Vanilla Oatis - Ninkasi Brewing Company

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Vanilla OatisVanilla Oatis

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BA SCORE
87
very good

495 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 495
Reviews: 96
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 9.84%
Wants: 24
Gots: 83 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Docer on 07-19-2009

A delicious oatmeal stout with just enough hops to balance the copious quantities of dark roasted malts, oatmeal for a creamy smooth drinkability, and whole vanilla beans for a rich complexity. To achieve this higher level of decadence, we added in whole vanilla beans to the final stage of fermentation - the same process we use to dry hop a beer.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 495 | Reviews: 96
Reviews by 111213forlife:
More User Reviews:
Photo of nychas
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

On tap Roof of Wholefoods Brooklyn. I am tasting the vanilla right away with this one. After that is a very good sweetish stout. Has some body, nice and chewy, so not a porter.

Photo of Reappropriated
3.35/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

I like this beer, there is just not as much depth in flavor as I would prefer.

There were hints of vanilla, but overall it seemed a bit faded, which was somewhat disappointing. If I am going to decide to get the vanilla Oatis over the regular version I want there to be a noticeable different. The favor was nice, which I was not surprised by, as I like the regular version, but I was not wowed either by the vanilla or by anything deeper coming from this beer. I would drink this beer again, there are just lots of others that I would choose before I got to this one.

Photo of biboergosum
3.96/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, one of a whole new swath of Ninkasi products to recently broach the Alberta market.

This beer pours a solid black abyss, albeit with prominent basal cola edges, and three fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and somewhat bubbly tan head, which leaves some stellar sedimentary rock face lace around the glass as things sink away.

It smells of roasted caramel malt, bready toffee, Cheerios, wet ash, bittersweet cocoa powder, ethereal vegetal vanilla, and burnt-seeming leafy, weedy, and earthy hops. The taste is semi-sweet caramel malt, dark chocolate, natural vanilla, oatmeal porridge, a subtle char, and earthy, leafy, and mildly grassy hops.

The carbonation is fairly low-key, just a minor burbling frothiness for the most part, the body a sturdy medium weight, and generally quite smooth, with a thin creaminess trying hard to be heard. It finishes on the sweet side, the cocoa, caramel, and waning vanilla easily parrying the barbs of any lingering char or party-crashing alcohol.

A tasty stout, both experience enhancers (oats for body, vanilla for flavour) workin' it overtime. It is a tad strange, the vanilla not being associated with its usual barrel friends, but that's ok with me - what we get here is more of the real deal, for what it's worth. Worthy of checking out, if you like the well-made, adulterated (much love) American stouts.

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours near opaque black with a tan, 2 finger head. Great retention, leaving a thin, broken layer of microbubbles on the surface. Very little in the way of lace.

Smell - As the name implies, the aroma consists of chocolate, vanilla and oats.

Taste - Follows the nose; strong chocolate and vanilla upfront, intermingled in a way that it becomes a bit muddled. Hints of oatmeal. Not much else, as the vanilla sweetness rides to the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full body with moderate carbonation. Smooth, creamy finish.

Overall - Sometimes, less is more. Such is the case here with Vanilla Oatis. The standard Oatis is a very, very good oatmeal stout: multi-layerd, with lots of flavor. Adding vanilla melds all those flavors together, making a beer that, at best, hits on two notes. Fair to good beer overall, but I'd take the original version everytime over this variation.

Photo of GilGarp
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bomber served chilled into an imperial pint glass.

Vanilla Oatis is nearly black in color with thick tan colored head. It has good retention and decent lacing.

Aroma is enjoyable with vanilla sweetness and roasted maltiness.

Flavor is balanced towards the bitter with strong dark malts, dark coffee, and chocolate.

Mouthfeel is medium-plus in bodied but not as creamy as I was hoping for an oatmeal stout. Carbonation is a little high for my tastes.

Overall a delicious stout for someone who likes bitter beer.

Photo of augustgarage
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a small tumbler.

Bistre body with a creamy buff cap. Thick sticky lacing, superior retention.

