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Velvet Merlin - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Velvet MerlinVelvet Merlin

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,015 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,015
Reviews: 531
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 172
Gots: 215 | 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:
Original name was "Velvet Merkin", but name was changed when it began to be bottled in 2010.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ufa ... tube_gdata 

(Beer added by: largadeer on 11-13-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,015 | Reviews: 531 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Oakhtar


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

05-08-2014 23:57:38 | More by Oakhtar
Photo of Stephenshannonsmith


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

11-17-2013 02:22:28 | More by Stephenshannonsmith
Photo of oglmcdgl


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

01-22-2013 06:51:16 | More by oglmcdgl
Photo of BeerOps


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

11-20-2012 03:26:01 | More by BeerOps
Photo of Sir_Goatman


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

02-15-2014 06:06:41 | More by Sir_Goatman
Photo of rowmine


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

04-30-2012 21:54:53 | More by rowmine
Photo of RKing44


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

02-01-2014 18:41:50 | More by RKing44
Photo of jjheinrichs


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

11-28-2013 00:07:26 | More by jjheinrichs
Photo of szmnnl99


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

01-22-2014 01:08:20 | More by szmnnl99
Photo of Lucnifter


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

08-23-2014 21:36:09 | More by Lucnifter
Photo of dbattey

New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

01-10-2014 00:38:32 | More by dbattey
Photo of vitese


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

05-13-2013 17:47:50 | More by vitese
Photo of ahbithwabm


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

04-30-2013 16:46:18 | More by ahbithwabm
Photo of MLaVioletteJr


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

03-07-2014 01:54:24 | More by MLaVioletteJr
Photo of Braz


3.78/5  rDev -6%

Pure black stout with one thumb of creamy tan head. Coffee and cocoa dominate the nose. Roasted coffee and dark chocolate flavors, maybe a touch of toffee as well. Lightly sweet and lightly bitter. Creamy velvety texture very pleasing. Pretty full bodied. Has a fairly dry finish. Very nice stout.

12-14-2012 06:19:09 | More by Braz
Photo of Bennettrox


3.78/5  rDev -6%

A - Pitch black aggressive pour, didn't leave much of a head. Half finger tan.

S - Oatmeal, roasted malts, a little bittersweet chocolate

T - Very tasty. Follows the nose with roasted malts, oatmeal, and a sweetness to follow. Not picking up the coffee as much as others, I'm just fine with that.

M - Creamy and delicious. This one has a full body with moderate carbonation. Goes down very easy and feels good in the mouth.

O - Enjoyable oatmeal stout. Pretty good example of this style all around, would have no problem putting several of these down.

05-17-2011 16:34:19 | More by Bennettrox
Photo of jminsc76


3.78/5  rDev -6%

On tap at Haven's Gastropub in Orange.

Pours a decent head that dissipates quickly, with what is left sitting atop an impenetrable black body.

Aromas include plenty of roasty breadiness, with slight whiffs of either molasses, coffee, and cocoa in the nose. A wonderful bouquet.

The flavor profile exhibits some bite, with espresso bitterness and mild carob washing across the palate. It's decent, though it lacks a certain level of the oomph! I have tasted in other quality oatmeal stouts such as Barney Flats.

The mouthfeel is velvety indeed, very full upon swishing, and does not disappoint.

Overall, my initial impression is the aromas and mouthfeel are the saving grace of this beer; however, I have had it at other locations since Haven's and the flavors are better than what I initially experienced. It's a very good oatmeal stout - exhibiting an excellent balance - but still needs a little more to make it a classic. As of now, it's a good session brew, for me.

04-14-2010 05:07:44 | More by jminsc76
Photo of tut2528


3.78/5  rDev -6%

A: pours a solid jet black that is boldly opaque with about 1 fingers worth of tan colored head formation with some nice lacing.

S: i pick up on a strong burnt and smokey malt backbone that is complemented by a robust coffee and oat characteristics. complexity is lacking

T: big oatmeal, only a slight smokiness with hints of dark chocolate and just a touch of vanilla. again, nothing out of the ordinary for an oatmeal stout. however I do find the balance quite nice

M: full-bodied brew, that leaves a smokiness aspect on the palate that is rather intriguing and not overwhelming. minimal carbonation

O: as previously stated, this brew lacks complexity but it makes up for it in its balance. there is a bit more of a body to this one than other oatmeal stouts that I have had in the past which is always a plus in my book. decent beer all the way around, but nothing to get to get excited about.

