Perennial Abraxas SHOOTOUT: REGULAR versus BARREL AGED, My Body Is Ready

Ever since this god damned barrel aged Abraxas came out, beer nerds have not shut the fuck up about this beer. It was released in the midwest, which made shit even worse because it is not NASCAR season and people living in the freezing cold dont have shit else to do but wonder what those size 11 women look like under those North Face jackets. So today let’s just economize a bit: no narrative, no bullshit, just direct and to the point, WHICH ABRAXAS IS BEST? Someone from Florida will probably chime in with a tired ass joke like “HUNA IS THE BEST ABRAXAS!1!!” and we all nod and he sits back in his desk and goes back to learning his times tables and shit.

Let’s get this stupid ass review over with already.

Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States
American Double / Imperial Stout | 10.00% ABV

Perennial Artisan Ales
Missouri, United States
American Double / Imperial Stout | 11.00% ABV

Technically only 500 bottles were really released since one dude went and scooped up like 80 bottles, but, we all know about that story. I will leave the rest to conjecture/autoeroticism.

Regular on the left, BA on the right, zero fucks given in the middle.

Regular on the left, BA on the right, zero fucks given in the middle.


I am not even doing this, they look almost exactly the fucking same. Seriously. It is like when people ask about the look of Goose Island Rare versus BCBS, I want to be like, are you fucking kidding? Ok for some reason, barrel aged version has a little bit more carbonation, but we are talking minimal amounts to begin with. This beer isn’t winning any beauty contests on either front. It is flaccid, lays there all dark and calculating. If you did a cuvee of Abyss and Huna you’d get the idea. Dark ass mocha foam, looking all like a coffee drink you drop $4.75 on. The sheeting is massive and if you are a wine asshole, “THE LEGS ON BOTH ARE SPLENDID!”




Regular Ass: This is kinda vegetal, deep roast, some kinda bell pepper and ancho thing going on with no cinnamon to speak of, or really any spices up in that moshpit of roast and char. Go dice up some onion and toss it into a Surly Darkness, boom, you have smelled regular Abraxas. Perfect beer to drink at a Quincinera.

Baller tits: This is like a bowl of fucking Cinnamon Toast Crunch, it is sweet with no real peppers going on, no real bourbon going on either. It smells like what I imagine that Bimbo factory smells like, you know that place that makes all the treats that our migrant workers eat? That place. It is sugar and cinnamon and there should be a cartoon Frog on the front of the bottle talking about whole grains. It is straight up cereal beer. Cut up some rails of State Fair churros and snort those bitches, you just smelled Baller Tits Abraxas.


Pedestrian Ass: This carries that roast in a serious way and gives a deep char with some drying smoked malts, bakers chocolate, faint hints of clove in the middle and it finishes with this vegetable/pepper/mole sauce sort of thing that is interesting, but not especially inviting. I mean, most escorts can probably tell some crazy stories about trips to the clinic, but you dont want to spend more than an hour with them.

Rainmaker Version: Again, this is like a completely different beer. This is not like the Baldwins where one is kinda good and the other is totally shitty, it’s like Ron Howard and his weird ass brother, you can’t even believe these two beers are related. There is no real bourbon presence on this beer, but the cinnamon and sweet brown sugar comes raging in, there is a crackle to the spices and maybe that is the peppers in the subterfuge, it is hard to say. If you like Horchata and use a prepaid cell phone, you will probably like drinking this. The perfect beer to drink while standing in line for your EBT benefits.

Just sit in waiting, be patient, they will make more, if people have sense next year's release will not be like this.  PATIENCE MY PREDATORS.

Just sit in waiting, be patient, they will make more, if people have sense next year’s release will not be like this. PATIENCE MY PREDATORS.


Approachable Version: This is a pretty standard affair with the exception of a tingly heat on the backend from the peppers that gives the beer a sort of deadening sensation to the gumline and bottom lip, but nothing too insane across the board. This beer seriously reminds me of a Darkness variant, like if they gave it a spoiler or packed in some breadsticks to jazz it up. Ultimately, this is nothing too earth shattering and I would not trade for this again, not as long as Parabola is sitting on a shelf for way less urethra stretching.

