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

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The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-AgedThe Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey
California, United States
lostabbey.com

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

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,892
Reviews:
701
Avg:
4.24
pDev:
11.08%
 
 
Wants:
606
Gots:
582
For Trade:
41
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,892 |  Reviews: 701
Photo of axeman9182
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a snifter at the Cloverleaf Tavern.

Bourbon Barrel Angel's Share pours a very deep mahogany, with a faint bit of caramel foam crowning the beer. The nose is absolutely heavenly. There's tons of caramelized brown sugar to form the base, and it's augmented by vanilla and oak. Bourbon is a subtle addition to the picture. The flavor profile is a little bit more rough. There's still some lightly burnt sugar, vanilla, and wood, but the bourbon presence is more brassy and harsh. Here it's the center of attention, with everything else playing more of a supporting role. The body is full and rich, but the carbonation is barely there. I like a more restrained carbonation for a malt forward beer, but this is a bit low even for me, and leaves the beer feeling flat. Bourbon Barrel Angel's Share is a decent to good beer right now, but I think it could use a little bit of time to really hit its stride.

 917 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a very dark brown with a whisp of an off-white head. Fair head retention.

S: Elegant full bourbon nose. Vanilla central, wood, a joy to smell.

T: A rather roasty, dark chocolate flavours meets me initially. The bourbon comes in and smooths it out, but this is almost stout like at times. Not sure if there's less residual sugar than Brandy Angel's Share but it certainly tastes like it. A good flavour, but not as strikingly delicious as the Brandy version for me.

M: Full-bodied, thick, nice warming alcohol in the finish. Light carbonation.

D: I've only had tasters in the past and have wanted to have a full pour of this. It's weird to have a beer on-tap that's much cheaper than in the bottle. This is good, but for Angel's Share it looks like brandy is the way to go, my palate is clearly gravitating towards the brandy barrel aged beers, but I certainly enjoyed this.

 912 characters

Photo of st9647v3
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Sigmund
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cask conditioned at the Great British Beer Festival 2008, gravity dispense. Nearly black colour (very dark reddish brown). Intense and lovely aroma of various subtropical woods, winey notes. The mouthfeel has lots of alcoholic warmth as expected. The flavour has notes of oak and fortified wine. Very good.

 306 characters

Photo of grub
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Viggo shared this rare treat. thanks eric!

12.7oz bottle, corked and caged. bottle label says 12.5% abv.

cork comes out with a hefty pop. poured fairly gently it still had a pretty hearty dense tan head. the body is a nice deep red-brown. the head dropped fairly quick and left a few spots of lace behind.

aroma is great. light alcohol. vanilla. oak and bourbon. lots of fruit too - date, fig, raisin, dried cranberry and cherry. biscuit and multi-grain bread. dark chocolate. hint of coffee.

taste is great. alcohol. bourbon. oak. light vanilla. dark chocolate. toasted multi-grain bread. biscuit. lots of dark fruit - date, raisin, fig, currants, dried cranberries and cherries. just a hint of coffee. alcohol is a bit warm actually.

mouthfeel is nice. medium body. high carbonation is a little too much for me and takes away from the beer overall.

drinkability is pretty good, but could be better. the alcohol warmth and high carbonation really take away from it overall. it gets better once it's had some time for the carbonation to dissipate. to me this one just doesn't quite have the depth and fullness that the original brandy barrel aged version had.

 1,165 characters

Photo of mltobin
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

375 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance is dark brown with just a couple specks of foam. The Lost Abbey has an aroma of vanilla, bourbon, some oak. Upon sipping, I taste raisins, alcohol, malt & some butterscotch. For the barrel aging and other characteristics of this beer, it is well balanced, the end has some warm booze. A very good beer to cap your evening.

 371 characters

Photo of Retail1LO
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is an update. Original tasting was done of a bullshit flat bottle. I had a change to get a 32 oz. growler of this, and it's completely different. It's amazing what some carbonation can do to change a beer. I don't have much experience with American Strong Ales to know if this tastes like most, but to me, this is more stoutish. Poured from a 32 oz. growler into a pint glass. Pours jet black with a one-finger deep crown. The smell is up there with the best I've ever smelled. Rich bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, and even some clove. The taste is right up there with the nose. So rich and lucious. The mouthfeel is allstar quality. Very smooth and creamy. Overall, this is a stellar beer. I wish they'd get their shit together and learn how to bottle this.

