Prairie The Beer That Saved Christmas - Prairie Artisan Ales

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Prairie The Beer That Saved ChristmasPrairie The Beer That Saved Christmas

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BA SCORE
84
good

361 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 361
Reviews: 69
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 13.51%
Wants: 19
Gots: 59 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Prairie Artisan Ales visit their website
Oklahoma, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Cowboys9 on 11-10-2013

No notes at this time.
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Ratings: 361 | Reviews: 69
Reviews by KevT:
More User Reviews:
Photo of lordofthewiens
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Originally $13.50 for a 500 ml bottle, but 20% off because Tully's was unloading some Christmas beers. Still on the expensive side.

In a snifter the beer was dark brown. The thick tan head persisted to the end, and left a smattering of lace.

A sweet fruit and caramel malt aroma.

Plums and prunes, toffee, a little oak.

A nice, medium-bodied old ale. Enjoyed it.

Photo of StoutFox
2.96/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Appearance: brown, huge medium brown head
Aroma: a bit sour, bitter oaky,
Taste: Dry, I'm getting a number of spices, clove nutmeg, to name a couple, finishes tart and oaky
overall: not a huge fan it could have been a whole lot better. it almost tastes as though something got into the brew either in the bottle or the barrel more than likely form the spices added. the sour oakyness does fade a bit as it warms.

Photo of Franziskaner
3.98/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Dark brown in color with a thin but tightly knit cream colored head. I get some serious bourbon,carmelized sugar,and dark malt in the aroma. The flavor is molasses,Brett,plums, and bourbon and it somehow works together. The blend of molasses and bourbon are sweet,but the tartness of the Brett quickly follows. Mouthfeel is thick but dry.

Photo of russpowell
3.61/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours chestnut/mahogany with 1 finger of cream colored head. Some lacing & head retention

S: Christmas pudding & brandy, plums & vanilla & smokeyness

T: Oaky dryness, plums, boozeyness, a touch of leafy hops up front. Slight smokeyness as this warms, oak & plummyness too. Finishes dry, with a bit of toffee, boozey with a bit of plum & leafy hops

MF: Fairly thick, slight carbonation, warming. Thins out as this warms

Not bad, but certainly came up short of expectations. I'm sure this will age well, but very rough on the edges now. Maybe my least favorite beer from these guys. If I buy any more it will be to age

Photo of KYGunner
3.97/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The absolutely darkest of brown colors this ale holds a creamy thick head that sat atop the ale throughout the entire glass.

The aroma is filled with cream, marshmallow, Graham cracker, slight bourbon and barrel.

The flavor improves as it warms as there's a lot bourbon whiskey creaminess, coffee, malt and light char. There's a strong malt backbone that isn't sweet but more grain and barley with a pinch if kilned toastiness. This is not a barrel aged beer and I would assume it should not have this bourbonesque flavoring but that is simply what my palate interrupted.

The feel is creamy, not entirely thick but very smooth.

Photo of emerge077
4.25/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a Flanders-inspired wild ale, despite the base of an old ale. Souring bacteria and wild yeast were used, making it a wild ale.

Reddish brown pour, dark brownish black in the glass. Light tan foam with a creamy surface texture, intricate irregular lacing that sticks well around the edges. Long lasting surface skim that eventually breaks after awhile.

Woody aroma with notes of dried cherry and chocolate.

Full bodied and vinous, creamy feel with a welcome mellow tartness. Light roast in the background, coffee, chocolate, and cherry. Dry woody tannin in the finish. Slight clover honey traces. Virtually no trace of the base old ale, it's defined by the barrel and expressive wild yeast/bacteria. Tastes a lot like an Oud bruin with amped up chocolate and cherry elements. Enjoyable slow sipper with a well hidden double digit abv. Recommended to fans of Noel De Calabaza/Madrugada and top tier Oud Bruins.

Overall a great wild ale that sadly appears to be misunderstood here.

Photo of boonzes
3.93/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

this is an english olde ale style, apparently. it probably needs a couple years in the bottle. that said, i really enjoyed the beer. the price was not great, but i think the investment in saving a couple bottles might be. light head and body, roasty, but almost like there was some lager yeast involved. the thing that stuck out for me was just like the wine barrel noir - it's like chocolate covered cranberries. it's not exactly "sour." it's not exactly "dessert" chocolatey. it's kind of an uncomfortable medium. i think a couple years in the bottle might do this well, but i also thought the mid-nineties cleveland indians would be unstoppable. i guess we'll see. until then, we can only get in line for a two bottle per person limit to pay for wax and amber glass. i hope the best for this beer.

