Xolotl | Avery Brewing Company

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147 Ratings

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.70%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Barrel-aged imperial stout brewed with cacao nibs, Mexican vanilla beans, Madagascar vanilla beans red black & brown chipotle chiles, Ancho chiles, Pasila chiles, and Ceylon cinnamon.

Added by ThatsThatDude on 03-20-2016

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 147 |  Reviews: 42
Photo of TexasBadger1954
4.44/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Well balanced. A real tingle on the tongue which I presume has to come from the chiles. However, the flavor is not hot or overly peppery. Though the beer is brewed with vanilla, I didn't find it offensive as is true in so many stouts that have vanilla added.

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Photo of Patches826
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of emyers
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2016. From bottle poured into snifter.

Near black with thin light brown head.

Cacao leads off in the nose with chiles and cinnamon prominent as well. Not getting much if any bourbon.

Taste is dominated by cacao and vanilla with cinnamon and chile on the finish. Still not getting much bourbon barrel character. Chile is pretty subdued, just warms the palate a touch - by no means does this come off as overly spicy. Finishes sweet.

Very low carbonation. Light side of medium-bodied.

Very good Mexican chocolate style stout, but overall lacks the balance of the best examples of the style and there just isn’t much bourbon barrel presence.

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Photo of CharlesK
4.54/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Sammy
3.69/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of rab53
3.99/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mschrei
4.41/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured one day short of 19 months old. Mild head, slight lacing. Smell is roasty malt, barrel, chocolate, vanilla, slight burn of spice and pepper. Taste is roasty malt, chocolate, and quite a bit of peppery heat. Pretty good balance, not too thin, slight oiliness. Glad I let it sit for a while, probably would have been too hot for me fresh.

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Photo of CHickman
4.26/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottled May 19, 2016 (No.37 in the Avery barrel-aged series), it pours pitch black color with a foamy 2 finger thick tan head that was full of bubbles of all sizes that faded on the fast side with crackling and hissing noises jumping out of the glass as the head faded to nothing, leaving minimal spotty lacing.

Smells of bourbon, vanilla, cinnamon, cut up chili peppers, brown sugar, toasted grains, chocolate, cocoa powder, burnt coffee grinds and churros. Pretty much smells like all the ingredients listed on the bottle, and does of fine job of covering up the booze while letting all the complexities work well together.

The heat kicks in from the first sip but is a nice accent and not a burning sensation, adding to the flavor profile while allowing the chocolate and roasted malts to keep a firm base. Like the nose this includes bourbon, vanilla, cinnamon, molasses, chili peppers, toffee, cocoa powder, brown sugar, toasted grains, chocolate, metallic notes, burnt coffee grinds, piney hops, floral notes and churros. Smoky accents add to the complexities and help mask the ABV, but I'm surprised at how smooth this is with this list of ingredients on the label: "Brewed with Rocky Mountain water, malted barley, malted wheat, imported specialty Belgian malted barley, cocao nibs, Mexican vanilla beans, Madagascar vanilla beans, red, black and brown Chipotle chiles, Ancho chiles, Pasilla chiles, Ceylon cinnamon and yeast." A notch below Westbrook Mexican Cake and Prairie Bomb!, but this is a really good imperial stout.

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Photo of Sweffin
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BEERchitect
4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Never shying away from a challenge, the brewers at Avery take on the Mexican hot chocolate spice, sweetness and chocolate flavors with generous additions of ancho, pasila and chipotle peppers along with healthy dose of cinnamon. Layered all onto an absurdly imperial stout base for sweetness and body. Cocoa and bourbon only add to the beer’s mystique.

Ominously dark garnet with strongly saturated threads of brown and black, Xolotl is Avery’s 37th Barrel-Aged Series beer and one that billows over with decadent brown sugar, molasses and cola sweet scents. Nearly still, the low lying carbonation allows the first sip to latch onto the front of the tongue with reckless sweetness that’s woven with light chocolate, toffee and dark fruit.

The richness continues on the middle palate as the full saturation of the tastebuds completes with all things molasses, sorghum, brown sugar and cola nut. Burnt toast, coffee and an overall soiled character provides and earthen charm to complement the lasting sugars. Cinnamon and chili peppers all work to balance the sweetness in the absence of any strong hop presence. Its strong taste of whisky, oak and vanilla pull from the barrels and offer their own set of woodsy complexities.

