I was up in Orono, Maine bringing a friend to a college orientation at U-Maine, and to kill the time I went in search of record stores and little beverage centers. Originally drawn to a record store which, oddly enough was only closed on Thursdays (the day I was there) I walked back to my car and spotted… a beverage center. I of course, had to check this out, and I was impressed with the beer selection! The really knowledgeable guy in the store recommended several Weyerbacher brews to me, so don’t be surprised if a few follow in sequence. Specifically, there is an oak-barrel aged version of the Blithering Idiot called “Insanity” that I’ll be reviewing tomorrow to compare.

Anyhow, onto the Blithering Idiot. First of all, awesome name. I admit, I’m a sucker for good names. Blithering Idiot is a phrase that you yell at your friend when they are so drunk that they’re playing in traffic or table dancing. “You blithering idiot! Get off that table!” Hehe.

This is a barley wine with a very drinkable taste! It is sweet and smooth and mild, it even has some vanilla and malty flavors. It isn’t overly strong, you’re not hit in the head with the taste of the alcohol like most barleywines I’ve tried. It is an 11% ABV, but you wouldn’t know it by taste. The carbonation is pretty low, so it is smooth and syrupy. This would go really well with a fine dinner or an intellectual conversation, or a sophisticated date… I would like to have more of this to just sip slowly – I highly recommend this as an entry level barleywine – impress your friends with the complexity and qualtiy of this… It’s an experience.

P.S. The alcohol in this sneaks up on you! As I write this, my typos are multiplying…. anyhoo, stay tuned for an Insanity review – what happens when you age barleywine in brandy casks. Should be fun!