1. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Obsidian Stout - Deschutes Brewery

Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

2,327 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2327
Reviews: 935
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 9.74%


Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Alc. by Vol.: 6.4%
IBUs: 55

220 calories per 12 oz serving

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-07-2001)
View: Beers (117) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Obsidian Stout Alström Bros
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 2,327 | Reviews: 935 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of irishevans
irishevans

Alaska

1.65/5  rDev -60.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

I agree with the akbelgianbeast, extremely overrated. it starts off with hints of epoxy, maybe some asphalt, the middle and finish have the taste and texture of some low-end cheap hairspray, and that nasty array of not so nice flavors lingers for far too long, this brew is definitely the shame of the DeSchutes line-up. bahh!

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2007 09:37:01 | More by irishevans
Photo of Vickaroo
Vickaroo

Washington

2.59/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Dark with a moderate foamy head
Smell: Molasses
Taste: I kept getting a taste that seemed familiar, but I couldn't figure it out until after I'd had this beer a few times. Then it hit me: Ashtray. A distinct taste that made me feel I'd poured an ashtray into my mouth.
Mouthfeel: Zesty
Overall: Ok, but the ashtray association was a little disconcerting.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2013 03:05:22 | More by Vickaroo
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
AKBelgianBeast

Alaska

2.65/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I cannot beleive this ranks in the 90's. An irishmen would ponder suicide if he drank this beer. It pours black and promising, the nose is standard for an american stout. The first sip has notes of black tar. Followed by a sweet sort of hairspray middle rounding out in a monarch vodka flavor. To me this beer is extremely overrated. If its your thing, then more power to you, but if you like true irish dry stout or american oatmeal stout then this beer is not for you. Give this beer to someone you hate for christmas. Or be nicer and give them some natty ice.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2007 05:48:55 | More by AKBelgianBeast
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

2.68/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Served on nitro-draught into a New Belgium goblet at The Daily Pint in Santa Monica, California. Cost was $4.00 USD plus tax. Reviewed from notes. Expectations were high given the serving type, brewery, and style - all of which I love.

A: Pours a one finger head of nice tan colour, good cream, slick smooth nicely thick foam, and excellent retention. Colour is a solid nontransparent black.

Sm: Roasted barley, cream, milk, and chocolate. A mild strength aroma.

T: Heavy cream is dominant, an effect of the nitro no doubt. Some underlying chocolate and rather tame roasted barley. I liked it better out of the bottle; it's a bit stale here. Dark malts form the foundation. Poorly balanced on nitro. The increased cream attacks the balance. I'm disappointed. It's not bad, but it's far from good. A bit simple and not subtle.

Mf: Creamy, smooth, and wet. A touch too thin. Very undercarbonated. Complements the flavour profile only moderately.

Dr: Drinkable but unremarkable. Best from the bottle methinks. I wouldn't bother with it again on nitro-draught, but it might do better on-draught.

C-

Serving type: nitro-tap

05-20-2012 21:36:17 | More by kojevergas
Photo of 94Sip
94Sip

Texas

2.75/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Overall: this was proabably my least favorite stout. It tasted like a typical west coast IPA mixed with a stout, and the result was the look of a stout and the taste of a Pale Ale. Maybe I had a bad batch because I drank 2 from the same 6 pack and they were identical? This is not something I would buy again.

A: typical stout darkness with nice tan head

S: I didn't pick up much of the roasted smells, or the coffee, malty smells either.

T: As I mentioned in my overall summary I just did not get the typical stout flavors that I enjoy - chocolates and coffees, toffees, caramels, roasted flavors. Instead it simply tasted like a typical Pale Ale. If I had closed my eyes I would have sworn it was a pale ale. I might say as the beer warmed up and if I let it sit in my mouth for just a bit I would get a little bit of a light coffee flavor, but almost unnoticeable.

