Firestone Walker’s Parabola
All craft beer guys have their bucket lists of most sought after brews and I certainly have mine. For many moons I have heard stories of the legendary Parabola by Firestone Walker, but until recently I was never able to get my hands on it. Last month however everything changed when my local B&M Fox Cigar Bar got a keg of the rich and potent Parabola and then a case of the bombers.
Parabola was created as a special project element for their Anniversary brew “10” which was to be an amalgam of different strong beer elements according to Firestone Walker. As the story goes the demand for some of these individual elements was so great that Parabola was commissioned, and that Parabola itself became so popular that it was then bottled as well as delivered in kegs. Parabola is a Russian Imperial Stout that weighs in at a hearty 12.5% ABV. Its fermentation process was done by letting the potent brew rest in various barrels for twelve months to give it, its richness of flavor. Needless to say this project is definitely a labor of love and it shows in the wonderful depth of flavor that this brew unveils.
Pouring the Parabola reveals an inky black beer that gives off a two-finger beige head. The beer is almost reminiscent of molasses in the way that it pours, as it pours thick and leaves a fine coating on the glass as its imbibed. Exploring the Parabola with my olfactory senses reveals a rich bouquet of chocolate and toffee notes mixed with a hint of vanilla and oak. Taking a sip of the hearty beer reveals a strong malty body that has a combination of sweet milk chocolate and coffee notes. For as robust as the beer is, it is also very rich in its sweetness. I wouldn’t consider it to be cloying, but rather finely balanced with the maltiness and tamed coffee notes.
All in all, I must say that the Parabola is easily one of my favorite Russian Imperial Stouts to date. It is full of flavor, richness, and body that is delicious to the last drop. That being said, it definitely is not for everyone and should only be approached by those who have a true passion for stouts as it is an amplification of all the best qualities of stouts. Parabola is a hard beer to find and I wholeheartedly encourage those that come across it to purchase it. If you are a fan of strong stouts and porters this beer is definitely for you, just make sure you bring a friend a long for the sharing of the bomber, because it is one epic beer!