Obsidian Stout | Deschutes Brewery

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
1,106 Reviews
Obsidian StoutObsidian Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States | website

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,106
Ratings:
3,701
Avg:
4.21
pDev:
17.58%
 
 
Wants:
553
Gots:
745
For Trade:
5
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,106 | Ratings: 3,701
Photo of Viggo
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to grub for sharing this bottle, its a treat!

Pours a very opaque black, red edges, thin tan head, settles to a nice ring, lace spots on the glass, looks like a stout. Smell is sweet, toffee and chocolate, some dark fruits, licorice, bit of spice, very malty, the fruitiness adds a different touch. Taste is sweet, chocolate and licorice through the middle, some roast, cherries, toffee, bit of a weak finish but nice flavours in the beginning. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, nice smooth stout. Very drinkable. Thanks Russ!

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Photo of Bighuge
4.7/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The bottle says this beer is as black as the volcanic obsidian rock for which it is named. I don't see it as quite that dark as some rays of light do indeed get through this brew. (Bring on the spectrophotometer!) It IS very close to black however. It has a nice creamy brown head that laces the glass very nicely as I drink. Very nice coffee and mocha on the nose. This beer tastes wonderful. Beautiful coffee bean and chocolate tones present. A nice subdued bitterness coming from the roasted malt. Smooth and velvety. This is truly a great stout.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.17/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle opened on 2.4.13
Best By 03/25/13

A - Pours a dark brown with a huge foamy brown head with great retention.

S - Lots of roasted malts, coffee, and chocolate.

T - Coffee, then nutty, some sweet chocolate and coffee again.

D - Good carbonation and a heavier body.

O - Perfectly balanced and simple, but right.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.36/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bim bam, it doesn't look better than this. Jet black. Smell isn't overpowering, as you'll soon find, this beer hides its alcohol presence extremely well behind a wall of deep burnt malt. But whoa, there's some zippy hoppiness in there. Cascades for sure I'd guess. For sure I'd guess? Meh.

That deep taste of chococoffee never fades, it becomes even more drinkable throughout the bottle. While I've had other Deschutes stuff that at times tastes inconsistent, I've had numerous Obsidian Stout's in various forms, and never, ever has any of them been anything short of magnifique!

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Photo of Bung
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A black/brown pour with a creamish colored head. Real nice roast malt aromas, some mocha. Flavors mimic the aroma. Roast malt and chocolate up front, finishes with good coffee bitterness. Roast coffee lingers. Drinkable, solid medium body. Real nice brew, the first I've had from Deschutes.
Side note, their bottles have some nice ornamentation.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle best by 8/12/2013 poured into a Bell's tulip and quaffed today, 4/9/2013.

Aroma: Smells of cocoa and a sweet roasty maltiness, I want to say caramel. It also smells faintly of dark fruit which seems to fade off as it gets warmer and the roastiness comes out more. The roastiness makes me think of a little bit of nuts, but mostly some cocoa and chocolate. Very nice smelling beer, especially as it warms up. (4)

Colour: Dang! This beer takes after its name- pure black like the obsidian stones. It's very opaque, with just the slightest hint of brown at the edges when illuminated. It also pours with an impressive 3cm brown head that takes more than a minute to dissipate into brown film on top of the beer complemented by a beautiful, thick brown collar that persists as I finish. The lacing is thick but falls into the beer soon enough. What's really neat is that if you look at the edges in a bit of light, you can see all the carbonated bubbles rising to the surface, feeding the collar. Absolutely beautiful and black as obsidian. (4.5)

Flavour: Awesome! This beer brings even more to the table than Black Butte does in terms of caramel, cocoa, e.g. what I like to call roasty maltiness for the lack of a better descriptor. There are aspects of nuts mixed in with faint dark fruit flavours. This is basically a giant trail mix beer that somehow comes together in a beautiful dark liquid form. The finish is a nice and dry earthy hop bitterness. I love how intense this beer tastes! (4.5)

