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Old Engine Oil - Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.

Not Rated.
Old Engine OilOld Engine Oil

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,366 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,366
Reviews: 731
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.63%
Wants: 104
Gots: 85 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harviestoun Brewery Ltd. visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English Porter |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-10-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,366 | Reviews: 731 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of UnionMade
4.1/5  rDev -1%

The ale is dark umber brown, with very little head. Almost looks like cola. Some lacework, forming patchy little globs on the glass.
Aroma is very subdued, light english hops and a slight roasty aroma. Light esteriness, with an herbal hoppiness flitting lightly through the malt.
Flavor is initially thin, then explodes with flavor at the back of the tongue. Bitterness from both roasted malts and prodigious hopping. Sweet in a strange dark chocolate kind of way. Mild plum and pear flavors, with a touch of fig. Very low carbonation, with a smooth, rich mouthfeel.
Hot stuff. Very similar to Old Peculier.

UnionMade, Sep 03, 2003
Photo of SilentSabre
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%

Now this is indeed a marvelous brew. Pours about as dark as Coca-Cola with about a centimetre thick head. Laces the glass quite nicely and has a wonderful smell.(If you enjoy stouts and darks and such.) The taste is wonderful! A robust maltiness with an almost chocolate finish. I personally love this in a brew. The mouth feel is quite unique in that it almost feels like there is more carbonation present than there actually is. It almost "stings" one's mouth similarly to soda. If strong darks are your preference, the drinkability of this one is most definately 4.0. I will most certainly be purchasing this one again.

SilentSabre, Aug 30, 2003
Photo of beerguy101
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%

Eclipse black color. Small head. Aroma is malty and peaty. A medium bodied Scottish ale. Complex malt flavors, chocolate, smoke, caramel and cherries It is a little sweet tasting, but it is balanced by the hoppyness. Nice smooth taste. Mild flavor. A nice beer for after dinner sipping. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter, with a sweet finish.

beerguy101, Aug 22, 2003
Photo of clvand0
2.35/5  rDev -43.2%

This beer pours a very dark color with a small tan head and little lacing on the glass. The aroma was a little hard to figure out, but malts were detectable. The body was really full and thick. I didn't find the flavor very pleasing, but it is interesting.

clvand0, Aug 15, 2003
Photo of jdhilt
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%

Well why not try to buy this in Scotland?? a Scotsman will look at you like you have green ears, they have never heard of the stuff. It must be for export only, found in York, England for £1.49. Looks like a stout or porter totally black, tastes like a sweet stout, very smooth, very drinkable; too bad it was only 330ml.

jdhilt, Aug 05, 2003
Photo of Darkale
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Dark, dark, dark brown, with a thick tan head, pocked and heavy. Aroma is of sweet chocolate, dense and sharp. The taste is dry, sharp, then slick; it's almost as if chocolate dust had been spread over cream. Chewy and rich, profound and wonderful.

Certainly a beer that I will have again.

Darkale, Jul 31, 2003
Photo of oberon
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%

I must say I had never heard of this until now,pours a deep brown with some nice ruby hues with a great creamy head that sticks very well.The aroma is a little caramelly and dry.A taste of unsweetened chocolate and some fruity notes with a slight dry finish.Very impressed with this beer.

oberon, Jul 15, 2003
Photo of TripelJ
3.85/5  rDev -7%

Presentation: 12 oz. brown bottle poured into tulip glass.

Old Engine Oil is certainly an accurate word to describe this dark beer's appearance. Poured a nice fluffy head of large off-white bubbles in my stemmed tulip glass. Nice lacing sticking to the glass throughout the beer. Smells of sweet chocolate and coffee malts dominate the aroma. Mouthfeel is velvet refined. Tastes sweet at first then slides into a gradient of wonderful bitter flavors--fruits(plums, grapes), Hops, Dark chocolate, espresso. All these flavors linger on the palate. This beer is best at cellar temerature, but start with it cold and sip it slow to get the full perspective of this beer.

TripelJ, Jul 14, 2003
Photo of JohnnyDuvel
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%

Nice beer, more of a porter flavor. Nice chocolate notes, good balance. Ordinary in appearance, but a real nice taste and mouthfeel. Substantial and a little different. Could pass for a good stout. I'll definitely revisit this beer. Thanks to the man in Osprey for the sample!

