The Abyss by Deschutes Brewery

This delicious offering was their 2010 release and was one of the first beers I decided to actually sit down and critically evaluate.  Then after finishing half the 22 oz bomber, I was feeling creative and decided to write a little narrative about the tasting experience.  What can I say, at least it was a start.  By the way, I was not able to cellar a second bottle.  I was able to find another one, just not able to cellar it…What is it they say again about Patience?


From the first pour into my glass, I was amazed at the pitch blackness that ran down the side of the glass.  I expected a beer like Abyss to be dark, this is completely opaque yet very clear.

I have to admit, I was already a bit buzzed before taking my first impressions, so I forgot about the whole “aroma first” step.  But my first flavor perceptions were, liquor (Duh! It was aged in liquor barrels.), liquorice, and bitter, roastedness. After a few sips, it starts to get much more complex.  Tons of dark coffee, dark chocolate flavors begin to emerge once your palate becomes used to the 11% ABV.

About half way through my 22oz bomber I contemplated not finishing the rest, since I was feeling pretty woozy.  But after deciding that a $14 beer is not going to be wasted, I poured the remainder of the bottle (which turned out to be a bit more than half), and lo and behold, I am sitting here about 20 minutes later, writing this review about how amazing this beer is.  It turns into an extremely smooth and silky stout that keeps your mouth craving for more.

The aroma (way late in the game) is heavily reminiscent of dark coffee and carmelized sugars with liquor undertones.  Not too strong,  allowing for flavors to really provide a kick and show off the complexity.

Overall, my impressions are great. I think this is a great boozy, winter-warmer type beer (or early Spring warmer, as I enjoyed it tonight on March 27, 2011). I plan on buying at least one more (if I can find it still!) to “cellar” until next winter and see how the flavors change.


About dfwbeerscene

I am a beer nut. I drink it all the time, I brew it as much as humanly possible, and if I'm not doing either of the first two, I'm probably thinking about it. So as a beer nut, I've always followed the limited beer scene in DFW, and up until recently, there wasn't a whole lot to discuss. Well now there sure is! As many of you already know, DFW and its surrounding areas is having a bit of a beer renaissance. Every month last year I'd hear about more and more breweries "in development" and I'd scurry the web to find out where I can monitor their progress. And that, is what I intend to do with this blog. So now a little bit about myself: I am an environmental scientist by trade, but as of January 2011 I have made the decision to become a professional brewer. Since then, I applied and was accepted to the American Brewers' Guild CraftBrewers Apprenticeship Program and am scheduled to begin in June 2013.
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