Mother's Milk
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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American Imperial Porter
Ranked #71
Ranked #5,372
4.26 | pDev: 8.69%
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States
Notes: From the minds of Creature Comforts and Firestone Walker comes Mother's Milk - an imperial milk porter aged for nearly one year in rye whiskey barrels with an added dash of sea salt. Rye whiskey barrels were specifically chosen to balance the sweeter tones of the milk porter with a spicy bitter quality, resulting in a 11.6% ABV beer with notes of dulce de leche, chocolate covered raspberries & brown sugar. Inspired by a friendship forged at the Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Fest, Mother's Milk is a collaborative creation made in small quantities and available for a very limited time.
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Reviews: 13 | Ratings: 33 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of IKR
4.29/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Very dark brown, bordering on black with a medium-sized, foamy, beige head that gradually faded. A nice looking Imperial Porter.

Smell: Whiskey notes, brown sugar aromas, and roasted malt aromas. The nose is not overly complex but good.

Taste: The taste profile features Whiskey, brown sugar just as the nose suggested. I also pick up some mild roasted malt notes and mild oak woodiness. The beer taste profile is fairly sweet and the beer has a very restrained alcohol presence for the listed 11.6% ABV.

Mouth-feel: Full bodied with a medium level of carbonation. The body is thick and hefty.

Overall: A good Imperial Milk Porter. if this were a regular Imperial Porter I'd probably ding it a little because it is a bit on the sweet side but knowing it is a milk porter/stout the taste profile is appropriate. I enjoyed this beer and if you can deal with a little sweetness it is a tasty brew.

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IKR from California, Nov 05, 2019
Photo of rudzud
4.04/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Received as an extra in a trade and shared with JLindros. 2018 vintage

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a nice dark brown almost black with a thin off white head that fades to leave light wisps and a thin blanket.

S - Big aromas of coconut soaked rye whiskey, powdered dark chocolate, tons of dark fruit, little bit of char and spices. The finish is boozy as well.

T - Taste is similar to the nose with loads of slightly sweet malts, caramel sauce, big dark fruits. Really aggressively sweet with sweet milk chocolate. Decent amount of whiskey and barrel sweetness.

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, creamy, alcohol lightly noticeable.

O - Overall this was a solid enough imperial porter, however, it was aggressively sweet.

Serving Type: bottle

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rudzud from Massachusetts, Sep 06, 2019
Photo of jlindros
4.04/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to rudzud
Large tan creamy dense head, thick lacing and great retention, pitch black dark beer

Nose super dark roasty malt, roasted char and coffee, anise and dark charred malt spice, plenty of dark fruits, little lactose sugar and some perfumey alcohol, little caramel and nougat, dark chocolate cocoa

Taste rich dark chocolate fluffy nougat and sweet caramelized lactose sugar, sweetened condensed milk, creme brulee, quite sweet, a bit of dark fruits, some roasty char and coffee milk, bitter roast and char, finishes little sweet with some alcohol and powdered chocolate milk and coffee

Mouth is med to fuller bod, creamy lactose, medium carb, fair warm alcohol

Overall a bit of a mess on the taste, nose was good, but way too sweet and not harmonious on the taste

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jlindros from Massachusetts, Sep 06, 2019
Photo of BillRoth
4.49/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured bottle in Teku glass at slightly chilled from room temp. Excellent nose, taste and body. Started a bit heavy with usual FW barrel notes, but quickly morphed into lactose/vanilla and fudge like chocolate character. Wood comes out more in nose than taste. Didn’t really catch much raspberry... which actually made me like it more. Understand many like fruit in their stouts and porters... but doesn’t really work for me. In this case the berry flavors were mild and complimentary ...found this a complex engaging sipper that I enjoyed as dessert with a La Flor Dominicana Double Ligero. Really glad I could enjoy one of these.

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BillRoth from Maryland, Feb 22, 2019
Photo of rodbeermunch
3.14/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Had this at the Firestone Walker Invitational, 2017 I believe. It was all hotly ticketed and hyped. It did not live up to the hype nonetheless, something kind of rare for a Firestone Walker beer, much less a barrel aged one. They're the gold standard of big barrel production and consistency. Rare misfire.

Pours a ruddy brown, dark, not quite black, thin 1/5" tan head. The aroma was actually kind of bitter. No big notes of barrel aging or lactose.

Taste, whoa, perhaps more lactose would have been appropriate. The bitter aroma played out in the taste, was surprisingly bitter. Where was the barrel aging? That would seemingly have tempered this a bit more. The sweetness from the lactose was there, but again, why it didn't temper the bitterness is strange. Was it something on my palate that compromised the beer? Maybe, but my beer buddies also found it to be harsh. I dunno, roasted malt, overused bittering hops, I can't think what made this so marginal. Like seriously my least favorite barrel offering ever from a brewery that I'm a huge fan of.

