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Firestone 16 - Anniversary Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Firestone 16 - Anniversary AleFirestone 16 - Anniversary Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

998 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 998
Reviews: 153
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 9.43%
Wants: 135
Gots: 500 | FT: 40
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  13.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: AgentMunky on 11-15-2012)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 998 | Reviews: 153 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Omer4176
3.5/5  rDev -19.5%

Photo of wyatt13
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of JALIEN
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of iwantsomerocks
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Evan47
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of mychalg9
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of OStrungT
5/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer pours into my Stone Old Guardian Barley Wine glass, a very dark brown color, with a thick, fluffy brown head. The head fades slowly, leaving a nice lace. I really like the murky depths of this beer. Holding it up to the light, nothing shines through at all.

This beer boasts a lot of aroma. I smell vanilla, chocolate, oak, light bourbon, figs, and tobacco. Wow, this aroma is intense. So much going on, but not overpowering or cloying at all. Just lots of different aromas.

This beer pretty much tastes like it smells. I get all the above, and also a nice sweet caramel flavor. Maybe just a hint of smoke also. It is pretty damn nice.

This beer is silky smooth. It has a mild carbonation, fitting the style. The 13% ABV is extremely well hidden in both the taste and the aroma. The entire time drinking it, I barely noticed just how strong it was. I get a caramel and toffee aftertaste.

With the high ABV, and the high shelf price, mixed with the limited availability, this beer might not make the best session beer. However, for just one bottle, this beer is very easy to drink.

Overall: This beer is amazing. I have been really impressed with Firestone Walker as a brewery the last few years, and I have always enjoyed their Anniversery releases. This one impresses me just as much and previous ones. Amazing beer!

Photo of andant
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.43/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this is just sensational stuff. came in a box for 19 bucks with a two sided r page of notes about the blending process. wow, this defines craft to me, maybe a little over the top by some standards, but you have to be impressed by this level of attention to detail. the beer pours dark and a tad silty into a wine glass. its glowing red and brown and caramel and black all at once, with a quarter inch of tan bubbles that dont go anywhere and are easily reinvigorated with a gentle swirl of the glass. the nose is real intense, tons of booze and wood, dead giveaway for a blended beer. lots of stout it seems like here, big roasty malt profile behind all that bourbon, some definite rye too from the wookie jack. flavor is more hoppy than expected, and the small portion of tequilla barrel aged brew comes right up to the top of the flavor spectrum here. it almost starts and ends like a shot of nice tequilla. so much complexity here, oak, chocolate, heavy handed american hop varieties. just a wonderful glass of beer, with alcohol strength just radiating throughout. the feel is taken over by the booze. if you hold it it your mouth for a few seconds, its akin to licking a 9volt battery, caustic and electric. not to say thats a bad thing, because it works here, almost necessary to cut through the layers of flavor and bring a man back to earth. full body obviously, but not undrinkable in feel, just in strength for me at least. great bottle to share with other beer enthusiasts. its stuff like this that cements firestone walker near the top of the brewing hierarchy in my mind. not a hair out of place. this is a series i wait for every year, and it just keeps getting better. do not miss it.

Photo of purdueflyguy
5/5  rDev +14.9%

Photo of xnicknj
4.23/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into Tired Hands stemware

Hazy mahogany brown with dark hues. Crop of bubbled tanned head rests on top, fading into cloudy film and a few patches of lacing on the glass.

Tons of stuff happening here - toffee, burnt sugar, raisins, oak, chocolate, vanilla, oak, tequila, brandy, alcohol heat...enough already? Breathing in is a treat, as something new keeps popping up as the beer slowly warms.

Sweet and warm up front, driven by cocoa, vanilla, brandy and burnt sugar. Toffee, bread crust, big burly dark roasted malts. Plethora of liquor barrels including bourbon, brandy and tequila. Brown sugar, raisin and candied dark fruit. Soft hoppiness on the back end with strong alcohol warmth.

