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Parabola - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
ParabolaParabola

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

4,310 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,310
Reviews: 971
rAvg: 4.61
pDev: 8.24%
Wants: 2,082
Gots: 2,450 | FT: 162
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.

2011
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)
View: Beers (72) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,310 | Reviews: 971 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mithrascruor
mithrascruor

California

4.3/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Callahan's, San Diego.

Pours a dark reddish-brown with a light tan head. Minimal malty aroma. Similar elements in the taste, but with a nice combination of some spices, dark fruits, and maybe cask wood? Smooth with minimal carbonation. Strong in alcohol, but hardly present in the taste and very drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

07-19-2008 00:26:43 | More by mithrascruor
Photo of ShadesOfGray
ShadesOfGray

Pennsylvania

4.3/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Portsmouth large snifter glass. I got a couple of these bottles from a few different BA'ers...so I don't know who to thank for this perticular one. In any case...if you sent me one...THANKS! Really looking forward to this one, since BA stouts are my favorite syle! Pours a super dark, and semi-thick black that fills the glass a murky darkness with a very, very small toffee colored creamy head that dissipates pretty quick. Not much for lacing...but who really cares!

Aroma is a slight let down...simply because it's very weak. I can pick up the chocolate, booze, and malts. Other than that, it's just so distant.

Flavor is outstanding! Thick and creamy mouthfeel, mild carbonation, big boozy flavor! Tons of chocolate all over the palate. All the big stout characteristics are present, but the barrel aging makes this so nice! The sweet flavors are not overkill, but just enough to make you keep wanting more...making this thick beer surprisingly drinkable! A great beer from Firestone Walker...can't weait to age a couple to see how it mellows and/or changes!

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2010 02:25:18 | More by ShadesOfGray
Photo of dgilks
dgilks

Australia

4.3/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black with a dark tan head. Good head retention.

Somewhat sweet aroma with plenty of coffee. Nice liquorice and bourbon oak. THe wood character is nicely integrated.

Plenty of sweetness again with a nice, earthy wood character. The coffee and cocoa add nice complexity. The balance is nice and a hint of fruit adds a touch of complexity. Very nice.

Medium-full body with moderately-high carbonation. A little over-carbonated for my tastes.

Parabola is a pretty classic BA stout. There is lots of sugar, coffee and bourbon with a nice oakiness too. Really good and delightful despite some minor flaws.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2012 10:05:05 | More by dgilks
Photo of amphion1065
amphion1065

Massachusetts

4.3/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Based on the information passed around on the forums, this review should have been posted a few weeks ago. 22 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip.

The pour is... audible, like olive oil from a jug. Thick and viscous, though there's a curious soda-like carbonation. The one-finger head reminds me of cappuccino froth, and it lasts and clings to the glass. Very nice.

Plenty of fresh coffee grounds in the nose, with a hint of vanilla - cafe au lait comes to mind. Overall, the aroma is pretty restrained: even as it warmed, this didn't give off a particularly rich or full bouquet.

Loads and loads of bourbon in the taste. The -bal presence is enormous, and there's charred oak and leather to go around. That said, this isn't brash or abrasively hot, and the heat is pretty mellow. The finish is all bourbon, and it lasts and lasts. Fudge brownie flavors from the base beer counterbalance the liquor character.

I had a feeling the mouthfeel would be spot-on from the pour, and I wasn't disappointed: thick and rich, this is a modicum of the style.

Right out of the gate, I prefer Parabola to fresh BCBS. I'm very excited to lay this down for a year or so - it's a little one-dimensional right now, but it'll be spectacular in 2012.

EDIT: Happened upon a bottle of 2011 this past week. This beer has matured beautifully over the past several months. The barrel presence has mellowed without losing its bourbon bite, but the base beer has taken on an absolutely gorgeous, mellow dark fruit sweetness that complements the chocolate notes very well - it is, in many ways, quite akin to BCBS. This is drinking so well, and I am updating my score accordingly.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2011 03:26:47 | More by amphion1065
Photo of claspada
claspada

New Jersey

4.31/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2011 Version.

