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Brass Knuckles Oatmeal Stout - Barley Island Brewing Company

Brass Knuckles Oatmeal StoutBrass Knuckles Oatmeal Stout

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

102 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 102
Reviews: 78
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 10.31%


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: 102 | Reviews: 78 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Jon
Jon

Illinois

4.4/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1/2 gallon growler.

Impenetrable black color with reddish tints around the edges. Creamy, thick tan head with excellent retention and lacing qualities.

Roasted oat malt, chocolate, caramel and toffee linger aromatically.

Minute notes of coffee and chocolate accentuate the appropriately roasted character of this beer. Further notes of minimally bitter finishing hops and a nice lingering acidity appear on the long finish.

Full-bodied, rich, thick and plentiful. So smooth.

Super drinkable. A very pleasant surprise from a brewery by which I've been pleased, but far from amazed. This stuff ends all doubts. Its best beer and a new favorite.

Serving type: on-tap

12-13-2003 03:45:00 | More by Jon
Photo of orangemoustache
orangemoustache

Illinois

4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours midnight black with thick a brown head that is multi colored with light and dark changes,the cap is much lighter than the sides of this mushroom looking head that is billowing out of my mug.The nose is packed full of chocolate like opening a varaity box of Godiva.The taste is pretty awesome,starts off with dark roasted malts,and I mean Dark!Bitter chocolate with a hint of vinilla sweetness lightens up the burnt soul of this gritty Stout.The body is heavy and charcoal like and below average carbonation keeps the focus on flavor!This is a well done Oatmeal stout,wish I had another round.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2008 16:50:37 | More by orangemoustache
Photo of tayner
tayner

Arizona

3.55/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, thank you leftmindedrighty.

black with nice khaki head that settled to a ring which laced nicely.

smell is dark roasted malt, coffee, bitter chocolate.

Taste followed smell only with the coffee the dominant feature followed by roasted/burnt malt and bitter chocolate. there is a pretty decent balance of these three flavors however.

Thin mouthfeel for a stout, probably due to the low abv and lack of fermented sugars in it, but still fairly creamy... but on the same token, it makes it highly drinkable and even sessionable for a stout, so it is give and take.

Wouldnt hunt this one down, but its a decent oatmeal stout i wouldnt turn my nose up at either.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2008 21:46:47 | More by tayner
Photo of AaronHomoya
AaronHomoya

Indiana

3.65/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz brown bottle.

This is a very dark, pretty much black color with minimal tan head. The aroma is nice and roasty with a little bit of malt sweetness. The taste is also malty and roasty with a nice finish. Mouthfeel is nice and smooth, not too thick or bubbly either. Overall a nice, drinkable oatmeal stout but nothing out of this world.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2006 13:50:52 | More by AaronHomoya
Photo of karengarys
karengarys

Indiana

4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Stout float anybody? This poured way overcarbonated, to the point of frustration. It looks great if you ignore the fact that you have to eat the foam out of the glass to get the beer to fit. Once settled, it looks quite good with a nice fluffy head on top of a dark brownish black glass of beer - I can't tell if it is hazy or filtered for it is too dark to tell.

Smell is very nice and malty.

Taste is an excellent combination of toasty malts and sweet hops. this has a heckuvalot of character!

Mouthfeel is - guess - very good, creamy to no end.

Finish is very creamy and clean, finishing off sweet.

This is a surprisingly great brew from a brewery i'd never heard of before. Give it a try!

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2007 02:39:42 | More by karengarys
Photo of mdvatab
mdvatab

Indiana

3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into shaker pint.
No B.O.D.

Aroma: Big Cabernet-like wine note right up front. Smooth vanilla, powdered hot cocoa mix, very subtle metallic hint, roasted coffee, and earth.

Appearance: Tan one-fingered head disappears relatively quickly. Body of beer has a dark coffee color.

Flavor: Smoky up front, dry dark chocolate, fruity red wine, with minimal bitterness. Finish is notably short-lived.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation. A bit on the thin side for an oatmeal stout. Not quite enough body to be creamy. Quite honestly a bit watery through the middle and finish.

Overall: Not a bad tasting beer at all, but I wish they'd bump up the gravity a bit. Had this beer tasted like its aroma, it would have really knocked my socks off. The aroma profile was fantastic! I just wish it had the body/texture of an oatmeal stout...

