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Black Butte Porter - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Black Butte PorterBlack Butte Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,446 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,446
Hads: 5,523
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 20.96%
Wants: 438
Gots: 1,142 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2001

Alc. by Vol.: 5.2%
IBUs: 30

192 calories per 12 oz serving
View: Beers (161) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Black Butte Porter Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,446 | Hads: 5,523
Photo of Itskarl
3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Everetts. Acceptable head and minor lacing. Faint roasted malts on the nose with just a kiss of milk chocolate. This beer shines in it's flavor. Chocolate malts are incredibly presented in a smooth, easy drinking beer that has tons of flavor and isn't overpowering. Deschutes has been making this in large quantities for quite a while but they have not sacrificed ingredients for profits. It is my grandfathers favorite beer and for a man that came from the age of crap beers, that speaks for itself.

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Photo of Bluerabbitbell
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer in a bottle for the first time on a train ride from Vancouver to Seattle. So good, couldn't stop at one! Up to that point, it was the best Porter I had. I prefer the Obsidian brew better, but overall, a solid brew!

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Photo of DevAJ
3.25/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I'll say up front that the one I got was past it's "Best By" date (I bought it in a build your own 6 pack) so who knows this may be better if it's fresher, but it a fairly standard porter. The porter that a former co-worker makes himself is better to me personally though.

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Photo of jdavis8361
3.2/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 1 | overall: 3

Thought the carbonation level was over the top. Way too fizzy for me. The Sierra Nevada porter is more to my liking, although I just bought a 6-pack of O'Dell Cutthroat porter to audition.

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Photo of Steve_Studnuts
3.01/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3


Thus, I review:

Looks swell enough upon initial pour, all dark and frothy and inviting. Head retention is minimal, if that matters to you. Smells of coffee & copper. Tastes of weak coffee & raisin & well, copper. It's awful metallic. Somewhat thin & watery, too. There are much better brews in this style - Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald, for example.

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Photo of BigDaddyWarbuxx
3.87/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Not nearly as overpowering as its peers. High level of drinkability, with its major flavor being a coffee tinge in the breathes after a sip. Good choice if you want a porter or stout, but you don't want such an intense flavor.

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Photo of DabblinWiscCraft
4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Picked up a fresh (best by date says it's good for another six months) sixer at my local Trig's supermarket. Poured right from the fridge into a pint glass.

L: Pours cola brown with about a half-inch of beige head that falls pretty quickly but sticks around as a hearty film. Good lacing on the glass as it down.

S: Roasted and caramel malts are the most prominent notes in the aroma. There's a bit of underlying coffee and dark chocolate, as well. Not much assertiveness to this bouquet.

T: This one is sweeter than what I was expecting. I was bracing for those roasted malts, but the front is really dominated by the caramel malts. Those roasted notes are still there, but quite subdued. The middle has some suggestions of coffee and dark chocolate, with a touch tartness beginning to come through. A touch of vanilla in the mix. The back end has a nice balance of roasted and caramel malts, with just a touch of bitter. Very smooth flavor.

F: As others have pointed out, this one drinks a bit on the watery side for a porter. It still has a nice medium body, creaminess, and well-executed carbonation. It finishes very clean, without any stick or syrupy quality.

O: This is a very drinkable porter, but I do find myself wishing that it had a little more heft. And while I do appreciate the well-balanced flavor profile, I wish that it had more robust roasted malt and chocolate/coffee notes. While I don't think it can stand as a world-class brew, I'll definitely return to this one again.

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Photo of everyman
4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I know that for many this is an excellent go to porter. However, I kinda disagree. The mouthfeel is closer to most light stouts--silky and thin. The flavors are complex for a basic porter recipe and the malt character is more hidden than forward. I do like this beer. In fact, I'd never turn it down. It really is flavorful, but that's part of my hang up. I like a basic porter to have a malt-heavy tone and to foam up thick and densely. I like to see that foam cling to the glass. This porter is just too slick to do that, albeit being tasty.

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Photo of Bil3539
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a room temp glass

L - Pours dark brown almost black with a one finger foamy tan head which disperses to leave a nice lacing.
S - Cocoa and roasted malts
T - Semi-sweet chocolate, coffee, & roasted malts. Gets better as it warms.
F - Smooth and creamy with a clean almost citrus finish
O - I love porters and this is one of the best I've had.