Pours almost black (darkest brown ever) with a nice tannish brown small foam head that sticks around with a bit of lacing.

Aromas begin with a ton of bakers cocoa powder. Dry, roasty bitter chocolate. Next I get a lot of the barrel; oak, vanilla, charred wood and some booze. As it opens up more I get some more of the sweeter dark caramels, nice sweet vanilla and surprising nuttiness in the background; really inviting.

The taste begins with a lot of dark and milk chocolate flavors; next I get the darker roasted malts, not coffee per say just like a roasted nuttiness mixed with caramelized, borderline burnt sugars. Vanilla and oakiness and more subtle barrel flavors emerge as it warms a little more. There is a solid toasted, graham cracker underlying toastiness which I really like. As it continues to warm the charred barrel and roasted flavors dominate the finish. No heat or alcohol flavors which is always appreciated for beers of this magnitude.

Mouthfeel is full bodied but not too thick, syrupy or cloying by any stretch. Adequate carbonation which helps to balance the heft in this delicious monster. Finish is nice and dry (for the style, not compared to normally crisp dry hoppy ales or pilsners). Not too boozy but the heft is evident as you slowly consume the 22 ounces.

Overall this beer is stellar. Firestone Walker is definitely winning with their barrel aging series of beer and I have loved Abacus, the anniversary series and now Parabola. Definitely recommended for fans of barrel aged beers and big boy stouts. I am going to call this a sessionable Barrel aged Imperial stout as it is really balanced and blended so well you almost don't recognize the boozy barrel flavors initially. Basically, yum.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2011 23:43:37 | More by claspada
Photo of roger617
roger617

Indiana

4.31/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

2013 bomber poured into snifter.

A: Pours very dark with a thin layer of khaki head that reduces quickly and leaves no lacing.
S: The aroma on this surprises me - it is more subtle than I expected. There are all the aspects I expected - bourbon, coffee, roasty, oatmeal, chocolate.
T: Far exceeds the power of the aroma. Flavor is full of bourbon chocolatey goodness. Compliments of coffee, roast, smokey I'm the background.
M: Carbed well, very easy to drink at 13%. Leaves just the slightest dry aftertaste that leaves me craving the next sip.
O: A must try for any beer advocate. I see this guy traded left and right, I just hope it is enjoyed by everyone who can get their hands on it, and shared by everyone who has the chance.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2013 00:40:52 | More by roger617
Photo of danieelol
danieelol

Australia

4.31/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to MrKennedy.

Pours black with well-retained head and lacing. Head is slightly tanned and a bit fizzy, which correctly suggests the body is not "thick" as such.

Nose is a banana split- banana, chocolate, vanilla. Thick and decadent chocolate ice cream. Cocoa powder. Still very bourbon-forward with an earthy chocolate behind that. But a very nice, smooth and integrated aroma. Perhaps a hint of rye/soy.

Taste is coffee grounds, banana. Bourbon. Some gunpowder as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel is about medium. Sour and a little astringent.

Not an endlessly complex beer but an extremely solid one.

Tried a little in a black and tan with Evil Twin Molotov Cocktail. Not recommended.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2014 03:23:40 | More by danieelol
Photo of dogfishandi
dogfishandi

New York

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500th review!!!

big thanks to youradhere for sending this my way.

2011 vintage, No. 002, 22oz bottle at cellar temp poured into a snifter. bottled 4/28/11

pours out a completely opaque black color with a dark brown colored head, somewhat fizzy, faded to a creamy dark ring rather quickly. a quick swirl of the glass rouses some lacing and a quick return of some head. some legs are also evident on the glass.

big notes of smooth powerful bourbon blend very well with a deep roasted/ burnt malt. i would say the bourbon is most obvious in the aroma however, becoming increasingly so the more it warms. some solvent like alcohol. also noticeable is some chocolate cake batter, vanilla, a bit of some dark fruits and a bit of molasses and brown sugar.