Photo of mfnmbvp
4.2/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. I found a lone bottle of this stuff at the local beer store a while ago, and have been holding onto it for this day - Christmas, and also my 600th beer review on BeerAdvocate! This is also my first review of a beer from Prairie Artisan Ales. Exponentially stoked to have this bottle!

Poured into a clear balloon snifter glass.

A - Pours an opaque chestnut with slight ruby hues around the edges when held to the light. Three big pillowy bubbly fingers of tan head falls down to a ring quickly. Looks very nice.

S - Smooth creamy vanilla, bourbon soaked oak wood, sour cherry, musty yeast, bretty funk, maybe some fleshy peach / cantaloupe like smell, and some kind of tart dark berries.

T - Ah yes, very nice. Silky vanilla, tart cherry, dark bitter baking chocolate, hint of cola, malt roast, dry vinous grapes & dark sour indistinct berries. Faint brown bread / yeast presence. The perfect amount of sour to complement the creaminess imparted from the oak barrel aging. Delicious.

M - Feel is smooth and creamy, with good roasty chocolate bitterness and some light tartness lingering on the palate. Light bodied with good carbonation.

Overall, I thought it was delicious, and I wish I had another bottle to age. Highly recommended, and I look forward to many more from Prairie Artisan Ales.

Prairie The Beer That Saved Christmas ---4/5.

Photo of imperialbeerdude
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I actually enjoyed this one, but it's definitely not an old ale unless it was infected. As far as the taste goes I get some mild barrel/old ale flavors, there are hints of vanilla but it's mostly a red grape/vinous tart flavor. Not overpowering and actually kind of pleasant, but I'm a fan of pretty much everything sour/funky. I'm really interested in the back story for this beer, overall pretty good. I'd give it a solid B, weird beer for sure though.

Photo of schwemjw
3.98/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: dark murkey Brown. No head. Very hazy.

S. Strong oak. Vanilla. Brown sugar. Dark fruits. Hints of citrus. Very interesting and inviting nose.

T: wow! Tart. Dark cherry and brown sugar. Molasses and white grape. Tons of oak. Pretty tart and acidic.

M: very effervescent. Lingering acidic finish. Good carbonation.

I: pretty awesome imo. Tart, dark cherry abd effervescent are what will stick with me! /92

Photo of FreshHawk
3.74/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Dark mahogany brown with ruby hues. Full, thick, creamy off-white head. Great retention leaving very little lace behind.

S - Dark fruit up front with prune, fig, and date. Tart cherry shows up on the finish. Underlying sweet brown sugar making it reminiscent of a fruit cake. Some Brett funk and some hints of barrel aroma.

T - Not as bold as the nose suggested (or what I was expecting from the description). Dried dark fruit is there like the nose but not as strong with prune being the strongest. A fair amount of dark, slightly tart cherry that is complimented by the hints of Brett. Slight tannin taste throughout. Notes of barrel throughout. Not really getting that sweetness found in the nose.

M - Light to medium body. Low carbonation. A little thin but not too bad.

D - It's not really encouraging me to drink more, rather I'm just sipping it whenever I haven't had a drink for awhile. Alcohol is well hidden.

Notes: I liked the sounds of the beer, particularly with Prairie's track record. This fell flat for me though. Nice looking and smelling but the taste a little bland. The dark cherry notes with the Brett was nice but it was too subtle to carry the show and nothing else stood out. Not a bad beer and a neat label. At $10-11 for 500 ml of barrel aged 10% old/wild ale it's not a bad price if you're curious, but I doubt I'll repurchase.

Photo of wethorseblanket
3.76/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours from a 500 ml, white waxed and capped bottle brown with reddish highlights under a 1 finger thick dark tan head which fades to a cap and rim leaving spotty lace.

N: Leather, plums, dark fruit cake, spices, brown sugar, candied glaze, rum raisins, and wood.

T: Some boozy spices, dark candied fruits, vanilla, complex roasted grains and malts, earthy, red wine, cranberries/cherries.

M: Semi-full body and moderate carbonation. Robust finish.

O: Lots going on, but in somewhat different directions. Not focused, but interesting.

Photo of Ri0
3.91/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

poured 500ml bottle into chalice.

