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Abraxas | Perennial Artisan Ales

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BA SCORE
98
world-class
286 Reviews
AbraxasAbraxas
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States
perennialbeer.com

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:
286
Ratings:
2,326
Avg:
4.43
pDev:
22.8%
 
 
Wants:
1,199
Gots:
693
For Trade:
77
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 286 | Ratings: 2,326
Photo of LiquidAmber
4.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours pitch black with virtually no signs of carbonation, although a thin ring of light brown bubbles forms around the edges of the glass. Nice aroma of sweet dark toasted malt, cinnamon, chocolate and a hint of hot peppers, quite reminiscent of Mexican chocolate. Flavor follows, with rich chocolaty dark toasted malt, cinnamon, vanilla and a pleasant, light chili burn in the finish. Medium to heavy creamy body and adequate carbonation in the mouth feel despite the visible absence. A very nice, velvety and rich chocolate and spice infused stout. The resemblance to Mexican chocolate is appealing and flavorful. Spicing and the chilis are done deftly. Very tasty and enjoyable. The price point is scary, but it delivers on the taste and experience.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
4.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black color with a quickly fading khaki head. Dark Chocolate, chilies, cinnamon, wood, and some vanilla notes dominate the nose. The flavor profile matches the nose with the dark chocolate most noticeable and a nice lingering burn from the chilies and spices on the finish. Cinnamon and spices become more noticeable as it warms up. This beer reminds me so much of Cigar City’s most sought after Hunaphu beers which is why I enjoyed this beer!

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Photo of Jwale73
4.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours one shade shy of black with a loose, mocha-colored head that quickly dissipates. Nose expresses ethanol, ground coffee, cocoa and cinnamon. Taste follows nose; however, the cinnamon is much more evident in the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body, perhaps a bit thin for the style, with an almost still carbonation and some residual heat at the back. Overall, a solid offering; however, a fuller mouthfeel would enhance this beer.

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Photo of d5001986
4.22/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into Spiegelau tulip.

A: Pours very smooth and slowly, just like motor oil. Appears a deep inky black with a finger of caramel-colored head.

S: Slight booziness. Roasted malt, coffee, vanilla, cinnamon, molasses, and just faintly of chili peppers.

T: Damn, the richness smacks you in the face. Pretty sweet, not cloying, but a tad much for my tastes. The first thing I get is lots of cinnamon and vanilla. Next is chili pepper, accompanied by the slight burn. There is a bit of roasted coffee presence as well. All in all, nice, but gets a tad overwhelming, like drinking a sweet cinnamon cookie. It does get better as it warms.

M: Definitely the thickest beer I've ever had. It's like drinking eggnog. Coats the entire mouth and just sticks there. Some might call it 'chewy'. Very smooth and creamy. No carbonation comes through in a beer this heavy. Couldn't ask for more in an Imperial Stout.

O: As I mentioned, it's like drinking a cookie. Quite sweet, which can get overwhelming as you get further into the bottle. Good complexity of flavor, not as much chili pepper as others I've had. Definitely a bottle you want someone to share with. Someday I hope to the opportunity to try the BA version.

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Photo of blankenhoney
4.22/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle from November 2014, enjoyed from a snifter today, March 24, 2015

A: Thick, almost syrupy burnt brown with a dark mocha head. Definitely getting some garnet tones there, though that might just be my mind projecting the Abraxas label onto the glass. Good-looking stuff

S: Lots going on here: cinnamon in spades, cola and rootbeer, ripe cherries, raw hot peppers or maybe Red Hots, and tree bark. Good stuff individually, but the nose didn't quite come together for me. More of a mishmash (of good aromas), not "well integrated."

T: Lots of quite bitter dark chocolate, sweet cinnamon, chocolate-covered espresso beans, a bit of cherries and ripe red fruit, and some pepper skin. Chili heat is present, too. Again, lots of good elements at play here, but they just don't come together or blend that well: one or another of the flavors tends to dominate each sip, rather than each component being present in each sip.

M: Just right, I think. Not too thick: smooth, lightly carbed, and a touch viscous. Nice tingle (rather than a burn) on the finish. Aftertaste is dry, bitter, and charred.

