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The Dissident - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
The DissidentThe Dissident

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

959 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 959
Reviews: 425
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 10.71%
Wants: 896
Gots: 429 | FT: 32
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Flanders Oud Bruin |  11.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Flanders style sour brown brewed with dark candi sugar and Oregon Montmorency cherries, aged in Pinot Noir barrels.

30 IBU

First release (9.0% ABV) - August 2008
Second release (10.5% ABV) - November 2010 (~118bbl)
Third release (11.4% ABV) - October 2012

(Beer added by: MisterClean on 08-19-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 959 | Reviews: 425 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bsp77
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Snifter.

Appearance: Bright brownish-amber with almost a pinkish hue. Not much head or lacing after the initial pour.

Smell: Tart cherries, brown sugar, pepper and a light farmhouse funk. Overall impression of vinegary olives - per my wife but I agree.

Taste: Strong cherry, with a biting tartness. More biting than truly sour. There is both an underlying caramel sweetness and an underlying peppery dryness, which complement one another nicely. Strong oak finish.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, slightly smooth medium body, tart and dry finish.

Overall: I used to think this had too much cherry. After more experience with sours and cherry flavors, I can emphatically state that this is an exceptional beer. Not the epitome of the style, but the barrel aging is great.

bsp77, Dec 17, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From 12/12/10 notes. Brought a growler of this to a local tasting. 2010 batch.

a - Pours a dark amber red color with two inches of white head and moderate carbonation

s - Smells of sour cherries and dark fruits, sweet fruit, vinegar, and a hint of oak.

t - Taste follows the nose, but not as sweet. Some sour and tart cherries, funk, and no real oak.

m - Medium body and low carbonation. Pretty smooth, I liked the body.

d - I thought this was a really good flanders. Some people thought the first batch was more sour and had mroe oak; I've never had that batch but still really enjoyed this one. Would like to get a bottle of this to compare.

mdfb79, Dec 16, 2010
Photo of pmccallum86
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque golden red color with a light bubbly off white head.

Smell is of tart cherries and vinegar.

Taste is great, smooth tartness comes through with a nice creamy finish. Sour, but not overly sour, quite an enjoyable beer.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, pretty damn good.

Very drinkable, especially considering the ABV.

pmccallum86, Dec 15, 2010
Photo of Ynot2
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured this into a snifter from the 22 oz bottle.

The colors are fairly deep orange with a small head that quickly dissipated. A thin haze of laze left lingering.

The initial aroma was a tart fruity smell. I then could pick up some sweetness of the alcohol and a stronger citrus (think lemon zest) pop.

The first taste was more of a cherry flavor than the citrusy lemon I expected. The beer has a sweetness to it that I do not expect from a wild ale. Not bad, just a little different.

Mouth was full but really smooth. The carbonation is there, but not overpowering. A pretty good mix.

A very drinkable beer. The light carbonation and sweeter taste blending with the tart bite makes this a beer that could easily cause you to enjoy a little too much at 9.00%.

Ynot2, Dec 15, 2010
Photo of drabmuh
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler provided by Dan, thanks Dan...a growler...really?

Beer is light brown and mostly clear with a head of large and small bubbles, mild carbonation and minimal lacing.

Aroma is mildly acetic with a bite to it. Good malt notes in there as well.

Beer is medium to light in body and sweeter than I expected. The lead off character is strongly malty and pretty sweet, this immediately gives way to a strong funky sourness, mostly lactic with an acetic and mildly citric brightness to it. The finish is clean and mildly tart in the corners of my mouth. A very good bruin.

drabmuh, Dec 14, 2010
Photo of tewaris
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Pracna on the Main, as part of their Deschutes December event. Served in a Deschutes snifter. I could try this beer only because of the generosity of the manager Meagen (chixdighops) and her boyfriend, and some luck. Thanks guys for letting me have the last drink of the sixtel!

Appearance 4/5
Brilliantly clear, deep rusty red hued with a tiny collar and some lacing.

Aroma 3.5/5
Funky and fruity, typical sour brown but nothing too exciting. Some sweet alcohol too.

Taste 3.5/5
Lightly tart and fruity with an unfitting bitterness/astringency towards the end.

