Now that the Firestone Walker Invitational for 2022 is in the books along with my jealousy of all who got to go and experience that excellent festival, it is time to move onto what this years anniversary beer will look like…
XXVI will be in the 12oz bottles with the special box packaging and are not to be missed. I did an anniversary flight last November (a great time to visit I might add) and it was fun to see how four different years tasted.
Looks like Firestone Walker is back into the pilsner game with this collaboration with St. Petersburg, Florida’s Green Bench Brewing.
Dabbling in Decoction from Firestone Walker’s The Propagator beer will be an American pilsner that hits 4.7%
Firestone Walker has been reading my mind again as they have done more gin barrel-aged beers and have dabbled in using bitters barrels too.
Let’s start with the bigger ABV of the two, which surprised me, the Daisy…
Imperial Blonde is sort of like imperial pilsner to me, I appreciate the level up game but it also defeats the purpose of a blonde ale. Daisy’s Favorite pours a dark orange color and their is a mingling of spices on the nose. A soft but sturdy botanical flavor leads to a bit of alcohol burn at the end. The spices pop as it warms and the ABV doesn’t show up as strong. I would have maybe liked a little more juniper beer or coriander to add an extra dimension.
Gold Rider has been the beer talked about a bit more. Mentioning Cognac will do that. This has a big barrel aroma. Very French mixture of whiskey and grape. Lighter mouthfeel to this one, the aroma leads you to expect one thing and then you sip and it is different. I am missing the lemon aspect to this though, unless that is what is contributing to the lightness.
To choose a winner: I would pick the Daisy. It had a simpler mission and hit the mark, the orange bitters in the Rider emerged well but it needed more Cognac and lemon.
Every year is a new generation and at the Propagator in Venice, Firestone Walker that means more IPA.
Here are the details – “Each April, we celebrate another year of good times and brewing at The Propagator R&D Brewhouse with an anniversary beer release. This year, we teamed up with our friends at El Segundo Brewing Co. to create Gen-6 Double IPA, a riff on our now-classic Propagator house IPA, Gen-1.”
Our next double are big barrel-aged beers from Firestone Walker that I have posted about earlier…
Royal Street – I often wonder when blenders think too many barrels has been achieved. Cognac, Rye, Bitters AND Absinthe. That is a serious flavor overload. Box reading aside, how does RS taste? It is quite bubbly. Getting cola and licorice in equal measure. Lemon acidity cuts through as a minor creek. As it warms, I am getting a major amount of honey. If I was handed this as a cocktail, I would be fooled for a bit.
Paraboloid – The newest Parabola variant. Has that Firestone Walker bourbon smell. After enough vintages, you can sense their signature barrel style. This is chocolate and cherry to me. Has a See’s Candy hit to it. More bubbly than expected and less Bourbon than expected but it is a dreamy beer to me.
Royal was an experiment that didn’t fire on all cylinders but the Parabola, damn, that is good stuff.
Earlier this month, I re-reviewed a beer from Stone Brewing, now, don’t get confused, I am reviewing a beer from Firestone Walker, Hopnosis IPA.
This is yet another light and bright beauty from FW. Hopnosis pours a darkish yellow. There is a light pine earthy aroma that really pops. The bitterness is calibrated just right. As you drink, a little fruit punch flavor creeps into adding another layer.
Firestone Walker has just upped their barrel aging game by not only finding absinthe barrels but then creating a beer that those barrels could affect in a new and interesting way. Plus cognac, rye whiskey and bitters barrels as well.
One quarter of the year gone by in a flash. Now it is time for spring-y beers or as they should be called in SoCal, early summer ales.
~ e-visits to (3) breweries that will be pouring at the return of the Firestone Walker Invitational
~ special featured reviews of press review beers from Figueroa Mountain, Stone and Firestone Walker
~Heads-Up on Los Angeles Beer Events
~ Three suggested beers to buy this month. One light, one medium and one dark
~ A Book & A Beer reads South to America by Imani Perry
~ A Podcast & A Beer listens to History Hit with Dan Snow
~ Great Beer names and Best Beers of the Month
~ I will tap the Firkin and give my no holds barred opinion on the craft beer world.
You should be excited by the 2022 release of Parabola from Firestone Walker but your excitement should be heightened by Paraboloid, “a limited small-batch spinoff aged in an equal selection of rare older-stock barrels from premium spirits producers—specifically 14-year-old Old Fitzgerald bourbon barrels and 18-year-old Sazerac rye whiskey barrels.”
More info from barrel meister Eric Ponce, “These barrels complemented Parabola’s classic flavor profile by imparting hints of stone fruits, fudge, leather and peppery spice. Additionally, the beer was aged for a full two years prior to blending and bottling.”
Firestone Walker has two distillery collaborations on the horizon, taking their Central Coast Quad in two directions with the help of rue whiskey barrels from WhistlePig.
First is a double barrel hit of rye and syrup…
…and the one that strikes my fancy more since I am a plain, unadorned type of guy…
Might be fun to get some of the Rye to pair with these.