A - Dark brown with dark amber highlights around the edge and a 1 finger foamy white head that fades into a thin film. Very small spots of lacing on the glass.

S - Tart fruit notes along with chocolate, vanilla, dark fruit and brown sugar.

T - There is a bit of tartness up front, not so much cherry, with chocolate and vanilla. The oak is present and has an earthiness to it. I pick up some dark brown sugar and dark fruit.

M - Medium body and nice carbonation. Finishes dry and semi tart with a bit of earthy wood.

O - At first I was calling this a stout and remembered that it was an Old Ale. Cool idea and one I really enjoyed.

Photo of cbutova
3.26/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Purchased on-sale at Coaltrain Liquors in Colorado Springs, CO over the summer. Consumed and fully reviewed at night on Christmas.

2013 bottle.

A- Super dark red around the sides with a deep brown body from the 500ml to a few glasses. A large cap makes it up to over one finger with a very foamy, fizzy texture; the bottle opened with a LOUD hiss. The cap dies to a large puffy ring and haze all atop the beer. Massive chunks of swamp things suspend throughout with some spots of lace here and there.

S- Probably the most pleasant part of this beer for me. Most of the roasty Old Ale part of the beer comes out here with a well aged vanilla toasted oak and woody buffer. Notes of raisin and aged caramel leading to cocoa and slight roast, lactic and slight acetic bacteria, figs and hints of sweets. Bacteria really opens up with time and it is probably more pleasant when there is more Old Ale feel before that.

T- More of a balance at this stage. It takes character from the deep malty base beer, the rounded out oak barrel and the tart and slightly fruity funky bacteria. Strong notes of cherry, lactic acid, red wine vinegar, raisins, figs, general spiced dark fruits, toasted wood, oak vanilla and musty caramel. The tartness and fruity bacteria gets pretty bold with time drowning out the Old Ale in the end.

MF- This is where things kind of get thrown off. The body is incredibly foamy as hinted by the noise when opening the bottle. Massive fizzy foamy carbonation fills up the entire mouth immediately as it feels like a champagne or sour. This does not suit a lot of the flavors for me.

This beer has all kinds of potential. I think the Old Ale notes are quite good when they shine through and I really like the amount of oak and barrel flavor. The mouthfeel really hurts it for me and the bacteria also take away from the good aspects of the beer after a few sips. I would like to try a non-soured version of this. Just lacks a total melding of the flavors presented.

Photo of BarryMFBurton
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Nothing like a boozy barrel-aged beer to quell a chest cough…I think. At any rate, my nose and throat are clear, so some beer before bed sounds just about right. Cheers.

Pours a deep red clay color, dark and brooding, with a loose, barely-there head of light brown bubbles. Little to no retention, but there’s a few strands of lace around the glass.

The nose mixes sour brown and old ale aromas in an interesting way: the gentle, controlled acidity of balsamic vinegar sits atop a vanilla and toasted coconut barrel tone, buttery brown sugar, and maple. The palate follows suit, but with more emphasis on the old ale character. Warm dessert flavors come through, though slightly faded by a thin body, a bubbly carbonation, and the overripe fruit character of the sourness, pushing a front of butterscotch and molasses. The balance in the palate is always tipped toward the old ale tastes, with supporting flavors of toasted oak barrel and brandy filling in the gaps of the profile. On top of that, there’s a distinct sour tinge that sits in clear opposition of all that’s normal here – toward the finish, tastes of lemon-lime and pie cherry add an acetic tartness. Vinegar and brown sugar don’t mix, right? Then why have I finished my glass so fast? Anyway, the aftertaste is mild and smoky: neither dry nor cloying.

A strange beer, but not a bad one. I enjoyed the interplay between the acids and the sugars, something you don’t normally find in darker styles like this. Sure, there are some kinks to work out – I mean, sometimes it comes together and the blend tastes plastic – but it ended up pretty tasty.

Photo of SebD
4.08/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2013 bottle

Appearance: It has a nice dark brown almost black color to it. It has a nice creamy beige head that dies down moderately and leaves light lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of brown sugar, caramel, dark fruit, some roasted coffee, oak, vanilla and a slight tartness.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has some sweet caramel and brown sugar, roasted coffee, light grass, dark fruit, woody oak, light vanilla and some tart cherries.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by good flavors and aromas.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of MartzMimic
3.39/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown with a bubbly head that disappears quickly. Smells of chocolate, fruit and malt. Those all carry over to the taste. Also notes of cherry and prune. Oily tongue and lots of carbonation. The style isn't my favorite, but this beer is well done.

