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Michael Heniff's picture

Colonel Kernel

May, 2016
Judges Rating: 
23 / 24
4 / 6
37 / 40
10 / 10
Overall Impression: 
20 / 20

This bourbon barrel-aged Barleywine comes in at an astounding 14.8% ABV. The name is a homonym, referring to one of the ingredients: Corn (don’t worry, you can’t taste the corn in this one!). Upon pouring, the beer is brown and muddy with a wisp of head that quickly fades. The aroma is very strong, rich and complex: bourbon, vanilla and toasted oak notes, raisin and prune esters, abundant pleasant ethanol, sherry and madeira elements and caramel and bready malt all intermingle beautifully. In the flavor, the sherry and madeira become more apparent and along with the dried fruits and bready malt, this beer becomes reminiscent of a well-cellared Thomas Hardy’s but with a bourbon slant. The beer finishes with a lingering, lightly sweet bready maltiness, plenty of bourbon and a long-lasting, pleasant warmth.  Crank up the air conditioner, light the fireplace and enjoy this very strong, rich and complex Barleywine.