Obsidian Stout - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

3,293 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,293
Reviews: 1,049
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 9.76%
Wants: 468
Gots: 538 | 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 (152) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,293 | Reviews: 1,049
Photo of Bluerabbitbell
4.74/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow! 12 pack variety. Glad this one was in it!

Photo of spoons
3.92/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle to a tulip.

Looks like blackness, I guess thats what they were going for. Looks great. A coffee colored head that sits on top with a creamy stature.

Smells like roasted barley for sure. Some coffee in there with a hint of caramel and a little bread.

I feel as if this is a little carbonated for my liking. Leaves it a little watery. Tastes of bitter roasted malts and a little sweet red fruits. The flavor is nice overall.

If it werent for the mouthfeel this would be an exceptional beer for sure.

Photo of natemort13
4.78/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Beer pours an opaque black with a thick dark tan head that sticks around forever (so far at least...). Head is super clingy on the glass.

Notes of strong coffee and dark roasted malts on the nose. Dark chocolate too.

Taste is an incredibly smooth chocolate and coffee stout. The roasted malt comes off as creamy and smooth on my palate. Finish is mildly bitter (similar to the aftertaste of a sip of weak coffee).

Creamy mouthfeel, full bodied but not really sticky like you might expect from such a stout. Really smooths out the roasted coffee flavor.

Overall it's an excellent stout. Picked up a Black Butte XXIII with the Obsidian six pack. Really looking forward to it but that one's gonna age for a bit.

Photo of bayougutter
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

/A vigorous pour yielded three fingers of dark black beer and three fingers of khaki creamy foam.

S: Roasted malts then cocoa, sweet date aroma. Toffee as well. Not all that strong of an aroma but a good one.

T: Followed the nose except that I got some hoppy/ coffee bitterness on the finish slightly.

M: Spot on mouthfeel for stout, not too thick but not watery. Nice carbination with good lacing until the end.

O: Impressive and very worthy of try. Nice job Deschutes!

Photo of alarmclock314
4.31/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Balanced and drinkable. A staple stout.

Photo of angelogarcia3
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

this is an excellent beer. Strong in flavor and aroma. The smokey aroma prepares the drinker for what is to come. The dark head full head and dark color let you know that their is a high level of carbonation. The roasted malts and full body satisfy the drinker requiring a strong beer that will withstand some heavy blue cheeses on a Kobe beef hamburger. Had it at the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival.

Photo of MikeyMikee
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served at fridge temp. 55'F

A- Dark, Dark brown (nearly black) with an off white head.

S- Pale malt, baking chocolate (semi sweet), brown sugar and some light hops.

T- Light roastiness, light coffee, little bit of chocolate. Slight cirtus hoppiness. slightly burnt flavor to it.

M- It's got a velvety feel. Its very full and smooth for a regular stout. Really great.

O- Very drinkable, best stout I've ever had, easily.

Photo of Pooba001
4.69/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Beer pours a black hue with a brown finger of head that dissipates, but some reappears when beer is roused. Jeepers its dark. Lacing sticks around the side of the glass. Aroma is sweet, not candy sweet, but malty sweet, chocolatey, and a little fruity. Nearly perfect. Mouthwatering.

Dry roasted malt flavor, sweetness, coffee. Great balance. This is a "wow" beer, probably the best thing I've had since my last Double Bastard or Oaked Yeti.

Mouthfeel is good, little thin, good body, but less than optimal. Drinkability is very good, so smooooth. Its not only an excellent example of American Stout, but just a damn tasty beer. I'm going to start calling my liver "the place Deschutes beers go to die".

Photo of hammer09
4.7/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I discovered this beer on a recent trip to Lake Tahoe and ordered it as a pre-dinner drink.

The Obsidian Stout arrived in a 12 ounce bottle at cellar temperature and the waiter had enough sense to suggest a room temperature pint glass instead of their customary chilled glassware. The beer poured a black, almost opaque color with a 3/4 inch head which settled to a creamy 1/8 inch in a matter of minutes. This stout had a nice roasted aroma, typical of many other stout varieties. Taste was exceptional with a roasted malt flavor and a creamy, smooth, and flat character. Overall, the Obsidian Stout's qualities adhere well to the tried and true characteristics of a classic stout, but its drinkability surpasses many of it's competitors.

I have yet to see this beer offered in Chicago, but will not hesitate to order a case from my local retailer if they can fulfill a special order.