Mouthfeel 4/5
Smooth and light bodied with medium carbonation.

Drinkability 4/5
Good.

Other
I don't get the hype. Hugely underwhelming. I will not part with anything that I can't get off the shelves for this beer.

tewaris, Dec 14, 2010
Photo of Hempdigler
4.7/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Today (12/10/10) I have climbed to the pinnacle of Mt. Beerdom. I have finally sipped my first taste of the much acclaimed Deschutes Dissident.
Just hours after the oldest restaurant on the oldest street in Minneapolis "Pracna on Main" tapped one of two kegs in the state I took my first sip into the "good-ass beer" subculture. Deschutes clearly sits high atop the throne of Beerdom and today was the day I became a citizen of that world.

I was expecting a good old pint of beer, but what I received was a snifter specially made for Deschutes Dissident. The waitress presented the golden brown and lightly rose colored snifter of heaven to me with a smile that told me she knew what I was about to experience. At first glance Dissident hardly looks like a beer, there was no head in the glass and there are only a touch of bubbles floating from the bottom of the glass. If it wasn't for the big Deschutes logo on the side of the glass I would have thought it was cognac.

Convinced I had beer in front of me proceeded nose first to give the beer a good sniff. The sweet smell of fermented cherries filled my nostrils. I hadn't had a cherry beer in ten years, Sam Adams Cherry Wheat. I don't remember enjoying the beer much either but my tastes have evolved much since those days.

I tilted the snifter further back to my lips ready to enjoy this beer that has been the buzz of the BA forums for months. It was like nothing I had ever tasted before. It was like a mix of a brown lager and cherry wine. I took all the restraint I had to drink it moderately. I knew it was a strong beer I believe around 10% alcohol. I could feel the wine taste leaving the undersides of my tongue dry begging for another sip. The after taste reminded me of the slight oak taste often described of many aged wines.

I also sampled a few other Deschutes creations while at Pracna, Obsidian, Jubelale. I must say this is definitely the most original beer I ever tasted, and the most standout I tasted that night. I will be back next week to sample it yet again and The Abyss they are tapping Thursday (12/16/10).

Hempdigler, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of Phelps
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

"You do not become a "dissident" just because you decide one day to take up this most unusual career. You are thrown into it by your personal sense of responsibility, combined with a complex set of external circumstances. You are cast out of the existing structures and placed in a position of conflict with them. It begins as an attempt to do your work well, and ends with being branded an enemy of society." - Vaclav Havel, Living in Truth

Pours a lovely burnt orange color, topped with a frothy half-finger head of bubbly tan that quickly fizzles away, leaving a thin ring. While the first glass impressed with its clarity, the second was just a bit hazier and was peppered with a small number of floating yeasties.

In the nose: caramel, apple juice, orange peel, cherries, oak and a bit of vinegar. There's perhaps even a bit of breadiness in the back, though it's mostly overpowered by the brighter fruit flavors. It's sweeter than I expected, with just a light lactic character.

The flavor follows the nose nicely. There are sour Washington cherries, vinegar, oak and caramel all in perfect balance. It trends toward the sweeter side throughout, though it dries out just a bit at the finish. The lactic character doesn't linger and isn't really intense or puckering. It's not extremely complex, but every sip is enjoyable.

While the body isn't full or heavy (I'd call it just a shade under medium), it's extremely soft and smooth. The carbonation is a prickly medium-light, tickling the tongue as it moves about. If this is actually ten percent ABV, it's hard to tell; all I get is a slight warming in the chest plate. Oud Bruin perfection.

The Dissident is crazy drinkable. If I have any criticism, it's that the tartness doesn't seem as if it's fully come into its own yet. While the beer's great now, I think a year or two in the cellar could make it outrageous.

Phelps, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of BretSikkink
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

In this corner, weighing in at 10.5% alcohol by volume and 30 international bittering units, a sour Flanders Oud Bruin hailing from Deschutes Brewery in Bend, Oregon: The Dissident. [Raucous cheering]

One of my favorite styles, this Oud Bruin has it all for me: a deep brown color, dark malty depth of body, vinegar notes of wild Brett yeast, and Washington cherry bittersweetness.

