Obsidian Stout - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,020 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,020
Hads: 3,322
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 8.31%
Wants: 476
Gots: 549 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-07-2001

Alc. by Vol.: 6.4%
IBUs: 55

220 calories per 12 oz serving
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,020 | Hads: 3,322
Photo of Knilas
4.01/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Midnight black in the glass. Tan head...just not much of one. Heavy mouthfeel. Rich, dark coffee and chocolate. Some molasses in the background. Lotsa malt. Hops come in just enough to balance everything out. Well made. Worth the coin. (235 characters)

Photo of Edman5P
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a thick dark brown color with an almost chocolate colored head.. very nice. Lacing is moderate.. Even at a warm temperature this beer maintained a very balanced dark malt taste with a light bitter finish. Best stout I have tasted thus far (245 characters)

Photo of Myotus
4.16/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a Spiegelau stout glass. Pours with a finger's worth of cinnamon colored foam that maintains. Black in color with a ruby tint. Bubbles are mild. Lacing is moderate. Has aromas of strong coffee, vanilla, and roasted malt with mild bitter chocolate aromas and a hint of alcohol. Initial taste consists of strong bittersweet chocolate flavors that combine with mild coffee and vanilla flavors. Strong roasted malt flavors enter the palate next along with subtle alcohol flavors as vanilla flavors fade very gradually, but coffee flavors persist in strength and bittersweet chocolate flavors grow stronger and just transform into bitter, earthy chocolate flavors. All of this results in a very bitter (but not exactly repulsive) aftertaste. Medium bodied, very creamy and smooth, with almost no carbonation and a dry finish that isn't over the top. Another great beer from Deschutes (and another great stout from the beer multiverse), but it was a little bit too bitter for my taste. (993 characters)

Photo of Spiff
4.02/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good tasting, with more than hints of burnt carmel sweetnes, no hoppy bitterness. Much more flavor than Guiness. Bold, confident - the stout that got me started liking stouts - I have moved on to Imperial's for the bigger flavor but this still stands there and says -drink me - I'm worth it. (292 characters)

Photo of BigDaddyWarbuxx
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful tan head that builds after the pour. A really intense roastiness to it with a nice burnt aftertaste. Definitely a sipper, but very impressive. (154 characters)

Photo of DabblinWiscCraft
4.41/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a sixer at my local grocer. The best by label suggests it's still good for about a month. Poured right from the fridge into a pint glass.

L: Pours coffee black--looks a bit like used motor oil as it goes in--with an inch khaki head that dissipates after a bit and leaves good cling on the glass.

S: Roasted malts dominate the nose. There's coffee notes present, along with a bit of vanilla. Very nice bouquet.

T: Big roasty malts at the front with a healthy dose of coffee and vanilla in the mix. Dark chocolate comes through a bit in the middle, along with some clear alcohol. Just a touch of black licorice. The back end has plenty of the malts carry over, but there's some definite hop bitterness that stays on the palate for a bit. Well-rounded and balanced flavors in this one.

F: Full-bodied and creamy. Very nice carbonation on this one. It's smooth with some nice bitter brightness at the back end.

O: This isn't a flashy stout, but it's impeccably balanced and smooth. I don't like being blown away by coffee or chocolate notes in a stout--I like to know that I'm still drinking beer. This one definitely delivers in that respect. Hats off to the Deschutes brewmaster in crafting such a lovely single stout. (1,228 characters)

Photo of Cannibalgasm
4.34/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

L: Pours a rich black with thick creamy mocha colored head. Good retention with a fair amount of lacing.

S: Dark chocolate, roasted coffee, cherry, plum, caramel, berries, resiny hops are all detectable.

T: Dark chocolate, roasted grains, espresso, brown sugar, earthy hops, cherry, raspberry, even some subtlety sweet tartness almost sour like qualities. Excellent balance of a multitude of flavors.

F: Lighter then you would expect, moderate carbonation, nice creamy finish.

