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BOMB! | Prairie Artisan Ales

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Brewed by:
Prairie Artisan Ales
Oklahoma, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial stout aged on coffee, cacao nibs, vanilla beans, and ancho chili peppers.

ABV varies by batch.

Added by MinorThreat on 05-29-2013

For Trade:
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Reviews: 825 | Ratings: 5,547
Photo of Justin8mypants
4.71/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Okay.. Ive had this before, and the first time I didn't do it justice. This is really the only world class beer here in Oklahoma and I wanted to sit down with it again and really enjoy it. I get a 12 oz bottle here for $5.99.

A- basically what you would expect. Dark black beer with a beautiful dark brown head. I always love seeing that.
S- For me I smell loads of chocolate, traces of vanilla and dark roast coffee. Nice and malty
T- First sip tasted like room temperature hot chocolate. All the flavors are there. You can definitely pick out the vanilla and coffee. The peppers were the hardest flavor to pick out, but I started picking it up after a while with just a touch of heat on the finish. The 13% alcohol is masked extremely well
M- Huge body. Incredibly smooth, Just perfect.
O- So glad I sat down with this beer again. It is like dessert in a cup. It is completely satisfying and I can't wait to drink this during the winter. Everyone must try this.

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Photo of Chico1985
4.52/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottle purchased in Oklahoma City, also had this at The Beer Trappe in Lexington, Kentucky a couple days beforehand. Liked the Bible Belt variation of this alot, happy to be able to review this now as well. ABV listed as 13% on the label.

Appearance - Oily black pour into a snifter. A finger or so of brown head forms, a swirly cap and thick ring are left by the end along with some good lace. Impressive for the ABV for sure.

Smell - Nice nose with prominent cocoa and chili spice, quite a bit of roasted malt as well, which rounds it all out very well. Coffee is on the lighter end of the spectrum but becomes more noticeable with warmth. Vanilla if you look for it. Noticeable alcohol but not bad. Pretttty nice.

Taste - More vanilla here, still very much cocoa/roast/chili forward. Coffee is pretty understated for me but can't really complain much. Smoke and heat from the chiles starts to build with further sips but it's not over the top and melds well. Touch of molasses.

Mouthfeel - Great mouthfeel, nice higher carbonation feels unique for a stout of this size, diggin' the liveliness on the palate. Very nice melding of flavors, a little booze noticeable but pretty damn drinkable. 12oz is no problemo solo.

Overall - As far as ridiculous-ingredient imperial stouts go, this may be as balanced, drinkable and enjoyable as it gets.

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Photo of M_chav
4.26/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pitch black body with a golden foam 1 inch thick that quickly dissipated into almost nothing.
Nose is full of chocolate, not getting a ton of coffee. Just chocolate laced with chocolate and a hint of chili... Lots of ashy/campfire too
Tasting a bit heavy still on the ash tray/campfire but chili really comes through, cocoa nibs are bitter as expected
Medium body. Possibly medium-full but rich and thick flavors
Overall I am appreciating this much more than the first time I ever tried it (was nearly a drain pour)... Maybe my pallet has changed but this is a rich/chocolatey smooth imperial stout with some nice chili heat coming through to sooth the throat

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Photo of tviz33
4.39/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured in to a tulip. Thanks scotlyn911!

A- Pours like used motor oil with a half in brown head.

S- Lots of coffee and roastiness with some chili spice and alcohol in the background.

T- Oh, how this beer changes as it warms! The chilies become much more pronounced towards the end. My first impression was of a very roasty dryness, but the taste quickly transformed, showing signs of dark chocolate and raisins. Almost no sweetness.

M- The feel is medium-full with medium amount of carbonation

O- Very nice beer. Would have again.

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Photo of JulioH
4.75/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is a really great beer. I wasn't expecting it to be this good.

