1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Double Double Barrel Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Double Double Barrel AleDouble Double Barrel Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,690 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,690
Reviews: 289
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 8.88%
Wants: 180
Gots: 817 | FT: 101
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: HopHead84 on 06-16-2009

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (79) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,690 | Reviews: 289 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gr0g
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After using Pintley to keep track of my taste notes and reviews, I've gotten fed up with the lack of updates (such as Double DBA not being listed) and now resolve to posting reviews on BA.

2012 vintage Double DBA. Poured into my Double Bastard glass, slightly hazy orange-copper with a faint head comprised of tiny tan bubbles. Aroma is a complex blend of wood and fruit, not unlike FW's own Abacus/Sucaba. Big vanilla note showcases the barrel-aging. Sugary-sweet, rum-soaked fruit. Slight fuel note. Bittersweet on the tongue with a definite alcohol warmth. The oaky vanilla notes from the nose show up on the palate, too. Rich caramel/toffee from the malt body with enough hop bitterness to keep this from becoming a sugar bomb. Mouthfeel is akin to a pale ale but stickier and with a lighter, finer carbonation. It's matches up very nicely with the flavor profile, though I think the carbonation could be even softer.

Having had Abacus/Sucaba, I don't feel that Double DBA reaches that level of magnificence, but it's still an exceedingly strong example of a big, barrel-aged ale.

Photo of jklecko2
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

Photo of barnzy78
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle shared with a friend. Pours brownish-red topped with a thin, beige head. Aromas are huge with bourbon, more bourbon, brown sugar, oak, booze, caramel, toffee, and vanilla. Tastes are just as full - vanilla, oak, bourbon, toffee, buttery, brown sugar, caramel, cotton candy, sweeeet but not cloyingly. Mouth-feel is creamy, smooth, and medium-to-full bodied. Overall, very nice treat, but for the price I'd probably never get it again.

Photo of Big_Eatums
4.75/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is my first posting, so I’m afraid to give it the full on 5.0. But seriously…..this one ROCKS!! Okay, wait…to get more sophisticated.

It has a caramel taste, which could be from the barrels. As a homebrewer, I’ve already made note to get some kegs to double barrel my own brews….okay. The flavor is very malty indeed with a nice small ring a foam.

Trust me, this BEER is worth the price you’ll pay for it. Heck, get two and save one for when the world comes to a end and enjoy……

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

Photo of tobelerone
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle drunk alone over an hour or so while deep into some nfl. Pours brownish amber, with a small off white head that settles slowly and leaves some patchy lacing. As the beer sits and settles I notice a fair of amount of yeasty floaties; otherwise it exhibits good clarity.

Nose is sweet and malty; my wife described it as rum raisin; lots of caramel, brown sugar, and whiskey notes. Flavor follows closely; a very subtly bitter and herbal, floral hoppiness is detected, otherwise the beer is dominated by a pleasant toffee sweetness, hints of maple, and boozy whiskey notes. Although the barrel comes out nicely there's almost no burn or warmth in the chest.

Medium body, medium carbonation, just a touch of stickiness. Really enjoyable even if it falls a hair shy of profundity. Get ready for a sugary whiskey treat.

Photo of Jules11788
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of jondeelee
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Double Double Barrel Ale opens to a malty, yeasty nose that smells initially more like the inside of a bakery than a beer: rising wheat dough, floury baguette, even touches of marble rye. These are slowly followed by a thick runnel of molasses, caramel, and wildflower honey, as well as a bevy of fruit esters, including berry, orange, apricot, and cherry, all of these present in Jolly Rancher candy-like strength. There’s a good hint of rosewater around the edges, joined by sweet pink grapefruit and a touch of pine resin. Good hints of oak, bourbon, and vanilla give away the barrel aging, but do not overpower the beer; rather, they blend nicely with the sweet fruits and thick breads. As a whole, the nose is very nice, bending toward the sugary side, but with enough bread and whiskey to avoid overpowering sweetness, and the aromas are full-bodied and potent.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a malty, yeasty hit of brown bread, caramel, toast crust, biscuit, bread dough, and chewy whole wheat bread, but this is tempered almost immediately by oak, vanilla, and whiskey from the barrel aging, adding a sexy alcoholic vibe to the breads. Fruit esters and sugars kick in next, bringing apricot, cherry, orange, and berry flavors, as well as molasses, honey, and brown sugar. Thick rosewater and pink grapefruit come from the hops, as well as touches of pine resin and hints of lemon. Hold the beer on the tongue long enough and the sugars will die off, revealing a good whiskey barrel belly. The aftertaste is slightly over-heavy on the whiskey notes, but a few touches of sugar and bread do remain, and the beer lingers on the tongue for a good while. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium.

As a whole, this is excellent beer. The barrel aging brings a fantastic oak and vanilla tone to what was obviously already a well-crafted brew, and the flavors mingle together deliciously. The whiskey flavors do tend to overpower the latter half of the mouthful, and the aftertaste is almost completely dominated by bourbon, making the high 12% ABV leave one’s breath feeling as if it could tarnish silver. But even here, this works well with the beer, and the next sip brings fresh berry and sugar notes to blend marvelously with the whiskey vapors. Recommended.

