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Obsidian Stout - Deschutes Brewery

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Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout

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3,176 Ratings

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Ratings: 3,176
Reviews: 1,022
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 9.76%
Wants: 463
Gots: 471 | 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
View: Beers (155) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,176 | Reviews: 1,022
Photo of jpmclaug
4.27/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A - Black body with a small off white head. Kinda light colored head for a stout

S - A bit on the hoppy side for a stout, Nice notes of roast and smoke present as well. A hint of sweetness in the finish of my whiff.

T - Big malty body with beautiful roasted notes, a hint of smoke and a strong hop presence lying in the background. Some chocolate notes but not much. Really a nice tasting stout.

M - medium to heavy body with a fair amount of carbonation

D - This one goes down easy for sure. I can't believe how lucky you Northwest BA's are to be able to find this so easily, even in grocery stores! This would be a staple if it was distributed near me. I would love to drink more of these.

Photo of 321jeff
4.43/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark black with two fingers of mocha colored head. Leaves some nice sticky lacing as it fades to a thin layer.

Aroma is fairly mild yet complex. A nice mix of chocolate, coffee, some molasses and what seems to be a citrus hop profile as well.

Taste begins with some chocolate up from and moves on to some bitter roast coffee and some molasses. There is also a very slight citrus sweetness in the background. Great flavor, balanced and consistent.

Fairly thick in body with plenty of prickly carbonation. Very smooth all the way through. Overall, a very well balanced and enjoyable stout that I would love to make a part of my regular rotation. Definitely lives up to the hype of being one of the best stouts out there.

Photo of marcusR111
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Obsidian well represents this beer as the color is almost black. light brown head.

S- Definately smell the chocolate and espresso with the smokiness of the roasted barley

T- Very good, roasted malt and black barley. Chocolate and coffee make an appearance in the back.

M- Lots of carbonation

D- I could drink a whole six pack in one sitting

Serving type: bottle

Photo of MbpBugeye
3.96/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Dunt for this bottle. Best by 1/27/11.

A- This beer pours with a big, rich cascading head. The glass is absolutely plastered with tan lacing. The beer is an obsidian black indeed. Quite a deep little stout.

S- The aroma has a little bit of a vegetal hop smell. Lots of roasted husk, bitter dark chocolate, tootsie rolls and coffee.

T- Very nicely balanced. Bitterness comes from lemon-grass hops and a nice even roast. Sweetness comes from tootsie roll-like chocolate and a creamy vanilla/toffee. The finish leans toward roasty bitter.

M- The carbonation is too high. The feel is very much a dry roastiness.

D- Really highly drinkable. I would like to see many more well constructed stouts with lower abvs like this one.

Photo of nickhiller
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pitch black and fairly oily, decent carbonation considering the relatively high viscosity.

S: vanilla, sherry, charcoal, a little oak.

T: smoky bitter charcoal, semi-sweet chocolate, milky coffee

M: low carbonation, medium to full bodied, silky in a chocolate milk kind of way.

D: pretty standard stout. I would expect a little more form Deschutes, but there was nothing wrong with it so I really can't complain.

Photo of Shuffledaddy
3.93/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I was out grocery shopping and decided to give this beer a try. I've tried several of Deschutes' other offerings, and have yet to be disappointed.

A - Pours an opaque, almost pitch black color. Head is thick and moderately tan with nice lacing.

S - Scents of chocolate and coffee abound, suggesting almost a mocha-type quality.

T - Lots of dark chocolate and black coffee, with some smoked peat and oatmeal notes. Hop bitterness is pronounced, and with 55 IBUs, that's not a surprise. Finishes smooth in the palate with hints of malty caramel.

M - IMO, a little thin in this department compared to other hoppy stouts, but that also may keep you from filling up too fast.

D - For all the hop and smoky character, this is a surprisingly drinkable beer. A nice change of pace from the creamy milk and oatmeal stouts I've been drinking lately.

Photo of oberon
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Its Deschutes day at my house today.Poured a jet black with a brilliant light mocha colored crown that nver really settled,great defintion and a nice crown.Aromas of heavy roast and molasses mainly,a bit of earthiness emerges as well.Again heavy roast on the palate with a little rawness,some unsweetened bitter chocolate as well,quite dry.Easy to drink,the earthy finish is the main reason for me,no doubt a heavy roasted, and highly hopped left coast American stout.

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another beer aquired while in Colorado area this past fall!

A-black with dark tan head.

S-roasty, roasty malts. Coffee and Chocolate.

T-same and smell here also.

M-Creamy, medium to full body and smooth!

D-this is very drinkable!

Deschutes is a brewery that impresss me alot! They have such great black beers. Another star amoung the style. I would go to the ends of the earth for this beer and the black butte porter! Must try!

Photo of MexicanSkittel
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really like this beer. I get it at my local shop for 5.99 a six pack, Its there best deal in the house.

