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RATINGS: 904   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.73/5   SEASONAL: Autumn   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
A decadent Oatmeal Stout brimming with cocoa and espresso aromas. This beer features a rich, dark chocolate and roasted coffee flavor with a creamy mouth feel and wonderfully dry finish. The addition of U.S. grown fuggles hops contributes the perfect amount of bitterness to this exceptionally balanced beer.

lucklys' rating

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
lucklys (62) - Chandler, Arizona, USA - APR 11, 2011
The Velvet Merlin poured a velvety dark chocolate brown with no visible carbonation; sparkling ruby highlights shone from the liquid near the bottom of the glass when situated in front of the light. Through a tame pour, a nice 3-finger thick head of fallow colored foam built and held with great retention and slowly melted into a creamy softness. It left minimal threads of clean beige lacing along the glass. * * * In the nose, there was a good amount of thick dark chocolate, lightly roasted coffee, gently toasted malts, hints of a dark caramel toffee, and dusty oatmeal. The aroma was slightly bitter, but also quite sweet, and a very faint vanilla aroma rose as it warmed and aided in keeping the overall scent on the smoother side. There was nothing complex or intimidating about Merlin’s scent, and I found it to be much lighter than most other stouts, oatmeal or not. With all of the bitter-sweetness and smoothness emanating from the nose, however, I was really looking forward to trying it. * * * Unfortunately, the first few sips tasted primarily of a chalky burnt coffee and were rather unappealing, but after a few more swallows, the chalkiness smoothed into a bittersweet chocolate covered in dusty oats. Toasted malts and something charred came up a little later in the background and lasted throughout the drink, hints of a caramel toffee and wood notes also became present, but stayed fairly well hidden. The aroma was definitely more promising than the taste, what with the body being a little on the thinner side with a moderate amount of carbonation – which kept it creamy, but also slightly diluted in mouthfeel. There was virtually no aftertaste due to the thinness of the beer, and it left my mouth pretty dry and hoping for more. Overall, it was a little more acrid than I would have liked, especially after distinguishing all of the sweet smells, but I guess that comes with the territory. I also would have liked to see it with a little more body, but with the low alcohol (5.50%) and even lower IBUs (30) , it was a fairly quaffable stout…just not one of my favorites. I’m a fan of many of Firestone Walker’s other delicious brews, so I’m a little disappointed that this wasn’t as good as I expected. Perhaps next time I’ll have to try it during the fall or winter, as it may just be because it’s 6 months old and fading.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Cokemonkey11 (505) - - SEP 20, 2016
Keg, half American pint. Pours creamy guinness with a medium tan foam subsiding average slow. Scent is sugary cake and Porter yeast. Taste is guinness but lighter and sweeter. Great. Finish is a little bitter bite? Not pure beer maybe.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
ehaak26 (84) - - AUG 21, 2016
12 oz bottle. Aroma is chocolate and coffee. Really nice mouth feel. Probably my favorite oatmeal stout to date.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
wombat23 (688) - Texas, USA - AUG 18, 2016
Shared 12 oz. bottle. Dark brown with a beige head. Aroma of dark malts, coffee, and chocolate. Similar taste. Very good.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 13/20
darbeer75 (519) - Round Rock, Texas, USA - AUG 4, 2016
Aroma: chocolatey and coffee; malty; Appearance: extremely dark ruby red with thin, white head that dissipates quickly; Taste: very smooth and rich; more complex than the average stout; Palate; heavy body with smooth, malty finish; Overall: quite good; would buy again.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Scopey (12505) - Croydon, Greater London, ENGLAND - JUL 7, 2016
Keg at BD Soho. It pours jet black with a substantial tan head. The aroma is rich roasted malt, coffee, liquorice, umami, toasted sesame seeds, cacao nibs and some toffee. The taste is smooth, rich roasted malt, dark chocolate, peppery spice, coffee grounds, earth and toasted spice. The finish is very smooth. Medium body, moderate carbonation and creamy mouth - feel. Well rounded and rather flavoursome. A classy stout.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
BeerViking (4141) - Brentford, Greater London, ENGLAND - JUL 5, 2016
Keg at Brewdog Soho, jet black with a fine crema and coffee-cocoa aromas. Smooth and velvety, then a roasty bitterness rolls in. More cocoa and coffee, a little toasted red fruit, touches of leather and tobacco, and a little wintergreen in the lightly burnt-bitter finish.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
weordie (833) - Tyne & Wear, ENGLAND - JUL 4, 2016
Pours black as Donald trumps soul but without his head. Aroma is strong coffee and hickory. My fav aroma. A strong coffee and hickory flavour too with a real smooth finish. Love it

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Stuu666 (10594) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - JUL 4, 2016
Keg at brewdog Edinburgh. Pours deep brown, nose is toffee, chocolate, roasted, taste is sweet, chocolate, toffee, dry.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
GlasgowTAD (1353) - Glasgow, SCOTLAND - JUL 4, 2016
Keg at Doghouse. Pours clear brown with a medium khaki head which recedes to a layer of minute suspended bubbles. Aroma is cocoa, roast coffee, vanilla, oak, wafer and some dark berries. Taste is cocoa bitter, roast malts, hint of vanilla sweet, medium acidic berries throughout. Medium body.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
teorn88 (6459) - Out of the EU, Greater London, ENGLAND - JUL 4, 2016
Keg at BD Shoreditch. It pours a dark brown color with a large beige head. Aroma is rich roasty dry with notes of dark chocolate, espresso, roasted malts and burnt wood. Taste is also dry and lightly smokey roasty with a light tangy red berries finish. More notes of espresso, dark chocolate, burnt wood and caramel. Medium to full bodied with silky texture and good carbonation. Overall, very nice

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