Helldorado | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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HelldoradoHelldorado
BA SCORE
4.27/5
Outstanding
1,013 Ratings
HelldoradoHelldorado
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Part of the adventure of aging beer in retired spirits barrels is the synergistic interaction of different malt flavors with the oak and spirit flavors from the barrel. Darker beers like stouts and darker barley wines have typically been the favored candidates for barrel-aging, due to their deeper caramel and roasted flavors. Helldorado breaks that mold with a deep golden color from being brewed solely with English and American pale malts. The bready, honeyed flavors of pale malts pull out rich wildflower honey, vanilla and coconut notes from the oak, creating an overall flavor evocative of bourbon-glazed graham crackers that stands as singularly unique in our Vintage lineup.

Added by wethorseblanket on 10-21-2011

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,234
Reviews:
260
Ratings:
1,013
pDev:
7.49%
 
 
Wants:
161
Gots:
482
Trade:
72
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,013 |  Reviews: 260
Photo of Brob245
4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of justme
4.85/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow. This was one of the best beers I’ve had in a long time. Find it comparable to JW Lee’s Harvest Ale. Similar flavors, but Firestone controls the alcohol taste slightly better.

 183 characters

Photo of siskiyoucellar
4.29/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Yeah. I know this beer well and I’m finally getting around to reviewing it. It’s always something special and this one has been in my cellar for 40 months. I think it’s among the best barleywines in the world and it ages superbly. Deep golden honey in color, it briefly shows a tight off-white head that quickly fades to a lovely ring. The aroma is rich and buttery, suffused with honey, vanilla and a hint of black pepper. The taste follows perfectly, building on the themes of wildflower honey and pale malts while adding more spice, juicy tropical fruit and even more honey. Hops are there but delicate, it’s more on the English side of the style. Mouthfeel is amazing; the carbonation is still strong and smooth after more than three years, perfectly supporting the silky, buttery viscosity. Yeah.

 818 characters

Photo of Nichols33
3.75/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Viaduck
4.27/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy honey color with almost no head. Definitely one of the prettiest aromas ever, very sweet smelling with honey & fragrant flowers. Taste is sweet but not as much as it’s aroma implies. Very pleasing flavors: honey, caramel, vanilla, malted grain & plenty of alcohol (it is 12.8 after all). Kind of like a mixed drink with whiskey. There’s enough alcohol & flavor that the lack of carbonation isn’t even noticed. Rich & complex & delicious!

 448 characters

Photo of gatornation
3.88/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear golden orange color with a minimal head. smell has a bourbon presence with honey, herbal notes and slight coconut. Taste follows nose with nice caramel and wood notes ,herbal flowers ,subtle coconut with a wood bourbon finish. Mouth feel is not heavy but does have a barrel taste and finish. This one grows on you as it warms.

 343 characters

Photo of grittybrews
4.37/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Jamison85
4.27/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of sweetbrew82
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TLA
4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of cd34
4.27/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Kwright
5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of rypkr
4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of dafla67
4.68/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

pours gold-ish; aroma is sweet with bourbon, vanilla and some honey. The taste is amazing -- a balance of the aroma along with malts and caramel. It is medium feel. Outstanding.

 177 characters

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

Photo of Heeenrik
4.49/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of scream
3.77/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Not sure what to make of this. It does not taste like any barley-wine I have had in the past. I think it is lacking in the charcter I would expect from a barley-wine - maybe there is something that I do not understand, it being called a blonde barley-wine style ale. It is probably dangerous at 12.8%.

 301 characters

Photo of gopens44
4.15/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of VforVinny
4.41/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of AngEo
4.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of metter98
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is hazy amber yellow in color—too hazy to see if there is any visible carbonation. It poured with a short white head that quickly died down, leaving only a thin film of bubbles on the surface and a narrow collar around the edge of the glass. The head died down further, leaving only a narrow collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of coconut and oaky vanilla are present in the nose.
T: The taste has flavors of rich caramel malts with notes of coconuts and finishes with lots of oaky vanilla.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a low amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is exceptionally easy to drink consider its strength as it hides any traces of alcohol from the taste; however the taste is very interesting and makes for this to be a beer to slowly sip and savor.

Note: 2017 vintage

Serving type: bottle

 864 characters

Photo of denver10
3.53/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of 1971bernat
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of NolaHopHead
4.26/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

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

Smooth with a sweet smell. Had the 2016 and it clocked in at 11.8%ABV. There was 4000 cases made, OG 24.5, FG 1.25, IBU 24 , yeast is a brutish ale, and SRM 11

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Helldorado from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.27 out of 5 with 1,013 ratings