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The Abyss - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
The AbyssThe Abyss

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

4,612 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,612
Reviews: 1,623
rAvg: 4.52
pDev: 9.51%
Wants: 2,407
Gots: 2,139 | FT: 142
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Aged in bourbon, Oregon oak, and Pinot Noir barrels.

65 IBU

Vintages (production numbers from Deschutes):
2006 - Released December 2006 (approx 90 BBL)
2007 - Released January 2008 (approx 350 BBL)
2008 - Released November 2008 (approx 350 BBL)
2009 - Released November 2009 (approx 600 BBL)
2010 - Released December 2010 (approx 600 BBL)
2011 - Released November 2011 (approx 600 BBL)

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-24-2006)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,612 | Reviews: 1,623 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bobhits
bobhits

Kentucky

4.22/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A top 20 beer with over 1k reviews and available off the shelf in many areas? This has already built up HUGE anticipation with me!

Deep and dark with a tall chocolate milk head. Amazingly dark given that this isn’t motor oil. Liquorish and bourbon mix to create this sweet vanilla note with a slight oak finish. This is almost candy bourbon with a dark chocolate vs say a bourbon ball with milk chocolate.

Light oak notes open this one up. A bit cool still to go into detail. Liquorish and bourbon mix to create this sweet vanilla note with a slight oak finish. This is almost candy bourbon with a dark chocolate vs say a bourbon ball with milk chocolate.

I see why people age this beer, the barrel blending gives off very overt layers of flavors that will blend wonderfully and a touch of alcohol that will mellow. Opens with a dark malt chocolate like profile. The flavor then goes to wet odd hop liquorish flavor that isn’t ideal. Finally the beer switches to a nice oaked bourbon aged beer. Warming up this no longer has the distinct beginning middle and finish. I’d never thought about liquorish and bourbon going together but I like this combo. BTW what does 33% brewed in oak and oak bourbon barrels? Is that 1/3 of this beer was in half oak and half bourbon barrels? Or do they use oak sometimes and bourbon barrels (which are oak) other times? This beer needs a bit more something to balance the molasses and licorice sweetness, and this blend of bourbon doesn’t add enough of that oak and woody note to finish it.

Certainly a dense beer, but of the imperial stouts I’d say this is medium or medium high density. More carbonation than average here works well.

I have a hard time seeing this as a top 20 beer. It is truly wonderful and I am amazingly thankful that I was able to get this in a trade but I think this beer’s ranking it a touch higher. That said everyone should have this beer at least once given the reasonable price. Now noticing the best after date and wondering how I missed that. Well I suppose I need another bottle, anyone? Overall a bit too sweet imo and that won't be helped with age. That said some blending of flavors could dramatically improve things.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2011 17:30:50 | More by bobhits
Photo of dwaz
dwaz

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 Bottle

A - Pours thick black into glass with small head

S - Boozy bourbon and malts, no detectable sweetness

T - Unbalanced, very noiticebale bourbon flavor dominates with some licorice and oak

M - Good carbonation and thickness

O - too much boozy flavor, probably needs to age more to acheive better balance

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2011 17:20:42 | More by dwaz
Photo of ThoreauLikeAGirl
ThoreauLikeAGirl

Pennsylvania

4.47/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my friends from New York for bringing this bottle down with them on a visit (users shutyourface and satorirotas)

2009 bottle, poured into a snifter... with an immediate sigh of relief that it was not an infected bottle.

poured a dark thick black - like motor oil. black as night. black as death. black as an... abyss?
had a bit of a brown creamy head that stayed around for a bit.

the smell was of roasted coffee and dark chocolate. the kind of chocolate you get at specialty shops that are 95% dark. some bourbon in the backgrounds.

the taste mimic'd the smell: dark chocolate and coffee. roasty. oaky. thick. left an enjoyable aftertaste that stuck around. a bit of alcohol warmth - seemed very mellow probably from being a 2 year old bottle. still definitely a sipping beer.

overall, a very enjoyable beer. would like to try some of the other vintages to compare.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2011 01:19:31 | More by ThoreauLikeAGirl
Photo of trodersark
trodersark

California

4.22/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Bottle, poured into a tulip.

