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Black Butte Porter - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Black Butte PorterBlack Butte Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,044 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,044
Reviews: 1,307
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.74%
Wants: 297
Gots: 347 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Alc. by Vol.: 5.2%
IBUs: 30

192 calories per 12 oz serving

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2001)
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Ratings: 4,044 | Reviews: 1,307 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Derek

British Columbia (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Portland pub.

A: Black with a tan head, thin ring of retention, good lacing.

S: Light molasses, coffee, licorice.

T: Coffee, molasses, licorice, light smoke, pumpernickel rye bread, slight grainyness, good bitterness.

M: Smooth moderate body has a dry finish.

D: A good drinker.

Serving type: on-tap

10-17-2009 03:00:52 | More by Derek
Photo of ProudGreen89


4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love a good porter during the cold months and everyone has been raving about this stuff so im giving it a go.

12oz bottle poured into a pint mug.

A-pours a rich coffee brown with a bubbly, fluffy dark cream head that takes its time settling down, lots of lacing down the glass, held up to the light some red undertones are noticed near the bottom of the glass. Leaves a 1 finger head that sticks around for a while with sticky lacing once it has settled.

S-a nice toasted maltyness with chocolate hints and some kind of flowery spice like cloves comes thru, there is a small trace of hops but the malts are the major scent in this beer. As it warms you can detect a dark fruit and a stronger aroma of chocolate.

T-The taste does not disappoint, the nose only hints at whats to come, the taste is just a perfect balance of sweet/maltyness and a subtle dry bitterness near the finish to even it all out. the malts taste lightly roasted with a chocolate background that has some kind of spice intermingling but i cant tell what it is (i was thinking cloves at first but now its hard to pinpoint) and has some kind of dark fruit in there, maybe currants. As the beer warms the malts and chocolate are very prominent and make for almost a meal in itself.

M-medium body, gives your mouth a rehydrating feeling then the sharpness of the bitterness finishes nice and dry but leaves a nice aftertaste. The head sticks around for quite a while so if you get some along with the beer its actually pretty fizzy and bubbly which is also nice. becomes slightly thicker as it warms and leaves a pleasant tingling on the finish.

D-overall this beer is highly drinkable and enjoyable, especially on these colder days, its definitely a beer to be cherished and enjoyed slowly. A very nicely done porter.

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2009 21:56:25 | More by ProudGreen89
Photo of blackie


4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: standard pint, deep mahogany brown in color, opaque when held away from light, capped with a nice layer of carbonation that shows average retention

s: roasty chocolate malt nose meshed with grainy and subtly sweet crystal malt, good balance with an earthy hop nose, hints of light roast coffee bean in the back, dig the interplay between chocolate and caramel

m: carbonation moderate in level and a bit prickly, medium bodied at the sip and dries quickly

t: good base of pale and caramel malts with a stream of chocolate malt running throughout, earthy hop flavors in perfect proportion add a moderate bitterness, dry roast lingers in the finish, nice stuff

d: absolutely sessionable, great balance and finish with more than enough character to keep one interested, obviously carefully crafted but lacking those special qualities that would garner higher scores

random single found in my six pack of mirror ponds, what luck!

best by 12/04/09

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2009 05:15:01 | More by blackie
Photo of SamN


4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A rather pricey ($8.99) sixer bought from the local booze shack in L-town, served in a tumbla'.

A- Deep amber brown, red in the light, almost black with less than 1 finger of thick, tan head.

S- Bitter chocolate, roasted malt, classic porter smell.

T- Bitter yet sweet malt/grain dominant, with earthy, hops bittered finish. A close second to my all time favorite, Sierra Nevada's porter. Not quite as balanced, but still fantastically delicious and smooth.

M- Fairly full bodied, with just a smidge too much carbonation. The smooth feel is interrupted rather abruptly by sharp bubbles on my tongue.

D- Fan-f-ing-tastic. What a great beer for anytime, anywhere, any time of day. I'd pour this in my Cracklin' Oat Bran in the morning. Superb.

I wanted to try this before I tried my special purchase of Black Butte XXI a few weeks ago for a comparo. Maybe I'll put it on the boards. Great job, Deschutes!

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2009 02:30:19 | More by SamN
Photo of DavoleBomb


4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

4.0 A: Dark brown, almost black like a stout in color. Two fingers of frothy tan head with good retention and lots of lacing.

