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:
3,700
Avg:
4.21
pDev:
17.58%
 
 
Wants:
553
Gots:
744
For Trade:
5
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,106 | Ratings: 3,700
Photo of E-McFarden
4.47/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This beer is excellently balanced in all aspects from appearance to flavor and feel. My favorite part is the feel, its not extremely heavy and doesn't overpower the palate, and it also doesn't overcompensate with extreme amounts of roasted malts. Excellent brew.

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

Deschutes has not disappointed me so far. On to Obsidian.

Out of the bottle, this brew pours extremely dark for a single stout, dark, dark brown that comes so close to black. A one-finger, mocha-brown head sits atop and takes a minute to trail off. Lacing left on the glass is mildly sticky and splashy.

A deep inhale of Obsidian reveals a thick, rich milk chocolate aroma, complemented by a very mellow roastiness and a nice, round coffee aroma. A little brown sugar and molasses reside in there, too.

Well, that is probably the most well done and tastiest single stout that I've imbibed. Just the right amount of roasted malt and bitter hop flavor lands on the sides of my mouth, while a rich chocolate and molasses package lands squarely on my tongue. The finish has quite a bit of a coffee-esque bite on the whole of my palate and pairs well with the rich sweetness.

A rich, full feel lands on my palate with each sip, accompanied by a very nice bite from the roasted malt and hops. Great body, great bite.

This is a really great stout. While only 6.4% a.b.v., it has a more in common with an imperial stout than a single in terms of appearance, flavor, and feel. Very full, creamy flavor and feel. Delicious.

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Photo of SamuelJackson45
4.45/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a dark coffee black color.

S- Smell of roasted malts brings out a coffee hint and hops and sweet caramel smell from the wort.

T-Hops and malts bringing out a bitter coffee note. And the wort bring a caramel note sweet.

M- Creamy and smooth to the pallet strong robust malts brings out coffee notes and hops bring a well balance flavor.

D- Very good beer. Tasty and good smell. Well balance flavor.

Cheers...

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Photo of frothy_80
4.36/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

The body color is black with dark brown highlights around the glass. A foamy light khaki colored head that left thick lacing throughout. Dark chocolate and coffee/espresso dominate the nose. There are hints of tobacco, licorice, and dark fruits that came out as the beer warmed. The coffee and chocolate bounce back and forth as the beer passes over the tongue, along with a roasty character that balances the two. Dark fruits, tobacco, and licorice stay in the background but aid in adding more layers. Malt driven sweetness that ends dry with a good hop bitterness keeps it interesting. Smooth and slightly creamy from a full medium body that is properly carbonated. It's no surprise that this hit all the right notes coming from a brewery that has a robust porter as a flagship beer. Truly fantastic! I believe I have found my go to stout for winter.

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

Appearance – 12 oz bottle with hop cones embossed onto it, obtained in a trade with Gueuzedude. In my snifter this stout is black with a thin tan head. The head falls to just a thin coating within a few minutes, but there is nice lacing.

Smell – Coffee and chocolate with some milk sweetness. It is a nice stout aroma, with just a hint of hops and alcohol.

Taste – Similar to the smell, coffee with a creamy sweetness that is really good. Very smooth flavor with just a hint of roasty bitterness in the aftertaste. Certainly not an overly complex flavor, but it is just really well done.

Mouthfeel – Full with medium-low carbonation. Just what a stout should be.

Drinkability & Notes – Easy to drink, because of the great flavor and perfect mouthfeel. In my experience this is one of the better American single stouts out there, I really wish this was available here on the East Coast.

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Photo of isualum12
4.56/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pure bliss....it's that simple

pours black with a carmel tone on the edge. darker creamer head then most which holds it's self up. The smell and flavor comes off the head to perfection.

Smells sweat with bourbon.

You can taste the bourbon on your tounge as soon as it hits it. There is some great spice in there as well.

I am really excited to try and pair this beer up with some great beer.

