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Parabola | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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ParabolaParabola
BA SCORE
4.61/5
World-Class
6,598 Ratings
ParabolaParabola
BEER INFO

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

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This Russian imperial oatmeal stout is aged for a full year in a blend of bourbon barrels from Elijah Craig, Four Roses, Pappy Van Winkle, Woodford Reserve, and Buļ¬€alo Trace.

Added by largadeer on 03-26-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#29
Reviews:
1,257
Ratings:
6,598
pDev:
7.59%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
3,146
Gots:
3,747
Trade:
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Ratings: 6,598 |  Reviews: 1,257
Photo of DoubleJ
4.42/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

The one and only Parabola, on-tap at 38 Degrees. The final beer of the night, on to the beer:

Oh my, another darker than black imperial stout! The lacing on this one is actually quite solid for the style. Now in this beer, the barrel qualities are noticable, but are more subtle than the Rasputin XII I had earlier. The aroma is very mellow, with a little oak, and succulent cocoa.

While not as complex, it's still very tasty. There's chocolate, boysenberry(!), licorice, and a little touch of oak. That sounds, good, don't you think? And they're blended and balanced together with the craftsmanship of FW. It's thick and rich, yet never overbeaing or harsh on the palate.

Do I need to say that this is delicous beer? A bomber of this may be a little much for me, but I'd certainly be happy to split one with somebody in the future...or be lucky and find Parabola on-tap again.

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Photo of malatinodesign
4.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Poured into a wine glass. Its the only glass I have that allows for enough room to breathe properly. Dark like motor oil as a caramel colored head arose. It came on slowly similar to most barrel aged beers but lingered just long enough to form that perfectly colored head that can only come from an imperial stout. Salivating already. This Monday is looking up already.

S: So many things going on here at once. Soft hints of chocolate and toffee. Soft woodsy smell. Every sniff brings out a different memory. Amazing. Should have lingered more at this stage but the dark liquid awaits.

T: Right away a subtle complexity destroying all other beers I have tasted in my recent memory. Coco -nibs, molasses, but not with that cloying sweetness that can overwhelm some beers of this type. I have been drinking a lot of Imperial stouts lately and this taste will linger in my palate for a long time. In the middle of the taste I get some whiskey and maybe even red wine flavors going on but they just blend in perfectly to the complete flavor of the entire beer. This beer tastes slightly differently with each sip as it slowly warms and you notice different elements. Vanilla, dates, on and on...This was a highly hyped bottle but one that I can not say enough about. Balance is a tough thing to do perfectly but this beer does it all. Infinite complexity and drinkability.

M: About three-quarters of the way through I remember, oh yeah 13%. Not a hint. I could have downed two of these. So smooth and full on the palate. Thick and juicy without being overwhelming. Carbonation present adds to the presence in the mouth but prefect level for the style. Soft and almost feels as if I am chewing through some amazing flavors in my mouth. Velvety smoothness and lip smacking perfection.

D: Humm, what do you think? If I was made of money I would be quaffing these on a daily basis and always sad when another beer was offered. Each sip was swallowed with a small tinge of sadness as one of the best beers to ever cross my lips slowly and smoothly slipped down my throat. I was not sure what to expect with all of the hype but was unexpectedly blown away and came away impressed. Sometimes hype is well earned and if you are as much a fan of the infinite complexity of the imperial stout as I am this may well be your favorite beer. May my dreams tonight be filled with fresh bottles of Parabola and I may sleep the slumber of angels.

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Photo of OlieIPA
4.66/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Bruery tulip glass at approximately 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

A: Just like any good imperial stout, Parabola poured black and viscous into my glassware. Was soon followed was a dark mocha head that dissipated into thin foam layer, even after a few vigorous swirls. The lacing was on the thinker side, but did leave a trail of brown stickiness along the sides of the tulip glass.

S: Woody and subtle dark fig aromas at the front end that eventually conceded to the robust amounts of chocolate, brown sugar, and molasses. The cocoa quality really jumped in after the few seconds and was really the showcase of the overall smell.

