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Firestone Walker 16

Firestone Walker 16

Rated 3.871 by BeerPals
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Brewed by Firestone Walker Brewing Company

Paso Robles, CA, United States

Style:  Strong Ale

13% Alcohol by Volume

36 International Bittering Units

Availability of this beer is unknown


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The Vision Behind Our Barrel Aging and Blending Program Is Still the Same! The Goal: To create complexity centering on oak, in a multitude of forms, by brewing high gravity beers in complementary styles, aging them in different barrel formats and then blending them together to achieve harmonious new flavors. The Puzzle: To blend these various components (or lots) to create a synergistic whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. This is done with the help of a few of our neighboring Paso Robles winemakers who are practicing experts in the art of blending. The Inspiration: Firestone Walker’s oak brewing tradition and our connection with winemaking. Of course until the advent of stainless steel, brewing was intimately linked to wood barrels and vessels. Brewing has a deeply rooted history in the alchemy of blending. The Barrels The individual lots were aged in oak barrels, many of which were hand selected from premium Kentucky spirits producers by Tom Griffin, who is extremely passionate and knowledgeable about bourbon barrels and beer. Each barrel lends its own unique influence to the final blend. The Aging Cellar – The Components We blended together 226 oak barrels and 8 different beers creating something truly complex and exceptional. The following are descriptions of key components with their original code names: Velvet Merkin (8.7% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon barrels -Traditional Oatmeal Stout (23% of final blend) OG= 15P FG=5.5 IBU=32.5 Color= Black / 15% Oats / Hopped with 100% US grown Fuggles Stickee Monkee (12.5% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon and Brandy barrels -English Barley Wine (22.5% of final blend) OG=27P FG=5.4P IBU=45 Color=28 / Brewed with Mexican Turbinado (Brown) sugar Double Double Barrel Ale (14.2% ABV) - Aged 100% in retired Firestone Union barrels -Double strength English Pale Ale (20.3% of final blend) OG=25.0P FG=5.1P IBU=30 Color=16 / A Double version of our flagship created by Ali Razi Parabola (13% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon barrels -Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout (10.8% of final blend) OG=31P FG=8.5P IBU=80 Color=Black / Hopped with Simcoe, Bravo, Styrian Golding and East Kent Golding PNC (13.0% ABV) - Aged in Tequila barrels -American Strong Buckwheat Stout (8.1% of final blend) OG = 25P FG = 5.0P IBU = 80 Color = 100 / Brewed with Buckwheat Helldorado (11.5% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon Barrels and Brandy barrels -Blonde Barley Wine (5.4% of final blend) OG=24.7P FG=4.5P IBU=24 Color = 8 / Brewed with buckwheat honey & 100% El Dorado hops Bravo (13.4% ABV) - Aged in Bourbon and Brandy barrels -Imperial Brown Ale (5.4% of final blend) OG=26.5 FG=7.7 IBU=35 Color=32 / Hopped with 100% US grown Fuggles Wookey Jack (8.3% ABV)- 100% Fresh, Dank & Hoppy 100% Stainless Steel -Black Rye India Pale Ale (4.5% of final blend) OG= 18P FG = 3.0P IBU = 80 Color =black / Extremely hoppy double dry hopped BIPA The Finished Piece As a finished beer, XVI takes us back to some of the wonderful dark notes (the black keys) that I remember from the original 10 blending. XVI is 42% stout with Velvet Merkin, Parabola and “PNC” working together as three roasty toasty friends that create rich cacao, chocolate and mocha flavors together. “PNC” also introduces tequila barrels into our blend for the first time and brings some interesting south of the boarder spirit notes to the mix – a welcome twist. Helldorado, with flavors of lavender honey liqueur was again a favorite of the winemakers and made the cut adding some flowery notes. DDBA continues to deliver its signature American toasted oak, English caramel toffee and light leather nuances. DDBA was also release on its own in 2012 and is now established as a solid annual brew. Stickee Monkee is fast becoming one of our favorite pieces with its rich maple syrup, spicy cinnamon, and ripe fig flavors which has developed into a bolder cousin of perennial blend component Bravo who carries barrel character and bourbon notes like no other. The additional twist this year is Wookey Jack, Black Rye IPA with its wily citrusy hop notes and spicy rye backbone. The finished blend is unfiltered and unfined, so there will be a small amount of sediment in the bottom of the bottle. XVI is best enjoyed poured carefully into a half filled brandy snifter or red wine glass. Allow it to warm to 55F to fully enjoy the pleasing and complex aromas. It takes a while, but as this beer sits and breathes in the glass, more rich dusty chocolate, stone fruit and crème brulee character is reveled as the rich spirit characters fade - so take your time. If you wait to open your bottle later, store it in a cool dark place. I suspect that this beer will age well and change favorably for years to come. It was an absolute pleasure in the making and I truly hope you enjoy our Seventh oak-aged blend! The journey continues and its just as fun and exciting now as it was back in 1996. Thank you so much for spending a little time with us!

