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§ucaba - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,857 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,857
Reviews: 756
rAvg: 4.53
pDev: 8.61%
Wants: 1,024
Gots: 2,127 | 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: 3,857 | Reviews: 756 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of wesley14
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

wesley14, Apr 09, 2012
Photo of PicoPapa
4.35/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber. Reserve Series No. 002. Pours a dark brownish black color with a small amount of tan head. Aromas of booze, cherries, malts and vanilla. Taste is a nice oaky bourbon up front with vanilla and cherry. Some malts and dark fruits as well. Nice warming alcohol burn. Certainly can taste the 12.5% Abv. Boozey oak finish. Creamy mouthfeel. Lightly carbonated. The flavors really come to life as it warms. Outstanding barleywine. Glad i got a chance to try it.

PicoPapa, Apr 09, 2012
Photo of jwat
5/5  rDev +10.4%

jwat, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of SawDog505
4.58/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a 8 oz tulip glass. Pours a magnificent mahogany with a half inch of white head, with a little lace. Smell is French vanilla, carmel, oak, and bourbon. Taste is tons of vanilla in the start and bourbon and oak finish. Body is medium large, perfect carbonation for the style, not dry, and very drinkable. This is the best barleywine I have had so far. The barrel aging with this company is crazy good. Wow

SawDog505, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of bluntedboywonder
5/5  rDev +10.4%

bluntedboywonder, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of C2H5
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

C2H5, Apr 07, 2012
Photo of AlexM
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

AlexM, Apr 07, 2012
Photo of jdhende
4.43/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 Bottle into a FW Proprietors Reserve Series Tulip

A: Dark black with a cherry red hue. Very minimal head and little to no lacing.

S: Lots of bourbon and Vanilla with a hint of Oak.

T: Sweet and Boozy off the bat. The taste though is just sublime. Nice notes of bourbon, vanilla and chocolate. With a little more bourbon for good measure. Pretty boozy.

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

O: While I could not drink this very often I thoroughly enjoyed it. A nice beer to split with a good friend. Can't wait to try my King Henry now.

jdhende, Apr 07, 2012
Photo of clayrock81
4.05/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark brown, almost black body with minimal lace patches. I pick up figs, barley, roasted malt at first sniff for some reason, a woodiness as well (I guess oak really), some sweet sugary and chocolatey malts as well as a pinch of dark fruit. A plethora of maltiness in as much as this is a thicker, fuller body that borders on syrupy stickiness at times. A bready/woodiness and some roasted malts balance real well with chocolate, careamel, vanilla even a touch of toffee (I think). Can't really say any hop or fruit notes come out, so it's more of just a malt beer so to say. Perhaps the stunner was the 12+ ABV% b/c they really hide it well other than that nice high and dry finish. A little pricey and def a sipper but worth a try by anyone.

clayrock81, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of Davit
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

Davit, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of chanokokoro
4.38/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2012 vintage. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Firestone Walker Proprietors Reserve Series snifter

Pours a deep ruby amber with a half-finger off-white head that quickly reduces to a very thin foam ring. Aromas of sweet dark fruit especially black cherry, oak, bourbon booziness, and toffee rises from the glass. Bourbon greets the tastebuds joined by a bit of sweet fig, plum, and caramel, finishing with tones of bourbon warmth and oak. Wonderful mouthfeel. Full syrupy body coats the mouth with silky smoothness. One of the top barrel-aged English barleywines available. A "must purchase" annually.

chanokokoro, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of rab53
4.25/5  rDev -6.2%

rab53, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of ShemRahBoo
5/5  rDev +10.4%

ShemRahBoo, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of kevgod
5/5  rDev +10.4%

kevgod, Apr 05, 2012
Photo of jzeilinger
4.45/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a dark ruby color with a super thin lacing ring and mild carbonation. During the pour the head was minimal and quickly died down.

S - Bourbon, oak, candied plum and raisins, roasted toffee and caramel. Sweet malt and bourbon forward.

T - The taste is intoxicating (literally). Up front is a hit of sweet roasted malt followed with a wave of dark fruit - raisons, plums, and layers of oak, bourbon, and vanilla. As I dig deeper into the glass, the oak comes through with more strength and the alcohol warmth subsides a little bit. In the beginning, the warming in the throat is very noticeable until things adjust. There's a hint of hop bitterness at the very end of the sip

M - Medium full body, somewhat thick, and leaves a sticky coating on the lips.

O - Nice depth and complexity, sweet and boozy, the next bomber will be shared with a friend, 22 oz of this goodness is too much for one person.

jzeilinger, Apr 05, 2012
Photo of claaark13
3.73/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Abacus 2011 served at cellar temp in a HF tulip to ensure it tastes better.

A - Ruby color with an off-white head that moves on to thick lacing. Sticks very well to the glass.

S - Sweet malts, some spice and almost a dark fruit note emerging. Only a slight note of oak in end (I may be imagining it).

T - Sweet malts smoothly transition into the barrel notes. Oak, toffee, then dry oak. The finish has a sweetness to it as well. Some heat comes through far into the finish. Some raisin/plum comes out in the middle. Bits of vanilla can be picked out as well once it gets coated on the tongue. Pretty smooth all around with the exception of the feeling on the throat.

