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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout - Old Dominion Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dominion Oak Barrel StoutDominion Oak Barrel Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

680 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 680
Hads: 1,430
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 12.5%
Wants: 75
Gots: 154 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Old Dominion Brewing Company visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-12-2001

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.
View: Beers (32) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Dominion Oak Barrel Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 680 | Hads: 1,430
Photo of Treebs
3.45/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle into a Founders tulip. Bottled 03/14/12. Big thanks to Holland for the extra.

A: Pours a normal black color with a quick dissolving tan head. It settles to a thin ring and leaves some small splotches of lace.

S: Toasted malts, a little chocolate with a touch of oak in the background. The vanilla bean is faint, but you catch a whiff of the sweetness once the glass warms.

T: Bakers chocolate, sharp cocoa some toasted malts and smooth oak make up the main components of the taste. It's mildly sweet, but there really isn't any noticeable vanilla bean flavors.

M: A little thin with some above average carbonation. A little to prickly for me. I would have liked a little carbonation due to the thinness.

O: The taste and nose were solid, but nothing special. The only detractor was the thin body and prickly carb, but for 6.10% you really can't expect a thick body.

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Photo of Mitchster
3.44/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Brewed with 7 different malts and 2 different hops, combined with vanilla beans and toasted oak chips. 5.2% ABV.

Pours out to a nearly black deep brown with dark mahogany accents, forming a modest cinnamon colored head with orange tints. Retention is good with average lacing. Carbonation is moderate. Aroma is very nice with pungent vanilla, roasted grains, distant fruity hops and subtle woodiness. Mouthfeel is surprisingly fleeting and medium bodied, not as dense as I was expecting. Taste starts with moderate floral hops, followed by vanilla, roasted grains with moderate roasted barley astringency. The vanilla lingers throughout the finish into the aftertaste. Bitterness is mild. Slight woodiness in the aftertaste.

Not really impressed with this one. It's good, but I've certainly had much better stouts. Lightweight for my tastes. Thanks again to Mike for sharing this with me.

Re-review 2/12/13-$11.59/6'er in Brighton. Now 6.1% , brewed with smoked and peated malts, "dry-hopped" with vanilla beans and oak chips and hopped with Willamette & Cascade per the website. Pours out to a clear, apparently filtered dark black, forming a modest dark brown head with average retention and good lacing. moderate carbonation, ~2.5 carbs. The nose is predominately burnt sugar, lots of black patent, a touch of smoke and potent vanilla. No hop character in the nose. The mouthfeel still feels thin to be, medium bodied but thin with a dry finish. Burnt sugar, ash, coal water, vanilla, no real oak flavor, finishing dry with smoke in the aftertaste. No real complexity, with a mild herbal bitterness.

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Photo of devilben02
3.43/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Truth be told, I want to dislike this beer. Old Dominion used to be a great example of local craft beer culture with the brewery and attached brew pub strangely located in a commercial park and an annual beer festival that was always a fun afternoon on the lawn enjoying a variety of regional and nationally-distributed selections. All of this seemed to change when the brewery was bought out by a bigger fish in the brewing world. The beer fest ended, the brewpub closed, but at least Dominion's core varieties can be found in more markets, right?

All of that being said, this is still a respectable stout. The deep, dark brown color lets you know that some heavily roasted malts are in this selection. The aroma presents this dark malt sweetness with a hint of vanilla. The vanilla flavor is even more pronounced in the taste, seeming almost overly sweet and almost artificial at times. It is lightly carbonated and has an overall smooth mouthfeel. Despite my acknowledged bias, I have to admit that this is a decent stout that would be a nice (albeit unspectacular) addition to any beer-drinking session if only for the interesting balance of bittersweet dark malts and added vanilla and oak flavors.

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Photo of Daniellobo
3.43/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A pleasant stout with a faint vanilla/oak touch.

Presentation: 12 oz bottle. Revised label design leaning on a more contemporary legibility with a tree, barrel and buck within. Short description of the brew on the bottom part of the label and a perfunctory repetition of the same on the back. Lacks bottling date or freshness, neither shows IBUs or °Plato, or Alc. by Vol. Poured into a jar.