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2011 03:02:47 | More by mdvatab
Photo of Lukafer
Lukafer

Michigan

3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Brass knuckles

Pours a dark almost black.  A semi-vigorous pours gives a huge  head, I had to stop pouring.  Is it infected?  Smell is some coffee, roasted malts and a touch of chocolate.  Mouthfeel is kinda thin but drinkability is good for a stout. I am not saying that this beer is infected, but, it was really thin and almost a gusher. If I was cellaring any of these I'd drink it now just in case.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2010 04:39:19 | More by Lukafer
Photo of treque
treque

Mexico

3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: black opaque in color, looks thick, creamy, very nice 2 finger tan head, with nice retention,

S: roast malts, some coffe, toffe, some oat aroma

T: sweetness, nice bitter roasta after taste, the end is long lasting, chocolate/coffe flavoured. medium high body, nice contrasts of flavours

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2011 04:25:58 | More by treque
Photo of MaximalC
MaximalC

Illinois

2.91/5  rDev -25%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Pours a dark cola color with a minimal tan head. Aroma smells of caramel, pretzels, and roasted malt.

The taste could best be summed up as thin, roasty, metallic, and overcarbonated. The carbonation is so vigorous that it masks most of the flavor on the front end. Roasted malt comes through when the carbonation burn subsides, but there's also a metallic twinge that keeps you from really enjoying it. On a positive notes, the Earthy hops are pretty well balanced against the sweetness of the malt, so it does have that going for it.

In a nutshell, it looks like a stout, but drinks like a coke.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2014 00:27:42 | More by MaximalC
Photo of trep
trep

West Virginia

3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle shared with a friend, courtesy of tonedef131

Dark black body with a thin brown head. Glints of ruby around the edges, when held to the light. Malt-driven aroma, notes of vanilla. Taste is all coffee, oatmeal, and vanilla. Roasted malts are present throughout. Has a bit of sweetness also. Mouthfeel is smooth, medium bodied with medium carbonation. It's very porter-esque. Very easy drinking and i'm glad i have a 6-pack of this stuff.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2007 03:39:19 | More by trep
Photo of dmfrench
dmfrench

Indiana

3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A decent enough earthy, hoppy, creamy Oatmeal Stout.
___

A: Opaque body with a fairly dark and somewhat persistent one finger head.

S: A bit of roasted oats, a hit of earthy hops, and a bit of inkyness... not particularly aromatic.

T: Much more of that earthy hops from the nose... nice dirty, creamy oat malt underneath... a bit salty.

M: Big and creamy... fills the mouth well... great carbonation... noticing a trend here with Barley Island.

D: Quite easy.

Serving type: on-tap

12-28-2009 17:41:59 | More by dmfrench
Photo of SMark
SMark

Illinois

3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer was poured into an Imperial pint glass at 52° from a 12 ounce bottle. There was no date information on the bottle. There was approximately one finger of tan head that displayed lacing. The beer was a dark brown almost black color.

Roasted malt was sensed while looking for color and clarity. The dark roast was verified with a purposeful whiff which also displayed a hop fragrance.

The taste was smooth and creamy with a slight bitterness. The dark roasted malt came across with a little coffee.

Roasted malt filled the mouth with every breath. A slight bitterness was attributable to the hops and was very complimentary.

Glad to see Barley Island still producing after my visit there several years ago which was very enjoyable. Don't remember if I had this on tap but it is very acceptable from the bottle.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2008 14:43:41 | More by SMark
Photo of Alkey
Alkey

Pennsylvania

4.43/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz.bottle poured black with a small brown head that leaves a few specks of lace around the glass. Has a big roasted and toasted malt aroma. Taste is rich with an oatmeal creaminess and lots of dark roasted malt and just a hint of unsweetened chocolate. There isn't much alcohol that I notice in this brew so I would guess it is around 5% or less. The full flavor and light alcohol make this an excellent session beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2007 13:36:18 | More by Alkey
Photo of BigJim5021
BigJim5021

Indiana

3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours inky black with a nice tan head. Settles quickly to a ring, but leaves little lacing.

The aroma is of coffee and burnt chocolate, though less aggressive than some other stouts.

The flavor is quite good. Almost like drinking a cafe au lait thanks to the oats. The dark roasted malt is nice and smooth. There is -- however -- just a bit too much acidity. It's also wicked bitter, but in a good way (like a black-ass cup of coffee).

Mouthfeel is just a tiny bit too thin for the style. Other than that, all is well. Carbonation is right where it should be. Dryness is near puckering.

Overall, Brass Knuckles is a quality oatmeal stout. It's not quite as good as Barley Island's coffee stout (Black Majic), but it's good nonetheless.

EDIT: I had a bottle left in the fridge, and I have to say that time has actually been kind to this puppy. The acidity really fades over time. I wouldn't suggest aging the beer, but when it's fresh, the acidity can be a bit much. A little time does wonders to smooth that out.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2009 05:15:52 | More by BigJim5021
Photo of PirateUlf73
PirateUlf73

Illinois

3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Interesting artwork on the label. This was yet another member of my latest mix-a-six. Poured into a tulip glass.

