Sinner's Blend (2009)
The Lost Abbey

Sinner's Blend (2009)Sinner's Blend (2009)
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Belgian Strong Dark Ale
3.97 | pDev: 13.6%
The Lost Abbey
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Sinner's Blend (2009)Sinner's Blend (2009)
Reviews: 68 | Ratings: 128 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.36/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

375 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Pours a flat inky black. Slightly transparent at the edges. Nothing really going on.

Smell - Oxidized. Chocolate. Sharp bright liquor flavor. I know its bourbon, but it smells like brandy. Dark fruit acidity.

Taste - Much more sour. Cherry sourness. Raisins. Oxidation. Oak and chocolate. Sharp alcohol. Red wine finish.

Mouthfeel - Mostly flat. Boozy. Acidic. Tough to drink.

Overall - Complex but not easy to drink. Wonder what it tasted like years ago.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Shared this one at a recent Random Sunday Tasting! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller taster flute. Poured pitch black with a minimal off-white head that subsided to none quickly. There was no lacing evident throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, roasted malt, cherry, tart, and wood. The flavor was of sweet malt, cherry, roasted malt, acidic, tart, and subtle dark chocolate. It had a light feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a fairly good brew. Out of the two Sinners Blend brews we had this night this one definitely stood out as the best. A nice roastiness was going on here that balanced out really well with the acidic tartness aspects going on. Still needed more carbonation to make it more appealing to the palate though. Definitely worth your time trying this one if you get the opportunity.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.88/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Richard for sharing this bottle. Served in a Lost Abbey Teku. Pours a fairly-dark brown color with no noticeable head. Fairly flat in appearance, and that carries over to the feel. The nose is quite complex with nice notes of bourbon and red wine before fading to some dark fruit and lactic sourness. Flavor has additional barrel presence, with a touch of the port coming through. Nothing too overwhelming, and the barrels blend very well. Nice lactic presence through the finish. Cherry and dark fruits. Really nice.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared at a recent tasting, thank. Beer served in a ticking snifter. Beer is black, dark, thick, almost no carbonation, no head, no retention, no lacing.

Aroma is pretty sweet, strong forward, very nice.

Beer is sweet and boozy with a nice malt backbone and a decent finish, sort of like Veritas 009 but better. I'd have this again.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer appears dark brown with a small, fleeting head. The aroma offers malt, roast, booze, cola, dark fruit. The flavor has a soy sauce consistency, with additional notes of booze, molasses, cherries. Distinguishable Lost Abbey flavors. Overall, this was quite complex and intriguing, but a bit unbalanced. Thick feel with low carbonation. Worth a try.

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Photo of ChrisPr
4.44/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours nearly pitch black with no head. Aromas of date and leather and a prominent "Oud Bruin" twang. First taste is of cherry, immediately followed by a sour apple, aggressive tartness that slowly dissipates into a tannic, slightly oak finish. This is quite dry considering my expectations. Mouthfeel is sort of medium - lighter than I thought, but balances well with the tartness.

Overall I think this beer could use some changes, like a little carbonation, but it's a great American sour and I'm very glad I still have a few bottles left.

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Photo of jethrodium
2.51/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

On tap at City Beer Store. Pours a dark brown with a small light tan head that settles to a ring and leaves a decent amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma is sweet brown sugar, caramel, light lactic, light funkiness, and some bourbon and vanilla. The taste is really sweet with caramel and brown sugar . There is a light tartness as well as some vanilla and bourbon, and a bit of funkiness. The finish is sweet with caramel. Full bodied with medium carbonation. I did not enjoy this beer very much. The huge amount of sugar with a slight amount of tartness did not work very well together.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.09/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky, dark brown with a hint of red. No head on this one. Scent is chocolatey with a lot of sour cherry aroma. Red wine vinegar and tart cherry notes tingle the nose. Taste is initially very sour, followed by some raspberry, cherry, and red wine vinegar. A lot of vinegar and very acidic. Somewhat chocolatey. Mouthfeel is smooth and velvety with very light carbonation. Highly acidic. Drinkability is very high. Overall, this is a fantastic sour. The light carbonation seems too work for this beer, but a little more couldn't have hurt.

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Photo of phichifiji00
3.97/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: Dark brown, no head, no lacing.

Smell: tart, red wine vinegar, red fruit, sherry.

