Schell's FireBrick
August Schell Brewing Company

Schell's FireBrickSchell's FireBrick
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Lager - Vienna
Ranked #35
Ranked #35,778
3.74 | pDev: 13.37%
August Schell Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States
Schell's FireBrickSchell's FireBrick
Notes: FireBrick was introduced in 1999, and is named after the bricks that line Schell's old boilers. It is the culmination of an effort to bridge the gap between the "popular-tasting" beers and the heartier, hand-crafted ones.
FireBrick is a refreshing all-malt lager with an amber-red hue that reflects the feeling of the brewery itself.

It has been described by Ted Marti as having a "subtle maltiness combined with a hint of hoppy taste that creates a mild, pleasantly drinkable beer." It is made with four specialty malts, along with Vanguard, Chinook and Hallertau hops.
Reviews: 251 | Ratings: 521 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of LesDewitt4beer
LesDewitt4beer from Minnesota

3.87/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz can best by date July 1, 2021 poured into a 16oz pint glass. I also drank one straight outa the can.
Look: Pours a gorgeous clear deep dark copper amber with a rather tall head that eventually becomes soapy on the outside. Minimal spotty lacing.
Smell: caramel, malts, grains and a little bread.
Taste: Tart, raisins, sweet, hop, malt, hop oil. Light smoke dances around in it all. Kind of resiny for it's style and there's a little more smoke at the end again.
Feel: It has a mouth feel that is slippery, soft, firm, a little bit sticky, and has a med-long red tang finish. It is lightly and nicely carbonated.
Overall a very smooth, drinkable beer that is good for it's style and it is consistently brewed.

May 13, 2021
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Bshaw22 from Wisconsin

3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours amber white frothy head.
Smell is caramel and a little roast. Maybe some dark fruits in there.
Taste is following the nose. Pretty clean and drinkable tho.
Got this one in the old mix pack too that I sat around drinking while buddies appendix almost burst.
Cheers to you schells and your tasty lagers. They are underrated to be sure!

Feb 13, 2021
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WoodBrew from Ohio

3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I got a can of this beer off the single shelf from a beer store in LaCrosse, WI. It poured a clear amber with off white head that is leaving some lace. The scent had caramel malt notes. The taste was nicely balanced and easy to drink with caramel forward base and nice subtle bitter hop finish. The mouthfeel was lighter in body with good carbonation. Overall it is a great beer .

Nov 14, 2020
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defunksta from North Dakota

3.4/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a deep, clear, amber color with a white head. SRM of 14. (4.00)

Aroma: Aromas of grassy caramel, brown bread/toast, toffee, and moderate amount of phenolic sharpie which is reminiscent of a touch of red fruit. But not much hops here. Don't be fooled. Or malts for that matter. Mostly earthy caramel and brown bread. A cream sweetness. Smells very English. (3.25)

Flavor: Mild flavor. Some faint caramel and bread. Earthy. A touch of tart raisin and red fruit. Finishes clean and dry. Again, strong phenolic and sharpie flavors giving a slight cherry profile. Malty and no hops. (3.25)

Feel: Lighter bodied. Clean. Decent carbonation. Crisp enough, but allows the malts to come through without being too sweet. (3.75)

Compared to Abita Amber 4/25/20: Pours an identical color with a stronger head. More caramel flavors. Less toast and wheat bread. A stronger carbonation. Similar sweetness.

Compared to Odell's Isolation Ale 2/4/21: Pours a slightly lighter and more orange color. More brown bread/toast, and caramel notes. Slightly more toast, caramel, and Vienna crema flavors. Very similar and hard to differentiate.

Overall: It's nice and clean, but the flavors are lacking. Some English and German flavors with strong phenols, alcohol, and sharpie flavors. Malty for sure though. Reminds me of a milder German Bock. Very much lighter than even a Boston Lager though. I don't know if I could peg this as a Vienna off the top of my head. It's pretty good, but nothing great. (Final Rating: 3.40)
*Compare to Boston Lager or Anchor Steam

Apr 25, 2020
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marcobrau from Illinois

3.19/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours amber with plenty of foam that settles to a thin collar of bubbles. Smells of creamed corn and a hint of toffee. Straightforward barley malt flavor laced with a touch of toasted marshmallow sweetness. Balanced with just the tiniest hint of hop bitterness. Finishes a bit thin and sweet. Very drinkable despite the sweetness.

Sep 10, 2019
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detgfrsh from Texas

3.89/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a 12oz bottle. Copper color with white head. Smells of roasted malts and caramel. Medium feel. Roasted malt and caramel with some floral hops on the finish. A very good Vienna lager.

