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Obsidian Stout | Deschutes Brewery

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
94
outstanding
1,098 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:
1,098
Ratings:
3,682
Avg:
4.21
pDev:
17.58%
 
 
Wants:
549
Gots:
736
For Trade:
5
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,098 | Ratings: 3,682
Photo of T100Mark
4.44/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 12 ounce bottle poured into a shaker pint glass.

Appearance - Black as used motor oil. Dense, tan, foamy head. Big stickage. Handsome.

Smell - Chocolate. Booze.

Taste - Chocolate. Espresso. Malt. Alcohol. A bit sweet. The afore-mentioned flavors are prominent but the hops play an important role, too.

Mouth - Fizzy. Bitter. Wow!

Overall - This is one big, ballsy brew. Delicious! Not for the timid. Like Sierra Nevada, Deschutes can do no wrong.

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Photo of JTahoe
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brown bottle with drink-by date.

A - Aptly named obsidian black with one finger rocky tan head settling down to a creamy cap. Sticky lacing clings to the glass in wild organic patterns.

S - Roasty and toasty grains.

T - A smooth mélange of melding and weaving flavors without any one dominating; deep roasted barley, perfectly bittering hops, caramelized sugar, baking chocolate, juicy fruit, rich malt, and as delicate a charred flavor as was ever created. There is a faint sweetness contrasted with a vivid and pleasing acidity.

M - Velvety and full, but without heaviness. Beguilingly effervescent. A nice spicy dryness develops in the finish.

D - Impressive and satisfying, this stout walks the fine line of subtle and flavorful just beautifully.

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Photo of brstls4drmrs
3.95/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to johnhenryconway for this brew.

A - Pours a black opaque color with a tan froth about 1" thick. A thick ring remains and the froth sticks to the glass like a melted marshmallow.

S - Coffee and roasted malts with some hints of nut in there as well. A nice roasted scent.

T - Slightly bitter malts roasted with a nutty finish.

M - Medium carbonation with a slightly bitter finish.

O - Not a bad stout. Would definitely have more.

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Photo of Flashsp2
4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Obsidian Stout into pint

Decanted pour is densely black with a thich beige head that tracks big
sticky webbing on the way down.

Nose is dominated by roasted grain, French roast coffee, and citrus.
It smells very roasty and bitter, walking the fine line of being
acrid, and its a touch smokey.

Starts off with a faint sweetness that is quickly run over by a clean
roasty bitterness, more French roast coffee, smoke, and a faint hop
citrus on the finish. The flavor is just intensely coffee focused.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a coarsely bubbled carbonation that
seems a bit rough.

Way easy to drink, with the abundant carbonation being the only
lackluster point. This is a well put together American stout that is
heavy enough to qualify for export strength.

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Photo of frankiepop
4.23/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

I finally got a hold of the elusive Holy Grail of stouts from the west coast. It's hard to find this stout east of the Rockies. This stout is UBER BLACK with a tan persistent head with plenty of lacing. Obsidian is so black I cannot see any brown. No light seems to be able to pierce this stout. That is pretty cool so I rated the appearance high. The aroma is good nothing wrong but nothing outstanding. Smooth clean sweet stout fragrance.

Now taste: When Obsidean hits my tongue it comes on bitter and strong yet with a creamy hint of sweetness. The taste is more like a dark chocolate or maybe lightly sweetened or even unsweetened chocolate you buy for baking. I have had similar strong stouts, but they lingered with a bitterness that was gritty. However, Obsidian is strong filled with flavors but with a creamy smoothness that is really nice. BALANCED.

Lightly carbonated smoooth texture. I prefer other stouts that are sweeter so I downed the score just a bit for that personal finding.

In head to head comparison with Deschutes Black Butte Porter, the beers, I found the beers were very similar except the Obsidian has like a teaspoon of rich molasses & an extra shot of espresso added. Butte may be a little more refreshing for a summer, but the Obsidian finish is like a cold dry refreshing clean espresso expression to me that really lingers in a nice way. I also compared Obsidian to Well's Double Chocolate Stout. Wells is smoother, creamier, less carbonated & the double chocolate shows. Obsidians firey little bubbles & espresso finish separate widely. Sweet beer lovers will go with Wells.

