Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Firestone 15 - Anniversary AleFirestone 15 - Anniversary Ale

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

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
18% Helldorado (11.7% ABV) Blonde Barley Wine.
17% Sticky Monkey (12.5% ABV) English Barley Wine.
17% Bravo (13.5% ABV) Imperial Brown Ale.
13% Double Double Barrel Ale (11.5% ABV) Double Strength English Pale Ale.
11% Good Foot (14.3 ABV) American Barley Wine.
10% Velvet Merkin (8.6% ABV) Traditional Oatmeal Stout.
9% Parabola (13% ABV) Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout.
5% Double Jack (9.5% ABV) Double India Pale Ale.

Added by brew3crew on 11-08-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 1,115 |  Reviews: 315
Photo of Nickcal
4.52/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Was good but could have been better. Bought it from my local liquor store. They had been aging it ever since. Don't know if this beer was the result of bad cellaring or what. Like I said though really a top shelf beer but would have liked to try when it had been released to compare. Stunk of booze but tasted medium bodied with a clean finish and no alcohol heat.

 364 characters

Photo of boralyl
4.67/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a small light tan head that fades pretty quickly leaving a thin ring of lace. The beer is a dark brownish-red with a little bit of light coming through.

S - The aroma has a huge sweetness with toffee, caramel and vanilla coming through. There are also brief instances of tropical notes that go in and out. There is additionally a pleasant oak presence and some barrel character. It's a very complex aroma that develops more as it warms.

M - Full in body and lightly carbonated. The beer has a smooth feel and creamy finish.

T - Light chocolate notes greet me first followed by a strong caramel and then toffee presence. There is a little bit of booze mid taste. The flavors seem to alternate with each sip. The second sip reveals the subtle hop character from the Double Jack along with oak, vanilla, and bourbon.

This is without a doubt one of the most complex beers I have tasted. The blend of 8 beers works extremely well.

 939 characters

Photo of MrDanno96
3.41/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a deep nutty brown in color that is opaque when held to light, revealing some orange hues. A vigorous pour resulted in several fingers of head, but it receded quickly. Some spotty lacing and legs.

S: Very boozy. First beer that has ever actually burned my nostrils upon taking a deep sniff. Almost fusel alcohol. It's not all bad, though. Distinct notes of sweet dark fruit, brandy, and vanilla come through.

T/M: Not as much alcohol as the nose, but still a lot. Very hot, especially on the way down. Distinct flavors of brandy and bourbon and their components of vanilla and oak. Some dark fruit and nuttiness as well, with just a touch of bitterness in the finish. Full bodied, almost syrupy.

O: A little disappointing to be honest, especially at $20/bottle. Definitely a good beer overall, but the alcohol just overpowers it. Perhaps in a few years this will be phenomenal, but for now it is just a little above average for me.

 946 characters

Photo of SpillyBeers
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of the_beerist
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of bertram
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of IPAyForHops
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of SaulFox
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of WankelEngine
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a snifter

A: Very dark mahogany brown bordering on black. Almost opaque. The is a slight foam head that disappears quickly to a faint rim around the edge.

S: The smell is deep and malty. Warm, brown malts dominate with a bit of darker chocolate/coffee scent. The burn of alcohol is also prominent. There are notes of cherries, raisins and rum along with just a hint of bitter hops.

T: There are a lot of nuances to this beer. Bourbon is a prominent flavor that I did not catch in the smell. There is still a strong malt presence which lends some dark coffee notes and chocolate. This is complemented by dark fruits, cherries and a light vanilla flavor. Hop bitterness and spicy oak and molasses.

M: Moderate to thick mouthfeel and a little bit syrupy. Alcohol heat is noticeable but manageable.

O: Excellent. Incredibly nuanced, potent and balanced.

 886 characters

Photo of M27
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of Sailracer
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle.

Shared with my lovely wife...

A - Dark brown with a one finger khaki head. Retention is decent and lacing is spotty...

S - Caramel, oak/vanillla, bourbon, and dark fruit. Bourbon has a fairly strong presence in the scent, but there is alot going on here, and it is in no way overpowering...

T - Caramel and toffee up fornt with a good dose of figs following. Ends with vanilla, lingering caramel, and smooth Bourbon. Very tasty...

M - Full bodied with a moderate amount carbonation...

O - Another excellent barrel aged beer from FW. As expected, this one is very barleywine foward. Although very good, I think 14 was a much better beer...

 658 characters

Photo of bcostner1
4.87/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: Deep, rich mahogany brown with some dark garnet undertones present. Thin tan head which quickly dissipates (not surprising given the high ABV).

S: Intoxicating. Vanilla, molasses, brown sugar, caramel. Faint EtOH present as well. This really is a fantastic smelling beer.

T: Outstanding. Follows the nose with heavy vanilla and caramel. Some definite molasses and brown sugar present as well. Mild, smooth bourbon. Rich figs. All brought together by the underlying woodiness of the barrel aging. Ridiculously delicious. Reminds me a lot of the Shmaltz Vertical Jewbelation (which is one of my favorite beers of all time) but this one may even be slightly better.
So complex. I think I could drink this over and over again and get something different every time.

M: Smooth. Ever so slightly on the thin side perhaps(?) The alcohol is detectable...faintly so but definitely there. Overall, very easy to drink.

This beer is phenomenal. I am becoming convinced that these blended, barrel aged brews (like this one and the before mentioned Vertical Jewbelation) are one of my top 3 favorite styles when done well. And this one is definitely done well to say the least. I am glad I bought 5 bottles of this (and would have bought more if it were available in my area and not so pricey). Still, this is an almost indescribably beautiful beer and I highly recommend it.

 1,370 characters

Photo of Bigtwin
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of disemgrowler
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of emaciated
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of mcrago
4.68/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of HawkIPA
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of amart80
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of nvbrew
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of bnelson997
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Njstoutlover23
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of apocalypsezombie
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of vitters03
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of phishsihq
4.92/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

15 years of brewing excellence, in bottled form.

Firestone Walker 15 - Anniversary Ale is a blend of some of Firestone's world renowned brews, aged in barrels. Here is a list of the blends;
18% Helldorado (11.7% ABV) Blonde Barley Wine.
17% Sticky Monkey (12.5% ABV) English Barley Wine.
17% Bravo (13.5% ABV) Imperial Brown Ale.
13% Double Double Barrel Ale (11.5% ABV) Double Strength English Pale Ale.
11% Good Foot (14.3 ABV) American Barley Wine.
10% Velvet Merkin (8.6% ABV) Traditional Oatmeal Stout.
9% Parabola (13% ABV) Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout.
5% Double Jack (9.5% ABV) Double India Pale Ale.

WOW! Those percents add up to 76% Barley Wine style beers, 19% Stout and 5% Imperial IPA. The real fun is in trying to pick up on all the flavors and styles, challenging too!

15 pours a very deep, dark brown, nearly black with flashes of ruby, all beneath a thin off-white head that dissipates slowly, leaving no lacing. Where to start on the aroma? We picked up hints of bourbon, coconuts, oak, dark fruits (raisins & plums), rum, citrus, alcohol, vanilla, chocolate, and malt, to name a few. Full bodied this brew is crisp, sharp and smooth. The flavor profile matches that of the nose, lots going on and it is easy to become tongue twisted trying to pick everything up. Most notably present is a strong, roasty malt presence followed by vanilla, oak and alcohol. Lots going on here, and it ALL works well. Brilliant brew from a brewery that knows a thing or two about brilliant beers.

 1,501 characters

Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
4.26 out of 5 based on 1,115 ratings.
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