Inferno Ale | The Lost Abbey

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Inferno AleInferno Ale

Brewed by:
The Lost Abbey
California, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Corruption, Greed and Lust, they’re all represented on he books today. Tomorrow they’ll be stringing Gluttony, Desire and Sloth. Go ahead, tell yourself you’re better than all of them. But you can’t. Hell can be funny like that. Down here it’s all just sin. Everyone here is screwed just like you. They don’t care who you sliced, diced or cheated. No one is escaping this heinous place.

Your roommate is an axe murderer. Eerily, he’s not threatening. How can he be? The Fallen Angel owns your body, mind and soul. As such, no one can take your life. It’s already been taken. Or was it given? Neither matters. Did you seriously think you were living a virtuous life? At least Satan serves beer in Hell. He brews it himself right there in that flame stoked cauldron. Rumor has it the beer is straw yellow, bone dry and simply labeled Inferno.

Added by scottoale on 05-04-2008

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Reviews: 349 | Ratings: 781
Photo of jdhilt
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a five+ finger thick, white head that fades very slowly leaving a good lace. Cloudy light amber color, ton of yeast left in bottle. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is tart fruit, flavor is sweet and tart fruit, smooth. Higher ABV is hidden. $10.99 for a 750ml bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Uncorks with a sound like a gunshot, surprising, as up until the point at which it uncorked it was difficult to pry out.

Pours a pale golden colour, with a slight haze from the voluminous sediment in the bottom of the bottle. I poured off the top of this, but still some managed to be agitated enough to enter the glass. Head is a crackling mess of white, voluminous and exciting. Lace is excellent as this crackles down. Body is extremely slippery and fluid, although it looks like it has a bit of heft to it. Overall, it's a great looking beer.

Nose is crisp and dry, with hints of crackling champagne yeast and a dry sweetness like apple cider. Some spicier Belgian yeast notes come through, giving a slight phenol and pepper note to the mix. Very distinguished, if extremely dry.

Taste is smoother than I expected, with more pepper notes on the back. On the front we get a surprising sweetness from the apple characters, matched with a cutting segment of Belgian yeast phenols. The spicy bite on the back is pleasant enough to cleanse the palate, but never gets too brash or astringent.

Feel is great. Incredibly smooth, but staying light throughout.

This was a very nice beer, and a great Belgian-from-a-non-Belgian. This had style and sophistication far above its genesis. Good work.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.99/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Healthy loud aubile pop upon uncorking. A straw pour exit sits a bit more with an orange tint in the vessel. A glass consuming display of dirty white foam dominantes the vessel to near capacity taking its leisure to retreat, a sure sign of a wild yeast strain. Sloppy bubble bath smudges of lace adhore the glass wit a strong sense of micro-effervesce within.

S: Aroma of fresh greenery is light, small touch of peppery dry pear and dry straw.

T: Flavor of straw, bright tart oranges and sweet malt. Musky nature, fresh green hops with a hint of pepppery caramel on the trail end. A light mention of grapefruit, bready yeastiness and a dryn finish rounds things out.

M: Malty mouthful, good depth and feel as well resistance on the tongue. A nice carbonation presence.

O: Overall inferno? this is heavenly with a sweetly well balanced flavor that flows together oh so smoothly from start to finish. A lot of subtle notes bring out the complexity with a well toned nature.

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Photo of akorsak
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to throwitallaway for this 750 mL corked and caged bottle.

A: The ale is a straw yellow color , augmented with a few drops of orange food coloring. The orange-yellow combination yields a mild haze that hangs in the glass, partially obscuring the objects on the other side of the glass.

S: The nose is yeasty with a peppery flair. Pear and apple aromas come from the yeast. The overall scent is very sweet but from the yeast and not sugar additions.

T: The ale is very fruity, deliciously so. Berries and apples drive the initial sip with a pleasing kick. Peppery heat soon follows, acting as a palate-cleanser of sorts. After the fruitiness, a distinct doughiness follows, bready like a cookie dough, very sugary. Boozy strength is evident throughout. The combination of flavors makes this the bastard offspring of d'Achouffe's Gnomette and Duvel.

M: The mouthfeel is Belgian, devilishly good with a wicked finish that hits you about 5 minutes after your first glass. The yeast-driven berry flavors seal the deal with their sweetness.

D: The ale is only 8.5%? It feels like an 11% behemoth at the midpoint. I was looking forward to this beer but walk away underwhelmed (and with a B+ rating, that is sayin' something).

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought this bottle from South Bay Drugs & Liquor for US$10. Thanks Joey!

The ususal caged and corked 750ml bottle, it pours a slightly hazy yellow gold with a 2 finger head of foam and plenty of lacing.

