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Geek Up, It’s Time for Deschutes’ Reserve Series

November 23, 2010 Leave a comment

Sour!

Written by our in-house cellar dweller, Timperial Stout.

When it comes to big, specialty releases that make waves on a national level, the Northwest is painfully lacking.  Washington state, more specifically, pretty much has none.  We don’t have a Dark Lord or a Black Tuesday or a Kate the Great or a Sexual Chocolate

I can’t think of a single time that I rushed out to the bottle shop for a WA release.  I have rushed out to bars to catch WA beers while they were on draft, but that is such a fleeting pursuit.  I want to be able to add a bottle to the cellar and age it and show it off and pretend that I’m cool that I have a crazy barrel-aged imperial stout that’s 4 years old and nearly impossible to get.  I have low self-esteem so if I don’t have an impressive cellar I have nothing.

But seriously, why can’t Washington brewers do this for me.  I guess I do have that Black Raven wheat wine that they made for Malt and Vine‘s anniversary.  Oh yeah, and those Pike Entires.  Both are wax-dipped and shit, totally impressive.  Well, whatever…I want more.

Our neighbors to the south are doing a little bit better than us on this front, but it’s by no means a landslide.  Hair of the Dog and Cascade bottles are pretty sweet trophies to show off.  I’ve got a New Old Lompoc Oak Aged Dopplebock down in my cellar.  Pretty cool huh?  I know.

The ultimate bottled prizes in the PNW come from Deschutes in Bend, OR.  I know you know what they are.  I know you are jealous of my ’07 Abyss.  Your best bet to rival me in supremacy is to camp outside of your local bottle shop tonight, and every subsequent night until more bottle of The Dissident hit Western Washington (if we are so lucky).  Then do the same thing in mid-December for The Abyss.  Buy as many as they will allow, drink one of each on New Years and hide the rest in the deepest recesses of your cellar.  In 15 years when your first-born turns twentyfun, make his/her first ‘legal’ beer be one of paramount class.

The following information is from the Deschutes Brewery website via Beernews.org:

The Dissident
Friday, November 19th
We are super excited to officially announce the release of The Dissident, our sour brown ale brewed with Washington cherries, that takes 18 plus months to reach near perfection. A limited amount of bottles will go on sale at both Brew Pubs and our Tasting Room on Friday, November 19th at 11 am. Fans will be able to pick up six bottles of this beloved brew at a time.

The Abyss
Wednesday, December 1st
The wait is finally over for the fifth release of The Abyss, our imperial stout brewed with molasses and licorice aged in bourbon and oak wine barrels. Join us at our Brew Pubs on December 1st as we tap the first kegs and make the 2010 bottles available for you to add to your collection.

…Also of note, here is information on those two beers and other upcoming releases as it was received this morning from a brewery representative…

The Dissident

When: End of November

What: Reserve Series (22-ounce wax-dipped bottles and draft)

Finally…. perfection. After nearly two years aging in isolation, the 2010 Dissident has reached its pinnacle. Deschutes Brewery’s only wild yeast beer, brettanomyces and lactobacillus “critters” (a technical brewing term) create a distinctive Oud Bruin, Flanders-style sour brown ale, with a fruity aroma and flavor. To make things even more interesting, whole Central Washington cherries – pits, stems and all were also added to the mix. The result? A beer that’s anything but conventional.

Where: Very limited available in most states where Deschutes is sold

Beer Geek Information:

10.5% Alcohol by Volume (ABV)

The Abyss

When: Mid-December

What: Reserve Series (22-ounce wax-dipped bottles and draft)

The Abyss has immeasurable depth inviting you to explore and discover its rich, complex profile. Hints of molasses, licorice and other alluring flavors draw you in further and further with each sip. And at 11% alcohol by volume, you will want to slowly savor each and every ounce.

2010 marks the fifth release of this dark and mysterious imperial stout rated the 4th best beer on planet earth by BeerAdvocate.com.

Where: Available in most states where Deschutes is sold

Beer Geek Information:

~11% Alcohol by Volume (ABV)

65 IBUs

Oh you got the Abyss down there? Impressive!

Weekend Column: Introducing….Archives of a Beer Nerd

The mighty archive.

By: Timperial Stout

On August 31, 2007 I started a beer review journal.  It’s a college ruled, 100 sheet marble composition book.  I figured that, since I was more often than not drinking a lot of really exciting beers, I should document some of the flavors (or lack thereof) and my enjoyment of them (or lack thereof).

Having a really bad memory is one thing, but when there are nearly infinite amounts of beers out there to be tried (when you consider seasonals, new releases, etc.), there’s no way that anyone could keep their opinions on all of them in their accessible brain bank.  Thus, the beer journal, and it has indeed proved valuable on many occasions, and continues to do so.

In fact, I often will write my tasting notes in the journal for beers that I end up turning into Notes of a Beer Nerd.  It not only serves as a rough draft, but it remains my hand written archive.

How many reviews are contained in this archive so far?  I chose to only estimate.  I’ve only written on one side of the sheet, so 100 pages total, and I’ve completed roughly 2/3 of the notebook.  Some of the earlier entries have brevity.  The same goes for entries on days where I was tasting many beers back to back and had limited time to deliberate.  I’ll estimate 2.5 entries peer sheet.  That’s approximately 165 reviews.

I’ve found that the journal is actually quite fun to read, not solely for historical sake, but for pleasure as well.  I often find it interesting to observe how my palate has matured.  It’s also quite exciting to read some of the reviews that were entered after a few to many drinks, especially when I knew that no one else was reading.

Like I said, there have definitely been a number of brief reviews, as well as some that are…well… quite boring.  I’ll spare you those.  The rest, if I deem them worthy, will be periodically published in this column for your reading pleasure.

A few notes before we begin – Right from the start I decided that every entry would have the date the sample was enjoyed, the name of the brewery, the name of the beer, the location of the brewery, and tasting notes.  As the journal evolved I added bottle size and abv.  I have chosen to not make any changes to the wording, so expect fragments and the like, after all, I wasn’t expecting anyone other than myself to ever see these.  Lastly, since this was all hand written in a notebook, I do not have pictures, so I’ll try to find labels online for the visuals.

First ever entry (why not?):

Goes down like a Katana to the abdomen.

8/31/07

Great Divide Brewing Co. (Denver, CO) – Samurai Ale

Brewed with rice.  Very light yellow color, light drinking.  Supposedly unfiltered.  I can taste the rice but much more subtle than Hitachino.  Less bite, very east to drink.  I have never seen this beer before, must be new or a seasonal.  Very little carbonation.  Half way through, the rice taste begins to be lost, and the beer becomes a bit boring.  I respect Great Divide for making a rice beer, don’t know any other American brewer that does, but not the quality I have come to expect from them.

What a gem!

De Dolle Brouwers (Esen, Belgium) – Special Reserva

10/4/07

Brewed in 2006.  13% abv.  Apparently very rare, only 20 cases in Washington.  The epitome of complex.  Dark, reddish color, above average, though not really consuming carbonation.  Smells and tastes much like Three Philosopher, though with a Flemish red edge, more than a lambic one.  Sour initially and more dark depths at the end of the sip.  Dried fruit caramel maltiness.  So much going on and so good.  Don’t get any alcohol burn at all which is surprising with the high abv.  Would like another though I couldn’t drink a bunch.  Definitely worth the $9 for 12oz.

That’s all for now, but many, many more to come.  Feel free to post a comment and let us know what you think about the new column idea.

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