Aromatics suggest creme brûlée french toast with the dark malts and vanilla working well together. Faintly grainy with some light berry and floral notes as well.

Hints of char suggest roast barley but are offset with a creamy lightly sweet smoothness from the oats. Nice complexity of malts. Medium-low hoppy bitterness with hints of orange and peppercorn. Vanilla is subtle. Touches of Earl Grey. Nice earthy finish.

Medium mouthfeel, creamy yet vaguely tannic. Well carbonated; some heat from the alcohol.

A flavorful, potent breakfast beer - not greatly improved by the vanilla - though it works well with the base beer.

Photo of RickS95
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pitch black pour. No way of telling if it's hazy or cloudy because it's so dark. However, you can rule out clear, because it just isn't. The head is a nice shade of light brown or dark khaki, take your pick. Not much retention, but the bubbles never fully dissipate. A slippery lace follows the head.

Smells the part. Dark roasted scents come wafting up from my snifter imparting smoky chocolate, toffee and because of the smoke, a bit of coffee. Char is the word for the day. Hints of the vanilla bean are saved for last.

Tastes like a milk stout with some smoke mixed in. I can't pick up the vanilla, but the bittersweet chocolate, all the roasted grains, the various malts and the Nugget hops are all very much present. There's a sweetness that I can't account for, which is likely the vanilla.

Feels like an oatmeal stout with it's smooth, creamy start. Some bitterness looms midsip in a battle with the sweetness before the sweet departs for a lingering, fairly bitter finish. It's never too bitter, just enough to clean up after the sweetness. Very earthy. Full bodied. Not crisp, but wet in the swallow.

Another good beer from Ninkasi. Smooth drinker here. ABV is well beyond sessionable, but you'd not know it. Goes down easy with a nice flavor and feel.

Photo of bradleyp
4.92/5  rDev +27.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I tried this beer at the Ninkasi tasting room. I was quite surpised from this beer. I am a huge fan of Oatis, and I am now a bigger fan of the Vanilla Oatis. Poured via tap into a pint glass by a sexy female bartender. Light creamy head with sweet vanilla aroma. The beer, not the bartender. I hope this comes out in bottles soon. I wasn't able to take the brewery tour due to construction.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.42/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

650 mL bottle poured into a tumbler.

Appearance - Black body, a little transparent at the edges. Small off white head that doesn't last.

Smell - A ton of vanilla. Oatmeal. Some chocolate

Taste - Again, a lot of vanilla. Much roastier. Coffee. A bit of dark chocolate. Bitter roastiness lingers.

Mouthfeel - Medium low carbonation. Medium body.

Overall - Vanilla keeps it interesting and elevates it.

Photo of richj1970
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bomber into snifter.

A: Pours pitch black with two finger tan head. Nice retention and lacing.

S: Vanilla, roasted malts, and cocoa powder.

T: Rich dark chocolate, vanilla, light coffee, and roasted malts.

M: Full bodied but not thick. Slightly creamy.

O: Very nice oatmeal stout. Sometimes vanilla can come off artificial or medicinal, but here it is quite tasty.

Photo of drone
2.97/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Light roast, has that great oatmeal bite, but there's just nothing that stands out.

Photo of TruePerception
3.55/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ninkasi's Vanilla Oatis, an oatmeal stout brewed with whole vanilla beans. 7.2% ABV.

Appearance: Solid black with a thin tan head. Slight root beer coloring along top outer rim, once head fades.

Smell: Dark roasted oats. Light coffee. I'm not getting any vanilla on the nose. We'll see if that changes as it warms up...

Taste/Mouthfeel: Really smooth texture. Soft and creamy. ...There's a weird acidity present. It's hard to pin down, but I'm definitely salivating! The lighter roasted coffee is present on the palate, as well. Slight oatmeal taste. I'm not getting any vanilla? I wonder if I got a bad bottle...

Poured into a pint glass, from a 22 oz. bottle.

Photo of Docer
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

What a treat at the PIB... was really looking forward to this... wish the would just make a vanilla Imperial Oatis to bottle....

