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§ucaba - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,674 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,674
Reviews: 750
rAvg: 4.53
pDev: 8.61%
Wants: 999
Gots: 2,082 | FT: 184
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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of §ucaba Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,674 | Reviews: 750 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of infi
4.43/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 release, courtesy of BA NYManc.

Poured into a brandy snifter.

Reddish, mahogany body. Thin cream colored head that quickly fizzles away. Translucent to the light.

Smells of potent, caramelized sugars and light bourbon. Good amount of oaky, barrel-aged tannin quality. Very sweet smelling– vanilla and milk chocolate. Some smokiness, like fresh leather too. Very awesome.

Opens equally as good. Sugary sweet but not cloying, minimally boozy, and hits of bourbon towards the end. Light bodied with small amount of carbonation. Leaves a nice warmth and bitterness on the palate as it finishes off. Well-rounded in flavors. Balanced between sweet, boozy and bitter. A fine-tuned, barrel-aged barleywine, for sure.

The barrel program at FSW is absolutely incredible. Both Abacus and Parabola are immensely delicious. Very glad to have tried this offering from them. It's definitely up there as one of my favorite barleywines.

infi, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of 2neardead
5/5  rDev +10.4%

2neardead, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of Tmappin
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

Tmappin, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of Swervine44
5/5  rDev +10.4%

Swervine44, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of leeswagerty
5/5  rDev +10.4%

leeswagerty, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of arizcards
4.45/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bomber of batch no 002 today from Bevmo for $14.99. I have a bomber of 001 in the wine fridge and look forward to comparing them!

Beer poured a reddish-brown with some head that quickly went away.

Nose is a little boozy with some oak, vanilla, and some hints of chocolate - quite nice!

Taste was hugely warming upon initial sip. Flavors picked up include chocolate, vanilla, light bourbon, and some raisins. The finish is very clean and not cloying at all.

Mouthfeel is full viscosity which helps make this brew satisfying for me. It is pretty smooth as well.

Overall this is a solid brew, i look forward to trying batch 001 with a year behing it!

arizcards, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of otrejo
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

otrejo, Mar 02, 2012
Photo of WankelEngine
4.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a murky dark brown with a light tan head. The head fades quickly to form a ring of foam around the edge of the glass.

S: The smell is malty and fruity. Toffee, brown sugar, raisins and alcohol. A little bit of oak.

T: Similar to the smell. Sweet fruit and malt dominate. Bourbon flavors come through clearly and give the finish a nice alcohol heat. Smoky oak flavor is more prominent than in the smell. Fairly sweet with molasses and toffee rounding out some of the bourbon.

M: Thinner than I expected with more carbonation than most barrel aged beers.

O: A fantastic example of what barrel aged barleywine should be. Warm, fruity, and with delicious notes of bourbon.

WankelEngine, Mar 02, 2012
Photo of todisht
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

todisht, Mar 01, 2012
Photo of ArchEnemyBrew
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

ArchEnemyBrew, Feb 29, 2012
Photo of SalukiAlum
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

SalukiAlum, Feb 29, 2012
Photo of jdprmd
5/5  rDev +10.4%

jdprmd, Feb 28, 2012
Photo of mdaschaf
4.45/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Shane for trading me this one! 2011 Vintage.

A: Pours dark reddish/brown color with a small tan, foamy head on top. Not much retention, leaving a ring on top. Minimal lacing.

S: Lots of caramelized sugars, vanilla, oak, and bourbon. Some dark fruits come out as well as some molasses.

T: The bourbon is not as pronounced in the flavor profile, but there is still a lot of vanilla and dark fruits, mostly raisins, prunes, and plum. Some caramel, toffee, and butterscotch.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation. No sign of the 13% whatsoever. Drinks incredibly smooth.

O: A fantastic beer, one of the best barleywines I have had. A slow sipper that I enjoyed over the course of the evening.

mdaschaf, Feb 28, 2012
Photo of mjaggers
4.55/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a St. Bernardus chalice

A- Mahogany, almost no head that dissipated quickly, fantastic color to this beer

S- Fantastic. Bourbon, vanilla, oak. Everything to love in a BA beer. Touch of caramel.

T- Sweet. Decent alcohol heat as expected. Great flavors with the vanilla and bourbon at the front as expected.

M- Might have a bit more carbonation than I expected but sits really well.

