Double Double Barrel Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Double Double Barrel AleDouble Double Barrel Ale

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

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by HopHead84 on 06-16-2009

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Reviews: 335 | Ratings: 1,961
Photo of Mattygross44
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of the best smoothest beers i have ever had! I bought 6 of these 3 being 2013 3 being 2014 and been sipping on 1 about every 3 days.. great experience!! Worth the money

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Photo of Can_has_beer
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2014 on tap at Flying Saucer Downtown Houston.

I don't think there is any way you can improve upon this beer. It looks great, the aroma is heavenly, and it doesn't suffer from the sweetness that some BA barley wines do. I love the taste of it. It's luxurious and entrancing. I think this is perfection of the style.

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Photo of rob99er
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The best Barleywines I've had. I shared this with a friend over the weekend, both id us loved it. I have one left to age. It sucks they don't make this one anymore.

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Photo of Rihup
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My 1000th review and I have been keeping this one for a while. 2012 vintage batch one and it didn't disappoint. Hints of bourbon, deep caramel notes, with a slight fig finish. Smooth as a babies butt. Glad I waited. Nom nom nom.

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Photo of DocJitsu
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into my Figueroa Mountain pint glass for a bit of poetic irony. The beer pours a mildly hazy copper-amber with a light taupe head. The head gives off an orange hue. The head, like all FW brews, subsides nearly immediately. Vibrant notes of coconut, honey, caramel, and bourbon comprise the aroma. The mouthfeel is so soft, creamy, and full that it takes on a life of its own. There's just enough scrubbiness on the top to balance. The mouthfeel is so complimentary to the gestalt of the beer. The flavor, while easily describable, does not lend itself to words for adequate appraisal of how good it really is. A flawlessly engineered combination of bourbon oak, caramel, and honey causes one to be thankful to have had the good fortune to experience it. It finishes with the most perfectly smooth coconut and butter, and, finally, just a hint of alcohol warmth. This may be the best beer I've ever had.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. I loved every sip.

This poured an amber malty caramel color with low foam.

There’s a complex, layered aroma with caramel, coconut, some dark chocolate around the edges and a hint of tobacco too. Like a secret whispered to the senses.

The flavor has a similar complexity, sweet with a nice bitterness giving it definition and contrast. I get more caramel, a roasted coconut, some cinnamon and dark chocolate. It’s smooth, malty and warmed well. The alcohol is present at 12% but it doesn’t show it. This is one of those brews that had me reminiscing about it days—nay, weeks—later.

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Photo of musicman575
4.97/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From a tiny Firestone snifter, it smelled a bit like hot, gooey banana bread. Lot's of buttery brown sugar and spicy goodness plus bourbon and vanilla. Tiny bubbles slowly rise through the clear, somewhat thick, mahogany-colored beer. It melts over the palate like a soft liqueur. It's delicate, but anything but subtle. The tinier the sip, the better.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.92/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Double DBA, on tap at Pony Bar, Hell's Kitchen, NYC

Appearance: Luscious color, Southern-style sweet-tea color, cherry overtones. One finger of head, then a rim and a mantle. Substantial lacing.

Smell: Rich, sweet, Christmas. Chesnut, caramel, butterscotch. Flan and all the desserts you can imagine. Countryside, smoke, Kentucky ham. Peat. Fields ready to be harvested, late summer in the Midwest. Malt, straight-up whiskey, barrel.

Taste: Great barreling here. Toastiness, lip-smacking hop touch as it goes down. Coconut, essential oils, vanilla. Whiskey (not bourbon) at the end, that astringent feel. Well balanced, not too sweet or heavy on the barrel. Just how I like it. Brulee sugars and spicy finish. Simple, but amazing.

Mouthfeel: Great carbonation, body and flavor. Love the tangy finish, like chewing on a Szechuan button. Whiskey all around, no doubt.

Overall: So drinkable! I don't get tired of this. Smooth, edible, beautiful. This is all I want in a barrel-aged beer.

Note: A second tasting of this on tap the next day was shorter in flavor and complexity and bigger in booze and barrel. More one-dimensional but still damn delicious.

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Photo of bball208
4.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75


Couldn't believe I was able to find this at a bar for $19, so I got a whole bottle to myself and had a very good night.

It poured a beautiful dark caramel color, with faint traces of beautiful frothy white bubbles. No head, just an outline of white around the glass.
The smell was intense. It was sex. This explodes with toasted coconut, vanilla, and oak. It's like backwoods bastard on crack. Couldn't believe the aroma I was getting. Perfect.

The expectation on the taste was raised very high due to the incredible nose I got on this, and the flavors exceeded those expectations. Coconut, caramel, oak, vanilla, booze, just a sweet beer. I can still remember the taste even a week after having it.