Poured into a tulip glass at Papago, the tapped brew had no head whatsoever, just a bubble or two here and there. The copper-mahogany color more than makes up for it, looking both formidable and inviting. The nose provides further enticement, with plenty of fruit notes, both sweet and sour. A hint of the wild yeast is apparent as well as a slight hint towards the red wine barrel-aging as a vinous character emerges.

The Dissident is simply spectacular. Balanced but assertive, the alcohol heat is remarkably well-hidden behind a wall of flavors. The sour, wild nature is readily apparent, but the massive flavors from the malt and cherries, rounded out by barrel aging, come together so nicely. This is presumably from the brand-new, November 2010 release, so this keg was less than a month old and snappier than hell. If you find a bottle, buy it; if you see it on draft, order two. Silly-drinkable for this style, and silky smooth all around.

BretSikkink, Dec 12, 2010
Photo of tempest
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Split a bomber with a friend. I think this was a recent acquisition of his and I'd be very interested to try a longer-aged version.

The beer came out more amber than brown and looked a bit like a double IPA, though it certainly didn't taste like one. There's a lightly fruity tart bite like you'd expect from a wild ale, and really this reminds me of an American wild ale like the Odell's Woodcut Series. You can taste a little of the cherries and they're matched with a lemon peel bite. The sour character is relatively clean considering how earthy and funky some Belgian get. Still, it's a tasty beer and I'd expect it to develop nicely over time. Even at 9%, it's relatively drinkable for the strength and I wouldn't have minded a few more glasses.

tempest, Dec 12, 2010
Photo of portia99
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle (2008 reserve) poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours a dirty, brown color with a reddish tint. A finger of cream colored dense foam sits on top for several minutes. Dies slowly leaving behind some light foamy lace on the glass.

S - Tart and sour with a good amount of bretty funk. Lots of barnyardy aromas. Smells very good.

T - Tart and funky. A decent amount of malt at the base. Nice lactic sourness. A touch of hoppy bitterness, but really at a subdued level. Funk is very evident and well presented. Very enjoyable.

M - Thinnish medium bodied with plenty of carbonation to keep things lively. Light tartness...

D - Quite nice...very enjoyable. Funk is prominant and welcome...a bit of malt presence. Could savor this one for a long time, but it is going down a bit too quick. Excellent...hoping to be able to try a bottle from the new release to compare...

portia99, Dec 12, 2010
Photo of chumba526
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It appears reddish orange with a small light tan head.

It smells of vinegar, brown sugar, cherries, oak. It smells a little bit similar to a tart white wine.

It tastes initially of dry cherries, oak. It is slightly acidic but the acidic character is not overwhelming. There is a mild brown sugar flavor sweetness that provides a bit of balance to the acidic character. The taste finishes with a bit of bitterness though it is a wild yeast type of bitterness.

The carbonation is medium low.

The drinkability is pretty good for a sour ale. It goes down smooth due to the fact that is has quite a nice balance to it.

Overall this is a great drinkable sour ale. I think this would be a good a sour ale for someone who has not had a sour ale before because it is well balanced but true to the sour style.

chumba526, Dec 12, 2010
Photo of nataku00
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Since I haven't been able to get a bottle here in the Bay Area, I had to make a trip to try it when I saw it was on tap locally.

2010 keg of The Dissident on tap at City Beer in SF, poured into a tulip glass. Slightly hazy reddish brown beer with just a little white foam right at the surface of the beer. Some carbonation visible through the beer, and I could see shadows through the beer as well so it's not too opaque.

Nose is sour cherries, vinegar acidity, and soft oak. Some raspberry sweetness as well.

Taste is light sour cherry puckering, sweet red berries, and vanilla from oak. Flavor is a bit muted compared to the nose, unfortunately. While good, just not as strong as I was hoping.