Juicy J version: The mouthfeel has none of that peppery complexity and just keeps it hard in the paint with cinnabon stickiness, girl from the mall kiosk be peeping on your palate and your khaki stained teeth, wanting to flatiron your hair. There is no alcoholic heat on this, but there’s also no bourbon either. Maybe they adhere to the Foothill Brewing school of barrel aging where 16 weeks is PLENTY of time for that beer to get those complex nuances. At any rate, it made the cinnamon more pronounced. Some assholes will probably come in here like “THAT WAS THE VANILLA AND OAK INTEGRATION THAT MADE THE CINNAMON POSSIBLE-” or some shit, don’t care, it tastes like a bear claw. Fucking donut beer, Rogue eat your buttholes out.


EBT Version: This is certainly more drinkable than the cinnamon monster, but at what cost? SimCity is a more “playable” game than Assassin’s Creed 3, but spending 8 hours of my life doing menial shit isn’t exactly a mark of greatness. Sure I could drink more of the regular version, but the BA version is interesting for the limited time I would want to have it. Crazy Parking Lot Sex versus Latter Day Saint Stability. Which do you want out of your bell pepper beer?

Gucci Mane Stacks: This version is heavier, stickier, has this inertia of spices and Big Red gum, and is overall not as approachable but if I had to take a pour of either, I would go for the BA version simply because I would be able to remember it more, point it out in a lineup, tell the jury where on the doll that it touched me. That sorta shit.

WINRAR: Barrel Aged Version is the overall winner.

You look at these bottles and think you are on some epic Golem shit, then you realize it was just steam the midwest blew into your lower colon

You look at these bottles and think you are on some epic Golem shit, then you realize it was just steam the midwest blew into your lower colon

You know who the overall losers are? The people giving up shit like Norma, Churchills Finest Hour, and Nooner for bottles of BA Abraxas. If you have had Mexican Cake or Huna, you seriously don’t need to chase this one down, and def. dont give up any Loonz for it. It is my suspicion that the people who OMG FUCKING LOVED THIS BEEER!!1!! are the ones who had a 2oz pour while standing in line, checking into Untappd, or some other shit. If you sit down and drink a solid 10+oz of this beer, you will not want more. I LIVED THROUGH THIS.


BONUS REVIEW: New Glarus Smoke on the Porter, the beer is much harder to make than the guitar riff is to play.

I love New Glarus and I don’t care who knows it. We all know my civil objection to Red and Tart, but quite literally every other beer is amazing without qualifier.

Now we come to this crossroad. I hate smoked beers, I dislike smoke, and even a flint and dry kindling makes me nervous. So here we go, don’t let me down Wisconsin.

So sticky, so rauchey.

Unplugged Smoke on the Porter
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States
American Porter | 6.10% ABV

Let me start by saying that every. single. beer. In this unplugged series has been amazing. Seriously. I will also qualify that with the fact that this beer IS AMAZING, but I absolutely did not enjoy it. How is this possible? Well, did you ever see Tree of Life, and you know something incredible is going on but you just refuse to embrace the artistry and amazing deliberate moves set forth. Enough sophistry, is it good? Yes, but not to me. This is not to say that people are “wrong” if they enjoy this. I just cannot stand smoke in my beers unless it they buttress the balustrade with some elaborate railings. So the base beer is amazing, if you can breathe through the smoke and inhale into blankets like that movie The Negotiator, you’ll survive.

I guess I just don’t like my amazing porter tasting like beer jerky [sic] anymore than I would cure a delicious cut of meat with a porter. “I WOULD!” the masses resoundingly announce. Well, intersubjectivity rules again. Some people dress in Furry suits and dome one another up, I am not saying it is wrong, my intercourse is just less elaborate.

The Verdict: This is a great base beer, amazing taste, very drinkable, clean, on to style, great chocolate and slight mocha wash, if you can somehow ignore the HUGE smoke presence, another win for New Glarus.

There are some bad ass elements going on in this beer, but you aren't sure if they should be combined.