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Fireside Chat - 21st Amendment Brewery

Not Rated.
Fireside ChatFireside Chat

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

315 Reviews
THE BROS
80
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 315
Hads: 1,067
rAvg: 3.34
pDev: 20.36%
Wants: 36
Gots: 159 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  7.90% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: elgiacomo on 10-19-2010

Like FDR’s Depression-era radio addresses, which were like a kick in the butt and a hug at the same time, our Fireside Chat is a subtle twist on the traditional seasonal brew. We begin with a rich, dark, English-style ale and then we improvise with spices until we know we have a beer worth sharing with the nation.

Fireside Chat is our early winter seasonal brew available from October through December in six pack cans and on draft. Brewed like a classic, warming Strong Ale but with a subtle blend of hand-selected spices for just the right festive flair.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 315 | Hads: 1,067
Reviews by jampics2:
Photo of jampics2
2.61/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

12oz can into a pint glass.

Fireside chat should make me cozy and confident, that is, if the branding is any indication. But it could all be a set-up to break some bad news, like when the president comes on the news with the pictures of his family on the mantle and tells us we're at war.

At least the first impression makes me excited to discover the beer's real message. Fireside chat sure looks good. It's an amber, chesnut and mahogany color with a beautiful white head. The head retention is fantastic without being too pillowy. There's some fantastic lace left behind.

The smell is OK too, but there's a hint that this chat may take a different direction. There's some mild toasted malt and lots of spices. Ginger, cinnamon, and brown sugar are there, making this festive and appropriate for the Winter Warmer style. Unfortunately, there's some sour note and the spices just aren't that prominent.

This beer tastes horrible. I feel like this "fireside chat" started out with some good news about the economy then let me know that an asteriod is on an imminent path towards Earth and we'll all be dead in 10 minutes. Seriously, 21st Amendment, I get you have some cool branding but your beers generally suck. Spend less time being all market-ey and get your products up to par. This joke of a beer starts out with some roasted malt and toasted nuts, then there's a weird flavor gap where the mediocre spices fall flat. A touch of ginger and cinnamon, then water and a weird sour and metallic note in the aftertaste. This is just poorly conceieved and horribly executed. If my neighbor brought this over as his first homebrew, I would say it was a decent first attempt. For a professional brewery to release this is unnaceptable. Get your contractors under control or, here's a novel idea, brew your beer yourself!

The aftertaste is sweet with some plastic and metal. The beer has medium to light body with creamy carbonation. It doesn't feel bad, but the lingering artificial tastes make me never want another sip. This is going down the drain. I bought this single for $1.49 and I won't take another Big Mac priced gamble on another 21st Amendment beer again. Seriously, who is buying this stuff? The black IPA sucked, the IPA has less flavor in the whole can than Avery or Oskar Blues have in one sip, and the watermelon beer tastes like corn. Stop the madness, you're doing a disservice to craft beer. (2,415 characters)

More User Reviews:
Photo of NeroFiddled
4/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

21st Amendment Fireside Chat
12 oz. can, $1.99 @ Joe Canal's, Egg Harbor Twp., NJ

Appearance: Surprisingly clear, very deep mahogany brown body beneath a short head of creamy tan froth. The head drops readily to a standard collar along the sides of the glass. Lacing is made up of tiny spots, some larger drops, and the occasional stretch of craggy lace.

Smell: Dark caramel and spice - no surprise there. Cinnamon is clear. Perhaps nutmeg, maybe ginger... nice.

Taste: The spice is strong, but I don't think it's over-done. However, it does kind of build at the back of the throat unless you give it some time between sips. It's balanced within the dark, almost-burnt-sugar maltiness, and a surprisingly bitter back-bone. As it warms it becomes more chocolatey and round, softening the spice a bit more.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and gently zesty on the tongue.

Overall: Charming, festive, and warming. (908 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.26/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

When cooler weather comes calling, so does the flock to indoor convening- hovering around the fire for bar banter and cosmos riddling. And the San "by God" Francisco brewery makes a beer for such the occasion.

Fireside Chat opens with the common brown ale charm. Its dark chocolaty austere highlights its initial toffee, nutty and sweeter malt tones while aromas of butter pecan, walnut, chocolate and toast waft about.

Spicy introductions are made upon the middle palate as the creamy but semi-dry ale balances that malt sweetness with the supple spices of coffee and allspice- lead by cinnamon. Yet as delicate clove and nutmeg round out the beer's juicy malt center, its bigger-than-usual taste and effects take hold.

