Black Butte XXI | Deschutes Brewery

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Black Butte XXIBlack Butte XXI
580 Ratings
Black Butte XXIBlack Butte XXI

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Released June 2009.

Similar recipe and strength to Black Butte XX (2008), "enhanced by adding some Theo's Chocolate cocoa nibs from Seattle, dry-hopping it with 100 pounds of Bellatazza's locally roasted coffee, and then aging a portion of it in Stranahan's Colorado whiskey barrels."

Added by squaremile on 07-03-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 580 |  Reviews: 377
Photo of t2grogan
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Tyecko
4.56/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of HollyHops
4/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

For being over five years old, the appearance holds up pretty well, with a short khaki-brown head disappearing to fine lace quickly. In the glass, it's an oily black hole which no light can penetrate.

Soft, but complex nose of medium roast coffee, 50% semi-sweet chocolate, and dark, dried fruit like raisins set against a faint trace of wood and whiskey. Rich, dark caramels as it warms.

The taste is where the aging really pays off. The ABV is very mellow, hiding in the background of the taste. The malts are definitely roasted, but not at all bitter. Hints of dark, bitter chocolate contrast with an almost-burnt caramel sweetness that finds traces of a whiskey shot in the finish. This could be cold Irish coffee.

Definitely a sipping beer. The structure is so thoroughly blended and softened, it might be a tad long in the tooth, but it's still a very delicious approach to a specialty porter.

 909 characters

Photo of Brewski
4.2/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of greg4579
4/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of RyanTheLion13
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of smutty33
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of BigBry
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

22oz bottle, black wax covered cap.
21st Birthday Reserve. Porter brewed with chocolate beans and coffee added with 20% aged in bourbon barrels.

Rich, dark and smooth. Dark, oily black with a thick brown head.
Roasted grained, coffee, and a whiff of bourbon.
Dark roast flavour, coffee and bitter chocolate, a bit of vanilla.
Full body, yet still smooth and creamy. Warming alcohol to finish.
Wish I would have grabbed more than one.

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Photo of Justin-m
3.6/5  rDev -18%

Photo of cbutova
4.24/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed during the last week when out of service area/Wifi in WY/UT. Full phone notes taken at the Beer Hive in Salt Lake City, UT. Really nice to see a five year vintage on the bottle list in SLC.

A- Bomber poured to two snifters with a motor oil pitch black body. A dark brown head rises atop the beer to about a finger with a frothy silky consistency. The cap falls to a small ring and lacing is just spotty but it is a vintage, high alcohol BA brew.

S- Smoothed out by noticeable age but plenty of strong aromas come off the top still. Age brings some oxidation and Old Ale caramel raisin feel with notes of dark roast grains, bourbon whiskey, cocoa and some coffee.

T- The age is a bit more secondary here as more seems to open up. The barrel influence feels greater with a medium strength whiskey and toasted oak feel, slight vanilla sweetness. Roast grains, dark cocoa powder, old coffee, cereal grain, caramel, oxidized raisin feel, vinous fruit and toast all come in strong to form a melded base. Coffee lingers especially in the after taste.

MF- Semi-thick bodied but it has definitely lost some texture with age but retains some creaminess. Carbonation is still at a silky medium-low level and it all hits the palate smoothly. Finishes with some alcohol warmth.

For being a couple years old it holds up quite well with some notes of age and oxidation overshadowed by a big Porter and some nice barrel influence. This was an all time want and I got it a few years late but this has held up to age as well as any dark nonsours I have had.

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4/5  rDev -8.9%

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Black Butte XXI from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 4.39 out of 5 with 580 ratings