RATINGS: 408   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.04/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 375   ABV: 12.5%
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 its just as fun and exciting now as it was back in 1996.

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   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
deyholla (10926) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JAN 15, 2012
Bottle thanks to my Secret Santa. Pours a slightly hazy dark brown with a slight amber hue and a caramel brown head that dissipates to the edges. Aroma has notes of sweet grains, caramel, burnt marshmallow and a hint of backing coconut and orange zest. Flavor begins sweet with caramel and burnt marshmallow but has a good amount of coconut, oak and toffee in the finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
pineypower (3217) - Ocean County, New Jersey, USA - JAN 14, 2012
Bottle, shared with Dmac, and also picked up at Canals Marlton. Pours out a dark rootbeer brown, bordering on black with a thing slightly off white head. Aroma is of bourbon, vanilla, sweet candy, wood, chocolate and some alcohol on the background. Taste is all about complexity, lots going on here. Vanilla, oak, cocoa, light coffee, bourbon, sweet caramel, honey, toast, light bitterness with a slight warming alcohol note on the finish. Once again a great anniversary blend.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
italianjohn (3038) - Penndel, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 14, 2012
Deep brown pour thin beige creamy bubbly head light lacing .... aroma is of vanilla/bourbon, tobacco, oak and caramel malts/toffee .... taste is complex with vanilla/bourbon, oaky, tobacco, dark fruits (figs), caramel malts and lightly roasted/chocolate ... smooth and creamy mouthfeel ... finishes dry with some bitter hops and some warming abv ... good balance so well put together and the abv is hidden fairly well

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
bhensonb (14762) - Woodland, California, USA - JAN 11, 2012
Bomber from the Novato BevMo. Pours deeply ruddy with flashing garnet glints. Head is 3 finger creamy dark beige. Aroma is primarily chocolate. Its almost like theres orange/cherry under the chocolate. Full bodied. The alcohol is like another flavor. In a way this is like a fruit filled chocolate covered liqueur. Very, very smooth. Getting cherry and orange. Its hovering on the edge of sweet, but theres enough hop to keep it there. I could ramble on, but lets just say its a wonderful dark beer that is incredibly easy to drink.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
drfabulous (7396) - Lexington, Kentucky, USA - JAN 7, 2012
22 ounce from Pear Deli, Seattle. I saw it. I bought it. Big bourbon and vanilla taste. Small tan head fades quickly. Lots of wood in there, but lots of vanilla as well. Very tasty.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
keepersj12 (3085) - Sicklerville, New Jersey, USA - JAN 7, 2012
This is really nice. The key is to allow it to warm. it pours a mahogany with red highlights, thin swirling head. It has a complex aroma with caramel, fruit, vanilla, oak, booze among others. The flavor has all of the above with each sip releasing something else onto your tongue. Wildly creative, looking forward to 16.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
nyindiansfan (463) - rochester, New York, USA - JAN 7, 2012
Bottle.Pours a dark brown with a bit of small head. Smells and tastes of caramel, chocolate, coffee, roasty, alcohol, vanilla, bourbon. clear, medium sweetness, lightly bitter, medium body, oily feel, flat. Over all I was hoping for a lot more then I got. It wasnt all that great I mean better then lots of beers but hardly worth the price. Maybe I just wasnt in the mood for it it was good but over rated?

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
IanIPA (20) - Tinley Park, Illinois, USA - JAN 6, 2012
On tape at the Tribes Alehouse in a snifter. It poured a dark brown color but oddly see through. You could taste all the barley wine, stout and IPA all at once which was good but didnt help to much. It was almost overly malty. The taste was almost to strong on the malts but didnt have any of the other flavors I felt it should have. Over all I feel like Firestone should have made a better beer for their 15th

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
hopdog (12083) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 6, 2012
22oz bottle. Poured a dark brown color with a small sized off white head. aromas of nuts, wood, roast, caramel, chocolate, and dark fruits. Tastes of dark fruits, caramel, roast, vanilla, and some wood.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
jeff789 (1408) - West Chester, Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 6, 2012
Big nearly black beer with no head to speak of... Big big big slightly sweet bourbon creamy aroma with notes of vanilla roast dark fruits, exceptionally complex, as the bourbon is big but not overpowering... Deftly blended with notes of dark fruits, vanilla, woods, cream, roast, bourbon, brandy... Full bodied but not overly full bodied, each sip begs you to come back for more with complex flavors, super silky body... Quite possibly the best barrel aged beer ive had...

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