21st Amendment / Firestone Walker / Stone El Camino (Un)Real Black Ale | Stone Brewing

21st Amendment / Firestone Walker / Stone El Camino (Un)Real Black Ale21st Amendment / Firestone Walker / Stone El Camino (Un)Real Black Ale
BA SCORE
74.1%
Liked This Beer
3.91 w/ 278 ratings
21st Amendment / Firestone Walker / Stone El Camino (Un)Real Black Ale21st Amendment / Firestone Walker / Stone El Camino (Un)Real Black Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States
stonebrewing.com

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our collaboration beer project between 21A Brewmaster Shaun O’Sullivan and our friends Mitch Steele of Stone Brewing Company and Matt Brynildson of Firestone Walker. This beer takes its name from the historical mission trail El Camino Real (the Royal Trail, now highway 101) that linked the 21 Spanish Missions throughout California and also links the three breweries together. A dark strong ale that floats between a stout and an IPA, it incorporates indigenous ingredients from along the Camino (un)Real. The addition of dried mission figs, pink peppercorns, fennel and chia seeds brings a slight herbal, fruit and spice note built to pair with the malt and hop complexity to this 9.5% ABV beer.

Added by womencantsail on 03-27-2010

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#7,138
Reviews:
164
Ratings:
278
Liked:
206
Avg:
3.91/5
pDev:
12.53%
Alströms:
0
 
 
Wants:
36
Gots:
32
Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 278 |  Reviews: 164
Photo of Sammy
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Roast and rosmary in the aroma. Black with some off-brown head, and lacey. Above-average mouthfeel. Some spice and pepper,a little vanilla, but mainly Coffee taste. Not getting so much of the uniqueness. Decent carbonation. So-so beer, a little disapointing.

 258 characters

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of Texasfan549
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of GRG1313
3.25/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of djrn2
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.56/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Striated layer of mocha foam, two fingers deep. Sticky lacing, pretty nice retention.

Smells green and hoppy, hint of roast or coffee, but not overly aromatic. Vaguely sweet and spicy as it warms, like snickerdoodle cookies.

Rich and bitter, roast coffee, dark fruit... could be figs but hard to pinpoint. Molasses, leafy green hops. Roasty char in the aftertaste, with a lingering bitterness too. Full bodied and sticky. A little much, but good in small doses.

 465 characters

Photo of dmorgan310
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of brentk56
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: We've got a stout-like pour here, with a very dark colored liquid (scant ruby highlights) and a massive tannish head that displays great persistence and leaves a curtain of lace

Smell: Unusual aromatics, that require a bit of deconstructing - it has the piney hops that are emblematic of a dark Stone beer; the Mission figs are easily apparent, as well; the licorice is also in there in a big way; and if you sniff it for long enough, the pink peppercorns will attack your nostrils

Taste: Dark and fruity, up front, with molasses and figs being joined by the licorice at mid-palate; the hops and the peppercorns also arrive just before the swallow; the finish is a balancing act of malt, dark fruit, hops, spices all accentuated by the heat of the pink peppercorns - don't I recall that they were pulled from the market years ago for health reasons?

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation; a bit tingly

Drinkability: Certainly an example of extreme brewing but the flavors just don't coalesce in an approachable manner

 1,053 characters

Photo of oline73
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of SocalKicks
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of zeff80
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a small, tan head of foam. Okay head retention and some lacing

S - It smelled of boozy alcohol and sweet caramel malt. Some floral hop presence.

T - More of a roasted malt flavor you'd expect in a stout. It had some sharp citrusy hop bitterness.

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

D - This is another good collaboration brew that Stone has done. It almost seems like it could fit the new Black IPA category.

 506 characters

Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of Kurmaraja
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of chinchill
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz can at Soulshine Farm Music Festival.
This strong ale has an exceptionally complex and rich flavor. Not harmonious however, with some sense of clashing flavors. Mild-moderate bitterness. Full body with near medium carbonation.

 237 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A: A big thick rich dark head keeps rising until it just reaches the top of my oversized snifter glass, then fades slowly, leaving a nice lacing, with a beer that is essentially jet black.

N: A nice malt and hop combination. Some dark malts, dark crystal, black patent, perhaps a little roast, touch of sweetness, and oatmeal even I think. Then a nice spicy earthy hop characteristic that adds a nice floral bitter hop component. It has some creaminess to it too, and slight chocolate. As I get deeper and deeper whiffs, I start to get some spicy booze as well.

T: Starts rich and creamy, thick, but not syrupy. Again malty, with lots of dark malts, caramel, oatmeal, chocolate milk, some sweetness, and a nice luscious taste. Before I can get to the hops the booze is starting to get overpowering, drinking like an 11-12% beer, I can even taste the booze, let alone the warming and tingly feels. THen there are also some hops, a nice bitterness, more from hops than any roasted character, spicy and part grassy hops even, little earthy. Chewy and malty overall.

M: Pretty thick, luscious and smooth, with good carbonation.

F: Pretty bitter on the finish, with a nice hoppy bite to it. The bitterness has quite a bit of that earthy hop characteristic, as well as some fresh musty hop bit to it a little. There is a little lingering sweetness, but mostly dry by now. SOme creamy chocolate milk and oatmeal linger, with touches of dark malts, and even a hint of smoke. The finish is mostly a showing of the hops and bitterness though. I do get a hint of a nuttiness and raisin characteristic though, very late on the finish.

Oh yeah, and I have to give a shoutout to Visionaries for sending me one of these, never hurts to have an extra on hand for aging.

 1,758 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours nearly black with a good tan head. The nose is really nice and brings forward some citrus and tropical hops as well as a bit of pine. Roasted malt with a bit of chocolate in there, and faint hints of pepper. I was really skeptical of this after not enjoying most of the other collaborations; however, this really worked out and the pepper didn't really go too far. Nice mouthfeel with a bit of spice. Nice roast and bitter characteristics playing off one another. Quite drinkable; a very nice collaboration that wasn't taken too far in any one direction.

 582 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.23/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a short beige head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains roasted malts, chocolate, some dark fruit and a good amount of hops.

T: The taste likewise starts out with a hearty roasted malt character. Then some mildly sweet flavors of dark fruit, chocolate and some coffee come in followed by a strong but not over-powering hops bitterness. There's a little bit of creaminess to it and a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, this is a very good strong dark beer worth drinking for a long time.

 816 characters

Photo of Kegatron
4.17/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a straight black in the glass, with several thick fingers of mocha colored head. This stays robust; throwing up a rich cascade of lacing that hangs on the sides of the glass in sticky swathes. Those figs jump right out here in the aroma and are complimented by additional notes of cocoa, vanilla, roast, caramel, danky ripeness, and even a good bit of wet tobacco flavoring across the back of the nose. Nice complexity here.

The taste is thick with chocolate, vanilla, toffee, green citric bitterness, and then a roasty backend to the profile that then lingers with the dark fruit flavors of the figs and some warm spicy alcohol accents in the finish. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied but has more of a softer creaminess to the carbonation, almost to the point of being slick on the tongue the whole way through the feel. The ABV gives this some fullness but it never does feel overly beefy in the mouth, with just the just amount of pleasant spicy sweetness and warmth here.

This was quite tasty, with a complex chewiness to the flavors, yet the alcohol here was quite complimentary to the other flavors and never got overly warming. I almost wish that I have saved this for the wintertime, as it would have been a good one to help take the chill off a cold night.

 1,308 characters

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21st Amendment / Firestone Walker / Stone El Camino (Un)Real Black Ale from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 74.1% out of 100 with 278 ratings
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