Double Barrel Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 1,875 | Reviews: 653 | Display Reviews Only:
3.9/5 rDev +6.3%
It pours a very clear and glimmering golden amber. A finger of soft off-white head devolves in no time to nebulous froth. Strings of lacing twine the inside of the glass.
The aroma is mellow with toasted malt, caramel, and a distant fruit note. A muted hops presence is gently spicy and displays just a touch of citrus.
Upon tasting, the malt is lightly toasty and mildly sweet with caramel and earthy berry. The hops are slightly spicy and credibly citrus, not to mention very crisp in nature. Some residual grain and a dollop of peach are dried by a lingering but mitigated bitter finish. It's subtle, and subtly good.
Light bodied, the flow and ebb are ably leveled and the mellow presence is very homey.
It's mild, subtle, balanced, and crafted. Everything about it simply screams, or rather whispers, session, but in a low-key, well-behaved manner. It's the potato chip of beers- you can't have just one, unless that's all you have on hand, of course. Nicely drinkable and eminently refreshing, it's a fresh, clean experience. Thank you sir, may I have another?
06-18-2008 20:20:33 | More by Foxman
4.15/5 rDev +13.1%
Clear bright orange color with about 1/4" of white head.
Fruity sweet smell with floral citrusy hops.
Malty sweetness with toffee followed by citrusy hops and a hint of pine.
A bit past medium body with nice crispness.
Excellent beer, a very good amber ale.
Tasted on 5/5/08.
06-17-2008 03:18:38 | More by tmitch75
3.68/5 rDev +0.3%
This was sent as an extra in a recent trade with errantnight, thanks again Derek! Double Barrel pours amber with glowing ruby highlights when backlit. A minimal head of one finger grew on the pour and fizzled rather quickly to a ring and a few spots. The head was slightly off white and didn't have much sticking power.
The aroma of this beer is unique and interesting. There's a good deal of malt present in the form of caramel and a touch of toffee but the hop profile is what stands out to me. After each swirl I'm greeted by a spicy hoppiness that mingles with a surprising tangerine citric quality. The tangerine is something I don't come across very often but I really enjoy it, even though it only comes up after each swirl.
The flavor doesn't quite live up to the aroma. It's much more malt oriented. The hopping comes through on the finish and adds a nice layer of bitterness but malt rules the roost. Caramel and toffee are the main subjects and a hint of alcohol chases all other flavors on the swallow.
Medium bodied with a surprisingly high amount of carbonation. The carbonation gives the body the right density but gets a little too prickly the more I drink. The hopping does leave a small but growing bitterness as I drink.
There are a couple minor flaws that could be easily fixed with a few small tweaks but this is still an easy beer to but away and is very session worthy.
This is a solid beer from Firestone Walker. My score probably doesn't show it but I did enjoy this beer. Good flavor and easily drinkable. Thanks for another good brew Derek.
06-17-2008 02:23:09 | More by joe1510
4.22/5 rDev +15%
Consumed 06/06/08 on cask at The Daily Pint, Santa Monica CA.
Slight hazy medium amber hue with an outrageously smooth and creamy two fingered tan head.
Aroma is juicy and full of toffee, caramel and butterscotch.
Flavor is likewise juicy and refreshing. Some hop flavors, but mainly a toffee and caramel malt character. A bit of hop bitterness at the end.
Being on cask does wonders for this beer, which is already perfectly fine bottled or on a standard tap already. I could have done another pint or two fo this one, but with so many other taps to explore...
06-07-2008 17:20:23 | More by charlzm
4.38/5 rDev +19.3%
This offering picked up in California pours a copper color leaving a thick tan head frothy and strong. The aroma has a slight sour tinge, flour, caramel, honey, airy.
The taste is delicious, starts sweet with a caramel feel, moving to a soft hoppy, earthy, sour twinge. This is a real drinkable beer one that at 5% is easily a session quality not a lot going on that clean, refreshing, suttle oak, with a great fruity mild bitterness.