Poured from a small corked bottle into 5 oz. snifter.

a 2
s 4
t 3
m 3
o 2.5

Well, this started off poorly. Uncaged the beer and slowly coerced the cork out of the neck of the bottle, without a single sound. No pop, no formation of carbonation at the top of the beer. Flat as a pancake. Poured without any head whatsoever. I hate to label, but "Flat Abbey" is appropriate. The nose is real boozy. Wreaks of bourbon. However, it has a ton of subtleties to it including chocolate, vanilla, and bourbon. The taste follows the nose nearly to a T, so I won't bother to repeat. The mouthfeel is void of any carbonation whatsoever. What's strange about this, is it has the mouthfeel of a stout...and exactly the way I like my stouts. If this WERE a stout, I'd likely grade this higher in the mouthfeel and appearance departments. I can see this needing age behind it...but why age a flat beer? This is so boozy, without everything playing out properly, I don't see myself battling the entire beer. Likely a drainpour.

 1,773 characters

Photo of sentomaster
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bottle poured into DFH goblet

A- very disappointing. An ever so faint pop from the cork, not a good sign. Pour is a deep ruddy, black, thick, and murky color with almost no carbonation.

S- monster whiff of grapey, sherry-like alcohol. if you really look for it, a touch of bourbon and oak, but it has really faded over time. Gooey, fudgy caramel; rum soaked dark cherries.

T&M- peppery alcohol is still strong. Chocolate cake like consistency. Shockingly, this is actually carbed up pretty decently- considering the alternative of zero bubbles which I've gotten with this beer before. Oh so slight...but it is there, and the very, very fine carbonation actually manages to lend to the rich and decadent mouthfeel; still it needs a step up. it gets even better as it warms. Dark fruits really present themselves and start to shine and flex next to the huge alcohol notes. While the spicy alcohol is big, it's really not at all overwhelming at this point. Vanilla and bourbon also vie for the stage as it warms. Rum soaked dark cherries appear again this time covered in dark chocolate.

O- rich and decadent is how I would describe this, but it's just missing an extra dimension that would send this beer into the stratosphere. I had this on tap and it was amazing, this doesn't quite measure up.

 1,303 characters

Photo of sarahrules
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Where to begin...
The aroma hits you in the face the second you pop the cork. It is thick and viscous with an amazingly smooth mouth feel. The complexity of flavor is unlike any other beer I've had lately. So much depth and many layers. Lots of dried strawberry in the nose and an unusual likeness to tiramisu. An ever changing flavor explosion. Very unique and exciting beer. I found myself sipping on it just to relish the layers of flavor.

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Photo of andrewinski1
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another generous beer from nerd. Thanks again! 2010. Poured into a tulip. Nice pitch black body with a small mocha colored head from an aggressive pour. Decent. Nothing special though. Looks very viscous coming out of the bottle.

The aroma is strong of sweet chocolate and vanilla. There is a good wood coming from the smell as well.

The taste is very sweet. The vanilla and chocolate flavors dominate. There is a slightly hot finish of booze and maybe some bourbon taste. This is a nice sipper for a cold night or dessert.

The mouthfeel is very soft, but not flat by any means. This is a very thick beer, appropriately so. I enjoy this beer from time to time, though it is a bit pricey.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

For this Thanksgiving I am giving thanks by having this beer. Really beutiful deep ruby brown hugh, but still. I mean flat. The aroma is saturated with vanilla, oak, bourbon, and notes of raisins and dry cherries. The flavor of this beer is unreal. Tons of sweet malts, the aformentioned vanilla, bourbon and oak. Some dry fruit flavors make apperances. I detect faint chocolate notes. A hint of heat and alcohol on the back end, but less than I would have though with how still it is. Smooth and slick mouthfeel. I'd say this is one hell of a sipper.

