Double Barrel Reviews – Gold Rider and Daisy’s Favorite from Firestone Walker

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.

Gin on Tuesday

The Bruery is adding a Black Tuesday variant aged in, wait for it, my favorite spirit, Gin.

It will be interesting to see if the botanicals can power through the very strong base beer. Then diving deeper, I would like to see smaller bottles with different barrels. Gin, wine, cognac and othets.


It is Smog City Brewing Day here at BSP so let’s talk gin-barrel aged saison.

In addition to being aged in gin barrels, there is additions of vanilla and lemon in this cocktail inspired beer that clocks in at 10.8%. Plus I like that French style font and the royal goblet on the label.


As a born and raised Portlander and a Gin fan, this new milestone release from Ecliptic Brewing is doubly up my alley.

This is Batch 5000 and it will be a golden BarleyWine ale aged in Old Tom Gin barrels and will reach 13% ABV. Maybe we will see this in L.A.

Gin & Fernet

I have never heard of a cocktail called the Manky Panky but if you say gin barrel, I will come a running. Add Fernet barrels and now I am all in. I wonder how the three powerful fruits will combine with that barrel power that the Bruery is harnessing.

Gin & Pepper

Leave it to me to find any slight mention of gin barrels and beer and bring it to your attention. Part of the Wooden it Be Nice series from Dogfish Head with wild + peppercorn + gin. Hopefully these beers will make it west to try.

In Flux

The annual release of Fluxus from Allagash Brewing had sorta fallen off the radar with the influx of new beers from outside the state but an added ingredient and different barrel-aging has it back on the to-buy list when I see it on shelves. (which should be any day now.)

The 2016 version is a saison that is “brewed with a plethora of Allagash base malt, including barley, rye, and wheat. After a heathy dosing of Noble hops, and ginger root, the beer was then partially aged in gin barrels. The barrels previously held Barr Hill Tom Cat Gin, made by Caledonia Spirits in Hardwick, Vermont.”

There are not enough gin and tequila aged beers out there and even less that start with a Saison. The question is how strong will that ginger be?

Once Only

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Can the three strong flavors of gin, grapefruit and a Belgian tripel live together? And how strange is the English language that comes up with a phrase like Hapax Legomenon?

Last question, who mentioned it to Cigar City Brewing so that it could be used for such a strange beer?