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Obsidian Stout | Deschutes Brewery

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1,108 Reviews
Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Alc. by Vol.: 6.4%
IBUs: 55

220 calories per 12 oz serving

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-07-2001

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,108 | Ratings: 3,727
Photo of schoolboy
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have been drinking a lot of Evil Twins big stouts lately, so today, when I have been drinking beer (no ales) I thought I'd get my fix with a lighter one. This fits the bill and meets the expectations.

It's dark and foamy to start, with a beautiful malty aroma. The taste doesn't disappoint, it brings all kinds of sweet overtones that satisfy.

This stout finishes stronger than you might expect, leaving a solid aftertaste.

This stout is a great value and recommended for when you want to see what can be done without jacking the ABV up to 10-12.

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Photo of augustgarage
4.28/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a 10oz nonic.

Opaque bistre body with a buff head forming a lasting collar and a delicate surface slick. Sandy lacing, average retention.

Aroma is like malt roasting in the forest. Hints of tobacco, hazelnuts, and brown sugar round out the nose.

Dark, brooding, and dry palate entry with a tantalizing malt profile (the black patent and roasted barley are forward but you can discern lighter/sweeter varieties as well - a lovely mix of grains). Clean earthy bitterness from the hops with a vanishing hint of fruit as well. Hints of cocoa nibs, coffee, tree bark, and over-steeped African black tea in the finish. I don't know if it is the water or more likely their house yeast, but there is a distinctive unifying quality to the flavor that makes this simply unmistakable as being crafted by Deschutes.

Medium-light bodied with zesty carbonation (almost a little too much for the style).

One of the first beers I ever had (I was born in Bend, though I was living in a different state when the brewery opened) - making it difficult to rate since it's sort of the equivalent of Proust's madeleine for me. Even if your glass isn't full of memories when you pour one of these, I can safely say it remains one of the defining recipes for the style and should appeal to anyone who enjoys a classic, middle-weight, dry, American stout.

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Photo of Nimbus_
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Look: Beautiful looking beer. Pitch black with a light creamy brown head.

Smell: I definitely notice dark chocolate right away. There is plenty of roasted malt and coffee in the aroma too, so it's balanced very nicely. I would keep my nose in the glass all night if this brew didn't taste so dang good.

Taste: Definitely not an unexpected taste from the smell of the beer. Right away there's a great sweet chocolate flavor. Then it turns to a slightly more bitter roasted malt taste. The aftertaste left is a nice roasted coffee flavor. It's a really delicious beer. Although, there is also a bit of a twang in the taste near the middle of each sip, feels almost like an alcohol sting, but it's not overbearing at all.

Feel: An awesome balance of light and creamy. It feels creamy on the palate, and yet it's very drinkable and doesn't feel too heavy. Mild carbonation in there as well. Definitely finishes a bit dry, especially with those coffee flavors at the end. As mentioned with the taste, there is a bit of a sting in the fell as well.

Overall: I rarely think of any beer as perfect, but I definitely think that this stout is as close as it gets to perfect. It pours beautifully, offers an enticing aroma, follows up with delicious flavors, and is as drinkable as a stout needs to be.

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Photo of rorykanderson
4.34/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cold six pack, best by 1/2017. Outstanding stout. Love the fact that you can get this fairly easily if you're in the distribution geography. Motor oil pour with a dimpled, tan head that lingers for awhile. Aroma of roasted malt, chocolate, coffee grounds. Taste is on point - bakers chocolate, dark roast coffee grounds, a little charred wood, tons of roasted malt and a fair amount of bitter hops. Moderate carbonation, long bitter finish that lingers and ends dry. Easy to drink, easier to enjoy. What a treat.

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Photo of Salt-n-Beer
4.23/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Artwork: That's one fantastic label. Great artwork and fairly fitting for a beer of this caliber. A true classic.

Appearance: Ink black, viscous-looking and with a huge tan head.

Nose: Lots of coffee upfront, strong roastiness too. Burnt bread and some dark fruit.

Taste: Fairly bitter. You can taste some coffee and some burnt starch.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and with carbonation that bites. Interesting combo.

