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Abraxas - Perennial Artisan Ales

Not Rated.
AbraxasAbraxas

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BA SCORE
98
world-class

1,194 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,194
Reviews: 130
rAvg: 4.43
pDev: 9.26%
Wants: 889
Gots: 275 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Perennial Artisan Ales visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Imperial Stout brewed with Ancho Chiles, Cacao Nibs, Vanilla Beans & Cinnamon Sticks.

2011 - 100 cases
2012 - 200 cases

(Beer added by: jmvecchio1 on 12-16-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,194 | Reviews: 130 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by LambicPentameter:
Photo of LambicPentameter
4.73/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Enjoyed on tap for Bier Station's one year anniversary Midwest tap takeover event. They had both the 2012 and the 2013 on tap, so it was really fun to do a mini-vertical and compare the beer to itself after a year. The scores and review will be for the 2013 (fresh) vintage, but I will make reference to the 2012 as well. Both were served in small Belgian tulip glasses.

Appearance - Yields a healthy two finger head mocha tan head of bubbles so small it looked a bit like chocolate mousse. The body beneath is a pitch black with zero light penetrating, not even around the edges of the glass. The dense head helps keep out the light as well. Retention is moderate, and the head dissipates to a rim of foam around the edge of the glass with a mottling of film across the surface. Lacing is spotty and very sparse. The 2012 is different in that it has much less head at first pour, starting out with a lazy half-finger foam that dissipates almost immediately. It also happens to have more legs than the 2013, with the foam leaving a sheet across the side of the glass when I tilt it, but it slinks back down, leaving zero lacing.

Smell - Rich with notes of cinnamon stick, dried chile, melting baker's chocolate and molasses. I also get a nice element of char from the roasted malt that you expect from a stout or porter. The aroma is so aggressive, with cinnamon and chile being front and center. The 2012, by contrast, has mellowed way out on the cinnamon and chile, allowing the rich, decadent notes of bittersweet chocolate to shine through. I think I prefer the fresh, although if I had never had it fresh, the one-year version would be an outstanding beer in it's own rite.

Taste - Like with the aroma, the cinnamon and chile work together to provide quite a punch to start. Spiced devil's food cake with an invigorating burn from the spice that is kept relatively in-check by the rich bittersweet element from the roasted malt and burnt caramel. The heat lingers for a long time, but it's a pleasant heat. Would be the perfect beer for a cold night. The 2012 vintage has mellowed considerably, with the cinnamon becoming a mere accent to the rich chocolatey taste and the pepper becoming a gentle tingle instead of the noticeable heat. Here, I think I prefer the 2012, but only by a shade. I still think the 2013 is unmatched for the right situation--when you want a big stout with some aggressive character.

Mouthfeel - Full-bodied, rich and creamy. Luscious. Carbonation is moderate and the finish is lingering and coats the mouth to a degree. The 2012 is a tiny bit thinner, but still nice and creamy. Lower carbonation levels are to be expected as well.

Overall, this is just a top-notch offering from Perennial. Outstanding and unique as a fresh beer, and wonderfully age-able as well. I've not had many different beers from this "Spiced Imperial Stout" sub-style that has been popular, but this one is fantastic. Now I just need to get my hands on the BA version...

More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
4.49/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Gaining inspirations from ancient central America; the sweet, savory, and spicy taste of mole gives this 1-year cellared stout as much meldedness as it does complexity.

Starting off with a mimicry of espresso- the dark black beer has a gaze of cloudiness cast over it and hardly allows any depth of clarity. Capped by a sandy-tan steadfast head, the foam slowly collapses back into the beer until its dainty froth circles the glass in even more espresso-like fashion. Relatively low on retention, the beer speckles the glass with pockets of sticky foam.

A strong foundation of bold-roast coffee, cocoa-rich chocolates, brown sugar, molasses, and campfire roast set the tone for certain stout-like aromas. But its the peppery scent of undeniable cinnamon and the twinge of capsacin that tantalize the nose with complements of black jellybeans and mild vegetal pepper fruit that poke through the malts

Similar to its scent- the bold richness of creamy malts coat the early palate with the sweetness of burnt sugars and malted milk (milkshake). Saturated tastes of bittersweet chocolate is exacerbated with true dry cocoa additions. Just when its middle palate release light fruit and spice of grape, cherry, and aniseed; the sultry spices of pepper and cinnamon come on and extend into the finish. Warm, fruity, spicy, and roasty- the beer keeps rewarding the palate into an indefinite finish.

Undoubted is the beer's full body. The roast is wrapped around a malty center of residual sweetness, heavy cream malt, and marshmallowy carbonation. But as the beer slowly releases its sugars and carbonation, the onset of spice, warmth, and supple dryness keeps the beer developing deep within a savory and extended finish.