Pours a nice dark beer. Forms a small dark brown foam. Smell is normal chocolate, coffee, nothing out of the ordinary for an imperial stout. Tastes like a good imperial stout, nice and smooth, not heady at all, lots of chocolate and coffee, not bitter. Then, you feel some heat in your throat, some tingling. The peppers hit you in the back of the throat but not in the mouth. Fantastic work. Body is syrupy.

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Photo of ADZA
3.88/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark black with a lucious three finger chocolate laced head and clingy lacing everywhere, the smell is dark chocolate with an underlying chillie smokiness and coffee, the mouthfeel is full bodied, smooth with perfect moderate carbonation and the tastes are simple with the usual lineup of flavours you would expect in a big stout starting with a big dose of milky chocolate, vanilla,cacao and a slight smokiness from the chillies but no heat whatsoever and finished like a coffee with some sugar bittersweet and overall a bloody tasty Stout that will age well but once again its a pricey affair but its off my bucket list cheers.

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Photo of mothman
4.33/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Growler from H.E.B.

1 finger of dark tan head. Leaves some splattered lace. Decent retention. Color is a deep black.

Flavor profile: A lot of rich chocolate and cocoa. Caramel and roasted malts. Coffee flavors. Vanilla. Molasses and dark fruit flavors. The chipotle peppers are near the end and in the finish. The chilies seem roasted as well.

Mouthfeel: Spicy, roasted, but smooth. Full bodied with a nice amount of carbonation. Ends dry with roasted notes.

Overall, this was a top level non BA stout. A massive amount of flavors. The only thing I would complain about is a bit too much roast, but otherwise I really like this one.

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Photo of SebD
4.46/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: It has a nice jet black color to it. It has a nice creamy tan head that dies down slowly and leaves little lacing.

Smell: Wow, the aromas definitely give out hints of milk chocolate, coffee, espresso, vanilla and faint chili peppers in the back.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a bunch of chocolate, loads of coffee, bitter espresso, some earthy undertones, vanilla and some spiciness from the ancho chili peppers.

Mouthfeel: It has a low carbonation with a very nice creamy overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by great flavors and aromas. Definitely worth a try!

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.73/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the local taphouse during their 4th of July takeover.

Pours a very dark brown colour, mocha head; foamy, nice uneven sinking. Awesome lacing. Looks amazing.

Smellls very bitter, loads of spicy espresso coffee on there. Roasty, slightly charred. Slight meaty hint. Smells pretty good. Bit bitter though and coffee-heavy.

Taste is sweeter. Unsweetened chocolate all the way through with more cocoa rich flavour upfront, then notes of espresso, pepperberry and smokey lamb. I'm not kidding. Pretty impressive, but very strong and lots of very bitter notes.

Full, pretty fluid. Touch of warming alcohol. Actually more of a shove in the throat rather than a touch.

Impressive impy stout. Big, and really spicy. Pleasant sipper.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.88/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour is black with a creamy mocha head. Nose is heavy coffee roast, pretty clean/not acrid, fair bit of vanilla and a light tinge of pepper. Full bodied, creamy and well carbonated. Taste has more pepper but still light (which I prefer). The roasted coffee is most prevalent and the vanilla comes in nicely behind but not sweet. Reasonably balanced, not sweet, pepper balances with vanilla. Not really chocolaty but a decent stout.

