Thursday, December 29, 2011


Thomas Hardy’s Ale, a Barleywine by O'Hanlon's.

8.5 ounce bottle served in a wine glass. 11.7% alcohol by volume.

2005 vintage from the beer cellar. Number P14372.


Thomas Hardy's is my favorite beer. Unfortunately, it's been retired and is no longer in production. This was my final bottle, but a fourth day of Christmas prime rib dinner needed its traditional accompaniment. I savored this ale, sipping it and thinking about it and simply experiencing it throughout the meal.


The pour delivers a plum-brown body with no head and no carbonation.

The body is smooth and strong, focused around alcohol, brown sugar, dark fruits (especially figs).

Words fail me* as I try to explain a beer that is "to die for."

For me, it pairs perfectly with prime rib and au jus.


If you ever come across a bottle, I recommend that you pick it up and stash it away for a gray winter day.


*Although that obviously hasn't stopped me in the past. 2009. 2006.

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