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Box Set Track #8 - Number Of The Beast | The Lost Abbey

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Box Set Track #8 - Number Of The BeastBox Set Track #8 - Number Of The Beast
BA SCORE
4.34/5
Outstanding
783 Ratings
Box Set Track #8 - Number Of The BeastBox Set Track #8 - Number Of The Beast
BEER INFO

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

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.70%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We’ve never released a Bourbon Barrel version of our Judgment Day. So we thought it might be interesting to take the base beer for Cuvee de Tomme age in first fill Bourbon Barrels and let mother nature take over. Of course, because this is a Rock and Roll inspired Box Set beer, we couldn’t just leave well enough alone.

Upon sampling the base beer, it became apparent that the raisins used to brew the base beer were going to drive the flavor bus of this beer. The conversations turned to Oatmeal Raisin cookies and the essence of a freshly baked treat. So we added some cinnamon sticks to the barrels and threw in some dried chiles as well.

Added by MasterSki on 08-16-2012

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#449
Reviews:
114
Ratings:
783
pDev:
8.29%
Bros Score:
4.74
 
 
Wants:
148
Gots:
239
Trade:
32
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 783 |  Reviews: 114
Photo of HopsForBrains
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Mantooth
3.96/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of g00ey
4.27/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of sjrider
4.01/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of ArkyVaughan
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kojevergas
3.68/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A bourbon barrel aged brew from one of North America's best breweries? I had to buy it!

BOTTLE: 12.7 fl oz format. Branded black hood-and-wire cap over a cork. Brown glass. Classy label art (in more ways than one).

13.70% ABV. "Ale brewed with raisins, [sic] aged in bourbon barrels with cinnamon and chiles." My label calls it just "Track #8."

Served chilled into a Lost Abbey teku and allowed to come to temperature over the course of consumption.

APPEARANCE: Pours a pale khaki colour head which is somewhat creamy and soft, but fails to dazzle in either regard. Robust enough in spite of being a bit fluffy. The ~10 minute retention is impressive considering the high ABV, but aside from that there's little here to impress.

The body is better, albeit predictable - an opaque solid ink-black. No yeast/lees are visible within.

It's a decent appearance for its style, but nothing about it stands out and it isn't unique or special to any extent.

AROMA: Dry Belgian yeast pairs surprisingly well with a subdued American bourbon barrel presence in this Belgo-American ale, with subtle notes of dried raisin and stonefruit/dark fruit dueling with vanilla and white oak tones from the bourbon to good effect. The Belgian and American influences coalesce rather than clash, forming an interesting if somewhat uneven build that successfully marries the odd pairing.

One might think the introduction of Mexican chocolate elements like ancho chile and dried cinnamon (well, cassia) would further muddy this already eclectic brew, but they're subtle enough that they play well, and their dry powdery aromatics seem to fit the dry Belgian yeast well.

There's no chile (or alcohol) heat by any stretch, but that seems to work well for it.

It's quite the aroma, and suggests a shockingly well balanced beer that juggles multiple influences without really fitting neatly into any convenient style categorization. I guess it's closest to a Belgian strong ale by my estimation, but the American & Mexican influences make that a hard point to defend.

Aromatic intensity is moderate, with no off-flavours or overt hoppy aromatics.

TASTE & TEXTURE: The spices and yeast may be dry, but the beer is actually silky smooth and soft, helping coax out the vanilla/vanillin from the bourbon barrel and let it shine via a velvety luscious creamy texture.

Many cinnamon/cassia spiced beers suffer from that "stuck to the roof of your mouth" nastiness, but there's none of that here...just a tugging dryness that adds textural complexity to this surprisingly well balanced ale. A blip of welcome bourbon warmth sets off the dark malt backbone, but the apt attenuation of the Belgian ale yeast prevents this from ever feeling too sweet like many bourbon barrel beers.

Dark fruit is in there, but has a more moderate presence than you'd find in a quadrupel, landing in Belgian strong ale terrain. Raisin is chief among them, but there's some faint caramelized plum and date in there...many hints of fig or prune, but they aren't overt.

Ancho chile flavour adds some central American flair while keeping the heat minimal...there's just a scintilla thereof, and it plays well with the equally subtle bourbon warmth.

Turning more to a discussion of the bourbon barrel...boy does it work here. It doesn't eclipse the base but it's definitely present, lending rich white oak undertones, barrel sugars, and lovely vanilla. I might mistake the barrel vanillin for actual vanilla bean in a blind tasting; it's really evocative.

Given the ecletic intricacy of this brew, one might expect a chaotic imbalance of flavour, but true to form Lost Abbey manages to achieve an impressive harmony and balance of flavour without compromising in terms of subtlety or depth of flavour. Complex as this is, it is not a loud or big bold brew, and each part contributes to the whole to form a gestalt treat of a brew that's perplexingly well-executed.

OVERALL: Despite its dangerous ABV, this ale drinks a bit too easily, but remains a sipper if only because each sip is meant to be savored. Lost Abbey again defends its reputation as one of the U.S.A.'s finest breweries with this home run effort, and I'd happily recommend it to friends. One can nitpick; I guess the dryness on the finish does get a bit off-putting after a while and there's room for still more expressiveness of flavour and intricacy, but it's a successful execution of an incredibly tricky premise for an ale. How many breweries can pull off a balanced American bourbon barrel aged chile pepper Belgian strong dark ale brewed with cinnamon?

Pair with fig newtons, sharp cheese, and/or chocolate covered pomegranate.

B (3.68) / GOOD

 4,674 characters

Photo of Coorsy
4.12/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of sd123
3.9/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of seanh99
4.54/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

The notes said Oatmeal Raisin cookies and that is what came to mind after a taste. Became more flavorful as the temp came up, I may have started too cool but this really was a nice surprise as I didn't have a clue given the ingredient list including chile peppers.

 264 characters

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.75/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of rjp217
4/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of petermethot
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of grahuba
4/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of PprBurke
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Gkruszewski
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of msondel
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of kell50
4.16/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Rob825
4.2/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BeerRay
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of BeerMe8
3.74/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of JamesLeung
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of brianmandell
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Oleg85
3.98/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of GuyFawkes
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2014 vintage; drank 8/1/14 @ the Yarchives.

Poured from the bottle into a glass.

Brown/black/purple hue.

HUGE tan head; decent lace.

Cinnamon, dark stone fruit & red wine nose.

Medium thick mouthfeel.

Nutmeg & chocolate up front; coconut & mild spice as it warms, with a dry, champagne finish. Odd but interesting.

 325 characters

Box Set Track #8 - Number Of The Beast from The Lost Abbey
Beer rating: 4.34 out of 5 with 783 ratings
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