again, the big powerful bourbon is at the forefront, pretty boozy, but in the best way possible. very smooth and rich and just melds with the rest of the flavors so nicely. deeply roasted/ burnt malt, some oaky, vanilla, barrel qualities noticeable. behind all that there is some chocolate cake batter, molasses, dark fruits, dark chocolate.

big, full, chewy body. extremely warming to almost your whole body. carbonation is on the low side. so smooth, especially in the finish. slick, heavy and hot.

this is defiantly a solid, very well made BA stout, one of the better ones, but there are still a few i would take over this, 09 BCBS, and BA sexy chocolate to be specific. the 12 months spent in the barrel really does show with a big, smooth bourbon character with some oak as well. this is really a bourbon lover dream. personally i think this would benefit from at least a year or 2 of age.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2011 01:32:05 | More by dogfishandi
Photo of ChristopherWIU-UTPA
ChristopherWIU-UTPA

Texas

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is an outstanding beer, that's brewed in small batches, and has a high alcohol content. I pours dark brown, medium sized mocha head, and vivacious carbonation. It has a taste of Kentucky bourbon, Tabaco, and the finest roasted coffee beans. It has a strong edge, with an aftertaste of chocolate and bourbon, and leaves you wanting another sip. This is one to enjoy....

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2014 04:24:59 | More by ChristopherWIU-UTPA
Photo of mikey711
mikey711

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown near black with a small mocha colored head. it doesnt hold all that much but it doesnt bother me all that much

S: Lots of caramel notes upfront which is very pleasnant almost like a twix bar with some cookie and chocolate notes as well. nice vanilla notes and some woodiness. The bourbon adds a nice bit of spiciness as well

T: Again the caramel and toffee notes mix with an almost cookie like flavor. Nice oak notes that bring out some vanilla and chocolate sweetness. the bourbon is very prevalent and both sweet and spicy

M: there is some heat and it is a bit thin for 13% and actually a bit more like a strong ale. it is not very coying

D: A slow sipper for sure and best shared, but overall a great beer that i wouldnt mind getting more of

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2010 00:37:13 | More by mikey711
Photo of IKR
IKR

California

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage

Appearance: Black (only appears very dark brown at the edges if held up to a light) has a 1/2" dark brown head which dissipated quickly.

Smell: Mild Bourbon, vanilla, and coffee/roasted malt notes almost equally balanced.

Taste: Bourbon, vanilla, oak, chocolate, and roast malts. The finish is fairly dry with just a hint of sweetness. Slight alcohol presence in the finish but very subtle for the ABV.

Mouth-feel: Medium to full bodied with very subtle carbonation appropriate tor the style.

Overall: My first time time trying this beer and I like it. Unfortunately the availability in Southern California isn't so hot compared to other RISs I would consider in it's class (e.g. Abyss). I would gladly seek it out at the price I paid if it were distributed in decent numbers to my area.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2011 22:39:44 | More by IKR
Photo of alleykatking
alleykatking

Indiana

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at Lukafer's going away tasting. Forgot who brought this amazing bottle. Review from phone notes...

A- Pour a deep dark black color. One and a half finger tan head that has really good retention for the ABV. Some spotty lacing on the sides of the glass but nothing much other than that.

S- Roasted malts in the front of this give way to a vanilla aroma. Bourbon-y flavors with light oak in the middle. Some alcohol hotness which tingles the nose. Brown sugar and light bitter chocolate.

T- Big roasted malts in the front end of this. Some chocolate malt undertones which also shows a good vanilla backing. Oaky notes soaked in a bourbon like alcohol take over everything for a short while before coming back with a coffee bite to it.

M- Heavy mouthfeel. Carbonation was good for the style but a little light for me personally. Roasted malts with vanilla backing left on the palate with a coffee bourbon aftertaste. Flavors were well blended but shined individually. Very drying for me on the palate. Clean flavors overall.

