1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Schell's FireBrick - August Schell Brewing Company

Schell's FireBrickSchell's FireBrick

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

346 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 346
Reviews: 212
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 14.17%

Brewed by:
August Schell Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Vienna Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
FireBrick was introduced in 1999, and is named after the bricks that line Schell's old boilers. It is the culmination of an effort to bridge the gap between the "popular-tasting" beers and the heartier, hand-crafted ones.
FireBrick is a refreshing all-malt lager with an amber-red hue that reflects the feeling of the brewery itself.

It has been described by Ted Marti as having a "subtle maltiness combined with a hint of hoppy taste that creates a mild, pleasantly drinkable beer." It is made with four specialty malts, along with Vanguard, Chinook and Hallertau hops.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-17-2002)
View: Beers (34) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 346 | Reviews: 212 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of woodychandler


4.28/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

My thanks to Chaz who sent this to me and has been awaiting my review since its arrival. It too is really fresh, dated 12/09/10 and I CAN't wait to get the Crack & Glug underway. Let The CANQuest (TM) resume in earnest!

From the CAN: "At 145 years of age, the August Schell Brewing Company is the second oldest family-owned brewery in the nation. While breweries and beers have come and gone, our quaint little brewery has remained here in New Ulm, MN, timelessly brewing traditional lagers and fine ales for five generations. Schell's Firebrick is a refreshing Vienna-style amber lager that carries a pleasant maltiness with a subtle sweetness and light, hoppy finish."

My pour resulted in just better than a finger of foamy eggshell-white head with decent retention. Color was a coppery-amber with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a rich caramel sweetness to it. Mouthfeel was medium with a very malty sweetness initially, but giving 'way to a slight grassy hoppiness on the tongue. Finish was incredibly smooth, very pleasant to drink, with an intermingling of the malt and hops that made me wish for more. I would certainly put this beer in my imaginary cooler that has become my basis for a "drinkability" score.

Serving type: can

12-28-2010 00:10:09 | More by woodychandler
Photo of sudz42


2.5/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I'm befuddled by the praising reviews as this beer is nothing more than an amped-up macro lager with more malt than say, Bud. The hops are macro acrid as in bitter, not floral or zesty like a good hopped beer.

The saving grace of this beer is that it's served on Northwest Airlines domestic flights, and it got me over my worst turbulence nerves going out and coming home. At $5 a can I was hoping it would deliver and at 5% alcohol it does the trick.

Serving type: can

09-22-2007 21:03:55 | More by sudz42
Photo of MTNboy


3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I tried this on a Northwestern flight from Detroit to Syracuse. It wasn’t bad and I’ll be honest I was a little skeptical at first. It was probably the best beer they had to choose from on this particular flight.

Appearance- There was a little bit of a red caramel color to this one. I would say a little darker than most Vienna style beers. It might be because of the plane but it poured with a lot of foam.

Smell- It was slightly sweet with a little hops tone to it.

Taste- It was sweet and just a little metallic. It was good but it did not seem like there were much for hops in it.

Mouthfeel. Smooth and a little thick but good for a lager.

Drinkability- Not bad. I would get it again.

Serving type: can

07-06-2007 12:12:00 | More by MTNboy
Photo of mynie


4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 Oz can for 99 cents at John's Grocery. I figured yeah, what the hell.

Pours a nice light brown with a decent but unexceptional head. Pretty much the same pour as you get from a bottle.

Well, it smells a heck of a lot crisper from the can! Very nice, smooth Veinna malt backed up by some simple but firm west coast hops, dry and lightly citrusy.

Tastes pretty much like it smells: like a greener, hoppier Sam Adams.

The can really does wonders for this beer. The hops are much fresher and the malt is much crisper and all around it's just a better drinking experience. Great session ale, nice to drink on the 4th!

Serving type: can

07-05-2007 01:02:15 | More by mynie
Photo of NODAK


3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma was a bit of roasted malts, mildly sweet....maybe earthy. Not bad. More interesting than most lagers.

