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Fireside Chat - 21st Amendment Brewery

Not Rated.
Fireside ChatFireside Chat

Educational use only; do not reuse.

316 Reviews

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Reviews: 316
Hads: 1,070
Avg: 3.4
pDev: 32.35%
Wants: 35
Gots: 161 | 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: 316 | Hads: 1,070
Photo of ccahoon22
2.66/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours a thick 2 finger head. Dark reddish brown in color

S - Very light spice and some carbonation

T - Very carbonated but not much spice taste. I cant tell exactly what the flavor is I'm tasting. It's sweet with some bitterness. Not a great taste.

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Photo of Cylinsier
2.7/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5


Pours dark brownish, medium off-white head.

Smells of spiced brown sugar malts.

The taste is odd, a bit bitter at first and then very bland, almost nothing detectable. However, as it warms up, it has a sour note to it. Not sure what that's about. Otherwise, dark sugar malts.

Feels moderate, on the fuller side, with mild carbonation on the roof of the mouth.

The taste is off-putting. The other characteristics of the beer are good, but the sourness makes me wonder if I got a bad batch or something. Wouldn't try this again unless I knew for a fact I got a bad one.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.08/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Picked up a single can of this while I was in Minnesota. I'm digging the can artwork. Poured into globe.

A: the beer pours a deep chestnut/maroon with ruby highlights where the light barely passes through. A sparse tan/white head forms and leaves some splotchy lacing behind.

S: upon smelling this brew, you can immediately detect a considerable amount of spice. I get some cinnamon and nutmeg up front which pair with some significant fruity character. The fruits character is reminiscent of figs and dark cherry skins. The aroma reminds me of Monks Blood a bit. There is a lot going on, but I can't say the combo of spices is exactly my favorite to go with a beer.

T: the spices come through on the palate up front, again with notes of cinnamon along with anise and orange peel. By mid palate, the flavor is quite bitter, almost like there is some ginger root. The spices are very earthy and finish with a bit of tingling sensation. The spices do a good job of balancing the sweetness of the brew, but again, not the best flavor combo.

MF: high carbonation, medium to thick body, slightly syrupy texture

D: this beer is worth trying for the sake of being unique and interesting, but it is not something I could see myself seeking out or even drinking again. The end product seems to be over spiced and just doesn't translate to a great beer.

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Photo of Natural510
3.76/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz can, no dating. Strangely, this one was brewed in Minnesota.

Impressive look; rich near-black with red highlights. Delicious-looking, creamy head with quality lacing.

Malty, earthy scent with cookie spices and a hint of ginger.

Flavor is decidedly spiced, with cinnamon, clove, ginger and cedar bark. Mildly sweet with an earthiness and balance from creeping hop bite.

Full body makes for high drinkability.

This is a milder Christmas ale; a bit of a muted version of the Anchor version, still flavorful. Apparently I liked it better than most people here.

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Photo of mymrnngjckt
1.36/5  rDev -60%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Poured from the can into a standard shaker pint. Pours a murky golden brown. A slight smell of molases is present but not much else. Taste is non-existant. No flavor at all. A lot of carbonation but it takes away from the severe lack of any flavor. This is a downright undrinkable beer. Fail.

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Photo of mdaschaf
2.11/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Can poured into an Evolution pint glass

A: Pours a dark brown with some carbonation bubbles being released. Small head formed but faded fast leaving a layer of foam on top. Nice lacing down the side.

S: Has a spicy smell, get some cinnamon and ginger. Also some brown sugar and some toasted biscuit aroma.

T: Started off ok with a spiced/roasted flavor. The middle has no taste whatsoever, it basically disappears. The finish has a coffee/metallic taste and is sour. Extremely off putting.

M/D: Medium bodied with good carbonation. Overall everything is good about this beer except the taste, which is the most important thing. A real big letdown, was hoping for much more but will probably not have this again.

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Photo of smakawhat
4/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the can in to a pint glass of a great standing head with large bubbles that stay but slowly fall to just at the right time. Some minimal lace, but small bubble stickyness on a dark brown walnut color with tinges of red at the bottom with light through. Slightly opaque.

Smell, great spice of clove and also a cherry chewy fruit smell, very festive without being cloyingly sweet. Great aroma!

Taste, big body and giant fruit cherry component but not sweet, faint hop finish, coats your palate real well, jammy consistency.

Easy drinking, easily addictive, a great seasonal winter beer.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.31/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance - pours a fine autumnal caramel/brown. A finger of light creamy mocha rests atop and makes some good swaths of lace on the glass.

Aroma - lightly bready and toasty, spicy shades of cola, anise, orange, along the lines of Anchor cmas ale.

Taste - starts off with a decent brown ale style maltiness. That slightly sourish, sweetish malt flavor of a brown, followed by some nice toasty grain, light spices like anise and maybe cardamom. Festive to a point, but not overly intense or exciting. A late drying smack of hops on the aftertaste. I think this is closer to a brown than a winter warmer. A little disappointed but it's good enough to keep.

