Rye Double DBA | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

18 Reviews
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Rye Double DBARye Double DBA

Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 15.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by raynmoon on 05-16-2016

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Reviews: 18 | Ratings: 65
Photo of aoampm
4.66/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Pour is an amber color just like a barleywine. A minuscule head tries to appear but it disappears immediately. Literally not head or lacing whatsoever. A tiny amount of carbonation.

Smells is superb. Caramel, tons of bourbon / whiskey, some sweet apple, plum raisin, and a nice oaky spice.

Taste is banging. The plum raisin is forefront with more boozy caramel whiskey flavors in the back. Some vanilla, brown sugar, and breaded malt is detectable.

Feel is very unique. The sheer lack of head and carbonation makes it drink like a mix of beer and wine. Hard to describe but I love it.

Overall this was an amazing beer. I love a good BA Barleywine and this really reminds me of that. I think the bottle I had really mellowed out due to the complete lack of head and almost no carbonation. Firestone kills it yet again!

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Photo of Zythophile
4.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle Date: June 2016
Palate Contaminants: none

Okay, time to crack this one open.

Appearance is a slightly murky caramel color. A little bit of head that leaves some lacing as well.

Just like the color descriptor, the first smell I get is caramel. And lots of bourbon. It's sorta like a bourbon candy. A little apple as well, but maybe I'm just conflating everything with a Halloween carnival. The only knock is that alcohol is certainly detectable, even after ten months of cellaring.

This thing is rich. It's only a step down from a dram of Woodford Reserve, albeit obviously a rye. Sweet barrel, slightly smoky, moderately spicy. Plus a little bit of clover and some pecans. Some figs and dates. Scorched caramel is definitely still there. The one complaint I have is that the alcohol seems to be helping cover up even more flavors. I'll keep aging the other bottle for a little while longer.

The weight is good and moderate, and there's not a whole lot of carbonation. The aftertaste is more like a rye whiskey than a bourbon, in a reversal from the earlier order. For both the taste and the feel, the only thing dragging it down is the heat.

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Photo of lupercmda
4.71/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Do not know if I have ever had an imperial ESB. But wow is this delicious. Nice sweet, taste with a big bourbon finish. Works well with the rye though. Nice smooth mouthfeel

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Photo of yesterdayfaraway
4.39/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

L: poured light brown / clearing brown with a lot of lilting carbonated bubbles (like soda) that disappeared fast. Now it looks still with no carbonation, looks like whiskey. Big alcohol legs on his one....again looks like whiskey
S: huge whiskey, smoke and char with sugar sweetness to cut the booze.
T: smooth whisky and barrel, fairly sweet. This is so much different than any other beer. This is like the best sipping whiskey you could ever dream of. This does not taste like beer at all. This is really good if you like Barrel and whiskey like me, but this is so far from any other beer I've had.
F: so smooth and easy drinking. Crazy this is 15%! If it was thicker I'd give it a 5. But this is scary smooth and drinkable.

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into snifter; 2016 vintage bottled in 5/2016. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy medium ruby red/light copper color with a 1 finger foamy off white head with decent retention, that reduces to a ring of lacing eventually. Light spotty lacing on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining a thin cap. Aromas of big caramel, toffee, brown sugar, vanilla, toasted oak, spicy rye whiskey, coconut, brown bread, raisin, plum, fig, date, cherry, apricot, and apple; with light notes of milk chocolate, cocoa, fudge, almond, molasses, butterscotch, and yeast/oak earthiness. A fair amount of booze in the aromas as it warms. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/bready malt, rye whiskey barrel, and moderate fruity yeast notes; with great strength. Taste of huge caramel, toffee, brown sugar, vanilla, toasted oak, spicy rye whiskey, coconut, brown bread, raisin, plum, fig, date, cherry, apricot, and apple; with light notes of milk chocolate, cocoa, fudge, almond, molasses, butterscotch, and yeast/oak earthiness. Light-moderate rye whickey/oak spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, toffee, brown sugar, vanilla, toasted oak, spicy rye whiskey, coconut, brown bread, dark fruit, apricot, apple, light cocoa/fudge, and yeast/oak earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, rye whiskey barrel, and moderate fruity yeast flavors; with a great malt and rye whiskey/oak spiciness balance; with zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light dryness from rye whiskey/oak spiciness, increasing through the glass. Light-medium carbonation and fairly full body; with a very smooth, creamy/silky, fairly tannic, and lightly slick/syrupy balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is fairly well hidden; pleasantly warming, and not too boozy. Overall this is an outstanding barrel aged English barleywine! All around awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, rye whiskey barrel, and moderate fruity yeast flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to sip on for the huge ABV. Huge on the rye barrel presence, but still has impressive balance; and is not too tannic, drying, or boozy. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.91/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to eyebereej for this bottle! Handed to me on the way out of our epic tasting, and cracked open shortly thereafter. Reviewed from (long-standing) notes. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into an El Catador Barrel-Aged glass.

A: Hazy bronze to brown, and becomes more hazy after getting some of the yeast sediment in the bottom of bottle in the glass. A thin off-white head disappears quickly, and has minimal visible carbonation.

