Firestone Invitational 2014 May 31st 2014 – Paso Robles, CA
The story started when I heard about the pre-sale tickets and 100 VIP tickets months before the event and to my amazement they all sold out in seconds. Then the regular tickets went on sale but again they were sold out very quickly. I didn’t get a Ticket but my Friend Jeffery got an extra ticket and he offered it to me. I had never been to a Firestone Invitational but have heard many amazing things. I am very grateful to Jeffery for the ticket and the ride down.
Jeffery and I left to go to Paso Robles at 6:15am Saturday May 31st and we got in line at 9:45am. Getting there that early when the event started at 12:00 meant we were in front of the line and we got shade the whole time which was well worth it. We had a good size group of friends in line. At 11:30 they let people through the gate to get their glass, a program for the event, food plate and a ticket for one pour of the new release of Firestone walkers Colab with Three Floyd’s Ol’ Leghorn. So we got to sip on Ol’Leghorn which is a very nice barley wine while we wait for the rest of the event to open. They had the Merch shop open while you waited, so it made out to be a nice intro to the festival. The event opened at 12:00pm and sine we were in the front we went right to the Three Floyd’s tent knowing they will be packed all day until they run out.
Here is a list of everything I drank in order with. This for sure wasn’t everything available nor was it all the rare and most sought after beers. You really must pick and choose at this event for sure. Overall it was a great day with great beers and great people.
Ol’ Leghorn – Firestone Walker (Paso Robles, CA) and Three Floyd’s (Munster, IN) – barleywine ABV 10.5% 4.5 out of 5
Barrel Aged Blot out the Sun – Three Floyd’s (Munster, IN) Imperial Double Stout – ABV 12% 5 out of 5
Rosa Hibiscus Ale – Revolution Brewing (Chicago, IL) Herbed Beer – ABV 5.8% 3.5 out of 5 it was light and fresh but I expected more Hibiscus
Reality Czech – Moonlight Brewing (Santa Rosa, CA) Czech Pilsner – ABV 4.8% 3.5 out of 5
El Hefe Añejo – Golden Road Brewing (Los Angeles, CA) Tequila Barrel Aged Hefeweizen – ABV 11.2% 4.5 out of 5 I had never heard of Golden Road Brewing and they had no line at the time so I went and checked out what they had and found this Gem. You could really taste the agave in it. It was so good and because I had never heard of them and I liked it so much I was telling strangers all day about this beer and it has to be a favorite of the day.
Saison-Brett – Boulevard Brewing (Kansas City, MO) ABV 8.5% 4 out of 5
Pentagram – Surly Brewing (Brookyln Center, MN) Sour Ale – ABV 6.66% 5 out of 5
Darkness (2013) – Surly Brewing (Brooklyn Center, MN) Imperial Stout – ABV 9.9% 3.5 out of 5
Speedway Stout (Barrel Aged) – AleSmith Brewing (San Diego, CA) Double Stout – ABV 12% 4.5 out of 5
Remy Ooh-La-La – TAPS fish house and brewery (Brea, CA) imperial Stout – ABV 12.3% 5 out of 5
Stormcloud – Rahr & Sons Brewing (Fort Worth, TX) IPA – ABV 6.5% 3.5 out of 5
Let me take a quick break here to talk about the food. They had food vendors all over the place from mostly local restaurants. The food was included with the price of the ticket just like the beer. They had some amazing food at this festival!! I was in line for food at 2:00 when I saw Cigar City completely run out of beer.
Vieille Artisanal Saison – Crooked Stave Artisanal Ales (Denver , CO) ABV 4.2% 4 out of 5
Nocturn Chrysalis (Blend 1) – Jester King (Austin, TX) Blackberry Sour Ale – ABV 6.7% 5 out of 5 this is one of the best sours I have ever had!
Appelation – Beavertown (Hackney Wick, London, E3 2NT) Apple Saison – ABV 9% 3 out of 5 I was expecting more of of this beer
Vanilla Coffee Eclipse – FiftyFifty Brewing (Truckee, CA) vanilla coffee Double stout – ABV 11.9% 4.5 out of 5
Notorious IPA – Boneyard Beer (Bend, OR) Triple IPA – ABV 11.8% 3.5 out of 5
Wineification – The Bruery (Placentia, CA) Wine Grape Fermented imperial stout (Black Tuesday) – ABV 15.7% 4 out of 5 this beer was only available to society members and you had to show your card. It was a nice perk for sure!