M - Medium body, pretty nice for the style.

O - The aroma doesn't show much, if anything, of the barrel. Instead it provides a lot of malts. The flavor is mellow and nice, but lacks complexity until the finish. The finish is still a little bit hot. If you have some left, drink it.

claaark13, Apr 05, 2012
Photo of muchloveforhops3
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

muchloveforhops3, Apr 04, 2012
Photo of C13
4.98/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer blew my mind! It is definitely one of the best beers I've had the pleasure of sharing with a friend.

A: Very deep brown with hints of red. Virtually no head.

S: After my first sniff, I knew this beer was going to be great. I smelled a lot of vanilla and oak up front and the malts came through nicely. There was also a hit of fruit. The kick of bourbon gave my nose a tingle...of excitement.

T: AMAZING! It was "hot", but I really enjoyed that sensation on my first sip when I got the blast of bourbon. It had a sweet, fruity, vanilla flavor with some chocolaty malts. Did I mention bourbon?

M: Smooth...incredibly smooth even without age. Great finish.

O: Hands down the best barley wine I've had. I loved it and I would be surprised if you don't. I have one sleeping in the box, in my basement, taking a long nap until I wake her up in a year or so. I cannot wait to see how she develops.

C13, Apr 04, 2012
Photo of PopeXXIII
4.7/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured a dark brown, almost port color.

S: Had a very classic barleywine nose, sweet, malty.

T: Sweet, with a little alcohol warmth. Not overpowering. Nice and balanced.

M: Smooth

Overall one of the best barleywines I've tasted. It's easy for this style to get out of control, but this was a very drinkable beer.

PopeXXIII, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of curly31989
4.25/5  rDev -6.2%

curly31989, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of areich6
4.68/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoying with my good friend pschul4

A: Dark, dark red. With a small amount of bubbly head.

S: Smells like delicious sweet bourbon with vanilla notes in addition to some dark fruits like blach cherries.

T: Fantastic flavor. Extremely sweet vanilla/ bourbon flavors. Some fruity sweetness is definitely present along with a hint of caramel malts. The alcohol is barely detectable.

M: Very light and smooth. Extremely drinkable. Very little bit from the alcohol.

O: This is a fantastic barleywine.

areich6, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of pschul4
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Big Bottle shared with areich6
Had Abacus never had Sucaba before O.o

A- Pours a burgendy brown with off white head that falls back rather quickly

S- So much bourbon! Amazing bourbon with some dark fruits in the background

T- Hey...hey...hi... This is awesome. I'm at a loss for words. Amazing smooth bourbon and background barleywine knocks my socks off too. Can't say enough about this flavor, this is better than Parabola IMO

M- Insanely smooth, perfect mouthfeel

O- This is the second best BA Barleywine I've ever had (thanks to King Henry). I love this beer a lot, you should too

pschul4, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of vic21234
4.78/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2012 bottle poured into a snifter. This one was a surprise at my local bottle shop the other day. Looking forward to it.

A- Pours a dark reddish color, almost brown. Hints of reddish purple can be seen through the edges of the glasses. Pours with a small amount of white head that quickly fades. Lots of lacing along the side of the glass.

S- Smells boozey more than anything to me. Getting some hints of dark fruits as well.

T- Wow, really unlike any barleywine I've had. First off is the caramel and dark fruit notes. Then comes the slight notes of hop character. The barrel-aging really shines in the taste, with great oak notes. This drinks very hot fresh, with an overly boozey presence which I like.

M- A great sipper. Definitely boozey, each sip leaves a warming alcohol feeling, especially as the beer comes closer to room temperature.

Awesome stuff, always impressed with FW beers. I'm glad I got to try this, and would be interested to get my hands on a bottle to see what some age does to this one.

vic21234, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of uvm2003
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%

uvm2003, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of bcostner1
4.6/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a rich, deep, ruby/garnet reddish brown. Sticky yet thin tannish-white accumulates and quickly dissipates leaving just a hint around the edges of the glass. Love the label on this one--Classic and clean.

S: Vanilla, oak, some EtOH, toffee. A nice melange of these and more.

T: Sublime and superb. Like the nose, vanilla and oak are present for sure. Hefty doses of rich toffee and caramel as well. Rich malt present. Some brown sugar present too. Dark fruits/dates/raisins come through as well. Flavors meld together seamlessly as the beer warms. I am loving this for sure. The only knock against it for me is that the alcohol is still just a little bit too evident in the finish for my personal liking.

M: Silky and smooth....dangerously so. A little on the sticky side too (if that is possible given the previous 2 elements described?) I divided my bomber up into 1/3'rds so that I could sip it and truly appreciate it. The 12.5% is deceptive to a degree but, as I said before, can still be detected in the finish (a little too much so for me)

Overall, I love this beer. Definitely amongst my personal elite. I am discovering that I have a penchant for English Barleywines and this one absolutely lives up to the hype. I hope to be able to get more and will do so as often as I possibly can. I want to see what some age will do to/for the alcohol component in the other bottle that I have aging presently. Highly recommended.

NOTE 6/13/13: I aged a 2012 for a year and it's much less hot and boozy now. The aging did wonders for it. Awesome!

bcostner1, Apr 03, 2012
§ucaba from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
100 out of 100 based on 3,857 ratings.