Double Barrel Ale - Batch 1000 | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Double Barrel Ale - Batch 1000Double Barrel Ale - Batch 1000
Very Good
22 Ratings
Double Barrel Ale - Batch 1000Double Barrel Ale - Batch 1000

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

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Zorro on 11-18-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 22 |  Reviews: 21
Photo of Dblaz5
1.2/5  rDev -69.2%

Photo of magictrokini
3.4/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear amber with a medium tan head. Aroma of caramel and roasted malts, yeast, nuts, vanilla, and oak. The taste is, well, dirty. Funky and sweaty gym sock. I let it warm , and there was a bit more of the good stuff: vanilla, caramel, oak, and some very nice roasted grain. But there was still the nasty dirty, earthy, dank sweat. Given the sway in ratings and reviews that I've seen on this site and others, it looks like there is a quality control problem between bottles.

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Photo of hopdog
3.64/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22oz bottle acquired in trade with DarkElf (thanks!). Tasted side by side with the normal Double Barrel Ale.

The Batch 1000 poured a deeper, hazy amber color with a larger sized off white head. Lots of little floaters. The regular was lighter and clear with a smaller sized off white head. Aromas of wood, oak, light vanilla, earthy, and some caramel. Softer tastes of caramel, vanilla, and citrus. The regular version was going south a little. Had a light cardboard aroma with lighter oak, caramel and vanilla. The 1000 was definitely better.

Notes from and tasted on 10/5/06

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Photo of madorb
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

So, i just cracked this open after letting it chill in the cellar for a couple of years.

It's definitely mellowed with time. I remember it having a stronger oak-y flavor, but it seems to have become more subtle after two years. Definitely not a bad thing, just... different. I still get smooth oak and vanilla, but if memory serves it's not as pronounced as before.

I really enjoy the mouthfeel, effervescent but not light, it really coats the palate. All in all, i think this beer aged quite well.

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Photo of Viggo
4.32/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In a neat box, biegaman was nice enough to pull this out of the cellar!

Pours a slightly hazed red/orange, full thick white head, settles to a thin ring, leaves lots of sticky lace. Smell is great, caramel, oak, very malty, some raisin, fruits, bit of grass and citrus, very nice! Taste is thick toffee, very malty, grainy bread, dried fruits, bit of orange, some oak, vanilla, floral, lots of flavour. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low silku carbonation, very smooth. Great take on an ESB, glad I could try this. Thanks a ton Jan!

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Photo of biegaman
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An exceptional treat from Solomon420! Thanks Damian!
Classy presentation with gift box. 650ml bottle with production date of 11/08/05 printed on it. This was enjoyed the lovely, star-lit evening of my first annual Summer Saison Tasting (May 2007).
huge white head, a glowing cherry coloured body. An aroma akin to a barleywine with notes of oak, vanilla, brandy and dried cherries all very prevalent. Subtle notes of chocolate even. Taste is of mellowed vanilla and more mellowed vanilla. A lot going on. This is like a bourbon without any of the harshness. Considering this is "double barrel aged" it's not all that complex but (especially considering 5%) this is an ultimate sipper.
Never mind food - this is too good itself. Instead, this goes well with people, music and moonlight.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ask and you shall receive, well at least partially. I had been wondering about a unfiltered, properly conditioned (albeit from the cask) version of this beer and I appear to have found it in this batch 100. The beer pours with a frothy, light tan colored head that starts out at about a finger and a half thick. The beer is an almost brilliantly clear, but lightly yeast dusted, pretty, ruby-amber color. As I pop the cap and pour this brew I get notes of woody oak. The aroma itself though is much more complex than that; caramel character, and biscuit malt notes up front yield to barrel aromatics towards the end. Notes of vanillin, buttery oak, and a bit of oaky sharp (I want to say astringent, but does that make sense for an aroma) character all play a big role here.