- Dark chocolate and caramel color with caramel head.. lacing all around... little specs of vanilla were present in the head, and the guy doing the pours noticed it too in the overflow pitcher and was shocked at the amount of real vanilla specs.. like the beans in ice cream..

- Wonderful sweet vanilla smell, clean, and crisp.. bit of bittering hop, nut, and chocolate... sweet oatmeal!

- Smooth vanilla without being too sweet... chocolate malt, bittering hop, and overall very balanced and delicious....

- Sweet watering goodness, I want more now!

- One must invent a devise to hold the mouth open for full time pour of Vanilla Oatis into my mouth... huge fan!

Photo of Spikester
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

It has been awhile since I have enjoyed the standard Oatis so my tastes may have changed over time.
Pours dark brown with a modest one finger head. Could easily be increased with a more aggressive pour. Head leaves after about 5 minutes but lacing is quite impressive.
Smell is the normal beer plus vanilla. Plenty of vanilla.
Taste in the same, plenty of chocolate, coffee, some molasses, and a medium hop bitterness that never overcomes the sweet malts.
Mouthfeel is very good for the style and carbonation is average. Finish is medium dry.
Overall I prefer the regular Oatis but I believe this would be a promising crossover beer for newer stout drinkers. One of the main ingredients in chocolates is vanilla. Also hard to believe this is 7.2% abv from the taste. Well hidden.

Photo of ocelot2500
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Pours a deep ebony color with foamy tan head that leaves little bits of lacing.

Smells of deep roasted notes with a touch of vanilla.

Tastes of the deep roasted notes with earthy bitterness and vanilla. Roasted notes lead off with espresso, dark chocolate, and some charred notes. Moderate amount of sweetness. Vanilla notes add in the middle along with some smooth, nutty oatmeal. Earthy and roasted bitterness add towards the end before a lingering vanilla note.

Mouthfeel is medium-full with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is pretty tasty and worth a look.

Photo of EgadBananas
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Black in colour, light brown finger of head, no lighter edges, sporadic lace. Aroma is rich with vanilla bean, coffee, roast, sugar, light flowery hops. Again, taste is big on the vanilla beans, rich, sweet, roasty, coffee, toffee. Creamy feel, medium body.

Beautiful use of vanilla right here. It's sultry and smooth, sweet and savory.

Photo of smakawhat
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Creamy and very light tan three finger head off the pour. Sits with a good thick cap and whip cream like appearance. Body color is a big dark walnut black with even a tinge of red highlights. A nice looking brew for sure.

Subtlety seems to hint on the nose. Mild coffee and cream like milky tones, a bit of sweet lactose maybe to round out. Very mild vanilla but an even softer coffee and cake like aroma permeates. Good solid milk chocolate adds to the mix. The creamy action hits nicely with the promise of something larger to come.

Palate delivers wonderfully. Creamy textured roast and chocolate with a silky body. Rich nice chocolate and light roast aromas wash over the mid palate. Very mild hop tinge of pine and fruit just so tiny but give a little play in the mid palate, finishing with a rich cream character no doubt from the oats. Vanilla character is a bit lost somewhat, but perhaps it is adding to the experience.

A real solid oatmeal stout for sure, missing some of the vanilla flavor it hints at, and a bit of hop unexpectedness, but as an oatmeal stout it sure delivers.

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Found this at WinCo of all places. Pours with fairly long lasting dark tan head... the brew is pretty much black except a little light making it through the stem end of my glass.

Plenty of vanilla on the nose... it sorta masks the background cocoa aroma, but the chocolate/roasty notes are definitely just there, just bullied out by the vanilla.

Flavor mirrors the nose almost exactly...

Body seems a little watery, but somehow still retains an unusual smoothness probably from the oats... carbonation is on the light side, but certainly within style guidelines.

Well made beer, but just not to my liking.

4/3.5/3.5/3.5/3.5

Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.82/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the Owl House in Rochester, NY.

Pours a dark, deep black, with a foamy one inch head, and lots of lacing.

Smells more chocolatey than like vanilla, interestingly enough, but the vanilla's there, along with burnt sugar and roasted malt.

