Perennial Artisan Ales

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American Imperial Stout
Ranked #37
Ranked #156
4.5 | pDev: 7.56%
Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States
Notes: An Imperial Stout brewed with ancho chili peppers, cacao nibs, vanilla beans, and cinnamon sticks. Pouring deep brown with a thick head, this beer has a complex body with a delicious lingering roastiness. Abraxas is brewed with unique ingredients intended to challenge and excite the palate. It may be enjoyed right away or allowed to age in the bottle. Vertical tastings are encouraged.
Reviews: 424 | Ratings: 2,947 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of lucius10
4.12/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Sweet chocolate, spicy-pepper, malty, and cinnamon-vanilla nose on this one! Taste follows with some prominent dark chocolate/cacao nibs and cinnamon initially and then a hint of vanilla and a crushed red pepper vibe. A lot going on here! The dark chocolate bitterness hangs around on the back of the throat a bit. This is good, but the different adjuncts seem to be competing for attention a bit...and I was expecting this to be a little more viscous on the palate.

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Photo of DokiDokiLitFam
4.82/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a thick dark brown. Motor oil. Just short of a finger of dark brown head. Creamy looking, tight compact bubbles. A good amount of retention and ridiculous lacing. It hangs on the glass for dear life for a few moments then slow slides it's way down. Very aesthetically pleasing.

Nose is cinnamon for days. I love it. Afterwards it's dark chocolate and something along the lines of caramel. Like a sweet candy sort of thing going on. This smells amazing.

Taste is cinnamon first, dark bitter chocolate, roasty malt, and vanilla. This is incredibly balanced. Like expert craftsmanship. This cinnamon is strong enough to create that spice quality but not so much that it's overpowering and perfumey. The chocolate is dark and rich and bittering. The vanilla lightens everything up to keep it from being too heavy. And at the very end there's that bit of chili pepper that creates a subtle warming feeling in the back of your tongue and throat. This is something that can be overdone and potentially ruin a brew, but not here. These mix of ingredients are damn perfect.

Just when I thought this beer couldn't get any better we get to the mouthfeel. Fullbodied and chewy. Not oily or sticky or cloying. Just full. Very mild carbonation.

Overall? I mean...God damn. This beer is not only THE best, as people usually call it, "Mexican" style stouts that I've had, it is one the best brews I've ever had. This is art. Pinnacle of human accomplishment type of shit. But before I get a little too overdramatic, this beer is some serious stuff. Crack this open at a family gathering or a bottle share and wonderful experiences will be had. So let me wrap this up. If you find this bottle, grab one. Do not hesitate. You will not regret it.

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.96/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a small tulip glass.

Look is a pitch black with a dark tan head.

Aroma is roast malt, coffee, and a hint of chili.

Taste is a rich spicy malt and coffee.

So good.

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.54/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours pitch black with a very thin tan head. Nice amount of sticky lacing.

S - Aroma is dark chocolate, cinnamon and ancho chili's.

T - The taste is dark chocolate, coffee, cinnamon, vanilla and light heat from the ancho's.

M - Full body with medium carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel with a soft dry finish.

O - This is a fantastic stout and definetly lives up to it's reputation.

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Photo of TooManyGlasses
4.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Bottlecraft Liberty Station in San Diego. 2018 Vintage. Saw it listed and had to have.
Deep black slightly viscous pour with short lived creamy crimson tinged brown head.
Oh that smell - wafts of cinnamon, vanilla, cocoa - and then a bit more cinnamon - hint of coffee.
Taste is cinnamon and chocolate up front - malty sweetness is perfect - not at all cloying - vanilla notes and just a touch of the heat of the peppers adding more to the flavour than to spiciness.
Smooth creamy rich full mouthfeel - nicely sweet with that lingering little bit of chilli pepper heat. Great.

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Photo of folkstar
4.49/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lot of cinnamon on the nose, as well as fudge chocolate notes. only a hint of the peppers
delightfully creamy mouthfeel... this is very balanced and not super sweet. Taste the cinnamon and chocolate, don't get an overwhelming amount of pepper, even after allowing it to warm

my friend and I both agreed this was a very delicious beer

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Photo of MikeWard
4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into a goblet. 2019 release.

Looks superb in the glass. Black body with a tan head which retains in some form throughout. Leaves only a little lacing.

Aroma is only lightly of cinnamon.

On tasting, the cinnamon is the only real taste here. It's not harsh or bitter at all, quite pleasant in fact. There is a burn in the back of the throat which could be pepper or Cinnamon, hard to tell. No chocolate, vanilla, or coffee flavors.

Mouth closing in on full, finish a warm burn.

Overall, a good enough drink, but I must admit to being a little disappointed. The cinnamon is the only real flavor that comes through, and I was hoping for more complexity.

