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Gift Of The Magi - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.
Gift Of The MagiGift Of The Magi

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

655 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 655
Reviews: 300
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 11.81%
Wants: 53
Gots: 102 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Bière de Garde |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerBeing on 06-10-2007

It seems that everyone knows the story of the Three Kings. Sent to follow the star in the sky each brought a gift for the baby they sought. One King brought Gold, the other Frankincense and the other Myrrh. Many breweries produce a Christmas Seasonal beer and this is our beer to celebrate the holiday season.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 655 | Reviews: 300 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

3rd beer in a series on my birthday. 2008 label. Label says 10.0 % alchol, not 9.5 as listed on here.

Very late developing small head after an incredible vigorous pour from a 2008 bottle. Beer is a nice dark amber color, with a pathetic white colored head.

A bit of alcohol, with a hint of citrus on the nose.

On the palate.. starts with a hint of malt, then evolves into a bit of sourness, but I think is mainly the alcohol. I just think this beer is too young.

Mouthfeel fairly heavy. Lingering warmth, most likely from the alcohol.

Its drinkable, but I feel this beer is simply too young. The alcohol totally sneaks up on you. Unfortunately I'm not tasting much more than the alcohol, but admittedly it is smooth and decent. I love Lost Abbey/Port Brewing. Definitely seek this beer out, and try to age it if you can.

Photo of weeare138
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears an orange hued gold with a small white head that quickly fades out into a mild cap. Spotty traces of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of an interesting spiced brew that could go with either fall, or winter. Lots of citrus and herbs pounding the senses.
Taste is of spiced, clovey, pineapple, and melon...interesting and engaging.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, spiced, rum cider-esque comes to mind with a little bit of abv being noticed in the body.

Photo of paco1029384756
2.45/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a murky orange color with very little head and nice lacing.

Scent of yeast, spices, citrus and a little earthiness. Nicely balanced, but there's nothing that really sets this above the rest.

Taste of earthy malts, spices and some alcohol. It loses more points from the bad aftertaste, bread and alcohol linger. Nothing that impressive, there isn't that much going on at all, it's pretty basic. Another disappointing beer from The Lost Abbey.

Mouthfeel is heavy and flat, I don't care much for it.

Photo of hopdog
4.42/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked bottle.

Poured a medium amberish / golden color with a huge sized off white head. Subsequent pours yielded a smaller, yet average head. Aromas of fruitiness, some spices, citrus, lightly earthy, and pine. Tastes of fruitiness, caramel, toffee, light earth, and light spices. Medium sweet.

Notes from 12/25/07 (yes, appropriate date to pop this one).

Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Lost Abbey, in Illinois, I think I may be in heaven (ha!).

It's weird, pouring this out of the bottle I was convinced this was mislabled. I've never seen a pale ale this...not pale...before. Instead its a deep, woody amber and topped with a soft looking, pillowy head that gets thicker after each pour from the bottle and leaves some good lacing on the sides of the glass.

The aroma is where things get a bit more familiar. That candi sweetness is very present, quite hop centric too, sweet grapefruit, caramel, honey and spice.

Again quite hoppy, though it is not as apparent here as it is in the nose, it gradually grows in bitterness than lingers throughout the tasting session. The beer is very rich, very full and very good. Lots of different things happening at once. Hop bitterness is there but more than anything a thick and chewy sweet maltiness dominates. Good mix of spiciness and sweetness adds to the complexity. Honey, brown sugar, earthy hops, fresh baked pop-overs. Really a treat.

Turns out this beer is more of a dressed up biere de guarde than a belgian strong pale ale as stated on the back of the bottle, so things make a bit more sense now. Drank a whole 750 of this in about an hour so its pretty damn drinkable, then 10ABV is well hidden and could get you into some trouble if not careful. Very, very good beer.

Photo of rallison
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2007 Bottling.

Finally, the Brett shows itself.

Smells of delicious Brett-cheese with some caramel sweetness character in the background.

Sweet caramel in the taste is nicely muted by some funky character and spice. Bottle tasted a week ago was a bit better, but this one is still good.

Mouthfeel is moderate in carbonation, with a not-overly-coating body.

