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§ucaba - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
§ucaba§ucaba

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

3,862 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,862
Reviews: 756
rAvg: 4.53
pDev: 8.61%
Wants: 1,026
Gots: 2,129 | FT: 192
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  12.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
2011 Reserve Series Bottle Notes:
O.G. 27 Plato
F.G. 4.7 Plato
I.B.U. 42 units
Yeast: British Ale (House)
Cases: 1500 produced
Color: 36SRM (Dark Ruby)

2014 Bottle Notes
O.G. 27 Plato
F.G. 4.7 Plato
I.B.U. 42 units
Yeast: British Ale (House)
Cases: 3500 produced
Color: 36SRM (Dark Ruby)

(Beer added by: SacoDeToro on 02-21-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,862 | Reviews: 756 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by zeledonia:
Photo of zeledonia
4.73/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2011 vintage (the last one called Abacus). Poured into a tulip.

Pours very deep amber. Looks like a typical barleywine on its way out of the bottle, but becomes nearly opaque in the glass. With light behind it, that same rusty amber re-appears. Half a finger of cream-colored head, gone fast, little lacing.

Has that amazing richness, warmth, and sweetness that good barrel-aged barleywines have, but there's something more here. The higher, sharper notes of the bourbon blend smoothly into the big fruity malt base. Plums, cherries, and other dark fruits abound. Vanilla oak notes float above it. Divine. One of those beers that made me say "wow" at first sniff.

Taste is much like the smell, only with some slightly sharper edges. Loads of dark fruits, dates more prominent here. Again it's quite oaky, with an impressively smooth bourbon twist throughout. Delicious, and amazingly mellow for such a big strong beer.

Mouthfeel is excellent. Heavy and sticky, but with more carbonation than I often find in barleywines. That fizz keeps the flavors moving, allowing me to savor them even more.

To date, the best barleywine I've had. Looking forward to drinking a few other bottles I have on deck to compare to it (King Henry, Mother of All Storms), but if they're better than this, I will be thoroughly impressed. I don't generally like barrel-aged beers, but I could drink this stuff for days (if it weren't 13%... is it really 13%? I get no alcohol burn at all). I need to get myself some more of this.

zeledonia, Apr 01, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of guityler83
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

2012

A: One finger of head formed when poured from the bomber into a snifter glass and fell in under a minute leaving behind a small ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass. The foam is tan in color and made of medium sized bubbles mostly. Nice alcohol legs are kicked up on the edge of the glass when swirled, but very little foam. The beer is a deep mahogany color and that color only comes through with a back lite.

S: Sweet bourbon dominates the nose with oak and vanilla right behind it, medium levels. Raisins and prunes with sweet plums come next at mild levels. A light spicy hop character. Candy raisins and toffee notes also present. Alcohol is mellow and mostly in the form of bourbon. Nicely developed after the 2 years it was cellared.

T: Wow, beautiful bourbon barrel character. Smooth and tobacco tasting bourbon with vanilla, caramel oak flavor - very developed and up front. Sweetness is kept to a minimum and seems to be reduced by the bourbon. Bitterness is medium with a more neutral hop character. Malty flavors come through as the beer warms up with prunes and plums consistent with the aroma. Some milk chocolate notes come out as well.

M: A big tingly tongue sensation from the bourbon that leads to a nice warming sensation from the alcohol. Carbonation is on the lower side and very complimentary with the style. The tannins from the wood provide a slight drying sensation on the mouth and the body of the beer is in the medium range.

O: Fantastic BA Barley Wine, The barrel is up front with tons of character from the bourbon left over. The alcohol is there, but not offensive or difficult to drink. This beer aged perfectly. I would like to try a fresh version to compare, but as it stands this was superb.

guityler83, Sep 25, 2014
Photo of DanGeo
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

DanGeo, Jul 20, 2013
Photo of tectactoe
4/5  rDev -11.7%

tectactoe, Mar 18, 2014
Photo of DavyJones
3/5  rDev -33.8%

DavyJones, Aug 02, 2012
Photo of t2grogan
5/5  rDev +10.4%

t2grogan, Oct 08, 2014
Photo of OhioBobcat
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

OhioBobcat, Nov 16, 2013
Photo of Runs4Beer
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

Runs4Beer, Dec 22, 2012
Photo of jono0101
5/5  rDev +10.4%

jono0101, May 18, 2013
Photo of brownbeer
5/5  rDev +10.4%

brownbeer, Feb 14, 2014
Photo of abeerdude
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

abeerdude, Jul 02, 2012
Photo of Schlais
4/5  rDev -11.7%

Schlais, Jan 24, 2012
Photo of cjn40277
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

cjn40277, Nov 03, 2014
Photo of SanFranJake
5/5  rDev +10.4%

SanFranJake, Feb 23, 2013
Photo of delaced21
4.25/5  rDev -6.2%

delaced21, Mar 03, 2014
Photo of SkiBum22
4.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a rich, red-tinged black with a small white head. Minor lacing and retention.

S - Nice scent bringing lot of barley wine and barrel elements with other notes of goodness. Dark fruits come through the most, along with caramel, chocolate, bourbon, oak, light tobacco and alcohol.

T - Tons of maple and vanilla, a bit nutty, very similar to smell, some sips had some alcohol in the back of the nose

M - Surprisingly smooth. Packs a punch but in all the right ways.

O - An amazing barleywine and another amazing beer from Firestone. This to me is the second best barleywine behind King Henry right now. Glad I have a few extra bottles.

SkiBum22, May 22, 2012
Photo of steelerguy
3.98/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark walnut brown, can only see a bit of light around the edges. Small head that fades quickly and ends up looking like flat cola after a few mins.

S - Lots of vanilla, chocolate, dark fruit, hop aroma absent. Can smell that this has spent some time in oak.

T - The smell translates to the taste very well. Very complex, again you can tell this has been aged in bourbon barrels, the vanilla flavor really comes through. Lots of chocolate malt and a bit of dark fruit, almost reminds me of a port. Again, lacking in hop character and bitterness which should be present in an American barleywine.

M - Nice, smooth, and warming. A little alcohol bite at the end. Wish it had a little more body to help balance the 13% ABV.

O - This is a good barleywine, would be even better if judged as an English style, but it is a bit lacking as an American style in the hop category. Definitely a barelywine to be tried by all loves of the strong style.

steelerguy, Mar 27, 2011
Photo of Ben7773
4.25/5  rDev -6.2%

Ben7773, Jan 10, 2014
Photo of newk340
5/5  rDev +10.4%

newk340, Feb 04, 2012
Photo of dimitrov
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

dimitrov, May 31, 2013
Photo of oddlandf
3.75/5  rDev -17.2%

oddlandf, Sep 27, 2014
Photo of danthehopslamman
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

danthehopslamman, May 02, 2014
Photo of NWer
4.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2011 reserve series in a brandy snifter.
Alcohol notes overwhelm the senses from the get-go. Like a fine brandy only better.
This is why I now prefer beer to other alcohol choices.
Mouthfeel and aftertaste leave a very pleasant taste and feel that makes each sip a joy to behold.
Life is good when one of these are at hand.

NWer, Nov 24, 2011
Photo of thetommo
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

thetommo, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of DaftPatrick
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

DaftPatrick, Feb 28, 2014
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§ucaba from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
100 out of 100 based on 3,862 ratings.