Dismiss Notice
Extreme Beer Fest:Los Angeles

Join us December 9th in Los Angeles for the ultimate throwdown of craft beer creativity!

Learn more...
Dismiss Notice
Introducing: Project Extreme Brewing (a Dogfish Head + BeerAdvocate project)

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

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-AgedThe Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
1,900 Ratings
The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-AgedThe Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged

Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey
California, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by scottoale on 08-23-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,900 |  Reviews: 701
Photo of chippo33
2.75/5  rDev -35.9%

Photo of Koufax21
2.75/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Wow... What a disappointment. After having this on tap a few months ago and enjoying it, I decided to buy a bottle. I ignored beerandraiderfan's warning and bought my 14.99 - 12.7 oz. bottle. To his exact description... No carbonation. I mean none. I thought this was only similar in the aroma. Sweet, bourbon, caramel. The taste was off. Some kind of acrid, sour flavor. So disappointed in the bottle version. Just for the record... On tap is 10x the beer. Poor bottling.

 472 characters

Photo of finewinemike
2.93/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer was popped in celebration of my 27th birthday! The first thing I noticed is that it didn't pop. Off to a good start...
Pours an extremely deep brown, like a fresh layer of varnish on wood. Smells like I would imagine a port aged in bourbon barrels would smell- lots of grape (touriga nacional)/ raisin, vanilla, burnt caramel, and oak. The flavor is semi-sweet and very reminiscent of raisins (actually thought of the old California Raisins claymotion ads while drinking this), but then there's some chocolate on the finish. Really, really hated the mouthfeel- the level of carbonation made the sweetness sit on my tongue longer than I would've liked. Not worth the price to me personally, but to each their own.

 722 characters

Photo of Hophead717
2.94/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 2.5

A: Dark brown--raisin hued, with no head whatsoever. Not a good sign for carbonation levels.

S: All bourbon, all the time. Some dark fruits in the back, but it's kind of hard to find anything else through the strong bourbon. It works nicely though.

T: Bourbon-soaked raisins. Entirely one-dimensional.

M: Flat. Devoid of all carbonation. Definitely lacks the properties of beer.

O: This is a disappointing beer. Between the one-dimensional taste and entire lack of carbonation, this beer is a letdown. Not one I'd seek out or recommend.

 540 characters

Photo of rvdoorn
2.94/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

2010 vintage
Look: The beer pours a dark brown color with no head
Smell: Chocolate, vanilla, caramel and bourbon
Taste: Overly sweet (dark fruits) and alcoholic. Bourbon is very much present, but the alcohol is sharp and disturbing
Mouthfeel: medium body with low carbonation
Overall: The beer could have been so nice, could, because the alcohol is so badly hidden that I can hardly distinguish this with a bottle of pure ethanol from my work…. After the sour 2009 version, I will not try this beer again.

 507 characters

Photo of dmsohyea
2.97/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 1 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

375ml bottle to a snifter glass. 2011 Vintage.

A - terrible... pours out like sludge and completely flat. Murky and nasty looking. No head, no lace, just gross.

S - Smells good, nice bourbon and vanilla notes, some chocolate and a good burst of brown sugar.

T - tastes alright, nearly exactly as I described the nose. But does have this weird metallic taste somewhere in the mid palate. No hops, just all malty bourbon flavors. Alcohol is pretty well hidden for the 12%.

M - Ugh. Flat and oily. Not enjoyable at all. No carbonation whatsoever.

O - if it was carbonated it would be a nice beer, maybe a B+. Not so with this bottle.

 635 characters

Photo of joecast
2.98/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

The infamous 2009 angels share. Let this warm before opening and did manage a slight pop as the cork was removed.

The pour though I could tell was of a stll liquid. Minimal carbonation. The thinnest rim of bubbles around the edge of the glass and a light swirl of tan bubbles when swirling the glass. The beer itself is near enough to black in this dimly lit room. Interesting black sludge around the bottom edges of the bottle.