Drinkability is good.

Overall, this has aged well. This bottle is not nearly as good as the same-vintage bottle I tasted 1-2 weeks ago, but I still like it better than fresh.

Photo of dbONE
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wanted a good beer for Election Night.
Cracked this one just in time for the big news. A tinted redish/ambre/brown appeared from the bottle, a better attempt than Biere de Garde.
I have to talk to Tomme about this....where is the HEAD? Maybe a bad bottle, but there was a big zero for carboation, a first for T.L.A.
The Brett it promised was a bit on the thin side for the flavor and very tame with it's sourness but is nice on the nose. Some sweetness came through with a floral almoast honey dryness.
Spices and dries cherries come in at the end.
Old Ale dominates with a sweet alcohol carmeled apple touch that rings in some sourness and bitterness that finishes a little syrupy and dry.
Hops are noticable and clean for this "style"?
All around good to welcome in the new president. For a second term I would work on it.

Photo of abfraser
3.94/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 bottling

A: Hazy, reddish brown. Pours with zero head. Again with this total lack of carbonation from Lost Abbey. Not sure why this continues to be a trend. Not a particularly attractive brew.

S: A little sour, sweet malt and spice. Some pear and apple as it warms up. But overall not that potent of a nose.

T/M: Intial Brett sourness gives way to spice and malty sweetness. I get some nutmeg, which basically confirms this as a Xmas beer to me. Totally flat tasting, which is a deterrent. Overall, pretty tasty.

D: Good drinkability, but pretty strong. I liked this a lot better when I gave it chance to warm up. It was too subtle when too cold.

Photo of scottoale
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the latest version 2008, weighing in at 10.0% ABV and pouring a deep copper-burgundy with great clarity initially. The second half poued a murkish orange and looked some how lighter in color. Very low carbonation at this point with minimal head that fades quickly, leaving no lace.

The smell is sweet and fruity off the bat, with a funky tartness from the brett and some fusal notes as it warms.

The flavor starts sweet of caramel with fruit and spice, then turns slightly bitter to a funky tartness. Frankincense and myrrh are noticable along with notes of orange, grapefruit, pineapple, apricot and a pleasant funk of Brettanomyces that lingers in the finish. Not a sour but tart kind of ending.

Medium full body with some warming from the alcohol...more carbonation would aid in the overall drinkability of this fine brew. This is freshly bottled and more carbonation should come in time, i'll let you know in six months when i crack another Gift open. Great seasonal offering that will improve with age regardless, Cheers!

Photo of waltonc
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle enjoyed at City Beer Store with abfraser.

A: Red/orange with minimal head.

S: Brett, fruit, spices.

T: This is like a blend of a little of every flavor, and somehow well balanced - hops, fruit, spice, brett. Works pretty well.

M: Medium/thick body, not a ton of carbonation.

D: Pretty tasty and drinkable, if it weren't for the fact I was at CBS and there were lots of other good things to try.

Photo of ncvbc
3.56/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Popped the cork and everything seemed fine. Slowly but surely this baby started foaming. Had to let it sit for twenty minutes or so and finally was able to pour. Funny, the pour produces little to no head and is hazed due to some yeast sediment rising with the carbonation. Smell is lovely. Some citrus fruits in a caramel honey glaze. An added bit of funk and spice make this even more seductive. Taste kind of moves in the wrong direction in that all the elements of the smell are there, just not seemingly in place as they were. There is some funk up front every time. I'm wishing it could be more subtle as it was with the nose. Afterwards, there is a nearly overwhelming sweetness with caramel malt and fruit, followed by minimal hop character but a big dryness. I'd prefer a little more balance. Also a little less of a dry finish. I'm actually thankful the carbonation calmed down, as the bubbles were coming up big and quick as it overflowed from the bottle. It's still a bit too active, though. Definitely has a dryness that isn't the most appealing in the world. Well, I pretty much finished a bottle by myself. Some escaped in the form of foam and some remains in the bottle, too much sediment to drink. This was still a very interesting brew. Lots of character to it and a joy to have had the chance to try.