Taste: tart, red fruit, red wine vinegar, sherry, sour cherries.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied, minimal carbonation, tart.

Overall: A tasty sour. Well balanced, tart, very drinkable.

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Photo of ehammond1
3.24/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Bottle (2009)

Thanks for opening this one, Nathan!

(Aged for 2 years)

This pours a very hazy, murky, almost dirty looking brown, mahogany with ruby edges and zero carbonation. There's very little if any bubbling and it leaves the glass nearly clean on the way down.

An interesting aroma: sherry and port wines, some earthy dirt and brick-like qualities, wood, black pepper, a mild sour component, and a bit of vinegar. More interesting than good, but very, very interesting.

And the flavor is more successful than the aroma. The black pepper spice, wood and earth elements, along with a mild sour component make for a nice beer, while the aging has certainly brought about some sherry and oxidation flavors, though I think they actually add nicely to this complex elixir.

Thin to medium mouthfeel with zero carbonation--lifeless.

A complex beer, but lacking some necessary components.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.97/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks a lot Kegatron for sharing this with stakem and me. The bottle was enjoyed from a tulip.

The color is a ruddy brown shade of bronze with ruby accents and small light beige ring of beads after the head condensed. The smell of fruit which is lightly tart with a wood aroma that is potent. The mild spice in the nose is strong with a slight custard odor and hint of meaty woody malty aromas. The blend is definitely diverse and seems to contribute a mild amount of alcohol to the smell too. I like the tart sharp and spicy feel which comes off woody on the palate with slight earthy, toasted tinges and highly carbonated presence. The maltiness is full and the finish has moderate sweet malt with a chewiness and slight alcoholic edge.

The taste is tart, sugary and has light chocolate malt tinges initially with a gentle barrel presence of wood with slight sweet port-raisiny and fig jam influence. The flavor is almost cherry-like in a sweet way, but has a bite with the sharp sour edges developing later in the taste. The mix has some dark sugar and light peppery notes as it finishes with some alcohol apparent in the taste. It is a real Trojan Horse of a blended brew overall. The way the aroma tricks you into thinking the malt is dominant and you get a glimpse of that up front but it is woody and spicy as it unfolds iwth sharp fruity sour in seconds after the first sip -strange brew indeed!

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Photo of stakem
4.12/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Kegatron for bringing this to my place to share with myself and Slatetank. A 1 liter swing top growler poured into a cervoise. This brew appears a dark brown color with a dark tan cap that quickly fades and holds strong around the rim of the glass with big bubbles. When held to the light, it has some ruby clarity through the body and lighter brown hues along the edges. Finger-like patterns of lace stick to the glass and a swirl revives the cap back to about a finger's strength.

The smell of this brew is chocolate and raisins with a very sweet vanilla character. There is a light amount of leather and some mild funk to earthy elements to the back of the nose. Hints of cherry aid the sweet smell of this brew providing a different depth of fruited character to this brew's aroma. More sniffs bring out smooth scents of chocolate mixed with a mildly tangy alcohol aspect, earthy and lightly spicy with a scent that is almost like incense once the brew is warm.

The taste is sharp and acidic like cherry mixed with lactic acid. Chocolate malt and smooth barrel aged vanilla incorporation are an afterthought with some leather and must. There are some fruited alcohol qualities about this brew making a suggestion of raisins or plums with a hint of maybe molasses but I am stretching here to focus on something other than the bold acidity of this. It is a little herbal and tangy to balance with a hint of mineral flavor. Quite a mouth watering brew.

This brew is an absolute mind bender. The way it smells suggests sweet, smooth sexual barrel aged love that entices and seems very easily approachable. Then you take a sip and it wrecks your face with sharp acidity and tang that was not to be found in the nose. An absolute pleasure to drink. It is medium bodied with a modest to light level of carbonation that is smooth in the feel yet sharp and tangy in flavor. Huge salivation factor with this brew, almost tongue curling upon first sip. For 8% it hits pretty hard but quite enjoyable.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Casa del Sean. Served in a Närke tulip.

A - A finger-plus of tan foam settles to a thick collar, leaving behind spotty lace. Very dark brown body with some hints of red at the fringes when held to the light.

S - The Gift of the Magi and french oak components are the first things that leap out, although as it warms up I get more light chocolate, roasted malts, and vinous notes from the port barrel-aged Serpent's Stout. There's the perfume note I associate with Ten Commandments as well, but not much of the bourbon barrel it was aged in. Brett is present but quite understated.

