Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #1,158
Ranked #6,274
4.17 | pDev: 6.47%
Yesterday at 01:46 AM
Sep 18, 2022
Notes: To create this first-ever canned Vintage beer, we aged a selection of Parabola for one year in premium bourbon barrels, then blended it with a complement of Velvet Merlin milk stout to create a silky mouthfeel and a more approachable ABV of 9.2 percent. Finally, we infused the beer with Madagascar vanilla beans, cocoa nibs and sea salt to achieve a full Salted Caramel-style drinking experience.
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Photo of tigg924
Reviewed by tigg924 from Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
Had on tap out of a growler. Pours clear, dark brown in color with one quarter inch head. Taste is big vanilla, Tootsie Roll, toasted malt, marshmallow and light barrel. Heavy body, moderate carbonation, sweet. Wow do I miss Firestone Walker and their imperial stouts. This is excellent....vanilla, barrel and more. FW has the best barrel Aged beers bar delicious.
Yesterday at 01:46 AM
Rated: 4.17 by petewheeler from Maryland

Sunday at 07:17 PM
Photo of jkblr
Reviewed by jkblr from Indiana

4.21/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
16oz can vintage 2022 poured into a Spiegelau stout glass at fridge temp 9.2% ABV 40 IBU 100 SRM per can. The beer pours black with no light penetration and light brown head. The head recedes slowly to a thick cap. The aroma is chocolate brownie and vanilla with bourbon. The taste is semisweet caramel and chocolate with a hint of salt and subtle bourbon and barrel notes in the background. Moderate bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium plus bodied with average carbonation and a semi dry finish. Overall, very good.
Saturday at 01:01 AM
Rated: 4.24 by HopBelT from Belgium

Friday at 08:47 PM
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
Reviewed by MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

4.18/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
16oz can. Label has this as BATCH NO.1 | 2022'.
Dark brown colored body with some mahogany back lit highlights. Two fingers of light tan small bubble head. Mostly complete walls of lacing left behind.
Aroma is big with vanilla, lesser bourbon barrel, cocoa, and dark roasted malts. Smells sweet.
Taste is initially cola like - with vanilla, then more dark cocoa arrives. The bourbon barrel is there but acts more as a support base. Some salt on the lips and tongue at the end, so the full salted caramel experience is there. Not as sweet as suggested by the note. Bourbon, vanilla and cocoa in the aftertaste. Leaves a final charred cocoa finish.
Medium mouth feel, with some creaminess. Smooth throughout. Higher ABV% is hidden for the most part. Supportive carbonation.
Slightly sweet dessert beer, to be paired with chocolate, vanilla, and coffee cakes.
Thursday at 12:49 AM
Photo of Viaduck
Reviewed by Viaduck from California

4.29/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
A surprisingly large head for a relatively high ABV. Aroma: vanilla, more vanilla, chocolate & a hint of bourbon. Mildly salty with a slightly bitter finish. Lots of vanilla flavor with some milk chocolate, roasted malt & a bit of bourbon. Slightly thin with good carbonation & plenty of alcohol to entertain the tongue. I really didn’t sense caramel, it was more like a s’more dunked in bourbon.
Wednesday at 10:33 PM
Photo of Darkmagus82
Reviewed by Darkmagus82 from Texas

4.09/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
Poured from a can into a snifter
Appearance – The beer pours a nearly deep brown color with a one finger head of tan colored foam. The head has a good level of retention, fading slowly over time and leaving tons of streaky lace on the sides of the glass.
Smell – The aroma rather heavy of a roasted malt and coffee ground aroma mixed with sweet aromas of a huge salted caramel smell. Along with these smells comes a strong showing of vanilla and cocoa as well as some notes of smoke and char. Rounding it all out is a nice oaky smell mixed with some boozy bourbon and a touch of coconut and toasted brown bread.
Taste – The taste starts out with a nice smooth roasted malt flavor that is accented with notes of cold brew coffee. As it is a salted caramel stout, this flavor is rather pronounced right from the start, with it getting even more potent as the taste moves forward. Upfront the vanilla is also rather strong and with the roast and coffee, it produces an almost latte like flavor. The cocoa is light upfront, but does develop a touch as the flavor profile moves forward. Coming with the cocoa are some light oaky and bourbon flavors as well as a touch of char. A bit of raisin develops at the expense of some of the vanilla at the end, and with all the transitions throughout the taste profile, one is left with a rather smooth, iced coffee/latte flavor to linger on the tongue.
Mouthfeel – The body of the brew is moderate in thickness and creaminess for a brew of 9.2 % abv with a carbonation level that is rather low. For the style and the rich salted caramel and latte like flavors the feel is rather nice and makes a slow, but not too slow and approachable sipper.
Overall – A rather nice, bigger, but approachable stout with a whole lot of nice flavor and more or less a nice balance. Living up to the Firestone name.
Nov 22, 2022
Rated: 4.16 by Taenim from New Jersey

