Black Butte Porter | Deschutes Brewery

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Black Butte PorterBlack Butte Porter
6,288 Ratings
Black Butte PorterBlack Butte Porter

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Alc. by Vol.: 5.2%
IBUs: 30

192 calories per 12 oz serving

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,288 |  Reviews: 1,602
Photo of slyke
4.12/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

Appearance: Deep, opaque brown in color with a 1/2 inch tan head that fades in a few minutes.

Smell: Roasty, coffee aroma, yum.

Taste: Very flavorful. A nice roasted malt flavor that dominates the taste with a crisp finish.

Mouthfeel: Good. Just what you'd expect from the style. Not too light, not overwhelming.

Drinkability: Very good. I could see sipping a few of these on a cold afternoon. For the warmer months, this would be a good beer to have in place of coffee with dessert.


 569 characters

Photo of Hunter
3.56/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours black, although shades of deep ruby show up under strong light. Thick frothy head of tan bubbles, good lacing effects.

Aroma: Notes of chocolate, cola, cherries and smoke. Very smooth.

Taste: Much smoother than most porters. Initial hit of smoked barley gives way to subtle cola, mocha overtones.

Mouthfeel is much lighter and smoother than expected. Still the cloying aftertatse typical of the style but an agreeable one. Call this porter light if you must but a very nice dark beer that won't scare off your Corona-swilling buddies.

 562 characters

Photo of Noxious26
4.37/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass.

Pours out dark cherry in colour. Almost black, but slightly red. Head is a dark beige and quite dense.

Aroma is malty and sweet with undertones that are fruity.

The mouthfeel is full, thick and rich. Somewhat chewy.

I think I started drinking this too cold, because as the beer warmed the flavours showed up much better. Flavour is toasted/burnt and somewhat coffee. Slightly hoppy for a nice balance. Aftertaste is of burnt sugar. Reminds me of roasting marshmellows, atleast the burnt ones, only not THAT sweet.

Overall this is a very good porter. Nothing about it really WOWed me, but it is truly very solid. The appearance suffers slightly because the head didn't stick around as long as most porters. It's quite drinkable, but the burnt flavour would eventually have me craving something lighter to cleanse my palate. Whether you are a fan of porters or not, this is one you should definitely try.

 956 characters

Photo of MrNuggets
4.89/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Oh Porter
Oh Porter,
Such fine service you sell.
I'll tip you a quarter
for work done so well.

"But what of this pail
delivered to you?
So full of dark ale,
I'd like some too!

Weakened by labour
my burden will stay.
A strong drink to savour
sustains me all day.

That smooth easy finish
refreshes me so.
See my mug deminish?
Back to work I go!"

Applaud & propel
make your stress shorter.
Goodbye & farewell,
Oh Porter
Oh Porter

 461 characters

Photo of JohnfromDublin
3.94/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted on 27th May 2005, best by just in date. Note change of label from one shown in these pages. Poured nice matt dark chocolate colour with a nice tan head. Smell was very good, a terrific sensation of burnt coffee beans and dark chocolate. Savoured this aroma for a while. Head started to settle, but a swirl of the glass brought a decent covering back. Taste was almost as good as the smell, and unusually the smells smelled were then confirmed in the tasting. Nice buttery mouthfeel that lingered. Very nice porter, not sure about being a session beer.

 558 characters

Photo of chrisms86
3.34/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours very dark with a thin, frothy layer of head. Only with a bright light source can you just barely see some transperency.

Smells weakly of chocolate and toffee. After the first few sips I was really loving this beer, but towards the end she turned on me. The thin mouthfeel had me craving some Obsidian Stout. This porter has a great taste but it is not strong enough, it feels somewhat watered down.

With that said, this is a very drinkable beer. Not something that I'd swish around my mouth of a second or two, because of the toned down taste, but this is the kind of brew that you'll buy a six pack of and before you know it there are six empty bottles in front of you.

A good beer, but kind of an annoying one because it is bordering on being great, leaving something to be desired. I've focused more on the weaknesses of the beer but do be aware of the scores I gave it, it is still recommended. One of the better porters I have had. I've just been spoiled by the Obsidian.

 992 characters

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

Pours a deep, very dark ruby/brown with a smallish tan head that doesn't last very long. Appealing nose of rich roasted malt, chocolate, brown sugar, and a slight earthy characteristic. Palate is redolent of toasted malt up front, with a touch of bitter hops mid-palate before finishing with a subtly sweet lingering taste of caramel malt. Sturdy body is good for the style, although a little foam develops in the back of the mouth. One of the few dark beers that I'll stick with for a whole session - I could drink this all day. Too bad I only have my one six-pack brought back from Oregon, so I have to ration wisely.

