Double Barrel Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
83
good
751 Reviews
THE BROS
82
good
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Double Barrel AleDouble Barrel Ale
BEER INFO

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

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerManDan on 08-24-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
751
Ratings:
2,461
Avg:
3.68
pDev:
20.65%
 
 
Wants:
85
Gots:
367
For Trade:
4
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Reviews: 751 | Ratings: 2,461
Photo of far333
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Honey apricot colored with an inch high head of thick and dimpled light beige foam.

Aroma of bready malt, sweet and nutty, a hint of caramel.

Initial flavor of light malt, strong tea flavor, woody but not overly oaky. Some caramel malt sweetness, with a delicate hop bitterness. Mild oak flavor lingers.

Even mouthfeel, moderate carbonation. Easy to drink, very sessionable.

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Photo of ccrida
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber (stamped 10/1/09) poured into my Meantime snifter, Double Barrel Ale is clear pale bronze with a frothy off-white head that leaves bubbly lace

Smell is pretty light, apricot English ale esters, some doughiness. Nice hint of minty, herbal hops come through as it warms from the fridge serving temp.

Taste is pretty good, on the sweeter side of the malt with a bit of citric orange from the hops, herbal tea like, contributing very little bitterness. Not bad, reminds me of a proper English mild.

Mouthfeel is sharp and dry, with a spicy, salty finish, medium bodied, probably from the oak tannins more then anything else.

Drinkability is OK, not really my style of amber. The first time I had this on draught, I was supremely disappointed, as it was my first Firestone Walker, and I knew it was their flagship. This bottle seems tastier then my draft experiences, but still, it doesn't really excite me too much. Something about it seems a bit much for sessioning...

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Photo of seanbhudson
3.51/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE: Pours a clear amber color with a relatively small off white with average retention. There is a little bit of lacing.
AROMA:
Light aroma of biscuit like malts and caramel.
TASTE:
Lightly toasted malts with a light caramel sweetness that is balanced with a little woody bitterness that must come from the barrels. There is also a hint of smokiness.
MOUTHFEEL
Light to medium body with a relatively dry texture. Light fizzy carbonation.
DRINKABILITY:
Very drinkable but needs a little more flavor to make it interesting. The dry finish also means it is not thirst quenching.
NOTES: BBCSD-0812

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

4.0 A: Orange amber color. Very clear. After a ultra aggressive pour, one and a half fingers of off-white head. Head is really dense with average retention. Lots of lacing.

4.0 S: A bit of citrus and a lot of some really nice smelling, unidentifiable fruit. Fresh and clean, awesome.

4.5 T: WOW! This is the best amber ale I've ever had. The wood barrel comes through in the taste, but isn't overwhelming like in OAB. The taste isn't all that unique, but it's perfectly balanced. The hop profile is very good. Just a bit of bitterness, but a lot of herbal and slightly citrusy flavor. The malts are very smooth with no unwanted flavors. A little more bitterness would have pushed this beer to perfect.

3.5 M: Medium body. Creamy, but undercarbonated.

4.5 D: I could drink this all night.

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Photo of aforbes10
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewing from a whole sixer (just so i know i've gotten it right!) Pours a nice clear amber with good strong redness and a nice white puffy head. Smells of sweet biscuity malt and light green hops. Flavor is very smooth, with just a bit of bitterness on the finish. Mild caramel sweetness and hop flavor mix well together. Extremely smooth drinker, medium bodied for the style. Drinks very easily and tasty to boot.

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Photo of mcallister
3.51/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Mahagony color with a white head that leaves a very thick lace that coats the entire glass. Great lace retention.

Sweet toffee malts at the forefront. Hints of herbal tea, and a slight hopping. Not much else I can smell.

More tea flavors and just malt driven. Some woodsy notes and a light date character. Hops are floral and nature and not very driven. RS is around 2% I'd say and could use a little more balance. Otherwise very drinkable with light carbonation.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.44/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of the brews sent to me by Wasatch in our recent trade, thanks John.

