The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
The Lost Abbey

The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-AgedThe Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
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From:
The Lost Abbey
 
California, United States
Style:
Strong Ale - American
Ranked #20
ABV:
12.5%
Score:
95
Ranked #1,406
Avg:
4.29 | pDev: 10.96%
Ratings:
1,946
Status:
Active
Rated:
May 08, 2022
Added:
Aug 23, 2006
Wants:
  613
Gots:
  568
SCORE
95
World-Class
The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-AgedThe Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
Notes: Down in Kentucky and across the pond in Scotland, distillers who age their whiskeys for many years refer to the evaporation of the spirits from their barrels as “The Angel’s Share.” We couldn’t agree more. Each time a barrel is filled, a measure of liquid seeps into the oak and is lost for good.This striking Strong Ale is brewed with copious amounts of Caramel malt to emphasize the vanilla and oak flavors found in freshly emptied bourbon or brandy barrels. The beer spends a year in oak before it is packaged for release.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Ratings by cd34:
Photo of cd34
4.23/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by cd34 from Illinois

Aug 11, 2019
More User Ratings:
Photo of NCSapiens
3.99/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by NCSapiens from Indiana

Nice whiskey barrel flavors compliment a base ale.

May 08, 2022
 
4.31 by hopley from Massachusetts on Feb 12, 2022
 
4.14 by 22Blue from Kansas on Nov 14, 2021
Photo of DaveMaciolek21
4.49/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by DaveMaciolek21 from New Jersey

Muddy brown strong ale, no head whatsoever, and absolutely no more disappointment after that. Great silky mouthfeel, vanilla flavor mildly allowing bourbon and even brandy notes to overtake it. Nice caramel malt finish, smooth from top of the glass to the bottom. Brandy flavor is more at the top, bourbon predominant through last sip. Superior effort!

Mar 07, 2021
Photo of bret27
4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by bret27 from California

2009 Vintage courtesy of acurtis.
(12 years old!)
Dark fruits,(prune, raisins), toffee, leather, wood, slight oxidization.
99% flat. No booziness. Smooth.
Overall: Though definitely old, this ages pretty well. Those melded flavors only age can produce. Ages better than most beers out there. From what I’ve read Lost Abbey was probably flat even when fresh.

Feb 02, 2021
Photo of DrStiffington
4.46/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by DrStiffington from New Jersey

The Angel’s Share is from 2016. Pours dark, dark brown. Almost black. Very little carbonation during the pour, and then a bit after it was all poured. Immediate aroma of bourbon. I was surprised it was so strong after 4-5 years. Taste follows - big bourbon presence, which makes me happy, because I love bourbon barrel aged beers. Between the color being almost black and the bourbon dominating, this is very close to a bourbon barrel aged stout instead of a barleywine. If given in a blind tasing I might think it was. There’s very little barleywine characteristic: it’s not sweet, don’t get any caramel or toffee. It’s still a bit boozy, but I like that in beers like this.

Jan 30, 2021
 
4.41 by Bogdawg from Massachusetts on Dec 26, 2020
 
4.31 by Tcsox from Massachusetts on Dec 26, 2020
 
4.18 by NolaHopHead from Louisiana on Dec 02, 2020
Photo of StJamesGate
4.16/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by StJamesGate from New York

Viscous, opaque garnet-brown with no head; strong bourbon nose with hints of wood, cherry stone, candy sugar, moss, plum and oak smoke; fig, milk chocolate, red currants, a whisky hit with a big thread of vanilla, sweet comeback + warming end; medium-full, chewy, round.

3.75 4.5 4 4 4.25

Sat on this for 5 years.
No looker, but smells like a humidor - once you get past the booziness, the complexity of the aroma drips down the back of your throat.
The taste is dried dark fruit more than any caramel sweetness. And then that bourbon drops in… while among the most harmonious I’ve encountered, it does take over more than complement the base beer.
Not perfect: it’s flat + boozy - hard to avoid at 12.5%, but it should've mellowed with age. I see lots of good ratings for this, but some are a decade old - maybe this beer jumped out more before everything was getting put in barrels.
Overall, this has more in common with treacly English strong ales than anything else. But with a lot of bourbon.

