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Vanilla Oatis - Ninkasi Brewing Company

Vanilla OatisVanilla Oatis

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

226 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 226
Reviews: 55
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 10.65%

Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: Docer on 07-19-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 226 | Reviews: 55 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of jeff12hoops


3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

This beer pours well, with a deep, jet black color. I could definitely taste the harmonious blend of vanilla and oatmeal that elevated your typical stout flavor to a new level. I picked up more vanilla than oatmeal, though neither was overpowering. Overall, the taste was incredibly smooth, as was the aftertaste, which dropped off appropriately gradually. This beer is incredibly drinkable and didn't taste alcoholic to me at all, despite the 7.2% ABV. I would have enjoyed this beer more if it had leaned a bit more overpowering, either in raw flavor or in heaviness, but as it stands, it felt smooth, light, and balanced. My only real complaint is that the carbonation was weak, which contributed to an average mouthfeel in an otherwise very nice beer. Would definitely drink again, and would probably have more than one at once!

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2014 19:24:57 | More by jeff12hoops
Photo of StonedTrippin


4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

impressive for a number of reasons. i love the dark sleek look, not shiny or flat, but somewhere in between in terms of luster. smallish head, but good retention and white lacing. i smell vanilla, but its still behind the dark earthen barley roast and a touch of carbon ash as well. minimal sweetness in the taste or the feel, which makes this for me. so many of these come across as sugar bombs, and this one is appreciably dry as well as bitter on the finish. vanilla is also only subtle, playing off the body and sweetness of the oats, but contributing only accents. most vanilla beers going right now are so heavy in vanilla that the beer gets lost, not the case with vanilla oatis, which stays dark and bitter and rich, without ever getting sweet or overbearing. well hidden alcohol strength and a long roasted barley finish. fun and well made beer, among the best ive had from ninkasi.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2014 23:32:08 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of LA_Hue24


3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
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

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2014 23:23:51 | More by LA_Hue24
Photo of GeezLynn


3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
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.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2014 04:39:21 | More by GeezLynn
Photo of Cervezaconcalor


4.24/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a big sized Delirium tulip glass.

A - I poured this beer straight down into the tulip glass and it is black with a nice two finger head formed.

S - Pleasant sweetness from the vanilla and oatmeal. I get some coffee too but not pronounced as well as a bit of molasses.

T - Out of the fridge you get some more sweetness from the vanilla but as it warms up oatmeal, coffee and some roasted notes come out.

M - Medium body. Has almost a little fizzy feel to it which goes away as it settles.

O - Damn good beer. I'll have another please. :-)

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2014 03:02:52 | More by Cervezaconcalor
Photo of ADZA


3.26/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It's been sitting in the fridge for a while eyeing me off so tonight's it's her turn and pours a dark as night black hue with the creamiest two finger coffee laced head and some nice lacing,the smell is bourbon,booze,sweet dark malts and dried fruits,the mouthfeel is nicely carbonated but feels light on in body just medium bodied which is a big let down and has tastes of strong vanilla first up followed by some sweet caramel,milky chocolate and finished with a fruity hoppiness which really levels out the sweetness in a good way but overall for me I'm glad I've tried it but it's abit all over the place and not something I'd seek out again cheers.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2014 11:18:48 | More by ADZA
Photo of augustgarage


3.94/5  rDev +2.3%
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2014 17:31:42 | More by augustgarage
Photo of travolta


2.58/5  rDev -33%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Appearance: Straight black, cappuccino head. Some lacing with good enough retention.

Nose: Roasted coffee, slight vanilla bean, mostly toasted oats. Not much going on.

Taste: Creamy mouthfeel with perfect carbonation. Tastes like oat crackers with some very light vanilla butter on top. There is not much vanilla in here.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2014 02:43:07 | More by travolta
Photo of BierJager89


4.38/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black with a creamy mocha brown head.

S: Creamy vanilla, coffee, roasted malt, milk chocolate, bittersweet chocolate and maybe a touch of espresso in the nose.

T: Dark chocolate, then some vanilla, then a bit of lemon and strawberry, a touch of orange, then coffee then vanilla again, but stronger. Vanilla and espresso are stronger as it warms up, coffee taste is a bit more bitter, like a dark french roast.

M: Full bodied and creamy smooth.

O: It fell somewhat short of what I was hoping for, but it's a great stout. The flavor of vanilla seems forgotten, at least to me. It's so common to see it imitated in sweets as a base flavor, but real vanilla imparts a delicious flavor, that I feel goes perfectly with chocolatey stouts, and that's pretty much what you get here.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2014 20:46:31 | More by BierJager89
Photo of kagent777


3.43/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bomber purchased in Pocatello, Id on the way back from Jackson. No bottling date to be seen. Poured into my standard beer goblet after half an hour out of the fridge.

