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Firestone 14 - Anniversary Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Firestone 14 - Anniversary AleFirestone 14 - Anniversary Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

652 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 652
Reviews: 290
rAvg: 4.4
pDev: 9.09%
Wants: 203
Gots: 554 | FT: 21
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  12.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

The blend consists of: 31% Double Double Barrel Ale, 29% Sticky Monkey, 27% Parabola, 7% Velvet Merkin, 3% Good Foot, 3% Black Xantus

(Beer added by: ZX6Chris on 11-02-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 652 | Reviews: 290 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of leftoverburrito
2/5  rDev -54.5%

leftoverburrito, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of mendvicdog
2.5/5  rDev -43.2%

mendvicdog, May 29, 2014
Photo of Monicagm
2.85/5  rDev -35.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Dark brown color with low carbonation and a thin head.

At first you get an umami scent but eventually it starts smelling like dark chocolate.

Has a chocolate taste.

Heavy mouthfeel.

Overall, an ok beer. Not one that I would be able to drink an entire glass of because the taste is heavier than I'd like it to be.

Monicagm, Jan 30, 2012
Photo of jmarsh123
2.93/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Decided to raid the cellar to see how this one is holding up. Pours dark brown with a small tan head. Decent retention and a bit of lacing down the glass.

Lots of sweetness in the aroma. Brown sugar and molasses with a touch of cocoa. Not element of heat anymore.

Sweet taste as well. Brown sugar and molasses are evident with a touch of coconut and dark chocolate. A little bit of bourbon presence, but most heat is gone. Really just kind of bland and sweet.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side which is a complaint I have on most FW anny beers although age seems to thinned it out past an acceptable point. Carbonation is holding up well.

Proof once again FW beers are best fresh. Having had both XV and XVI recently, they are both tremendously better than this. Really just kind of bland at this point.

jmarsh123, Jan 02, 2013
Photo of stephens101
2.93/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Dark brown with a pure tan head. Smells of milk chocolate, ripened cherries, plum and dark bread. Taste is limited to milk chocolate, vanilla and dark fruits. Cloying and too rich to handle with the alcohol coming in overly strong to add insult to injury. A highly rated, but simple and lopsided beer, which of course makes me question my "beersanity" but confirms my perception with another sip. Might be good in small doses, not unlike cough syrup or moonshine.

stephens101, Jun 17, 2014
Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -31.8%

ygtbsm94, Jan 13, 2012
Photo of oregone
3/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle into shifter
Pours fairly low carb. A ring of lace around the edge settles in quickly from the moderate pour and light initial head. Dark brown bordering on transparent black.

Smells decent. Big oak and creamy barrel presence with some age apparent in the softness. Nothing aggressive here. Coconut. Rich maltiness.

Not so good. Stale old soft carboardy flavors. This has not aged well at all. Big hit of coconutty oak and pronounced booziness out of line. Very hot on the finish and the aggressive barrel character lingers on the finish. Some melanoiden and deep malt character fighting the stale flavor.

Nice mouthfeel. The low carb is about perfect here. Luscious, rich and decadent. Would be great if I want the flavor hanging around.

Overall, not great. Not unpleasantly bad, but not good. I'd rather look at it and smell it. I would pass if offered it in the future.

oregone, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.23/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Dark, not quite black. No head. Some legs and lace.

Smell - Bourbon barrel, but mostly the spirit smell. Lacks a complex barrel aroma. Sweet. Vanilla and caramel come through, but that's about it. It's all bourbon and only a hint of beer.

Taste - Alcohol. Caramel. Booze. No oak. The barrel seems lost again. Very sweet with bourbon. Hop bitterness but not enough to give it any semblance of complexity.

Mouthfeel - Boozy and sweet. Low carbonation. Thick and syrupy. Slow to drink.

Overall - It's bourbon without any of the good barrel notes that usually accompany it. I don't really love the beer behind it, either. Uninteresting.

Alieniloquium, Jul 17, 2012
Photo of cpetrone84
3.25/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark black liquid with a hint of red on the edges and a somewhat creamy tan head. The nose has the most bourbon and barrel of the series compared (11-14) and it seems a bit too present. sweet toffee and vanilla, a bit sugary. The flavor is similar, too sugary and too much barrel and bourbon. Vanilla, marshmellow, sweet toffee, light roasted and a bit of heat. Medium body, smooth and the most carbonated.

cpetrone84, Nov 22, 2011
Photo of mquartuccio87
3.25/5  rDev -26.1%

mquartuccio87, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of xhuskr
3.3/5  rDev -25%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Awesome aroma on this beer along with an appearance that could make me wait. Very complex brew, but the alcohol was a bit too much overall for me. I didn't finish my glass so I share it with others. The bourbon flavor was a bit strong for my palate at this time, but I look forward to trying this again when it's not so hot. Two bottles have been put away along with my other FW anniversary brews. I would say this beer is a must try, but not a must finish...yet.

xhuskr, Nov 24, 2010
Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -20.5%

GRG1313, Apr 09, 2014
Photo of Wisconsinality
3.5/5  rDev -20.5%

Wisconsinality, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of phishphorce
3.5/5  rDev -20.5%

phishphorce, Jun 04, 2013
Photo of duceswild
3.5/5  rDev -20.5%

duceswild, May 27, 2014
Photo of Retail1LO
3.5/5  rDev -20.5%

Retail1LO, Jun 11, 2013
Photo of millerbuffoon
3.5/5  rDev -20.5%

millerbuffoon, Jun 04, 2013
Photo of Wegomlegging
3.53/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Dark brown pour with very weak head. Excellent full oaky boozy smell with burnt brown sugar and caramel. Remarkable flavor considering the high alcohol presence, with malt, sugar, and caramel. Mouthfeel a bit thin. Great tasting beer overall, overcoming skepticism of "blended" beer. Drinkability suffers a bit with high alcohol presence, which can be overcome as evidenced by many other beers.

