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Vanilla Oatis - Ninkasi Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Vanilla OatisVanilla Oatis

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

429 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 429
Reviews: 85
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 10.13%
Wants: 22
Gots: 64 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  7.20% 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: 429 | Reviews: 85 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of drone
2.97/5  rDev -22.9%
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 arvidkoval
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very, very dark. Fantastic looking beer. Light roasted malt smell, overpowered by a nice sweetness. Roasty, sweet flavor with a vanilla finish. Silky, creamy, thick, decadent texture. This is a bad ass oat stout.

Photo of hockeypuck
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Exeter
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of KAF
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of richkrull
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of johlac66
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of JMBSH
3.44/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Harvest06
3.26/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of maltlikker
4.11/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of atom714
3.37/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Photo of BCborn
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jaswilson2
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of arizcards
4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber from Total Wine in early November for $5.49. No bottling date visible.

Beer poured black with a nice brown head upon the initial pour.

Nose is roasted malts with hints of cocoa and vanilla.

Taste is heavy on the roasted malts with a touch of cocoa and a kiss of vanilla. It is nicely balanced by a decent hopping. Finish is dry.

Mouthfeel is medium and fairly smooth.

Overall this is a very nice beer, nicely enhanced by a slight touch of vanilla. Too much vanilla in a beer is not a good thing for my palate. Definitely one I would have again.

Photo of 2013beer101
3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Catracho5
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of flagmantho
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 22oz bomber into a tulip.

Appearance: totally black body; head pours two fingers of frothy tan foam. Head dissipates slowly with a big, chunky lace left on the glass; I like it a great deal.

Smell: light roasty character with a light vanilla aroma. Not bad overall, but mostly rather low in intensity.

Taste: the vanilla is up front, followed by a classic oatmeal stout flavor, if a bit on the sweet side. The vanilla is good, but almost too much for me.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good carbonation and a decent creaminess for the style. Not bad.

Overall: I think the vanilla is just a little too much on this one. Mostly a good beer, but it could be dialed back a notch.

Photo of GilGarp
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
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 campfirebrew
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of frlrv1020
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DavidHume
3.63/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of S2kookies
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of WDJersey
3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of kojevergas
3.02/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

BOTTLE: Brown glass. 1 pint 6 fl oz. 2014 vintage. Purchased in Lone Tree, CO. Appealing label art/design. Branded pry-off pressure cap.

1072 O.G. 50 IBUs. 7.2% ABV.

Served chilled into a nonical pint glass. Expectations are above average given the brewery and style. Allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: 3 fingers wide. Khaki colour. Gorgeously creamy, thick, and full. Soft-looking and supple. Retention is good - about 6-7 minutes. Leaves no lacing on the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

BODY: Opaque solid black. No yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Overall, it's an appealing oatmeal stout, but isn't unique or special. Looks more or less as it should.

AROMA: Oats, dark malts, cream, chocolate malts, vanilla, sweet milk chocolate, and lactose sugar. I like that the vanilla isn't overt, and the oat character seems lovely, but it could definitely be more evocative and intricate. Luckily, there's no off-character, overt alcohol, dirty yeast character, etc., and the hop profile (in spite of the ostensible 50 IBUs) is unnoticeable.

Aromatic intensity is mild at most.

TASTE: The vanilla isn't as overt and naked as I expected, and initially I find myself let down, but as I drink I come to appreciate it as a subtle addition to an already successful oatmeal stout. And fairly subtle notes of creme brulee emerge as it comes to temperature. Predictably, the malt backbone is dark malts and chocolate malts. Many oatmeal stouts don't actually have an oat flavour, but this one definitely does, bringing plenty of starchiness to the table. Light on cream. Mildly sweet. I do find some hints of lactose sugar and milk chocolate which are more appropriate for a milk stout than an oatmeal stout.

I certainly like it, but it leaves a lot to be desired - especially in terms of complexity/intricacy, subtlety, and nuance. It's a fairly well balanced brew which will definitely scratch your oatmeal stout itch, but there are absolutely more widely available brews out there that do the style better - and the sweetness/bitterness aspect of the balance is just off. Average duration, depth, and intensity of flavour, with a nice flavour amplitude.

It's not a hoppy brew by any means. No yeast character comes through, nor do any off-notes.

Critically, where's the requisite roasted barley note?

My biggest criticism is it's just too reticent and closed off. Its flavours just aren't that rich or evocative.

TEXTURE: Medium to full-bodied. It features a strange coarseness and dryness - particularly towards the end of the second act - which drags on the palate and frankly defeats the point of an oatmeal stout to begin with; oats are used to render an otherwise coarse and dry stout smooth and wet - like a porter. Not as creamy or soft as would be ideal, but sufficiently both. It's aptly thick and has a good overall presence on the palate. Well-carbonated.

This mouthfeel, while not ideal for the style, does complement the taste nicely, and the unexpected coarseness helps curb the usual slickness of the vanilla. It doesn't elevate the beer and there's definitely work to be done, but it's well-executed.

OVERALL: It hides its ABV well, and it's a nice oatmeal stout, but it does flirt too much with milk stout characteristics for my tastes, while not committing enough to the titular vanilla. It's a nice but unfortunately generic beer in the style from Ninkasi. I won't be buying it again unless it's the only good choice at a subpar bar, but I'm glad I tried it. Might make a nice introduction to the oatmeal stout style, but the discerning drinker will be unimpressed. On the high end of average.

High C

Photo of DeadeyeOTDO
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vanilla Oatis from Ninkasi Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 429 ratings.