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Abraxas | Perennial Artisan Ales

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
97
world-class
262 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
262
Ratings:
2,164
Avg:
4.42
pDev:
8.14%
 
 
Wants:
1,206
Gots:
647
For Trade:
73
AbraxasAbraxas
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Fall

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

2011 - 100 cases
2012 - 200 cases

Added by jmvecchio1 on 12-16-2011

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 262 | Ratings: 2,164
Photo of yeahnatenelson
4.02/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks go to Richard for the share.
 
Appearance -- Pours a deep dark brown with a slim mocha head. Nice.
 
Smell – Rich with dark chocolate and vanilla, also with the faint aromas of cinnamon and smoky chiles. Inviting.
 
Taste – Semisweet dark chocolate, vanilla bean and cinnamon are the most noticeable, followed by licorice and leather and a very faint pepper smokiness. Well-balanced, if only a little too reserved. I wish there was less licorice phenolic flavor to muddle up the spice and pepper, but otherwise tasty.
 
Mouthfeel – Full-bodied with mellow carbonation – velvety, not syrupy. A fine line that Abraxas does not cross.
 
Overall – A pleasant surprise! Good mesh of flavors, though I wish there was more chile heat. Great effort, definitely worth trying, and I look forward to trying more from Perennial.

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Photo of Jeffo
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one was sent over the pond by bsuedekum. Cheers for the trade man. Really appreciate the extra effort you put into making this trade happen.

From a 750 into a snifter.
Bottled in November 2011
Brewed with ancho chili peppers, cacao nibs and cinnamon sticks.

APPEARANCE: A black pour yields a 2+ finger, medium looking, dark tan head with very good retention. Opaque black body and lower levels of carbonation evident. Head slowly fades to a good foam cap. A slight wisp and ring remain but leave no real lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Medium nose of roasted and chocoalte malts, with a light touch of sweet cream and chili pepper notes. This is mostly roasted malts and cacao nibs, though there is a touch of chili and cinnamon in there as well. A nice nose with enough strength.

TASTE: Roasted malts and some nice dark chocolate up front. Nice initial flavor, with the chili and cinnamon coming out more at the swallow. Big, persistent aftertaste of peppery spicy flavors, cacao, sweet cream and some roasted malts. Chocoalte definitely plays a leading roll, but this is well balanced and very flavorful, with chili and cinnamon in just the right dose. Enjoyable and addictive.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. Enough weight on the palate. Very creamy smooth, goes down smooth and finishes slightly mouth-coating. A bit of peppery spice lingers on the tongue.

OVERALL: This is quite good. The adjuncts are definitely there with the chocolate taking the lead, and nothing dominates or is out of place. This reminds me of a more mellow Hunahpu; perhaps a bottle with a couple years on it. The nose could be a little bolder and adjuncts could be a touch bigger still, but overall, this was excellent. Thanks again for the beers man. I really enjoyed this one.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Sean for sharing this one. Served in a plastic cup at West Lakeview Liquors.

A - Big creamy mocha foam that settles to a thin cap, leaving splotchy lace behind. Dark brown body - doesn't really look like an Imperial Stout, but it is attractive.

S - Smells exactly as advertised - ancho chiles, cinnamon, and cocoa nibs.

T - The taste is pretty similar, with the aforementioned adjuncts dominating the palate, and some dark chocolate and roast character coming out in the finish.

M - Smooth, creamy, medium-full body. Lower carbonation, melted chocolate texture, and shockingly well-hidden booze - I had no idea this was 10%.

D - This was really good for 4-6oz, but I can imagine it getting fatiguing after that point. Still, it's quite well done and I would happily try it again. Best beer I've had from Perennial.

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Photo of dashmartino
4.07/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Blind Tiger in NYC. Pours jet black with a trace of bubbles for a head. First sip you notice the heavy cinnamon, then the cocoa nibs, then the chili aftertaste. They sure aren't lying, you can taste all that crazy stuff in there. Its a very good beer, but I had a hard time finishing an 8 ounce glass of it because of all the other stuff thrown in there. Not exactly my style of beer, but definitely an experience.

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Photo of emerge077
4.08/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch #2 bottle. Thanks Eric for the assist.

Into a mini pint, it pours black with an ample head of persistent dark tan foam, almost the color of dark leather. It leaves rings of intricate lacing all around.