T - The taste is far more sour and vinous than I expected from the aroma. Lots of port, oak, and red wine vinegar acidity mingle with a dark chocolate truffle backdrop. Some Belgian yeast character, but not much brett presence here.

M - Tannic, medium-full body, pleasant medium-low carbonation, and a dry finish. Not much in the way of obvious alcohol, even though all the components are up there on their own (before the barrel-aging).

D - Wow! This has mellowed a ton since it was released, and the massive perfume and spice aroma it initially had has largely faded leaving behind a nice and complex beer. I find it really odd that the aroma is mostly French Oak Gift of the Magi while the taste is mostly Port Serpent's Stout, but it's strangely compelling nonetheless. I'm curious how the bottles have developed compared to this keg, although I'm guessing they are still flat. If you want this beer at its best, a growler from Sean is the way to go.

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Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle tasted side-by-side with 2008 and 2010, all shared by Joe – thanks!

Pours a very hazy brown color with a light tan head that leaves decent lacing.

Smells of lightly roasted malts with good amounts of cocoa powder and lightly tart cherries. Also present are hints of darker fruits – figs and raisins – with heavier amounts of funk.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Very lightly roasted malts up front are joined quickly by dark cherries dusted with cocoa powder. Slight amounts of funk come into play midway through, fading out into a mildly tart ending. Mouthfeel is very good, with grainy carbonation.

Overall this was the least impressive of the three but also the most interesting. Well worth a shot.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.88/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Seans 30th birthday extravaganza!

A - Brown beer with some red on the edges. Off-white head that left some spots on the sides.

S - More tart than I was expecting, with some chocolate and dark fruit scent in there as well. Smells pretty good.

T - Chocolate, some sourness, good tart notes go with some dark fruit. This is actually pretty tasty, and better than I was expecting.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

O - Very enjoyable beer, glad I got to drink as much of it as I did.

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Photo of emmasdad
4.46/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks very much to schmittymack for sharing this one with me last night. Poured a very dark brown color with a smattering of light brown bubbles on the surface. Huge inviting and tart aromas here, sour cherries, oak and dark fruit. On the palate, this one was quite tart and light bodied, with flavors of bourbon, port, oak, cherries and dark fruit. Excellent.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.42/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle. Review No. 2000 here on Beer Advocate.

The beer pours a brownish (but almost pink) color with an off-white head.

The aroma is awesome. I get a lot of bourbon as well as some roasted malt, dark fruit and a light amount of smoke.

The flavor is bourbon, tart dark fruit, coffee, roasted malt and tart cherries. I have no idea what beers make up this blend, but the flavor is incredibly complex and tastes like a barrel-aged, slightly tart Lost Abbey Judgment Day.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Outstanding.

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.15/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: poured a dark brown with pale brown highlights and had almost no head and left almost no lacing sticking to the glass.

S: toffee, caramel, and borbon are noticeable on the first whiff with boozy, dark fruit, oakiness and hints of funk. There was faint traces of cherries as well.

T: the tart cherries were more apparent on the palate with bourbon, dark fruit, caramel toffee accents and had some oaky character but had booze that was there but was not overwhelming.

M: the brew was medium in body with a low amount of carbonation which had a sweet, bourbon boozy, oaky, fruity, and tart finish.

D: was a solid sour BDSA that drank really good and was very tasty. To me this blend was better than the 08.

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Photo of 100floods
4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Taken from my session notes...

2009 bottle from my Patron Sinner's collection. super dark. Almost stout black. Bubbly white head that disappears as soon as you stop pouring. Sour, dark aroma. Mostly sour. notes of pinot nior and wood. I quote my friend who said, "This is winey as shit!" You are immediately bombarded with a sour flavor, but a unique one. This beer is really dark. The pinot and wood flavors come at you strong. There's a very faint red wine finish. If you let the brew sit for a a few seconds you can almost get some hints of dark mal (dare I say the slightest hint of roast), i'm talking almost not there. It's the kind of flavor that is that that almost shouldn't be there. This beer taste like a blend of Supplication and Concecration. It's fairly tart, too. I've hard sour brown ales before, but this is black as night. I'm curious as how much the malt contributed to the flavor. I know this is a blend, and unfortunately almost two years later I can't seem to find what this beer is made from. Whatever it is, it's nothing short of amazing.