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Photo of Brenden
4.71/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This one looks to want to compete in the majors, and it starts off right. It's a thick, heavy and inky black brew with a medium-dark brown head that rises commandingly to two strong fingers of rocky cream. Retention is good, as it just sits there without losing any height for almost the entire session, and lacing clings plentifully to the glass in heavy patching most of the way down.
The aroma is big, if not huge, and it portends deliciousness to come. It's got all the roast expected from a big stout, the sweet vanilla and woody notes expected from barrel aging despite the fact that it isn't, including the alcoholic heat without the burn, there's a nice underlying smokiness, and there's some dark chocolate and unsweetened cocoa powder in the mix for a further contribution both sweet and dry.
Huge, rich, robust, and massively flavorful, this beer rises to the upper echelon thanks to not only its overall fantastic flavor, but its depth and complexity as well as its ability to be massively strong while avoiding the pitfalls of excess or overbearing. While a very nice note similar to bourbon whisky comes through, it doesn't overtake the subtler (ironic, yes) aspects of the beer. The vanilla sweetness is ever-present with the roastiness, and a creamy blend of dark chocolate and milk chocolate glides over the tongue. More than most beers, even many barrel-aged stouts, there's a big, dry woody note that lends itself as much to the flavor as anything and becomes its strongest note without drowning out anything else. It works with just a hint of char, no acridity showing because of the sweetness countering and its easy smoothness as it works in the brew. The only thing that might throw one off is that, without knowing beforehand, I wouldn't immediately be able to say this was brewed with peppers but for an extremely subtle heat that doesn't build up.
The mouthfeel has all the trademarks of the style and its uniquely American nature: huge, rich robustness in a thick, extremely full body that isn't thinned by the alcohol and is velvety smooth on the tongue, rolling off just the right amount of carbonation and extremely creamy. The fluffiness building from the carbonation does give it a lighter feel in the middle into the smooth finish, but never much less than full.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.73/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance - The beer poured a deep color with a modest off-white head clouding the glass. Some lacing was left on the sides of the glass.

Smell - The aroma smells like dessert. I noted chocolate and vanilla coming together, but peppers were hiding in the background.

Taste - The sweetness of the malts melt together with the chocolate. The chocolate is balanced by the vanilla to create a cake like quality. But before you get the impression that this is too sweet, the peppers create a burn on the back of the tongue. The spice does not overwhelm, but adds nuance to the chocolate goodness. As a reference point, this is slightly less enjoyable than Mexican Cake.

Mouthfeel - The peppers are allowed to linger because of the thickness of the stout. I wish it was a little thicker so I could enjoy it a little more.

Overall - I like this one a lot. Whereas straight coffee Russian Imperial Stout were once the standard, this is the new trend. It is an improvement.

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Photo of StoutItOutLoud
4.33/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Got to sample 2 ounces or so out of a waxed bottle in October 2013 (gave a 4.25 then).
Got to try a 8-oz pour on tap, next to Abraxas, in March 2014 (gave a 4.5. 4.25 for Abraxas)
This review's based on a 7-12-14 tasting of a May 2014 unwaxed bottle. Comparing it to a 2014 Huna consumed last weekend, despite the fact the adjuncts are slightly different.

A: like Huna, very dark appearance, with zero light escaping from the body. there is a red tinge at the edges. there's no head though, and weaker alcohol legs.

S: vanilla and very, very earthy coffee grinds. the ancho chile gets drawn out with a vigorous swirl - very interesting. I wish the cacao was more pronounced though

T: like Huna, the chile comes across most distinctly, without "heat." the flavor's earthier than Huna, likely because of the addition of ancho AND coffee to the vessel. personally, though, I'd prefer more cacao, less coffee

M: thinner mouthfeel than Huna, despite the 13%. to its credit, this went down easier than expected for the ABV

4.5 4.5 4.25 4.25 4.25

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Photo of LessMyth
5/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a 5 star beer. To rate it lower is to wantonly find lacking what is in every way an superlative creation and satisfying beer; or you don't enjoy the style.

The beer is near black and thick looking; it has a medium to thick brown head with lacing.

Its smell is perhaps its weakest point, as it is less distinguished than its other attributes. A strong smell of coffee and roasted malt.

The combination of cacoa, peppers and coffee combine smoothly to create a delicious taste. It is mildly sweet and very strong. The high alcohol content seems to support a depth and variation in taste as you sip.

This beer is heavy full bodied, smooth in the mouth and extremely balanced for an ABV above the roof and a complex list of ingredients. This is one beer I buy every time I see it.