T: The initial flavor is mild molasses with a coffee bitterness character that was once again, backed up by huge amounts of chocolate flavor. The wood flavor crept up towards middle palate and lasted throughout the finish, which helped add some complexity to the bold cocoa flavor. The fruit flavor never seemed the surface, but there was other minute aspects to Parabola that wasn't able to determine.

M: For an imperial stout, the carbonation was on high side which may have added to a slightly dryer finish than I expected.

D: Simply wonderful! One of the best beers I've had the pleasure of trying. Really wish I was able to acquire some bottles for myself...cause honestly, I could of polished this bomber off in 20 minutes. It's that good!

Overall: Easy to see why this is one of the most sought after beers around. A must try! Cheers!

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Photo of callmemickey
4.28/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pitch black body with a large brown-khaki head. Good retention before the head eventually crashed to a nice skim and a bubbly loose ring. Spotty lacing left here and there on the glass.

S: First impression is tons of bourbon, vanilla, and oak. As the beer warms more dark fruits and roasted malts begin come out.

T: Bourbon blast with oak and vanilla. Nicely roasted malts. Bitter chocolate, espresso, raisins, and a red wine like character. Some charred wood and earthy bitterness. Pretty damn complex.

M: Medium-full bodied. Good, assertive carbonation. Lingering earthy bitterness. Moderate heat, but no burn.

D: I don't know... something was a little off, and I can't put my finger on it. Despite tasting quite deliciously, I struggled to finish the bomber.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.52/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black into a small snifter, no head, very slight brown tint near the very edges.
Too many smells hit the nose at first; vanilla, burnt malts, bourbon, and maybe a bit of wine(?). A nice woody scent makes up the background.
Taste follows the smell with some earthy qualities (minus any wine notes I may have smelled.) The alcohol taste is there, but at 13%, they have hidden it pretty well. The mouth is hot, lightly bubbly and very smooth.
I have procured a few more of these for aging and very much look forward to enjoying them later.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.46/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle, No1 so 2010, with black wrap that has a tag to pull on...cool idea and it works nicely. I also like the amount of info on the label re the beer.

A light hiss when I popped the cap, this straight from the fridge bottle and a slow pour still brought a good inch of tan foam. The lacing department worked overtime as there's ton of it.

Still being cold, the smell is somewhat subdued. I'll come back to it later.

The taste will, no doubt, also improve during warm up but...man...there's a ton of flavour here already. It's roasty, has some coffee and dark chocolate bitterness, a hint or 2 of a fruity sweetness, vanilla kicking in now, and a very tasty bourbon/barrel influence that kicks some major arse.

I'd say, for the abv, uncle Al it isn't too noticeable tastewise other than the obvious flavour you get from a barrel aged brew but after the swallow, it gives me a very warm and fuzzy feeling. I think I like this stuff. ;^)

The mouthfeel is close to full with a perfect(lightish) amount of carbonation.

Drinkability? No back to backs for me ever with a brew in this abv range but the bottle in front of me is killer for one session. Marvelous.

Back to the smell, it *has* warmed up some and I do get notes of chocolate and vanilla and what barrel aging brings to the table but no way does the smell, imho, do the taste justice. This is one of the best barrel aged Stouts I have tried. Full marks to Firestone!

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Photo of largadeer
4.5/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 22 oz bottle into a tulip. Parabola is an opaque obsidian color, viscous but well carbonated, topped by an inch of head that slowly recedes to a crown.

The aroma is wonderfully nuanced, roasted malt at balance with notes of dark bittersweet chocolate, spicy black licorice, mellow spirits and fruity red wine. Alcohol is noticeable, but just barely.

Bold flavors of dark chocolate, rich molasses, sweet whiskey and black licorice hit the taste buds first. There's a slight fruity, vinous quality to it as well, enhanced by a light tannic astringency. Barrel aging makes its presence known without overwhelming the complexities of the base beer, which has not always been the case in past iterations of this beer; this is clearly the most balanced batch of Parabola yet out of those I've tried. It has a hefty, chewy texture with a firm lingering roasted bitterness that clings to the tongue after a few sips and doesn't let go. Sweetness is reserved, at a perfect balance with the bitterness and tannins. The more I drink this, the more impressed I am. I've tried several batches of this beer over the years, some aged entirely in bourbon barrels, others in rye whiskey barrels, some a blend of different components. This one really nails it; the balance, nuance and delicacy make it my favorite batch yet. Thankfully, it's the one we finally got in bottles.

