Bison Organic Chocolate Stout - Bison Brewing

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Bison Organic Chocolate StoutBison Organic Chocolate Stout

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291 Reviews
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Reviews: 291
Hads: 572
rAvg: 3.51
pDev: 15.1%
Wants: 10
Gots: 47 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bison Brewing visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 01-02-2002

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 291 | Hads: 572
Photo of livingregret
2.45/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Serving Type: a large bottle(over a pint)

Appearance: A black that is as dark as night...wonderful looking beer but no head, no lacing, no nothing in terms of the head.

Smell: A powdery cocoa smell. Dark roasted malt, a touch of coffee. They weren't joking when they said they use chocolate cocoa.

Taste: Bitter cocoa chocolate. You can also taste what seems like burnt coffee. Watery at points leaves this chocolate stout feeling a touch ehhhh.

Mouthfeel: Watery, thin...leaves a bitter/dry feeling in the mouth

Drinkability: I don't see myself trying another watery and bitter. Not enough "umph" w/ this drink (629 characters)

Photo of cswhitehorse
3.73/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The chocolate stout is black as night with a quickly disappearing head. It smells of roasted malts and cocoa. The flavor that hits the palate is deep dark maltiness with chocolate overtones and good alcoholic nature. The mouthfeel is good but a tad bit bitter for my tastes. Not a bad organic beer. The carbonation is low which lets the aftertaste of the cocoa come to play. Up here in the NW I am seeing more organic beers hit the shelf. (438 characters)

Photo of kellyst
2.98/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown. Tan head. Good retention.

S: Chocolate. Suprisingly, some hops on the nose.

T: Lots of chocolate. Bitterness balances, but not noticeable. The problem is that the beer is thin, even watery in the middle. This beer has no "uumph." Not what I like in a stout.

D: High, since it's watery. But I won't have it again. (330 characters)

Photo of mynie
3.68/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark, slight ruby hues, with a really wonderfully large and retentive chocolate brown head.

Smells a bit hoppy for a chocolate stout, but above average for an American stout. Roasted stout grains, very dry, along with a nice and firm blend of west coast hops.

Tastes like it smells, very well balanced, only the malts are dulled by a weak body and a watery middle. Dry stout goes into water which goes into a nice, dry hop. If that middle was chocolatey (or even stouty) this would be one hell of a stout. (523 characters)

Photo of happygnome
3.85/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a: dark brown color with about a half inch of brown head that doesnt dissapear too fast leaves a little lacing around the edge of the glass
s: strong aromas of chocolate and roasted malts little hop presence
t: initially strong chocolate taste that evolves into a stronger roasted malt flavor
m: medium bodied beer with average amount of carbonation

overall this is a very nice and enjoiyable beer great taste (415 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
4.35/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Black & opaque w/ a frothy tan head. that makes swiss cheese type lace.

S - Malty, rich, roasty and sweet chocolate with a citrus hop note. Smells Rich!

M - Creamy smooth malt and roasted. A pleasant dry bittersweet cocoa w/ nutty coffee that settles on the roof of the mouth. Nice gentle tinge of carbonation with a full rich finish.

T - I really dug into this one. It was the aroma that got me at first, but as I sipped it the brownie in beer form I expected transitioned. Sweet, but a very well made stout that is not syrupy or choco-cereal tasting w/ a pleasant baking chocolate with deep cocoa + dry nutty almost hazelnut notes. A citrus hop flavor that doesn't interfere, but rather helps to balance the big roasted chocolate flavors w/ a little herbal goodness shines in the finish.

