OK, I get it: Spring's here, summer's coming, and stouts are so last winter. But, that is so not the case. Stouts gets a bad rap for being seasonal brews - but they're available year-round for a reason, my friends.
Enter this newly released Parabola from Firestone Walker. Parabola comes out once a year, and like many stouts, it's best if aged for a bit (6 months-1 year, I'd say) before consuming. However, it's also great right off the shelves, which is how we enjoyed this year's concoction.
What: Parabola 2016 by Firestone Walker Brewing Company, Paso Robles, California
Style: Russian Imperial Stout
ABV: 13.1% (seriously)
Tasting Notes: Parabola is aged for a year in a blend of bourbon barrels - including Elijah Craig, Four Roses, Pappy Van Winkle, Woodford Reserve, and Buﬀalo Trace - giving it a boozy, bourbon flavor that's a little extra apparent in this new bottle (again, aging should help mellow this out a teeny bit). The rich, bitter chocolate and sweet vanilla notes help to cut the alcohol nicely, while the mouthfeel is wonderfully silky - albeit a bit thin.
Pairing Suggestion: This beer is hefty, so it really doesn't need to be paired with anything. However, given the ABV, I'd highly recommend having a satiating snack or meal before sipping on it. ;)
Where Can I Find It? Parabola bottles are usually easy to find, but it's a seasonal release, so I wouldn't wait too long to try and snag a bottle. Drafts are also available from time to time at select bars, but they are much more limited. To see where you can find a bottle near you, check out Firestone's beer finder.
Do you drink stouts year-round? Or are you more of a seasonal stout drinker?