Perennial Artisan Ales

Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #40
Ranked #160
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.
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 411 | Ratings: 2,896
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.

 1,127 characters

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.

 990 characters

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.

 394 characters

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!

 271 characters

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.

 425 characters

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.

 738 characters

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.

 245 characters

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!

 1,035 characters

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.


 1,392 characters

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...

 725 characters

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.

 759 characters

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.

 236 characters

Photo of 57md
4.47/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Sampled the 2017 version in February 2019.

Pours a deep dark brown-to-black with very little head. The dominant note on both the nose and in the flavor is cinnamon. Make no mistake, this is a solid stout on its own - not just a one-trick adjunct pony. The heat is present but very, very mild compared to the cinnamon. The adjuncts provide the perfect balance of sweetness to go with the roasted bitterness of the base beer.

 427 characters

Photo of BerryKumquat
4.2/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L: Very dark much like soy sauce.
S: Cinnamon flavor.
T: Very peppery ride with chocolate notes in the middle. Cinnamon more in smell.
F: Hard and heavy.

 154 characters

Photo of wmscottsimpsonjr
4.31/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Draft. Black with brown one-finger head. Smell is dark chocolate and cinnamon with a hint of pepper. Incredibly thick with a powdered cocoa feeling. Moderately sweet for the style. No perceivable alcohol. Low carbonation. Slight burn in throat by the end of the glass.

 268 characters

Photo of WunderLlama
4.51/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Growler poured into a teku glass

Black motor oil liquid with a dense dark brown foam cap , recedes in about 3 minutes, few lacings

Aroma of roast malts, cinnamon, Chile’s

Taste of cocoa, Chile’s, cinnamon roasted malts

Velvety smooth , low sudsing but not syrupy

Good beer

 281 characters

Photo of CanConPhilly
4.58/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L - 1-finger dense mocha head atop a jet-black body.

S - cinnamon, peppers, vanilla, chocolate. Just awesome.

T - Follows the nose. Cinnamon-dusted chocolate with a shot of vanilla. Peppers kick in midway and tingle on the finish. Low bitterness. Low sweetness. Low booziness.

F - medium-full body with average carb.

O - a great, great beer.

 345 characters

Photo of siskiyoucellar
4.36/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

It’s pretty bold to name a beer after this album, but if Carlos drinks stouts I’m sure it’s OK. It looks exactly as I think a big stout should look, ultra dark, opaque brown/black, yet it preserves a beautiful garnet overtone. The aroma is a bit underwhelming although it makes pleasant promises of well balanced coffee and malt. Then the taste brings the game up to world class status, full and complex but subtle and perfectly blended. To make a really great flavored stout of this kind, you have to start with a great base beer. This is exactly what Perennial has done in this case, it is, first and foremost, a really excellent stout. Then the other flavors are blended in with impressive expertise; the chili’s in particular are a delightfully ethereal aura of flavor. Feel is smooth and a little crisp. A very finely crafted stout.

 853 characters

Photo of dbl_delta
4.23/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Undated bottle into pint glass. Pours a very, very dark brown with a thick dark tan head, which reminds me of the chocolate milk I used to make when I was a kid (heavy on the chocolate powder; you knew it was about right when the spoon would stand up by itself...). Initial impression is dark chocolate, cinnamon, a touch of chili peppers, and maybe some vanilla. Mouthfeel is rich and decadent. Alcohol is extraordinarily well hidden. Finish is slightly bitter but mostly chocolate and cinnamon. This is really tasty. I don't think I could take a constant diet of it, but for a once-in-a-while indulgence, it's outstanding!

 631 characters

Photo of DaveMaciolek21
4.91/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Flat out amazing stout. Alternately spicy and sweet, with a long, deep finish. One of the tastiest beers you'll come across. So good, I had to close my eyes with each sip. Brilliant!

 182 characters

Photo of Beers-es
4.27/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap, pours black with a nice looking dark brown head. Smell and taste are complex and spicy. Not boozy at all. Rich but not overly thick feel. Good beer.

 156 characters

Photo of HorseheadsHophead
4.34/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Oily pitch black appearance with a small creamy brown head. Decent retention. A thin ring persists. Streaky lacing is left behind.
Smells of potent, rich, strong, fresh ground cinnamon; some spicy chili pepper heat, cacao, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, coffee.
Tastes of dark chocolate, cacao, chocolate syrup, but mostly tons and tons of cinnamon. A cinnamon bomb. Chili peppers creep in, too, and lend some heat that adds to the cinnamon spice. There is a subtle sweeter edge of milk chocolate and vanilla. The lactose no doubt contributes to this. Finishes gently sweet but not cloying. Feels warm going down, but the alcohol is incredibly well hidden.
The mouthfeel is medium-plus, not thick or chewy, but silky and soft. Moderately carbonated. Dangerously drinkable for its abv.
A really nice imperial stout. The pioneer of the Mexican hot chocolate style stouts. It's not longer mindblowing by today's standards, but remains a delicious and enjoyable imperial stout.

 987 characters

Photo of AyatollahGold
4.33/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Doing blindly with Hunahpu’s & Mexican Cake.

This beer is rather black but has brown highlights around the edges of the top. Has a caramel colored crown. Leaves an outer ring and an island. 4.5

The smell brings vanilla being the most prominent with peppers slightly tingling towards the back. The vanilla presence is like cake batter. Has some alcohol burn in there as well. The only one that seems to have cinnamon presence to me. 4.5

The taste brings pepper presence to the lips before very quickly turning into a vanilla cake batter/fudge brownie delight. Cinnamon there as well. 4.25

The mouthfeel thick and full bodied. Coats the mouth. No tingle from the peppers but nice fudge like body. 4

Overall, this one is by far the best for my palate preference. And the only one that I really detected cinnamon in. 4.25

 825 characters

Photo of silverblaze540
4.99/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Pitch black with reddish brown tiny head that dissipates immediately.
S - Chocolate, cinnamon, peppers, and cherries.
T - Mexican chocolate, peppers, malt, sweet with a hint of cinnamon.
M- Thickest beer I've had; mouth-coating, with low carbonation. Some burn from the high alcohol and even from the chilies.
O- Everything seems to work together; extremely robust flavor; fantastic if you are into thick beers.

 416 characters

Photo of Djoneil
4.3/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Draught 8oz in a tulip glass at Wet City in Baltimore. Have enjoyed previous versions of this stout. Found the cinnamon vs. chilies balance too heavily weighted toward the spice in this season's offering. Still a nice stout.

 224 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 99 out of 100 with 2896 ratings