M: perhaps some of the creaminess of a stout with the head, but definitely that thicker feeling that I get from other stouts.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2012 03:24:34 | More by 94Sip
Photo of jujubeast6000
jujubeast6000

Texas

2.83/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed 1/14/2010:

(Bottle BB 2/4/10): Pours a dark black color body, average tan head, somewhat lasting. Dark roasty aroma, alcoholy. Some sweetness, coffee. Funky taste, coffee aftertaste. Light body, somewhat watery. Some ash, but not heavy. A bit of wildness too. Not so tasty.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2010 04:29:12 | More by jujubeast6000
Photo of ProducerBRBeer
ProducerBRBeer

Arizona

2.83/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Very darkish red with a decent head retention and great lace that sticks to the sides.

S - Chocolatey with a floral or citrus smell that could be from the hops.

T - Different than most stouts I have had. Smooth at the very beginning but instantly transforms into bitterness from the crystal malts. There is a slight citrus flavor to it.

M - Medium bodied which is not something I expect from a stout. The beer doesn't coat the mouth for long.

O - Something that can only be enjoyed as a sipper, not because of the body but from he bitterness. I probably could only have one or two.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2011 01:03:13 | More by ProducerBRBeer
Photo of TheGordianKnot
TheGordianKnot

Tennessee

3.03/5  rDev -28%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured into NB globe. Thanks to GatorBeerNerd!

A- Pours nice blackish brown color with a khaki colored. Head is an inch thick with stability that keeps it around to enjoy the party for awhile.

S- Weird dog biscuit aroma. Its a roasted fig dog biscuit beer. Not appetizing, but you can find the beer in there.

T/M- Very lackluster. No dog biscuit though! The roast comes through very dry with a touch of coffee. I do get a sweetness in there, almost fig, maybe prune? Alcohol flavor is also too prominent; not hot, but a fusely presence is invasive on the palate. Nice level of carbonation keeps the medium bodied liquid lighter and full of life on the tongue.

O- Somewhat disappointing. I expected more. It has the potential to be solid but comes up short in my mind. Maybe my expectations were just too high... I really don't think the beer sports the ABV

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2011 02:51:24 | More by TheGordianKnot
Photo of NDPDuke
NDPDuke

Michigan

3.08/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz in a snifter via trade from Nitrogen (as always, thank you).

APPEARANCE: Dark black with a thin head, quickly disappears into the thick black

SMELL: Strong smell of chocolate, roasted malts and grain. Powerful smell.

TASTE: Smell of chocolate and malts. The taste isn't as strong as I expected. Wasn't as much there as the smell gave off. I guess I expected more from this beer.

MOUTHFEEL: To thin for stout for me. Too watery for me. Not quite what I expect.

DRINKABILITY: I Could sip this for awhile, but overall, I wouldn't want too many of these.

I expected more from this beer because of the reviews and all of the talk, but it really didn't do much for me. I honestly expected a lot more, but it really didn't do much for me.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2008 01:51:54 | More by NDPDuke
Photo of jvillefan
jvillefan

California

3.08/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: I can see why they called it obsidian stout. Jet black body with a thick and heavy mocha colored head.

S: Not a big fan. It smelled like a chocolatey lager. There was intense chocolatey aromas but the soggy bready aromas were also very strong.

T: I'm not so sure why this beer is reviewed so highly. The malt has too mush sharpness from the roast. I love stouts but the roast is way too much. The lager soggy bready flavor matches that in the aroma. There is some chocolate flavors here as well.

M: Nicely carbonated and the body is a tad light for a stout but still good.

O: Know what this beer tastes like, I would not be disappointed if I never tried it. There are much better stouts available year round for less out there.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2013 04:52:28 | More by jvillefan
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
ThreeWiseMen

California

3.15/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours pitch black with 2-finger foamy, brown head. No light passes through this beast.

Smell: Milk chocolate and coffee. Roasted malts and ... [fill in the blank]. That's probably it; not too complex, but smells very rich and smooth.

Taste: A strong milk chocolate flavor followed by mocha and roasted malts makes for a smooth, rich drink. However, flavor seems to be lacking that 'pop'. There's just nothing distinct or memorable about this one. Furthermore the aftertaste is that of an ashtray.