Overall: A very nice Stout. I perhaps drank it a little colder than I should have so I may have missed some of its true complexity.

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Photo of jasonpeckins32
3.64/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours black with a huge tan head on top that sticks around for a while. The aroma is of roasted malts, with stone fruit and coffee in the background.

Flavor of coffee, roasted malts, dark bread, and a subtle hop bitterness. The beer is full-bodied, but maybe only medium-bodied considering it's style. They made it very easy drinking without sacrificing too much flavor.

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Photo of IchLiebeBierZu
4.63/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Deschutes' brew pub in Portland, OR

L Very dark, small perfect head probably thanks to the nitro

S Dark chocolate, coffee, roasted malt...

T Amazing followed by dark chocolate, coffee, roasted malt, perfect
amount of hops comes through at the end.

F Nice and creamy on the palate, yet light in the belly

O Amazing!!!

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Photo of degueulasse
4.59/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This dark brown beer pours into the glass thicker than most, leaving a head that looks as thick as one on a root beer float. The label claims that chocolate and coffee notes can be smelled and tasted, and it is not wrong—the richness and slight bitterness of very dark chocolate and black coffee comes through here, but there is something a bit sweeter that hits the back of the tongue. The taste is strong but never overpowering, making this optimal to drink with a meal or by itself. As delicious as it is beautiful, this beer is one that I will certainly be returning to.

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Photo of GregHansen
4.73/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I'm not a big stout fan but I have to say that this beer changed my mind. I didn't notice the taste of chocolate as much as the taste of coffee, but the taste of coffee lingered a few seconds after taking a drink. I really enjoy this beer.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Blackest of all SRMs it seems this is that 10000 miles of used motor oil vibe. 1" brown head on top of that blackness of the void. Might even be darker than Abyss. Anyways, burnt chocolate malt, c hops in the aroma.

Super solid, smooth, roasty, thick but not overly, drinks pretty easy. Always consistent, this is elite American stout, nothing surprising, just consistent quality without anything being overdone or any corners cut.

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Photo of MizzouBrew
4.29/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into frosted pint glass. This looks incredible - jet black with an inch thick dark tan frothy head. Medium feel with a taste of chocolate and mild coffee. Just a bit lighter than an imperial. This is the perfect daily drinker (non-special event stout).

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Photo of jrsqc7
3.87/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Perfectly dark thank god it's not as cola flavored as the black butte but there is still quite a bit of cola flavor lol wtf deschutes imagine it'd go good with over cooked hash browns fried eggs and sausages

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Photo of gregoryhengeldc
4.17/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very dark and thick pour. One inch of head, with moderate lacing throughout.

Chocolate and coffee on the nose.

The taste follows the smell, with more coffee than chocolate coming through.

Very creamy, almost like a milk stout.

I liked this very much. Just a nice balanced stout.

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Photo of TrueOregonian
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I decided to get off of my hop binge and try out a stout.

This beer is delicious. Very easy drinking and we'll balanced. You get a smooth beer with espresso being the prominent after taste with a great mix of bitter and sweet.

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Photo of Everydayoff
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

355ml bottle poured into a pint glass.

Completely black in color with thick fluffy brown head, the head endures with excellent retention before slowly subsiding to small everlasting foamy crown along with plenty of refined lacing in form of ring, patch, and spot clung on the glass-side.

Dark chocolate, espresso coffee, and cocoa, these 3 scents are big and very aromatic. In the same time, roasted malt, hint of ripe fruit, and creamy note draw in adding nice mixture.

The bitterness reminding of espresso coffee, roasted malt, dark chocolate and hop dominates all over but same time harmoniously rides together with an underlying sweetness proportion that is reminiscent of creamy chocolate and slightly dark breadiness. Light astringency at the end where all other flavors return and delicately wrap up together to yield immaculate finish and long-lasting aftertaste.

Medium body with smooth mouthfeel and active carbonation to make some crisp through the palate sensation, finish is quite dry. This beer is very tasty and nicely robust, great example and introduction to American Stout.

