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Velvet Merlin - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Velvet MerlinVelvet Merlin

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,434 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,434
Reviews: 574
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.22%
Wants: 203
Gots: 358 | 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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Ratings: 2,434 | Reviews: 574 | Display Reviews Only:
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5/5  rDev +24.7%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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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%

Photo of portia99
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle (1/9/14) poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours black in the glass with small heading forming briefly and then falling to leave behind a thin collar of grayish foam and random traces of lacing on the glass.

S - Tons of burnt, charred malt, traces of burning tires, molasses, over-roasted coffee, dark chocolate, mild licorice. A bit too much burnt character for me.

T - Flavor follows the aroma fairly well. Large quantities of smoke, burnt, charcoal-y, acrid and deeply roasted flavor. Dark chocolate, fudgy, molasses, coffee, licorice. More complexity and balance than the aroma indicates...chocolatey sweetness comes in just enough to smooth out all of the heavy burnt character.

M - Quite thick and full bodied. Medium carbonation that comes in just a touch to high for my preferences but is not offensive. Increasing hoppy bitterness as the beer warms in the glass.

O - Overall, enjoyable stout. Bigger beer than the ABV would indicate. Super thick in feel and a bit heavy. Nice with dessert.

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3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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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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3/5  rDev -25.2%

Photo of donkeyrunner
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

$7 for 14 oz at Meadhall, Cambridge MA

Dark browny black with a thin, quick to dissipate head.

Smells smooth. I know that's not a scent but it does. Mushy brownie batter or moist chocolate trifle with more and more char emerging as VM warms.

Features the usual chocolate and roast malt flavors but the mix and creamy mouthfeel just makes this a better tasting oatmeal stout. Mild something in the back - orange mint? Bigger body than 5.5%.

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3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

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3.25/5  rDev -19%

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4.25/5  rDev +6%

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4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of imscotty
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours with a modest tan colored head that settles quickly. Very little lacing. The beer is dark brown in color with a reddish tinge when held to the light.

S: Smell some dark fruit, coffee, malt. Some slight earthy tones, not overly aromatic.

T: The slightly bitter coffee flavor is the most forward. Some chocolate, malt and almond notes. Nothing too aggressive or complex. The finish is dry and prominently taste slightly bitter coffee.

M: I think this beer is surprisingly thin and watery for the style, more like a black ale. Fairly well carbonated.

O: The flavor is good but not spectacular or overly complex. I feel the mouthfeel is off for the style and detracts from the beer. This is a very drinkable brew but not a world class beer. Even Firestone Walker hits singles sometimes.

Photo of wvsabbath
3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Black, dark brown with trances of tan, 1/4 inch creamy head, nice thick lacing.

Smell - Smoked malts, raisin, plum, figs, brown sugar, some chocolate and cocoa, faint coffee and a little vanilla.

Taste - Starts off very silky with additions of coffee and chocolate. Oatmeal adds a bittered flavor. Smoked malts add boldness. Dark fruits give a nice fruity flavor that works well to add sweetness to balance the bitterness of the oatmeal and coffee. Cocoa and honey come out more as this warms up.

Mouthfeel - Rather light on the tongue. Smoked malts, chocolate and coffee are main flavors on the tongue. Palate gets dark fruits, and a little honey and vanilla. Aftertaste is malty, and actually a little watered down bitter.

Overall - Really good. Smooth, easy to drink and enjoy. Balanced really well and nothing is overdone flavor wise. Only gripe keeping this world class is the finish is a little watery, weak. Still solid and worth a drink.

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4/5  rDev -0.2%

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4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Velvet Merlin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 2,434 ratings.