Obsidian Stout - Deschutes Brewery

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Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout

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1,044 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,044
Hads: 3,415
Avg: 4.21
pDev: 17.58%
Wants: 494
Gots: 590 | FT: 7
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: 1,044 | Hads: 3,415
Photo of BreakfastStout
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours night black into my pint glass with a massive tan head. Burnt coffee flavor, with a mellow char smokey nose. Subtle bitterness, with a slight java espresso taste. Just a bit thinner than my favorite stouts, but then I tend to favor RIS. Doesn't coat the tongue, and actually tends towards a nice porter. I like it and would buy it again. Nicely done.

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Photo of Wer34truh
4.06/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A massive head, with a stylistic dark body.

A traditionally coffee smell, with sub-tones of sweetness and malt.

The taste is relatively subtle, considering the style. With a sweet roasted coffee-flavor dominating, with hints of caramel and vanilla.

Overall, a very good stout that could very much become a go-to beer when there is a lack of interesting seasonals.

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

Appearance: Pours an opaque pitch black.

Overall:This is a deep, robust, and richly rewarding beer. This beer has distinct notes of espresso, chocolate, roasted malt and black barley.. It has just the right amount of hop to cut the sweetness. Excellent beer. Cheers!

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Photo of snaotheus
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle served in a tulip. Best by 02/13/16. Utterly amazing to me that I haven't reviewed this before.

Pours very dark brown with a very small head, moderate carbonation. Smell is coffee and roasted malt, something slightly sweet in the aroma.

Taste is brutally bitter coffee, which is awesome. Super roasty. A little anise. Such a good stout, and gets so little love on the boards here.

Mouthfeel is smooth and clingy. Overall, excellent stout. For price, quality, and availability, it's easily a go-to beer for me.

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Photo of stlfatguy
4.31/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great looking stout. black body, brown head is dark and thick and sticks around. Smells like some kind of alcohol laced espresso. Taste is a little tingly, but not overly carbonated. Some coffee, dark chocolate, not to sweet, roasted without any burnt taste. Some alcohol bite at the end. Don't remember liking it this much, but this was a single ignored in the back of the fridge from a few months back. Time to pickup some more and keep it up front.

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Photo of braker649er
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Frankly, I had forgotten this beer. Several years ago, it was a standout before I was really geeking out. This time, I got in the mood for solid stouts, and revisited this old friend. I couldn't believe the quality at the price and availability!! Overall, it delivers what it says it will on the label--coffee and dark chocolate notes. An honest stout.

L - this wowed me. The head was thick, foamy and stuck around. The color lived up to the big word in the name. A good word, obsidian.

S - not the highlight, but not bad. Gave a sense of what was to come. Maybe hard to decipher this mysetery through the foam, though.

T - as noted. True to labeling: Rich and dark and a touch of coffee and dark chocolate. not a sweet chocolate for me. More roasty.

F - very good. Oh, that foam contributed.

O - again, I was impressed by a beer I'd abandoned for a while. Very available in my area, and very good.

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Photo of Mlkluther
3.97/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Perfectly smooth, balanced stout. The rich roasted malt flavours are there but not aggressive. Slight chocolate and coffee flavours. Overall, a good stout.

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Photo of 911CROFT
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

355ml bottle into a Tulip. Paid £3.10 for a single bottle.

Pours an opaque, pitch-black body that remains unchanged when held to the light. A three-finger in height, rocky, dark-tan coloured head gradually reduces to a dense cap, leaving behind an excellent amount of thick, sticky lacing.

Rich, dark, roasted malts, burnt barley and heavily roasted coffee beans dominate the nose. Noticeable in the background are a touch of molasses and sweet milk chocolate. The taste follows suit, leading with deep, rich, dark roasted malts and tangy bitter roasted coffee. Towards the middle a flash of brown sugar and molasses provide a fleeting amount of sweetness before quickly fading as the moderately bitter, earthy and herbal hop profile builds. Medium to full-bodied with a small amount of fine carbonation, the mouth-feel is luxuriously soft, smooth and creamy. Charred, roasted dark malts, a mildly acidic hop bite and traces of milk chocolate combine to give a drying bittersweet finish, which lingers forever on the palate.

