Obsidian Stout - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

3,289 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,289
Reviews: 1,048
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 9.76%
Wants: 468
Gots: 536 | 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 (154) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,289 | Reviews: 1,048
Photo of MartyMaltose
4.61/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(12 oz bottle.) My favorite of all beers commonly available in a 6-pack at standard Pacific Northwest grocery stores. Every superlative cited by other reviewers here is accurate. Deschutes does a great job with most everything they make, but this is particularly genius. It's a lot like the great Imperial stouts but without the in-your-face alcohol.

Had this on tap recently too, and I'd have to rate that experience as very close to perfection.

Photo of dcmchew
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours "obsidian" black with a nice full finger mocha head, really sticky on the sides of the glass.
Rich roasted barley smell with a smokey edge, dark chocolate, burnt toffee, roasted coffee bean, light caramel. Some dark licorice and a really really faint whiff of citrus.
Wow, what a great taste! Rich roasted malts, grainy, bready, with a really authentic smokiness, feels like nice bread that's been left on a countryside bakestone for a few minutes too long. Nice chocolate to go with it, sweet with caramel and light toffee, a tiny bit fresh with some lemon zest, reeeaaally subtle. Hint of vanilla, dark licorice and burnt wood. Heavily roasted finish, but not ashy (as they usually are), which is really nice.
Long finish, the rich roasted malts heading to the aftertaste, with some coffee bean hints and cocoa. Medium body, smooth carbonation.
Wow, what a wonderful stout, just so damn tasty and rich in flavor!

Photo of Chris_Pressler
4.61/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Beautifully dark stout with a smooth taste and feel.

Photo of stratusjeans
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into tall pilsner glass.

A: Looks pretty black. Almost 2 inch medium tan head. Velvet foam. I don't think it was quite as velvety as Black Butte Porter but it's close.

S: Dark roastedness. Smells like a basement but the basement of a huge castle that is aired out often. Just a nice cave-y smell that I'm liking.

T: The taste really envelopes your mouth. Nice strong dark flavors. A little bit of leather, good amount of coffee, and a hint of dark fruit like fig or date.

M: Mild carbonation. Long lingering flavor. Hits heavier but lightens up pretty quickly without fading away.

O: I haven't had this in a while and I had forgotten how much I liked it. Very good beer to have on hand and I'm glad I have easy access to it.

Photo of arvidkoval
3.92/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks pitch black. Obsidian is a good name for this. Nice tan head. Smells of roasted coffee. Tastes like smokey roasted coffee. Nice smooth mouthfeel. Great stout in a 6 pack.

Photo of Beer-Revelry
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours jet black with a finger and a half of dark coffee colored head. Nice whispy lacing on the glass.
S - Milky vanilla, dark chocolate, espresso coffee and a hint of caramel if you search for it. T - Lightly roasted malts up front with a lightly sweet coffee note followed by bitter dark chocolate which resides on the palate for an extended period of time. Ends with a slightly sour carbonation bite. Body is a little on the thin side for a stout, but the ABV is too.
O - A decent stout.
V - Medium.

Photo of colingaiser
4.72/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

From 12 oz bottle left out of fridge for 30 min, slowly poured into a nonic pint glass

L: Beautiful deep brown molasses color with a light brown, two-finger head that disappears quickly and leaves a lot of sticky foam hanging onto the side of the glass.

S: Strong and inviting aroma with notes of molasses, brown sugar, black licorice (naturally), and a hint of lightly roasted coffee.

T: A sweet, robust combination of dark chocolate, black licorice, rich toffee, all with a slightly bready backbone; the lingering flavor is like a chocolate-covered espresso bean, roasted and chocolatey with a pleasant lingering bitterness. It’s a pretty sensational profile of flavors.

F: Medium level of carbonation with a smooth, velvety body. Allows for remarkably easy drinking for such a sturdy stout. Some might like it chewier, but this just works for me.

