Breakside Aztec | Breakside Brewery

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Very Good
23 Ratings

Brewed by:
Breakside Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
"If mole were ever to be turned into a beer, it would taste like our Aztec ale! We brew this American, or "Mexican strong ale" with chocolate and chile to create a unique digestif of a beer. Despite this beer's dark golden color, it has an aroma filled with chocolate: dry cocoa, chocolate-covered banana, and a little bit of chocolate-covered raspberry. There's a strong sweetness on the front of the palate that mixes more chocolate, honey, and fruity flavors (the fruit flavors here come from both the chiles we used as well as the higher alcohols produced during fermentation). These aggressive flavors give way to a warming finish--the chile character is cumulative, but combined with the booze in this beer, it leaves a persistent warmth in your chest. Sip this one slowly and enjoy
a unique treat!"

Malts: American Pilsner, Munich Light, CaraPils, Canadian Honey
Hops: Columbus, Glacier
Yeast: California Ale

Specs for Beer Geeks
Original Gravity: 1.083
Final/Terminal Gravity: 1.020
Alcohol by Volume: varies - 8.2% to 10+%
IBU: 36

Added by msubulldog25 on 03-17-2011

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 23 |  Reviews: 7
Photo of johnnylake
4.75/5  rDev +21.8%

Photo of p4nch1to
4.56/5  rDev +16.9%

Photo of cjpalist
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%

Photo of cbarrett4
4.47/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Surprised a chili infused beer could actually have come heat and taste this good. If you've tasted Theobroma from Dogfish, you might have an idea of this style (though the Dogfish doesn't really have any heat).

Pours amber, hazy hue with off white head that settles quickly leaving a pretty nice lace. Good carbonation.

Smells of cocoa, anise, and spices. Really subtle fruit in there, mostly berry and a slight tropical note. The cocoa really dominates.

Palate is richly flavored with bitter cocoa up front, baking spices, a hint of fresh berries, and more anise. The pepper really comes through nicely. I was ready for some Tex-Mex after this! I like the comparison to mole'. It really has that same layered, heavily spiced, cocoa, and pepper thing going on. Pure genius!

Texture is really nice with some weight, good grip and intensity, but not sticky or overly full bodied. Has a good finish, the heat comes on in the midpalate. The cocoa adds a nice textural backdrop. Medium to long on the finish, alcohol is noticeable, but not oppressive.

A really fine beer that according to the bartender, does get tweaked a bit so each batch is slightly different. He explained this batch had a more textured palate than some others.

The peppers are there, they are noticeable, they do bring a bit of heat, but they aren't too spicy. If you have an aversion to medium to hot salsas, then this might be too hot. It's not going to burn the mouth or send you reaching for the glass of milk.

Also mentioned a bourbon barrel aged aztec in bottle, but I was already in danger of getting a little too tipsy, so maybe next time!

 1,622 characters

Photo of devilmakesthree
4.34/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of msubulldog25
4.25/5  rDev +9%

Photo of milesmayhem
4.25/5  rDev +9%

Photo of ccrida
4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is clear amber with a small off-white head leaving very light foamy lace.

Smell is chocolate covered cherries and a little pepper.

Taste is earthy pepper and more of this chocolate covered cherry that must be a confluence of the cocoa nibs and malt sugars. Nice chili heat, slow build, long lingering.

Mouthfeel is sticky, medium-light bodied.

Drinkability is pretty high. I really like the concept, and the execution greatly exceeded my expectations. Novelty, yet delicious. Very impressed! That said, you're only gonna have one, or *maybe* two of these at most in a sitting.

 594 characters

Photo of loren01
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a reddish brown color nice head with good lacing
S: Chocolate and sweet malt scents
T: Sweet up front with chocolate/coffee flavors. Finishes with a nice spice kick from the peppers.
M: Medium bodied beer, carbonation seems to be right on
O: This is a nice complex beer, very wierd as most of the beers at this place are but this is my favorite one they do. I would get this one again for sure.