D - Highly drinkable, flavorful, Robust. As many extremes as I can think of and more. This is probably not recommended for those who want a chocolate malt flavor, since it tastes like real chocolate combined w/ a very smooth stout. Not over the top or extreme, but it doesn't need to be. It hands out a gentle punch and makes you want to continue tasting long after the first pint is gone. (1,195 characters)

Photo of mwearl
3.9/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured with some head, though not long lasting and lacing was minimal. Very dark in color as expected. Nice aroma with some cacao oder. The chocolate taste was very subtle at finish. Not nearly enough too really be called a chocolate stout but the taste was very good overall. Mouthfeel was medium with nothing irritating on the tongue. A good drinkable chocolate stout actually gains drinkability based on the minimal chocolate taste. (435 characters)

Photo of July2Nov
3.37/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: 1/2 a finger head. It was dark like...guess what? Chocolate.
S: Full of the sweet sweet smells of Coco.
T&M: Had a sweet syrup flavor upfront, then a roasted dark-chocolate bitterness, followed by an oversweet acidic bite near the end.
D: I could probably only handle one of these in any given period. One is enough, unless you've got an addiction to chocolate or a major sweet-tooth. (390 characters)

Photo of TheSarge
3.29/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bison Chocolate Stout gives off aromas mostly dominated by hops and burnt malt, not so much in the way of chocolate. I also detect a lot of smoky fragrances also.

This pours with a light one finger thick head, which is a milky chocolate shade and dissipates very quickly. By the end of my one brew session, the head is totally gone with no lacing at all.

This tastes mostly of liquid smoke. There is a sweet tinge to the front of the palate.

This stout is actually kind of light in body for a stout, but not watery. This seems to be the trend with organic brews who likely sacrifice ingredients for the organic label, tisk tisk...

Overall this is a good session beer, but not greatly balanced as far as trying to promote this as a chocolate stout. I can't taste the cocoa at all. (793 characters)

Photo of daliandragon
3.32/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thiis all natural stout pours mostly black with a minute sliver of light at the base of the pint and almost no head at all, which is a big negative for me with stout. Nose is slightly grainy coffee malt based with a powerdery chocolate note, like instant cocoa mix with the little marshmallows when we were kids. Hops are also present but in deep cover.

Dang...the mouthfeel lets me down instantly, before the taste even has a chance to. The texture is watery and lifeless, with no kick or energy to the aftertaste. Some reasoable coffee malt, a little hop balance, but overall kind of dull and one dimensional. No assertiveness, no aggresiveness, just kind of blah...Definitely many better stouts for the dough... (736 characters)

Photo of letsgopens
3.88/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The appearance is nearly jet black with deep brown highlights. A creamy frothy head diminishes fairly quickly with a bit of lace left behind.

A nice aroma of sweet coffee and earthy cocoa greet the nostrils.

This chocolate stout has expectedly strong chocolate and coffee taste with a surprising amount of hops peaking through. Creamy and delicate with a hint of smokiness.

Silky on the palate, this beer is not as thick/full as expected. Its a great pint, but I wouldn't necessarily want to polish off a six. (521 characters)

Photo of gubbt
3.77/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jet black without any light shining through with a very small head even after a relatively hard pour.

Smell is a nice mix of roasted malts, coffee, and a little chocolate.

Taste is mostly roasty barley with some coffee beans and espresso. Not a whole lot of chocolate flavor here. It's kind of milky chocolate, very subtle and is mostly in the finish and aftertaste. Also in the finish is a nice bitterness to balance it out.

Mouthfeel is excellent, medium to heavy body with a nice creaminess to it.

This is a very drinkable stout, as I powered through this one pretty fast. It's a solid stout, but I don't know about the chocolate, there just isn't a whole lot there. (681 characters)

Photo of bjohnson
3.48/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a jet black color with a thin one finger white head. Not much retention. Roasted malt notes with hints of sweet cocoa. Subtle bitter coffee notes. Somethings a bit off with the flavors--could it be the organic malt? probably not, but I can't place my finger on it.

Roasted and chocolate malt notes. Chocolate flavors are actually quie subdued when compared with the hefty roasted malt flavors. Hints of bitter coffee that leaves a nice bitterness on the palate well into the finish. Leafy hops also are noticeable. Creamy and smooth across the palate. A nice brew, but not anything that's jaw dropping. (612 characters)

Photo of illidurit
3.39/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Can't find a freshness date.

