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Oil Man - Elevation Beer Co.

Not Rated.
Oil ManOil Man

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

29 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 29
Hads: 122
Avg: 4.01
pDev: 10.22%
Wants: 19
Gots: 30 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Elevation Beer Co. visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: denver10 on 01-23-2013

Much like the "sweet light crude oil" from the eastern plains of Colorado- this beer pours a deep black with a tantalizing off-white head. Aromatics of sweet malt and bourbon envelope the nose like the sunset of the eastern plains. The malt profile continues through the palate from beginning to end with subtle hints of chocolate, coffee, and of course bourbon. This is a true beer for the malt and bourbon lovers alike.
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Reviews: 29 | Hads: 122
Photo of cosmicevan
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

super rich and sludgy black. nose is coffee and barrel lots of roast. at first ok but amazing after it warmed and opened up. nice coffee. good roast. nice stout. meal.

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Photo of Labeorphile
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glass. Thin tan head, which starts as big bubbles and ends as little ones, but quickly recedes. I may have been too eager and not let it warm, but the nose is faint. Definite bourbon, some coffee and chocolate with sweetness peeking through.

Taste is good. Something different than most BBA stouts, but can't place it. Maybe more dark chocolate than usual. Good mouthfeel, but the aftertaste is not my favorite.

Good, but not great example of style.

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Photo of OregonGrown7
3.15/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Maybe folks rate this high because it's in a nice bottle. They clearly need to work on this one. Poured next to black with a very thin bubbly head that dissipated quickly. Bourbon flavor is there, with some oaky dryness, but the absence of what I expected from an imperial stout is too much. This tastes and feels like a thin porter, with some bourbon and oak in there. There's also a metallic aftertaste that only hurts it more. I'm just glad I didn't buy it.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #75 (April 2013):

Aged in Breckenridge Distillery Bourbon Barrels, this brings back some not too distant memories … great ones at that. Too drinkable for its size, every flavor is extremely expressive but all seem to meld well and form quite the balanced brew. Elevation Beer Co. has nailed it again. Highly recommended.

STYLE: American Imperial Stout
ABV: 11.0%

LOOK: Black, towering brown head

SMELL: Boozy barrel juice, very woody, char, espresso, burnt sugar, vanilla, blackberries, yeast

TASTE: Amazing creaminess, nearly silky smooth, pull of wood, mild charcoal, clean booziness, vanilla, melon rind, rose water, cinnamon, French roast coffee, black walnuts, bourbon sweetness, barrel finish

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Photo of beergoot
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle label data: Bottled on: 12.05.15, ABV: 10.80%

The pour comes out thick and oily; near black body; nice, thick, light brown head. Raisin, cinnamon, and boozy notes in the aroma; soft tones of chocolate and toffee. Chocolate and creme de menthe flavors; mild bitterness flowering into a strong bourbon aftertaste. Heavy body; smooth and creamy texture.

A ballsy stout that delivers rich and complex flavors. The bourbon barrel aging balances nicely with the dark, roasted malt character while the mouthfeel, though on the heavy side, seems well-suited for this massive beer. Very, very good...

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Photo of TX-Badger
4.16/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black like oil with the same viscosity and dark tan head. Bourbon, big on the nose, with just a little vanilla and cocoa, some oak; follows onto the palate. Finishes with more bourbon.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours pitch black, opaque in the glass with a thin light brown head that dissipates to patches. Although this opened with a nice pop, the first part of the pour had no visible carbonation and I was relieved to see a typical thin head expected from a barrel aged stout. Great aroma of sweet toasted malt, bourbon, vanilla, hints of chocolate. Flavor is sweet dark malt, light vanilla and coffee, very bourbon forward. Light flavors of vanilla, chocolate and day old coffee, but they are subsumed into the barrel flavor. Medium bodied with light, but satisfactory carbonation. The bourbon in this is quite distinctive, and perhaps slightly unbalanced, masking the other flavors from interaction of malt and hops. The malt body is complex and robust enough to support the bourbon influence, but it would have been nice to taste some of the more subtle flavors. I'm a bourbon fan, so I thoroughly enjoyed this stout, but do wish it had a bit more balance. Perhaps a year or two on it could produce something wonderful. I am going to get another bottle to find out. A bit boozy in the finish, but it’s bourbon, so not a flaw. I like the name, it is remarkable how these rich stouts look like raw or well used engine oil when they pour. At this point I'm going to start salivating when I change my car oil; bad conditioning.

