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Firestone Walker 15 (XV)

Serve in Snifter, Tulip


on tap

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RATINGS: 380   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.03   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 375   ABV: 12.5%
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As a finished beer, XV is alive with amazing complexity and yet it is quite possibly the most integrated and seamless blend yet. Looking at a blend of 8 beers on paper at first looks chaotic and potentially disjointed; however, a closer look reveals and interesting theme: 76% Barley Wine style beers, 19% Stout and 5% Imperial IPA. XV introduces our new blonde barley wine Helldorado with flavors of lavender honey liqueur. The well established DDBA delivers its signature American toasted oak, English caramel toffee and light leather nuances. 2010 vintage Sticky Monkey folds in brown sugar, maple, cinnamon, ginger and ripe figs. Parabola brings the familiar flavors of roasted dark coco, and chocolate covered cherries. Velvet Merkin carries silky milk chocolate, toasted coconut and creamy textures. Good Foot and Bravo add assertive barley wine warmth and lush barrel derived vanilla bean notes. The game changer this year is the addition of Double Jack to the blend. At just 5% its massive dry hop character brings citrus zest, tangerine and mango aromas making this a completely new beer. The beer is unfiltered and unfined, so there will be a small amount of sediment in the bottom of the bottle. XV is best enjoyed poured carefully into a half-filled brandy snifter or wine glass. Allow it to warm to 55F to fully enjoy the pleasing and complex aromas. As the beer sits and breathes in the glass, a richer, orange zested, chocolate dusted, vanilla custard character is reveled, so take your time. If you wait to open your bottle later, store it in a cool dark place. I suspect that this beer will age well and change favorably for years to come. It was an absolute pleasure in the making and I truly hope you enjoy our Sixth oak-aged blend! Our journey continues and it’s just as fun and exciting now as it was back in 1996.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
daleharshman (949) - San Diego, California, USA - FEB 3, 2014
Bottle purchased at the brewery in Paso Robles in November 2011 ($). Enjoying this nicely-aged beauty just a few days after my 40th birthday. Pours a murky red-brown hue with a thin layer of beige foam. AROMA of dark caramel and toffee, brown sugar, brandy, bourbon-covered dark candied fruit, marshmallow, and vanilla. FLAVOR is nicely complex with various notes of dark toffee, pipe tobacco, oaky bourbon, maple syrup, vanilla, sticky molasses, and chocolate-covered maraschino cherries. The Double Jack must have fallen out over the 2+ years since this was bottled is there is little not really any detectable hoppiness to be found. Boozy finish with sweet-ish bourbon/brandy notes. Another excellent blend from the fine folks in Paso! (351, 838)

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 13/20
Odysseyalien (47) - New Jersey, USA - JAN 26, 2014
Firestone Walker's biggest competitor is Firestone Walker. This 15th Anniversary bottle is two years old and has aged well. The alcohol is still hot though the flavors have blended well in two years. Still, while this is a delicious strong ale or barleywine, it competes in my book with their Sucaba offering which is an amazing English barleywine. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
high_on_hops (709) - Burlingame, California, USA - JAN 22, 2014
Pours a solid black with a brown head and lacing. It has a rich aroma and flavor of caramel and some chocolate but is overall somewhat mellow with the perfect amount of carbonation. It's aged well. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
ericdevin (961) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - JAN 9, 2014
Draft at Bier Stein, Eugene. Pours a medium brown, little to no head. Almost no aroma, maybe a hint of booze, no wood. Meh. Body somewhat lively and brandy tasting. Kind of seems like it broke down, not bad but pretty disappointing for what it could be.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
dfearnley (1113) - Alberta, CANADA - JAN 4, 2014
UPDATED: JUL 11, 2014 Bottle to tulip Caramel, vanilla, pepper, and bourbon. Reddish brown with no head. Chocolate, coffee, bourbon, and boozy. Relating: Bottle to plastic taster at the RBAG14 warmup ... FW Anniversay Vertical Salt, caramel, lots of malt. Dark brown, no head. Pepper, light salt, vanilla, and bourbon. Great with a cookie!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Ferris (6216) - Burnaby, British Columbia, CANADA - JAN 4, 2014
Bottle - Vintage 2011 - Chocolate, toasted malts and a ton of caramel. Cloudy brown with a thin beige head. Caramel, chocolate, oaky notes with a bit of bourbon. A nice but not exciting brew.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
kbudd19 (776) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - JAN 4, 2014
Bottle. Dark brown pour. Aroma - lots of complexity, oak, hops, sweetnes. Taste - barley wine, spirits, malts very nice. Very bourbon and spirits forward. Tasty

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
LoFi (1637) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - JAN 2, 2014
Bottle from trade with MtGoat, cheers!Dark brown with a beige head. Aroma : toffee, fruity, licorice and candy, vanilla, toffee. Taste : malty, toffee, vanilla, licorice, fruity, more candy, nuts, brown sugar. Pretty full-bodied. Very well-balanced and tasty.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
annunz123 (899) - Taunton, Massachusetts, USA - DEC 22, 2013
Barley wine aroma, with malt, vanilla, wood, and some dark fruit. Rich, malty flavor with vanilla, chocolate, nuts, and fruit. A little coffee bitterness and some heavy alcohol in the finish. Not as over the top as some of the other bourbon barrel stuff I’ve tried, and I think that’s a good thing. The aging adds some complexity and flavor without totally overpowering everything. This is a really good beer.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
harrymel (1524) - Spokane, Washington, USA - DEC 16, 2013
14 was one of my favorite beers last year, let’s see how this year’s blend is. Pours nice brown with a caramel ring and spotted surface. No lace. Excellent clarity. Whiskey, bourbon, oak, vanilla, fudge, nougat and figs. Flavor is heavy on the vanilla/bourbon character with some nice malty caramel and toffee. Heavy beer with smooth carb and a long mouth watering finish. Good beer. Not worth the $20+ price tag. Serving type: bottle 03-07-2012

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