Pours a rich dark brownish black with a nice finger thick head. Smells of malt and black licorice goodness. Tastes like a smokey, excellent stout with the right amount of malt and black licorice, nothing too overpowering. Mouthfeel is great. Effervescent enough to encourage tasting all the tiny component of Abyss on your front and back palate. Drinkability is exceptional. Overall good beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2011 20:21:55 | More by trodersark
Photo of surly1987
surly1987

Minnesota

4.55/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

a truly amazing beer. i had the 2010 reserve the day we received it in mn and loved it. i grabbed a second bottle to mature for a few months and decided to pop it open on my girlfriends birthday. i had had an obsidian at my local watering hole prior just so i had a refernence of comparison...unintentioanlly another deschutes product. the abyss is next to perfect. the carbonation is magnificant. the aroma is so rich yet far from overwhelming. the taste boasts rich coffee...sugar...and molasses. poured into a pint glass it was dark, rich yet the head, though minimal, was ideal...a dark carmel lacing was left in color on the glass...perfect. A+/A beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2011 05:27:41 | More by surly1987
Photo of jradams76
jradams76

Indiana

4.38/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 Vintage from Bottle

A: Dark black pour with little or no head.

S: Chocolate, Molasses, and a hint of bourbon aroma

T: Nice smooth stout! Chocolate and hint a bourbon with some vanilla. Hides the alcohol well.

M: Full body... smooth all the way.

O: Overall a great full bodied solid beer. Great to get two and drink one and cellar to see how it changes.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2011 00:54:22 | More by jradams76
Photo of benpopper
benpopper

Washington

4.15/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Was essentially just given this from Alpar! 2010 bottle poured into a Stolzle Beer Glass to celebrate my first day at a new job.

Pours almost pitch black, just a hint of a lightbulb will make it through. Nice creamy hocolate head that stays for a little bit and fades leaving some nice lacing

Smells great. A bit of the barrel, some chocolate and a bunch of alcohol. The best drinking date is a half of a year off so I attribute that to me being a little impatient as they told me to wait.

The taste bounces back between the chocolate from the smell and the barrel. It seems hot to me right now though, but maybe that is just me. As it warms everything becomes more pronounced.

This feels great in the mouth though. Velvet smooth with a backing of heat and good balanced carbonation make it everything I'd expect.

This will only get better right now, but seems available enough that you should drink one now to compare to later. Another vertical I want to, but don't need to start.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2011 20:35:49 | More by benpopper
Photo of seeswo
seeswo

Ohio

4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2007 bottle opened the night before DLD.

Pours like, well, an Abyss - black, viscous, tan head. Looks good. The nose is coffee, bitter chocolate, maybe a hint of caramel and some wood. No booziness present. Smells good. Taste is dark chocolate, caramel malts, wood and a hint of coffee. Again, no hint of booziness, which is impressive. The flavor is actually somewhat mild in comparison to my expectations. Not as rich as I was expecting, but definitely balanced and surprisingly drinkable. Could have used a touch more oomph. The mouthfeel was somewhat heavy with a medium carbonation. Seemed right for the beer. Overall this is definitely a good beer, but I don't understand the overwhelming acclaim. In a night with several other great beers, this quickly became forgettable.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2011 15:40:15 | More by seeswo
Photo of ShanePB
ShanePB

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the black waxed 22 ounce bottle, shared into two tulips.

A: Well, it's a dark abyss in there - pitch black body with some extremely dark coffee brown around the edges. Creamy, bubbly tan head that lingers around and leaves some great lacing.

S: Oak chips, roasted coffee, bakers chocolate and some sticky caramel malt. No real hints of "licorice" as described on the bottle, but a really nice nose. Perhaps the oak/wood notes come off a bit too strong for me, but it is very well blended and balanced, just not perfect.

T: Sticky molasses sets things off followed by heavy oak notes. I feel this is really centric on the oak, not necessarily ideal for a completely balanced flavor profile. Bitter roasted coffee and semi-sweet chocolate come through as this warms.

M: Viscous, creamy, great carbonation, almost perfect.

Abyss is a fantastic example of barrel aging and will only improve with time. Even though there's no alcohol heat on the palate, the nose does display some - something I think time can assist nicely with.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2011 03:42:47 | More by ShanePB
Photo of impending
impending

California

4.3/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz into a tulip. Pours a ruby hued well used motor oil, shiny and slick. Minor dark chocolate milkshake colored head lasts briefly, lacing unexceptional.

Aroma is classic american imperial, rich with sweetened charred dark malts. Yes, the molasses and licorice are prominent and wonderful but the barrel not so much.