Insane aroma. Heavy doses of oak, vanilla and molasses. I mean room filling this smells so strong. Bourbon wafts through in the background. Amazing that the alcohol heat, which is easily noticeable, doesn't burn the hairs in my nose. Usually I don't like beers to have that much alcohol presence in the smell but this has quite a nice accompaniment to it.

Wow. Two sips and I'm feeling buzzed already. This is gonna be a struggle.
Quite a lot of bourbon character. Some oak and vanilla again but this time taking a back seat to the bourbon. Sweet molasses and heavy syrupy mouthfeel. Tough to judge mouthfeel actually cause I think carbonated it would be quite nice. As it is it's quite heavy and a bit sweet. Added to that, the alcohol makes it harder to get down.

Incredible beer but finishing is a struggle. Now I know why it says to share on the back label. Pity I'm not more of a spirits fan cause aside from that, the beer has a nice velvety, oatmeal body and smooth character. Now that I think of it, blend this with some mild oatmeal stout and it could be a winner. Give it five years and some carbonation and who knows.

 1,561 characters

Photo of parris
2.98/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.25

Opened a properly aged 2008 bottle - so not a fresh bottle and probably not a great representation of the beer. I wish there was some sort of "vintage" option for BA ratings.

Completely flat pour
Nose is molasses, musty, Brett
Taste is similar to nose but super muted and a tad oaky
Super thin mouthfeel, body has completely disappeared over the past 6 years.
Aged beers can be a bit of a gamble, I totally lost on this one.

 428 characters

Photo of alamode
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of jheezee
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of mscudder
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of Fhantom99
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of CityofBals
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of tedho21
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of Dirty25
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of Captainren
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of jophish17
3/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of gtn80
3.06/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a 2008 bottle into a chalice.

I hate to review a flat bottle, but this bottle was procured and stored properly, but absolutely no carbonation from the pour.

Aroma is tremendous. Dark, rich, malty sugars. Wine grapes and oak.

Beer is a deep brown with ruby highlights when held up to light.

Taste is overpowering without carbonation. Too thick and viscous. Dark fruits are there, molasses, touch of vanilla. Syrupy however, with a touch of an acrid, bitter bite on the finish.

Mouthfeel is horrendous. Viscous, thick, and heavy on the tongue.

Drinkability is horrid, just alcohol and thickness. Cloying.

I hope to get to review a better bottle at some point, as I can tell the flavors are there, but this bottle was not something I enjoyed.

Serving type: bottle

 780 characters

Photo of nrbw23
3.06/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A- Pours a deep brown color with no head at all. A handful of bubbles that's all.

S- Smell is toffee and caramel malts, oak, vanilla, and bourbon.

T- Big bourbon with just a touch of malts and a bit of oak. I really like the bourbon.

M- Full in body and no carbonation.

D- I enjoyed the big bourbon taste but it was incredibly hard to drink, as it was pretty much flat. Not sure if I got a bad bottle or what. I'll come back to this one some time but until then not really impressed with this one.

 505 characters

Photo of JayS2629
3.11/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A- Dark night black with very little head and what is there fades fast. No lace.

S Amazingly sweet smell. Dark fruit and licorice with woody, oak and bourbon tones in the forefront. Prunes, raisins, and vanilla oak. Dark fruit is prominant. Strong yeasty and hints of spice. Rich deep smells of dark fruit and spice. Deep whiffs of chocolate.

T- Forefront of chocolate with a touch of booze. Rum like taste with a hint of sour grapes. Lots of raisin. Fruity, dark plums, dark cherry, and grape. Mix this with some milk chocolate and a booze bite.

M- Thick, chewy, strong, boozy bite and creamy

D- A definite sipper. Creamy and sweet and boozy. Take it slow.

 662 characters

Photo of russwbeck
3.11/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Enjoyed side by side with Angels Share - Brandy with nhindian. Thanks to Douglasjamjak for this one!

