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Parabajava - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

33 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 33
Hads: 281
Avg: 4.63
pDev: 18.57%
Wants: 302
Gots: 62 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout | 14.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Rau71 on 04-13-2013

The espresso coffe lends roasty caramel, toffee, baker's chocolate and molasses to the big rich character of Parabola. The complementary flavors pair well with Parabola's rich malt and smokey oak bourbon notes. Complex, smooth and seamlessly integrated.
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Reviews: 33 | Hads: 281
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Tieman for sharing this one at hopodyssey's tasting.

Pours an almost opaque super dark orange-brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Tiny dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, coffee bean, brewed coffee, and cream aromas. Taste is much the same with coffee bean, brewed coffee, cream, cocoa powder, caramel, and toffee flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a perfect creamy coffee smell and fantastic flavors.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of jaydoc
4.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2015 Vintage

Opaque black liquid and burnt orange head. The nose is predominantly coffee with a background of bourbon. The taste is boozy sweetness from ample malt character. Decadent coffee permeates the taste in addition. The mouthfeel is a combination of heat and smoothness. Overall this is an extraordinary ale.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.46/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed from notes from CollaBREWtive Father's Day Brunch event @ Tiatro.

A: Pours a clear golden with a thin (1/4-inch) white head which fades to the rim and leaves a few spots of lace.

N: Roasted coffee, dark cocoa, hint of boozy bourbon,

T: Complex blending of softly mellow, low acidity, coffee with some fruity citrus and toffee. Slight molasses, smokey oak, bourbon.

M: Semi-full body and medium carbonation. Rich, lusciously smoot,h roasted coffee finish.

O: A delight. Keep it coming! Winner.

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Photo of dar482
4.81/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The aroma hits of big espresso, oak, milk chocolate, malt powder, bourbon vanilla, chocolate cake.

The flavor offers bourbon up front, milk chocolate, a heavy cream flavor in coffee, coffee ice cream, latte, with a longing spicy oak finish and licorice.

Against BCBCS, this paled in comparison, although still being an wonderful extension of a wonderfully executed base bourbon barrel aged imperial stout.

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Photo of lupercmda
4.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep black with minimal head. Smell is of roasted coffee and oaky bourbon. Taste is oak barrels followed by coffee and finishes on the back of the palate with the bourbon. A really good beer.

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Photo of dwagner003
4.59/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a little thinner than I prefer from a stout, but the smell makes me forget about that. Tons of coffee immediately. Like, the smell of a coffee maker dripping into the pot. Taste is much of the same with a strong, rich coffee flavor, and that great vanilla barrel quality from the Parabola. Great beer.

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Photo of KYGunner
4.46/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lots of toffee and caramel on the front end with brown sugar, hazelnut, maple and bourbonesque cream. The coffee is actually secondary to the much stronger Barleywine characters. Listed as an Imperial Stout I felt this tasted more like a barrel aged barleywine. Despite that this is delicious.

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Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

- 4oz. pour off tap into flight glass at Haven Gastropub (Orange, CA) on 11-Feb-16

This is really nice. A bit of bourbon barrel heat that muddles the flavors a bit, but probably the only flaw I noticed. It's very smooth considering it's at 14% abv. Overall, doesn't beat my personal best barrel-aged coffee stout (BA Vietnamese Speedway), but better than BCBCS and Eclipse Vanilla Java, which is pretty damn impressive.

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Photo of Roguer
4.79/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Fairly clear black brew; modest head with OK retention.

Incredible aroma: coffee and bourbon, oak and chocolate, vanilla and ... more coffee.

Impressively smooth. This ranks amongst FW's most perfectly integrated and balanced brews. Chocolate, espresso, and smooth, sweet bourbon. Nutty and roasty. Almost wine-like finish from the barrel.

Mouthfeel is just as impressive. Way too drinkable for 14%. Just a touch of heat on the back end. Thick.

From the first sip, this is a BA brew that can truly rival GI's BC series. Superb; almost too rich.

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Photo of Keananmichael5
4.59/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Really really great beer! I mean who could ask for anything more then adding coffee to Parabola!?!? If only there was a little more coffee taste this would be a close to perfect beer

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Photo of jacewg
4.5/5  rDev -2.8%

Appearance: (4.5) - Pours a jet black color with a light khaki head that fades quickly. Minimal lacing. Very viscous looking. Big beer

Aroma (4.25) - Lots of coffee roast on the first whiff. Underneath, some vanilla, cream, dark chocolate, dark fruit, and a hint of caramel. Just a hint of boozy bourbon.

Flavor (4.75) - Flavor is beautiful and hits all over the map. Big, nicely balanced flavor. Coffee is big but doesn't overshadow flavors of semi-sweet chocolate, cream, vanilla, dark fruit, and booze. Hint of booze on the finish with lingering coffee and chocolate. A subtle bitterness keeps tames the sweetness. Superb.

Mouthfeel (4.5) - Rich, thick mouthfeel. Moderate bitterness helps balance the sweet components of the beer. Finish is long and a bit boozy with lots of coffee and chocolate. Mouthfeel totally suits this beast of a beer.

Overall: Excellent beer. Maybe not an improvement upon regular Parabola, but a world-class BA coffee stout.

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Photo of SDRedDevil
5/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2015 bomber, amazing coffee and bourbon aroma. Great balance of dark chocolate, coffee, and barrel character. Medium mouthfeel. Smooth, pleasantly sweet finish that hides its abv well. Not hot or overly boozy, amazing well crafted.

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Photo of mythaeus
4.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is the thickest Firestone Walker BA beer I've ever had...and I've had them all! Great overall beer, but the coffee was rather subdued. My friend who doesn't like coffee loved it. I personally prefer much more coffee.