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Photo of MLDucky
3.22/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

My bottle was from 2013. The bourbon nose had left alone with most of the bourbon flavor. An oak taste lingered, but there a bit of a metallic taste that was beginning to come through. I'm going to have to revisit this fresh to gain another perspective on this beer.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Bottle #: 02442

Appearance: Splashes out a very dark brown, near black body in color, with a medium-sized, dark tan-hued head.

Smell: Chocolate-glazed roasted malts coated in meager hints of dark fruits, vanilla sugar, brown sugar, spent coffee grinds and barrel wood.

Taste: A heavy, lush chocolate and roast component in the fore with more than enough sweetness to back it up. Flush of alcohol warmth. Slight vinous dark fruitiness, a little drizzle of soy. Though not dominating the flavor, the barrel accents are evident. Subtle hop character and bitterness. The choco-roast sustains through the finish as it seems to pick up even more alcoholic heat.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium-low carbonation.

Overall: For me, it falls short of great, but it's certainly still a worthwhile, solid BA-RIS.

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Photo of mactrail
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nearly black with a ruby glint in the little Jewbelation anniversary glass. A vigorous ous gets a brown-beige head out of this along with a sudsy well-carbonated mouthfeel. Interesting grapey aroma.

Brawling charred, roasted, and burned malt. Bitter chocolate flavors Fairly sweet and seriously malty. A faint sourish tang for the finish. Winey with a chalky sensation. Burnt sugar and fat, all-day caramel. Not too cloying, though, with a dry hint at the finish. Dark raisins and Sugar Smacks.

From the 750 ml bottle purchased at Grapevine Liquors in Denver. Dated 12.18.13 for 2013. Seems to have lasted well.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.68/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle $16.99 2013 vintage. I held off on this last year due to infection rumors and general wariness about the brewery. I had to buy it this year because I've been jonesing for barrel aged imperial stouts. Appearance was that typical pitch black and it actually had a good head. Aroma was a hint if coffee, roasted malts, sort if enticing. The flavor had a bit if coffee and them burnt coffee followed by blackjack gum. The barrel aspects were so subtle I almost didn't notice them which is a bummer. I don't want a beer that tastes like a shot if whiskey but I want the bourbon barrel to be noticeable. Overall this was decent but I need something more like Parabola or BCBS.

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Photo of mevett89
4.94/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This review is for a bottle of Oil Man I aged for one year.

Appearance: black as oil, with a thin chocolate brown head.

Aroma: chocolate, vanilla, roasted malt, a bit of sweet nuttiness.

Taste: sweet chocolate and some caramel, vanilla, roasted bitterness, and some dark fruit.

Mouthfeel: smooth, creamy, full bodied.

Overall: phenomenal! This was a great beer young, and it's matured beautifully. Smoother and less astringent; the alcohol has mellowed out to be fairly undetectable. This is just great!

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Photo of sweemzander
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750mL corked and caged bottle poured into a snifter. Thanks for sharing Matt!

(A)- Pours pitch black as night black. Some good tan froth and lacing too.

(S)- Great cocoa and coffee meets a mountain of raisin. Great subtle barrel notes.

(T)- Lots of raisin and dark plum/raisin balanced well with cocoa and subtle bitter coffee. Same great oak notes from the smell on the finish.

(M)- A smooth carbonation level meets a great barrel aged stout. Not too thick or boozy. A great balanced sweetness as well without being too thick.

(O)- This is one solid barrel aged stout that might fly under the radar of the bigger names and brands these days. Rich, but well balanced and well integrated barrel characters. Tasty!

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Photo of metter98
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a quarter finger high tan head that died down, leaving a large thin patch of bubbles on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of bourbon from the barrel aging are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste has moderate to strong flavors of bourbon that develop more as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. Slight hints of alcohol warming are present.
O: This beer hides its alcohol rather well and the bourbon flavors aren't overpowering.

Notes: Bottle #02211, Winter 2012

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Photo of GilGarp
4.02/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Winter 2012 vintage.

750 ml bottle with extremely stubborn cork. It broke in half and required a corkscrew to extract the remaining piece.