San Diego Surprise – Alpine Beer Co (Alpine, CA) ABV 5.5% 3.5 out of 5
Miso Hoppy – FiftyFifty Brewing (Truckee, CA) English Summer Ale Made with Soriachi Ace hops originally made for Sapporo Brewery in Japan – ABV 4.2% 3 out of 5
Tokyo Black Porter – Yo-Ho Brewing (Saku-shi, Nagano, Japan) ABV 5% 4 out of 5
popcorn pilsner – Sun King Brewing (Indianapolis, IN) ABV 5.1% 3.5 out of 5 you can really taste the popcorn!
Oarsman Ale – Bell’s brewery Inc. (Michigan) Berliner Weisse – ABV 4% 3.5 out of 5
Saison – Funkwerks (Fort Collins, CO) ABV 6.8% 3 out of 5
Cellerman – Triple Rock (Berkeley, CA) saison – ABV 6.5% 4.5 out of 5
Scires (2010) – Birrificio Italiano (Limido Comasco, CO, Italy) Cherry Sour Ale – ABV 7.5% 4.5 out of 5
Tiny Bubbles – Hollister Brewing (Goleta, CA) Gose – ABV 4.5% 4.5 out of 5
Lil Opal – Firestone Walker (Paso Robles, CA) Saison – ABV 5.6% 4 out of 5
Trip in the Woods – Sierra Nevada Brewing (Chico, CA) Scottish Ale – ABV 9.6% 4 out of 5
And that is it for the Firestone Walker Invitational we left the event about 5:00pm and walked back to the Motel 6. On the way back we saw D from Bobby’s Liquer and ISO. It’s always good to see that guy. We got back to the motel and I thought ok well have a few beers at the pool with our group. We were the first in the pool area and cracked a bottle and all of a sudden tons of people start getting to the motel from the Festival and I said wow this place sold out with beer heads I guess. Then the other tables start filling up with people opening beers. Beer Jesus the awesome guy he is starts taking the bottles we were opening and sharing with the other tables and they then start sharing with us. After about 30 Minutes of that I look around and the pool area is packed, every table chair, people siting along the pool and some in the pool. It became a massive bottle share and I got to meet a lot of great people from all over. Here is my Beer list from this Epic Pool bottle share.
Cap’n Skoon’s Baltic Stout – Westbrook brewing (Mt. Pleasant, SC) ABV 10% 4 out of 5
Serendipity – New Glarus Brewing (New Glarus, WI) Fruit Sour Ale – ABV 4% 4.5 out of 5
805 Blonde – Firestone Walker Brewing (Paso Robles, CA) ABV 4.7% 2.5 out of 5
This was the first time i tried this beer and I expected more. A group from San Francisco shared this with us.
Gose – Westbrook Brewing (Mt. Pleasant, SC) ABV 4% 4 out of 5 I do love this beer!
pseudo Sue – Toppling Goliath Brewing (Decorah, IA) ABV 5.8% 4 out of 5
Mischmishmish – The Bruery (Placentia, CA) ABV 8.8% 4.5 out of 5
Sosus – Toppling Goliath Brewing (Decorah, IA) Double IPA – ABV 8% 4.5 out of 5
Hyper Dog – Pipeworks Brewing (Chicago, IL) Milk Stout with Cacao and Coffee – ABV 7.5% 3.5 out of 5
Strawberry Rhubarb – New Glarus Brewing (New Glarus, WI) Strawberry Rhubarb Sour Ale – ABV 4% 5 out of 5 this is one of the best beers I have ever had!
Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout – Goose Island Beer (Chicago, IL) ABV 13.4% 5 out of 5
West Ashley (Batch 5) – Sante Adairius Rustic Ales (Capitola, CA) Saison Aged in Pinot barrels with Apricots – ABV 7.3% 4.5 out of 5
Redemption – Russian River Brewing (Santa Rosa , CA) ABV 5.15% 3.5 out of 5
Mokah (2014) - Southern Tier Brewing (Lakewood, NY) ABV 10% 4 out of 5
Ninja VS Unicorn – Pipeworks Brewing (Chicago, IL) ABV 9% 4 out of 5
Barrel Roll No. 4 Hammerhead (2014) - Hanger 24 Craft Brewery (Redlands, CA) ABV 11.2% 4.5 out of 5
Swami’s IPA – Pizza Port (Carlsbad, CA) ABV 6.8% 4 out of 5
Pulling Nails (Blend #1) – Side Project Brewing (Saint Louis, MO) ABV 6% 4.5 out of 5
Le Saisonner – Side Project Brewery (Saint Louis, MO) ABV 4.8% 4.5 out of 5
Syndicate No. 1 – Speakeasy Ales and Lagers (San Francisco, CA) ABV 10.5% 4.5 out of 5
Danish Red Lager – Figueroa Mountain Brewery (Buellton, CA) ABV 5.5% 3.5 out of 5