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Abraxas | Perennial Artisan Ales

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
98
world-class
271 Reviews
AbraxasAbraxas
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial Stout brewed with Ancho Chiles, Cacao Nibs, Vanilla Beans & Cinnamon Sticks.

2011 - 100 cases
2012 - 200 cases

Added by jmvecchio1 on 12-16-2011

BEER STATS
Reviews:
271
Ratings:
2,228
Avg:
4.42
pDev:
8.14%
 
 
Wants:
1,215
Gots:
654
For Trade:
72
User Reviews
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Reviews: 271 | Ratings: 2,228
Photo of BratchAttack
1.24/5  rDev -71.9%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Awful! Last years Abraxas was great, but this year's bottle was terrible. No carbonation what so ever, waaaaay to spicy, overly bitter, and just complete crap in evey way. It taste like they threw a bunch of random shit into a brew kettle without measuring and didn't give it any care throughout the brewing process. I want my $20 back.

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Photo of sukwonee
1.5/5  rDev -66.1%

ughh... can't believe this beer is rated this high.

Spice is too over powering and nasty.... to me it tastes very artificial (although probably not).

We had KBS, Grey Monday, and then this... even in this order this beer/spice was so... obnoxiously fragrant and overpowering, our tasting group couldn't finish this bottle.

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Photo of pagriley
3.04/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 2

Pure cinnamon bomb. If you like cinnamon go for it, but if you want anything other than a smooth stout with an arse load of cinnamon steer clear.

Poured well, smelled OK, but nothing (not even the chilies) made it through the cinnamon. Harsh finish with a touch of what felt like fusel alcohol. Feel was good, but then you remembered how overpowering the cinnamon was and gagged anyway...

Had this on 2 separate occasions, and age does tame it down a bit, but Huna and Prairie Bomb achieve significantly better balance of flavors

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Photo of KSOZE
3.34/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Very underwhelmed. Put hype aside and did blind test with other spiced stouts and this came in a unanimous dead last. Like brushing your teeth with a cinnamon stick - and not in a good way. Also got a grassy/weedy flavor that was not my favorite. A bit let down.

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Photo of SportsandJorts
3.43/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pours a walnut color just short of black. a finger of tan head with weak retention. opaque due to the darkness but lets some light through the very edges.

Smell: peppers, cinnamon and chocolate to mocha.

Taste: opens with spicy peppers, some cinnamon filters in. mocha and chocolate. notes of espresso but with a bit of smoothness from vanilla. some booze and ends with a bit more pepper

Mouthfeel: heavy , strong carbonation and some heat from the peppers.

Overall: strong spices and could be more chocolatey. If your into spiced beers go for it but I prefer more malt character

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Photo of kojevergas
3.58/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled 11/2013. 750ml brown glass bottle with appealing brown label art and branded silver pry-off pressure cap acquired earlier today at a local CO bottle shop and served into an Odell stem-snifter/tulip hybrid glass in me friend's gaff in high altitude Fort Collins, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given its reputation and current 96 rating. 10% ABV confirmed per the label. Reviewed as a chili imperial stout.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a gorgeous rich dark tan colour head of one finger width. Fantastic creaminess and thickness. Beautifully soft shiny complexion. Lovely even consistency. The head is wonderful, but recedes inside two minutes - likely due to the high ABV. No real lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes, nor can I get any to stick by tilting the glass.

Body colour is a predictable opaque solid jet black. No floating yeast particles or sediment is visible.

Overall, it's a gorgeous looking stout with an impressive head. I'd call it a special appearance, but it isn't unique. There are no flaws here

Sm: Hidden roast, heavy cacao nib dust, chocolate malts, dark malts, dusty powdered chilis (but no overt spice or heat), rich cinnamon dust, and cream. Some burnt/caramelized sugars.

Really appealing.

The cinnamon obscures the chilis, but overall I'm really impressed. A mouthwatering aroma of mild strength. I can't wait to try it.