Dark chocolate aroma, clean and dry, some light bitterness and a hint of spicy cinnamon in there as it warms up.

Bittersweet dark chocolate intertwines subtly with mellow cinnamon spice and a vague dark fruit component from the anchos at room temp. Very smooth and chocolaty, the foam itself has a chocolate milkshake consistency. Medium bodied and especially drinkable for an Imperial Stout.

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Photo of Sean9689
4.08/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Cory for sending me this bottle. This is batch #1.

A - Pours black, mocha-colored head, nice collar, spotty lace.

S - The spice was very upfront when I first poured this, but it after it warmed a bit, it melded nicely with the chocolate and vanilla notes. Big baker's chocolate, spices, roast, and vanilla notes. Nice.

T - The chocolate and roast are really nice, and the spice adds a small kick on the end, but doesn't overpower the beer. Really a nice balance of sweet & spice, good stuff. The finish is creamy chocolate sweetness with a slight spicy kick.

M - Full, rich and smooth, good carbonation, creamy finish.

O - A really enjoyable Imperial Stout that we all seemed to enjoy. The spices and sweetness were right in-line with what I prefer, and there wasn't too much of either one. Looking forward to having this again and all the variants that will come along as well.

Edit: I think the spices were "turned down" because of the age on this bottle (being batch #1). I haven't had a batch #2 yet, so I can't comment on the spices in there.

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Photo of ratedz
4.08/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is my first beer from Perennial. I've been looking forward to trying their beers and I opted for this on a cold winter night.

A - Pours blacker than night with about an inch of milk chocolate brown colored head. The head never faded completely and a fair amount of lacing was left on the glass.

S - The nose is full of of semisweet chocolate, roasted malts, and vanilla. Hints of cinnamon and a faint smokiness are also present. Very complex and inviting.

T - The roasted malts lead the way on the tongue along with some dark chocolate. A little cinnamon and some spiciness from the peppers appears right before the finish. The flavors are all layered perfectly and nothing dominates.

M - Full bodied, smooth, and creamy. Little carbonation, which is expected from a big imperial stout.

O - Overall, a very enjoyable imperial stout. A little pricey at $19 for a 750, but I have a couple more bottles in the basement and am excited to see how it develops over time. I'm also looking forward to trying some of the other offerings from Perennial.

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Photo of claspada
4.12/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown, bordering black, with a big creamy mocha head that settles to a thin cap, leaving splotchy lacing as it recedes.

Aromas begin as advertised with chocolate and roast initially. Spices emerge more as it warms. Light vanilla, cinnamon and more milky chocolate as well.

The tastes follow the nose with dark roasted malt, cocoa and dark baker's chocolate. As you further sample you get light spice (light heat and cinnamon) that linger ever-so-slightly in the background after you get past the initial dark chocolaty malt backbone. Espresso flavors emerge as it warms more. Also much more spice in the aroma than in the flavor which is fine by me.

The mouthfeel is medium to heavy bodied with ample carbonation. Finish is full, rich and smooth with a light roastiness that hangs around a little on the palate.

Overall this reminds me a lot of a Cigar City Hunahpu Lite. Not as intense by any means in any of the flavor aspects that both beers share, but all are present and created a much more balanced beer overall. The wow factor isn't there like with Hunahpu but a really solid beer overall; not sure it's worth the almost $20 outlay but it more accessible than Hunahpu which counts for something.

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Photo of dcc449
4.12/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Evening Star.

Strong notes of cinnamon, taste is the same. Heat from chilis is very subtle. Really nice balance with the spices. Very good and well crafted, but not super drinkable for m - 10 oz was more than I needed.

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Photo of kevanb
4.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, 2014 release, poured into a Goose Island Bourbon County Stout snifter.

The beer pours a jet black color, thick, inky with a big caramel head, nearly 3 fingers with an aggressive pour that nice nice retention with spotted lace. The aroma has tons of chocolate, chili pepper, cinnamon, stone fruits and rich grain. It's as advertised, plenty of the adjuncts, balanced quite well, though simple in its own right. The flavors echo the nose, loads of chocolate, plenty of chili pepper, a touch of heat, but delightful roasty and earthy flavors, cinnamon is there, fruit, toasted coffee bean, toeing the line between earthy, sweet, and rich. The mouthfeel is so nice, coating, soft, smooth, lively carbonation that isn't abrasive, full bodied with a lightly dry finish.


