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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

2,525 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,525
Reviews: 588
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 9.98%
Wants: 206
Gots: 388 | 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: 2,525 | Reviews: 588 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of daBoLTman
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of dominic4beer
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Black body, with ruby highlights at the bottom of the glass. Medium-to-dark tan head of dense foamy micro-bubbles. Stretchy lace as the head recedes.

Aroma is heavy with coffee, maybe a touch of cream. Hint of oatmeal.

Taste starts with a sip of coffee, followed by a dollop of chocolate, a spoon of oatmeal, a hop bite, then a big dose of stronger coffee to finish.

Mouthfeel is a bit prickly for an oatmeal stout, not as rounded as expected.

Despite the slightly disappointing mouthfeel, it's a quality stout, well worth sampling.

Photo of Gutbucket
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of Joelbear5
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of output01x
3.93/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. capped bottle (Bottled On 01/09/12) into a pint glass.

A strong pour yields a 2-finger tan-mocha head that slowly fades after a few minutes to a thick, clumpy dusting and thick foam ring. The body is a deep, dark brown with traces of ruby when held to light. Thick lacing clings to glass between sips but always seems to fall back down, leaving a rather clean glass at the end.

Dark, roasted malts give notes of ground coffee beans, dark chocolate, chocolate milk, and burnt caramel. While pretty standard for the style, it is enjoyable and welcoming.

The beginning of each sip starts out with flavors of dark chocolate and roasted coffee beans. As the beer is swirled in the mouth, flavors of milk chocolate and milk caramel become more obvious. Swallowing the beer releases flavors of creamy coffee followed by more dark chocolate. As these flavors fade, a baker's chocolate bitterness lingers on the palate.

Medium bodied with great carbonation, this beer is silky smooth and easy-sipping. The body is a bit light but that does not seem to affect its ability to transfer flavors. This also helps to prevent the beer from being sticky or coating. The carbonation is a bit fizzy but does not seem to interfere with the experience and creates an excellent swallow.

Photo of Rocketman8911
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of BeezNeezy22D
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of DM1293
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Seasonal Sample from the Lazy Dog Cafe.

Its pretty good. Appears a reddish brown to the light, but then again the light was kinda dim.

A bit less smooth than other oatmeal stouts, being up-front with the bitter smokiness and coffee notes, but it falls into a semi-rich chocolate finish, which I find strangely decedent of a beer. So the finish does balance out the beer quite well.

A very unimposing, tasty stout.

Photo of KingStephenR
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of Kelp
4.75/5  rDev +18.5%

Photo of BeerImmediately
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into mug.

Pours with of fairly rocky, brown head over deep brown body with just a hint of light on the edges.

Solid, roasty aromas... reminded me of Founders Imp Stout. Lots of bittersweet chocolate, charred log, oats, and some tire rubber.

Creamy on the palate. The roast continues into the flavor, but mellows out to a sweeter chocolate profile - think chocolate/chocolate chip ice cream. Light hop pull in the finish. Good body - this drinks bigger than a 5.5%. Nearly perfect carbonation. Light film on the tongue.

Awesome Oatmeal Stout. Smokey quality is the only thing holding me back from a couple 5's.

Photo of ambruns1979
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Rifugium
3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: bottle from Capone's, Norristown, PA

Poured a dark brown-black, nearly opaque, with a small cap of off-white head that receded to a patchy layer and left a bit of lacing on the glass. Aroma was heavy with roast: coffee, dark malts, underlying cocoa. More roast on the taste, oatmeal and toasted grains, coffee, cocoa, roasty bitterness, with a definite sugary sweetness in the background. Medium-bodied, creamy, but still a bit on the light/watery side for the style, and not as completely balanced as it should be. Still very good though, and quite drinkable overall.

Photo of raynmoon
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours a nice dark brown with hints of red in it. Once it's in the glass, however, it looks black, but thin in that you can see through it slightly.

The smell is very bread-like, with a little bit of coffee and sugary roasted malts.

The beer is very smooth, with a tiny bit of hop bitterness on the way down. A little bit of an alcohol tingle as the beer warms up, but ever so slight.

Overall, it is very medium bodied and pleasant. I like it. But not an exceptional stout by any means.

Photo of scootpolute
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12ozs. bottle into a pint, 'cone' glass.

A - Pitch black with 1.5 fingers light tan creamy head. Head retention is good, with OK lacing.

S - Smokey roasted malts are at the forefront. Chocolate is well defined in the background.

T - Chocolate and roasted malts now dominate while the smokiness is still present it was mostly in the aroma. Some coffee and hints of dark fruit are present on the back of the tongue. Overall a balanced flavor, but not overly complex.

M - Medium-heavy bodied, a little thin for an oatmeal stout. Very creamy mouthfeel. Carbonation is definitely noticeable, but expecting more. Finish is slightly drying with lots of roasted malts, here the smoke comes back again.

D - Very Chocolaty (like having a large bite of your favorite chocolate ice cream...you can mention your's, mine is Ben & Jerry's!!), yummy beer...Well rounded, starts out dominating with the smokiness and finishes the same way. No complex flavors but definitely a very good beer...just a bit flat in parts, but other than that GREAT!

Photo of PhillyFA
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Giovacchini
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a snifter.

A- pitch black with a thin tan head that disapates.

S- toffee, roasted malt, coffee, dark chocolate, and raisins.

T- roasted malt, coffee, bread, chocolate, molasses, raisins, and toffee.

M- creamy mouthfeel with subtle carbonation. Alcohol brings a little warmth to the palate.

O- This is a decent beer. My first oatmeal stout I had was Samuel Smith's and this beer is very much comparable to it. It has a nice rich flavor and it's low alcohol makes it very drinkable.

Photo of ElGallo
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Mizorie
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of leedorham
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of lurpy1
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Cordova Casino in Rancho Cordova. It accompanied one of the shittiest meals I've had in eons, a nasty-ass chicken fettucine alfredo. I should have my head examined for having a stout with white sauce, but the mismatch isn't responsible for the Boyardee impression of the noodles. Anyway, this review is not about the noodles, it's about the beer. And what a beer it turned out to be. One of the best oatmeal stouts I've had. Roasty and subtle vanilla flavors, with a fantabulous sureally smooth consistency. Much better than FW's porter. Really makes me want to try Parabola.

Photo of MichaelBuck
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of rpjordan
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of mdillon86
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Velvet Merlin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 2,525 ratings.