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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout - Old Dominion Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dominion Oak Barrel StoutDominion Oak Barrel Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

1,248 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,248
Reviews: 657
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 12.72%
Wants: 63
Gots: 70 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Old Dominion Brewing Company visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
We use smoked and peated malts to create an intricate malt foundation. Our method of dry hopping with vanilla beans and oak chips pushes the depth of this stout’s flavor spectrum even further.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-12-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,248 | Reviews: 657 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Navalartichoke:
Photo of Navalartichoke
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Navalartichoke, Oct 24, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 11/07/09.I have sampled this beer a few times in the past,this is the first bottle I have had to myself.Poured into a bulb glass a deep dark but not opaque cola color with a minimal light mocha colored head atop.Aromas of vanilla/oak and dark coffee stand out most with just a hint of molasses as well.A little thin and prickly in the mouthfeel department but not overly annoying.Flavors are dominated by vanilla and heavy roast up front with a drying earthy,woodiness that comes thru in a long finish.Its a year and a half old but I dont think it matters much,a decent flavorful stout.

oberon, Mar 12, 2009
Photo of RoyalT
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – This one poured a ruby dark brown in color with a nice head that showed off a cool-looking orange tan.

Smell – The traditional vanilla from American oak barrels came on big at the taste, although I’m sure it was just added vanilla extract. There was also a light stouty malt note or two, but mostly the malts were buried by the vanilla.

Taste – The vanilla/oak was AWOL at the taste, which was OK because that allowed the other wonderful flavors to come out more. The dark malts and light chocolate were nicely complimented by a fruity sweetness.

Mouthfeel – This Stout was light to medium in the body and very well put together.

Drinkability – This wasn’t bad. It was very different for sure. It is an interesting interpretation of the style and a “must try” for any serious BA.

Comments – A big, huge thanks to skyhand for not only putting together the BA tasting night but also for supplying this gem.

RoyalT, Apr 25, 2004
Photo of aszatk01
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

aszatk01, Nov 10, 2012
Photo of DanGeo
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

DanGeo, Oct 12, 2014
Photo of Fear4Beer
3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

This review is for the Dominion Oak Barrel Stout in a 12oz bottle and served in a tall glass. This beer is a nice dark brown/black... you can't see through it. What I got from this beer was a bunch of oak, vanilla, chocolate, and coffee bean in that order. If you are into those sort of notes, you will probably like this sort of beer. I'm figuring out that this isn't my style of beer. Not a big fan of beers like this. I figured I'd give this a try. Again, you might really like it if you are into these sort of flavors.

Fear4Beer, Sep 30, 2013
Photo of tectactoe
3.05/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this forever ago (just a tick), finally trying it again for a full review. Thanks to Jeff for the bottle. Like most stouts, deep-brown and black are the only colors to be found throughout the body; it's topped off with a thin tan skin - too weak to be called a "head", even after a fair aggressive pour. Carbonation issues, I wonder? I would expect a much frothier foam than this, especially at only 6.1% ABV.

Although the aroma isn't exactly off-putting or offensive in really any way, it's just kind of bland and mundane. It's carbon copied from the generic, basic "stout" profile and adds only a slight hint of oak. Dry cocoa beans, lightly sweet cream, tons of dry oak, and a touch of vanilla. I'll admit, the slight vanilla addition is nice, but everything is just so underwhelming and weak, that it's kind of hard for me to vibe on this.

A little more java and coffee beanery shows up on the palate, something that is certainly a welcomed accompaniment. Malts provide a light roast and a mild onset of cocoa in the periphery. Oak dryness plagues the background; much to my dismay, the vanilla is even more faint in the flavor than it was in the aroma. Just a dollop and nothing more; I feel it could benefit from a larger vanilla presence.

More roast and dry oak clog the aftertaste; the beer finishes in an uninspiring way and kind of leaves me wanting something more. The carbonation feels surprisingly lively, despite the egregious head formation from the start. Slick, oily and sharp mouth feel, although the body is much too thin for my liking, and especially for the style.

