Obsidian Stout | Deschutes Brewery

1,130 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: 1,130 | Ratings: 3,811
Photo of mactrail
3.72/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Oxford Suites hotel in Portland. Really dark stuff. It's a Guiness black color, but a very different kind of brew. Some beige foam in the pint shaker. Spritzy mouthfeel. Some blackened grain flavors along with the warm, roasted malt. The sweet malt a thoroughly mellow base with the charred barley providing a pleasant balance.

This seems like a pedestrian dark beer at first sip, but it grows on you. Extremely drinkable with a lot of fat malty flavors. I'll have to get a six of the bottles. This seems like a flavorful, easy to drink brew to have around.

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Photo of mcallister
3.72/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is a stout through and through. Black in color, fluffy tan head with thin lacing.

One of those beers that you just don't want to quit sniffing. Very addicting aromas. Thick chocolatey dark fudge, coffee accents, with heaps of dark fruits thrown in and integrated almost perfectly. Sweet malty aromas lay behind the sheen of fruit and lend towards caramel and vanilla. Mollasses, black currant, black raspberry, and black cherry dominate the fruit with hints of mission fig.

Rich and roasty flavors of coffee but not nearly as complex as the nose would lead you to believe. The roasty flavors seem to overpower the fruit and chocolate. The underlyings are very bitter chocolate flavors, black currant, with hints of blackberry. Mollasses also is notable in the finish.

This is a very dry stout that lingers for a long time that I find slightly displeasing.

Damn good stout worth drinking if for only the smell. But there are other fish in the sea I'd buy before this stout.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.73/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Pours black with a thick tan head that fades. Aroma of roasted malt and coffee. Flavor of roasted malt and bitter chocolate as the beer warms. Thick, full mouthfeel. This is pretty good!
Aroma: 7/10
Appearance: 4/5
Flavor: 8/10
Palate: 4/5
Overall: 14/20

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Photo of Wegbier
3.74/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best by 06/19/09 and then
edited with the last of the same sixer 7/14/09
I dont know about this one. I waited until the third in the six pack before reviewing it. But I think its overrated.

a- appearance is very good. Pours very dark and then holds its head the whole way down with thick stout lacing, but no cascade in the pour.

s- smell exquisite with citrus hops and ripe fruit notes.

smell is much less but still good.

t- let me down. I looked at the best by date over and over wandering if that was why. It is stout smooth typical of its style until swallowing and then it has an awful finish, reminds me of a band-aide.

i dont know what but the taste has improved from my initial idea, a lot of coffee and dried dark fruit.

m- smooth with very light taste of alcohol in the finish, 6.4% is big for an American stout.

also very crisp toast

D- Starts out good and enjoyable but by the time I finish I need to wash my mouth out from the after taste

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Photo of ADZA
3.74/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a very dark brown hue which leaves a massive dimple laden rocky head lacing absolutely everywhere,the smell is dark roasty malts,barley and rich mocha,the feel is medium bodied and well carbonated with tastes of rich dark chocolate,roasty toasty malts,a herbal earthy hoppiness and finished with a chocolate bittersweetness and overall it's not bad and drinkable but nothing exuberant cheers.

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Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Chocolately mocha powder aroma. Coffee dark. Smooth, although some cookie crumbs and coconut strings mouthfeel in there. Well roasted, bittersweet and neither leaning to coffee nor chocolate. Very nicely carbonated. A very good stout but I think somewhat overated. A drop behind the Bell's stouts.

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Photo of MMAJYK
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A. Deep, dark opaque black in color with splochy tan head that is 1/8" tall. 4

S. When I first poured, I picked up a leather aroma from the brew. After sitting, I pick up raisins and coffee.

T. Bitter dark chocolate is the first impression. The hops and black malts provide a little astringency to me. Its no malt bomb and that's ok by me. Tastes good, but a lingering astrigency is off putting to me.

M. Fairly light bodied for a Stout and high carbonation.

D. I guess you could call this a "session stout" as its quite thin and refreshing for such a dark beer. Not bad but not my favorite from these guys. Minus the LINGERING astrigency, it would get a lot better score from me. Seriously, I could still taste it 10 minutes after I finished this glass of beer.