More an advertisement for bourbon barrel aging than a complete beer.

Nov 26, 2020
Photo of DvdP
4.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by DvdP from Netherlands

Cork didn't want to get out, no pop. Pours dark brown, flat. Smells bourbon. Smooth mouthfeel, but could do with some carb. No alcohol to speak of. Taste is dry, woody, with some bice bourbon. Bit herbal, that old leather tobacco flavour from good barrels

Nov 14, 2020
Photo of Apellonious
4.31/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by Apellonious from North Carolina

Vintage 2016. Poured into a tulip glass. No head to speak of, just a full murky ruby brown. Aromas of fig,barrel, and caramel. Taste is similar, no hops semblance at this point. And that is ...Ok. I’ll give you six dollars if you can name where that quote came from. The heft was surprisingly light, carbonation low, mildly sticky as everything warmed. Delicious and coating.

Oct 03, 2020
Photo of Luscious_Malfoy
4.33/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Luscious_Malfoy from Illinois

vintage 2016 poured from a 375mL corked & caged bottle into a snifter. pours light brown but gathers in the glass a bit darker, almost chestnut, with the tiniest amount of khaki colored head that dissipates leaving small khaki swirls. nose is a combination of dark fruit, figs, toffee, chocolate, vanilla, oak and bourbon. taste is a little more oak and bourbon forward followed by sweet toffee and caramel. it suffers from a little oxidation but that’s my own fault for letting this sit so long. mouthfeel is medium to full. it sits on the tongue fairly full then finishes a little thinner. overall, pretty stellar bourbon barrel-aged barleywine. need to track down a fresh vintage as it was not my intention to try this for the first time with so much age on it. very much enjoyed it though.

May 31, 2020
 
4.25 by Patches826 from Massachusetts on Apr 15, 2020
 
4.5 by TylerJ from Iowa on Sep 04, 2019
 
4.06 by NotAlcoholicJustAHobby from Vermont on Aug 31, 2019
 
4.39 by Duncian from Pennsylvania on Aug 09, 2019
 
4.45 by Dharmelink from Wisconsin on Jun 18, 2019
 
4.76 by Trmmilwwi from Illinois on Jun 01, 2019
 
4.45 by Hopelessly0 from California on May 14, 2019
 
3.84 by Oh_Dark_Star from Washington on May 06, 2019
Photo of TheGent
4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by TheGent from New Jersey

2014 Bottled

Consumed on April 13, 2019.

I pulled the cork slowly to only a slight release of air. No pop.

Brown, large and very loosely packed bubbles, indicating low carbonation. They disappeared very quickly. Dark brown color. Translucent and slightly murky.

This beer has a huge nose. Bourbon, chocolate, toasted coconut, vanilla, oak. Tons of dark, dried fruit including raisins and prunes. Coffee. A hint of cinnamon. Some ABV coming Through.

Lots of chocolate. Notes of sweet and dark over the course of the glass. Chocolate covered, bourbon soaked raisins and cherries. Some cinnamon. Some oak.

A medium body with no carbonation. Pleasant warmth from the 12.5% ABV and a semi-sweet finish with some woody bitterness. Residual, sticky sweetness coats my lips.

I am really enjoying this beer. There is tons of chocolate and dark dried fruit that comes through as chocolate covered cherries and raisins. I pulled this from the basement at 55-60F and put it in the fridge for about 30 mins. This beer has held up beautifully. Has it improved? Based only on my ratings from 14 and 15 I am enjoying this MUCH more, but there are too many variables to say it has improved. Right here, right now, I think it’s excellent. There is definitely some heat, which I think works nicely.

Apr 22, 2019
 
3.65 by buzzedup from Pennsylvania on Mar 31, 2019
Photo of EMH73
4.32/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by EMH73 from New York

Pours a medium to dark brown with mahogany highlights. Thin tan ring of head, no lacing present. Really looks like rusty tap water. Smells of bourbon, oak, vanilla, malts and dark fruits. Tastes of bourbon, vanilla, caramel malts oak, raisins, figs molasses and toffee. Medium bodied for the style, minimal carbonation, syrupy mouth feel. An awesome sipper.