So apparently this beer used smoked and peated malts? I got pretty much no hint of smoke or meatiness here, unless you count the touch of oak throughout, but I'm sure that can be attributed to fermenting with oak chips. Overall, a basic and timid stout; kind of boring and uneventful, and while it's not "bad" by any means, it wasn't really enjoyable or tasty or different enough for me to seek out again.

tectactoe, Jun 14, 2013
Photo of MadScientist
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A:
Excellent clarity with a deep ruby/garnet color and a medium tan head of fine bubbles that dissipates leaving just after a ring around the edge of the glass after about a minute.

S:
The aroma is a bit faint but what is there shows the oak and vanilla with aromas of vanilla, toffee and some carmel along with the roasted malt character an American stout. There is some diacetyl which is probably from the oak.

T:
Again the vanilla and oak are upfront with flavors of vanilla, toffee and cocoa initially. A pleasant moderate amount of coffee flavor in the middle and finish. There is a little sweetness in the beginning and middle while it eventually progresses to a moderately dry finish. Faint, nondescript hops flavors of citrus with a descent amount of bitterness thought out.

M:
The light to medium-light body is too thin for an American stout. The moderately high carbonation is appropriate and the bit of astringency probably results from the hops/malt bitternes and the oak aging.

O:
The oak and vanilla defiantly come through and are nicely balanced in a very solid beer but I'd like stronger aromas in the nose, more body and better head retention.

MadScientist, Apr 20, 2012
Photo of StoutHearted
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This drink had me from hello- I loved it from first sip. The oak is very apparant and will kick you in the teeth if you're not used to it. To oak lovers like myself, it feels like home. The reiging image in my head as I drank this beer was of vanilla bean ice cream. Whether this beer made me crave it, or its smell strongly resembled that tasty treat, I couldn't figure out. Either way, this brew was begging to be turned into a beer float.

Not much head when I poured it, what was there quickly turned to caramel lace over a typical dark stout-black brew. No matter, the beer held a strong aroma throughout the drink. At room temperature, it is fantastic. Forget the black forest cake, this beer is dessert in itself.

StoutHearted, Jun 19, 2006
Photo of GameOfBeers
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%

GameOfBeers, Aug 19, 2014
Photo of newk340
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: a beautiful jet black pour that completely swallowed all the light it was held up to.

S: a very faint roasted coffee aroma.

T: a fizz of oaked coffee that quickly dissipates with a strong vanilla aftertaste. the vanilla adds a nice unexpected touch.

MF/D: slightly more carbonated than the average stout that begins with an explosion of bubbles thats gone as quickly as its felt. however, ends very smooth down the throat.

newk340, Jul 13, 2010
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.08/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The Dominion Oak Barrel Stout, fermented with vanilla beans and oak chips, pours from the longneck bottle a nice deep, dark black with a small tan head that falls to a ring around the glass. Aromas of big vanilla upfront alongside a roasty, somewhat lactic chocolate. Some bitter coffee works into the mix and I can get hints of the oak as I inhale as well. However, it all seems to collide on the way to my nose.

First sip brings a dark roasted malt upfront with hints of cocoa and mellow coffee tones. The blast of vanilla flavor isn't far behind and works its way across the length of the palate. I get a bit of sour lactic twang halfway through each sip. Subtle woodiness is there but it's more of an afterthought in the brew. The vanilla gets to be a bit overwhelming for me.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a spritzy carbonation. It's a little thinner than I'd like for a stout, but still manages to carry itself well. Unfortunately, this really doesn't stand up against true barrel aged stouts. It's a bit muddled and somewhere along the line the flavors just don't do it for me. Check it out for yourself, as your mileage may vary.

Music: Luomo - Tessio (Moonbootica Radio Edit)

orbitalr0x, Feb 05, 2006
Photo of blitz134
3.48/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Relatively hard pour led to very little chocolate milk colored head on top of this nearly black brew. Only peaking corners of red and caramel show through on this one. I would like to see a little more head, which should be possible with the lower abv content.