Jun 23, 2019
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bbtkd from South Dakota

3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Schell's Firebrick, 5% ABV. Pours pale red, with a one finger white head. Nose is bread and light fruit. Taste is bready roast malt with moderate bitterness. Decent mouthfeel, though light carbonation. Overall good.

Jan 30, 2019
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beergoot from Colorado

3.63/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bright, copper-colored body; thick, creamy head; sticky globs of frothy foam clinging to the glass inside. Respectable caramel malt aroma with a touch of ester fruitiness; faint toasted grain element. Fine malt-based flavor; a tad sweet with some mild nut-like character; fair hop bitterness. Medium-heavy body; crisp and warm on the palate.

A solid Vienna lager.

Dec 09, 2018
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MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 12oz bottle into glass. Best by date stamped on bottle's neck is '030319'.
Pale amber colored beer, with a hint of red. One finger of off white head recedes to scattered islands and a ring. No real lacing left behind.
Aroma is slightly toasted malt and rich caramel. Slight fruity hops.
Taste is malty, with a caramel emphasis and a bit of nuttiness. Backed up by floral, spicy hops.
Medium mouth feel, and the touch is quite smooth. Okay carbonation.
Easy drinking lager with more aroma and taste than a macro lager.

Dec 01, 2018
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SB2017 from Iowa

3.42/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Beautiful color saves this otherwise mediocre beer. It smells slightly malty with a metallic note to it, but mostly like clean lager. The taste is unfortunately nondescript. Very hard to pull any notes out besides a mild sweet maltiness.

Nov 21, 2018
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MNAle from Minnesota

4.16/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a footed pilsner glass. Abundant caramel aroma, slightly smoky. Excellent appearance as it is poured directly to the bottom of the glass, with the very tall head rising from the bottom to a 2 inch slightly off-white to tan thick and creamy head that lingers, receding quite slowly while leaving a thick lacing. Golden amber with plenty of small rising bubbles. The pilsner glass shows off this beer to excellent effect. Very flavorful, dominated by the caramel malts with smoky hints. Smooth and moderate (not thin at all) feel. Slightly bitter on the initial taste, moderating in the middle, leading to some bitterness in the aftertaste, but the malts remain throughout. (Based on some of the reviews, the hops were better represented than I was anticipating.) Well balanced. Recommended for those looking for a well-done American-brewed Vienna-style lager.

Aug 27, 2018
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Martin194 from Iowa

3.42/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Look: Clear, rather light-looking amber with a fluffy, off-white head.

Smell: Warm malts, hops, bit of a roasty, smoky scent.

Taste: More of the smokiness, along with subtle, sort of earthy malts and hints of hops throughout. Leaves a kind of sourdough aftertaste.

Feel: Light body, pretty normal carbonation, leaves a dry but crisp mouthfeel.

Aug 16, 2018
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wl2bill from Wisconsin

4.78/5  rDev +27.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Copper color with a tan head. Herbal hop smell, tannin also. Taste sweet smoky with a tannin finish. This is the measuring stick for all Vienna layers in my book.

May 30, 2018
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Victory_Sabre1973 from Minnesota

4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very clear amber color. The head was slightly off white, frothy, 1 finger. The retention is average, and there's minimal lacing on the glass.
The nose has a slight smoke to the malty aroma.
Taste - This is where this beer shines. There's a slight smoke flavor, that lingers. I also get some sweetness in there as well. Not too much in the hop department.
Feel - decent. Not really watery, but not thick either.
Solid beer from Schell's. I do recommend this one. It is easy drinking with a great flavor.

May 05, 2018
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StephenM from Iowa

3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear copper appearance with thin head
Aroma mild sweet, grain, slight floral hop
Taste is sweet malt with caramel, ester, floral, balanced bitter hip flavor
Mouthfeel light, creamy, clean finish
Overall a smooth, very drinkable, refreshing lager with pleasing flavor

Apr 09, 2018
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dcotom from Iowa

4.34/5  rDev +16%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 12-ounce bottle into a vintage Vasold Pilsener glass. There isn't much to complain about as far as appearance is concerned. The clear, deep-copper colored body rests beneath a thick, long-lasting eggshell-white head that leaves scads of lacing as it creeps down the side of the glass. Big aromas and flavors of caramel, dark bread, and spicy hops, with a bit of fruity tartness and a little alcohol heat coming through as the beer warms. Medium mouthfeel, on the silky side, with a peppery and spicy bitterness on the finish. Not getting the lack of love for this because it is one fine Vienna lager.

Mar 23, 2018
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FBarber from Illinois

4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a dark amber hued brown color. Mostly clear with lots of effervescence initially that gradually dies off. Two finger off-white head dissipates slowly and never completely. Thin complete layer of off-white foam remains on the beer along with lots of sticky white lacing. Very very nice looking beer.