4.5 S: Very pleasant roasted malts, milk chocolate. Semi-sweet smelling. Not any hop component.

4.0 T: Lots of roastiness. Chocolaty and sweet. Bootstrap molasses.

3.5 M: Light medium body. Would prefer a hell of a lot more body. Good carbonation. Could also be a bit more creamy.

4.0 D: Good overall, but suffers from the mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2009 02:27:47 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of armock

New York

4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a black color with a tan head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of roasted malt that give off chocolate and coffee scents

T - Follows the nose roasted malt with chocolate and coffee flavor

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

D - Yet another well made beer from Deschutes this is a good easy to drink porter with a good taste worth trying sometime

Serving type: on-tap

10-06-2009 23:36:18 | More by armock
Photo of CampusCrew


4.65/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ok, this comes from one of the most respected breweries in the US, so we expected alot. We both agreed this beer was not overated and it dominated the tasting tonight. Tons of roasted charcoal flavor and very rich flavorful beer. There are good porters and then there are great porters ... this a great one. Grab this ASAP!

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2009 03:40:33 | More by CampusCrew
Photo of projectflam86


4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to a061183 and ZymasefungiI207I for both sending me bottles to try and share with friends. Cheers guys!

A- Pours a nearly opaque brown/black color with a thick creamy beige colored head. Some sticky lacing left behind.

S- Nice roasted malt and wet coffee bean aroma. A light chocolate and caramel malt aroma comes through with another whiff.

T- Huge rush of roasted cocoa bitterness initially that gives way to a sweet milk chocolate finish. A nice smoky/coffee flavor is present throughout that adds a bit to a toasted grain maltiness.

M- Medium bodied with lots of carbonation. Smooth and creamy but snappy at the same time.

D- Overall a great porter with a big roasted flavor and high drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2009 02:44:25 | More by projectflam86
Photo of wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased from the BSF bar, GBBF 2009, this bottle is at 5.2%abv. and comes in a brown, 12 Fl. Oz. slim bottle; BB 4 Sep. 2009, served mildly chilled in Gulden Draak's branded tulip-shaped goblet.

A: pours a very dark brown colour, showing some dark ruby glows when seen against light as well as very fine streams of carbonation; the dark-beige to light-tan froth builds up slowly to a huge head, then retreats slowly and leaves uneven lacing along the way.
S: very clean in composition and enticing, featuring semi-sweet and semi-sour dark chocolates, toast sweetened nuts, melted black sugar, and dark berry fruits; a swirl seems to highlight the creamy elements of dark malts and more intense nutty aroma. Overall, I'd say this is NOT meant to be a really hoppy take on the style, while the balance is beautifully retained.
T: a decent ale from the beginning to the finish - the foretaste is pretty light and features semi-sour and bitter-sweet black malts, bitter chocolates, with a touch of grapey dark fruits; then the mid-taste deepens on the roastiness gradually, where hops also chime in to render a slightly bitter, herbal, rather chewy and semi-sour finish.
M&D: the mouthfeel is consistently good, showing only a necessary amount of light fizz to match an equally light body and moderate flavour profile. This ale tastes rather "conservative" so far as an American version of Porter ale is concerned, as the weak presence of aromatic hops in aroma and taste is quite apparent. That said, I have no issues with the understated-ness all too common to English Porters; actually, the overall light body & taste and a chewy finish make this a rather drinkable example.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2009 20:19:12 | More by wl0307
Photo of Beernoisseur


4.72/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a fantastic porter. Looks great, tastes great, and smells great. Dark chocolate brown, nice sized head with a spot or two of lacing, this beer looks great from the get go. The flavor is subtle but complex. Obvious toasty qualities, but there are also notes of charcoal, and an acidic bite. The hops are mellow, but with nice bitterness on the finish.

Another spectacular entry from Deschutes.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2009 23:47:28 | More by Beernoisseur
Photo of nms1987

North Carolina

3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks like a porter.

Creamy coffee on the nice nose. Not exceptional aromatic though

Tastes good. Fairly hoppy for a porter but it isn't out of place or anything. Nice coffee flavors. Very good beer but not quite the wonder I was lead to believe it was.

Mouthfeel. Carbonation is fairly crisp for the style. Not as smooth and rich as some but still very nice. The higher than normal hoppiness and crisper carbonation kind of make this a pale ale lovers porter.

Very drinkable and tasty, i'd love to have another.

NOTE-Might have been slightly unfresh. Bomber had a 9/30 best by date and I drank this on 9/25

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2009 20:31:46 | More by nms1987
Photo of astout

British Columbia (Canada)

4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep deep brown that you can just see through if held to the light, decent amount of creamy light tan head.

Smells of sweet fruits and bread originally but slowly develops a more burnt toast type of aroma, but a little bit of alcoholic sweetness still lingers in the background.