 551 characters

Photo of ChadQuest
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well there is some carbination here in this bottle, not alot but enough to make an enjoyable experience and leave a nice ring around the edges of the glass over the thin oil that is angle's share. man this is like oil butter in the glass and in the mouth. total sipping beer, drinks very much like a wine. Aroma is much better in this bourbon version compared to the Brandy, it is just a touch mellower but alot less bacterial smelling, and also tasting, overall. the aroma and flavors come out in a nice dark fruit and raison that in a more subtle way reminds me of a red wine, with a nice very pleasent bourbon alcohol presence with its vanilla componant. Great beer to sip on when you have some time to relax, don't rush this one, and don't distract yourself from it.

 770 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Darkest brown, with ruby edges, under a fuzzy, toasted tan head.

Sweet, smokey bourbon hits the nose first, with alcohol tagging along, ...oak, vanilla, and a hint of cherry comes behind....matched by caramel and cocoa...deep and mighty.

big buzz on the tongue, thick, slick, and whiskey-ish galore....chocolate meets rich brandy-ish favors, right up next to the bourbon feel. Long, finish, lushly textured, utterly luxuruious. Hoppy bitter smack on the tongue.

lovely stuff, satisfies my bourbon-loving sweet tooth (tongue?), though it feels like an imperial stout.

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Photo of Boilerup
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of claspada
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 Version shared with HimerMan. Pours with a russet brown/red color with slight haze. Above average carbonation (which was surprising given Lost Abbey's issues) that settles quite rapidly because of the high ABV/Barrel-aging, it slowly blankets the beer. Solid lacing remains as the foam subsides.

Aromas begin with irresistible dark heavily caramelized malts, cotton-candy sweetness and sweet alcohols. As it warms you get lots of dried fruits highlighted by currants, plumbs, dates, prunes, grapes, raisins and apples. No hops which is expected.

The tastes begin more balanced with sweet caramel malts, fruits and light sweet bourbon. As it warms you get a little more of the oakiness and the woody tannins. The bourbon flavor and oak character balance with the delicate sweetness more in the taste than in the aroma.

The mouthfeel is rich and rounded up front without too much thickness or heaviness. Tannins/barrel imparted flavors helps to dry out the beer going into the finish. Carbonation is medium which was a huge treat given the reputation of this beer and helps to make the flavors lighter and less heavy on the palate.

Overall I really enjoyed this beer and was extremely pleased we got a bottle that had some carbonation. Flavors are big and bold so I appreciate the small bottle offering. It is obvious that this beer was crafted very delicately and aged to the exact right time the brewer wanted. Flavors are huge but balanced between the dark caramelized malts and big bourbon boldness. I enjoyed this very much and will hopefully have it again down the road. Recommended, but a a crap-shoot unfortunately as many bottles don't have the carbonation I was lucky enough to receive.

 1,704 characters

Photo of SuperMario
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of stevoj
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Barley wine bottle share on 1/31. Very smooth, tasty stuff. Pours out a nice mahogany, , lots of sweetness, brown sugar, molasses. Silky, syrupy mouth feel, tons of warmth. deserving of the (mostly) high praise.

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Photo of rtepiak
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

would say that this is the quintessential response to a belgian quad in the american sense. quite the beer yet coined with the very american concept of bourbon barrel aging to express beer dynamics instead of unitizing a unique yeast culture to create such a high abv and palate range.

a drinking buddy recommended that i have this on tap in that the bourbon does not muddle the subtleties.

with that said this beer has two layers. the primary and actually quite interesting undertones of fruit, both autumn harvested and preserves. fig, cherry jam, and pear. that is fused and in wood and coated in vanilla and bourbon. great pour. quad look. overall a great beer and one to be had if you're into these elements. but this beer i think is good but at the same time safe.

in the U.S. no one knock a good bourbon case beer. i could just see this becoming dated as a style eventually. but america likes there beer to be manly so it makes beer big. i just think that this is getting typographically standardize in the end and we're disregarding the cultivation of the yeast and ingredient relationship. but then again... we have standardized yeast haven't we.