D- A wonderful beer overall by Firestone Walker. This beer I can tell will only get better with age or at least a couple more years on it. I am going to be looking for a few bottles for the cellar. Well worth the praise in every way.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2010 04:12:18 | More by alleykatking
Photo of TruePerception
TruePerception

California

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Firestone's Parabola, Bourbon barrel-aged Imperial Stout. 14% ABV.

A: Just a little tan head. Fades quickly. Pours a rich brown. Pitch black in the glass, with a root beer meniscus. More rich brown in the dimple, with a bright caramel edge. Some very fine lacing. Thin ring of head stays the course.

S: Bourbon apparent as soon as the bottle is cracked! Very nice blend of bourbon and chocolate. Burnt caramel, toffee, dry cocoa/dark chocolate. Not as complex as I was expecting, but a very nice overall aroma!

T/MF: Feels very thick! Creamy. Very deep, dark flavor profile. Very strong, sweet Bourbon flavor up front. Even deeper burnt caramel, bordering on tar or tobacco. Sweet dark chocolate towards the back. Some sweet char, with almost graphite-like notes. Faintest hint of licorice.

I still like the Velvet Merlin better, but certainly a strong beer! Biggest Bourbon presence I've had yet, I think. This seems like a beer that demands rich food accompaniment! ...Speaking of which, I have some salted caramel gelato in the freezer, and it is about dessert time!

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle, into a Belgian tulip glass.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2014 05:01:27 | More by TruePerception
Photo of claybeerman
claybeerman

California

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was really thrilled with this beer. A very enjoyable Imperial Stout.

Firestone Walker Brewing Co. is becoming one of my favorite breweries. And lucky for me it is only 45 minutes away from my house. So whenever they have something fun on tap or realeasing, I try to stop by and see what's going on. I had one of those opportunities last month when Firestone Released their Parabola in bottles at the tasting room in Paso Robles, Ca.

Serving type:
on-tap poured into a 6oz snifter and 22oz bottle poured into a large wine glass.

Appearance:
It is quite dark. I held it up to the light in a large wine glass and even at the edges it was hard to see any light coming through.

Smell:
Much more fragrant in the large wine glass than in the snifter. My buddy and I would just sit and smell it over the course of the half hour it took us to finish the 22. It is almost as enjoyable to smell as it is to drink.

Compared to:
My other favorite in the imperial stout category would be Dogfish Head's World Wide Stout which I would say is quite similar. There is definitely much less of an alcohol taste with Parabola. I would say that when it comes to flavor, they are right on par with each other. It would be hard to name a favorite.

With Parabola now in bottles (and $15 for a 22 at the taproom), I am very happy that an amazing Imperial Stout will be accessible now. Way to go again Firestone!

Serving type: on-tap

06-06-2011 00:35:34 | More by claybeerman
Photo of JulioH
JulioH

Florida

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A unique beer.

Pours a light brown beer, almost looks like chocolate syrup with water, or watered chocolate. Forms bubbles immediately. Aroma is heady, coffee, chocolate. Taste is very strange. It is a heady beer but it is highly carbonated, and the carbonations tickles the tongue in a way that doesn't let you taste the high alcohol. Very strange feeling. The body is very light, not a heavy beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2014 03:57:57 | More by JulioH
Photo of Etan
Etan

Wisconsin

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Side-by-side comparison of 2011 and 2012 at Agold's tasting last night. Ratings are for the 2012 bottle. Each poured into its own glass.
---
2011

A: Pours a straight black with a small dark tan head. Some noticeable ruby highlights, head recedes quickly.

S: A bit of liquor, sweet dark fruit and chocolate, slight booze.

T: Nice oaky bourbon, tannic vanilla, big dark fruit, sugary chocolate, a small dose of bitter roast and slight heat on the back end.

M: Pretty thick, small carbonation.
---
2012

A: Looks basically the same as the 2011. Better retention, less ruby highlights.

S: Bourbon, slight dark fruit and chocolate, roast, a bit more alcohol than the 2011.

T: Same as the 2011 with noticeably more heat and more vanilla. Less fruit notes as well.

