Helldorado | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
HelldoradoHelldorado
BA SCORE
4.26/5
Outstanding
976 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:
#836
Reviews:
246
Ratings:
976
pDev:
7.51%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
160
Gots:
486
Trade:
72
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 976 |  Reviews: 246
Photo of szmnnl99
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of YeastEnthusiast
4.48/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Grinky
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of WOLFGANG
4.41/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2016 Vintage Apple-molasses, toffee, oak, coconut, vanilla and cashew. Definitely better with a little age.

107 characters

Photo of larryarms847
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly murky/hazy amber reddish brown.

Leather, spice, caramel, toffee, oak, and rich malt sweetness.

Caramel, bourbon, oak, toffee, and spicy hops.

Full-bodied, low carbonation, sweet, strong.

Overall, an interesting brew but nothing to write home about IMHO.

 274 characters

Photo of d3zine
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Justinprintz
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Pearlstreetbrewingco
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of glf60
4.23/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MjBrewhouse
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of EMH73
4.34/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a very slightly cloudy deep amber with a half inch white head that left a little spotty lacing. Smells and tastes of bourbon, oak, malts, honey, apricot, granny smith apples and a hint of vanilla. Medium to full bodied, light carbonation, smooth mouth feel, mild alcohol burn. Excellent sipper.

 300 characters

Photo of Muss42
4.21/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Firestone Walker Brewing Co. "Helldorado"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, 2017 vintage
$9.99 @ The Beer Yard (The Beverage Store), Wayne, PA

Notes via stream of consciousness: Aged in Bourbon barrels, eh? That's an interesting twist. Not that a golden barleywine isn't, but I've seen those before. It's a hazy deep golden/amber in color beneath a short head of creamy white. The aroma expresses both sweet malt and Bourbon. It's quite nice and I feel I could almost enjoy sniffing it as much as drinking it, but that's still to be determined. As it warms and I smell it more I'm getting light notes of apricot, orange, some other tropical fruit, maybe pineapple, red apple, and of course, a light flicker of alcohol. It is 12.8% after all. On to the flavor... I'm getting less malt, more Bourbon and oak, and the fruitiness is more like dried fruit. Some alcohol remains as well, which is not unpleasant right now but could possibly become so by the end of the glass. By now the head has dropped and there's just some small spotty lacing left behind. I understand that might be due to the alcohol but it could be better. Back to the flavor, I really like the Bourbon barrel, that makes the beer for me. It's got Bourbon and oak, and that's another layer to offset the sweet malt and help balance it. ...(long break while sampling)... It's dextrinous and medium-full in body, and creamy smooth with a moderate, fine bubbled carbonation that explains at least part of the lack of head retention. I'm getting more grainy malt now, and much less fruit, and even a hint of coconut and vanilla. The alcohol hasn't risen, which is good, and the bitterness remains low yet it's not at all sticky or cloying in the finish, probably due at least in part to the drying oak and alcohol. That's an important point for me, some of the other golden barleywines I've tasted have been just too sweet and malty, but that's not the case here. This would be a great after-dinner beer, something to just sit and relax with. Very nicely done. Well worth seeking out.

 2,045 characters

Photo of wshinevar
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Luscious_Malfoy
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BrewSTL
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of GOBLIN
4.15/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Nunya
3.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Chuckdiesel24
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of dazedman
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Sevinup07
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of SFC21
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of puck1225
4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2017 edition. Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass. Clear golden yellow with a good white head and nice lacing. Smell of caramel and apples apples. The taste includes these as well as a bit of toffee and some booziness. Nice smooth beer, very good.

 251 characters

Photo of Samlover55
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle into Libbey Tulip
2016 Vintage
L- pours a bright burnt orange, opaque, with a nice white foam head,
S- bourbon, vanilla, wood char, golden raisins
T- this literally tastes like a bourbon soaked golden raisin. With a slight alcohol burn on the finish
F- medium to full-bodied, really drinkable, despite the 11.8% ABV
Overall this is a a unique beer, and very good at that, however I wasn't able to pick up anything resembling a Barleywine. I guess that's why they call it a blonde Barleywine

 508 characters

Photo of Beerhemoth
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Helldorado from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.26 out of 5 with 976 ratings