Sunday, February 21, 2010

Vertical Tasting of Sierra Nevada's Bigfoot

You would think that with SF Beer Week going on, we would be to our limit with tasting beer. But when 4 friends come to town and 2 of them come in by past midnight before Toronado's Barleywine Festival, you know we had to break out something tasty.

SO we tried a vertical of Sierra Nevada's Bigfoot Barleywine- years 08, 09 & 10. All 9.6% abv.

Bigfoot 2010- Poured a clear orangish teak. Smelled very floral with notes of grass, lemon, citrus and not too much hop character. It tasted like bitter grapefruit, citrus, pine and leaves a large hoppy bitterness on the back of the tongue. Pretty good drinkability.

Bigfoot 09- poured the same orange brown with a shade darker than the 2010 version. It smelled hoppier than the 2010, more malt flavors, grapefruit. It smelled the best out of all three.
It tasted of hops, bitter grapefruit skin, citrus, some light toffee and malt flavors.

Bigfoot 08- the darkest color of them all- dark copper orange. It smelled of more malt characters than hops- toffee, vanilla, caramel and light citrus. It tasted more bitter than the 09 with more flavors of bitter grapefruit skin, light malt and citrus.

Overall, my favorite was the 2009 Bigfoot for it's fantastic malt/hop balance. The 2010 is great for a fresh barleywine that is still $10 a six pack, which is amazing. It's a good barleywine to start with if you have never had one before. It's also a good beer to have your first vertical with, as it is not too expensive and you can definitely tell the difference in the age of each. 

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