Sunday, April 05, 2009

Firestone 10

The first in a series of anniversary ales produced by Firestone Walker Brewing out of California, of which an Eleven and Twelve have also been produced. This particular vintage is highly sought after and has been "hyped" quite a bit by beer lovers since it's release. It is nearly impossible to find at this point and I was lucky enough to score a bottle from a generous soul awhile back.

Finally cracked the lone bottle of this I had in my cellar. Pours a deep dark brown with a quarter inch of tan head that leaves spotty lacing. Head quickly falls. Aromas of dense caramel and roasted malts colliding with boozy bourbon and wood tannins. Lots of dark fruits moving around here with some vanilla in the background as well. Alcohol comes through slightly.

First sip brings sweet rich caramel and dark malts upfront moving into roasted flavors with molasses and dark fruits popping through. Bourbon flavors move in along with woody barrel accents and tannins. Flows down with a touch of aged hop bitterness and quite a bit of alcohol bite on the end. Somewhat harsh overall, it doesn't come together as nicely as I was expecting.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and slick, but thinner than I expected for this brew. Sharing the bomber with a friend was the right decision as this would have been tough to take on solo. Maybe it was the age on the bottle, but this one really didn't live up to the reputation that was out there for this beer for me personally. Glad I tried it, but also glad I didn't spend / trade an arm and a leg just to do so.

Overall I gave this one a rating of Enjoyable.

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