 619 characters

Photo of Brian700
3.45/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured a nice dark ruby color. Almost black but you can see its not. The had is a tan color and sticks around for a while. There was some decent lacing while I had this one. I only had one bottle of this so I am assuming I had a good bottle and poured it well.
The mouthfeel was creamy but the taste isn't really anything great. It taste like it was headed in the right direction but it has a bitterness that seems odd...sort of like a bad pot of coffee. It isn't terrible but out of all the beers from deschutes, I definately would leave this one on the shelf.

 568 characters

Photo of santoslhalper
2.31/5  rDev -44.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Appearence: Poured a simple dark ruby with an incredible fizzy foamy beige head.

Smell: There are vague smells of chocolate and toasted nuts, but honestly there's not a whole lot to sniff.

Taste and Mouthfeel: The taste consists of a really weird, almost moth ball flavored malts combined with an inappropriate hop bitterness at the end. There are no real strong, bold or even interesting quialities to the flavor. The mouthfeel is just a tiny bit creamy.

Drinkability and Overall: Dissapointing!! I loved their Obsidian Stout, but this one just wasn't for me. It just tasted incredibly bland and boring.

 613 characters

Photo of troutmask96
3.72/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This is what a great porter should be. Pours night-black, with very little head. Smell is of roasted coffee, chocolate, molasses, and raisins. A little carbonated for my liking, but no alcoholic aftertaste. Oh, so smooth! One of the only porters I've found that can be consumed in multiples...

 293 characters

Photo of IceAce
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Twelve ounce bottle with a best-by date of 04/06/05

With a name like Black Butte, one shouldn't be surprised that the description of this porter is jet black. The collar of foam is a medium tan and the collapsed area shows approximately 80% lacing. The nose is almost equal parts coffee and chocolate with a slight yeast note as a backdrop.

Entry of this brew begins with a light CO² scrub of the tip and sides of the tongue. Midtaste hits the rear of the tongue with coffee, with the chocolate following just a little further back in the throat. Finish contains a nice clean hop note and a slow roasted malt fade.

While this brew is plenty chewy, the mouthfeel is a touch watery and thin...seemingly the only drawback to this black gold. Great paired with smoky sausage or BBQ.

 788 characters

Photo of KoG
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've always liked the Deschutes bottles, I don't know why. This one contained a dark bubbly porter that had agood head, stuck around for the entire consumption as it was fed by active cabbonation streams. Good lacing is nice and sticky

Smell is sweet and grainy with a slight hop presence giving it a refreshing aroma. Subtle chocolate comes through as well.

Taste is well balanced with vanilla and caramel hints. Starts out smooth and mellow and fades to a sweet dark malt before leaving the palate with a touch of hop bitterness and chocolate appeal.

Very easy to drink and at 5.2%( on the bottle) it would make a very nice session brew.

 648 characters

Photo of watermelonman
4.21/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This arrived nearly black with faint hints of dark ruby. There's very little head, but what was there lasted very well and left a nice curtain of lace.

The smell was nice but faint. The taste was full of very satisfying flavor. Roasted malts and chocolate make themselves known in a very subtle fashion.

This is a very good beer, all the way around.

 355 characters

Photo of germaniac
3.88/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black, which makes sense, given the geological formation it's named after. Smells of malt, with a dash of chocolate sweetness. Tastes of roasted malt, coffee. Smooth, with just a little robust muscle to make it interesting. One to remember when the need for a good porter hits.

 283 characters

Photo of SBPCGuru
3.68/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up in Oregon last weekend, freshness date on bottle of 02/10/05. Poured dark black with 1/2" of head. Head disappeared after 5 minutes during this tasting. Left dots of lacing down the side of my tulip glass. Tasted of roasted malt with a slight chocolate presence. Taste of beer was the same from the time i drank it until I was left with an empty palate. Would definately drink this one all night long. Definately a Butte above the rest.

 451 characters

Photo of yemenmocha
3.98/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Lives up to it's name. Definitely black. Opaque, even in a well lit room. Light tan head retains well.

Aroma is roasty and bready, perhaps brown ale baked beer bread. I detect a hint of marshmallow smores sweetness in the aroma.

On the palate the malt and hops mingle well, neither predominates over the other. Big roasty malt, yes, but a nice hop tang accompanies to remind you this beer does have balance.

Medium to light bodied, not as thick as you might expect from a porter. However, to me this yields a more drinkable porter which can be a virtue to some.

 572 characters

Photo of mschofield
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep brown with some yeast floaties, topped with a two finger creamy tan head, leaves webs of lacing.
Coffee, floral aroma, a touch of chocolate.
Very robust taste, a bit tingly on the lips, roasty, coffee, chocolate, burnt bread, crystal malt, cracker, a bit acrid.
Medium-full bodied, great drinkability.