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Photo of patre_tim
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown with a ruby tinge when held to a candle. No visible carbonation, topped with 3 fingers of milk chocolatey brown head.

Chocolate scent, cocoa, chocolate milk. Liquorice, tar, toasty, and a fresh vanilla, linen scent.

Cocoa, chocolate, light fruity grape note, almost like chocolate covered Turkish delight.

Rich, somewhat syrupy body within a light bubbly coating. Like cocoa dusted fruit jellies.

Got on wish beer, this brew is a winner. Based on reasons based in my description above, this one is different from others in the style and must be tried. Drank June 1st, 2016.

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Photo of Shippy
3.6/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours almost black with a big, creamy brown head. Smell is smoky with some coffee and chocolate notes. Flavor follows similarly with smoky and ashy flavors of dark chocolate and light coffee, with some sweetness throughout. Feel is creamy but light. Overall this is a solid representation of a stout. Very malty, a bit too smoky, and the flavors are a little bit more mellow than I was expecting. Still very good, just not excellent.

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Photo of bbtkd
3.94/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deschutes Obsidian Stout, 6.4% ABV, 55 IBU. Lots of head that sticks around. Picking up alcohol nose, some coffee. Taste is slightly bitter coffee, roasted malt. Real decent stout!

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Photo of stevoj
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black like coal with the perfect thick tan creamy head. Aroma and taste of bitter roast grains. Coffee, chocolate immediately come to mind. Deserving of it’s score for sure. Another beauty from Deschutes.

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Photo of JustLikeMyDad
3.72/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark, very dark, black dark. With a small foam head that doesn't last long tan in color, and sits around the edge of the glass.

Smells dark, like chocolate, maybe roasted chocolate.

Tastes of a dark chocolate with a bitterness in the likes of coffee int he aftertaste. Slight "bite" to it.

Nice mild carbonation making it smooth to drink.

Overall, quality stout, and I don't care much for stouts. Adding this to the list of the few that I like.

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Photo of jmd1978
3.98/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Black color with creamy tan head. Nose coffee heavy, with notes of chocolate and roasted malt. Taste espresso with bitter chocolate and a little happiness. Finish lingering like morning cup of coffee. Very drinkable stout.

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Photo of mlockman
3.83/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Now THIS is the kind of intensity of flavor I was expecting from Black Butte Porter! Intense bitterness really overshadowed the malt profile of this beer, but without hop-flavor being immediately apparent; rather, the malt and hops of this beer work in concert to provide an intense and complex flavor followed by a dry finish.

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Photo of Motleydrunk56
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into a Anchor steam glass.Smell is a a chocolate with a hint of coffee.Taste is slightly bitter chocolate.Overall like all Deschutes beers i have had there simply is not much that you can say that is negative.And this is no exception.Get it you will love it

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deschutes Brewery "Obsidian Stout"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, "BEST BY: 08/28/16", sampled on 03/31/16
$2 @ Giant, Havertown, PA

There are certain beers that exemplify certain styles of beer for me, and this is the one that I think of when I think of American Stout". Sure there are others (North Coast Old #38, Avery Out Of Bounds, Sierra Nevada Stout, etc.), but Obsidian just seems a little bit more polished to me. It's medium full in body; roasty and chocolatey but also a touch fruity; bitter but not harsh; and remarkably balanced and drinkable considering that it's not quite an Imperial stout, but almost there. Of course, isn't that the American way?! I'd certainly recommend all of the beers I've mentioned, and also give a tip of the hat to Sierra Nevada who probably invented the style, but it's the Deschutes that I'll reach for most often.

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Photo of BWED
3.35/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a nonic

A- Black, slightly rocky brown head. Retention okay, great lacing.

S- Chocolate, a little roast, burnt sugar/marshmallow.

T- More roast. Espresso, a bit of cocoa. More bitter than sweet. Mellows more with a temperature rise.

M- Full body, less smooth than expected. Bitterness and roast lingers. Almost astringent.

O- Not so smooth. Aftertaste a little off. Aroma is nice and complex. Flavor less so. Overall okay.

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Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
4.21 out of 5 based on 3,727 ratings.
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