The Abyss - Deschutes Brewery
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Ratings: 4,152 | Reviews: 1,598 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by BeardedRiker:
4.8/5 rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
My friend and I had two Deschutes beers. I had the Black Butte XXI, at the time we drank the beers it was one year and 364 days old, and my friend had the 2010 Abyss, it being 366 days old. We expected the drinking event would be superb. Little did we know it would blow our socks off.
This is a beautifully dark beer. What did Nietzsche say? "When you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Well, with this beer, you just get sucked into it like a black hole. It's the blackest of black. When you hold it up to a light it is as if the light cannot compete. Ok, maybe I'm just saying BS here, but the point is this beer is midnight, charcoal black. The head forms relatively slowly and looks like a mocha foam, yet creamy.
If you spend half an hour just smelling this then I wouldn't blame you. Every inhalation of The Abyss is like you're inhaling for the first time, it is so complex. You literally cannot get enough. The smell has a warmth to it like smelling wine. It's definitely boozy but not overpowering at all, thanks to the rich chocolate and roasted coffee smells. The bottle says the beer is brewed with molasses and it definitely has a sort of burnt sugar aroma. Dark fruits are in there too with a distinct oakiness. Smell it, smell it again, and then keep on smelling. Every whiff will satisfy.
How does The Abyss taste? Oh my, I don't know if it could be properly put into words. Dark roasted coffee, delicious chocolate, satisfying sweetness, dark fruits like raisin and prunes, and some good, warming booziness. Every single flavor was exceptional. It was like a cascade of sweet, roasted awesomeness where the depth of flavor seemed to never end. There's some obvious booziness from the 11% ABV but even with it that high the amount of flavor keeps it completely satisfactory. Sometimes imperial stouts have so much flavor that you feel like you can't drink much of it. In the case of The Abyss such is not the case. With a beer as great as this the bombardment of rich flavor is too satisfying to stray from. There's also a bourbon-ish bite at the end that adds more complexity. I don't know if I've ever given a beer a 5 out of 5 on anything but I'm content with giving The Abyss a perfect score when it comes to taste.
Like I said when explaining the taste of The Abyss, many times I feel as I can't drink too much of an imperial stout, no matter how much I like the style, because they're so flavorful, so boozy, and so heavy. Well, The Abyss, while being a heavy beer, doesn't feel like it. It's not thin at all. It's just perfect. Creamy, smooth, a bit sticky from the sweetness, and insanely drinkable for how much flavor it has.
When I was drinking The Abyss I knew it was a great beer but it wasn't until after I drank it that I realized just how flippin' good it was. I actually got a bit...depressed because I knew I wouldn't drink another beer as good for a long time. The next time I see this on the shelf I'll definitely be purchasing it and aging it. I can only imagine how it tastes when aged longer. Great beer.
Serving type: bottle
11-23-2011 04:11:31 | More by BeardedRiker
More User Reviews:
4.35/5 rDev -4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
Vintage 2013 (I know the best after date but I like to try everything fresh first)
Appearance: a pitch black color. completely opaque. two finger tan head that fades slowly and leaves a good strong lacing. extremely viscous and leaves a slickness on the sides. a pretty spot on look for a big stout.
Smell: chocolate, roast, dark fruits. wood, slight smokiness. slight molasses. all these and more are there but its not the strongest and most profuse scent.
Taste: opens up with rich chocolate that mixes with a slight roastiness. lots of woody characteristics, mostly oak and some strong cherry wood are strong. ends with some licorice and slight molasses. also at the end a strong cherry wood and a very slight bourbon comes through. very strong alcohol comes and goes through.
Mouthfeel: extremely viscous and thick. strong alcohol kick and warmth. some bitterness from the roast and alcohol.
Overall: This is a great and complex beer. lots of good flavors but fresh it is very rough. but if you enjoy beers that have harsher tastes, like me, than go for it young. shows great expectations for aging as suggested by the bottle. certainly lives up to its name and reputation. Only thing that is really lacking is the weakness of the smell
Serving type: bottle
03-09-2014 23:29:05 | More by SportsandJorts
The Abyss from Deschutes Brewery
100 out of 100 based on 4,152 ratings.