A: Very dark and opaque with a chocolate brown head, which didn't last long.

S: Fantastic nose. Roasted chocolate and almost smoky malt aromas. Oatmeal manages to sneak in as well, but is not overly pronounced. Very nice.

T: Roasted malt flavors with a pinch of chocolate. Sweet, but not overpowering. Nice and subtle. Flavors are somehow not as blended as the nose night suggest. Oatmeal does not shine in the taste...

M: ...but rather helps to smooth out the texture. Medium-bodied. A bit lighter in the mouth than I might have liked. Just enough carbonation to satisfy. Slight roasted malt and chocolate in the aftertaste.

D: Very drinkable. Not too heavy. Alcohol level makes this one very sessionable.

While definitely not the best Oatmeal Stout I've ever had (not even in the top 10), it was still very much worth the try. The nose was to die for, but I tend to like mine with a heavier mouthfeel and with the malts and oatmeal more smoothly blended. However, if Barley Island's goal was to make a mildly interesting, albeit lighter-bodied Oatmeal Stout, then Mission: Accomplished, I suppose. An interesting venture, and one that I may feel inclined to have again. We'll see...

Serving type: bottle

01-09-2009 08:44:39 | More by PirateUlf73
Photo of diabecktic
diabecktic

Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance:
Chocolate-colored head (~2 fingers) forms quickly, but seems to disappate fairly quickly, too; lacing is average. The beer itself seems pitch black (like most stouts), but is actually a very, very dark shade of ruby red. You can verify this by looking at it in front of a light as it is being poured.

Smell:
Roasted barley seems to be the dominant aroma, but there is distinguishable chocolate and oatmeal character. It's quite a sharp scent that has no problem piercing the nostrils. As said by someone below said, it's almost "smokey." I personally find this one to be a bit more on the hoppy side.

Taste:
Ah, here's where it gets interesting. My first sip seems to hit me with a bitter sweetness. As strange as this sounds, it's like getting a mouthful of barley and oats that turns into dark chocolate (the bitter kind). Relative to others, it's quite distinct in this regard because it's a quick hit/shift. The oatmeal character is definately present in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel:
Given the style, I'm suprised that this beer is as light as it is. I suppose with respect to all beers you would say that this has medium body. With respect to stouts, I think that this one is a bit on the watery side; it just doesn't "feel" like there's much there. It's fairly smooth, but I don't know if this redeems it given the body.

Drinkability:
This brew is definately a sipper. Given the % ABV and the style, I guess you could call it a session beer. I personally find it a bit hard to drink in this respect because I don't think it's heavy enough to sip. The type of flavor is not conducive to a quick-drinker.

Summary:
I'm not sure what to think about this beer. It's not a bad oatmeal stout, but I've definately had ones that are far better. I think that this brew is a lot less "subtle" when it comes to flavor because it's a pretty distinct taste. Now, whether or not this is a good thing has yet to be determined. However, I would try this beer again in the future. I just think it's a bit too thin for the style even though the flavor is unique.

Serving type: bottle

02-16-2009 05:40:24 | More by diabecktic
Photo of BlackAngus
BlackAngus

Indiana

4.43/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - Black and opaque, thin coffee-colored head that quickly fades.

S - Malty, chocolate/coffee, sweet.

T - Roasted malt, hint of chocolate, strong coffee notes. Velvety smoove. Nice bitterness from the roasted malt.

M - Smooth as silk, medium-full body. Clean, not cloying at all.

D - Simply awesome. IMO, a paragon of the style.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2006 23:15:02 | More by BlackAngus
Photo of Pellinore1
Pellinore1

Illinois

3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The bottle pours deep brown into an imperial pint glass, leaving less than a finger of tan head.

It smells of roasted malts and maybe just a hint of oatmeal. There a tiny bit of sharpness in the nose, not what I usually expect from the style.

The dominant flavor is that of roasty malts, followed by oats and a bit of coffee bitterness.

Feels a bit thin in the mouth, not as creamy as most oatmeal stouts I have tried.

Drinkability is just fine; seems like a possible session beer.

Overall, this is a perfectly enjoyable oatmeal stout, if nothing particularly special. I probably would not hunt for it again, but neither would I object to having another.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2010 01:42:46 | More by Pellinore1
Photo of emyers
emyers

Illinois

3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: Black color, nearly opaque, with a huge light brown head. Not a whole lot of lacing down the glass.

Smell: Roasted malt, milk chocolate, and smoke. Has a milk-stout type sweetness to the aroma. A bit of wet cardboard oxidation smell to it.

