Agave Maria - The Lost Abbey

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Agave MariaAgave Maria

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BA SCORE
89
very good

480 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 480
Reviews: 73
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 15.33%
Wants: 53
Gots: 100 | FT: 18
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  13.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 480 | Reviews: 73
Photo of BRami127
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Drank this today (6/8/14) after buying the bottle on May 14, 2014. 2014 vintage. Served in a Brooklyn Brewery snifter glass.

Appearance: Almost like a marshy, brown color, very little head. Body is thick, but not syrupy.

Smell: Caramel, not too boozy tequila aroma. I sense a sweet raisin scent to the beer.

Taste: Sweet, raisiny, and another dried fruit that I can't identify. The agave is present, but not a primary flavor (compared to a straight shot of tequila or mescal).

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, but thin. You'd think the sweetness and appearance would make it somwhat like a heavy, sweet stout or barleywine, but it is not. Low carbonation.

Overall: Very good beer. Had to try it at least once. It's not my favorite of all the Lost Abbey beers, but it's a definite must try.

Photo of Jonada
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

375ml bottle. 2014 vintage. Served in a DFH signature glass

Appearance: Pours a murky brown color with less than a finger of a light tan head that settles to a thick ring. Body is just short of opaque.

Smell: Caramel, mild roast character, agave/tequila, brown sugar, oak, booze.

Taste: Sweet malt, booze soaked raisins and figs, slight smoke and oak. Definite tequila presence, but not overwhelming.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, with a thinner than expected mouthfeel. Carbonation is on the lower end of medium.

Overall: Definitely a good beer,but not one of the Lost Abbey's best. Given the price point, I probably won't revisit this one again.

Photo of scottfrie
4.27/5  rDev +7.3%
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.

Photo of scottbrew4u
4.32/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Served in a snifter a beautiful, light brown color, clear with garnet highlights and a tight tan head.
S: Toffee, oak, light smoke, raisins soaked in tequila, and a rich roasted malt profile.
T: Caramel, oak, tequila, raisins and dried plums. Rich layers of roasted malt and a kick of boozy tequila finish on the tongue but it still remains smooth.
M: Medium to full body with a smooth, light carbonation. Alcohol warmth is noticeable but where it should be and not harsh.
O: A terrific sipper! Lots of smooth layers that keep developing. This is a harmonious balance between a strong ale and tequila! Seek this beer out!

Photo of AgentMunky
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
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!

Photo of reebtaerG
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured bottle into Lost Abbey Teku

A-Pours a dark brown color with a small beige head that soon recedes to a fine ring.

S-The aroma is sweet with agave nectar, dark fruits and tequila.

T-The taste is similarly sweet with raisins, dates, plums and a trace of mellow tequila.

M-The mouthfeel is oily and viscous and the carbonation is soft. Finishes long and cloying.

O-Overall was quite surprised and impressed with. Would definitely get again to age and compare.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.52/5  rDev +13.6%
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.

Photo of cbutova
4.04/5  rDev +1.5%
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.

Photo of gr0g
4.41/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark brown, mahogany highlights showing. Off white color on the head, composed of very fine bubbles. Tequila is unmistakable on the nose. The "sting" associated with Tequila is tempered nicely. Woody, vanilla-like notes reflect the barrel-aging. Plenty of agave and brown sugar character. Alcohol presence is notable but not overwhelming; it doesn't hide the good qualities present.

Strong, sweet flavor profile. Any heat or sting from the tequila is tempered nicely, with the barrel qualities allowed to shine through. Comparisons in flavor profile to an English barleywine are accurate. Tons of caramellized sugar. The finish is dry and clean. Mouthfeel has a slight syrupy quality, but it's not very viscous. Not quite moderately carbonated, and it's not prickly.

Lost Abbey comes through again with another top notch barrel-aged strong ale. The tequila qualities are expertly balanced with the base beer. Pricey, for sure, but there's a strong argument to be made that it's worth it.

Photo of smakawhat
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
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.

Photo of neurobot01
4.42/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 375ml corked & caged bottle at cellar temp into a snifter, in honor of Cinco de Mayo. Bottle lists abv at 13.5%.

Look: murky red-tinged brown, with essentially no head, and little carbonation (but not the infamous Lost-Abbey-flat).

Smell: unmistakably of tequila. This is the part where I remember that tequila and I do not get along particularly well. Having a pretty hard time picking up anything else.

Taste: unmistakably of awesome! Quite sweet (duh, the base beer's brewed with agave nectar), and definitely a wallop of tequila, but without a strong alcohol bite, and with brown sugar, figs, overripe banana, a tiny bit of cinnamon and nutmeg, and honey backing up the tequila. Given how little heat there is on this, I'm not sure what aging will add—but, that's not going to stop me from sitting on my second bottle for a year.

Feel: pretty syrupy, but not unpleasantly so. Just the mildest hint of carbonation, but basically right for the style.

Overall: if I didn't find the smell of tequila somewhat aversive, this would be a 4.75 overall. That said, at $16/bottle, there are probably other examples of the style that are a better value. Definitely worth trying for fans of tequila.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
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.

Photo of Mikeypnh
4.55/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a dark brown, not a whole lot of head, just a few bubbles. The aroma is initially very sweet. Along with oak, tequila, and dark fruit. Very nice smell. The taste is rich with flavor, oak up front, slight chocolate and molasses, caramel, Tabacco?, and tequila. The tequila shines best right at the end. There's that nice tequila alcohol burn right after you swallow. Really good. It also leaves your mouth dry immediately after, making you want to take a sip as soon as you put the glass down. Mouthfeel is a little thick but still easy to drink given the ABV, with little to no carbonation. Very nice beer, especially if you like tequila. Most impressed with the tequila at the end, it's makes it a very nice sipper.