S: Big toffee, oak, and vanilla. Some liquor as well - it comes across as bourbon, but I’m honestly not sure if this is "Rye" in the sense of rye malts or a rye barrel. There's sweet malts, and a bit of dark fruits, and some fruity yeast esters.

T: Toffee, sweet malts, and rye whiskey. The big oakiness lends dryness and vanilla along with the woody tannins. Some fruity esters as well, with brown sugar sweetness and the lightly toasted malts. Mild spices and raisiny fruitiness. It finishes with malt sweetness, more brown sugar and whiskey.

M: Medium to heavy body, with low carbonation sensation. The alcohol is quite noticeable but stops short of detracting.

O: This rather drank like a barleywine. I'm a bit confused by the label - not only was a not certain which "Rye" the label was referring to, the label implied that was a Special Bitter. It shared no characteristics with an ESB while drinking, and getting on here I see that's not how it's listed. So the labeling could use some help. But it was a tasty enough beer for sure.

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Photo of neurobot01
4.23/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: much like regular DDBA, though a bit clearer and more burnt orange.

Smell: whisky, coconut, almond extract, orange blossom.

Taste: caramel, lightly toasted coconut, caramelized sugar, booze. Compared to regular DDBA, even the 2012 I had last night, I'd say the hops are a bit more muted.

Feel: light mouthfeel, with pretty active carbonation, and a dry finish.

Overall: very good, but not substantially different from regular DDBA, and probably not worth the high price. I'll probably let my other bottle sit for a year or two before revisiting.

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Photo of t2grogan
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is up there with any other beer Firestone has made. Loved the sweetness on this. The rye barrels do a lot more for this beer than the bourbon barrels did. Loved it.

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Photo of raynmoon
4.52/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

appearance: hazy amber with some foam sticking around the edges. Nice alcohol legs too.

aroma: big bourbon/ whiskey notes hit right away. Backed up by a nice body of oak and sweetness. If I dig a little bit I get a cherry aroma that reminds me of cola. A but of spice as well initially. Perhaps some paper oxidation from the lengthy aging. Complex.

taste: Much more full and mellow than the aroma, but still follows suit. Prickly booze/ rye at the front of the tongue, followed by caramel/ toffee and coconut.

mouthfeel: Medium plus. Not too full. Good carbonation to it. A little more viscosity would be nice.

Overall: a great beer! As it warms I get a ton of maple syrup coming through. But the 30$ pricetag is not worth it, in my opinion. I'd take 2 regular DDBA over this; price specifically. Still world class.

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Photo of ivegot3Dvision
4.37/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Look: Amber caramel with a light head that quickly dissipates.
Smell: Malt, light sweetness, caramel, vanilla, and oak.
Taste: Follows the nose well, but that unmistakable DBA flavor is deep in the background.
Feel: The perfect mouthfeel without being too viscous.
Overall: In the past I've been a little disappointed with Double DBA, but this has forever changed my mind.

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Photo of KevSal
4.48/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Double DBA 2014 aged for an additional 14 months in rye whiskey barrels, makin. it a whopping 15%, up from 12.

poured into a fw glencairn

looks amazing, immense dark orange hue. small ring of bubbles.
nose is big dba, malts, bourbon and rye whiskey, a bit subdued.
luckily it note only follows the nose but pops with flavor! big bourbon and vanilla, sweet malts, peppery rye finish. very flavorful!
feel is thick, big body and some alch, not as much as I was expecting honestly, most of the tingle is the rye
overall this is excellent! I wish the limit was higher on this guy. but being brewery only at a hefty $30 a bottle, I'm not sure it's worth the extra price tag over the already great regular dba, but it sure tasty!

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Photo of HopHunter19
4.97/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - dark brown mahogany clear color with a off white head that dissipates quick and therefore doesn't leave much lacing
S - HUGE caramel toffee vanilla, some Rye bite, bourbon, oak, figs, raisins, milk chocolate (mild), butterscotch, toasted coconut
T - big caramel, toffee, vanilla, then Rye whiskey, bourbon, oak, bites a little bit, nice alcohol flavor given the 15%abv, toasted coconut, mild butterscotch
M - big beer. Alc present but appropriate. Aftertaste is caramel, toffee, vanilla.
O - jesus. When I think about perfection this beer will now come to mind. It's insane. It's like listening to Rush, driving a capable Jeep through 3 feet of mud, or sex with a petite brunette with attributes, but in beer form...

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Photo of BenwayPHD
4.44/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep auburn color with a very thin nicotine stain yellow head. The aroma is nice. The first thing you get is the perfume from the booze, but thus is followed by a fairly complex bouquet. Spice from rye, cola, toffee, a dirt smell which I'm assuming comes from the wood of the barrel, caramel. The flavor is fantastic. Not as much booze as the nose would have you believe. The bourbon flavor is most definitely present, but it is nicely balanced by the rye and the wood. The real star here is the mouthfeel. So thick and creamy you could spread it on toast.

