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Odell Isolation Ale - Odell Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Odell Isolation AleOdell Isolation Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

238 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 238
Hads: 694
Avg: 3.88
pDev: 20.1%
Wants: 60
Gots: 89 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Odell Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-28-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Odell Isolation Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 238 | Hads: 694
Photo of Phatz
3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy copper color with a thick creamy head.

Smell: Roasted grain. A hint of sour dough, malts and splash of hops.

Taste: It has a nice malt sweetness with suggestions of grain and bread and a subtle apple tart in the finish but very little typical WW spices.

Mouthfeel: Very well rounded. Crisp with a nice pinch of bitterness to close off the beer.

Drinkability: This beer is simple and built for drinking.

Hope this is helpful.

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Photo of bort11
4.02/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, with another very nice looking Odell woodcut label, poured into an imperial pint glass. Not much of a head, only about a 1/4 inch thick, but the lacing was persistant. Color was a dark yet clear reddish brown. Smell is mildly wood-like, sort of like fresh cut pine or spruce. Bit of smokiness. Wood flavor in the taste comes through strongly, like a campfire. Spicy notes add to the smokiness. Slight hops tang. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and has a smooth warmth. As a Winter Warmer, it doesn't really pack a big punch, but that's ok. It's a very nice and relaxing beer. very good for just sitting back and watching TV.

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Photo of whynot44
3.58/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A nice clear reddish copper color with a decent tan head that subsides to a skin but continues to leave some nice lace.

The aroma is biscuity, toasty malt with hints of spicy hops.

The flavor is toasted malts, some caramel, vanilla and raisins. The finish brings our some spicy hops, a bit of slightly burnt toast and hints of alcohol warmth.

Medium bodied, easy to drink could help get you in the mood for some outdoor activites in the fall or recover from shoveling snow later on.

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Photo of russpowell
4.34/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2006 vintage

Pours efferevescent copper/caramel with a 2.5 fingers offwhite head. Good lacing & head retention

S: Intense almost burnt caramel & malt & some alcohol

T: Smokey caramel & a little aclohol up front, then a hint of cherry& oak. Rich breadyness, vanilla & brown sugar follow as it warms. Finishes with dryness, a slight smokeyness & a praline sweetness

MF: sticky Rich body with excellent carbonation & balance

Drinks good, but 2 would be about my limit. Good winter warmer, would go good with ham or fruitcake

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Photo of Oxymoron
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It’s back! Had it available on tap at Odell’s. How did I not rate this before? Pour is a darker brown color with amber hints when held up to the light. Good clarity and a mostly puffy white head.

The nose is mostly malty. A good sweetness with some toasty aromas. A light spiciness as well. The hops are subtle but noticeable with a earthy smell.

The taste has a great malt presence and good body. To start the malt is a good bready flavor with a touch of biscuit and a light roasted hint to the end. The hops are more noticeable then the smell would indicate. A great bitterness that is enhanced by a spicy finish. The spices aren’t exactly noticeable but still drink out a good finish.

The body is good with a full body feel. Not quite chewy though. I wouldn’t exactly call this a Winter Warmer as the spices are blended more then stand out but a fantastic beer to drink.

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Photo of expatsteve
3.16/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Copper-orange hue, with medium clarity. Poured a foamy, white 1/2 inch head that dissipated in a couple of minutes. Good lacing, with medium viscosity.

Aroma: All malt and yeast, with bread and biscuit tones. Hints of raisins and light sours, with slight caramel finish. A lot of the more subtle flavors are masked by the immediate malt/yeast finish.

Taste: Light body and carbonation provide good support for a mild bitter aftertaste. Again, lots of malt and yeast, but not as much complexity as the color and aroma immediately promised. Subtle honey tones, and a light coffee finish - little if any hop presence. Grainy malts and yeast give this a fairly basic earthy feel, with good balancing of the bitters.

Mouthfeel: Nice creamy finish, with lower caronation than I expected from the head. Smooth with no astringency.

Drinkability: Definitely a very drinkable beer, but I'm not sure it has the complexity to carry itself as a winter warmer. Very little spice or development of sweet flavors in the malts. In a lot of ways this is characteristic of a rustic loaf of white bakery bread - definitely pleasant, but needs other things to bring it to life.