Served chilled into a goblet, Oil Man is nearly black with thick tan head. It settles slowly but leaves no lacing behind.

Aroma is sweet and slightly boozy with coffee, chocolate, and bourbon. It has some really nice dark roasted malt character.

Flavor is really nicely judged with great balance to the different elements. It's primarily a big imperial stout and that's a good thing. The bourbon in a barrel aged stout should compliment the beer and here it does just that. There is some good vanilla from the barrel aging.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, a little thin for the style but easier to drink as a result. Alcohol is present but does not dominate.

Overall a very good effort from this relatively young brewery. I look forward to discovering what else they have in store.

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Photo of kawilliams81
3.47/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 ml cork n cage bottle into a 6 oz snifter.

A- pours black with a 1 finger tan head. Minimal lacing.

S- roast, some coffee, dark fruits. No bourbon what so ever.

T- chocolate, roasted malts, faint coffee, dark fruits and more chocolate.

M- medium body and carbonation. Smooth and easy drinking with slightly if her carbonation than per style.

O- I think they may have poured this through a bourbon barrel and back into tanks. This beer has zero barrel or bourbon notes. For a regular RIS its wouldn't be pretty good, but for a BA stout is terrible per style.

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Photo of TokyoCO
4.77/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Had this on tap at Elevation Beer Co. tasting room.

A: Dark black, no light penetrance.

S: Coffee, and lots of it! Dark chocolate, dark fruits and a hint of bourbon.

T: Follows the smell. Big coffee tastes up front mixed with dark chocolate and fruit. Coffee taste is present throughout but the bourbon/alcohol warmth comes in the finish.

M: Heavy and fairly creamy.

O: One of the best beers that I have tried from Elevation. Great mixing of a typical Imperial stout with a coffee stout. Loved it!

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Photo of maximum12
2.9/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to blakelive784 for this bottle as part of an excellent trade a few weeks back. Always good to try another new brewery, especially one from my second favorite state. Big, tall, imposing 750ML bomber, split with my wife. Bottle #287.

Nice minimalistic bottle art. Cork gives way reluctantly to reveal a dark black beer that foams when I look at it cross-eyed. Really. A hard pour brings head, which falls, then I pick the glass up to check it out, & it zooms right back. Nice trick. Nose is more like a straight stout, roast, cocoa. Maybe a thread of vanilla, but no bourbon is detected by my bourbon-o-meter.

Oil Man taste like no big stout I've ever had; maybe an American Double/Imperial Fruit Stout? There's a ton of flash-dried fruit right up-front, as if somebody dropped their trail mix, sans peanuts, into the mash tun. OK, so I peeked - someone said cantaloupe, & that's exactly right. Bare-bones roast in the middle, vanilla peeking out from under, but barely detectable. No bourbon. Over-carbonated for a big stout, & gotta be honest, I'm not even wild about finishing my half of the bomber.

Disappointing. I'm not going to say that word, but inappropriate carbonation, bourbon faded to nothing, fruitiness...well, I'm one hundred percent sure this isn't what the brewer intended. Scraping the heel of mediocre.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Served in a Local Option cervoise.

Bottle #02022. I just can't keep my mind from flashing to There Will Be Blood-style wastelands... Anyway, this stuff pours a straight obsidian topped by a half-finger or so of dark tan foam. The nose elicits the image of a pate of brownies carousing within a bourbon barrel, with a bit of roasted malts, coffee, oak, and pretzel tossed in for good measure. The taste brings in more of the same, with a good amount of the physical barrel itself shining through, including a hint of the metal rings in the hazy distance. The body is a lithe medium, with a very light moderate carbonation and a thinly fluid feel. Overall, a tasty barrel-aged stout, though one whose overt barrel influence and relatively thin body hinder its advances toward greatness.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle pour at the bottle share held at Chloe's inside Golden Road Brewing in Los Angeles, CA.

Bottle # 00772. Bottled Winter 2012.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and bourbon aromas. Taste is much the same with a slight smoke flavor on the finish. There is a mild 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 a good beer with a solid barred aged presence.

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Photo of blankust
4.59/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Serving type corked bottle
served in Duvel Snifter
Color: Black, thick dark brown head with nice long lasting lace
Odor: Aroma of molasses and dried fruit
Flavor: Smooth mouth feel, tastes sweet and toffee like at first , rich cocoa in middle hints of of vanilla at end.

