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Sede Vacante - The Lost Abbey

Not Rated.
Sede VacanteSede Vacante

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

123 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 123
Reviews: 12
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.63%
Wants: 78
Gots: 32 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  15.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
Sede Vacante is a blend of Barleywine aged in Cognac barrels and Brandy barrel-aged Angel’s Share and at packaging came in at 15% ABV. A contemplative beer with substantial depth, Sede Vacante imparts tones of dark fruit and vanilla, with a warming finish from the Cognac. The strongest beer to emerge from The Lost Abbey, portions of the beer spent almost 5 years in a barrel. Sede Vacante can be enjoyed immediately or cellared till the next Papal Conclave, however long that may be.

(Beer added by: MasterSki on 03-14-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 123 | Reviews: 12 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of FullObs
2.75/5  rDev -33.6%

FullObs, Jul 08, 2013
Photo of vissai
3/5  rDev -27.5%

vissai, Apr 21, 2014
Photo of FrogOut69
3/5  rDev -27.5%

FrogOut69, Nov 24, 2013
Photo of miadw3
3/5  rDev -27.5%

miadw3, May 08, 2013
Photo of CityofBals
3.25/5  rDev -21.5%

CityofBals, Sep 12, 2013
Photo of kodt
3.25/5  rDev -21.5%

kodt, Nov 08, 2013
Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

GRG1313, Oct 26, 2013
Photo of StarRaptor
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

StarRaptor, Mar 25, 2013
Photo of CreativeJeenyus
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

CreativeJeenyus, Mar 11, 2014
Photo of pmoney
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

pmoney, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of BullBearHawk
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

BullBearHawk, Jan 02, 2014
Photo of CoolEthan
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

CoolEthan, Mar 13, 2014
Photo of topdown
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

topdown, Nov 11, 2013
Photo of tom10101
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

tom10101, Nov 11, 2013
Photo of evilc
3.51/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle shared by a buddy. 6oz is more than enough with this beer, split with 4 people. At least you don't need 24 people as with Black Tuesday.

A: Looks exactly like flat Sleepin w' Shaggy , which was a gross looking beer. That said, I don't really care about appearance much - but it's a category here. If it tastes good, that's all that matters. Flat as a pancake, virtually zero carb. Tomme is saying this is normal and intended for this style.

S: Booze and raisins, normal LA smell that I get off a lot of their beers. LA loves their raisins. Not surprising given one of the component beers. Decent smell.

T: Boozy, but not as much as smell would indicate. Raisins follow through from the taste. Definitely agree with other reviewers that the AS component is much in the lead.

M: Syrup, full. Zero carb, I think it needs it. Would be interesting to try on draft as LA beers are generally better from the keg. Carbed CdT for example on draft is much nicer than the flat bottles.

O: Meh. Very much in style with other LA beers, but an uninspiring, unfinished blend. I wonder if they solely blended this for the Pope vacancy at the last minute or it was to be released under a different name? At the price, Tomme needs to produce much higher quality and not random blends.

evilc, Mar 26, 2013
Photo of Dope
3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Cork pops off with only the slightest hiss. Uh oh. Pours a very very dark reddish-brown. Tiny light brown head that fades to nothing almost immediately. It's not flat but it's close. Almost no lacing, just a dot here and there.

S: Pure dark fruits, very very sweet and rich. Raisins, cherries, plums, maybe even grapes? Get some grain alcohol aroma in there, this is a big one.

T: Very heavy on the dark fruits. Again with the raisin and plum primarily up front. Big and sweet. Loads of caramel and vanilla. Finish is more dark fruits, cherry stands out this time. Pretty much pure spirits in the aftertaste, cognac for sure with lingering cherries. A little drying oak in there too. Quite hot, decent alcohol sting and very belly-warming as well.

M: Heavy and thick. Viscous. Not quite completely flat but very very little carbonation.

O: An interesting beer for sure. Lack of carbonation hurts this one (typical of LA). A 750ml of 15% ABV beer is hard enough to drink, nevermind when it's almost still. Having said that, it's quite good. Definitely a must-have for the brandy/cognac lover. It's mainly like drinking a really weak versions of the spirits. Not a whole lot of "beer" character comes through, barrel aging is just too strong. I had to subtract a little bit what from what I wanted to in this category, this was an awful lot of money for a beer that they can't even figure out how to carbonate properly (again, typical LA). Just kinda gives you buyer's remorse. Having said that, it's still unique. Reminds me of a Baladin Xyauyu in a way, just not nearly as good.

Dope, Apr 13, 2013
Photo of Gonzoillini
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

Gonzoillini, Apr 21, 2013
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Murky brown. No head. Not even a pop when it opens. Lifeless on the pour.

Smell - Brandy is very prominent. Vanilla and oak. Raisins and tons of caramel. Not that hot.

Taste - Brandy is still prominent. Nice oak. Sweet caramel and raisins. The liquor comes through in the back end. Just a touch of astringency in the finish. Hot and sweet in the back.

Mouthfeel - Flat. Not that boozy. Sweet.

Overall - Good, nice barrel. Not worth the price at all. The carbonation doesn't detract at all.

Alieniloquium, May 21, 2013
Photo of mendvicdog
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

mendvicdog, Jul 01, 2013
Photo of markasparov
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

markasparov, Jun 30, 2013
Photo of drewone
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

drewone, Jun 02, 2014
Photo of fiver29
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

fiver29, May 04, 2013
Photo of Retail1LO
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

Retail1LO, May 10, 2013
Photo of yoitsarch
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

yoitsarch, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of akang
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

akang, Mar 13, 2014
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Sede Vacante from The Lost Abbey
92 out of 100 based on 123 ratings.