O: Really good stuff. Lots of great elements at work on the nose and the flavor profile, but those elements tend to clash against -- rather than complement -- each other. So not as complex or outstanding a beer as Huna, but very enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of birchstick
4.22/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - pours black with a 1 finger, chocolaty head

S - nose is really chocolaty (rich and dark) with notes of vanilla and spicy, ancho chillies

T - starts of with sweeter chocolate flavors that morph into dark, dry chocolates. A modicum of vanilla comes through toward the back and is overtaken by the heat of the chillies. I think the cinnamon got lost in the mix somewhere (I couldn't pick it out). Nice complexity, the chocolates and chillies provide a nice balance as well.

M - medium body, creamy with a little carbonation

D - solid effort by the folks at Perennial. The price is a little steep, but I went out and bought a bottle after having it on tap. I look forward to trying it again. Recommended!

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Photo of SammyJaxxxx
4.23/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look and smell were great.
A little bit too much heat for my taste. I'm doing my best to rate to style and my personal tastes.
I can tell this is an incredibly well made beer. However, this is one is not for me.

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Photo of Rutager
4.24/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2012 bottle. Thanks Willandperry!!

Appearance. Pours thick and black with over two fingers of dark tan head, great retention.

Smell. Cinnamon and sweet dark chocolate, some vanilla and a light herbal, almost peppermint like smell that must be at least partially from the chillies.

Taste. Dark dark chocolate and woody cinnamon, with a nice herbal spiciness that lingers a while.

Mouthfeel. Full body, slightly sticky, low carbonation.

Overall. A nice big stout with lots of herbal spice going on. I don't understand the hype on this one, but a good brew for sure.

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Photo of Pray_For_Mojo
4.24/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On draft, poured into a snifter.

Appearance: black, thick looking with a coffee-and-cream colored head.

Aroma: this beer smells like waffle batter. Cinnamon and bready with maybe a hint of maple syrup. The cinnamon is the dominant aroma, though.

Flavor: French toast w/o syrup. Sweet, cinnamon and bready. The chili flavor comes through but without much heat, although the heat reaches very mild levels as the beers warms closer to room temperature. No alcohol or alcoholic heat in the flavor. Definitely a unique flavor profile, and the chilis add a great flavor component and another depth. There is no alcohol heat in this beer, but each sip is warming as it goes down. Is that the alcohol or the chilis?

Mouthfeel: medium to medium-heavy. The body is right at the mid-point between the uber-hyped BA-rated imperial stouts.

Overall: Good but not great. However, in the week that has lapsed since my tasting, my opinion of this beer and the impression it made on me are trending upward. I would not seek out this beer, but I would likely buy it if I came across it. Better Imperial Stouts are readily available at this price point - or less; Nebraska Brewing BA Black Betty comes to mind. As another comparison, I drank Abraxas side by side with a Prairie Bomb, and the Abraxas was considerably better.

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Photo of circuitmonkey
4.24/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

On draft.

Only spicy chile on the nose. Strong taste of vanilla and even more cinnamon with some restrained chile spice at the end... Probably the best beer I've had including Chile (it's often overdone).

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Photo of joe1510
4.24/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

9oz Pour
$9
Tribes Alehouse - Tinley Park, IL

A black hole of a liquid is set in front of me in a tiny little snifter. A dense mocha head rests on top of the body with an almost purple tint. Tiny carbonation bubbles crawl up the glass to keep the head intact throughout the entire drink while sheet lacing gets left behind. This is one handsome stout.

The nose is intense but well integrated. A big hit of cocoa kicks things off before slightly smokey, earthy ancho joins the fray. Subtle vanilla and baking spices (cinnamon mostly) lay across the top of coffee, chocolate malts, doughiness and moderate roast to make for an appetizing nose.

Robust cocoa again leads the way. Vanilla, cinnamon, and earthy ancho bring about thoughts of a holiday cookies. The ancho also lends a touch of leathery smokiness. All those attributes are wrapped around coffee, chocolate malt, and an approachable roast. Nice depth and complexity.

The body is silky but robust. Smooth but sticky. As a matter of fact my only complaint about this beer is that it's slightly stickier than I would have liked but that's minor. The weight is on the higher side of the spectrum while the feel remains creamy.