I owe 0110x011 a big thanks for sending this as a TIF winner's treat. And yes, I did copy and paste your name to help me in the long run!

Photo of akorsak
3.52/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A corked and caged 750 mL bottle.

A: The ale opened with a pop and slowly begam to ooze white foam. After an initial pour, the foaming continued and brought a rather large chunk of yeast to the neck. A quick pour put the thick patch in my glass, where it sat in a rather unappetizing manner until I scooped it out. The ale has a hazy sunset orange color.

S: The nose is fresh, lively with a young brett character. Without a doubt, this is an Orval clone.

T: The flavor is interesting, slightly funky with a hoppy afterthought. The dry Belgian yeast strain has brett elements that are not overwhelming. They dry and add just a bit of flavor to the ale. The hop bitterness is citrusy with a grassy flavor that melds well with the yeast.

M: The flavors are interesting, hoppy and funky with no clear middle ground. The hops leave a bitterness that mixes nicely with the brett.

D: The yeast clumps are unappealing and the ale is generally muddled. Not my favorite Lost Abbey offering.

Photo of CrellMoset
3.69/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of dkachur, poured into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: A really murky, hazy reddish orange brown beer, with a white head of average retention and splotchy, speckly lacing. Nothing too impressive.

Aroma: Smells, quite literally, like pure caramel malt wort, with belgian spices and bananas. Bananas Foster anyone? Slight alcohol too, which doesn't hurt the foster smell. Sticky, syrupy, thick, and sweet smelling.

Taste: Deeply roasted, sticky malts, spicy phenols and hop bitterness and spiciness, a few light stone fruit notes and Belgian spices. Perhaps some slight papery oxidation, as well. Only slightly above average.

Mouthfeel: Silky and smooth, creamy, buttery, medium-bodied, nice.

Drinkability: Not bad, but not too impressive. The aroma is pleasant, but the sheer quantity of yeast rendered the appearance unattractive and the taste was a little bland. On the other hand, the mouthfeel and aroma were very nice. Alcohol is a little high and also, a little noticeable.

Photo of kmeves
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep copper orange with a thick off white head. The aroma is medium sweet, yeasty, floral, citrus and light spices. Flavor is floral, orange, herbal, pepper, apple and light pepper. Medium to full body, smooth and creamy texture. Finishes medium with a citrus bitterness.

3.76/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours to a hazy wheat honey gold color body. Head is two full fingers of rocky tan fuzz that has very nice retention. Nose is faint but includes some crisp and slightly wheaty sour feel. Smooth complexity is teamed with a grassy hop feel and a long dry, almost peppery spice profile that is very consistant. I would think that the brett has not fully taken effect and probably needs a little more time to age. Moughfeel welcomes the next sip and tingles with spice. Nicelyu drinkable now, but would be nice to see what some age does for this one.

Photo of jwc215
3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for bringing this back from California and sharing!

750 ml cork-caged bottle, poured into a tulip glass:

Pours cloudy tea-like amber with a thick, rocky, off-white head that leaves some trailing lace in its descent to a thin, lasting cover.

The smell is of orange, plum, lemon with caramel. Mild peppery spicing in the back.

The taste is yeasty with caramelish sweetened citric fruity zest. Sweetness balanced by sour and tart with some spicing. Some sharp booziness is present, but warming more than interfering.

Mild carbonation with a medium body. There's a certain thickness to it that is almost syrupy, but somehow gets washed away.

The label puts this in the Biere de Garde style. Here it is a BSPA... Either works, as neither works...An interesting American spin on a Belgian/French style that turns out to be unique, though not one that thrilled me.

Photo of arizcards
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a 750ml bottle from AJ's in mid-December 2007 for $12.99.

Beer poured a golden orange with a nice off white head. 4.0

Nose was fragrant of floral hops and alcohol on the initial pour. 4.0

Taste is sweet, of warming alcohol on the intial sips, pepper, coriander, and a blast of citrus-apricot hops to finish. 4.5

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and is very smooth compliments of the belgian yeast and candied sugar. 4.5

Overall drinkability is very good as this beer has aged quite nicely. It is unique in that there is a well played blend of the Belgian and San Diego IPA2 styles that I have not seen very often. Definitely worth the splurge!