No yeast character, hop character, or overt alcohol is detectable.

T: Dark malts, cocoa powder/dust, chocolate malts, milk chocolate, caramel, caramelized/burnt sugars, well-integrated cinnamon spice, a faint hint of chili heat, brown/muscavado sugar, and cream. Cocoa dust is dominant, and boy is that note executed well here. A bit ashy and burnt. Any vanilla is pretty tame, and doesn't evoke authentic vanilla bean (or artificial vanillicin).

Very well balanced, though there isn't a great deal of complexity (relative to the style) or subtlety. It isn't an intricate brew, but the subtle chili pepper lends it some interesting nuance and the cinnamon is a nice touch.

Above average depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour. Very cohesive, but not quite gestalt.

Mf: Creamy, smooth, and wet. Thick and full-bodied. Unrefreshing. Really good presence on the palate. Comforting, approachable, and somewhat soft. A biteen overcarbonated.

Not too sticky.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, or harsh.

Dr: Drinkable for the 10% ABV, but the ABV isn't that well hidden. I quite like it, and I'd certainly order it again at a bar, but I don't know that it's world class. It's almost a unique take on an imperial stout, and I love the subtlety of the chili pepper. I'll have to try more beers from Perennial. This one is damn solid.

The mouthfeel is a highlight for me, but the earthiness of the flavour profile detracts from the beer overall.

Low B

***
12/29/15 impression of a 2014 vintage:

B

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Photo of thebigredone
3.59/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Jason for sharing this bottle. High expectations for this.

Looks great coming out of the bottle. Good color and nice tan head.

Smell isn't quite what I was expecting. Not much stout aroma, heavy on the pepper and cinnamon.

Taste - Starts out with heavy pepper, some cinnamon, and a touch of cocoa. Sounds great in writing, not so good in actuality. The pepper and cinnamon flavors were unpleasant, and there was not enough balance between the stout and the additions. No heat from the peppers comes through, also no vanilla that I could detect.

Mouthfeel is fine.

Overall, I was incredibly disappointed with this beer. It seems this has to do with my palate as opposed to getting a bad bottle, as the other tasting group members all really enjoyed it. I couldn't even finish my 4 oz taster of this. I did really enjoy Hunahpu, so I'm not sure why Abraxas didn't work for me, but it's not a beer I would seek to drink again.

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Photo of champ103
3.64/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours a near opaque black color. A small tan cap forms that leaves no lace.
S: I get overwhelmingly cinnamon spice and sugary sweetness all the way. Maybe light roast and chocolate. Though the cinnamon sticks are the show here.
T: Like the nose, cinnamon sticks, clove allspice. Really sweet, with some chocolate that becomes more noticeable as this warms. I don't get much else. The stout is overwhelmed by the cinnamon.
M/O: A big thick and inky/oily body. Really viscous, but still smooth around the edges. It is a big stout, and outside the cinnamon there is not much here. Though still easy to drink, and considering the large sweetness was surprised at how easy this went down.

In many way, this reminds me of Saint Arnold Pumpkinator. A big beer that is more on the cinnamon spiced side of the spectrum and not the stout side. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but it becomes to one noted. With the cinnamon, allspice, clove, sugary sweet aspect, just not among my favorite stouts. That said, it is still enjoyable, but not exceptional IMO.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.66/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle. Pours dark brown-black with a huge creamy brown head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is sweet fudgy chocolate with some cinnamon and spice. Kind of smells like a Mexican mocha. Alcohol comes out as it warms.

The flavor is sweet fudgy lactic chocolate with some cinnamon and spicy chili with a bitter roast finish and some booze and black licorice. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and creamy.