JohnnyDuvel, Jul 10, 2003
Photo of AtLagerHeads
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%

A very nice dark heavy ale that is smooth and creamy, dark and lacey. Superb malt sense in the nose and taste. Thick, creamy tan head and super lace down the glass. Chocolate and coffee notes are a free ride along with the nice malty flavor. A good black-as-night beer that has great opacity.

AtLagerHeads, Jul 09, 2003
Photo of putnam
4.68/5  rDev +13%

Smells like chocolate skim milk with a steamy, boiled bean background...not to mention raw nuts (acorns, almonds and hazelnuts), and stale coffee.
The flavor is gratifying. Plush, milky cocoa expands across the palate and enforces a bitter bitterness of cocoa to cleanse the blueberry and cream sweetness of the attack. Subtle enough. Crafty, agile flavor. It wears well.

putnam, Jul 09, 2003
Photo of jlervine
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%

Pours a nice dark, well, old engine oil color. Smell is very malty. Dark and mysterious. The taste is very light on the bitterness of roasted malts, and very heavy on residual malt flavor. A bit of hops on the finish, but not overpowering in the least. The mouthfeel is thick but not coating. Dunno about drinkability; it's not alcohol strong, but it's still just a sipper.

jlervine, Jun 28, 2003
Photo of beerluvr
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%

This pours with a firm and creamy rocky tan head settling over nearly black liquid. The nose is wonderfully full of chocolates, some coffee & roasty maltiness, very light notes of dark fruit too. Taste is more of the above only with a refreshing slight tanginess added that enhances the enjoyability of this beer. Finishes up nice and chocolatey with a touch of hop bitterness...eminently drinkable and totally delicious!

beerluvr, Jun 22, 2003
Photo of far333
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%

Wow...this is great. Dark brown, nearly black with a light brown head. The head is small and drops quickly, but leaves a thin layer of frothy bubbles floating on top of the beer. The smell is faint, but hints of coffee and chocolate are definitely there. The flavor is big. It hits your tongue quick and hard, and it's great. It's full of hop bitterness, coffee, chocolate, and roasted malt. The hops linger in the mouth. Carbonation is a bit heavy, but the mouthfeel is still smooth. The feel and flavor are well-balanced. Need to get more of this stuff.

far333, May 08, 2003
Photo of BigHead
4/5  rDev -3.4%

A beautiful, dark, dark, dark, dark beer with a lovely thick head which rests about a 1/2 inch on top. Roasted malts and oh, the chocolate play up the smell of this brew, yummy. Man, this oil is smooth, maybe I'll put some thick in the lawnmower. Quite smooth, light texture for being so dark. Chocolate dominates the flavor initially, with roasted coffee flavor coming through as well as the presence of hops in the end. The beer rested heavy in my stomach which takes away from the drinkability. Good stuff though.

BigHead, May 02, 2003
Photo of ElGuapo
3.93/5  rDev -5.1%

A thick dark pour, yes, like old engine oil, but definitely not as thick. A massive head of chocolate cool whip on top. Chocolate and roasty aromas dominate the nose which also contains a nice hop scent.

The flavor is very robust. A nice full body with a rich creamy feel to it. A good chocolate taste leads the way with a nice roasty character following closely behind. Sweet malts jump in next to mix things up a bit. The end has a bit of hops to round out the complexity of the beer. Aftertaste is all roasty. Very nice to drink, and it could be something that you could have a few of. 11.2 ounces seems to go a bit quick, and I would like to have another.

ElGuapo, Apr 27, 2003
Photo of dwarbi
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%

Wow. It really looks like engine oil. So thick, practically no head. But it looks very inviting, though. Rich, thick taste that rounds out very nicely. Thick feeling, too, but it has a delicious aftertaste. The aftertaste sticks around for a long time, making you want more of the real taste. I could have a few of these in a sitting.

dwarbi, Apr 27, 2003
Photo of BeerResearcher
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%

This Stout/Porter hybrid is an unusual as its name. Mahogany colored with a thick, full, peaty and chocolaty malt. An aroma of faint chocolate, dry malt, alcohol and hops. High in English tea-like and mildly citrus hops. It's earthy, yet sweet and creamy. The white/beige head fades leaving behind a thin trace of lace. A truly unique brew! Noticeable alcohol. A must try!