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Photo of Goosehunter75
4.22/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours a dark almost jet black dark chocolate. A very slow to form 1/4 inch dark tan head. The head is smell but it does linger for some time

S - Wow, lots going on here. Chocolate, coffee, a hint of pepper. Sounds weird but I even detect something that smells like a chocolate milk shake

T - Awesome flavor. Not as sweet tasting as the aroma would indicate. Lots of sweet chocolate dominate at first but then it fades to a oak type bitterness. Tastes of coffee are nicely mixed in the middle. It even has a little bourbon flavor on the finish.

M - Great heavy beer. It does has a pretty powerful burn but what else would you expect at 13% abv. Really easy to drink and provides a nice warming feeling as it goes down!

O - Fantastic beer. Glad I stumbled across one. Has a powerful but well balanced flavor. I was a little leery when it mentioned chili peppers, but they are very mild and hard to detect but are present. Will be picking another one up soon!

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Photo of bowzer4birdie
4.24/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I've had three bottles now and each has tasted differently (which is wonderful). Honestly, though, all have been underwhelming for me. Pours flat, not much chili influence at all. At most I can say the vanilla is distinctive. I won't pay $9 for a bottle again.

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Photo of Rob23
4.14/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is a very special stout.Pours almost pure black with a half inch head but I was careful on my pour.Nice frothy lacing that goes away and leaves a little ring around the head.Smell is coffee right away and alcohol to follow.First taste is coffee and then as I swallow here comes the chilis which I am sure cannot be good for my acid reflux but I had to gamble with this one...lol.Mouthfeel is warm and fizzy.This is not my favorite stout but it is definatly different and lives up to the hype in my opinion for at least originality.A bit boozy for my liking but all in all a great stout if you are open minded.

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Photo of Eddiehop
4.74/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Head is minimal but lacing residue apparent on sides of glass. Color is black. Can taste a hint of the chili peppers, coffee and vanilla. Very well balanced and to say the taste is complex is an understatement. There is a lot going on in this bottle of beer. Alcohol content is extremely well masked considering the ABV. An awesome beer.

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Photo of linnymtu
4.29/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a glass snifter.

A- jet black with a thin tan head

S- mostly coffee with a hint of the chili pepper

T- Hits you up front with the coffee. This is mostly a coffee stout and a chili stout second. Then as expected you get just a slight hint of chili spice hitting your tongue. The taste is not overly complex and I think it hurts the beer. More chocolate would've helped balance it out better.

M- Not too thick and a good amount of carbonation

O- I was pleased that the spiciness was not overwhelming, and actually almost underwhelming. But I think it was spot on for my tastes. The coffee flavor was superb, but what held it back from being a world class 4.5+ beer was there wasn't much of a third flavor blended in. But overall a great beer and you should try it if you haven't.

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Photo of heygeebee
3.78/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From notes..
Pitch black, tan head swirls nicely. Full on assault of thick dark choc, roast, coffee, with the merest hint of chilli in background. But a nice addition. Big and thick in mouth. Demands respect given ABV warmth. Chewy mouthfeel. Like really chewy like soup.
Chilli lingers a lot longer than other palates elements, and the initial hit is all flavour, leaving a mid hollow palate and chilli afterwards, thus a bit unbalanced overall.

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

Thanks to Owen.

Pours a lovely looking black with nice tanned head and lacing.

Smell is a lot of coffee and a slightly dusty chilli. Definitely get some chocolate also. Interesting melding of coffee, chilli and chocolate; which I guess is really interchangeable with vanilla. As time goes on I even get sweet malt and vanilla.

Taste is coffee, definitely has a potent earthiness to it which could also encompass chocolate really, and it finishes with a tasty drying cocoa powder presence. Taste has a delightful mounting chilli presence, which nevertheless retains its subtlety. It's more of a little extra kick at the end than anything else.

I think chocolate (cocoa powder) becomes more pronounced in nose and taste as time goes on- it's really quite rich and strong in this one.

I had this on tap last night and out of the bottle really blows it out of the water (to abuse a beer review cliché).

