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Old Engine Oil Special Reserve (Aged In Malt Whiskey Casks) - Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.

Not Rated.
Old Engine Oil Special Reserve (Aged In Malt Whiskey Casks)Old Engine Oil Special Reserve (Aged In Malt Whiskey Casks)

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

199 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 199
Reviews: 182
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 16.02%
Wants: 9
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harviestoun Brewery Ltd. visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English Porter |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 10-27-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 199 | Reviews: 182 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gford217
gford217

Georgia

3.78/5  rDev -2.3%

12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours black with mahogany tint around the edges. Very thin bubbly tan head that dissipates almost immediately leaving minimal lacing.

S: Tough to get around the boozy whiskey smell of this one. There is definitely a toffee, chocolate smell along with the roasted malt aroma, but it really comes back to the whiskey for me.

T: Big, nice, complex taste where the whiskey doesn't dominate as much as the nose. Big roasted chocolate malt taste up front with some caramel and coffee in there as well. The whiskey is present throughout but isn't overpowering.

M: Creamy mouthfeel with very little carbonation and a nice malt whiskey burn.

D: The whiskey is certainly present in this one so the drinkability isn't extremely high. All in all, a decent representation of an old ale with a serious whiskey kick.

04-29-2008 01:39:39 | More by gford217
Photo of objectivemonkey
objectivemonkey

Minnesota

4.4/5  rDev +13.7%

Into a pint glass, pours a thick, motor oil like viscosity, black, not much head. The aroma reveals a woodiness that takes on boozy tones and vanilla notes. Similarly, on the palate its a bit hot, but rich and delicious. The roasted malt is plentiful, some nice plum fruitiness. The mouth again is warm, and very nice and smooth. Overall, this is a damn tasty beer, and I need more.

04-15-2008 03:03:05 | More by objectivemonkey
Photo of GbVDave
GbVDave

Illinois

4.47/5  rDev +15.5%

Poured from an 11.2oz glass into a St. Feuillian chalice.

A: Pours a dark black with faint ruby-brown at the edges. Tiny dark khaki head recedes immediately to a bubbly, uneven ring that leaves a small amount of lace spots.

S: Delicious aromas of dark fruit, whisky, roasted malt, bitter espresso, dark chocolate, cask char, toffee, cherry, oak/vanilla, roasted nuts, and milk chocolate.

T: Spicy overripe plum, rum soaked raisin, milk chocolate covered cherry, and bitter dark chocolate all hit big in the opening salvo of this beer. After that, my tongue was awash in flavors of whisky, charred wood, caramel/toffee, vanilla, espresso, blackened malt, spicy smoke, and brown sugar/molassas.

M: Thick, smooth, and creamy. Very big and sticky. Starts big and sweet and becomes spicy and dry as the middle leads into the finish. Excellent sweet dark fruit and dry spice linger for a long time after the finish.

D: Incredible! I would liken this as being the closest to the Ola Dubh SR12 in aroma and flavor, but more like the Ola Dubh SR30 in mouthfeel. I can't get enough of these whisky cask aged Harviestoun old ales!

03-30-2008 21:05:43 | More by GbVDave
Photo of John_M
John_M

Oregon

4.43/5  rDev +14.5%

Had this beer with a friend the other night. We were trying it side by side with the 12 and 16 year old Ola Dubh. Much to my surprise, this beer more then held its own against those two beers.

The beer pours a dark hazy brown color with good head retention and lacing. While the beer looks good, the aroma was incredible. This beer has a huge nose of malt whiskey. It's sweet smelling, but has an incredible spicey scotch aroma. There is plenty of vanilla and butterscoth as well. The beer tastes nearly as good as it smells, though I'm not sure anything could taste that great. This beer is pretty smooth and initially comes across as fairly sweet. There are flavors of butterscotch, butter and honey, but then a nice hoppiness comes in at the end, which cuts the sweetness and gives the beer something of a dry finish. The beer is medium bodied and the abv. pretty well disguised.

This was a pretty impressive beer; much better then I was expecting, and really showing up its more expensive siblings.

