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Agave Maria - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.
Agave MariaAgave Maria

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

71 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 71
Hads: 523
Avg: 3.89
pDev: 43.7%
Wants: 57
Gots: 107 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  13.50% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: dwagner003 on 03-26-2014

Using a blend of Anejo and Reposado barrels and aged for a minimum of ten months, Agave Maria has hints of black pepper, sweet sugar, oatmeal, and oak with an earthy, bitter smoked chocolate on the finish. The base beer, a new Agave strong ale, was created specifically to pair with the spiciness of the Tequila, adding a sweet honey-like quality to the beer.
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Reviews: 71 | Hads: 523
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.16/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

2014 vintage.

Pours an opaque super dark brown with no head. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, brown sugar, molasses, agave, tequila, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with caramel, toffee, brown sugar, tequila, and wood flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of wood bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and sticky mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a very nice use of tequila barrels that gave the finished product a distinct tequila aroma and flavor while still allowing other aspects to come through.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.52/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

i havent had a beer this interesting in a long time, and have never seen a better expression of tequila in a beer. a strong ale, like only the lost abbey can brew, using agave nectar instead of the usual belgian candy sugar or other sweetener, and then aged in a mix of repo and anejo barrels for what just be quite awhile. listed on the bottle at 13.5% abv, it drinks like about 8%, just no heat at all and very pleasant all the way through. rich amber color, mahogany really, cherry wood red, with a lot of haze and viscosity, and an average cream head. it smells fruity as heck, super sweet, and lush like the agave plant itself. i get plenty of sweet oak, red and brown malts, and just the smallest hint of booze. the flavor is tequila heavy, but not in a hot or caustic or stomach turning way. its rich and sweet, like a tequila desert made from some top shelf stuff. tons of oak and a hint of vanilla in with the fresh agave plant juice. malt base is enormous, but right where it belongs. i get toasted almonds, coconut, black pepper, and molasses all wrapped up in this, but its agave all the way, and as smooth and mellow as the best of them. a hint of smoke to cut the sweetness after the swallow. very dense beer too, almost gelatinous, but slippery and drinkable for what it is. lost abbey takes come criticism from users of this site for whatever reason, but its beers like this that keep me loyal. fantastically interesting and well crafted beer, up there with anything, near flawless, i need more.

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Photo of largadeer
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle into a Lost Abbey teku. Cork comes out with a pop, and miraculously, this has perfect carbonation. Pours a clear dark brown with a clinging finger of head.

Lots of agave goodness on the nose - plenty of tequila character that brings fruity sweetness and caramel. The big brown ale base brings some nice toasty sweetness, but the barrel is really the dominant aspect here and it works nicely.

Sweet and fruity on the palate, big tequila and agave presence with layers of caramel, vanilla and smoke. The body isn't overly hefty, and there's not much booziness despite the high ABV. The base beer is pretty simple, a bit toasty and sweet; little more than a showcase for the agave and barrel.

Having been really impressed with Firestone's tequila barrel aged stout, I had high hopes for this one, and it delivers. It's also nice to see a really polished strong ale coming from Lost Abbey, fully carbonated and without a large amount of sediment.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%

Reviewed from notes. 375ml C&C bottle.

A: Pours a light brown with a light tan head which fades to the rim and leaves spotty lace.

N: Spices, sweet caramel, faint tequila booze, aged oak, fruity.

T: Well balanced, aged woody tequila with malty sweetness and raisins/fruity. ABV is noted.

M: Full body and light carbonation. Finishes sweetly sticky with boozy heat and lingering fruits.

O: I really enjoyed this one. Go slow, take your time as this warms. Wish it wasn't so spendy.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.76/5  rDev -3.3%

From 10/11/14 notes. Thanks to Nugganooch for sending this out to me... thanks Dane! 375ml bottle poured into my Lost Abbey stemware.

Pours a medium brown color with a slight reddish tint, less than an inch of off white bubbles and low carbonation evident. Not quite flat but not very carbonated. Tons of tequila, oak, booze, dark fruit malts, sugar. Medium body and low carbonation, pretty hot.