Taste: Roasted malt is dominant. More milk chocolate with a definite sweetness. Caramel and molasses also come through. I'm not picking up the oxidation present in the aroma anymore. Really quite delicious. Fairly complex. There could be a bit more intensity, but for a standard oatmeal stout it packs quite a bit of flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, medium carbonation (I was expecting a whole lot more carbonation given the huge head).

Overall: This was a pleasant surprise once I got past the smell. A very good oatmeal stout. I'm curious if there was some oxidation and how it would taste without it.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2013 03:41:10 | More by emyers
Photo of DrinkinBoy
DrinkinBoy

Georgia

4.48/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Extremely dark brown, almost completely opaque. It is hard to get light to go through it. The head is a khaki color with decent retention.

S: Classic roasted barley notes, with coffee, chocolate, and some smoky tones. Slightly elevated sweetness from oats, with little to no hop smell.

T: Flavors start out very light on the front with some dainty sweetness. The middle begins to pick up with a milk chocolate sweetness. The finish ramps up even more with an intense coffee bitterness that is surprisingly well balanced by a powder sugar sweetness.

M: Thick body with slight carbonation, which fits the style very well.

O: This is a great version of an Oatmeal Stout. It focuses on the nuances that can be created with barley and oats. Props to Barley Island for distinguishing itself from a majority of craft brewers fright now, and not feeling that American hops need to shine through in each style.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2012 02:05:09 | More by DrinkinBoy
Photo of HoboAGoGo
HoboAGoGo

Indiana

4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of the bottle into a tulip with a super thick creamy tan head on top of a dark, almost black body with healthy carbonation. Nose was of a sour bread quality with roasted coffee, slight citrus and very faint burnt chocolate. Mouth was slightly sour, roated grainy with a slightly, bitter floral coffee taste that when it warmed up over the course of the 45 minutes I drank this beer lent more vanilla and almost caramel flavors to it. Very nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2006 05:49:45 | More by HoboAGoGo
Photo of nouseforotacon
nouseforotacon

Connecticut

3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This bottle was courtesy of IndyBeer as a part of Big's SBB. I've really been looking forward to this one, thanks!

Smooth, deep, jet black pour with a creamy, cafe au lait, milky brown head. Two-finger foam falls quickly but leaves some nice lacing stuck to the edges of my mug.

Sweet, milky nose. Lactic. Strong oat aroma, toasted malts. Sweet like maple syrup. Hint of alcohol and a touch fruity.

Dark, roasted malts with a bit of a bitter hop twang. Oats and malts blend well. Definite lactic profile in the flavor, milky, creamy, and smooth. Rich coffee beans. Finish is a bit dry, with cafe au lait lingering on my tongue.

Pleasant aroma/flavor, with a very nicely done mouthfeel. A bit rich though, so I rated the drinkability a little lower than usual. Enjoyable oatmeal stout.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2006 06:47:26 | More by nouseforotacon
Photo of Brettster
Brettster

Indiana

4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this beer on tap at Barley Island. This beer had a thick carmel colored head that hung around for a while. The brew was a deep brownish black with good carbonation. I could taste hints of java and roasted malts. Just the right amount of hop flavor for this beer. Give this one a shot if you like Oatmeal Stouts.

Serving type: on-tap

11-23-2009 13:11:27 | More by Brettster
Photo of neckbracesub
neckbracesub

Indiana

3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

If you ever find yourself visiting the Noblesville brewery, this is one of the best bets on the rotating tap list.

As far as oatmeal stouts go, Brass Knuckles ranks somewhere in the middle for me. A thick, full-bodied pour creates a head that is darker than you would imagine, but the aftertaste leaves something more to desire.

There is still a lot going for this one, though, and I would rank it toward the top of what Barley Island has to offer.

They are a hit-and-miss microbrewery nowadays, but this is always a nice mainstay.

Serving type: on-tap

03-09-2012 01:03:58 | More by neckbracesub
Photo of StargherKing
StargherKing

Indiana

3.15/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark black with ruby highlights. Very little head, but I think that was more from my pouring than anything. Smell is much hoppier than I expected, with a rich coffee scent and slight cocoa hints. Wow, I really do NOT like the taste of this...I usually love oatmeal stouts, but the term "roasted malt flavor" doesn't even come close to describing this. One of the other reviewers compared it to ashes...I would agree with that and add burnt coffee to the mix. Still, some hop flavor comes through, and there are certainly hints of what I would consider a good beer in here. Mouthfeel is a little light for a stout (especially an oatmeal), but it's not too incredibly thin. Drinkability is really only hurt for me by the burnt flavor...I finished the beer, but I don't think I could have done another. I think some people would love this beer, but it's just not for me.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2007 18:01:27 | More by StargherKing
Brass Knuckles Oatmeal Stout from Barley Island Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 102 ratings.