Taste reveals the barrel. Many flavor notes can be discerned, roasty coffee, molasses, caramel and chocolate. The alcohol was nowhere to be found, bitterness is minimal. Long lasting delicious aftertaste, warms perfectly. Full bodied creamy mouthfeel.
cheers
jd

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2011 04:37:20 | More by impending
Photo of siradmiralnelson
siradmiralnelson

Iowa

4.78/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Reviewed on 5/4/11 for my Birthday. Poured from 22oz bottle into Globe glass.

A. Poured a 2 finger tark tan head. Very thick glass coating lacing. Excellent retention. color is black. Looks exactly like an Imperial Stout should.

S. Coffee, chocolate, vanilla, bourbon. Great smelling stout. Very balanced and smooth with a lot of complexity going on. I really like the fairly strong vanilla and oak aroma.

T. Excellent. A lot going on in the flavor of this beer. Where to begin. Coffee, licorice, molasses, vanilla, oak, roasted malt. I really like the vanilla and oakiness that this beer has. Almost reminds me of another

M. This might be the only area that the Abyss could be improved upon IMO. Maybe just a litte bit fuller would make it very good.

O. I really expected this to be an excellent stout given all of the buzz about it. I have to say that it did not dissapoint. One of the most complex and flavorful Imperial Stouts that I have had. I think this beer really showcases what barrel aging can do to a beer. For my flavor preferences this might be one of my favorite stouts.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2011 19:17:50 | More by siradmiralnelson
Photo of jag21
jag21

Washington

4.53/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cracked a bottle of 2010 to share with friends.

A: Black with brown foamy head that screams thick
S: Coffee, a bit of licorice, oak, molasses
T: I got a lot of creamy coffee up front, very tasty, followed by roasted malts and finished with a bit of oak and vanilla, very nice
M: Creamy, coating, lingering on the palate; Perfect for this beer
D: I could drink a couple of these if the occasion arose. Awesome beer

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2011 18:20:04 | More by jag21
Photo of tarheels86
tarheels86

California

4.6/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

651mL 2010 ed.

A- The pour is a near black with a healthy, menacing, Martian red head towering up with slow trepidation. Mean, sticky lacing abounds with layers and explosions of harden lava and obsidian.

N- Nose is already impending something quite special: big vanilla bean ice cream, beautiful vanilla and subtle notes that scream bourbon though bourbon barrel is not a dominant character here. Fresh hazelnut coffee, meaty flank steak, fatty/savory/umami characters take hold in an intoxicating whirlwind. Warm pecan pie, candied street food pecans, and slight spicy alcohol form the crescendo. Almost the superlative nose for imperial stout.

T- Body upfront makes it very obvious this is not an underattenuated milkshake. There is fatty steak and umami character quickly usurped by dry wood, tannins, big licorice, and big oily then dry spicy dark chocolate. Dry, almost soapy palate with obvious bitterness. The ends adds some fresh lemon and sharp tartness. I thought this was so similar to Expedition that I cracked a 3 year old Expy, but the vintage Expy just demolished this bad boy.

P- Heavy, woody, sharp, spicy, mildly tannic.

2010 batch I thought was superior to 2009. Didn't have an infected '09 bottle either.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2011 14:36:55 | More by tarheels86
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

4.88/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2010 Vintage poured in to Founder's tulip glass at 45F.

A - Poured dark black with one finger of foamy espresso coloured head that slowly disappeared laving some good lacing behind.

S - Very robust nose full of oak, coffee, brown sugar, bourbon and licorice.

T - Nice oak and bourbon notes compliment a robust palate of coffee, licorice and brown sugar. The alcohol is slightly noticeable but for the ABV and considering the freshness of this beer, it is actually well hidden. Some bitterness in the finish.

M - Medium to full body with a nice hearty chew. Light carbonation. Silky and smooth.

O - This was superb. Definitely lived up the very high expectations that I had for this beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2011 23:21:43 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of mavbrew
mavbrew

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 Reserve, poured into tulip, tasted on 4/30/11

A: Pours a deep, inky black color with a massive two finger thick, dark tan head that takes a couple minute to dissipate and leaves nice lacing.

S: The scent has a lot of dark chocolates, deep roasted malts with some oaky/woody scents and molasses notes are present as well.

T: The taste is much like the smell, dark chocolates up front with some roasted/charred malts coming through in the middle. The molasses notes come through towards the end with slight bourbon notes. The finish is charred and chocolaty.

M: Full bodied with light carbonation. The feel is thick, chewy and dark chocolates.