The beer is lightly chilled and has a soft sweetness and a fleeting fruitiness to it that quickly morphs into the oak character. The oak character is not too much here, though it does play a leading role. Hop notes, especially a solid bitterness, play a role here as well. The bitterness extends from beginning to end as well as a herbal character that mixes with and accentuates the woody notes towards the finish. The oak character yields notes of vanillin (though only softly), a quite apparent buttery character, and a spicy oak note that adds a sharpness to the finish. While not particularly astringent, there is a definite tannic character here that just starts to coat the teeth like a green tea would. This is a nice beer, the added oak notes really improve the overall character of the base beer. It still does not answer the question of what the regular versions taste like unfiltered fresh from the cask though.

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Photo of Westsidethreat
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Light hazy auburn color with a medium sized off white head. Attractive.

S: Red berries, caramel, smokey oak with a touch of citrus.

T: Begins with lively sweet red fruits and toasted cereal grains. Spritzy tangerine/strawberry soda flavor accompanies the red fruit adding an interesting dimension. Healthy caramel comes next with a good balance to it. A wisp of oak is present but not as much as I expected until the after taste where some vanilla and butterscotch play together with a dirty flavor thats accompanies them. Finishes with a lingering dirtiness which is the first unattractive aspect of the beer.

M: Medium body with a full mouthfeel. Bit fuzzy but overall quite nice.

D: I regret not drinking the original double barrel before this one to compare and contrast. Overall, this was a nice red ale with good flavor.

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Photo of weeare138
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to hopdog for this...
Appears a slightly hazy amber with a 2 finger off white head. Streaky lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of mild oakiness, light caramel, and gentle hops.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a hint of oaky vanilla.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, thin, with a slick caramel presence.
This is ok. We did a side-by-side with the regular version and I really only found slight differences between the two.

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Photo of RedwoodGeorge
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours out a deep reddish amber with only a touch of cream colored head. The foam is gone before the glass gets to the table leaving no lacing on the glass.

The nose is just incredible - all the fruity esters you'd expect from a British Ale with apricot, plum, apple and peach along with some rather floral hoppy notes and a good clean toasted caramel.

The flavor is quite good as well - a little more hoppy (Goldings earthiness) than the typical Double Barrel Ale and a little more oak in the beer. Malt profile is a little on the light side but that's compensated with all of the fruit notes found in the aroma.

Mouthfeel is fine for a British Ale - medium bodied, low carbonation and a little on the oily side. Finish is somewhat dry with a moderate amount of hop bitterness - right on the mark for the style.

An excellent beer that actually manages to improve on the already good Double Barrel Ale by bringing more complexity to the flavors. Sadly it'll be a while before Firestone Walker does something like this again but I'll be waiting for "Batch 2000" Ale.

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Photo of JayTheFinn
4.37/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a nice looking red brown with a small off white head. A few little bubbles rise up from the murky depths. Wow, nice woody scent! You can taste the woodiness right off, but it's overcome soon by a great, creamy, smooth hops and malt combo. A little smokey, a little fruity, a little sweet, a little bitter. Mixed together it's a great blend. Full body flavor. Very drinkable, although the fairly strong flavors might wear out your tongue after a few.

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Photo of blackie
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: Nice looking, boxed bottle. The pour creates a .5" eggshell colored head that gradually becomes just a ring around the glass and an island in the middle. The beer is an orange-copper in color.

smell: Upfront bready, lightly sweet grainy notes (toasted, nutty grain). A nice, light fresh hop aroma provides some balance. The oak/malt interplay is wonderful.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is a somewhat lighter, smooth medium. The body is medium.

taste: Good flavors, somewhat subtle. The dominant flavor is a nutty, grainy caramel malt flavor...just slightly sweet. Just a little oakiness has been imparted from the fermentation barrel. Right alongside is just the right amount of English hop flavor and a considerable bitterness that cleans up the finish.

drinkability: It was hard to put this one down. Very smooth and well balanced in both flavor and aroma.