Drying alcohol and fleeting malt sweetness gives the ale a semi-sweet finish, creating crevices in taste that allow for the strong astringency from spice to balance the beer more so than hop additions. Those broad an woodsy hops are no match for the tannin-heavy unsettling that comes with those excessively boiled tea and spent coffee ground flavors.

While the ale simmers in the glass like coffee- there's a lot of promise in its taste. Allowing the spices to join the process in more post-fermentation usage would have retained the delicate oils from the spices and without leaching its brash tannin. (1,328 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.85/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great artwork on the can.

A - Poured out a dark burgundy color with a one-finger, tan head of white foam. It left thin wisps of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of traditional Christmas spices - nutmeg, cinnamon, etc. A mild caramel malt aroma, too.

T - It tasted spicy - not hop spice but spices. Again, more nutmeg and cinnamon. A slight dried fruit flavor like figs and plums mixed with strong maltiness.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

D - I was glad to finally try a can from 21st and this was a pretty nice one. Loved the artwork and it was pretty tasty, too. (614 characters)

Photo of MaineBrewing
2.42/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A - Poured a dark brown mahogany body with slight red or ruby highlights. Head was just shy of 2 fingers and was very frothy, creamy texture against some larger bubbles. Left a few streaks of lacing, and always appeared lively.

S - Smell is very sweet and fruity at first with an immediate wallop of cinnamon and nutmeg, maybe some other things from the spice rack in there... very spiced smelling. The sweet fruity aroma is almost raisiny, with a thick bready malt note. Like some sort of overly sweet and rich holiday desert.

T - Taste follows the nose but is engulfed in an astringent finish that swallows it up like a black hole. Nothing can escape the astringency... accept the cinnamon and the sweetnes. So yes.. no real malt, hops, just a drying astringent holiday cookie that was overcooked. On top of that, somehow in the face of massive astringency, the sweetness is just immense... I think cloying is a harsh word and I try not to use it in my reviews without some restraint... but this... this is cloyingly sweet beer.

M - Thick, sweet but still astringent.

O - This was neither refreshing, nor could it possibly perpetuate any fireside chat. Maybe I should smoke a cigarette like the guy on the can to add some flavor. Sorry for the diatribe, I often find myself liking most of the new beers I try. This one would be a drain pour if I wasn't committed to writing this review based on a fully drunken beer to give it the benefit of the doubt that it gets better as it warms. It doesn't. (1,505 characters)

Photo of Crotalusrob
1.17/5  rDev -65%
look: 3.75 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Let me just start this semi-long winded review on how much I disliked this beer...I disliked it so much that I stopped what I was doing at 4 AM to come and write my first review on beer advocate. I’ve been reading reviews on this site for over a year now and I’m on it quite frequently, I’ve been meaning to start writing reviews for months now and well...Holy god damn shit this was the perfect inspiration. I by no means am an expert, and I fully understand that everyones palate is different, I’m sure there’s someone on this planet who can find something to like about this beer but they are probably a tad slow or dying of some kind of horrible disease that effects their senses...but I digress

A: Dark brown and red with a surprisingly deceiving head, I looked at it and said “wow that looks like a good beer”

S: Dark (dark wasn’t a smell until now) black coffee mixed with a small amount of 10-W30 engine oil, maybe an odd type of weird dried fruit scent in there some where, uhhh and alcohol and water scents as well

T: Dark (also a taste now as well), burnt, thick with coffee and weird dried fruit on occasion oil, lots of a bitter taste and a very strong presence of alcohol, some weird spices , very very harsh and unenjoyable, this should be called “fireside unnecessarily horrible yet intentional suicide”

M: Thick, chalky, harsh, rough...I keep taking a small sip of this after every section of this review and...god this is just really bad.

O: I’m extremely open minded when it comes to all beer, 99.9% of what I try that I’m not a fan of I can at least find something positive to say about it, and I usually end on an “I won’t buy it again but I’d drink it if it was offered to me” type of note. NOT fireside chat, I will never drink this shat again. It’s just not good, I’m not trying to be a jerk it is just a sincerely bad product. (1,895 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.6/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I got myself into trouble drinking pints of this at a pub, not knowing how strong it is on the alcohol, because it never shows it! A few of these and I was real loose, which is always fun. Dark brown it looks like a porter, but the roast on the grain is only medium, and there is very little bitterness. What bitterness is in here is balanced out by a brown sugary middle and a drying spicy finish that may include anise and clove. A darker take on the winter warmer, it's rich and satisfying in the feel, very full bodied and lightly carbonated. Surprised how drinkable it is, which is how I got wasted on it in the first place. I have liked all the beer I have had from these guys, cool they have wider distribution now. Not my favorite here, but is think it is underrated. (775 characters)

Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single finger head with poor retention but nice lace on a near clear deep amber red body. Aroma is very sweet and well represented with nutmeg, cherry, mint and cinnamon, all spice really. Flavors of the winter season with more nutmeg, gingerbread, nutmeg and hint of peppermint. Some caramel malt base as well. A lot thicker than expected, moderate carbonation and fairly oily coating the palate. Very interesting with this one managing to have many of the same flavors as others in the class but the overall flavors and body make it different and therefore memorable. (569 characters)

Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev +13.8%

Photo of EastBay_Nick
3/5  rDev -10.2%

Photo of NWer
4/5  rDev +19.8%

Photo of csmartin6
4/5  rDev +19.8%

Photo of nstroup
3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of Britton
4/5  rDev +19.8%

Photo of Doomcifer
2.19/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a dark amber/cherry color with decent head. Decent lacing. Immediate aroma of sourness, funk, and sweet candied malts. WTF? Definitely not what I expected. Smells like a Flemish Red/Sour Ale. Taste follows with brettomyces-like sourness and funk along with sweet malts, cherries, and bitter/tart/sour finish. Mouthfeel is semi dry, kind of thin. I really do not understand this beer at all and not sure what they were aiming for. I don't pick up any of the cinnamon and utmeg spice that they claim to have thrown in. I'm so confused... (541 characters)

Photo of petewheeler
3.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Jason
3.53/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can

LOOK: Clear mahogany, lacing works for the duration.

SMELL: Burnt sugar, candied fruit, spice, alcohol, bread crust ... pretty much smells like a pissed off fruit cake.

TASTE: Smooth, creamy, toasty, carob powder, holiday spice, warming alcohol, ripe fruit, bready, molasses cookies.

Hey, if you are going for that spiced holiday ale you may as well go big or not go at all. 21st went big flailing away at the tastes buds, perhaps not liquid gold but it sure was fun to drink. Fun enough to have more than one as well. (531 characters)

Photo of Billolick
3.48/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce can, w/o any sort of freshness/canning date information.

Pours dark, murky amber, mocha head, moderate retention, thicker film and ample strands of lacing.

Holiday spicing in the nose.

Flavorful, spiced up creation, with notes of smoke, burnt malts, dark chocolate, then quite dry in the finish. Taste is all over the place and doesnt really come together all that well. On the thin side and lacking a solid finish. Another blah beer from 21st Amendment. Contract brewed in Minnesota. I'm getting the feeling this brand is all style and little substance. Nice looking gaphics on the can and packaging, fairly lame attempt at a craft brew in the can. It is warming, but this is a less then decent winter warmer/night capper. (736 characters)

Photo of tigg924
3.18/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: one inch head, clear, dark brown in color

Smell: cinnamon and nutmeg. This smells like a Christmas candle.

Taste: toasted malt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and some sourness

Mouthfeel: medium-light bodied, medium/high carbonation, slightly bitter with spices

Drinkability: An average winter warmer. I could have a couple. The spices are there but are somewhat muted. I have had better from this brewery. (409 characters)

Photo of reitzbrewing
4/5  rDev +19.8%

Photo of alienlifeforcecube
3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of bsp77
3.08/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into tall glass.

Appearance: Rich, dark brown with thick, foamy tan white head.

Smell: Caramel, cherry, spicy & floral English hops and sweet gingerbread.

Taste: Semi-sweet caramel and roasted malts, with some cherry and spicy English hops. Ends very burnt and metallic.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, fairly light and thin body for almost 8%. Very dry finish, but that's not the greatest thing considering the circumstances of that finish.

Drinkability: The burnt metallic finish just kills this, and destroys any complexity. Not really sure where the spices are either, although I thought I smelled a little. (648 characters)

Photo of deebo
3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of NilocRellim
3.78/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from the can.

This beer is a dark red/amber colour with a foamy head that didn't last long. The smell has a lot of spice to it, mostly cloves and cinnamon with a hint of nuttiness. The taste is in-line with the smell, lots of clove and spices, with a nutty aftertaste. A nice winter beer.

Would I buy it again? Yes. (324 characters)

Photo of kingcrowing
2.32/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz can poured into a Duvel tulip. Bonus points for my favorite president on the can!

Pours a nice really dark brown with a small dark brown head that fades fast. Nose is spicy and light and malty,

Taste is meh, not too much going on here, it's really disappointing and bland. This is 0/4 for 21st amendment. (312 characters)

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Fireside Chat from 21st Amendment Brewery
77 out of 100 based on 315 ratings.