Three new barleywines. Three new brands with quite a few offerings.
Stone Old Guardian 2011 - loads of hops and malts, and worthy of aging in your "cellar"
Stone Old Guardian Belgo Barley Wine - the same malts and hops from the Old Guardian, but with belgian yeast. So far, I've loved all the belgo beers from Stone, where they've added belgian yeast to their already delicious recipes.
Smuttynose Barleywine (2nd available from their Big Beer Series, the first available in Chicago was a Baltic Porter I never got my hands on).
Firestone-Walker is here! And, along with the distribution of their beers comes distribution of Nectar Ales, a brewery that Firestone-Walker have owned since 2003. So far, I've seen the Firestone-Walker Double Jack Imperial IPA and the Barrel aged Porter on tap in Chicago. Quite a few others are available around town, and surely some in bottles. Nectar Ales introduced include their Hemp Ale, Red Nectar, and Nectar IPA.
Brown Angel (strong hoppy Brown ale), Clementine (belgian style wit), Eagle Claw Fist (imperial amber), and Hoppy Feet (black IPA). Clown Shoes is just a year old, and has already made it into the Chicago market. I wonder if there's a best/worst brewery name of the year award?