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Gift Of The Magi | The Lost Abbey

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
86
very good
307 Reviews
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Gift Of The MagiGift Of The Magi
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey
California, United States | website

Style: Bière de Garde

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
It seems that everyone knows the story of the Three Kings. Sent to follow the star in the sky each brought a gift for the baby they sought. One King brought Gold, the other Frankincense and the other Myrrh. Many breweries produce a Christmas Seasonal beer and this is our beer to celebrate the holiday season.

Added by BeerBeing on 06-10-2007

BEER STATS
Reviews:
307
Ratings:
720
Avg:
3.82
pDev:
17.54%
 
 
Wants:
58
Gots:
130
For Trade:
7
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 307 | Ratings: 720
Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml
Caged/Corked

Thanks to Bitterbill for this brew.

Poured into a chalice a dark golden orange/reddish color, very nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy off-white head, which leaves a nice thick blob in the middle of the glass and some sticky lacing around the edges. The nose is malty, some nice yeast strain, spicy, lemon/citrus, and slight caramel. The taste is malty/yeasty, very nice tangyness, nice touch of citrus, and some caramel. The finish is bitter/tangy/dry. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is a very tasty BSPA, highly recommended. Another awesome brew from The Lost Abbey. Thanks Bill.

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Photo of jamie2dope
4.3/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This bottle was obtained via a trade with Smokingmex. Many thanks for the opportunity. Poured in to my Stella Artois glass a cloudy (perhaps from the low temp) orange/red color, with a decent enough looking white head that quickly faded in to a lace crown. First thing that comes to mind with smell is light stone fruit such as Strawberry and Raspberry. There is also a light presence of funk in the smell, which I suspect is a result of the addition of some Brett. Taste is sort of surprising to me in that it is much more hoppy than I was expecting. The brett adds a slight tartness, along some dry grain and fruit in the beginning. Mouthfeel is medium. Drinkability is good, but the alcohol presence makes itself known, making it a brew that would be good to share with friends. Reminds me a bit of the Avant Garde ale in some ways. GOTM is indeed a gift from a brewery that I have been gaining respect for with each new tasting. Hopefully it will make it to Boston soon, like some of its counterparts such as Serpent's Stout, Carnevale, and Devotion. More than worth seeking out. Cheers

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.32/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a review of the bottle although I enjoyed the tap version first and found it mellower and without the wild yeast 'funk' that is developing in the bottle. It will be interesting to see what new dimensions are added as this one ages.

Pours a golden orange with a nice 2 fingers of white foam that melts rather quickly to almost nothing. Sort of typical for a brew with such a high ABV.

The first thing that hit me in the aroma was apricots...fresh, smooth, and sweet apricots with a bit of citrus ting and brightness as you inhale. Only a slight bit of caramel and Belgium yeast aromas make themselves known if you go looking for them.

The taste is again apricots with some sweet Belgium candy sugars and lots of hops at the end along with lots of alcohol.

Mouthfeel is creamy and rich...I didn't find it thin at all. Again, lots of candied sugars to keep it creamy.

Right now, the bottled version is a little to hot to be completely enjoyed like the tap version was at the Brewery. Still a wonderful take on a Belgium style and I am really looking forward to age mellowing this just a little.
It's a pleasure now.
It will be a dessert in another year.

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Photo of vfgccp
4.32/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2012 bottle opened Jan 2014.

A - Deep nectarine orange / brown body. Creamy off-white head settles quickly with ok lace.

S - Unique nose; apricot, rhubarbe, cherry twisters, fresh oregano, dandilion flowers.

T - Herbal spiciness, watermelon rind, rose water, raw nutmeg, waxy bitter greens.

M - Medium frame with a really nice spice that lightens the body. Silky smooth finish.

O - Bright, herbal, and spicy. An off-beat, well executed beer.

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Photo of Deuane
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Tayner for a bottle of this! I shared the love with a few friends.

A-Hazy, deep copper with a medium off-white head that left lovely lacing throughout.