Lots of vanilla in the nose along with other ripe fruits. Also an overall sweet malt smell which adds some burnt caramel to the aroma. Taste is really complex and offers flavors from all different angles. The vanilla and oak flavors generally offer themselves at the forefront. Then some toasted malt and nut flavors come up. I also pick up some chocolate as well. A good flavor overall, but it seems a little cloying and almost as if much of the flavor was added with extracts. I was expecting a more toasted malt flavor with hints of oak, but this one is really sweet.

Mouthfeel is nice and almost full bodied, which is a nice feature for this lower abv brew. There is a bit much carbonation for the style though, and that brings this part down a bit.

Drinkability is pretty good. The low abv helps out a lot, but the overally sweet character might make this hard to consume a couple of.

Overall, a decent brew, and definitely different than most other stouts. Worth a shot. This one seems like a love it or hate it, I fall in between but think it is a good shot. Its just a little too sweet for me…

blitz134, Jun 08, 2005
Photo of JasonA
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black, fairly opaque brew. Solid 2 finger carmel/mocha head. looks delicous.

Dont get much of a smell. Maybe vanilla? Am I missing something?

Roasted coffee malt. Vanilla finish. Interesting. Oakyness is definately in there.

Medium to light bodied. Nothing pungeant. Nothing out of the ordinary.

Neat interpretation of an American Stout. Might be a little light bodied balance wise, could use a bit more overall.

JasonA, Oct 12, 2008
Photo of Todd
4.47/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: A big, most impressive, 2L growler -- full with ceramic lock-top and metal handle. Available at the brewery only.

Appearance: Opaque, black with ruby dark brown hues around the edges. Beer foam is about two fingers in thickness, tightly carbonated and ultra creamy with a tan colour. Rests at a thin creamy lace that sticks.

Smell: Toffee, caramel, coffee, oak, vanilla and bourbon aromas.

Taste: A silky smooth beer in texture, with a full-body. Up-front the beer is acrid (black malts) with a crisp roasted/bitter quality. The sweetness that follows is well-balanced and complex as hell -- big chocolate, coffee and caramel flavours meld together to create a pleasing richness then vanilla, wood and massively distinct bourbon flavours follow and carry through to the end. As the beer warms, the bourbon qualities impart more flavours that come forward in the form of smooth alcohol fumes in feel, taste and smell. Grain tannin and more roasted flavours in the after-taste.

Notes: Fermenting Dominion Stout is set in charred oak barrels that have had bourbon stored in them for five long years. The beer is then stored for one week in the barrels, then transferred to kegs.

One of the more interesting, flavourful and complex stouts that I've had in ages. Just made the top of my stout list!

Todd, Aug 12, 2001
Photo of shapudding
4.53/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Last time I had this was on tap over in malvern at The Flying Pig after the beer fest at The Desmond! (schweetness!!)

Poured a pitch black with a creamy, milkshakey thick head that quickly left my glass leaving only a smally caramelly foam mainly at the edges. Giving it a bit of a wrily, you can bring back a light covering. You really cant see through this beauty. You can smell the oak in it.

Maybe because I read the label first, but I do smell the bourbon...

Very rich and dark scents... sherry, over-ripe cherries, black coffee... Alot of carbination hits your mouth, yet it is not too "bubbly" feeling, it stays smooth. Tastes of coffee, burnt toast, vanilla. The oak is everpresent. After it warms up, the bourbon really makes it presence known! Almost as though you just did a shot and then took a sip from your pint...

Very nice tasting. One to sit back and think about while drinking. Yummy! Highly enjoyable stout!

shapudding, Jul 05, 2004
Photo of JoeD15
4/5  rDev +1.8%

JoeD15, Aug 14, 2013
Photo of Guden
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Very dark and nearly opaque, with just a tiny but lasting beige head. Looks like a decent stout.

S- Not getting much here, a bit of toffee and roasty malt notes (chocolate more than coffee) but its a bit mild for the style.

T- Much more pronounced than the nose theres a lot of caramel/toffee sweetness with a little bit of chocolaty roast character and a definite vanilla presence. The oak doesn't hardly show but seems to blend in behind the vanilla nicely where it does. Overall not a bad taste but the vanilla is the only thing which comes out strongly with the hop bitterness and roast astringency being very mild behind it.