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Photo of robwestcott
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

thanks to ivanwho and Noob BIF round 2 for this one

poured cold from the bottle to a surly darkness 10oz goblet a dark-ish cola black with a big bubbled, quickly dissipating, foamy mocha head with good retention.

big aroma dark chocolates, sweetened espresso and maybe a bit of toasted malts and dark fruits in the way-wayback.

leans to the bittersweet side, with dark fruits and molasses up front til it warms a bit and then the chocolate and slightly bitter espresso comes through a bit more.

fairly light bodied for the style, highly carbonated, bittersweet, smooth.

drinkable - yeah, sure, a couple 3 maybe.

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Photo of ej285701
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a goblet.

Pours out a very dark brown, almost black with a one inch tan head.

In the aroma I get the usual coffee and chocolate notes, as well as some metallic sourness and lactose as if its a milk stout. Some bready malts are noted as well.

The taste delivers on the smell with coffee and chocolate being the most dominant. The lactose is a bit distracting however, as I am not the biggest fan of milk stouts. The finish is quite nice as the flavors stick with you long after you swallow.

The mouthfeel is medium-bodied with low carbonation. I think more carbonation would have helped.

This is a well made beer, and I can see why it's rated highly, but I can't get past the lactose flavor. I prefer more roastiness from my stouts.

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Photo of genog
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours such a black as night color with plenty of bubbling two inch tall head. The once bubbly head fades away and leaves plenty of lacing clinging to the side of my snifter. Smell is doughy and dried fruit with chocolate notes. Smell is not quite black licorice but more of a slight anise smell. This one started out strong but there was not a lot of flavor here. Some chocolate, coffee but it is all muted. Mouthfeeling is way too carbonated and makes this one not very drinkable. I had such high hopes for this beer coming from the makers of The Abyss.

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Photo of mabermud
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

With a medium pour, this appears a super dark brown beer with a thin tan head. Decent lacing, nothing to write home to mom about.

Roasted malts + coffee beans and a faint aroma of chocolate.

Even taste of roasted malt and bitter coffee.

Medium body, a little creamy, but thin.

This is a solid, all-around stout. Nothing stands out, but nothing is lacking. There are a few others I would select before this stout. However, this brew has an advantage because it is readily available in the area.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Guess what. I am finishing the top 100 with this unremarkable stout. Poured into a bruery tulip. Beer is black with a thick brown head of medium and small bubbles that leaves a lot if lacing on the glass.

Aroma is mild and ashy with a lot of burnt roast.

Beer is medium in body with minimal forward sweetness with nice back palate bitterness from the roasted grain. Drinkability really nice and mouthfeel ok. It's simple, one nite, relatively standard beer but quite decent.

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Photo of morebeergood
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a six pack for $6.99 at Albertson's in Magnolia WA. Had a few while watching the Seahawks game before Xmas. Poured into a pint glass. Dark black color, like obsidian (to borrow from the name). Brownish white head. Decent lacing. Smelled like roasted barley, and the alcohol was a bit noticeable too. Taste was way above average. Dark, roasted coffee and chocolate flavors abound in this brew. A bit dry in the finish, and like I said, after a few, the alcohol is present. A textbook example of a great stout from an excellent American brewer.

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Photo of jeonseh
3.76/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a bottle that has a best by 3/28/08 and poured into my snifter. Thanks to bbothen for throwing this in as a great extra.

A - This is one beauty of a beer as it is a pitch black and a bit reflective which in a way reminds me of the obsidian that the beer is named after. There is a nice creamy, bubbly and frothy, one thumb head that sits on top and just looks really nice. The head leaves a bunch of lacing and the body appears to be a viscous.

S - heavy on the roasted notes and reminds me a bit also of a burnt oak smell coming through. Also a slight small hint of chocolate is also noticed.

T - Taste is also a mix of a light roasted flavor that reminds me a bit of a light chocolate taste. More on the dark chocolate aspect than the milk that leaves a roasted taste in the mouth.. There is a bit of a caramel sweetness as well that helps to balance that aspect out. In the end, there is a bit of a bitter hops that come in and adds some pine aspect into this one. The hoppy bitter aspect was a bit intriguing and not really what i expected. Has a nice flavor profile but nothing that is blowing anyone out of the watery. Also seems a bit watery.