The smell has notes of yeast, lemon, pepper, and a bit of clove. It's nice and I think, right for the style.

The taste is...yummy. Plenty of pepper and lemony flavour along with notes of yeast, banana, and some sweet and bready malt. I don't notice any of the clove that I mentioned in the smell but it's not really needed as the flavours do fine without it. It finishes very dry and, despite its abv, this is a very refreshing and quite drinkable BSPA.

It has a medium mouthfeel to me and the carbonation is also medium.

Hey, if I was given this in a blindfold test, I'd swear that this was made in Belgium...or by Russian River.;^) I'd love to do a side by side with this and RR Damnation! I doubt that there would be a loser.

Bottom line: Excellent example of the style and it is one that I'd seek out again. Highly recommended!

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Photo of Haybeerman
4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Hazy straw color. Poured a 3 finger frothy white head with excellent retention to a 2 lumpy fingers. Decanted continually. Lots of sticky lace.

S: Bready malt. Light-colored fruits; pear and green apple.

T: Much like the nose (malt and fruit). Yeast esters very pronounced. Pronounced peppery finish that was not evident in the nose (hiding under the foam?).

M: Medium-to-full body. Ample carbonation; active on the palate and in the glass. Smooth, warming and dry.

O: Very balanced malt and yeast character. Nice looking beer too.

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Photo of spinrsx
4.13/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml Bottle - my first lost abbey beer thanks to zacs for this one

Appearance – Hazy yellow colour with a gigantic size fizzy white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some gorgeous lacing. The head lasted for 10 minutes before is disappeared.

Smell - Grains/wheat, lemons, yeast, coriander/cloves

Taste & Mouth - The beer has a very high amount of carbonation and I can taste lemons (juice and zest) and yeast mixed with coriander/cloves. There is also a bit of heat from the alcohol and lots of yeasty/floral notes. It ends with a spicy lemon/clove/yeast aftertaste.

Overall – My first lost abbey beer and I am impressed. The lemon flavour is very fresh and vibrant and the spicy notes give it a very interesting taste. It has a great dry aftertaste that keeps you wanting more. Worth seeking out.

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Photo of pat61
4.65/5  rDev +16%

Biscuit laced with funk and light fruit dominate the nose.
The beer pours hazy gold with a giant rocky off-white foam cap.
Ripe fruit first strikes the palate with a hint of sweetness, funk, some orange, a hint of bubble gum, and spice as the beer grows dry to finish slightly tart with a spicy bitter emphasis. The bitterness is a crisp quinine like bitterness rather than a heavier resiny or grapefruit rind bitterness.
The body is very creamy with a fine soft effervescence.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle obtained via Growling at the Moon from d0gnate. Corked and caged. Thanks for the opportunity.

Poured into a Chimay chalice, formed a 1 1/4" beige head over the slightly cloudy golden amber brew. Super-frothy head falls ever-so slowly, leaving a heavy coating of foam from top to bottom on the walls of the glass. Aroma is spicy, sweet, lightly tart.

Taste is lightly sweet to tart, lemony in the center, with spiciness coming in on the close. Mouthfeel is very smooth, and drinkability is excellent.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.43/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottleneck's Bottled On Date is smeared but I can make out the "13" at the end.

A- From a gentle pour comes a massive three inches of off-white head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a large center bump of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a broken ring behind. Once the sediment is introduced, it creates a murky, wispy cloud inside the body.

S- Effervescent Belgian yeast reminds me of a saison since there's a touch of soily funk.

T- Clean flavor of Belgian yeast brings notes of apple, pear and some banana. The alcohol is incredibly well-hidden. Almost has a white wine dryness to it.

M- Crisp and bright with medium-high carbonation and a light body.

O- Definitely one of my new top 5 BSPAs. Has all the components that I look for in the style: Champagne-like carbonation, is dry yet still somewhat sweet and has a yeast presence that's almost perfectly balanced toward the malt flavor.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a sunshiney amber golden sunshine amber, Only gets opaquer the deeper you get into this 750ml bottle. Good, spritzy one finger head that slowly recedes to a film o' foam, to nothing. Sporadic, small bubbles slowly make their way to the top of this bubbly brew. Yeasty nectarines and some soft, hoppy grass clippings make up the brunt of this brews nose. Dried citrus fruts in a bag as far as the taste goes. Nectarines, mandarin oranges, limes, and even some grapefruits. The finish is an herbal, grassy, yet slightly sugary hop. Pretty dry palate, a little sweetness, and more of a pronounced hop profile for a Belgian beer than I'm used to. Very easy to drink, cosidering the high abv.