Nov 20, 2022
Photo of zeff80
Reviewed by zeff80 from Missouri

4.36/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
16oz can. Poured out an opaque, jet-black color with a small, light brown head of foam. It left minimal lacing on the glass. It smelled of caramel, vanilla, chocolate and oaky notes. Sweet caramel, chocolate and toffee. Subtle saltiness with oak and vanilla notes, too.
Nov 17, 2022
Rated: 4.12 by shelby415 from Oregon

Nov 13, 2022
Photo of mothman
Reviewed by mothman from Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
2022 can.

Fizzy tan head. Black color.

Overly roasted. Malty. Chocolate and caramel. Coffee. Light vanilla, light barrel.

Not much going on here. Kind of tastes like a BA Porter. Some barrel in the finish.
Nov 12, 2022
Rated: 4.15 by SaxmanRick from Minnesota

Nov 08, 2022
Photo of HattedClassic
Reviewed by HattedClassic from Virginia

4.16/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
The beer pours a nice dark brown bubbly head that dissipates fairly quickly. The beer itself is a dark chocolate brown color that comes off as black. The texture is nice. It has a very nice sheen to it.

The smell is pretty good. It has a nice creamy and milk smell with note of dark chocolate and vanilla. It's fairly sweet with some light bitterness.

The taste is pretty good. It starts off with a nice bitter cocoa note upfront and through out the taste while the bourbon is fairly light. The caramel note starts to appear towards the finish. The beer finishes salty.

The feel is good. It has a creamy and slightly thick texture but a medium body with biting carbonation in the finish.

Overall, this a pretty good beer worth getting and a good stout. Like their other stouts, it has a nice variety of flavors that isn't overwhelming.
Nov 04, 2022
Photo of Troy-Hawaii
Reviewed by Troy-Hawaii from Hawaii

4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Bought a single 16oz can $6.59 Tamura's
No can date other than Batch No. 1 2022
Dark black color
Smells like tootsie rolls
Heavy mouthfeel
Medium light carbonation
Tate of chocolate, coffee, vanilla, caramel, light bourbon, some creaminess. Alcohol taste is well hidden, but can feel it warming you up.
Overall great for the price. Other Parabolas are usually $10 for 12oz so this is a great deal.
Nov 03, 2022
Photo of LiquidAmber
Reviewed by LiquidAmber from Washington

4.46/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, appearing nearly opaque in the glass with a thin khaki head that dissipates to patches with light lacing. Aroma of dark toasted malt, cocoa, malted milk and vanilla; inviting. Flavor is dark toasted malt with light to moderate char, bakers chocolate, vanilla, light dry caramel and coffee. Medium bodied with light to moderate creaminess. An interesting new stout from the blend masters at FW. I really could taste the two main components with the deep malt and roastiness from Parabola combined with the milk chocolate of Velvet Merlin. It's a winning combination. I'm not quite getting the salted caramel connection, there is quite light salt notes and mild caramel; perhaps a dark, lightly sweetened chocolate with a caramel wisp, is what this reminded of. The main show here is the nicely toasted malt and vanilla milk stout combination, which is great. Nice kick of smokey toasted malt in the finish. I may like this a bit more than the base Parabola, so further testing is called for. Can't wait. The "…ita" ending for the name prepared me for a diminutive version of Parabola, but this is full bodied.
Nov 03, 2022
Photo of pkalix
Rated by pkalix from California

3.57/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5
Nov 03, 2022
Photo of DIM
Reviewed by DIM from Pennsylvania