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Photo of ThaneMcC
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep, dark brown with fine 1fb of off white head and good residual lacing.
Smells of roasted malts, yeasty, cocoa, hint of hoppy pine. Tastes semi sweet toasted malts forward, nice balanced flavor, mid note pine, cocoa, nice clean finish. Mouthfeel is slightly less than medium, good carbonation.

Overall, easily one of the best porters I've had, I wouldn't hesitate to pick this up again. Delicious!

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Photo of Vein95
4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Straightforward very tasteful, poured right into a cold mug. Look- dark brown color,Tan foam. smell- like coffee/malt beverage. taste- medium chocolate background which makes it a smooth creamy drink. Enjoyed it alot, would recommend.

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Photo of Qbdoo
3.72/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Awesome-looking porter. Cola colored with frothy tan head, lots of roasted malt and a bit of chocolate on the nose. Taste is mostly roasted malt and a kick of hops. Slightly thin texture for the style. I enjoyed this and will be happy to drink it again, but had been led to expect a more complex beer.

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Photo of Cannibalgasm
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

L: Deep dark brown with a thick foamy tan head. Great retention and very solid lacing.

S: Roasted coffee, burnt grains, chocolate, vanilla, even some cherry, apricot and pine come through.

T: Subtlety sweet fruit surprises you at first with a blast of cherry, then chocolate and brown sugar flood the palate, follow by roasted malt and finished perfectly with a slightly grass like hop finish.

F: Light in body, moderate carbonation, great creamy finish.

O: A very well balanced easy drinking porter.

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Photo of Griffin2
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L - Pours dark brown with a nice tan head.
S - nice roasty smell.
T - delicious chocolatey Porter.
F- really creamy.
O - I really enjoyed this beer. I highly recommend it, if you like a chocolatey Porter.

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Photo of Taybeh
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a single into a snifter
a: khaki head on top of a deep dark brown/black body; big foamy bubbles that subside quickly, little lacing
s: burnt coffee beans, bittersweet chocolate, piney hoppy edge with a little orchard fruit
t & m: surprisingly thin and even a little flat, despite some bright flavors...some fruity flowery notes with a grassy edge, then you're into the roasted chocolatey malts, and then back to a grassy hoppy finish.

overall: have always really enjoyed this one on its own, though it is a little thin and hoppy to be a perfect porter to me. This particular tasting, I tried it side by side with Odell's, Founder's, and GL's, and this was quite distinctive but it was my least favorite...it lacked the creamy rich mellow flavors and perfect balance that others had; undoubtedly just my own idiosyncratic preferences. I'll definitely drink this one again, but there are others in the style that I prefer.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
4.07/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle into a teku.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown color. The head is two fingers high and khaki in shade. Retention isn't very long, and the texture is slightly lacking in creaminess. At least some lacing sticks to the glass (but not a lot...) (3.25)

Smell: The aroma is typical of a porter. No wait, let me revise that - the aroma is typical of a great porter. I get plenty of intertwining notes: mainly dry baker's cocoa, along with hints of cherry, apricot, and brown sugar. It's also gently hopped, which does even more to balance the rest of the beer. I mean, it's just a porter...and yet, the craftsmanship put into this is utterly top-notch. (4.25)

Taste: Its flavor doesn't disappoint. Fruity flavors hit the palate first - notes of cherry and apricot makes it seem shockingly bright. Subtle caramel, chocolate, and brown sugar flavors finish it off, along with the gentlest hint of smoke and hop bitterness. This is complex yet delicate - in other words, exactly what I like in a great porter. (4)

Mouthfeel: Light in body, with an airy, well-carbonated feel. While it finishes a little slick, I can't deny how easily it drinks. (4)

Overall: I had high expectations for this beer after hearing how great it was: not just from BA, but also from friends and family. Guess what? This lives up to the hype. It's so light and drinkable, I could kill this one all day. A fantastic every day drinker in all regards. (4.25)

4.07/5: Wish I picked up a 6-pack...