Mouthfeel: This is a thicker medium bodied beer with excellent carbonation that contributes a nice refreshing feeling with each swallow. It's very creamy, smooth like the Black Butte and there is no indication of heat even as it reaches room temperature. The aftertaste is of chocolate nuts from the roasted malt combined with an earthy bitterness that lingers a while longer. Very smooth and easy to drink! (4)

Overall: Awesome take on the American stout style by Deschutes. This is basically Black Butte on steroids- more flavour, even blacker and did I say more flavour? The flavour from the roast malt, which is what I love about Black Butte, is even more intense here. The hoppiness is also higher as well. I have to say that the other big difference is that Obsidian brings a bigger bitter quotient, as evidenced in the earthy bitterness that I don't notice much of at all in Black Butte. It also leaves a dry finish, whereas Black Butte will quench my thirst if I'm feeling thirsty. I really love this beer and I'm going to grab a sixer or two every time I return to Minnesota. I haven't seen this in Illinois yet, but once it shows up there, I won't return to Wisconsin without it. One of the finest examples of an intense, hoppy American stout that I've had! (4.5)

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Photo of drpimento
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pretty good. Served a little cold with a smallish taan head and a bit of lace. Color is an opaque black brown. Aroma is roast, malt, molasses, licorice, bit of honey and dark ripe fruit. Flavor's like nose, muted, fairly dry, toast, carbonic tang, and bitter up front, in fact it's all up front. Body is great, ditto carbonation. Finish is like flavor, a bit long, and also a bit boozy. Good drinkin' stout.

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Photo of dgilks
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black colour with a small tan head. It dissipates fairly quickly to a thin tan film over the top.

Earthy and roasty are the first things that come to mind in the aroma. There's a light sweetness as well. Moderate hops.

Mild malty sweetness teamed up with a nice hoppiness and some roast character. Not as full on as I expected.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Good.

This is a tasty stout with plenty of flavour and a nice hop character too.

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Photo of jrallen34
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle thanks to Colby, served in my Narke tulip. Review # 1200, tick beer #98 of the new crappy top beers list...An 11pm black pour, dark throughout. A light tan head that rises about three fingers, average retention but really nice think lacing, almost covers the whole glass...An aroma of roasted coffee and a little smoke. Not sweet malts at all but this is really nice, almost perfect roastiness very light sweet chocolate on the very back...The taste is shockingly sweet. The roastiness is gone, replaced by a very sweet chocolate with a hint of vanilla and dark fruits. A touch to sweet especially for the low abv but its totally 180 in taste is fun and refreshing...A light palate easy to drink.

A low abv stout that is super easy to drink and tasty. An A+ Englishish stout that you could just crush all day. Wasn't expecting much but this is a great one.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a 6-pack in Vegas as it's not currently distributed to OH. The beer is completely opaque black, with a thin but resilient tan foam. The aroma has plenty of good things going on, dark roasted malt with toasty bread and a hint of cacao. The taste is slightly sweet initially, a little bitter or burnt flavor at the backend. The roasted malts come through big time. All in all a very good stout, one I could easily recommend to anyone.

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Photo of barnzy78
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle; Best By: 03/11/14
A - black colored ale with a frothy light brown head that holds excellent retention and leaves chunky lacing sown the glass
S - rich aroma of chocolate, roasted barley, creamed coffee
T - robust, baker's chocolate, french roast coffee, semi-bitter, roasted barley, ashy; excellent balance
M - creamy but a bit resiny, medium-to-full body, finishes a bit smoky with roasty bitterness lingering
O - excellent robust American stout! Instant favorite of mine for the style.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

100th review - Served in a standard pint glass (thanks msubulldog25). Poured an opaque black; zero light penetration. Luscious coffee-colored three-fingered head with excellent retention that left behind concentric bands of thick sticky lacing during the tasting. Scent out of the bottle was coffee and malt (in glass was much more diffuse). Taste similar to nose with roasted coffee flavors much more pronounced; slightly burnt/astringent aftertaste lingers at the finish. Mildly effervescent and full-bodied mouthfeel (not as chewy as an RIS, but you definitely know it's there). Very drinkable and would be a regular if it was locally available.