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Photo of NClifestyle
3.43/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours up a semi-dark amber, hazy color, with a decent off white head of lumpy foam. drops in time, but keeps a nice layer on the beer, tons of spider web lace all over the glass.
smell is earthy, mulch and a touch of sweet bread.
taste is a bit average, very malty, not much hop, but nothing outstanding. a good malty ale but nothing like a hearty winter warmer i've come to expect.
mouthfeel is medium, somewhat creamy and nice, with a bit of carbonation.
drinkability is high, a decent beer to have a few of, but the average taste would keep me from having more than 2 or 3.


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Photo of BigRedN
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2005/06 Edition. Bottle is of the new packaging.

Appearance: Poured into a pint glass, the beer is an orangish brown, not fully clear. While the beer poured with an off white head about 1/4 inch thick, it did not stand the test of time, actually not even a minute. Faded to a ring around the glass. Spotty lacing as the beer is consumed.

Smell: Predominately malty, slight sweetness as expected, but balanced with some piney hop aromas as well. Good, but not great. As the beer warms there seems to be something a little whiskeyish about this as well.

Taste: Malt seems to dominate this one for me. There is a definite hop bitterness to it near the finish, but as I quaff the beer I get less of that and more sweet maltyness, some roasted malt, some caramel malt.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, lightly carbonated, a touch dry on the finish. A good winter beer. Slight alcohol burn in the throat.

Drinkability: While this is drinkable, I will say I always expect and hope for more, but am always somewhat let down. I love the other Odell beers that I have had, but I just can't fully get behind this one. Still, it's worth a try, though.

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Photo of wcudwight
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a amber almost cinnamon color. Nice sticky head with little retention. Very sweet malty smelling with some other aromas in there that are hard to distinguish. Taste is malty sweetness maybe some caramel with a nice dry finish. The dry finish gives this beer a very good mouthfeel. It's drinkable and good to have once and awhile. I wouldn't drink this one regularly though. Many thanks to Dertbert for providing me the oppertunity.

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

Appearance: Clear, medium amber color, with a small, persistent white head, and thick, patchy lace.

Aroma: The aroma is quite odd, rather like wet leaves, with a slight earthy note.

Taste: Tart, earthy, and mildly smoky notes dominate the taste, the finish is tart and sweet, with a note of yeast, and a lingering metallic bitterness.

Mouth feel: Smooth and pleasant, quite full.

Drinkability/notes: Rather odd, somewhat like a tart brown ale. Thanks to Hardtarget for sharing this sample.

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Photo of Shultzerdugen
2.78/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. brown bottle.

A slightly hazed dark copper in color with a big off-white head. Sticky and clingy froth.

The nose is of biscuity malts, faint spices, metal, and burnt rubber. Yes, that is right, burnt rubber. Yuck.

Medium body with a gentle carbonation. The beer has a bready malt flavor, an ambiguous spiciness, and a good balance of bitterness. There is a strange sugary sweetness that fades in and out.

Being that smell and taste are so closely linked I had a hard time enjoying this beer. I'm hoping it was poorly stored and I was an unlucky recipient.

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Photo of ColoradoBobs
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 edition, claims to be 6.1% this year.

Not much to add to previous reviews except that this feels as malty as a Doppelbock. Good hop and malt balance, with the lots of malt sweetness kept under control by decent piney and bitter hopping.

Worth a try.

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Photo of rowew
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: New label and six pack match the new Odell's packaging line. No date listed. Bottle is also different, with aspen leaves on the neck and a ring around the top.

Appearance: Pours a dark red orange with a nice thick off white head. Nice retention, thick lacing.

Smell: Starts off spicy, then a thick malty sweetness. Hops are present in good numbers here. Very full-bodied aroma.

Taste: Very smooth mouthfeel - medium to full bodied. Very nicely balanced. The spice flavor is present but not overpowering - just enough hops to keep the malt from overpowering.

Overall impression: Highly drinkable - this is a nice warming winter brew. I look forward to enjoying this in quantity once the weather turns cold.

