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Southampton Abbot 12 | Southampton Publick House

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Southampton Abbot 12Southampton Abbot 12

Brewed by:
Southampton Publick House
New York, United States

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-22-2003

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Reviews: 148 | Ratings: 253
Photo of tempest
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled from a bottle contract brewed at Sly Fox. This one's a little odd/off. It tastes a good deal like wort straight from a lauer tun. There is a nice spicy hops note that finishes the beer, but the flavor, while not unpleasant, isn't very quad-like. Considering the high-cost on this beer, I'd say avoid.

UPDATE: Had this again and it's much better. Big, big juicy prun and raisins with complimenting cocoa and caramel. Like an authentic quad, but a little richer.

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Photo of WesWes
4.22/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a translucent brown color with a 1/4" offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a warm crystal and roasted malt scent along with a wondeful yeast aroma. It has some awesome dark fruit scents. The taste is good. It has a smooth crystal malt flavor that goes down easy and finishes warm with some excellent yeast esters. It's a well balanced beer with great yeast character and moderate warmth. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a very nice Belgian style ale. It highly drinkable and enjoyable.

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Photo of Gavage
3.78/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear reddish brown in color. 2" head lingers around awhile. Some spotty lacing develops.

Smell: malt and fruity sweetness and a hint of yeast.

Taste: malt, brown sugars, yeast, prunes, raisins, and a bit of breadiness. Alcohol is noticeable and warming, and there is a nice bitterness to level out the sweetness.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Smooth from start to finish. Aftertaste is mild while the flavors are soft on the tongue after swallowing.

Drinkability: a slow sipping belgian-styled quad here. A bit sweeter than expected. The alcohol and sweetness levels knocks down the mark here, but it is a good beer.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to NutBrown for this brew.


Poured into a chalice a nice ruby red color, nice carbonation, huge two-finger creamy tan head, lots and lots of nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, yeasty, kinda sweet, good touch of figs, raisins, plums, and some caramel. The taste is sweet up front then the yeast hit next, with malts, and the dark fruits. The alcohol is alittle present, this is a complex brew. Full body. Very drinkable, highly recommended, another great brew from Southampton.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap yet again at Capone's in a small serving.

A- This abbot 12 came with a fairly nice white head that faded with time. A deep dark red color with hints of brown and some activity within. Not anything in terms of lace.

S- This quad had all the familiar smells with raisins, dark toasted malt and brown sugar. Also getting dark fruits and a caramel sweetness as well leading to some toffee.

T- Good stuff. Sweetness but not overbearing. Dark malts, a hand full of raisins along with some yeast to balance it out. Ripe fruit including apples and some berries. A good amount of spices not overdone again. Caramel backing.

M- Not quite thick but this coats the mouth, I would say it's a step above medium with lively carbonation. Alcohol only barely noticable with a sweet aftertaste. A good sipper.

D- A nice drinkable quad but if I had a bottle it would probably be best split among friends. I heard rumblings that this was a 07' version even though it was listed as 08'. Well, it sure drinks like an 07.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.71/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2003 Bottling, Sampled May, 2004
Pours a hazy dark amber color. Rich aromas of dark fruit waft from my glass as I pour it. The carbonation is quite low, with only a wispy head, when roused it shows a brown color. Fig dominates the aroma, though it is joined by dark caramel notes, almost a coca-cola type quality, earth, wood, alcohol, brown sugar. Quite a rich aroma, it is super malty almost like a strong bock. The beer itself was some what lighter bodied than I was expecting, still rich though with an almost meaty quality to it. It is fairly sweet with an astringent finish that seems to be a combination of alcohol and yeast character. Tastes like it has just started to oxidize, perhaps, this adds to the rich maltiness of this brew. This beer is redolent of dark concentrated fruit; fig, raisin, prunes, and a hint of orange in the finish. There are some banana and clove notes here as well. As this beer warms up the concentrated fruit notes really picks up. All I can say is that this is deceptively good. Rich, complex, and hearty what more do you need.

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Photo of biegaman
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer's chestnut colour is simply lovely and the combination of transparency and resplendence make it every bit as graceful as good-looking. Its plush amber tones, ruby undercurrent and soft tawny edges look as though they were taken from an interior-decor magazine for the rich and famous. Even without any head, how luxurious!

When most American brewers try their hands at any strong Belgian-style beer the result often plays out like a guitar that's missing a string (or is just out of tune altogether). Southampton, however, has already proven that replicating these varieties comes can be done; like Saison Deluxe, Grand Cru and Bière de Garde this smells authentically European.