Mouthfeel: Thick and milky with a pretty smooth aftertaste. Carbonation is a little too high. I've had better.

Drinkability: Very smooth. We were expecting something a little more challenging. We don't have any beef with this stout, however we can't see any reasons to seek it out again.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2008 00:44:27 | More by ThreeWiseMen
Photo of pokesbeerdude
pokesbeerdude

Colorado

3.15/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From Notes:

A: Poured a very dark brown, almost black with a tan head, about half an inch thick that receded to a thin film. Almost entirely opaque. Decent lacing. 4.0

S: Very rich, chocolate, and dark roasted malts, slight coffee hints as well. Very noticeable piney hops, as well, add a clean dimension, but seem somewhat out of place. 3.0

T: Smoky, coffee flavors up front, with a nice bitter lingering. Relatively little chocolate flavor though, very subdued. Hops are very clean finishing, but are a little too much. Slightly out of balance. Bitterness definitely comes from hops. Clean finish, but just a little too hoppy. 3.0

M: Fairly thick and creamy, doesn't coat the mouth, but still isn't half bad. A little too clean though. 3.0

D: Minus being overly hopped, the beer is fairly drinkable. It wouldn't be my first choice as far as American stouts go, but it is still a very drinkable beer. 3.5

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2008 02:44:10 | More by pokesbeerdude
Photo of Frankcost
Frankcost

Minnesota

3.15/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got this bottle from the make your own six pack door @ Top Ten Wine & Spirits in Woodbury, MN. Poured into a arrogant bastard pint glass

Pours a pitch black with a nice two finger mocha head that dissolves really quick

Smell getting some chocolate and Burnt coffee beans

Nice mouthfeel could of been a little heavier but it is very drinkable

I get the bitter chocolate and coffee bean with a little vanilla the hoppy bitter chocolate lingers in the after taste

It was pretty darn good but just a little to bitter for my liking. But a god one

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2011 20:28:47 | More by Frankcost
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

3.15/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

On nitro-tap at the Holy Grail Pub in Plano.

The beer pours a deep, black color with a large nitro-induced tan head. The aroma is full of roasted malt and chocolate, just as I expected. The flavor is where the nitro really takes away from the beer. I get quite a bit of chocolate and roasted malt, but the nitro thins out the mouthfeel and makes the beer taste watery. There is also a little bit of coffee in the flavor. Thin to medium, watery mouthfeel.

Hopefully I will be able to try this beer in the bottle or on regular tap so I can re-review it, since I am sure it is a better beer when not on nitro.

Serving type: nitro-tap

11-17-2011 18:57:22 | More by Mora2000
Photo of humuluslupulus8
humuluslupulus8

Arizona

3.18/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: The beer was a dark brown color, almost black; light didn't pass through the glass. There was a tan head that disappeared quickly and left practically no lacing on the glass.

S: I noticed roasted malt like in a porter. There was also a faint, bitter bite- possibly from the alcohol or hops?

T: The taste was primarily bitter and dry. Unlike other bitter beers I've drank, I noticed the bitterness mostly on my palate and tongue rather than on my throat. I couldn't taste any level of sweetness; I think some sweetness would have balanced the flavor better.

M: The mouthfeel was a medium thickness, not good or bad. It seemed appropriate for the style.

D: The beer was okay overall, but I probably won't drink it too much in the future. I sort of felt about it the same way I feel about India Pale Ales: I prefer American Pale Ales or Double IPAs, but IPAs are somewhat annoying to me. APAs are mostly balanced with a slight hop bitterness, and DIPAs are very hoppy and alcoholic. But IPAs are only hoppy, which I don't really like. In a similar way, with dark beers I prefer a sweet/balanced Porter or a big, complex Russian Imperial Stout, but Stouts are often just bitter. I guess I don't like bitterness to be the foremost characteristic of a beer, I like bitterness to only have a supporting role to the flavor profile.

