Abraxas | Perennial Artisan Ales

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Brewed by:
Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States

Style: American Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

User Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 410 | Ratings: 2,882
Photo of argock
3.96/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

An exceedingly dense Beer with a ton of vanilla, chocolate, cinnamon, and chili in both the aroma and flavor departments. Solid base stout, heavy with a kiss of booze but nothing over the top. Feel has a lot of heft, a bit too much, it feels like it could use a touch more carbonation. Glad I tried it but a bit too much body and spicing for me.

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Photo of Psilo
4.52/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black with half a finger of dark khaki foam that dissipates quickly and leaves no lacing. Great viscosity, with golden yellow legs tracing behind the swirling liquid.

Smells of spicy cinnamon chocolate.

Sweet chocolate cinnamon taste. Quite boozy, particularly for being "only" 10%. Not much chili presence and not much spice heat.

Medium boddied and sticky boozy mouthfeel.

I can see how the cinnamon might be overwhelming, and initially wondered if I would be able to make it through a whole bottle, but I spent about ten hours getting another small pour whenever my glass was empty, and enjoyed it down to the last cinnamon chocolate drop.

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Photo of ejmontoy1
4.62/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I love how different the flavor of this beer comes off. You can really taste all the different ingredients in this one and they all work harmoniously to make this a delicious sipping beer.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.35/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Perennial Artisan Ales "Abraxas"
$14/snifter on tap @ Wm. Mulherin's Sons, Philadelphia, PA on 3 February 2018

Notes: Opaque brown-black body beneath a short head of light brown. The aroma is malty sweet with notes of cocoa powder and a dusting of powdered cinnamon. The flavor follows, moderately roasty with touches of coffee and bittersweet chocolate, soft cinnamon, and chili peppers that steadily build on the palate but never get beyond a moderate heat/spiciness. There's not a lot of bitterness but it's not really needed as the spice and a little bit of alcohol do everything that's needed to anchor it. A fair amount of cinnamon lingers in the finish along with some cocoa and light, coffee-like roastiness. It's sweet but not cloying, and would make a great dessert beer, or just a nightcap. It's medium in body and smooth in the mouth with a moderate, fine-bubbled carbonation. I'd feared that the cinnamon or chiles would be too much but they're nicely restrained. Extremely well done. Well worth seeking out.

4.25/4.25/4.5/4.25/4.25 = 4.35

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Photo of ajm5108
4.59/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Optics are as expected, head is maybe a tad lacking. Aroma isn’t as action packed as you might think with all the ingredients- some light cinnamon and chocolate, dark malt. Taste is way more robust - tons of cinnamon and smooth chocolate, coffee more towards the back for bitterness and depth, just a kiss of heat. I am wary of peppers in beer but this might have the best balance of heat in one I have seen. Body is a bit thin but not horribly so. Excellent.

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Photo of Dewsby
4.4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L) Pours dark, oily brown with a toasted hazelnut head. Ok retention, little lacing.

S) The smell is deep caramel and Belgian candi, with intense cinnamon and heat. There is quite a bit of booze on the nose though.

T) The taste if very rich, and everything in the nose is present in the taste (especially the booze), in addition to rich chocolaty notes from the cocoa nibs. The heat from the ancho peppers lingers.

F) Super rich and creamy mouthfeel. Heat from the alcohol and spice from the peppers tingles the tongue long after sipping. Lovely.

O) This is a solid brew, really solid. A great "pepper-beer" for those who haven't tried one, or a great stout in general for those who like deep and roasty brews.

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Photo of Erikshegda1994
4.32/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bomber into a standard cup not a tulip or snifter which may have somewhat altered my rating

Dark coffee brown appearance with a thin light mocha head and lots of bubbles

Smell is primarily cinnamon and a slight hint of brown sugar and coffee

Tastes is lots of cinnamon and bittersweet chocolate with little no heat or bite from the ancho chiles

Feel is light bodied and high carbonation which was the most disappointing part about this beer

Overall leaves a delicious mexican chocolate cake flavor on your tongue that is not overly sweet, however the light bodiy and overly carbonated mouthfeel takes away from the integrity of the beer and makes it feel less like a stout and makes it go down easy like a lager almost. The overall flavor is on point but its not a sticky sweet treat like you want a good stout to be.

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Photo of Lucular
4.71/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Had on tap. An incredibly complex, smooth beer. Wonderfully thick and creamy mouthfeel. 10% abv is nowhere to be found. I'm not sure how a non-BA spiced stout could be any better than this.