Regardless of what I say this is a world class brew, just not my personal favorite. This is a black brew of deep strong black flavor that is well balanced. So what goes with this stout. Something strong black bold. James Brown - Live at the Apollo. Please Please Please! This is something that is inherent to black. Something white guys can't do.

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Photo of Px2GrafX
4.07/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

presentation: 12oz. bottle with a 4 color label. tan with a black oval in the center. within the oval is an illustration of a mountain, valley and a river running through black obsidian-like rock. 6.4% abv displayed along with a best by date of 11/24/05. the deschutes logo is on the neck label, and there is an explanation of the stout and what's behind the obsidian stout name.

appearance: very dark almost black with dark, dark brown highlights in a snifter glass. pours a nice rolling 2 inch dark tan head. laces very nicely.

smell: first sniff is alcohol, flowery hops, barley and some sweet chocolate. some coffee as well. very clean and hoppy for a stout. some fruit, maybe bananas after the beer warms.

taste: resiny coffee flavor. light dark chocolate and lightly bitter in the finish. there's a hint of caramel and dark fruits as the brew warms. lightly acidic. aftertaste is bitter mocha coffee.

mouthfeel: light to medium body, but a little lighter than i like. good carbonation and swallow. almost every sip finishes with a light resin on the tongue. i'm not a big fan of the french press mouthfeel.

drinkability: fairly drinkable and would make a decent session stout. alcohol is well masked. aftertaste keeps you drinking.

overall: not a bad stout. i have to thank waldowin for this brew in a trade. like i said before, this would make a decent session stout, but the mouthcoating resin may become anoying after a while. not overly complex, and i've had better, but you could do much worse. a recommended good try.

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Photo of chicagobeerriot
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is as good as it gets for the style:

Pours espresso brown with a beautifully thick, rocky, mocha-colored head.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a spot-on medium-low carbonation.

On both the nose and the taste buds, rich coffee and molasses are layered on full multigrain biscuit backbone. It's not enough to have "a lot of flavor;" a beer must have those flavors in proper proportion. Obsidian delivers on both counts spectacularly.

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Photo of dbmernin83
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with an off-white nitro head.
Aroma dampened but there's a faint roasted coffee and chocolate on the nose.
Holy shit! An unexpected whallop of chocolate, roasted coffee followed by a nice hop bitterness. This is one of the most flavorful regular American stouts I've ever had, especially on nitro.
It's on nitrogen, what do you think?
This is a fantastic stout that I will seek out again.

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

Poured this from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A - Poured as dark as night with a brown head and good lacing.

S - Lots of burnt coffee, chocolate, and a bit of toffee.

T - This Stout made me a believer. Heavy on the malts, with wonderful coffee notes with caramel malt trailing behind.

M - Loved it! Great feel; dangerously smooth.

D - This is a absolute drinker for sure. Great flavor, buttery smooth and superb balance.

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Photo of shambeano
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a jet black with about an inch of brownish head, which quickly subsides to about 1 cm, and then really slowly diminishes.

S- a bit of yeast, and roasted coffee malt, touch of dark chocolate.

T- little bit of yeast but then straight into the roastiness, a dark chocolate and black coffee, strong roast flavours. finish is a smooth cocoa bitterness. very nice and well rounded.

M- creamy and very smooth mouthfeel. slight bitterness at the back of the mouth on the finish. pretty good length too.

D- pretty good. smooth, creamy, not a hint of 6.4 per cent. could easily have a couple of these.

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Photo of redneckchugger
4.21/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

pint serving of this at jack cannery bar in san francisco. black body, tan nitro induced head,. sheets and sheets of lacing.
smell is weak, not at all what i was expecting, but i have found that nitro taps have that effect on a beer, i am kinda tired of nitro taps btw.
taste is much better, hoppy for an american stout, huge malt flavor as well, dark viscous, truely the best non imperial stout i have ever had, i look forward to having this in the bottle form.