4.32/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Mission accomplished, they achieved exactly what they set out to do here. There is a really nice caramel note here, I don't recall tasting it in a stout before. It works extremely well with the rich cocoa and hint of salt. I'm getting rich, boozy, liquid salted caramel. I wouldn't want this every day, but I'm enjoying the hell out of it right now.
Nov 02, 2022
Rated: 4.1 by Budlum from Maryland

Oct 29, 2022
Photo of mschrei
Reviewed by mschrei from Illinois

4.31/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Dark, mild head. Strong notes of roasted dark malt, vanilla, and cocoa, with a mild barrel presence. Taste is not as strong in the flavors as the smell, but the adjuncts assert themselves. Barrel is kind of weak. Lighter to medium bodied, booze is subtle, thin for a barrel aged stout. Almost seems like more of a barrel aged Porter. Good, but when you’re a spin-off of a classic, you should be better.
Oct 27, 2022
Rated: 4.17 by Dope from Massachusetts

Oct 27, 2022
Photo of stevoj
Reviewed by stevoj from Idaho

4.04/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
16oz can from Brewers Haven. Dark brown pour with a thick dark beige head, fluffy. Caramel and chocolate immediately waft up towards the nose, roast malts. Taste is mildly sweet, cocoa, coffee, caramel. Feel is on the heavy side, light bitterness lingers. Sweetness fades but the bitterness stays throughout.
Oct 25, 2022
Rated: 3.98 by crobinso from Colorado

Oct 24, 2022
Rated: 4.12 by dshansen1184 from Washington

Oct 15, 2022
Rated: 4.5 by 1971bernat from Virginia

Oct 13, 2022
Photo of dafla67
Reviewed by dafla67 from Pennsylvania

4.21/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Pours dark brown. Aroma is quite sweet -- caramel, chocolate brownie, sugar and vanilla. Taste follows nose but with a different balance. Brownie is lessened but vanilla and sugar is definitely more prominant. Some bourbon in there as well. Mouthfeel is a bit thin for my taste. Overall a really good stout.
Oct 09, 2022
Photo of Zythophile
Reviewed by Zythophile from Washington

4.46/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Can Date: none
Palate Contaminants: other beer

Look is the typical completely opaque dark brown. Maybe a half-inch of light visible at the edges. A little bit of medium-fine light brown head. Hardly any lacing.

Really nice smell. It's like a dark chocolate brownie with a caramel topping. Molasses. The sugar has some smoke with it. Heavy sweetness even in the smell. Maybe vanilla in there, too.

The vanilla is a little more present in the taste. I'm still going to say brownie, but any chocolate or cocoa is dialed back. However, the scored sugar (caramel) is dialed up. There's more bitterness present than what you would get in a dessert with the flavors I'm describing. Sweetness is medium. Char flavor doesn't really interact with the bitterness.

Medium-thin weight for the type. Lots of carbonation for the type, oddly. Aftertaste is smoky sugar, with the vanilla and caramel having exited stage left. Alcohol is detectable, but not bad for a niner.
Oct 06, 2022
Photo of Scotchboy
Reviewed by Scotchboy from Idaho

4.21/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Nice offering from FW, a nice Parabola variant. Dark/black pour with a mocha head from the 16oz can (ftw!). Sweet, roasty, nice backbone of caramel and vanilla sweetness with some mocha/dark chocolate and some sticky, figgy dark fruits. Burn is minimal and the body is obviously lighter than other imperial stouts, but this one works for me.
Sep 26, 2022
Photo of micada
Reviewed by micada from New York

3.56/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5
Mixed bag. More bitter than I imagined. Strong cacoa nibs, barrel wood. The Velvet Merkin or something is putting an odd twang in the flavor. Doesn’t seem like salt, but something. It’s still enjoyable. Maybe needs more breathing time. -1 for being in a can. Sure it’s a bigger drink but I prefer glass for no scientific reason.

Updated the rating much lower after about an hour. More air only made it more bitter, harsh, unpleasant. Really not a salted caramel taste. More like raw cacao nibs meets dirt on wood. Parabola is good. Velvet Merkin is good. Together this version with the adjuncts is not working tastewise.
Sep 18, 2022
Parabolita from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 28 ratings