 317 characters

Photo of HochFliegen
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black Butte Porter is well black. With a slight hint of a deep ruby color. A thick and creamy tan colored head formed when I poured. It stayed untill the last pull and it laced a fair amount while I enjoyed this tasty brew.
The smell is strong with chocolate malt with some coffee in the background. The aroma is quite pronounced and adds to the drinking experience of this porter.
On first taste it seems a bit rough( I like it) and harsh like I think a porter should be. Lots of chocolate and burnt coffee flavor which lingers in the taste buds. There is also a tart of sourness to the taste which is not unpleasent but to my surprise enjoyable and adds to the complexity and robustness of the flavor. Leaves my mouth watering for more.
Not to thick in the mouthfeel but just enough to be a good finish to a tasting session.

 831 characters

Photo of marcobrau
3.88/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one starts out with a great aroma of dark roasted grains (chocolate and coffee) with a bit of a lactic note, but it doesn't bother me. The color is good: not too dark (like the porter I just homebrewed); dark brown and ruby. The complexity of the malt flavors, bits of chocolate, rich caramel make for a very tasty porter. The hops are in the background with this one, they play a supporting role, making this beer nice and balanced. The body is perfect, not too thin, or too full. There is slight tart character that really makes this porter enjoyable. Too many ales are I try these days are too clean tasting. It's nice to get a little yeast flavor once in awhile, and this beer delivers.

 695 characters

Photo of RenoZymurgist
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a clear, dark burgundy almost black, brew with a inch and a half thick off white head that subsided to a thin film. The aroma is a beautiful balance of sharp black malts that give a burnt coffee impression. The flavor is clean and american in style but the brew pushes the boundaries with a barely perceptible hop bitterness that is immediatly overtaken by the black malt dryness. A smooth carmel malt sweetness balances the astrigency of the black malt but the dominating flavor is the black malt which is there on the inital taste and lingers on the tongue in the finish. I believe this to be an excellent example of a porter and it is one which helped me to formulate my personal definition of the porter style. The mouthfeel is light and smooth due to very little carbonic bite from the bottle conditioning. An excellent session beer this porter has a very enjoyable flavor that would be easy to drink pint after pint.

 929 characters

Photo of GuinnessSmurf
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: darkest brown body with a nice ruby red tones towards the bottom of the glass. It pours initially with a fluffy head but it quickly disolves.

Smell: Smell has chocolate and roasted malts, and a somewhat salty smell too.

Taste: Three part flavor here. Onset is very mild, milky, creamy. Next it becomes sort of tangy (sweet/sour). Then it quicky evens out and kicks in that chocolate malt flavor to the finish.

Mouthfeel: This is a very smooth beer, but the body lacks the weight that I look for in a porter. The flavor is very good and might be better enjoyed in a fuller bodied beer. On the other hand, a more slender body won't fill you up as quickly, so this may increase the drinkability for some.

 723 characters

Photo of Thrasher
4.06/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A deep ruby brown with giant, pillowy head and lots of lace; a very attractive beer. Big sweet malts are the name of the game, with flavors and aromas of caramel, burnt bread, molasses, brown sugar, pumpernickel, gingerbread, and a minty herbal hopness. The finish is decisive and warming. While the beer lacks the roastiness of some porters, it's got a lot of malt flavor in it, and should satisfy those who love amber or old ales. The hops are pretty mild, providing a slight mint quality that offsets the chocolatey malts. While the mouthfeel can at times seem soft and pillowy, like the head, at other times it reveals a certain wateryness. This aids drinkability though. Black Butte remains a beer for all occasions, for good weather or bad. I prefer this store-bought in a bottle as opposed to draft at a bar, but that may be because I can control certain things: temperature, amount of head, etc.

 903 characters

Photo of gbontrag
3.85/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ruby, dark ruby. Tan boil fizzes out with little retention.
I smell burnt timber, dried fruits cooking on a wood-fired stovetop, and cast iron.
Taste smoked peat; cast iron skillet lickin’ good; burnt biscuits over a fire; some old staw. Nice porter brings to mind an image of an old-fashioned road side tavern filled with porters unloading horses, eating bad tavern food, and drinking decent beer. Lots of quaffable qualities to this beer.

 443 characters

Photo of Rastacouere
3.46/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deep dark brown body, smallish diminishing dark beige head. Hops are quite subdued in this one. Very malty aroma. Notes of vanilla, roasted barley. Coffee-chocolate flavors. Finish is light, roasty and sweet (lips sticking together after a minute or 2) It’s certainly well focused on malt, but remains a bit chocolatey sweet ultimately. Fairly mild from beginning to the end which is a nice change of pace at times rather than hop bombs, but its character suffers and just leaves the impression of a straightforward well made porter. Light to medium bodied, medium carbonation. Not quite as great as expected, but of course highly drinkable etc.

 646 characters

Photo of aracauna
3.72/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Very dark brown with a noisy khaki head that dissipates quickly. The aroma has strong notes of anise and chocolate with just a touch of smoke. The flavor is nicely roasty and slightly smokey (this would go great with grilled steaks or burgers). The body is a bit thin and soda bubbly, but not enough to be irritating.

 317 characters

Black Butte Porter from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 4.18 out of 5 with 6,288 ratings