Photo of pkalix
4.62/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

what a beautiful aroma! the last guy MarcWP hit it all right on the head as I read his review and sipped my snifter.... some boozy notes but not at all alcohol-like. just a pleasant taste and aroma of cocoa, toffee, tequila (much like a bourbon, but tequila), fruit... first sip and first taste produced that deja vu sensation of extreme excitement much like that first Eclipse I had.... sweet and dessert-like, yet serious and sincere. Lost Abbey really has some great stuff.

Photo of MarcWP
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into Toppling Goliath chalice.

Pours a dark brown and when settled in the glass looks almost black. Small tan head that dissipates to the thinnest of rings around the edge of glass.

Aroma is truely wonderful. Rich chocolate, tequila reposado (literally), light caramel, maple, oak, Brandy, and a fruity coffee lingers in the background. The tequila in this I would say is more pronounced than in the PNC or any other beer aged in tequila barrels that I've had (which isn't more than I can count with the fingers of one hand!)

The palate brings pretty much what was present on the nose. Cocoa, caramel, grade b maple syrup, smooth tequila (you know, the good shit), some silky agave sweetness, raw sugar cane (have you ever chewed on fresh sugar cane? I have), and fruity black tea. This finish is so smooth, refined and decadent. At 13.5 abv it's hard to believe there is no booziness. The only hint of booziness you get is from the tequila flavors but even those are more flavor than actual fusel alcohol notes.

Mouthfeel is silky heavy medium with low carbonation that seems fitted to this beer. I don't see the need for more carbonation but maybe some would not agree. The beer has sweetness throughout but is not cloying in any shape or form.

A risky, innovative approach by The Lost Abbey in pursuing a 100 percent tequila barrel-aged strong ale and calling it a regular among their seasonal lineup. I think tequila is at the bottom of choices for spirit barrel usage by brewers to age their beers in. I grew up in the Mexican culture (I am Mexican) and have had many drinking binges consuming all sorts of tequila (growing up, as I don't exactly binge drink anymore) and I have to say, Agave Maria is probably the best vehicle for enjoying those agave and tequila flavors :). The beer really showcases the Tequila reposado and agave flavors while also presenting barleywine like characteristics uniting it all in a smooth drinking package. Well done, Lost Abbey, well done.

Photo of Resuin
4.26/5  rDev +7%
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.

Photo of 3sheets2wind
2.67/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

Dark brown purple pour. No head at all. Almost no carb. No lacing.

Smells like Cola and tequila, but not awful like those two sound together. Some maraschino and plum.

Tastes very sweet. Grape jelly, maple and tequila.

Mouthfeel is syrup-y. Coats the tongue.

I would like this better with more carb, drier and some hop character.

Photo of 01001111
3.47/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Maple syrupy chestnut brown. Little carbonation that disappears quickly.

S: Tequila hits first. Given the roasted malts, there's a mezcal smokiness to it. Then there's some earthy dust and sweetness.

T: Syrupy sweetness. Caramel with a touch of tequila. Dark cherries, dates, and pumpernickel.

M: Syrup.

O: Interesting but not excellent. A liqueur more than a beer or perhaps a Chimay Blue with half a shot of tequila thrown in.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.16/5  rDev +4.5%
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.

Photo of largadeer
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
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.

Photo of FitnessForBeer
4.31/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: pours a very dark brown, little carbonation. Looks like a Belgium strong ale kinda
S: smells of tequila, does have an agave smell ( I had some agave nectar to compare to). Little bit of woody oak smell
T: very sweet, agave flavor mixed with like a dark chocolate flavor. Very much of tequila and some spicyness. The tequila and woody/oak flavors hit you at the end are mixed to the point it's hard to tell the difference. Very strong alcohol is evident but blended.
M: little carbonation, smooth. Has a heavy feeling without actually being heavy.
O:very interesting experiment from lost abbey, I've never had anything aged in tequila barrels and I do say i might prefer it over some of the whiskey barrel aged things out there.

Photo of Rollzroyce21
3.73/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2014 vintage 375 mL bottle poured into Lost Abbey Teku on 11-Apr-14.

BA rate/review #999 (woot wooot!)

Must note that I have not had high quality tequila before (Patron might be the highest quality I've had) and personally do not enjoy tequila, at least not yet.

Also must add that though I've had agave nectar couple times before, never naked and usually poured over something to sweeten so my taste/preference towards agave is neutral.

When uncorking, musters a faint whisper. Normally I'd be a little concerned, but this is a Lost Abbey beer.

Pours a murky dark brown that's borderline black. When held against light, reminds me of old Coke that's been sitting out.

Aromas of tequila are upfront, but not the kind that makes me wanna gag, and kind of pleasant which is a surprise to me. Also some candied sugar that I can only assume is agave and definitely some earthy oak tones and hints of chocolate.

Up front, I get some bready malt beer base with the good tequila and agave notes. Caramelized sugars and bit of chocolate. And... there we go.. there's a tequila-bitter finish with some tannic oak barrel notes. Wish it just had the good tequila notes up front without the off-putting tequila at the end. As I continue to sip, the sweetness of the agave gets cloying. There's not much heat as one would expect from a 13.5 abv brew.

The carbonation is low to low-medium with a smooth body. Some might find the lack of carbonation undesirable, but I rather like it for such a big beer.

Overall, fans of tequila should enjoy this one. I found it to be a little too cloying in the end, but did enjoy it. Thanks to Lost Abbey for the opportunity to try a beer aged in tequila barrels. Really curious to see how this would age.

Photo of HopHead84
4.49/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

04/06/2014

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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Agave Maria from The Lost Abbey
89 out of 100 based on 480 ratings.