That aroma, like the taste, is full of sweet and dark flavours: brown sugar, dark rum, raisins. That list of 'brown sugar, dark rum, raisins' is repeated over and over again, like clockwork, as if it were the beer's own personal spiritual mantra. Occasionally caramel, honey or fig shows up, but so few and far between that they're of minor significance.

If memory serves me correctly, this particular bottle has already celebrated its second birthday. After first trying a considerably aged version of the original batch I rushed right out to buy more...only to find the newer batch ferociously, regrettably sweet. And so I aged this one in hopes that with a little time it would mature like the other one had.

Which it hasn't really. Like the child who's learned his first word and says nothing but, this beer knows sweetness and nothing else. Despite some earthiness, hops are an afterthought and, judging its thinness, it has been deprived of the proper malt bill required for a beer of its strength. That said, alcohol has also been excluded from the palate.

True to its intended abbey heritage, I've found this beer makes a wonderful pairing with simple monk foods: hearty, grainy breads, salty cheeses and dried fruits. Indeed, a little salt goes a long way in sedating the beer's malignant sweetness. Without the grub it's still worth downing but be sure to bring a big sweet-tooth. You'll need it.

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Photo of tobelerone
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was probably my favorite tap offering during two recent visits to the brewpub. It’s clear and amber with a fluffy white head that has good retention. Extensive lacing.

Lots of spicy, yeasty esters and fruit notes in the aroma. Fairly complex, with a hint of booziness emerging from underneath. Lots of sweet malt and Belgian candi sugar as well.

This is a sweet quad to be sure, with all that candi sugar and dark fruit dominating the taste, as well as prominent yeastiness and spices, most notably cloves and pepper. Again the astringent alcohol emerges in the swallow and as the beer warms. Not quite as complex as the nose lets on.

Medium-full bodied with solid carbonation. A little bit fizzy and less profound in feeling than the best of the style. Finish dries out a bit, which helps things along. Not a top notch quad but not bad either.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from corked & caged 750mL bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: rich ruby-amber hue with a largely haze-free body and a good effervescence. Head is two thick fingers of pillowy tan foam. Quite attractive.

Smell: rich, sweet malt with a lot of interesting character. There's caramel in here, along with a mild but pleasant fruitiness with notes of apricot and cherry. In with all of this is an alkaline, chalky aroma which I happen to quite like. Good stuff.

Taste: again, sweet, caramelly malt, but the fruity character is deeper and darker than in the aroma. There's cherry, plum and raisin in here; just what I look for in a quadrupel. There's also an alcoholic fruitiness which adds a little complexity to the flavor. I like it quite a lot indeed. A hint on the sweet side, but I'm finding I quite like it.

Mouthfeel: big body with a pretty huge carbonation and a massive, mouth-filling creaminess. Smooth and extremely satisfying. Wonderful!

Overall: I find I like this beer the more I drink it. Sure, it's sweet, but the flavor profile justifies that completely. Yum!

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Photo of puboflyons
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

From the 750 ml. corked caged bottle with an expiration date of 12/6/2017. Sampled on September 6, 2015.

Attractive chestnut-reddish poiur under a lingering tan head. Eventually settles back but it leaves lacing as it does.

Big nose of roasted Belgian malt, Belgian candied sugar, licorice, and coriander. No alcohol for 9.9% ABV.

The body is medium and better.

The taste is a slight letdown because it is way too sweet and way too bready. Those are the characteristics that you might expect for the style but this is a bit over the top. The booze is buried and I drank the entire thing.

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Photo of Derek
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've cellared this for a while (2 yrs?), and it has mellowed nicely.

A: Clear, amber-chestnut, light tan head, thin ring of retention, light leg.

S: Sherry, raisins, cider, figs... plenty of alcohol in the nose.

T: Caramel, raisins, figs, prunes, dark bread, sponge toffee, candied pineapple, marmalade, vanilla, modest bitterness, slight alcohol warmth. This one's right up there with the big Belgians.

M: Moderately full body is smooth with a light residual sweetness.

D: Great for its strength.

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Photo of weeare138
3.62/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is the Sly Fox contract bottling...
Appears a crimson toned red with a small, off-white head that quickly fizzles away into nothing. There were no traces of lacing around the glass.
Smell is of sweet brown sugar, cola, with notes of raisins, and plums.
Taste is of the same aromas with a bit of an overbearing sweetness, vanilla, a touch of cocoa, and molasses.
Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with a sweetness that reminds me a bit of the Sly Fox's corked and caged Ichor. It even has the same lack of CO2 like the Ichor. What's the deal with that? Is it just a Quad problem?

