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Oak Horizontal - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Oak HorizontalOak Horizontal

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

296 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 296
Reviews: 61
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.88%
Wants: 17
Gots: 54 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: jzeilinger on 12-28-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 296 | Reviews: 61 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of woemad
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

1pt.9.4oz caged-and-corked behemoth received courtesy of the outstanding ShroudOfDoom. According to a stamp on the neck, this was bottled on November 7, 2013. Also according to the label, this is 11% alcohol, and it was aged for three months in oak casks used to age bourbon. If that is correct and my math holds, this was put into those casks about a year ago.

When I popped the cork, there was a very quiet “pfft.” Poured into an Iron Goat snifter, this was a dark clear amber that took on an opaque russet color once in the glass, with a thin, sudsy, beige colored head. Said head didn’t stick around too long, but a respectable foam ring reappeared whenever the glass was agitated (as opposed to merely anxious). Spotty lace.

Initially, the aroma was of brown sugar and bourbon, in that order. As it warmed, the woodsiness of the oak came out to play, along with a mild, toffeeish sweetness. There’s just a hint of tropical fruit-like hops as well.

Whoa! The toffee is much more of a blast (in a good way) that just didn’t come through nearly as much in the nose. It’s balanced by the boozy whisky notes. There’s some vanilla notes, some dark fruit flavors, and even some pineapple. As it warms there’s definitely some alcohol heat, but it’s not overpowering. There’s a slight dryness at the swallow.

Though not remotely a light bodied beer, this was a lighter in the body than I expected for a barleywine, with a creamy, coating mouthfeel.

A great after-dinner beer after six consecutive work days. Big and boozy but not over the top about it. Definitely not a session beer, and I anticipate not wanting any more for tonight when I finish this big fella, but damn it’s good. With this less than a year after bottling, I’m curious what this would be like after it’s aged some more, when the hops completely fade and the booziness mellows more. Really glad to have been able to try this, and I hope this someday joins the list of Victory beers available around here.

woemad, Sep 22, 2014
Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.1/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled on Dec. 20, 2012

Crystallized/caramelized light brown sugar immediately swept away by bourbon and ABV. Once the nose settles down, there's light molasses and more caramelized brown sugars, with notes of unfinished oak wood and hints of dark red fruit. As it warms and opens, orange rind and hints of vanilla appear; butterscotch appears later. The nose is the most enjoyable part of this bottle. Assertive without being pushy, it's nicely nuanced and accessible for exploring. The rough oak floats to the front, and then into the background, back and forth.

Taste is moderately toasted malt, toffee/caramel, and molasses that gets overrun right away by the booze and moves directly to the finish. Finish is dominated by a bitter wood sensation that sits in the middle of the tongue, with a bit of maple sugar on the sides. Red fruit sugars remain on the lips. The lack of integration between the beer and the booze is a problem here. Letting the beer sit and warm in the glass helps take the edge off, but the dry pine hops and rough oak remain front-and-center, making this a bitter barleywine – it gets almost medicinal. I've decided to use the 2nd half of the bottle for a slow-cook pork roast.

This beer could use some more time – at least a couple of years – to age and mellow in the bottle. As it is now, it's a rough, boozy brew with a bitter finish that feels like doing shots. If you have a bottle of this and you're thinking about waiting, do so. This one is a strong argument for releasing big beers in 12-ounce four-paks; I'd have three more I'd know what to do with. This beer is also one of the booziest brews I've had in ages; so many big beers do a great job of hiding and integrating the ABV into the taste profile. This one is still pretty hot, and only time can fix that. If it ages into the nose, it will be worth the wait. If nothing else, the hop bitterness should subside, and that would be a big plus.

BuckeyeSlim, Today at 08:36 AM
Photo of kingjohnh
4.04/5  rDev 0%

kingjohnh, Today at 02:01 AM
Photo of OrangeMen
4.63/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Beautiful deep amber, mahogony, burnt reddish/orange, glistens when held to light, fairly transparent. Razor thin head, agitation rises up a nice finger thick off-white head, beautiful lacing.
Aroma- Sweet and sticky bourbon notes, nice sublte oaky astringency, earthiness. Dark winter fruits rest underneath, figs and raisins. Sweet molasses, caramel malts, toasted toffee.
Taste- Wonderful sweet bourbon notes, brings out nice maple, molasses, vanilla notes, very sweet. Dark fruitiness, toasted malt, and oak tannins create a bitterness on the back, warming booziness.
Feel- Medium mouthfeel, fairly slick rather than thick, nice stickiness though. Lower carbonation which is fine, brings warming alcohol forward.
Overall- Incredibly sweet and satisfying beer, much sweeter than the base beer, and bourbon notes mix wonderfully. There is a tame mellowness to this beer, just sit back and sip while the flavors unfold. Bourbon notes accent the toasted caramel, molasses, and brown sugar, then offset by bitterness from oak tannins and dark fruits. Barrel aging does wonders.

OrangeMen, Yesterday at 09:09 PM
Photo of Fievel
1.25/5  rDev -69.1%

Fievel, Monday at 08:07 PM
Photo of Nolen12
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

Nolen12, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of Phobicsquirrel
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

Phobicsquirrel, Nov 09, 2014
Photo of oriolesfan4
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

oriolesfan4, Nov 04, 2014
Photo of trdtercel92
4/5  rDev -1%

trdtercel92, Nov 04, 2014
Photo of jjauga
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

jjauga, Nov 04, 2014
Photo of Robyn
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Robyn, Oct 26, 2014
Photo of midlifec
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

midlifec, Oct 25, 2014
Photo of moshea
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

moshea, Oct 23, 2014
Photo of Bolivian22
4.75/5  rDev +17.6%

Bolivian22, Oct 21, 2014
Photo of Nobcefus
4.08/5  rDev +1%

Nobcefus, Oct 21, 2014
Photo of JTbrue
3.76/5  rDev -6.9%

JTbrue, Oct 20, 2014
Photo of barflybastard
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

barflybastard, Oct 20, 2014
Photo of Yoda22
3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

Yoda22, Oct 14, 2014
Photo of tikk
4/5  rDev -1%

tikk, Oct 06, 2014
Photo of matt_duthie
4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

matt_duthie, Oct 06, 2014
Photo of schmitter
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

schmitter, Sep 27, 2014
Photo of JonnyRebel
4.24/5  rDev +5%

JonnyRebel, Sep 24, 2014
Photo of smcolw
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%

Small head that leaves a cross between streaks and spots for lace. Deep dark amber color. Clear.

Very sugary aroma. Strong caramel malt smell with a bit of toast.

The sugar is strong on the tongue as well. Quite warming from the alcohol, particularly in the swallow. A perfect compliment to very spicy food. Rich body to the point of oily. Low carbonation enhances this.

smcolw, Sep 15, 2014
Photo of hillind
4.16/5  rDev +3%

hillind, Sep 12, 2014
Photo of Prost76
4/5  rDev -1%

Prost76, Sep 06, 2014
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Oak Horizontal from Victory Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 296 ratings.