Overall, very interesting with a lot going on. Everything doesn't blend real well - the chocolate is a bit too sweet, the roast is a bit too bitter, the black licorice is a bit strong. It would be interesting to try this aged to see if it mellows some. It is a bit pricey at $22 a bottle.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in color and almost flat. The aroma is almost herbal. Very much spicy, but it has an almost ginger aroma to it, though the chili peppers and cinnamon are there. Lots of licorice and roasted malt, too. The flavor is quite a bit sweeter than expected. Licorice, molasses, and burnt sugar to go with a bit of chocolate. The same chili character with a dash of cinnamon. Certainly an intensely flavored beer.

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Photo of Etan
3.71/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle shared by Jason. Thanks!

A: Thick, oily black body with a nice milk chocolate-colored head.

S: Greenish pepper is most apparent, followed by cinnamon and chocolate notes. Pretty rich aroma - smells like a Mexican chocolate cake.

T: Cinnamon, bitter roasted malt, dark chocolate, some moderate pepper heat and slightly astringent vegetal pepper flavor. The pepper flavor, along with the roasted malt, gives the beer a somewhat off-putting bitterness.

M: Thick-bodied, moderate carbonation.

O: Although the spicing and base beer seem to have the potential to be really good together, the pepper flavors are throwing the beer off. I think the barrel-aged version is far superior, in part because the pepper flavor seems more subdued.

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Photo of Xenoreactive
3.71/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L: Pitch black. Looks like a slightly viscous texture. Next to no head.
S: Smells faintly of cinnamon, nutmeg, toffee. Too faint for a spiced stout.
T: Was expecting alot more. Solid imperial stout base with a few hints of the pepper, cinnamon and malt. Has a slight cereal flavor to it.
F: Relatively low carbonation. Was expecting a more sticky texture, but it's fairly thin.

O: Was expecting alot more. Truly a hype beer, since there are alot of spiced imperial stouts that taste better. This reminded me of a cinnamony Stone Xocoveza. Price is double its actual value.

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Photo of jaasen64
3.71/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle thanks to Auror to bringing this to the tasting. Poured into Founders snifter, shared 3 ways.

A- Pours a completely opaque dark black with about a finger of very creamy mocha brown head that has decent retention and leaves some spotty lacing.

S- Lots of cinnamon followed by light chilis and some chocolate. Definitely above average aroma strength. Kind of a little bit too much cinnamon and overall the smell is a little bit off-putting, definitely unique though.

T- Lots of cinnamon, some light chili peppers that don't add too much heat but a little bit of flavor, finishes with some dark chocolate mixed with light cinnamon that lingers on the palate. Interesting, not as off-putting as the aroma, but not bad. Chili builds a little bit as you drink but never too hot.

M- Creamy, a tiny bit thin for a double, smooth, a tiny bit syrupy but not bad. Easy to drink.

O- This was definitely an interesting beer. I wouldn't say I completely liked the taste but it was definitely an interesting try that I enjoyed having. I would have definitely toned down the cinnamon a little bit, I found that to be a tiny bit off putting but not bad. I'd recommend trying this if you like unique stouts.

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Photo of Sir_Whats-his-face
3.84/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A solid imperial stout to be sure, but it's not nearly as unique an idea as it used to be, so I can't say it's worth such a hefty price tag. I'd probably rate it higher if it weren't so deliberately hard to get, but as it stands, it's not really worth the hassle.

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Photo of stakem
3.84/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Kegatron for the share. 750ml bottle poured into a snifter. The brew appears black in color with a khaki head that holds decent. This smells nutty with chocolate, licorice, roast and coffee. The taste is more like earthy licorice and anise meets char, tobacco and peppers. This is medium in body with modest carbonation. Overall not a bad brew but considering the hype and hysteria ive heard over this beer I guess I was expecting a little more. Wouldnt mind revisiting this one again but considering the price and rarity I doubt id chase after it.

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Photo of Bdawg1
3.85/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured black with a nice off white head. Smells of chocolate covered peppers and cinnamon. Thick mouthfeel with very complex flavor profile. I'm not partial to peppers in beer but I think with a little age this will change my mind!