03-30-2008 00:40:50 | More by John_M
Photo of Trueant1
Trueant1

Minnesota

4.83/5  rDev +24.8%

When I opened the bottle, the smell waifted so strong throuth the air, I KNEW this would be special. I then brought out my favorte chalice!

Pours black. Sits in glass black. Very little head. A thin coating. Looks like a very serious stout!

Smells come right out of the bottle when opening! Chocolate rum cake! Then, oak, vanila, and gummy bear type candy flavors. The Wiskey comes through in the smell and flavors. The flavors are the same as the smells...just way more intence!

This beer is so velvety smooth but at the same time so intence in flavor. Should be all 5's!

NICE BREW~

03-29-2008 05:49:04 | More by Trueant1
Photo of DIM
DIM

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

a: This is just a degree shy of black, I can see some ruby highlights near the stem. It pours with a huge, frothy, mocha colored head that has decent retention and fantastic lace.

s: The first thing that comes to mind is cherris covered in dark chocolate soaking in brandy. There were also some raw, floral alcohol aromas as well.

t: Very much mirrors the smell, except that the cherry flavors aren't as strong as the smell would suggest. Everything hear is very much in balalnce with the addition of some vanilla flavors as it warms. It has a long dry finish that leaves warming alcohol flavor in it's wake.

m: This has gentle, foamy, mouth-filling carbonation and a thick velvety texture.

d: I didn't realize that I had grabbed the version that was aged in a malt whiskey cask until I was ready to open it. This was a pleasant mistake and a real treat. I'll certainly look for more of these as well as the "naked" version.

03-24-2008 11:50:38 | More by DIM
Photo of dsa7783
dsa7783

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%

12 oz, single bottle copped from Super Saver in Somerville...
This sample, that was supposedly aged in Malt Whiskey Casks, is much noticeably more sweet than its original counterpoart, with a distinct vanilla, whiskey aroma and flavor bursting rhough...
Dark, burnt chocolate, and roasted malt aroma is complemented by a heavy vanilla, oak-aged essence replete with caramel, nutmeg, vanilla, and candied sugars, including dark lattes, and rich capuccino..
Thick and heavy roasted malt flaovr pervaded this one...
Very whiskey-like, with touches of Bourbon and alcohol..

03-15-2008 02:03:54 | More by dsa7783
Photo of bilyboy65
bilyboy65

Colorado

4.47/5  rDev +15.5%

Poured into a pilsner style glass.

A: Very dark brown color with no head upon being poured.

S: Is superb mix of malt whiskey barrel and chocolate. Neither over powering the other for an over all smell of sweet whiskey.

T: Is almost as good as the smell. The difference being the malt whiskey over powers the chocolate for an off balanced taste. It isn't a bad taste because the chocolate really accents the whiskey to give the same taste as it smells. That is of a sweet whiskey.

M: No carbonation to distract the taste buds. Very smooth flowing beer as it moves around the tongue.

D: This beer has it all. A fantastic smell that instantly fills the nostrils of sweets, a taste that draws that sweet back with the sharp taste of whiskey. Without the carbonation it goes down very smooth. A beer you can drink a lot of because its not to heavy, but something that should be savored with every sip.

03-04-2008 00:40:24 | More by bilyboy65
Photo of charlzm
charlzm

California

4/5  rDev +3.4%

Bottled, consumed on 12/22/07.

Dark brown liquid; a modest tan head was coaxed during pour. Looks a lot like a stout. Aroma: in case you missed the label that says "aged in malt whiskey casks", the nose will tell all. Smokey, salty aroma: almost like soy sauce. Silky texture as it glides onto the tongue. Mild chocolate, some bitterness and the aftertaste of peat and whiskey (complete with a little burn) round out the palate.

Substantial.