BeerResearcher, Apr 10, 2003
Photo of porter17
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%

A solid, thick and rich beer (what did you expect with the name it so proudly wears?), it packs a nice punch but is far from overbearing. Sweet on the palate, this beer grows on you as you drink more. Not a session beer, as you tap out after a couple of pints, but certianly a treat, nonetheless.
Next, we move on to old anitfreeze...

porter17, Mar 18, 2003
Photo of GreatPondBrewer
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%

I was very interested intrying this beer and a chance meeting with a bottle of it afforded me the oppurtunity to do so. Who wouldn't be curious with a beer that people may mistake for something that you put in your car engine? It poured out of the bottle like mud and kind of rested in the pint. It smelled dark and bitter with notes of prune and fig. The taste was probably the closest I may come to drinking real oil. It was sludgey and viscous. Cool beer.

GreatPondBrewer, Mar 16, 2003
Photo of longpondbeerman
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%

True to its name, this stuff pours thick and black out of the classic long-necked bottle. Its developed a fine, chocolate tan foam that receeded slowly. The lace was sticky. Old Engine Oil has a deep, rather prune-like smell (my wife said she was reminded of figs), and the taste is smooth and fruity with very little carbonation. I thought this a worthy brew, but not very complex, and not among the top I've had recently.

longpondbeerman, Mar 16, 2003
Photo of Reidrover
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

got this in a 330ml brown bottle with gold foil around the cap..nice simple label.
The beer purs thick and slow..and leaves a very very small head which soon dissapears. The colour is rich deep dark brown almost black..light does not penetrate this.
I Liked the scent of the beer the aroma of malts is strong..some chocolate too..dark chocolate nice.
Taste is wonderfully full of malt with a thick cocoa like feel..some blackberries in there too..
very very smooth on the palate leaving a slight bitter aftertaste on the back of the tongue..buttery..mmm mmm
I find this very easy to drink..but the label on the back of the bottle says its a good after dinner drink..and i suppose it is since i just ate my dinner.

Reidrover, Feb 23, 2003
Photo of fattyre
4.1/5  rDev -1%

Pours a very dark red brown with a moderate lasting tan head. A syrupy malty raisin smell. The taste was toasted bread with a peppery bitter finish and a very slightly oily mouthfeel. A tasty beer that definitely tastes even better when at warmer temperatures. It really seemed more like a porter than an old ale.

fattyre, Feb 19, 2003
Photo of mzwolinski
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%

Very dark brown in color with some chunky sediement, and a light tan thinnish head. Aroma is lovely and inviting: chocolate and molasses combine with a roasty malt scent and blend into a rather port-like alcohol nose. Flavor is chocolate/ caramel sweet up front, with a light hint of cherry, a bit of alcohol warming mid-palate. Medium-bitter hop finish fades gently into the background, yielding to a a pleasant, roasty sweet aftertaste. Sooth, creamy, and rather full bodied. A nice treat!

mzwolinski, Feb 12, 2003
Photo of Thrasher
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%

Dark with a tinge of purple, good head. Aroma of Scottish malts, quite grassy and just a hint of smokiness. A surprisingly friendly beer, despite name and appearance. Smooth malts are not caramel sweet but more roasty and toasty, with mild hint of coffee. Some slight fruitiness gives this beer distinction; a very ripe flavor, kind of like a mild although the alcohol kick can't be denied. This beer evokes, for me, images of cloth caps, wood paneled walls and my grandfather's immense library of antique books. Hoppiness is very herbal, gives the palate a quick jab towards the finish. There is a lasting and lustrous finish that is wonderfully nourishing. Mouthfeel smooth, like oil, if not as thick and sticky as that simile suggests. This beer is labeled a number of things: old ale, strong ale, barley wine, porter; but to me the malts are indelibly characteristic of a Scottish ale. A unique and enjoyable beer that I will be buying lots of, if only I could find it priced less than $2.78 for 11.2 oz bottle.

Thrasher, Feb 08, 2003
Old Engine Oil from Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
92 out of 100 based on 1,366 ratings.