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Parabola - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,969 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,969
Reviews: 1,006
rAvg: 4.61
pDev: 8.24%
Wants: 2,337
Gots: 2,691 | FT: 187
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  13.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout aged for 8 months in circa 1990's Heaven Hill bourbon barrels.

OG: 29.5p [plato]
IBU: 82 [high]
Cases: 3000 produced [LTD]
Aged: 12 mo [time in barrel]
Yeast: British Ale [house]
Color: 167SRM [midnight black]

(Beer added by: largadeer on 03-26-2008)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,969 | Reviews: 1,006 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of match1112
4.43/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: pitch black, thin brown head quickly fades to nothing, no lacing left behind just an oily appearance on the inside of the glass.

s: bourbon, chocolate, vanilla, figs (or other dark fruit, can't really tell), a little maple syrup and tobacco.

t: like drinking a glass of really good bourbon while enjoying a slice of thick rich chocolate cake and a very vanilla forward cigar.

m: thick, oily, alochol burn, sweet and dry.

o: simply the best bourbon r.i.s. out there.

Photo of ComRock12
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Aduardo
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of groovejackson
3.3/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - What you would expect....complete black...looks good!

Smell - Not overpowering....some currents...some toffee.

Taste - The first and lasting impression is twizzlers. You could think of it as wine but It's a bit medicinal...not in a good way. Alcohol is nicely hidden. I do taste some vanilla and wood as well.

Mouthfeel - nice and smooth....luxurious.

Overal - I was so excited about this one but I have to say I'm disappointed. The synthetic fruit is overpowering and I think it is just not my cup of tea. I really prefer a more cocoa and coffee profile in my Imperial Stouts. I'm glad I tried it but I don't think I'll be getting it again.

Photo of Cooper925
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of ciscov
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of eorwar
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of iKrystin
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of bamadog
4.55/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I've been sitting on this one for just over 2 years, and I'm really excited to crack it. Review is from notes taken on 9/15/2012 and poured from the bottle (2010 batch) to a snifter.

Appearance: Pours exactly as I would hope and expect - it looks thick, viscous, a little goopy; body is of course nearly black and it starts with a short 1/4 finger, dark brown head that fades quickly to nothing than a fairly thin circle at the surface along with a thin, wispy skim; thick and opaque, there's no chance light is sneaking through this one; can't get a read on any kind of carbonation, so the thin head is my only tell so far...;

Smell: Again, pretty much exactly what I would hope for and expect - plenty of big, rich, sweet syrupy malts; some vanilla and some sweet cherry; touch of earthy roastiness, but really more on the sweeter side of the stout world; no sense of alcohol in the nose, so that's a little scary since it's a 13% beer... it must be well masked.

Taste: Wow. This is a fantastic beer. Easily a top 5 stout for me. Lots of the sweet chocolates up front, but I'm surprised by a strong presence of bitter, roast espresso grounds blending in with it; the bitterness overpowers a bit and it hides the vanilla, largely, which is a bit of a shame, but it's early in the beer and it might make more of an appearance later; definite presence of alcohol in the mouth, especially at the back of it -- really, I would have to say it's a bit like a jamocha shake from Arby's with bourbon in it. Pretty excellent.

Mouthfeel: Body is heavy, thick, viscous and a little syrupy; carbonation struggles through the heavy body, but it is there, keeping it soft, smooth and almost velvety; a thick, sticky coating is left all over the palate and the teeth are left with a gritty film as well; belly is left quite warm from the alcohol. I love a beer that makes its presence known.

Overall: This beer has just about everything going for it -- looks good, smells better, tastes great, thick and chewy body... what else could you want? This is a great beer for dessert, wouldn't want to drink too much on a full stomach though. The alcohol and weight will indeed slow you down a bit.

Photo of dirtylou
4.38/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

interested in some of these 24oz/651ml bottles people are talking about - mine is the standard 22oz/650ml!

2012 vintage

appearance: served in an oversized snifter, ebony body, aggressive pour yields a 1/2" mocha head, some nice lace

smell: very big and rich - bourbon, dark chocolate, chocolate cake

taste: This is a massive stout, and the 2012 vintage is drinking MUCH better than the 2011 bottle I consumed a few weeks ago. Dense chocolate cake, dark chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, coconut. The barrel aging delivers a lot of booze and vanilla, but very little wood - would have liked to see that in more balance.

mouthfeel: full bodied, rich, decadent, bourbon heat lingers

overall: epic stuff, obviously

Photo of SamuelJackson45
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of jaasen64
4.25/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of chickencoop
4.25/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of erlenmeyer
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of thatruth
3.6/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

24oz bottle poured into a Ninkaski pint glass. Pours a liquorice black into glass. Absolutely opaque color underlines a dark mocha head. The head pours fat but dissipates quickly with cappuccino tan slippery lacing.

Smells strong of alcohol, the 12.5% is more than obvious here. Robust cherries and figs with overtones of purple grapes. Hints of liquorice are present, as well.

Taste is damn nutty and malty. Chocolate and a mellow fruit, slight liquorice type flavor is all that really comes to mind.

Initially flat on the tongue, the taste rounds out on the back of the throat. Alcohol reverberates throughout the mouth while a cream-like feel touches off the finish.

I've been waiting to open this bottle for a year now. I had planned on keeping it longer, but I've never been one for patience. Opening it when I moved a month ago was the idea, to christen the new house, and although that never came to fruition, temptation proved too volatile tonight. An $18 bottle I bought from Seattle last summer that I've seen for $15 here in Bellingham, needless to say I've had better. You're buying for nomenclature and exclusivity here. While it is a tasty brew, I've had twice as good beers for half the price. Unless you're buying for a wedding or dinner party, or just to impress a lady, stick with something else to fulfill your exotic craft or review-based needs.

Photo of mwarriner
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of JustinMatthew
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of guytyping
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of JigsawRecords
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of captainbearcat
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of mctizzz
4.95/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of AndresR
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Shag
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of fiver29
4.08/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Eric. I've had this a couple times. Pours thick reddish muddy color with thin head. Aroma is wood, booze, sweet caramel, sherry, vanilla, and a touch of brown sugar. Heavy mouthfeel. Flavor follow the nose exactly. Has the booze and vanilla upfront, the caramel in the middle and finishes with a touch of sherry. A great beer.

Photo of BobCobb
4/5  rDev -13.2%

Parabola from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
100 out of 100 based on 4,969 ratings.