M: Same as 2011.
---
O: Of course both were delicious. The 2011 was a little less roasty, less vanilla, less alcohol heat, and more fruit. I gave it a slight edge.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2012 14:37:04 | More by Etan
Photo of PicoPapa
PicoPapa

Connecticut

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle. Reserve Series 003, 2012 Vintage. Pours a rich black color with an inch of light brown head. Some lacing. Aromas of booze, vanilla, toffee, and light and sweet coffee. The taste is boozey vanilla up front followed by some toffee. Some hints of coffee, chocolate and sweetness. Alcohol burn finish. Thick, heavy mouthfeel. You can certainly taste the barrel aging. This is a great slow sipper with a bunch of flavor. Damn good and would like to try it with some age on it, but fresh is outstanding. I need to get more of this.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2012 03:54:44 | More by PicoPapa
Photo of nkeckhar
nkeckhar

New York

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2011 Vintage

A: Pitch black, very little head..marked consistency

S: Vanilla, bourbon, roasty, chocolate

T: Taste change distinctly throughout the tasting. I got a sweetness with vanilla and coffee to start with little to no alcohol then after warming I got more of the barrel and alcohol. It kept a great balance throughout

M: Thick body - really great

O: I think the mouthfeel and the balance set this one apart for me...definitely worth the $15-$17 price tag.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2012 17:05:44 | More by nkeckhar
Photo of broken22
broken22

California

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a very dark brown. No head formed at all and I poured right down the middle of the glass. Only a slight ring of bubbles formed around the side of the glass and stayed there. The smell is mainly dominated by alcohol notes and perhaps a slight tobacco smell. I can taste more than I could smell of this beer. I can taste a cherry like sweetness that gets balanced out with a nice bitterness. There is a flavor change as the beer progresses through you mouth. The finish is has a lingering bitter and kind of has a warm like feeling. The mouthfeel is very heavy and with little to none carbonation.

Overall this beer is fantastic. I was really worried that the hype behind this beer might turn out to be just that. It is everything people say it is. The flavor is really really good. A fantastic beer that if you see one you should buy it immediately since they will be even more scarce and hard to find every day that goes by.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2011 04:59:25 | More by broken22
Photo of RyanLigeia
RyanLigeia

North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at McLaddens Irish Public House in Hampden, MA on 9/29/12.

Pitch black, completely opaque. No head which is expected with a 12.5% abv but there are a few small carb bubbles floating around the edges on top.

Smells heavily of bourbon, dark roasted coffee beans and some rich milk chocolate underneath. Just a hint of oak as well.

Taste is similar to smell but the coffee shines through a little more. Bourbon is still the most prominent but the oak flavor is much more noticeable here. A lot of booze in the finish, very warming. Also VERY sweet. Almost too sweet.

Mouthfeel is smooth, heavy, LOTS of alcohol warmth as it goes down. Low carbonation.

Overall this is a great stout! A little too sugary and the bourbon is kind of overpowering but those are my only complaints.

Serving type: on-tap

09-29-2012 19:26:17 | More by RyanLigeia
Photo of Lukafer
Lukafer

Michigan

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Jdefont for busting this out at our tasting! From notes:

Pours pitch black with minimal tan bead. Smells are little chocolate, booze, powered cocoa. Tastes are coffe, booze and a slight chocolate finish. There's some others in there as well, possibly some dark fruits and maybe hints of tobacco. Drinkability, as with other beers in this style are extremely subjective, and I know my group could have had one more bottle.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2010 22:40:04 | More by Lukafer
Photo of Retsinis
Retsinis

California

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had this beer as part of three separate vertical /horizontal tasting events of Firestone Walker Eleven, Twelve, Thirteen, Fourteen, & Parabola. All of which took place in the last 4 months. One was at an apartment with beers from my, and a fellow Beer Advocates cellar, the other was at a bottle share at Instant Replay in Canoga Park, CA. The third was hosted & served at Blue Palms in Hollywood, California.