03-02-2008 07:52:07 | More by charlzm
Photo of tiger88
tiger88

Alabama

3.38/5  rDev -12.7%

Had this one Saturday night while watching the Memphis-Tennessee ball game. Pours a thick black just as the name would suggest. Head doesn't last too long but was tan and lacey. It smelled extremely sweet as one could imagine being aged in malt whiskey casks. The whiskey taste is prevelant from first to last sip, gaining momentum as the temperature rises. Mouthfeel was a little less viscous than a typical Impy stout. Drinkability: good sampling beer but I'm not sure if I would drink an entire bottle, unless I had an hour to kill.

02-25-2008 16:13:11 | More by tiger88
Photo of joe1510
joe1510

Illinois

4.3/5  rDev +11.1%

33cl Bottle
$4.49
Sam's Marcey

8% abv.

Old Engine Oil Special Reserve plops into my glass black without letting a glimpse of light break through. The super creamy tan head was slow to develop but a more aggressive pour yielded a finger's worth. The head eventually fell to a respectable cap and left film lacing on its fall. This is an excellent looking beer.

The aroma is good but needs to be more robust. All the aromas come together so well it's actually tough to put a finger on all the different components. Roasted malts, cold coffee, dark chocolate, vanilla and alcohol are in there in order of intensity. The smell of this beer makes you want to drink up without a doubt.

The flavor doesn't stray much from the aroma. The Special Reserve is incredibly well rounded. All the maltiness I picked up in the nose is in the flavor as well. The vanilla is a little more pronounced along with spicy alcohol on the swallow. The aftertaste leaves a hint of smokiness. The aging that's been done is spot on. Excellent old ale.

After my first few sips the body seemed somewhat thin. After it had a chance to warm a little more it became all at once rich, creamy and velvety. Alcohol fumes waft through the nose on the swallow.

This is a beer to sit back with and enjoy the complexities. A sipper without a doubt and a good beer for these cool winter evenings.

I enjoy the original but the Special Reserve steps it up a notch. The added complexity the aging provides makes this a beer to be reckoned with.

02-24-2008 02:19:42 | More by joe1510
Photo of gwood
gwood

California

4.7/5  rDev +21.4%

I've been wanting to try this brew for quite some time now and as luck would have it, there was some at my doorstep today when I came home.

This beer really is quite sexy. Pours just like it's name, like oil, thick and black like it was bubbling up outa the ground. A half inch dark tan head peaked and then subsided to a thin film that laced down my snifter in pockets.

Smells of chocolate, heavy roasted malts, oak, whiskey, and sweet candy came trough in droves, just smells great. Taste is just full of sweet and doughy malts and bittersweet chocolate that transitions to a lingering oaky sweet finish that warms the tongue all the way down to the gut and everything in between. Some alky burning is present but mellows as the beer warms. After only five or so sips feel this one coming on but it goes down so silky smooth that there's no point in rushing it. Like I said, I've been waiting on this one and I wasn't disappointed, truely one of the best in the style that I've had to date.

02-16-2008 05:11:16 | More by gwood
Photo of barefootbrewer
barefootbrewer

Mississippi

4.22/5  rDev +9%

This beer poured a thick black with a ½" brown head. The aroma was sweet, malty, cane sugar like with a hint of whiskey. The taste is sweet and malty with molasses and somewhat alcoholic. The mouthfeel is chewy. This is a big, easy drinking beer. Delightful - I'll be having another soon.

02-12-2008 04:24:51 | More by barefootbrewer
Photo of DrJay
DrJay

Massachusetts

4.03/5  rDev +4.1%

Very dark brown with a fine tan cap, mostly in a ring around the glass. Excellent retention for what's there, plus a fair bit of spotty lace. Sweet milk/lactose aroma, with some chocolate, oak, toffee, mild booze and a hint of smoke. Mellow flavour with restrained bitterness and lots of toffee and chocolate. Doughy malt with a bit of oak and booze. Medium bodied with low carbonation and a bit of warmth. Very good, quite mellow and highly drinkable.