11-05-2012 17:51:21 | More by tut2528
Photo of Brad007


3.78/5  rDev -6%

Received in a trade from dimce.

Velvet Merlin pours a pitch black with a nice, thick head into my glass.

Aromas consist of roasted malt with a touch of coffee and a creamy, silky texture.

Mouthfeel is dominated by the lingering silky texture courtesy of the oatmeal.It cradles the tongue.

A decent oatmeal stout. It hasn't broken any new ground though for the style.

10-19-2011 18:40:44 | More by Brad007
Photo of lacqueredmouse


3.78/5  rDev -6%

Pours much lighter than I expected, more a deep brown than a brown-black, and still letting light pass through rather easily. Head is yellowish beige, large-bubbled and frothy where agitated, but otherwise forming a thin film. Pretty good static carbonation when tilted, but overall, it just doesn't win me with its look.

Nose is dry but pleasantly roasted, with grainy cereal notes and a hint of coconut. It's rather mild in aroma, but the characters it has are very pleasant.

Taste is similar, and it has a really nice smoothness on the back palate that melds with the dark grain notes to almost give the suggestion of chocolate, even though there's absolutely minimal sweetness. Finish is quite dry, and with that mealy cereal character that suggests you have another sip. It's light on the palate, really, but it's pretty drinkable.

Certainly something I'd happily drink again, and something with plenty of dry roasty character that is eminently sessionable. No bad at all.

10-10-2011 03:21:32 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of jzeilinger


3.79/5  rDev -5.7%

A - Pours very dark brown/black and leaves a creamy, one layer, toffee colored coating with a slightly thick lacing ring. Leaves a sticky coating on the glass that is more like a high alcohol beer. Impressive legs.

S - Dark chocolate roast, grainy, and light char.

T - Follows the nose with deep/dark chocolate roasted malt and a chocolate charcoal finish.

M - Light medium body and finishes a little watery.

O - A nice, session able stout.

12-12-2013 03:24:03 | More by jzeilinger
Photo of tectactoe


3.8/5  rDev -5.5%

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.

09-17-2013 11:24:45 | More by tectactoe
Photo of chinchill

South Carolina

3.8/5  rDev -5.5%

12 oz bottle consumed in Redwoods Park.

Opaque black-brown; good tan head that leaves layered lacing.

Aroma: dark bread with hints of molasses and dark fruits

Flavor: Follows the promise of the aroma. Moderate level of dark roasted malts flavor. Faint coffee in the aftertaste.

Feel: soft medium carbonation. Medium-light body.

O: good for style.

08-22-2014 14:21:20 | More by chinchill
Photo of AgentZero


3.8/5  rDev -5.5%

Believe Jason shared this one.

A - Black beer with a big layer of tan foam that left a nice amount of fat lace.

S - Coffee and oatmeal, with the grains being roasted and a little bitter. Smells relatively sweet as well, good meaning the oats haven't soured so much.

T - Slightly roasted with oats, sweet chocolate, somewhat depressed coffee, and a little bit of cream. It's not bad, but not as good as I would have thought from the nose.

M - Smooth and creamy, one of the better aspects of this beer.

O - Not bad, liked this one enough that I enjoyed drinking what I had and wouldn't have minded more. Good stuff for a 5.5% oatmeal stout.

07-14-2011 21:16:32 | More by AgentZero
Photo of womencantsail


3.8/5  rDev -5.5%

On-tap at the Blue Palms. I was really glad to see this one hadn't kicked yet.

A: A very nice looking black pour with a thin layer of tan foam on top.

S: A strong aroma of coffee with other scents such oatmeal, roasted malt, and chocolate joining the party.

T: The flavor is a bit disappointing. The coffee is once again the dominant sensation. The oatmeal is there, but surprisingly not a huge presence. There are also some hints of chocolate and roasted malt.

M: The beer has a nice smooth somewhat creamy mouthfeel. The body, however, isn't quite as full as I was expecting.

D: Certainly a very drinkable beer with very little alcohol presence. I was really excited to get to try this, but a bit let down by it.

12-31-2009 01:35:11 | More by womencantsail
Velvet Merlin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 2,015 ratings.