RateBeer
overall
99
97
style
Brewed by Orkney (Sinclair Breweries)
Style: Barley Wine
Stromness, Scotland
Serve in Snifter

bottled
common

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

Add Distribution Data
RATINGS: 365   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.86   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
Share this beer with friends!
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Bottled, Filtered, Special;
Dark Island Reserve is a strong and full Orcadian Ale - lagered for 3 month in old Dalmore whiskey oakbarrals. This slow proscess makes a classic - a fruity, spiced, oakroasted maltflavour.


5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
sic1314 (3401) - Leiden, NETHERLANDS - AUG 19, 2012
Now Dark Island is one of my Desert Island beers, so the fact this creams it says one hell of a lot from my point of view. Utter complexity, Dark and vinous, the odour is an mix of normal DI but transformed by the whisky cask with wooden hints. Flavour is also complex, caramel and heavy malt complemented with chocolate and coffee notes, Hell, don’t read this description, just get some and drink it!

5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
Alecwallace (155) - West Midlands, ENGLAND - DEC 31, 2012
My highest rating to date. A glorious beer. This was bottled 13 months ago and is even better than it was a year ago. It pours sluggish its so full bodied. Jet black, brown on the pour and has a tan coloured head. Still well carbonated. The aroma of Christmas cake hit me as the swing top hissed. Sniffing the beer, its chocolatey, rich and telling me to drink it. The first taste is viscous, warm, rich and fruity and full of complexity. The whisky notes on this beer are as good if not better than ive tasted on any other. So definite but so discrete and balanced. There is a nice bitterness. This is Christmas pud in a glass, and full of cherry, dark chocolate and caramel. The flavour left in the mouth is rich, warm and lasting. An excellent beer and one Orkney should be proud of. This beer may seem pricey at circa £15 for 750ml (which is expensive) but when you consider £7 for 330ml it is good value compared to average beers ive had from other brewers, Anarchist/alchemist being most notable. This is a yearly treat and one i hope continues. Glorious!

4.9
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
MCniel (1) - DENMARK - NOV 6, 2007 does not count
ISpicy and peaty aroma. Black color, light brown head, Vinous, roasty and oaky flavour - a wonderful beer! Now for sale in Denmark by www.skotsk-import.dk

4.9
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
McWorta (596) - LUXEMBOURG - MAR 31, 2012
UPDATED: MAR 2, 2014 Bitter chocolate/coffee, lightly roasted malts, red wine,soy sauce, raisin, leather, licorice aromas topped by earthy, woody and walnut notes with a hint of salt. Colour - another blackhole, Darth Vader beergoggles - ginger tan head absolute full body, creamy, rich oily and slick texture, really low carbo offering more tastes of coal, olives and treacle. Everlasting finish, well balanced, Astonishing and complex! It occurs rarely but here: ... Speechless ... Silently endulging art!!!

4.8
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Sigmund (5128) - Tau, NORWAY - AUG 31, 2007
UPDATED: APR 17, 2009 Rerate, 750 ml bottle, courtesy of Cardinal Pub & Bar, Stavanger. ABV is 10%. Brewed 23rd Sept. 2008, bottled 10th Dec. 2008. Pitch black colour, moderate brown head. The aroma is still vinous (sherry), oaky and roasty - also notes of chocolate, vanilla, figs and dates, hints of Christmas spices. Full and rich mouthfeel. The flavour has loads of malty sweetness, a moderate roastiness, oaky and vinous notes (sherry and/or port), some chocolate and a hint of liquorice. Moderate hops in the finish. Terrific beer! Original rating: Bottle, at RBESG 2007 in Glasgow, Grand Tasting. ABV was 10%. Pitch black colour, brown head. Lovely vinous, oaky and roasty aroma, some sandalwood too. Perfect! Vinous, roasty and oaky flavour - a wonderful beer!

4.8
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Travlr (11976) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - DEC 22, 2008
Absolutely unbelievable. 750 ml bottle, bottled on 3rd September 2008. Jet black, no head. Aroma of burgundy wine, taste of a single malt whisky. D bitter and malty finish. Heaven.

4.8
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Tim Webb (229) - Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, ENGLAND - DEC 19, 2010
UPDATED: DEC 20, 2010 Gyle 4, 2008. At last I find a beer that is British - albeit Scottish and edge of islands - and among the planetary best. Massive, black, at the edge of oxidation, profoundly caramelled but tart, plonked leadenly like a huge dare-you-to-drink heavy grain soup. "Arr-sum", as some people say, rather too often. Not so much a beer, more an act of reassurance.

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
drpimento (2237) - La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA - JUN 28, 2012
Dark shit going happenin on the Dark Island. Poured at a good temperature with a medium sized, foamy, tan head that settles after a while and some lace. Color is an almost opaque, but clear black ruby. Aroma is roast, coffee, cherry, cocoa, molasse, vanilla, smoke, pomegranite. Flavor’s like nose, mildly sweet, balanced with pleasing carbonic tang and yeast/hop bitter and just friggin good. Body and carbonation are bang on. Finish is like flavor, average length, and easy drinking. Superb beer.

4.7
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
BeerAcademyRO (2) - - APR 10, 2014 does not count
A great experience together with beer friends: this beer surprised us all and discover good atmosphere all around.

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Murano (10) - - AUG 10, 2014
I will first state that this high a rating is partly--and only partly--perhaps--and only perhaps--due to sentiment, and that part is further due roughly 23/40ths to the circumstances surrounding the drinking and roughly 17/40ths to the beer being something fun and different. This excellent, unique beer has a wonderful mouthfeel--a cup of silk, with cream: a certain water-gossamer lightness (or gossamer water-lightness)--like biting into a lush, soft, icing-based pastry (I cannot remember the name of the particular pastry of which I am thinking). It has the aftertaste of splendid churchwine. The taste is hard to pin down, like most good beers, but there are hints of sweet, faint cherry. I would sum up the main taste as "coffee & port with holy water." There is a soft, soft burn to it; one would probably not (accurately) guess straightaway its alcohol content. Overall, the beer is best enjoyed with key members of your closest family and a viewing of The Grand Budapest Hotel or To Catch a Thief. To do so while sitting on a magic carpet is preferable. The color is somehow both pure red and pure black. A very classy, delicate, and delicious beer. Hard to find, and even harder to capture. It’s like chasing a deer in a forest in a poem. The only true negative about this beer is regret that it is but all too fleeting, combined with its being a limited edition (which I hope is one promise upon which Orkney will renege). A great experience. I pity those who have not tried it and envy those with more than one bottle.


We Want To Hear From You



Join us! RateBeer is made by beer enthusiasts for the craft beer community. Your basic membership is free and allows you to read all beer ratings. Click here to create your account... and give your opinion!

Join Us »



Page    1  2 3 4 » 37


Tick this beer

for your profile
  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Copyright © 2000-2014,
RateBeer LLC. All rights
reserved.
about us
About RateBeer
FAQ
Contact/Feedback
New Beers
add
Advanced Search
Add A Beer
Add A Brewer
Add A Place
Events
membership
Log In
Edit Personal Info
Buy Premium Membership
Your Messages
the best
RateBeer Best
100 Beer Club
The Top 50