Agave Maria
The Lost Abbey

Agave MariaAgave Maria
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Style:
Strong Ale - American
Ranked #39
ABV:
13.5%
Score:
90
Ranked #5,239
Avg:
4.05 | pDev: 14.81%
Reviews:
94
Ratings:
608
From:
The Lost Abbey
 
California, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  64
Gots
  111
SCORE
90
Outstanding
Agave MariaAgave Maria
Notes: Using a blend of Anejo and Reposado barrels and aged for a minimum of ten months, Agave Maria has hints of black pepper, sweet sugar, oatmeal, and oak with an earthy, bitter smoked chocolate on the finish. The base beer, a new Agave strong ale, was created specifically to pair with the spiciness of the Tequila, adding a sweet honey-like quality to the beer.
Reviews: 94 | Ratings: 608 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of John_M
John_M from Oregon

4.4/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Arch Bridge today. Listed as the 2016 version of this beer.

The beer pours a fairly dark brown color with good head retention and considerable sticky lacing. On the nose, this is great stuff, provided you like tequila (and I do). There's a huge aroma of pepper, tequila, brown sugar, caramel and light vanilla. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this rich, fairly sweet beer, but with something of a smokey quality on the finish. The tequila flavor is petty prominent, which I think works well in this beer. Mouthfeel is full and fairly soft on the palate, with a long finish. Alcohol is very well integrated into the flavor profile, though of course you can tell it's up there a bit.

A very unusual beer that I quite enjoyed. Definitely not for everyone, and you really need to be a fan of tequila, but I found this to be quite excellent. Really like it when a brewer pushes the envelope and tries something a bit different. Very nice offering.

Jan 20, 2020
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.09/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a tawny color with a one finger head; while the foam fades away within a minute the lacing action is pronounced

Smell: Barrel tones prominent, with the Tequila presenting and supplemented by lime and salt and counterpointed by toffee, raisin, green apple and a hint of vanilla

Taste: A bold contrast of flavors, with a distinct sour green apple and lime aspect; in the other direction, there is the toffee, raisin and vanilla all of which is enveloped by the Agave syrup and Tequila barrel; the finish brings all three elements together

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; considerable warmth in the gullet

Overall: A fascinating beer and while I respect what has been created I can't say that I particularly enjoyed it

Jun 15, 2019
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

2/5  rDev -50.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bottled spring 2014; drank 6/25/14 @ the Kid's.

Brown rusty murk.

Minimal off-white head; minimal lace.

Cocaine, glue & tequila nose. Um.....

Thick mouthfeel.

Cocaine, tequila & hints of oak in the flavor.

Unique, to be sure, but this was pretty gross. Yikes!

Feb 14, 2019
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.67/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Had this at Stone Oakquinox 2014 for the first time. Think I had it at the barrel aged festival since then too. Seen plenty of expensive bottles on shelves too, but its a pass at that price point.

Pours a browny black color, thin flat abbey reminder kind of a head on it, lighter brown in color, 1/8" deep. Aroma was complex, I'll give it that, alternating between agave, wood, chocolate, pepper, brown sugar, roasted dark coffee, it was a lot of tequila kind of feels right away with some stuff beyond that.

Taste was a little sweet agave/tequila feel, less hot and bitter than expected. Had a slight dark fruit quad feel to it. Sludgier feel than need be due to the "intentional" (lol) low carbonation. A little bit of a wood tannin kind of presence. Warming but not hot. I dunno, while I dig on tequila barrel beers, I certainly don't dig on them at this price point. Its a festival beer worth trying, not buying.

Oct 18, 2018
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SHODriver from North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured into a snifter to a deep brown beer topped with a minuscule tan head which is only there in the form of a collar around the edge of the glass with minimal lacing.
S: Smells like straight tequila and agave.
T: Taste is a little sharp on the tongue followed by a lot of tequila barrels and agave. Slight tartness as well which is surprising. Mostly just tequila and agave flavors. A little chocolate and spice try to creep in but the tartness is too strong to let them come out. Swallow is a lime like tartness followed by more tequila and agave.
M: This beer is fairly full in body with a slightly sticky mouthfeel. Carbonation is low to the point where the beer almost feels flat. The ABV gives this one a dry finish.
O: Tastes like an accidental Roble Blanco clone. Not undrinkable but I like my beers to taste like beer. Could have unintentionally soured as well. I have one more of these of an unknown vintage so we'll see if it's any better.