 1,161 characters

Photo of breadwinner
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Boozy nose at first straight off the tap, but it really evolved nicely into a depth of dark fruit, leather, figs, a really pleasing richness. Palate is a touch syrupy, a touch sweet, a touch boozy, probably a little much overall, but solid in a digestif sort of way. Warming booze burn on the finish. Wonder what the brandy barrel does to this...

 346 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 Vintage.

A - Very dark murky brown colour with a thin layer of dirty taupe head.

S - Sweet bourbon, vanilla and oak. Caramel, raisin, toffee.

T - Barrel at first: bourbon, charred oak and vanilla with a good sweetness. Toffee, caramel, brown sugar, molasses.

M - Medium to full body. Creamy. Light.

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Photo of CoreyC
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - dark leather, nice head
S - oak, bourbon, dark fruit, even some chocolate
T - bourbon forward, dark fruit
M - nice, some thickness
O - good BBA beer, bourbon a bit too dominate to let more other flavor come through, though. I think aging a bit might have made this even better.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My earlier review was deleted(host error) so here goes my redo from notes: Served chilled in a goblet (10oz) at the Drafting room. Thanks to tb69.

A - A turbid dark walnut brown, w/ no head at all. The ale appears like iced coffee except thicker - still opaque appearance

S - The nose has very boozy impact w/ lots of vanilla and an almost custard-like aroma w/ mild toffee and woody nutty vanilla scent w/ an accent of molasses

M - The feel has very mild carbonation as expected from the appearance. The texture is viscous and sweet/syrupy w/ a mild toasted accent. There is mild astringent and alcohol tannic notes from the wood and finishes w/ a mild residually dark malt sweet note

T - The tastes starts with dark brown sugar and caramel with a subtle dry dark tobacco note and dark toast crust w/ creamy and sugary malts. The flavor is warming w/ dry nut and vanilla from the oak w/ alcohol high in the flavor profile. The taste has a toffee/cinnamon accent w/ mild butter notes and toasted nuts w/ light pepper from the hops. The taste has burnt caramel lasting into the finish w/ a very dry grain accent and prominent alcohol flavor as it nears cellar temp.

D - Definitely not a beer I consider highly drinkable, but considering the style it is for me. I consider it great since it is so complex but really one is plenty as it comes off sweet from such low carbonation and the 12% is apparent w/ a tannic bourbon hint. I am glad I tried this and recommend it if you see it -don't hesitate!

 1,501 characters

Photo of alexgrahamlv
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown to almost black. No head at all. Nice lacing on the glass. The aromas are intense as I whiff the vanilla upfront, also licorice, brown sugar and molasses. The taste is powerful! I can definitely taste the vanilla and oak upfront. Strong alcohol taste that lingers in the finish. Some residual sweetness. The body is a little thin and I think the finish is a little too alcoholic that lasts way too long. Overall good beer not necessarily a favorite though.

 478 characters

Photo of boomer31
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

My first review in too long...time to get back to it. First I must premise this review with a disclaimer, I've been wanting to try this beer since I became a BA 2 years ago, thanks mikesgroove!!!

A: a little pop after the cork came out, more than what I expected to hear from prior reviews but less than I wanted. Deep mahogany color with no head

S: sweet bourbon and dark fruits. Sweeter smell than anticipated

T: similar to the smell, sweet bourbon and dark fruits. Caramel malts and almost no alcohol burn for a 12%+ ABV. Really nice overall, one of the better BA beers I've had even with no carbonation this was a great one to taste.

M: Smooth and almost viscous as it warms. The small amount of carbonation does not hinder the taste one bit...dare I say that it works?!?

D: at 12%+ this works very well for a sipper after dinner. The sweetness is enhanced as it warms but an overall ve3ry nice beer.

Very happy to try this beer. One of the better barrel aged beers I've had and did not disappoint after a couple years of waiting. Definately looking to score a few more of these.

 1,089 characters

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The Angel's Share - Bourbon Barrel-Aged from The Lost Abbey
4.24 out of 5 based on 1,892 ratings.
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