Firestone 14 - Anniversary Ale
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Firestone 14 - Anniversary AleFirestone 14 - Anniversary Ale
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
American Strong Ale
4.41 | pDev: 8.84%
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Firestone 14 - Anniversary AleFirestone 14 - Anniversary Ale
Notes: The blend consists of: 31% Double Double Barrel Ale, 29% Sticky Monkey, 27% Parabola, 7% Velvet Merkin, 3% Good Foot, 3% Black Xantus
View: Beers | Events
Reviews: 304 | Ratings: 720
Photo of GonzoHomebrewer
4.32/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Opened for the third period of the B's game tonight

A Pours pitch black with a very thin mocha head, has some legs to it but also looked thin upon pour.

S- This is where the beer shines the most for me. An incredibly deep, complex blend of vanilla, dark fruits, toffee, oak, char, dark roasted coffee and caramel. really could smell this all day as it has mellowed to an icredibly well rounded barrel aged beer on the nose.

T- A more subdued version of the nose with a mild presence of alcohol heat; The brandy/dark fruit component seems to linger really long; to the point where it is reminiscent of belgian quad. Overall still very good, but the nose had promise for more.

M- creamy, yet I wouldn't really call it full, thick or luscious, which is what I wouldve preferred.

O- I was surprised at how much alcohol heat was still on this, this was pretty warming still. Good beer, could probably be aged a little longer to see if that heat goes away, but I feel as though the taste may mellow to a point that the mellowing of the flavors would negate any gain in mellowing of alcohol heat. Good beer, I'd drink my bottles now if I had any more.

 1,153 characters

Photo of shand
4.24/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Mmmmm, a barrel-aged blend of a bunch of beers I've never had. Firestone 14 pours a deep brown with a very small head. The aroma is sweet with a ton of bourbon, with layers of complexity that I can tell are there, but can't quite coax out. The complexity comes through more on the tongue by far, with layers on layers of flavor. Vanilla, dark fruit, chocolate, coffee, oak, caramel, toffee, roasted malt, all the flavors you want from a big barrel aged beer are here. Each sip reveals a different facet of the blend. The mouthfeel is a little lighter than I would have expected, but it's very smooth. Overall, Firestone 14 is an excellent barrel aged blend. Very tasty.

 669 characters

Photo of mikeyv35
4.13/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Date: 09/26/2011
Type: 22oz. Foiled Bomber
Vintage: 2011
Glass: Free The Hops Snifter courtesy of Zach (beeruser)

Pours a deep brown mahogany in color w/ light black highlights w/ a skim coat white head that leaves little to no lacing. Aromas of bourbon, oak, cola, and caramel. The taste was of caramel/toffee/raisins up front, followed by bourbon and woodiness. Medium bodied and lush. I could not drink alot of this brew as it is very warming. This brew is best shared w/ friends.

Overall, not mind blowing, but very good.

 527 characters

Photo of artoolemomo
4.48/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Very carbonated with definite rush akin to a saison or a quadrupel. The body is incredibly opaque. A dark chestnut that is almost black. The head pours under a finger and dissipates quickly. I didn't even get much to time to really look at it but was your typical darkish beige of stouts and beers of this type.

Nose- There is a lot of chocolate and raisins on the initial sniff. There is also caramel, toffee, and vanilla. None of it is terribly strong but it is quite inviting.

Taste- The first observation is that this is starting syrupy sweet but this dissipates quickly into a flavor profile reminiscent of the best imperial stouts. The first thing I notice is coconut, then cherry, followed by chocolate, oak, and basic woody. The alcohol is almost nonexistent except for a slight burn at the end. There are notions of fig and tobacco also. However, these flavors have been muted by age and bring out a more integrated beer. While I may have enjoyed the brash complexity when it was green more, this is resplendent with its charms. There are also notes of licorice.

Mouthfeel- Perhaps the least enjoyable aspect of what is proving to be a very nice beer. It's a little thinner than I would like but not so much that it really detracts from the beer much at all.

Drinkability- Could be terrifying. Thankfully, this comes at the cost of 25 dollars and 2 years so maybe I will be able to hold back?