Re-review 7-1-12.
Picked up a 750 ml caged and corked bottle from Total Wine in early January for $3.99. Wow...must have been miss-priced. Bottled on 10-27-11.

Beer poured golden orange with a decent white head for such a big beer. 4.0

Nose has hints of light fruit and touch of sour. 3.5

Taste is light fruits, a bit of white pepper, lemon peel, candied sugar, and a sour touch in the finish. 4.0

Mouthfeel is classic belgian yeast strain, light and effervescent yet smooth. 4.5.

Overall this is a pretty solid brew. Definitely a seasonal worth coming back to.

Photo of flexabull
3.82/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of jshufelt, thanks again!

Beer pours a bright, yet somewhat dark gold color, with a nice thick white head, and some good lacing.

Aromas are nice. Lots of fruits noticed. And the smell is strong, I noticed it as soon as the cork was popped. Mostly I notice citrus, and a very pineapple like note, with a bit of funk sour brett yeast.

Flavors is mostly about fruit. A bit astringent, and quite dry. A certain dusty quality, as well as some creamy malts. Not all that sweet. I mostly taste citrus, that is bitter, sour, and dry. Lemon? Grapefruit maybe? Also a bit peppery and spicy.

Mouthfeel is good. Crisp, clean, with good carbonation, and a nice full feel.

Drinkability is not bad. But this one didn't do much for me. It's interesting, and worth a try. But it's a bit too dry and bitter for my liking. It's a good beer, but not a favorite for me...

Photo of jamie2dope
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This bottle was obtained via a trade with Smokingmex. Many thanks for the opportunity. Poured in to my Stella Artois glass a cloudy (perhaps from the low temp) orange/red color, with a decent enough looking white head that quickly faded in to a lace crown. First thing that comes to mind with smell is light stone fruit such as Strawberry and Raspberry. There is also a light presence of funk in the smell, which I suspect is a result of the addition of some Brett. Taste is sort of surprising to me in that it is much more hoppy than I was expecting. The brett adds a slight tartness, along some dry grain and fruit in the beginning. Mouthfeel is medium. Drinkability is good, but the alcohol presence makes itself known, making it a brew that would be good to share with friends. Reminds me a bit of the Avant Garde ale in some ways. GOTM is indeed a gift from a brewery that I have been gaining respect for with each new tasting. Hopefully it will make it to Boston soon, like some of its counterparts such as Serpent's Stout, Carnevale, and Devotion. More than worth seeking out. Cheers

Photo of seaoflament
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a ripe golden orange color with a good inch of foam that quickly begins to trickle down. The head settles to a thin layer but a quick little stir and you're back to a good half inch of head that sticks around for a few moments.

Aroma is very fruity with grapefruit, orange, tart cherries, peach, yeast and spices. There's a lot going on in this one but somehow it comes out well blended together. The spices, fruit and malt complement each other very well. Slight funky aromas linger in the background, very earthy too. As it warms up the toast and bread aromas begin to take a stronger role and there is some honey or orange blossom honey too. I really like the aroma of this beer.

Tastes of bitter citrus, then yeast and spices, some tartness and finishes with bready malt and more spices. A little bit of alcohol heat in the back of the throat. Brett seems to start to show itself in the middle and the finish, a little tart and funk. There's also a taste of flowers or rosemary in the finish and aftertaste, a little strong but interesting nonetheless. Somehow it's too bitter and dry in the finish with a combination of bitter citrus, bitter flowers and the brett. Hmm, the bitterness does tone down as it warms up and becomes much more pleasant, so I'm actually giving this a little more points.

Pretty well carbonated, a touch too aggressive maybe but still decent.

I've wanted to try this one since it came out but since it was bottle conditioned with Brett I decided to sit on it for a few months to let that do its work. I think it could still use a couple of more months to tone down the spices.

Photo of Deuane
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Tayner for a bottle of this! I shared the love with a few friends.

A-Hazy, deep copper with a medium off-white head that left lovely lacing throughout.

S-Popping earthy, musty aromas. Malt sweetness comes through with a nice sourness in the background.

