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RATINGS: 1358   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.21   SEASONAL: Winter   IBU: 68   EST. CALORIES: 330   ABV: 11%
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This special Reserve Series brew will only be offered December Ė February (limited distribution)
The Abyss: Stout brewed with licorice and molasses with 33% aged in oak and oak bourbon barrels. Itís dark. Itís deep. Itís mysterious. Aged in French Oak and Bourbon barrels, this special brew has immeasureable depth inviting you to explore and discover its rich, complex profile. The flavor of molasses and licorice draw you in further and further with each sip. The Abyss beckons. Enjoy the journey.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Beaver (1219) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - JAN 28, 2008
22 oz bottle. Pours a dark blackish brown with a frothy dark brown head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is more subdued than expected - roasted chocolate malts, strong oak with a little anise, nitrogen(?) and leather.

The flavor is strong overpowering black licorice at first with a little oak and sweet chocolate malts leading to a charred bitter finish. The alcohol is well hidden. The mouthfeel is medium to full with low carbonation.

Overall, I tend not to like the black licorice flavors, and this one has it strong. As it warms (or as I get used to it), the sweetness starts to balance it out.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
StefanSD (2015) - Lakeside, California, USA - JAN 27, 2008
650 ml bottle from Bev4less in Santee. Pours an opaque black color with a dark tan one finger head that lasts a short while and leaves plenty of lacing. The aroma is strong and complex with molasses, anise, coffee and cherries. The flavor was similarly complex with a good hop backing highlighting those same flavors found in the aroma. The mouthfeel was full, smooth and creamy, big malt presence at work here, this is damn near a beer that you can chew. The finish was long and smooth with lingering mocha coffee and a touch of alcohol. Overall: This beer has earned its hype, its good stuff. Highly recommended.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
killjoy966 (677) - Washington, USA - JAN 26, 2008
pours a midnight black with a light brown head. i had high expectations for this one that were mostly met, a little too alcoholic for my liking, but deserving of a spot in my beer cellar.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
drfabulous (3646) - Lexington, Kentucky, USA - JAN 26, 2008
So many beers. So much hype. The problem with hype is that itís hard to live up to you. On one side, you have the fantasy of what you expect. On the other, you have what you receive. Still, despite this gap, hyped beers can still be magical. The Abyss is one such beer. It could never live up to the hype, to being sold out everywhere, to the one or three beer limits. But it doesnít matter. Aligned with that hype is the creamy, dark, roasty taste of this stout. Its tatste lingers inside of you. Its richness captivates. It is as good as it was hyped.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
robforbes (2048) - Bremerton, Washington, USA - JAN 26, 2008
UPDATED: DEC 21, 2008 old rating: 7/4/9/4/18 - 4.2. pours a jet black with a medium size brown head, excellent lacing. smell of cocoa, coffee, molasses, touch of walnuts, some smoke, some caramel, and sour malt. taste is creamy and thick, bakers chocolate, dark chocolate, coffee, woody, black licorice, some walnuts, caramel, a little smokiness, and a touch of vanilla, excellent bitter ending that is just a touch on the dry side.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
BillKismet (3291) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JAN 26, 2008
Burnt brown dissipating head on a black, abyssful body. Deep soot black patent charcoal aroma with veins of chocolate, coffee, licorice and a tingle of bourbon. Bourbon definitely invades the edges of flavor that is also of burnt coffee and other similar to the Black Butte Porter. Strong alcohol presence, though one would still not think 11% as it is well integrated. Medium dryness.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
doubleo (1433) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 23, 2008
22oz bomber, 2007 Reserve. The beer looks awesome. Pours thickish dark black with a dense and creamy light brown head. Smells like moldy drywall and bark. Tastes of dirt and ashes, it does have a malty aftertaste once the taste of ashes finally fades. Maybe a hint of chocolate in there as well. Full, but not thick bodied. OK carbonation. Itís different, Iíll give it that. Not very good in my opinion.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Snojerk321 (2975) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 23, 2008
22oz bottle from Bev Mo Carmel Mountain. I think this is the darkest, thickest beer Iíve ever seen! Poured a deep coffee brown almost black. Head was big at first then dissipated, looked like bubbling milk chocolate. Great lacing was left on the glass. Nose was big on chocolate, coffee, molasses and alcohol at first. As the beer set, more bourbon and licorice became present. Big rich and oily mouth feel. I think I was expecting a bit more from all the hype, but overall, a killer Imperial Stout.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
scrizzz (2223) - Bothell, Washington, USA - JAN 22, 2008
aroma of damp forest floor and raw alcohol. beer looks amazing, so thick, inky and heavy the head appears to sink into the black hole below. alcohol permeates all flavors with a bright flash. iíll let it warm and see what comes out. the anise and oak come out, but the bite remains strong and prohibits the delicacy.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
NickVega (154) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - JAN 21, 2008
Really nice, on tap at Sam Bondís Garage (Tom Waits Tribute Night)... A little to earthy/smoky for my wife - the second pint was even better than the first.

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