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Innis And Gunn Oak Aged Beer - Innis & Gunn

Not Rated.
Innis And Gunn Oak Aged BeerInnis And Gunn Oak Aged Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

434 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 434
Hads: 1,022
Avg: 3.77
pDev: 24.14%
Wants: 47
Gots: 169 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Innis & Gunn
United Kingdom (Scotland) | website

Style | ABV
Scottish Ale | 6.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: UncleJimbo on 09-15-2003

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (28) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 434 | Hads: 1,022
Photo of Brenden
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pouring a clear, almost fiery red-orange-brown from the tap, the only reason for this beer's translucency is how dark it is. On top of it rests a 1/2 finger cap of frothy-looking brown head that leaves blotchy lacing spattered about the glass.
This beer showcases mainly sweetness on the nose and tongue, but it's not shallow. Wood provides a dryness that counters it, albeit a light one. Toffee and vanilla are the main elements, but malts also offer sweetbreads. The whiskey is part of the sweetness but adds a bit of warmth (as opposed to heat). A little bit of not-quite-herbal greenery eases into the middle to end of every sip. There's something a little more to the sweeter aspects well into it also, almost like maple or a little thicker and firmer like molasses.
This beer has a good body, appropriate for style, an even medium strength with some heft (but not thickness) and brightness, lightly crisp and plenty smooth. It's semi-dry for the entirety of every sip beyond the sweeter opening.

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Photo of Florida9
3.6/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

No age on the bottle, but I believe this bottle is from 2011.

A: Clear glass bottle. Looks like cream soda in the bottle. Beer itself is a light copper-brown in color. Forms a minimal white head. Little retention and little lacing.

S: Very aromatic. Smells strongly of oak with notes of vanilla, toffee, and green apple.

T: Apparently not only does this beer look like cream soda, but it tastes like it as well. Fairly sweet with lots of vanilla. Notes of toffee, light caramel, oak, and rum. Very quick, almost watery, finish.

M: On the thinner side of medium in body. Lower carbonation. Mild bitterness.

O: Well, you can't say this beer doesn't showcase the oak aging. Unfortunately, aside from the wood, there just isn't much there.

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.99/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

draft at beer study. into a snifter.

pours a dark copper with a nice head. smell is very much according to style with the nice bourbony scent. taste stays true to scent with some great oak characteristics. 100% on point to style. mild bodied, mild carbonation

overall a great representation of the style!

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Photo of BEERMILER12
3.69/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

BB MAR2014

A: Pours a golden amber color with just over a fingers worth of head that fades down to a thin cap

S: Oak, vanilla, toffee, a light fruitiness, and maltiness make up the aroma

T: Starts off with the vanilla and oak and goes into a toffee sweetness along with some fruity notes. Finishes with some malt sweetness and a bit of graininess

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A nice oak aged beer that displays the barrels nicely. Not to much in the way of the barrel, so it really shines through. A good dessert beer because of the sweetness, but not a bad any-time beer either

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Photo of SFNC
4.07/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I bought this one as a single from A Southern Season in Chapel Hill. Poured into a generic pint glass. The bottle and design is top notch, but I’m a tad nervous about the clear bottle.
Appearance; Little to no foam after an aggressive pour, the suds vanished without a trace in mere seconds. A beautiful golden honey color that shimmered like a fine bourbon or whiskey.
Smell; A whiff of skunk that thankfully left quickly. Sweet, oaky with some vanilla and a burnt undertone. Not the strong suit of the product but intriguing.
Taste; This makes up for the smell and then some, oak up front and throughout, burnt sugar, butterscotch, vanilla and bourbon. I am enjoying each sip. Aftertaste is mild and sweet, though not too sweet.
Mouthfeel; As intriguing as the taste. For the lack of carbonization on the pour this is pretty tingly on the tongue, not unlike a whiskey or bourbon on the rocks.
Overall; Very good, indeed! I'm not a huge fan of Scottish Ales per se, but this one I'd get again without reservation. Very drinkable and complex

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Photo of Nikxed58
3.72/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Had this poured from a bottle. This was my first barrel aged beer and I was pleasantly surprised by it.

