Ughsmash (6967) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - FEB 9, 2012
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bomber. Poured medium chocolatey-brown with a short-lived, but easily-resuscitated smoked beige head. There was a lot going on in the aroma.. redder vinous notes and charred oak led, with sweet bourbon and dark molasses not far behind.. black pepper and a hit of smoked peat deep down.. warm, but not unreasonably so.. really nice. The flavor found a base of milk chocolates and molasses with accents of sweet vanilla, bourbon, and tangy oak.. chocolates and cocoa come back on toward the back, and ride delicious rye whiskey through the long, belly-warming finish. Heavier-bodied with low carbonation on the palate.. oily and coating in a good way.. the boozage was well-masked.. excellent brew!
Marsiblursi (2974) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - FEB 7, 2012
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
(Bottle) Pours dark brown to black with almost no head. The aroma is oaky up front with butter, wood, vanilla, light coconut and light dill. Chocolate and mild caramel. Undertones of cinnamon, brown sugar, molasses, dark cherries and dark fruits like raisins and prunes. Soft, mild and creamy on the nose. The flavour is light to medium sweet and light to medium bitter. Oaky and chocolaty. Undertones of brown sugar, dark fruits and hints of cinnamon. The mouthfeel is super silky, round and light oily with a light carbonation. Some tannins and alcohol on the finish. Medium to full bodied.
hallinghansen (1720) - Odense S, DENMARK - FEB 6, 2012
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Dark brown body with a small head. Aroma is roast, tobacco, dark fruit, bourbon. Flavor is chocolate, roast, tobacco, booze.
peteinSD (1227) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 28, 2012
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle very generously provided by Amy - many thanks! Pours a dark brown with a quickly fading tan head that reduces to a ring of foam on the edges of the glass. Steady ebb of carbonation. Aroma is up front dry rye followed by sweet brandy before giving way to clean, sharp bourbon with distinct vanilla, a bit of oak, and lingering bourbon over smooth, sweet malt into the finish. The aroma reminds me of Bagby’s last stand at PP Carlsbad. Taste is a rye/brandy melange with distinct, soft bourbon notes over sweet malt with some roast/leather (perhaps the tobacco character suggested), just a whisper of alcohol heat, and a pleasant caramel/toffee flavor. Clean, coating mouthfeel with only a smidge of oxidization toward the final third of the flavor profile and it doesn’t make the beer any worse for the wear IMHO. Certainly the various barrel influences must have been more distinct when this beer was first released but I do not get the sense that the beer is "over the hill" or degraded to the point of meaningfully detracting from the drinking experience. Perhaps the beer is getting close to the tipping point but there is a well-integrated smoothness to the overall blend and the dominating barrel aromas/flavors that I’m really enjoying. Firestone Walker is so good at pulling off barrel aged beers like blended wines. Excellent beer and I’m glad to have enjoyed a bottle. Cheers Firestone Walker!
Gription79 (2127) - Bountiful, Utah, USA - DEC 30, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
22 ounce bottle at Utah holiday tasting. A great rich malty beer. Notes of plum, dark stone fruits, vanilla, and hints of port. A great big beer that needs to be shared.
Savvy1982 (1705) - Lethbridge, Alberta, CANADA - NOV 28, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle at javit’s Birthday Tasting: Pours clear tawny, with a deep brown hue; forms a very thin pale tan head, and no lacing is apparent; clearly softly carbonated. Nose is barrel, old leather, tobacco, jam, and smoke. Flavours of tobacco, tar, red licorice, sweet tea, creosote; a bit sweeter than I’d have liked, but otherwise wonderfully complex.
wagman (14) - - NOV 23, 2011
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: NOV 29, 2011 Had during a 10-15 vertical on 11/20/11. This was my favorite from the tasting. Dark brown with no head. Aroma was great. Sweet coffee, vanilla, bourbon, and alcohol. Very smooth taste with hints of coffee. You can taste the alcohol on the back of your tongue which I found enjoyable. Great beer.
cpetrone84 (1160) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 22, 2011
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Pours a black liquid with hints of red on the edges and a slightly bubly tan colored head. The nose has hints of peat, notes of caramel, some dried fruits, light dark malts and an almost vinous quality. Dark fruits are brighter in the flavor, plums and figs, hints of ash and notes of roasted malts, light chocolate and bourbon with a bitter aspect with a thin finish. Medium body, light carb and slightly oxidized.
ksurkin (1021) - Norfolk, Virginia, USA - AUG 8, 2011
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
22oz gold foiled bottle courtesy of jbeatty. thanks, james! pours a deep, dark, cola-brown with shades of russet on the edges and a smooth, khaki head that leaves sharp rings of oily lace. aroma is simply fantastic with rich, brandied dark fruit notes of prune, fig, black cherry, and plum backed by decadent toffee, vanilla, and belgian chocolate with smooth notes of oaked bourbon and tobacco popping as it warms. flavor is absolutely wonderful as well, the aging has done wonders for the balance, with rich, sweet toffee, chocolate macadamia nut cookies, and vanilla up front backed by toasted coconut, charred oak, and spicy bourbon with dark fruit notes of black cherry, plum, and figs ahead of the slightly smokey, spirited finish. palate is medium bodied with smooth carbonation but avoids being syrupy and closes with a touch of boozy warmth. overall, another masterful blend from FW.
craftycarl21 (2115) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - JUL 30, 2011
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle at Ebenezer’s. Black pour with a tan head. Nose of fantastic prune, plum, vanilla, milk chocolate, and wood. The flavor has HUGE caramel, mocha and fig. Awesome. Hot but smooth. Amazing.