Taste had an initial sweetness to it....perhaps a bit of caramel....followed by some tea and mild roasted notes as well. Hops are mild but present on the backend, of a herbal nature.

Pretty good lager here, as Schell's is known for. I hadn't had any of their beers in a while, and this makes me want to try more.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2014 01:03:55 | More by NODAK
Photo of mcrow24


3.86/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

A: brownish brick red in color, clear with a finger tip of white head, no noticeable lacing.

S: Like most light lagers, not a lot to smell here but there are noticeable malty toasted scents.

T: This is a pretty malty brew, sweet, soft but hoppy notes at the finish. Leaves a sweet, mildly bitter after taste.

M: Light bodied, medium to high carbonation, which confirms the smell and taste.

Overall: Good solid light bodied malty style lager, though may not be right for those who do not enjoy the malty sweetness.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2014 22:35:14 | More by mcrow24
Photo of harrymel


3.11/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Best by 09SEP13

Its a lovely amber with a solid sheet of toasted cream on top. Smells sweet with some nougat, some pale malt, some biscuit and a bit of tea. Flavor is malts, sweet, some banana, some more tea (sweet tea in the south), some bits of orange peel. Medium on full bodied with fine, creamy carbonation and a wet finish. Decent beer, nothing I'd be likely to slam repeatedly.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2013 05:00:01 | More by harrymel
Photo of TheSSG


4.15/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a soft, white head that forms a thin, white layer atop the liquid. Sweet malt aroma with a lot of nice, floral hops. Amber-burnt sienna color that has an orange quality to it. Starts a touch tart from carbonation and floral hops, moves quickly into a MASSIVE malt middle, a flash of hop bitterness, and it all mellows in the finish, where the floral hops and a touch of bitterness comes through, but malt dominates.

This is really, really nice. There is just a touch of hops to make you happy, but the malt is so fantastic and well balanced throughout. It's just miles and miles of smooth malt. It's just a nice, silky mouthfeel, too!

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2013 02:03:13 | More by TheSSG
Photo of sommersb


4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasted On: 10-14-2012
Freshness: Best by 11-26-2012
Packaging: 12 oz. brown bottle, pry-cap
Glassware: Willi Becher
Purchased: Received in a trade

A: Clear beer, dark copper in color. The white head starts at 3 fingers and shows very good lacing and retention.

S: Aromas are rich, malty and sweet, with a dose of earthy hops.

T: Clean lager taste of sweet caramel malts. Simple yet flavorful and delicious.

M: Crisp feel with moderate carbonation. Aftertastes are malty, with just enough hop presence to make a good balance. Body is medium.

O: An excellent, easy-drinking lager from Schell's. It reminded me of an Oktoberfest beer. If I had access to this I could see it being a fridge staple!

Thanks to fLax for this one!

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2012 03:03:34 | More by sommersb
Photo of herman77


3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Clear amber/copper orange with a small white head. Not much lacing.

S: Sweet, nicely toasted malt. Biscuit. Slight spice/hop twang to it.

T: Carmel and semi sweet toasted malt. Lots of biscuit and toasty flavors. A bit of hop bitterness keeps you coming back for more. Finishes a tad sweet, but still fairly crisp.

M: Light to medium body. Good amount of carbonation.

O: Good drinkability. If you like malty lagers, this is for you. Better than Sam Adams Boston Lager. Another great lager from Schells.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2012 23:03:55 | More by herman77
Photo of jimmah120


3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look is a dark red-amber color. Smell is roasted malts, with a hint of sweet stout-like malts. Taste is very beer-y. A lot of roasted grain notes, semi-harsh malts, hint of earthy hops. Feel is crisp and clean.

Didn't enjoy it the first time I tried it, this time though, it was very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2012 02:52:20 | More by jimmah120
Photo of JamesMN


3.15/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Dark caramel, translucent. Nice off-white head.

Aroma: Average lager smell. Not getting much in the nose.

