Tag Archives: Great Divide

Great Divide Old Ruffian Barley Wine-Style Ale

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Old Ruffian is a medal-winning barleywine ale from the Great Divide Brewing Company out of Denver, Colorado. They say that it’s hop-forward, but this is no West-Coast IPA. It pours a rich, semi-translucent copper with a thin head, which is to be expected from a barleywine as they are only lightly carbonated. The nose is sweet, with notes of dark fruit (figs and raisins) and toffee. This is a well hopped ale, and the sweet caramel and sugary fruit in the middle is beautifully balanced by the strong hoppy citrus notes of orange zest. The malt comes back to the fore in the finish with brown sugar and plums, and a bit of heat from the alcohol right at the last. The body is heavy and the alcohol is high, at 10.2% ABV. Barleywines aren’t my favorite, but this is an outstanding example of the style with enough hops to make it enjoyable to any palate. This is a very fine beer.

I give it a 4.7 out of 5.

Great Divide Oatmeal Yeti

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Oatmeal Yeti is an Imperial Stout based on Great Divide’s Yeti Imperial Stout, but with the addition of rolled oats to soften the bite of the roasted malt and raisins to give it some rich, almost Belgian fruity notes. It pours nearly black, like heavily used motor oil, with a thick, dark, chocolatey brown head. The notes I get in the nose are chocolate and figs and a hint of coffee. The middle is rich, heavy, smooth and dusty with the flavors of the oats, raisins, a bit of cherry, and some oak. The finish has more oak, some coffee, and sweet chocolate syrup. This is a big, heavy beer, that could honestly be mistaken for a meal. The alcohol content is fairly high too, at 9.5% ABV. I’ve reviewed a lot of good beer lately, and this is no exception. I love big oatmeal stouts and this is an outstanding example.

I give it a 4.7 out of 5.