Overall way too tequila foward for me; it dominates it and not much else going on. Hot and tough to drink a 375ml bottle by yourself...probably wouldn't seek t out again personally.

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Photo of chinchill
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Medium-large shared bottle.
High ABV is quite evident in the aroma which suggests a mix of sherry and brown ale.
Slight woody aspect with plenty of dark and over-ripe fruit notes.
Lovely red-brown body.

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Photo of stakem
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

375ml corked and caged bottle poured into a matching lost abbey teku. The brew appears a murkey brown with a light khaki head. Some lighter brown clarity is noted when held to the light. Some spotty to stringy patches of lace hang on the glass snd a swirl revives a finger of froth back to the surface. This has ample carbonation visually as it constantky rises to the surface supporting a film throughout the duration.

The aroma is a little musty. Almosy heavy on a notion of older damp oak with some raisony character blending to toffee, caramel and candy-like sweetness. Booze is prevalent across the back. As it warms up, it has a distinct fruitiness like agave and grass with a mild herbal feel.

The taste is sweet and malty with notes of raison and toffee before some raw oak barrel character. A little hint of must and mushrooms almost like earthen and damp old oakiness blends with agave that has a green grassy note. There is a fruity feel to this before plenty of warming alcohol comes into play. A mild herbal bitterness lasts into the finish.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is quite an enjoyable sipper. The tequila is not prevalent in this other than some alcohol warmth. The agave however is pretty pronounced. Ive heard a lot of conflicting information about bottles of this ranging from flat to infected and sour. I was pleasantly surprised that mine was neither and a pretty good representation of what the label reads. Then again, my bottle went from store shelf to fridge to my mouth in a fairly quick timeframe.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.21/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer is murky and chestnut brown with a filmy tan collar. The aroma brings oak, cherry, vanilla, heat. Similar flavor with some tequila like notes in the flavor. A tad sweet, finishing with a tangy, oak, slightly tannic note. Vinous. Flavorful. I like this one. An interesting beer.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a large snifter. Vintage 2014. Very small pop, and some muscle to get the cork out.

Deep somewhat murky brown, a strange reddish glow, and hints of lemon yellow edges. No head produced, looks a little lifeless on the pour, but has a nice tan collar, very fine and thin. Not too bad, not too slick or oily top either.

Great aroma. Hints of tequila, but a real nice soft sweetness from the agave syrup. A little bit of smoke aromas round out, faint heat of tequila warmth as well. Maybe even a little briney sensing.

Nice palate. Great texture of silky sugars that aren't horribly sweet from the agave syrup. Syrup light bodied with some playful carbonation. Hints of red wine grape, a little bit of smoke on the finish, and roasty warmth in the gut, and some good grass aromatics. Nice butterscotch and caramel action more giving to style of a classic strong and old ale, picking up a beer character more so than hinted on the nose.

Quite a fun little beer, and if you are into aged tequila which I enjoy, you will dig this.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.49/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Bottle into Lost Abbey stemware. The cork comes off with a big pop and the beer pours dark brown with a lively inch of beige foam. Lacing is scattered.

The aroma has a strong tequila influence. Caramel blends with vanilla and agave. The base beer is bready with some brown sugar and a touch of chocolate. There's a light spiciness as well, maybe some floral character accompanying oak and earth.

The flavor is bursting with agave, caramel, and oak. There's a touch of chocolate as well. I'd like to imagine that the deep caramel and vanilla notes are from the experienced hand of the añejo, while the livelier, spicy notes can be attributed to the reposado. Alcohol is very well hidden. There's some citrus in the dry, sticky, warming finish. Caramel, earth, and oak linger. Carbonation is at a medium level.

Overall, this is a beautiful beer with the fine flavors of a good tequila. The base beer seems to be the perfect vehicle for the agave. Highly recommended.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

375ml caged and corked brown bottle purchased from Healthy Spirits in San Francisco. Shared with Sam in Sydney.

