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Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Firestone 15 - Anniversary AleFirestone 15 - Anniversary Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,053 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,053
Reviews: 302
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 10.78%
Wants: 164
Gots: 744 | FT: 38
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:
Beer added by: brew3crew on 11-08-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

18% Helldorado (11.7% ABV) Blonde Barley Wine.
17% Sticky Monkey (12.5% ABV) English Barley Wine.
17% Bravo (13.5% ABV) Imperial Brown Ale.
13% Double Double Barrel Ale (11.5% ABV) Double Strength English Pale Ale.
11% Good Foot (14.3 ABV) American Barley Wine.
10% Velvet Merkin (8.6% ABV) Traditional Oatmeal Stout.
9% Parabola (13% ABV) Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout.
5% Double Jack (9.5% ABV) Double India Pale Ale.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,053 | Reviews: 302 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SpillyBeers
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of uvm2003
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of barnzy78
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of IPx
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of caskstrength
2.22/5  rDev -49.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

2nd bottle I've had. I wish I had only bought one. (or none)

Pours a cola brown, adequate carbonation. Looks sort of thin.

Smells are dr. pepper with some cheap bourbon (or Southern Comfort) thrown in. Some esters come through (didn't like those in Abacus either). No richness or deep dark smells.

Tastes are, not surprisingly, dr. pepper with some cheap brown spirits thrown in. A warm mixed drink sitting on the table you tried a few hours later after the party, just for shits and giggles. Simple brown sugar sweetness with some poorly matched alcohol is not what I was expecting here.

Thinner than it should be, but it matches the thin flavors, so at least it's consistent.

Poured it out. This beer is a failure. I didn't have Abacus fresh, but whatever went wrong with that beer over time went wrong here in spades.
I guess I'm not a Firestone Walker barrel guy, so more for all you.

Photo of aorloski
4.47/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap at Sunset Grill in Boston

A - Pours a very dark brown, almost ruby red on the edges. You can see through this one when it is low. About a half finger worth of a quirky disappearing off white head.

S - Deep dark fruits in this one, rum soaked raisins, plums, figs, lots of bourbon.

T - Follows the nose, rum soaked raisins, plums, figs, big bourbon notes, vanilla and dark sugar, ends with a nice sweetness from the alcohol. really fantastic stuff

M - Low carbonation, kind of expected with the abv range. Coats the mouth and very chewy and sticky.

O- For 10 bucks a 13 oz i thought it was worth it. Very delicious and love that i have a bottle in my closet i can sit on.

Photo of DSlim71
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of drabmuh
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Thorpe, at the time of this review, this is the #15 beer on the "Top Beers - American Strong Ale" list. I've had all of these anniversary ales and this one is a relatively big disappointment for me. Too thin, not enough barrel comes through. They should just make the 13th over and over again.

Beer is brown, dark, but clear, thin lazy head of small bubbles, minimal carbonation, minimal lacing.

Aroma is mildly sweet, a little toffee, interesting yeast character, and some bourbon.

Beer is thin in body, sweet, a little bourbony, not boozy at all, moderate finish. I was expecting something totally different. This should be called FW anniversary light.

Photo of pmlondrigan
4.07/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

15 pours deep purple burgundy. A thin light tan head appears and disappears. A thin ring of tight foam remains, along with an island of bubbles in the center. First impressions of the nose are deeply complex with bourbon and jammy cooked fruits, red wine grapes. White american oak, distant hops. Soft and nuanced, I like it. Lots of bourbon soaked oak, caramel, toffee and burnt sugar flavor. Chocolate makes an apperance married to some port like flavors. Hops are surprisingly present in the finish manifested in their bittering form.
A short finish, and thinner then appropriate. A lingering burnt sugar and bitter taste.
I know I shouldn't be comparing this to 14 but I am in my mind. 15 is complex, but just not as complex as 14. There is great depth of flavor here, but it is not sewed together as well as it could be. Still, damn....tasty.