O: Frankly, this is one of the best stouts I’ve ever had. The flavors are bold and perfectly balanced while the beer is not too heavy or boozy. I’ve still never had even a mediocre brew from Deschutes.

Photo of BIll_Currie
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

my first real stout. still a great beer

Photo of JISurfer
3.29/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.75

Got a bottle of this at a tiny shop in Honolulu. While the smell and look were on point, the taste was just too bitter for me. It left a nasty burned chocolate flavor in my mouth, wasn't a fan of it. I'd be willing to try it on tap, but for now, it's a no go for me.

Photo of plaidowl
3.19/5  rDev -24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

My tastes are usually more along the lines of hefeweizens and lagers, so take that into consideration here. I am always looking at expanding my repertoire and I've always been interested in stouts.
Popping a bottle of Obsidian open, as with most beers, I first notice the head. It is thick but it's the color that's more notable, a kind of really light umber tone, capping the impenetrably black body. It's smooth and I noticed a relatively low amount of carbonation in my glass. The flavor is primarily roasted malts, with the usual notes of coffee and cocoa (more than a straight chocolate). As one reviewer noted, there is a bit of a char to the flavor, especially in the aftertaste. Overall, I can see this as an easy-drinking stout; it almost seems a bit too thin, but I do like its cleanliness.

Photo of nizzle8287
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Look: Black/brown highlights, big khaki head with beautiful lacing all the way around
Smell: Sweet... if-it-tastes-as-good-as-it-smells delicious
Taste: Awesome creamy blend of cocoa, black coffee and light toffee
Feel: Full bodied with medium to high carbonation, alcohol makes it feel bigger than it is
Overall: Amazing stout, PERIOD

Served at 55-60 F in a tulip

Photo of Southside830
4.27/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Great stout !! More complex char to sweetness IMO. Gets better as it warms up. A great value on a readily available and high quality stout.

Photo of GregJ
4.04/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with dark brown edges. Thick and foamy light brown head dissipates quickly leaves nice lacing down the glass. Smells sweet roasted malts. Tastes dark roast coffee, mocha and dark roasted/burnt malts in the aftertaste with a little hoppy bitterness. Nice medium body.

Photo of HoppyBastard
4.04/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Shaker pint glass, "best by" date 4-13-15.

APPEARANCE: pours completely black, even when held to light nothing penetrates the darkness, one-finger tan head that dissipated to a thin, broken layer of small bubbles, there was significant lacing on the glass, medium carbonation.

SMELL: roasted grain, chocolate.

TASTE: initially very sweet then a blast of roasted grains and chocolate, the 6.4% alcohol is perceptible.

PALATE: medium carbonation, creamy, full bodied.

OVERALL: I am not a huge fan of stouts but enjoyed this one when included in a sampler pack, not something I'll seek out by itself but worth trying. If you like the stout style this is one of the better examples for sure.

Photo of Jishguy
4.37/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours a solid black body with a one finger mocha colored head. The head did dissipate after about two minutes or so. The lacing on the glass is moderate when turning from side to side.

S - The immediate smell of espresso dominates the aroma, along with sweet caramel, chocolate and roasted malts. Very inviting

T - Very similar to the aroma. Dark roasted malts immediately up front followed by the chocolate and sweet malts on the backbone. A tiny hint of alcohol is present in the aftertaste, but not to overwhelming.

M - Not bad, but definitely the most disappointing aspect of this brew. Creamy, but could be a bit more.

D - It does sit heavy, which is not uncommon for a stout. I could drink three or four.

Overall, a solid brew. a friend brought me a six pack while on vacation. I'd definitely buy another.

Photo of MichaelNeelsen
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

L: Pitch black, pours thick, with a one-finger width cinnamon-colored head.

S: Roasted malts is the overwhelming aroma. Maybe some espresso and uber dark chocolate.

T: Roasted malts again. Espresso. Nice finish.

F: The highlight of this beer for me. It's medium-full, bouncy, fluffy, pillowy body is the way an American stout should be.

