March 16, 2014

Deschutes Abyss Complete Vertical Tasting Notes

Overall the thing that blew me away by this vertical was the complete lack of oxidation. Even the first batch, 2006, was relatively free of oxidative effects. This is a good and bad thing. Personally, I like a little oxidation. It adds sherry/port, dried fruit, and a bevy of other effects. On the other hand, it was fantastic to taste a BA imperial stout without negative stale oxidation too.

Bottom Line: I love this beer with 4-5 years on it. The roast and booziness has mellowed, but there is still an impressive roast malt character and body along with some vintage flavors.

Deschutes Abyss Complete Vertical: 2006-2013

Deschutes Abyss Complete Vertical: 2006-2013

Tasting notes below:

2013: Coffee grounds, caramel malts and a somewhat harsh booziness. Light vanilla oak presence that stayed constant throughout the entire vertical. Astringent roasted finish.

2012: The fullest bodied of the bunch. chewy black licorice, cheap rum and bittersweet chocolate.

2011:  Still a bit fusel-y, but starting to show some vintage flavors. Raisins, black chocolate and spiced rum.  The fullest bodied and sweetest of the bunch. Astringent roasted finish almost totally gone.

2010:  Sweet cuban coffee, brown sugar, and port. Less sweet and more integrated than the 2011.

2009: Most bottles of this vintage were infected and this was no different, however, it was substantially less than most we’ve experienced. Was much drier with a distinctive red wine quality. Still chocolatey, but not near as sweet. Was some folks favorite, but I found it too dry to allow it best qualities to shine through.

2008: Belgian chocolate, raspberries and oak-induced vanilla and coconut. Perfectly balance of sweetness. Amazing.

2007:  More roasted than the 08, presenting more of a coffee flavor. Caramel and vanilla, but overall a subdued bottle.

2006: Very coffee forward and bitter. The same flavors as previous years, (chocolate, caramel, sherry, etc) are present, but muted. Comes across a bit flat.

barrel aged imperial stout vintage

Abyss 2013: This young’in has a ways to go


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