S-Popping earthy, musty aromas. Malt sweetness comes through with a nice sourness in the background.

T-Hops in the forefront and then the funk kicks in! Hops, malt, funk, dark fruit, earthiness...wow, this is complex!

M-Medium body with a pleasant creamy texture. Nice carbonation and with all that complexity it only adds to the excitment in your mouth!

D-This is some interesting stuff! My first Bier de Garde / IPA hybrid. Very cool of the Lost Abbey folks...a most interesting brew, very tasty.

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Photo of Blakaeris
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours opaque red-brown with a thick rocky head that leaves globs of sticky lacing.

Aroma is sweet caramel malt and yeasty spices. Generous citrus presence - notably orange and apricot. A touch of earthy orange peel bitterness.

Taste is similar to the nose. Malty and sweet up front with a Belgian candy sugar character and a floral quality. Plenty of citrus and dark fruit flavors. Orange, apricot, and pineapple along with subtle plum and date. Musty and yeasty. Finishes with an earthy bitterness and a mild alcohol warmth.

Mouthfeel is medium full, a bit chewy.

Overall a very interesting and fruity brew. Spices bring complexity behind the general candied fruit sweetness.

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Photo of Nerudamann
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass.

Look – ruby amber in color, hazy, with thick carbonation and about three and a half fingers’ worth of thick khaki-colored foam that dissipates somewhat quickly. Good head retention throughout the tasting.

Smell – this one smells of spices and clove. Mostly malty, but maybe with a touch more of hops.

Taste – definitely tastes of spices and clove, lots of clove. The bottle conditioning with Brettanomyces must be what gives it its unique taste. Hops are present too, but mostly in their feel and not the taste. Kick comes the tasting around the middle, but the actual bitterness hits toward the finish. The high abv is also noticeable, but also toward the finish.

Mouthfeel – very well balanced overall, not leaning more toward the watery side or toward the creamy side.

Overall – very good brew! Interesting label, interesting (and pleasant) taste, just good all around.

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Photo of portia99
4.35/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle (2008 release) poured into a Lost Abbey stemmed glass.

A - An absolutely brutally difficult to remove cork finally gave up and released a nice pop of carbonation. Pours a crystal clear deep amber color that trends towards orange on the color palate. A finger of foam cap, pale tan in color sits on top of the beer for a minute or so and falls to a thick skim coat with mild lacing on the glass. Really good looking beer.

S - Very spicy Belgian yeast aromas here mixed in with Brett-y funk. Cloves, black pepper, tropical oranges, mild caramel, earthy brett has taken hold of this and added a really great extra layer to the aroma.

T - Oh yeah...really Brett-y flavors too...earthy funk up front, a bit of barnyard (especially noticeable on the exhale), spicy too - black peppery and clovey. Hints of sweet malt, lower level but noticeable hop bitterness.

M - Thinnish medium body with a mid-level carbonation too. Funky and earthy from start to finish, spicy, a bit of booze. Brett has really done its job here...really taken hold nicely.

O - I'm gonna stop short of calling this truly comparable to Boulevard's Saison Brett...but it is the first thing I can think of to compare this to. Bought a couple of these bottles on clearance and glad I did. I remember this beer being decent when fresh, but 4 years of age have helped this tremendously. This is really brett-y in a very good way. Alcohol is noticeable at 10%, but actually kept in check pretty well. Gonna have to go back to the store I got these and hope they still have a couple more of these left.

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Photo of boomer31
4.35/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Traded for this last year for occasions just like tonight...opening presents with my wife! 2009 bottle

A - Pours a beautiful burnt orange with a thick light tan, near white, head. The head forms a thin layer as I drink it down...reminds me of the sour-ish beer in my carboy right now.

S - There's a nice earthy hop nose that blends well with the brett. Some spice though I can't put my finger on it. Very pleasant.

T - Nice malt up front, followed by a spice then horsey brett in the back. The brett really sticks around but not overwhelming. Again the spice is apparent but blends nicely with the almost tart brett.