American Amber/red ale? I would have guessed an English or American Pale Ale.

Copper colored body with a decent amount of carbonation bubbles moving around. About a finger and a half of off-white head that has decent retention and leaves some nice rings and sheets of lacing on the side of my glass.

There is not a huge aroma on this one. Mostly biscuity malt coupled with just a touch of hop aroma.

The taste of this beer is considerably hoppier than the aroma. The main hop characteristic is fruity, english hops. Fruity without a lot of bitterness. The standard bitter, grapefruit flavors comes through also though. The biscuity malt of the aroma is present here too. Finishes with an earthy flavor.

Medium bodied and carbonation, maybe a little thicker or heavier than I would have expected Rather oily mouthfeel, espcially after swallowing.

A pretty decent beer overall, something that is ok in the drinkability category.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.28/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

trade via barleywinefiend

I've never had Firestone Walker before and I can't help wonder who would win in a fight: the lion or the bear? Normally I'd take a bear but the lion seems to be a giant lion and I think a giant lion would beat a regular bear. Discuss.

See-through amber color with a medium white head. Good retention and some lace. Smells like fall fruit and bready malt.

Tastes very clean. Mainly tastes of toasty biscuit malt hints on oakiness. Low carbonation and very subtle flavors typical of English inspired ales. That said it's subtle almost to the point of boring. Though I'd like to see more flavor, the sublety and cleanliness of this brew give it high drinkability.

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Photo of HopDerek
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to EinWeizenbitte for this extra.

Pours a clear amber color with 2 fingers of frothy off-white head. Good retention and nice sticky lacing for the most part. Smells of caramel, bready malts, fruit, and floral hops. Tastes of caramel and bread with a touch of vanilla. Light earthy hops kick perk up in the end along with a fruity finish of grapes. Medium/medium-light in body with average carbonation. Sweet and bready with a semi-dry crisp finish. An all right amber ale but could use a little more hop presence, seemed very overshadowed by the malt.

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Photo of beertunes
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into straight pint glass. Poured with minimal head that disappeared almost immediately. What lacing there was, was very nice and sticky. No big upfront aromas. Just a twinge of hop bite at the finish. Good full body. Very drinkable. This would be an excellent session beer. If you were stuck inside all day, this would be a wonderful companion.

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Photo of Brewsmith
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 22 oz bottle purchased locally. Aroma is malty with just a slight hint of wood. Color is a clear amber, very deep orange with a half inch beige head. I get malt then a little oak, followed by earthy hops and then a little chocolate and a touch of roast in the back. A little lingering malt in the finish with out being sweet. There is so much going on in this beer. I really enjoy it.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.32/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Clear, bright amber body with thin, creamy, white cap. Spotty lacing is left along the sides of the glass.

Smell: Caramel, melted butter, bready yeast, and oak. It's hard to explain, but the smell of DBA is just very unique and very enjoyable. Maybe I'm just a homer.

Taste: Similar to the smell, with warm buttery bread and caramel jumping out first and mildly hoppy finish. Oak can be found throughout.

Mouthfeel: Creamy with a crisp, clean finish. Carbonation produces a minor nip, and is pretty low for the style. Light-medium body.

Drinkability: My go-to amber (even though it's actually an English pale ale). The flavor is simple and delicious, and the body is light enough to allow you to drink as many as you'd like. I think FW really excels in this category with all of their beers.

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Photo of magictrokini
2.95/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bomber. Pours amber with a medium tan head. Aroma of malts, yeast, and oak. The taste is awful. The only thing I can compare it to is armpit sweat. Yeasty, stinky, armpit sweat. To add insult to injury, this bottle costs over $10. Damn you, Firestone.

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Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wasatch for including this in a trade!

Pours slightly hazed copperish amber with a thin off-white head that becomes a wide patch mid-way though, with some lacing sliding down the glass.

The smell is of citrus/grapefruit with light roasted caramel.