O: A great baseline for stouts, and another great beer from Deschutes. It's not as special as The Abyss or Black Butte, but it's very good.

Photo of Taybeh
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a single into a Bell's snifter (and consumed sitting by the fireplace after shoveling snow)

A: rich jet black with a 2 finger puffy tan head (looks amazing)
S: roasted espresso, toasted barley, bitter chocolate, grassy hops
T: nice layers of flavor that follow the nose, though the chocolate is less pronounced than the nose suggests; lots of toasted dark malts with some ashy burnt flavors too; ends fairly bitter (both grassy notes and some char). First one of this winter, but in winters past, this is one of my staples. God bless you, Deschutes!
M: creamy, smooth, with some pleasing bitterness and acidity. maybe a little on the thin side.

Overall: These guys win. This is a stellar stout.

Photo of spidermite
4.41/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.75

So crisp and clean, one of my favorite go to stouts when I can find it.

it's just so smooth and tastes like it should be thicker smells like roasted malts and goes down so smooth, the appearance is spelled out in the name and I love seeing peoples eyes pop when they see it for the first time. Cant have just one though....

Photo of metter98
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is absolutely jet black in color. It poured with a finger and a half high dark tan head that died down but consistently left a short head covering the surface.
S: Light aromas of dark chocolate and roasted malts are present in the nose; these become stronger as the beer warms up.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, but the flavors are intensified and the roasted malts really stand out and linger through the finish.
M: It feels a little more than medium-bodied and a little dry on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is a well-crafted stout that is very flavorful and nearly as complex as a Russian Imperial Stout, despite its lighter body nature.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of genesisgrunge
4.87/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: very dark brown/black, can't see through. head is 1/2 in when poured and diminishes to a thin lacing by the end of the bear. the creaminess to the beer remains the same though.
S: a robust concoction of chocolate and roasted malt. powerful and effective and a good indicator of the taste to follow.
T: strong chocolate and roasted malt flavors. sweet and inviting. this is a beer you don't want to put down.
M: slightly high carbonation, but it doesn't get in the way of any of the taste and the mouthfeel ends up feeling wholesome and refreshing. you are definitely drinking a stout. it ends in a nice dry tinge.
O: excellent beer. in my top ten of stouts. perfectly balanced.

Photo of Sean_King
3.89/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Very good stout. Had it on nitro. Very smooth.

Photo of drtth
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

As with most stouts, this beer, poured into a Duvel glass is an opaque black with not a bit of light showing through it and a nice 1/2" dark tan head.

The foam persists for a reasonably long time but eventually settles into an island of thin foam on the surface and a small ring of foam around the glass, as do most stouts. There is some foam coating one side of the glass and a couple of patches and rings of leggy lacing. By the end of the beer there is only a small ring of foam and a few scattered speckles of lacing.

The light aroma is full of dark roast malt highlighting coffee and chocolate.

As expected from the aroma, the flavors are nicely complex. There is dark, bitter roasted malt underlying the coffee flavors and semi-sweet dark chocolate and they are all playing together nicely here without any one of them insisting on dominating the action.

The mouthfeel is smooth and medium bodied with light persistent carbonation. The finish tapers off into that lightly bitter dryness that invites another sip (or three :-) ).

Overall this is so far an impressive beer and one that offers an abundance of flavors and complexity along with an ABV (6.4%) that would easily allow having more than one. It has definitely earned a place on my “have more in the future” list.

Photo of Suds
4/5  rDev -4.8%

This is an ultra black, thick brew. Tan head with a decent lace. Grain and a touch of smoke and coffee in the smell. Firm bitterness in the taste. Some underlying thick smoothness. Bitter and powerful. Excellent brew.

Photo of Mac_Daddy
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

If Guinness had a bigger, badder, stronger, better looking twin brother Obsidian would be it.

Photo of JoshWells
3.75/5  rDev -10.7%

Definitely a great go to stout. Not going to blow your socks off but it's a must have in your fridge if your a stout drinker like I am.

Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 3,289 ratings.