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Brass Knuckles Oatmeal Stout - Barley Island Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Brass Knuckles Oatmeal StoutBrass Knuckles Oatmeal Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

106 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 106
Reviews: 78
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 10.59%
Wants: 8
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Barley Island Brewing Company visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: zerk on 01-24-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 106 | Reviews: 78 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared with Tomthompson98. The aroma is very roasted coffee. Good head and lace. Sweetish, with lots of coffee and chocolate and an average mouthfeel. Just too sweet, though lower ABV is appreciated. Happy with carbonation though it is above average.

Sammy, Mar 18, 2008
Photo of brentk56
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a pitch black color iwth a foamy tan head that sticks like crazy but doesn't leave much lace

Smell: Rich roasty chocolate aroma with a hint of mint and coffee

Taste: Opens with a roasty dark chocolate flavor that grows in carob bitterness by mid-palate; after the swallow, hints of coffee appear

Mouthfeel: Way too much carbonation gets in the way of the mouthfeel which I guess is medium to full

Drinkability: Very nice flavors by marred by the overcarbonation (may just be a problem with this batch as not many others seem to have raised this issue)

brentk56, Feb 20, 2008
Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What's so loved about Oatmeal Stouts is the creamy smoke flavor and aroma with a vevety smooth mouthfeel. Barley Island's Brass Knuckles delivers all the promises of the style and also powered with the moderate amount of alcohol so that you can enjoy more than just one or two.

The dense and dark beer reveals a bark brown color and a completely opaque lack of clarity. That's ok because the denese looking beer releases a creamy and dense tan head that rises early but reduces to a thick sheet across the beer. Ample lacing makes this beer a very attractive and masculine choice.

A malty-rich aromas swirl while picking up aromatic notes of smoky sweetness, coffee, and cocoa. Quite roasty, but with a campfire-ish scent gives this dark beer a dense and meaty undertone. Slight fruitiness of burnt grapes, dates, or plumbs round out the aroma profile.

Flavors bring about more sweetness than the nose suggests, but do so with a rich smoky sweetness of bittersweet chocolates, nutty Columbian coffees, and th milky richness of Whoppers candies. Mild on bitterness, there's a slight woody influence from hops, but the majority of tame bitterness likely derives from the roasted grains, similar to coffee. Low-lying fruitiness may resemble notes of toasted currants, grapes or berries but these compounds are slight and only offer background notes.

Creamy, smooth, and velvety- the lable says it all. This beer is moderate in mouthfeel but heightened because of the creamy carbonation and the rich proteins of oats. A mildly warm finish accompanies a silky smooth minty sensation that gives the beer an extended aftertaste of malt and roast but with the calming malty richness that's so rewarding!

Brass Knuckles is a very rewarding roasty ale that places emphasis on smoky sweetness, roasty warmth, and delicate creaminess- all much appreciated!

BEERchitect, Mar 01, 2012
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Impenetrable onyx with the slightest glimmer of gold at the bottom edge of the glass when held up to the brightest morning sunshine that January can muster. The head is a beast as well. Dark brown sugar in color and tight-bubbled in texture, it's a lace generator of the highest order. Most double stouts and quite a few RISs would kill to look this good.

I continue to be impressed with BKOS. The nose is hugely roasted malty with all of the dark accessory aromas that that implies. Dark chocolate fudge and ground espresso beans lead the way, neither really dominating the other. I think I can appreciate hops, but can't be sure. Can Brass Knuckles keep up the smashmouth quality on the palate?

And the answer is... not quite. It isn't as big as it looks and smells, and is the lesser for it. That isn't to say that I'm not thrilled with the beer that Barley Island has chosen to brew. The flavor profile tastes like black patent and chocolate malt have been roasted to within an inch of their lives.

There's a wonderful bitter char that gives the beer character and will probably keep the uninitiated far, far away. I can't help but wish that the brewers would double the malt and turn this into a palate pulverizer of a stout. If oatmeal provides sweetness and softness, there can't be too much of it onboard. I might be able to pick up a hint of vanilla on the finish as the beer warms.

The mouthfeel is just a tad too light for the flavor. Beer like this needs to have some degree of viscosity and chewiness to really get on my good side. Still though, it's big enough not to let the taste buds down, and that's all that really matters.

This is my fifth Barley Island Brewing Company beer and none of the previous four prepared me for the magnificence of this offering. I'm stunned that the ABV is only 4.9%. If you live in Indiana and feel like sessioning a stout, this is the obvious choice. I can't believe that anything in that state can lay a glove on Brass Knuckles.

BuckeyeNation, Jan 03, 2007
Photo of TMoney2591
3.78/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Devil's Backbone willibecher.

Just when I think I'm reachin' the end of my post-DLD death march haul, a few more bottles surface. Case in point: this guy. It pours an opaque black-brown topped by a little over a finger of tan foam. The nose comprises maple syrup, dark chocolate, molasses, and toasted wheat. The taste holds notes of dark wheat, roasted malts, chocolate powder, and a light tinge of coffee beans. The body nears a heavy medium, with a moderate carbonation and a smooth, fluid feel. Overall, a solid oatmeal stout...nothing special but tasty and highly drinkable.

