Feb 10, 2014

Uinta Anniversary Barley Wine Ale

The only other barleywine that I’ve had from Utah’s Uinta Brewing was back in 2010 or so. It was their bourbon barrel-aged Cockeyed Cooper and, while I don’t quite remember the specifics, I do recall it being just ok. I had high hopes for the beer — I believe it was my first barrel aged barleywine so expectations my have been astronomical. At any rate, the company has another barleywine available that I just ran into not too long ago.

Anniversary Barley Wine Ale was first brewed many years ago as a one off, but is now available year-round and is more readily available than it’s barrel-aged version. At 10.4% ABV it’s certainly not a small beer by any means and could do with a little cellaring to not only mellow, but fully develop it’s flavors.


The beer pours a dark mahogany in color with a dense crown of tan foam.

Uinta Anniversary Barley Wine Ale photo


Caramel, bready malt, moderate sweetness, grapefruit, pine notes and a touch of alcohol fill the nose smoothly.


A strong pine and grapefruit combination leads the way for caramel, bread, grain and a solid amount of sweetness. There’s a moderate amount of hop bitterness present that tempers the sweetness a touch. The higher alcohol content leaves a glowing warmth in the chest. The brew finishes slightly dry and with the lingering tingle from the hop bite.


All in all, Anniversary Barley Wine Ale is what I would expect of an American barleywine. It has all of the characteristics including a solid hop character, big alcohol and malt sweetness. Just like it’s bigger, barrel-aged cousin, though, it too was just okay. The beer is a little rough around the edges, but I think would do well with a little time in the cellar.

Rating: 3.5/5

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