Verdict: A very nice stout from Perennial, definitely puts the select ingredients in the spotlight. Nice balance and interplay, simple in that there isn't a lot going on beyond those adjuncts, but impressive in how complex they can feel and how nicely they go together.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured a dark brown, almost black body with one finger dark brown head (so I guess the body is black since I differentiate) that left lace patches and had an aroma of sweetness like chocolate and toffee, maybe caramel, hint of cinnamon, and some roasted, bready malts as well as coffee and chile (although I may pick these up more b/c others say they are in there than on my own without prior knowledge). A thick, almost chewey body that is sticky at times but so easy to drink and so calling for me to drink it. Great balance as I get a lot of chocolate and touches of cinnamon (and I still think toffee or caramel) with a very dry, coffee-esque malt base. Picks up on the end with a little heat so I'm assuming both the alcohol and chile are coming in and thankfully not overpowering me at all. A very enjoyable sipper and another great beer from Perennial.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured a big black body with good carbonation leaving a moderate brown cap which quikly fades leaving some bubbles and spotty lacing

5: Big cinnamon and anchos smothered by chocolate, roasted malt.

T: Taste follows the nose very well. Big cinnamon meets chiles but everything seemed to play second fiddle to the chiles and spice. It provides an initial zing or spiciness which is nice, it lingers from start to finish. It provides a nice heat which smothers the alcohol heat. The chocolate and roasted base is nice and helps keep the beer in check. This one is a little to spicey for my taste. The finish is rather creamy, spicey, sweet and decadent.

M: Full bodied, well carbonated. The spice and heat really coats the palate providing some staying power. Awesome.

O: Good. I do prefer the BA version better because it seemed to hide the chiles a but more

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Photo of Khazadum
4.15/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- good mocha lacing, moderate stickiness. Inky darkness with mohogany edging. Very nice, to look at. Doesn't keep the head as much as I'd like. Dissipates, cirrus clouds.

S- chili gives it a nice smokiness, cinnamon spiciness blends well into the chili power. Almost like star anise. Unusual. Some light sweetness if vanilla on back end. Very faint though and something to be desired.

T- fantastic roast. Bitter grain mixes with cinnamon the best I've ever had. Chocolate comes out next rolling into a malty, very low bitter and light light heat. Finishes chili flavor and some bitterness right in center. Vanilla doesn't translate well and I really wanted some.

M- nice creamy body. Velvet body. Good carb. Low heat leaves some desire. sticky sticky flavors and light bitterness.

Not amazing but not bad. Good beer to have. Miss this brewer. Guess ill trade for others.

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Photo of fondyball20
4.15/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

8 oz pour on draft. Good beer overall but the cinnamon dominated too much for me and the chile added some bite on the back end. Had it a long with Sump and honestly preferred the Sump more.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.17/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for sharing, Dan!
A: Pours black with a thin dark brown head that vanished quickly into soapy lace.
S: Smokey smelling with notes of bacon, chili, hints of cocoa and a touch of cinnamon. Smells meaty.
T: Follows the nose with flavors of chilis, cinnamon, smoky meat and cocoa. Cinnamon lingers in the finish.
M: Medium-full body, fuzzy and clean carbonation, smooth mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden.
O: Really integrated and impressive. Not too spicy but rather the chili compliments the complex flavors. Thanks again Mr. Clean!

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Photo of BillRoth
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Unsure if this bottle or if this is usual taste. Very good imperial stout with all the usual characteristics of a very well made IS. Met the hype. Thought it might be in vein of Hunahpu...but no. Found flavor unbalanced with cinnamon way too dominant. Ended up being a "spiced" IS more lent to Christmas than otherwise. Will keep remaining bottles to age for the holidays.

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Photo of Sludgeman
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Rustico/Arlington. Poured into a snifter.

A unique non-barrel-aged stout. Worth the hunt but don’t believe I could drink more than one full pour at a sitting. But a sipper of a nice beer. - 4.25

A - Reddish brown opaque with a nice light brown head, alcohol legs, excellent lacing for such a high ABV. - 4.25

S – Roasted malts, vanilla, slight cinnamon. - 4.25

T - Rich roastiness, some sweetness, just a bit too much cinnamon and chiles and vanilla. - 4

MF - Smooth and creamy, med-dry, heavy bodied. - 4.5

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Photo of jmarsh123
4.19/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to TheAbyss for hooking us up with this bottle for a tasting.

