Parabola - Amburana
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Parabola - AmburanaParabola - Amburana
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Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States
Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #58
Ranked #1,553
4.42 | pDev: 4.98%
Nov 03, 2022
Feb 28, 2021
Parabola - AmburanaParabola - Amburana
Notes: None
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Photo of jrc1093
Reviewed by jrc1093 from Connecticut

4.24/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
2021 vintage; consumed on 11/2/2022

Pours a jet-cola-brown body topped with a finger of creamy, khaki-hued foam; good head retention yields a slight layer of cap, thin, frothy collar, and extensive walling of chunky lacing spread across the entirety of the glass.

Aromas wafts intense notes of oatmeal raisin cookie dough into roasty bakers cocoa, with a tinge of nutmeg guiding to ashen malts and black licorice over time as a hint of bourbon-soaked cinnamon roll lingers.

Taste opens to bakers cocoa and charry vanilla, edged by nutmeg and smoked toffee over the mid-palate as black licorice intensifies across layered malt roast on the back end of the profile, leaving notes of caramel, oaky barrel, and vague bourbon residuals.

Mouthfeel features a body on the lighter end of medium along with a rounded, moderate carbonation easing to a charry prickle before trending creamy through the mid-palate; a supremely attenuated bittering is prevalent on the back end as a slick, largely drying texture finishes.

Potent layers of earthy baking spice enmesh seamlessly in the charry malt compound of the Russian Imperial Stout base; a balanced barrel does well to amplify yet never interrupt as the profile is elevated to a complete and fulfilling bittersweetness.
Nov 03, 2022
Rated: 4.85 by admonster00 from Illinois

Jul 19, 2022
Photo of maximum12
Reviewed by maximum12 from Minnesota

4.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
As one of my OG favorite beers (yes, I’m too old to say or write “OG”) I’ll try to get my hands on any Parabola variant I can. 12 oz. bottle that I believe originated from Tavour.

The pour is dark & fairly still, as expected, with a nose to match. Chocolate, mild bourbon, many malts. No wood detected. Is it coming?

Parabola – Amburana feeds the non-wood of the nose & channels it aggressively into the taste. On top are the chocolatey malts along with a sharp, bitter tang of wood. Bourbon is surprisingly strong underneath, tickling my nose hairs & warming my sternum (sternum, not sterno). Finish is spiciness that increases as it warms, light booze. Old school stout viscosity. Not sure I’d line up pints of this at the bar, but happy to work through this single bottle.

This adds a lovely, endearing twist to a classic. Excellent brew.
Jul 16, 2022
Photo of WunderLlama
Reviewed by WunderLlama from Massachusetts

4.4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Bottle received in Bif15 from @beersnake1 , poured into a Smog City snifter, also from @beersnake1, stored at 45 degrees, served at 50 degrees

Dark brown cola liquid, creamy two finger brown foam cap, good retention, settles to a pencil thick layer after five minutes, some active microcarbonation streams are visible, recedes to an espresso cream after 10 minutes , layered rings after each sip

Aroma is bourbon, leather, tobacco

Taste is bourbon, licorice, roast malts, slight char, hint of cocoa, cocoa powder

Mouthfeel is thick, syrupy, velvety, luxurious, decadent , boozy …the abv is 14.6%

Good beer, thanks @beersnake1
Jun 12, 2022
Rated: 4.5 by Bruno74200 from France

May 25, 2022
Rated: 4.38 by crobinso from Colorado

May 23, 2022
Rated: 4.45 by BAsbill from California

May 15, 2022
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
Reviewed by JonnoWillsteed from England

4.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
L- Inky black, pours with a brief tan ring of bubbles that almost completely dissipates swiftly - given the ABV% that's no big surprise.
S- Intriguing. I do get a slight liquor edge to it but more prominent seems to be cocoa. I believe there is a quite pungent 'milk chocolate' aspect going on here.
T- Milk chocolate again (does this contain lactose; IDK?) plus vanilla. Pungent deep roasty aspect. Then the ABV% starts to come into focus. A slow-mo b-o-o-m of sorts for me. In that you can tell it's high ABV% but it's not OTT, it never risks 'burning' at all.
F- Rich, pungent, heavy, complex. A slow-sipping beer that would be ideal for winter, or for an Xmas gift in fact.
O- Very nice, very polished indeed for a beer of this ABV. A real Xmas cracker. I'd happily drink this again but I wonder what it costs in the US, as here in the UK the price is mad, more than I paid for the legendary Westvleteren12 and similar.
Bought from Bacchanalia, Cambridge, UK. £12.49/US 12 FlOz. I was unable to find a BB date on the packaging but then at this ABV% it perhaps is somewhat secondary.
Mar 16, 2022
Rated: 4.18 by westcoastbeerlvr from California