Photo of jlindros
3.79/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to rudzud for sharing/splitting.

Light creamy head, decent lacing, dark murky molasses brown.

Nose lots of bourbon, barrel juice, toasted oak and light vanilla, sweet molasses and brown sugar, dark fruits, nougat and dark sweet malts. Torn between a 4.25 as it's pretty nice and good bourbon with other good malts, but the malts are a little meh for what they should be and bourbon destroys.

Taste stats with sweet malts, candy, molasses and brown sugar, dark fruits little fig, brown crystal malts, caramel toffee, mild bitterness, but quite sweet. Lots of bourbon, barrel juice, sweet bourbon and toasted oak. Finish is bland, little bourbon, little brown sugar. Fairly bland overall in flavor, mostly just washed bourbon.

Mouth is med bod, decent carb, mild warming booze.

Overall meh, pretty bland and one trick pony esp for so much bourbon.

Photo of Ohiovania
3.67/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Rusted out all along the cap. Got this via trade in Iowa.

I didn't know this has wild bacteria in it until I took my first sip. Then I had to look up the specs on the prairie website. I love old ales so my first sip was awful. i see what they are doing here, though. The more I drink it the more I'm warming up this sour version of an old ale.

The tart fruits and chocolate and leather, I get, don't blend as cohesively well as I would like. I'm glad I'm splitting this one.

Photo of jdhilt
4.15/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a three-finger cream/beige head that fades slowly to a ring leaving some lace. Deep opaque brown color, ton of yeast left in bottle. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Dark fruit and oak nose. Flavor is dark fruit, oak, vinous grapes; high ABV is mostly hidden. Decent old ale. Pricey at $13.50 for a 500ml bottle from a Tully’s Beer & Wine Wells, ME. And first bottle from Oklahoma after 3400 bottles.

Photo of Davepoolesque
3.74/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A bit sour, a bit savory, a bit delicious. Not exciting, but worth checking out.

Photo of ThePaleRider
3.97/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was prepared for disappointment when I read the reviews on this brew. Turned out to be a winning choice!

This is the second BA old ale, that's sour(whether intentional or not), that I've come across. The first was from The Bruery and it was pretty disappointing.

Pours a lovely brown that's very cloudy. Very rich, light tan head that had a lot of retention.

Smell hits you with lacto and then the old ale caramels,malts, and alcohol sugars.

Taste hits you just like the aroma. Very sour bite that is followed by some alcohol and caramels. When colder the sour really kicked in. The more this guy warmed up the more the caramel and oak began to take over and at room temperature this brew was very smooth and oaky.

Medium body with a little alcohol present.

Decent beer, not sure if it was supposed to be sour or not but very enjoyable.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.56/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle opened on 11.26.13

A - Pours a dark cola brown with a frothy, light tan head that has great retention.

S - Raison, oak, malty.

T - Tart and oaky, some dark fruits. Blah.

D - Good carbonation with a light body.

O - Mild flavors, but boozy and dark fruits try to show. Not that great.

Photo of Hopswagger
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

P: Pours a murky brown swamp body with a khaki airy head. A small amount if milky off white bubbles congregate around the edge if the glass.

S: Rich aroma of Borbon soaked oak, chocolate, brown sugar, plums, sugared prunes, tart grape presence, star anise, pencil shavings and plant bulbs.

T/M: Chocolate and timid booze arrives on the first sip. Dark fruits, licorice, ground cumin, burnt toffee and the faint grape tartness shows up as well. I'm picking up some strange flavors that bring hoisin sauce to mind. Molasses drizzled scorched grains linger in the background after the swallow. Medium body with subtle carbonation and finishes semi dry.

O: I'm not really feeling this Prairie Ale. I'm a huge fan of the brewery but this one seems like a mess. It gave some off flavors. While it was complex the flavors didn't play well together. Good but not great.

Photo of cvm4
3.87/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Poured very dark brown with a light tan one finger head.

S - Bourbon, oak, vanilla, caramel and dark malts. There's also an ever so faint tartness on the backend.

T - Oak and vanilla sweetness up front that leads into dark fruits and some tart brett characters.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Has a dry ending and is oh so drinkable.

O - Not a bad combination of flavors, but not one of my favorites. It is definitely unique and gets points on creativity.

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Prairie The Beer That Saved Christmas from Prairie Artisan Ales
84 out of 100 based on 361 ratings.