Velvet Merkin | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Velvet MerkinVelvet Merkin
BA SCORE
4.28/5
Outstanding
2,582 Ratings
Velvet MerkinVelvet Merkin
BEER INFO

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

Style: English Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our decadent Oatmeal Stout lovingly aged in Bourbon barrels. Beautiful chocolate, espresso and vanilla-bourbon aromas hold your nose hostage. Rich dark chocolate truffle, bourbon and espresso create a dangerously smooth and incredibly drinkable barrel aged Oatmeal Stout. Hoarding tendencies may occur.

Added by t0rin0 on 11-20-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,141
Reviews:
412
Ratings:
2,582
pDev:
8.88%
 
 
Wants:
408
Gots:
1,098
Trade:
136
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,582 |  Reviews: 412
Photo of Dark_Scarecrow
4.19/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is the 2015 variant poured from a 22oz bottle into a Speiglau BA glass.

Look is pitch black with faint cola highlights at the very edge of the glass, and just a thin small off-white head spread across the top.

Aroma is charred wood and vanilla bourbon just a hint of coca cola syrup coming right at the end.

Taste is surprisingly light. A little bit of roast but much more sweetness from the vanilla and bourbon coming through. Just a hint of astringent malt at the very end.

 486 characters

Photo of onewayboogie
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of PaulSlazinger
4.36/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Ahypercube
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

This is the 2017 Vintage. I had it once before, on a date at a campsite. Very easy drinking. Mellow.

L: Pours a very dark brown (like baker's chocolate) with a viscous consistency and a single-centimeter mocha brown head of fine foam, like on instant hot chocolate. Light penetrates up to about 3/4 inch of the liquid, but no more.

S: The initial impression is cloyingly sweet, like raw unfiltered honey; but an instant later, molasses bitterness demolishes the sugary edge opening up space for notes of bourbon vanilla, coconut, prunes, American white oak, fudge, buttery caramel, oats and tobacco.

T: Fortunately, it comes off much less sweet on the palate. Molasses, bourbon, oatmeal and oak are the primary flavors, with subtle fudge, caramel, coconut and drifting among them. Prune tartness kicks in for a moment toward the end, leaving dry tobacco alone for a simple, elegant finish.

F: Surprisingly light for such a rich and flavorful stout. Creamy, but soft: quite like oatmeal.

O: God, do I love oatmeal stouts. I find this tastier than Parabola.

 1,060 characters

Photo of Curt3
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch black color with a thin foamy head. Head retention is minimal. Lacing is good. Aroma of roasted malts and java. Mild chocolate bourbon. Nice rich taste. Roasted malts followed by java with mild chocolate on the end. Medium to heavy bodied with mild carbonation.

 277 characters

Photo of kjmom2014
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of eppCOS
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

ON tap, 9.7.18 at Brewer's Republic (colorado springs, co)
L - This barrel aged (2 years!?) merkin gives nothing away in appearance, looks more like a porter than a thick stout.
S - This is where things get interesting for the Merkin - aromas of cola, wood, vanilla, and spice with the usual stout smells
T - Fantastic - and a total surprise in some ways. Comes across as a beer version of Jack and Coke (if that's your thing, you're going to love this).
F - Properly but not overly carbonated, fairly lively on the tongue, not flat. Very good.
O - Even if it's not my usual style on a daily basis, this is creative treatment of an oatmeal stout. I believe the two years of barrel aging were Heaven Hill bourbon casks. Great stuff.

 731 characters

Photo of folkstar
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ptykozoon
3.68/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

'16

Pours black with a faint purple in the light, a bit of sparse froth.

Scent is pretty vicious for an oatmeal stout. Bits of dark chocolate, raisin, oak, toffee.

Taste is mellow considering the smell, but it could be from its age. Some caramel and milky aspects. Fairly watery.

Mouthfeel is delicate, ABV tastes ~11%. Not sure if this needed barrel aging. It's not thin, but it really yearns for some flavors to round it out.

It may have aged too long because it's quite mellow, but it's not bad.

 503 characters

Photo of TooGood
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of byronic
4.09/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of RBuckley73
4.17/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Dharmelink
4.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of GarageRock
4.59/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of dafla67
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of edthehead
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of NickThePyro
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Negrelly
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of BFCarr
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Hayley_86
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of polloenfuego
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Beerdudenumberone
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BeerAndFilm
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

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Velvet Merkin from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.28 out of 5 with 2,582 ratings