The taste is of lightly roasted caramel, some nuttiness with a citric/leafy/herbal, slightly piney hop presence. Pretty evenly balanced, though leaning malty sweet with a bitterish touch and dry-ish finish.

It has a pretty chewy, medium body.

It has a nice amber-style maltiness with a hop presence more noticeable in taste than in bitterness. Not necessarily "complex", but an enjoyable, "sessionable" amber.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

L - slightly hazed copper color with a fine beige head that left some bits of lacing.

S - sweet caramel malt aroma.

T - sweet malty flavor with a very light touch of bitterness and wood on the finish.

F - light/medium bodied with a thin feel.

D - it was easy to drink but I've had better.

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Photo of davexisxrabid
4.12/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass and enjoyed! This brew poured a nice dark amber/copper color with a thin head that fizzled down quickly and left minimal lacing throughout the drinking.

Aroma was of sweet malts nicely balanced with some citrusy hops; reminded me of orange blossoms.

Bold sweet malt flavor, rendered bitter-sweet by the slight hop aftertaste. Mild alcohol presence throughout the drink.

Smooth mouthfeel, very well balanced with good carbonation that keeps this brew lively.

All in all, I would definitely have to say this is a good session beer; it has excellent flavor and an average abv making this perfect all night long or paired with some food.

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Photo of beachbum1975
4.13/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Much of what makes me a beer fan is the opportunity to meet and trade with great people on this website. I was fortune enough to trade for a Firestone Walker 11th Anniversary EinWeizenbitte for some local brews and he was kind enough to send me a sampler pack of 4 of Firestone Walker's offerings as extras! EinWeizenbitte is a truly generous beer advocate. This one's for you!

A: No freshness date on this gorgeous 12 ounce brown bottle. I love the bear and lion attempting to keep the DBA balanced in the center of this classy label. Much like the picture on the label, this pours a beautifully clear ruddy copper with a great, creamy ½ off-white head. This is a thing of beauty to look at and a great example for its' style.

S: Lightly toasted malts, sweet grains and traces of floral hops.

T/M: Much lighter than I was expecting for being a double barreled ale. To me, a name like DBA implies rich flavors slamming your palate, especially with this being a West Coast beer. Instead the beer was gently blended in a very subtle manner. The taste was much like the nose - sweet malts with light floral hops. Slightly bitter in the middle, as well. It almost reminded me of Fat Tire. This is a light bodied, medium flavored beer with ample carbonation. Mouthfeel was slightly smooth and velvety. Very nice.

D: I really enjoyed this one. For its' style, it's quite easy to drink and the high carbonation helped.

I can't wait to try the other FW's now!

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Photo of mattffrost
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into glass.

Appearance - Beer is a clear copper color. Very little carbonation that does not last to long. Head is a off white colr. I would say a nice looking beer but in my opinion needs better lacing.

Smell - Some sweet malt smell. I smell a citrus hops smell as well. Nothing really profound.

Taste - Starts off a little fruity and finishes just a little bitter. A hint of some sort of floral taste.

Mouthfeel - Beer is very smooth on the palete with little carbonation. I would say light body compared to other Red Ale's?

Drinkability - Very easy to drink with its light body and smooth character.

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Photo of Offa
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a good, solid beer with a slight English element to its character.

Copper, it has a medium, pale tan head that shrinks steadily to a thin, permanent top. It leaves weak hints of lace.

The aroma is flowery and slightly earthy with a lot of breadcrust along with hints of caramel and grapefruit.

The taste is mild caramelly malt, bread, light citrus leaning slightly towards grapefruit, hints of pine, earthy leaves, and light fruitiness. It's somewhat mild and is a tad more grapefruity than I ideally prefer, but it is overall quite tasty, with good balance, and definite English qualities that I like. The sweetness and bitterness both last nicely, it also goes well with food and is very drinkable.

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Photo of CrellMoset
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle cracked at Beer Run, Charlottesville, VA, and enjoyed w/ a pretzel. Poured into a traditional American pint glass.