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Photo of DrJay
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a chalice. Cloudy peach gold colour with a thin layer of fine white bubbles that stuck around for a long time. Just a bit of lace. Very fruity aroma, yellow grapes, white wine, crackers, bread and yeast, cloves and a hint of lemon zest. Good balance. Bitterness was present throughout, but remains restrained. The fruity character so prominent in the aroma was pulled back a bit (and was more of the pear and apple variety), allowing the malt to add some smoothness and honey sweetness. Spice and alcohol appeared towards the end and lingered into the finish, along with light citrus. Medium bodied with spritzy carbonation, some dryness (not bone dry like the label warned). Nice texture. This one's pretty drinkable, quite thirst quenching.

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Photo of rfgetz
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy golden straw color with a touch of orange. Nice puff of head with good retention and lacing.

S: Sweet citrus and belgian yeast. A little breadyness to it with hints of black pepper.

T: Great balance of sweet malts, yeast and citrus notes. Slight alcohol and peppery tastes linger.

M: Medium bodied with good carbonation. Nice warmth and drying.

D: Complex flavors with an overall mellow vibe.

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Photo of tigg924
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: 1 inch head, bright yellow in color, hazy, high carbonation

Smell: straw, lemon, and some funk

Taste: straw, lemon, earthly-peppery hops, apple, some funk, with alcohol noticable on the finish

Mouthfeel: light bodied, slightly sweet with some funk, high carbonation

Drinkability: A very drinkable, dry, Belgian that has saison qualities to it. While I do want this again, I would sooner choose other Lost Abbey beers first. A very good, nice and fruity/funky beer.

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Photo of sweemzander
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle poured into a tulip glass. No bottled date.

(A)- Pours a hazy golden hue that produced a huge 2+ finger white billowy head. It initially dissipated quickly but is now staying right at around 1 finger. It left tiny webs of lacing behind as it dissipated.

(S)- Crisp lemon peel and rich sweet banana biscuits with a yeasty yet wheaty barnyard clay funk. Velvety fruits that dance around the funky wheat.

(T)- Light lemon wheat with a thicker banana and clove with a dense barnyard funk bitterness of clay, yeast, and hay on the finish. Very light but present hop dryness in the middle and increases in presence on the finish. Complex and damn tasty!

(M)- Very delicate and complex with a flurry of different things going on. Just a tiny bit sweet, bitter, and funky. Really smooth with a spot on carbonation level.

(D)- Incredibly smooth and balanced yet ridiculously complex that keeps you guessing. Its criminal to not consider this a sipper though due to how nice and complex this beer is. Fantastic stuff!

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

25.4oz bottle had at dinner a couple of nights back.

A: The first two pours (into my smallish wine glass) are crystal clear golden yellow with a gorgeous white head with excellent retention.

S: On the nose, this is quite awesome. Dry, spicy with a hint of white pepper and some ginger. Mildly fruity with some pear.

T: The palate is a replication of the nose, with a mild sweetness present. All told, the balance between the spicy character from the yeast and the fruitiness coupled with dryness of the finish make for one very refreshing beer.

M: Light with excellent carbonation and an awesome finish

D: I had no issues polishing off a bottle but it is a bit telling...

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Photo of ColForbinBC
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a Duvel tulip

Pours a chilled golden honey color with a huge, fluffy, root beer float style head. Great retention and lacing. The nucleation site of the tulip maintains an iceberg style lump of foam in the middle of the glass.

This is a hoppy little number. Crisp and dry grassy hops with a hearty dose of lemon peel with some damp barnyard hay and band aids.

Crisp and dry, very succinct. The hops lay a nice lemon peel, grassy, bitter flavor over top of barnyard hay and band aids. Pretty much right on par with the nose.

Extremely light and dry. Bitter in the finish with grass and hay. I am really enjoying how light and playful this beer is.

The 8.5% is barely noticeable while drinking, but it creeps up on you. I felt it before I was midway through. Otherwise, this is light and crisp with a good dose of bitterness that makes this perfect year round.

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Photo of Viggo
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, received from largadeer in MetalBIF.

Pours a cloudy amber/light orange, very nice colour, thick white head forms, quickly drops down to a thin ring and layer around the glass, a lot of lacing is stuck on the glass, nice pattern, great looking beer. Smell is nice, sweet and fruity, honey, very fruity, nice peachy aroma, honey and caramel, some candi sugar, apricots, toast, yeast and light spice, some floral hoppiness, not spectacular but enjoyable. Taste is similar, very sweet at first, honey and candi sugar, very fruity, floral, grapefruit tartness, apricots, wheat, quite dry in the finish, very tart fruitiness, touch of yeasty spice, nice. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium to high carbonation, , nice dry finish, some warmth from the alcohol but it is pretty well hidden. Quite a nice BSPA, great fruitiness and really dry in the fnish. Thanks Chris!