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Photo of Dlish
4.71/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- It is murky black with a hint of ruby. its foam is a dark brown and lightly beaded.

S- smells of dark chocolate, hits of Bourbon and alcohol.

T- Rich deep chocolate, hints of vanilla race by as a bourbon and rich dark cherries spread over the tongue. coffee and roasted malts start to grow and ends with just a hint of smokiness. Overall amazing, taste like liquid black forest cake but better.

M- thick chewy milky.

D- I've had this both on tap and from the bottle, both are amazing, I enjoy the small 4oz of it just fine, the 22 becomes over whelming. but now that i have had it, i keep getting the urge to by more or drive back to firestone!

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Photo of jrallen34
4.12/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasting with Agent Zero...I drank this from a 750ml bottle into my Rochefort glass...The beer pours jet oil black with a light tan head. Rises about two fingers but falls pretty quickly, light lacing...The aroma is nice medium strength, dominated by lots of really nice coffee not strong just yummy roastiness with a sweet cream finish....The first sip is lots of coffee nice like the aroma. As this warms it really starts to bring out the bourbon which is sweet and warming. Light coffee on the front, sweet in the middle, light bitter coffee finish. Not 50 ibu's...The feel is nice, coats the palate nicely, very warm finsih. Pretty easy drinker.

Overall, this is ok. Drink it quickly because as you drink it, its worse. It becomes flatter, less flavor and more alcoholic.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.38/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Black with a nice one and a half finger fine head that dissipated nicely leavin behind a small ring. A little bit of chunk lines left behind during the consumption. Nice looking.

S - Sweet, there is some subtle coffee and wood. Sweet cocoa and creamy milk smell, some dark char and burnt malt smell.

T - This is a very complex and nice tasting brew. Finishes with a nice and quit bitter roasty taste. Some subtle coffee. The bourbon comes out more as the beer warms up. This beer has a very creamy, milky chocolate taste which is quite nice. Becomes much less bitter and more sweet as it warms up.

M - Full bodied, very creamy, mild carbonation. All works well.

D - Super drinkable for a 13%, was shocked to see that it was that much.

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Photo of oregonskibum
4.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Tasted at a release party at a local Portland pub. Served in a 8 oz snifter glass. The beer was served way too cold (likely in the lower 40's). On the bad side, the first couple tastes were not optimal. On the plus side, I was able to experience this beer as it warmed. Review from notes taken after the event.

A: Color is a very dark black with almost no head. The glass was very full.

S: Smell changed dramatically as the beer warmed. First impression was coffee and licorice. Later the chocolate and bourbon flavors started to show up. Eventually, the more subtle vanilla and oak flavors appear. THe smell is lush, complex, and big.

T: Taste is amazing. Big coffee and chocolate up front. In the middle, dark fruits, vanilla, oak, and some faint toffee. The taste is creamy and rich. The bourbon is obvious, but it's not in-your-face. Instead, you're able to pick up the vanilla and oak flavors rather than just tasting like a RIS with bourbon mixed in. Didn't notice the heat until I took a break and ran to the bathroom. THat's when it hit me - the back of my throat all the way down my neck has a warm, glowing feeling. Yeah, there's some heat there, but very comforting. Taste lingers (and lingers), leaving some light bitter, coffee and woody notes.

M: Big, lush, smooth. Full bodied with minimal carbonation (although definitely not flat). Definitely coats the tongue and stays around for a while.

D: This was excellent and will likely improve over the next year or so as the warming (which was increasingly noticable during the tasting) calms slightly. I really liked how well integrated the bourbon was with the stout. Not over the top, but just enough aging time to pick up the vanilla and oak flavors. Overall, this is excellent and I look forward to seeing this develop over the next couple years.