Medium bodied beer with just a gentle carbonation, slippery and slightly syrupy. Fairly drinkable glass of beer as the sour is not too strong, not lingering too long on the tongue, making it very easy to drink, but better to sip slowly.

nataku00, Dec 11, 2010
Photo of kbutler1
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Draft. Sampled on 12/10/10 at Pracna on Main. Had 2 glass, the first poured into a tall pils glass a clear copper amber color with very little head. The second pour was into a snifter and did have a slight tan head. Aroma is that of sour cherries and slight acidic notes, very minimal aroma with some sweetness. Medium/light mouthfeel with slight carbonation. Slightly boozy. Cherry taste with white wine characteristics. Woody. The Brett is pretty subdued, may be interesting how time treats this. Easy drinking but with all the craziness over this in MN, I'm really note sure if it deserves the hype.

kbutler1, Dec 10, 2010
Photo of atleehammaker
4.88/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2010 release

For all the difficulty I've heard about finding this beer and how quickly they apparently sold out at local specialty beer stores, I was stunned to find plenty of them at my local Bevmo.

Appearance: Reddish/orange/brown color and pretty clear with not much head.

Smell: You had me at hello. The smell on this is unbelievably inviting. Sweet and sour, cherries, oak, wine. You can definitely smell the Brett.

Taste: Tastes as good as it smells. Similar flavors. Sweet/sour, cherries, oak, vinegar, wine and Brett. Finishes w/ a slight warming from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Slight carbonation. I felt it would be mildly better with a bit less carbonation, but that should occur with some aging. Warm from the booze.

Drinkability: This went down much too easy for the 11% alcohol. Seems like a late night beer, but I had half of it with dinner and it went well with my herb roasted chicken, like a nice glass of wine. It went exceptionally well with the dark chocolate I had for dessert, which really brought out the sweetness and cherry flavor.

This is one of the best sour beers I've ever had...right up there with Russian River Consecration. So good that I went back to Bevmo later that night to buy more.

atleehammaker, Dec 10, 2010
Photo of BDJake
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- slightly hazy reddish-brown with lively bubbles et low head retention, not perfect but very inviting

S- cranberry, sour cherry candy, and a hint of connamon and allspice

T- tart and dry, with a mouth-puckering mix of cherry, vinegar, red grapes, oakiness, a hint of toasted malt, all surrounded by a booziness that intensifies the funk- but delicious!

M- crisp, big body, finishing dry with a good dose of alcohol warmth

D- it's amazing how a beer with so many wine-like qualities can be this enjoyable, since i've never been a big wine drinker

BDJake, Dec 08, 2010
Photo of codewarrior
3.93/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a Balloon.

Finding this beer was quite the Odyssey. Every store I went to had 1 case period, and a 1 bottle per customer limit. At one store they would only give us 1 bottle for my girlfriend and I combined (even after she pleaded that she too was a beer fanatic) ... ridiculous.

Fortunately, this is a pretty damn good beer, and seems to have been worth the journey.

L: Pours a ruddy, rustish brown orange transparent. Half-finger wispy head, carbonation looks just about right for the style.

S: Starts a light sweetness, and then the bottom drops out into a constantly evolving oldness with a touch of sour. Sour isn't brett ... I don't think.

T: A bit more shallow than the smell, but still good. Sweet up front to a tart extreme, rolling into an enveloping sourness. Heat kicks in the back and the super 10% ABV makes itself known.

F: A touch thin, but good. Opens up well. Finish is warming.

D: Doesn't stand up to the hype ... but it's real real good anyway.

codewarrior, Dec 06, 2010
Photo of dirtylou
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, red wax, split and shared

2008 edition

appearance: served in my hopleaf tulip, dark garnet body, muddy hues, creamy beige lace

smell: sweet and tart cherries, oak, brown sugar, cranberry

taste: nice brown - moderate acidity, sweet dark cherry and tart red cherry, alcohol warming sensation provides an interesting twist on the style, light balsamic, strong notes from the oak. I dont have a whole lot of exposure to this style, which has minimal modern day interpretations, but i liked this a lot more than goudenband and petrus

mouthfeel: minimal tartness, prickly carbonation

drinkability: good

dirtylou, Dec 03, 2010
Photo of grittybrews
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep ruby-amber into a pint glass with a finger of fluffy white head. Somewhat polite aroma of sour cherry and a hint of vinegar.

Fairly generous carbonation and full, light mouthfeel. Sour cherry up front with a hint of malty sweetness that develops into a more tart sourness on the lingering finish. Just a hint of the more funky notes.