 404 characters

Photo of spark3148857
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of throwerbri
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of Kopfschuss
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of Greels
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of Docer
3.97/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just had at Breakside. What a great little joint.. seems to be run like a bustling Laurelwood though.. lot's of folks working there.

- Beer pours a dark cloudy copper/amber.. off white fingers of head settle to some scattered island and a bit of a lace-making ring. Overall decent look.

- The chocolate and esters come through in the smell. Lots of cocoa and sweet caramel malts with a nice fruity and piney hop to balance the sweetness in the nose. The cocoa is all over in smell.

- Great robust grain and caramel. Cocoa plays a sweet role. Esters, light fruit, banana, and chocolate. Pepper certainly makes its mark, and says 'Hey, I am here, love me as you love everything else that made this beer'. Balanced well.. great heat and earthy pepper flavor. Overall a very cool beer, and it tastes fantastic. Not much alcohol heat in the flavor.

- Nice medium body, creamy feel, and perfectly carbonated. Slightly stick and chewy, but overall not the slightest bit chalky.

- Great robust heavy amber with perfect amounts of pepper and chocolate. Great combination, and it's so nice to be able to fill any growler or mason jar with this beer. Very good. Not very much heat in alcohol, and the stated % here seems accurate. At the pub they marked it at 9.5% which I feel is a notch too high for what it really is.

 1,319 characters

Photo of Mahlik
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Breakside brewery.

A - Pours a dark amber with a small off white head. Head dissipates in a minute or two. Some streaky lacing is left behind.

S - Cocoa and lots of it. Sweet malty aroma. Smell of blackberries and raspberries come in. A spiciness hits the nose at the end.

T - Very interesting. Cocoa, sweet malts and a slight hint of fruit upfront. But then come the chilis. Wow. I was not expecting that. A good amount of heat hits the palate. And stays for a while. It's almost like I just swallowed some hot sauce with my beer.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. The spiciness from the peppers really hits and lingers for awhile. Definitely not for someone who is not a fan of some heat. Alcohol is present but nothing major. A slight astringency at the finish.

O - Definitely different from any other chili beer I've had. This one brings the heat. I enjoyed the heat but I felt it hung around too long at times. Overall, I thought this was a nice change of pace brew. I'd enjoyed it again but I think I'll ask for a side of chips with it.

 1,070 characters

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of PZBREW
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of moonknight31
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of Rifugium
3.45/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at their brewpub

Poured a cloudy reddish brown with a thin white ring of bubbles that left a bit of lacing behind. Aroma of sweet malts and cocoa, slightly boozy. I actually think the person sitting next to me might have said this was the worst beer he's ever tasted. haha I don't think I'd go that far; it wasn't too bad. Actually, MsRif picked up that it was a chili beer before I did. I got hit mainly with the booze up front in the taste, followed by malt sweetness, woody, with cocoa and a spiciness that I soon understood to be chili pepper heat. Not the smoothest beer in the world for sure. Medium bodied, and fairly drinkable, but probably not something I'd ever want to try again.

 709 characters

3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of CoryR
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of Kylemif
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of Hoptometrist
2.04/5  rDev -47.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Served into a short strange glass. Approximately an 8 oz. pour

A- Poured a dark reddish amber with no head that left no lacing.

S- Big sweet cherry notes, lots of alcohol, and some light spiciness. Aroma is very very sweet and not complex

T- Big sweet cherry and blueberry notes, rich and cloying sweetness, and big spicy finish that really lingers.

M- Medium to full body, very sticky, big burn on the finish (not sure if that is from the peppers or alcohol)

O- A way too sweet, boozy, and spicy mess of a beer. I drank about 4 oz. of it and it would have been tough for me to drink much more. Just not my kind of beer I guess.

 634 characters

Breakside Aztec from Breakside Brewery
Beer rating: 3.9 out of 5 with 23 ratings
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