01-24-2008 01:45:58 | More by DrJay
Photo of JayQue
JayQue

Virginia

4.05/5  rDev +4.7%

This is a nice rich stout with an extra flavor kick from the whiskey casks. Pours like...old engine oil...dense dark, no light coming through. Medium brown head that fades to a covering fairly quickly. Leaves medium lacing on the glass. Smell is mild, malty, nothing special. Taste is a rich malty flavor with a surprise in the after taste - the sensation of whiskey including a little burn. Mouthfeel is rich and creamy with the little burn at the end. This is a very drinkable beer, flavorful...variety of tastes and rich. Really nice....going to have to try the OEO without the cask aging for comparison.

01-14-2008 03:38:15 | More by JayQue
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

4.58/5  rDev +18.3%

11.2 oz. bottle, tasted side by side with the original Old Engine Oil to taste the nuance and differences and also the similarities, listed at 8.0% alc/vol.

A: Pours a very dark brown/black, with a full tan head, with great lacing, good retention on the head as well.

S: As opposed to the original, the nose of this is mostly Scotch and peat, some woody and resiny characteristics as well.

T: The whisky barrel aging really makes the already tasty OEO even better. Mild dark chocolate starts off the flavour, but is kind of blown away by the delicious woody, peaty, raw whisky character, reminiscent in a way of Firestone 11. A nice espresso note ends the beer, fantastically full-flavoured and very tasty.

M: I think the extra alcohol adds some body that the original is lacking, very smooth and silky, though light enough to be easily drunk.

D: This beer is really good. Maybe I'm partial to whisky or whisky aged beers, but I really liked this stuff. Only seen it at Hollingshead's, got to pick up another bottle next time I'm in, much more of a bargain than Firestone 11.

01-08-2008 04:29:52 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of kwakwhore
kwakwhore

North Carolina

4.13/5  rDev +6.7%

Pours like it's name, black and viscous, with a smallish tan head which quickly subsides to a small ring around the side of the glass. Darkest old ale I've seen, porterlike in appearance.
Smells of dark chocolate, some booze and perhaps a little fruitcake.
Dark chocolate dominates the flavor along with vanilla. Bitter chocolate flavors sticks around for a long time in the finish.
A bit of an alcohol burn, but the mouthfeel is still silky.
Not sure I'd want more than one of these in a night. I'm feeling the 8%abv(not 6) so I'd say that drinkability suffers a bit.
Still this is a very good beer, especially for a winter's evening. An interesting beer which could be called a porter/old ale hybrid.

01-08-2008 03:29:37 | More by kwakwhore
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ

California

2.95/5  rDev -23.8%

2002 vintage, from a 33cl bottle purchased from the Wine Exchange, on to the beer:

Poured into an oversized wine glass, the beer is black with almost no carbonation (uhh ohh). The aroma is boozy and hints whisky, vanilla, and dark ripe fruits. Not bad. All right, continuing to the taste. Although the carbonation is nil, there's enough taste to hold my interest. The one advantage of the minmal carbonation here it allows certain flavors to dominate more. A hint of whisky and more dark ripe fruits in the taste, and quite smooth at that. Cocoa appears too. Still, I wish I had a little carbonation here.

The beer was a bit of a let down (was the bottle too old?), however it did compliment my Tipsy Fudge Cake (made with Jack Daniels Whiskey) nicely.

01-07-2008 03:47:06 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of danend
danend

Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%

Aroma : Lot's of vanilla and bourbon. Some dark fruits, malt sweetness, a little chocolate, raisins...Not too much hops in the nose. No harsh alcohol but a little alcoholic sweetness.

Appearance : Very dark, but clear when held to the light, a small tan head that lingers. Some lacing down the sides.

Flavor : Much like the aroma; vanilla, bourbon, some chocolate and roasted malts, dark fruity flavors, some caramel. Lot's of good stuff here.

Mouthfeel : Pretty full bodied, but not overly so. Finishes roasty with a little sweetness. Nicely carbonated.

Overall : A very nice old ale, has all of the dark characteristics I look for without being over the top in alcohol content. I wish I had another.