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Photo of kk73
4.55/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle that my brother in law picked up in Washington.

A - Parabola pours black as night and thick, with little carbonation. Just how I like my stouts. Very little mocha colored head that disappeared quickly with some lacing. I cant wait to try this one.

S - The first thing I smell is the bourbon, a little reminiscent of KBS, imo. But I have not had many bourbon barrel stouts. Getting some tobacco, oak, vanilla ice cream, and some dark fruits. This beer smells damn good and very complex with many subtle aromas.

T - I get chocolate and coffe upfront as I move it around a bit I get the vanilla and bourbon finished with some fruity sweetness in the finish.

M - Velvety, creamy, milky smooth. The mouthfeel is thick and voluptuous somewhat chewy. Everything a RIS should, not overly carbonated, but full bodied.

D - The drinkability on this is very high for a 13% beer. Interested in what a year would do for this beer, thankfully I got more than one. Excellent sipper to be had over a longer period of time.

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Photo of alcstradamus
4.17/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a finger of head and no lacing.

Aroma is marshmallow and oak up front, with plenty of toasted malts and dark fruits adding complexity. A bit of bourbon heat, but not too much. Notes of tropical and piney hops. Pretty damn nice overall.

The flavor isn't quite as good as the nose, but it is still very very solid. Toasted malts and oak dominate. The oak is particular really puts its stamp on the flavor profile. A bit of bourbon heat in the finish. Raisins and grapes peek their head out every once in a while.

The body is on the low side of full and somewhat creamy. Pretty nice but not thick enough for a 5.

Overall this a is very nice imperial stout, and at 13% is is highly drinkable. A good desert beer for sure. If the oak mellows a bit I think it could improve even more.

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Photo of gford217
4.62/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to rhertan for sharing this one.

Pours pitch black out of the bottle with light mahogany around the edges. There is a small creamy tan head that recedes quickly to a thin collar and leaves no lacing but some sticky legs along the sides.

The aroma is fantastic dark chocolate, coffee, lots of dark fruits including raisins and plums. There is also some tobacco, spicy oak and vanilla beans.

The taste is wonderful as well. There is plenty of dark chocolate and tobacco. Also lots of dark fruits, vanilla and caramel. The finish leaves a slight alcohol burn though nothing to indicate the 13% abv.

Super smooth mouthfeel, full bodied with soft carbonation. Spicy oak and tobacco in the finish.

Decadent, complex, outstanding. There's so much going on in this one and it all comes together in one fairly drinkable package.

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Photo of melliott2811
4.92/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Firestone Walker Parabola Barrel Aged Imperial Stout 2010

"This particular lot was aged in a combination of barrels for 9 months. . .Chocolate, charred oak, vanilla, dark cherry and coffee are just some of the complex aromas and flavors you will find in this beer."

Had this beer on two occasions: 22oz bottle poured into specialty glass (almost a snifter) & 22 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A: This beer is beautifully packaged and pours like a dream. Bomber comes in a box that provides a venue to describe the beer in detail and makes you feel like a kid on Christmas. Pour is dark, very dark, with some head, but not enough to last you through you sampling. Not a big deal, your brain will be busy later with the flavors.

S: Coffee, vanilla and a nice aroma from the barrels used hit you first. Go back and take a second, third and fourth smell before you taste it. Complex and enticing.

T: This beer is 13%, and that comes out a little in the smell (those barrels again) but when you finally taste it, the broad swath of flavors overpower the alcohol taste. You still know you're drinking a strong beer, but the rich sweetness, coffee, chocolate & variety of barrel-aged flavors keeps your palette busy. Too bad I couldn't find enough to age one of these bad boys.

M: This is a beer you'll sip and smell and hold in your mouth for an hour or more. A pleasant experience on the tongue.

D: Wonderful beer for a relaxing afternoon/early evening. I'd be careful, hesitant even, pairing it with food. You won't want to miss out on or distract from the myriad flavors in this beer.

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Photo of Bubba83
4.65/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Review #100!

Poured at 50 degrees into a snifter. Boy, I am really excited they decided to bottle this beer as I have had it on tap and loved it two other times.