06-02-2008 16:58:43 | More by Franchise
3.58/5 rDev -2.5%
12oz bottle. A clear dark brown with a medium head that laces. Iced tea aroma with a little lemon. Ditto on the flavor; sweet caramel iced tea with some citrus and light spice from the hops, and a mildly bitter finish; pretty nice balance, but could have some more hops. The body is medium-light with smooth carbonation. Overall, it's a very pleasantly drinkable beer, with subtle flavors. This is the standard local beer here, so I'm surprised I hadn't had it; it seems like they have it everywhere. Definitely going to re-rate when I go up to the FW taphouse in Buellton next week. Rerate: Draught at Chili's. A lot of wood and caramel come through. Very clean and drinkable.
06-02-2008 08:05:06 | More by bulletrain76
3.53/5 rDev -3.8%
My first encounter with a Firestone Walker brew... excited to taste what other beers they craft.
Appearance, amber color with a brilliant clarity. Head retention is a little weak and so is the lacing.
Notes of baked bread, caramel, toffee, and some dark fruit. Quite pleasant and complex aroma for an amber styled beer. There may even be a bit of oak in the nose or that might be my head telling me that because of the unique brewing system they use.
A very malty brew. Very close to chewing upon malt. There is as described in the aroma, a caramel biscuit character, dark fruits rub the pallet and bitterness takes light jabs at back of the tongue during the finish.
The bread character of this beer would play a factor in its drinkability. A unique and interesting amber. I would prefer a bit more of a hop character and less biscuit.
05-28-2008 23:06:11 | More by beace
4.18/5 rDev +13.9%
Thanks to BigBry for this one (and you're a lucky fella for having access to this). Nice amber pour, with a small off-white head which doesn't last too well. The appearance is loses something for the somewhat lackluster head, but its a small quibble, and made up for by the other aspects of this beer. Rich, malty caramel aroma and forest floor earthiness. Fruity, caramel flavours hit first as the malts dominate, before the hops make themselves felt wuth an earthy character. The crisp finish returns to fruitiness and light brown sugar. Just the perfect combination of flavours for a solid drink whenever, wherever brew. Nothing really challenges the palette, yet there's huge kudos for the soothing, drinkable and familiar flavours that this one brings to the table. Medium-light body and carbonation, but very smooth on the tongue. As I've already touched upon, there is huge drinkability here. The crisp finish and relatively light body really helps to make this a session beer that could disappear in a hurry.
05-26-2008 19:20:46 | More by bobsy
4/5 rDev +9%
Thanks to Weibull for sending this my way!
Pours a reddish amber tone into a rinsed pint glass. Spotty lacing all around. Aroma of clean malty sweetness.
Flavor is mellow and malty, with light oak notes. Dry hops lend a low, earthy bitterness. Pretty easy drinking, not sure why anyone would have beef with this.
05-23-2008 02:07:40 | More by emerge077
4.35/5 rDev +18.5%
The beer pours a rich amber with an off-white head. The beer has a pleasant aroma of balanced malt and hops. The beer has a biscuity malt flavor with a nice floral hop finish. The feel is medium and dry. I found this to be a very pleasant and drinkable beer. It was actually very reminiscent of a British Bitter.
05-21-2008 23:10:58 | More by claytri
3.68/5 rDev +0.3%
12oz bottle into pint glass.
Clear deep amber hue with a thin eggshell colored head that setles to a thin cap.
Light aromas of brown sugar and not much else.
Soft grain flavors mix with some caramel flavors from the burnt sugars. The hopiness is pretty mild, only enough there for balance. Medium bodied with an average amount of carbonation. It's not fizzy nor flat. The finish is the lingering sugary grains.
Not very complex but a good sessionable beer. I can definitely see myself drinking this one again.
05-16-2008 01:51:57 | More by BeerSox
4.2/5 rDev +14.4%
I'm tempted to up the score, because I think this beer is generally under-appreciated... but for me, this is as close as I can get to a session beer out here in SoCal that isn't loaded with hops.
It's beautiful. Crystal copper with a thin head that sticks around with attractive lacing.
Aroma is a ball of malt with just a tinge of pine and hoppy spice with some fruit esters around the corners. Super mild, however.
Flavor is a perfect balance of malt and hops. Smooth, silky textures reveal subtle toasts and mild roast flavors. Nothing here stands out, but those claiming this lacks complexity aren't paying it enough attention.
The mouthfeel on this is refined and truly exceptional. A solid medium body with a pleasant lift from a perfect carbonic level. It's not big, it's not thin... I "blame" some tannins from the barrel aging process, and this is backed up a bit by some dryness in the cheeks.