M - Actually very rich and full bodied. Nice high carb, the tartness lingers very nicely.

D - At 10% this is a sipper but very easy to drink. A nice beer that has great flavors that blend very nicely.

Overall I'm a little surprised at how this beer has been rated overall. Very drinkable, spicy and bretty.

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Photo of advm1
4.37/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It was the day after Christmas and the pub menu said "gold, frankincense and myrrh" so I gave it a try.

Poured out a deep amber color with a tan two finger head that quickly receded to almost nothing into a 12oz tulip. Lacing slid down the glass with each sip but hung around till almost the last drop. The aroma coming from this beer hit me before I even picked up the glass. It was like a cornucopia of fruits. I could smell cherries, apples, raisins or prunes and it seems they didn't even try hiding the scent of alcohol, which I didn't mind at all after I took a sip. The taste reminded me almost of wine with lots of alcohol undertones. Again, cherries and apples were very present. Mouthfeel was a bit oily on the lips but finished clean. Not too easy to drink due to the alcohol being so noticeable. I wouldn't be able to handle more than one or two of these before calling it quits. A great ale indeed.

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Photo of ahalloin
4.37/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750ml corked bottle into a large tulip glass. When I opened the bottle initially, there was virtually no hiss, so I am wondering about the carbonation. The fluid is a cloudy melted caramel color. At first no head formed but as if in a delayed reaction a swath of bubbles formed at mid fluid level and shot to the surface creating a small off white head that now resides as a fine lace atop the drink.

The smeel is of spice, green apple, slight funkiness and somewhat vinous. It reminds me of a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc aroma with tinges of green grapes and minty wine yeast.

The first sip reveals what I had suspected about the carbonation: very little, but this beer doesn't need it. The beer itself drinks like a fine wine, but the slight carbonation reminds you that it is beer. The flavors of the beer morph in my mouth. First I get a sense of spiced green apple with a low malty background which gives way to a "center-stage" brett funkiness. The finish reveals a nice dry-hop bitterness.

Excellent brew!

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Photo of hopdog
4.42/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked bottle.

Poured a medium amberish / golden color with a huge sized off white head. Subsequent pours yielded a smaller, yet average head. Aromas of fruitiness, some spices, citrus, lightly earthy, and pine. Tastes of fruitiness, caramel, toffee, light earth, and light spices. Medium sweet.

Notes from 12/25/07 (yes, appropriate date to pop this one).

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.42/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy orange-ish color to light brown color with a light tan head. In the aroma, spicy and a dry, tart white grape fruitiness. In the taste, dry cinnamon, somewhat fruity, especially tart, white grapes. A spicy bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry cinnamon and small tart flavors in the aftertaste. Nice spice and nice tartness, in good collaboration with each other. Hides the alcohol, quite nice for the season.

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Photo of searsclone
4.43/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

a fresh bottle into a globe glass

pours a hazy copper color with a cloud like tan head that lasted through 2 or 3 sips

smell is huge! earth, horse blanket (brett?), chocolate, roasted malt, and vanilla cream

taste is spice, clove, roasted malt, alcohol and vanilla. <I'm not exactly sure what "Brett" tastes like,so the clove and spice that I'm getting might be that>

mouth is crispy then creamy and chewy with a thick finish

overall, very smooth and really sweet. easy to drink, alcohol is well hidden. I'm new to Brett beers, but I think this will be even better with some age. I think I'll look for another bottle and cellar it for a while to see what happens, but, it is really good fresh too.

