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WSU vs. UCLA football: Baxter's beer of the game

A special beer for a special day in Baxter's life.

Baxter is licking his lips, ready for The Abyss.
Baxter is licking his lips, ready for The Abyss.


It's a big day for Baxter. Sure, he's excited for Washington State's trip to Pasadena to face No. 19 UCLA, but that's not all that has him excited. Today is Baxter's seventh birthday.

He started his day off right, with some treats in bed. He's going to the pet store later to pick out a new toy, and probably relieve himself on the floor because that's what he always seems to do no matter how many times we make him go before entering the store.

For Baxter's birthday, he wanted to have a special beer, and he wanted something that is celebrated annually, much like his birthday. I decided to go with one of my favorite annual releases: Deschutes The Abyss.

I haven't always been at the same level of beer nerdery I am now, where I buy up loads of limited release beers and store them for future use. My house is currently filled with barrel-aged delights that are sitting, waiting for special occasions. But long before I did that, the first yearly released, barrel-aged beer that I encountered was The Abyss.

Deschutes started releasing The Abyss in 2006, and it comes out around November each year. It is a little more complicated than your standard bourbon-barrel-aged stout. It's partially aged in bourbon barrels, partially aged in red wine barrels and partially aged in oak barrels, then blended deliciously together.

And like many big beers, it does well with some time in the bottle. In fact, Deschutes lists a "drink after" date on the side of the bottle. For the 2014 release, that date was November 1st. So Baxter's birthday is the perfect time to bust it out.

Craig's Review: The Abyss tastes as complex as it sounds. There's a tartness from the red wine barrel that gives away to the sweet heat of the bourbon. Finally, a woody finish completes the awesome flavor profile. I love this stuff.

Baxter's Review: They say that turning seven in dog years is something like 49 in people years. Personally, I don't feel a day over 21 in people years, which is just old enough to taste Craig's awesome sweet and dark beers. Hopefully I can do that today during my favorite leisure activity: Pooping at the Petco.

That's what Baxter and I will be enjoying as the Cougs face the Bruins. What will you be having?