lucklys (62) - Chandler, Arizona, USA - APR 11, 2011
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
The Velvet Merlin poured a velvety dark chocolate brown with no visible carbonation; sparkling ruby highlights shone from the liquid near the bottom of the glass when situated in front of the light. Through a tame pour, a nice 3-finger thick head of fallow colored foam built and held with great retention and slowly melted into a creamy softness. It left minimal threads of clean beige lacing along the glass. * * *
In the nose, there was a good amount of thick dark chocolate, lightly roasted coffee, gently toasted malts, hints of a dark caramel toffee, and dusty oatmeal. The aroma was slightly bitter, but also quite sweet, and a very faint vanilla aroma rose as it warmed and aided in keeping the overall scent on the smoother side. There was nothing complex or intimidating about Merlinís scent, and I found it to be much lighter than most other stouts, oatmeal or not. With all of the bitter-sweetness and smoothness emanating from the nose, however, I was really looking forward to trying it. * * *
Unfortunately, the first few sips tasted primarily of a chalky burnt coffee and were rather unappealing, but after a few more swallows, the chalkiness smoothed into a bittersweet chocolate covered in dusty oats. Toasted malts and something charred came up a little later in the background and lasted throughout the drink, hints of a caramel toffee and wood notes also became present, but stayed fairly well hidden. The aroma was definitely more promising than the taste, what with the body being a little on the thinner side with a moderate amount of carbonation Ė which kept it creamy, but also slightly diluted in mouthfeel. There was virtually no aftertaste due to the thinness of the beer, and it left my mouth pretty dry and hoping for more. Overall, it was a little more acrid than I would have liked, especially after distinguishing all of the sweet smells, but I guess that comes with the territory. I also would have liked to see it with a little more body, but with the low alcohol (5.50%) and even lower IBUs (30) , it was a fairly quaffable stoutÖjust not one of my favorites. Iím a fan of many of Firestone Walkerís other delicious brews, so Iím a little disappointed that this wasnít as good as I expected. Perhaps next time Iíll have to try it during the fall or winter, as it may just be because itís 6 months old and fading.
ilovedarkbeer (2145) - Dallas, Texas, USA - DEC 17, 2013
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a black brown color with a lacy light brown head notes of roasted malt, dark chocolate, Oreo cookie, and earth caramel hops. Very well balanced.
jhamp9 (882) - Corinth, Texas, USA - DEC 17, 2013
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Black pour with a nice khaki head that slowly fades to a ring. Aroma is roast, milk chocolate, and a little coffee. Taste is dark roasted malts, and baking cocoa with a black coffee finish. Silky palate. Easy drinker.
patrickfannon (1205) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 15, 2013
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Drinking it alone because I am feeling depressed and, you know, fuck it. Pours cola black with a creamy beige head. Aroma of smoke, oatmeal, and ocean air. Taste is roasty and smoky, with a creamy, somewhat lactic finish. Much thinner than I had expected. Decent, but not great.
kaser (1789) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 14, 2013
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Firestone does it again. Great stout. Draft at standard bar and grill. Creamy chocolate and coffee flavors. Black pour with no head from draft. Smooth and flows like choclate milk
harrymel (820) - Spokane, Washington, USA - DEC 12, 2013
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours nice dark brown with a solid sheet of light graham foam. Nose is dry and oaty with a solid stout biscuit and cracker malt profile with hints of cocoa and just the slightest hint of herbal hops. Flavor follows suit with great roasty flavors and simply tastes like a great all around stout. Medium on thin bodied with hi carb for the style. I like mine a little smoother just toning down the carb or upping the body. Good beer, very drinkable and easily available. Happy to have this around and happy to drink when available.
Serving type: bottle
Fritz123 (566) - Boca Raton, Florida, USA - DEC 11, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle at Aces and ales Vegas. snifter. Jet black pour with short lasting head. No lace. Roasted malts, chocolate and caramel nose. Taste is similar. Medium full body.
SPDickerman (830) - Texas, USA - DEC 10, 2013
4.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Pours black with a large pillowy tan head. Smells of chocolate and roast. Taste is chocolate, roast, hints of coffee. Full-bodied with a smooth texture and soft mouth-carbonation, Firestone Walker Velvet Merlin finishes with a touch of roast dryness.
HIGHB4LL (38) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - DEC 10, 2013
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: DEC 13, 2013 12 oz. bottle. Appearance: moderate sized tan head that diminishes quickly, poor lacing, deep brown to black color, little bit cloudy. Aroma: very malty, oatmeal, milk chocolate, caramel. Palate: full body, lively carbonation, thin texture, slightly bitter and lasting finish. Taste: medium sweetness, light bitterness, slightly savory. Overall a very drinkable stout with an excellent aroma.
joeworrall (49) - USA - DEC 8, 2013
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Poured from a 12 oz bottle, itís totally opaque with a thin brown head. Nice coffee & toasted barley aroma, the taste adds some bitter chocolate & lemony hop notes. Nicely carbonated mouthfeel.
Jasond612 (171) - Phila, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 8, 2013
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
12/6/13 $4.19 bottle at CBO. Poured black with a medium khaki head. Smokiness, roastiness, coffee, chocolate. Awesome!!
Taste is similar to the toast. Again AWESOME! Thick creamy mouthfeel. A great stout!!!!
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