RateBeer
overall
99
98
style
Brewed by Harviestoun
Style: Old Ale
Alva, Central, Scotland

bottled
common

on tap
common

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 869   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.85   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 240   ABV: 8%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Ola Dubh (or ‘Black Oil’) is a collaboration between Harviestoun Brewery and Highland Park, Distiller of the Year*. It is based on Harviestoun’s award-winning Old Engine Oil. With more than a stylistic nod to the classic Imperial Porters (and Stouts) of the nineteenth century, this deliciously rich, dark, 8% a.b.v. beer is the first ale to be aged in malt whisky casks from a named distillery and, with traceable casks and numbered bottles, the rest with genuine provenance. Ola Dubh will initially be available in three different expressions; the initial release will be of small batches aged in casks formerly used to mature Highland Park 12 Year Old, Highland Park 16 Year Old and Highland Park 30 Year Old. Further variants are planned for the future. Ola Dubh is, in the words of beer afficionado Owen D.L. Barstow: “The most interesting new British beer I have tried in years.”


4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
oteyj (2130) - New Hampshire, USA - JUN 29, 2009
Extremely dark brown pour with zero head. Aroma is smoky peat, some vinous notes, whiskey, and roasty malt. Flavor is chocolate, roast and smoke. Sweet malt is accentuated by the distinct presence of dark fruit, and a very dry burnt roasted malt. Incredible.

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Beerona97 (2397) - Washington, USA - JUN 25, 2009
Pours near black with a tan head. Chocolate and caramel aroma. Creamy feel with flavors of oak, choc, and coffee. Very smooth roast finish.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
henrikb (1259) - Aarhus, DENMARK - JUN 25, 2009
Black body with a fluffy light brown head; Excellent aroma, the whisky is very well integrated as a full sharp background, in front of it there are layers of fruit, oak, caramel and chocolate malt notes, very good; Very pleasant body, very full velvet soft textured, very well balanced, slightly thin but it fit perfectly with the velvet softness, that could easily have become to much if the beer had been to chocolate full and sweet; It dies a little to fast in the finish, there are lots and long whiskey aromas but the fell of the beers disappears a little to fast. Very pleasant and I think the most drinkable of the 3 I have had.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
danielcurtis81 (1519) - San Diego, California, USA - JUN 21, 2009
Bottle. Pours a rich velvety ruby black with a nice deep brown head. Nose of whiskey, chocolate, and caramel. Flavors also of whisky, dark chocolate, smoked sausage and roasty malts. Really smooth and good beer. The other vintage barrels should be good too.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
TimE (4058) - Tokyo, JAPAN - JUN 16, 2009
Decent stuff. Had it against a couple of paradoxes. Much more subtle and balanced. Unlike Paradoxes, it doesn’t try to be too much one way or the other, the impy comes through fine then the whisky shines after that. Good and veyr drinkable.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Luis (5) - ARGENTINA - JUN 14, 2009 does not count
Old Ale? For me its not. I think I was drinking an entire bottle of an Imperial Stout example. And it was amazing! Very black with a pretty creamy head. Nose: roasty, chocolate, alcoholic background, smells treacle too. Flavour :Roasted burnt from black malt, emphyreumatic background, chocolate treacle and alcohol. Balanced bitternes. Palate: I expect more body It was a bit far attenuated but was ok. Whisky notes? Where? No Oak flavours too, that’s only marketing. But what can I say, it’s a heaven top Ale!!!

4.5
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
drpimento (2458) - La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA - JUN 9, 2009
Got this at Sam’s in Chicago last week. Poured with a tan head and some lace. Has very pleasing color highlights. Looking straight through it’s about opaque. Nice roasty, whiskey, malt, chocolate, ripe dark fruit nose. Flavor’s the same but much more full. Really pick up the whisky and a bit of oak. Little sweet on tongue sides and tip. Great body and carbonation. Boozy. Nice long rich finish. No way a session. Great for after dinner or on a dreary day.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
vtafro (4653) - Wayne, New Jersey, USA - JUN 9, 2009
Bottle. This beer was interesting to say the least, wasn’t sure what to expect while opening it, but my curiosity payed off delicious flavors but aroma is ok, alcohol content barely shows through.

3.4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
jonno (2345) - JAPAN - JUN 8, 2009
UPDATED: JUN 10, 2009 Unfortunately a bit thin on the palate. Probably not a robust enough beer for this type of aging. Smokey, malty nose, but not more than I was expecting. Whiskey and chocolate body with a medium bitter finish. Flattered to deceive.

4.3
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
MAP (1133) - Lakewood, Ohio, USA - JUN 3, 2009
Bottle purchased at Buckeye Beer Engine. I have been sitting on the 30 and 12 versions for quite a while now, so I decided to go out and get a 12 to try and see if I want to hold off on the other 2, or dive right in. The aroma of this right off the bat was something else. It reminded me of some good cured olives. The pour is a deep dark black which required a rough pour to give it a wonderful thick cream head on top. The aroma, once my nose got right up next to the beer is very smokey, lots of character is given off from the barrels, so much so that there robust smokey malt flavors from the Highland Scotch actually come through here. Jesus, it has been years since I have had Scotch, but this brings me back. The rest of this beer is just a huge malt profile that has been put to bed. It is so smooth that it just goes down so smooth. The alcohol is hidden completely, and the chocolaty malt flavors just get to come in like none other. This has adopted the barrel conditioning better, and more drastically, than any other beer I can think of.


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