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

bottled
common

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 654   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.85   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.”


3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
henrikb (1259) - Aarhus, DENMARK - JUL 8, 2008
Black body and a dark brown head; Good but the aroma could be bigger, all the right and very pleasant aromas but somehow the nose doesn’t know if if really wants to be a whiskey barrel aged beer or not; Super soft very pleasant body, maybe it is the fact that it is very pleasant that is wrong an old ale should not be very pleasant, it should be pleasant and very complex and hard to understand (imo of cause); Warm soft and aroma and texture in finish, again it is to simple good and not aggressive enough. A hard rating of a very good beer, Thanks.

4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
mgumby10 (1856) - Jupiter, Florida, USA - JUL 5, 2008
Pours pretty jet black, with a small, quickly dispersing, light brown head. The smell is rich with caramel cream, light peat, molasses, gingerbread, dark fruit, and mild chocolate. Really dug that nose. The flavor was a little heavier on the peat and smoke than the nose let on, although not too burning or up front. Left some nice heat in the finish however. The flavor was of burnt malts and dark fruit mixing with mild chocolate bitterness and woodsy oak. Well carbonated, more than I expected. The finish was a little fruity sweet, with the mild chocolate notes becoming apparent a bit. Very nice brew indeed.

4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
LooseCannon (938) - Norfolk, Virginia, USA - JUL 4, 2008
11.2oz bottle, Bottle No & date 03749/Sept 2007. Pours pitch black in color with thin brown head. Aroma sweet, dark chocolate and roasted malt. Taste chocolate, Scotch, coffee and bitter sweet with bitter and dry finish.

4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
MartinT (8024) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JUL 3, 2008
My Bottom Line:
Sublime peat smoke rises from the dark chocolate, vanilla and licorice dessert bestowed upon the ecstatic tastebuds in this rich, complex and highly original Old Ale.

Further Personal Perceptions:
-A veil of foam lingers atop the pitch blackness.
-The salty component from the highly peated barrel alters the vanilla and chocolate aspect of the malt sweetness and takes it into sweet soy realms.
-The roastiness also takes the form of charred wood at times.
-There is barely any alcohol showing in this flavor profile.
-The smoky and roasty finish is bitter and enduring, but not too much as to bother the tastebuds.
-The body is corpulent and is easily perceptible due to the relaxed carbonation.

Bottled in September 2007.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
heemer77 (5106) - Urbandale, Iowa, USA - JUL 1, 2008
No one around here seems to care, so I am drinking a bottle of this one on my own. Black body with a light brown head. Massive peat malt and smoke dominate the aroma. there is also some of that sea smell. at first, I could not detect the beer behind the overwhelming scotch. However, as it warmed, the beers malt was subtle with some light chocolate. The taste is the expected peat with a salty and lightly smoky finish. As it warms, the beer starts to shine a little past the whisky. There are notes of deep prunes and dark chocolate. A thick and oily mouthfeel complements the beer. i wanted to like this one more, but again, the barrel aging is just too much.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
beerbuzzmontreal (3490) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JUN 28, 2008
Pitch black color with a thin light brown head. Aroma of scotch, chocolate and malt. Interesting flavor of scotch, wood, chocolate and malt. The body is light to medium with a liquorous texture and soft carbonation.

4.4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
thedm (4968) - Fort Wayne, USA - JUN 26, 2008
This bottled brew from Indianapolis, IN poured a very small sized head of foam with a frothy top and dark brown colored quickly diminishing bubbles. The body was opaque with a black color and no visible carbonation. The aroma was of very nice dark malts and dark roasted chocolaty malts. The mouth feel was mildly tingly from start to finish with a smooth rich flavor and a soft hop backing. The flavor contained notes of nice chocolate dark malts and a smooth whiskey backing.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
HomeBrewHawk (464) - De Soto, Kansas, USA - JUN 19, 2008
11.2 oz. bottle served in a brandy snifter. Poured a deep brown/black with a finger of tan head. Chocolate, vanilla, and a hint of peat smoke in the aroma. Also some fruity aromas. Medium bodied, a little thin for me. The whiskey flavor is more in the beginning. There’s also plenty of chocolate and roasted malt. A little sweetness in the middle, but a very dry malt finish with cocoa. I was a little disappointed in this. I expected more scotch character, and the body seemed a little thin. There’s nothing wrong with it, but at $7 a bottle, I want a happy ending!

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
dwyerpg (4635) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - JUN 13, 2008
Aroma not as intense as the 12. Immediately thicker than the 12, this is the thickest of the bunch. Sweet and strong, it has a solid consistency from start to finish. Excellent.

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 16/20
LinusStick (2879) - Moon Twp, suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 12, 2008
A little less flavorful than the 12 in my opinion. Aroma was more scotch than anything else. Pour was the same deep black with no bubbles or head. Taste was more one dimensional. There are hints of chocolate and peat, but the whiskey is more dominant throughout. No aftertaste to speak of. All in all it’s a good old ale, though.


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