A - looked very much as how a scotch would look, with a nice solid brown color. There was maybe 1 cm of head, even with an aggressive pour.

S - smelled extremely complex, with lots of different notes. Most prominent were vanilla and some whiskey scent. Oak finds its way through as well, kind of subtle in the beginning.

T - way different from what I've ever had before. Tasted of bits of light citrus, vanilla, and a more prominent whiskey flavor. That oak and whiskey flavor threw me off in the beginning, but I enjoyed it towards the end.

M - it was a light to moderate mouth feel. There wasn't anything crazy about how it felt, but this aspect also put the beer's taste into the spotlight.

O - As my first time trying this, I walked away with a pretty nice impression of it. Although I read a description of the beer before I ordered, the beer just destroyed any expectation I had of it, in a good way. This may not be the best beer to try for those just getting into it, but everyone should try it at least once.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.84/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A Scottish classic and one of Gordon Ramsay's favorite beers, I had wondered why it took me so long to try anything from Innis & Gunn. Well, it's a big world of beer which continues to grow, which makes it difficult to "taste 'em all". Comes in a 330 ml clear decorated bottle. On to the beer:

The color of Innis & Gunn is lovely, being the color of autumn orange. It's also translucent. The head is very weak, forming initially at an inch and looking soapy before quickly fizzing away to nothing. The aroma is modest; the barrels bring flavors of vanilla bean, toffee, oak, some spicy hops, and a fume of alcohol.

Much of the beer's magic occurs in the taste. Despite its 6.6% ABV, this is a beer to savor. The flavor starts with a kiss of oak. Now comes some toffee and pleasant diacetyl. Vanilla bean note seems to intensify midway through. Bit of alcohol, marshmallow, and wood makes their appearances too. The carbonation level is on the light side, the body being medium. Mellow sweet aftertaste.

Very pleasant and mellow overall. Sometimes, you just want a mellow beer with the barrel aged characteristics, and Innis & Gunn provides that.

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Photo of Libationguy
3.89/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Medium reddish-amber color with brass hues. Off white head of medium density with moderate head retention. Lacing in the glass.

Moss, citrus, white/yellow flowers, malt, vanilla, gentle baking spices.

Rich malt fruitiness, vanilla, nutmeg, red apple skin, vanilla, nutmeg, mild bitterness. Firm carbonation off the draft system. Gentle alcohol heat on the palate.

Medium+ bodied mouthfeel. Gentle, crisp bitterness keeps it clean on the finish.

Nice pint.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.49/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This brew was served on tap at Black Lotus Brewery in Clawson, Michigan. It arrived in a generic pint glass, showing a dark golden butterscotch coloring. It held a one finger head of off white cream, showing poor retention. No real lacing was noted, with no sediment or haze to cut the clarity. Carbonation appeared to be mild. The aroma was sweet, with brown sugar, caramel and crystal malts, vanilla bean sweetness, spicy medicinals, Irish whisky sweetness, allspice, pineapple, grapefruit fleshiness, strawberry buttercream, plantain greenness, and sugary sweet cooled banana bread. Our first impression was that the flavoring showed a good blend between medicinals, sweeter malts, and lighter hop inclusions, while keeping things foamy and drinking decently well through the feel. As we sipped, the taste opened with creamy vanilla cake icing, crystal malt toast, honey sweetness, buttery diacetyls, medicinal bitters, and lemon rind hoppiness. Moving to the peak was pale and caramel malt toast, cloying apple juice sweetness, light grassy hops, bittersweet chocolate chips, and caramel drizzled banana bread. The end came with apple cider vinegar, lactic creaminess, corny whisky bite, cherry skins, plastics, spicy clove, browned banana, warming oak, and boozy vanilla extract. The aftertaste breathed of pale malts, woody warmth, cooked brown sugar sweetness, green stick resins, honeydew melon, plum, cherry sugars, cranberry, and that persistent browned banana heaviness. The body was medium, and the carbonation was high and foamy, with bright prickle down the length of the tongue. Each sip gave excellent foam and pop, moderate glug, and lesser smack, cream, or froth. The mouth was left clean and, following an initial slickness, left with the faintest, gritty sugary dryness. The abv was appropriate, and the beer drank decently.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this beer was its complex flavoring. While each component was decently represented in quality, the variety of fruits, malts, oak, and liquored flavoring was quite impressive. With each sip you were given all of that European whiskey flavoring, without all of that fusel alcoholic afterpunch. The feel was thin and overly prickled for the style, contributing little, and only minimally enhancing the experience. Otherwise the aroma and the taste were wrought with sweet and bready esters which, by the end, effectively drowned out a lot of those initial intricacies.