T-Hops in the forefront and then the funk kicks in! Hops, malt, funk, dark fruit, earthiness...wow, this is complex!

M-Medium body with a pleasant creamy texture. Nice carbonation and with all that complexity it only adds to the excitment in your mouth!

D-This is some interesting stuff! My first Bier de Garde / IPA hybrid. Very cool of the Lost Abbey folks...a most interesting brew, very tasty.

Photo of Kegatron
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle split into a 10oz goblet. Special thanks to Deauane for hooking us up on this one.

Pours a cloudy medium amber with a 1/2 finger of off-white head. Retains beaufifully with a full, creamy layer that leaves fantastic lacing behind. The aroma of fresh Amarillo hops dominates up front followed by citric tones, barnyard notes, a musty yeasty malt scent, and some sourness.

The taste is one again dominated by the dry hopping but then gives way to accents of a chalky sweetness, citrus and other fruits, and a flush of sourness that then finishes bitter. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a smooth, creamy, and oh so easygoing feel. Very nice.

The amount of dry hopping in this threw me at first, but after I got past that, this a rather tasty and easygoing offering from the Lost Abbey. And I nearly did a double take when I saw that this was almost 10% ABV as you feel none of it in the taste and body. Good stuff as always from Tomme and company.

Photo of ffejherb
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Gift of the Deuane... thanks buddy!

A - Hazy burnt orange body with one finger of creamy off-white head that never faltered and still left intricate lacing throughout its duration.

S - Earthy, musty aromas with dank hops, barnyard yeast and some citrus hops in the back. I get a sense of some burnt hops in this as well as a strong malty quality.

T - Hops seem to dominate with a slight burnt aspect and some musty, earthy tones and barnyard funk. Maltiness is akin to a barleywine. Hints of dark fruit and citrus. Mild sourness from the yeast.

M - Creamy texture with a bit of alcohol sting, but not overbearing at all. Mild carbonation. Finish spreads a blend of bitterness and sourness over the tastebuds.

D - Highly drinkable despite this being an extremely complex brew. This has elements of IPA, barleywine and Belgian farmhouse styles that seemed to blend together quite nicely.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.45/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of Bu11zeye: Poured a deep clear copper color ale with a nice foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of medium sweet Belgian style malt with light funky yeast notes. Taste is also one-dimensional with some medium sweet Belgian style malt with some light funky notes. I thought this was missing some spices or some kind of ester. Good carbonation with average body and no apparent alcohol. I thought this was OK but definitely not as good as expected. Not that it impacts my ratings but I am starting to think this brewer more hype then what he actually deserve - good to great beer but the exceptional ones are fare and few between.

Photo of Floydster
3.41/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle purchased directly from the brewery at the Older Viscosity release for twelve dollars, split with a friend two nights ago, reviewed from notes, poured into my Dogfish Head snifter

A-Golden yellow color with some orange highlights, thick 1 1/2 inch foamy white head that stuck around for a few minutes, some retention, not much lacing

S-Not much going on here, some citrus with mostly grapefruit, grassy accents, faint amount of brettanomyces, slight tart, bready malt aromas, some Belgian yeast, and hoppiness

T-Flavor was almost too complex to distinguish what exactly as going on at certain times, started out with some honeydew and tangy cherries, then some bready malt in the middle, tons hops in the finish giving an extremely dry feeling, definitely earthy at times, had that barnyard funk that a lot of sours have, also some grapefruit and orange peel later on, spices did not come to the surface until the beer fully warmed and they were rather herbal, interesting mixture of tastes threw off the balance a little bit but still enjoyable

M-Not as tart as I hoped for, slighly spicy at times but very dry mouthfeel overall, lots of carbonation, medium bodied, taste lingered for a minute or two

D-Could get close to drinking this bottle by myself, not too heavy, alcohol is high though, smooth for the most part, taste gets tiresome after a while due to lack of complexity

Not the best from Lost Abbey but still interesting, do not know what to style to classify this under, not in a rush to drink this again but will probably try again next year, worth trying once at least

Gift Of The Magi from The Lost Abbey
86 out of 100 based on 655 ratings.