So I recently tried the Firestone Walker’s 15th Anniversary ale. It’s a blend of Helldorado, DDBA, Sticky Monkey, Parabola, Velvet Merkin (one of my eternally favorite beers), Good Foot and Bravo, and Double Jack. It comes off bit heavy on the raisin taste (too much Sticky Monkey?), with a medium alcohol kick. It still had the distinct cocoa flavor that all the anniversary ales seem to carry.
I kept wanting to compare it to the 14, though, which I drank just a few weeks ago. It is quite simply one of the greatest beers I’ve ever had. The 14 was complex, full of caramel and floral and fruity notes. It felt like you could find something different in each sip. It’s smooth for 14% alcohol–even after a long night of drinking I kept refilling my glass. The 15, on the other hand, falls pretty hard on the stomach and brain.
Perhaps it’s not fair to compare the two. The 14, after all, had an extra year of aging on it. I could see the 15 mellowing out on the alcohol front and letting some of the more complex flavors of the blend come through.
I guess I’ll let you know in a year…
In other news, who’s excited to try Wookey Jack? Firestone releases this black IPA in March. Definitely going to have to try that one.