Pours slick and oily into my glass. I used a pretty quick pour without a glass tilt to achieve a two finger widths dark tan head. The body is an impenetrable midnight black with not even a smidge of redness near the edges. The head looks creamy and inviting, comprised of small bubbles. Unfortunately, the only thing holding this back is that the head mellows out rather quickly, and leaves a thin ring around the glass which achieves some slight lacing.

The aroma of this beer is very complex, and reminds me a lot of FW12. There's a huge tobacco component that hits hard initially, accentuated by a good bit of vanilla, followed by chocolate, and slight roast. The hops are here too, which is something I don't recall in the tap version. Perhaps this had to do with the new more potent hop bill employed for the bottle release version. The hop character is kind of a zingy spicyness, likely from the Hallertau hops used late in the boil.

A good bit of sweet vanilla sits up front on my tongue and plays with chocolate, much akin to vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup. As I begin to move the beer around my palate I get a whirlwind of other flavors, cutting through the sweetness. Some of the flavors in this whirlwind include deep french roast coffee, tobacco leaf, slight citrus zing, and cherry liqueur chocolates. Fantastic, fantastic stuff. No off flavors or anything unwanted here.

The best way to describe the mouthfeel is velvety. It's quite thick and has a nice chewyness. I couldn't find any flaws here at all.

Drinkability is hindered a bit at the present time due to a considerable amount of warming on the swallow, but overall it's just a fantastic beer to consume over the period of an entire evening as I am doing now. Who wants to share a beer this good, anyway? With that said, the alcohol heat doesn't detract from the flavor one bit. I'm guessing the alcohol heat will mellow with some more time, but I'm curious to see if that will hurt the taste, since it might start missing some of the alcoholic cherry flavor that I love so dearly.

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Photo of srroos
4.05/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a brandy snifter:

A: Opaque black with a small dark brown head. Fades quickly to pretty much nothing, which is unfortunate.

S: Cocoa, vanilla, bourbon. Very sweet, but not getting the caramel other describe.

T: Huge chocolate, with a bourbon alcohol burn and cocoa finish. More subtle flavors of dark fruits and an underlying malty sweetness throughout.

MF: Full bodied, but highly carbonated, which breaks up the heaviness.

D: Quite drinkable for a 13% ABV imperial stout, but still too heavy for anything but sipping.

A very tasty brew but I think this will be much better after a bit of age. I'll be re-reviewing this beer later.

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Photo of tjsprague
4.63/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Beer is midnight black with a chocolate brown head.

Nice chocolate and roasted aroma.

Taste is wonderful. Balanced with nice roasted malt flavors, chocolate and dark fruits. The alcohol is not upfront making this a very smooth beer.

Mouthfeel is great. Velvety and smooth, its almost thick. Very full bodied.

For a big stout with 13% abv this is a very drinkable beer. The mouthfeel is great and the beer is an excellent stout.

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Photo of Zorro
4.15/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pure black colored beer with a small dark Brown colored head.

Smells sweet with a strong chocolate and coconut aroma. Lots of vanilla here and a whiff of whiskey. There is a faint orange aroma here like a Cadbury Chocolate Orange.

Starts out strong vanilla and chocolate, with some coconut and caramel. Strong vanilla and a bitter chocolate aftertaste, this is very much a vanilla and chocolate beer. Slightly hot in the mouth still not bad at all for 13% ABV. Tasty but still a little young, let it age a year.

Mouthfeel seems a bit thin; alcohol seems to have everything well dissolved.

Very good drinkability for a young high-test beer. This needs to be aged for a year.

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Photo of gregmoscetti
4.4/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Firestone parabola is nothing new... but lord is it good. I think that this beer is a textbook example of the Barrel Aged RIS style. Its not too sweet, not to hot (though it could use 9-12 months), and incredibly balanced. this beer will mature to really be a heavy hitter. Can't wait

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Photo of froghop
3.91/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a midnight black with a small brown head, and great lacing.

smell is of nuts, bakers chocolate, licorice, some sour malt, and hops.

taste is thick, cocoa, nuts, and some sour malt, ends dry and nicely bitter.

overall a very good imperial stout. nice chocolate flavoring.

