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RATINGS: 54   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.68   EST. CALORIES: 450   ABV: 15%
Sede Vacante is a blend of Barleywine aged in Cognac barrels and Brandy barrel-aged Angel’s Share and at packaging came in at 15% abv. A contemplative beer with substantial depth, Sede Vacante imparts tones of dark fruit and vanilla, with a warming finish from the Cognac. The strongest beer to emerge from The Lost Abbey, portions of the beer spent almost 5 years in a barrel. Sede Vacante can be enjoyed immediately or cellared till the next Papal Conclave, however long that may be.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Fritz123 (1360) - Boca Raton, Florida, USA - JAN 12, 2014
Bottle share at the Funky Buddha MBCP release party. Snifter. Pours a muddy brown pour with a thin rimmed white head. No lacing. The nose is first BOOZE! Man I thought I was going to be drinking a cognac or brandy. (Well close I guess.) Vanilla, malts, and dark fruits are present but the booze and wood barrel really dominate. The same with the taste. I really get the booze and barrel overwhelmingly. The vanilla, dark breads, and nuts are also present. Some spice. Medium-full body, low carbonation. I thought it was a very novel beer.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
olr1984 (1338) - fort wayne, Indiana, USA - JAN 2, 2014
750ml bottle drank on new years eve. pours a dark hazy brown with zero head. Big brandy and oak aroma. taste is the same with lots of vanilla toffee cognac. great beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
hopscotch (10142) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - JAN 2, 2014
Bottle... This beer rocks!… Murky brown pour with no head. The nose is a fantastic intermingling of dried fruits, raisins, brown sugar, bourbon and a light molasses note. Full-bodied and downright chewy with almost zero carbonation. The flavor consists of boozy brandy, seared caramel, mocha and a light note of butterscotch. Roasty-sweet finish with a butterscotch aftertaste that lingers. Many thanks to richiesd for providing this world class brew!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
JohnGalt1 (835) - , Idaho, USA - DEC 22, 2013
Shared this one tonight with some good friends... I received this in trade from the great trader jvillefan... Thanks a bunch Michael!! It was well received. Pours a fairly clear walnut brown.. no head and no bubbles and unfortunately no surprise. The nose is rich dark malts and plenty of fruity esters.... great barrel presence, but not overdone. Sweet and very rich maltiness... a light tannic oakiness helps cut through the pretty thick caramel maltiness... dark cherries and vanilla.. cigar wrapper tobacco.. later pours show more raisin and some light cocoa.. so very rich. I am so disappointed that there is no carbonation in this... A decent bubble would catapult this into the upper echelon of beers... I have absolutely NO idea how a brewery like LA can come so close to perfection and then fuck things up like no carbonation. Thanks again Michael... This tasted and smelled great... I would love to get another 1-2 of these to hang onto for posterity.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
mathieuc (2285) - Québec, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 13, 2013
Pours a dark brown with no head and looking completely still, really. Damn. Aroma is straight up boozy. Taste is alcohol also with some cloying caramel. Carbonation is really low, further harming this beer. Burning booze sensations and syrupy mouthfeel. OK

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
czar (5843) - Québec, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 13, 2013
pours clear dark brown-reddish without a head. red fruits, brandy and cognac fruitiness - raisiny too, but also bourbon vanilla, booze, complex layers of caramel, along with butter notes, chocolate, caramelized nuts, tobacco and other oxidation notes. almost cloying red fruitiness. low to flat carbonation, medium body - syrupy, grassy-spicy short finish. complex but still is a let down..

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Marheb (3291) - San Diego, California, USA - NOV 12, 2013
Je reconnais le profil Lost abbey en arôme, cognac, caramel, porto, bois grillé et un peu de raisins secs. En bouche le même éventail, le corps sans vie est liquoreux et transporte mal les saveurs complexes. Dommage.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
tom10101 (4031) - Quebec, CANADA - NOV 11, 2013
Bottle (750 ml). From jvillefan, thanks! Hazy dark brown with no head and no lacing. Aroma is boozy with cognac, caramel, vanilla, dark fruits, port, raisins and oak. Taste is boozy with cognac, dark fruits, wood, caramel, burnt caramel, port and sweetness. Warming alcohol (not burning though, despite the abv). Full bodied. Flat. Liquorous. Complex, but the complete lack of carbonation is a bummer (just a little could help). Lack of refinement and finesse to be compared to a fine wine or liquor.

   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 8/20
brystmar (1314) - Dallas, Texas, USA - NOV 4, 2013
From notes on 4/19/2013. Pours an ugly dark brown-red, nearly opaque; zero head or lace. Appears to be flat (insert LA carb jokes here).

Nose is pure booze, not inviting at all. Taste opens a bit more, revealing some intricacies of the barrels briefly before the alcoholic burn overtakes everything again. Some notes of dark fruit here and there vaguely remind me of Utopias (though SV is far inferior to that masterpiece). Nearly flat, yes, but that isn’t this brew’s problem: it’s simply way too hot. Barrel-heads rejoice?

"Sede Vacante can be enjoyed immediately or cellared till the next Papal Conclave, however long that may be." SV needs another few years in timeout before it’s ready for prime time (assuming it ever even gets there). Blame the Pope.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
TheAlum (6373) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - OCT 29, 2013
Bottle shared at Lightening Day. Thanks! Pours a nice deep brownish darker brown hue, some ruby and leather hues, firm hazy body with a mellow tannish ring that sits atop, laces small. Loose mellow carbonation. Mellow ruby glow on the edges. Aromas are carmelized, firmer vinous qualities. Touches of vanilla, caramel and gentle butterscotch. Touches of spirit are warm, a firm oak presence. Caramel, toffee, and dark fruit. Initial is medium bodied, a bit more full. Subtle carbonation is mellow, touches of red wine, mellow warmth, Cognac sticks and oak, gentle grape. Carmelized malts, some caramel and toffee are there, provide a bit of body but this is definitely thinned a bit. Middle is a bit vinous, firm barrel presence really gives some heat at times. Oak, a bit tannic and darker carmelized malts and some plum, vanilla and carmelized elements. Some gentle tannic qualities, vanilla, and heat. Backend and finish show show more heat, tannic qualities. Darker carmelized and biscuity malt. Cognac is pretty warm at times, some red grape, spirit and brandy. Really could use a touch more body and carbonation to give it some life. The flavors are solid, a touch warm overall I think. Some nice Cognac play covers up the Brandy a bit more.

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