Burnt, roasted malt dominates the palate with a touch of sweetness up front fading to a nice dry toasted finish. Reminds me of having burnt toast as a kid a little bit (this is a good thing for me my mom used to burn it all the time).

Great mouthfeel medium bodied well rounded and very smooth, probably the perfect amount of carbonation.

I could drink a ton of this, very smooth and easy going down and not at all fatiguing on the palate, not to mention delicious.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2009 06:22:07 | More by astout
Photo of donkeyrunner


3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"I like big buttes and I cannot lie." -Sir Mix A Lot

via ZymasefungiI207I

Black with dark brown highlights: cola color. Regal tan head that leaves multiple lace rings. Aroma is of roast malt and chocolate.

Has all the usual porter flavors (chocolate infused roast malt) but it's just better. The first thing that comes to mind is that this beer tastes clean; especially for a porter. I don't know if that's a result of Cascade water or Deschutes mastery, or a combination of both--it's just real clean. Has an acidic eh which I'm not a fan of.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2009 20:17:41 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of angelmonster


3.68/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a huge 3 finger chocolate head, body is pitch black. Head retention and lacing were good.

Smell is of roasted chocolate malt and coffee. Hops are pretty faint and there is also alittle alcohol in there

Taste is pretty light. Mostly malty, very roasty with some chocolate and coffee. Hops are pretty faint. The best way to describe the taste is traditional porter,kinda boring.

Mouthfeel is good. Lighter than average body for a porter but not watery. The head had some creaminess for awhile but then it faded. Carbonation was well balanced.

Drink ability is good. Session able porter but a bit bland. This is a good beer but just not on the level of the best, ie: Avery New World Porter

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2009 01:48:40 | More by angelmonster
Photo of flagmantho


4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Not sure why it took me so long to review this beer, as it is one of my perennial favorites.

Appearance: deep coffee brown with a one-finger tan head which maintains pretty well. Quite nice.

Smell: rich chocolate-and-coffee aroma against a background of light graininess. Bang on for what I like.

Taste: immediate chocolate flavor with hints of coffee. Plenty of hop character in the flavor that is not evident in the aroma: slightly spicy, slightly floral. Just a great combination. Bitterness at the end to counter the sweet malt flavors.

Mouthfeel: on the light side of medium, which makes this quite a sessionable beer.

Drinkability: probably my favorite session dark beer. This stuff is just fantastic over an evening.

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2009 04:13:10 | More by flagmantho
Photo of mdwalsh


4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My first Deschutes Beer, I got this at the Old Faithful Inn in Yellowstone. I was not expecting to see this here, but I was very excited because I'd been seeking this beer for a while now. It pretty much lived up to its hype for me. I had just gotten lectured about writing reviews in restaurants by my wife, and this was a classier joint, so this was written in the bathroom all at once when I finished. Forgive any lack of detail.

A: One and a half finger head, with ok lace. Black with red accents around the edges. Served in a footed pilsner type glass with a inward snifter type top. Looked just like a porter should. Light tan head.

S: Mild, with some roastiness and sweetness, but not hops whatsoever.

T: Roasted Barley is a compliment/accent flavor, not the whole thing, it works great. There is a rich grainy taste with some caramel in there. Dark malt provides something, but overall it's actually a fairly light porter.

M: Again, light, but still very good. Sort of dry feeling.

D: Great, it went perfect with my porkchop.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2009 18:17:09 | More by mdwalsh
Photo of Graham5161986

British Columbia (Canada)

4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Yes! My first beer from Deschutes!!!

Into my Duvel tulip, this porter pours a nice, dark, black colour that is topped with an espresso-foam head (which doesn't stick around too long, forming a thin, whispy layer of espresso-like foam) and leaves some decent lacing as it goes down. Smells of milky smooth chocolate, a bit of coffee and I get hints of hot chili as well (If you've ever tried chili chocolate, you know what I mean - delicious and so enticing!). Taste is nice and roasty with the malts showing through. Then, notes of coffee and dark chocolate come through (not overly strong) with a touch of minerality that cleans up the palate. It's on the finish that the chocolate really begins to come through finishing off with a really enjoyable chili-chocolate, spicy tingle and some bitter hops in the background. Mouthfeel is full bodied, quite creamy but with a spicy, tingly finish that really makes it feel clean and surprisingly refreshing. Overall, this is a killer and very sessionable porter that has some nice flavour complexity but doesn't overpower the palate. I could see myself drinking a ton of these - no problem. I'm looking very much forward to trying more beers from this brewery!

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2009 22:03:37 | More by Graham5161986
Photo of ocelot2500


3.93/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown with a small mocha head. Enough lacing on the glass.