Overall- Very nice indeed. This is an A to A+ beer- my guess is that it would have been closer to the A+ when it was younger.

 1,548 characters

Photo of Rutager
4.26/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Tried this at a Parabola release in Seattle a couple years ago and have been sitting on a couple of these for a while. Probably should have reviewed it sooner, but with my buying habits any beer that can wait, usually does for a while...

Appearance. Pours a deep brown with a thin, light tan head.

Smell. Sticky toffee, light bourbon, chocolate, vanilla, caramel and a bit of coffee. There's a touch of dark fruit and some nice smooth booze as well. Smells sweet and decadent.

Taste. Sweet toffee again, raisins, very woody bourbon, chocolate and vanilla. There's a good amount of booze here but it's fairly smooth.

Mouthfeel. Full bodied, low+ carbonation, warming for sure.

Overall. A very nice, big sweet sipper. I'll be enjoying this one for the whole evening I'm sure.

 778 characters

Photo of Dope
4.56/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just about 2 years old, seeing as the 16th just came out.

A: Pours a deep and dark ruby-brown. Mid-sized but dense light brown head. Fades at a moderate pace, leaving absolutely zero lacing behind. Somewhat decent head retention, however.

S: Whoa, heavenly aroma. Heavy on the bourbon with caramel, toffee, vanilla and burnt sugar. Surprisingly strong roasted malt character too, some coffee and really nice chocolate blends in. Honestly it smells like a bourbon barrel stout but it is extra sweet and caramelly (is that a word?) like a barleywine. Some mild dark fruits too. Absolutely wonderful; I keep picking up the glass to sniff it some more. Such a variety of aromas and so pleasant. Amazing.

T: Oh man. This is unreal. Bourbon up front, lots of caramel, burnt sugars and some vanilla. Strong roasted malt, primarily chocolate here. Wonderful milk chocolate. Some coffee in the middle with lots of caramel sweetening it up. Quite sweet and unbelievably creamy at the same time. There is some hoppiness in the finish, maybe a little pine? Even get some toastiness with it too. Finish is primarily bourbon with brown sugar and caramel and a moderate drying oak. Still fairy boozy after 2 years, especially apparent in the aftertaste. Nothing harsh but it lets you know that it's still 12.5% ABV.

M: Heavy, thick, super creamy and smooth.

O: Wow, can't believe I've never had this one before. One hell of a beer. The blending of brews creates an unbelievably complex yet somehow balanced beer. It's primarily a bourbon barrel stout but has lots of toasted malt and caramel of a barleywine and or a strong ale. Which I guess, is more or less what it is. Mouthfeel is great, so smooth and creamy like an oatmeal stout. Very sweet overall but somehow isn't cloying. Great work, Firestone Walker.

 1,803 characters

Photo of homebrew311
4.65/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Transcribed from notes of an earlier tasting.

Pours a deep reddish purple color with minimal head. Nice clarity here which makes for a dazzling appearance. The first thing that comes to mind in the aroma in the contribution of Abacus to the blend. Tons of vanilla and caramelized malts stand up front with some chocolate and coffee character in the back The bourbon looms large in this and seems to be well blended. The taste is incredibly smooth with vanilla, molasses, caramel, raisin, and mild stout qualities at the end. This seems to feature an array of styles (ie barleywine, stout, bourbon) which seems like it might clash, but the fine folks at Firestone Walker managed to blend this into quite the well integrated treat. The body is somewhat light relative to the high ABV, the carbonation is mellow. This is damn delicious.

 834 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.01/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a deep tawny garnet brown with a smallish off white head that dissipates almost instantly. Smells of oaken wood with a sweet but tannic edge and a hint of wet cardboard. Sweet sugars and caramel with a touch of chocolate an roast along with a bit of fruity sweetness to round out the nose quite nicely. The flavor is big and sweet up front with a solid shot of ethanol. Brown sugar and caramel with hints of cocoa and dark fruits.Medium to thick body with a sweet sugary mouthfeel and a light level of carbonation. This is a big thick complex beer that I thoroughly enjoyed tonight. Its a sipper, but on a cold night such as this it just worked as an all night thing.

