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Velvet Merlin - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Velvet MerlinVelvet Merlin

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2,565 Ratings
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Ratings: 2,565
Reviews: 599
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 9.98%
Wants: 205
Gots: 407 | FT: 7
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: 2,565 | Reviews: 599
Photo of Mollerina
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of Gmann
3.48/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A. Pours near pitch black color with a short but dense head. Some lacing on the glass.

S. the aroma has light chocolate notes quite nutty. Light overall roast.

T. The taste is of a chalky chocolate. Good roasted nut flavor. A bit of an herbal bark flavor going on. Smooth from the oat but an odd flavor going on.

The feel is quite dry and chalky. Too chalky. The roast is light and flavorful. Meh.

O. A bit disappointed in this way too dry. Decent flavor. Both this and the bourbon barrel aged version didn't really do it for me. Too chalky.

Photo of spinrsx
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Whole Foods Las Vegas for 1.99$

Appearance - Dark brown colour with a large size frothy light brown head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes.

Smell - Malts, chocolate, oatmeal

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, coffee, chocolate, and oatmeal. There was also a touch of smoke and a bit of a cola flavour. It ends with a grainy chocolate aftertaste with a hint of lingering smoke.

Overall - The appearance of this beer once poured was really great. A beautiful fluffy/rocky/foamy head. Oh ya, it tasted pretty good too. Although there are better oatmeal stouts available to me locally.

Photo of AgentMunky
3.64/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a brandy snifter. Bottled 28 December 2011.

A: A finger of creamy brownish head. Deeply black. Great looking stout. Good lacing.

S: Some roasted malt and oatmeal sweetness. Pretty much exactly what I expected to find.

T: Rich and verily velvety. Still, I think the flavour is a little lacking. It's tasty, just very faint. Sweet cream mostly and then roasted-bitter malts on the endtaste. Great lingering aftertaste.

M: Chewy and substantial.

O: A very nice oatmeal stout. Recommended. Would have again. Drinkable, smooth, and pleasant.

Photo of Soxfanmcgee
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of SheboyganJake
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of phishsihq
3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Velvety Smooth....

Firestone Walker Brewing Company was the 2011 GABF Mid-Size Brewery of the Year, as well as winning the award in 2003 & 2007, and at the World Beer Cup in 2004, 2006 & 2010. So, considering they won awards for being the best brewery their size in '03, '04, '06, '07, '10 & '11, it is safe to assume they know a thing or two about good beer, and it is good beer!

Velvet Merlin is an Oatmeal Stout that is partially aged in bourbon barrels and utilizes the always amazing Maris Otter malt. The beer pours an intensely dark brown (black?), with ruby highlights near the edges. Atop this dark brew sits one inch of beige colored head that dissipates slowly and leaves a curtain of lace. A BIG roasty nose leaps from the glass, with whispers of espresso and chocolate aromas as well. Sweet chocolate flavors quickly fade into roasted coffee tones on the pallet. Bold flavors and a delicate creaminess is due to the medium-full body and softer levels of carbonation. We enjoyed some of this with Blue Bell Vanilla Ice Cream, simply magical.


Photo of zapahoppa
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of switzer
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of station815
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of jwillyburns
4.25/5  rDev +6%

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

Poured from the bottle into my new Bruery glass.

Poured a dark black color with a tan head. Head vanished rather quick leaving some lacing.

Smells of roasted malts mostly, with a touch of vanilla and some cereal notes (think cheerios).

Taste is quite good, very balanced, slightly chocolately, slightly roasty. Not overly complex but certainly not boring.

Mouthfeel is a bit light. I like my oatmeal stouts to be a bit more thick and syrupy.

Overall a very drinkable stout, one that I will certainly seek out again. Quite tasty.

Photo of davidtarantino
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of CSGardenhire
4.75/5  rDev +18.5%

Photo of GoatRoyal
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of zachary80
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of MarkyMOD
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of fox227
4.23/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer takes on typical stout form: black with tan head, which doesn't retain, to describe it more, I have no claim. Smell is fairly faint in the form of the following facets: coffee, chocolate, and roasted malt; however, these characteristics are quite bold, and is best served not too cold. Mouthfeel is creamy and rich; Velvet Merlin seems full bodied, but by alcohol volume it's nary as such. I would imagine quite a night, drinking six of these, and not dehydrate, or overindulge; Velvet Merlin, a single strength stout, I can easily afford.

Photo of iskeptopotamus
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of MumboJumbo
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of espijosh
3/5  rDev -25.2%

Photo of Jhatwig
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of match1112
4.13/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: pitch black body. half inch of mocha colored head quickly settles to a thin ring with spotty lacing.

s: milk chocolate and roasted coffee.

t: sweet chocolate quickly takes a back seat to the roastieness with a touch of oat on the backend.

m: kinda thin body for a oatmeal stout, feels and tastes more like a milk stout. decent carbonation. creamy with a bitter dark chocolate finish.

o: good stout, but to me is more like a milk than a oatmeal. none the less still worth trying.

Photo of davey101
3.69/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 09/09/11. 12 oz bottle into a DFH signature glass.

A - Pitch black body with a small one finger light mocha cap. Tight and small bubbling with low retention.

S - Sweet milk chocolate, roasty malts, and light coffee. Simple, but amazing. One of the better noses on a beer I've encountered.

T - Doesn't live up to the nose. Milk chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and a slightly bitter and dry finish. A bit thin and plain.

O - Damn, this beer had an excellent nose. The flavors and body are just above average for me. I wish I could buy this though, its a nice and simple oatmeal stout that does everything right. It doesn't stand out, but its a safe bet.

Photo of Murrhey
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

A- Two finger thick frothy head. Mocha color. Deep dark brown-red color.

S- Mocha scents. Dark roast malts, coffee and chocolate.

T- Deep malty and finishes sweet and chocolatey. Taste some grainy oatmeal notes.

M- Velvety smooth and chocolate like in texture. Creamy.

O- Would absolutely buy again. Love this beer.

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Velvet Merlin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 2,565 ratings.