O: A very complex yet well balanced brew. Easily one of the best readily available stouts on the market. Deschutes truly does a great job creating quality beer. (672 characters)

Photo of Joe_Howard
4.56/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

this is a great stout! Pours an almost pitch black body, with a big frothy tan head. The smell is chocolatey and roasty. The taste is perfect balance of coffee flavors and dark chocolate and has a full creamy body. If you have a chance get it, you will not be disappointed. (273 characters)

Photo of wedge
4.44/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black crowned with a generous head of dense bubbly creaminess that coats the glass well. Aromas of roasty, smoky malts, coffee, caramel, malted milk balls, berries, and hops. Delicious hoppy stout flavor...bittersweet chocolate, char, slight fruity yeast character. Creamy smooth mouthfeel, finishing a bit dry. Excellent stout! (337 characters)

Photo of RonaldWilsonReagan
3.81/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Lingering coffee and chocolate, but overbearingly so. This beer reminds me of why I don’t smoke cigars: can’t get the taste out my mouth. Best aspect is the smell. (170 characters)

Photo of TBonez477
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Reasonably fresh, started with a strong licorice flavor at cellar temp. This died as it warmed. Has strong roast flavor throughout and a bitter finish that lingers. Good mouthfeel on this one for the low ABV and medium carbonation. (231 characters)

Photo of Lukass
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lots of bitter, roasty, dark chocolate and coffee ground flavors from the roasted barley. Not as much sweetness as I was expecting, but whatever, this is one awesome stout. The dryness makes for a very bold, robust stout that's very true to the style. (251 characters)

Photo of RBryn
4.04/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The rich dark colour is lightly topped by a half inch head of beige creamy foam causing the drinker to anticipate the hints of caramel and chocolate flavours about to be experienced. (182 characters)

Photo of Libeertarian
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

"Expired" (but bottle conditioned) almost three months ago, still an excellent beer. In large snifter, couldn't quite get the head to the top (unless I wanted to really overdo things, leaving the beer about only 25% liquid). Opaque dark brown to black. Frothy, lightly-creamed coffee colored head, with bubbles increasing in size as it slowly dissipates. Sticky, fast drying lace. Smells of roasted and sweet malts and chocolate, taste is somewhat similar but favors roastiness and chocolate more than sweetness, especially in the back. Like a medium roast coffee, so tangy/acidic qualities, but with a pinch of hop bitterness and spice. Seems lower than 55 IBUs, which indicates excellent balance. Thick, rich brew with perfect, prickly level of carbonation. A little oily, mostly noticeable on teeth. Warming, but not drying at all on my palate. This stout is right up there with some of the better black ales in my book. (923 characters)

Photo of Gabriel_Vaughn
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: dark. black

S: deep dark chocolate brown, roasty, toasty

T: actually a bit fruity once I dug around back there-- on the sour side

M: brilliant but not 5 stars

O: great brew. I'll be back... (197 characters)

Photo of spoony
4.16/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

From a 355 ml bottle (best by June 21, 2015) to a tulip. Reviewed from notes dated March 25, 2015.

A-The beer pours with a dense, pillowy head of mocha-colored foam. Retention is good and there is some lacing left behind. The beer is black and opaque. Nice.

S-The aroma suggest dark chocolate with a mild, bitter twang of roast coffee and char. I also smell some anise, dark fruit, and a bit of roasted barley.

T-The taste is similar. Bitterness is subdued with lots of chocolate flavor here. There is some mild roasted grain character, some dark, a touch of fruity sweetness, and a smooth espresso-like finish.

M-The feel is lighter than I would expect for the style, but the beer drinks well. Carbonation is moderate.