 673 characters

Photo of ummswimmin
4.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I picked up this bottle quite a while ago, and I finally opened it up tonight. I used a snifter to maximize the aroma on this one.

This is a very rich beer. The aroma provides a lot of venous presence while balancing that with the coffee and significant roast characteristics. I definitely pick up the bourbon off of this one. This beer smells amazing.

The flavor is equally rich. I like the velvety texture. You get a decent amount of warmth from the alcohol. This is a very good sipper. I'm glad I was able to age this one.

 527 characters

Photo of beagle75
3.7/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a half-pint chalice.

A: Slightly hazy, medium red-brown color with a peripheral ring of light beige bubbles. No lacing remains on the glass.

S: Brown sugar, vanilla, maraschino cherries, tamarind, and earthy spirit all combine to good effect in the nose. A moderate alcohol presence is pervasive and comfortable.

T: Begins off-dry, with molasses and roasted malt that is slightly scorched. Carbonic acidity is strong into the middle where plentiful bourbon and oak qualities develop. Dark chocolate and more bourbon are in pleasant company by the finish which is boozy, drying, and moderately bitter.

M: Thin to medium viscosity; wet, hot, and slightly acidic on the palate; with low carbonation.

D/O: Potent in its flavor intensity, but diminished by a level of acidity that just isn't welcome in a beer of such heft. Still, barrel qualities are captured in appealing fashion, particularly in the smell, making it a worthwhile strong ale.

 970 characters

Photo of jmarsh123
2.98/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Decided to raid the cellar to see how this one is holding up. Pours dark brown with a small tan head. Decent retention and a bit of lacing down the glass.

Lots of sweetness in the aroma. Brown sugar and molasses with a touch of cocoa. Not element of heat anymore.

Sweet taste as well. Brown sugar and molasses are evident with a touch of coconut and dark chocolate. A little bit of bourbon presence, but most heat is gone. Really just kind of bland and sweet.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side which is a complaint I have on most FW anny beers although age seems to thinned it out past an acceptable point. Carbonation is holding up well.

Proof once again FW beers are best fresh. Having had both XV and XVI recently, they are both tremendously better than this. Really just kind of bland at this point.

 803 characters

Photo of Bubba83
4.22/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewing this beer while eating a baguette with some Humboldt Fog Goat Cheese. Opened at around 50 degrees F and enjoyed over the course of an hour or so. 16 was just released so that puts this bottle at about two years old. Pours a very dark brown, much darker than I remember the fresh bottles being. The head is a light tan and there's a fairly decent amount of it considering the style/age of it, nearly one finger-width. Retention is good for a barrel aged beer and there's even a light amount of lacing. Very nice to look at.

The aroma on this guy has come a long way in two years. I remember being able to tell from the aroma that this beer had a big alcohol presence and that was true in the taste too two years ago. Now though I really just get hit with a ton of toasted coconut, with a good hit of vanilla and brown sugar in the background. There's some dark caramel and a little bit of a cocoa touch there as well. No traces of any alcohol heat anymore as the beer has mellowed out just fine.

The taste can't quite live up to the aroma, but has also improved dramatically with age. I really didn't like this beer fresh, it just seemed so unincorporated and solvent-like. Now there's some harmony in between the caramel/brown sugar backbone and the coconut. I'm accustomed to a little bit more dark chocolate type of flavors from their Anniversary beers, but it's not surprising this one is a bit different since Double DBA and Sticky Monkey make up nearly 60% of the blend. I have to say, I miss Parabola being more apparent. The bourbon notes are there with some vanilla, and I'm even picking out a little bit of cherry perhaps from the brandy barrels used for Sticky Monkey. With that said, the barrel character is not overbearing.

The mouthfeel is a little thinner than I think it should be, but that could partially be due to the age on it. I want it to be a little more viscous, but it does still coat the tongue nicely. The carbonation seems to be spot on and the texture is overall very good.

I'm glad I sat on my second bottle for a couple of years since I really wasn't feeling this one when it first came out. It's drinking pretty well right now and this might be its peak. Probably my least favorite final blend chosen yet, but I have to admit it's still pretty damn good.