The depth alone makes this a beer worth seeking out. I've always been a sucker for the Mexican style stouts and Abraxas is no exception. The ancho works well with cocoa, vanilla, and cinnamon for an alcoholic, dense Mexican style hot chocolate of sorts.

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.24/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the brewery
The beer pours jet black with a thin dark tan was that fizzles into a thin halo with little lacing (slightly oily residue) and no sediment. The nose is marshmallow-vanilla, chilies, and some bitter cocoa on the back end. It's not potently aromatic, but all the different notes come through in time. The taste is sweet and marshmallowy upfront, but there is much more distinct cocoa compared to the nose. It's full bodied, lightly carbonated, has rich and distinct flavors, masked alcohol, and a slight heat from the chilies in the finish. This is a fantastic stout, with a rich, full body, bold adjuncts, and seductive drinkability

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #62 (Mar 2012):

LOOK: Black, dense brown head

SMELL: Unsweetened chocolate, soft charcoal, mild chili peppers, cinnamon, plum pudding, figs, espresso

TASTE: Cinnamon, light molasses, silky, full body, mild chili warmth, dense chocolate, burnt raisins, French roast coffee, charred bread crust, warming alcohol, sweet roasty finish

A heavy name for a heavy beer. Sometimes beer can be so serious and deep that you can get lost as it unfolds with each sip. Complexity meets drinkability with a dull warning of strength. It is beers of this character that further forge what American beer is and represent the intentions of craft brewers. Search this beauty out.

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Photo of cbutova
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tampa visit review dump. Full notes to IPad during consumption, thanks Sonny!

A- Pure black to a snifter. Tan cap to under a finger with a frothy creamy consistency. Medium ring means spotty lace and a few sheets.

S- Huge earthy cinnamon leads the way for vegetal charred anchos, huge raisins, cocoa powder, charred barley and something like vanilla sweetness.

T- Again a massive earthy and woody cinnamon leads the flavor all the way. Beyond that is pretty much the aroma with cocoa, coffee, vanilla sweets, brown sugar, raisins and dark dry fruits, hot chocolate and some chile spiciness.

MF- Thick body but a shade toward the medium side of things. Slick decadence and a texture overall that is creamy and foamy. Finishes with warmth, chile heat and roasty bitterness.

Sort of in the Hunahpus and Xocoveza league but this one falls a bit short of them both for me. Great profile of dark roasted character with all of the fun stuff added.

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Photo of KillerJigger
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thick with a dark head that dissipates quickly. Viscous with cinnamon at the forefront of smell and taste. Didnt get the spice as much as i would like. Solid beer!

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Photo of mdfb79
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

From 05/15/13 notes. Had this on tap at Pony Bar on the UES in NYC during their one year anniversary party.

a - Pours a pitch black one color with one to two inches of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Looks like a very nice big stout.

s - Smells of roasted malts, sweet milk chocolate, green peppers, cinnamon, toasted malts, vanilla, cocoa, light coffee, light sugar and molasses, and some cream. Very nice nose; super complex but nothing dominates it, which I liked a lot. Sometimes when I hear a beer is brewed with so many different ingredients I feel like you can only make out one or two of them, but this one works great; you can really smell the chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, and peppers at different times.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, green bell peppers, cinnamon, vanilla, dark chocolate, cocoa, toasted malts, burnt malts, and molasses. Taste has a little more cinnamon and vanilla than the nose, and a lot more pepper. I didn't find it spicy at all, but for more earthy, green bell peppers from it. Very nice, though a little too much pepper taste for me; a big step down from the nose.

m - Medium to full bodied stout and low to moderate carbonation. Body is pretty smooth and not much spice or alcohol heat. Very nice body.

o - Overall I was very excited for this one and I liked it a lot. I think the nose is amazing and complex, and it looks and feels great. The taste is good, though the weak point of the beer for me, as it has a lot of peppers to it. Not a spicy chili pepper taste, but more an earthy bell pepper taste. I would see how a bourbon barrel would mute the peppers and make a very good stout into a world class stout. Would love to get a bottle of the BA version.