Overall, if you've had founders backwoods bastard, and sweet repute, this is almost like a hybrid between those two flavors. Insanely good.

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Photo of smcnulty1981
4.88/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: pours with a nice copper color with a 2 finger white head that sticks around for awhile good ammount of lacing on the head and some alcohol legs

S: starts off with a good ammount of coconut bourbon and oak very very little alchol on the nose

T: hints of bourbon flavor and coconut and maltiness that is present in most English bitters no alchol on the taste

M: full bodied mouthfeel that fully Coates the mouth almost sticky

O: another great example of why fw is the best at barrel aging

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Photo of ISmith87
4.86/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Recommended to me by willbm3. Picked up a bomber at Sun Devil Liqours in Mesa, AZ. Poured into a stout/porter glass.

A - 4.5 - Nice warm brown color, little bit hazy. Very thin film of bubbles on the top with a nice ring around the edge, leaves a light lacing. Bottle is cool, "reserve series" style that comes in a nice box that makes you feel like you're drinking a vintage wine or something.

S - 4.75 - caramel, oak, bourbon, honey, vanilla. Smells sweet and smooth. It smells like a really good whiskey.

T - 5.00 - Damn. Huge smooth bourbon flavors with absolutely no harshness, I'm baffled at how they even managed this. Vanilla, toffee and butterscotch on the finish. Definitely some wooden barrel flavors in there too. It's beautiful.

M - 5.00 - I can't believe this is 12% ABV, the taste of the alcohol is completely covered. It's got a nice full mouth feel to it but then it leaves no aftertaste other than the slightest hint of whiskey.

O - 4.75 - I guess I should have expected this to be amazing for a twenty dollar beer, but god damn. It really doesn't taste like anything else I've ever had. I haven't really gotten into aging beers yet but my guess is that aging this one would only make it better. I've always been one to avoid spending over 6-10 dollars on a bomber or six pack but this completely changed my attitude. Absolutely amazing. The only thing I could ask is a little bit more head, but hey, at 12% what are they supposed to do?

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Photo of badgustav
4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance - clear and ruby brown, with a beige head that settles to a light foam

Aroma - sweet, malty, low to no hop bite. Hints of raisin and plum

Flavour - Rich, malty, caramel, notes of toffee and fig. Sweet, rich, with an underlying hint of alcohol

Feel - thick, rich, and lasting. Finishes on a sweet note.

This beer is wonderful, curious how it will age.

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Photo of Marius
4.84/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I am usually a sucker for bourbon barrel-aged barley wines, but this one blows most of them out of the water. Rich caramel, bourbon, vanilla and oak notes.

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Photo of 01001111
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A: Caramel with a brilliant red tone that comes through when held up to the sunlight.

S: Toffee, toasted coconut, vanilla, and a very faint, saison-like funk.

T: Following from the smell, an initial hit of toffee and light vanilla followed by a subtle sour apple flavor and finishing with the taste of a strong, English bitter mixed with a bit of bourbon.

M: Syrupy but not cloying.

O: A great beer that transforms from a barleywine to a bitter in your mouth.

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Photo of Catracho5
4.81/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

22 oz bomber poured into a Firestone Walker 6 oz. brandy snifter

Appearance: A lovely ruby, orange colored beer, clear, shiny, head disappeared fairly quickly, little to no bubbles, a really nice looking beer.

Aroma: Big coconut, candy, toffee aromas on the nose, toasted coconut, macaroons, vanilla, caramel, very sweet aromas, not getting any alcohol on the nose, smells great.

Taste: Like the nose, big toasted coconut, macaroons, toffee, candy, vanilla, sweet malts, there is a bitterness that gives way to all these different sweet flavors, some alcohol burn on the back end, taste really good.

Mouthfeel: medium mouthfeel, dry finish, not a big syrupy beer.

Overall: I love this beer, FW has the best barrel aged program in the country, too bad this is discontinued, not as smooth as Sucaba, but I think this has a rougher profile than Sucaba, really good, worth $16.99 per bottle, where ever I find it, I am buying and saving it, a must try.

Just finished tasting a two-year old bottle and I would say that this is much better fresh. After two years, the barrel flavors have subsided, there's a slight bitterness that is more prevalent. I prefer this beer fresh or within a year, it's not bad, still world class but it loses some of its punch over time.

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Photo of Abbbp
4.79/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Gosh all mighty this is greatness. Lil background when this sucker dropped in DFW I started scouring up the bottles because of my beer naïveté I missed out in both Parabola and Sucaba (traded and got em both though) and didn't want to miss out again. Traded some, gave some away, but never tried it until this past Thursday before the Baylor/O-who game...