 2,299 characters

Photo of jsanford
4.44/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark cola brown with lighter brown edges and a very thin ring of khaki haze. Splendid aromas of tobacco, chocolate, caramel, vanilla, and oak. Definitely getting the barrel aging, mixed nicely between the Bourbon and Brandy. Reminds me a bit of Angel's Share in the nose. Taste is along the lines of the nose, rich tobacco, caramel, and chocolate with more oak, vanilla, and a surprising amount of citrus hop bitterness in the finish that balances the sweetness nicely. Mouthfeel is slightly sticky but nice and smooth, with a medium-full body and low carbonation. Definitely a slow sipper, but a deliciously decadent one. Superb beer, I think I actually like it better then 13th Anniversary blend.

 711 characters

Photo of travMI13
4.6/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

650 ml bottle poured into a Founders tulip.

A: Pours a deep mahogany-black with about a half-finger of off-white head that dissipates quickly. Fairly transparent for a strong ale, it seems.

S: Smells of bourbon, oak, vanilla, and dark fruits. It smells very sweet, and the bourbon definitely dominates the nose.

T: Whoa. The aroma doesn't do this beer justice. Rich, deep notes of bourbon, vanilla, and oak are there, but there is a very strong dark chocolate presence in the middle. The sweet, dark fruits and some tobacco are there as well. There is a very slight burn from the bourbon, but it backs up and balances the sweetness of the beer. The flavor of this is nothing short of incredible.

M: Silky, smooth, and decadent. Perfect amount of carbonation.

O: What a spectacular blend by Firestone Walker. I wasn't sure what I was getting myself into with this one, but it really is drinking great. No need to age this one any further; I'm not sure how any additional age could improve it.

 996 characters

Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.42/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes

22oz bottle split with my brother. Had this back to back with a Parabola and a DDBA...

A - Pours a deep brown with a one finger khaki head that dissipates at a fairly hasty pace. Lacing is present, but is minimal...

S - Lots going on here. Caramel, toasted malts, vanilla, chocolate, molasses, and a good amount bourbon. Very inviting...

T - Starts out sweet with caramel, toffee, molasses, and a little chocolate. Vanilla comes through and lingers throughout with some smooth bourbon on the finish. Bourbon comes through alot smoother than I was expecting from the scent...

M - Rich and silky. Heavy bodied with light carbonation.

O - FW hits another one out of the park. It was interesting drinking this one back to back with a DDBA as I could pick up alot characteristics from the DDBA. Don't see age doing much more for this one as it is drinking very well now...


 905 characters

Photo of ngeunit1
4.42/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a very dark brown color with a thin finger of frothy chocolate-khaki colored head. The head fades down fairly quickly leaving behind some lacing.

S - Aroma is full of sweet caramelized sugars, vanilla, oak, bourbon, toasted coconut, brandy, with some chocolate, coffee, and booze.

T - Starts off with sweet caramelized sugars, dark fruit, vanilla, and some chocolate and brown sugar. Through the middle, oak, Bourbon, and Brandy come through with some toasted coconut and a bit of coffee. The finish is a mix of vanilla, oak, Bourbon, dark fruit, caramelized malts, with some roasted chocolate and booze.

M - Full bodied with mild carbonation. Feels smooth and a bit syrupy with a warming and sweet finish.

D - Very drinkable. Great bold barrel aged beer. Nice and complex from the blend of barrels and nicely balanced.

 833 characters

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.25/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Dark, not quite black. No head. Some legs and lace.

Smell - Bourbon barrel, but mostly the spirit smell. Lacks a complex barrel aroma. Sweet. Vanilla and caramel come through, but that's about it. It's all bourbon and only a hint of beer.

Taste - Alcohol. Caramel. Booze. No oak. The barrel seems lost again. Very sweet with bourbon. Hop bitterness but not enough to give it any semblance of complexity.

Mouthfeel - Boozy and sweet. Low carbonation. Thick and syrupy. Slow to drink.

Overall - It's bourbon without any of the good barrel notes that usually accompany it. I don't really love the beer behind it, either. Uninteresting.

