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Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Firestone 15 - Anniversary AleFirestone 15 - Anniversary Ale
1,118 Ratings
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.

Bros Score:
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,118 |  Reviews: 316
Photo of khumbard
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Brewermeister
3.33/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours dark brown with a slight head that dissipates quickly leaving little lacing. Smells like booze. Mouthfeel is a bit watery.
Tastes very alcoholic; bourbon and tabacco present at first. As it warms up other flavors become noticable like vanilla and dark fruits. I was very dissapointed because 14 was one of my favorite beers and 15 falls very short.

 364 characters

Photo of axeman9182
3.92/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber. This one was allowed to warm a little bit before being poured into my Bruery tulip.

Firestone Walker's 15th Anniversary blend pours almost stout black, only backlighting reveals some cherry redhighlights. There's maybe a finger and a half of light cocoa head, and it displays just a little bit of both retention and lacing. The nose is reminiscent of a barrel aged English barleywine (which makes sense, given how much of the belnd is made up of just that), with notes of bourbon, vanilla, caramel, and brown sugar. There's also a faint background aroma of citric American hops. The flavor profile adds a nice chocolate note to the typical barleywine fare, but the hop presence is also steppe up a bit. Sometimes hoppy and malty can coincide nicely in a big beer, but this isn't one of those times, as the grapefruit and other citrusy flavors don't really meld into the beer and just seem like they're coming in on the back end and interrupting all the delicious sweetness that came up front. The carbonation is spot on, nice and subdued, but the body just feels a little thin, like it could definitely be a bit more rich/full. Firestone Walker 15 is a good beer, but I think it had a tall order in living up to 14, which is still an all time favorite beer. I think some age will do this one good.

 1,312 characters

Photo of Bobheed
4.62/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep, nearly black in color. Dark, dark brown with a little red around the edges. A small khaki head that dissipated quickly

S: Fantastic. What did I not smell? I picked up more hoppiness than in previous Firestone anniversary beers. Also got that distinct Firestone bourbon barrel smell. Picked up some banana peel and coconut, with a lot of vanilla as well.

T: Very complex. Hops right at the very front of it, then goes into a deep alcohol, kinda vanilla bourbon flavor. Got lots of dark malts in there, and a very, very sugary sweet finish.

M: Light carbonation. Very thick beer, with a bit of a warm alcohol presence.

Overall, this is amazing as I would expect it to be. Would love it if there was more available on the market, but we'll see. Another great job by Firestone Walker.

 794 characters

Photo of Centennial
3.97/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle split into snifter

A. Dark tan with amber hue while being poured, yet appears darker in the glass except when held up to the light. Still opaque. Clear, appears slightly syrupy, virtually no head.

S. Bourbon and alcohol, vanilla, mild caramel. Can not detect the hop aroma they claim is suppose to be apparent due to the 5% double jack addition.

T. Sweet caramel and vanilla with brandy undertone. Hops in the back seem to mix this up a bit in the wrong direction and do more to bring out unpleasant alcohol nuances then add to the smoother barrel flavors.

M. Slick and a little syrupy, alcohol has a burning effect.

O. Ok barrel blend, falls far short of FW14

 672 characters

Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 12/31/11 notes. Big thanks to Ian for sharing this one. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip, served side by side with the FW 14th Anniversary ale.

a - Pours a transparent dark reddish brown color with one inch of light tan head and low to moderate carbonation evident. The 14 was much, much darker.

s - Smells of vanilla, oak, bourbon, fruity malts, tropical fruits, light citrus hops. A lot of bourbon/vanill and fruit, which surprised me a bit.

t - Tastes of bourbon, vanilla, fruity, malts, caramel malts, tropical fruits, citrus, oak, roasted malts, toffee, and alcohol.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Pretty thick body.

o - Overall I thought this was a good beer, but the 14 blew it away. While I know they are different blends, this reminded me of the 14 fresh in that they are both bourbon forward, and a bit boozey fresh, though good. With a year on it though, the 14 has become a really great beer, like some of the earlier anniversary beers, so I am hoping that happens to the 15 as well. 15 seemed a little more barleywine-ish while the 14 seemed more stout-ish, but I think this will age nicely. I'll open my bottle next winter.

 1,166 characters

Photo of rhertan
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Kelp
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of hooliganlife
4.05/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pour was a deep yet clear brown, very dark. light creamy head that gave way quickly. little to no lacing.

smooth bourbon. slightly sweet. very faint hint of alcohol.

sweet and smooth. light bourbon and really smooth vanilla. some darker brown ale flavors with some dark sweet fruit. some heat on the finish.

moderate carbonation with a slightly smooth.

pretty awesome for being so fresh, but seems more one dimensional than previous vintages.

 447 characters

Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. Bomber

Poured into a chalice a nice dark ruby red color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy off-white head, with some sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some very slight yeast notes, with some plums, figs, raisins. The taste is sweet, malty, fruity, with some caramel. Medlium Body, very smooth brew for such a high ABV. To me quite not an American Strong Ale at all, more like an Belgian Dark Strong Ale, a nice brew, very easy drinking, but, quite different than their other Annv. Ales, quite dissappointed.

 533 characters

Photo of patm1986
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Beertracker
4.32/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

FW15 pours up a bit heavy with enough effervescence to create a moderate creamy beige-tan colored head that encompasses the deep mahogany-reddish black body. The aroma is a showcase of complex malts & oak finishes with nuances of cocoa roasted almonds, candied ginger, cordial cherries, cinnamon bark, heather honey, maple sugar, toasted coconut & treacle pudding. However, all these components haven't yet melded leaving it a bit disjointed. The flavor starts off with some caramel sweetness e.g. toffee apples followed by a complex toastiness with roasted malts taking over the long, marked bittersweet finish. Alcohol is well-intergrated and this anniversary is surprisingly drinkable for being so young. I cannot wait to revisit this one in another year or so after cellaring. We're not worthy!

CHEERS! Beertracker

 819 characters

Photo of InspectorBob
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of bluntedboywonder
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of alalvarez75
3/5  rDev -31.2%

Photo of bhir
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of johnhenryconway
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of bmwats
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Second pour from a 650 ml bottle into a tasting snifter.

A: Dark brown. Pours a half finger, foamy, brown white head. Settles quickly, leaving a smattering of foam and a slight beer ring. No lacing, but again this was a second pour.

S: Roasted coffee, molasses, raisin, and black licorice.

T: Woody, roasted, coffee malt with unsweetened dark chocolate, vanilla bean and licorice.

M: Strong alcohol profile. Bitter pungency lingers throughout the experience. Dry finish.

D: Sip and enjoy.

Good atmosphere. Solid appearance and a full malty nose with sweet and bitter components. Great balance of roasted malt with all sorts of bitter and sweet components to give it great character. Very well balanced, as all the flavors seem to make themselves available throughout the experience. Overall, this is a great quaff.

 820 characters

Photo of bigorange
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Kranders
4.92/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice deep black that's deceptively transparent. Small head retention. The aroma just knocks you back. Huge hints of bourbon and sweetness come from all directions. One of the most complex tasting beers in a long time. Very sweet, with a ton of bourbon that somehow doesn't taste all that boozy. Lasts a while on the tongue with pronounced sweetness at the end. Fantastic beer.

 384 characters

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of hawkmage
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of GrindFatherBob
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Kaydogg
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of kevgod
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Firestone 15 - Anniversary Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.36 out of 5 with 1,118 ratings
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