Feb 24, 2019
Photo of sweetbrew82
4.59/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by sweetbrew82 from California

2016 version. Absolutely phenomenal and incredibly complex! Not much booze to speak of at this age which really lets the deep character of this brew to really shine through. Been wanting to try this forever now and somehow it just always slipped through my fingers but now that I've had it I get all the hype surrounding it. One of the very best beers I've ever had. Period.

Feb 24, 2019
 
3.75 by mmilyko from Nevada on Feb 13, 2019
Photo of StoutElk_92
4.68/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
by StoutElk_92 from Massachusetts

Dark, rich brandy, booze soaked raisins, chocolate, coffee, oak barrel, bourbon, vanilla, dark caramel, molasses, dark dried fruits

Feb 08, 2019
 
4.5 by bigred89 from Maryland on Feb 03, 2019
Photo of patre_tim
4.24/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by patre_tim from Thailand

Dark brown with a murky ruby tinge and no head.

Smells of your typical english barley wine 'stinky foot' and bourbon barrel. Caramel, cherries, and butterscotch.

Tastes of caramel toffee, stinky foot, bourbon barrel, and a butter scotch finish.

Medium, syrupy body with a moderate carbonation.

I got this in Chico, and am drinking it Jan 26th, 2019. Very smooth, very well crafted and thoughtfully done brew.

Jan 27, 2019
Photo of EMV
4.22/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by EMV from Pennsylvania

Poured from a cork'n'cage 12 oz bottle into a Dogfish Head tulip. 2016 edition

L: Cloudy viscous dark mahogany brown pour. No head or lacing worth mentioning.

S: Sweet caramel and toffee... bourbon and booze.

T/F: Sweet and thick... big time dark sugars... caramel, toffee, and vanilla. Very boozy... almost overpowering. Warming... unbalanced on the sweet side. Rich and ABV not all that well hidden.

O: I wanted to like this more. It's quality, don't get me wrong... but too sweet/boozy and lacking the depth/balance I was expecting. Very glad I got to try it... but honestly not one I'd seek out again.

Jan 12, 2019
 
4.29 by KMcGrath from Massachusetts on Dec 03, 2018
 
4.7 by WheelOfTheLaw from Washington on Aug 15, 2018
 
4.28 by Cpmitchno1 from Virginia on Aug 13, 2018
Photo of WunderLlama
4.36/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
by WunderLlama from Massachusetts

Caged and corked bottle poured into a snifter

Murky brown liquid, plenty of carbonation in the glass, a few brown bubbles cling to one side, settles to a ring

Aroma is bourbon whiskey

Taste is bourbon, bit of vanilla, bit of oak. The taste lingers but doesn’t have the alcohol burn

Smooth, almost creamy, no sudsing

Good beer

Aug 09, 2018
 
4.4 by Eman17 from Illinois on May 19, 2018
Photo of CMEG
4.53/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by CMEG from Maryland

This is a wonderful drinking experience! I had aged this beer for over 2 years prior to drinking it. The beer pours dark brown, with minimal head. The aroma is one of the most complex and pleasant I have ever experienced. There are hints of blackberry, or currant, with an subtle earthy aroma. The taste is totally different from the aroma - malty, hints of raisin on the front, with a subtle and pleasant flavor of oak and vanilla on the back-end. This is a beer to sip and enjoy for an extended period of time. As the beer got warmer, the flavors only got richer. If you find it on the shelf - pick it up!

Apr 22, 2018
 
4.56 by grapeshops from California on Apr 04, 2018
Photo of BBThunderbolt
3.55/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5
by BBThunderbolt from Kiribati

2009 vintage. 12.7oz bottle poured into 12oz goblet. Poured a very still (no carbonation at all), opaque dark brown color with no head, thus no retention.

The aroma was fantastic, lots of oak, some bourbon, and dark fruits.

The taste was a bit less well defined, with the fruit notes upfront, the oak underlying, and a bit of booze at the back.

Drinkability was good, it was definitely a sipper, not a gulper.

Overall, perhaps a bit past where it was, but still a very nice brew. If you see one, grab it.

Mar 20, 2018
 
4.5 by StoutAtTheDevil from Alabama on Mar 01, 2018
The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged from The Lost Abbey
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 1946 ratings