A: As with the brandy version, 0 head. Murky black pour. Worried about the carbonation in this one as well.

S: Lots of oak and bourbon. Big bourbon smell really dominates. Perhaps a bit of coconut, as pointed out by nhindian.

T: As with the smell, the bourbon is at the forefront here. It's followed nicely by a big chocolately middle, and a dry coffee finish. A lot better than Brandy Angels Share, but still not top of the line.

MF: Still no carbonation. The lack of which extremely hurts this beer.

O: I don't hate this one like I hated Brandy Angels Share, but it still isn't very good. Way overpriced for what you get.

 730 characters

Photo of bbeane
3.11/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- Poured into an oversized snifter... a murky copper colored liquid pours producing basically no head. I was expecting this...

S- Very oaky smelling with a copious amount of bourbon presence

T- Bourbon is overwhelming vs the sweet malts of the flat beer. Some earthy wood flavor comes through as well

M- Medium body with no carbonation

O- Despite being flat, I managed to drink a fair amount of the bottle. All the great flavors are there, but the carbonation, or lack there of ruins this one. With the proper carbonation, I could see how this would be considered a solid beer


 589 characters

Photo of Gosox8787
3.12/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

Thanks to calinalu for this bottle I split with a friend. A corked and caged 12.7 oz. bottle poured into a wine glass. Served slightly chilled. 2009 Vintage.

Appearance: Deep dark brown in color. The lack of any head whatsoever really is disheartening. Some sediment floats toward the bottom of my glass.

Aroma: Nice bourbon, oak, vanilla, and some milk chocolate. A bit of heat here too but nicely balanced overall.

Taste: The rich bourbon and vanilla really stand out here, as does the heat from the alcohol. Much less balanced and more boozy in the taste. There is also some oak and chocolate in teh background of the bourbon, but nowhere near as pronounced.

Mouthfeel: This literally fell flat here for me. This bottle was clearly carbonated badly and the entire beer suffered for it. More like a spirit than a beer unfortunately.

Drinkability: The heat from the booze and the completely falt mouthfeel kill it for me here. I was barely able to finish my half of the bottle.

Overall, a really nice beer but the carbonation on mine really killed it. The aroma was amazing and the taste was really complex. The booze heat and flat mouthfeel took hold though and made it less enjoyable.

 1,193 characters

Photo of DrSpaceman
3.16/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into snifter, pours flat muddy brown. Before warm up, beer is strongly sulfurous. No smell, largely unpleasant. As beer comes up to temperature more dried fruit, oak, and vanilla come through in the smell. Belgian candi sugar, oxidation, and booze. Less refined than expected, especially at this price point. Feel is too thin for the alcohol content, definitely has some heat on the finish. Overall, I am underwhelmed with both Angel's Share and Deliverance Ale.

 469 characters

Photo of RustyDiamond
3.2/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Shared with bro-inlaw in two RR BA stems. Cork really popped out and said "Merry Christmas you shithead sinners!" Small amount of ooze but settled down, thank goodness. Dark brown with ruby highlights. Big head that settled down...beige colored. Deep aromas of vanilla and bourbon, with a slice of pecan praline pie. Truly intoxicating and exotic, to the point that I just could not pull my nose out. Big, malty flavor with some plums thrown in. A touch of hot caramel sweetness, vanilla, bourbon somehow nicely blended together. A noticeable carbonation poke on the tongue. Brightness felt in the mouthfeel, quite effervescent. Beige fizz ring stays on top of the glorious liquid throughout.

Really wish I had more than 12 ounces to share...truly special.

2009 Edition (375ml bottle)
Small pop of cork. Poured into RR BA glass...flat as a 10 year old girl. Dark brown like a cup of coffee. Good flavor, but very sad tasting. The beer is crying. C+

 951 characters

The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged from The Lost Abbey
Beer rating: 4.29 out of 5 with 1,900 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.