Full, sweet and mildly lumbering, the decadence of the ale renders it to a slow, savory, sipping affair, one that’s meant to enjoy like cognac, port or fine sherry wines. Numbing alcohol is soothed with a long vanilla creaminess as the sweetness trails long and full leaving that sweet tooth fully satisfied.

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Photo of JoeB51982
3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Treyliff
3.92/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into an oversized wine glass
Bottled 5/19/16

A- pours deep black in color with a thin foamy khaki colored head that reduces to a ring around the edges of the glass

S- lots of bakers chocolate and confectioner sugar up front, almost pastry-like. Undertones of pepper skin, cinnamon and vanilla cream. The bourbon is subtle but noticeable

T- very chocolaty up front with a cake-like emphasis, followed by vanilla whipping cream. Mid-palate brings out notes of cinnamon and pepper skin. The finish brings out subtle bourbon barrel notes and lingers of cocoa and pepper burn

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a slightly foamy mouthfeel and a creamy finish, pepper burn on the linger

O- sweet cocoa dominates the other adjuncts, its good but needs more barrel character

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Photo of Duff27
3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of RobinLee
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Raziel313
3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mancavebeercouch
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of tvenne
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MikeWard
3.71/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a goblet, bottled 5/19/16, so almost a year old.

black body with brown hues. head is a bit on the fizzy side, disappears quickly to just a ring, after about 15 mins, that vanishes too.

aroma is mostly bourbon, but not overly so, none of the other flavors mentioned come through.

there is an alcohol burn from the bourbon, and you can feel the heat from the chile. No cacao or vanilla. Cinnamon may be there, but it gets lost in the burn,

Mouth is a touch below medium. finish is heat.

overall, it tastes okay, but I was expecting so much more. Other Avery high octane offerings are so much better.

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Photo of heddar33
4.41/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Best_Enjoyed_In_Texas
3.63/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of sposter4
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter. Thin tawny colored head that disapates quickly. smells is Vanilla and barrel. Taste is similar but rounds out with dark chocolate and a hint of spice and smoke. Could be a little thicker but overall good stout

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Photo of pagesofphotographs
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of beergorrilla
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of morimech
3.76/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottled May 19, 2016. Very dark black color but with an odd, fizzy carbonation like soda. A finger of head forms and settles to a thin film. A little bit of lacing is left down the glass. Aroma of oak, alcohol, bourbon, vanilla, earth, and chiles. This stout is still contains a lot of alcohol heat. I love the chile heat. Does it really work with a stout with this much alcohol heat however, not so much. Nice earthy chile flavor as well. The vanilla and cinnamon are a bit muted. There is also a little bit of bourbon flavor. This beer is dominated by the adjuncts as I am not picking much from the base stout. Surprisingly the carbonation is not out of control or it all dissipated during the pour. Nice smooth texture to go along with the large body. Nice feel. Obvious why this beer is still sitting on the shelf almost a year latter. Definitely not worth the price of admission.

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Photo of cbutova
3.91/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Motor oil black pour from the 12oz bottle into a tulip. A tiny ring forms at the edges but never really a true head; it has a light tan hue. Maybe a few small spots of lacing.

S- Chilies, deep dark cocoa, roasted barley and vanilla sweetness. The whiskey is a bit subtle but oak, peppery Bourbon and that oaky vanilla feel come to mind. Considering the ABV and the recipe very subtle.

T- Opens up a bit more here. The initial sip brings a massive wave of vanilla from both the added beans and the degraded Bourbon barrel. A true vanilla bean flavor throughout. This joins a rich chocolate profile, roasted barley and cocoa powder to make a true dessert flavor. The chilies round it out with some toasted veggie flavors and a hint of heat. A hint of earthy cinnamon but not much, well balanced.

MF- A thick body that has a fairly low amount of carbonation. The texture is oily and just a bit frothy-foamy. Ends with warmth from the alcohol and a bit of chili heat.

Somewhat tame for the Avery beastly stout series and considering the added ingredients the flavor profile is somewhat unexpected. The vanilla takes over the brew with cocoa, Bourbon barrel and chilies in that general order. Good but not one of their best.

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Xolotl from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.09 out of 5 with 147 ratings