Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout - Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

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Samuel Smith's Oatmeal StoutSamuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout

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6,113 Ratings

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Ratings: 6,113
Reviews: 2,229
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 11.16%
Wants: 300
Gots: 899 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-05-2000

No notes at this time.
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Ratings: 6,113 | Reviews: 2,229
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 18.7oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours to a very dark brown with a thick, beige head and a decent amount of lacing on the glass.

S: You smell a chocolate & coffee sweetness and a roasted malt aroma with just a bit of alcohol.

T: The taste isn’t as sweet as the smell containing a smoky coffee flavor. No bitterness at all and a slightly sweet after-taste.

M: Very smooth, with a heavy body and light/medium carbonation. I’ve seen the word “chewy” thrown around in other reviews and this is the first beer that I’ve had that identifies with that term. I’m considering that a good thing.

D: Despite being heavy and a bit filling, this beer goes down very easy. It’s very flavorful and not over-powering. This is a beer that you can just chill out and relax with.

Photo of jlindros
4.05/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Huge head of a whole hand, dark black color with no real light coming through.

N: Rich malts, oats, chocolate milk and milk chocolate, slight sweet malts.

T: Rich and very creamy, lots of chocolate milk, oats, velvet chocolate oats, some rich malts and lightly sweet, lush.

M: very creamy and rich, almost velvety, decent carbonation.

F: Still a little somewhat sweet, some roasted flavors come out as it warms, the milk chocolate lingers with a very slight bitterness.

Photo of Slatetank
4.83/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of the most drinkable oatmeal stouts I have ever tasted. I enjoy the results of fermentation in slate tanks. It has the best appearance, taste, and smell of them all. I like the fact that it is not too strong, so you can have several. I enjoy that it has no cloying sweetness and a crisp aftertaste. This stout has a luxurious mouthfeel and can be counted on to deliver everytime.

Photo of Jason
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz clear bottle that has gold foil on top, no freshness date to be found.

Appearance: Ink black with a wonderful light tan lace which leaves rings all the way down the glass.

Smell: Mildly acidic dark malt twang, a little earthy and some sweetness also.

Taste: Smooth as silk with a crisp full body to boot. A strong roasted malt flavour pushes everything aside ... to make way for a creamy sweetness. There seem to be an hidden earthy undertone throughout ... most likely from the Yorkshire yeast. Hop bitterness is vague yet keeps the sweetness in check. A semi dry falls on the palate as soon as the sweetness fades. Dark roasted coffee, over caramelized buttery toffee and dark sweetened chocolate flavours swirl around the tastebuds to make for a bitter sweet finish.

Notes: A cult classic among beer geeks dating back to 1980 ... lets have a moment of silence in honour of this fine brew ... if you want to jump into the world of stouts give this one a try, you might be surprised and actually love it ... I did that is for sure.

Photo of russpowell
4.67/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark mahogany/black with a thick, creamy tan head. Very good lacing and head retention

Smell; Chocolate, honey, fruiity & vanilla notes

Taste: Bitter choclate, licorice & grainy bitterness. Fruitty/quinching finish

MF: Perfect, silky smooth & great carbonation

Great quaffability, I highly reccomend this ressurection (decades ago) of a classic from sam smith's

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Textbook pour with a full two fingered tan head to complement the deep ruby almost black color of this magnifcant beer full even rings of lacing nice. Aroma: Deep chocolate tone with a biscuity edge to it and fruit ridden coffee tones what a complex oat filled aroma awesome beer here folks. Taste: Creamy milk tones with fruit and robust coffee and chocolate textures a mild taste of alcohol presence running through it just so easily balanced this beer is tops in the style. Mouthfeel is fluffy the body has increased texture due to the oatmeal this is perfected. Drinkability: Smooth creamy easliy imbibed a must try that not matter the price tag next time I'm in the mood for a Oatmeal Stout this is my choice.

Photo of kojevergas
3.68/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired at Trader Joe's as part of their 3 beer/1 glass for $9.99 pack. 550 ml brown glass bottle with foiled-over pressure cap served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are through the roof given its current ratings and reputation as the best oatmeal stout in existence.

Served nearly straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a two finger light tan colour head of good cream and thickness, and good retention. Body colour is a solid nontransparent opaque black. Not quite jet black, but it's very dark. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Looks as it should for the style.

