Firestone Walker 16 (XVI Sixteenth Anniversary Ale)

RATINGS: 377   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.04/5   SEASONAL: Series   EST. CALORIES: 390   ABV: 13%
The Aging Cellar – The Components
We blended together 226 oak barrels and 8 different beers creating something truly complex and exceptional.

The following are descriptions of key components with their original code names:

Velvet Merkin (8.7% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon barrels
-Traditional Oatmeal Stout (23% of final blend)
OG= 15P FG=5.5 IBU=32.5 Color= Black / 15% Oats / Hopped with 100% US grown Fuggles

Stickee Monkee (12.5% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon and Brandy barrels
-English Barley Wine (22.5% of final blend)
OGP FG=5.4P IBU=45 Color=28 / Brewed with Mexican Turbinado (Brown) sugar

Double Double Barrel Ale (14.2% ABV) - Aged 100% in retired Firestone Union barrels
-Double strength English Pale Ale (20.3% of final blend)
OG=25.0P FG=5.1P IBU=30 Color=16 / A Double version of our flagship created by Ali Razi

Parabola (13% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon barrels
-Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout (10.8% of final blend)
OG=31P FG=8.5P IBU=80 Color=Black / Hopped with Simcoe, Bravo, Styrian Golding and East Kent Golding

PNC (13.0% ABV) - Aged in Tequila barrels
-American Strong Buckwheat Stout (8.1% of final blend)
OG = 25P FG = 5.0P IBU = 80 Color = 100 / Brewed with Buckwheat

Helldorado (11.5% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon Barrels and Brandy barrels
-Blonde Barley Wine (5.4% of final blend)
OG=24.7P FG=4.5P IBU=24 Color = 8 / Brewed with buckwheat honey & 100% El Dorado hops

Bravo (13.4% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon and Brandy barrels
-Imperial Brown Ale (5.4% of final blend)
OG=26.5 FG=7.7 IBU=35 Color=32 / Hopped with 100% US grown Fuggles

Wookey Jack (8.3% ABV)- 100% Fresh, Dank & Hoppy 100% Stainless Steel
-Black Rye India Pale Ale (4.5% of final blend)
OG= 18P FG = 3.0P IBU = 80 Color =black / Extremely hoppy double dry hopped BIPA

As a finished beer, XVI takes us back to some of the wonderful dark notes (the black keys) that I remember from the original 10 blending. XVI is 42% stout with Velvet Merkin, Parabola and “PNC” working together as three roasty toasty friends that create rich cacao, chocolate and mocha flavors together. “PNC” also introduces tequila barrels into our blend for the first time and brings some interesting south of the boarder spirit notes to the mix – a welcome twist. Helldorado, with flavors of lavender honey liqueur was again a favorite of the winemakers and made the cut adding some flowery notes. DDBA continues to deliver its signature American toasted oak, English caramel toffee and light leather nuances. DDBA was also release on its own in 2012 and is now established as a solid annual brew. Stickee Monkee is fast becoming one of our favorite pieces with its rich maple syrup, spicy cinnamon, and ripe fig flavors which has developed into a bolder cousin of perennial blend component Bravo who carries barrel character and bourbon notes like no other. The additional twist this year is Wookey Jack, Black Rye IPA with its wily citrusy hop notes and spicy rye backbone. The finished blend is unfiltered and unfined, so there will be a small amount of sediment in the bottom of the bottle. XVI is best enjoyed poured carefully into a half filled brandy snifter or red wine glass. Allow it to warm to 55F to fully enjoy the pleasing and complex aromas. It takes a while, but as this beer sits and breathes in the glass, more rich dusty chocolate, stone fruit and crème brulee character is reveled as the rich spirit characters fade - 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 Seventh oak-aged blend! The journey continues and its just as fun and exciting now as it was back in 1996. Thank you so much for spending a little time with us!

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50belair (3661) - Florida, USA - JUL 4, 2013
Bottle. Dark brown pour with an off white head. Boozy aromas. Sweet malts, bourbon, oak, vanilla, and tequila notes. For me, the tequila does not work well with this ale. Decent body and mouthfeel.

BeerandBlues2 (13594) - Escondido, California, USA - JUL 4, 2013
Bottle at home. Pours nearly opaque black with a medium, frothy beige head, medium to short retention with light to spare lacing. Aroma is a wonderful marriage of dark malts, roasted and chocolate with earthy and spicy coffee notes, prunes, plums, and raisins, figs, oak, bourbon, brown sugar and caramel, spicy and floral hops with peppery alcohol notes. Flavor is dark and bittersweet malts, dark dried fruits, medium hops and bitterness, warming and drying bourbon, oak notes and a dry finish. Full body and medium carbonation. This beer warms nicely and is one to sip and contemplate for a while.

Brouwerij (959) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JUN 29, 2013
Bottle. Pours a dark maroon brown with rapidly settling tan head, no lacing. Aroma is strong barrel, bourbon in particular, vanilla, sweet and boozy, mild roast. Flavor is bourbon, strong vanilla, mild fruit, plum, with a moderately roasted, chocolatey, mild hop finish. The darker tones and richness developed as it warmed, as did the hops. Fairly sweet and sticky, but pleasant. The alcohol is very well masked. Soft to moderate carbonation, medium to full body, and a mildly warm finish. Pricey but well done. Quite the creation, an excellent blend of intense beers.

flylikeabanana (179) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - JUN 29, 2013
Bottle pours a dark amber brown with a rapidly dissipating tan head. Aromas of fig, oak, vanilla, and cane sugar. Taste is sweet caramel with the slightest bit of hops. Notes of apple, chocolate, and bourbon. Very interesting--each sip brings new flavors. Palate is smooth and overall the alcohol is well masked.

sonnycheeba (6126) - Federal Hill, Baltimore, Maryland, USA - JUN 23, 2013
Tap. Pours deep, dark brown with a trace of creamy, off-white head. Aroma is cookie and caramel malts, sweetbread, figs, dates, and floral hops. Flavor is some dry malts, vanilla sweetness, dark fruit esters, oak, booze, faint hop bitterness and light toffee; dry finish. Medium body and low carbonation.

snoworsummer (5746) - baltimore, Maryland, USA - JUN 23, 2013
Draft. Pours almost opaque almost black. Tastes very sweet and raisiny, like grape nuts, molasses, toffee, dates. Medium body and carbonation. Smells like light raisins and caramel.

madmitch76 (25009) - , Essex, ENGLAND - JUN 23, 2013
4th May 2013
CBC. Clear deep amber beer, good pale tan head. Nose of vanilla wood and spice. Palate is airy and a little dry. Bourbon vanilla, light wood. A little brandy and red wine. Finishes light and dry. Doesn’t appear to have the complexity these anniversary beers normally have but then this is hardly the right conditions to appreciate something like this. Must revisit.

vvesside (256) - California, USA - JUN 17, 2013
Great blend of amazing beers. You continually pick up familiar flavors from so many of FW’s great brews.

Nuffield (4180) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - JUN 16, 2013
I’m really suspicious of the "blending" fad in brewing--rarely have I seen it pay off in terms of complexity. That’s true here. But as a barrel aged beer this is still really good. I wouldn’t call this "restrained" barrel aging but it isn’t over the top either. There’s a sippable quality if you like liquor. Good body--supported and vibrant, a little hot. Hedonistically very very good; as brewer skill, less stellar. Bottle.

jazz88 (2681) - San Francisco, California, USA - JUN 16, 2013
Bottle. Rated on 6/19/13. A dark brown color with a tan head. A nice rich chocolate aroma and well balanced bourbon aroma and flavor.

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