Pours a turbid, murky mahogany brown, with a very fine head that doesn't really form with any verve. Body is incredibly thick, leaving a powdery mess of static carbonation when tilted. It looks really quite interesting, if a little confusing.

Nose is extremely strange, but with stacks of complexity and interest. Noticeable plasticky funk, a hint of smoke, and a syrupy tequila character from the agave. It's spicy, peppery and very unusual—I'm not sure I've ever had a beer quite like this before.

Taste is actually not what I expected from the nose. It does indeed continue some of the weird aromatic characters: especially the pepper and the spice, but there's a pronounced malt backbone giving it a true sweetness to support a lot of complexity. Again there's tequila notes, along with a rather interesting woody oak note that smoothes over the back palate. Feel is very clean and smooth, but with a prickly spice from all of the agave notes.

Overall, this is a really good, and a very unusual beer. It has a lot of really strange twists to it, but manages to pull together something reasonably coherent from the anarchy. I'm genuinely a fan.

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Photo of vfgccp
4.56/5  rDev +17.2%

A - Low retention and lace on a bone-white head. Beautiful deep mahogany body with cranberry highlights.

S - Sweet nose. Raisins, honey, agave, and tangy tequila.

T - Sweet brown bread, golden raisins, tart vinegary oak, smooth agave, and a touch of anise.

M - Medium-light body. Super smooth.

O - Outstanding. Great execution on an interesting experimental style.

4.56 Agave Maria
-- -Jay- -Jon- -Vin- -Avg- Weight Adj
A - 4.00 4.30 4.50 4.27 10% 0.43
S - 4.50 4.75 4.50 4.58 20% 0.92
T - 4.60 4.60 4.70 4.63 40% 1.85
M - 4.40 4.40 4.50 4.43 10% 0.44
O - 4.60 4.60 4.60 4.60 20% 0.92

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.99/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Kurmaraja hooked me up with a couple of these gems... Thanks Ryan!! This was opened with a couple other tequila barrel aged beers at a boutique tequila tasting... This was similar to the Bottleworks 15, but seemed more refined with more of a straight agave presence... okay light khaki head... dark brown brew, with highlights only showing near the stem-end of my glass... Nose has a spicy element from the barrels that shows more than the palate... the taste is still good, but doesn't have as much "ummph" to get things jumping ... a little bit of something that I associate with raisin as it really warmed up... but the agave and the vanilla/oak with the tequila bite really accomplish the brewers' goals. Thicker but still had a good carbonation... Props to Mr. Arthur.

Thanks once again to Kurmaraja... A top-notch trader for sure.


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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Gavroche tulip. Pours a very dark mahogany amber with little light transmission and a thin off-white head that dissipates quickly to a ring around the glass, slight lacing. Aroma of toasted malt, brown sugar, light tequila; woody and a bit boozy. Flavor is caramel and mild toasted malt, wood, toffee, dark fruit, earthy and woody with light tequila hints in the finish. Medium bodied with light carbonation. An interesting strong ale with the rich, complex flavors I expect from this brewery's more powerful brews, the flavors are so well integrated that they seem mellow at first, although the barrel elements become more noticeable as the flavor develops. The tequila influence is well done without being intrusive and the whole flavor blends together quite well. A very interesting and satisfying strong ale. A warming sipper.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

AUG 29, 2014
UPDATED: AUG 31, 2014 Bottle from Chris. Thanks, hagg. 2014 vintage.Pouring a very dark brown with a dense, brown head with decent retention and nice lacing, this looks great. The nose is awesome. A blend of boozy notes, rum and tequla mostly, up front along with a complex malt base that has floral agave notes, leather, dark fruit, a little smoke (the last 3 particularly reminiscent of Angels Share). A mild barrel/boozy tartness is present with flavors of semiripe blackberries. A really nice earthy, savory note is present with petrichor and red wine. Awesome.The palate opens full-bodied with the berry tartness, a delightful tequila character, some brown sugar and a little leather. The leather grows through the palate, gaining earth, toffee, burnt sugar, a little smoke and red wine/grape skin tannins quite strong. Fruity and vinous on the finish with a blend of floral agave, a fruity, jammy Zin and a hint of smoke. Lightly carbonated, this feels great on the palate. Excellent stuff.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.15/5  rDev -19%

Pours a dull mahogany hue a murky clarity. Nose is vegetal and vinous with a hint of sour milk. Taste is interesting - tannic, acidic, agave nectar and raisins are most prevalent in the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body and acidic with a residual alcohol burn at the finish. Overall - this is just a weird beer. Not bad, but not my thing.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
1.76/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 1.75

Shared by Curran last night.