O-This is a tasty stout that I should drink more of. The bitterness levels are just right for me.... It looks good, smells good, and tastes good. If I had to knock it, I would say that the mouthfeel is a little thin. (943 characters)

Photo of Cath
3.19/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

No specific scent pulling through. Picking up mostly on burnt coffee bean. Leaves a bitter malty aftertaste that lingers for a few extra seconds. Meh. (151 characters)

Photo of takusan1000
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Obsidian is the standard I use for stouts. Midnight black tan lacing, complex dark roasted aroma. The taste is absurdly good, with bitter dark roasted malt and dark chocolate sweetness predominant, anise, rum-soaked berries, and a healthy taste of bittering hops that do not bite. It's a bitter brew, not for those expecting Guinness or stouts of that ilk, but the bitter is elegantly balanced by a complex flavor profile. Moderate mouthfeel. Overall one of my all-time favorites in this style and in beers in general. (518 characters)

Photo of maedhros09
4.08/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Nice deep black with big dark tan head
Smell: dark fruit, floral, roasty
Taste: roasty espresso and a little dark chocolate, very restrained sweetness - not as rich as expected. Moderate herbal hops. On the dry side. Opens up a lot as it warms - highly recommend serving at cellar temp.
Feel: smooth with medium body
Overall: The first time I had this a few months ago I remember thinking it was thin and lacking flavor compared to what I expect from a stout. After seeing the BA rating I figured I must have been missing something, or maybe I got a bad sample. Despite the very inviting presentation and a good balance I still found it to be lacking richness and flavor. In every other respect it is an excellent stout, and it is very drinkable - I will happily drink more of these. The Deschutes Black Butte Porter is more exemplary of its style in my opinion. (873 characters)

Photo of secondtooth
4.12/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep black, with a thick head of tan foamy carbonation. Lovely, ornate lacing.

Aroma: Rich, bittersweet cocoa and chocolate. Stunning and full-on.

Taste: Rich, roasty chocolate up front, with some pronounced charred, burnt wood accents. I get a bittersweet, warming finish. A strong, sturdy, and perfectly-executed stout that packs tons of complexity and flavors into every sip. Wonderful and an ideal example. Deschutes are masters of the dark-roast ale, and Obsidian more than proves it. (503 characters)

Photo of Norvelljeff
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look is black with a faint brown edge.
Smell is cocoa
Taste up front very kind of sweet maybe a little tart. Back end is not much a little roast taste in the very back of the mouth corners.
Feel not too slimy.
Overall-Good beer that leaves a little zip on the end of your tongue. (281 characters)

Photo of Redneckwine
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle into tulip

Appearance - Jet black and totally opaque. Generous 1.5 finger, rocky, tan head retains well and leaves near perfect sticky lacing rings.

Smell - Nice coffee and cocoa notes coming in right away, roasty/nutty malts, licorice/fruity sweetness, earthy grassiness

Taste - Much like nose, but with a nice little hop bite on the end. Coffee/cocoa roastiness throughout, a touch of charred malt bitterness, a bit nutty, nice presence of fruity yeast esters, slight earthy/grassy hop nip on the end cleans, balances, and adds some mild bitterness in the offdry finish.

Feel - Creamy smooth and well carbonated medium-full body. Thick and rich feel, yet avoids feeling heavy. Doesn't exactly feel "sessionable", but that's not what it's going for anyway.

Overall - What a kickass stout, and for an insane value to boot ($7.50 a sixer for me). As you can see from my review, I think this beer rocks on all levels, and there just isn't much more to say about it than that. (991 characters)

Photo of ONUMello
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle best by 5/13/15 poured into a pint glass
A: Pitch black with a creamy two-finger tan head
S: Coffee, cocoa, chocolate malt, a bit of burnt malt
T: Malt-focused, particularly chocolate malt. The other notes of the nose come through as well
M: Full-bodied, smooth
O: As everyone below has mentioned, this nails the stout style (336 characters)

Photo of skiking70
4.23/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

One of my favorites, from over twenty years ago. Finally got to have it again on a ski trip this winter and it didn't disappoint, it was as good as I remembered. (162 characters)

Photo of drdiesel9483
4.37/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look - by looking at it I think it's a nitro from the look. Dark as night with a tan head.
Smell - sweet dark chocolate espresso smell
Taste - dark rich coffee dark chocolate taste
Feel - creamy and goes Down smooth
Overall - great coffee creamy stout (254 characters)

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Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 1,020 ratings.