By now, everyone has either uttered the word, or heard it whispered in the dark corners of your favorite bar: abyss. As soon as the word hits the air, it evaporates into a ghost of a rumor, a tall tale, a big fish.
Riding on a huge wave of publicity generated by Men's Health magazine recognizing The Abyss as the World's Best Stout, this beer is damn hard to find. Well, it's actually not hard to find, it's hard to find before it's gone. This beer is walking out of most places by the case as soon as it hits the shelves. I bought mine before it even hit the shelf. It was sitting in a shrink-wrapped pallet at the end of a non-beer related aisle at the store. There were two cases, one of which had already been infiltrated by the employees before leaving the loading dock! I inquired about the unopened case and they gave it up without a fight.
It's nice when it's cold enough outside to keep beer cold.
I can see a beer of this caliber stirring up emotions in different cities around the world, but here in Portland? Here, you are never more than 7 steps from a great beer. So how can one beer have this much of an impact in a city where great beer is ubiquitous? Now, don't get me wrong, it's a great beer. I had last years on tap here in Portland. I also had it straight from the teat in Bend. Delicious, strong, and a great example of a multi-barrel aged Imperial Stout.
So, what's all the hubub, bub? Well, I'm going to find out. I've got twelve 22oz bottles to "test" in different settings, possibly paired with food, probably paired with other beer. I'm not sure where this journey is going to take me, but I'm almost certain that at some point along the way, I will hallucinate--most likely if I pair and Abyss with another Abyss. So, over the next two weeks or so, I will be checking in with you to deliver the savory details.
You can hear the sigh from accross the house when my girlfriend opens up the fridge to see this.