This one pours a murky brown, with no head or lacing.

This one has a really off-putting smell that really reminds me of rotting garbage. It's honestly disgusting. There's some stale tequila as well.

This was just a major fail on Lost Abbey's part. I'm not sure if that was intended, or it went deeply south in the year it's been in the bottle, but it was 2-3 sips and a drainpour, which I don't do often. There's a super unpleasant sour character, when mixed with the tequila, it's just rancid. The garbage character is really nicely present in the taste too.

This is medium bodied, and a bit syrupy, and not really that palatable.

Honestly, one of the worst beers I've ever had. Blech all around.

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 375mL bottle into a footed glass.

A: Murky brown. No head.

S: salty. Tequila is obvious. Sweetish malt. Spicy.

T: This is really tasty. Sticky caramel/toffee. Dusty yeast. Distant booziness. Astringent citrus peel, agave, yeast.

M: Smooooth.

O: Great, interesting beer. Really worthwhile. Would recommend!

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Photo of Immortale25
3.74/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Haw River Farmhouse Ales teku glass. 2014 vintage.

A- Pours a medium brown color with a 1/4 inch light tan head that retains a bit before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a half sheet of surface foam. Minimal lacing.

S- Strange funky aroma that's pretty off-putting. You get a bit of the barrel and a hint of booze but it's mainly this earthy aroma that's not very pleasant.

T- Big lime flavor with a spicy tequila finish. Slightly sweet with some raisin notes. Man, this is great because it really pulls through the reposado/anejo spiciness of a top-shelf tequila. There is a tartness present that actually complements the drink in the way that a lime would with a margarita. The more I drink it, the more I get this sour mix flavor that I really like.

M- Slight tart dryness. Actually gets more and more tart as the drink goes on.

O- This beer definitely shows signs of infection. The tartness becomes more and more apparent as the drink progresses and the smell is just plain bad. That being said, the flavor is great in my opinion. The tequila comes through with this sweet/sour lime flavor making me feel like I'm drinking a margarita which the tartness actually enhances. If I hadn't heard this was infected, I might not have thought there was anything technically wrong with it when drinking it. I'm glad I popped it when I did though since it apparently is on the road of getting worse over time, but I'm still pretty sure this beer isn't exactly how the brewer intended for it to taste at the time it was bottled. Overall, somewhat of a disappointment considering the money spent on this bottle.

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Photo of cbutova
4.04/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On-tap at Armsby Abbey Worcester, MA. Notes taken 3 days ago.

A- Dark brown almost black body poured from the tap to a goblet. Small frothy tan head is just a thin layer atop the beer. Big creamy ring and nice sheets and webs of lace.

S- Deep and rich with cocoa, roast malts, plums that almost feel like a truffle. With some time wet oak and tequila come out to be fairly strong. Fruity and something spicy, smoky.

T- Tequila feel is more assertive in the flavor. Agave also stronger here as well and they both blend well with notes of rich fig, plum, cocoa, wet oak and spice.

MF- Medium body with a foamy, creamy carbonation. Strong warmth from the alcohol heating up the palate in the finish.

Perhaps has the strongest tequila presence of any beer I have had thus far. The tequila works just fine with the Strong Ale aged on it and nothing is abrasive about the experience.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.71/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark-brown colour, slight mahogany tinge. Head is just a rim of pale bubbles. Nice lace left behind though. Looks alright.

Smells ridiculously sweet. Red wine tinge with brown sugar, molasses, touch of sweet spice. Fruity, rich and sweet. Bit apprehensive about sweetness, but there's lots to like.