Wegomlegging, Feb 10, 2011
Photo of jnn4v
3.53/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark mahogany / espresso brown color. Barely translucent. Very little head that is a surprisingly light color - almost white. No visible sediment or haze.

S: Smoke, grainy sweet dark malt, molasses and sorghum. Bourbon, vanilla and oak. Cocoa powder.

T: Very sharp alcohol burn. Very hot - singes the back of my throat and hot burn on the tongue in the aftertaste. Cocoa powder, molasses and a hint of licorice.

M: Relatively thin mouthfeel. Not terribly much carbonation. Seems reasonable for the genre, albeit a bit less body than I'd prefer.

D: Moderate drinkability. Seems to be challenging to drink at both the cold and warmer temperatures.

jnn4v, Dec 18, 2010
Photo of madvermin
3.55/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a Coca-Cola brown with no real head. Only a thin, light tan cap was present and remained static throughout the drink. The body was murky and only slightly translucent.

Smelled of licorice, molasses, some crisp herbal hops and semi-sweet chocolate. Smells pungent but not overly so. At the same time it seems rough around the edges.

Taste follows with molasses and charred malt, some pine astringency and mellow chocolate before moving to a slightly burnt coffee finish. Again, the blended nature of this beer isn't hidden as well as I'd have liked, but it is definitely solid.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly light in terms of body when contrasted with the flavors. A coating is left between sips and carbonation is livelier than expected after seeing the head. Drinkability is good but held back by that roughness; it got harder to drink the further into the glass I got.

madvermin, May 14, 2011
Photo of Kristienhare
3.63/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer had an extraordinary smell. At first I thought it had a type of soy sauce aroma but then I notice it was more of a dark chocolate smell. The taste of the beer was a little bitter for me but it left a hint of dark chocolate in your mouth which was very good. The after taste of the beer was very delicious.

Kristienhare, Jan 30, 2012
Photo of gregshead
3.63/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Jet black with little carbonation. Swirled it and had very little in bubbles stick to the side of the glass.

S: Mmm. Vanilla/Oak overwhelms my smell.

T: Oak taste dominates my palate. Other more suttle tastes are hard to pick out. Very well blended but lacks a complexity

M: Smooth with little but some carbonation.

D: A solid blended aged beer but it didn't blow me away. Lots of oak taste.

Maybe my palate is not ready for this masterpiece but it seems like it just didn't have the complexity I was hoping for in a blended beer like this. Overall a good beer but not amazing.

gregshead, Nov 07, 2010
Photo of calir1
3.63/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

So I must say that I appreciate the barrel aging thing, but this beer is like a beer whiskey. It looks good, smells like a bourbon barrel and tastes like whiskey covered in beer. It tastes great, but sip after sip of this taste gets to me. The first few were really good, but it seems I missed the beer part of this and drank a diluted beer induced bourbon. I get that this beer was aged in these containers, but I assume it takes on the flavor and not be the flavor. It is good, but way to much alcohol flavor for me.

calir1, Dec 25, 2010
Photo of justintcoons
3.65/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Pours black with ruby highlights and 1 finger of fluffy white head that dissipates moderately slow. Low carbonation.

N: Vanilla, oak, booze and nuts.

T: Oak, vanilla, toffee, dark chocolate, almonds, red grapes, brown sugar, molasses with hints of citrus. There's a lot going on and a lot of tastes tend to get muddled together.

M: Very full bodied and creamy.

D: This stuff is thick with a 12.5% ABV which makes it a super-sipper. Alcohol is well hidden.

justintcoons, Mar 22, 2011
Photo of beagle75
3.68/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a half-pint chalice.

A: Slightly hazy, medium red-brown color with a peripheral ring of light beige bubbles. No lacing remains on the glass.

S: Brown sugar, vanilla, maraschino cherries, tamarind, and earthy spirit all combine to good effect in the nose. A moderate alcohol presence is pervasive and comfortable.

T: Begins off-dry, with molasses and roasted malt that is slightly scorched. Carbonic acidity is strong into the middle where plentiful bourbon and oak qualities develop. Dark chocolate and more bourbon are in pleasant company by the finish which is boozy, drying, and moderately bitter.

M: Thin to medium viscosity; wet, hot, and slightly acidic on the palate; with low carbonation.

D/O: Potent in its flavor intensity, but diminished by a level of acidity that just isn't welcome in a beer of such heft. Still, barrel qualities are captured in appealing fashion, particularly in the smell, making it a worthwhile strong ale.

beagle75, Jan 14, 2013
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Firestone 14 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
98 out of 100 based on 652 ratings.