ID: 50233 Last updated 8 years ago Added to database 8 years ago

Key Stats

99
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0

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4

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Statistics

Overall Rank340
Overall Percentile99.3
Style Rank20 of 722
Style Percentile97.2
Lowest Score4.4
Highest Score4.7
Average Score4.525
Weighted Score3.871
Standard Deviation0.000

Rating Distribution

Beer vs Style

4 Member Reviews

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  • FARGINGBASTIGE6 1476 reviews
    rated 4.7 8 years ago

    Aroma: 9 | Appearance: 10 | Mouthfeel: 9 | Flavor: 10 | Overall: 9

    Thanks, Chris - slowrunner77! The complexity in the aroma and flavors are astounding. Deep, dark, rich pour with a tight head. Vanilla, wood and caramel aroma with the same flavors along with a bit of molassass and fig. Warmth from the alcohol without being overbearing. The flavor deepens and the aromas intensify as it warms. Enjoyed mine in a tulip glass to help funnel the aromas. Wow... this was really good. Thanks, Chris.

  • HEYBEERMAN 1025 reviews
    rated 4.4 8 years ago

    Aroma: 8 | Appearance: 9 | Mouthfeel: 9 | Flavor: 9 | Overall: 9

    An unexpected and awesome find in a recent trade with slowrunner, huge thank you! The beer was big and beautiful in all aspects as I knew it would be. Very much a bourbon barrel stout in line with what all the popular kids are doing, but with a complexity the others lack. You can almost taste the different woods that are in there and as temperature changes more and more layers come out. Fantastic beer.

  • GGRUMET 311 reviews
    rated 4.5 8 years ago

    Aroma: 8 | Appearance: 9 | Mouthfeel: 9 | Flavor: 10 | Overall: 9

    Big thanks to slowrunner77 for the bottle. Deep black pour with minimal head but strong, effervescent carbonation. A menageries if scents and flavors in this beast - it may be the most complex beer I've had in a long time. I enjoyed this much more when warm as it allowed more of the blend to shine. Notes of chocolate covered caramel, tobacco, molasses, oak, vanilla, and...tequila. Yes, I noticed the addition of tequila aged PNC in this blend, ever so slightly when warm. This is undoubtedly an extremely well crafted brew. I'd love to bear witness to meetings/discussions that serve as the foundation for this beer.

  • SLOWRUNNER77 5682 reviews
    rated 4.5 8 years ago

    Aroma: 9 | Appearance: 9 | Mouthfeel: 9 | Flavor: 9 | Overall: 9

    Man...don't know where to start with this one. This year's blend (which over the last 2-3 years has become THE seasonal release) is rather stout heavy (42%). So was XIII, my personal favorite. This year's is maaaybe a notch lower in pure awesomeness...better than 14, a step behind the barleywine heavy 15 (hard not to try and rank these in my head, but I love em all). Probably THE most complex of the blends. Still sweet leaning, a little heavy and sticky, but surprisingly lacking in alcohol burn. Warm? Yes. Hot? No. Aroma sensory delight...cocoa, mocha, leather, wood, bourbon/vanilla, and a hint of brandy and yes, tequila (very very subtle, a tiny bit more in the flavor). A floral honey-like sweetness from the Helldorado (probably my favorite componenet), light toffee and caramel (DDBA) and dark fruit. Taste is likewise so ridiculously complex (though bourbon and cocoa dominant, it goes waaaay beyond those flavors). Slight twang from "other" barrels and an ever so slight note of rye and hops from the Wookie (like last year's use of DBL Jack, just to temper sweetness. Expensive at $22 per, but you can tell the craftsmanship that goes into something like this. One of the most decadent and complex beers I've had. And the best part? No hint of surprise in that statement.

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