Mouthfeel - good smoothness, medium carbonation, good body for the style.

Drinkability - a decent brew, props for the presidential can art. Doesn't have an elevated appeal for me like winter warmers generally do, but this is more of a spiced brown ale.

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Photo of Billolick
3.48/5  rDev +2.4%
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.

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Photo of tmcelvain
3.55/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

L: Reddish Amber with a big, but quickly disapating foamy head.
S: Bready malts.
T: Lots of good flavor - just what I would expect from a spiced winter ale. Malt backbone with hints of cinnamon (maybe cardamon?) and allspice. Nice light hop bitterness on the finish. Could almost be an English Strong Dark IMO.
M: A bit flat - which seems just right for a spiced winter ale. A little bit thin feeling, which keeps this from excelling as a real winter beer. It has the flavor and the warming alcohol (though I can't find it in the taste at all) of a true winter beer, but lacks the body. Slightly sour aftertaste.
D: Not a real drinkable beer, though I would say that about most spiced ales - just too much going on too drink more than 1 or 2.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.01/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a deep amber to almost black in color, with a light tan head. In the aroma, sugary caramel, like standing in a candy shop. In the taste, roasty, quite sugary, and very candy like. A smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small hint of dry caramel in the aftertaste. A bit sugary and candy like, ok, but it could be too much after one.

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Photo of pnwclimber
1.46/5  rDev -57.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Wow, I didn't want my first review to be a bad one, but this is one of the worst beers I have ever had. At $9 a six pack it was a rip off. Tastes like metal or blood. Frail body.

I don't even want to spend any more time on this review it was so bad. Stay away ...

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Photo of oglmcdgl
4.16/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A can poured into a sa perfect pint.

A- a steady pour yields three epic fingers of light tan fluffy head that rises I good half an inch about the glass and holds for a nice bit. Head slowly settles leaving tons of chunky lace all around the glass and a thick foamed milk like ring. The body is a hazy deep chestnut brown with a bit of a red glow. Great looking brew.

S- opens up with clove studded oranges, nutmeg, a touch of cinnamon then rolls banana bread and some brown sugar.

T- fall spices at first with nutmeg, and cinnamon some cloves but to a lesser extent. Nice fruit component right behind the spices that bring a bit a granny smith apple and peaches to mind. Toasted bread and some caramel sweetness to round thing out.

M- a bit less then medium in body with a nice carb that starts off light and a bit creamy and finishes bright and a bit aggressive, it works well keeping the flavor from becoming to overbearing.

D- I really enjoyed this beer. I'm not usually a big fan of ww but this one brings something new to the style for me. Ill keep my eye out for it on draft.

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Photo of Doomcifer
2.19/5  rDev -35.6%
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...

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Photo of Daktyls
3.7/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Appears as a dark brown sitting on the table, but when held up to the light is a dark ruby color with a two finger head that dissipates slowly leaving a lot of lacing on the side of the glass.

S: There is definitely some spice in the nose, I can pick up cinnamon and a little bit of nutmeg and cloves. There is also a roasted malt character that goes along well with the rest of the nose.

T: The taste is similar to the nose, but no one taste is as present as they were in the nose, a little disappointing for sure. Definitely cinnamon and nutmeg up front but turns a somewhat bitter, somewhat sour taste on the finish. Interesting, but again, a little underwhelming.

M: Medium light body with very little carbonation, a little bit of a "funk" to it.

D: Good, not great, it was interesting to try but I'm not sure this is going on the "buy again next winter" list.

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Photo of steve8robin
3.98/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Looked interesting so I figured I'd try it out. 12oz can...

A: Super super dark ruby red with a 1 inch tan head that fades at a decent pace. Very good.

S: I get some spices upfront with some cinnamon and nutmeg blended in. Almost a pumpkin type scent. I get some candi sugars in the middle and some breadiness on the backend. Good.

T: I get some spices and nutmeg upfront quickly followed by cinnamon in the middle with some bready malt on the backend. Good.

M: Full bodied with a heavy carbonation. Kind of finishes a little dry. Decent.

D: Goes down good.

All in all, this is a good brew. A nice spiced ale. Good for a winter evening. Nice to try if you like a very heavy spiced brew.

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Photo of burring
3.32/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I've been in a winter warmer mood as of late. Figured I'd give 21st Amendment's style.

Appearance: a very dark brown. Not completely opaque but, as many people have already said, it holds the same color as cola. Actually, vertically, the sides are considerably less dark than the center when held up to light. Actually, a clunky amount of lacing was left.

Smell: cinnamon dominates with subtle hints of chocolate. I sense a very small malty aroma as well.

Taste: the first thing I thought of was its cocoa-like bitterness. There were malt flavours pinning it down but I could only think of the word "mediocre" while drinking it.

Mouthfeel: for not being a hop based ale, I could only think of the sharp cocoa bitterness.