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
2.97/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured way more yellow than I was hoping for, very cloudy. Shit. Aroma was sweet and strong alcohol wise.

Taste, ugh, sweet alcohol overpowers. I thought this might be a little hoppy like Mischief. Its a little peppery, maybe plum. Getting clove in the mouthfeel of this. Ah, so glad I didn't buy a whole bottle and waited to check it out at the SDIBF. Finishes too 'hot' no pun intended. Can't recommend.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.89/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I drank this from the bottle into a chalice.

It pours a medium cloudy gold with a huge (at least 4 fingers) white head that lasts several minutues. The lacing is strong and chunky and there is tons and tons of carbonation.

The aroma makes me think I'm drinking a trippel, same kind of senses. There is light sweet hops and light apricots.

The taste is nice and light. There is sweet orangy start with a nice light hop finish. Pretty complex taste that sticks to your tongue. Nice mouthfeel and pretty easy to drink.

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Photo of dgilks
3.64/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Hazy golden colour with a moderate sized white head. Fair head retention.

Sharp citrussy aroma with distinct clove and pepper phenols. Nice balance of fruit and spice. Sweet with some alcohol notes too.

Soft, sweet malt with a sharpness that cleans it out. Solid fruitiness and touches of spice. A little musty. Good.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Could be spritzier.

A solid Tripel. Good flavour even if there isn't a twist. Carbonation a little lacking.

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Photo of Jwale73
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in my Delirium Tremens tulip. Poured a hazy orange-gold with a one-inch foamy white head with tiny ringlet craters embedded in the cap. Eventually settles into a thin, consistent skim with some webs of lacing that adhere as the volume of the brew diminishes. Scent of citrus, belgian yeast, pepper and spice. Taste is tart up-front with light fruity esters in the mix (perhaps pear and melon), a hint of candi sugar and a hops presence detectable at the finish. Mouthfeel is light- to medium-bodied with a fair amount of carbonation that tingles throughout the mouth and a slightly tart finish that lingers between quaffs. Alcohol was well-hidden and there is a nice complexity to this offering.

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Photo of glid02
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this courtesy of ATLbeerDog - thanks!

Pours a straw color with a one-finger white head. The head sticks around for a while before receding into a thin pancake on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of sugar-coated orange and lemon peels - lots of citrus zest. Hints of pears and a very light grassiness from the hops are also present.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Lots of citrus flavors backed by sweet malts and Belgian candi sugar. The hops don't seem to have as much influence on the taste as they did on the smell, but they're still lurking in the background.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with active carbonation that makes this go down smoothly.

Drinkability is good. I finished my glass relatively quickly and could have a few more.

Overall this is a tasty BSPA that's on the lighter side of things. Definitely worth a shot.

EDIT 11/9/2010

Tasted again recently and got a slightly more pilsner malt and much more pear aroma and flavor than previously. Adjusted the drinkability up a notch but other than that things are fairly similar. Still worth a shot.

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Photo of maximum12
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Picked up during an August trip to Seattle from Bottleworks.

First off, great pics, great blurb on the back, just fantastic presentation. My wife & I have talked about it being a shame to throw the bottles away - it's like tossing a work of art.

This beer is Belgian to the core, color, nose, taste. There's an abject fizziness to the brew I could do without, reminds me of Shasta in the summer of my youth, a memory I didn't need to dredge up. Taste is sweet & light. Barring the cost, this is the kind of beer I could drink all night. Right up to the point my unsuspecting head smacked into the floor.

This is my first foray into Lost Abbey, although I have a couple more in the basement for a rainy day. Maybe it's just the stylish bomber, but I was expecting something a little more...radical. This is a solid beer, but not the hellion I was expecting.

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.91/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a brandy snifter.

A: The cork was very difficult to remove, but rewarded my blisters with a very satisfying pop. Inferno pours with two to three fingers of stark white head. Clearish straw-yellow with lots of bubbles. Scattered lacing.

S: Fruity/estery yeast. A bit of dry grain. Slight citrus.

T: Very satisfying! Dry-sweet with white pepper, pineapple, banana, and lots of Belgian yeast. I don't have a lot to say about it, but it's definitely a solid example of the style, though reminiscent of a tripel as well.

M: Excellent. The perfect balance of spicy-dry and fruity-wet. Light grain and barely noticeable alcohol.

O: An unmitigated success that cements The Lost Abbey in my mind as an excellent brewery. Highly recommended if you like Belgian pale ales. I would drink again, despite the steep price tag. Drinkable and undeniably pleasant.

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Inferno Ale from The Lost Abbey
4.01 out of 5 based on 781 ratings.
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