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Velvet Merkin - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Velvet MerkinVelvet Merkin

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,307 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,307
Reviews: 179
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 274
Gots: 398 | FT: 81
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Oatmeal stout aged in a >10 year old Heaven Hill bourbon barrel.

(Beer added by: t0rin0 on 11-20-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,307 | Reviews: 179 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of duceswild
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

duceswild, Apr 28, 2014
Photo of DoubleJ
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

DoubleJ, Jan 08, 2014
Photo of Zorro
4.65/5  rDev +8.4%

Light proof black colored beer with a medium sized brown colored head.

One sniff and this smells like Canadian Whiskey! Not at all shy about letting you know this has been sitting in a bourbon barrel for a while. Strong vanilla, coconut and caramel scents. Smells sweet with some faint scents of tobacco leaf, ash and tanned leather. Simply lovely I could sniff this glass all day, pity they don't market this smell as an air freshener.

Starts out mildly sweet with a vanilla, coconut and chocolate flavor. Slight butter and stronger toffee candy flavors. A little sweet but not as much as the scent suggests. Mild bitterness. Strong Canadian Whiskey flavor. Oak and a little wood ash really coats the mouth like a milkshake. I can even taste a little sugar cookie in this, complex with a Capital C.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall one of the best things I have tasted all year. I may have tasted a better beer but there are few beers than can beat this. A lot of the beers that might be infinitesimally better are other Firestone Bourbon Barrel aged beers.

Zorro, Sep 22, 2013
Photo of BARFLYB
4.33/5  rDev +0.9%

On Tap at Teresa's Next Door. Served in a tulip glass.

Velvet Merkin pours the standard dark black color like the Merlin with a silky look. Black shade, off white head that is an inch that eventually fades, no cling. Smell is a nice and if not the best mix of oatmeal and bourbon ever. I'll admit, I am not a fan of huge beers, so i was a bit surprised at the alcohol difference between the former and the latter. I cant smell the eight some percent listed. OAts, ripe chocolate, vanilla, no oak, present bourbon. The taste is about the same with a focus of oatmeal and bourbon with a backing of chocolate. The great thing is, it's under 9%, meaning if i want another glsss, it would be a sinch. I loved the original and all the flavor and low abv, I love this version as well.

BARFLYB, Jul 04, 2012
Photo of afsdan
4.75/5  rDev +10.7%

afsdan, Aug 11, 2014
Photo of Gonzoillini
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Gonzoillini, Apr 13, 2014
Photo of BillRoth
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

BillRoth, Jun 07, 2014
Photo of John_M
4.24/5  rDev -1.2%

The beer pours a blackish brown color with good head retention and lacing. Don't get a huge amount of bourbon on the nose, but nevertheless, I'm picking up considerable milk chocolate, vanialla, a hint of leather and light bourbon. Not a lot of coffee in this one, but nevertheless, the nose is attractive. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this moderately sweet beer. and while the mouthfeel is a bit thin I thought, there is still a very attractive soft, plush, almost creamy consistency to this beer. Alcohol is very well integrated into the flavor profile, and so drinkability is quite good in this beer. Had no trouble whatsoever downing a bomber during the Sunday night football game.

Nice beer... not sure it's up there with Parabola or some of the anniversary beers FW has done, but it's still a nice enough beer.

John_M, Oct 21, 2013
Photo of mdaschaf
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

mdaschaf, Nov 06, 2013
Photo of rab53
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

rab53, Oct 13, 2013
Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev -6.8%

On draft at The Lark, East Northport, NY.

Poured a black hue with a two finger foamy tan head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured roasted malts a d a touch of charcoal.

The flavor was likewise roasted with a touch of sweetness and a hint of black licorice.

The mouthfeel was toward tge fuller side of the style.

Overall a tasty oatmeal stout.

plaid75, Feb 23, 2014
Photo of tdm168
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

tdm168, Oct 18, 2013
Photo of billab914
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

billab914, May 07, 2014
Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev -6.8%

DrBier, Jul 26, 2014
Photo of PEIhop
5/5  rDev +16.6%

PEIhop, Nov 17, 2013
Photo of HuskyinPDX
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Bottle opened on 10.8.13
No. 1

A - Pours a dark brown with a larger dark tan active head that fades fast leaving large bubble lacing.

S - Malt and oats, pretty subtle.

T - Bourbon barrel, chocolate and light oats.

D - Lower carbonation and a heavier body.

O - Nice and solid, nice flavors. I was wishing for a bit more depth.

HuskyinPDX, Oct 31, 2013
Photo of johnnnniee
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%

johnnnniee, Mar 23, 2014
Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

iL0VEbeer, Dec 04, 2013
Photo of dirtylou
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

2013, batch 01

When a FW brew comes in a box, you expect great things - aroma of toasted oats, touch of chocolate, some malt. Very light bodied - thin flavor profile - oats, cocoa, some hops. For FW, this is terribly disappointing and downright boring

dirtylou, Jan 11, 2014
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.05/5  rDev -5.6%

650 mL bottle poured into a taster.

Appearance - Black with a large khaki head. Good lacing. Really nice.

Smell - Bourbon is strong without being overpowering. Vanilla and chocolate. Roasty.

Taste - Bourbon and oak are nice. Roasty. Vanilla. Chocolate.

Mouthfeel - Well it is thin, but it's nice. Drinkable, we'll call it.

Overall - Good beer. Quality flavors in a small package.

Alieniloquium, Oct 08, 2013
Photo of drummermattie02
3.5/5  rDev -18.4%

drummermattie02, Sep 26, 2013
Photo of xnicknj
4/5  rDev -6.8%

xnicknj, Feb 06, 2012
Photo of LiquidAmber
4.01/5  rDev -6.5%

Poured into a Reuben's Brew snifter. Pours pitch black with a thin brown head that dissipates to a ring around the glass with light slippery lacing.Aroma of chocolate, sweet dark toasted malt, bourbon and vanilla. Flavor is vanilla, mild toasted malt, cocoa, lactose. A touch of coffee, coconut and bourbon. Light to medium bodied. A nice stout with complex flavor and a deft touch of bourbon from the barrel. Surprisingly thin bodied for an oatmeal stout, perhaps the lightest I've ever had; I would never have identified this as having oatmeal in it in a blind taste. Still tasty different. Can't help but think that this would have been outstanding with a bit heavier malt body.

LiquidAmber, Dec 25, 2013
Photo of Rhettroactive
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Rhettroactive, Feb 07, 2014
Photo of GraduatedCashew
4/5  rDev -6.8%

GraduatedCashew, Oct 07, 2013
Velvet Merkin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 1,307 ratings.