I was very excited when I saw the Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine for the first time at Ted’s Butcherblock on Saturday. I had only heard the legends of this beer, but I never thought it would make its way to South Carolina. Sierra Nevada has been a long-time favorite of mine, and their pale ale was my first real introduction to hoppy beer. So when I saw the Bigfoot at Ted’s, I nearly wet myself with excitement.
Right off the bat, this beer introduces itself as a Sierra Nevada. You can smell the signature Cascade hops right through the malty aroma. The hops doesn’t disappoint in the taste, either. It has an extremely hop assertiveness throughout. They say it has 90 IBU and I believe it. You can tell there’s a heavy malt character in there somewhere, but it is buried underneath the hops.
For a hop-head like myself, the Bigfoot is a great beer. If you prefer something more velvety, like a more traditional barleywine, this might not be the beer for you. You might find the Flying Dog Horn Dog more appealing with its malty, almost wine-like feel. (That is not meant as a criticism. The Horn Dog is very good in a different way.) However, if you’re ready to bring some hop-induced thunder, bring on the Bigfoot!