Aug 06, 2018
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superspak from Ohio

4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16 ounce prowler into snifter, filled on 11/4/2017. Pours hazy very dark brown color with a small dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, honey, tequila, agave, toasted oak, raisin, plum, fig, cherry, and brown bread; with light notes of molasses, chocolate, cocoa, pepper, coconut, almond, smoke, and yeast/oak/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of dark/bready malt, agave, tequila barrels, and light-moderate fruity yeast notes; with great strength. Taste of huge caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, honey, tequila, agave, toasted oak, raisin, plum, fig, cherry, and brown bread; with light notes of molasses, chocolate, cocoa, pepper, coconut, almond, smoke, and yeast/oak/toasted earthiness. Mild herbal/roast bitterness and tequila/oak spiciness on the finish. Lingering notes of caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, honey, tequila, agave, toasted oak, dark fruit, brown bread, light molasses/chocolate/smoke, and yeast/oak/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, agave, tequila barrels, and light-moderate fruity yeast flavors; with a nice malt/bitter/spiciness balance, and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Slightly increasing dryness from bitterness and tequila/oak spiciness. Light-medium carbonation and full body; with a very smooth, creamy/bready/silky, and lightly slick/sticky/tannic balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden; a mildly increasing warmth of 13.5%, with minimal barrel booziness lingering after the finish. Overall this is an awesome barrel aged strong ale! All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/bready malt, agave, tequila barrels, and light-moderate fruity yeast flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to sip on for the huge ABV. Tons of complexity that increases as it warms. Perfectly balanced yeast, malts, and tequila barrel flavors. Very rich, but not overly sweet. A really impressive and enjoyable offering.

Nov 11, 2017
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macrosmatic from Florida

3.02/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Thanks to eyebereej for sending this! Reviewed from long-standing notes (drank May 30, 2015). Poured from a 12.7 oz. bottle into a Brooklyn Brewing tulip glass.

A: Murky brown, average visible carbonation, and a thin to nonexistent thin tan head.

S: Sweet malts, acetic acid, tequila spices and some barrel tannins. A touch of toffee as well. Not terrible, but may be infected – wasn’t expecting any acetic acid.

T: Sweet malts, a tequila bite, and the acetic acid tang. More toffee here as well. The acetic acid is joined by some mild funk after the swallow, and it stays acidic on the way down.

M: Medium body, but it seems thick due to the low carbonation sensation. Alcohol is obvious but not overly prominent.

O: I'm not sure that this is what this beer is supposed to be at all. But still, it isn’t undrinkably awful, even if it is infected. Maybe a C-Minus though.

Jan 20, 2017
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mrmaps from Arizona

3.9/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

L: Light brown with no foam at all -- looks completely flat but I have held it for a couple of years
S: Light malt aroma --- not smelling any tequila notes. But the beer was cold when first poured
T: Very odd flavor during first sip. Sort of sour not the rounded . Very faint taste of tequila and as the beer warms it gets stronger. The tequila is surprising laid back. As it warms the astringent tequila flavors rise up a bit. The taste is not as intense as I would expect. Maybe this is an off batch. Tastes more like a standard strong ale.
F: Wish there was some carbonation it it. The beer is completely flat which definitely detracts from it.
O: An unusual beer for an unusual time. I really like that this company is willing to take these kind of risks. I am not certain is has paid off -- but it is so far out for the usual bourbon barrel -- fruit -- spice type of beer it is hard to be prepared for it. I kind of like it.

Nov 24, 2016
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Lingenbrau from Oregon

4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bit of a murky mahogany with a half inch khaki head. Smells of fig, raisin, caramel, oak, and a bit of tequila. Taste is incredible with those sweet dark fruits shining and well complimented by wood and mild sourness (I guess I am getting a much lesser concentration of tequila than most). Feel is lightly carbonated, semi acidic, medium bodied, and pretty well balanced favoring sweetness. Wonderfully complex, this beer brings the sweetness and strength of a Belgian Quad and the acidity of a mild barrel aged sour together perfectly, which I would have never guessed based on its own description. Very glad to have tried it. Cheers!

Nov 19, 2016
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ReviewingUnderInfluence from Canada (AB)

3.83/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Awesome flavours of herbal, wood tequila with some caramel and chocolate on the background and a hint of tart cherries. 375 ml bottle for $15 usd good? Not really.

Aug 17, 2016
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FBarber from Illinois

3.91/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a orange tinged brown with almost no head.

Smell has notes of dark fruits, brown sugar, oak and TONS of tequila. Wow, this is probably the booziest smelling beer I've ever had - if not just because the tequila aroma is so so strong.