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Photo of WebbFlyer
4.49/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Dark as night, Thin tan head
S: some what sweet, vanilla and chilis
T: Cinammon, cocoa, vanilla with some sweet pepper heat at the end.
F: very full bodied, thick mouth feel, lingering heat at the end and slightly dry

Very enjoyable, perfect for the season. A world class stout indeed

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Photo of jimmybram
4.41/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Salud, poured into a 12 oz tulip

Look - Black tar. Solid leather head on its shoulders.
Smell - Espresso and vanilla. Hints of cocoa and toasty malts.
Taste - Strong flavors up front with mellow finish. Much better when it warmed. The smells translate to the taste.
Feel - Not overly thick and somewhat dry for such a heavy stout. Actually balances those big flavors out nicely.
Overall - Impressive stout. Dangerously easy to drink; could put down many (sadly Salud kicked that keg almost instantly). Not a ton of subtlety and that is probably why the BA version of this is highly rated. Perfect beer for a cold day.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.49/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color ale with a large dark brown foamy head with good retention and light lacing. Aroma of nice strong floral coffee notes with some black cholate and roasted malt. Taste is also a nice mix of floral coffee notes with some black chocolate notes and light roasted malt notes. Body is full with nice creamy texture and good carbonation with no real alcohol notes really apparent. World-class coffee imperial stout.

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Photo of BlakeT49ers
5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

So smooth. Honestly the chili heat is very subtle. More of a back heat. Definitely chocolate undertones. Malty without being overly sweet. Faint bourbon notes on the nose, likely from the vanilla. Awesome full body.

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Photo of EMH73
4.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an extremely dark brown with a one inch, dense medium brown head that that left minimal spots of lacing. Smells of cinnamon, peppers, chocolate, roasted malt and vanilla. Taste starts of with cinnamon, followed by chili peppers (not overbearing high heat), dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malts, vanilla and a hint of char. Full bodied, light carbonation, thick and creamy mouth feel, dry finish from the cinnamon.

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Photo of Tony210
4.44/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours very dark with an impressive mocha head. Aroma is chocolate and chili’s, roasted malt and a little yeast. Flavor is massive chocolate and fudge, ample cinnamon, sweet vanilla on the finish, Ancho chili heat is pervasive and light crating a little tingle in the back of my throat. Perfect. Carbonation adds to a creamy mouthfeel. Medium to full bodied, thick and creamy. Overall a very enjoyable beer.

750ml bottle
4.5 rating

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Photo of JohnFred4
4.57/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Look: black, whit a brown/reddish/tan minimal head

Smell: wet cinnamon chocolate milk. ice cream.

Taste: cinnamon sticks (not powder), anise, chocolate powder, roast, charcoal, red pepper powder, atole, horchata, more cinnamon. creme.

Feel: oily, heavy, a bit of alcohol kick at the epiglottis. a true meal of a beer.

If you took Negro Modelo, horchata, coffee, and some ceylon cinnamon sticks and steeped them all in a cave for an eon, this is what you would get. if you made mexican candy skulls with the darkest of chocolates, this is what you would get. this is what the dos equis man would drink for desert after a legendary night on the town in mexico city. this is the mexican version of Canadian Breakfast Stout. Now if only we could have a flavored imperial american stout to add to the NAFTA trifecta of Mexico, Canada, and America...I guess the closest we have is Bourbon County Barrel Stout? All are highly sought after and hard to find. do you want a bourbon punch in the face? BCBS. do you want something you could pour on your pancakes? CBS. do you want something to dip your churros into? this is the one.

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Photo of IvoryFoxhole
4.29/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from 2018. Poured into Kane chalice and allowed to warm.

L: Beer is very dark brown. Small brown head with almost no retention, leaves no lacing or anything.

S: Cinnamon, spice, cocoa, roasted malts, a hint of vanilla.

T: Cocoa, cinnamon, and roasted malts up front, but the ancho chili is more present than in most of these beers and I almost would classify it as a chili beer rather than an imperial stout. Spicy, but short of overbearing (individual tastes will vary, of course). Spice does wipe out a bit of the overall picture instead of integrating and that does need to be taken into account as it takes a lot to get in front of the long finish of cacao nibs.

F: More of a moderate body than full, not much carbonation. Construction is very good, balance is pretty good and I think they achieve what they are going for here. Perhaps the more elusive barrel aged softens and rounds the varied components a bit more.

O: It's very good and only a tiny bit short of the hype.

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Photo of mkh012
4.55/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml. bottle at Monk's Cafe.

Pours thick near-black with a thin tan head.

The nose is milk and dark chocolate, cinnamon, maple syrup, graham cracker, and roast. Awesome.

The taste is similar. This reminds me of Kane Mexican Brunch. Chocolate, malt, cola, cinnamon, graham cracker, and light chili. Damn.

The mouthfeel is medium+ but not huge for the ABV. Drinkable.

Overall, world-class.

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Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
2.13/5  rDev -52.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I wake up at night wondering how this beer got so highly overrated. Who paid who? Purchase at your own risk. I can count for a day the number of stouts that surpass this one. If cinnamon is your special thing, I guess try it, otherwise don't waste your high expectations!

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Photo of JBowenGeorgia
4.69/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This just made my list of permawants!
Pours a dark brown with two fingers of mocha head.
Nose is predominantly cinnamon, fresh baked cinnamon rolls, vanilla, light pepper, dark roast.
Taste follows, the cinnamon leads the way, mild pepper heat accompanies it nicely. Vanilla and cocoa seem to balance the cinnamon kick just enough.
Full body, good carb level.
Overall an excellent brew that I will definitely look for again.