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Photo of brentk56
4.47/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(2007 bottling - tasted Dec 2008)

Appearance: Pours a cloudy peach nectar color with a reasonably fluffy head (foam burst forth from the bottle after the initial pour); it wasn't as impressive as I thought it was going to be, but there was decent retention and plenty of lace

Smell: This is one unusual aroma and I am limited in my ability to capture the elements as I haven't smelled frankincense and myrrh in a while (if ever); in any event, there is stone fruit (nectarines and apricots), bitter orange peel, peppery spices and a developing sour funk; boozy, as well

Taste: Opens with a blend of the fruits and the spices and moves in a funky direction by mid-palate, with plenty of pithy bitterness, as well; after the swallow, there is a depth of flavor that is part fruit, part funk, part balsa wood, and ultimately quite dry; the herbaciousness in the aftertaste is slightly medicinal but again, defies my vocabulary

Mouthfeel: Moderate to full body, slightly creamy, with medium to high carbonation; a bit of warmth in the gullet from the alcohol

Drinkability: Looking over the reviews of others, I wonder whether this is not a beer that needs a year, or more of age; I recall Tomme Arthur posting that the Brett takes a while to ferment in the bottle and the lack of carbonation others are experiencing was not an issue in my aged bottle; in any event, to my palate, this was one of the top offerings from Lost Abbey

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Photo of corby112
4.47/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes:

Pours a very dark ruby/golden amber color that is almost completely opaque except for slight mahogany edges when held to a light source and a one finger yellowish tan head. Decent retention with chunks of lacing left behind.

Slightly tart earthy oak aroma with hints of wood, spice, vanilla and crisp light fruit.

Nice sour/tart flavor that is complimented by an earthy oak presence and a touch of vanilla. There is a good balance of this flavor as well as some peppery spice and dark fruit notes. Hints of cherry, raisin and plum. Slightly funky with a bit of caramel and subtle hops. An excellent balance of sweet, malty and tart with a slightly dry finish. Very good.

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Photo of nickfl
4.47/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with one and a half fingers of white foam on top of a hazy, copper brown body. The foam settles at a moderate pace and leaves nice lace.

S - Bready malt with tropical fruit and lots of spicy yeast character.

T - Thick malt up front with lots of musty pineapple and mango. Some peppery notes in the middle with clove, anise, coriander, and banana. Finishes with notes of vanilla, pound cake, pepper, and more mango.

M - A thick, chewy body, high carbonation, and a balanced finish.

D - Really nicely done, the malty, farmhouse ale base beer is taken to new heights by a brilliant application of funk and fruit from the Brett. I particularly like how vanilla and cake flavors mix with mango and pepper in the finish to leave a dessert like impression that is sweet and thick without even coming close to becoming cloying.

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Photo of ChazMania
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Corked and caged.
A) Interesting pour, very effervescent.

S) Aroma is light and sort of, sort of, well I can't pinpoint it. A little sweet and a little like soil.

T) The first sip was so tasty! Very well balanced and complex. There is alot of hints of fruit but nothing overly sweet, some orange, apricot and raisin. After a few minutes, I looked over at the bottle and it was foaming up with the yeasts. I took my finger and scooped up foamy yeast...not bad! The second pour then became a little more cloudy and more of the earthy tones are coming forward.

M) Very complex. Like a Belgian stong, but not. Like an Abbey Dubbel, but not. Like an IPA, but not.

D). So delicious! Lost Abbey never dissapoints. I love the complexity of all their beers I have sampled and I'm excited to be a patron saint this year!

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Photo of rye726
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is more of a Biere de Garde than a Belgian Pale, so keep that in mind. It pours a rich woody brown with a thin tan head. The nose has sweet malts, spicy yeasts and a subtle Brett character. Taste has citrus fruits, herbs, spices, and a bit of funk. Medium to full body flows over the palate.

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Photo of benclimbs
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours redish brown opaque in a tulip glass with a one finger head that sticks around a while and lacing throughout the glass even after 20 minutes.

Smell is almost like a sour ale - lots of tart cherries/indistinct ripe fruit on the nose, very yeasty and fresh smelling...spices in there too...an bit of unsweetened chocolate as well.

Taste is a delicious mix of peppery syrah-like spiceness....followed by fig newtons, caramel malts and an incredible depth...the finish lasts forever, the mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.