Appearance: Very dark brown with a dark tan head that settled quickly. No problems. Nice lacing.

Smell: Vanilla and some roasty notes with chocolate. The overall effect is that of a yummy chocolate bar.

Taste: The vanilla is strong in the taste. I love vanilla, one of my favorite flavors, but this is almost too much for me. The vanilla hides almost everything else. I could have used a bit of ash or char to butt up against the vanilla. This is semisweet and the alcohol is well hidden at 7.2 ABV.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with medium carbonation.

Overall: Too much vanilla, this one needs a competing flavor. Something to go up against the vanilla. I was hoping for more.

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2013 03:49:35 | More by kagent777
Photo of BastardKing24


4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance is black with tan head that falls to lacing fast, but sticks around.

Smell is of milk chocolate, roasted malts, vanilla, bittersweet cocoa, coffee.

Taste is more of the smell with predominant roasted barely and vanilla on the front, with coffee, toffee, hops, chocolate on the backend.

mouthfeel is very nice with the oats added, it gives a thick kick to it, as well as the base malt which equals out at 7.2% alc. a very well done stout, ive had the normal oatis and this vanilla gives it just a bit more dimension and compliments the flavors nicely.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2013 03:42:31 | More by BastardKing24
Photo of PHBoiler


3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep, rich black color with a nice one finger coffee brown head. The nose has some faint chocolate and roasty notes. The body is exactly the right consistency for an oatmeal stout, which runs a little thinner than others. Not quite as creamy as other stouts. You get the coffee, chocolate notes from the roast and I did notice the vanilla. It isn't sweet or overpowering, but I'd be disappointed without the vanilla. Well made, tasty stout.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2013 14:46:12 | More by PHBoiler
Photo of canucklehead

British Columbia (Canada)

3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The vanilla does show up but enough in my liking as to not take away from the chocolate notes of the beer. Add oatmeal to the mix and this is very drinkable and quite smooth in the aftertaste. Ninkasi has become one of my fave brewers from Oregon available in BC. This stout hits the marks in all areas.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2013 18:17:15 | More by canucklehead
Photo of TruePerception


3.55/5  rDev -7.8%
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.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2013 09:19:07 | More by TruePerception
Photo of Sark


3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22 oz bomber

Appearance- good finger and a half of caramel colored head, deep black that doesn't let any light though

Smell- chocolate and caramels with just a touch of the advertised vanilla bitterness, malt forward with little hop

Taste- much brighter than the smell, toffees and sweetness up front are soon overshadowed by a huge vanilla burst that goes to the finish with a slightly unpleasant astringent aftertaste

Mouthfeel- full bodied, the finish is a bit dry

Overall- I thought this was going to be a very solid brew up to the taste. They tried too hard with the vanilla and could have tried balancing with a bit of more lasting sweetness. Nonetheless, an enjoyable stout.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2013 01:52:25 | More by Sark
Photo of archyquaffer


4.14/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bomber into a Black Tooth Brewing shaker pint. The glass was gotten for free at burger night at a local pizza place in Sheridan, Wyoming. A moderate pour produces a one inch frothy tan head. The beer is very dark brown, and would take a powerful light to see through.

Nice aroma and flavor- you can smell and taste the vanilla but it's not overbearing by any means ( I love vanilla). Maybe just a whiff of something akin to dark cherries. Lingering bitterness on the tongue, with notes of toffee, pecans, walnuts, and chocolate, in addition to the ever-present vanilla. This is almost like sipping some bittersweet cocoa. Nice full, smooth and creamy mouthfeel, as you might expect. The flavors improve as the beer warms. Maybe a little warming from the alcohol.

Another excellent beer from the goddess! I bought this bomber in Livingston, Montana at the Albertson's supermarket, which is the only place I've seen it thus far.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2013 04:29:34 | More by archyquaffer
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.39/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Thin rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, cookie dough, and vanilla aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa, vanilla, and lots of char flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer with a fairly acrid char flavor that lingers long after each sip and takes away from the drinkability in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2013 03:53:13 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of Axnjxn

North Carolina

3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

bomber into a FW tulip. No apparent bottling date

Pours an opaque black with a half inch beige head. Smell has a tad of vanilla but mostly malts/booze. No chocolate apparent. Taste is better, good malty feel with some nice chocolate and vanilla notes. Oatmeal makes its presence felt here to smooth out the feel. good drinkability. mild body, low carbonation.

overall real easy drinking stout right here. I had it with breakfast and it paired very well.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2013 14:43:22 | More by Axnjxn
Photo of cavedave

New York

4.09/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Even again more thanks to beertunes who blessed me with this treat of sweet drinking oat stout.