I can't claim that this gets me excited to sniff and savor like great IPAs, or has the complexity and richness of... well, of the truly great beers. But there's something Perfect here. I was turned off to this beer by a Los Angeles location with infected lines, but now it's a staple. Inexpensive, prevalent, low in alcohol, and tasty. Good stuff.
05-11-2008 00:20:59 | More by errantnight
2.5/5 rDev -31.9%
I'm gonna have to agree with brother Jason Alström - It'd be hard to drink more than one of these.
I found it so smokey oaky--like a forest in my mouth! Finish is an acrid, arboreal dryness. I guess I'm a bare-bones malt and hops kinda guy, 'cause I haven't had this much fragrant wood in my mouth since... (insert terribly off-color gay porn reference here.) It's just NOT my thing. I want malt, people!
God forgive me for thinking a beer should taste like malted barley. Anyway, if you feel sucking on raw tree bark has run its course for you, put the branch down, and pick this up!
(And to think I washed this down with a shot of Grand Marnier. WHAT WAS I THINKING?!)
05-08-2008 04:39:48 | More by Exner83
3.7/5 rDev +0.8%
A: This beer looks fantastic, you will go "wow what a beer" it has a nice foamy white head that has lacing and tops a gorgeous ruby beer
S: lacking, initial whaff was hoppy but then it became cold steal and sterile
T: this is a good beer, but a bit too caramely, not enough hop backbones. it is however a good beer. it is a bit too sweet, it is however a good beer. i would 100% drink it again. but it is not too earth shattering
05-06-2008 07:11:06 | More by Redwood21
3.45/5 rDev -6%
Poured into a standard pint glass.
A - Transparent amber coloration, decent bit of froth, retention was quite nice and it even left some generous lacing behind.
S - Light sugary aroma with hints of toasted malt. Not very potent, and leaves the desire for something more.
T - Smoke flavored light malt body, sweet caramel backing, with a faint bitterness at the end. Finishes mild and while fairly tasty, it's not very complex.
M - Crisp light body, sharp carbonation which really helps this brew out, and a rather clean feel.
D - Easy drinking, and pretty tasty, this would be a nice session brew. I'd say despite it's simplicity this one is worth trying.
04-25-2008 16:49:12 | More by PhageLab
4/5 rDev +9%
Pours a clear but dark amber. Nice citric balance on the flavor. Kind of a pine aspect to it, but not a pine tar thing you get from a lot of IPAs. It's more like a fresh bud off a young pine deal. It's vibrant and fairly interesting. Feel is nice. Interesting bite to the carbonation. Overall a good drinker and a nice beer.
04-22-2008 04:39:15 | More by RblWthACoz
3.58/5 rDev -2.5%
Got this one from mymrnngjckt. Thanks Kevin.
Pours an orange amber color with a bit more than a finger of ivory head. Keeps a thin lace and leaves a good amount of stick on the sides.
Smell has a good amount of caramel malt, some toasted malt aromas and earthy, sort of musty hops.
Taste also has a solid caramel malt base with some toasted malt and earthy hop flavor. A bit of vanilla flavor comes through the finish too. Not terribly flavorful, a bit on the bland side but very smooth.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, very smooth, adequately carbonated. This is a pretty decent beer but nothing special really.
04-16-2008 00:39:45 | More by number1bum
3.65/5 rDev -0.5%
Served on tap. Copper color, with a bright white head that clings to the glass. Aromas of toasted malt and some citrusy hops. Flavor is grounded by the sweet malt as a candied citrus hoppiness lingers atop it. Medium bodied, well-carbonated, easy to quaff.
04-14-2008 05:13:02 | More by illidurit
4/5 rDev +9%
A- Dark golden color with white head. Left a nice lacing on the glass.
S- Slightly yeasty. Toasted Malt smell
T- At first it tasted like a standard american amber, but it seems to have a west coast twist. It's hoppier than any american amber that I've had, though that's not to say it's too hoppy for the style.
M- Medium to Medium light body. Low carbonation.
D- It's better than I expected. Perhaps a decent session beer at 5% abv. In fact I'd consider another bottle.