A: Deep dark brown with a miniscule head that fizzes up to at most half a centimeter and disappears quickly. Makes me question the freshness of this beer.

S: A nice cocoa smell emanates from the glass, obviously due to the fact that this beer is brewed with actual powdered cocoa in the mash. A bit of a smoky roasty note too.

T: The powdered cocoa is prominent in the taste along with typical chocolate and coffee notes. Bitterness from the roasted malt shines through as well.

M: Kinda watery for a stout, with a lack of substantial carbonation

D: Went down easy but didn't really want another one. (683 characters)

Photo of rkuhnel
3.63/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a 12 oz bottle this poured very dark back with big tan head and decent lacing. Not a real heavy mouthfeel and flavors of chocolate and roasted malts. Finish is nice with a touch of citrus hops. This is not Rogue Chocolate Stout, but then what is. Very well done. (267 characters)

Photo of AltBock
3.51/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle with just a simple black label with the Bison Brewing Co. symbol of a shadowy Bison or what people call the American Buffalo. Below the shadowy Bison is another picture (it's also on the cap) that looks a lot like a cave drawing depicting a Native American hunting a Bison. To the far right of the label is a short blurb telling the consumer about the beer. If you look hard enough, you will find a bottling date. It's right below the small blurb and next to the barcode. That's all good, but they didn't bother to notch it, so I don't know how old it is. Bison Brewing really wants to tell you that it's organic because they have a big neck label stating that and there's another one above the small blurb. Poured into a simple and plain mug.

The beer was as dark as a 89% cocoa chocolate bar. It had a massive mocha head of foam to it, but I think it was too big. The first time I poured it, this mocha head of foam came out of nowhere and made the mug look like an erupting volcano of black beer. After it overflowed the glass, it looked like the mug was leaking oil all over the place. After it settled, I tried to pour it a second time and it did it again. So after it settled down for the second time, I poured the beer a third time and it didn't do it again. I finally got the entire bottle into the glass and it only took three tries. It had a rich aroma of old dark chocolate, roasted chocolate malt, a hint of chocolate covered cherries, and a pinch of chocolate covered hops at the end. The taste was a lot like the aroma, but it had a few subtle differences. It tasted like a bar of dark chocolate was infused with chocolate malt, chocolate covered hops, and with a pinch of chocolate covered cherries. It wasn't just one taste after another, it was just one big organic chocolate punch to the tastebuds. It was medium bodied with an aftertaste of a watered down Hershey's milk chocolate bar with a dash of bitter hops added into the mix. It was just an OK beer and probably is the best organic beer I've had. If you love drinking organic alcoholic chocolate, then by all means, try this one. (2,121 characters)

Photo of Neehan
3.62/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a jet black with a large, caramel colored head that quickly disappated with no retention. Appearance a bit disappointing, looked stellar at the pour but thinned down to a watery body. Most captivating is the taste, with a thick smokiness that lingers in the mouth and comines with the dark-roasted coffee flavors, roasted almonds, and of course the dark chocolate. Mouthfeel is again, a bit watery for a stout, but well-balanced in carbonation but lacked the creaminess I was hoping for. If this was a bit thicker it would do wonders for the mouthfeel, appearance, and boost the already great taste. Then it would be a slam-dunk but for now, it's a slightly above average stout. (695 characters)

Photo of theopholis
3.67/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Very dark brown or black. Nothing shows through, even when held up to a light. Nice, light brown, tight head with little lasting power, and no lacing.

Aroma- Nice blend of dark chocolate and roasted coffee. Just the slightest hint of malt sweetness gets through.

Taste- Nice chocolate, roasted taste. Not much else tho. Some coffee overtones, especially at the back of the pallet and more so as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel- Medium body and good carbonation for the style.

Drinkability- Not the best chocolate stout out there, but certainly not the worst. (576 characters)

Photo of mjc410
2.95/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I poured my first bottle of this a bit carelessly into my Fuller's nonic, and I ended up with three inches of beer, with the head filling the remainder of the glass. It took a while for the head to recede enough for me to empty the bottle.

