Deschutes Brewery releases The Dissident approximately every other year, or as they say: “When the beer tells us it’s ready.” This is the only “sour” beer that Deschutes brews, which is unfortunate since it’s quite outstanding. That may change however as they have recently expanded their offsite facility with the intention of increasing their sour offerings. Stylistically, this beer falls into the category of a Flemish Oud Bruin, or old brown. It has been aged in Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon barrels and fermented using Brettanomyces. This beer has one of the smallest yields of any of the Deschutes Special Reserve beers.
Appearance: Hazy/murky Red/Brown with a light tan head and little retention.
Aroma: Sharp acidity, cherries, wine-y, pepper and spicy phenols, brown sugar and a touch of barnyard.
Taste: Malt Vinegar, Balsamic Vinegar, balanced acidity, dirt, pepper with a bit of alcoholic warmth on the finish.
Overall Impression: This is a very deep beer, and one that could use cellar time before opening (which I didn’t do). It was still an extremely impressive and interesting beer. I don’t imagine much is left out in the world, but if there is, snap it up and sit on it for a while.
Availability: Rare and nearly gone.