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2010 22:55:54 | More by humuluslupulus8
Photo of MisterClean
MisterClean

California

3.2/5  rDev -24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12 oz from Bel-Air

A - Black, dark mocha head, which dissipates very quickly. Lt-moderate carbonation.

S - Dark cherry-chocolate. Light alcohol presence.

T - Dark coffee, grassy notes, lightly earthy, and light dark chocolate.

M - Lightly bitter and moderately dry.

D Good, but the mouthfeel is nothing special. Also the alcohol presence is slightly alarming in a 6.4 beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2008 23:06:48 | More by MisterClean
Photo of Damian
Damian

Massachusetts

3.25/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Drank from a 12 fl. oz. bottle purchased at Ralph's Deli & Grocery, Seattle, WA

Poured a thick, super dark and opaque pitch black with a one-finger, frothy, coffee-colored head that lasted and left some sticking lacing along the glass.

The aroma was rich, smooth and very sweet. Chocolate was quite apparent, with dark and milk chocolate and powdered cocoa notes all coming through at various points. Coffee was noticeable as well, along with sweet cream and vanilla. A touch of alcohol appeared as the beer warmed.

The taste was quite different from the aroma. Huge roasted malts came through up front along with a rather bitter, mineral-like quality. Roasted coffee was noticeable mid-palate. The huge, hoppy and espresso-like finish was powerful, slightly tannic, bitter and lingering. As the beer warmed, the bitterness intensified to the point of being overwhelming.

The mouthfeel was somewhat thin and a bit over carbonated.

Overall, this beer seemed to be a bit of a disappointment. While many may be attracted to its deep, roasted flavors, I found the bitterness to be too much to handle.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2007 23:19:21 | More by Damian
Photo of Prufrock
Prufrock

Massachusetts

3.33/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

black as night with nearly an inch of tan head that leaves plenty of thin lace.

woody, smoky charred malt in the aroma, along with some floral, piney hoppiness. faint hints of bitter chocolate and some soy sauce as well.

roasted and chocolaty malts in the flavor with a bitter, smoky, lingering finish. medium body with a medium-high carbonation; seems like it should have a bit more weight to it. flavors are passable but stiffly bitter finish hurts the drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2006 04:05:09 | More by Prufrock
Photo of stcules
stcules

Italy

3.35/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Black in color. One finger of a beautiful light brown head. Good stout appearance.
Roasted malt in the smell, light, very smooth.
The taste is quite intense, of a robust stout, with a good amount of roasted malt.
Some coffee notes here and there.
Very drinkable, smooth.
Good, but not exceptional.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2008 19:03:46 | More by stcules
Photo of n2185
n2185

North Carolina

3.4/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours black with about a finger of light tan head that quickly recedes into little more than a thin ring with almost no lacing.

S: Some smokey, roasted malts up front followed by sweetened cocoa powder. There's a very dry character to the chocolate aroma, reminding me more of hot chocolate powder than of whole chocolate.

T: Similar to the aroma, the roasted malts come first followed by a bit of sweetened chocolate flavor. The finish is of bitter, almost burnt, coffee.

M: Medium-thick body with low carbonation, but with a bit of a watery feel to it rather than being creamy like I prefer.

D: Goes down fairly smooth, though the lighter body and slight burnt coffee aftertaste keep it from being extremely drinkable.

Overall, not a bad stout, but not much stands out about it either.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2011 17:00:43 | More by n2185
Photo of joeseppy
joeseppy

Illinois

3.4/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pitch black with a low retention head.

Faint aromas of chocolate, coffee and roast.

Roast malt and grain step forward and finish with a metallic tasting hop. Not very sweet at all.

Mouthfeel all the way through is very silky, velourish and creamy.

Never had such an incredible mouthfeel fall so one dimensional. Aroma was muted and taste was off-set with a metallic taste, cold draft to even warmed up. Mehhh. Feels more like a porter or even pretty close to their Black Butte Porter. Sowwy!