D: This is a top tier beer, very well balanced and ages quite well. There is hardly any alcohol noticeable, very smooth, just an overall excellent beer and a must try Imperial Stout.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2011 21:26:10 | More by mavbrew
Photo of loobear
loobear

Texas

4.68/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Viscous black body that is completely opaque. Rich, thick light nut-brown head that pours a thick and creamy 3-finger head with amazing retention. Lots of bubbles yet very dense. By looks alone I'm really excited to drink this beer.

S - What an amazing scent. This is the epitome of what I would like a stout to smell like - a perfectly balanced blend of coffee, dark fruits and malts. Wow.

T - Incredibly smooth front with a satisfying amount of alcohol in the finish. Bitter chocolate and malt aftertaste that is pleasant and lingers.

M - Goes down like silk but still has plenty of alcohol. Aftertaste is nice and warm and stays for quite a while. Really enjoyable.

O - This is the perfect stout in every way feasible. Can't wait to drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 05:48:34 | More by loobear
Photo of chrislouden
chrislouden

Texas

2.15/5  rDev -52.4%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Purchased from Side Door Liqour Store in El Paso Texas. $13

Bottle dated as best AFTER Nov 15 2011

Appearance: Darkest beer I have ever seen. Aptly named.

Smell: Strong malt smell followed by molasses

Taste: ... nothing kind to say

Mouthfeel: meh

Overall: Did not enjoy this beer at all. High expectations based on description on bottle.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 05:41:52 | More by chrislouden
Photo of ZenAgnostic
ZenAgnostic

Texas

4.9/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2010 Reserve, poured into a pint glass

Appearance - As black as the abyss. Big foamy brown head with lots of stick to the lace.

Smell - Deep coffee with some malt and alcohol. Plenty of complexity. You can keep smelling this, getting something different all the time.

Taste - Delicious. The alcohol is strong, but so well balanced by the coffee characters, that it goes down smooth. No off flavors. Perfect balance. I was expecting an overwhelming bitterness to follow the body, but it never came.

Mouthfeel - Very silky mouthfeel. Amazing.

Overall Drinkability - The best stout I've ever had in my life. Perfectly balanced. Smooth in flavor and in mouthfeel. Greatness. Very interesting an complex. Drink it fast though. It'll start to taste like shit pretty quickly when it oxidizes even for a little while. The last pour of the bottle tasted completely different, in a bad way, due to having been sitting on the table for half an hour.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 02:14:03 | More by ZenAgnostic
Photo of Azurescens
Azurescens

Washington

4.68/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz wax dipped bottle with best after date 11/15/11 poured into snifter, reviewed on 4/29/11

A: Pours pitch black with no light getting through even when held up to the light. Big fluffy light brown head with good retention leaving quite a bit of lacing around glass.

S: Lots of stuff going on in the nose. Roasted barley with molasses, a hint of bourbon, oak and vanilla with alcohol and a hint of licorice. As it warms up the alcohol comes out quite a bit and begins to overpower the other aromas.

T: The licorice comes out in the taste much more than the smell with all of the flavors picked up in the nose coming together wonderfully. Roasted malts, sweet vanilla, thick molasses, chocolate, some licorice with additional complexities coming from the oak and bourbon barrels that help blend all the other flavors together rather than overpower them like many other barrel aged stouts. Very little alcohol is detectable in the taste for an 11% ABV beer. Hop balance is near perfect keeping all of the malty sweetness in check.

M: Mouthfeel is awesome, viscous, slick, super smooth full bodied beer with some carbonation. Wouldn't change a thing.

O: One of my all time favorite stouts. Fantastic all around, I love how you can easily pick out all of the complexities yet they still blend together in perfect harmony. Ridiculously drinkable for an 11% barrel aged imperial stout. Excellent offering from Deschutes.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2011 03:52:49 | More by Azurescens
Photo of tedwilson40
tedwilson40

Washington

4.38/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into maudite stem glass. appearance:pitch black with thin caramel brown head. smell: verry sweet, chocolatey, roasty malts with a vague hint of soy sauce but not in a bad way. taste: delicious sweet and chocolaty up front fades into roasted malts with licorice and bits of coffee in the after taste. mouthfeel: good, not too carbonated, definately not flat. overall: an extremely delicious example of the style. this is one of my fav's its better than chocolate milk!!!

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2011 03:38:30 | More by tedwilson40
Photo of AlCaponeJunior
AlCaponeJunior

Texas

4.45/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Epic 420th review!

2010 vintage received in yet another great trade with pitasoup. Thanks man!!

For the style this one looks quite good. Black, completely so, with a nice dark brown head that lasted a bit, leaving plenty of lacing.