The head is very noisy while it falls. It's a light tan color, over a near-opaque brown body. The head is far too slick to the glass. I'd really like to see a lot less carbonation in this one. The nose is highly roasted, and also a bit sweet. I can definitely smell a bit of dry cocoa, and some anise. The taste is very dry, but very noticeably chocolatey. Sour, too, due to high acidity. The mouth is medium, with very high carbonation. This is not a beer I'll be buying again, but it might be nice with a high % chocolate bar. (772 characters)

Photo of atsprings
3.75/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought a six pack of this yesterday at the same time as one of Brooklyn Black Chocolate stout. Two very different beers, I know, but both having chocolate in the name, I wanted to see how they compared. This one is somewhat easier to drink due to the lower alcohol content. The addition of actual cocoa added a unique chocolate bitterness, however. Overall, a good beer for nightcap on a cold winter night. (406 characters)

Photo of WetCoaster
4.03/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep brown that appears black with an espresso head. Good retention; leaves thick lace on the glasswall for quite a while. Midsized carbonation that casacades nicely.

Smell: Truth in advertising -- chocolate bomb. A bit much really; more like a Hershey bar than chocolate malt. Once you get past that, there's the expected roasty edge from the malt, but also an odd grassiness, like lawn clippings. Uh... no idea.

Taste: Excellent. It all comes together beautifully, with roasty, smoky malt holding up a dry, well-blended dark choclate bite. Finishes bitter and dry, with chocolate, smoke and coffee long lingering.

Mouthfeel: Pretty average, medium thin, slightly crisp. It's fine.

Dinkability: Pretty good. Love the flavor, unique, powerful aroma not too heavy. A nice surprise given it's organic, which is usually the kiss of death. I liked it. (871 characters)

Photo of beerphan
3.67/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle -> pint
no date

Pours mostly black with some brown highlights. A big brown head quickly settles to a light film. Lacing is minimal to non-existant.

Nose: Chocolate, coffee and some dark fruit elements.

Taste: Burnt coffee bean flavor with sweet light chocalate. Hop bitterness is present on the finish. Slighly astrigent. Finishes slightly dry and clean.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy with a drying finish.

A quality desert beer, but not something i'd like to session. (499 characters)

Photo of canucklehead
3.8/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a chocolate stout with a real chocolate finish. Very dark and very packed with cocoa, vanilla, roasted malt and even tobacco notes. A big beer with not so much alcohol, this is worth buying for those cold winter nights when you want a beer and a piece of chocolate (272 characters)

Photo of stephendr
3.07/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22 oz. bottle- color dark black – sharp quickly dissipating coffee color head - nose of milk chocolate , vanilla , coffee , and anise – taste of milk chocolate , roasted , and dark berries - body medium , and fizzy almost over carbonated – aftertaste of bitter chocolate , and sour (284 characters)

Photo of PorterLambic
4.57/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours black with a chestnut tinge at the fringe. Dark brownish-tan head. Big and fluffy with great retention, eventually forms a nice, thick film (about 1/4").
Smell is rich with malt, chocolate, smoke, vanilla, hints of beef jerky and soy - it works - and a touch of hops way in the back. Great balance and nice complexity.
Taste is more of the same, smoky, dark chocolate malts, soy, hops with the same terrific balance.
Smooth with a slightly tingly astringency. A nice chocolate & smoke aftertate lingers all over the palate and just slowly, very slowly, fades. In no way overbearing. Could be a bit chewier, the medium body is really the only thing I can knock here.
An absolutely excellent brew. You would be fool not to have one - or more - of these. An awesome example for the style. Now, if you will excuse me, I'm gonna go get some Oreos and finish this 22 oz. bad boy. (883 characters)

Bison Organic Chocolate Stout from Bison Brewing
80 out of 100 based on 291 ratings.