 708 characters

Photo of Scotchboy
4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Amazing 22oz bomber sent from Steve, thank you so much! Poured into snifters and shared with my brother.

A: Pours that opaque dark brown color, with a khaki colored head that is quickly revivable with a swirl. Excellent alcohol legs cover the glass.

S: Absolutely epic nose, full of complexity...bourbon, vanilla, molasses, dark caramel, burnt sugar, rum soaked raisins, toasted coconut, slight alcohol heat, faint cocoa nibs.

T: Follows the nose, initially you are overwhelmed with sugary sweetness but this beer shifts flavor profiles continually. Bourbon and spirit notes again, along with the expected vanilla and caramel, there is a molasses syrup component, sticky figs, toasted coconut, and sweet cream. Very pleasant alcohol presence on the back end.

MF: Viscous and sticky, medium to full bodied with mellow carbonation.

O: Complex and admirably crafted, this beer is a pleasure to sip as it warms and evolves. Simply awesome use of barrels, with just enough of the abv showing at this age to add some warmth.

 1,023 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.24/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Wowcoolman for sharing this one at the Firestone Walker night at Steingarten LA in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that fades to nothing. No lacing on this one. Smell is of roasted and toasted malt, vanilla, caramel, toffee, toasted coconut, slight cocoa, cookie dough, and some wood and alcohol aromas. Taste is the same but the flavors are balanced and complex with a woody finish and not too bad of an alcohol kick on the finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer that seems to be holding up quite well at this time. To me this one tastes great and has become a tasty and dangerously drinkable beer at this time.

 764 characters

Photo of BostonHops
4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served in a snifter.
bottled date: 10/25/10

pours an opaque dark brown, sits a pitch black in the glass. 1/2" head fades to a thin, khaki colored collar around the glass... middling retention (not unexpected) and decent lacing. overall a solid looking brew, though nothing about it really stands out as exceptional.

aromatic nose is decidedly malty, offering strong notes of molasses, vanilla, oak, some hops, and a big bourbon presence. great aroma.

wow. hugely complex flavor profile follows the nose; just a ton going on - unsurprising given the blend (FW double double barrel ale, sticky monkey, parabola, velvet merkin, good foot, and black xantus). molasses, vanilla, oak, hops, bourbon, all shine through in one of the more complex beers i've had in a while. significant bitterness and a warming boozy kick to the finish.

smooth, velvetey full-bodied mouthfeel; oustanding there. the archetype of a sipper; drinks almost like a cognac.
carries a hefty pricetag, too. not something i'd buy on a regular basis but worthy of a once-in-a-while, special occasion purchase.

originally reviewed: 02-28-2011

 1,124 characters

Photo of Etan
4.12/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a brandy snifter. Sent to me in a trade by inventsituations. Thanks!

A: Pours a very dark brown with a small tan head. A little bit of lacing.

S: Slightly oxidized dark fruits with a good amount of stout elements. Raisins, mild cocoa, vanilla, brown sugar, smooth liquor, sweet oak.

T: Dark roasted malts laced with a pungent but smooth alcohol presence. Raisins, prunes, bitter dark chocolate, big sweet vanilla, coconut, and caramel, oaky whiskey. Solvent alcohol lingers. Great barrel presence.

M: Good carbonation in the body still. Medium-bodied and silky. Alcohol is very present.

O: Nice and smoothed out, although there's a bit of an astringent bitterness that isn't helped by the alcohol. Still pretty damn tasty. Great barrel presence as usual.

 790 characters

Photo of Jeffo
3.92/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Masterski for including this one in our trade a good while back. Finally Doopie, Pasqual and myself were able to open the XV, XIV and XIII together a couple weeks ago. Vive la France!

From a bomber into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours a small, medium looking, beige head with lousy retention. Color is a relatively transparent sienna brown and no carbonation is evident. Head quickly fades to only a ring, which remains until the end but leaves no lacing down the glass. A little darker than XV, but also nothing special.

SMELL: Bourbon, oak, vanilla and some notes of roasted malts and milk chocolate. Not quite as bold and the XV, but more roasted aromas and less caramel / toffee notes. Still nice on the nose.