Pours a viscous dark black with hints of tan bubbles which begin to create a off white light tan head, about a 1/4 inch, foam holds up for a good while, with solid rings left along the glass during consumption.

Alot of roasted malt, coffee, oak, and bittersweet chocolate on the nose.
A balance of earthiness from the coffee and sweet from the malt and chocolate on the palate create the chance for this beer to linger well after it is swallowed.
As for it's drinkability, well yea I've often told myself I'll have 1 or 2 from a six pack, and find myself with 5 or 6 empty bottles.

Photo of kwjd
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on nitro-tap at the Deschutes brewpub in Portland. Thick tan head on top of an opaque almost black beer. Nice rings of lacing after each sip. Big roasted malt smell, both chocolate and coffee. Incredibly well balanced stout, some roast bitterness and sweetness in the flavour. Creamy mouthfeel, likely from the nitro. Really nice stout.

Photo of humuluslupulus8
3.2/5  rDev -23.8%
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.

Photo of tewaris
3.92/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On nitro tap at Pracna on the Main during their Deschutes December event.

Pours usual dark colored but with poor head, poor head retention and some lacing. The aroma and taste were roast, malts, chocolate, coffee and had some coconut notes, something that I never got from this beer. In my opinion "nitro" hurt this beer's mouthfeel; can't say how or why but seemed thinner than usual and there was no creaminess that I was expecting. Drinkability is ok.

Photo of punkrkr27
3.58/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Black pour with brown edges and a small, dense, tan head. The aroma has notes of rolled oats, with a mild balance of dark fruit, chocolate, coffee, and tobacco. The flavor is similar to the aroma. It's a bit sharp though with notes of dark chocolate and a bitter coffee finish. The body is a bit thin but creamy with lots of carbonation.

Photo of CrazyDavros
4.02/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a small dark head.
Nose shows intense roasted coffee and dark chocolate with a hint of smoke. Very nice.
Very similar flavours, lots of roasted malt and coffee beans with more noticeable smoke. Finishes with a light roasty bitterness.
Carbonation is a little too high.

Photo of nkersten
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of Black13 - thanks! Poured into NB globe, opaque black with dark brown edges when held up to light. Thin tan head fades to collar. Smell is spicy hops, roasted malt, some coffee and black patent. Taste is a nice balance of bitter bakers chocolate and spicy hops with dark roasted malts in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a lively medium carbonation - a bit bubbly even after a vigorous pour. A very drinkable American Stout, but not my favorite. Definitley gets better as it warms.

Photo of Phocion
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black and bubbly with a minimal but retentive frothy light brown head and slick lacing.

The aroma is filled with dark malts. Predominately a healthy dose of roastiness, but as it warms a hint of sweet, almost milk chocolate and coffee shows through. Small hint of toffee and just the slightest citrus hops poke through.

Flavor is roasted and somewhat bitter -- I was actually expecting something a little more sweet from the nose. Coffee and hops are the most evident, but finishes with the roasted malts to smooth out the flavor.

Healthy body and carbonation, but goes down very slick compared to most stouts (or maybe I've just been drinking too many Russian Imperials lately). Definitely a full-flavored beer, and like everything else from Deschutes, a very solid brew.

Photo of Metalmonk
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to bytor2112 for this gift. I owe you one!

Obsidian is right, the color is a flat and bold black. Has a thin head of mocha-colored foam, which sticks around a long while.

Big roast in the nose, reminding of dark roast coffee, and there's definitely some fresh hop greenness lending another layer. Something kind of earth/soil about it too, but not in any kind of negative way.

That earth/soil organic vibe also comes through in the taste, which also, unsurprisingly, brings along a generous helping of bitterness, both in terms of coffee-like roast/char and that wonderful green budding flower we all know and love. Finished off with a subtle latte-like steamed milk sweetness. They could have almost passed this off as a coffee beer, had it actually been brewed with the stuff.

Just a little too tingly in the mouth for what's going on here, a thicker, creamier, rounder feel would have worked wonders. Body is thinnish, for a stout, but hardly watery. Not bad at all, can't really fault it here, just not what I think it should have been.

This is really good. Perhaps not the mindblower most Deschutes stuff is, but for a flavorful, accessible, very drinkable and just damn solid American stout...this one delivers.

Photo of ChadQuest
3.85/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

large latte colored head over a black body, sticky sticky head, im loving it. The aroma is inviting like a heated blanket on a day like this windy snow covered one, roasty and creamy and soft and smooth. It's a rounded approachable aroma. The flavor is good and roasty but drops off rather quickly, leaving a blend of faint espresso and steamed vanilla soy. I'm suprised how fast this fades, leaves a clean mouthfeel at the finish, not a thick palette coater by any means, but all this does is make you drink it faster.

This is a solid Stout, and well worth keeping around.

Photo of beer2day
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Jet black, motor oil pour with 2-finger deep, dark cream head. Mild retention. Nice rings of lace formed after each sip.

Dark mocha and rich French roast coffee greet the nose. Nice shot of pine hops, too.