Taste is strongly sour tequila. You get the tequila up front with some lime and salt notes. Nice oatmeal flavor isn't prominent but underlies the beer and really gives it some balance with that tequila. the lime gives it a margarita like flavor that is really interesting. Still, the tequila just dominates the flavor of this beer making it very boozy.

Feel has mild carbonation, smooth, velvety in the mouth. The boozy nature results in a real warming sensation in the face.

Really interesting beer. Its well done for what it is, but its so unique. I don't think I'd ever want to drink it again, although I'm really glad I got to try it.

Jun 12, 2016
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TheManiacalOne from Rhode Island

4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 5/15/2016 at Natty Greene’s Tavern in North Attleboro, MA, served in a snifter glass.

A: The beer is a very deep dark brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains roasted malts, chocolate, toasted oats, licorice and agave fruit.

T: The taste starts out with sweet flavors of chocolate, licorice, coffee and agave. Then a hearty roasted malt character comes in. The hops presence is very mild but complementary and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty with good complexity, goes down dangerously easy, not too filling, very strong kick, good representation of style, this is a flavorful beer to sip on for a long time.

May 16, 2016
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mothman from Minnesota

3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fizzy tan head. Brown color.

The tequila dominates this beer. It's like a sour tequila beer. Lots of agave. Brown sugar and malt with some sweetness combined with tequila.

Very interesting beer.

Feb 27, 2016
Photo of nonpo
nonpo from Germany

4.4/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark caramel into a teku glass with slight beige head

Aromas are of date and raisin with boozy tartness

Taste comes through with some complexity... Up front I get a dry tart bite almost like a carbonation bite but by appearance it shouldn't be.... Middle mouth is full of date, raisin, dark fruit and a hint of sweet Belgian Candy? Once that clears I get a tart funkiness that fades into a slight boozy after taste... Obviously has tequila notes messing with my taste buds (in a good way) throughout flavors...

Feel on this beer is full and rich and leaves a nice "after lace" on your tongue.... Follows through with a nice boozy burn....

Overall- If you have a bad history with tequila don't shy away from this beer... It delivers great flavors with tequila accents but not enough to give you flashbacks to previous tequila overindulgence stay likely lead you to "driving the porcelain bus" or "calling Dinosaurs" if you get a chance seek this one out... But avoid 2014 vintage bottles (should be stamped on the neck... Subsequent years to not appear to have date stamp) as they were prone to infection due to vast numbers of little monsters from the tequila barrels that were fed when bottles were pitched with yeast and sugar for conditioning.....

Feb 12, 2016
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Dentist666 from Russian Federation

4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

0.375 ml bottle.
Poured into tulip.
Pours opaque dark brown beer with 2-finger beige head, so-so retention.
Smell - tequila, something herbal (agave?), wood, wild yeasts sourness, pepper, chocolate.
Taste - follows the smell, complex of tequila/agave notes, woodiness, siginificant acidity, dark fruits.
Full, oily body, low carbonation.
Very solid brew.

Jan 31, 2016
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JohnnyHopps from Indiana

4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - The beer poured a deep brown. The shade of brown seemed a little odd.

Smell - Lime and tequila dominate the nose. Is this a shot?

Taste - The lime jumps out, quite sour and realistic. The tequila notes are also very present, but are not too hot. I really can't tell much about the base beer. The lime/tequila renains strong in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Allegedly, this is a strong ale. There was little carbonation and seemed a little thin.

Overall - A unique beer, but not a world changer.

Jan 01, 2016
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Wasatch from Colorado

4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12.7 oz. Bottle
Caged/Corked

Poured into a chalice a very nice brownish color, very nice carbonation, with a very nice one-finger foamy off-white head, which leaves a nice huge island and some sticky lacing behind. The nose is malty, yeasty, with some very nice grapes, raisins, fig, plum notes, some nice tartness. The taste is malty, yeasty, very nice touch of dark fruits, very nice touch of oak, tequila, kinda winey, tarty like. Medium body, with a nice little bitter/dry finish, pretty complex as well. Overall, this is a very fine brew, to me quite a different take on the style. Always a joy to drink a brew from this brewery.

Dec 04, 2015
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khoff5 from Connecticut

4.39/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Excellent mix of sweet and tart, like they mixed a strong and a sour, my dream mix! High ABV was hardly noticeable, great look, smell, flavor and aftertaste. Def will buy again.