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Photo of BreakfastStout
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours night black into my pint glass with a massive tan head. Burnt coffee flavor, with a mellow char smokey nose. Subtle bitterness, with a slight java espresso taste. Just a bit thinner than my favorite stouts, but then I tend to favor RIS. Doesn't coat the tongue, and actually tends towards a nice porter. I like it and would buy it again. Nicely done.

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Photo of erk0607
4.05/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L - You expect a dark beer with something called obsidian... you're not disappointed. Nice amber head.
S - Smells like a dark beer, not much else to say
T - Starts off quite bitter, once you get used to it, it sweetens up and you get some of the maltyness. Not much prominent coffee or chocolate to speak of, just very dark.
F - Pouring this is like pouring a chocolate syrup (maybe a bit exaggerated but still, it's thick!)

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Photo of dcook11
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- pitch black. Two finger mocha head, Seafoam lacing.

S- charcoal, roasted malt, hops, coffee, massive chocolate.

T- hops, heavy, roasted character.

M- medium bodied. One of the best all time stouts. A must try. Completely embodies what a stout should be.

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Photo of bigbeerdrinka
4.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep dark brownish black which no light can be seen through. A nice thick creamy offwhite head appears and leaves a nice lace around the entire glass. Aromas are dominated by roasted malts, with a little chocolate and burnt aromas also present. There is also a slight nutty character and some sweet molasses in the air as well. Initially this beer has a very robust malt profile. The roasted flavors just scream out at you initially with nice chocolate, smokey, and sweet coffee like flavors. There is a nice creamy texture to this beer and some oat like flavors make their way into the middle of the taste. This beer is also very thick and almost chewy in the body. Just a delicious feeling on the pallate. This beer finishes bittersweet, with a slight bitterness from the hops but an almost molasses sweetness that fights back and forth to make this beer just incredible. Overall this beer just has it all, great body, great flavor (including a wonderful aftertaste) and is quite drinkable. I must find a way to get my hands on more of this brew!

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

12 oz bottle, pours a black with a nice medium sized fluffy and rocky head.
Big sweet malt character in the nose, milk chocolate, very hidden hop aromas and a touch of alcohol.
Sweet dark roasted malty flavor with carmalized brown sugar, slight fruitiness, esspresso and and a little alcohol in the finish.
Medium bodied mouthfeel, good light carbonation for the style.
Good drinkability, but is a bit too sweet for have more than a few IMO.

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Photo of amphion1065
4.08/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks for this extra Todd. 12 oz. bottle into an Alpine pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

Pours black, with no visible highlights. The head is gorgeous - it just looks creamy and smooth. One finger thick and mocha-colored, it really sticks around, too. Great lacing as well. Very pretty.

There's a lot going on in the aroma. My first impression is of roasted malts, but there's quite a bit of coffee at work as well. Notes of chocolate and toffee come through as it warms. There are a lot of sweet scents happening here, but that robust roasted quality tempers them.

The taste displays a similar balance. This is malty and rich, but the coffee character imparts a tempering bitterness, especially in the aftertaste. Still, though, I'm picking up huge milk chocolate notes in this one - not the worst thing in the world.

Deschutes nailed the mouthfeel of this beer. There are plenty of imperial stouts that drink thinner. This is so rich and thick, a real treat.

I can't remember the last time I picked up an American or Irish Dry Stout, but after this bottle I may have to rectify that. This was a very pleasant surprise, a beer that was totally off of my radar that I'm thinking about days later.

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Photo of Cannibalgasm
4.19/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

L: Pours a rich black with thick creamy mocha colored head. Good retention with a fair amount of lacing.

S: Dark chocolate, roasted coffee, cherry, plum, caramel, berries, resiny hops are all detectable.

T: Dark chocolate, roasted grains, espresso, brown sugar, earthy hops, cherry, raspberry, even some subtlety sweet tartness almost sour like qualities. Excellent balance of a multitude of flavors.

