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805 Blonde Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
805 Blonde Ale805 Blonde Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

68 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 68
Hads: 683
Avg: 3.43
pDev: 52.77%
Wants: 32
Gots: 227 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Zorro on 05-22-2012

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (83) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 68 | Hads: 683
Photo of 1424IpA
2.95/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

This beer has a lot of hype here in the 805 area code and FW sells
alot of 805 merch because of it. smart choice changing its name from honey blonde to 805 as the local 18-26 age group cant get enough of it.

I on the other hand have had enough of it, the beer pours well, has a little head, color is a golden yellow of sorts but the taste definately leaves me wanting more from that department.

This beer is great for a hot summer day at the lake, on a boat fishing or to wet you palate after mowing the lawn but thats about it.

 530 characters

Photo of SolipsismalCat
3.56/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Clear golden yellow with lots of bubbles and one-finger, white, fizzy head that lasted a couple minutes and left a nice film. Okay lacing.

S: Hops, malt. Light fruit banana, apple. Mild overall.

T: Light to moderate sweetness and light bitterness. Toasted malt. Not much hop flavor. Crisp and clean. Subtle apple.

M: Light to medium bodied with fizzy carbonation. Nice feel.

O: Above average, but nothing special. Refreshing and drinkable.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.77/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Firestone Walker 805
12 oz. bottle, dated "01/21/13 17:41" on the label, and "01/21/13 18:55" on the bottle.
Reviewed in "real time", 24 February 2013

Pulled from the fridge at 38˚F and allowed to sit for 10 min. to warm to about 42˚F. It's an interesting label, black & white with strong graphics. It almost looks like a tribal tattoo or something. And 805? Is that code for something? I'd have expected a stout or a strong beer to be waiting behind that label, but this is just 4.7% ABV.

It pours a crystal-clear deep gold body with a hint of an orange cast to it. The head is a frothy inch and a half or so of bright white foam. It holds well, and leaves some nice lacing about the glass. Average-sized bubbles stream steadily upwards.

The aroma displays some fresh hops and a light, basic malt. There's nothing special about it, it's just a basic beer smell, but it's fresh and clean.

As expected, the flavor follows suit: standard golden malt base with a median amount of gently spicy and floral hops thrown in. Yeasty fruitiness is limited - I'd wonder if this was a lager except that it's labeled "ale". Median bitterness, I'd guess in the 20's range. Nicely balanced. Malt flavor appears more upfront, floral/spicy/grassy hops in the finish. Clean and dry. There's even a very mild hint of pine in the delicately lingering finish.

Light-medium bodied. Gently crisp. Exactly as expected. I'm not sure you could do anything else with it without having to alter the malt / hop profile. More carbonation would make it bristle and stiffen the hops, and less would make it creamier but a slight touch too dull. Perfect as is.

Overall, it's a really well-polished, perfectly balanced but basic golden ale. Well, not exactly completely basic as there are some hops to it (and they're really quite nice), but it's not trying to be anything other than that. Is it any better than an inexpensive American lager??? Probably. Better than a German or Czech pils? Well, that's apples and oranges. I've drank about 4/5th of it. Would I have another? If I was having one, yes, I think so. I wouldn't mind it. Good for warm weather. Any place a pilsner might fit in. Not really worth pairing with food though.

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Photo of mooseo
3.5/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into pint glass.

A - Clear bright copper with a small bubbly white head.

S - Sweet bready malt, apple, banana, herbal spice, floral hops.

T - Bready cracker-like malt with light citrus hops and a subtle earthiness. A bit grassy. Finish is grainy with some wheat notes and hints of honey.

M - Very light body, smooth and refreshing. Average carbonation and clean finish.

O - A decent blonde ale with high drinkability. Flavor is subtle but nice. A slight saison and wheat character comes through. Nothing really stands out though.

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Photo of jvillefan
4.09/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Yellow/Golden body with a white lacy head.

S: It has almost no hoppy character to it but has that nice Belgian spiciness that Belgian blondes should have.

T: Avery secessionible beer that has some malt, some Belgian bite, and a decent hop bit to it.

M: It has some viscosity to it and has a very good bite from the carbonation.

