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Velvet Merlin - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Velvet MerlinVelvet Merlin

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

2,524 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,524
Reviews: 588
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 9.98%
Wants: 207
Gots: 387 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: largadeer on 11-13-2008

A decadent oatmeal stout. Velvet Merlin offers robust cocoa and espresso aromas with subtle American hop nuances. Rich dark chocolate and roasted coffee flavor with a creamy mouth feel and wonderfully dry finish create the perfect balance in this full-bodied stout. Ideal for sipping in the winter months or at the end of a meal.

Original name was "Velvet Merkin", but name was changed when it began to be bottled in 2010.

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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,524 | Reviews: 588 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ToddThompson
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of famous_mortimur
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of MikeWard
3.89/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a goblet. Bottled on 1/8/13, so 8 months old.

Poured jet black, with a little under 2 fingers of oatmeal colored head. In fact the head really looks like oatmeal pancakes on the griddle. Head dissipated rather quickly tp a thin covering and collar. Lacing was decent though.

Smell was mostly roasted malt and a little grain

On taking a mouthful, was immediately hit by the roasted malt around the edge of the tongue. But was was interesting to me was that it didn't linger to much, smoothed out quite quickly to a very pleasant and grainy aftertaste. (I'm not a big fan of the stouts whose heavily roasted malts stay with you for hours, so this was enjoyable)

My only real problem with this stout was the extremely thin, almost watery mouth. Would have been a much more enjoyable drink with a medium to full finish.

Overall, I would have it again, though likely won't be scouring the shelfs for it.

Photo of C_Roetting
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of tectactoe
3.82/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Black. Black as black can be... Surprisingly black, actually, with another surprisingly deep brown and tainted mocha colored head that foams up to a few fingers quickly, and then hastily retreats to a weak film stretched across the black hole. A few splotches of tan lacing are left near the top of the glass and that's about it. I know it's an oatmeal stout, but I wasn't expecting this level of darkness.

The aroma ventures into the cream and silky chocolate range with a mild oat undertaking and plenty of dark and lightly roasted malt. The darkness and roast don't come without a somewhat out of kilter, but nevertheless balancing, creamy sweetness - the beauty of sweet/oatmeal stouts, right? The nose shows just a touch of dark fruit in the finish... Not as captivating as I was expecting, but a decent smelling oatmeal stout nonetheless.

Velvet Merlin tricks me a little bit, as the taste is definitely more roasted than you would ever be able to anticipate just from taking a few whiffs. Lightly charred malt is met by a quieter, softer prune and dark fruit sweetness that lends every hand it has in an attempt to balance, and eventually does a respectable job of it, even if not immediately.

More milk chocolates explode about halfway through, flowing into a graciously soft and dry oat filled finish. Sweetness is contempt, yet notable and overall balanced pretty well with the roast and the dry oats. The mouth feel of this beer doesn't swoon me with its sexy silkiness like oatmeal stouts should (and like many of them do), so I must dock it a few points in that regard.

Velvet Merlin is a pretty good oatmeal stout all around, but it really wasn't a mind-blowing or incredible experience for me, and there are certainly some options that are more local to me that I'd take over it (New Holland's The Poet, or even Rogue's Shakespeare, as much as I hate Rogue and their business practices... but that's neither here nor there). Really good, but not legendary.

Photo of Cazlo
4.25/5  rDev +6%

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4.25/5  rDev +6%

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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4.25/5  rDev +6%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of UncleAddie
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

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4.25/5  rDev +6%

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3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of SpongeRuiner
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of Omnium
3.94/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle > Pint Glass

A - Pours pitch black, one finger tan head, no lacing.
S - Roasted oats and some coffee, a little smokiness, some toasted grains.
T - Creamy roasted flavor, nice bitterness, some nutty quality on the end as well, some burnt qualities in the aftertaste.
M - A little bitter and thin for a stout, but not bad.
O - Taste doesnt follow aroma enough, but its an average oatmeal stout, I'd look elsewhere for cheaper and better oat stouts.

Photo of RobertColianni
2.75/5  rDev -31.4%

Velvet Merlin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 2,524 ratings.