Appearance: A clear orange amber bodied beer, with a foamy, one-finger, slightly off-white head with average retention. Lacing is initially nice, with finger-like wisps rising from the white slick of foam laying atop the body, but disappears pretty quickly.

Aroma: Spicy grassy hops and some faint citrus are the dominant notes here, backed up by a pale, biscuity maltiness. A little simplistic but pleasant.

Taste: Very balanced. Malty, with lots of roasted notes, some nuttiness, a hint of buttery malt, and a few spicy phenols, but backed up by a healthy dose of balancing bitterness - a little rough, but not too bad - and a nice burst of orange zest and faint vegetalness. Stylistically, very nice.

Mouthfeel: Pretty fine-bubbled, full-bodied, and creamy. A good amount of carbonation as well, which melds with the hop bitterness and spicy phenols well.

Drinkability: I thought this one was pretty good, actually - a very interesting and balanced amber with a very reasonable alcohol level. Haven't yet had a bad beer from Firestone Walker - a very good beer from a very good brewery.

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Photo of apaltrineri
4.02/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - A very coppery amber/orange color out of the tap, with a small off-white head and some lacing for the first half of the pint. Admirable.

S - Sweet earthy malt aroma, with yeasty sweetness finishing it off nicely. Hint of tart apples.

T - Mmm, this ale is balanced so well it is almost buttery! Not too much sweetness, balanced with hops that assert the ale's complex character. Not a standout, but very solid.

M - Smooth, buttery and the hint of carbonation make this one of the most pleasant red ales had in recent memory.

D - Could polish off these babies all night! Definitely worth the hike out to northern California to find this brew.

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Photo of Foxtrot
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz. Bottle into pint glass

A - Pours a very nice amber brown color with a tan head that dissipates rather quickly with some lacing

S - Smells of Oak barrels with the sweetness of caramel with some hops

T - Tasted as it smells. That it had lots of oak with some sweet malts, and a little earthy.

M - Decent on the mouth feel with a low carbonation.

D - I like this, really clean taste with dry oak finish.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.3/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bronze-amber colour, with a thin head of white foam. Head dissipates pretty quickly, despite the steady carbonation. No lacing. Looks pretty tame.

Lighty toasted malt characters on the nose. Dark, a little sweet burnt sugar character. Although it's pretty weak, there's not a lot on it.

Taste is also pretty weak, a light roasted character on the front palate, and a light slightly sour character later on. Finishes with an earthy taste that leaves the palate feeling a bit rough. Pretty light mouthfeel too.

This is a pretty bland beer - there's nothing really wrong with it, but there's not a lot to it. Simple flavours. It's drinkable enough, but not very exciting.

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Photo of dfitch81
4.31/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

BA classifies this as an American Amber/Red Ale, but it tastes more like an English Pale Ale (or maybe an ESB), which is how the brewers describe it.
Poured with a head about two fingers thick, average retention.
Smell, though not strong, is pleasant and tea-like. Taste is nicely subdued at first, with more of the tea-like flavor suggested by the smell. Juicy hops come out near the end - flavorful but not overwhelming. Nice, satisfying finish with no unpleasant aftertaste.
Overall a very satisfying beer, and one that I liked more the more I drank. Too bad it isn't a little cheaper - I feel slightly guilty spending $4.99...

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Photo of Spikester
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear deep amber with a fair amount of cream colored head.
Aroma is spicy hops with a hint of cinnamon.
Taste is rich leathery hops with medium bitterness. Slighttest hint of grapefruit for a change. Well balanced with the sweet malts. Some iced (sweet) tea in the mouthfeel. Moderate carbonation. A very fine English Pale Ale. Very sessionable beer. When the 22 ounce bottle was empty I wanted another. I could drink this beer all night. Hope to see more from Firestone in my area.
One of my go to beers at this time. I'm never dissapointed with this beer. A nice change from my usual Pale Ales or IPAs.

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Double Barrel Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 751 ratings.
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