Serving type: on-tap

08-29-2013 00:31:11 | More by joeseppy
Photo of zac16125
zac16125

South Carolina

3.43/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pint glass
No born on date or other distinguishing numbers

Thanks to 3hops for sending this one over as an extra.

A: Pours a thin appearing black with some browning on the edges and 2plus fingers width of mocha colored head, which dissipates down at a moderate rate to a thick film that hangs around throughout the entire drink. Leaves a good amount of lacing.

S: Roasted malt, burnt wood, heavy cream. The roasted and char notes are by far the most prominent aromas, and I dont get much else.

T: Follows the nose. Roasted malts and charred wood. Some mild dark fruit notes that I didnt get on the nose. A bit of anise and some medicinal phenolics. Surprisingly bitter on the finish, not necessarily in a good way.

M/D: Smooth, appropriately low carbonation, good drinkability but somewhat limited by the odd lingering bitterness on the back end. Could be creamier too.

O: Overall, not bad, but not terribly good either. Seems pretty mediocre, and I dont really see why the ratings are so high. Ive had a number of American standard stouts significantly better than this one. Its not bad, but its just slightly above average in my book.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2013 01:08:38 | More by zac16125
Photo of FtownThrowDown
FtownThrowDown

Ohio

3.45/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served in my delirium tremens tulip. Pours a very dark brown with a nice quarter inch head. Nice lacing and froth remains. Smell is roasted malts and cocoa bean. Taste is of bittering coffee bean. The mouthfeel is carbonated and medium in feel. A decent stout from an above average brewery. A good session beer that I would like to have on hand at all times.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2007 00:25:32 | More by FtownThrowDown
Photo of tr4nc3d
tr4nc3d

Kansas

3.45/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into my tulip glass from a 12fl oz bottle.

Pours an opaque black color that lets no light shine through. The head measures around two inches and is rather dense. In the middle of the head there are medium sized bubbles that soon begin to pop. Great head retention that fades very, and I mean very slowly, leaving behind minimal lacing on the sides of my glass.

Fresh mineral water, roasted malts, cocoa powder, unmalted barley, leather, and sweet dark fruit.

I tasted that of roasted malts and barley. This gave off a rich sweet dark brown roasted flavor. Roasted malts contributed a dark chocolate taste that I would go border on saying more like cocoa powder. As this subdues it leads to a dry sharp bitter finish on the palate.

Mouthfeel is full bodied with a slight bitter dry aftertaste that lingers in your mouth for a while.

Pretty good stout but I have seen better ones out there. Overall its something you can try, but nothing fascinating to pick up again.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2009 03:14:56 | More by tr4nc3d
Photo of bamadog
bamadog

Kentucky

3.45/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I feel a little bad for my lower rating of this beer since I know it's very popular, but I feel that I've been spoiled by so many great stouts that I've become a little pickier and judgmental. Deschutes still rocks, though. Review is from notes taken on 6/17/2010 and poured from the bottle to a snifter.

Appearance: The pour is black and starts with a scant 1/4 finger dark brown head that fades immediately to nothing; body is entirely opaque; an oily residue and very thin strands and spots of lacing are left behind.

Smell: Super solid! Lots of sweet and bittersweet dark chocolate; burnt roasty coffee grounds come through in the maltiness; the nose is very robust and almost makes me hungry for a Hershey's dark chocolate bar.

Taste: A bit of a let down in the end, but still not awful. Taste is thin and watery, flavor is bitter and dark, with burnt roasty maltiness and a faint bittersweet chocolate; bit of an oaty presence in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Thin and watery for a stout... Carbonation is soft and fairly smooth; a pleasant stickiness is left on the roof of the mouth; body is of medium weight and really not too heavy. If the flavors were a bit better, and the body was a bit thicker, this beer really would have done much better in my eyes.

Drinkability: Meh, sadly, I could kind of take it or leave it. I really remember this being better when I lived in Oregon, but oh well. I feel the flavors are OK, but deceiving at the same time due to the amazing smells blasting out of the glass -- if only the flavors matched the smells.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2010 02:46:16 | More by bamadog
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 2,327 ratings.