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

Mentally comparing to mocha Wednesday which I had on tap at the bruery yesterday. Having this on tap at the barrel works.

Looks like a stout. Bit more foam and head than a lot of barrel aged stouts.

Huge coffee and chocolate smell. Barrel is hidden. Quite good. A bit of a step below the mocha Wednesday.

All coffee and chocolate in the taste with a very smooth mouthfeel. Maybe a little barrel? Really freaking good.

Excellent coffee stout.

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Photo of 1424IpA
4.57/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Had this today at the parabola release and was flipping delicious. Right up there with bourbon county coffee. Pours real dark, smells great and let's just enough bourbon and coffee linger in your mouth. Awesome beer I hope to see in bottles one day.

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Photo of yoitsarch
4.83/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

L: Dark dark dark!
S: So much coffee and chocolate with a nice blend of bourbon vanilla notes
T: This is a coffee bomb! Wow, their barrel aging program simply is amazing, firestone walker does not disappoint. Chocolate covered espresso bean. A tiny bit of heat to it though.
F: Feel is medium
O: Overall this is a fantastic variant of Parabola. Extremely happy that theybhave finally decided to bottle this fine mastepiece.

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Photo of South2NW
5/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My first 5 beer! Absolutely phenomenal. Everything you want from a coffee beer. Huge coffee aroma, and taste. Perfectly full body. Nicely balanced and just the right amount of barrel character. I wish I had more.
It's like I dunked a chocolate biscotti into my espresso and chased it with a shot of bourbon. Marvelous.

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Photo of SteveB24
4.23/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Part of a tasting session, poured into a snifter;
Color is a brown that is near black, with an oily shine to it, pours a half finger of brown head that quickly settles into a thin ring of lacing.
Smell-Lots of coffee, with hints of oak, vanilla, cocoa, and dark fruit, some booze is definitely there on this one.
Taste-Roasted malt flavors of cake, dark fruit, brown sugar and cocoa are there but subtle, the flavor is dominated by strong coffee, there is a better kick that somewhat compliments the sweet malt notes, sigh bit of booze.
Feel-Full bodied and pretty oily, identical texture to Parabola IMO.
Overall-Really tasty beer, i think i prefer Parabola but this did it justice as an interesting variation.

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Photo of Redgoatman
5/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this gem on the release day at Barrel Works.

This beer is exactly what you would expect, black as night, this is a straight coffee bomb. Nice roasted coffee with subtle vanilla, bourbon, and other barrel goodness. Coffee is by far the star of the show and is up front and in your face. Very balanced but a coffee bomb, awesome stuff.

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Photo of Rau71
4.79/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

The beer pours black with a small tan head.

The smell is chocolate and coffee.

The taste follows the nose for the most part. Coffee and chocolate sweetness, very smooth some bourbon peeks through. Very well blended beer with each sip different as it warms up.

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Photo of BG24
4.89/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Edit from original rating
22oz bottle
Pours nice deep black with good head
Coffee dominates the nose but the barrel is not overshadowed.
Taste is AMAZING coffee comes through first then dark chocolate and hints of caramel. Not overly hot but you definitely get a solid barrel presence.
Overall another Amazing release from Firestone Walker. One of the most balanced bourbon coffee stouts. Its drinking great fresh and I can see this aging nicely.

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Photo of neurobot01
4.74/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Fresh (obviously) bomber into a Barrelworks Teku at cellar temp.

Look: noticeably lighter than Parabola (srm=117 rather than 167); small ring of tan foam.

Smell: straight fudge and coffee; almond extract.

Taste: hot damn, that's delicious. Chocolate truffle, coffee, vanilla, coconut, mild bourbon, mild oak, with hints of tobacco and molasses.

Feel: chewy, without being a chore. Slightly dry, and shockingly little alcohol heat/burn.

Overall: I think I've given maybe two other beers a 5 in taste before, but I had to do it here. This is just a magnificent beer. Given the utter lack of abrasive heat, and the coffee element, I don't think I'll wait longer than four months to finish my remaining bottles. Hard to imagine this getting better anyway.

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Photo of Kraj30
4.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

pours a deep brown with a small mocha head.. no is strong bourbon to me and nice coffee notes.. taste is a super awesome bourbon coffee bomb... slight vanilla ... just awesome stuff..

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Photo of frasergrove
4.41/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Barrelworks. Deep brown with a light frothy tan head. Aroma is a pure mixture of cold pressed dark roast coffee, toffee, with vanilla notes. A touch of bright coffee acidity up front and hot alcohol, which quickly mellows to a smooth bourbon mid body. A delicious coffee bourbon stout which will be even more amazing in a few years time.

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Photo of emyers
4.68/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2015 vintage. 22 oz. bottle poured into Firestone Walker teku glass.

Pours jet black with a thin medium brown head. Not much lacing.

Nose is led off by a phenomenal fresh-brewed coffee aroma, which transitions to bourbon and dark chocolate. Tons of depth here, yet stays very balanced.

Taste is just as good as the nose if not a bit better. Phenomenal mix of dark chocolate, bourbon, and coffee up front with hints of raisin, caramel, and oak. Between the base stout, barrel, and coffee, each component has a ton of depth but stays quite balanced. A bit too much alcohol heat on the finish is the only issue I can take with this beer - I'm guessing it will improve with age as the alcohol bite fades a bit.

Mouthfeel is full-bodied and smooth with low carbonation. Excellent.

Not that I expected anything less from the Barrelworks program, but this is truly a world-class beer.

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Parabajava from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
98 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.