MF - Light amount of carbonation that sits on the tongue. Creamy beer that makes it easy to drink but didn't really have the ummph behind it that I was expecting and hoping for from a stout.

D - overall a good stout but not one that really left me wanting another one. have to say I was a bit disappointed by this one and just thought it would have been a bit better. Plus, something in the aftertaste makes me not really want to have another one either and I think it maybe that the hops seems to linger and leave a bit of an odd feeling in the mouth.

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Photo of kemoarps
3.76/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

overall a good dark Stout. Poured from standard twelve ounce bottle into glass, first impression (this time, I've had it before and liked it):

darker than you realize when simply drinking out of bottle. nearly black, held to light and couldn't really see any level of light shining through, with dark brown head, thin and dissipated fairly quickly, though left enough on top to leave a residue on the glass as I drink it down. dark enough that I only see light through on the edges as I tilt the glass to drink.

definitely notice the deep coffee malt smell right off the bat. I didn't notice as much of the chocolate tinge as others have, but there is a very definite malty coffee-esque aroma to it. Before drinking it, you know what you are getting yourself into. Not overly complex, mostly driven by the roasted malts.

the taste brings further credence tow hat your nose first notices; a strong roasted flavour as the malts are at the forfront, again reminding me in some ways of a dark roast coffee. The chocolate flavour came to me later, almost after swallowing it, almost in little waves. the hops come into play later in the moutful as well, leaving a slightly bitter finish, that is not unpleasant

it is a little creamy, but not as much so as other stouts I've had, enjoyable and not overwhelming. doesn't coat the mouth the way some stouts do. the hops leave a lasting bitterness at the back of the tongue (where the bitter receiving taste buds are...)

overall a drinkable beer. Dark, but not overpowering or overly filling. Something I have drunk before and will drink again.

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Photo of sevenarts
3.76/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark brownish black with a tan head. Light to moderate lacing.

S: Chocolate and coffee, a mix of bitterness and sweet underlying malts. Not a very strong aroma at all.

T/M: Really tasty and smooth. Rich chocolate and licorice up front, followed by some milky coffee flavors, and some bitterness, from the hops and the lingering coffee taste, in the follow-through. A trace of alcohol shows up in the aftertaste, along with that rich coffee. Very delicious. Mouthfeel is medium and creamy.

O: An very good all-around stout that gets better and more layered as it warms up.

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Photo of pmcadamis
3.77/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pitch black...very deserving of it's name. The head is a dark brown one finger cap with some nice brown lace coating the glass.

S - Bitter espresso beans and dark unsweetened chocolate. This is one of the most coffee intensive stouts that I've ever smelled. Literally smells like the strongest dark roast espresso with a huge chunk of baker's unsweetened dark sugar lumped in.

T - Again, huge espresso and bitter dark chocolate. There are some woody campfire flavors in there too.

M - Bitter, medium bodied, with some raspy carbonation that is a bit too rough for the style IMHO. The finish is bitter and "stoutish" as hell, and will stick to your teeth for the next few hours.

D - Pretty good stout honestly. I prefer less dark bitter coffee, but I know that's exactly what a lot of stout lovers are looking for so I can't fault it for that.

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Photo of breakingbland
3.77/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Ap: opaque brown with red highlights. A 1/2-finger light brown head of coarse and fine bubbles.
Ar: strong roasty, black coffee, but can't identify the hops.
T: like the aroma but not as strong. Somewhat shallow and sweet. Has an astringency that intensifies and lingers. Again, can't identify the hops.
M: appropriate for the style (fairly light carbonation).

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Photo of Tone
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black color. 3/4 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of roasted malt, alcohol, sweet malt, slight spice, and a hint of hop. Fits the style of an American Stout. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of roasted malt, coffee, sweet malt, slight dry hop, and slight alcohol. Overall, good appearance, aroma, blend, and body.

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Photo of ptykozoon
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours not quite obsidian, great head and lacing.

Cinnamon, brown sugar, caramel, booze.

Taste is strikingly dry and bitter. Roasted coffee and brown sugar. A bit of hops. Chocolate on the finish.