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Photo of kitch
4.47/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review #1000, picked something I know is good. A 750ml bottle, bottled in 2017 (I think 27th November 2017). Poured into a snifter glass.

Appearance: Dark dark brown to black in colour with a minimal brown head that dissipated quickly and left only sparse to no lacing.

Aroma: Cinnamon, creamy chocolate, carrot cake, and hints of chili peppers.

Taste: Cinnamon dominates when cooler, but as it warms it gets better as the roastiness, rich chocolate and cocoa, tones down the harshness of too much cinnamon. Only hints of chili spice on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, smooth, full bodied with soft carbonation.

Overall: Cinnamon was too strong and harsh at cooler temperatures, but as it warmed, this was a wonderful balanced sipper.

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Photo of ChrisMon02
4.6/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What an experience. Tons of cinnamon, vanilla and a lingering roastiness that balances the beer perfectly. Definately worthy of the high rating. The only flaw is the peppers could be a bit spicier but that is me being picky. Get this if you can.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.89/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

This was poured into a snifter.
The appearance was a beautiful dark black close to jet black color with a quickly dissipating cap of a little off white to tan foamy head softly dissipating to leave some sly lace.
The aroma captured a delicate nuanced blend of ancho chili peppers, cacao nibs and cinnamon sticks. Somewhat seems to bring a slight toasty effect, dark toast mainly.
The flavor seemed to mesh finely but all of the way through the dark and milk chocolate sweet to bitterness gently flowing through the ancho chili spice and cinnamon stick. Quick semi-dry cinnamony aftertaste with a touch of dark chocolate.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a fair sipping quality about it. Good carbonation and ABV. Semi-dry with some cinnamon to ancho chili harshness invading my tongue. Nice finish with dried chili pepper to cinnamon quality about it.
Overall, what a damn nice imperial stout with a stellar creativity about it. Of course, I'd have this again. This is the cream of the crop coming from the state of Missouri!

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Photo of Lingenbrau
4.29/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a one year, four month old bottle...

There's motor oil, then there's Abraxas. I mean thick fudge plops out of the bottle and pools in the glass like cooling lava. It's pitch black and one smooth mass. Above sits a thin espresso foam, creamy looking, and I don't think it's going anywhere.

Intriguing aroma. Starts off with straight booze and chocolate. Slowly, it morphs into what I can only describe as cola blended with a Little Debbie fudge brownie, complete with toasted nut toppings.

But wow does the flavor take a different approach. Chocolate and cinnamon with a pinch of nutmeg. Vanilla creeps in just enough to be noticed, but not prevelent. Still has that overall cola aspect to it as well, but this has some good depth to it. As it warms, the chili flavor actually does become very defined. Nice.

This is indeed smooth, but not as smooth as I was expecting based on looks, especially considering the additional age. I guess I mean it's not as creamy. It has a tingly carbonation to it that surprisingly cuts through. Well balanced and not as sweet as I was expecting either. A touch of spice is a nice one. 10% abv? No way. It can't be. That's some good coverage.

Abraxas is a damn fine and unique stout. Worth $25? Eh, maybe not. I would never say no to a pour though. I can imagine the barrel does wonders to this thing. Someday perhaps.


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Photo of beergoot
4.57/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bright and deeply dark brown body with a thin yet dense and creamy tan head. Beautiful aroma of earthy spices; cocoa; curry; chili; fresh ground coffee beans. The flavor amplifies the smells with additional qualities of cinnamon and a nearly whiskey-like booziness. Heavy body; velvety and lush; sweet but not sweet; warm but not hot; chewy.

I've long heard of this beer and have been waiting for a chance to try it, and, boy, the wait was worth it! This beer is a poster-beer for depth, complexity and balance, especially for dark ales. I can only say that if rich and complex dark beers are your thing (or you would like to try one), Abraxas would be a fine starting point. Now, if only I can find a barrel-aged version...

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Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

'10.30.17' is the bottling date for this 750ml bottle.
Nearly black opaque colored body, with a tiny point of garnet back lit light. Thin cap upon pouring recedes to bubble fed ring. The bubbles left behind with each sip slide back down into body.
Aroma of dark roasted malts, cinnamon, and slight whiff of peppers.
Taste brings forth the cacao chocolate experience, along with the cinnamon, and chilies. Solid malt foundation.
Medium plus mouth feel, somewhat thick and sticky. Carbonation brings along an interesting beer body surface show.
One of my favorites over the years. This one has faced a bit but is still solidly balanced and well mannered. Slight sweetness with minimal bitterness. The cacao and cinnamon are such well performing components here.

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Photo of Rristow
4.77/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Tasted on draft. Pours black with dark brown head. Aroma of cinnamon, chocolate and a hint of peppers. A lot going on for taste. Cinnamon and cocoa up front with some caramel and molasses to follow. Slight pepper finish. Very well done.

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Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 99 out of 100 with 2947 ratings