A - Dark brown with a hint of transparency towards the margins. 1/4 inch head that fades leaving thin layer and minimal lacing.

S - Roaster malts with a touch of vanilla. Not very fragrant.

T - Sweet malt with notes of chocolate and coffee. Minimal oak feel.

M - Quite carbonated giving it a light bubbly feel to an otherwise decent smoothness.

D - Not too complicated or sturdy a stout , it goes down well without many complications or memorable notes.

Notes: It is a nice and reliable stout. But neither the oak nor the vanilla beans are present in a very memorable manner. They are there subtly adding a hint to a bit of a thin stout for my linking.

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Photo of Metalmonk
3.41/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled 3/18/09

There's really only one shade of black and this is that shade. A deep color that no light can penetrate. Small light brown head thins to a crown quickly.

Aroma is charred malts with some chocolate notes and mild woodiness. With all the label promises (hops, vanilla beans, etc.) I expected more from the nose.

Flavor is toasted dark bread mingling with dark baking chocolate and a bitterness that works well with the woodiness. I didn't pick up the vanilla flavor, and throughout most of the session I found this to be almost all roast without much depth. Oak is barely noticeable in the finish, with the bitterness of old, dusty dark chocolate trailing behind.

Silky smooth feel, though maybe a tad too much carbonation and probably a little thin overall.

Unspectacular yet it has a few things to offer. Not the best of the many oak-aged stouts out there, but worth a shot. I think the label promises too much...

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Photo of jdhilt
3.41/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a one finger light brown head that fades quickly leaving some lace. Black color, no highlights. Light carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Baked chocolate nose and flavor is slight oak and baked chocolate that goes to a burnt chocolate finish. $4.50 for a 12oz bottle at Skyland Resort Luray, VA.

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Photo of abcsofbeer
3.41/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First one from Dominion that I have really liked. 12 oz bottle with freshness date of Aug 19, 04.

Pours a dark used oil color, but not as thick as some stouts I have tried. A thick rocky head that is tan in color accentuates the top. Lace is thick and clings to the entire glass in nice patterns.

The aroma is week, imo. Chocolate and coffee like. The taste is mildly coffee-like with chocolate undertones. There is a very distinct metallic aftertaste that I have not noticed in other stouts. I am not sure where this comes from, but would like to compare the bottle to an on tap glass.

Overall, a pretty decent stout.

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Photo of aaronh
3.41/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

As an update to my on-tap review - this beer really suffers in the bottle. Aromas are crushed and flat, flavor is simply better than average. Nothing spectacular in the bottle. I was very disappointed when I bought some of this. Drink it on tap - the bottle doesn't do it justice.

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Photo of ewpgolf2
3.4/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bought this stout off the shelf and slowly cooled to 57*F. bottled stamp date: 5-30-07. Chose a (clean)snifter in anticipation of a heavy aroma to enjoy. It poured dark with 1/4" head. Sat so dark in the glass that you cannot see light through it-at all! Aroma was of smokey burnt wood with a sweet caramel background. I expected more with the taste based upon the prelude. The taste was toasty/nutty with a bitter aftertaste. I couldn't get away from the bitterness throughout the beer and seemed to intensify as it warmed. Mouthfeel was surprisingly smooth and clean for such a dense beer.
Overall, I expected more. The head completely dissapeared 1/2 way through and the flatness prevailed. I didn't sense any of the vanilla in the taste either which I would've liked. I would drink this again but not back to back. I'll pair one bottle with food next time.

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Photo of hosehead83
3.4/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a wine goblet.
Opaque black in color, with a large head of tan foam.
Aroma-Dark roasted malts, faint vanilla note
Taste-Dark roasted malts, subtle oakey spiciness and vanilla notes. Roasty and flavorfull. A nice all-around stout.