Received from Zorro in BCG BiF, cellared for a few months since then

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Photo of pjwilson
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

i love the regular double barrel, to me it's up there with anchor steam as an all american orginal session ale. so i was excitied about batch 1000, but 5.99 seemed just way to steep for a bomber. I'm one a budget here people, I can't be droppin' so much a bomber. Anyways, swing by bev mo and oh yeah, on sale for 1.99 a bomber, and picked up three. I am kicking myself for not picking up every last one (about 5,6 more). much better at this price. i was concerned it since it's at least 4 or months old, but it still is great.

appearance: man is the head huge on this beer. bigger than the normal db. amber colored but very hazy due to it not being filtered.

smell:some yeast and nice toasted malts. this isn't really a smelling beer, but yeah nice.

taste: ok a little aged, but still great. Like the regular DB, but more of caramal maltiness. It's hard to explain why, but it's just a little bit "better" than the already fantastic DB. off hand i can't think of any differences.

mouthfeel: so smooth, so good, so nice

drinkability: i haven't seen a bomber fly by this fast in while, good i love this beer. Don't think it would have been worth the price, as the regular double is about as good. great sessionier, rumor has it that at the brew pub you can get the unfilted verison which is similar to this.

not an esb, not an american amber, an english amber all the way, just happens to be made right smack in the middle of california.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Double Barrel Ale – Batch 1000 – Special Release

Presentation: Picked up at the local HB-BevMo this weekend. 22 ounce Bomber with the regular label but sealed with a dark gold ‘FW’ embossed plastic cover over the full-color crown cap. Sold in a simple looking dark blue box. The Box sports the usual Double Barrel Ale label design with the words “Batch 1000” underneath in the upper third whilst ‘Special Release’ sits quietly at the base of the box on the front facet. However the scribed ‘Batch 1000 Special Release’ verbage positively fills the two side panels. The reverse of the Box states >>

“Batch 1000 is a special limited release that commemorates the brewing of our one-thousandth batch at our brewery in Paso Robles on California's Central Coast.

While similar in style and flavor to our flagship Double Barrel Ale, Batch 1000 boasts the added distinction of being unfiltered, bottle conditioned and entirely fermented in new American oak barrels. The result is a beer that stands alone in quality and character.

Ten years ago, when we brewed our first batch of Double Barrel Ale, we revived the lost art of barrel fermentation. Our inspiration was the classic Burton Union brewing method that was once responsible for England's finest ales. Over time, this method was abandoned by most brewers because of the considerable expense and labor when compared to modern stainless steel brewing. Today, we remain the only American brewery to ferment beer in a union of oak barrels.

Batch 1000 is ultimately a beer born of tradition and inspired by innovation. It is a unique piece of brewing art composed of the finest all-natural ingredients, one that should be consumed in its youth, at its freshest. Only 500 cases (6000 Bottles) were produced.”

Appearance: Soft fusel amber-orange with a deep hazed Robertson’s Golden Shred Orange Marmalade brilliance. Plenty of carbonation with a high rising ½” thick beige head with vanilla tints. Low key conditioning but the carbonation is feisty when the glass is gently swirled. The head fizzles and fades but never disappears, just when it seems to relax and start to break it seems to jerked back into life and bolstered by each sip in fact. Like the Millionaire at the beach club, this has a relaxed but very confident "inner" look.

Nose: Enticing oak-lined toasted malts with a gentle sweetness that mingles with a soft edged pillowy vanilla bean laced yeasty finish. Splashes of peaty soil and beer soaked wooden spiles. Far from leaping out of the glass, but damned good when deeply inhaled.