Fuller medium body, slightly higher carbonation, sticky and lingering on the tongue. A little crazy, definitely complex, and probably a little young yet. I enjoyed this but I'm looking forward to opening more bottles in a year or so.

Photo of coz
4/5  rDev -8%

Photo of KingStephenR
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of MasterSki
4.03/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Local Option. Served in a snifter.

A - Tan foam settles to a partial cap and thick collar, leaving behind splotchy lace. Brown body with some ruby transparency when held to the light. Impressive for a 13% barrel-aged blend.

S - Roasty, with some chocolate an coffee notes and mild oak. Fairly stout-like this year, but with some obvious English malt influences, as well as a decidedly English approach to the barrel-aging; oxidized fruits and mild vanilla in addition to dry wood.

T - The taste is similar, with a mixture of roasty stout, vanilla, molasses, dark fruits, and chocolate, with a milder barrel influence than the aroma. The tequila is thankfully understated and creeps in late, although it does assert itself more as the beer warms with a spicy faux hop herbaceous vibe to it. Booze comes out a bit as this warms, and this gets a tad heavy and fatiguing.

M - Dry, roasty, and tannin heavy, with a medium-full body, and fairly restrained carbonation. Alochol is reasonably well-concealed, making this a smooth drinker even with the grainy and oak-heavy texture.

D - I enjoyed this more than the disappointing XV, as I dug the heavier roast stout flavors and the restraint on the vanilla. This also doesn't have cloying sugary sweetness and oxidization like last year. I was a bit skeptical about the blend, but the tequila integrated better than expected. I'd be curious to try this again, but I don't anticipate it will age that well, as it's decidedly mellow to begin with. Probably too pricey for me to splurge on though, as there are beers I enjoy more at half the price. It took me a while to work through the snifter.

Photo of bigorange
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of sukwonee
4.18/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black opaque body from the side (you can see through from the top) with 1 finger light tan head that retains.

S: Oak, Vanilla, some hops, booziness,

T: While I think this could benefit a lot from aging, its got great taste fresh. I think it's a tad bit too boozy though. I guess lots of wood, oak, vanilla, caramel malt, roasty malt, hop bitterness, and booze. I also taste some... what appears to be tonic water? Very very complex.

M: It's thin for my linking and carbonation is quite sharp.

O: It's one tasty beer. As mentioned above, slightly too boozy and thin for my liking, but it's a very complex, masterfully blended beer.

Photo of danipp
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of appetiteforparis
5/5  rDev +14.9%

Photo of Imacopyouidiot
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of jrpapajcik
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of mjw1200
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of kynap55
3.25/5  rDev -25.3%

Photo of EyePeeAyBryan
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of DefenCorps
3.18/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle from Whole Foods. Split with my dad on Christmas Eve.

Pouring a very dark brown with a thin brown head with decent retention but poor lacing, this is about on par for the course. The nose is solid. Very boozy with some caramel, cocoa, light Vietnamese coffee. Lots of oak, rather tannic with the double DBA component quite noticeable - pale English malt, mildly caramelized. Some vanilla, brandy and mild tequila notes are apparent. 


The palate is poorly integrated. In the past, the thinness of these anniversary beers hasn't bothered me, but this time, it does. Caramel, toffee, sweetened mild chocolate, mild coffee, some brandy, plenty of bourbon, some vanilla- all components that i typically enjoy -just don't mesh here. Astringent booze and oak, especially on a sweet finish, make this harsh. The brandy fruitiness is one component that does work reasonably well here, but again, at this price point, i expected more. Medium-light in body, moderately boozy and astringent, this beer is mildly carbonated and does improve with time to breathe. The finish is long, tannic and boozy with some sweetness. Decent, I think this will improve in the short term, but I don't intend to buy any more, especially at the $1/oz price point.

Photo of jhb138
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Firestone 16 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 998 ratings.