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Abraxas - Perennial Artisan Ales

Not Rated.
AbraxasAbraxas

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BA SCORE
98
world-class

987 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 987
Reviews: 122
rAvg: 4.41
pDev: 9.3%
Wants: 793
Gots: 202 | FT: 15
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: 987 | Reviews: 122 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by LambicPentameter:
Photo of LambicPentameter
4.61/5  rDev +4.5%

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 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...

LambicPentameter, Dec 30, 2013
More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
4.49/5  rDev +1.8%

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.

BEERchitect, Mar 26, 2013
Photo of Suds_Suds
5/5  rDev +13.4%

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

Suds_Suds, Aug 21, 2014
Photo of tectactoe
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

tectactoe, Jun 23, 2014
Photo of jono0101
4.5/5  rDev +2%

jono0101, Nov 27, 2013
Photo of brownbeer
4.75/5  rDev +7.7%

brownbeer, Feb 14, 2014
Photo of Schlais
4/5  rDev -9.3%

Schlais, Mar 07, 2014
Photo of weatherdog
3.93/5  rDev -10.9%

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

weatherdog, Dec 22, 2011
Photo of delaced21
4.5/5  rDev +2%

delaced21, Jun 10, 2014
Photo of SkiBum22
4.5/5  rDev +2%

SkiBum22, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

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.

BeerAdvocate, Jan 17, 2013
Photo of dlorton0844
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

dlorton0844, Jul 13, 2014
Photo of DaftPatrick
4.5/5  rDev +2%

DaftPatrick, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of Beaver13
3.63/5  rDev -17.7%

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.

Beaver13, Dec 23, 2013
Photo of Jared14
4.5/5  rDev +2%

Jared14, Jul 31, 2014
Photo of Jason
4.5/5  rDev +2%

Jason, Feb 11, 2012
Photo of mctizzz
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

mctizzz, Jun 02, 2014
Photo of BigE90
2/5  rDev -54.6%

BigE90, Jul 06, 2012
Photo of fo1ksguitar
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

fo1ksguitar, Jun 11, 2014
Photo of Prospero
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Prospero, Jan 05, 2014
Photo of jaminjohnson
4.5/5  rDev +2%

jaminjohnson, Aug 11, 2012
Photo of bpfrush
4.75/5  rDev +7.7%

bpfrush, Feb 08, 2014
Photo of ehammond1
4.35/5  rDev -1.4%

Bottle (2011/Batch 2)

Thanks for opening this, DarthKostrizer!

Nearly black in color with a moderately sized brown head that eventually leaves spots of lace down the glass.

The aroma is an interesting and unique combination of roasted and black malts, plenty of chile spice (like chipotle), a bit of cinnamon, and even a bit of pine presence. It all comes together quite interestingly and nicely.

The flavor is as complex as the aroma, with cinnamon and chile elements pushing through the roasted, dark malt backbone. There's also traces of smoke and wood. The chile flavor is obviously present without being overtly spicy.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

A unique and incredibly flavorful, evolving stout.

ehammond1, Feb 01, 2012
Photo of Mantooth
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Mantooth, Sep 06, 2014
Photo of Cynic-ale
4.25/5  rDev -3.6%

Cynic-ale, Dec 06, 2013
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Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
98 out of 100 based on 987 ratings.