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Photo of Kevinpitts
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had 2014 edition with about one year of age on it. Cinnamon shows through on this beer. Not sweet like many beers of this nature. More of a spicy cinnamon up front flavor. Certainly good, but would love to try the barrel aged version. I imagine that the barrel aging would do wonders to this.

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Photo of JamesStreet
4.26/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A- Deep brown with thick, foamy light brown head. Looks like a coke. S- cinnamon, baking spices like nutmeg, a slight vanilla nose. Faint cocoa. T- cinnamon and peppery spice comes to the forefront. Not as big a chocolate presence as I would have thought. Very little alcohol presence. M- super creamy, rich feel. Perfect carb and rolls down the back of the pallet easily. O- really solid imp stout. Not too peppery; maybe a bit too heavy on the cinnamon/baking spice edge.

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Photo of floridadrift
4.26/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Holy Cinnamon and Ancho Chiles. Its got a good aftertaste but its pretty strong on the front end. You almost have difficulty swallowing between the ABV, cinnamon and the chiles. Body is great, head is also very nice but it's a little unbalanced on the sip.

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Photo of James_Michaud91
4.26/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Most of the adjuncts are well balanced and come through nicely in the beer, just a touch too strong on the cinnamon front for me. Kind of distracted from the overall experience. Should be interesting with some age on it.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.27/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served alongside Cigar City Hunahpu's.

The beer is black and viscous with an oily beige collar. Aromas of heavy cinnamon with some peppery heat. Vanilla and chocolate are there as well, but in the background a bit. Really nice flavor, with cinnamon leading the way. Rich, roasted malt with hints of coffee. Thick body with a delicate sweetness throughout. While Hunahpu's still reigns supreme, in my opinion, Abraxas is certainly a delicious and well crafted beer well worth seeking out.

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Photo of shand
4.28/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter.

Coming from Tampa, FL, the land of Hunahpu, it'll be interesting to see another brewery's taste on the formula. This beer pours out deep black with two fingers of thick, mocha head. The aroma is more heavy on the cinnamon and chocolate than the roast, with a surprising amount of smoked character to it as well. Some of this might come from the Ancho chilis, which don't have a high level of heat, but plenty of spicy flavor. The taste is pretty heavily spiced with the cinnamon and the flavors of the chili. The chili really dominates this beer without contributing much heat at all. There's some roast, coffee, and vanilla in here for sure too, especially in the beginning. The mouthfeel isn't really that heavy, and it goes down fairly slickly. Some more heft on the body wouldn't hurt, but the heavy chili flavor excuses some of it. The drinkability is actually quite good. Overall, it's a good chili imperial stout. Come in expecting chili flavors without the heat, and you'll be happy.

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Photo of Zoomslowik
4.28/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L- deep brown, slight reddish hue around the edges. Not much head or lacing.

S- cinnamon and chili heat.

T- I got different flavors at different times. My first half glass I got quite a bit of spice (cinnamon and chili), though not unpleasant. As I kept drinking, the flavors smoothed out a bit and I got a lot more chocolate.

F- not much carbonation. Creamy.

O- It's well done, but I can't decide how much I like it. At times, the spice overpowers the other flavors. At others it mellows and I enjoy it more. If I get my hands on another one, I'll try to let it warm up a bit first.

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Photo of brentk56
4.28/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: A great looking obsidian-colored stout arrives at the bar, with a massive head that leaves sheets of lacing behind

Smell: Chocolate, coffee, chile and cinnamon aromas all waft upwards from the beer

Taste: Chocolate and coffee flavors dominate the front end with cinnamon appearing in the middle; after the swallow, heat from the chile peppers hits the taste buds though the lasting impression, in the finish, is from the cinnamon

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Really nice and complex flavors though the cinnamon is a bit too strong in the finish; still, a keeper

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Photo of OneEye78
4.29/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2014 bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a dark black with a 2-inch brown head. Smell was cinnamon, some vanilla, and a hint of black licorice. Taste was also very cinnamon forward, got some vanilla and a little chocolate, but mostly cinnamon with a late chile and alcohol burn. Mouthfeel was great with spices tickling the Rouge and a good body. Overall this was a good beer, but too cinnamon dominated to call it great.

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Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
4.43 out of 5 based on 2,326 ratings.
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