M- Nice medium-high in body with some typical stout chewiness and light carbonation. Has a chocolate milk type feel to it, could be drank slow or easily chugged.

D- Very high, especially for the style. Nothing comes on too strong but all the flavors are there on the taste buds and it feels nice in the mouth. Would have been nice to see a little more bitterness or roast character but the vanilla and sweetness are welcome too.

Guden, Apr 23, 2011
Photo of merlin48
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A very nice brew for my first review of the year. Found a sixpack of this at Jungle Jim's International Market in Cincinnati. The Virginia border is just two miles from my house, and it's distressing that I can't find Old Dominion's excellent brews without driving at least three hours. This one pours a deep brown and opaque body, with two fingers of tightknit, tan head. Dramatic sheet and patch lacing is left behind. Excellent looking stout.
Aroma has vanilla, milk chocolate, mild coffee, and notes of oak wood.
Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with a medium body and just enough carbonation to mingle the complexity of flavors.
Taste is much like the aroma, with creamy vanilla and chocolate. Some toasted walnuts are noted, and there are coffee notes but little bitterness. I don't pick up any notes of bourbon, and there are only some mild notes of dark fruits such as figs and raisins. Still, this is one of the tastiest American stouts I've sampled. Insanely drinkable at 5.2%. Highly recommended.

merlin48, Jan 01, 2005
Photo of warriorsoul
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to lostbearbrew for this one...
Almost black in color with no light passing thru...a half a finger of tan colored head which disappears within minutes.
No real lacing to speak of.
Pleasant in the nose...vanilla, butterscotch, chocolate and a definite oak/woody character.
Taste is real nice once it hits right around room temperature...more vanilla with a hint of robust coffee, almonds and an overall, well-balanced malt to hop experience.
Mouthfeel is a tad thin, but the carbonation is where I enjoy it and it is easily consumed with a fairly low abv (for me)...would love to try this one on cask, as the oak age flavors are nice but would really shine as a real ale IMO.

warriorsoul, Dec 28, 2005
Photo of Neur0mancer
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Neur0mancer, Jul 09, 2014
Photo of tigg924
3.73/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: black with a decent 1/4 inch head

Smell: oak, chocolate, malt and chocolate

Taste: oak, chocolate, malt and chocolate

Mouthfeel: very sweet, light for a stout, smooth

Drinkability: I could easily session this. It has several complex flavors to it

tigg924, Mar 27, 2009
Photo of badbeer
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black with a beige head that quickly recedes to a a ring around the glass. Smell gives me quite a bit of roast and some cherries. Upon further agitation of the glass, I got a little bit of a malted milk ball aroma; really don't think I picked out vanilla. Taste is a bit roasty at the beginning, but then I get a much more creamy taste that comes through. Again, I don't know that I would have specifically picked out vanilla if I didn't know it was used. Medium carbonation and body is a little less than medium. Thanks to dsigmon for the sample!

badbeer, Mar 16, 2008
Photo of reitzbrewing
5/5  rDev +27.2%

reitzbrewing, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Finally able to be purchased in Richmond, I eagerly snagged a 6-pack of the famed Oak Barrel Stout to see how it compared with wonderful tap version.

Blunt summary: Disappointed.

Poured a very fizzy darkness with only a slight bit of light 'round the edges. The head was short-lived, tan in color, and crackled and fizzed like a pot o' witches' brew. Aromas are tough to detect. I'd expected a more pronounced vanilla aroma, but such was not the case. There is some caramel sweetness, backed up by a smoky/coffee aroma. Flavor is less impressive than the draft version. Don't get me wrong, though. Still a tasty stout, there's a chocolate-coffee front, followed by some earthy bitterness, and ends with a smoky, vanilla-laced goodness. Mouthfeel is very thin for a stout. Not much body to this at all. Way too much carbonation. Drinkable, but nothing that blew me away. Sadly disappointed by this one.

OldFrothingSlosh, May 11, 2004
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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout from Old Dominion Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 1,248 ratings.