01-03-2008 16:12:37 | More by danend
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +29.2%

Pours an opaque black with a thick tan head. As I was pouring this, the word "gorgeous" hit my mind. Like the beer soul I possess deep down, the nose spoke out. Strong malty wood with thicker cocoa qualities and an overall roasted character. Flavor is rich with chocolate character and a strong malt flavor. So meaty and earthy I almost want to start chewing it as I drink it. Feel is great. Small level of bubble and a nice smooth and thick liquid feel.

I am shocked. Last night I tried the standard Old Engine Oil and had slightly higher expectations for this one. But geez. In no way did I expect to be hit with only my 2nd flat 5 rating as of yet. Unbelievable. Blows the hell out of the standard Old Engine Oil...and most other brews at that too.

12-30-2007 23:58:15 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of ColForbinBC
ColForbinBC

New Jersey

4.23/5  rDev +9.3%

11.2 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A: A dark, dirty black with brownish tones. Small deep tan head with no retention. Little to no carbonation.

S: Smells of bittersweet dark chocolate, caramel, and molasses with a whiskey backbone

T: Big roast malt flavors. Bittersweet dark chocolate, butterscotch/caramel, and whiskey. Warming alcohol feel as it goes down. Reminds me of a wine in some spots.

M: Full-bodied with prickly carbonation.

D: This beer is big and bad, I'm feeling it halfway through. A sipper.

12-29-2007 03:20:23 | More by ColForbinBC
Photo of rye726
rye726

Colorado

4.28/5  rDev +10.6%

12oz bottle poured at 50F into a snifter

Black color with mahogany tints. Thick mocha head with poor retention and lacing.

Wow, very nice nose. Lots of chocolate malts blended with some caramel and black varieties. Roasty with molasses and a delicious whiskey/bourbon smell with some dark fruits.

Deep and complex flavors from start to finish. Rich roasted malts with sweet fruits and sugars. Bitter chocolate with molasses and a strong oaky whisky character.

Full body and smooth feel, good amount of carbonation.

Near perfect example of an old scottish ale that is complimented by the whisky cask aging process. May have to pick up a few of these to see how they better over a few years.

12-25-2007 04:37:04 | More by rye726
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev +3.4%

Black with a roasted barley and coffee nose. Exceptional smooth chocolate and porter stouty concoction that was great after a dairy meal, like a good coffee without the coffee. This is not a transition beer, it is for those who can appreciate this style. A non-Shelton Bros. import, and a hard one to find in the Northeast.

12-10-2007 03:01:21 | More by Sammy
Photo of Boppar
Boppar

New Hampshire

4.03/5  rDev +4.1%

A: At first it looks jet black, but on closer inspection it's absurdly dark brown. One finger of leathery head, with good lacing and retention.

S: Vanilla, brown sugar, and a solid amount of alcohol burn on the nostrils.

T: Whiskey, sweet malts, chocolate, molasses. Rich alcohol burn. I wish the finish weren't quite so sweet, but it's still mighty fine. The aging in whiskey casks definitely gave it some faint woody notes in addition to the much more powerful whiskey flavor.

M: Thick, rich, sticky.

D: I'd be good for a couple. It's really too sticky and sweet and rich to want more than that.

Interesting. Well worth a try.

12-09-2007 19:55:02 | More by Boppar
Photo of emerge077
emerge077

Illinois

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%

Impenetrable and opaque blackened oil. Capped with a milk chocolate/cappucino dollop of foam, with small arcs of lace around the chalice. Sturdy and substantial in appearance.

Lots of chocolate, malted milk balls, and even a little vinous. This all sounds good, but there's an alcohol sharpness arching over it all that mutes these desired aromas.

It's velvety and feels more than 6%, but i'm thankful that it *is* only 6%. The sharpness from the Whisky isn't overpowering, but lends a distinctive element to the finish and aftertaste. Some berry an dry woodiness are in there, under the load of chocolate and long whisky finish. Nicely balanced and not a booze bomb. Very smooth and enjoyable to slowly sip a glass after dinner or by the fire...

12-03-2007 02:13:01 | More by emerge077
Old Engine Oil Special Reserve (Aged In Malt Whiskey Casks) from Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
87 out of 100 based on 199 ratings.