The Mexican inspired stout would make the Aztecs proud- as this beer has certainly earned respect among the best that today's craft beer world offers. The beer is meticulously balanced and doesn't shy away from powerful complexities in addition. It's beautiful in its recipe design, brewer execution, and courage.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2012 vintage into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours pitch black with a dark, fluffy mocha colored head with good retention. Beer is pitch black. Lacing is thick but sparse with oily legs. Real menacing look brew.

Nose is mint, chocolate, fudge, and cocoa. Vanilla beans smooth out the experience while a touch of spice tickles the nose. Very deep and rich. Moderately aromatic. Solid.

Opens cocoa, cinnamon spice, chocolate, and fudge. Vanilla beans add even more sweetness towards the middle. Some heat comes in towards the end amidst more fudge and milk and dark chocolate sweetness. Chili peppers in the end with a heated, sweet, cinnamon finish. Great complexity, very unique, and really well integrated.

Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Oily, slick, and rich in the mouth and goes down messy, smooth, and thick. Messy finish with a sticky, lingering aftertaste. Couldn't ask for more.

I haven't been a fan of a lot of Perennial's beers and in fact, I feel they're a bit over-rated overall. However, Abraxas is a revelation. The flavor has great balance and complexity, the feel is incredible, and the look and nose are spot on. I wish I'd picked up a lot more of these when I had the chance.

Photo of Suds_Suds
5/5  rDev +12.9%

A beer that changed my life when I first had it. Beautiful balance of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon and chili heat.

Photo of jonandhisflask
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

one year cellared

Pours Deep black, with mocha head, light head retension, silky as it hits the glass.
Mocha head melts away, leaves some legs on the glass.

Aroma: At first this was Chilled to the max and i got an Irony metallic nose up front, after this sat for a half hour, i was able to get The bold cocoa, Deep espresso roast, Brown sugar, Cinnamon and a hint of the Chile ... very sweet molasses and cinnamon come through after a few swirls.

Taste: Almost identical to the Aroma, Great Dark chocolate, Cocoa, Sweet molasses, a hint of the chile right before the cinnamon takes over ending on a combination of cinnamon and dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Very viscous, coats the mouth with the first initial drink, creamy, almost like a melted malt. full bodied finishes with a hint of dryness.

Overall: This beer is very balanced for what it has going on, im guessing this beer fresh might be a little over spiced, id like to have this fresh at some point to see if theres more Chile heat. this beer is great , i will be seeking more in the future.

Photo of tectactoe
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of CavemanRamblin
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of jono0101
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of brownbeer
4.75/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of Schlais
4/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of cjn40277
4.75/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of weatherdog
3.93/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle poured into tulip glass.

Pour is deep chocolate brown with a nice size mocha colored head. Minimal retention and medium head retention.

Aroma is fairly mild, hint of cinnamon, some roast and sweetness. Nothing spectacular but nothing bad.

The chilli picks up in the taste, lots of roast (much more than the nose suggests). Chocolate and then some cinnamon. The flavors are fairly integrated and one doesn't stand out more than the other.

Creamy mouthfeel with present back end carbonation. Minimal back end heat with chillies.

I really enjoyed my first beer from Perennial. It's no fresh Hunaphu but it's still enjoyable

Photo of delaced21
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of SkiBum22
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #62 (Mar 2012):

LOOK: Black, dense brown head

SMELL: Unsweetened chocolate, soft charcoal, mild chili peppers, cinnamon, plum pudding, figs, espresso

TASTE: Cinnamon, light molasses, silky, full body, mild chili warmth, dense chocolate, burnt raisins, French roast coffee, charred bread crust, warming alcohol, sweet roasty finish

A heavy name for a heavy beer. Sometimes beer can be so serious and deep that you can get lost as it unfolds with each sip. Complexity meets drinkability with a dull warning of strength. It is beers of this character that further forge what American beer is and represent the intentions of craft brewers. Search this beauty out.

Photo of dlorton0844
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of DaftPatrick
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of Beaver13
3.63/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle. Pours dark brown-black with a huge creamy brown head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is sweet fudgy chocolate with some cinnamon and spice. Kind of smells like a Mexican mocha. Alcohol comes out as it warms.

The flavor is sweet fudgy lactic chocolate with some cinnamon and spicy chili with a bitter roast finish and some booze and black licorice. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and creamy.

Overall, very interesting with a lot going on. Everything doesn't blend real well - the chocolate is a bit too sweet, the roast is a bit too bitter, the black licorice is a bit strong. It would be interesting to try this aged to see if it mellows some. It is a bit pricey at $22 a bottle.

Photo of Jared14
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of Jason
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of mctizzz
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of BigE90
2/5  rDev -54.9%

Photo of fo1ksguitar
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of MitchShepherd
5/5  rDev +12.9%

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Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
98 out of 100 based on 1,194 ratings.