Taste: A gentle but charming entrance, this is definitely firmly in the camp of the softly spoken smooth-talking panty remover; no flashy loud-mouthed entrance for this one. Understated but confident in its own ability, it doesn’t feel the need to tell everyone how good it is because it doesn’t feel the need to prove anything. Toasty malts have a light warmth that blends with a wooded caramel middle. Unfettered vanilla gets to soak deep in the soaked wood and malts. Ending is long and very smooth with a gentle oil-like slickness that elongates the pronounced finish. Cleverly restrained and understated yet firm in its presentation.

Mouthfeel: Oh soooo smooth, the vanilla bean character is oily and the malts are softened with a good wood soaking.

Drinkability: My oh my, this one is a gentle enticer. I used my Stone OG Goblet for this one, but I soon found myself topping it up far too often and even sooner finding that my Bomber was empty. This is in fact a strong contender for “Session” status.

Overall: It just goes to show that not all US Barrel-Aged beers have to be “Quadrupel-Double-Imperial-BigAss-Triple-tastic-Double-Digit” offerings. This is labeled at 5%, and I have to say that the soft gentle *subtlety* in the oak barrel-aging is by far the strongest and most appealing aspect here; dare I say that this is very English in its humbleness. This will probably appeal more to the lovers of English Ales rather than the high end hammer-smacking stronger American ones. Very nice, I wouldn’t mind picking up another one of these if there are any left when I next head down to Huntington Beach and BevMo. Shame its a little pricey at $6+ a Bomber.

Glad to see someone use Barrel Aging to great effect for a 5% Ale.
Nicely done and Recommended.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
4.01/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 Oz., boxed bottle, purchased at BevMo in Redlands CA in December 2005, for approximately $6.99.

Pours a fairly clear orange-amber with a nice off-white head that slowly collapses to a thin but complete cover over the beer. A steady stream of carbonation keeps things lively.

Aroma is mostly sweet. Roasty malts and a hint of floral. Fairly plain aroma, not offensive, not robust either.

Flavor is intriguing. Mostly roasted malts, caramel (but not sweet), with a distinct floral hop finish. Perhaps notes of vanilla weakly swim through. The mouthfeel is pretty dry, which with the hops, make for a decent swallow. An odd tartness on my tongue at the end is a little strange. I can't quite put my finger on it.

Overall pretty tasty, quite enjoyable. This could easily be a session-type beer. I wish I had their regular Double Barrel to compare (I remember liking it the one time I had it some time ago).

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Photo of Jamie134
4.48/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased from the brewery restaurant in Buellton. 22 oz. bottle in dark blue box...reminds me of Fuller's Vintage Ale presentation.

Amber in color, slightly cloudy as it looks in pint glass. Aroma of oak, caramel very nice. Medium mouth feel, malt up front followed by nicely balanced oak, vanilla flavors. Similar to the oak flavor in red wine. Finishes very clean like all of Firestone's beers. This is a nice offering.

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Photo of SteveO1231
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a bottle from BevMo! Packaged in a dark blue box printed with "Batch 1000, Special release." The bottle is sealed with a bronze plastic wrap around the cap.

Pours a clean copper color, little white head that fizzles away quickly to little white bubbles that stick to the inside of my glass.

Light malt aroma masked by a sour yeast smell. As the brew warms up the oak smell really comes out.

Very crisp clean malt flavor. Mild sweetness followed by a nice sour bitterness. Has a an earthy flavor I assume from the oak barrels. Clean finish that is very satisfying.

Smooth and balanced. No overpowering flavors.Very nice session beer.


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Photo of DogFood11
2.5/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pounder glass it forms minimal head that eventually falls to a tiny lace. I really couldn't pick up to much in the smell other than some sweet malt and adjunct corn/grain. copper color.