Smell is of plenty of dark, roasty and burnt malts, licorice, dark fruits, anise. Wood and bourbon are also present.

Taste is damn spectacular, I dare say the perfect tasting American Double stout has been found! Bold roasted malts and ample bourbon come through first, followed by tangy anise and licorice, woody notes, vanilla, and dark fruits. There's some dark chocolate and espresso notes in there too. Extremely complex, flavorful and delicious. A bit of alcohol comes through, but this is expected for the style and ABV.

Mouthfeel is very thick, smooth, with silky carbonation and a lingering bitterness. Alcohol warms on the way down.

Drinks quite well. A damn fine beer that's fully worthy of all the hype. It's on my "always wants" list on my profile from now on.

Thanks Pitasoup!!!!

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2011 20:14:12 | More by AlCaponeJunior
Photo of dcsoke
dcsoke

Arkansas

4.03/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage from Bottle

A: Dark oily pour with decent head at first, but the foam soon subsides. Little to no head retention.

S: Molasses, chocolate, roast and a hint or bourbon aroma with no alcohol kick to ruin it. This smells like a great and inviting beer.

T: The smells don't deceive, but there is a faint alcohol taste. Considering this was only bottled 5 months ago it's not suprising. The roast comes through strong in the end.

M: Nicely carbed with a full body... smooth all the way.

O: Overall a great full bodied beer. Could use some more bourbon flavor and a bit of aging to mellow out the alcohol flavor. Definitely drink again and would probably age the next bottle.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2011 02:52:07 | More by dcsoke
Photo of dmsohyea
dmsohyea

California

4.03/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On tap at San Diego Brewing Co. Served in a mini goblet. 4/21/11.

A - Pour had virtually no head, but the bit that was there was very dark khaki. Some lacing. Pitch black. No light penetrates.

S - Some sugary dark malts and chocolate. Faint hops with some coffee.

T - Tastes nearly exactly as it smells, except the coffee is much more forward on the first sip. Brown sugar and chocolate are background flavors with a bit of oak somewhere on the finish. Moderate bitterness, but not overly so.

M - Mouthfeel is perfect. Silky smooth bubbles and full bodied texture. Holds its body well without being overly thick or watery.

O - A great example of the style, but not world class to me. For me I would rather have a speedway stout. I'll drink this one again if it comes across a tap board in my future.

Serving type: on-tap

04-22-2011 01:18:48 | More by dmsohyea
Photo of Dijeriduster
Dijeriduster

California

4.38/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had 2008 followed by 2007...'08 was slightly better as the booze wasn't as forward as the more aged '07

A - Dark thick looking black, opaque with a bubbly coffee looking head.

S - Roasty malts come thru with a hint of booze and a ton of complexity. You get some fruits (dates, currants) along with some sweetness hidden in the darkness.

T - Wow, easily the best Imperial Stout I've ever had. Extremely well balanced between roastiness, booziness, sweetness and goodness. So many different things happening I don't even know how to describe it all. Just a hint of the oak they use, but again well balanced and nuanced.

M - Nice feel rolling on the tongue, not too thick while still having a good ummph. The booze does take away some of the feel, but that is very much a part of the style.

O - Damn, first time taking this ride and really impressed. Of course, its not a daily drinking type beer but clearly they know what they are doing.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2011 21:01:08 | More by Dijeriduster
Photo of mmurphy525
mmurphy525

Nova Scotia (Canada)

4.78/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My first review, figured I would begin with a bang.

2010 vintage poured from a bottle into a duvel tulip. Pours a very dark black with a dark tan head which dissipates quickly. Lasing was negligible.

Aroma – hints of vanilla, roasted malts, slight bourbon, and very sweet.

Taste – dominate notes of roasted malt/caramel which fades to vanilla and bourbon notes, finally finishing with a roasted coffee/mocha taste. Flavours are incredibly balanced and very palatable. I could not personally distinguish the liquorish(anise) character and the 11% is very well hidden.

It is incredibly smooth with perfect carbonation; resulting in a very creamy texture.

I am personally not particularly found of 100% barrel aged (BA) stouts and found the abyss (33% barrel aged – bourbon notes not overly pronounced) to be perfectly balanced. Though this beer tends to be difficult to acquire especially for those in Canada, it is a perfect gateway to BA stouts.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2011 21:42:40 | More by mmurphy525
The Abyss from Deschutes Brewery
100 out of 100 based on 4,612 ratings.