10 Commandments from The Lost Abbey is a 10% ABV ale brewed with honey, raisins and rosemary. Mmmmmm! This special beer came to me as a very nice ‘Thank You’ from a New Jersey ex-pat living in cold and cloudy southern California. 😉 Rhea (the kind NJ ex-pat) had emailed The Brew Club about some beer suggestions when she came to this area to visit family and friends. I replied, as I always do, with some beer ideas that were local to the Southern NJ scene like Flying Fish, River Horse, and Yards.
Fast-forward a bit, and Rhea was a happy camper so she offered to send me a bottle of Lost Abbey beer as a thank you! How could I refuse? Lost Abbey beers always seem to get rave reviews, and I’ve never tried anything from them! I just don’t think they distribute to NJ!
So, there’s the story of how I got this great beer. As they say, beer people are good people! Thanks Rhea!
As it turns out, this is a great Christmas beer! Anytime I read something like raisins in the mix, I immediately think of some of my favorite beers, which are the strong, dark Belgian Christmas ales like the Corsendonk Christmas Ale or Gouden Carolus Noel. Wow, that’s good stuff, so I had high hopes for this beer too.
Well, I shouldn’t have worried. 10 Commandments lived up to expectations!
After getting through the cage and cork, I gave this beer a pour into mt glass. It created a bit of a foamy head, but it dissipated quickly and left no lacing to speak of. Held up to the light, the beer was a bit murky-looking, and reminded me of prune juice a little it. I know many people say its a ruby-red color, but I’m going to go with my prune juice.
The aroma was familiar to me, as I mentioned I dig the Belgian Christmas ales, and if you do than Lost Abbey 10 Commandments will not be shocking to your system. To me, the dark fruits come through the most in these beers along with some of the alcohol and that holds true here as well. I’m not sure if I could specifically pick up on the rosemary though.
Taste is again quite recognizable with the dark fruits (raisin) providing the main flavor, which is mostly sweet, but there is a good amount of peppery spice present as well to keep it on the lively side. The alcohol, while respectable in quantity, is well masked and it doesn’t really bully any of the other flavors in this beer which I liked. Maybe its just me (OK, it definitely is me) but I just don’t like it when beers are too boozy in flavor. I know, its an alcoholic drink, what do I expect. I expect balance and Lost Abbey pulls it off very well with 10 Commandments. Speaking of balance, there is enough malt in the beer to keep the sweet flavors in check. Its a sweet beer for sure, but it isn’t out of line and seems to be well within the style.
Mouthfeel is nice too! I’d say its a creamy and smooth, but the spices and moderate carbonation make it lively on the tongue. Its a little sticky, much like the Delirium Noel is, and usually that’s a turn-off for me, but not with this beer, (or Delirium either). It works.
Overall, I’d say this is a great beer for a few reasons. One, I got it as a generous Thank You which makes it mean more to me straight-away. Two, I really like this beer style. The strong, dark Belgian ale is a great beer style, and 10 Commandments is a great rendition so I’m giving this beer a 4 out of 5. It really made my day! 🙂