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: 882   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.85   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 240   ABV: 8%
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.”


KapitiCritique's rating

4.4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
KapitiCritique (375) - Xincheng, Henan Province, - DEC 2, 2011
Nose is very much molasses, very strong, like I am actually smelling molasses, there are some roasted grains evident as well, reminiscent of Highland Park 12-Year Old Single Malt, it gets smokier as it approaches room temperature; pours black tar with a hint of green, totally opaque, thick but no head to speak of and the lacing is translucent but very thick. May have been chilled too long; Taste is very big, very strong slightly sweet, and tart, sour finish, sprightly carbonation but it is fading fast; Palate is heavy, good carbonation, textrue is thick, oily, sticky and creamy - go figure; OVERALL; Overpriced. And, at this price I’d rather have the Highland Park. But, it is very good. Next time I will try this room temperature. I hear the head is impressive


3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
ChtiBreizh (215) - Rennes, FRANCE - AUG 31, 2015
Black with a smallish head, no retention nor lacings. Roasted malts, bitter burnt coffee, bitter milk chocolate. Little sweet with a dry and gently sour finish. I hardly feel any whisky. Very soft carbonation, oily to syrupy, full bodied. OK but nothing special.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
alex_leit (654) - Minsk, BELARUS - AUG 30, 2015
33 cl bottle #17026 (sept. 2014). Opaque, almost black color with tan foam. Aroma: vanilla, oak, smoked malt, whisky, bacon, caramel malt, biscuit. Taste: sweetish malt and caramel, smoked, cold coffee, chocolate, mild bitterness blends whisky, oak, hops. Like!

2.9
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
procraste (198) - FRANCE - AUG 25, 2015
Nez un peu trouble et moins chocolaté que la version 16 ans; clairement, ça sent le viandox ou le corned beef: ce qui n’est pas un problème en soit ... Tourbe et chocolat donc ... Plus de fraîcheur que la 16 ans. De la cardamone. Mieux donc mais toujours pas si exceptionnel. Pas très équilibrée qui plus est; et à nouveau, en se réchauffant dans le verre, se déprécie plus que ne s’améliore.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
mmmbeer (1334) - Austin, Texas, USA - AUG 18, 2015
10 oz. serve at Saucer- near perfect black in color, thin tan head atop the surface. Aroma of plums and scotch- alright. Hits the mouth with a medium body, malt tastes like it was burnt along with the sugar but at least it plays well off of each other, scotch in the middle and end. It worked too!

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Franksv6 (577) - Tiel, NETHERLANDS - AUG 15, 2015
Unclear black beer with a small beige head. Taste is coffee, lots of wood, rauch, caramel, wiskey. Great beer nice

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Tognetta (391) - Campinas, BRAZIL - AUG 3, 2015
Totalmente negra, aspecto licoroso, espuma marrom de baixa formação, pouca persistência. Aroma em ordem de intensidade: defumado, amadeirado, chocolate, alcoólico, café, whisky não tão notável. Paladar de médio amargor torrado, seguindo o aroma defumado, café mais intenso do que no aroma . Corpo licoroso, carbonatação baixa. Aftertaste duradouro, mantendo as impressões iniciais de defumado e torrado. É uma boa cerveja, mas esperava um pouco mais.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
ciocanelu (190) - Timisoara, ROMANIA - AUG 3, 2015
Very dark color, almost black, with just a bit of dark head. Aroma is not too intense, just some caramel and dark fruit notes, especially figs. Taste is also more faint compared to the other versions. Definitely the weakest of the Ola Dubh bunch, but still a very good, complex beer. What I enjoy most from the series is the strong fig character and the very balanced, complex taste.

4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
JefVerstraete (2141) - Ghent, BELGIUM - JUL 27, 2015
Bottle from Deconinck, Vichte. Dark brown beer, beige foam. Medium carbonation. Dark fruit, whisky. Sweet vanilla notes, light bitter finish. Very well balanced. Wonderfull beer.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
PartyFowle (669) - - JUL 16, 2015
An old ale aged in whiskey casks, you say? Color me intrigued. And color the beer itself a nearly impenetrably black, though a lift up to the lights does reveal the faintest streaks of brilliant crimson. A pretty aggressive pour begets a one-finger head with a nice, cocoa powder colored head. Sadly, however, the crown is quickly gone, leaving just a ring in its wake. Ah, scotch. Scotchy scotch scotch. The aroma is a celebration of the spirit, balanced with notes of dark chocolate as well as some sweeter fruity esters: currants, plums. A slight alcohol burn is also there, but it’s muted and blended nicely. I’d say the scotch is even more subdued in the flavor than in the nose, but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, in interacts very well with the a heavy dark fruit sweetness. Amazing coffee notes from the malt hit at the finish and linger in the back of the throat for a while after the swallow. The mouthfeel seems to be the only downside to this beer. You would expect a brew whose name translates to "black oil" to be a little more viscous. The liquid feels creamy, sure, but a little more body would be appreciated. However, I could (and intend to) sip this for the next hour.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Travlr (16422) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - JUL 15, 2015
Bottle. Black hole black. Aroma has burnt licorice, leather, burnt espresso, overripe plums. Taste is rich, dark fruit, roasty, oily mouthfeel. Booze. Incredibly complex sipper.


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