F: Lighter then you would expect, moderate carbonation, nice creamy finish.

O: A very complex yet well balanced brew. Easily one of the best readily available stouts on the market. Deschutes truly does a great job creating quality beer.

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Photo of Trueant1
3.86/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A great buy at 1.39 a bottle. My bottle has a different design.

Appearance is exceptional due to the huge creamy, rocky, tan head. Pours like a root beer float.

Good smell of roasted malts, coffie, and chocolate milk.

Tastes of hops, alcohol, coffie, chocolate and anice....if I am not mistaken other herbs such as rosmarie. A nice balance of tastes. Very sweet profile overall...almost too sweet..but followed by some nice sting of alcohol and hops. Some grainy flavors I do not like...leading to a "tar" like flavor.

Moutfeel is just about perfect for a stout. Nice and sticky up front with a dry aftertaste.

This drinks good.

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

Delicious stout, very balanced flavor, not one note (coffee, chocolate, licorice, roasty malt, etc). like many stouts. Only the right flavors are in here, and blended in sweet harmony. Just enjoy this one and be grateful it exists.

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

A nice and big stout from the Pacific Northwest. Very black in color with brown head. Roast malt and coffee aromas pours out of the glass, slightly smokey and slightly sweet...very nice. The flavors lean heavily on the roast malt/coffee side with enough sweet malt and nuttiness to balance. It is medium bodied with some chocolate and licorice in a nice dry finish. Highly recommended for the serious stout lovers.

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Photo of Marty30
4.12/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to black13 for this extra!Poured into Sam Adams perfect pint glass at cellar temp,around 52 degrees.

A. Very dark black body, I see some dark ruby in the pour. Two finger khaki head that dissapates rather quickly. Leaves good lacing all over the glass.

S. Lots of roasted malts here from the get go,also getting some brown sugar,coffee grinds and some chocolate.

T. Big roasted malt notes and bitter chocolate. I get some nuttiness and light hints of vanilla cake batter with some hop bitterness in the end.

M. Mouth is a little thin,I would say medium. good carbonation.

Overall this is a good brew that I would like to get more of.It it a great substitute if you don't want that big imperial stout sometimes.

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Photo of pdoran10
4.23/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

yay! obsidian stout makes its first appearance in Minnesota! pours out a jet black into a snifter with a finger of tan head that leaves nice lacing and stays around.

smell is musty herbal hops up front, with some nice chocolate roast in the back. this beer is definitely fresh. nice dose of hops in the nose. hop forward.

taste is herbal hop bite up front. delicous velvet chocolate. finishes roasty and a bit dry but not overly so. a roasty american stout with rasin, burnt toast and some chocolate flavors as it warms. i prefer a bit sweeter of a stout but nice flavors here.

mouthfeel is amazing! nice and chewy for not being a big stout but also crisp and not syrupy. carbonation is moderate and done right and not overly dry.

could drink these all day. exceptional beer.

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

Pours an oil slick black. Ample finger plus of thick mocha head. Ridiculous lacing. This head isnt going anywhere.

Sweet roasted malt. Raisin, rum, maybe chocolate, maybe espresso. Some ABV.

Dry black patent malt. Deep roasted malt. Dryness, buscuit.

Little dry, almost too much dry, something missing, though not horrible. Just a little unbalanced. Maybe a tab more malt to go with dryness.

I would love more of these. There is something in the dry finish though I could use a bit more malt with, but certainly not much of a detractor. This is more than likely the best American Stout out there. So close to being perfect.

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

A- Super-duper black, some would say, obsidian, in color. One-finger tan head appears thin and disipates to just a ring around the edge of the glass

S- Dark, roasted malts & coffee with a hint of booze

T- Heavy on the dark roasted malts. Bittersweet chocolate, coffee & booze in the body. Finishes with a strong bitterness and cocoa powder

M- Full-bodied and creamy. Chocolate & coffee flavors linger

D- Pleased to be traveling through Deschutes distribution-land. Would be drinking this A LOT if it were available at home.