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Photo of ramseye4
4.4/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- cloudy, with a ton of bubbles, enticing head
S- toffee and a bit of alcohol dominate the nose
T- toffee, a bit of vanilla in the finish, with wonderful oaky undertones
M- highly carbonated and smooth
O- great oak aged beer, a real joy to sip on in bad weather

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Photo of Kremlock
3.97/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: copper/orange colour, no head, clear.

S: Creamy smell, oak on the nose with notes of vanilla,

T: Same as nose but the oak has a fresh taste vs a toaty/burned flavour I've gotten from other cask beers. Strong vanilla and black cherry flavours coat the mouth.

M: Creamy and well carbonated. THere is some residual sweetness that stays on the tongue.

O: This is a fantastic beer. Though sweet with strong vanilla and cherry flavours this beer goes down very well.

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Photo of SerialTicker
2.02/5  rDev -46.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

Oh dear God, where do I begin? This beer is just. An absolute atrocity. (Bottled some time in '11, so keep that in mind.)

Appearance: Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. The beer is clear with a brown color. No head, no lacing.

Smell: It smells like scotch... with bananas and oak.

Taste: Absolutely dreadful. At first instance it's not bad (though it HARDLY tastes like beer)... I just can't take the aftertaste. It has a sweetness that's reminiscent of diet pop/soda, and it has a flat feel to it, despite there being a medium amount of carbonation. I can't really explain it, but it's not pleasant at all.

Maybe I'm just spoiled, considering I'm surrounded by some great breweries here in Michigan. While I'm not exactly familiar with the difference between Scottish Ales and Scotch Ales, I feel like it's safe to assume they're relatively similar. This is my first Scottish Ale, but I'd find it very hard to believe they normally taste like this. The bottle is dated almost a couple years ago, so maybe that's its problem, but I took a couple sips of this and was done with it. Absolutely awful.

The worst beer that I've ever had.

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Photo of homebrew311
2.63/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Pours a clear caramel color with a multitude of bubbles clinging to the side of the glass. Zero head present along with minimal lacing. The nose has a decidedly lager like character with faint notes of caramel malt and oak. Not really getting any of what I would classify as Scottish character. The taste features plenty of oak, mellow bourbon and vanilla character, and again a dry bready lager yeast character. The taste is rather thin and seems to have more flavor from the oak than from the base beer. Mouthfeel is way over carbonated with a very light body. This one is not working well for me. Kinda reminds me of the AB Winter Cask Ale, bland and watery with some vanilla and oak character.

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Photo of evanforbeer
3.56/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A friend poured me a glass from a bomber. Ill take it.

Zesty orange oil mist, burnt sugar, vanilla, and oak on the nose.

Taste follows with vanilla, oak, maybe some spruce, then past-its-prime orange, stone fruits, raisin. The oak evens out the finish with a mellowing oaky vanilla.

For what it is, a scottish ale that emphasizes oak aging, its a solid beer. Not a lot of bite or umph to it, but has nice flavor and body to it and the oak is balanced in the palate nicely.