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Photo of jdhilt
5/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Explodes out of bottle and takes 25 minutes to pour a five+ finger very light tan head that stays forever leaving a good lace. Almost clear amber color. Strong carbonation and heavy bodied. Sweet caramel/raisin nose. Flavor is a balanced sweet fruity/raisin and hops. Caramel finish. High ABV is hidden but it is warming. One of the rare beers that I don't find anything wrong with it. Pricey (but worth it to try) at $13.00 for a 750ml corked bottle from Tully's Beer and Wine Wells, ME. Label puts the ABV at 8.9%.

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Photo of corby112
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark amber brown with off-white head. Pleasant aroma that is fruity and spicy with a nice touch of hops. Extremely quaffable great tasting beer! Spices with hints of apple, pear, berries, raisin, plum candi sugar, caramel and a nice balance of maltiness and hops. ABV very well masked. Excellent!

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Photo of akorsak
3.03/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A corked and caged 750 mL bottle. I think I picked this up at Joe Canal's in Lawrenceville.

A: The ale is dark but not opaque, a bold red that could pass for a glass of wine, save for the white head atop it. That white head left small patches of lace.

S: The nose is very sweet and strong, led by raisins and brown sugar and plenty of booze. A chalky powder aroma, perhaps more yeast byproduct, leaves an aroma that can't overpower the sweetness.

T: Man, this beer is sweet. Candi sugars, darker and fuller in flavor, lead the way, along with a raisin taste thanks to the yeast. Sugars are burnt, amplifying the sweetness, so much so that the ale borders on cloying.

M: The bottle is approximately 2 years old, so I can't tell if it needs more or less aging. The sweetness is overpowering, bold and strong.

D: I am not a fan; too darn sweet to really get into. I'm glad that janlud was here to share it with me.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.96/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Best before December 6th 2017

A small pop when I pulled the cork out, it pours a clear reddish brown with a finger of off white foam. Lacing is impressive

Loads of caramel malt in the smell with some dark pitted fruit that's on the subtle side. The sweet seems likely to be influenced by candi sugar, I reckon.

Tastes of caramel malt and probably a bit of oxidation. Dark fruits are a mild presence. Candi sugar here but doesn't cause any over sweetness. Alcohol is definitely there and brings oodles of warming.

Close to a syrupy mouthfeel, I really do like this Quad.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: A brilliant chestnut pour in a tulip glass crowned by a clingy cream colored foam collar. S: fruit, anise, cola – dark fruits, hint of honey and chocolate, banana. T: Starts molassey with traces of sweet caramel, some dark bread, and then it dries out on the finish. Anise, cola, dark fruit, honey and a hint of chocolate complete the palate. F: Above average carbonation, medium body. O: A big meaty Belgian dark ale.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle obtained via trade with Plaid75. Thanks for the opportunity... 2006 vintage.

Poured into a heavy glass chalice, formed a 1/4" light tan head over the slightly cloudy reddish brown brew. Head is quickly down to an uneven layer of bubbles, with average to good lacing. Aroma is lightly fruity and spiced dark maltiness. Flavor is just what the nose portended, with little to no alcohol taste, but the warming throat and tingly lips tell you that, like those old pasta sauce commercials used to say "It's in there...". Mouthfeel and drinkability are excellent as well. Unsurprisingly, another excellent offering for the 750 Series. Wish these were distro-ed just a little bit further out, but I'll trade and/or travel to find them.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.27/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Duvel tulip. Label says 12/6/2017.

A- Pours a medium brown color with a 3/4 inch off-white head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of sheer surface foam. Resilient lacing leaves a solid ring behind.

S- Trappist-like yeast quality with some fruity esters and sweet biscuity malt. Maybe some Belgian candi sugar too. Tiny trace of oxidation.

T- The sweetness continues with pleasant dark fruit, vanilla, caramel and even some almond-like nuttiness. Has great balance between the malt, alcohol and yeast making it so dangerously easy to drink. There is certainly some oxidation detected but luckily it's for the better and complements the rest of the flavor profile.

M- Slick and slightly syrupy with medium carbonation and a fullish body.

O- Been wanting to try this for a while and so glad I dropped the money on what is clearly a vintage bottle since it has aged quite nicely (from what I can tell) and the oxidative qualities found are of the positive variety.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.84/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very deep amber toffee color with a thick toffee ring and gentle carbonation.