TMoney2591, Jun 24, 2010
Photo of emerge077
3.6/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours black with a sawtooth type lacing. Initially produces several inches of foam, but soon dies down.

Smell is nondescript, mildly lactic, roast malt is barely there.

Taste is good, but very thin for an oatmeal stout. Roast malt, oats, hops, residual roastiness is reminiscient of coffee grounds. Fairly basic, it doesn't grab you like their coffee stout does.

Thin mouthfeel is it's weak point, a watery stout is an oxymoron.
Easy to put back a couple, but there are other stouts i'd go to first.

emerge077, May 31, 2007
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Barley Island Brass Knuckles Tavern Style Oatmeal Stout. Noblesville, Indiana.
"This brazen, malty dark ale is a real sock in the kisser. But with a creamy touch of oatmeal, it's as soft as velvet."
We'll see.

Solid black as it sits in the glass, under a sturdy 1/2" of smooth cocoa-tan foam.

Fierce aromatics, big, fat roasty nose, nice blend of choclate and coffee. Some rich caramel and toffee in there somewhere, too. Lovely.

Taste: smooth and oaty.Velvety, yes. Creamy. Full-bodied, rich,

Don't get the name, really. "A sock in the kisser?" How so? Since when were oatmeal stouts dangerous? Well, whatever.
Long, chocolatey finish. Massive malt, deep and delicious.

It's a top notch stout. Much recommended.

feloniousmonk, Oct 10, 2007
Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for bringing back a bottle for me from Indiana!

Pours black with a thin light brown head that slowly descends to a wide patch. Some dotted lacing sticks.

The smell is of chocolate, lightly roasted coffee, and soft earthy notes.

The taste is very chocolaty, with roasted coffee and some earthy bitterness blended in. Finishes with a balanced sweetness.

It has a smooth medium-to-full body with fairly mild carbonation. The texture is pretty creamy and almost velvety.

Pretty straight-forward with all its chocolate character, though well-balanced with sweet and bitter (leaning towards the former). The chocolate hangs on through a long finish. A nice dessert stout.

jwc215, Aug 17, 2008
Photo of imperialking
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

imperialking, Jan 09, 2012
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a nonic)

A- This beer has an opaque black body with a brown rocky head reminiscent of a lumpy oatmeal cookie. There are tiny bubbles stuck to the glass but when they pop off they disappear. The head last a good while.

S- There are roasted chocolate malt with a slight tart hint and some lighter roasted malt notes.

T- The big taste of dark chocolate malt and black malt with a light black malt bitterness which turns to tartness when it warms. There is a light chalk note in the malt with a light hint of prune and cola.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a clean finish with no alcohol heat.

D- This beer has some nice flavor with some good malt flavor but it is a bit light for a stout.

rhoadsrage, Aug 29, 2007
Photo of biegaman
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a lovely rustic coloured head. An opaque black colour. A salty sweet aroma of oatmeal goodness. Nice roasted malt. The taste is slightly acidic and lactic, with chocolatey coffee notes in the flavour. Very nice flavour profile. Balanced but a little light bodied. Hope to find more from this brewery!
Thanks Blankboy!

biegaman, May 18, 2007
Photo of WoodBrew
3.79/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Brass Knuckles is a decent stout. I am very impressed with the body of the beer vs the abv of the beer. Generally a weaker stout usually has more of a watery body. The beer poured a dark opaque with an ecru head that is leaving a spotty lace. The smell is reminds me more of a pur baltic porter...not much in the sense of coffee or chocolate. The taste provides a decent semi sweet chocolate flare that is nice. In additionl there is some roasty malts that help to balance out the beer. The mouthfeel is medium body with smooth carbonation. Overall it is a very nice after hours or after dinner beer.

WoodBrew, Mar 28, 2013
Photo of bluejacket74
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle. Served in a mug, the beer pours dark brown/black with an inch tan head. Head retention and lacing are both good. It smells like roasted malt, coffee, chocoloate and oatmeal. The taste is similar to the aroma, coffee comes out strongest in the taste but there's also a charred/burnt malt taste noticable. Nice bitter coffee finish, too. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's creamy and has good carbonation. Drinkability is very good, it's smooth and with the low ABV I could easily have this as a session beer. I think this is pretty good, I'll definitely have to buy this again the next time I see it.

bluejacket74, Dec 14, 2008
Photo of Dogbrick
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a sampler: This is a beer that I wish I had brought home in a growler. It is also one available in bottles. Pours almost black with a thick tan head an good lacing. The aroma is a pleasant blend of roasted coffee, malt, and chocolate. Very rich and satisfying with a strong cocoa/coffee flavor. Malt, caramel and hops are all in there for good measure too. The finish is long and roasty. This is easily the best beer from the brewpub as far as I am concerned.

