Ola Dubh Special Reserve 12 - Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 627 | Reviews: 337 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Phelps:
4.25/5 rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5
Bottled in Sept. 2007.
An old ale aged in whiskey casks, you say? Color me intrigued.
And color the beer itself a nearly impenetrably black, though a lift up to the lights does reveal the faintest streaks of brilliant crimson. A pretty aggressive pour begets a one-finger head with a nice, cocoa powder colored head. Sadly, however, the crown is quickly gone, leaving just a ring in its wake.
Ah, scotch. Scotchy scotch scotch. The aroma is a celebration of the drink, balanced with notes of dark chocolate as well as some sweeter fruity esters: currants, plums. A slight alcohol burn, but muted and blended nicely.
I'd say the scotch is even more subdued in the taste than in the nose, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. In fact, in interacts very well with the a heavy dark fruit sweetness of the beer. Amazing coffee flavors flavors from the malt hit at the finish and linger in the back of the throat for a while after the swallow.
The mouthfeel seems to be the only downside to this beer. You would expect a brew whose name translates to "black oil" to be a little more viscous. The liquid feels creamy, sure, but a little more body would be appreciated.
All said and done, special 12 reserve would be a worthy addition to any whiskey or beer collection. I could (and intend to) sip this for the next hour. Scotland, what would I do without you?
Serving type: bottle
02-22-2010 06:39:48 | More by Phelps
More User Reviews:
4.1/5 rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
330 ml bottle into snifter, no bottle dating. Pours pitch black color with a 1 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin lace cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big caramel, chocolate, toast, brown sugar, roast, raisin, fig, brown bread, molasses, vanilla, oak, tobacco, leather, peat smoke, and roast/oak earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted malt and whisky cask notes; with great strength. Taste of big caramel, chocolate, roasted malt, toast, raisin, fig, dark bread, molasses, vanilla, oak, peat smoke, tobacco, leather, and roast/oak earthiness. Slight roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, chocolate, roast, toast, dark bread, raisin, fig, tobacco, leather, vanilla, oak, peat smoke, and roast/oak earthiness on the finish for a white. Very nice complexity and balance of dark/roasted malt and whisky cask flavors; with a nice balance of the oak character with zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a smooth, moderately slick, and lightly chalky mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent old ale. All around great complexity and balance of dark/roasted malt and whisky cask flavors; and very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.
Serving type: bottle
06-02-2014 00:56:55 | More by superspak
4.33/5 rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
330mL bottle into snifter
a: pitch black with half a finger of light tan head
s: whisky, vanilla, and smoke are pretty dominant in the nose here, but there are also notes of wood, chocolate, hints of coffee, and maybe even some syrupy sweetness. very nice
t: follows the aroma. up front is the whisky, smoke, vanilla, and wood. after that comes roasted/burnt malts, hints of toffee sweetness, and shy dark chocolate and coffee notes. the sweetness hangs around for quite a bit towards the end, but this beer does finish dry, leaving your mouth with a coffee-like bitterness and lingering smoky whisky flavours. zero alcohol presence. whisky, dark fruits (raisins, cherries), and the chocolate flavours dominate as the beer warms. zero alcohol presence. complex, delicate, and delicious
m: silky smooth medium body, nearly non-existent carbonation
o: fantastic beer. comes with a rather high price-per-volume but don't hesitate to pick this one up, especially if you dig barrel-aged beers
Serving type: bottle
05-14-2014 23:06:21 | More by kevinlater
Ola Dubh Special Reserve 12 from Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
92 out of 100 based on 627 ratings.