Photo of Peglegtim
4.75/5  rDev +11%

Photo of JamesShoemaker
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured out into my oversized tulip. Thanks to mhksuccess for this one.

A - this beer pours a deep brown, with a tinge of red and yellow on the outside. Very little head, very little carbonation.

S - not nearly as interesting as the taste. There's hardly any indication of alcohol, which is surprising given its high content.

T - wow. What a unique taste. Very sweet, coriander and honey at first, a little citrus bite at the end. The alcohol is still hardly a factor.

M - too syrupy.

O - very interesting beer. The sweetness was surprising, but a real treat. I don't know how many more chances I'll get to try this, but I'll certainly get it again.

Photo of bonkers
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured from a bomber into a SA perfect pint glass. The pour is a deep amber, moderate head, decent lacing. It has a strong bourbon smell, lots of vanilla and oak. The beer has a great bourbon taste, ton of vanilaThe beer is a bit boozey. It has good carbonation, suprisingly smooth for such a big beer. Really enjoyable, exceeded expectations.

Photo of imperialking
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of JayCin
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of TMoney2591
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Founders shaker pint glass.

My vote would be to call this a "Quadruple Barrel Ale", as "Double Double" sounds either redundant or too close to a Jeopardy! bonus. This stuff pours a clear sunrise garnet topped by a finger of light khaki foam. The nose comprises vanilla, light oak, light molasses, fig, brown sugar, a touch of wheated bourbon, maple syrup, and sweet toffee. Yup, malts are the name of the game here, and they're out in full regalia. The taste follows very closely in lock-step, but the fig seems to have dropped out a bit, and the oak has gotten bulkier. Still, an awesome complexity reigns. The body is a stolid medium, with a very light moderate carbonation and a smooth feel. Overall, a damn fine brew, one that comes across similarly t a mild oloroso or muscatel sherry. Gotta say, I was more than pleasantly surprised with how well this sat with me...

Photo of trxxpaxxs
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep copper color with minimal head, even after a vigorous pour. All that remains of the foam is a thin bubbly lining along the edges of the glass. But ever then, it looks very still.

S: I get a huge amount of vanilla, malt, and caramel. There is also a big boozy note in there as well. I guess I'm not all that surprised with this since it's been sitting in a barrel.

T: The taste follows the nose. I get a lot of sweetness right up front with huge vanilla and caramel notes. Those flavors last through towards the end of the beer, where it gets slightly bitter and then really boozy.

M: Full bodied beer. This one is a sipper. It's syrupy and coats the palate. The flavors linger on the palate with an alcohol burn well past drinking.

O: This is a good beer, but it's a vanilla bomb. I opened this bottle to drink in a single sitting, but I really wish I had decided to share it with some. It's a lot to handle solo.

Photo of Kmccabe33
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

Photo of drpimento
3.52/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Geez, don't know what happened with this bottle compared to what others seem to have tried. Poured at a cool temperature with a smallish, fizzy, tan head that quicly settled to a couple of dinky islands and no lace. Color is a clear amber orange cherry. Aroma is malt, caramel, hop, solvents, dark ripe fruit. Flavor's similar to nose, sweet and carbonic tang in front, followed by a little bitter and the solvent. Body and carbonation are good. Finish is like flavor, slow taper to a lingering cheap brandy aftertaste accented by the alcohol.

Photo of mattdbh
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of JRBecks
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of HoshuaJobbs
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of steinz
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of dumptruck81
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of boilermakerbrew
4.52/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a caramel-amber hue with a smaller, 1 finger head. Good retention, decent lacing. Semi-hazy when held to the light, and the head is a very light tan.

S- Prominently sweet oak barrel flavors mixed with caramel malts. Relatively high level of sweetness, with some underlying spiciness. Really complex and hard to pin down the flavors, but pretty enticing.

T- Really mild mix of everything in the scent. Starts off with a spicy barrel flavor and mixes right into the solid caramel malt base. Whiskey flavor makes a slight comeback after a short stint with the malt. Sweeter notes of vanilla and hints of spicy peppery flavors mix to provide a good contrast. Ends with slight alcohol spiciness with lingering barrel flavors.

M- Smooth and creamy, low carbonation. Semi-heavy weight supports the flavor profile well. Slight alcohol heat, but not much for the 12%. Not quite a sipper, but one you'd like to take slower.

Overall, this is the first barrel aged beer that I've had in which the barrel flavor hasn't overpowered the base beer, except for KBS. Superb mix of flavors from the beer and the barrels. Wish I had bought another bottle or two.

Photo of Trio2shine
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%

Photo of nataku00
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Beer pours a slightly hazy amber/brown with little to no head. Some light lacing as you swirl the glass, but also a bit of alcohol legs.

Nose opens with fruity esters, red apple, a bit of toasted malt and caramel, light orange, oak, vanilla.

Taste follows the nose, fruity esters and caramel open up, with more toasted malt, toasted coconut, orange peel, toffee. Barrel comes through near the finish, a light charred wood and vanilla.

Medium body with a touch of carbonation. Very warming beer due to the high abv, though not too pronounced in the taste.

Double Double Barrel Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 1,690 ratings.