Velvet Merlin - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 1,946 | Reviews: 527 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by magictacosinus:
4.18/5 rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
Poured out of a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Label states that this was bottled on "09/27/12."
Color is a blackened, brownish shade that is surprisingly thick and full looking, to the point where barely any light shines through. Not too much of a head, to my disappointment. Smallish bubbles fade away at the top of the glass and a ring resembling the top of coffee remains, with slight lacy specks on top. This is really dark, but I can see bubbles occasionally go around the glass's edges. Good stuff.
The aroma contains various aspects that are found in oatmeal stouts - other than dark grains and oats, there are coffee grounds, vanilla, a fresh herby zest, and several notes of dark wood and earthiness. The first aroma is definitely on the malty side, but there's an immediate balance with the hops and oats that makes this rich and wholly enjoyable. My mouth is already watering.
With one sip, followed by a second, I can immediately label this as the most balanced beer I've had by FW to date. There's an initial strong flavor of lovely chocolate malts, richened oats, and smooth, subtle coffee bean notes, but there are quickly - just as in the aroma - aided by the hops and slight yeasty flavors to create enormous balance and enjoyability. The aftertaste is slightly warming, and also rather smoky. There's a slight astringency that remains even a minute or so afterwards, which is rather unpleasant but not the biggest problem.
A very good oatmeal stout by FW, especially for its budget offering. I could definitely have more of these due to its rich, full-bodied experience at such a good price. Great stuff by FW, and I could definitely have more.
Serving type: bottle
10-28-2012 06:00:08 | More by magictacosinus
More User Reviews:
4.8/5 rDev +19.7%
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 1,946 ratings.