Thick hit with chocolate, dark roast coffee, hint of cream and a tad bit of smoky ash. Dry finish with a nice chocolate malt and hop bite.

Feel is just right. Thick enough to stand up to the rich flavors.

Despite the thick feel, this one is pretty easy to drink.

Photo of bosox941827
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz dated bottle, poured cold into an imperial pint glass; allowed to warm as I tasted it.
A - Wow; black but with as dark a red highlight as you can imagine. Pours like syrup; an opaque, black-red velvet. Fantastic looking.
S - Black licorice, toasted oatmeal, beets(!), chocolate malts.
T - Taste is a bit thin compared to the nose; roasted and chocolate malts come in a bit late, along with some molasses, a drying hops characteristic, that isn't really a flavor but more of a feel. Nice, long finish though, that does yield a bit of complexity; getting a bit of roasted coffee at the end as well.
M - Smooth, but with a tongue-drying, subtle hop finish, not unlike Guinness.
D - Could probably do a few of these; the 6.4% (for a stout) could sneak up on you.
Overall a very good stout and one of the best looking beers I've seen.

Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.16/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a nice stout.

A: Pours dark crimson into the glass which ends up having a solid black color with a nice full tan head and great lacing.

S: Roast, black malt, dark cabernet, and chocolate covered dark fruit. There is a metallic edge to this I'm not fond of, but past that I like the aroma.

T: Nice malty roast with a great amount of supportive sweetness that does not overpower anything. Smoky toasted marshmallow, dark chocolate, bittersweet finish. Great taste.

M: Mostly smooth medium feel, a little prickly in the carbonation department if you ask me. Roast on the back of the palate.

D: Very good stout. An easy to drink beer packing the roast punch you'd hope for in a stout.

Photo of Gobzilla
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very dark brown with brown highlights that had a thin head and left some frothy lacing sticking to the glass. The coffee and chocolate malts dominated the nose with roasty, slight oat grains, and faint lacto notes. The coffee is more potent on the palate with oat grains, chocolate, and roasty accents. It did have coffee bean and vanilla bean notes in the background as well. The brew was full in body with a fair amount of carbonation which had a sweet, roasty, slight astringent, malty, and creamy silky finish. It drank decent but was really tasty. Can't believe why I would avoid this brew for so long.

Photo of jamex
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pilsner glass. A dark impenetrable midnight with a nice, coffee tinted foam that sticks to the glass.

Smells amazing. Roasty malt with hints of espresso, dark chocolate and smoky goodness. The aroma is delightfully represented on the palette. Deep roasted malt nearing a burnt taste. Hint of cocoa, caramel and chocolate with a subtle hop nudge to balance it wonderfully.

Nice carbonation and very drinkable. Good job Deschutes.

Photo of sweemzander
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. Best by 01/21/2011. Thanks to black13 for this one!

(A)- Pours fairly thick and near pitch black with the tiniest hints of burnt sienna. Produced a great fluffy brown head with great retention. Plenty of lacing.

(S)- A good dry roasted backbone with hints of baked bread, molasses, raisin, and the tiniest hint at caramel.

(T)- A righteous roasted profile with a subtle nutty dryness. Bits of molasses, cocoa, raisin, bread, and subtle caramel sweetness.

(M)- A great carbonation level and balance. Heavily roasted, but has just enough dryness and mellow sweetness to balance it out nicely.

(D)- A superb stout. Has the flavor to back it up and rival some Russian Imperial Stouts out there. A great drinker and just damn tasty. If this was distributed by me, this would always be in my fridge for those brisk fall/winter days. Perhaps THE best American Stout I have had.

Photo of bevenson
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass. Best by date of 1/27/11 on bottle. Thanks to caninedevotion for this one.

A - One of the darkest stouts I've had that is under 10% ABV. The beer doesn't even lighten up at the narrow part of the glass at the bottom. Obsidian is a good name for this one. Dense, dark tan, two finger head formed upon pouring and lasted for a couple of minutes before reducing to a thin layer on top. Very pretty.

S - Deep roast and chocolate. Woody hop aroma in background. Low yeast fruitiness; cherries. Moderate mineral quality. Hints of alcohol appear as the beer warms.

T - Wonderful. Deep coffee flavor with some toffee and chocolate added for fun. Firm bitterness from the hops and the roasted grains linger well after imbibing. Moderate hop flavor that tastes like a combination of citrus and currants. Any yeast flavor that is present is blending in with everything else. Getting the balance between roast and hops is not easy, and they nailed it on this one.

M - Very full bodied for a 6.5% beer, but with a dry finish. Finish borders on being too dry; it begs for a sweet dessert to pair with it to balance out. Strong carbonation for a stout; I prefer my stouts with a little lower carbonation, but that's a nitpick.

D - Very enjoyable. I would definitely get this one again if the opportunity arises. However, this is the most filling beer I've had that was under 10%. One of these per evening is plenty, but it's easy to sip on during the night.

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Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 3,176 ratings.