Mar 06, 2022
Photo of ReDave
Reviewed by ReDave from California

4.38/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
This is amazing. Right off the bat, strong raw dark chocolate. Licorice, bitters. this is good
I think it absorbs light, I'm holding it up to the setting sun NOTHING is something thru wow
Not sure when i did this last, but now when i open pour in a snifter of sorts massive coconut! with the chocolate WOW
Feb 27, 2022
Rated: 4.46 by QuakeAttack from California

Jan 31, 2022
Rated: 4.28 by Cpmitchno1 from Virginia

Jan 22, 2022
Rated: 4.5 by kevindp9 from Arizona

Jan 06, 2022
Rated: 4 by Nichols33 from Massachusetts

Jan 06, 2022
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Reviewed by sjrider from California

4.38/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Bottle pour- dark as night with short chocolate milk head leaving a ring of bubbles and minimal lacing. Nose is rich with roasty malt and barrel notes, cocoa and spice. Taste follows with a bit of vanilla and more spicy wood overtones. Finishes with on the dry side with lingering spice. Tasty.
Nov 02, 2021
Rated: 4.5 by Resistance88 from California

Oct 23, 2021
Photo of Beersnake1
Reviewed by Beersnake1 from California

4.4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Poured from fridge temp. Pours motor oil black with little head. Nose is tonka bean, roasted malts, bourbon, chocolate licorice, vanilla, and dark fruit. Incredibly nice. The taste is insanely good. Sweet upfront, with a nice roasted wood aftertaste. Dark chocolate, bourbon, toffee, black licorice, brown sugar, a bit of spice, blackberries. Mouthfeel is nice and thick. Overall, I'm loving this take on the normal Parabola.
Oct 14, 2021
Rated: 4.62 by MickeyHops from California

Sep 19, 2021
Photo of jakecattleco
Reviewed by jakecattleco from California

4.71/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
Hard to improve on the base beer, and I feel this one does a great job trying. There's definitely accentuated barrel and cherry aspects on the nose and added spiciness to the taste (that I love), but I feel I comes at the expense of chocolate prominence which feels a bit MIA. Its really good, but maybe a little heavy in some areas of the spectrum and not as diverse and dynamic as the base. Mouthfeel a touch thin, and brings a hint of ABV burn and spicy-like heat. I definitely really enjoy this effort, but not more than the OG. Though maybe judging it against the base is a bit unfair...
Aug 28, 2021
Photo of JohnnyHopps
Reviewed by JohnnyHopps from Indiana

4.62/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
Appearance - The beer poured a thick rich black color with a mocha colored head crowing the glass.

Smell - Parabola was here with a definite what he presence.

Taste - The thick reached out had chocolate and malt bitterness. But this time, the amburana gave is a sweet and spicy oaky finish. The finish was similar to cinnamon. It was though Parabola was turned to 11.

Mouthfeel - The viscosity on this boy did not disappoint. It was like paint for the tongue.

Overall - Parabola can be improved.
Jul 17, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by BarrelAgedG from California

Jun 14, 2021
Photo of StraightNoChaser
Reviewed by StraightNoChaser from Georgia

4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Look: very dark brown. Some scant cola highlights when held to light. Medium big mocha head on the pour. Messy, clingy lacing.
Smell: not sure how to describe the amburana addition. Very nice, rich, a bit spicy, not cola but something like cola.
Taste: amburana takes the lead, but the base Parabola holds its own. Really easy drinker.
Apr 26, 2021
Photo of RaulMondesi
Reviewed by RaulMondesi from California

4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Had some big expectations on this, but it’s kind of like Beyoncé’s acting career - I mean, she’s Beyoncé and everything, but she’s not perfect. And that’s what we have here; PA has a lot of good stuff going on, but the feel is too light and carbonated. Sip it again, your boy would. But bring it to Queen B's birthday party - nope.
Apr 19, 2021
Photo of bret27
Rated by bret27 from California

4.71/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Draft at brewery
Mar 16, 2021
Rated: 4.44 by Beer21 from Florida

Mar 14, 2021
Photo of fifreak3
Reviewed by fifreak3 from California

4.91/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
The spice from the amburana wood is delectable and unlike anything I ever tasted. Spicy like pepper, cinnamon, oak, anise, cloves. Exotic like I don't even know what. Let it linger in your mouth for a bit and it gets better. If anything, it could use a little more viscosity for a beer that otherwise has so much heft.
Mar 08, 2021
Rated: 4.04 by TrojanRB from Texas

Mar 02, 2021
Parabola - Amburana from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 27 ratings