The appearance is pure dark cream soda. The smell is sweet vanilla, butterscotch, oak, bourbon, but the taste was anything but. It was smooth and decadent, I felt like I should be sipping on this with royalty, like nothing I had tried before. Hidden [relative] high ABV, idk how they managed that with the low carbonation, just perfect.

Bravo, bravo firestone walker, your proprietors reserve series is just thru he roof, easily my top 5 beers I've enjoyed.

PS- I'll be hoarding this guy all next year also!

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Photo of PlayitAgain
4.76/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2014 vintage in a snifter. Wow, based on some of the reviews of this being "Sucaba Lite" I tempered my expectations quite a bit. I am completely blown away by what I'm drinking. Tastes like the birthday cake that I always wanted. It's a real shame this got discontinued. Firestone knows how to barrel age a beer, and the result here is a real treat.

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Photo of JMS1512
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Poured hard into my Lucifer snifter.

Sight: Lovely hazy, burnished orange with a stark white head. This recedes into a light film on top, delicate speckles of lace.

Smell: Oh God, the malt! Sweet bready, malty, raisin goodness. Just the slightest hint of hop.

Taste: More Heaven in a glass. Sipped while chilled, it offers a great caramel note, playing in concert with a sugary malt and like its aroma, dark fig/raisin characteristic of balanced English style Barleywines. Booze is well hidden for 12%- to me, a great hallmark of well-crafted barleywine. As it warms, the hops are a bit more apparent, but the other flavors still take control. I MAY consider this a "malt bomb."

Mouthfeel: Delicate carbonation, slick oily feel on the tongue. Very pleasing. Smooth, almost to a fault.

Overall: Fantastic offering by FW. And a new "nomenclature" for me: Imperial Special Bitter. Call it what you want, I'll call it malty magnificence.

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Photo of yesterdayfaraway
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The 2014 vintage.. Holy smokes this is fan-freaking-tastic!!!!!! I have not been overly impressed with barleywines but this surpasses all expectations. The highlight is the supreme drinkability/smoothness of the bourbon barrel especially at 12%abv

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Photo of SLObeer
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 24oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: poured a nice dark toffee color, slightly reddish when held to light. large fluffy off white head that dissapears quickly, leaving very minimal lacing.

S: big floral hops right away. caramel malt, sweet fruit, slight hint of wood. i love how this beer smells.

T: tastes amazing. first comes the floral hops, then the caramely sweetness, the aftertaste is slightly woody

M: creamy, buttery, perfect carbonation

D: im into my second pint of it and i could keep on going. great session beer. the flowery hops get slightly overwhelming to the palette, my only complaint

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Photo of Ngntjp
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Going into this knowing that we don't particularly love bourbon barrel aged beers, I was stunned. This was such a pleasure to drink, as each sip becomes more and more complex with the temperature of our glasses rising. Beautiful color, nose, taste, and mouthfeel. Overall this is one I expected to be indifferent to, but came out absolutely loving. Should've bought more!

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Photo of Big_Eatums
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is my first posting, so I’m afraid to give it the full on 5.0. But seriously…..this one ROCKS!! Okay, wait…to get more sophisticated.

It has a caramel taste, which could be from the barrels. As a homebrewer, I’ve already made note to get some kegs to double barrel my own brews….okay. The flavor is very malty indeed with a nice small ring a foam.

Trust me, this BEER is worth the price you’ll pay for it. Heck, get two and save one for when the world comes to a end and enjoy……

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Photo of shehateme
4.74/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A ...amber /copper tiny head
S...vanilla ,bourbon carmelized sugar Firestone you've done it again .i don't know what bourbon barrels Firestone uses but they should be the standard for beer aging .Huge bourbon ,vanilla and sugar shine through the perfect boozyness
M...still not sure what mouthfeel is
O...the barrel program at Firestone is heads and tails above every other that I have tried ,and this is no exception this beer seems to sit on the shelves in my area ,and now I'm glad it does will make this a staple in my rotation .

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Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Oh I will miss you! While my love for Barleywines falls short of my yearning for BBA Stouts. This beer really nailed everything I like about the style.

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Photo of Labeorphile
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Split a 22 oz bomber with my little brother at a family gathering. Poured into two pint glasses. Great dark cream soda look with a 2 finger head that lingered for a while.

Smell was buttery, maybe some vanilla, but to me it smelled a lot like blue cheese. Not sure what combination of compounds it was, but most of the nose was blue cheese, which was okay but a little off-putting.

However, the taste was amazing. I've never had a beer quite like it. Much more of the bourbon and butterscotch in the taste and incredibly drinkable, given the high abv. Carbonation was low which was good because this beer would have seemed strange if it was fizzy.

Overall a great beer that I wish I hadn't shared. :)

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Double Double Barrel Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
4.26 out of 5 based on 1,961 ratings.
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