S - Dark Belgian candy sugar/toasted/burnt sugar, plumbs, prunes, mild Belgian spice. Aroma is very, very sweet.

T - Sweet toffee and caramel from start to finish with alcohol warming on the way down (though not detectable in the nose), the booziness that comes through is buried down under and a bit of an edginess to it. A little bit of bread/yeast, prunes, plumbs, figs and some coriander buried way down. After several sips the alcohol starts to diminish.

M - Thick, gentle carbonation, velvety. Coats the mouth with toasted candy sugar, plumb, and coriander.

O - A good Quad but not on par with the Belgians.

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Photo of DrJay
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked and caged 750mL, Sly Fox bottling.
Beautiful clear burnt orange colour topped by a thick, fluffy cap of beige foam. Chunky lacing that just won't go away, great head retention. Bready, yeasty nose with banana and brown sugar notes, raisin and plum. Lots of sugary sweetness, mild raisin and dried fruit, with just a bit of bready malt and banana. Toasted marshmallow, caramelized sugar. A bit peppery towards the end with a pleasant warmth in the finish. Medium to full bodied with a decent texture overall. Lots of carbonation and a bit sticky. Pretty good with some really nice character, but seems like it would benefit from slightly higher attenuation.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.17/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I tried this from a 750mL bottle on Dark Lord Day (thanks Andrew). This is one of only 2 beers I'll rate from that day (out of God knows how many others I tried "splashes" of), because it really stood out and I was able to get a nice pour (I reciprocated with Westvleteren 8). It was an awesome day.

The beer had the murky brown appearance (good thing) of St Bernardus 12 but not so much of a foam poof as I normally get from the latter. The aroma and flavor definitely compared with the St Bernardus (I assume this was what Southampton intended), but were less rich and overpowering. The nose in particular was beautiful, I kept sniffing the glass. The viscosity was up there enough to keep a thick feeling in my mouth, overall it was really well done.

I'm so glad I got a chance to try it, I've been searching for it part time for so long, it just never shows up anywhere I travel to in NY. Thanks again Andrew!

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.07/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A 750ml bottle poured into a tulip glass. Red/brown in color, with a small head. Sweet, dark fruit aroma. Very sweet, fruity taste. The alcohol is noticeable, and intrusive. I thought this beer was also way too sweet. I don't think I'll try this beer again.

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Photo of ccrida
3.87/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle that I picked up on Long Island about 2 months ago. There's no date, but since I got this at Shoreline Beverage, which is close to the source and has a pretty high turnover, I assume it's on the newer side. While I'm sure time would serve it well, how would I know if I didn't have one fresh? Note the label cites 9.9% ABV, not 10.5%.

Poured into my 75th anniversary Orval chalice, the quad is garnet colored with a small, long lasting head, with bigger bubbles in the middle of a tight foamy collar that leaves light foamy lace.

The aroma is pretty soft, sweet fruitiness, and maybe a touch of vinegar, reminiscent of a subdued Liefmans Goudenband, with alcohol and some spicy phenols.

The taste has a big smack of raisins and some other dark fruits, candi sugar, just a touch of phenols and booze, with a nice spicy backbone. It's weird because it starts off very sweet and fruity, and I'm thinking this is a lot more BSDA then quad..but then it really spices up towards the finish, although the aftertaste is still heavy on the candi sugar. And while the spices are nice, there is none of that roastiness that you get in the benchmarks like St. Bernadus or Rochefort.

This is really carbonated and creamy, more evidence that this is a younger bottle, and is made to really go the distance. Medium-light bodied for a quad.

A bit too sweet and rich to really be super drinkable, it gets a little cloying after awhile, but nevertheless quite good. I'll have to get my hands on another bottle and let it run. Lately Avery's The Reverend has become my new benchmark, at least for US versions, if not period, and this one was about twice the price and not as good.

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Photo of Suds
3.91/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a clear brown ale with a wonderfully dense, light-tan head. The aroma is moderately malty, with a dark fruit, bubble-gum, clove, and spices. It could be a little more intense, but is very complex. Wonderful flavor, lots of complex, layered malts. Very sweet...almost sugary in the fore-taste. The beer, however, dries out nicely in the finish. Appropriate. Full body but lots of carbonation. Small bubbles. Very, very drinkable.

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Southampton Abbot 12 from Southampton Publick House
3.98 out of 5 based on 253 ratings.
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