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Bison Organic Chocolate Stout - Bison Brewing

Not Rated.
Bison Organic Chocolate StoutBison Organic Chocolate Stout

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555 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 555
Reviews: 287
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 15.52%
Wants: 11
Gots: 41 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 555 | Reviews: 287 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gubbt
3.77/5  rDev +8.3%
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.

Photo of bjohnson
3.48/5  rDev 0%
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.

Photo of illidurit
3.39/5  rDev -2.6%
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.

Photo of rkuhnel
3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
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.

Photo of AltBock
3.51/5  rDev +0.9%
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.

Photo of Neehan
3.62/5  rDev +4%
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.

Photo of theopholis
3.67/5  rDev +5.5%
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.

Photo of mjc410
2.95/5  rDev -15.2%
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.

Photo of atsprings
3.75/5  rDev +7.8%
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.

Photo of WetCoaster
4.03/5  rDev +15.8%
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.

Photo of beerphan
3.67/5  rDev +5.5%
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.

Photo of canucklehead
3.8/5  rDev +9.2%
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

Photo of stephendr
3.07/5  rDev -11.8%
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

Photo of PorterLambic
4.57/5  rDev +31.3%
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.

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

Very dark, with some garnet and orange highlights. A rough pour produces a nice head, but pouring "properly" will produce little-to-none. Nothing in the way of lacing.

Smell: Lots of cocoa powder, with dark chocolate and coffee notes. Smells good.

Taste: Something of a let-down after the aroma. Do not serve this one cold! It will improve greatly the closer to room temperature it gets. Initially sweet chocolate up front, but then... nothing, very light flavor on the middle, before a swallow and a bitter chocolate aftertaste. As it warms, the flavor stretches out and becomes much more balanced, and other characteristics start to make themselves known, like roast and coffee.

Mouthfeel: Thinner than it needed to be, perhaps, but not bad.

Drinkability: When cold? Low. When room temp? Good. Not a chocolate beer to give to a chocolate lover and expect them to like it, though.

Photo of jpkoch1962
3.81/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served at cellar temp in pint glass. Poured a deep ebony with a dark tan, long lasting head. The aroma of fresh roasted malt and coffee rushed from my glass. The stout is a tad richer on the front side. Malt, coffee, and roasted malt dominated through out. The finish was suprisingly dry for such a rich stout. A clean aftertaste resulted.

Photo of scruffwhor
4.49/5  rDev +29%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Deep tan head with strong retention into its foamy formy former self. Deep black/brown color. No lacing left. Great bitter chocolate nose with roasted and very lightly smoked malts. By bitter chocolate nose I mean bakers chocolate, straight up cacao. The cacao bitterness blends with the more subtle hop to creat a great bitter palate. Blend this with the great dark malts giving off hints of toffee and coffee. Smooth palate, but a little chewy at the end. Great beer though. Will purchase again if they start distributing to IL. Had to go to IN to buy.

Photo of Applesauce1
3.33/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had this on-tap at O'Hooley's in Athens, OH.

Appearance: dark, almost black (looks good); about a half inch brown head off the tap
Smell: chocolate and cappuncino are the main smells i can pick out
Taste: chocolate and a cappucino/coffee flavor are present to start out with; it seems this beer contracted a yeasty flavor about halfway through the drink and became less pleasing though
Mouthfeel: a little to much carbonation; medium bodied
Drinkability: the yeasty flavor turned me off from another one; i would like to try this beer again though

Photo of MerkinMan
4.05/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A good Chocolate stout, though not the best ever. I bought a case of 24s for $20, and was very happy with my purchase. I liked this one much better than their Red or Belgian. The Chocolate could be more pronounced if I was to make personal reccomendations.

Photo of RBorsato
2.35/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Black with dark brown edges to a light source, a full big bubbled head and overactive carbonation indicative of a problem. Chocolate, roasted malt, and oxidized/infected aroma and flavors. Medium-light bodied due to overcarbonation with a dry cocoa powder finish.

I need to find an un-infected version of this b/c it certainly had potential.

A bottle of on of these exploded in my basement not long ago and the owner/brewer was great when I discussed the matter with him ... I'll try again for sure.

Per label: "Stout brewed with cocoa" & "USDA Organic" & "Since 1989" & "Fine cocoa in the mash"

Per BB website: Dutch cocoa. 5 Organic malts.

2005 GABF - Silver - Foreign Style Stout

($9.99 / 6-pack)

Photo of kirok1999
3.77/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours a dark black with a small, clinging head.

S- Super chocolate, as the name implies, some bitter coffee, roasted malts. I know there's some hops there but they're kicked around too much by the chocolate.

T- Too bad the taste doesn't match the smell. Very thin and watery, only given body by the chocolate. Dry, with a bitter aftertaste.

M- Thin and watery, just like the taste.

D- Easy to drink, but there are so many better stouts out there.

Photo of rayjay
4.12/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Sierra Brewfest in Grass Valley, CA. Found this one and kept coming back. Deep dark brown with big bubbles and a brownish-white head. Sweet and rich with major chocolate notes, both from chocolate malts and from real chocolate. The sugary sweetness of the malts lingers forever, and it pulls it off without being overly thick or sticky. Refreshing even on this hot sunny day. A real treat for stout and chocolate fans alike. Also good to see an organic brew that fits in and doesn't scream "I'm organic so that's why I taste a little bit different than your favorite beer." This is just a good old beer that *happens* to be organic.

Photo of Brent
3.7/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice walnut-tinged black. Faint cocoa powder in the aroma. Nice substance to the flavor, with the chocolate note up front but reserved. Front was short-lived, with a follow up by roasted malt that was a touch rough. Chocolate perception faded rather quickly, and the beer held up nicely but without depth. Nice enough with a beef dinner.

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.05/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - black pour with garnet hues around the edge. A thick and creamy mocha head rests evenly across the top. Lacing is scattered and slightly sticky.

Aroma - the cocoa is immediately evident almost as soon as the first drop hits the glass. A backdrop of raisiny sweetness, lending a somewhat sugary quality to the cocoa. Some alcohol notes come out a little as it warms, like chocolate liqueur. Not much roasted malt character but a nice sniff anyway.

Taste - lots of charred malt, burnt even, rather powerful.Getting past that there is some bitter chocolate presence, oak, and a definite dry bitterness on the swallow, but it's not so much hop related as just the bitterness of the chocolate and charcoal. Once the palate adjusts the flavors fit together better, but it needs to warm to the mid/upper 50s.

Mouthfeel - properly heavy, with much carbonation, rather dry on the finish.

Drinkability - I tend to prefer the smoother, less burnt style of stout, but this is a fine beer nonetheless.

Photo of mcallister
3.32/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A very dark mahoganny bordering on black. A light tan head doesn't stay around for the party and only leaves a ring around the glass with no lace.

Great nose on this beer. Dark roasted malts, espresso, bitter chocolate, vanilla bean, and some black currant.

Unfortunately the taste of this beer does not follow up on the nose. Very one dimensional with little complexity. You mainly get a big slap in the face of dark roasted malt, with some bitter chocolate, and coffee in the finish.

Mouthfeel is thin yet bold. I won't be drinking many more of these.

Bison Organic Chocolate Stout from Bison Brewing
79 out of 100 based on 555 ratings.