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Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown nearly black with a thin creamy tan head. Smells of roasted malts with slight vanilla seeping through. Tastes of nice roasted malt with a carmel sweetness. Definitely a bitter hop presence that comes through in the middle and bursts in the end. The finish makes me want to say a little thin in the mid palate. Overall a tasty porter.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.54/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: [4.75] Gave it an aggressive pour that lead to 3 fingers of head. The head is khaki with mostly small bubbles - but some larger ones mixed in. The beer is not opaque - it is a translucent black color. Kind of interesting when backlit. The bottle lists the ABV (5.2%) and the best by date (7/24/2015).

S: [3.25] It has a smoked scent - like a Rauchbier. That is the main thing I am getting on the nose.

T: [3.50] The taste does not follow the nose. It presents with roasted malts in the front. There is a sweet lactose flavor in the middle that lasts to the finish.

M: [3.75] The carbonation gives a bit of tingle on the tongue. The beer itself feels a little thick and chewy - which is nice.

O: [3.50] I got none of the advertised chocolate flavor. For 5.2% it had decent body. The flavor has a nice roasted malt forward flavor and gives a sweet finish. Blindfolded I would guess this is a milk stout. I think this is just a middle of the road porter. I have more, and will drink them, but it is not something that I will seek out.

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Photo of Joe_Howard
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Wow, I was pretty disappointed with this brew given the high ratings. Poured a very dark brown with a very tiny beige head, almost completely flat. The aroma is primarily dark, roasted malts. The taste was primarily roasted malts, with chocolate accents. The feel is fairly smooth and creamy though. It was ok, but way to flat.

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Photo of wedge
3.94/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark chestnut brown - nearly black - with a very soft, lush looking beige head. Dark toasted malts, coffee beans, molasses, black malt, berries, and citrus in the nose. Flavors of fruity coffee beans, bittersweet chocolate, black malt char through the center, finishing hoppy and dry. Medium bodied with some creaminess. Maybe a little too fruity for my personal Porter preferences, but a fine example of the style.

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Photo of delta490
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a deep, almost-black brown with a thinner cap of cream-colored head. The head leaves small sticky lacing. The aroma is rich mocha with hints of earthy hops and chocolate malt. The taste is a little restrained when compared to the aroma but all the same qualities are there. The body is a little thinner but not watery, smooth throughout.

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Photo of dabone
4.54/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Sam's Saloon. Great looking beer. Dark with a creamy head. Not much aroma, but the taste is excellent. A blend of hazelnut, coffee and chocolate, excellent. Good texture, but not overly thick for a porter. Great beer for anytime, except maybe a hot day.

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Photo of kitch
4.07/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This 12oz bottle was dated best by 3rd July 2015 and was poured into a pint glass.

A: It poured a really dark brown with a half finger tan head that dissipates quickly leaving a generous amount of lacing.
S: Smelled lightly of espresso coffee with some chocolate and maybe a bit of dark fruits like prunes. Would have preferred a stronger smell.
T: Immediate taste of dark bitter chocolate with roasty malts and a slight herbal bitter ending.
M: Medium bodied, medium carbonation and somewhat creamy.
O: This was a nice porter that I would buy again… if only it were that easy in Hong Kong.

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased in a growler at Total Wine in Fredericksburg, VA - so I have tried it on multiple days! Classic Porter taste and smell. It does not get old quickly! Yum!

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Photo of ARoman
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

*transferred from previous notes - 1/15/2014*
12oz bottle poured into a snifter. The smell of caramel apples comes through strong at the very beginning which subtly switches to a "candy" fruit punch smell (I couldn’t help but think of fruit punch Jolly Ranchers). This gave way to a milk chocolate, vanilla bean, toffee, and pie crust aroma with maybe a touch of ground coffee and grassiness. Near the end of the drink peanut butter cup smells start to become noticeable - needless to say, quite an aromatic adventure. Near the beginning, the fruit punch aromas become more pronounced with a couple swirls of the glass. Appearance-wise, it’s nothing too fancy standard tan head atop a dark brown-red body (not quite opaque) with some nice even lacing. Mild to medium chocolate sweetness combined with passion fruit flavors (more chocolate than fruit) hit the tongue initially followed shortly by a very light, but pleasant, toasted bread bitterness. It’s medium bodied, creamy, although not as much so as some stouts, and, at first, I thought it was relatively flat, but by mid-glass, the carbonation was a bit more alive. It finishes with a toasty, nutty, and grassy combination - maybe a trace of citrus too.

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Black Butte Porter from Deschutes Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 1,446 ratings.