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

Poured from a bottle into a teku.

A - Beautiful dark murky brown/black. 1 finger tan/brown head.

S - Smoke, charcoal, barbecued wood, cacao, vanilla, brown sugar.

T - Smokey, charcoal, bitter chocolate, slightly sour.

M - Very creamy, perfect amount of carbonation, silky smooth.

O - A nice American Stout. Not overbearing, but hearty and tasty.

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Photo of arvidkoval
3.92/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks pitch black. Obsidian is a good name for this. Nice tan head. Smells of roasted coffee. Tastes like smokey roasted coffee. Nice smooth mouthfeel. Great stout in a 6 pack.

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Photo of Orrshow
4.4/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance – Jet black with a lot of nice tan frothy head. The lacing left is plentiful.

Smell – The smell is very strong of roasted malt. There is a little caramel and coffee as well.

Taste – Very nice roasted malt flavor off the get go. This is followed by some coffee and burnt wood. There is a nice balancing bitterness also. Excellent flavor.

Mouthfeel – Nice subtle carbonation and a substantial enough body to hold its own.

Drinkability – Amazing…it goes down like cold water on a hot day.

Thanks to elricorico for the bottle. A great beer which I hope to get more of soon!

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

Got this beer in trade. Thanks Ben(Madhomebrewer)

I like most everything I have drank from Deschutes so I wasn't worried about this one. It pours Black into the glass with a big frothy head with good lacing as the pint got lower. Smells roasty, milk chocolate, coffee, some vanilla, and a little doughy. Taste faintly of bitter coffee and some chocolate. Full Bodied, creamy. Good beer

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

12oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

A: Pours nearly black, with just barely a trace of red highlights during the iPhone flashlight test. An admittedly gentle pour resulted in one finger of dark khaki head that retains wonderfully as a creamy cap. Good bits of lacing down the glass. This one could have benefitted from more eye candy, but that's no fault of Deschutes. Even a weak pour resulted in commendable lacing. A more aggressive pour would have surely resulted in a blanket of beige.

S: Gorgeous roasted profile. Lots of dark roast coffee beans, toasted malts, and slightly burnt caramelized sugar. A nice hint of semi-sweet chocolate underneath as well as some dark fruit.

T: Chocolate fades a little bit on the tongue, giving way to some glorious roasted coffee that tastes as fresh as the first cup of morning joe. A little bit of brown sugar underneath struggles to carry the weight of the dark bitterness, offering only a little balance. It's eventually completely pushed out of sight as a nice rush of fresh hop flavor melds with the coffee. The aftertaste is exclusively black coffee.

M: A stout that drinks almost like an imperial... Damn near full-bodied with tons of creamy smoothness to be found. Doesn't quite reach the chewiness of an imperial stout, but who's complaining? This bad boy drinks like a charm.

O: I never found Deschutes to be the most outspoken brewery around, and with beers like this, they don't have to be. Everything Deschutes has to say gets said as you take a sip of their brews, and Obsidian Stout is a perfect example of what Deschutes is all about. There's no gimmicks or arrogance here... just a divine stout from a company who knows how to brew legendary beer.

 1,712 characters

Photo of turbine2475
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Largadeer for this beer:

A - Pours opaque black with a huge mocha head that has a very good retention and dissipates leaving a moderate lace.

S - Roasted malts, some chocolate, coffee, toffee, tobacco, and a slight smoke presence.

T - Strong roasted malts and grains, some burnt woods, and mild to light coffee and chocolate. Not Bad.

M - Light for a stout but not bad. Carbonation is in good balance. Burnt nature lingers on for a while.

D - Good brew, easy to drink and a decent ABV that allows you to have several without going too out of control. Lighter aspect is welcome for a good stout to have on a hot day like today.

