wedgie9 (1929) - Nashville, Tennessee, USA - DEC 12, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tasted on 12/12/11 from a 12oz bottle sent to me as an extra by a very generous trader, 2010 vintage. I have been waiting to pop this bottle in hopes that I would some day find my old rating for the Velvet Merkin, and I just found it in a stack of old papers. Pours a nearly black dark brown with a thick, smooth tan head that slowly recedes to spotty lace. The nose is full of dark chocolate, ground coffee, and very light hints of vanilla and maple bourbon, with a bit of a creamy milk chocolate note as well. The flavor is full of dark chocolate and freshly ground coffee, with vanilla, maple, and caramel, and the lactic milk chocolate coming through stronger than on the nose. The body is full and creamy with lively, stinging carbonation, and a long, milk chocolate, coffee, and light vanilla finish.
bpreo (1609) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - DEC 7, 2011
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
A nice Oatmeal Stout. Not the best because the Oatmeal flavor is not very distinct. Still leagues above most other beers though.
bblack99 (526) - Kansas City, Missouri, USA - DEC 6, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
6 pack from an October trip to Colorado, tasted with 11 other stouts (finished 3rd). Pitch black with a moderate tan head. Aroma is extremely dark roast coffee (nearly burnt) and just a touch of bourbon. Flavor and texture are well-rounded, with a creamy body and loads of depth. Dark chocolate layers well on top of coffee and earthy hops.
Nik925 (751) - California, USA - DEC 6, 2011
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: SEP 13, 2014 **** rated this one with some confusion about merkin back in 2011. This is solid sweet stout. Nothing special like the magical merkin.
I heard a lot about this one - not sure why, wasn’t hard to find at all - had it at Trader Joe’s. Disappointingly looks nothing like the picture on the label. The aroma is pretty good. The flavor is surprising...while pretty middle of the road, it tastes a lot like just alcohol and burnt malt. Very hard to pick up on any barrel flavors. Hard to pick out the hops but they sit nicely with all the burnt malt.
skmikeg (900) - Poway, California, USA - DEC 4, 2011
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a near black with a creamy, foamy tan head. aroma is of coffee, coco, some hops, and some vanilla overtones. flavor is of coffee, dark chocolate, roasted malts, some hop bitterness, and some vanilla in the background. Has a medium body with a creamy mouthfeel and a dry, bitter coffee finish. overall, a very tasty and sessionable oatmeal stout that is my favorite beer from Firestone I have tried.
michaelinwa (590) - Bothell, Washington, USA - DEC 3, 2011
2.2 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Hugely overrated stout. Aroma is low, head is ample, taste is dry without anything whatsoever to stand out and make me want to try this again. Not one to buy again.
JoeTheYounger (1144) - Lake Arrowhead, California, USA - NOV 29, 2011
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Dark black with small off white head. Aroma is toasted grains and mild roast. Taste is perfect roast and mild oak. Awesome session stout.
mrmartin (669) - New York, New York, USA - NOV 15, 2011
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Dark brown pour with creamy tan head. Nose is light hints of coco and coffee. Creamy but relatively light body. Coffee and dry chocolate. Semisweet malts. Mellow, slightly dry finish. Good drinking and not too heavy.
briangray77 (14) - Colorado, USA - NOV 13, 2011
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
(12 oz. bottle) Pours inky brown. Nice caramel color in the head, which dissipates quickly and leaves minimal lacing - all acceptable in the style. Aroma definitely moves with temperature: bitter cocoa and espresso notes dominate when chilled, and cellar temp brings out improved complexity - dark chocolate, burnt carmel, and very subtle vanilla. Oatmeal contributes to a nice mouth feel, but I didn’t catch must impact on flavor. Dark chocolate taste, and over-strong coffee flavor lingers well into the finish. Other than the subtle vanilla nose, I don’t catch much impact of the oak aging. Fantastic dry stout with great bittering in the finish.
talon1117 (1152) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - NOV 9, 2011
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
The pour is nearly black with a moderate, tan, creamy head which does settle to nearly nothing and leaves minimal lace. The nose is as the description suggests with some espresso notes, cocoa, dark chocolate, toasted oats, and faint burnt caramel. The flavor is similar with dark chocolates, dark coffee roast, some burnt caramels, toasted oats, and soft floral notes. The palate is lively, silky, drying, and light to moderate in body. The finish is quick and dry with cocoa, more caramels, and lingering dry floral and coffee. Very nice table strength stout with rich dark malt notes, silky smooth palate, and balancing bitterness. I would like to try something similar with a bit more strength. I didn’t really notice any bourbon barrel notes but nicely done anyway.