Taste: Pretty malty for how light it feels. Little bit of caramel right at the beginning but that quickly fades and is replaced with a skunky flavor. There is a slight bitterness in the aftertaste. Decently clean tasting.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation asserts itself on your tongue immediately, sort of waking up the palate. It's not quite refreshing, but there's nothing too bad to say about it.

Final Thoughts: The best thing about this beer was the lovely coloring it had in the glass. However, if you are looking for a more flavorful alternative to a macro lager for drinking on your porch as the sun sets, this beer would do the trick. It's nothing complex, but that makes for an easy drinking experience. Also a good transition beer for someone interested in craft beer but afraid of some of the darker or hoppier beers out there.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2012 01:06:47 | More by JamesMN
Photo of homebrew311


3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into pint glass. Clear golden appearance with white head, nice retention, minimal lace. The nose features some hop character up front and a touch of skunky character. Notes of bread and grain come through. Not sure if this has been skunked or if it is intentional. The taste is full flavored and is very malty. None of the skunk quality comes through on the taste. Decent balance, minimal hop character. The mouthfeel is light and refreshing with appropriate level of carbonation. Overall, this is a nice Vienna lager. I'm assuming the skunk character is unitentioal and is a result of the storage at the place I purchased the bottle. For that reason,, I am not factoring that into the smell score. It wasn't much of a detractor in the first place.

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2012 05:29:45 | More by homebrew311
Photo of TCMike


4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Produce a nice white head, which lasted awhile. The beer color is an amber.
The aroma is of roasted malts, slight brown sugar, and biscuit.
The taste is the same with a slight hop presence.
Easy drinking. medium mouth-feel, and medium carbonation. Yum!

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2012 02:03:09 | More by TCMike
Photo of DK_CPA

3.15/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle poured in glass similar to the picture used on schell's website.

A - Amber/tannish red. This is an amber lager after all so it gets a 4.0 for appearance

S - I can't smell great but its better than an average beer. Gives off a nice sweet sensation.

T - I can only say the taste is average. Almost a lack of a taste.

Assessment - This beer was once a snowstorm winter beer that august schell decided to make available all year round. I personally wouldn't sit and savor the beer, but could definitely throw a couple down in a short amount of time.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2012 01:33:23 | More by DK_CPA
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


3.08/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A darker copper and brown color, mild head, some lace. A mild aroma of very little, if you look for it, you can probably say you smell caramel, yeast, hops etc. . . but there really ain't much there.

Taste, parts of a red ale, more caramel, toffee, but its all pretty mild and nuanced, I could picture some old timers drinking this and wishing for something more bland, but saying it has some promise.

Very similar to SA Boston Lager. I get it if you're drinking this, you're not looking for massivity and complexity, and this beer delivers in that regard. There are no off flavors, its just a middle of the road beer with mild smooth malt additions, minimal hops and mild yeast.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2012 19:54:53 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of PorterPig


3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into pint glass.

A: garnet tinged amber, fine ivory head quickly dissipates

S: malt, sweetness, slightest hint of berries

T: bright malt character, biscuit, restrained hop bitterness. Clean finish.

M: on the light side, bordering on thin

Drinkable and pleasant.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2012 17:14:52 | More by PorterPig
Photo of JackieTH


3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: This was a 22-oz pour. Was coppery brown, clear, with an inch of light foam that receded leaving no lacing. Smell is lightly toasted malt and a light sweetness. Taste is very malty, caramel, biscuit, slightly sweet, nutty, enough balance to keep the finish relatively clean. Too low carbonation, maybe a function of the tap.. 22 oz was too much, its better from a bottle.

Serving type: on-tap

02-11-2012 04:15:17 | More by JackieTH
Photo of hardy008


4.45/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear dark amber color with a two finger off white foamy head with nice retention and lacing. The aroma has sweet caramel malt, toasted bread, and hops. Very nice as always.

The taste has sweet caramel malt, toasted bread, and hops to provide bitterness for balance. If more lagers tasted like this, I would drink more lagers for sure.

