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: 3,809
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 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 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 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 DavidRandall
4.54/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sorry for a not very helpful review but, this is a great stout. I had it at a local small chain of bars called Bailey's and it was $2. pints on Tuesday. I'll take another.
Dark with a dark caramel color to the foam head, about a half inch. I was warned about the alcohol flavor but it was not prominent. Mild coffee and chocolate flavors.

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

Serving type: 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass

Pours a jet black color. Smells of dark chocolate, coffee grounds, toasted nuts, slight alcohol scents, and toasted biscuit. Taste reflects the smell wonderfully with great coffee ground and bitter chocolate flavors, that ends with a nice malt/bread sweetness. Feel is thick and slightly creamy with below average carbonation that works with the flavor profile. Overall, this is a very good stout with great coffee and dark chocolate characteristics.

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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 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 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 AmishLightning
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Looks: Two fingered head that stayed around a decent amount of time. Black as night as expected. The lacing that was left on the glass gave a good finish towards the end of the beer.

Scent: Semi-Sweet chocolates are the most prevalent smell. There is a hint of maltiness which adds a good balance, but I didn't notice any coffee or bittering scents at all.

Taste: This was a surprise for me because I thought the taste did not follow the smell much at all. I mostly tasted a powerful coffee with hints of very dark chocolate flavors. This was not sweet at all. The lack of sweetness did not bother me too much, but I would have liked to see some sweets at some point in the taste. Instead, the beer finished as is started with no flavor profile to change over time. This is the biggest reason I rated taste at a 4/5 instead of higher. I feel that if I wanted to have seen different flavors appear as the beer warmed up or as it sat in my mouth.

Mouthfeel: Smooth for sure with a medium body. I would have liked less carbonation but that is really nickpicking. No oily feeling afterwards, not a bad mouthfeel.

Overall: I liked this one, but I do not think that it lived up to its hype. I will have to revisit and review again some time.

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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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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 joedon
4.51/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Perfectly opaque black beer with a creamy tan head. Aroma of dark fruit, licorice, roasted malt.

Taste is perfect! Rich malty sweetness and a good amount of roasted-coffee/barley notes. Exceptionally smooth [Nitro!] and has a dark toasty, slightly bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel also perfect. Almost like a dessert custard-thats how smooth and creamy this stout is. Drinkability was outstanding for a pretty big beer.

I would love to have more of this but I never see it in the midwest.

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Photo of Janderson91
4.16/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by 03/23/11 printed on bottle. Enjoyed on 03/02/11. Really looking forward to another one from Deschutes.

A - Looks great. Big tan two finger head that leaves great lacing as I drink. Pitch black and opaque, no light whatsoever gets through even around the edges.

S - The aroma holds some roasted malts, chocolate, and a light hoppiness. Also a faint coffee smell to it as well.

T - Nice mixture between some roasted malts and sweet chocolate flavor. Good coffee and hop bitterness in the background. Finish is pretty dry, with a lingering milky chocolate/coffee flavor.

M/D - Mouthfeel is good, medium bodied, the carbonation may be a little high. Quite drinkable, delicious beer.

Another good one from Deschutes, only my second offering from them. Looking forward to more!

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Photo of the_awesometeer
3.96/5  rDev -5.9%

Appearance - Pitch black, with a very nice foamy head, which laces glass the whole way down.

Smell - Very strong roasted smell, a hint of coffee and chocolate

Mouthfeel - Great mouthfeel, nice thick beer, smooth to drink, and I enjoy the foamy head that stayed throughout most of the beer.

Taste - Very strong roasted flavor. It does have nice coffee flavor as well. Lastly there is a small hint of chocolate but it was not very strong.

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Obsidian Stout from Deschutes Brewery
4.21 out of 5 based on 3,809 ratings.
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