I compiled notes from all three events, before I reviewed this beer here, to be as fair as possible to something that is rare, released once (for each anniversary) sought after, aged, and to a degree hyped as well. Also, each event I had 3-4 oz of each beer, and I felt I needed to try them again to better evaluate them, (also considered storing conditions affecting the beer.) Since I have now had about 9-12 oz of each beer in totality, I feel I can post my humble opinion of them in a review.

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a Bruery Tulip glass (was a large Brandy at Blue Palms, but a Bruery Tulip at the other two tastings)

The beer's appearance is a deep black with a foamy cappuccino colored head, which rose about an inch or less, and then quickly faded to a thin carbonated ring, leaving just a tinge of lacing on the sides of the glass.

The scents and aromas on the nose are well integrated, and show off the barrel more than anything. (Also makes you want to smell it for a while before actually tasting it) I get whiffs and notes of oak, caramel, bourbon, and vanilla, as well as some heat, followed by a mild cocoa. I also get some dark chocolate, burnt wood, and coffee. None of these are overpowering, but rather smooth.

The taste was a bit surprising, given the nose. Velvet smooth, roasted chocolate malt, and dark chocolate. (glad I had this with desert) These are much more prominent in the taste; only adding to a well balanced beer if this strong of roasted chocolate flavor can be masked by other notes on the nose. After allowing the beer to warm a bit more, I found the other flavors in the middle, caramel, light oak, bourbon, and heat on the finish. The alcohol is mostly there on the back end.

The mouth feel is full, though light to moderate carbonation. A bit creamy initially, but also viscous and smooth.

Overall, this beer was a great way to end a flight of all these great Firestone Walker beers. Can't say there is a bad one in the bunch. It basically boils down to flavor preference, and freshness to age preference, but these beers are deserving of their recognition, as they are well crafted, complex, and balanced. Glad I still have 3 bottles of Parabola, and I am looking forward to what age does for this beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2011 19:34:08 | More by Retsinis
Photo of alpinebryant
alpinebryant

Connecticut

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pour looks great, nice thick and chestnut dark brown slightly see through at the edges. Healthy tan head with just bubble lacing

S: Sweet roasted cocoa with oak barrel aging prominent. Bourbon aroma present with cocoa and booze.

T: Strong bourbon and oak right off the bat. Extremely smooth with healthy chocolate flavors and more barrel flavors at the end. Yeah there is a little booze present, but not unfamiliar territory with something as unforgiving as bourbon. I really thought this went down very smooth and could definitely enjoy it as it warmed up even more. Very drinkable, light carbonation and medium to thick body.

O: This is a keeper, I had not expected it to be this good based on the hype that some other beers have and have small run numbers. I cannot hate a great product that is brewed in larger quantities. Bravo Firestone, bravo

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2011 00:40:32 | More by alpinebryant
Photo of Brabander
Brabander

Netherlands

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

We had a beertasting at Beerpirates place on sunday the 15th of may 2011. Jeffo, Claark13, Bierschenker, beerpirates and i drank a whole bunch of beers. Thanks for your hospitality Wim!

Poured in my Westvleteren tasting glass this beer looked very nice, the oily lacing sticks to the glass. Head is low. Far away in the taste you can get some hops. Vanilla is also to find in this chocolat dark beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2011 12:48:50 | More by Brabander
Photo of clayrock81
clayrock81

Virginia

4.33/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured a black body with small tan head and a lace ring that never left the glass. I pick up not only booze in the aroma but dark fruits like raisins, figs, plum(?), some bourbon and wood as well as a little sweetness. A very heavy, boozy beer that is great but definitely made sure I could only have one. Thick, not sticky but this is going to leave some beer remnants on your tongue, a little heat on the finish and this beer actually benefits from a woodiness to keep it flowing smooth. As for tastes I pick up the dark fruits which is still mostly figs and raisins and again I swear a hint of plum, possible black cherry, all combining with a vanilla-like bourbon sweetness that is wonderfully balanced.

Serving type: on-tap

05-18-2014 19:32:24 | More by clayrock81
Parabola from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
100 out of 100 based on 4,310 ratings.