Deschutes comes out swingin’! My Lord this is good! I drank a bottle … and bought a case. The Bond Street series is knocking them out of the park lately. First came Hop Trip, then came this beer, and there’s also Hop Henge. All very drinkable beers, but this one is exceptional. Weighing in at 11% ABV, this is a big, roasty, stout that is so smoooooooooth! Be sure to buy several for cellaring.
Onto the tasting.
- Appearance: Opaque, mahogony, beautiful light toffee head that lasts and finally settles leaving plenty of bubbles drying on the glass as it settles onto the surface of the beer.
- Smell: Plenty of deep caramelized malt. Burnt sugar, slight initial smell of bourbon and hint of raisin under all of that.
- Taste: Wow! Despite the big alcohol, I was surprised how easily this beer went down. Plenty of what you’d expect given the dark, oily look of it: flavors from malts like highly-kilned crystal, chocolate, and black patent are all over the place. But balanced … incredible depth of flavor and balance. Plenty of those complexities come from, as the label says, 33% of the beer being aged in bourbon barrels and French oak. Can’t pick out the bourbon flavor nor an obvious use of licorice. It is just a creamy, roasty deep balanced flavor from start to finish.
- Mouthfeel: Great mouthfeel. Excellent coating of the tongue imparts flavor all over.
- Drinkability: This thing went down quickly. Be careful, but buy several so you can explore The Abyss more than once. You’ll most definitely want to.