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Photo of cbutova
4.17/5  rDev -1%

Reviewed at Big Meadow Campground, Shenandoah National Park, VA. Full notes taken.

A- Pitch black pour out of the bottle to a chalice. A dark mocha brown crown of cream tops the beer to over a finger with great retention and thick consistency. Massively thick sheet at the top followed by

S- Rich chocolate notes right off the top with big roast aromas as well. Dark fruits bring a bit of a truffle feel with earthy hops chiming in too.

T- For below 8% it delivers a lot of roast malty flavors. Thick dark chocolate and baking cocoa, darkly roasted cereal grains, coffee hints and slight caramel. Other notes of dark red fruits, raisin, earthy hops, slight citrus and pine hops.

MF- Medium to thick bodied with a fairly chewy, creamy texture. Roast bitterness lingers on the back end of a medium high carbonation. Quite smooth.

Packs a lot of punch for a standard Stout. Smooth and flavorful chocolate and roast richness with the convenience of only being 6.4%.

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Photo of Gusler
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The most beauteous thing in the world is“Stout” setting in its “Chalice”, that magnificent ebony color crowned by a thick head all chocolate brown, frothy and the left over lace a nice sealing sheet upon the glass. Nose has the delightful aroma of toasted grains, Starbucks coffee and bittersweet chocolate, sweet and inviting, as is the malt-laden start with the top thick and chewy. Finish has a spicy hop bite, moderately acidic, bittersweet chocolate dry and a real treat to the palate and a top notch “Stout” in my book.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.17/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a very dark brown, nearly black, color with a small tan colored head of one finger height. The head has a decent level of retention fading over a moderate amount of time to leave a good deal of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is massive of a coffee smell mixed with a nice showing of a roasty smell and a little bit of cream like aroma. Along with these smells comes a light caramel sweetness and a little bit of a burnt toast smell, giving a very nice deep and dark strong expresso like smell overall.

Taste – The taste begins as the nose would suggest with a whole lot of roasted malt and a strong showing of coffee. Upfront there is a bit of a caramel sweetness which seems to fade as the taste advances. While the caramel fades, other sweeter flavors of a light vanilla and sweet crème flavor come to the tongue. These remain lighter overall keeping the taste on the drier side. More and more roast and coffee come to the tongue at the end of the taste, where with a little bit of an earthy and char taste, end up leaving one with a nice dark and roasty coffee flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is average to slightly lower for a stout of 6.4 % abv., with a carbonation level that is rather average. A thicker body and lower carbonation level may have accentuated the nice coffee and roasted flavors slightly better, but overall, the feel was OK.

Overall – This is a very nice coffee heavy flavored stout with tons of roasty and dark flavors. The taste and aroma are nearly spot on, with the only thing holding it back a bit being its moderate mouthfeel. Even with that said, I must say this is a nice, more moderate in abv. stout overall .

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Photo of champ103
3.51/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark brown with some ruby highlights around the edges. A tan head rises to over two fingers. Rings of sticky spiderweb looking lace is left all the way down the glass.
S: Sweet roasted malt up front. Semi astringent and mineral aroma. Hops linger towards the end.
T: A malty and sugary sweetness up front. A light roasted flavor comes out next with some bitter chocolate. Bitter hops linger a bit to much for my tastes (for a stout anyway).
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Surprisingly thin and and watery. Not hard to drink, but I would not make this a session.

A decent stout. Not as much roasted malt as I thought there was going to be, and there are two different bitter flavors that are at odds with each other (one from the chocolate, and one from the hops). This is worth a try, but not one of there better beers.

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Photo of maximum12
3.95/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks for largadeer for sending me a bottle of this from my favorite West Coast brewery.

I read some of the reviews that mentioned hops; hops? This was a malt bomb in my mouth. Malts were piled higher & thicker than Mississippi sediment. Normally not my thing, but these didn't appear to be lager-level malts, but gave the beer a rich, deep feel to it. The depth of the malts give Obsidian a fairly unique taste to me, & one that was easy to drink by Stout standards.

Good beer. I'd drink it again, happily.

