Schell's FireBrick | August Schell Brewing Company

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Schell's FireBrickSchell's FireBrick
508 Ratings
Schell's FireBrickSchell's FireBrick

Brewed by:
August Schell Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States

Style: Vienna Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-17-2002

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Ratings: 508 |  Reviews: 243
Reviews by NODAK:
Photo of NODAK
3.94/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma was a bit of roasted malts, mildly sweet....maybe earthy. Not bad. More interesting than most lagers.

Taste had an initial sweetness to it....perhaps a bit of caramel....followed by some tea and mild roasted notes as well. Hops are mild but present on the backend, of a herbal nature.

Pretty good lager here, as Schell's is known for. I hadn't had any of their beers in a while, and this makes me want to try more.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Evilyak
4.09/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

sometimes you read the description from the brewer and wonder if they switched labels. this one's pretty spot on:

"an amber-red hue" - yup. sticky head and and clear, reddish-brown color. nothing remarkable here, but clearly defined.

"subtle maltiness combined with a hint of hoppy taste that creates a mild, pleasantly drinkable beer" - pretty much. smells clean and malty. tastes the same. nothing hanging around afterwards, no untoward or unusual flavors, just simple and easy to quaff.

i'd never think that i need to get some firebrick, but it's the kind of thing that you go back to every once in a while and think "that's a damn fine beer".

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Photo of Ri0
3.87/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

poured 12oz bottle into Pils glass.

A - Burnt amber color with visible carbonation and 2.5 finger white frothy head that left some splashy lacing on the glass.

S - Big toasted malt, bready notes, sweet fruity notes, and floral hops . Pleasant aroma for the style and well-balanced between the malty and hoppy notes.

T - Big bready notes, toasted malt, sweet fruity notes, and a kiss of floral hops.

M- Very smooth, medium body, soft carbonation, and dry.

O - An excellent Vienna lagers. Very well balanced, great aroma, and a very smooth, easy drinker.

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Photo of oberon
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A style that I dont see enough and rarely find alot of quality in,poured into a stein a deep bronze color with a thinner slight off white head there was a slight chill haze to it.Nice aromas sweet caramel and toasted grain with a light leafy hoppiness a full aroma for sure,well rounded and food friendly flavors starting off with a big caramel buttery sweetness with an underlying firm toastiness with a small dose of spicey/herbal hop that lingers nicely in the finish.I think a very appetizing vienna lager its just good I cant find any real faults to it really.

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Photo of Turbo
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.03/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light caramel colored beer has a 2-finger, sherbert head that falls fast t a thin layer. Nose is faint and like orange marmelade.

Woah sweetness! In keeping with the orange motife, this has a light tangerine tasting SWEET malt flavor. There is almost no discernable bitterness, just a kind of sugary sting that has more to do with carbonation.

Mouthfeel is mid bodied and highly carbonated.

An easy drinker, but it felt more like soda than beer. Honestly, I don't know how I feel about this one. I feel like the imbalance is kind of understandable, since the bittering/ hopping of these beers often feels like a forced issue. It is at least an interesting beer and I finished mine off pretty quick.

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Photo of skybluewater
3.85/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice amber color, just a bit of lace. Smells malty sweet. Taste is of sweet malt, with a bit of toastyness. Mouthfeel is a bit syrupy.

Pretty good brew here. I prefer Great Lake's Elliot Ness, but since that isn't available locally, I'll have to live with this one. Not that that's a bad thing...

 308 characters

Photo of kgeijer
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of NWer
3.95/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.
Bronze red, clear. Minimal head, no lace.
Classified a Vienna Lager. I assumed it to be an American Red.
Balanced to the malt side, it is a good drinker.
Slightly cloying on the aftertaste knocks the mouthfeel down a peg. Overall, a good beer worthy of the style.

 289 characters

Photo of SD-Alefan
4.25/5  rDev +14.9%

Photo of DaftPatrick
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of chip26
3.94/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Jason
4.27/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz brown long neck bottle with no legible freshness date.

Appearance: Orangey tarnish copper hue with a bright clarity, thick froth forms and subsides to a dainty and creamy off white lace.

Smell: Sweet toasted malt aroma with a soft perfume-like hop twang to match, clean with a fresh grain smell.