Sm: Roasted barley, chocolate malt, dark malts, and caramel. The roast is particularly attractive. Very evocative and inviting. I don't detect alcohol or yeast. I'm looking forward to this one.

T: Roasted barley, chocolate malt, dark malts, fired kiln malt, caramel, chocolate, milk, and cream. Some cream. A balanced, enjoyable flavour all around. Well layered. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Any hopping is floral and backgrounded at best. Tasty. Oats come through as it warms; I didn't detect any in my initial pass. Some cola notes throughout, even some herbal character as it warms. Oddly enough, I get some pear fruit. Some earthiness at the base, but subtly executed. Some vanilla/creme brulee hits in the late second act - a highlight of the beer, but one that directly challenges style conventions; it's ballsy, but I like it.

Mf: The coarseness of the roast duels with the rolling smoothness of the oats; the only winner is the consumer. Ideal thickness and carbonation. Wet enough to keep it drinkable but dry enough to satisfy the needs of the style and to complement the flavours. Above all, it's balanced and tailored with/to the flavour profile. A bit heavy on the palate for the modest ABV, but it suits the flavour. It could use more cream.

Dr: Quite drinkable considering its heavy bold flavours and assertive mouthfeel. I rather fancy it. A solid oatmeal stout, and one I'd love to try on nitro/draught. Tasty and enjoyable. A satisfying brew from Samuel Smith's. Is it their best beer? Possibly. I look forward to finding out.

I'd like to try this side by side with the Stockyard Oatmeal Stout also available at Trader Joe's. I worry that I'm rating this a bit high based on outside influences, but it's so yummy.

High B

Photo of feloniousmonk
5/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Big, booming tan head, and a color as black as the darkest night. Aroma is all things good: fresh, nutty, dry, coffee, espresso, the very essence of roastiness. Texture is smooth, with late bitterness coming through on the palate, very chewy and substantial. Comes on sweet, warm, and wonderful, a comforting stout.
Honestly, how do they do it? There are many who attempt this style, but no one comes close to Samuel Smith's when it comes to flavor, to taste, to utter perfection. Nothing less than happiness can result from drinking this fine brew. Always to find a spot among my Top Five. Absolutely perfect!

Photo of smcolw
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Impressive and lasting rocky head. Excellent lace on the side of the glass. Nearly black in color.

Strong caramel aroma--semi-sweet. Some chocolate and cocoa. No hop.

Awesome balance of dark and light malts. Not as sweet as the smell suggests. Some hop in the finish but the swallow is mostly black patent malts. Very full body--almost like whole milk. Low carbonation, but perfect for how dry this beer is.

This is one of the best stouts in the world and worthy of tasting in a flight of the world's best.

Photo of mdfb79
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 550ml bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a dark dark brown color, almost black, with 2 fingers of fluffy tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of chocolate, roasted malts, caramel malts, coffee, and some vanilla or cream.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, oats, chocolate, and light coffee and caramel malts.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. The body is very smooth and creamy and goes down easy.

d - Overall a very good, very drinkable oatmeal stout. Was glad to have it and enjoyed the roasted notes and chocolate in the smell and taste. The mouthfeel and the low ABV makes this one you can drink a lot of. Would definitely have again.

Photo of drabmuh
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into an imperial pint glass. There is no date on the bottle so I will assume it is relatively new. This is a beer I've had on several occasions but have never bothered to review it. Here it goes.

Beer is dark black and forms a brown head of medium and small bubbles. Head dynamics are pretty good, and it leaves some lacing on the glass. I don't know about carbonation.

Aroma is a little weak. There is a mild roast to the aroma, disturbing the beer produces some more, its smells fine, its just small.

Beer is medium bodied and has a great flavor to it. I can't taste the oatmeal as much as some other beers but it gives it good body. Nice roast in the back. There is nice connectivity in the palate but not a lot of carbonation in the mouth. It doesn't really need it. Drinkability is high. I like this beer and highly recommend to everyone interested in stouts.

Photo of jwc215
4.03/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured very dark brown, almost black with well-retaining head.
Smelled of molassass and chocolate with bread-like background.
The taste was mildly sweet molassass, chocolate and oats. Not as sweet as other oatmeal stouts I've had, but some sweetness was evident.
Very smooth mouthfeel - quite drinkable!
This might not be the best example of this style, but it is certainly a great beer. However, I've had some regional and local oatmeal stouts that were almost/just as/slightly better for less money. This is a special treat - and a bit different than most others - nevertheless.

