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Parabola - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

5,118 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,118
Reviews: 1,029
rAvg: 4.61
pDev: 8.24%
Wants: 2,535
Gots: 2,749 | FT: 192
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:
Beer added by: largadeer on 03-26-2008

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]
View: Beers (76) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,118 | Reviews: 1,029 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tun
4.25/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of ycortez
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of PowDay
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of BostonHops
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served in a snifter.
2011 batch.

pours a typical imperial stout used motor oil black; somewhat aggressive pour yields a 3/4" mocha toned head. expected below-average retention. nose is very appealing, stands out even in a style populated by worthy foes. rich notes of coffee, chocolate, bourbon, vanilla and roasted malts.

flavor delivers follows and expands on the aroma. in addition to the above-mentioned headliners there are secorndary elements of oak, molassess, and raisin. full-bodied mouthfeel with adequate carbonation.

overall a stellar RIS, one of those rare hyped beers that meets (even exceeds) expectations. another home run from firestone walker.

(originally reviewed: 09-16-2011)

Photo of ShemRahBoo
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of mattsander
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a few fingers at a time into a bourbon tulip.

A: Deepest mahogany, not quite black, with some red highlights. A ring of beige colored head clings to the side.

S: Toasted oak, marshmallow, dark chocolate, booze, a bit of roasted fruit and dark roast coffee. Quintessential barrel aged imperial stout - very refined.

T: Deep dark coffee dominates at first, with a fruity-honey center that evolves into a cocoa-dry vanilla whip-cream syrup. Absolutely delicious.

M: Very full bodied but never too syrupy with just the right amount of carbonation. This stayed slightly bubbly for the 2+ hours I sipped it.

A true masterpiece, Firestone Walker does big beers as well as any brewery I've ever tried.

Photo of pearljam118
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of carteravebrew
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of ant880
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of SonOfThor
5/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Oily pitch black pour, very viscous. Absolutely no light shining through this. Small tan head recedes into darkness, but that's totally expected for a 12.5% abv beverage such as this.

S - Wow! There are so many componentes to this aroma. I get cherry, vanilla, chocolate, coffee, earthy hops, some leathery flavours, and big roasty character. This smells incredible!

T - I get the same components as in the aroma, but with some more sweetness. This is well balanced by bitterness from both the hops and the roasted malts. There are some definite vinous qualities here. This is a beautifully crafted work of art.

M - Huge mouthfeel on this beer. The creaminess of an oatmeal stout x10! What an amazingly rich beer. This is a beer in no need of pairing, it is a meal on it's own.

O - I'm sure this is the best imperial stout I've tasted, and it's very likely the best beer I've ever had. This blew my mind, I'm soooo glad I've got one more bomber. I'm going to give it a good old fashioned cellaring. I highly recommend this beer. If you see it, buy it! don't worry about the $14 price tag, it's totally worth it.

Photo of ajramirez1
4.08/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Initial look is typical, nothing to exciting here. Smell was quite stromg w/the high abv. First taste when chilled was avg, got better with warmth asbit should. Better than avg imperial but was disappointed. The Abyss blows this out of the water. Tasty beer but nothing special. Sucaba is the best FW brrr ive had to date

Photo of Cowcakes
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of jpbebeau
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Listers
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of EzraAtom
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of Beerevity
4.47/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into tulip glasses, half in mine, half in Dad's (Happy Fathers Day!). It's a beautiful black with a tan head that's gone before you know it. After one whiff I knew this was something special. I instantly picked up on sweet cherries that are nicely balanced by smokey oak and vanilla. Taste up front is of dark chocolate, bourbon, sweet raisin, dates and cherry. This gave way to the notes of burnt coffee, oats and roasted malt. I picked up on a bit of liquorice and several other flavors that my palate just couldn't identify. The bitterness and light carbonation in this stout is perfect. The brew felt thick and the booziness really warms is it goes down. Overall this beer is powerful, complex and excellent. I'll be aging another bottle to crack on a cold winter's day several years in the future.

Photo of agaloco9
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of G-Hawk
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of rodkin
4.11/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2012 release.

Looks nice, big and dark, decent carb. One finger head that dissipates, leaves some decent lacing.

This smells great. Chocolate, vanilla, coffee, a bit of a dark fruity character, some barrel notes. Really nice.

Taste doesn't quite live up to the smell for me. You get all the same flavors, but the balance seems a bit off. Stronger bourbon up front, not as smooth and balanced as the nose would indicate. A bit more heat than I'd like, it's not unpleasant by any means but it kind of hurts the drinkability. It's a great beer with a lot going on, but I think it needs some age to mellow out a bit. I'd be curious to see how the '11 is drinking right now. This is probably more like a 4.25, but I'm docking it to a 4 because it disappointed me when compared to my memory.

Nice mouthfeel. Big and thick, decent carbonation but not overwhelming. Coats the mouth nicely.

A really nice beer, but this is not as good as I remember the '11 being. I definitely think it needs some time to mellow out. The bourbon is a little overpowering, adds a bit more heat than I'd like and hurts the drinkability. I'll be holding onto my other bottle for at least another year before I try this one again.

Photo of johnnyboy76
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of BucannonXC5
4.47/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a draft into a snifter at San Diego Brewing Company in San Diego, Calif., on June 15. About a finger of head when I got it. Color was black with tints of purple in it. Brown, coffee and caramel lacing. Good retention.

Smelled chocolate, caramel, chocolate milk and some light coffee malts. Also some dark fruit, maybe plum? Great smell.

Tasted a big dose of alcohol right away, mainly bourbon. That gave way to caramel, toffee, chocolate and light coffee.

Full body. Average carbonation. Creamy texture. Smooth finish. The feel was the best part of this beer by far. I wish I could have given this a 5.5. Just phenomenal. I kept craving another taste when I put the glass down.

I’ve been wanting to try this beer for awhile and it didn’t disappoint. Just a marvelous beer.

Photo of Stumpy29er
4.25/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of getinked
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of mjr2377
5/5  rDev +8.5%

Photo of USChuy
4.75/5  rDev +3%

Parabola from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
100 out of 100 based on 5,118 ratings.