Not the most complex of sour brews, but really delicious and very drinkable. I bought several bottles to age, but was lucky enough to find this on tap at the Parkway in Tacoma. Already a great beer, and I can't wait to see how it develops.

grittybrews, Dec 03, 2010
Photo of iD9
3.3/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Head forms a stark white foam. Simmers down to a pleasant, even surface across the top of the beer. No lacing. A medium bodied amber hue, with a hint of golden-orange at the very bottom of the glass. Highly carbonated.

Smell: Strong smell of yeast and bright fruits (yea, cherries). A bit acidic/chemical? I assume this is the nose on the sour component of the beer but it does bother me a bit. Remind's me of Lompoc's Memorial Braggot.

Taste: Much better than I thought it would be from my investigation thus far. A definite sweet note, followed by a tang of sour. I was expecting a ball-breaker here but this beer is much less aggressive than it plays at. The cherries are evident, but not in such a way as to be obtrusive and the sourness makes itself known without ruining the experience.

Mouthfeel: Good medium body though it does seem a bit syrupy. Not so much to ruin beer but its noticeable.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. Its a bit sweet to warrant large volumes but at 10.5% that's certainly not the goal of this beer.

The way I see it there are two possibilities. Either the name doesn't fit the beer (assuming this is what the brewer was going for) or the beer didn't quiet fit the brewer's vision. I know it doesn't sound like it, but I am enjoying this beer. Not the most notable release from Deschuttes but certainly not the worst. A good, solid brew.

iD9, Dec 03, 2010
Photo of Doodler
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 version. Split with the wife - who picked it up for me at $10.99 at local beerstore (all sold out in a day). Wine like nose, Golden amber color with minimal head. Softly tart with oaky wine barrel, sour cherries, and a bit of brett funkiness on the palate. Similar in taste to the Deschutes St Ryan's - which had some extra brett flavors. Fruits come out as it warms up.. Can't say that it is as tart as the previous version or as sour to me. So, while muted, still a very nice cherry flavored finish. Well done and refreshing. Even the wife liked it, - so that is saying something....

Doodler, Dec 02, 2010
Photo of LordAdmNelson
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 vintage.

What a beer! I loved it... a very nice sour brown, a bit fruitier and more sour than other browns I've had. Very pretty orange copper color, I like it a lot. Tart on the nose, but also prominently acetic as well, nice interplay between the two "sour" notes. A bit of cherries, some oak. Flavors work together really nicely, some vinegar, tart cherries, apples, light brown malts. They all come together well while still showcasing their individual lights. Dry finish, medium to full body for a sour. Overall a great drink, crisp, refreshing, sad to see it go.

LordAdmNelson, Dec 01, 2010
Photo of barleywinefiend
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a orangish color with good carbonation at first but shortly fell flat

S: Sour, wild and tart cherries mostly

T: Tart of course but its dominated by fresh, wild cherries, sour and unripe cherries, vinegar, wood, Earth

M: Tart, medium body, light booze sting and acidic

D: Good for the style and easy to drink.

barleywinefiend, Dec 01, 2010
Photo of WhatsNewinBooze
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of the best domestically brewed barrel aged sours! It is not quite as fruity as the Flanders beers but this is the closest thing I have tasted to a true Flanders that wasn't. The nose and the palate are loaded with red and dark fruit flavors with some slight spice malts that blance out the fruity flavors. The carbonation is just perfect with a thin fizzy head and really fine bubbles that are almost champagne like. I always look forward to the release of this beer.

WhatsNewinBooze, Nov 28, 2010
Photo of ElGordo
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage

Body is a pretty reddish amber color, toped by a small, creamy, off-white head. Aroma is mostly tart cherries, with some lactic acid, astringency, and sour notes. Palate is deliciously complex - balanced between the sweetness of the fruit and light, airy malt and just a hint of sourness up front. The lactic sourness builds before the swallow, then takes over completely on the finish. Lively carbonation keeps the cherries dancing around the acidity. This has aged very well. I'm not a zealot for sour beer, but time has been kind to this one and it's a pleasure to drink.

ElGordo, Nov 24, 2010
The Dissident from Deschutes Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 959 ratings.