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

550 ml bottle into imperial pint glass, bottled on 8/3/2012. Pours crystal clear almost opaque dark brown color with a nice 2 finger dense and fluffy light tan head with incredible retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of caramel, cocoa, molasses, oatmeal, dark bread, toast, light apple, floral, and earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt notes with some light fruitiness. Taste of caramel, molasses, cocoa, oatmeal, toast, roasted malt, dark bread, floral, and roasted earthiness. Light floral bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, molasses, oatmeal, cocoa, toast, roasted malt, dark bread, and earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of dark malt notes with moderate hops; with great flavor robustness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a creamy and slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent oatmeal stout. Very nice balance and complexity of dark malt flavors; and very smooth to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of chinchill
3.83/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Portion of fresh bottle served in 6 oz glass.
(revised 1/2011 with 550ml bottle served in pint glass)

This is what an oatmeal stout should look like: nearly opaque with a frothy light brown head.

S - more subtle than expected, given appearance. Floral, earthy and malty; toasted grain aromas dominate.

T - starts smooth and soft. with predominately malty flavor. Noticeable chocolate. A bit bitter at finish. This classic is good to the last drop.

M - smooth, full bodied, significant carbonation.

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've had this beer probably 150 times over the past 18 years and now I've decided to finally review it.

A: Deep, deep russet - thin tan/white head with a moderate pour - tight tiny bubbles.

S: Very distinctive yorkshire yeast smell, black currants, English toffee, New England brown bread from the can (raisin of course!)

T: biscuity malt, prune, caramel, a slight roast coffee flavor, just under-ripe bartlett pear.

M: Silky smooth, slightly thin.

D: Very high, a supremely smooth version of an Oatmeal Stout and certainly the benchmark for the style.

Photo of WesWes
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours black witha full tan head that is well retained. The aroma is of dark malts. There is something in it that I just can't put my finger on; maybe it's the yeast or an aromatic specialty grain. The taste is excellant. A good stout with that oatmeal flavor. Chocolate malts overpower me in a good way. It is such a balanced ale. A real pleasure to drink. The mouthfeel is med/heavy body, but a real drinkable beer. A low abv. (5%) means that many can be had without getting too loose. Another great brew from this respected brewery.

Photo of dbrauneis
4.18/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours an opaque very dark brown to black with brown highlights when held up to the light. The beer has a two finger tall creamy tan head that slowly reduces to a thick layer covering the entire surface of the beer. Significant lacing is observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of dark malts, oatmeal, light sweetness, and hints of chocolate.

T: There is a nice complexity to the flavors - dark malts, chocolate, nuts, oatmeal, and some light sweetness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Creamy.

O: I like this beer, another return to years of past when I was just starting to appreciate craft and import beers. I think this beer is easy to drink and sessionable - goes down perfectly on a cold autumn afternoon, preferably by a fireplace.

Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Glad to see Samuel Smith switching to brown bottles.

The beer pours a very dark brown to black color with a tan head. The aroma is chocolate and roasted malt. The flavor is more of the same. I get a lot of chocolate and roasted malt notes, with some lactose and oats mixed in. I also somewhat surprisingly get some cinnamon notes which go very well with the other flavors. Medium to thick mouthfeel and low carbonation. A very nice Oatmeal Stout.

Photo of mdaschaf
3.88/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

550 ml bottle

A: Pours a very dark brown color with a thick layer of beige/mocha colored foam on top. Decent retention and very thick lacing left behind.

S: Surprisingly faint, there is a bit of chocolate and lightly roasted malt. Slight sweetness from the oatmeal and a little bit of dark fruits at the very end.

T: Slight sweetness, with chocolate and a little bit of dark fruit. There is a little bit of coffee and cream as well. Again, rather sweet, which wasn't completely unexpected.

M: Very smooth and creamy, but touch thin for my liking. Goes down easy and is very drinkable though.

O: A solid beer, I don't love it, and I am not sure I would get it again, but it has its place.

Photo of mothman
3.58/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into Samuel Smith Pint Glass.

Pours a 2 finger full tan head. Color is a deep deep mahogony brown. Pretty much black. Good retention and a lot of lace sticks to the walls of the glass.

Aroma: Very sweet oatmeal stout. Chocolate, caramel, and coffee are the main notes I get. This is quite a light stout as compared to others I have had.