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Photo of Cal0407
4.37/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A beer you'd enjoy were it a soft drink. Sweet and natural tasting, it is satisfying, with taste you can't ignore, if you'd even want to. If a bar serves this drink I sincerely recommend you take your opportunity to enjoy a sweet oaky delight even if the price makes you hesitant.

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Photo of kjyost
2.61/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

EDIT: Had this beer 1/1/13 and it smelled and tasted distinctly of artificial bananas (exactly like a banana Runt). Score would be even lower. Bottle was from a 3 pack & a glass made for Christmas 2012. Score reflects this pour. The scores just keep getting lower... Everything banana & oak. Bleah.

Reviewed 9/10/2011, bought by a buddy as a thank-you.
330 mL clear bottle poured into a Perfect Pint glass. Well, let's how my palate has changed over time and many more tasting experiences.
A: Copper and clear. Light white head that drops too quickly, leaving a light ring and no lacing.
S: The worst part of the beer here. Came out with an initial cooked cabbage that was really off-putting. Mellowed with time, to light oak and a hint of earth. Came off initially though as a bad BMC lager.
T: Rock solid here if you like oak. Tons of oak initially, in fact overpowering the light body of the beer. Tones down over time giving way to a light sweetness with a well balanced vanilla note. Personally I found the oak just too strong to start here.
M: Oak and vanilla linger, average carbonation. Comes off well.
O: A better beer than I remember, though when I saw my first rounds of grades I was stunned at how high I reviewed it the first time. Something worth having from time to time.

Reviewed 7/12/2008
This is the second bottle I have tried in recent weeks, and for some reason this one was the better of the two, although likely due to context.

Poured a tall, strong head and has an inviting and spicy nose to it. Distinctive, but I cannot pick out a particular aroma. The oak is very evident on the first sip. It is reminiscent of a good scotch rolling across the palate, and leaves a woody aftertaste.

The beer only loses some points due to the fact that its oaken character is not nearly as evident by the bottom half of the glass., except in the aftertaste. It is a beer that would make it into my 'sometimes' repertoire.

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Photo of spokeydonkey
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into three wine glasses for a sampling. Bottle was clear glass with instructions to serve at 4 to 6 degrees.

A - Dark amber-brown with a tiny layer of bubbles on top. Still and clear.

S - Vanilla, burnt sugar.

T - Sweet caramel and vanilla notes in this beer. A bit of sharp alcohol heat in the finish and some lingering smokiness.

M - Smooth and medium bodied. A nearly still beer with no discernible head.

O - This is definitely a mild beer used to highlight the barrel-aged flavors. I prefer a solid beer with barrel-aged notes. It's not bad, but not worth choosing over the many other barrel-aged beers out there.

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Photo of KarlosT
2.53/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Had this beer at the Amesbury Beer Festival on Sep 22 2012.

Most of the beers were served from bottles into small 3oz plastic dixie cups.

Although I took notes on the 20+ different beers that I tried, it is difficult to remember all of the details associated with each beer. My apologies to readers of these notes. However, I did pay attention to my overall scores, and noted what I thought were unique positives and negatives w/ each beer.

Note that for me:
< 2.5 = probably would not finish the beer
3.0 = drinkable beer, but likely would not buy again or look for
>3.5 = will try to buy again in the future

Not a big fan of the Innis and Gunn beers. Seem kind of mellow to me, and a bit bland. Normally I would be more neutral, but this beer had spice notes which put me off.

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Photo of tdm168
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - transparent caramel amber with a thick, foamy, bubbly, soap-like, white head that has decent retention

S - musty, caramel, faint diacetyl

T - caramel, apple, faint vanilla, oak, earthy, sweet

M - medium bodied, smooth, well carbonated

This didn't look or smell like much but it was deceptively complex. The typical caramel, apple, and butterscotch notes are there. The oak adds some vanilla and woody, earthy notes as well. It's not great, but it's worth a try.