First pull has me wondering, whats the deal with boxing this puppy?. To me it tastes like a macro lager with an extra malt extract. Hops are minimal, they do provide some balance in the middle of each pull. Earthy oak tones, very vague.

glorified lager that comes up short.
Bitter? no. extra special? no. Box was "cute" but nothing more than inviting advertisement. bland and boring brew

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Photo of germaniac
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy reddish gold, with a sticky off white head. Smells of heavy sweet malt and mellow vanilla, with a subtle smokiness. Taste is crisp and clean vanilla sweetness with a slight hop bitterness, with enough malt depth to make it pleasingly mouth-filling. There's a hint of toffee and an overall toasted/roasted bite. At 6 bucks a bottle, this is a great one-time experience.

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Photo of kmcnair
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep garnet hue, makes a tight offwhite rocky mountain that has a nice lingering lace. Rich crisp malty aroma with hints of spice & vanilla. Oaky vanilla character shines through the flavor, slight bittering up front and light caramel in the end. Nice creamy, buttery mouthfeel, medium body and very smooth carbonation with a slick oily finish. This is a solid, drinkable offering, I wish this could replace the standard fare Double Barrel Ale.

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Photo of BrewMaster
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle purchased at BevMo in Chino Hills, CA for $5.99.

Appearance: Golden amber hue with a light tan head. The beer is hazy with lots of small particles in suspension. Head has decent retention and lacing. Swirling revives the head nicely.

Smell: Smokey and toasty malt with peat and some vanilla.

Taste: Very rich maltiness with a bready and biscuity chewiness. Woody and creamy with a bitter hop middle. The bitterness is balanced, even, and long without and hot spots of bitterness. Earthy and dry, the hop flavor moves the flavor along without taking over. The maltiness develops a nice fruit flavor with a touch of strawberry jam on wheat bread. Sweet with a faint roasted sourness and sandy flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, slightly drying on the palate but still juicy from the faint fruit flavors.

Drinkability: This beer is complex and well done. They achieve a nice balance of rich malt to flavorful hops. I can't compare it to the regular Double Barrel Ale because I don't really remember it, but this is a good one off.

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Photo of Zorro
4.8/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Special version of the brewers “Double Barrel Ale” after 10 years; this is batch #1000.

From the box:

"Batch 1000 is a special limited release that commemorates the brewing of our one thousandth batch at our brewery in Paso Robles on California's Central coast."

"While similar in style and flavor to our flagship Double Barrel Ale, Batch 1000 boasts the added distinction of being unfiltered, bottle conditioned and entirely fermented in new American oak barrels. The Result is a beer that stands alone in quality and character."

The beer is packed in a special blue box emblazoned with the logo "Batch 1000." The bottle itself is a standard Firestone Walker 22 Oz bomber bottle with the gold special reserve seal over the cap.

So much for the box let us see what is in the bottle.

Pours a hazy dark amber to red ale with the super puffy head that the unfiltered double barrel from the taproom has.

Smell is clean with a very strong toffee and vanilla scent from the oak barrel brewing. Smell is on the sweet side with oak, vanilla and caramel scent dominating. Hop scent is a little citrus and lots of oak scents not all from the hops I am sure.

Taste is a little sweet and bitter with a BIG hit of vanilla and toffee from the very start. The flavor very quickly becomes the melody of the unfiltered ale from the taproom that pretty much everyone for 20 miles around has come to crave. Complex dance of mildly sweet malt and all the flavors of the oak, vanilla, toffee, caramel and slightly spicy hops completely unmasked by any filtering to extend the shelf life. This is dead on in the taste department to the unfiltered ale. Now THIS is a tasty pale ale.

Mouthfeel is thick with nothing at all filtered out from the oak barrel brewing process.

Dead perfect in the drinkability department. Super flavorful ale made by a fusion of the minds of a wine maker (Adam Firestone) and an Australian (David Walker) that doesn't really like wine so he started making beer in wine country!

On big warning about this brew, KEEP IT REFRIGERATED! The regular Double Barrel is filtered for extended shelf life, this is not in fact this is stored only refrigerated at the taproom, you have to ask for it none is left out at room temperature.

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Double Barrel Ale - Batch 1000 from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.9 out of 5 with 22 ratings