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Photo of dbl_delta
3.39/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Revisited 03-28-15 after initial review last August.
Bottle dated 02-18-15 (this puppy is fresh) into pint glass. I'd call it a ruby brown - not red, but not brown either. Thick light tan head of coarse bubbles reduces to a thin and long-lasting film.
Taste is, unfortunately, underwhelming. Vanilla and dark malt initially, then...nothing.
It's way too thin for a stout. Too much carbonation. As a result, it's not as smooth as I'd expect.
There are a lot of really good stouts out there. This isn't one of them.

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Photo of Fear4Beer
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
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.

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Photo of Eriktheipaman
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black with fading khaki head.

The smell is kind of off to me. I'm guessing American hops that give it a slight cheesy smell?

The of taste is so-so. No oak to speak of but the other flavors are decent. A sweet semi vanilla on the front with a bitter roast on the back.

Not a terrible beer but kind of strange for the style and over all not super impressive. Worth the under $2 though.

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Photo of nick76
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is almost prototypical for the style. It has coffee, chocolate, burnt malt, and a hint of vanilla. The appearance is dark brown with a larger than average head for a stout. The flavor is like the aroma. The palate is a tad thin but OK. Overall it's a decent stout.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tasting with AgentZero.

12oz bottle into my Rochefort glass.

A super dark brown pour, light tan head that rises about two fingers, gone quickly. Light lacing...Light aroma, combo of vanilla, coffee, and alcohol...The taste comes out of nowhere, no idea it would be this vanilla from the aroma. Dominated by vanilla on the front, but on the finish its dull bitter coffee and alcohol and wood. The finish is also very chalky, a residual powder feel which is not nice. Very alcoholic for a 5% beer.

Overall, this is a big miss. The first sip is nice vanilla but after that its all downhill. The vanilla disappear and you get a powder feel.

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Photo of mjw2808
3.37/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a black with a pretty big tan head that leaves pretty good lacing. The nose is of roasted malt, sweet vanilla, and coffee. The taste is strong of vanilla, with a healthy dose of coffee and some roasted malt. Its a little to sweet for me, and not one of the best stouts ive had, but an alright beer and definitely worth trying. Nice creamy mouthfeel but not extremely drinkable.

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Photo of Pencible
3.37/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A lot of people love this beer. To me (and others agreed), it tasted like half Guinness and half whiskey. The Guinness taste is, of course, because it's a stout. And the whiskey flavor is due to the oak barrel. This is great for those who enjoy whiskey, but I simply don't enjoy that flavor. So this beer just isn't for me.

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Photo of bamadog
3.35/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Review is from notes taken on 12/23/2009. Poured from the bottle to a snifter and thanks to Mkroadrush for the trade!

Appearance: Pour is black and looks a little viscous; starts with a 1/4 finger dark brown head that fades immediately to a thin ring around the sruface and a faint whisp in the center; hard to see if there is any carbonation as the body is entirely opaque; a few spots and swaths of lacing here and there.

Smell: Sweet vanilla/oakiness combines with a mild chocolatey smell and a nice burnt roasty maltiness, not much unlike espresso.

Taste: Very "thin" and doesn't really match up with what I see and smell in the glass; it does have a firm roastiness and a nice bitterness from the burnt roasty malts and a slight earthy hoppiness; the roastiness is a little reminiscent of espresso as mentioned in the smell and there is an ever-so-slight semi-sweet chocolate flavor as well.

Mouthfeel: Solid carbonation for a stout; body is a just a tad thin, but I find that's not uncommon for anything that spends some time in a barrel; no real coatin or stickiness left behind but I appreciate that carbonation as it keeps an otherwise kind of bland tasting stout lively in the mouth.

Drinkability: Meh. Nothing special - nice smell, but the flavors are weak and I really prefer something much more robust in my stouts.

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Photo of Gushue3
3.35/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-pours black with smal head that goes away. no lacing.

S- vanilla off the top, a smokey sweet wood scent in there too. not getting too much

T- much lighter vanilla note than the scent gives. oaky wood taste with a tiny hint of booziness. the flavors work well together. lingering vanilla taste that im not sure if i like a ton.