Overall this is an excellent beer. Incredibly well-crafted, well-balanced and hugely drinkable. The intense roasted malt profile, present from start to finish, creates an amazingly characterful robustness, but still allows the other elements of the beer to shine. Sadly none of Deschutes’s beers are easily available to me in the UK, if I spot another bottle though I wouldn’t hesitate to pick it up. Recommended.

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Photo of pianoguy
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

12 oz bottle (best by 02/16/2016)

Pours a solid black body with a generous dark tan frothy head. some retention, good lacing.

Smell starts as a burnt roasted malt with a little sweet chocolate caramel, leading to a big black coffee note

Taste has less sweetness but other then that it follows the nose. Coffee, with a nice slightly bitter finish

Medium-full with a slightly creamy feel

A very tasty stout ! I like the way the taste is not overly sweet. It's like a cross between an English and an American stout. A lot of work must have gone into making this one... And at around $7 a six pack it's a great value too ! Bravo

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Photo of Reema
4.57/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving type: 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass

Pours a jet black color. Smells of dark chocolate, coffee grounds, toasted nuts, slight alcohol scents, and toasted biscuit. Taste reflects the smell wonderfully with great coffee ground and bitter chocolate flavors, that ends with a nice malt/bread sweetness. Feel is thick and slightly creamy with below average carbonation that works with the flavor profile. Overall, this is a very good stout with great coffee and dark chocolate characteristics.

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Photo of Buschyfor3
3.97/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz pint, on nitro, at Holy Grale, Louisville, KY

A: Deep nearly black pour; opaque; cascade effect; finger thick sandy head; creamy with good retention.

S: Roasty/nutty, mild coffee; soft chocolate notes; in fact, the nose itself is very soft, muted really, likely a result of the forced nitrogen.

T: Light roast, mild breakfast blend coffee; nutty; light powdered cocoa sweetness peaks through the middle; smooth with a touch of roasted bitterness, but not overly complex. I wonder just how much of an impact the nitrogen has on the flavor profile - like the nose, this just seems a bit muted, like the edges have been softened, almost too much.

M: Oily, slightly creamy; it is smooth, but not overly thick on the mouthfeel.

O: A solid nitro stout, if not a bit unremarkable - again, my only qualm is that the roasted/coffee/chocolate flavors don't really pop like some other stouts of the same ilk. I would be interested to see how the flavor profile changes (if at all) when served from a bottle instead of on a nitro tap - I'm guessing the nitro probably dulls the overall aroma/flavor profile. Notwithstanding that point, this is still smooth drinking and easy on the palate.

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Photo of ChugMan
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Lovely soft khaki-tan head, black body turning burgundy at its edges. Great lattice lacing throughout.
S - Clean, roasty, dark chocolate flakes, some breadyness too. Simple and inviting
T/M - The hops and roastyness combine to give the sensation of biting into a dark, moist sodabread, quite a mouthful! A surprising amount of snappy-spicyness with the lingering bitterness as well, again contributing to the bread motif but this time of a nice crackling crust. Just enough roasted sweetness to tie it all together without becoming dessert-y. Very pleasant.
O - This beer is a great example of craftsmanship that can be appreciated by newcomers and vets alike. It drinks like a meal! Likely a fantastic pairing to a hearty campfire-cooked breakfast or dinner, be it Dinty Moore or bangers n mash, and a casserole / shepherds pie might be ideal.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.93/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 11/22/16 at 42 degrees into snifter
Aroma weak roasted malt
Head average (2.5 cm, aggressive pour), light brown, frothy, diminishing to irregular two to three mm ring and frothy partial layer
Lacing good – curtains with tiny to medium bubbles
Body dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor roasted malt, some coffee, some malt bitterness; no hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium to full, creamy, lively carbonation

Appearance 4.5, Aroma 4, Flavor 3.75, Palate 4,Overall 4

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Photo of breadwinner
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Exactly as a good, hearty American stout should be, nose of dark grained bread, roasted barley, light espresso. Palate combines a smooth creaminess and roast with a pop of hops to jazz things up. Excellent, archetypal stuff.