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Photo of Auracom
3.86/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another old review to be ticked in. Thanks to Marc for the share and Mike for the pour. 4 oz. into a generic snifter on September 2nd, 2013.

A - Not quite black coloring, but a super dark body with semi-dark toffee head. Quite frothy but minimal retention and lacing. Slightly filmy across the sides.

S - Plentiful dark cocoa. Cinnamon, caramelized brown sugar, and almost lactose-like. It really smells like a Starbucks mocha latte.

T - Dry, deeply roasted espresso. Strong, strong dark chocolate. I maybe sense a hint of the pepper skins but this has aged a few months and it's very minimal by now.

M - Medium-heavy body, very dry. Low carbonation, long bitter finish.

D - I can see why this is a great base for a barrel treatment. It's pretty similar to Hunahpu's but doesn't have anywhere near the same heftyness to it.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.88/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Hops and Pie, I was glad to get to try this for significantly less than the $20 that bottles are (over)priced at around here. Dark black, tan head, looks good. Aroma is cinnamon and the slightest hint of pepper. Flavor seemed heavier on the cinnamon with discernible vanilla, not much pepper on the flavor. My friend said it reminded her of cinnamon life cereal. I liked this beer but I could never pay $20 for a 750, more like $10.

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Photo of weatherdog
3.91/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL bottle poured into tulip glass.

Pour is deep chocolate brown with a nice size mocha colored head. Minimal retention and medium head retention.

Aroma is fairly mild, hint of cinnamon, some roast and sweetness. Nothing spectacular but nothing bad.

The chilli picks up in the taste, lots of roast (much more than the nose suggests). Chocolate and then some cinnamon. The flavors are fairly integrated and one doesn't stand out more than the other.

Creamy mouthfeel with present back end carbonation. Minimal back end heat with chillies.

I really enjoyed my first beer from Perennial. It's no fresh Hunaphu but it's still enjoyable

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Photo of inlimbo77
3.94/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750ml, 2012 batch
Lost Abbey TEKU

A: Pitch black. No light gets through. Looks pretty thick, but having side by side with Hunahpu it's not as thick as that. Alcohol feet. Some dark tan bits of lacing.

S: Lots of cinnamon here. Roast notes. Dark chocolate fudge. Herbal spiciness.

T: I hope you like cinnamon, which normally I do. This was almost like a dark winter warmer to me. The spice bill completely dominates the beer. I wish that the chocolate and the roast and the fudge/vanilla were played up more. Big beer. Round sip. Lingering spice on the end of the palate.

M: Full bodied.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.96/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Bottled 11/2015.

3.75 A: Black color. One finger of light brown creamy head. Retention is about what you'd expect from a beer this big and a few wisps of lacing are left.

4.0 S: Quite sweet overall. It starts and finishes with dark chocolate and cocoa nibs. Slight vegetal pepper from the anchos which meshes well with the cinnamon and vanilla. Just a touch of dark roast coffee with stronger molasses and caramel. Supple roastiness that falls behind the chocolate sweetness. It's a bit more mellow than I was expecting, but it's still pretty good.

4.0 T: Despite the nose having just hints of coffee in it, the taste is a borderline coffee bomb. Again the chiles, cinnamon, and vanilla are mellow and complementary. Just a touch of heat is realized. Sweet chocolate would be the dominant flavor if the coffee wasn't so abundant. Moderately sweet throughout but with a roasty bitter finish. Again, this is good, but the flavors aren't as impressive as the reputation might suggest.

3.75 M: Lighter heavy body. Good moderate carbonation. Mild-moderate creaminess and a mild heat that builds some momentum as it is consumed.

4.0 D: It's a good beer, but I was expecting quite a bit more. Honestly, it doesn't hold a candle to the regular Speedway Stout that I had a couple nights ago. This mixed with the fact that this costs a ton more and is infinitely harder to get a bottle of makes me okay if I never have this again.

