Schlafly Reserve Barleywine-style Ale (2007)March 1, 2008
St. Louis Brewery
Available: MO, IL
This limited-release beer is aged on new Missouri oak. Schlafly Beer was born in 1991. The company brews 34 different beers, of which it typically serves six or more at a time.
Original Gravity: 23.2
Settle down in your favorite armchair for this astonishing beer that weighs in at 10.2% alcohol by volume. It has a deep burnished gold color and a massive aroma of dried fruit—raisins, sultana and figs, with smoky, oak notes from maturation in wood. Sweet, luscious fruit and warming alcohol fill the mouth and coat the tongue with a powerful balance of juicy malt and bitter, spicy hops. There is a pronounced wood/vanilla note in the finish, with sweet fruit, malt and spicy hops. Sumptuous—and best enjoyed in a brandy snifter. Drink one now and lay another down for a few years. Should be fun.
- Roger Protz
Pouring an attractive, full orange color, this beer stands a rocky off-white head. The bottle doesn’t mention the provenance of the oak involved, but the nose says “new American,” full of vanilla and coconut. The palate is sweet and full-bodied, with just enough bitterness to pull it into balance. It finishes sweetly with a lilt of fruit, and oak glows in the aftertaste. Subtle it isn’t, but it is well-structured and smooth, so if you love oaky beers, this one’s for you. It would make a fine match for a rich preparation of duck.
- Garrett Oliver
Roger Protz is the author of Complete Guide to World Beer and 300 Beers to Try Before You Die. He is a respected beer authority and editor of the CAMRA Good Beer Guide.
Internationally recognized brewer and expert on traditional beer, Garrett Oliver is the brewmaster of the Brooklyn Brewery and the author of The Brewmaster's Table.
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