Pours dark and black with a tan head. Decent retention for a beer this side and chunky lacing down the glass.

The nose is filled with cocoa, brown sugar, cinnamon, anise and a little smokiness. Roasted coffee also lingers in the background and smells just a bit like my chili.

A lot roastier in the flavor than the nose lets on. Lots of the creamy cocoa is still around, but a deep rich almost espresso like bitterness dominates the front end of this beer. Then the cinnamon and chile kicks in giving it a pleasant spicy contrast.

Full bodied beer with lots of sweet components, but the spicy does a good job of balancing those flavors. Because of this, the beer finishes semi-dry with good carbonation.

Very well balanced and well made beer. Good complexity throughout. I feel if I did not immediately contrast this with the deliciousness of the BA version, I may score it even higher.

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Photo of Zoomslowik
4.19/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L- deep brown, slight reddish hue around the edges. Not much head or lacing.

S- cinnamon and chili heat.

T- I got different flavors at different times. My first half glass I got quite a bit of spice, though not unpleasant. As I kept drinking, I got more chocolate and enjoyed it more.

F- not much carbonation. Creamy.

O- It's well done, but I can't decide how much I like it. At times, the spice overpowers the other flavors. At others it mellows and I enjoy it more.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.19/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Re-reviewing Abraxas- on tap at Tria Taproom in PHL, served at perfect temp. Very nice blend of crushed, fresh cinnamon and subtle spice. Unlike the first time I had it, this is very well balanced. The aroma is tremendous. Nice spicy finish that scratches your throat just so.

World-class? Not sure about that... but a delightful brew nonetheless.

------------
3.37

Terribly unbalanced, all spice and sweetness, a little too flat, muted smell, feels like drinking hot chocolate on ice. Will not revisit.

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Photo of Powderhornphil
4.19/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black. What is really noteworthy is how it glugs out of the bottle. Really nice thick appearance.

Smells heavy on the cinnamon. Cocoa follows. Espresso roastyness.

Taste is cocoa and cinnamon. Chilis are incredibly subtle. A very tasty stout. Flavors are well integrated. Slight hint of booze on the end.

Medium mouthfeel. Moderate carbonation.

Great beer here.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Viscous black. Thick with a nice head and a thick mocha collar.

Smell - Peppers are strongest. Chocolate and a bit of cinnamon.

Taste - Chocolate. Dark rich chocolate. Graham cracker and cinnamon is beautiful. Peppers come out right in the front, then fade in the midrange, and come out in the finish again.

Mouthfeel - Thick. Medium carbonation. Good stuff.

Overall - This is really good. BA Abraxas is still better, but this is excellent.

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Photo of rtaps
4.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thanks to darthkostritzer for opening this one

oily black, with a dark tan head that had nice retention leaving spotty lacing behind.

cinnamon, and spice with dark roasted malts it's a nice aroma that makes you want to dive into tasting it

the taste fallows the nose, chile spice, cinnamon with roasted malts.

medium bodied and carbonated

overall it was a tasty little treat, complexed and the spice in it was great not overpowering but let it's precense be known

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.21/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours pitch black with virtually no signs of carbonation, although a thin ring of light brown bubbles forms around the edges of the glass. Nice aroma of sweet dark toasted malt, cinnamon, chocolate and a hint of hot peppers, quite reminiscent of Mexican chocolate. Flavor follows, with rich chocolaty dark toasted malt, cinnamon, vanilla and a pleasant, light chili burn in the finish. Medium to heavy creamy body and adequate carbonation in the mouth feel despite the visible absence. A very nice, velvety and rich chocolate and spice infused stout. The resemblance to Mexican chocolate is appealing and flavorful. Spicing and the chilis are done deftly. Very tasty and enjoyable. The price point is scary, but it delivers on the taste and experience.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
4.21/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black color with a quickly fading khaki head. Dark Chocolate, chilies, cinnamon, wood, and some vanilla notes dominate the nose. The flavor profile matches the nose with the dark chocolate most noticeable and a nice lingering burn from the chilies and spices on the finish. Cinnamon and spices become more noticeable as it warms up. This beer reminds me so much of Cigar City’s most sought after Hunaphu beers which is why I enjoyed this beer!

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Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
97 out of 100 based on 262 ratings.