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Photo of biegaman
3.89/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This honey-hued liquid is clear as the bottle it came in (and looks equally as classy). Barrel-aging may have taken the bounce out of carbonation's step, as evidenced by the total lack of bubbles, but it's left the beer's glossy, shimmering complexion perfectly intact. It looks a hell of a lot better than I would after 77 days in a barrel!

I have no idea from where Innis and Gunn source their barrels, but all their beers share a distinct, flagship aroma and probably in no other beer is that buttery-oak bouquet more prominent than in this offering. The heavily honeyed, heavily oaked scent is rich in vanilla and underlined by notes of toffee. The profile can instantly be associated to this brewery.

The flavour is perhaps best described as being composed of two parts the vanilla-oak, butter-bomb characteristics of a Chardonnay and one part the peaty, wood-spice of a single malt scotch. Those highly distinct elements surprisingly play nice with one another, although they're helped along by honeycomb toffee and fruity, brandy-ish esters.

Butterscotch explodes with nuclear proportions to the point where the beer starts to feel sticky on the palate. That being said, Innis and Gunn Original doesn't have much substance to it (beyond the distinct qualities gained from oak aging) and its honey sweetness comes uncomfortably close to cloying once it looses its chill. I believe they call this "diacetyl"...

To the average, casual lager drinker, Innis and Gunn Original is mind-shattering stuff. To many in the craft beer world, Innis and Gunn is kitschy and underwhelming. I've always felt that the truth lay somewhere in the middle. Regardless of your tastes, this brewery has made a lot of headway in expanding the palates (and minds) of the general public.

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Photo of darkstar12
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a bottle into a pilsner-style glass

A: copper colored and clear. one-finger head that dissapated down to a thin layer of foam. no real lacing.

S: vanilla, malts, a hint of scotch whiskey

T: Here the scotch whiskey comes out as a dominant flavor, very peaty and smoky. Also some vanilla, with the sweetness of the malts in the aftertaste.

M: a bit thick and syrupy, with very little carbonation.

O: A very unique and interesting beer. If you're in the right mood for it, it's an excellent beer.

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Photo of gcamparone
3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pilsner glass (It's all I had).

A - Dark gold appearance, medium head

S - Smells very nice. The aroma of caramel is the most prominent

T - Very unique in flavor. Oaky with some vanilla and toffee notes. Delicious and drinkable

M - Light and smooth

I'd drink again.

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Photo of codyhotel
3.58/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a decent head, dissipates fairly quickly with little lacing. Very clear amber colour.

S - Not a very prominent nose, but some nice flavors. Honey and oak are in there, and a touch of a scotch whiskey. A bit of fresh floral notes from the hops.

T - Toffee, caramel, malts. Very sweet.

M - Very smooth, little carbonation, medium body. Crisp finish, alcohol not very noticeable.

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Photo of brewskifan55
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a glass at our hotel in Bath, England

A: amber/bronze with a one finger head that dissipates rather quickly. Decent lacing.

S: Honey, oak, caramel, malts.

T: Yum! Follows nose with toffee and bourbon. Smokey, sweet, oh, so good.

M: Medium with medium carbonation.

O: Best ale we tried in the UK. Smooth, bourbon-y and delicious. Highly recommended.

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Photo of HeightsEats
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is a nice caramel, very similar to whiskey. The aroma is a bit of oak and caramel malt. Flavor is excellent with burnt sweetness coming from both the wood and roasted malt with just a hint of hops in the background. Body is surprisingly light considering the complexity and ABV.

This is an excellent beer that hits the sweet spot between complexity and drinkability and maintains the oak and whiskey elements while still being really good on a hot day. Far better than Bourbon Barrel Ale, which tends to overwhelm with a syrupy vanilla wood flavor.

DO NOT drink this straight out of the bottle; pour it into a glass. Like any nuanced beer, the aromas bloom when allowed to open up.

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Innis And Gunn Oak Aged Beer from Innis & Gunn
85 out of 100 based on 434 ratings.