04-10-2008 00:54:36 | More by gpogo
4.22/5 rDev +15%
Got this along with a good amount of the rest of the FW lineup in a Secret Bunny BIF...and I jumped right into these as soon as I could. This one poured a very nice orange tinted amber with a nice overall reddish hue to it that came off very good. A nice fluffy three finger head of lace then rose up above it before settling down to nothing in the end, with just a clear top and no side glass lace. Initially a bit of carbonation streaming up, however this died down rather quickly to be honest.
The aroma was full of grainy malt characters. Not as sweet as I have seen in others, but it had a nice citric hop presence as well. Some nice grassy tones as well. The flavor followed perfectly, really making this quite the hoppy little red ale. The first notes of grains coming through very clearly, but then melding seemlesly with a strong citrus and pine like hoppy punch. Some light notes of caramel coming through now and blendning it all together. The finsih is strong, nice and drawn out with a good amount of hoppiness and bitter flavors riddled throughout. Nice light bodied ale that stayed very well carbonated and had an excellent dry finish to it.
Overall this was a very quality session ale. It took the amber ale theme and hopped it up a little but overall stayed pretty true to its form. Could have had at least three of these without issue. Defitlnly a must try here.
03-21-2008 01:50:33 | More by mikesgroove
3.5/5 rDev -4.6%
Clearish, orange amber color. White head, large bubbles, couple fingers. Lacing is full but doesn't last.
Notes of vanilla, caramel, diacetyl and ethanol, and a slightly sweet grain in the nose. May be power of suggestion but I detect some oakiness as well.
The flavor doesn't seem quite as complex. High carbonation sort of steals the flavor off the tongue and leaves a sparkly stickiness. Bland caramel malt flavor, a hint of hops that don't stand out or add much overall. I suppose it seems a bit like an APA in some respects, but to me it's very characteristic of an amber ale, and not an outrageously good one.
The mouthfeel is thinnish, aided by the carbonation. The malts seem a bit thin, and the hop bill just takes away an chewiness they had. Not bad for style but in my opinion hurts the beer overall and brings it into the range of "every other" amber ale rather than a style-standout.
03-20-2008 08:05:29 | More by BretSikkink
3.28/5 rDev -10.6%
22-oz bomber poured into pint glasses.
A = Clear amber, three finger off white head that dissipated quickly but left medium heavy lacing on glass, light carbonation.
S = Light hops, a slight metallic smell.
T = Some bitterness in the first taste and in the finish, middle has sweeter malted grain tastes of light caramel and maple syrup. Overall good flavors but a little too watered down.
M = Thin bodied, only average mouthcoating, very light carbonation.
D = This was not a bad beer by any stretch, but although I liked the appearance quite a bit, it was just a bit too watery and non-descript.
02-24-2008 22:49:01 | More by Traquairlover
3.85/5 rDev +4.9%
Initial malty, mildly hoppy aroma that diminished very quickly. Clear deep amber color with a frothy tan head that lasted for several minutes and left medium lacing. Flavor was well balanced slightly in favor of bitterness and a mellow spicy "British" hop flavor and slight roasty notes. Slight diacetyl was a nice addition to the flavor. Aftertaste was a good mix of malt, bitterness and hop flavor. Lively carbonation and medium/light body with a fairly dry finish.
02-17-2008 17:12:15 | More by ojclark
3.05/5 rDev -16.9%
It's a good beer, not great, not like there other beers.
A california version of an amber/red. The best thing about this beer is the look. Looks like a deeply hopped and malted beer.
Tastes warm, lots of malts, not much hops, kinda macro tasting.
I guess its hard to do an amber right, cause this tastes like malted water.
02-16-2008 00:44:43 | More by Murchmac
4.18/5 rDev +13.9%
12oz bottle purchased at Stateline Liquors in Elkton, MD.
A- Clear reddish amber body. Poured with little to no head. Minimal carbonation.
S- Sweet taosted malts, toffee and vanilla. Slightly yeasty and hoppy.
T- Malty and bready beginning. A bit of oak. Very light hops in the finish.
M- Medium bodied. Lightly carbonated.
D- An extremely drinkable beer. Nicely balanced. No single overpowering taste. Light enough in body and alcohol to drink several of these in a sitting.
02-12-2008 05:02:01 | More by Jerzdevil1116
Double Barrel Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 1,875 ratings.