Deschutes Obsidian Stout

Obsidian Stout
Deschutes Brewery
Bend, Oregon
IBU's: 55
Alcohol Content: 6.4%

I was thinking about this beer the other day, the Obsidian Stout from Deschutes, and I realized that even though I've gone through several six packs over the past couple of years I have NEVER reviewed it!  To me, this is a pretty common beer, but I realize for some people (especially East Coasters) this may be a bit harder to find.  Which is a pity...

It's been almost a year since I've formally reviewed anything from Deschutes Brewery.  I've already reviewed their Mirror Pond Ale, Black Butte Porter, their wonderful seasonal beer Jubelale, and one of my favorite beers of all time, The Abyss.  But this, this is their standard stout.  
The Obsidian Stout comes in at a respectable 6.4% alcohol and 55 IBU's.  It pours a thick, dense blackish brown with a good solid dark tan head.  Aromas are rich and full of dark roasted espresso beans, overtoasted malt, and molasses.  Tasting brings a pleasantly thick, creamy mouthfilling bouquet of French Roast coffee, burnt toast, dark caramel, toffee, and bittersweet chocolate followed by a surprising bit of earthy, bitter hops.

Now this is a stout.  

This is a big, bitter, dark and brooding, verging on being burnt-tasting stout.  And I love it.  This is what I think of when I think of stouts, not that mild Guinness stuff.  Granted, I still prefer Imperial Stouts (and their Abyss is a classic one), but for a regular stout, this pretty much sets the bar.  Like I said, I've gone through several sixers of this beer over the last couple of years in between tasting all the other beers, wines, and liquors here on the site and the ones I've tried without reviewing.  It's one of the few beers I've bought repeatedly.

The only thing I wish is that Deschutes would come out with an Imperial Obsidian Stout.  Maybe a brother beer for their wonderful Abyss.  Afterall, they have a special version of their Black Butte Porter, so why not this one?  You hear me, Deschutes Brewery people?!  Bob wants an Imperial Obsidian Stout and he wants it now! :)

Drink This: if you want what I consider to be a perfect example of an American Stout.
Don't Drink This: if you're looking for a watery light beer.



  1. I ran across this review while searching for reviews Cameron's Obsidian Imperial Porter made in Ontario Canada. It is by far the thickest darkest beer I have ever tasted. Not quite as bitter as a stout. But that could be due to the fact that it was aged in Jamaican rum casks for 7 months. This is the second rum cask aged beer that I have tried, the first being from a British company called Innis and Gunn. Since this Obsidian clocked in at 9.2% I thought I would try it in a shandy using a half and half ratio. The dilution did virtually nothing to the darkness :). The sweetness of the ginger ale (the brand I like is not as sweet as many others) brought out the molasses flavours.

    I am not a beer connoisseur by any stretch of the imagination. But I am developing a taste for what is good and what is not so good. And Cameron's oak aged Obsidian Porter is good.


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