Taste is porty. Loads of red wine character, rich and strong but with big residual sugar that gives that fortified character. Slight tannic edge, a touch of black pepper and a decent belt of treacle. Definitely more red wine than beer (or agave), but still not bad, and impressive to get such notes in a beer.

A bit thin, quite a pull, probably yeast-related. Actually body is OK but definitely quite a twist at the end.

Not sure what to make of it as a beer, really, but it's a fine little sipper.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #90 (July 2014):

Raisins, Tequila, Agave

A strong ale brewed with agave syrup and aged in tequila barrels? Yep. Drops into the glass dark reddish brown, opaque, and with a creamy beige head. Aromas of agave nectar, lime rinds, apples, candied fruit, boozy tequila, and wood. Creamy, silky, and oily on the palate, with a massive toffee note, hint of vanilla, toasted malts, distinct tequila flavors, a smack of lime, suggestions of salt, plum, and an underlying charred raisin note throughout and into the finish with a boozy heat and pepperiness in the linger. What we have here is an awesome use of tequila barrels.

STYLE: American Strong Ale | ABV: 13.5% | AVAILABILITY: Limited

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Photo of scottfrie
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 vintage poured into LA teku glass.

A: Pours a very deep caramel brown with a faint soft collar for a head.
S: Tequila barrel comes through strongly alongside hints of roasted malts, sweet agave syrup, and maybe a mint hint of chocolate.
T: Interesting and much smoother flavors than expected from the nose. Tequila barrel hints first with that characteristic agave and oak taste, followed by notes of caramel, vanilla, leather, tobacco, roast, and milk chocolate. The finish is sweet with agave syrup and full of spice, and the aftertaste is buttery, smooth and has a lingering taste of chocolate and tequila. Tons of sticky caramel comes out as the beer reaches room temp.
M: Full and fairly viscous body, low carbonation that thankfully fluffs up a bit in my mouth and adds some chewiness to the mouthfeel, and a sticky and slick mouthfeel. Alcohol is warming but not distracting.
O: Impressive. I didn’t know what to think given the barrel, but I thoroughly enjoyed sipping on this.

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Photo of Resuin
4.26/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 375 mL bottle into a snifter. Served at cellar temp.

Appearance: Pours a deep caramel color and leaves a half finger of off-white head that fades almost immediately to a ring around the rim of the glass.

Smell: Molasses, liquor soaked raisins, oak, sweet grape jelly. The aroma is sweet but not overly, and pretty nice.

Taste: Starts with a flash of spice and then proceeds to be very sweet, and matches the aroma well. Sweet grape jelly, sweet dark fruits, oak, strawberry jam.

Mouth-feel: Medium carbonation with a slick, medium body. Finishes rather nice and smooth. A hint of alcohol in the finish.

Overall: I wasn't sure what to expect from tequila barrels, but I think it worked out rather nice and subtly. Definitely plenty of sweetness likely from the agave in the base beer, but possibly from the barrel as well. Interesting sweet fruit flavors and oak are predominant in here.

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Photo of Dope
3.52/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

No bottling date.

A: Pours a dark red. Mid-sized fizzy light brown head. Head is thin and effervescent and fades out fairly quickly as a result. No real lacing, just a hint here and there.

S: Huh. Sweet and sour. Like literal sweet and sour sauce. Tequila is notable. Light tart berries. Interesting if a bit head-scratching.

T: Lots of tequila up front with that sweet agave. Once it fades there's loads of tart berries. In the finish there's sort of a...burnt fruit and oak flavor? Get some bittersweet cocoa in there too. Pretty quick and clean finish with lingering tartness and drying oak.

M: Heavy, tart and shockingly dry for 13.5%. A little alcohol sting (which may be the drying part).

O: Hmph. Very unique beer. I'm honestly not even sure if I like it. It's an interesting concept but it just feels muddled and doesn't really hit the spot for me. It's kinda like a random collection of flavors that don't necessarily work together. I give them credit for trying but not something I'd buy again.

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Agave Maria from The Lost Abbey
87 out of 100 based on 71 ratings.