Photo of gcare02
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of b3shine
4.35/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to urbancaver for this one. Deuce to oversized tulip. Looks good; opaque from the barreling. I've been stuffy, so I can't thoroughly enjoy the bouquet, but I can make out scents of bourbon and vanilla. The taste is great. As others have mentioned, you can definitely notice the 5% DIPA, but in a good way.the mouthfeel is great too, especially for 12.5%. Dangerously drinkable. Overall, a great beer that is worth the hefty price tag.

Photo of Huhzubendah
4/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Thorpe429. Thanks Mike.

The beer is dark brown with a thin tan head. The aroma is of roasted malt, toffee, caramels, bourbon, oak, buttery malt, booze. The flavor is good, but not great. Lots of complexities, and well balanced, yet lacking that special something. Alcohol is present, but I wouldn't consider this beer as hot. A lot of oak character. Pretty good.

Photo of searcy
1/5  rDev -77.1%

Photo of PBoegel
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

It scarcely gets better than this. I was pleasantly surprised when Firestone Walker products started showing up in my neck of the woods in Albany New York earlier in 2011.

I'll spare a tome to Firestone Walker, you can find a great about why this brewery is highly acclaimed and rightfully so across the world wide web.

Often times beers of this nature reach a proportion of hype which simply cannot be lived up too, they are good, but not the type of thing that changes your mind or perceptions. You can choose not to like this beer and perform an anti-hype campaign, but you would be wrong.

Poured from the 22 ounce bottle into a Brooklyn Tulip snifter the beer is stunning in appearance, deep hued brown, ruby the head (as to be expected) is short lived. I actually had to take a picture of the color that refracted through the glass it was that interesting. It looked like a Garnet stone.

Aroma was rich cocoa, vanilla, rum, scotch, some faint hints of piney hops (due to a healthy addition of Double Jack into the blend). No off aromas, certainly an alcohol presence, but one that supports the beer, not detracts from it.

The current taste profile of this beer is a rich layered but highly drinkable strong ale. The alcohol from the stronger beers in the blend combined with the bourbon barrel aged beers creates a rich palate. Everything from dark chocolate notes, to hints of fresh dark coffee beans, vanilla, traces of bourbon and a velvety caramel. The alcohol cuts through the sweetness to balance the beer magnificently.

I did not detect much in the way of hops from the flavor, but there was a very well defined hop bitterness. Full bodied, but also perfectly carbonated with a warming alcohol finish and rich oak character as well.

Hard to imagine there will be many beer experiences much better than this. Looking forward to trying to quell my lust to open the remaining three bottles. Perhaps I'll buy another to deny my sanity.

Photo of sugit
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of nathanjohnson
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Ninjabrew
4.8/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is an excellent beer, I was a little reluctant to pay $22 for another FW special after having been disapointed by Pararbola, but I am so glad I did.

Appearance, smell and mouthfeel are exceptional but the taste is where this beer excels the most. It has hints of dark fruit and maybe mollases very much like many Strong Ales, but there is something else, a sweet taste that is very evident but took a few sips to place, but once you do its unmistakeable. That taste is Dr. Pepper!!! I don't know what it is that makes it taste that way but that's what it tastes like.

Photo of tbeq00
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of Agold
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of mark14580
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of rowingbrewer
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of volta
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Blanco
4.42/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Firestone Walker 15 is a dark brown color with amber notes, topped with a white head that eventually settles as just a light film on top of the beer.

The smell is inviting and mostly dark fruit with some light bourbon in the background. The taste is similar with dark fruit, a light tartness, and only the slightest hint of liquor. Dry at first, it becomes significantly sweeter as the beer warms with somewhat of a tannic quality as well. Like a red wine, only not. Alcohol presence is almost negligible despite sporting a 12.5% ABV.

Mouthfeel is just about right, medium bodied, slick. Leaves a slight aftertaste however, that requires a splash of water from time to time as I sip the brew.

This is a very unique beer and I'm truly enjoying the complexity of it. I was expecting a deep bourbon barrel aged beer, but the bourbon is a background flavor (and after seeing the blend that makes sense) and was refreshed by the fact it was a little lighter. Excellent.

Photo of mjtiernan
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of jhb138
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 1,053 ratings.