If you didn't tell me what this was, I might not have been able to pick it out as a vanilla oatmeal stout. I get the vanilla, but no more than a typical stout has anyway. It's much more chocolate and coffee forward, with the slightest smidgen of roasted malt to keep it from getting too sweet. There's seems to be something missing on the back end- kind of bland once the first wave of flavor hits.

This is quite creamy, with a full mouthfeel, and a medium body. There is a lower amount of carbonation. It is quite drinkable.

This is tasty, but I wish the vanilla was more pronounced, and the finish was a bit more complex.

Photo of WalterHeisenberg
4.8/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Aggressive pour into giant beer mug
A: black dark body mocha colored head big and foaming. Dies down in minutes but still apparent with minimal lacing. Leaves a ring Looks enticing
S:dark roasted malty bitter chocolate cherry coffee vanilla. Yea!
T: dark roasted malty slightly hoppy vanilla alcohol up front then chocolate cherry malty bitter then coffee malt vanilla down .Very balanced flavor. Vanilla was slight but more pronounced as it warms.biter hop coffee after taste. Yum
M: smooth rich velvet creamy
O: A pleasure to drink. Looks smells taste very quality. Just a tiny hint of the 7.2% i would drink this regularly. Funny i like my IPAs bitter but my stouts sweet. Good price too.

Photo of Greywulfken
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: black body with a mocha head a few fingers high; some lace motes left behind

S: vanilla clearly expresses itself above the dark roasted oat and cocoa aromas

T: vanilla is again at the front, riding atop bittersweet chocolate and hearty oat flavors; some espresso notes drift by in the background

M: smooth and light, modest carbonation, little bit of drying on the finish; nice finish and aftertaste

O: more smoothed out flavors courtesy of vanilla than their regular Oatis - I found it to be an improvement on that stout; vanilla influence will not disappoint.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an Elysian snifter. Pours pitch black with a fine, one finger light brown head with great retention and lacing. Sweet aroma dominated by vanilla with light toasted malt. Flavor is toasted malt, coffee and quite distinct, but well integrated, vanilla. Starts semi-sweet, finishes dry and crisp with bitter coffee and light hops. Medium, creamy body with nice mouth feel. A nicely made oatmeal stout with deft use of vanilla flavoring, nicely balanced. I'll watch for this the next time it arrives.

Photo of CookstLiquor
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 650ml bottle. Pours a deep blackish-brown colour with some nice tan head. The smell is big on creamy chocolate notes. The taste is quite rich with the vanilla showing up as a sort of burnt marshmallow flavour. There's a bit of smoke in there as well as some chocolate and coffee notes. The vanilla component is complementary without domination. Nice.

Photo of LA_Hue24
3.72/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured out of 22oz bomber into Stone IRS snifter

A: pours dark brown it sits black with a small beige head. Looks thin and light lacing clings to the glass

S: Sweet buiscuit and cacoa. Not much vanilla in the nose mostly oats n malt with slight coffee

T: vanilla is almost absent. Oatmeal n coffee with hints of cacao n vanilla. Good breakfast beer

M: lightly carbonated very thin wish it had more going on kinda bland

O: its a good beer didnt have any expectations this is my first oatmeal stout. I dont think I would buy it again although $5 for 7%abv is hard to pass up

Photo of GeezLynn
3.96/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown with a little light shining through. Goopy light tan head with moderate retention.
S: Intial smell is very sweet and heavy on vanilla. A little roasted and black malt peeks through followed by some oatmeal mustiness.
T: as in the aroma, starts off sweet, with lots of vanilla. Flavor turns bitter with some coffee and a little Hershey’s chocolate syrup. Finish is short, roasted and on the dry side. Very nice vanilla flavor.
M: Medium-bodied for the style with heavy carbonation. I prefer a beer this big with oatmeal to be a bit smoother.

Would love to have access to this out here in MN. $4 for 22 oz of this stuff beats most anything comparable in this market.

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Vanilla Oatis from Ninkasi Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 495 ratings.