TASTE: A touch of roasted flavors up front, but the rest is similar to the XV. Very bourbon barrel forward, with bourbon, oak woody notes, vanilla, and some nice milk chocolate as well. A big, bold and lingering aftertaste of bourbon barrel and a tough of roasted malts and caramel as well. Very nice and flavorful stuff.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. Not overly creamy on the palate, but goes down fine and finishes slightly sticky. Carbonation is actually a touch prickly perhaps. Some heat lingers on the palate. Same as the XV.

OVERALL: Another solid brew in the FW Anniversary Series. While they were all enjoyable, quality beers, this one was probably my least favorite of the three beer series. It didn’t quite have the boldness the XV had, and the XIII agreed a little more with my palate. Still, another person could have the complete opposite experience, so this one not only comes highly recommended for being part of a stellar series, it comes highly recommended for being a superb beer on its own right. Thanks again for the trade Masterski.

 1,803 characters

Photo of rapidsequence
4.59/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle. I think it was $20 or so from Ned's. My 500th BeerAdvocate review.

Appearance: Pours a very deep brown that looks black in the glass, but shows brown and ruby highlights when held up. Thin light brown head with brief retention, some spots of lacing.

Smell: I don't pass out a lot of perfect scores, but the aroma of this beer really has the wow factor. Chocolate, dark fruits (raisin, fig), maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, and bourbon. Rich and sweet, but balanced such that no part stands out and dominates.

Taste: This is a delicious beer, but it falls a little short of the aroma. There's a little more bourbony heat than I'd prefer. Also, while the aroma seems to perfectly blend aspects of the different blended beers, it tastes more like a somewhat fruity BA imperial stout-- albeit an excellent one.

Mouthfeel: I expected the beer to be much thinner than this. Its got some heft, and its silky smooth. Great.

Overall: Pretty exceptional beer. Great job of blending some already excellent beers.

 1,023 characters

Photo of orangesol
4.22/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I brought this one to Imminent Liquidation II. Bottle poured into a taster glass.

A - Pours dark brown with a decent one finger tall off-white head leaving light streaks of lace down the glass.

S - Smells of chocolate, vanilla, brown sugar, caramel, toffee, toasted nuts and some warm bourbon. Some booze creeps in as it sits in the glass.

T - Starts off with quite a bit of sweetness - same flavors as in the nose - slowly giving way to the warm bourbon that only grows stronger as it sits in the glass. Finish can best be described as sweet heat. The combination works very well. Once the booze dies down a little more this one will really be something.

M - Rich, slick feel with plenty of candy sweet flavors and moderate carbonation. The only real drawback is that the booze is still pretty noticeable.

O - I really liked this one. It had nearly all of my favorite flavors and was fairly easy to drink. I hope to try this one again in the future, I think it could really end up being one of the better in the series.

 1,025 characters

Photo of ms11781
4.28/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a deep, dark, opaque brown color with a minimal tan head. The little head that does develop recedes immediately and leaves an extremely thin ring of foam around the glass. No lacing at all, as to be expected for the style.

After sitting for over a year the nose is still full of bourbon. Nice toffee notes are here along with some caramel. The two give a sweet scent. Chocolate is here in a lesser fashion as is some light vanilla. There is a touch of wood but it's more bourbon than barrel overall.

The bourbon is prevalent in the taste as it was in the nose. The toffee and caramel notes combine to provide a substantial sweetness that contrasts nicely with the warming bourbon. The chocolate is still here but it is far more subdued than it was in the nose, and even then it wasn't all that strong. There is some pleasant warming at the back of the throat with each sip.

The mouthfeel is pretty full. It feels thick and viscous on the tongue. Low carbonation contributes to the big, full feeling. Some warming from the alcohol provides a nice warmth.

This is still a very good beer, even a year later. It has perhaps faded a bit from when it was fresh but, nonetheless, it's still very good. Despite the same flavors and aromas coming across it is a pretty complex beer. The fact that it stands up this well more than a year later speaks to the craftsmanship that when into this beer.

 1,434 characters

Firestone 14 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 97 out of 100 with 720 ratings