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Photo of JAXSON
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 rate.

Bottle from Kevin. Pours deep, thick brown with a wispy beige head. Aroma of sour cherries, some nice coffee dust, maybe light cedar. Good nose. Surprisingly sour, tart mouth, focused on chocolate covered cherries and light coffee. Very centered on a lactic cherry sourness. Very surprising. This is rich, deep, and it's properly carbonated. Black Cherry Bomb-esque for sure.

Had another bottle of this later 2009. Only thing to add is that -- shocker -- some unwelcome acidity crept in and it has gone downhill. Still a nice beer and probably underrated.

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Photo of portia99
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Armsby Abbey. Served in a 4oz sample glass.

A - In a dimly lit room this beer pours an almost pitch black with light brown tinting around the edges when held to a light. A thin tan collar clings to the glass with very mild lacing left behind.

S - Lightly sour and tart, some dark roastd malts and mild chocolate notes. Interesting combination of sour and roast.

T - Chocolate up front with complementing lactic sourness. Dark roasted malt blends in nicely and as it warms there is some added complexity with notes of vanilla and caramel joining the party.

M - Smooth and creamy with a midlevel carbonation and medium body.

D - Smooth and very easy drinking...very creamy and caramelly. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of brentk56
3.97/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a fudge brown color with a modest, but rocky, well-tanned head that leaves some splotchy lace (count my blessings, it wasn't flat)

Smell: Tart cherry, leather, currants and a wallop of oak

Taste: Tartness dominates from the second the liquid hits the tastebuds so it takes a while for the flavors underneath to make themselves apparent - there are currants, cherries, prunes, a bit of dark chocolate and an oaky character; after the swallow, the wood prune and chocolate elements add a nice balance to the tartness; quite a bit of musty funk in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Rather viscous, with an almost nectary mouthfeel; gentle carbonation

Drinkability: Although I was lucky enough to get a properly carbonated bottle, I didn't like the chewy character; the flavors are interesting but it would have been enhanced with a bit more chocolatey depth than I detected

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Photo of WeisGuy
4.24/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by twig86 -- thanks, Derek!

a - pours a dark almost black color with ruby highlights, minimal head with retention around the edges only

s - tart grapes, tannin, light dark fruit sweetness, oak and hints of booze on the nose

t - much more tart and sour than I expected, tart grapes and cherries up front with a nice raisin and dark fruit sweetness component on the midpalate and finish, fairly dry finish with lingering tart cherry and grape with lighter dark fruits and hints of alcohol, really surprised to find out this doesn't have Cuvee de Tomme in it

m - medium-bodied, low carbonation, well-balanced finish that's slightly on the dry side, good amount of alcohol warming

d - pretty drinkable stuff, the tartness is not overwhelming due to the bit of sweetness that balances it out a bit, alcohol isn't too strong either

Really good stuff, surprisingly so based on the previous reviews. Much more tart and sour than I expected as well. Thanks again to Derek for sharing this gem.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.23/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - this beer pours a dark stout color, impenetrable to light, with a thin brown ring on head atop

S - tannic and leathery at first, followed by a strong super grapey aroma, dark pruple grapes, accessorized by other dark fruits

T - the grapiness persists to the taste as well, with some surprising chocolate/cocoa notes accentuate the dark fruits

M&D - easily quaffed, not super smooth, but not offensive, superb sour notes will put off some, but not many, nice aftertaste and followup

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.38/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this in an awesome secret bunny make-up package!

A- Body is a translucent dark brown foggy hue. Pours with a thin collar which fades rather quickly and no lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Astringent alcohol is prominent upfront. Behind this is sour ripe dark fruit (plum, raisin), cocoa, vinegar, and a hint of tart sourness.

T- Some tart acidic sourness upfront, sour dark fruit, a hint of dusty oak. The blend is much more complex with a lot going on the the background-but its somewhat chaotic and hard to decipher individual flavors (and yes chaos can be good but this is a borderline mess) The finish is quite dry and a slight acidic sourness lingers.

M- Carbonation is flat. Brew is full bodied with medium weight and somewhat dusty-relatively smooth overall.

D- This is a decent sour brew overall. The blend is somewhat hard to decipher-and the brew is flat and boozy. Perhaps this needs more time?

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Sinner's Blend (2009) from The Lost Abbey
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 128 ratings