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Photo of corby112
3.96/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pitch black and completely opaque with a one finger mocha head that immediately fades into a thin ring. Minimal spotty lacing left behind. Nice color but this beer has poor head retention and lacks lacing.

Slightly spicy, roasted dark malt aroma with silky dessert-like sweetness and a zesty pepper presence. Lots of cinnamon and chili pepper in the nose along with faint vanilla bean. Decent amour of robust dark malt with coffee bean, burnt sugar, toast and oatmeal. Luscious silky chocolate character with cocoa bean, bakers chocolate, caramel, toffee and moist chocolate cake. Smells pretty good with a nice balance of spice, peppers, roast and sweeter malt. Was expecting more pepper but there's a decent amount of chocolate and cinnamon.

Fuller end of medium body with a blast of spicy cinnamon and a zesty pepper kick that lingers throughout. The cinnamon is really, really strong and along with the chili dominates the palate. Underneath, there is a complex malt bill with robust dark roast and dessert-like chocolate sweetness. Cocoa really comes through as it warms with fudge and molasses sweetness. Slightly burnt tasting but not acrid with coffee, charred toast, oatmeal and subtle smoke. Smoked peppers are strong and cinnamon is a bit overpowering. chocolate malts balance things out with some dessert/cake sweetness, licorice and caramel. Nice beer but the spices are a bit strong for my preference, making this beer slightly one dimensional. My palate adjusted to the heat/peppers after a while and I'm really enjoying those flavors.

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Photo of DCon
3.98/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought a 750ml 1 pt 9.4 fl oz. bottle @ the iTap House in Chesterfield, MO for $20 & Shared w/ ChrisF. Poured from the Dark Brown Labeled bottle w/ ABRAXAS cleverly branded into a 12oz Snifter Glass. Has "bottled 11/2011" on the side of the label.

Aroma- Has a coffee aroma from the beginning with light booziness. Rich malts then come through and a slight amount of hop. Double Coffee Stout aroma?

Appearance- Pours a 1 finger head that is dark brown and lasts for an average amount of time. Has a dark brown colored body that you can't see past. Leaves dark suds behind.

Flavor- Tons of coffee, malt, and sweetness make up this brew. Very rich and has a nice amount of intensity. Finishes with a medium bitterness level.

Mouthfeel- Full Bodied, Light Carbonation, Textured with grit that wasn't very favorable, and then leaves bit of alcohol with coffee behind.

Overall Impression- A nice 2X Stout and one of my favorites now from Perennial Ales! I'm glad the St. Louis beer community has grown so much in the past year to be able to enjoy nice ones such as these. The only part of this brew I didn't enjoy was the gritty finish... Would like to age one of these and see how it grows this next year!

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Photo of zerocrane
3.98/5  rDev -10%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- perfect for pour. 1.5 finger tan head with great lacing

S - Boozy... Rum, with dark fruits and propery.

T - melo compared to Nose. Almost no carbonation. Everything comes together wel. Nose screamed rum, but taste screams white wine barrels

Mf. - surprisingly light with little carbonation

Overall. Meh... It's a good stout. Not great, but it didn't really dissapoint

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.02/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Haymarket in NYC.

6 ounce pour in a snifter. Smell is spicy with cinnamon. Almost too spiced. Notes of chocolate and vanilla even things out.

The flavor is initially just as overwhelmingly spicy as the nose was, but as I let it sit, it integrates a bit and the chocolatte emerges along with vanilla and coffee and roasted malt notes.

Not sure if it was the taps I had this from, but both this and Sump felt a bit undercarbonated, to the point of being flat, but at the same time, it kind of accentuates the creamy, full mouthfeel.

I'll say it once, I'll say it again, Xocoveza undermined every highly tradable spiced stout. This is good, but there's comparable for cheaper prices and more accessible.

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Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
98 out of 100 based on 271 ratings.
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