Smells of roasted malt and some chocolate.

Tastes of the roasted malt upfront, with a little bitterness. Small sour/acid taste. The roasted character lends to some underlying coffee flavors with some chocolaty flavors on top.

The mouthfeel is a medium and has a smooth character, but I think is a little thin.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2009 02:58:40 | More by ocelot2500
Photo of chickencoop


3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance & Smell - pours a deep coffee brown with a thin tan head. Smell is about what you'd expect, coffee malty and chocolatey, very pleasant.
Taste & Mouthfeel - This is a benchmark American porter, taste is a full bodied malty flavor,
mouthfeel is malty with some bitterness finish.
Drinkability - as I said, this is a classic, but personally I can only drink a few, so too me not the most drinkable beer. But just because i'm a stick in the mud, I can't knock this, it is a great beer, and I would recommend just not my cup of tea.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2009 03:33:56 | More by chickencoop
Photo of Aenema


3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a very dark brown / black. Off-white head with splotchy lacing.
Smell - Coffee and roasted malts.
Taste - Coffee grounds with some chocolate in the background.
Mouthfeel - Light to medium-bodied and light carbonation.
Drinkability - Quite drinkable.
Overall - After having Black Butte XXI a few days earlier I couldn't help but be disappointed. I expected less intense flavors, but this beer seemed like a version of the XXI that had been toned down several levels.

Serving type: on-tap

09-11-2009 00:41:24 | More by Aenema
Photo of cokes


4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark mahogany brown, hinting at blackness, as ruby pops up at the edges. The head is tight and tan and lasts a while.
Roasty nose with cocoa and coffee and influxes of nuts and grain, and a sizable minty, wintergreen hop closure.
Roasted grain appears in the mouth first, followed immediately by coffee and chocolate. A mixed bag of roasted nuts, drizzled with caramel. The hops enter quickly and bring a spritely and powerful piney bite. It concludes with a linger of the wintergreen hops and the forceful roastedness.
Pushing toward full bodied with a low-level CO2 that remains constant throughout.
This is a classy, classic American Porter.

Serving type: on-tap

09-05-2009 07:24:24 | More by cokes
Photo of qchic


4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cola brown with some light peeking through revealing red highlights. There's a "bowl" of head--clinging to the walls of the rounded glass, while showing hints of the beer beneath in the middle. Smells of rich roasty malts and chocolate--yum! The malts keep it up in the flavor with more roasted goodness, chocolate, and hints of coffee, smoke, cherry, molasses, and some alcohol. Just a little thinner than I would like, but a satisfying beer otherwise. This one goes down easily. Solid.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2009 23:10:51 | More by qchic
Photo of scottchesterhall


3.55/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours nicely. Looks black at first glance, but holding up to light you can just see through it with an amber/black hue.

Phenomenal smell. Bitter chocolate with espresso.

But right off the first taste there's something funny. Then it's really nice through the middle. But then at the end of your swallow, there's a lingering something I'm just not feeling. Something kind of vegetably. Beets? Potato?

I feel like an oregon-blasphemer, but there's something there from the bittering hops that could use an edit. Now that you've read this, drink one...I think you'll see what I mean...

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2009 21:50:05 | More by scottchesterhall
Photo of morimech


4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown color with minimal tan head that quickly settles to a thin cap. Light spotty lacing is left on the glass. Wonderful aroma of dark malts, chocolate, coffee, and a little tobacco. The taste is likewise rewarding. The chocolate malt is on full display giving hints of mocha and coffee. A little bitterness is perceived but finishes with just a touch of sweetness. A little ash on the finish as well. Medium body but the carbonation is a little pricky and agressive. An outstanding porter than does not get overly bitter and burnt. No problem drinking a few of these in a session.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2009 21:43:54 | More by morimech
Photo of aristeros


4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I liked Dechutes' Obsidian Stout and Inversion; have high hopes for this one. Poured into my Bodum pint glass. Very dark brown, red highlights visible that indicate that it's not in fact opaque. Small beige head.

Roasted malt smells dominate. Espresso and dark chocolate.

Some interesting flavors. A tiny bit of sweetness up front, then dark coffee, a little chocolate, then big roasted flavors. Something undefinable here that reminds me of a milk stout. Moderate body, excellent smoothness.

Doesn't feel or taste boozy, didn't interfere with the greasy pizza shop sandwiches I was eating. I'd like to try this with some spicy food and/or barbeque. Uncomplicated, but good.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2009 02:09:07 | More by aristeros
Black Butte Porter from Deschutes Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 4,044 ratings.