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Photo of Superheatnsubcool
3.92/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2017 vintage

Was really excited to try this, since it’s so highly rated and I rarely see it on shelves in the Seattle area. My overall impression was that it is very similar to Stone Xocoveza, but for $25/750 ml. Abraxas is a very tasty, cinnamon-forward beer. But next time I’ll stick with Xocoveza for $15-$18/6 pack.

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Photo of Jimmys
4.42/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2017 vintage.

Pours thick as motor oil. Smells sweet, a little spicy. Tastes awesome. Cinnamon, chili powder, some alcohol heat, thick residual sweetness in the finish. Really tasty beer, glad i popped it now, don't see this aging and getting better. Vibrant flavours, drink up.

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Photo of morimech
3.95/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 11/07/17

Beautiful looking beer that is black with a large mocha colored head that settles to a thick cap. Aroma of cinnamon, cocoa, and lightly roasted malt. The cinnamon is the dominate component in the aroma and flavor. Very mild chile flavor and heat to the point that I wonder if I sensed any at all. The cacao adds a nice flavor. The malt also seems to be mildly roasted as there is not much roasted malt qualities besides a faint hint of smoke. Big body with a smooth, luscious texture. I am a bit disappointed in this beer. Seems like a timid attempt at a Mexican chocolate stout.

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Photo of brewaddict
4.56/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 5/19/16. 2016 bottle

L - Pours dark chocolate black. Looks a little thick and oily. No head.
S - I get notes of coffee, chocolate, and a little woody or medicinal.
T - Tons of flavor! Dark chocolate espresso.
F - Rich and thick. Light on carbonation. Which make it smooth. Dry finish.
O - fantastic coffee stout.

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Photo of RyanK252
4.49/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Spokeasy Public House

A: Pours basically black with a rich chocolate brown head that settles to a light layer and leaves some spotty lacing.

S: Beautifully spicy, lots of sweet cinnamon, a touch of peppers, vanilla, chocolate, and toasty earthy malt.

T: Spices really pop, cinnamon, hint of nutmeg, vanilla, just a touch of the peppers, milk chocolate, toasty, earthy, and some toffee sweetness. Holds its % beautifully.

M: Full body, mild carbonation.

O: Finally caught this one after being out of town the last couple times it hit. Absolutely delicious!

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Photo of johnnybgood1999
3.28/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Initial chocolate up front. A very, very quick hit of cinnamon follows almost simultaneously. The cinnamon is actually perhaps a bit overdone. I love spice and have never said that, but I think I'd appreciate a richer chocolate and malt like their mint beer. That was very well done. Anyways, cinnamon overwhelms this beer. On top of the malt base being less than expected, the mouthfeel is also a bit thin for all the spice. I would buy this on occasion at $10 A bomber. For $24 this is disappointing.

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Photo of Chris1907
4.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Awesome full-bodied stout... cinnamon flavored beer, real pleasant! On tap. VERY good highly recommended!
It's up there with Breakfast Stout near or world class! Dry enough not too sweet, and malty not hoppy. Wow.

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Photo of hophugger
3.34/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottled June, 2017. Purchase price of $25.99. Lots of mixed reviews on this one. Pours like motor oil with a deep tan head and coating lacing that dissipates quickly. Aroma is strong cinnamon and malt. Taste is bold and somewhat disheveled. Cinnamon is the strong part of the taste with a dry cocoa powder following. The end has just a very very light amount of heat from the peppers, no vanilla. Overall this beer is somewhat off-balanced with the dry cinnamon and cocoa taking the lead and keeping others out. The stout base does not seem to have the quality that a good stout should be. A decent beer but would have liked ot better at a lower price point, not really worth the cost. UPDATE, I let this warm a little to see if anything changed. Still too much cinnamon and dryness to this stout, lowering rating !

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Photo of redpine42
3.1/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

When we poured this it looked like motor oil. Cinnamon and pepper hide the rather mediocre stout that is base for this beer. The sweetness is over the top. Finish is the redeeming part of this beer. Love the pepper finish.

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Photo of jdub11
4.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

ranking for '17, poor dark chocolate color with faint smells of cinnamon and vanilla. From the bottle the cinnamon is less intense than on tap with sweetness from chocolate and vanilla tastes. Great mouthfeel with slight coating texture.

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Photo of darktronica
4.39/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

2017 release, dated November 13. Pours a dark, thick chocolate brown with little fanfare or fuss, aside from legs uncommon to a 10% abv beer. I'm surprised by the relative sweetness, with the cacao nibs and vanilla leading the way, and the chile and cinnamon struggling to catch up. This is more to my taste, as I find cinnamon too easily overwhelming, but Abraxas takes a pronounced but more balanced approach. I'm not sure if it is still such a standout now that so many other breweries are jumping aboard the Mexican hot chocolate train and doing it well, but the full body and silky mouthfeel is what sells it for me as something quite special.