Aroma has some roasted malt notes, bread, caramel, and a touch of biscuit.

Taste is very malt forward as you'd expect. Notes of caramel malt, dark fresh bread, with some slight sweetness in noted throughout through. Floral hops throughout are certainly present in the palate with a hint of bitterness on the finish.

Feel is medium to full bodied coating the mouth and lingering on the tongue. Moderate vibrant carbonation. Smooth finish.

Overall this is an outstanding Vienna lager - particularly for an American made one.

Oct 28, 2017
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Monsterbaitor from Minnesota

3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper amber hue. Slight malty caramel smell. The Vienna Malt steals the show with a bit floral and bready biscuity flavor. The hops are subtle and overall this is well balanced. All schells beers seem to be very drinkable and this is no exception. Good example of an underrated style.

Aug 16, 2017
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CraigP83 from Minnesota

3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark copper good head retention. Smell is sweet malt, slightly floral and bright. Taste is slightly metallic, good summer beer if you wanted something with a bit more body. Would also be great in the fall around a fire

Jun 24, 2016
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AleMan66 from Minnesota

4.3/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I poured a 12 oz. bottle into a clear wide-mouth beer glass. It pours an attractive amber red. The taste is an awesome mix of malt and subtle hops. Love it!

Jun 05, 2016
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Squire from Mississippi

3.69/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep amber gold color with good white cap and lacing.

Aroma of roast caramel malt and floral hops.

Taste is malt forward with emphasis on the roastier aspects of the malt. There is a definite undercurrent of roast flavor that while not bitter is on the darker end of the flavor spectrum. Hops are there more as a balancing offset to the malt fullness. No real apparent sweetness yet the brew isn't entirely dry.

Medium texture with balancing carbonation.

A well made, clean, refreshing Amber of the heavier sort.

May 23, 2016
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Bluegrass49 from Minnesota

4.03/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Clear, dark amber color with a tan 2-finger head. I was really surprised at how smooth and refreshing this one tasted. Perfect combination of maltiness and hops. Can't wait to have another.

Mar 12, 2016
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UrbanCaveman from Ohio

4.46/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, poured into a shaker pint at ~40 degrees F.

Appearance: Pours a lovely, bright, crystal-clear burnished copper, and forms about a finger or so of fluffy, vaguely off-white but just barely, head. Bubbles stream up continuously from the bottom. Lacing is insanely good, draping the sides of the glass in walls of tightly-packed bubbles with occasional holes and ridges.

Smell: Bread. Warm, dark, crusty bread, with honeyed biscuit, toffee, white pepper, and something floral.

Taste: The floral aroma is definitely present in the flavor, from start to finish, though not significantly enough to trigger my Wall-O-Hops-And-Nothing-Else response - which means for non-supertasters, it's probably just this side of "detectable". Rolling along beneath and around the florality comes the dark bread and biscuit, which taste like they want to be sweet (and likely would be for someone other than me). Toffee is present as well, around the edges, and there's some mild, faint tinge of raisin frolicking about in the distance. The aftertaste lingers as flowers and bread, like a blooming vase left on a kitchen table strewn with crumbs where a loaf was just devoured.

Mouthfeel: Fairly light in body with a good deal of sparkly carbonation, with no watery breakdown at any point during the drinking process.

Overall: That's a damned good Vienna lager - up there near Eliot Ness. I'll be tracking this down again.

Mar 03, 2016
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.04/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Dark brown and burnt copper color, thin head, decent lace. Super faint nutty caramel, toffee thing going on.

Taste was roasted malt more than expected, but pulled off smoothly. A little heavier than a Vienna Lager, this one goes into Oktoberfest territory.

Dec 20, 2015
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maedhros09 from Minnesota

4.22/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Dark copper-amber with about two fingers of off-white head that settles to a film with a smidge of lacing.
Smell: Caramelly bready, softly fruity (apples? pears?)
Taste: Taste mirrors the nose. Soft, round flavors. Lightly sweet and malty with a balancing herbal bitterness in the finish.
Feel: Light to medium body, moderate carbonation but smooth.

Overall: Firebrick must have been one of the first "craft" beers I tried when I came of age. I remember liking it then, and I like it now. It has a very nice round, aromatic maltiness that is lightly sweet but not cloying, and great balance in the finish. Compared to the Great Lakes Eliot Ness, which I also really like, I feel like the Schell's is a bit mellower in flavor with more bitterness in the finish. Consistent with its lower ABV (5% vs. 6.2%) it is more sessionable than the Eliot Ness.

Oct 21, 2015
Schell's FireBrick from August Schell Brewing Company
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 521 ratings