O- Terrific beer. May get better with age as the carbonation mellows a bit.

mjaggers, Feb 28, 2012
Photo of SiflandOlly
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

SiflandOlly, Feb 27, 2012
Photo of pirmannt1
5/5  rDev +10.4%

pirmannt1, Feb 27, 2012
Photo of DustinSmall
4.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass

A- Dark ruby, mahogany, red notes on the curves, small head maybe a half of a fingers worth, it left quite quickly, but its just a great looking beer

S- The smell is amazing right off teh bat you get huge oak, and bourbon flavors, some vanilla is there, along with toffee and caramel, as it warmed up the bourbon became more up front it smells amazing

T- This taste amazing, plenty of bourbon, caramel, toffee flavors, but there is a nice underlying sweet fruity flavor that does a great job to cut some of the bourbon heat

M- Perfect for this beer, medium feel not too heavy but not to thin either, the carbonation is on point there is enough there to enhance the flavor but it didnt assault the mouth

O- Great great beer, awesome mouthfeel, appearance, smell, and taste were all there and blended perfectly together

DustinSmall, Feb 27, 2012
Photo of morningthief
4.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into an oversized wine glass. Special thanks to a non-BA friend for the hookup!

Color is dark ruby as described, with little semblance of any head and no lacing. Little darker than I'd prefer from a barleywine, but still very rich in color.

Smell from the bottle is all bourbon and oak, with some cookie thrown in for good measure. In the glass the heat and bourbon are more prevalent, but there is lots more going on here. With time, more maple and cookie flavors develop, with vanilla being the dominant characteristic. Smells amazing with each sip.

The flavor that follows is intense caramel malt, with plenty of toffee, oak, maple, and vanilla to back it up. Some fruitiness is present in the finish that counteracts the heat quite nicely. Hop flavor is non-existent but some faint bitterness is present. Nice balance, amazing flavor. With warmth, the vanilla comes out in full force. I'm typically no fan of vanilla flavor in beer, but it's well balanced, and presented here as more of a vanilla one would experience in a red wine. Masterfully done and always welcome.

Overall, this is a beer that every craft beer fan should try if given the opportunity. Firestone Walker really sets the bar with their barrel fermenting/aging profile, and they are certainly masters of their craft.

morningthief, Feb 26, 2012
Photo of siege06nd
4.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 vintage

A. Pours a cloudy, dark ruby brown. A quarter finger of light brown head quickly dissipates to a dusting around the edges. Faint lacing.

S. Excellent. One of the top examples for style. Ripe plum, cherry, dark fruit, and some raisin. Fairly assertive vanilla, wood, and bourbon. Little bit of chocolate in there as well.

T. Chocolate, oak, bourbon, vanilla. Ripe fruit is a little more subdued in the flavor profile. The barrel is very assertive right now, with the wood and char dominating. Very very good, but I suspect this will improve with a few more months on it.

M. Smooth and silky. Quite a bit of heat and barrel character that needs to be evened out. Full bodied, light moderate carbonation.

O. It's doesnt eclipse Mother of All Storms and I wont do it the disservice of comparing it to King Henry, which is really a stout as opposed to a barleywine, but Sucaba is one of the very best barleywines out there. It is hot and rife with barrel out of the box, but I am eager to see what age does to this. Excellent now, could be ridiculous later. One of my very favorites.

siege06nd, Feb 26, 2012
Photo of brez8791
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

brez8791, Feb 26, 2012
Photo of johnnyboy76
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

johnnyboy76, Feb 26, 2012
Photo of Proteus93
4.38/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Okay, so §ucaba or Abacus... whichever works, I suppose. This is the 2012 release. Picked up at my local Whole Foods, where I'm finding a better beer selection on every visit.

A: Deep mahogany, topped with a rather pale head. It doesn't last long, but leaves a thin collar around the top. There's something oddly 'still' about this beer. Calm before the storm?

S: Dark fruits, followed by the vanilla nuances and woodiness. Often times, these types of beers will have an incredibly potent whiff of vanilla / bourbon aged wood... this has a nice balance and is a little more subdued.

T + M: Big and sweet... flavor is quite rich, and full of the same dark fruits that were noted in the nose. Body is big and chewy. Some nice, spicy notes from the alcohol content, blending in quite nicely with the malty, caramel sweetness and fruit flavors.

D: A very well balanced and enjoyable brew. A quality brew, perfect for a relaxing evening of sipping and reading or just getting lost in thought.

Proteus93, Feb 26, 2012
Photo of tbeq00
5/5  rDev +10.4%

tbeq00, Feb 25, 2012
Photo of FarmerTed
2/5  rDev -55.8%

FarmerTed, Feb 25, 2012
Photo of RViator325
5/5  rDev +10.4%

RViator325, Feb 22, 2012
§ucaba from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
100 out of 100 based on 3,674 ratings.