Prairie Artisan Ales

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category-iconBeer Reviews

Prairie's Christmas Bomb! Explodes With Spice

December 10, 2019

By Tucker Anders, December 10, 2019

The shopping is long done; the wrapping mercifully finished. Presents have been opened, food eaten and family gone—Christmas is almost over, and it’s time to give yourself a little present. Opt for something boozy, but not too sweet since you’re still trying to digest the embarrassing number of sweet treats you consumed after Christmas dinner. I’d suggest grabbing Prairie’s Christmas Bomb!, a cinnamon-infused imperial stout that beats the hell out of after-dinner coffee and anxiety about work tomorrow. 

Appearance

Prairie’s Christmas Bomb! features two nearly identical depictions of Santa and Mrs. Claus at the North Pole with a challenge to find the 20 differences between the two. I’ll be honest, I spent an unreasonable amount of time searching before I finally gave up. (Are we sure there aren’t only 18?!) The beer itself pours with the viscosity of motor oil, and while all imperial stouts are dark, Christmas Bomb! somehow seems to reach a deeper, inkier darkness.

Aroma

Holy cinnamon! Christmas Bomb! smells like a fresh piece of Big Red, and were my eyes closed, I’d probably run through a variety of candies before I guessed it was actually a beer I’m smelling. It’s honestly ridiculous how much cinnamon aroma this beer puts off, and while that isn’t exactly an uncommon addition to a Christmastime ale, Christmas Bomb! takes it to a whole new level.

If you like cinnamon, you’ll love this beer.”

Flavor

If you like cinnamon, you’ll love this beer. Imagine taking a sip of one of your favorite imperial stouts fresh off of a handful of Red Hots and you’ve got a good idea of what Prairie’s Christmas Bomb! has to offer. Despite the strength of the cinnamon flavor, it manages to not overwhelm the delightful base beer that is Prairie’s imperial stout. Christmas Bomb! is decadent and rich, but that richness is cut by the cinnamon that presents more as spicy heat than cloying sweet. That heat serves to slow down the drinking experience, keeping Christmas Bomb! as more of a sipper. It’s a good thing, too, with a hefty 13% ABV.

Overall

Prairie manages to make Christmas Bomb! all about the cinnamon adjunct without losing the integrity of the base imperial stout. As it warms, it becomes less Red Hot candy and more snickerdoodle cookie. Prairie makes a ton of excellent stouts that lean heavily on adjuncts, but Christmas Bomb! may be the best of the bunch. So sink into your favorite chair and enjoy the last moments of your noël night by savoring this bodacious brew.

ZX Ventures, a division within AB InBev, is an investor in October
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