Photo of Cannibalgasm
4.34/5  rDev +3.3%
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.

Photo of BenHesk12
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Obsidian Stout can be considered a hidden treasure. At $8 for a six pack, this beer is inexpensive, widely available, and spot on for the style of an American stout. For this review, I was served on nitro-tap from a local bar in San Francisco's North Beach. This beer is a delight start to finish with lasting chocolate and coffee flavors, a creamy, delicate mouthfeel (partly due to the nitro), and overall a balance of alcohol and stouty flavors that leaves little to be desired. While not extremely complex or fancy, this beer is enjoyable on a special level.

Photo of idResponse
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent beer, Looks great, smells great, tastes great, feels great, drinks great, and is.. great!

I've found it to be best on nitro taps and has been known to sway all those swaggering guiness die hards to open their mind to a new brew.

Although starting in 2006 I feel the recipe has been messed with somehow and the taste has been off... It hasn't quite been the same as it used to be. I've noticed this with the Jubelale as well as the Porter. Has Deschutes lost something? I'm not sure, perhaps it's just a passing phase in my tastebuds or something.

One thing for sure: Next time you're at your favorite venue, demand the obsidian be put on nitro!

Photo of MrBoz21
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours murky black - opaque. Thick, creamy brown head that settles down to ice cream float. Thick, sticky lacing.

Aroma: Roasted malt, grainy and a bit of ash. Light chocolate and faint faint hops.

Taste: Sweet roast and vanilla chocolate. Very little bitterness.

Mouth: Creamy and thick. Not really slick. Malty.

Overall: Very balanced and tasty. Sweet.

Photo of JohnnyJam
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have had this in my beer refrigerator for four months and it was buried in the back and I had not reviewed it. Deschutes Black Butte Porter is always on hand and I deviated to try this. I'm glad that I did. It is so good. The date code is 9/16/13 but I will review it anyway. Did it get better?

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle with the date code clearly visible (9/16/13) into a pint glass and got 2+ fingers of head.

A: Pours black and opaque. I get a huge 2+ fingers if tan head that dissipates slowly to more than just a covering on the top of my glass that lasts to the end. Huge amounts of off-white lacing from top to bottom.

S: Dark coffee, vanilla, and charcoal.

T: Charcoal, strong coffee, burnt toast, and molasses. Really complex. Finishes with the bitterness of unsweetened chocolate.

M: Medium bodied and carbonated. The carbonation is similar to an effervescence that dances on my tongue. It goes down good.

O: I really like it. It is really satisfying and tasty.

Photo of Joe_Howard
4.56/5  rDev +8.6%
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.

Photo of BigDaddyWarbuxx
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
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 burnt aftertaste. Definitely a sipper, but very impressive.

Photo of thesilverhand
4.56/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks, as I so often say, to Naerhu for this one.

Pours inky black, with a massive, light, frothy wet-sand brown head that looked just gorgeous. It fell over the next few minutes, leaving vast swaths of thick lace.

Mmm. Aromatic dark coffee, a touch of woodsmoke, and a sweet vinous hint of dark fruits. Very pleasant.

Interesting. A much drier, roastier (is that a word?) first impression than I expected. Plenty of charcoal, dark-roasted coffee, with a smooth, sweet base. Very nice. The finish is long -- ages long -- and dry, leaving my mouth pleasantly smoky and thirsting for more.

Silky smooth with perfect carbonation. Active and light, despite being a heavy beer.

Wow. Very, very nice. Intense and long-lasting aroma and flavour in a beautifully smooth and aesthetically beautiful beer. I recently read an article (Times of London I think) about Deus and the "new" upmarket beer segment, comparing high end beer to champagne. A wine expert, tasting Deus, said it was a great beer, but still "short," leading him to say that he couldn't see paying champagne prices for beer -- a taste that "disappears immediately." I can say without hesitation that the aforementioned "wine expert" has never tried Obsidian Stout. You should. And it won't set you back as much as a bottle of champagne, either.

Photo of jwilli7122
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours your stout-typical opaque brownish black with a monster rocky tan head made of a combination of humongous and tiny bubbles.
smells like alchohol, loud dark fruit, and roasted malts.
taste is hop spiced dark fruit - grapes and plums especially- and chalky bittersweet chocolate...notes of alchohol...roasty finish but not as big as in many stouts.
mouthfeel is dry and fairly thin with some alchoholic warmth.

this is very fruity for a stout. I'm not real big on fruit flavors, but if you are, you will like this.