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Photo of THECPJ
4.42/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes 2/7/2011

A: black with a 1 finger mocha colored head, leaves nice lacing down the whole glass

S: roasted malts most prevalent, brown sugar and/or molasses, chocolate and espresso

T: roasted malts and barley, bitter, chocolate, and espesso

M: mild carbonation, smooth, full bodied, creamy

D: a very nice stout, comparable to Victory Stormking

Cheers!
The CPJ

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into an imperial pint.
6.4% ABV, Best By: 03/17/14

A - Black as the rock it's named after, this stout pours quietly and cascades briefly before the three-finger tan head settles. Great lace covers the glass in wisps after the dense foam subsides to a mousse-like layer.

S - Rich roasted chocolate malts offers cocoa and a bit of roasted coffee with a mellow aroma of milk chocolate; simple with a layer of complexity and depth that's unassuming and nostalgic.

T - Roasted malts have the same notes the nose does with sweet milk chocolate starting things off but quickly turning to bitter coffee and dry, dusty cocoa.

M - Full-bodied and dense with moderate carbonation to the finish, Obsidian Stout is acridly bitter from roasted malts but sweetness is also balanced by a layer of dry, bitter hops as well.

O - Black as coal, Obsidian Stout is a gorgeous looking beer that has simple layers of roasted malt complexity in the aroma, transforming from sweet-ish to bitter in flavor, balanced by a sharp level of hops. Smooth and robust, this dark stout is a hefty beer to sip.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

In a pint glass the beer was a dark black color with a small tan head. There was a bit of lace.

Roasted malt aroma, coffee and chocolate.

The taste improved on the aroma. Espresso/chicory/burned coffee. A little bit of chocolate.

Nice mouthfeel. I liked that charred, burned sensation. Chocolate took a back seat in this beer.

Very enjoyable!

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Photo of ccrida
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into my large St. Feuillien goblet,
Obsidian Stout is black with a very dark tan head that quickly settles to a thick skim, leaving scattered lace.

Smell is very robust, freshly ground coffee and bakers chocolate. I could stand just a flash of sweetness, but it's really phenomenal. I should start mixing this with my coffee for those lazy fridays - or painful mondays!

Taste is also very intense, but really well rounded, lots of bittersweet chocolate, a flash of condensed milk and hint of herbal hops. A bit of waxy phenols that I could see tampered is my only complaint. Lingering, roasty finish, normally this kind of profile would be too astringent for me, but this is just so damn good, truly in a league of it's own.

Mouthfeel is awesome, super creamy, espresso like, for a bottled beer, wow. They cite the krausening on the bottle, and it really shines. Still, a touch thick for the heft.

Drinkability is dangerously high. If you like American stouts, this is one of the best, period. The fact they they can maintain such a luscious mouthfeel in the bottle is a true testament to their skill. A masterpiece.

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Photo of ZAP
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a treat this one is!!! Man I love good stouts!!! This has is jet black in color with the smallest of lace around the edges...a nice burnt roast malt on the nose along with some soft java notes...a sweet creamy texture in the mouth...full bodied...great roasted malt flavor with a sweet finish...hops are unnoticable...very easy drinking stout with some character....one of the better ones available..

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Photo of Rutager
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thank you to DraftCaskBC for making this one just appear on my doorstep last night!

Appearance. Pours a deep, deep brown with two finger of dark tan head that fades pretty quick but what's left leaves some nice bands of lace.

Smell. Dark roasty malts and bakers chocolate. Some vanilla and light roasted coffee as well.

Taste. Roasty malts and again, bakers chocolate. A little vanilla and wood with ssome grassy hops. A little nice roasty coffee in the bitter finish.

Mouthfeel. Medium body with a below medium amount of carbonation.

Overall. Great stout. Had this on tap during a beerfest but didn't remember it being so nice. (And that's why I don't review after more than a couple!)

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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 ArrogantB
3.88/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Dark black with a decent tan head. The smell was roasty but subdued. The taste was also standard stout to me: roasty, no hops, good , dark, smooth.this was a nice beer but I don;t think it should be in the top 100.

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Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 1,106 ratings.
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