Drinkability: the beer was enjoyable. I didn't hate it. I didn't love it. I'm not sure if I'd buy it again though.

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Photo of smcolw
3.24/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Large and rocky head. Leaves plenty of chunky lace. Brown color and clear.

There's a shocking sourness on the initial whiff. Behind that, there's a powdered cocoa.

The flavor is an improvement: there's a hazelnut element to the tongue. It has a mild peppery bite in the swallow. This is a surprisingly thin brew. There is a minor metallic presence in the taste, but overall it is true to the winter warmer style.

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Photo of DaveHS
3.7/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours cola brown with 1/3 of khaki head. Leaves moderate lacing.

S-Nutmeg, cinnamon,orange peel, coriander, white pepper.

T/M-Thin flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg, with a lightly roasted malt backbone. Just the slightest hint of earthy hops. Not quite as full bodied as I would expect given the style. Light to medium bodied, with moderate carbonation.

D-An average winter warmer.

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Photo of tone77
3.67/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a very dark brown color with some amber hues and a 1/2 inch head. Smell is strong with spices, considerable nutmeg and cinnamon. Taste is a bit subdued compared with the smell. Hops up front, a strong spice presence. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has average drinkability. Overall this is a good quality beer.

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Photo of thain709
3.03/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pouring from the can the beer looks like Coca-cola as the body is brown in color with some ruby highlights...there is a tan head that stands about one finger...some retention, but better lacing

S - The nose is spicy but there is also a funk to it...it goes along the lines of roasted malt and Saison funk

T - Yup, the flavors are the same from the nose...more of that Saison funk...some roasted malt...the "spices" (cinnamon, nutmeg) that are said on the label are very light...there is a slight sourness that leads into a light bitterness at the end

M - Medium bodied...flat, funky, sour

D - I hesitated on picking this one up and now I'm wishing I didn't...I've tried a few 21st Amendment brews before and I have liked them...but this one just didn't do it for me...it tasted like a slightly roasted Saison

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Photo of BigB415
2.46/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Got one can as a free sample from work. Poured a dark red color into my small glass. I was excited to try this since I am a fan of their beers and I have been to their restaurant. Unfortunately for me this beer didn't hold up for me to their other beers such as watermelon wheat and their IPA. I'm not impressed with it. It's not something I would get again. It doesn't have much flavor so it falls flat and without flavor I wouldn't really call it a beer.

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Photo of muttyd
2.64/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Chestnut/mahogany body with a thick foamy tan head. Very dark without being pitch black. Nose is very spicy: somewhat musty with notes of cinnamon, ginger, and caramel. Flavor is of chocolate malt, caramel, Belgian spice, slightly funky/sour (similar to a dark saison a'la Fantome?), and moderately hoppy. Creamy full body with moderate carbonation. Slightly metallic. Not too crazy about this one, but not the worst beer I have ever had.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.68/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep brown mahogany with ruby highlights when held toward the light, also forms a light tan head rising above my chalice. Fine even speckled lacing sticks to the glass. Aroma has a dark roasty cocoa accent with the dark roasted malts used, hints of subtle spices added as well a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg coated with honey glaze. Herbal/mild citrus hops in the background I see the beer actually clocks in at 45 IBUs, I wouldn't have estimated it being that high. Flavor has dark roasted malts cocoa rustic dark breadiness, herbal citric hops with spices running through. A nice tartness comes through the middle of it almost has some orange peel characteristics. Ample bitterness amongst the malts and spice additions, a nice complex canned ale perfect for the colder weather. Mouthfeel is medium bodied dry bitter finish from the spices and moderate hop dose, carbonation is moderate tickles the throat a good bit but also carries the spices across the palate nicely. Drinkability overall, I'm glad I grabbed a six of this for $9.99 it will last me throughout the winter months. A can here or there is what I would like to do, not much of a beer I want to sit and enjoy in number but it's nice if you're in the mood for this type of beer.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.65/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This weekend was our community's annual Greek celebration at the local church and the food is to die for! It is on the other side of town from me, but near one of our better six-pack shops, so I decided to pop in for a look after dinner. Lo and behold, a new 21st Amendment CAN! You CAN bet that I could not get up to the counter fast enough.

From the CAN: Not much. Great graphics involving FDR and an elf, plus "Seasonal Release", "Winter Spiced Ale"; "45 IBUs".

My aggressive Crack & Pour again threatened to overflow the glass, but to no avail. I had a big, rocky two fingers of mocha-tan head with modest retention. Color was a deep, dark-brown with ruby highlights at the edges. Nose was big with cinnamon coupled with dark chocolate. I was reminded of MexiCAN hot chocolate with its infusion of spices. Mouthfeel was medium with cinnamon, nutmeg and chocolate all intermingling on my tongue. Tasty. Finish lingered with a pleasant admixture of spice which overpowered the chocolate. I CAN't recommend putting this in a cooler, but maybe by the fireplace on Christmas Eve ... ?

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Fireside Chat from 21st Amendment Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 316 ratings.