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Photo of PaulyB83
3.88/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a shaker pint glass.

L- Black a slight fraction of light coming through on the edges, two finger medium brown head.

S- Dark roasts, chocolate, coffee, some light dark dried fruit, slight minerally.

T- Similar to aroma, dark roasts, chocolate, coffee, some fruity cherry, plum notes. Finishes with a good bitter roasted note.

F- On the more full side of medium, nice bit of silkiness.

O- A very good low abv stout that stands well next to Founders Porter and Kalamazoo Stout in my book.

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

Had this on nitro at the mayor in Fort Collins. Wish. Could get this is jersey. The nitro added some amazing creamyness but the base beer itself really stood out for a single stout. Nice roast and chocolate really wowed me.

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

Pitch black with a good brown head. Gobs of lace at the top and a permanent ring.

Rich malty roastedness, slight chocolate, coffee, and a burned note.

Subtle notes of chocolate, char, caramel, and cream underneath a black coffee and roasted malt base. Subtle cascadey aftertaste.

Medium thick and quite smooth.

The word here is balance. Easy-drinking and quite flavorful, among the top American Stouts out there in my book.

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Photo of CoryJones
4.92/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Just like drinking a good cup of coffee, great when enjoying in a cold glass and with friends. The body of the beer promises great flavor that will make you ask for more.

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A - Pitch black, opaque, with a light tan head that is quite persistent. Huge lacing.

S - A wonderful bouquet of roast grains, barley and wheat, chocolate and coffee come from this melange of malt, with toast overtones.

T - The positive is a powerful black coffee element, with molasses and chocolate. A bitter turn in the middle is a bit stronger than my taste. The close brings a punchy umami element, as well as herbal hop bitterness.

M - The issues here are the drying and chalky elements. It is ultimately a bit taxing.

O - There are huge positives here, and I can see what some find so compelling, but there is a bitter hit in the middle and a certain fatigue in the close that prevent this from scoring top marks.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.17/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a very dark brown, nearly black, color with a small tan colored head of one finger height. The head has a decent level of retention fading over a moderate amount of time to leave a good deal of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is massive of a coffee smell mixed with a nice showing of a roasty smell and a little bit of cream like aroma. Along with these smells comes a light caramel sweetness and a little bit of a burnt toast smell, giving a very nice deep and dark strong expresso like smell overall.

Taste – The taste begins as the nose would suggest with a whole lot of roasted malt and a strong showing of coffee. Upfront there is a bit of a caramel sweetness which seems to fade as the taste advances. While the caramel fades, other sweeter flavors of a light vanilla and sweet crème flavor come to the tongue. These remain lighter overall keeping the taste on the drier side. More and more roast and coffee come to the tongue at the end of the taste, where with a little bit of an earthy and char taste, end up leaving one with a nice dark and roasty coffee flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is average to slightly lower for a stout of 6.4 % abv., with a carbonation level that is rather average. A thicker body and lower carbonation level may have accentuated the nice coffee and roasted flavors slightly better, but overall, the feel was OK.

Overall – This is a very nice coffee heavy flavored stout with tons of roasty and dark flavors. The taste and aroma are nearly spot on, with the only thing holding it back a bit being its moderate mouthfeel. Even with that said, I must say this is a nice, more moderate in abv. stout overall .

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Photo of E-McFarden
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This beer is excellently balanced in all aspects from appearance to flavor and feel. My favorite part is the feel, its not extremely heavy and doesn't overpower the palate, and it also doesn't overcompensate with extreme amounts of roasted malts. Excellent brew.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.13/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours black with a 1-inch thick cream colored head which leaves semi-rings of lace. Roasted malt aroma with a chocolate flavor. Smooth and full bodied.

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Photo of Chris72
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been a while since I've tried it, so this will get updated...
Look: Rich, dark color
Feel: Good thick beer, similar for me as Black Butte Porter

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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.

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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

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Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 1,044 ratings.