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

bottled
common

on tap
common

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 512   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.89   EST. CALORIES: 240   ABV: 8%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Ola Dubh (or "Black Oil") is so named because it is gloopy and viscous. This limited release has been matured in casks from Orkney’s award-winning Highland Park distillery to add complimentary whisky notes to what is already an amazing brew. It is chocolatey with a roasty, bittersweet aftertaste. Special Reserve 18, whisky notes: Highland Park 18 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky was named Best Spirit in the World by F. Paul Pacult; it offers toffee sweetness, almond nuttiness and a prolonged, smoky aftertaste.


3.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
swoopjones (6535) - Buffalo, New York, USA - JAN 16, 2011
draft at Blue Monk, Buffalo. Beautiful looking dark black pour, khaki head. Chocolate & roasted malts, Scotch. Taste was the above but with an off acidic tartness. Sharpe off bite amonst all the other intended flavor, too bad. Will rerate with a bottle.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
neuromatt (1225) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JAN 14, 2011
Bottle #16096, brewed January 2009. 33 cL from the LCBO courtesy of Rob and Pat, served in a snifter. Pours black with a small light brown head. The head fades slowly to a bare cover but leaves a small amount of fine lace. On the nose, there are aromas of molasses, whisky, and chocolate with hints of espresso, herbs and cask wood. The flavour is moderately sweet with complex notes of whisky, roasted malts, molasses, and espresso. The flavour is balanced with a good dose of herbal hops. The finish is long, lingering whisky with just a touch of hops. On the palate, it is full in body with a milky texture and soft carbonation. Overall, this is a very nice roasty ale with a strong whisky accent in the latter half. The whisky is more prominent than in the 12 or 18 year old. Another very well made beer with a beautiful smooth and elegant body, ample roasted malts and nicely complementary whisky notes. 2011-01-14

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
probstblueribbon (3158) - Nepean, Ontario, CANADA - JAN 13, 2011
330 ml bottle from LCBO, served at cellar temperature in a tulip glass. SEP 2012.

App.: Deep brown black with a small light mocha head. Aroma: Tons of deep, rich, fruity molasses, definitely some peat smoke, but in an either tired or integrated way, iodine, brothy, thick, savoury, green notes, really thick and inky and sweet and dark. Palate: Medium+ body, restrained, velvety effervescence, slightly syrupy and also a touch chalky. Flav.: More smoke than the nose, but still feels...muted or warn-out somehow, plenty of thick, inky, fruity molasses, still plenty of iodine and savoury/meaty/mashy/brothy notes, some dark chocolate peeks through, an interesting blend of dark malts and Scotch smoke, pretty good; sweet with almost enough bitterness (not cloying, but a touch flaccid), sweet chocolate some molasses and a bit of peat smoke.

I could probably make a joke or two about 18 year olds, but I think I’ll just shut up and drink my beer.

3.8
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Sammy (9140) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 23, 2010
Middle of the pack enjoyment of the series. Must do a vertical one night. Pours black, wiskey smoke aromas. Milk chocolate taste, a little more bitter at the end of the bottle. Bit more than medium mouthfeel. Whiskey is right there.Good drinkability.

4.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
JohnRMurdoch (3514) - Glasgow, SCOTLAND - DEC 21, 2010
Bottle from The Cave. Strong aroma of sweet malts & alcohol. Very dark brown colour like oily cola. Flavor very complex - sweet & spicy roasted malts & treacle toffee with pleasant ligering aftertaste and very smooth. A very different beer which is really good.

4.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
Tim Webb (256) - Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, ENGLAND - DEC 20, 2010
33cl bottle. Well what do you expect when you add a slug of 18 yo Highland Park single malt into a sizeable old ale? Something delectable provided the beer that is added to the cask is good enough, and this is. Not so much whisky notes as chords. Rich dark textures come from the ale side.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
MOboy (505) - Kansas City, Missouri, USA - DEC 13, 2010
Smoky, leathery and slightly chocolatey aroma. Peat smoke, vanilla, chocolate, hazelnut in the taste. This is a well made beer and is beautifully balanced.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Radek Kliber (6572) - Toronto (Can) Krotoszyn (Pol), POLAND - DEC 10, 2010
Bottle 330 ml 2009 vintage # 15016
Aroma dark ,straight smoky feel with touch of plum , barley roast , dark soy. Light hint of whiskey barrel.7+
Appearance clear dark brown look with medium head, dark beige , fine top. 4-
Flavor and Palate : Medium bodied. Frontal dryness with hint of ash followed by burnt barley grains , cask feel. Clean character , mellow bodied with refined smooth dry toast on top. Sweeter sugars with alcohol shown at finish. Felt lighter on alcohol than numbers suggested. Bonus for being very drinkable.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
pootzboy (1608) - Hawgville, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 27, 2010
UPDATED: DEC 6, 2010 Bottle: Pours a deep black with a decent coffee colored cap. Mild carbonation. Aroma has the same smoked peaty-oak cask aromas as the 30 and 40 yr reserve but the dried fruit notes seem brighter in this 16 year version. Flavour profile confirms this one has more dried fruit tones come forward in the front. Still wonderful complexity in the middle as roasty malts and vinous esters mingle with smokey peaty oak tones. Finish is long and oily on the palate with a dozen different compound flavours poking away at the palate. Covers the alcohol well and gives a satisfying warming. Still a decadent brew but at a price most can afford.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
piscator34 (2016) - Winnipeg, Manitoba, CANADA - NOV 27, 2010
Bottle via Savvy1982. Near black in colour with moderate carbonation. Aromas are of peaty scotch cask, chocolate, and a bit of sherry. Flavours are of peat, creosote, caramel, chocolate, ash, plum, and faint mineral. Medium bodied. More restrained than the 12 year old, but still has a huge Highland Park influance. The sherry note on the nose was a bit of a negative for me personally, but not really out of place as far as intentions go. Quite nice, but I prefer the 12 y.o.


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