In terms of drinkability, this is one of the nicest 10+ beers i've ever had.

what an incredible beer, damn!

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Photo of msmezher
4.52/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Note: Scores are for my tasting on-tap, but I will include notes on the beer in bottle form as well.

My first smell of Gift of the Magi was of spices, caramel malts, and a tart, sour, lactic aroma. In terms of taste Gift of the Magi matched its smell rather nicely, a medium-light bodied beer with a beautiful sour feel that tasted of cherries, dried fruit, and spices. I almost regretted swallowing this beer, it felt so good in my mouth. I'd give the goblet of this I had on tap a solid 4.5 rating, I really enjoyed it on its own and missed it when it was gone.

I later had Gift of the Magi poured from a bottle and was a little disappointed. I'm not certain if it was past expiration, but the tartness and sourness were almost unnoticeable. The beer still felt high quality, but it was the sourness and finish that were so apparent from the keg that I loved the first time I tasted it that gave it its high ranking. In bottle I would give Gift of the Magi around a 3.75, overall quite good, but lacking the spark I first felt. Again, I cannot be certain of the beer's age/expiration, as the bottle has probably been melted down and made into new bottles by now, so if it was past due sue me.

I <3 Lost Abbey.

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Photo of itsromy
4.55/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

First off... Happy St. Patty's day!!

Awesome beer. Unfortunately, poured into a plastic cup at Churchill's in San Marcos, CA. Getting past that was easy due to the fact that beer smelled oh so good. The look of it was beautiful; a dark chocolate/nut brown color with about a half inch of head in the cup. Very very tasty... Hints of citrus, fruits, and spices. I would be able to drink a couple of these without feeling to full or bloated....

Cheers to Lost Abbey!

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Photo of mcallister
4.55/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Solid looking with nice depth of color. A copper ruby color with a thin yet full and long lasting. So whispy and leaving chunky white lacing behind.

Wonderful nose. Light Spice with big floral compoents. Violet and earth. Somewhat barny. Some yesty notes and a caramel type twist. Candi sugar and clove.

Man this is a damn tasty treat....wow. So thick and creamy with huge caramel bursts, banana, clove and flowery finishings. A slight bitterness on the finish and minimal residual sugar. Again light spices with more of a "teroir" type feel that only Lost Abbey could accomplish. Can't get over the creamy thick caramel middle. Damn this is fine. There is a bit of alcohol in the chest but this is so tasty it gets a pass.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.55/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Interesting how split people seem to be about this brew. Personally, I think this beer is fantastic and a bit different. Pours a hazy orange/amber. Smells sweet with some spicebox, and a bit hot, and with some fruity esters, but fairly simple. The taste is far more complex. Honeyed and long in the mouth with some light spice, some bright but subdued fruit, and a long bitter herbal fruitiness that is just wonderful and nicely balances the sweetness on the front end. Very smooth and delicious, and a nice winter treat.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.57/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

(Served in a snifter)

A- This beer pours a golden caramel-brown body with a dense thick light tan head of foam that last and lasts. There is a good carbonation of tiny bubbles that supports the head.

S- This beer has a slightly sweet musty smell that starts as caramel that grows as the beer warms but melds into a bit more of a pineapple aroma with a note of cardamom. It finishes with a nice pine needle hop note that increases in spiciness as the beer warms.

T- This beer has a smooth sweet note that has some caramel qualities to it but is overtaken by a toasted malt flavor. There is a softer earthy flavor that has a minty quality to it along with some peppercorn hints and a bretti tartness. The finish of this beer is a soft piney hop flavor that lingers just a bit.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a full texture on the tongue. There is no alcohol heat noticed until the last sip.

D- This is how spiced winter beers should be. Good solid beer with some mysterious spice qualities that can't be teased apart. All the flavors work well together complimenting each other. They managed to put spice and malt and hops together and it works. I don't know if they used Frankincense and Myrrh but whatever it is its great.

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Gift Of The Magi from The Lost Abbey
86 out of 100 based on 307 ratings.
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