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Ola Dubh Special Reserve 18 - Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.

Not Rated.
Ola Dubh Special Reserve 18Ola Dubh Special Reserve 18

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

343 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 343
Reviews: 126
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 9.74%
Wants: 29
Gots: 87 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Harviestoun Brewery Ltd. visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Nickls on 01-29-2009

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (31) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 343 | Reviews: 126
Photo of brewskifan55
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a tulip glass. Thanks, Alan.

A: Tar black with a tan half finger head that lingered. Nice lacing.

S: Currants, port wine, dark fruit. Nutty

T: Ancient goodness. The port wine decadence shines in with peat, vanilla, bready malts, dark chocolate and perhaps a bit of Scotch. Sip slowly, my friends.

M: Thick and viscous. Chewy, robust, dry with medium carbonation.

O: I feel honored to get to try one of these beauties. A definite "share" beer.

Photo of JMBSH
3.74/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of -DF-
4.36/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ummswimmin
4.13/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MacGyver88
4.91/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

According to the label, it was bottled in 2011. Poured a nice inky black, but with very little head. The taste was exceptional and smooth, with the scotch present the whole time but never overpowering. Though the head was slight, it did lace the glass nicely as I drank it. Overall, a wonderful experience.

Photo of leitmotif
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of tridge85
4.67/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of brywhite
4.08/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Greywulfken
4.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

February 2012 bottling...

A: just odd for my expectation of an old ale - black but not quite opaque - some dark brown glassiness on the edges - didn't kick up much of any head despite a solid center-pour

S: very mild - not much there actually - something vaguely suggestive of chocolate malt, the barest nuance of whisky barrel wood and whisky...

T: incredible - subtle flavors throughout as age has probably married everything together quite compatibly - chocolate/cocoa and brown nut, barrel wood and Scotch whisky; hints of dark fruit like fig or plum, something like vanilla and peat; slight smoke on the finish

S: super smooth and mild - slim and light and effortless; some whisky vapor traces and a bit of bittersweet chocolate on the close; relatively clean-finishing, with but a trace of cocoa and smoky peat

O: stunner - admittedly, I have had no other version of Ola Dubh, nor have I had it fresh, but that aside - as a standalone experience, this was elegance defined. An $11 or $12 bottle, well worth every penny - highly recommended.

Photo of dcmchew
4.39/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black, small tan head quick to a thin string.
Nice smokey peaty malts on the nose, roast and rich dark chocolate with a light Scotch dryness. Hints of vanilla, caramel, woody dark licorice and cinnamon, extra cocoa powder.
Scotch up front, kinda "zesty", not too strong, with light chocolate and burnt sugar trying to enhance it. Malts follow, just a bit toasted at first, developing into a nice roast, not too deep, but with a minimum of coffee powder notes showing up. Peat shows up, pretty subtle, with nice vanilla and a charred oak barrel note that's really rich, splashed just by a tiny bit of Scotch warmth.
Medium to light bodied, low carbonated, not entirely smooth, but kinda like slightly watered-down oil, so not too sticky either. Aftertaste has peated Scotch, rich oak barrel, bit of roast. No booze.
As is normal, i guess, somewhere between 16 and 30. Great Scotch barrel notes, as usual, nice rich dark ale underneath. These Ola Dubh's are well worth the expense.

Photo of lovethebelgians
4.48/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Jack_Malts
4.29/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very good, big scotch notes on this one, making the finish sweet and smoky. Deep, dark brown body with a tiny tan head. Definitely a bit more of a stout than an old ale with big roasted notes, coffee and char and such, but I think this ultimately works better with the smoke from the scotch.

I wouldn't buy this again given the price, but it's more than worth it to give it a go once.

Photo of stumac
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyable but I think the 16 year barrels tickle my delicates more so. Caviar

Photo of sampsonw
4.21/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ZEB89
4.26/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 2/2012. Bottle No. 05567.

Pours an opaque super dark brown with a foamy super dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of roasted malt, molasses, smoke, char, cocoa powder, whisky, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with char, cocoa powder, bittersweet chocolate, earth, smoke, wood, and whisky flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roast bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that has more earth and smoke characteristics than the 12 year aged version that I recently had.

Serving type: bottle.

Photo of WantonFaun
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Axnjxn
4.09/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of deac83
4.25/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of valkyre65
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of srletend
3.55/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mchengcit
4.1/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Sygav
4.19/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mbeerdino21
3.5/5  rDev -16.9%

Based on the reviews I was expecting a lot more from this one. Very underwhelming. Almost tastes flat with some Band-aid smokiness. At least you can pick up the barrel characteristic. Only thing this had going for it.

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Ola Dubh Special Reserve 18 from Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
94 out of 100 based on 343 ratings.