Black and a big light brown head that grudgingly retreats to a thick skim, leaving a solid sheet of lace around the entirety of the tulip.

It is a modest aroma of neutral sweet, light nutty roast, even lighter chocolate, and just hints of floral and almost fruit sweet.

More robust in the flavor department, a nice blast of roast and chocolate usher in really nice mix of flavors, especially some bitter notes of the roast, as well as some nice neutral and burnt sugar sweet. Hops bitter plays well with charry bitter and herbal bitter, sweet hangs in. Finally at room temp vanilla hints get some air time. Delicious.

Mouthfeel is light but full, well done with the oatmeal, creamy and finishes strong and clean. Plenty of carb. in fact a bit too much as it turns out, def, slight carbonic note to this as it goes along that barely detracts from an otherwise excellent beer.

Minor ding for the carbonic note to it, but a masterfully done easy drinking and roasty rocking beer I am glad to finally taste. Another bit of greatness from a criminally underrated brewery.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2013 18:26:25 | More by cavedave
Photo of RickS95


4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2013 02:44:53 | More by RickS95
Photo of Matthew_Taylor


3.36/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark, thick coffee color, with a small, thin, light brown head when poured. Surprisingly has little to no smell, but great mouth feel. A very milky texture, one of the better feeling stouts that I have tasted. A Solid stout, but lacks the vanilla taste or aroma that I would expect from a beer that calls out its inclusion. Dark, coffee tasting with notes of chocolate and (very minor) hints of vanilla.

Very drinkable, but again, lacks the taste of vanilla you would expect from a beer that you would think it trying to highlight the use of vanilla in the brewing process.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2013 20:48:08 | More by Matthew_Taylor
Photo of Braz


3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Purchased at Fred Meyer.
Had an alright roasted aroma. Some notes of coffee.
Looks fairly typical. Almost no head at all. There is some carbonation there though as it has a sort of sparkling presence.
Taste is pretty good though I don't pick up a ton of vanilla. Just a bit more would have been nice. Lightly sweet roasted taste. Pretty good.
Nicely carbonated. Has a velvetty feel to it that I like.
Pretty good but not outstanding. Has a good feel but lacks on the vanilla. A bit of a head would make it more appealing to the eye too.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2013 20:20:55 | More by Braz
Photo of Bookseeb


4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is a very dark brown color with a fairly stable head leaving fair lace. Smell of the dark malt, vanilla and a bit of the oatmeal. Taste is in par with the aroma having a nice balance with the hops. Mouthfeel is full and creamy with good carbonation. A very nice stout with a twist.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2013 01:29:54 | More by Bookseeb
Photo of Reappropriated


3.36/5  rDev -12.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2013 22:19:11 | More by Reappropriated
Photo of Goblinmunkey7


3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Robbrandes for the bottle.

Appearance: Near black with a super smooth pour. Head is a dark khaki and drops to a small creamy cap in short order. Solid retention with some tiny spots of watery lacing. Minimal visible carbonation.

Smell: Roasted malt. Sweet chocolate and a solid punch of bitter and dark cocoa. Milky sweetness hints at something like lactose sugar. Soft undercurrent of vanilla bean. Roasted barley and a solid hit of oats. A touch of caramelized malt sweetness. Grainy with some underlying minerality. Very minimal hopping adds something almost floral. More cocoa as it warms.

Taste: Roasted milky sweetness. Vanilla is very mild until the beer warms. Nice full vanilla flavor in the back as it warms. Roasted sweetness. Some chocolate malt with a nice caramelized malt sweetness. Milky, almost lactose, sweetness. Milk chocolate, dustings of cocoa and dark chocolate. A very slightly burnt edge. Mild hop profile adds a backing floral/citrus element. Some vague dark fruitiness. Loaded with oats and some minerality--must be the water.

Mouthfeel: Silky smooth with a medium body and just below average carbonation. So very creamy. Clean.

Overall: A lateral movement.

Not a marked improvement over the original, but it's solid. The vanilla is nice and subtle, adding just enough to let you know it's there. Still clutch for the style.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2013 00:17:20 | More by Goblinmunkey7
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Vanilla Oatis from Ninkasi Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 226 ratings.