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Photo of Dope
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle 01938, bottled Winter 2012.

A: Pours pitch black with a huge and dense dark brown head. Fades slowly, leaving moderate specks of lacing behind. Decent retention though.

S: Hmph. Lots of chocolate. Kind of an odd aroma, can't quite place it. A touch of bourbon in there with some caramel maybe, but not much.

T: A little bourbon up front, heavy on the toffee. Some chocolate mixes in with bunch of anise. Again, a strange flavor to go with the strange aroma previously mentioned. I looked back through the reviews and I saw mention of melon rind. Yes, that's pretty close. It has almost a cantaloupe type flavor mixing in with everything. Espresso flavors in the finish with lingering coffee beans and oak in the aftertaste. Alcohol very well hidden, no noticeable taste but nice belly-warming sensation betrays it.

M: Pretty heavy but surprisingly smooth. Viscous.

O: Huh, not a bad bourbon barrel stout. Very non-standard, especially with that "melon" flavor in there. Unique, but I can't quite tell if it's amazing or if it reeks of off-flavors or brewing flaws. I'm a little torn on this one. Bourbon isn't very strong in this one like a BCBS or something but it does add a noticeable and appreciated layer of complexity. Overall a good beer but I couldn't quite get over the odd flavor combinations (which I feel MAY have been the beginnings of infected flavors) to give it really high scores.

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Photo of Hex92
4.28/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a great imperial stout. This is my first beer from Elevation and I am looking forward to the other one I have ( APIS IV). It pours black with a thin head. Smells a bit like bourbon and not much else. The mouth feel is a bit thin...but the taste....wow. incredibly smooth. Nice malty flavor, but not too sweet. The bourbon flavor is there, but not over the top. The high alcohol content is also hidden quite well.

This a very drinkable beer. I could knock back another one, right now. If it wasn't for the price and high alcohol this could be a session beer.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I liked the oil man a lot. it is one of the best hidden high alcohol content brews ive ever had, one would never know this was 11% abv. felt more like 6 or 7, no kidding. the pour is a velvety black color, indeed like motor oil, with patchy tan lacing, not appearing to be as sticky and thick as some of these big stouts. the nose is hugely dark on the malt front, espresso notes, as well as some nice vanilla oaky smells and some char. the flavor is delicious, not as complex as some, but well balanced and unique. its very chocolaty, with all the flavors of the bourbon barrel too, an excellent combination. again, I cannot taste any alcohol in this at all, not even when it warms up, a very impressive feat for such a big beer. im shocked there is no oatmeal in this either, with great body and texture and the subtle sweetness oats usually impart. also the body isn't so filling or dense as some big stouts. it is surprisingly drinkable as a result. its still a full body, it just isn't super heavy, not too sweet either, not teeth rotting, I like that. overall this is a very well executed brew from elevation, like all their stuff in this series. its big and its different, and its a good bottle to share. worth the price.

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Photo of DenverLogan
4.16/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Corked bottle...poured in Belgian Scotch Silly glass.
Nice cork pop...pours blackish with 1/3" light brown head.
Aroma...oooh...get the straight jacket...bourbon and dim sum pork sweet buns. Wow...rich on the nose...lots going on with sweetness, booze, dark malts, funky melon rind (from first sip to final of the bottle...always a strong funky melon rind note)...
Modest carbonation and poignantly strong mouthfeel.
Flavors of dark roasted malts, sweet malts, bourbon, slight wood, tropical melon rind, chalk (just a little), cherry, carob....lets give it 10 minutes...
OK...it's still black! Small remaining head with lace. Aroma of funky melon rinds...humm, much of the bourbon and dark roasted malts has subsided. Flavor is there, with gusto, rich roasted dark malts, alcohol, a mouth puckering funky bitterness like cream of tartar vs the tropical melon rind on a volcano....oh...oh...bittersweet chocolate, carob, malt balls, plum, cold near black coffee. Whoa...it's a mouthfull with every sip...I like it, but it is challenging...not for the timid or meek! Brilliant for beer geeks.

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Oil Man from Elevation Beer Co.
88 out of 100 based on 29 ratings.