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Photo of Dithyramb
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Labeled as "For the season of 2004-2005", procured through XMas BIF 2004. Bottled on 10/04.
Caramel colored brew with nice white head. Good retention and lacing. Chocolate and caramel laden aromas with some earthy hops thrown in. Same chocolate and caramel come through in a hefty medium bodied brew. Nicely balanced with some earthy/grassy hops on the back end. Nicely done, without all the sweetness and spicing normally reserved for holiday ales. Went down smooth and easy and worth several.

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Photo of LuckySevens82
3.65/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle courtesy of babydoc.
Pours a very nice, clear amber with a very nice head and decent lacing.
Smell is quite nice. Caramel, cinnamon, cloves?, fruity (strawberries, a little bit of orange maybe), definite hints of toasted malt as well.
Taste is very similar to the way it smells although the fruitiness seems to be overshadowed by intense cinnamon and spiciness of the beer. I was kind of hoping for a bit more emphasis on the fruit rather than the spice. But overall a pretty decent winter warmer.

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Photo of TastyTaste
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Competely clear maroon body, big head fades fast and leaves a tattered curtain of lacing around the top of my Schell tulip. Smells malty, with tones of choclate and brown sugar, very doppley. Taste is extra sweet and accentuated by vanilla and cinnamon flavors. Hops are there, but not dominant, just ind of in the background. Slick, fairly thick mouthfeel. I like it, a good well-spiced warmer.

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

12 oz. Brown twisty with Best before 2/1/05 on the bottle
Aroma: An odd harsh hop aroma. Hard to pinpoint, but different.
Appearance: Clear to hazy orange/amber with a nice tan head. The head lingered and left a solid coat of heavy lace.
Flavor: Seems to be based on an amber ale. A sweet start is cut short by a harsh bitter finish. Some alcohol noted as well as a touch of rain water that I associate with an organic beer. Sample was a bit oxidized showing a touch of cardboard within the best by date.
Mouthfeel: Medium body, medium carbonation.
Overall Impression: Not my cup of hop tea. No real malt tastes, not much spice to put it in a winter mood. An enjoyable beer, but a bit different. Big props to babydoc who set me up with the generous trade!

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Photo of alexgash
3.91/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cool label; makes me want to drink beer in a warm cabin. Pours a dim burgandy with flashes of amber. Capped by a creamy, light khaki head that laces nicely. A very warm looking ale.
Smells of figs, toasted nuts, caramel, and spicy citrus hops. Not overly aromatic though. Hits the tongue with moderately sweet malt. Notes of toasted bread, nuts, rummy fruit, and toffee are evident. Mouthfeel starts out lively and then gets thicker toward the finish. Spicy and citrusy hops pick up into the finish and remain. Slightly warming for its abv, but I would need a little something more if I were cabin-ed up all winter. A nicely made beverage nonetheless.

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Photo of jimdkc
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I like this kind of winter warmer, where the spicy flavor comes from the hops, malt, and yeast rather than from the addition of fruits, nuts, and spices!

Pours a coppery amber with a tan head. The head recedes quickly, but a small patch of foam remains. Aroma is dominated by citrusy and earthy hops. Flavor, too was predominantly hops, with a nice bitterness in the middle. Finish was surprisingly sweet... but not overly so. Very nice body and mouthfeel. Pretty good rendition of a winter warmer. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of poundboy
3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My first beer from Odell Brewery. I'm a bit tired tonight so I won't write too much.

Appearance and Packaging: Yeah, I know this is lame, but I picked this one out of the several bottles I have from recent trades because the packaging said "quality beer" to me more than many of the others. Pours a deep amber to medium brown with a reasonable tan head that lingered for a few minutes at least.

Smell: Strongly of roasted malts, with perhaps a hint of undeterminate hops underneath.

Taste: A unique beer. Combines roasted, nutty to toasted flavors with a noticably hop presance and malt sweetness. Alcohol warms the mouth a bit going down, but otherwise is not noticable flavorwise.

Mouthfeel: Gave this one high marks 'cuz it coats the tongue without being too thick, and for the pleasant warming sensations

Drinkablity: Tastey and alcohol is well hiden. I enjoyed this beer and had no problem drinking it, however it just doesn't say session for me somehow. However, if my local beer bar had this as one of its twelve taps, I would probably end up ordering it pretty regular.

