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§ucaba - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,200 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,200
Reviews: 809
rAvg: 4.52
pDev: 8.41%
Wants: 1,175
Gots: 2,437 | FT: 238
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  12.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SacoDeToro on 02-21-2008

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)

Matured for 1 year in a blend of Heaven Hill, 4 Roses, and Old Fitzgerald barrels.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,200 | Reviews: 809
Photo of bonez05404
5/5  rDev +10.6%

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4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

Photo of crashoveride
5/5  rDev +10.6%

Photo of DefenCorps
4.67/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

**I managed to fuck up my review when I reviewed the bottle**

** Original review : 4/10/2011 2:45:24 PM**
On tap at The Black Squirrel last night. $13 for a 10oz pour, reminding me again why DC sucks.

Pouring reddish brown with a thin tan head that recedes rapidly, this looks decent. The nose is great. Brown sugar, vanilla, toffee, bourbon, rich leather and a little tobacco, this is beautifully balanced all the way through. The alcohol is shockingly well-hidden, I find it hard to believe this is 13%. Some oak appears as it warms up. The palate opens mildly sweet with bourbon and brown sugar along with toffee. Mildly nutty without the associated astringency, this shows beautiful balance and complexity. Leather and pipe tobacco are present, especially on the finish. Some oak with nice tannins to balance the sweetness on the finish. The barrel is remarkably well-integrated here, it's a very harmonious beer. Surprisingly refreshing for a 13% barleywine, this is easily the best fresh barleywine I've had.

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4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

Photo of ralphw56
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

Photo of KAF
4/5  rDev -11.5%

Photo of GatorBeer
4.07/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Bruery tulip

Pours a dark cola-esque brown that lets some light through. A brief head diminishes with some medium sized bubbles. Smell is heavy on the booze, a strong overwhelming dose of bourbon. First impression is a strong sweetness upfront, but not sickly sweet. If finishes with bourbon, but very smoothly. Mouthfeel is creamy and perfect for this beer. Lightly hopped, they take a backseat to the sweetness and bourbon.

Photo of grittybrews
4.39/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 bottle, opened 01/2012.

Poured a dark brown with a faint amber tinge and a finger of off-white head. Very nice aroma of vanilla, oak, sugar cookie, dark fruit, and some booze.

Moderate carbonation and a creamy, medium-bodied mouthfeel. Sweet up front with caramel, sugar cookie, vanilla, dark fruit, leather, and a slightly bitter tail end that mingles with boozy warmth.

Very tasty; a little sweet and boozy but the flavors are definitely there! Gets a little smoother as it warms.

Photo of beenitty
4.75/5  rDev +5.1%

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5/5  rDev +10.6%

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5/5  rDev +10.6%

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4/5  rDev -11.5%

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4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

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3.5/5  rDev -22.6%

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5/5  rDev +10.6%

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4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

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3.5/5  rDev -22.6%

Photo of bennetj17
4.09/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks a bit flat after the pour, not much froth at all. Dark brownish amber color, with some haze. Dry, oaked aroma, hints of dark fruit, bourbon, and plenty of alcohol fume. As it warms the aroma becomes more inviting and is quite delectable.

Tastes a bit sweeter than I expected. It's got a boozy, caramel and vanilla backbone, with soft hints of raisin and cherry. It tastes like bourbon aging, but apparently all sorts of different wine and spirit barrels were used in the process. The resulting complexity really shows. It's not overly alcoholic in the finish, but the sweetness definitely carries through without much hop balance. The carbonation is subtle, but works. There's a little syrupy feel but ultimately not heavy on the palate.

A unique and worthy English Barleywine, I would recommend trying this one. Curious to see how it ages, probably pretty nicely in my opinion.

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5/5  rDev +10.6%

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.98/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm an English Barleywine lover. Here's another for me to dive into. Life is good....

Pours a dark nutty brown, very dark and deep. Rich off-brown/tan head. Thick, yet thin on the lacing

Aroma is quite nice. Vanilla. Leather. Chocolate. Caramel. There's some "smoothness" to the nose. Not sure how to describe it. It seems to burn with alcohol at first, but just mellows out to sweet caramel and chocolate and vanilla. Spicy.

Well, ok. So this is a pretty darn good beer. Complex but with only a handful of flavors dancing around. Caramel and vanilla come from a woodiness. Chocolate and leather are more from a sweet side. A bit of spice from the barrel. A bit of an alcohol zing at the end, but all that does is make you want more

EDIT: Updated
This is the newest version, 2012 Sucaba. Earlier review was Abacus and there is a difference...to me at least. This version was just thinner all the way around. The caramel and vanilla didn't come alive and laid somewhat dormant. This is tough to rate b/c it's still a great beer, but I feel it has lost something that aging in the bottle just won't improve.

Photo of dbellizzi
5/5  rDev +10.6%

Photo of schwaeh
3/5  rDev -33.6%

Photo of Beertracker
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

Photo of kiddynamite920
4.55/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a ruddy brown, with a ring of tan, big bubbles that pop every so often. Sits still as night after the pour settles.

S: Bready, caramely malts and some toffee. Alcohol is a bit present, a bit more than I remember in fresh bottles. Strange. I like to compare English Barleywines to J.W. Lees, because I believe that is the perfect example of the style. This certainly holds a candle to that beer and has that sweet bourbon lick on top.

T: Full of English malts and caramel, great compliments of the barrel. May be a bit strong as the alcohol seems to override most things here. A bit earthy with some grainy flavors. The wood plays a key role in the flavor of this beer. Bourbon flavors definitely work well with this barleywine.

M: Fills the palate, lingers and finishes sweet. Everything I look for in an English Barleywine. Just a bit of bitter hop to finish it off.

O: This beer really is close to perfect, leans towards a perfect English style barleywine with barrel notes on top. Quite impressive.

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§ucaba from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
100 out of 100 based on 4,200 ratings.