Firestone 12 - Anniversary Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Firestone 12 - Anniversary AleFirestone 12 - Anniversary Ale

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296 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 296
Reviews: 187
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: 9.34%
Wants: 359
Gots: 53 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: barleywinefiend on 11-09-2008)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 296 | Reviews: 187 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of duceswild
2/5  rDev -54.4%

Photo of mendvicdog
3/5  rDev -31.7%

Photo of Hugonaut13
3/5  rDev -31.7%

Photo of sleuthdog
3/5  rDev -31.7%

Photo of craytonic
3.3/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Tasted side-by-side with 10, 11 and 13

Appearance: coffee/brown/mahogany, decent head and lacing

SMell: Caramel, fig, bourbon, brown sugar, vanilla, molasses, raisins

Taste: Toffee, caramel, bourbon, vanilla, oak, booze

Mouthfeel: low carbonation, alcohol is a bit harsh

Drinkability: I did not notice any big differences between FW 10-13, they range from OK to slightly better to my palate. THis one was a bit hot, although most of them were to some extent.

Photo of cpetrone84
3.33/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black liquid with hints of red on the edges and a slightly bubly tan colored head. The nose has hints of peat, notes of caramel, some dried fruits, light dark malts and an almost vinous quality. Dark fruits are brighter in the flavor, plums and figs, hints of ash and notes of roasted malts, light chocolate and bourbon with a bitter aspect with a thin finish. Medium body, light carb and slightly oxidized.

Photo of oline73
3.5/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of Zbeetleman
3.5/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of dfhhead25
3.5/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of BMart
3.5/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of Goliath
3.6/5  rDev -18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours nearly black and opaque with some ruby hues at it's edges. A large one inch light tan head forms on the pour and lingers with excellent retention. No real lacing is left behind.

The aroma is decent. It's fairly boozy, but I get a good dose of vanilla and oak, with a touch of caramel and phenol.

The taste is ok, but a bit of a disappointment. It's slightly bitter, with a bit of a dying hop presence, a bit of a phenolic quality, a ton of booze, and a big dose of oak. No real pleasing flavors are available.

Mouthfeel is pushing full bodied, and is slightly slick and creamy. Carbonation is very low, with a gentle bubble giving a bit of a tickle at the back of the throat.

Drinkability seems low. The alcohol is high, and it's very apparent in every sip. The flavor profile is lacking pleasing qualities. I just don't get this beer. 11 was much better.

Photo of Murchmac
3.68/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Is that guy from the bachelor the same dude that is Firestone? Either way, this beer is better than the show.

Pours a deep dark brown with ruby highlights, frothy tan head. Look out for the yeasty sediment crap that can float on down like a disneyland snow globe.

Smells of strong bourbon up front, makes way for vanilla, dark fruits, coffee, toast. Smells a lot like the 11.

Straight up bourbon taste, bleeds into melted chocolate, hops, roasted coffee, burnt toast. Very complex, the bourbon dominates like Buster Douglas against Tyson.

Warming alcohol numbs your head and coats your throat, bourbon chocolatey coffee tastes linger like Piston Honda. Very complex, good, but not great, yet. I liked it but would let it chill for 4-5 years and see what happens.

Photo of Lothore
3.68/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a deep, dark brown hue with a thin, frothy, off white head.

S- Smell is deep with hints of plum, fig, caramelized sugar, a little mettalic

T- Taste very round, hints of spices, rum soaked raisins, brown sugar and rounded out with a bit of roasted malt / coffee flavor at the end. Very balanced and full but not nearly as complex as some other big beers.

M- Thick with medium low carbonation.

D- Very big, thick, and sweet with alcohol that is pretty "in your face". I really don't think I can justify the retail price let alone some of the ridiculous markups (not that i graded it down for this, just thought i would mention it).

Photo of sweemzander
3.7/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a tasting glass. I believe thanks go out to John or Jim for sharing this one!

(A)- Pours a dark brown; almost black color. A decent tan head that dissipated after awhile.

(S)- Kinda closed. Some roasted bits and some raisins. Touch of heat.

(T)- Some rich nutty hazelnut and vanilla caramel and molasses. Still a bit hot.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. As mentioned before, it is a bit boozy, but otherwise a good rich, malty sweet monster.

(D)- Good, but a tad sweet and boozy for my taste. Maybe another 6 months could help this one out?

Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of trappistlover
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

(sampled at Dak's Final Four Tasting, courtesy of Rusty!). Pours dark brown with khaki head. Aroma has loads of bourbon, vanilla and wood. The taste is sweet with bourbon notes. Medium bodied with an oily texture. This is a nice beer. Thanks Rusty!!

Photo of Rhettroactive
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of CityofBals
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of tjmodica
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of billab914
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of RodBurg
3.78/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours an opaque dark brown with a thin layer of head gracing the top that leaves no lacing. Small highlights of amber peak through the edges when held up to light. Extremely viscous.

Lots of bourbon in the nose. Vanilla, oak, caramel, sweet corn.

Taste is all Kentucky Whiskey and caramel malt. Vanilla, brown sugar and molasses notes combine very well with a thick and chewy mouthfeel. Good carbonation and a slight alcohol burn in the finish.

Incredibly complex and tasty. Definite sipper, I had to share the bottle.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.78/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled January 2009
A vigorous pour sneaks up on my and creates a bit of a foam over in my 25cl tulip glass. The head starts out a fat-three-fingers in height with a nicely browned, dark tan color. The beer is quite dark, but more of a concentrated brown than black color, when held up to the light the beer shows flashes of a brilliantly clear, ruby color. The aroma has a nice mix toasted coconut, a light barrel spiciness, lots of vanillin, butterscotch and a finish that has a touch of bourbon like warming to it. The aroma is incredibly smooth for showing so much barrel influence and is actually not quite as powerful as I was expecting. Notes of toffee, hints of dark fruit and some toasted grain notes provide a touch of character underneath the other more dominant notes.

This starts out on the cool side (high 40s to low 50s), but I plan on slowly consuming this over the course of the evening. Thick, viscous and heavy as it first hits my tongue, there is a solid prickle of carbonation as the bubbles struggle to release from the beer. The beer is sweet tasting, but this is balanced a lot by spicy bourbon notes, a lingering woody bite in the finish, a middle that has notes of toasted coconut as well as a roasted malt contribution that is sprinkled throughout. The finish also has a touch of cherry like fruitiness to it, though this quickly succumbs to a more dominant, spicy, bourbon heat (which can be a little too much at times). The sweetened coconut flavors are heightened by barrel influenced notes of vanillin and butterscotch.

As the beer warms up it looses a bit of the sweetness but remains quite rich. This is most definitely a sipping beer. While I was grilling some chicken I was noticing a bit more fruit in the flavor as it seemed to bring out notes of figs and raisins. Dark caramel notes, some solid toffee and some salty caramel start to become noticeable after my third pour of this beer. The flavor has some nice things going on, but it just gets too hot, almost phenolic in the finish because of the barrel spiciness and higher alcohols.

Perhaps not quite as much toasted coconut as the XI, but this certainly has quite a bit of it too. I really like this in strong, barrel aged beers, and it makes me wonder what are they doing / using that most other brewers are not. For some reason I am not quite enjoying this near as much as the 10 or 11, it is not bad, but just doesn't achieve the finesse of either of those brews.

Photo of youradhere
3.78/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes of a 12, 13, 14 Vertical

Poured a deep maroon tinged mahogany, no head and little lacing. Looks very clear, nice legs on the brandy snifter. Smells of subdued oak, bourbon and slight vanilla. Tastes sweet with still some alcohol hear, the flavor is mild with notes of chocolate, caramel, honey. Slight sediment as the bottle goes down, mouthfeel isn't that thick but still drinks good.

Photo of jrallen34
3.85/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I drank this from a 22oz bottle into a Rochefort glass.

The beer is very dark brown you can just tell its brown not black but irregardless its very drak. The head is a very light tan rising about a finger but is gone quickly, under 30 seconds. The lacing is very light and watery. There some spotty drops around the glass.

The front of the aroma is really sweet with some vanilla, toffee and raisins and finished with oak and bourbon. Its complex but light, wish it was a tad bit stronger.

The taste of the beer is tons of vanilla which is awesome on the front. It fades to some oak and bourbon and finishes with some bitter alcohol.

The feel is a little light, somewhat disappointing.

Its decently drinkable but something about it just makes it a sipper not a chugger.

Overall its pretty good but has some draw backs in lack of overall aroma and too much vanilla mixed with a bitter end that makes this beer only good not great.

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Firestone 12 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 296 ratings.