1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Black Butte Porter - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Black Butte PorterBlack Butte Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

4,503 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,503
Reviews: 1,341
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 10.77%
Wants: 329
Gots: 518 | FT: 14
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Black Butte Porter Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,503 | Reviews: 1,341 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of djeucalyptus
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Been a while since I've had a regular BB, so decided to pour a glass last night...

a. poured a beautiful dark brown with garnet highlights, almost ruby-like when held up to the light. A fair head of a light mocha color faded slowly leaving some nice dry and chunky lacing.

s. The aroma was almost pure roasted malt, with some hints of cinnamon, cocoa, and coffee beans.

t. Taste was nice and pleasant, not over the top, but enough flavor to make it enjoyable. Roasted malt, dark coffee, some bittersweet chocolate, and just a hint of hops and a touch of smoke. Bitter burnt coffee and bitter chocolate dominate but are balanced by a slight malty sweetness.

m. Light and thin for a porter, but given the less than overpowering favors, it works nicely for me. A bit slick and a bit foamy, there's some nice creamy carbonation that keeps everything together. Finish is a touch dry when the carbonation bubbles away... no real bitterness present in the feel itself.

d. Definitely highly drinkable. It's nice to see a relatively low ABV porter on the lighter side of taste and mouth. While I love a good strong porter, sometimes it's a bit excessive. And for when it is, Black Butte seems to be just about the perfect answer. Easily drinkable, and quite sessionable, if you like to session dark beers. A must try. And, as i've discovered, one of the best gateway porters for a non-porter/stout drinker. And that's always a good thing.

djeucalyptus, Oct 16, 2008
Photo of gyllstromk
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown into the pint glass with a medium-thick head. Shows red when
swirled at the light.

Maliness and liquorice on the nose. Taste is a chocolate maltiness with a slight smokey affect.

Mouthfeel is thin and wet. Not an overpowering beer and pretty drinkable for a porter.

gyllstromk, Oct 12, 2008
Photo of Foxtrot
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was going through some of my older reviews and though I would pit it against my palate after a few months. Here is my revised version.

Poured a very beautiful dark dark brown with some ruby tones around the edges followed by wonderful head retention and good lacing.

Dominant aromas of crystal malt with multiple roasted notes of chocolate, brown sugar, and molasses. There is also a nice earthy twang that makes this beer all the more inviting.

Big flavors of smoky brown sugar, with hints of chocolate and coffee. One thing I really enjoyed was the slight hop presence at the end. It builds very subtly until the very end. Leaves roasted aftertastes.

Mouthfeel was good, but just a tad light. It didn't change my experience with this beer, but it could use just an extra push.

As for drinkability, I could easily put a few of these away no problem and still savor the flavor each and every time. This is my best and most favorite session beer to date. Cheers!

Served from a bottle into a pint glass.

Foxtrot, Oct 05, 2008
Photo of bifrostguard
3.6/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Black with some light poking through the bottom of the glass. Nice light tan head that settles to a rim around the beer surface.

S - Chocolate, toasted grains, some sweetness.

T - Nicely toasted, with some burnt coffee flavor and chocolate noise. Slightly sweet after taste.

M - A bit thinner than it looks, but enjoyable.

D - Light and crisp for the style. Doesn't weigh me down like many other porters have and is still tasty even after few.

I typically don't like standard porters, but this one was notable.

bifrostguard, Oct 05, 2008
Photo of GilGarp
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass the color of coca-cola, very dark brown with a hint of red around the edges. It has great head that stick around a while and leaves very good lacing.

Aroma is very pleasant, rich in roasted malts.

The flavor has a great blend of roasted malty bitterness and just enough sweetness to balance.

Mouthfeel is good but I would prefer it to be a little bigger in body. It's just a little thin but otherwise good carbonation and not too roasty or bitter.

Drinkability is very good for a porter. I could easily see having a few of these and not get bored from it.

GilGarp, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of Haybeerman
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Opaque, deep dark brown color with hints of ammber when held up to the light. Poured a one inch tan head that dissipated slowly. Moderate lacing.

S: Licorice, chocolate and coffee are prominant. Malt and light hops are balanced in the background.

T: Alcohol followed by toasted malt, chocolate and coffee. Bittersweet chocolate finsh and mildly bitter aftertaste.

M: Thick, creamy and smooth. Coats the mouth and tongue. Big beer, full in the mouth.

D Highly drinkable porter for big beer, big smell and big taste.

Haybeerman, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of paco1029384756
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark ruby color with minimal head and an uneven lacing.

Scent of chocolate, raisins and sweet malts topped off with a hint of mint.

Taste of sweet malts, raisins and chocolate finishing with some roasted malts.

Mouthfeel is smooth, but has a bit of bite taking away from the enjoyment slightly.

paco1029384756, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of Goliath
3.18/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown and opaque with some red hues. A thin tan head forms on top. Decent retention and no lacing.