Thank you babydoc for the sample.

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

No nutmeg, no cloves, no orange, none of your typical winter warmer spices in this seasonal...

2004-5 edition, pours a deep, burnt amber with beautiful head; hints of cola in the body and a smell that is dominated by chocolate and carmel. again, the absence of 'winter spices' is a welcome surprise.

The malty syrupiness is present from the beginning and never lets up, basically hiding any potential bitterness on the tongue or after swallowing. Chocolate and carmel are present throughout, given this a firm body and good length.

The heaviness of the flavors would probably keep me from drinking more than two of these in a night. So, not a session beer by any means, but this isn't exactly a style known for its 'drinakbility.' Well-worth a try or two on a snowy mountain eve.

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

2004-2005 pours a clear copper-orange with a nice light brown head of big bubbles that lasts, nice lacing. Bready,earthy aromas, chocolate and caramel cookie flavors. medium bodied with a lightly carbonated soft mouthfeel, finishes dry. A nice winter ale, very drinkable.

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Photo of Mitchster
2.73/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

2004-2005 edition. Pours out to a slightly hazy dark amber with ruby accents, forming a large soapy and rocky dark beige head with excellent retention and sticky sheets of lacing. Carbonation is moderate. The aroma is very toasty and biscuity, slightly earthy and herbal, and dry, immediately reminding me of it's Colorado cousin, Fat Tire. The mouthfeel is middle of the road with a round yet lively finish and medium body. The taste is quite odd and unique...starts with very herbal flavor hops, followed by weak light roast coffee, roasted barley, and then this wierd medicinal, liquor-type, earthy bitterness with some medicinal hops thrown in. The finish is lightly dry. Sharp alcohol adds a distinct astringency and peppery bite to the aftertaste. Slight amount of fusels. The tylenol and saccharin bitterness hangs on the tongue longer than I want it to.

I wanted to like this, but I just can't get over the pronounced and bizarre herbal/medicinal finish. I'm hard pressed to finish this one.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.38/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hazy orange-brown, tawny to be exact. The head is orangish ecru in color and creamily sturdy in constitution. All the hallmarks of a quality cap are present: staying power, fine pits on a rocky surface and sticky lace. I've seen better winter warmers, but not too damn many.

The aroma is heavy on carmel malt, easily twice as evident as citrusy-earthy hops. It's a very nice nose for the style, I'm enjoying it quite a bit. Even without the knowledge provided by the label, I'm easily able to tell that no spices were used in the brewing.

Isolation Ale is good stuff. I like spices in my winter warmers and Christmas ales--if they're done right--but this beer doesn't seem to need them. The flavor is a carbon copy of the nose and I'm glad of it. Sweet, candied caramel provides the bass notes (perfect for the style) and hops add balance, depth and complexity. I love the taste of brown sugar-crusted grapefruit, lemon and orange peel that is on display in this beer.

Come to think of it, Isolation Ale tastes like a mulled, cider-based winter punch. That Odell managed to get it to taste like the holidays without the addition of spices is pretty impressive. The finish retains a good deal of sweetness and remains balanced throughout the long, lingering decrescendo. The body is full without being heavy and the mouthfeel is as smooth as the winter nights are long.

According to the date on the label, this particular bottle is approaching its second birthday and is none the worse for wear. I wish that I had come across a sixer instead of a single because I'd love to have plenty of this beer on hand throughout the winter. Every so often a good old-fashioned Midwestern blizzard comes howling across the plains. What better time could there possibly be to sip and savor an Odell Isolation Ale? This is beautiful beer.

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Photo of jtfest
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an orange highlighted amber, somewhat cloudy, with a thin white head that leaves lots of lacing. Slightly alcoholic and fruity aroma (watermelon and peach), it has a light mouthfeel but a rather full flavor. I liked the taste -- somewhat peppery with a sweet aftertaste -- yet despite those flavors it was highly drinkable. Overall a nice brew, but I wasn't "wowed".

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Odell Isolation Ale from Odell Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 238 ratings.