O: A very good sessionable beer that should be tried if given the opportunity to.

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Photo of TheMarkE
3.73/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pale gold with a decent head that disappears quickly, good lacing, and lots of carbonation.

Smell: Grain, buscuity malts.

Taste: Grain, malt, caramel, honey.

Mouthfeel: Lighter bodied, crisp, slight sticky sweet finish.

The Verdict: Not bad. Brewed for the 805 area code as a fresh sessionable ale we can all get behind and enjoy with our tri-tips or local organic sustainable heirloom free-range farm-to-table artisanal rabbit food. It’s a good solid beer with unusual freshness.

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Photo of Nugganooch
3.2/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle dated 11/12/12 – standard pint glass

A: 805 pours a lighter shade of caramel with fine clarity and a minute cap of fizzy white. Bouncy bubbles knock out much chance of a retaining head. Pretty minimal stick down the glass with just a few light runners and dots.

S: Aromas are real grassy and a touch herbal with a firm grainy malt character. There is a bit of a sharp tangy yeast biting at the nose as well. Nothing great but pleasant overall.

T: Tastes of grassy hay with some sour orange tang and a bit of dried herbals. There is a dominant grainy malt featured with some yeasty bread and a soft caramel sweetness. Pilsner malt with some wheat perhaps? Low moderate bitterness and sessionable by definition with no real alcohol presence. Not quite your typical Blonde Ale but still somewhat pedestrian. Comes off more like a hefe or a pale-wheat even.

M: The mouthfeel is light and frothy with a nice carbonated spritz. There is a slight tart pucker to the palate towards the finish with a great drying and a snappy crisp.

D: Light, crisp, and sessionable. I could see this as being a brew for the masses. I actually thought more of a light hefe or pale-wheat beer when consuming this so it does differentiate from other Blondes on the market. Definitely highlights a grainy malt bill.

I do get how this beer falls into FW’s lineup nicely however I would have appreciated something a bit bolder and hoppier to rep the 805. While well crafted this is fairly mediocre.

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Photo of CampusCrew
3.76/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow.... for a blonde ale... not something i would buy just happend to aquire, but i did really enjoy this blonde ale. Nice dark blonde in color with some nice pure white head rentention. Aromas nithing there but some sweet malts as expected... but the flavor was quite full for style... lots of slightly sweet malt backbone no hops, but malt flavors were nice. Great with pub food in general when you dont know what you are eating at a party. Very verstile beer for a beer lover.

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Photo of FosterJM
2.85/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

1535th Review on BA
Draft to 6oz Snifter

@Firestone Walker, Paso Robles

App- A very clear yellow. Very similar to the yellow of the Iphone notepad. A very clear beer with a small amount of bubbles. Standard look to it. No lace or cling on it.

Smell- Its a blonde ale at heart with that clean and crisp aroma. This was better than most blondes but still a blonde. The honey adds a unique layer of aroma to this one.

Taste- Its a good blonde. Better than most but just too one dimensional. It has some cracker like bite to it with a little grass and that base malt bill I just dont like.

Mouth- A lighter body on this one with a bit of a crisp/clean carbonation. The feel of the honey adds a layer that just doesnt work on this finish. A bit muddled on the residual flavors.

Drink- It was better than most blondes. Still a blonde though.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
2.66/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to drewone for sharing this one at Benny’s tasting.

Bottled 6/25/12.

Pours a clear gold with a foamy bone colored head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, honey, and some vegetal aromas. Taste is much the same with a vegetal and slightly metallic aftertaste. There is a mild bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty poor beer with some weird aromas and flavors.

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Photo of BilbosNuts
2.75/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear, lightly golden yellow color. A one finger creamy head sits on top and fades slowly to a thin ring around the sides. It appears pretty lively with a moderate amount of carbonation.

S: Light toasted malts, sweet floral notes, and corn and straw-like characteristics make up the aroma.

T: The taste was a bit of a let down. More of the corn and straw came through here than the aroma and it drowns out any other flavors that could be there. It also has a sort of off-putting metallic taste as well.

M: Light bodied and mildly carbonated, pretty much what you'd expect for the style.