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Photo of teromous
4.34/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On the right side of the label, it says: "Bottled 2017"

Appearance: The body is black and it is headless. The beer has a very thin brown ring. No head or lacing.

Aroma: There is a nice cinnamon aroma with a spiciness that burns the nose. There is a bit of a chocolate aroma but it tends to get lost in the cinnamon. It smells a lot like an Atomic Fireball.

Taste: Up front there is a lot of cinnamon and a very nice toasty flavor with a bit of a burnt caramel taste. It honestly tastes just like a cinnamon roll. After a while, when the palate starts to become more adjusted to the bombardment of cinnamon, a nice chocolatey flavor starts to emerge with hints of coffee.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel of this beer is truly its highlight. It is smooth, thick, and full bodied. It has this decadent texture that really lays a solid foundation for this beer. It's perfect.

Overall: It really takes a while for this beer to open up and give everything that it has to offer. A small portion of that might be attributed to warming but an even greater part of that has to do with how the palate adjusts to the cinnamon. There is this nice underbelly of flavor that gives off a touch of roasted coffee and chocolate. When that comes out the beer really starts to shine. While the bottle for this beer is large and the alcohol volume is also high, I would recommend that if you share this bottle with others that you take this into consideration. If you are drinking it on your own then you are in for a wealth of flavors that you don't get tired of drinking. I would both highly recommend this beer and drink it again.

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Photo of AdmiralOzone
4.45/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an almost black very dark brown with a fair amount of tan head that recedes slowly. Smells mostly of cinnamon with the flavor following the nose. You get a touch of heat in the end. Nice and thick, overall a wonderful beer.

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Photo of miniditka77
4.94/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L: Thick, black, with a creamy tan head that sticks around for a long time.

S: Chocolate, cinnamon, and a little bit of peppers. Very nice - the only reason I didn't give it a 5-5 is that the smell really didn't do justice to the taste.

T: Holy crap, this is good. Cocoa, with a little bit of pepper flavor and heat, a little bit sweet, very Mexican chocolate-y.

F: Also great. Super thick - one of the thickest beers I've ever had. It just kind of coats your mouth with flavor.

O: I find a lot of highly-regarded beers to be overhyped, even if they are ultimately very good beers. This one exceeded all of my expectations. One of the best beers I've ever had of any type, period. I would love to try some of the variants someday, although I honestly don't know how you improve on this. Perennial is 2/2 on big stouts for me (Sump is also fantastic). I may have to try a few more of their beers.

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Photo of Mdaniel723
5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

It’s hard to find anything wrong with this beer. I had hoped it was all hype but man, great beer

L-pours black and thick with a dark brown head.

N- smells like a spice cake

T- Tastes like the greatest boozy spice cake you have ever had. The chili hits up front, but gives a cinnamon hit to the malty fruity goodness, incredibly balanced with nothing overpowering and everything working together in great harmony.

M- this is a thick chewy beer, but in the best way possible. Coats the mouth but isn’t too thick.

I don’t ever want to call a beer perfect, but it’s going to take something unbelievable to beat this as the best in the style, far and away the best I’ve had.

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Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4.46/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2017 vintage tasted in a snifter from draft at Consume on November 22, 2017. 2018 vintage tasted in a Rastal Teku from a 750 ml bottle on December 31, 2018. 2016 vintage tasted in a Rastal Teku from a 750 ml bottle on January 25, 2019. 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. Highly recommended.

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Photo of ManapuaMan
4.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Hell of a beer. Just a lot of fun to drink, which is what this is all about. Easy to forget, especially when these types of ingredient-heavy stouts, i.e. pastry stouts, often get derrided by the beer geek crowd but, man, this beer just nails it. Damn delicious and just an enjoyable bottle to sip over a session.

Poured an inky black with barely any head; couldn’t coax one out for the life of me. Light cardboard-brown swirls on the surface.

Aroma is sweet, savory and spicy - vanilla, cinnamon, roasted malt, chocolate and a nose tingling heat. Mouth watering.

Taste is dark Mexican chocolate, bitter chocolate, fudge, vanilla, char, cinnamon and heavy malt. You feel the peppers not taste them - always a hallmark of a well made beer of this style.

Thick, viscous, heavy on the palate. Nice heat complements all the flavors. Coats the mouth but isn’t cloying, chalky or overwhelming. Really nice deployment of a shit-ton of flavors.

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Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 4.5 out of 5 with 2,882 ratings