Velvet Merlin - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 1,952 | Reviews: 527 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by LambicPentameter:
3.69/5 rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
Reviewing from notes after drinking on January 18th, 2014. Enjoyed out of a 12 oz brown bottle with a bottling date of 09/16/13 stamped on the bottom front of the label, so this is four days outside the 120-day period recommended by Firestone Walker for beer consumption. Poured into a standard 16 oz tumbler glass.
Appearance - Pours an inky black hue with just the slightest twinge of dark, walnut brown when I work hard to get some light to come through the glass. Atop the obsidian body rests a frothy off-white head about a finger and a half thick with a mix of larger and smaller bubbles. Retention is moderate, and leaves small bits of sticky lacing on the sides of the glass after the foam dissipates.
Smell - To be honest, I'm a little underwhelmed, as the smell is pretty simplistic--predominantly aromas of roasted malt and light char, with some complementary notes of bittersweet chocolate and stale coffee. Faint woody bitterness comes through on subsequent inhalations as well.
Taste - Very much inline with the aroma, only now with some characteristics coming through from the oatmeal in the form of a rustic, moderately sweet graininess along with the bitter roasted components and semi-sweet notes of semi-dark chocolate and coffee. Nice earthy hop bitterness as well, but at a pleasantly subdued rate, allowing the malt profile of this beer to be the lead role.
Mouthfeel - A little thinner than I would've liked, with a medium body, and moderate to low carbonation. Bittersweet finish.
Overall, a nice oatmeal stout, but nothing mindblowing like FW's hop-forward and barrel aged beers. There are other lowish ABV stouts that I would likely pick up off the shelf before I reached for this one again.
Serving type: bottle
04-16-2014 21:57:03 | More by LambicPentameter
More User Reviews:
4.8/5 rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
S: bottle to Pilsner glass
A: Beautiful, simply beautiful. A near perfect example of a stout. Nearly pitch black with a finger or so of tan head that stays throughout. Very light lacing is the only area that seems to lack.
S: Rich roasted malts, dark chocolate, light grains, light hops.
T: Similar to the nose. Rich flavors of espresso, dark chocolate, breads, very light bitter late bite. Chocolate cake in a glass. More than enjoyable.
M: Creamy, rich, light carbonation. In short, the way I expect a stout to feel.
O: I love it. I'm partial to stouts, especially oatmeal stouts, so the numbers may be slightly skewed, but if it weren't a good stout I would rate it low, so take it at as it is. Because of the coffee/espresso notes, I would consider this a great dessert beer. Who am kidding, this would be great for breakfast or anytime.
Serving type: bottle
07-16-2014 05:14:06 | More by TotallyGomer
Velvet Merlin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 1,952 ratings.