Dogbrick, Jan 16, 2004
Photo of aasher
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This brew pours a midnight black with a dark khaki head which laces the glass. It smells of dark roasted malt, milk chocolate, and it has some light smoke to it. The flavor is rich with milk chocolate and has some light oaky smokiness to it. I'm surprised so far. It drinks pretty well. It could be a little smoother. It's a little too carbonated for a stout in my opinion. Overall it's a pretty solid stout and as sessionable as a stout could be.

aasher, Feb 03, 2011
Photo of enelson
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

enelson, Nov 03, 2012
Photo of tpd975
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice dark black hue. Nice tall tan head solid retention with nice chunks of lace.

S: Aromas of deep roasted malt, dark gas station coffee, chocolate, and cream.

T: Nicely roasted. Lots of coffee and dark chocolate as well. Hints of light smoke and ash.

M: Fairly thin, The oatmeal did not provide the slickness I expect in a great oatmeal stout.

D: Pretty good. Solid brew.

tpd975, Apr 07, 2010
Photo of hopdog
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle acquired in trade atpayne (thanks!).

Opened to a loud Psst. This one poured all head. Eventually settled into a dark black with red edges. Aromas of chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and some oatmeal. Nice aromas. Tastes of bitter coffee, with light chocolate and roasted malts. As expected with the pour, the body was on the over carbonated side.

Notes from 4/9/06

hopdog, Nov 23, 2008
Photo of Brent
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nicely done beer - dark chocolate black with an attractive mocha lace. Satisfying roasted malt flavors, full but not overdone. The oatmeal was evident in some creamy mouthfeel. Held up nicely at the finish without thinning out, and no oxidation flavors.

Brent, Jun 26, 2006
Photo of Vancer
4.4/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ummm, Oatys were my first craft beer luv, and this one brings back good memories. Excellent Oaty, just a tad high priced at $9 a sixer.

Black pour with a solid tan head that streaked laced the glass throughout the quaff. Malty chocolate shake in the aroma. And the taste? Lip smacking good – almost coffee stoutish on top of the toasted chocolate smore with a chockly grit edge. Still, rounds out creamy and smooth on top of a very rich and robust brew.

I’ll have more – Barney Island is a newcomer to be recognized within the beer world.

Vancer, May 02, 2007
Photo of kmpitz2
4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Anoter of my spoils from Indiana last weekend. It pours a nice black color with a 2 finger tan head over top. Maybe a touch too much head. The nose is big and roasted. Lots of coffee and chocolate, even a slight creamyness from the oats. Me like...me like. The flavor is just as bold. The dark roasted coffee flavor really hits me first. It falls off to a light sweet chocolate and a lingering hop finish. Not too bitter, just very nice. Very good brew. The feel is moderate, with a light to moderate carbonation. A touch more body would be nice. Very drinkable stout. It is bold in aroma and flavor, but also clean and refreshing enough to keep me coming back for more sips. I will get more of this in the future. I really enjoy it.

kmpitz2, Jun 23, 2005
Photo of wagenvolks
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dug this review outta the notes pile.

12 oz bottle pours a murky, dark brown/black body with a scant coffee colored head that hugs the wine glasses' edges. A nice aroma on this one: oats, chocolate, coffee, some dough, and raisin, too.

Flavor packs some big roasted malt flavors with touches of chocolate and coffee (pretty typical oatmeal stout taste). A bitterness rests up front, as well as an oxidized feel across the top of the tongue. Medium body and a good carbonation round out the mouthfeel. This oat.stout goes down very smoothly, easily consumed by my fellow drinkers. It may be a touch light on the flavor, but the style works.

wagenvolks, Jun 24, 2007
Photo of matjack85
3.38/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Found this single 12oz brown bottle at Binny's in Glen Ellyn, IL for $1.79. No back label and no freshness date.

The beer poured a deep dark brown color that showed off some purple highlights when held to light. It made a 1 finger chocolate brown head that lasted about a minute, but when the head faded, it didn't even leave a rim of foam on top and left no lacing on the glass.

The smell was nice - a rich chocolate hazelnut aroma with some oatmeal in the background.

The taste had more of a bitter coffee flavor to it than chocolate but there was still some bittersweet dark chocolate flavor in there as well. Oatmeal and hops only play a minor role in the flavor leaving an overall bittersweet taste.

I thought the mouthfeel was awfully thin for a stout. I like a much fuller body than this one had and I also felt the carbonation level was way too high. The mouthfeel gets much better as the beer sits awhile and some of the carbonation loses its punch.

The low alcohol and thin moouthfeel make it easy to drink, but I would have preferred this one to be a little sweeter, a little heavier, and a little less carbonated.

matjack85, Nov 11, 2009
Photo of mpayne5
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

mpayne5, Jul 29, 2013
Photo of clvand0
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark color with a small head that has nice retention and leaves good lacing on the glass. The aroma has a lot of coffee and a lot of chocolate malt. Very nice. The flavor has a lot of the coffee along with some other dark malts. Finish is bitter from the coffee/dark malts. Drinkability is very good and the body is pretty thick.

clvand0, Jun 30, 2005
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Brass Knuckles Oatmeal Stout from Barley Island Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 106 ratings.