overall
99
98
style
Brewed by Orkney (Sinclair Breweries)
Style: Old Ale
Stromness, Scotland

bottled
available

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

Add Distribution Data
RATINGS: 451   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.88/5   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
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, oak roasted malt flavour.

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5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
sic1314 (4775) - 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, dont 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!

5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
Maltworm01 (7) - - NOV 21, 2014 does not count
Extremely nice Dark Ale matured in whisky casks. A smoky round falvour with notes of coffee. Handbottled and not easy to get!

5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
bulldogops (2490) - Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA - AUG 2, 2016
Rating #1753 - 2015.06.25 - Bottle from CBI - Dated November 11 2013 - Rich dark brown-black pour with a weak white head that bubbles away quickly, no lacing. Aroma is earthy - presence of toasted barley, chocolate, coffee grounds, mild peaty smokiness.Mouthfeel is clean, low carbonation, medium alcohol warmth. Taste is a depth of chocolately, nutty roast malts, tinge of peat smoke, and tremendous character from the wood of the whisky casks - vanilla, oaky. A truly gorgeous concoction.

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 (1595) - 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 (7073) - 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 (23043) - Charlotte, North Carolina, 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 (426) - Bristol, Gloucestershire, 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 (3324) - 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. Flavors 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.


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