Taste: Carbonation is at a moderate level, creamy slick mouth feel of malt within the firm medium body. Soft toasted malt flavours surround the taste buds and leave bursts of grain, bread and caramel. Melanoidian flavours of concentrated malt pops up in the middle, soft graininess is throughout. Hops are controlled with their bitterness and drop a light sharpness on the tongue. Bit of hop flavour is there but barely noticeable with suggestions of herb and flowers. The multi-leveled malt character shows each layer of complexity; breadiness, soft grain, caramel and toasted husk. On the sweet side, big malt residuals are left in the finish with undertones of toasted malt and a surprising long lasting hop finish also to make for a pleasant ending.

Notes: Very drinkable with big malt complexities. If you like sizeable malty lagers this will be a treat for you. Big enough to pair up with some schnitzel and kraut.

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Photo of MrUse
3.94/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of bsp77
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into a Pint glass bearing the logo of a competitive Minnesota brewery.

Appearance: Clear, light copper with fairly thin head and ligut lacing.

Smell: Toasted and caramel malts with a nice spicy noble hop counterbalance.

Taste: Fantastic toasted malt character, with notes of caramel and fruit. Finishes with a mild spicy bitterness.

Feel: Moderately high carbonation with a clean, medium body. Nice dry finish.

Drinkability: Refreshing beer that actually works for all seasons. Nice Vienna overall, and this is what I compare all other Viennas to. SA Boston Lager is great as well, but not a true Vienna.

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Photo of deebo
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of NilocRellim
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of ryanocerus
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I thought this beer was better than most beer advocates did. The appearance was hazy copper with a short lasting head. The aroma was big malt, then faint spicy hops. The flavor was spiced malt, with a hop presence that was appealing. The beer was smooth with a long lasting flavor. Pretty good, though I don't have much experience with this style.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Pours brilliant deep amber under a 1: cream colored foam collar that produces thick lace.
S: Slight hop aroma but no caramel.
T: Moderate malt flavors with a crisp dry finish with a moderate hop bitterness. No fruity esters or diacetyl.
F: Soft and elegant with moderate carbonation and medium light body.
O: One of the few good Vienna Lagers around.

 357 characters

Photo of MattyG85
4.03/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: Clear amber orange with a huge three and a half finger off white head with very good retention and lacing.

Smell: Strong toasted malty aroma with a decent amount of hops that smell like the Hallertau variety. Has a bready Pils like aroma.

Taste: Very malty and bready with sweet caramel and toffee malts followed by a decent amount of bitterness from earthy hops. Very good balance.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Very creamy and smooth.

Overall: A very solid lager from Schell's. Easy drinking and flavorful.

 625 characters

Photo of Timmuh
4/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of moundbz
3.65/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.08/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A darker copper and brown color, mild head, some lace. A mild aroma of very little, if you look for it, you can probably say you smell caramel, yeast, hops etc. . . but there really ain't much there.

Taste, parts of a red ale, more caramel, toffee, but its all pretty mild and nuanced, I could picture some old timers drinking this and wishing for something more bland, but saying it has some promise.

Very similar to SA Boston Lager. I get it if you're drinking this, you're not looking for massivity and complexity, and this beer delivers in that regard. There are no off flavors, its just a middle of the road beer with mild smooth malt additions, minimal hops and mild yeast.

 683 characters

Photo of ADR
3.76/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

One of the most drinkable of the malty beers. And I like that this style is still around. Its quite orange in color and pours with little head at all. There's a slight bready quality to the mid mouth impact, but the flavor is balanced and lessens evenly as its swallowed. I don't look for a lot of bite or chewy mouthfeel in Vienna Lagers, so I'm pretty happy with FireBrick.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Is an amber copper tone with a cream colored nice sized head leaving specks of lace as it dwindles down. Aroma: Slightly metallic with a roasted malt nut tone and an underlying hop bitterness they're very mild there is no fragrance jumping out at me. Taste: Taste is a clean sweeping amount of toasted caramel malts and bitter sweet tones, nicely balanced a little mild seems mass produced but still tasty overall. Rather uninteresting compared to some Vienna styles but this one beats out the Sam Adams lineup even though this one is lacking compared to Elliot Ness overall not a bad throwback. Mouthfeel: Thin highly carbonated not much texture to speak of. Drinkability: I could put down a few without being filled up, but I wouldn't really yearn for too many of these, they're not challenging my palate seems run of the mill and for the mill I don't run.

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Schell's FireBrick from August Schell Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.7 out of 5 with 508 ratings