Saturday, December 26, 2009


DESCHUTES BREWING unleashed a deluxe imperial stout called THE ABYSS upon the world at the tail end of 2007, yet in such insanely limited bottled quantities that I didn't even hear of it. Last year's THE ABYSS got out there in just about the right amount to both start a cult of believers (myself included) and to ensure it was limited enough to help generate a little supply-and-demand hype action. While the beer obviously speaks for itself (we rated last year's a 10/10), the marketing worked as well. This year, late 2009, DESCHUTES has let a lot more ABYSS unto the world than ever before. There are tons of bottles at my local BevMo, Whole Foods and at speciality retailers, all around a $11.99 price point, which is more than worth it in my book.

THE ABYSS 2009 version is called ABYSS 2009 RESERVE. As you might expect if you had last year's, it's amazing, and deserving of all the kudos raining down upon it. It's a rich, creamy stout - extremely roasted and intense. It has a deep coffee flavor that you can even taste in the foam, but unlike last year, I don't really taste chocolate. And I was looking for it. It's got some real burnt, "bitter" qualities, but it's all good. I've kinda got a crush on it, and I'm terrified if I don't buy some more bottles they'll stop making it. So I'm off to BevMo this weekend. Need anything? 2009 version = 9/10.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I've had two bottles of the '09 so far. The first left me a bit in doubt, it seemed hot and not as well balanced as in previous years. The second bottle I enjoyed more, especially as it warmed. In fact, I think I liked the second go round as much as the '07 or '08. But I agree on the missing chocolate. In other years I really enjoyed a cocoa flavor that was just enough to give it a richness without the cloying sweetness of other chocolatey stouts.