Photo of UncleFrank
4.59/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a thick oil black with a brown head. The head lasts and lasts. The aroma is high with roasted notes and sweet malts roasted over burnt wood. There is a bit of coffee aroma as well. Very interesting.
The body is thick and chewy, leaving the insides of my cheeks covered with a slick malty taste that mingles with the roasted grains on the middle of my tongue. A touch of sweet chocolate is evident and is followed by a flavor of dark grain bread, like a rye or pumpernickel. I’m not saying that’s what it is, but reminds me of that. Like a new coffee flavor. Very complex.
The finish is slightly bitter without being overly astringent. The re is no hop or alcohol taste at all and yet this beer weighs in at over 6 percent.
Wow, this could be my new favorite Stout. Complex, tasty, and a limited supply in this area make me want to savor this beer. Enjoy!

Photo of isubsmith
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Would you believe.... very dark black and opaque? Poured into a pint glass. 1/2" to 5/8" of tan head quickly settled down to traces which stuck around to the bottom of the glass.

Nose: Typical of a stout - Roasted barley, hints of coffee.

Taste: Follows from the nose pretty well - roasted barley, some coffee notes. Bitter chocolate. Smoother than expected. Very creamy mouthfeel. Slight hops finish to round it out.

A very drinkable, balanced beer. Definately recommended.

Photo of NefariousR
4.77/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

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

A - Pours an intensely dark brown; absolutely no light is passing through here. There is a foamy, tan head of about an inch that mostly dissipated after about three minutes. Left a lacy webbing down the glass.

S - Strong roasted coffee, with some notes of sweet molasses.

T - The roast taste comes through strongly, with an after-taste of sweet malt that sticks to the throat. Almost no perceived bitterness. Quite delicious.

M - Medium-thick, with light carbonation washing over the tongue and throat.

D - A recent discovery for me, and one of my new favorite stouts. I could drink these all night, quite an accomplishment given the moderately high ABV of 6.4% -- getting close to Imperial Stout ranges. Highly reccommended.

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 ThePortlander
3.91/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle in a mug.

A: A wonderful smooth black, no light can get through this one. Truly 'obsidian.'

S: For some reason I couldn't get much aroma out of this one. I got some vague milk chocolate aromas, and the malt is there, but not much else. Perhaps a slight hint of dates or plums with agitation.

T: The silky sweet malt rushes in first, bringing chocolate, dried fruit and nut flavors as well. There is some hop bitterness in this stout, which works to even out the sweetness, but it never quite fully evens out. (Or, at least the brew from the batch I'm basing this review on never seemed to even out; I have had this brew before at it was much more balanced). Overall, a wonderful evening or dessert stout, as the sweetness seems to win out. The mouthfeel is quite smooth and milky.

D: Despite being a bit too sweet for my tastes, this is a very solid stout and another great brew from Deschutes. Despite being a heavier beer, the mouthfeel and sweeter taste make drinking it quite easy.

Note: This was not the best bottle of Obsidian I've encountered. It's usually quite a bit more even, like a good cup of coffee; not too sweet or bitter, but complex and full. Maybe it was me, maybe it was the brew. Either way, I have given this a combined rating which may change the next time I buy a bottle or order one out.

Photo of scottyg354
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

No need to get into details, this is by far one of the best looking, best smelling, tastiest, smoothest Stouts I've had. Wish I was back out in San Francisco were this would be a staple in my fridge. Unfortunately, it's not available in PA or at least in my area.

This is one awesome brew.

Photo of fretlessman71
4.68/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours - you guessed it - black as obsidian, with a taupe colored reasonably tight head that lasts to the bottom of the glass. Strong roasted aroma very characteristic of a stout - kind of like an original Guinness, but somehow even more so. There's a pleasant sharpness in the flavor, yet it's irresistably smooth... you'd never know there was 6+% ABV in this beer. Bitter chocolate, espresso flavors are very strong - why, oh why can't Starbucks make a shot that tastes this good? Mouthfeel is almost oily, but in a good way... not too carbonated, not too flat feeling. This one goes down just as smoooth as you could want - there aren't enough o's in "smooth" to describe it!

Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 3,293 ratings.