Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 989 | Reviews: 296 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by nhindian:
4.47/5 rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
22oz bottle poured into a snifter.
A - Pours a deep crimson which is completely opaque. A relatively hard pour yields only about a finger's worth of tan head with low retention. The lacing as well is pretty minimal with only a few rogue strands of foam hanging around.
S - The aroma brings a rather unusual twist considering the composition of the blend, and one of the first things I notice is a sweet honey and toffee. The barrels are present here as well, but unlike the 14th Anniversary, the oak and vanilla and more subdued. I'm not sure if it's because of the increased proportion of barleywines in this beer or different barrels, but I am getting a lot more brandy notes than bourbon in the form of pitted fruits. A hint of butterscotch as well which I hope is intentional rather than the early onset of an infection.
T - The flavors in Firestone 15 are all about the barleywines and barrels, which shouldn't come as much of a surprise given the blend is 76% barleywine. Caramel, toffee, and coconut hit the mouth first, before being balanced by a rich cocoa and vanilla flavor. The bourbon qualities do come across easier here than in the nose, but I am still predominately tasting brandy over bourbon. This bottle is still pretty fresh, but the addition of Double Jack IPA is almost completely absent; I can't really taste any citrus hops here, and the best I can get is a slight hop bitterness in the finish, but even that is far down the ladder behind more robust flavors. It is certainly a bit hot overall, but the alcohol isn't as off-putting as one would assume and the complexity definitely offsets this.
M - Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with decent carbonation. Although not heavy on the mouth, the flavors linger for a long time on the palate, developing the profile as it settles to deliver layer upon layer of nuance.
D/O - Drinkability is moderately high. Surprisingly, I think I like this a little more than the 14th Anniversary, as it seems to incorporate a little bit more depth. The one thing I'd levy against it would be the amount of alcohol and bitterness, but it is still fresh at this point and can only improve.
Serving type: bottle
01-23-2012 04:01:00 | More by nhindian
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Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 989 ratings.