Taste: Sweet toffee. Chocolate, caramel, and coffee is also there. Again, a very sweet tasting beer. Beer roasted malt taste.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and creamy. A very small touch of alcohol pokes through. Very sweet beer. Full bodied. Medium level of carbonation.

Overall, this is a decent oatmeal stout. It isn't on the top of my list, but it is worth a try. One of their better beers in my opinion.

Photo of stakem
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased a 4 pack and unfortunately had a mishap that redendered all the other soldiers MAN DOWN all over the floor of my garage. (A moment of silence if you would be so kind.) So I am taking the time to sit and review this lone hero in real time at my computer...

Poured into my favorite plain, somewhat chipped pint glass.

Pours a very dark brown; nearly black color with a bit of redness around the edges where the light fights to get through. Initially it has an amazing creamy 3 finger head that slowly receeds and leaves a fair amount of lacing about the previously touched sections of the glass. Deep smell reveals traces of burnt grains, chocolate and little bits of coffee. Taking a deep gulp, it has that rich smoothness you would expect with anything advertising the name oatmeal. Immediate flavors of over-ripened dark fruit, coffee, chocolate and burnt barley/hop bitterness brings in the finish. The carbination is enough to make your tongue tingle...quite inviting for the next sip. This is a solid beer and each sip is a reminder that this beverage is well balanced...if only I had another.

Photo of GClarkage
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

06/20/08- Consumed during my two week Montana vacation.

Presentation- 16.9oz bottle. Forgot to look for freshness info. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Black colored pour with a creamy 3/4 inch head. Nice staying power of a good 1/4 inch with nice patchwork left behind.

Smell- Roasted malts, rolled oats, milk chocolate and a dusting of nuttiness.

Taste- Very slight chocolate dusting meets you at every sip. Oatmeal and roasted nutty malt meets you as well. All combine for a breakfast like meal.

Mouthfeel- Creamy, smooth, full mouthfeel, even with the low abv.

Drinkability- I've had this before, but finally got around to rating it. Class oatmeal stout with few as good.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.85/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An opaque dark brown color, just about black. It is topped by a frothy, creamy brown head. Thick malty aromas mixed with burnt toast, expresso, toffee, and chocolate are all found in the nose. The taste is sweet, creamy, chocolately, and slightly viscous. I get notes of milk chocolate, and espresso. There is a bitter component that is derived from the roasted malt, but it is not enough to balance the sweetness that is found in this beer. For some reason I was expecting a bit more out of this beer. It is quite decent but seems a little dumbed down, which makes sense given this beer wide availibility & popularity.

Photo of Huhzubendah
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: dark brown with a decent sized beige head and a fair amount of lacing.

S: sweet oats, roasted malts, toffee, caramels.

T: good tasting brew, with all of the aspects of the aroma coming through nicely. The beer is slightly sweet. I would prefer a bit more roasted malt and crispness from the oats.

M: slightly thin and sweet.

D: a solid example of the style.

Photo of woodychandler
3.9/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I am continuing to drink my way through the Samuel Smith's oeuvre, thanks to a recent inspiration in one of the forums. Just in case anyone wondered what I was doing ...

From the bottle: "An opaque, wonderfully silky and smooth textured ale with a complex, medium dry palate and bittersweet finish. rich, creamy head and an intense dry, tangy character. Brewed with well water (the original well sunk in 1758 is still in use), malted barley, roasted barley,oatmeal, yeast and hops. Fermented in 'stone Yorkshire squares'. Celebrated Oatmeal Stout is a style benchmark revived by Samuel Smith's and the inspiration for hundreds of commercial oatmeal stouts."; Captioning a picture: "Knocking down the lively head of yeast formed during fermentation in 'stone Yorkshire squares'."

My pour created two foamy fingers of deep-tan head with great retention. It looked like the top of a root beer float. Color was a deep, dark brown with cola highlights at the edges. Nose had a roasty, chocolaty sweetness, not really dark chocolate, but more like chocolate and smoke or chocolate and charcoal. Mouthfeel was more active with carbonation than I would prefer from a beer whose brewers are calling "silky". Taste was rich, chocolate and a light smokiness, to me more of a dessert beer than an everyday beer. I have to agree with them about the "bittersweet finish", but it was more sweet than bitter. I tend to think of bittersweet in terms of chocolate and this was somewhat sweeter than that, but there was also a modicum of bitterness.

Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
94 out of 100 based on 6,113 ratings.