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Photo of JWD
4.53/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Purchased several bottles at a local bevmo.

I have been wanting to try this for 2 years now and i will say it has been worth the wait. I have had most of the big RIS and i would put this up with the best of them. I am not a fan of bourbon bombs which i had heard this would be, not the case at all. I guess the original version had a 2 year barrel age and this bottled version had been aged 9 months in several different types of barrels. PERFECT!!!

A- The body is death black with a very viscous oily pour. One thing i noticed first off was the deep brown head that i have only seen on 2 other beers (dark lord and Bourbon county) much darker than beers light Darkness or Abyss.

S- Smell was ok, raisin and dark chocolate, for me personally this is a good thing as it reminded me of that sweetness of DL.

T & M - I absolutly loved it causing me to purchase additional bottles to save for later when the heat dies down a little. It has a very velvetly texture and coating to the tongue.

D- I that it was very good considering how fresh it is, I think it will continue to improve as the heat mellows.

Overall this exceeded my expectations.

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Photo of alexgrahamlv
4.7/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is amazing!!!
Pours opaque black with long lasting tan brown head, nice legs filming the glass.

Aromas of chocolate, molasses, nutty toffee caramel. The booziness burns the inside of the nose.

Taste is very rich of cocoa, very complex, dark chocolate, not overly roasty, quite a bit of booze. Toffee, nutty.

Mouthfeel is big bodied with moderate carbonation. Still quite hot at 13% and young.

This beer young is fantastic and aged will only be even better. Glad I got some to hold on to. Yummy!!!

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Photo of PeprSprYoFace
4.82/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So glad I'm able to buy this now. Been lookin for this beer for a while but miss it every time it's on tap. Finally got a bottle and then some to put away.

Pours a deep black with a very nice dark tan head. The head dissapated to a ring but is leaving ok lacing. It looked amazing at first.

Aroma is awesome. So much going on. Dark chocolates and caramels. Roasted grains and bourbon. Smells like man hood.

Taste is amazing. One of the best beers to grace my lips. Taste of chocolates at first, then some sweet caramels into some bourbon and dark fruits/roasted grains then leaves your mouth with a roasted grain flavor with bourbon and I taste the dark chocolate covered cherry that I imagined from the discription on the box. Such a great beer.

Mouthfeel is so smooth and creamy. Perfect carbonation for the beer. So nice in my mouth.

Overall I'm glad I busted open a bottle by myself and not sharing because I'm lovin this. I'll be sippin in this all night. Glad I have 5 more to put away and age. Amazing beer.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.92/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Can this beer live up to the hype, I have a lot of expectations on it to be honest. I have been staring at it on my wants list for 3 years, dying to get a taste, but with no luck. Then they bottle it and I go into full on rage mode to get some. A kind BA sent me a bottle and I am in heaven. My son graduated yesterday, what better way to celebrate I could not think of one.

Served chilled and poured into a snifter, this one was consumed on 05/26/2010.

Deep and dark, black as night this one poured with a tremendous fury. Evil looking and thick as oil it came at me . Small two finger head settled down and coated the sides with sticky chocolate colored lacing that let me know I was in for it.

As I reach in and take a whiff it hits me like a ton of bricks. Deep aroma of roasted malts, huge bourbon notes , vanilla, molasses, tons of rich oak and lots of sugary and boozy touches. Hard to explain, just soo complex I dont know where to begin. Warming just confuses me more as the profile seems neverending. Each sip is like liquid god for me. Deep roasted notes, coffee, light licorice, bourbon, boozy flavor that seems to dominate early on but fade as it starts to warm. Vanilla, and oak, chocolate, rich decadent notes of toffee and never ending complexity welcome me and wont let me go. Smooth carbonation, full, complex body, delicous, perfect nightcap.

Overall everything I wanted it to be and then some. One of the best BA beers I have ever had. It works on every level possible. So worth seeking out.

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Parabola from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.61 out of 5 with 6,598 ratings
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