Nov 19, 2015
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BillRoth from Maryland

3.94/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from recent trip to SD. Well made and a nice note or two from barrel. Largely complex but not very interesting in nose or taste. Shared with others who's only comment was about the sweetness. Can't all be home runs I guess. Not a bad beer, but don't expect to try again.

Nov 15, 2015
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jmasher85 from Maryland

4.36/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This beer has everything I look for in a great strong ale - depth of flavor, complexity, balance, temperance, and uniqueness. The flavor is at times funky, sweet, tart, and savory. The honey sweetness and malt are balanced by good yeasty flavors that add fermented, very mild tartness to the mix, plus a bit of peppery spice. There's a lot going on here. I expected this to taste like tequila-beer and was pleasantly surprised when I only got just a hint of the liquor's presence.

It's also smooth, real smooth. For a beer breaching 13% abv, and for me to not notice any remarkable burn on the first sip, that stuff is really well-tempered. The feel of the beer also stays with you as much as the flavor. It's an opaque muddy brownish red color - hazy but not gritty, and stays on your tongue for a while with it's chewy, heavy body. And yet for a beer of that consistency, there's quite a bit of fizz on it. It actually foamed out of the bottle as I opened it like champagne which felt like a tragic waste, but cest la vie.

All in all, from the price, abv, and style, this is clearly a special occasion beer and while aging it longer than the 6 months it spent in my cellar might have done wonders to it, it might have just as easily overpowered it and with no bottling date present, I'm okay with enjoying it as is and will definitely seek it out again. And while my first impressions of it were not as a world-class beer, it definitely grew tastier and more interesting as the drinking went on (and I don't even think that's simply because I was getting tipsier).

Nov 14, 2015
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Franziskaner from Missouri

3.96/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light black in color with just a hint of light partially seeping through. There's a fingernail of beige surrounding the rim and covering the majority of the top. I smell sweet tequila and slightly vegetal agave. Later passes include fig and black pepper. The taste is predominantly sweet from the tequila. It transitions into a dark Belgian ale and then finishes with more sweet tequila notes. The alcohol is well masked and yet the mouth is fairly thick, chewy, and syrupy.

Nov 07, 2015
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jdhilt from New Hampshire

3.72/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a two=finger light tan head leaving some lace. Very dark color, no highlights, yeast left in bottle. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Sour ale nose, flavor is almost like a sour ale but more a sweet & sour ale. Clean finish. No alcohol burn - the very high (13.5%) ABV is hidden. Seriously expensive at $18.99 for a caged & corked 375ml bottle from Julio’s Liquors Westborough, MA.

Oct 22, 2015
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joeseppy from Illinois

4.34/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Cola caramel pour with mocha lace cap. Aroma of fig Newton, raisin, molasses and candied dates. I never would of guessed tequila but it can be picked out. Strong ale with a mellifluous sweetness. I've been adding agave this past summer to my margaritas and it is most accommodating here. Syrup sticks to the back of your throat. Figgy and aftertaste of unsulphured molasses. Mouthfeel is creamy. Lips getting sticky. Ale has some staying strength. Bold and audacious yet the Tequila barreling is not overpowering and give this a sparkle. Would buy again.

Oct 14, 2015
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BWood from California

3.69/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Smells almost like a sour to me. Murky looking beer that holds a small cream head throughout the glass. Though not much to look at or smell it does have a nice smooth taste once you get use to it. First few drinks were so so but then half way through it became nice and smooth. Not sure if I would seek this out but not a bad try it once beer.

Sep 22, 2015
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JamesStreet from Louisiana

3.89/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look - pours a cloudy, burnt caramel color and a slight ruby tint in the light with an off-white head of about 3/4". Retention is pretty good and lacing is moderate.
Smell - This really is a cacophony of interesting flavors. Toffee, burnt sugar, vanilla, wood, pepper, molasses, alcohol.
Taste - A mix of woody leather taste with hints of chocolate, syrup, and a lime-like tartness. Interesting to say the least. I'm just not sure it balances well together. It does seem a bit muddled. Definitely get the alcohol burn in there as well.
Feel - I wouldn't quite put it in the heavy-bodied range, but it is right under there; so we'll call it heavy-medium. Carbonation is moderate. It does finish with a somewhat dry effect carried over from the tartness.
Overall - This beer definitely falls in the "interesting" category. I'm not sure it was executed perfectly. Maybe a bit too much, as far as flavors go. This is probably a one-taste thing for me.

Sep 15, 2015
Agave Maria from The Lost Abbey
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 608 ratings