Firestone Walker Brewing Co. turns 22 this year and as it has done since 2006, is celebrating the occasion with a brand new beer.
That creation is the appropriately named XXII Anniversary Ale—or Twenty Two XXII Anniversary Ale—a 12.7 percent ABV ale that is composed of a blend of barrel-aged beers.
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Each year we invite our local winemakers to join us in a “friendly” blending competition. We give them the available components of beer, have them come up with a blend that will amount to 450 barrels, then everyone blind tastes each blends & votes for their favorite. The winning team receives the coveted cardboard crown & bragging rights for creating our XXII Anniversary Ale! #FWTurns22 #barrelagedbeer #pasowinemakers
According to a post on the Paso Robles, Calif.-based brewery’s Facebook page the final blend was created by a team of local winemakers who chose from five different potential components:
- Stickee Monkee — 44 percent
- Double Rum Helldorado — 7 percent
- Gin Helldorado — 5 percent
- Parabola — 22 percent
- Bravo — 22 percent
“Even though it’s a small percentage of the final blend, the gin barrel Helldorado adds a lot to this beer,” said Matt Brynildson, brewmaster for Firestone Walker, in a press release. “It brings this interesting botanical quality with spicy notes that we’ve never had in our Anniversary blends before.”
In 2006, Firestone Walker released a limited edition oak-aged strong ale named Firestone Walker X to commemorate its 10th anniversary which was composed of seven different barrel-aged beers that were then blended together. Since that first release, a new anniversary beer has been released every year that blends together different base beers in varying ratios to produce totally unique releases.
In an email, Jemma Wilson, media manager for Firestone Walker, told Tenemu that XXII Anniversary Ale will be packaged in 12-ounce bottles ($12.99) that are scheduled to be released during an event at the brewery’s three locations on Nov. 3. Bottles will then be shipped to retailers in the brewery’s distribution network starting the week of Nov. 5 with 3,500 cases available.
(Nov. 2, 2018) – This post has been edited to include brewing details. It was originally published on Oct. 5, 2018.