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Photo of Buschyfor3
3.97/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz pint, on nitro, at Holy Grale, Louisville, KY

A: Deep nearly black pour; opaque; cascade effect; finger thick sandy head; creamy with good retention.

S: Roasty/nutty, mild coffee; soft chocolate notes; in fact, the nose itself is very soft, muted really, likely a result of the forced nitrogen.

T: Light roast, mild breakfast blend coffee; nutty; light powdered cocoa sweetness peaks through the middle; smooth with a touch of roasted bitterness, but not overly complex. I wonder just how much of an impact the nitrogen has on the flavor profile - like the nose, this just seems a bit muted, like the edges have been softened, almost too much.

M: Oily, slightly creamy; it is smooth, but not overly thick on the mouthfeel.

O: A solid nitro stout, if not a bit unremarkable - again, my only qualm is that the roasted/coffee/chocolate flavors don't really pop like some other stouts of the same ilk. I would be interested to see how the flavor profile changes (if at all) when served from a bottle instead of on a nitro tap - I'm guessing the nitro probably dulls the overall aroma/flavor profile. Notwithstanding that point, this is still smooth drinking and easy on the palate.

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Photo of arfenhouse
4.27/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Black with light brown head. Good retention and good lacing.

S: A mix of baker's chocolate, plum, raisin, and cherry. Hint of vanilla in the back.

T: Roasted malt with raisin and cherry upfront. Fades into a semi sweet chocolate aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Wet.

O: Solid, affordable stout. Good for taking a break from big RIS and DIPAs.

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Photo of xoqx
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: The deep coffee colored brew pours to reveal an interesting 3 finger head: the sides were deep brown bubbles while the top was a creamy tan color.

Smell: You can tell you're in for a great malty-sweet treat with this one. There was almost a hint of grassiness too, which seems strange, but the aroma can only be described positively.

Taste: What a lovely, well-structured, full stout. Chocolate and toffee tastes abound throughout the dark malt body yet there are also great hops that really play on the back of the palate.

Mouthfeel: Definitely a full mouthfeel brew, as any stout should be.

Drinkability: I scored this a 3.5 only because I can’t keep drinking stout after stout. Yet I would consider it above average across all beers.

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Photo of 05Harley
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best by 10/31/11

Purchased through Hi-Time Wine Cellars, Costa Mesa CA.

Price - $9.47/sixer

Appearance is close to black with a three fingered creamy lite tan head. Retention is long lasting finally rescinding to floating foam bergs. Nice legs from start to finish.

The aroma is full of roasted malt followed by mocha and unsweetened chocolate. No real presence of sweetness to speak of.

Flavors of roasted malt, unsweetened chocolate and coffee. You can really taste just how burnt the malt is from the start.

The body is light and smooth with a perfect blend of hop bitterness. Low carbonation especially towards the finish. After awhile a fair amount of dryness is felt on the palate.

Overall a great example of an American Stout that hasn't gone overboard. Rich and robust for a 6.4% beer. A more sessionable stout @ 6.4%.

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Photo of TheFlern
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Black with a voluminous tan head that laces very nicely and has good retention.

Smell: Chocolate with a perfect amount of complimenting bitterness from the hops Also, some roasted/smokey malts in the background. As the beer warms more coffee notes come out in the aroma.

Taste: Follows the nose with chocolate up front. The bitterness from the hops really brings out the flavor of the malts and makes it taste like real chocolate. As the beer warms it the malts take on a more coffee like flavor which is, like the chocolate flavor from being cold, accented by the bitterness from the hops. Ahmazing!!!

Mouthfeel: Not overly thick like many stouts seem to be these days. There is a good amount of carbonation and this viscosity is where a drinkable and tasty stout should be.

All in all this is probably the best good old fashioned American Stout on the market. Give it a try ASAP.

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