Stuedmaster (207) - Vista, California, USA - MAR 3, 2014
2.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 11/20
I don’t think this should be categorized as a sweet stout, it is awfully bitter, just like everything else I’ve had from this brewery. 22 oz. bomber from the local liquor store. Aroma is slight, some roasted malt, chocolate, and vanilla over an oatmeal background. It doesn’t smell nearly as highly hopped as it tastes. Pours black with a small tan head that dissipates quickly. The flavor is bitter high alpha hops, with medium sweetness to help balance. It has an astringent quality due to the bitterness, which overwhelms the subtlety of the vanilla and oats. It might be better with food to help balance out the strong flavors. I detect some smokiness, which is nice. It is nearly imperial strength at 7.2% abv and it was a good deal for $4.99 but I won’t revisit this one due to excess hops.
slimspady (178) - Lethbridge, Alberta, CANADA - FEB 28, 2014
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Black with a big tan head. Disappears quickly. Bread, licorice, coffee, of course vanilla. Thin, bitter finish. Expected more.
dslam (43) - surrey, British Columbia, CANADA - FEB 9, 2014
2.9 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
Poured from a 1 pint bottle
Dark to the pour with a good amount of carbonation that yields a little yet nice creamy head. I smell vanilla chocolate. This heavy beer comes alive on your tongue and slowly reveals it’s flavors. It starts off a little bitter ,but if you let it sit and wait for the carbonation to fizz out you can start tasting the chocolate and vanilla. It is not as over powering on the pallette as an imperial stout, but it is nice.
pictoman (482) - British Columbia, CANADA - FEB 9, 2014
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
Poured from 1 pint (6 fl oz) bottle. Black with minimal tan head. Aroma of mild coffee and roast malt, very subtle vanilla. Taste the same, mild chocolate. Light body.
jrob21 (2513) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - FEB 4, 2014
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle smuggled back from San Diego. Smooth creamy and slightly roasty malt. Light and for the price I think this was less than 6$ his is the jam. Light oat and red fruit aroma. Finish is light and slightly sweet. Very session able and would be a go to if I had more access to this. Damn.
DarkElf (3033) - La Jolla, California, USA - JAN 25, 2014
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
30-Sep-13 (22-oz bottle: Purchased 30-Sep-13 for $4.99 at The Bine & Vine Bottle Shop in San Diego, CA)
My fear with any beer that has "vanilla" in the name is that the vanilla will be overdone and blatant because subtlety is not in the vernacular of most craft brewers these days. But here we have a Vanilla Oatmeal Stout where the stout aspects still are the dominant characteristics while the vanilla plays a complementary role in the background, which is the way it should be. The malt base is generally medium in roast, very chocolatey, medium sweet, and moderately bitter, with the oatmeal being slightly less apparent than the roast and chocolate. And while the expected vanilla flavor is apparent but not prominent, piney hops seemingly contribute more bitterness than flavor. There’s also an unexpected spicy quality with just a touch of heat to make me think there’s a bit of jalapeño in the recipe. The same level of balance between roast, oatmeal, and vanilla is echoed in the nose, the roast and oatmeal about on par with the vanilla just a bit more in the background, but there’s also a bit of floral and spicy quality as well. It’s full bodied but not heavy, sticky, or cloying, and carbonation is medium. There’s plenty of roasty dryness and lingering, roast/hop bitterness to dry out the palate on this medium-sweet beer. The beer is dark-brown in color and is capped by half an inch of dark-tan head that settles to a wide ring surrounding a wafer-thin sheet, leaving only a few spots of lace on the glass. Overall, while I wish this oatmeal stout were a bit less roasty, I do love the complementary use of vanilla and the overall balance is very finely crafted here. Nicely done.
high_on_hops (611) - Burlingame, California, USA - JAN 18, 2014
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a solid black with a tan head and lacing. The aroma has lots of vanilla and chocolate with a bit of dark malt too. The flavor is dark chocolate and vanilla up front with a toasty, semisweet finish over a smooth, medium heavy body.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
Sammy (8524) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JAN 18, 2014
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle from Windy City. Very dark brown body with a big mocha soapy head. Stout aroma. Light taste of oatmeal, vanilla in finish. Roast on finish is very lasting. OK beer.
alexanderj (3311) - Branson, Missouri, USA - JAN 17, 2014
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle; dark brown or black in color with a light brown head. Aroma of oats, leather, smoked meat, and a subtle hint of vanilla and caramel. Very oaty, roasted and meaty. Some vanilla, but lacking a bit of sweetness. Some coffee notes. A bit messy for me.
maxwelldeux (3542) - Everett, Washington, USA - JAN 16, 2014
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Pours a near-black color with a moderate tan head on it. The vanilla in this one is actually pretty subtle on the nose, methinks, but serves as a nice complement to the roasting, while serving to temper the roastiness a bit. The vanilla comes through much more in the taste and sweetens the beer up from the normally slightly bitter roasting flavors. Nice brews.