Medium bodied with modest carbonation and a light sweet aftertaste. I could easily drink this beer all the time, and do have it pretty often. I was surprised to find out I had not reviewed this beer in a bottle yet. I thought this was as good a time as any to do so.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2011 01:55:13 | More by hardy008
Photo of OleJohnnieAle


3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a - Pours a dark amber color with about an finger of white foam and moderate carbonation. Left minimal lacing.

s - Very sweet for as dark as it looks. Nice malty aromoa.

t - Nice strong sweet malts as the aroma would suggest. Slight bit of toasted malts finish off/

m - Light to medium body with little carbonation. Pretty smooth and easy to drink.

O - Pretty good beer to come ou of a sampler pack. Not just a winter beer, I would enjoy this in the summer as well. Good sweet tasting but nice roasted flavor to balance out.

Serving type: bottle

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2011 04:04:33 | More by OleJohnnieAle
Photo of Infamous7100


3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours deep nice looking amber. Clear with tinge of gold to it.
S: biscuity, malty. There is some honey as well. Interesting.
T: follows the nose at the front. Malty, bready and some sweet notes. This fades to slightly hoppy and bitter finish.
M: thicker than expected with medium carbonation. Slighty creamy maybe. It finishes crisp and dry.
O: nice beer. Simple, well rounded and flavorful. Easily could have a few of these.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2011 18:06:09 | More by Infamous7100
Photo of NuclearDolphin


3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into Pilsner Glass

Appearance - Has a deep amber/red color, Small amount of carbonation present that stays around consistently; Finger length head that disappears fairly quick.

Smell - Has a distinct honey and toffee smell with a bready aroma to it

Taste - Sweet Honey/Toffee taste that turns into a bitter hoppy after taste

Mouthfeel - Little more carbonation then I'd like, but it's got a very crisp/fresh feel to it. Body is on the thicker side

Overall - I enjoyed it, it's one of those beers you could either sit down and drink or chug down after working outside on a hot summer day.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2011 02:32:10 | More by NuclearDolphin
Photo of Bitterbill


3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Received as an extra from France 44. Thanks folks!

Best by stamped on bottle, Dec 5, 2011.

It pours a brownish amber with a 2 finger head of foam and leaves some lacing.

It smells kind of purfumey with notes of sweet malt and a flowery sort of bitterness.

The taste is nice. There are some good malty sweet notes with a hint of chococlate, some roast and grain, and a mild non descript bitterness.

On the low end of medium bodied with fairly light carbonation, the mouthfeel is decent and it's easy to drink. Not a bad little brew.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2011 22:15:52 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of jsisko01


3.3/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Says it's the 2010 Anniversary on the bottle. Date on the bottle says 4-16-11, so I'm not sure if this is the born-on date or expiration. Today is 9-30-11.

Appearance - Pours a very deep amber color, with a very small head.

Smell - Has a sweet, somewhat of a roasted nut character.

Taste - Roasted nut, malty, a small hint of honey and caramel, and some other spices probably. Has a mild bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium body with quite a bit of carbonation. It makes me burp a lot.

Overall - It's not a bad beer but not really my style.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2011 04:31:42 | More by jsisko01
Photo of pBRale


3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From tasting notes 9-17-11
Poured into a snifter

Appearance: Beautiful clear deep amber in color with a very tall pale tan head that settles moderately slowly to a dense (but thin) creamy head that leaves moderate lacing behind.

Smell: Some nice toasty malt smells along with some supporting hoppy and earthy aromas. Pleasing.

Taste: Bready malts followed by a nice hoppy bitterness and a fairly bitter finish. A hint of some sort of a stronger, earthy taste at the end as well.

Mouthfeel: Pretty light bodied with low to medium carbonation. The bitter finish is crisp and drying.

Overall: A very drinkable beer that is decent overall and could pair well with a variety of foods.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2011 22:37:20 | More by pBRale
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Schell's FireBrick from August Schell Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 346 ratings.