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Photo of SaisonRichBiere
4.59/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours cola dark brown with a soft hazy head. Smell is crystal malt roastiness, maple-caramel-nuttiness, capped off by robust rye barrel spice and vanilla. Taste is rich praline notes with a molasses boldness and rye spice. Very dessert-y, dense and rich, without being syrupy. Feel is smooth and dense, allowing the palate to savor the nuances for a good measure of time. Great beer, and a very nice variation of the regular Double DBA. A great showcase of rye barreling.

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Photo of stevoj
4.44/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle from share on 7/30/16. Excellent way to cap the evening. Darker amber with a small ring of beige head. sweetish aroma of caramels and toffee, butterscotch vanilla. More flavor follows capped off with some boozy warmth. Was expecting some rye sourness, but its rye barrel aging, so even better.

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Photo of darktronica
4.66/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

650ml bottle from the FW Venice Propagator shop. Pours a transparent amber-orange, with fast-dissipating head that vanishes without leaving any lacing behind. The liquid itself has legs, though, a sign of its viscous mouthfeel and high ABV. Caramel, turbinado sugar, and vanilla on the very aromatic nose, with lighter notes of almond, candy gumdrops, and orange zest.

The flavor profile is quite similar, but with the addition of big barrel character. Like the other reviews noted, it's more suggestive of brandy than rye, along with a decadent sweetness of figs and dried jujube fruit. Plenty of oak, but not much in the way of rye spice, pepper, or other typical whiskey notes. This is a phenomenal dessert sipper, sweet without being cloying; the 15% ABV is very well disguised. I'm glad to have splurged on a second bottle, because it's going to sit down in the cellar for a grand occasion in the future.

I've been disappointed by many $30+ bottles in the past, but this is not one of them. This is glorious and well worth seeking out.

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Photo of MadManMatt
4.61/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I am new to beer advocate and a bit new to beer in general so I will give this the best go I can. I picked up four of these bad boys at the Firestone Walker brewery in Paso Robles at 10am along with at least 200 other beer maniacs just like me. Please note that I pulled this from the beer fridge at about 40 degrees.

LOOK: I'm shining my iPhone light through it and I see a thick honey like amber. It's a beautiful color really, and is a far cry from the reds of Abacus and the almost deep blackness of Parabola. There is almost no head at all to this beer and it seems to sit flat, almost looking like honey in my snifter. I don't see much red in it just brown and amber. I was hoping for a little head to the pour hence the 3.5.

SMELL: I'm new to this so don't judge me if this sounds silly, but this is what I smell: Right when I pop the top I bring it up to my nose and inhale deeply. I immediately sense deep dark chocolate, a hint of caramel and even vanilla. There is definitely that big boozy heavy hit of these world class brews. I put the snifter to my nose and inhale over and over again: brandy or burbon, rye, more chocolate, something red that I can't quite place. Cinnamon. More vanilla. When you inhale deeply it almost burns my sinuses. Such a glorious smell to this god send of a brew.

TASTE: Big booze. The first sip is a surprise, strong, heavy and thick like honey diluted with Stickee Monkey. Vanilla, Chocalate, more big booze. Going down it burns the first time and is warm to the throat and belly with each sip and swallow. There are other flavors too, but my nose is not yet trained enough to pick them up, but I love it. I take another sip and let it linger on my taste buds: Big booze, syrup of a sort, maybe even a tiny hint of cinnamon. I love it.

FEEL: As noted very smooth, but it burns the first time swallowing and then rounds out to a deep inner warmth. 30 seconds after my last sip I have this warm calmness about me brought about by the feel of this brew. Light carbonation, feels like diluted, but bubbly syrup. When it lingers on the tongue the heat of the alcohol can almost have a little burn to it.

OVERALL: Good God almighty, these maniacs have once again blown me away. I want to say right now that this is steal beaten hands down by Parabola, Stickee Monkey and Sucaba, all of which are heavenly. But if you need something new that is different from the other world class beers from Firestone Walker, take as many people as you can to Venice, Beullton or the 805 and get as many as you can, but do not try to drink this monster by yourself unless you have a lot of time on your hands or you can handle this much alcohol. 15% ABV and 650 ML is enough to make me silly. Brewmaster Matt Brynildson, you are a godsend to this planet. Please keep making brews such as this. If all you can get is Parabola or Sucaba, don't feel bad, but if you have the $30.00 and are within 5 hours of FW go and get this beer NOW!!

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Photo of Specules
4.56/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this one up at Firestone Barrelworks room in Buellton. 22oz into a pint glass.

Huge smell of dark chocolate, snickers bar, caramel, cinnamon toast crunch,vanilla cream, some boozy smell also apparent (brandyesque?). Taste follows mostly the smell with nutty, cinnamony & chocolaty flavors plus a warming finish going down (that's the 15% right there). There is in addition some soy sauce/rye flavor that I am digging.
I love the syrupy mouthfeel, reminds me of an old ale or barleywine.

Hope this really truly wasn't a one-time only offer. Hope they make this again and get it to liquor stores (although hopefully for less than $29.99)

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Rye Double DBA from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
4.46 out of 5 based on 65 ratings.
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