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Photo of PeatReek
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My bottle looks different than the one in the picture, but it's definitely Deschutes Obsidian Stout. So here we go. Pours a deep opaque black, just faint hints of ruby around the edges. Thin light-ish brown head. Smells deeply toasty and sweet, just a hint of the charcoal bite. Mmm! Incredibly rich chocholate espresso flavor; roasty and vinous with a fizzy bitterness that balances the slight sweetness perfectly. I never know quite what to say about drinkability with American stouts; I haven't met an American session stout yet. But I'd love to sit around and drink this all night if it wouldn't fill me up after just a couple.

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Photo of CPeterson
4.45/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A -- Pours midnight black, no detectable translucency aside from hints around the edges, a heady foam rests on the top and doesn't quit.

S -- Dark roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, a touch of smoke.

T -- Malty, smoky, a touch of chocolate and a subtle hop nudge to balance it beautifully.

M -- Silky smooth, justs coasts on the palate. Lightly drying hop finish.

D -- A decadent stout that would stand up to any other I can think of. Another textbook example from our friends in Oregon.

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Photo of UpToMeBeer
4.46/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. This is the creamiest, thickest, chewiest nitro-stout I've had. It is a sheer joy to savor in the mouth after admiring a one-inch thick head and decent lacing. Don't let the full-bodied character intimidate you if that's a danger... This is a very drinkable, pleasant beer.

Smell-wise, it's rather standard with hints of chocolate and coffee. It tastes like stouts of similar quality; the thing that sets it apart are the body and creaminess. A definite advantage I had, even here in Colorado, was getting served on nitro (thank you Taps, in Fort Collins).

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Photo of hiku7
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured in a tulip glass.

A - Pours the color of coffee with a big bold tan-brown head. As the head dissipates, a medium thick lacing sticks to the glass all the way down.

S - Caramel and molasses and other things dark, roasted, and delicious.

T - Caramel and coffee flavors up front with a mild hoppy finish that really balances the initial flavors. There is a tiny spiciness that comes through the carbonation on the tongue.

M - Smooth and creamy, with a mildly fizzy carbonation to finish every swig.

D - Pretty good. Even though I've been working my way slowly through a six pack over the winter, I wouldn't turn down a second or third in one night.

Very enjoyable stout.

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Photo of ChugMan
4.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Lovely soft khaki-tan head, black body turning burgundy at its edges. Great lattice lacing throughout.
S - Clean, roasty, dark chocolate flakes, some breadyness too. Simple and inviting
T/M - The hops and roastyness combine to give the sensation of biting into a dark, moist sodabread, quite a mouthful! A surprising amount of snappy-spicyness with the lingering bitterness as well, again contributing to the bread motif but this time of a nice crackling crust. Just enough roasted sweetness to tie it all together without becoming dessert-y. Very pleasant.
O - This beer is a great example of craftsmanship that can be appreciated by newcomers and vets alike. It drinks like a meal! Likely a fantastic pairing to a hearty campfire-cooked breakfast or dinner, be it Dinty Moore or bangers n mash, and a casserole / shepherds pie might be ideal.

 849 characters

Photo of guitarmage
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black, no light passes through, nice tan creamy head, sticky lacing.

Smell: Big coffee, molasses, toasty malt.

Taste: Roasty and toasty, coffee, dark chocolate, a little astringent.

Mouthfeel: Nice and creamy, smooth, easy to drink, very full bodied, heavy.

Drinkability: This beer is really good on nitro in my opnion, the creamy mouthfeel softens up a really tasty but harsh brew, it makes it easier to drink and delicious. Looks like Guinness and a lot of flavor.

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Photo of ReebShorts
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This pours very dark brown to black in color, nice thick sticky brown head, lacing throughout.

Aroma of Coffee, Cocoa, Vanilla, cherry (maybe raspberry)...

This is a big stout, lotsa flavor here, with a nice hop bite at back to close it out. Not to say there is a lot of hop here, but just enough, very well balanced.

Creamy mouthfeel, tasty, great nightcap, dessert material. Actually a few of these would be a nice meal in itself. This brewery has yet to dis-appoint, another top notch selection from Deschutes.

 522 characters

Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 1,098 ratings.
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