What to review this in the same sphere as? Is it a coffee beer, like the classics Speedway or Peche Mortel? Is it a chocolate/coffee beer like Breakfast Stout? Or is it a more Mexican chocolate inspired beast like the deviant Hunaphu's (notably absent of coffee)? I will say that the chilli in this beer is a little stronger than I've noticed in Hunaphu's (much to this beer's credit), but this beer may also be fresher than the times I've had Huna.

Just excellently tasty stuff and it's great to have the opportunity to buy this in Sydney. Thanks to Prairie.

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Photo of ajmmin
4.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Came across a stash of these at Dirty Jack's in Iowa City. Bottle poured into a juice glass.

Appearance - One of the darkest beers I've had. Completely opaque. Fantastic legs and head. Head is dark... the color of caramelized sugar.

Smell - Scent is subtle. Nice, but not overpowering.

Taste - Robust. Coffee prevalent, chocolate close behind. Chili isn't overpowering--it is pleasant. Vanilla mildly brings up the rear.

Mouthfeel - Balanced. Isn't thick and coating, but is not thin either.

Overall - Quite nice! On average I'd still prefer a nice bourbon barrel stout, but this definitely deserves the hype.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.2/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz brown bottle purchased from Leura Cellars, imported by ExperienceIT.

Pours a very silky and slick black-brown colour, with a fineness to the body that almost makes it looks thin. Head is minimal, forming some dark frothy and settling out to a topological film. Minimal lacing. Body is good however, and there's fine carbonation present when tilted. Looks pretty good all up.

Nose is ripe and biting with bright coffee characters first up. There's a slight smoky vegetative quality to it as well, possibly the ancho. There's plenty of roast as well: surprisingly, there's not a great deal of sweetness though, and it relies much on the coffee for its breadth.

Taste is extremely smooth and fine, with a clean, slick malt roast character glossed over by some malt sweetness—again it's fairly subdued, and it's an interesting way to go. Some coffee characters bite a little around the back as well, laced with some aromatic chilli characters, although no heat. Alcohol is very well hidden. I drank this with breakfast before any other beers, so I wasn't inured to booze by any means—but I still couldn't really sense it.

Overall, yeah, this is another cracking brew from Prairie. I'm yet to have a bad beer from them, and this is probably even pushing up their average despite the average being very high already.

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Photo of shangwang
4.34/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Excellent beer, had within a day of Bible Belt. Poured thick, dark walnut color with a thin coating of chestnut head. Smelled of fresh roasted coffee beans and cocoa, with a tinge of spiciness. Tasted heavily of coffee and baker's chocolate; much more bitter than sweet. Hints of chile, but very subdued- almost more like a fresh vegetable rather than heat. Mouthfeel was thick and creamy with lots of texture. Finished leaving heavy bitterness and the slightest burn.

Overall, awesome stout. Didn't really get much vanilla or sweetness, but the coffee and chiles worked well together and the think mouthfeel gave it a milkshake character. Drinks like a beer with a much lower abv than 14%, which I'm always a fan of.

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Photo of Tele
4.28/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: 4.75 Pitch black with a small tan head.

S: 4.25 Lots of chocolate and vanilla at first. Some dark malt and coffee follow with roasted nuttiness. No chile on the nose.

T: 4.25 Vanilla still dominates. Coffee comes through more than on the nose. The roasted malt/coffee bitterness is well integrated with the chocolate and vanilla. The slight heat at the end rounds everything out.

M: 4.25 A little thinner than I would like, but the carbonation level is nice.

O: 4.25 Probably a bit more going on than Bible Belt, but I think I prefer that over Bomb. It seemed a little richer and the chile was a bit stronger. It also seemed like Bible Belt had a more dry chile flavor while bomb comes off as more of a fresh chile. This is really nice, but for me it comes in at a close second.

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BOMB! from Prairie Artisan Ales
4.48 out of 5 based on 5,547 ratings.
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