Habitat: Conifer forests
Conservation Status: Not of concern
Russula adusta is a member of the subgenus Compactae, which includes relatively large, dense, hard-fleshed mushrooms that are white to brownish and often blacken in age. R. adusta blackens only slightly, and the flesh pinkens lightly when cut. The cap is brownish to grayish (adust is Latin for burned or tanned), relatively shiny, and the odor is said to approximate that of empty wine barrels (although this odor has not been noticed in PNW collections). The spores are white and the taste is mild. It grows with conifers.
R. densifolia (Secretan) Gillet is very similar, with more white in the cap, reddening flesh, perhaps a more acrid taste, and perhaps slightly yellowish spores. R. albonigra (Krombholz) Fries is whiter at first, and then turns black without reddening, with the gills often the last part to blacken.