O: This had a promising start, but the simple and dull taste proved this one to be average at best and certainly not one of Firestone's better offerings.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
2.99/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a tap into a pint glass at Cattlemen’s Lounge in Paso Robles, Calif., on Aug. 9, 2012 for $5.00. Two fingers of head when I got it, pretty foamy on the sides. Beer was honey pale. Good retention on the top and the sides.

Smelled a bit like a saison initially. Then got honey, dark fruits, bread, grain, wheat and malts. Kind of weak overall.

Tasted honey, bread, wheat and a bit bland. Nothing really stood out.

Light body. Thin texture. Below average-to-poor carbonation. Abrupt watery finish, but refreshing. Surprisingly got better as it went down.

Pretty much an average blonde, but great for the summer.

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Photo of t420o
2.21/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

FW 805

They got me with the labeling and the fact that it's FW because this beer is crap. 

A- fizzy, light yellow. No head or lacing 3

S- some floral notes, grainy, a little yeast and some dirty bathwater 2

T- on again with the dirty soap water taste mixed with some grain and light floral hops, some metallic notes, Not good 2

M- good mouthfeel. Good carbonation, lighter body 3.5

O- "why did they release this?" is all I kept thinking. I love FW, but this is a crappy beer no matter what. I feel bad that this is the beer they gave to the 805 proclaiming "local only" on the bottle and 6-pack. Do something to make up for this abomination you've released to the 805 FW! 2


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Photo of DoubleJ
2.73/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I had no background of this beer whatsoever, yet I decided to try a pint of it anyways. After all, it's made by Firestone Walker. On to the beer:

I spend the entire pint trying to understand what this was. There isn't much head, retention, or lace to this one. The nose is weak and offrers some strange fruity notes. And its taste is more of the same. If anything, it tasted like a weak pale ale where the hops weren't worked as much as they could. At least it was easy enough to drink, not terribly offensive, and was bubbly in the mouth. As far as everything else, I'll pass. It's a good thing this is brewed for the local Central Coast market, because I don't think it's necessary to inflict this beer on the people in my area (Orange County).

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Photo of ehammond1
2.81/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle (2012)

Clear golden with a small off-white head that leaves the glass clean on the way down.

The aroma is of simple grain and some dishrag, unfortunately. Simple, yet not particularly pleasant.

The flavor is similar to the aroma, with simple grain, low bitterness, and a bit of earthy yeast character.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

Not that good, but completely expected for the given style.

 414 characters

Photo of BeerManDan
2.46/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

The color when poured into a pint glass what a light yellow with hardly any foam and not lace. The smell was of a weak lack luster aroma of weak hops and that was it. The taste was of really weak everything in a beer. I should have rated it a 1 all across. Not a good blonde ale. What a disappointment from a very good brewery. One of the worst ales I've tasted from Firestone/Walker.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked up a 6 pack while in Paso Robles for the FW invitational. Pours a yellow beer, white head, nothing exceptional going on. Aroma was cereal grain and not much else, barely present hop aroma going on.

Clean taste, mild mouthfeel, grain presence. Easy to drink, slightly bitter aftertaste, but nothing that should scare any seasoned beeradvocate. A decent beer, worth having around for other's to drink. You've had lots of iterations of this beer, this is the local brewery easy go to drink for the non beer drinker. It is what it is. You know what kind of beer I'm describing. Its an all barley version of BMC basically. Slightly better, a little more ooomph, but nothing special.

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Photo of Zorro
3.17/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Black and white colored label on squat brown glass bottle. Brewed on 05/16/12 that makes this bottle of beer just 5 days old.

Clear amber colored ale that turns gold if you hold it up to the light. Not much head formation.

Smell is on the sweet side and fruity with a strong vanilla and banana aroma. Just a guess fruity from an English style beer yeast and the vanilla is from the oak barrels Firestone Walker is famous for using.

Starts out dry with a strong soda cracker malt flavor. Caramel and oak with a little vanilla in the flavor. The fruitiness from the smell does show up in the taste, it just isn't as strong.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a mild tasty low alcohol ale.

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805 Blonde Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
79 out of 100 based on 68 ratings.