Aroma is ok. Nothing outstanding, but a bit of coffee and chocolate.

Taste is ok. Some coffee and chocolate, kind of earthy. Just not much going on.

Mouthfeel is thin to medium bodied, seemingly watery. Ample carbonation though.

Drinkability is moderate. Decent flavors, easy to session. Just seems pretty average to me. I can't believe this has such high ratings.

Goliath, Sep 12, 2008
Photo of PatronWizard
3.95/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Snagged a sixer from some shabby little liquor store. Lets do it.

Pours incredibly dark. Dirty white head.

Nice aroma of coffee.

Taste of coffee and ... cigarettes? Don't smoke but I am reminded of cigarettes here. Not actually in a bad way. Flavor is stronger than the nose suggests.

Overall: not bad, give it a shot

PatronWizard, Sep 09, 2008
Photo of thequeen711
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pouredblack in a pint glass with a finger of beige head, quite frothy! Aromas of chocolate and malt. Taste is quite like the nose, chocolatey and malty with no noticeable hop finish. Feel is smooth and creamy good, not thick like most porters, and not thin at all.
Drinkability is great! The low ABV makes multiple enjoyment without major buzz!!

thequeen711, Sep 07, 2008
Photo of bkilpatr
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. 09/04/08.

Pours a dark brownish black color with about a finger of tan head. Aromas of chocolate, toasted malt, and faint hops.

Taste is rather simple but very nice. Starts with a bunch of chocolate and toasted malt and ends with a nice hop finish. Kinda simple but it works really well. Feel is smooth and creamy yet well carbonated. Not too thick or too thin. Drinkability is great, it's quite sessionable. The taste is good and the alcohol is low enough.

Not the most complex porter but it's really good. Tastes good and it's very sessionable.

bkilpatr, Sep 05, 2008
Photo of johnnnniee
3.95/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights but almost no head whatsoever. Aroma is of roasted malts and some chocolate. Taste follows the nose maybe adds some bread to the party. Creamy oily mouth with a lingering roast bitterness in the end. Decent brew, I could definitely see myself drink this is if were available in my area.

johnnnniee, Sep 05, 2008
Photo of HalfFull
3.63/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich brown into a pint glass with a thick slightly creamy tan head. Color is actually a very deep amber red when held up to the light. Head is quickly quenched and yields only temporary lacing.

Nose consists of notes of roasted coffee, roasted malts, some light carob and a light hop presence with a rich malt overlay. Alcohol is unexpectedly present on the nose. A lager like stillness emanates after the glass has rested for a few minutes.

Taste is of light chocolate and bready toasted malts with a slightly chewy malt finish. The carbonation helps the malt structure linger on the finish without overwhelming, thus enhancing the feel of the brew. Smooth and drinkable though a bit thin in body overall.

Note: 5.2% per bottle.

HalfFull, Sep 02, 2008
Photo of TasteTester
3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another good brew from Patron Wizard.

A-Deep copper, small head that doesn't last.

S-Smoke, coffee. Slight caramel.

T-Bitter then sweet. Flavors blend well together. Little bit of alcohol tone.

M-Very sticky and resiny. On my tongue from start to finish.

D-A couple would do.

TasteTester, Sep 01, 2008
Photo of Silenus89
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

poured straight black into a pint glass finished with a tan head with good lacing.

S. coffee, roasted chocolate, dark malts and a butter scotch scent.

T. an amazing taste with dark coffee, dark malts with a creamy finish

D. This has an epic drinkability. 6 pack? piece of cake.

This is a very top class porter. highly recommended!

Silenus89, Sep 01, 2008
Photo of jake87
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L. Opaque black with a small tan head
S. Buttery malts and al little nutty
T. Starts off with a bitter yet sweet floral hoppiness that then switches to a coffee aftertaste
F. Good carbonation followed by a syrupy thick smoothness

Definately impressed with this beer, and by the brewer. Another good sipping brew to enjoy with the friends or after dinner.

jake87, Aug 31, 2008
Photo of tendermorsel
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into DFH pint glass.

Brownish black in color. Very fizzy head. Dried fruit and a bit of burnt malt on the nose.

Great dark malty flavor. Hits of coffee and figs. Very easy drinking porter. I could drink this all day long. Great session beer.

tendermorsel, Aug 31, 2008
Photo of stumac
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

pours stright up black with crimson edges. nice lacing. has a decent brown-tinted head. the nose is roasted malts, chocolate, vanilla bean, toffee. the taste is roasted malts, smoky, kinda cigar-ish flavor, vanilla bean, subtle spiced hops, medium body yet a very thin taste. low carbo, sweet start to a dry finish.

stumac, Aug 27, 2008
Photo of kkipple
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to buddy Barronkr, who hauled this back from his West Coast trip to put into my gullet.