Would try again simply because I can't believe it was as bad as our first sample was.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
4.09/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

(on tap at Pinocchio's 9th anniversary event... served in a 5 oz snifter)

maybe it just catches attention calling this a (imperial) porter, but the base beer doesn't seem to deviate all that much from their other strong dark barrel-aged offerings... what does stand out immediately though is the (I'm assuming) lactose sweetness rolling across the tongue long before the finish... doesn't seem to add too much extra weight to the body, as it does drop off with a slalom snap at the back and doesn't trail much grease, as is the norm for their other BA'ers... soft, arguably phantom booze on this one... might be worth pouring out a whole cellar-temp bottle in a snifter for oneself, take it for another spin

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Bouleboubier from New Jersey, Dec 09, 2018
Photo of RyanK252
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at BC's Pizza & Beer

A: Pours dark brown, nearly black, with a frothy khaki head that settles to a thin lacing.

S: Dark sugar, a little spice, smooth bourbon, roasted malt, dark chocolate, and a little lactose sweetness.

T: Big brown sugar and toffee, smooth bourbon, roasted malt, dark chocolate, a little spice, faint dark fruit, a hint of salt, and a touch of lactose sweetness.

M: Full body, moderate carbonation, creamy, holds it's % really well with just a slight warmth.

O: Really enjoyed this one.

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RyanK252 from California, Dec 06, 2018
Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Albany Ale and Oyster in Albany, NY.

This one pours a fairly dark black color, with a small foamy head, and no lacing.

This smells like chocolate fudge, vanilla, jammy dark fruit, sea salt, spice, and rye whiskey.

This is a really great beer. It's super creamy, fudgy, and thick, with silky notes of lactose and vanilla running through. The description says you're supposed to get chocolate-covered raspberries, but I'm not sure I really get that. I do get some dark fruit sort of thing- dark berries/plums/etc. There's some light rye spice to balance out the sweetness, along with a touch of drying sea salt. This all works very well.

This is thick, chewy, and creamy, with a great level of drinkability. There's no booziness here.

This is fairly under the radar, I'm assuming. It shouldn't be- it's excellent.

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GreesyFizeek from New York, Nov 26, 2018
Photo of NeilSilber1
4.74/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Firestone Brewery: Pours dark with fluffy head. Whistle pig rye whiskey barrel with dash sea salt. Spice from barrel balanced sweeter porter notes of milk porter with notes of dulce de leche, chocolates raspberry and brown sugar!

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NeilSilber1 from California, Sep 17, 2018
Photo of jakecattleco
4.06/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2018 collab bottle with Creature Comforts into a snifter.

L: Pours jet black with a half finger of medium density frothy khaki head with moderate retention and left limited lacing.

S: Nose is prominently sweet with lactose, rye barrels are present but definitely secondary.

T: Taste brings better balance and FAR more barrel character to the beer. Definitely some rye spiciness, more chocolate, still plenty sweet but at least there's competing flavors to lessen its prominence. Finishes with some lingering sweetness on the palate, hides the ABV very well.

F: Low-medium bodied, low carbonation, thin velvet-like on the tongue and swallow, slight ABV burn on the tongue.

O: It's definitely a delicious beer, but a bit too sweet for my preferences. Glad to have tried it, but also glad I only grabbed one.

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jakecattleco from California, Jul 22, 2018
Photo of emyers
4.12/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Dark brown with a thin tan head

Nose: mostly cacao nibs and some roasted malt. Hints of vanilla and oak but not much barrel character.

Taste: Rye barrel comes through quite a bit more than in the nose and is in the forefront. Milk chocolate, vanilla, and hints of raspberry round it out. Finish is fairly sweet.

Feel: medium to full-bodied. Medium-low carbonation.

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emyers from Illinois, Jul 08, 2018
Photo of Stevedore
4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On draft at Propagator. Dark black body, one finger offwhite head. Good retention and no lacing. Chocolate brownies, lactose, a bit of whiskey, touch of spice. It's very nice, good sweetness to it, reasonably complex. Barrels add a bit of heat on the backend, but not much. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, good carbonation, a bit of lactose accompanying some heat on the finish.

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Stevedore from Wisconsin, Jun 20, 2018
Photo of Original_Gravity
4.23/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Imperial milk porter aged in rye whiskey barrels. Collaboration with Creature Comforts for the 2018 FWIBF. Label states that 300 cases were produced. Pours a dark brown with minimal head. Slight carbonation, medium lacing on the glass. The smell isn't very appealing to me -as it is dominated by milk/lactose. Mouthfeel is smooth and velvety - but not terribly robust - definitely the best characteristic of this beer. Taste has notes of chocolate with a hint of milk. The whiskey barrel cuts through and turns what could have been a very sweet, dessert like beer and gives it some hair. Slight saltiness on the back end. Overall - well-balanced and very enjoyable!

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Mother's Milk from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 33 ratings