M-small carbonation bubbles rush around and feels pretty light too.

D- easy to drink.
ill be reaching for something else though

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.33/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a mostly opaque black with some brown showing aroune the edges. No head and no lacing. The smell is mostly lightly scented with vanilla and a touch of grain. The flavor is very smooth and light with some light roastiness and detectable vanilla, but not a lot more going on. Very, very smooth mouthfeel- you could just suck this down like a glass of milk. Not the most interesting stout in the world, but refreshing for the style.

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Photo of wisrarebeer
3.33/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the original Ashburn brewery. Decided to pick up a few when I heard they were closing.

Bottled: 040809

A: near opaque, deep rosey-black color, thick dense head
S: leather, roasted malt, faint treacle toffee, nice
T: a not in-your-face barrel stout but noticeable barrel aging, held up well for the lower ABV and 1.5 years in the bottle, burnt chocolate/licorice taste with nice hop balance that is not too bitter for its style, a bit thin but not too distracting, decent beer
M: nice, a bit thin
D: drinkable, well-made but doesn't have any outwardly incredible tastes that would have me wanting to drink more than two in one sitting

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Photo of JohnnyMc
3.33/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

My first beer from Old Dominion!

Pours out black with very slight ruby highlights around the edge and only one finger of a light-tan head.

The aroma is roasty notes, chocolate and some earthy/grassy hop notes.

Just like in the aroma, the taste follows suit with the roasty malt notes, some chocolate, a very subtle touch of oak and a lot of grassy/earthy hop notes. It's fairly bitter and has a decently dry finish to it.

The mouthfeel is slightly creamy and the body is on the light side for a Stout.

This is a decent Stout, but nothing that blows me away. It has typical characteristics of a traditional Stout, but not much else going for it. Worth trying and not a bad beer, but nothing great either.

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Photo of jmalex
3.32/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Got for take out from Mesquito Grille. I'm glad it caught my eye on the way out.

APPEARANCE: Pours into a shaker pint black and dark. When held to light, brown highlights barely come out. The light tan one-finger head drops very quickly and becomes splotchy bubbles and a good size collar.

SMELL: Not so roasty, but black burnt malts are prominent. Alcohol comes out as does a little bit of oak. Very faint aromas of brown sugar and diacetyl. Smells very porter-like.

TASTE: Similar to the smell, but seems lacking in some way. Porter-like flavors dominate with very vague oak hints. From start to finish, it seems quite empty, especially from a stout.

MOUTHFEEL: Thin for a stout and carbonation is very low. Disappointing.

DRINKABILITY: If you want this as a porter, it's not too bad. It certainly does not drink like a stout. The 5.2% ABV is kind of nice too.

Hmm, I hope I didn't get a bad bottle. I'll look for it again and give it another try.

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Photo of McNealc31
3.3/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The barrel aging is evident in the aroma with strong smells of oak, vanilla, and char. The oak comes through some in the flavor, as well, but it's different than bourbon barrel aged beers. Initially, there is an interesting sweetness, but the charred wood and smoke cut through. A dry, boozey finish provided by the 6% ABV.

It's good, but not quite great. I think for something boasting oak aging, I want more of that flavor.

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Photo of ATPete
3.28/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle

bottling date of 08-19-08

Pours an opaque dark brown, almost black in color with a monster, loosely knit brown head leaving some soapy sticking on the glass. Monster head? Barrel aged? Oh wait a minute, only oak chips were used... There is a much larger citrusy hop profile in the nose that i had expected, faint notes of caramel malt and roasted chocolate. Light in body, hardly any chew going on, simple roasted chocolate malts and some hints at roasted coffee beans. The carbonation is insane, the way over-the-top carbonation hurts its body and mouth-feel. Subtle notes of vanilla, sweet wet wood and lemony sourness on the finish. This one was a disappointment. Maybe put the beer in a barrel next time?

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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout from Old Dominion Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 680 ratings.