Notes from January, 2004, and a bottle just brought back from Wisconsin:
Cloudy appearance, a dep amber, a light burgundy, a soft orange playground for the delight I know wait within, and the foam is a sturdy well-retained creamy cap.
Aroma, sharp, ripe fruit, brandy, like boozed-up cherries, sharp, strong, utterly fruity, ...fantastically glorious, so inticing that I need a drink, and wait, here is one, under my nose!
Taste: a hell of a mouthfeel, oh, it fills you, with a full, lush malt, pow, pow, powerful, no baby-steps in the sipping here, no kid-gloves, the ripe fruit, plus intense flavor and full alcohol starts right off, with no relenting. And it continues, ever hotter, like warmed-up cognac, and it nearly stings, it's spicy, kicky, wow, wow, wow...much more than I expect, going into any barleywine. Rich, ripe, tasty fruit continues...I almost run out of things to say, this pleases so generally and so well, ...you've got to be serious about it, with a 750ml of this bomb-a-long-a-ding-dong! Taste gets richer, riper, fruitier...ever-more delicious, if not terrifically strong, too...my last tipple of the night, if that was a question.
Tasty, lip-smackingly delicious...I've got to end it there.