Beer: Mayan Apocalypse Judgment DayBrewery: The Lost Abbey Style: Quadrupel ABV: 10.5 percent
Screw you, Mayans. I was SO ready for the apocalypse. I stocked up on canned goods and toilet paper. I spent months mapping out the best path to take after the skies rained down fire and turned our planet into a sun-torched hellscape. I took all my money out of the bank and used it to buy ninja stars.
And for what?! Now I look like a dummy, and you're probably just laughing your asses off in the 13th level of Tamoanchan. I haven't been this upset since Y2K.
Well, this doomsday prepper will have his Mayan Apocalypse -- one way or another.
Luckily, I wasn't the only person who presumed the end was nigh. As the world spiraled toward its last days and people began to panic in earnest, the brewers at The Lost Abbey thought it a perfect time to tweak the recipe for their Belgian-style quadrupel, Judgement Day. While the OG version of this rapturous beer is made with raisins, the Mayan edition adds dried chiles, cinnamon and tamarind to the mix.
The result is a brew that's both thicker and darker than before. Deep purple-black in hue, the apocalyptic brew lets zero light in. A cocoa powder-colored head locks in aromas of raisins, brown sugar and maple, along with a touch of cinnamon. A chile-derived earthiness is here as well, though in a much smaller amount than I'd like.
In the flavor, the chile bite is more noticeable, planting an earthy grip on the back of the tongue. If left on the tongue for a while, you can detect just a bit of the pepper's heat. Big, fruity raisins, cinnamon and bitter dark chocolate swirl amidst a shot of alcohol. The alcohol bite is almost too big here, getting in the way of the underlying flavors somewhat. It does add, however, to the body, which is a big, syrupy medium that's enhanced by mild, gooey carbonation.
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I find the standard Judgment Day a bit too boozy. Mayan Apocalypse, with its unique adjuncts, combats this a little, but it would've been great if the beer had just a bit more of the South American flavors.
Whatever. That's what you stupid Mayans get. Now if you'll excuse me, I have a few dozen boxes of ninja stars to return.
Zach Fowle is a Certified Cicerone, an accredited guide to beer. He works at World of Beer in Tempe.