Pours a beautiful molasses-colored deep brown with amber highlights. Looks more or less black by the time it settles into my Sam Adams pint glass. A 3cm nutty tan head crowns it off.

Smells good too. Great even. I'll let it warm and come back in a bit... after a few minutes, a pleasing roasted grain aroma jumps from the glass, emboldened by mocha and sugar. A fine smelling beer and great for the style.

Taste is pretty much spot on for an American Porter. It's nutty, with a little dry cocoa and coffee. There's a pleasing finish of roasted grains kissed with sugar and if I didn't know better I'd say there were oats in here. A little acidity keeps things interesting. It's all very smooth and harmonious - the 5.5% means you can have more than a few. Ends up only a little dry with a touch of bittering hops.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side, carbonation is fine and there's really nothing offensive on any front.

Black Butte is pleasing, drinkable, and well-made. I'm having a hard time faulting it. Just wish I could get more! Recommended.

kkipple, Aug 25, 2008
Photo of jwc215
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to russpowell and bitterbill for this!

Best by 09/11/08:

Pours black with a rich, creamy tan head.

The smell is of roasted chocolate and coffee with an earthy/fruity hop backing.

The taste is ashy/smoky with chocolate, coffee and anise. Hoppy balance gives it a nice bitter touch.

Medium-to-full bodied, this is very creamy.

A very well-balanced porter. Almost reaches stout category, but stops in time to stay in the style. Very drinkable. Another great beer from a great brewery!

jwc215, Aug 22, 2008
Photo of lightindarkness
4.53/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours very dark, with some deep mohogany edges and a little ruby highlight from the depths. Head is isn't overly long lasting, but does form a nice crisp ivory cap leaving a ring around the edges.

Toasty dark grainy bread prevails, with a light syrupy caramel adding some nice sweet depth. A little cocoa and gumminess deepen the overall detail on the nose. Some herbal earthy root and sandalwood aromatic notes linger behind the grain. There's also something antique smelling in there, like walking into a historic home, not offensive by any stretch.

I have a hard time thinking that a porter should taste any different than this one. Charred wood over toasted grainy bread, bitter cocoa, all wrapped up in a smooth creamy blanket with mild vanilla, tobacco and the smell of a warm fire on a snowy day.

Medium bodied, relatively light with lively carbonation on the tongue. Thickens slightly at the finish, drawing out the flavors as they fade.

Between the moderate abv, remarkable taste, and overall satisfaction, this is one of the most balanced drinkable beers I can recall having.

lightindarkness, Aug 20, 2008
Photo of Sweasty
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Deep dark brown with ruby hues when held to the light. The head is off white and short lived. Leaves adequate lacing down the glass.

Smell: One hell of a porter nose! Lots of char and dark malts. Coffee and Bitter sweet chocolate aromas abound. There is an herbal hop note in the background.

Taste: Matches the Nose. Initial burst of acidic twang from the dark roasted malts. The Coffee and chocolate notes are more pronounced. Plenty of char in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a silky smooth mouthfeel. Medium carbonation.

This is one hell of a porter. Easy drinking and chalked full of classic porter flavors Bring on the cool so I can really enjoy brews like this.

Sweasty, Aug 19, 2008
Photo of DrDogbeer
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle to a tulip.
Deep black with a very thin head. Nice sweet aroma. Some chocolate and some sweet malt on the nose. Taste has some chocolate and some roasted malt flavor. Pretty full flavor, yet not overwhelmingly full bodied. Slick mouthfeel with a bit of a zing at the end of each sip. Good quality porter.

DrDogbeer, Aug 19, 2008
Photo of elniko
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into pint glass

A: Opaque coloring, tan head that dissipated. Definite lacing as well. Nice looking brew.

S: Very strong coffee and chocolate tones. I really enjoyed the nose on the beer and it definitely whetted the appetite.

T & M: Wow, very nice taste. I have limited American Porter experience but cannot imagine one tasting any better than this. Nice taste of coffee on the initial taste, nice creaminess in the mouthfeel. There is a pleasant touch of bitterness as well. Well done.

D: Highly drinkable, I will without a doubt be having this beer again. I expect this will be a stand-by in the fridge.

elniko, Aug 19, 2008
Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: snifter. extremely deep mahogany/black color, some red appears with a light behind it. tan head. good retention and mild lacing.

S: rich roasted malts. some sauteed cherries.

T: nice sweet roasted malts. very well-balanced porter. some liquorice, chocolate and toffee.

M: rough carbonation level. mild body. smooth and creamy.

D: very nice, full flavored porter. nice roasted malts bring this one over the top. great representation of style.

paulthebeerguru, Aug 14, 2008
Black Butte Porter from Deschutes Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 4,503 ratings.