A decent amount of carbonation and dryness keep this un-viscous yet smooth.

A good beer all around, whether for sipping or sessions.

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Photo of bagpiper2005
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour: Jet black with hints of dark ruby red on the edges. A huge three fingers of tan head that retains forever and laces the glass like crazy.

Smell: Roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, and alcohol. A hint of floral hops coming through.

Taste: Starts off rather pleasant. Nice sweet caramel and dark fruit front end that gives way into a chocolate and coffee middle. However the back end finishes up with a rather unpleasant burnt bread taste, which actually gets less noticeable as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel: Medium and rich. Creamy. Moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: Average. The front and middle are delicious but they need to do something about that back end.

Final Notes: A decent American stout. I'll drink it, but I think there are better American stouts out there. If you like the taste of burnt toast, however, this is probably the beer for you.

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Photo of barczar
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque black color with a solid 2 inch cola colored head that dissipates slowly, leaving spotty lacing.

Coffee, chocolate, and roast malt dominate the aroma, with nutty, toasted notes adding complexity.

Fairly acrid coffee is the predominant flavor, overwhelming the roast malt, which almost seems charred. Chocolate becomes secondary. The finish is bitter, peppery, and dry. As it warms, the flavor improves significantly.

Body is on the thick side, with minimal carbonation, and a fairly acrid, astringent finish. There's slight alcohol warmth.

Pretty disappointed in this beer, given the exceptional ratings. Very coffee-forward, bitter, and acrid, roasty, but lacking in chocolate and malt complexity. Substantial phenols. Pretty harsh. The more it warms, the more I like it, but still expected more. Leave it sit out for a good half hour.

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Photo of rawfish
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Vigorous pour into an Odell tulip glass yields a two finger mocha colored head rising above a near black body. The slightest tinge of mahogany runs along the sides of the glass. Head has incredible retention which forms a halo when subsiding resulting in nice lacing.

Aroma is of bold roasted malts some grain and oats, with a backing of chocolate and more earthy hops. Some fruity characteristics from the yeast.

Bold blackened malt followed by citrus hoppiness. The coffee taste here lasts throughout the drink only to bitter even further with the earthy and lemon tart citrus hops on the back end. Leaves a parched throat kind of dryness, charred, even a bit metallic.

Creamy smooth but the drying feeling come more from the taste than the actual liquid. Good heft and carbonation.

Nice looking stout with a pleasant smell but the taste is big bold coffee without much complexity and ends rather harsh, astringent and dry. Good offering by Deschutes but I'll take the porter when I want something dark.

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Photo of CHSLBrew
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Enjoyed on a pleasant Saturday afternoon before Katelyn and Bled's wedding in Saint Paul.

A-Absolutely black beer, as should probably have been obivious based on the name. Fluffy brown head topped this brew.

S-Dry chocolate, slight roastiness, all blackish malt aromas with no perceptible hop aroma, and a hint of fruity esters.

T-Lots of burnt malts, some choco-coffee flavors moving this malt-centric beer forward. Hints of dark fruitiness play with some slight malty sweetness perceived.

M-Medim body, moderate level carbonation.

D-Tasty stout, and certainly represents the style well. It kind of blends in among the crowd, though, as far as the flavor profile goes.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.79/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A friend brought me this back from Texas. Shocked that I hadn't reviewed it... I've definitely had it before. 12oz bottle into a Cigar City snifter.

Pours a thick, 1 finger dark mocha head with good retention. Beer is pitch black. Lacing is stringy, spotty and thick with good cling. Oil legs too. Great looking beer.

Nose is smoke, roast, cocoa and dark chocolate. Moderately aromatic but very appropriate for the style.

Opens roast, liquorice, and smoke. Some dark chocolate, black strap molasses and more roasted malt in the middle and end. Finishes with some sweetness and just a touch of booze. Roasted malt in the finish. Decently complex beer with all the right flavors here.

Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with some sparse bubbles in the mouth and goes down slightly prickly. Messy finish with a lingering aftertaste. Nice.

A real nice beer overall. Subtle yet complex nose and flavor with a body that makes this one pretty drinkable. I'd definitely revisit this one.

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Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
4.21 out of 5 based on 3,811 ratings.
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