O'Hara's Irish Stout - Carlow Brewing Company

Not Rated.
O'Hara's Irish StoutO'Hara's Irish Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

838 Ratings

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Ratings: 838
Reviews: 467
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.89%
Wants: 60
Gots: 57 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Carlow Brewing Company visit their website

Style | ABV
Irish Dry Stout |  4.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-27-2001

The flagship of the O’Hara’s brand, this uniquely Irish stout brings one back to how Irish stouts used to taste. First brewed in 1999, it has since been awarded prestigious honours for its quality and authenticity.

O’Hara’s Irish Stout has a robust roast flavour complemented by a full-bodied and smooth mouth feel. The generous addition of Fuggle hops lends a tart bitterness to the dry espresso-like finish. This sessionable stout beer is filled with rich complex coffee aroma mingled with light liquorice notes. The combination of traditional stout hops with an extra pinch of roast barley allows us to stay true to Irish tradition, recreating a taste so often yearned for by stout drinkers.
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Ratings: 838 | Reviews: 467
Photo of hotstuff
3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled. This stout poured a medium tan head that quickly dissipated and it had small-medium bubbles. The lacing was sparse on the sides of my glass. The aroma was that of coffee and it had a good and smooth coffee taste that I enjoyed. There was an aftertaste to this particular stout that lingered.

Photo of TheDM
3.08/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a medium head of fine creamy light brown bubbles that leaves a fair lacing and a dark opaque black brown body. It has a very mild malt aroma. Its flavor contains notes of coffee, mild chocolate and some roast. It has s lightly smooth start with a lingering mild bitter coffee aftertaste. A nice example of a stout without being overly impressive with the coffee flavors.

Photo of zerk
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a most impressive beer... black, with a persistent light tan head that leaves behind patches of lace. Aroma is a mixture of malt, chocolate, and some light notes of coffee, with a touch of a metallic influence. Flavor is very balanced, with a light sweetness that becomes slightly bitter as it finishes... notes of coffee, chocolate, and some light earthy hops complement each other, and at the same time, compete for your attention. The beer is very smooth, and full bodied, with moderate carbonation. Highly recommended!

Photo of PhantomVodoo
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Opaque black in the glass. Pours dark brown. Brown head.
Aroma of heavily roasted malts, hops, and chocolate notes.

Taste follows suit with heavily roasted malt flavors dominating. Dry and slightly bitter. Hops to balance. Coffee and bitter chocolate notes.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin.
Good drinkability.

Overall, a good stout, but nothing overly exciting or bold. I'd like to try this one on tap. Session beer material.

Photo of budgood1
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

this beauty pours out a pitch coloured deep and dark ruby. tan head which sticks leaving lots of lace. very pleasant roasted barley aromas augmented by subtle chocolate and nut hints. lots of roasted notes come through in the flavour profile...bits of burnt coffee and astringent bitterness. leaves the tongue longing for more body, though...as the mouthfeel comes across weak and even a bit watery. i like the taste and character nonetheless, and i'm thinking this would be a good one to have on tap. a mighty fine breakfast stout i'm thinking....lots to excite the senses without being heavy or even filling. easy drinkability with full roasted stout flavour. a winner, and nice changeup among the irish stout examples.

Photo of AtLagerHeads
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A truly lovely stout that is impressive in its even-ness. The pour showed a very, very dark mahogany tending toward black opacity. The head was somewhat disappointingly small, but did give a small, compact and creamy crown of beige. The nose was robust and mostly of malted, roasted chocolate. The taste was likewise mostly of roasted chocolate with hints of cofee and some light smokiness. The head moved to a lovely tan as it quickly diminished and left light deposits of lace. Eminently drinkable and ejoyable, it is creamy, but a tad light in feel.

Photo of MJR
3.55/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours dark brown that appears black with dark brown edges. Typical opaque stout body. What begins as a foamy, creamy thick head shrinks down to a small tan cap.

Smell: Has a pretty standard dry stout aroma of bitter, roasted grains. A hint of hops.

Taste: Suprisingly one-dimensional... There's the roasted grains, along with a nice firm bitterness, but not much else. A bit of toasted grains, and a hint of burnt chocolate. A bit disappointing...

Mouthfeel: A bit thin for style. On the thinner side of medium, with a dry, sharp mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Fairly average. This is a decent dry stout, but nothing special.

Photo of far333
4.24/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow-what a great beer. This reminds me of what Guinness tastes like in Ireland. The thick, foamy, beige head stays with the pour (I think I can float a quarter on it), and there is nice lacing down the glass as you drink. The beer is dark brown, nearly black. Taste is weak on the front of the tongue, but rolls across the middle and down the sides toward the back with a smooth mouthfeel and a smokey, highly roasted malt flavor, with hints of bitter chocolate and coffee. I could drink this all night. Really nice Irish stout.

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Inky black on the pour with a very nice bed of creamy lace that rings nicely.

Smell: Roasted coffee, malts, chocolate. Nothing too overbearing.

Taste: Like the smell, there is noticeable roasting of the flavors involved: chocolate, coffee, and a toasted malt sweetness. Behind all of this, though, is a fairly strong bittering effect and this really shows up at the end.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy. Not as thick and syrupy coating of the mouth as I expected, but very smooth.

Drinkability: Above average. Just a slight bit of toasty bitterness on aftertaste, though I felt as though this beer is a little on the thin side.

Notes: I think this would be a good introduction for someone wanting to try a stout and isn't ready to dance with an Imperial stout.

Photo of Sixpack595
3.63/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a truley black with a fair amount of tan head. The aroma was faint, but suggested roasted malt. Taste was a crisp, dry bitterness. Roasted malt and expresso dominate with a hint of chocolate. The mouthfeel was a bit on the thin side of medium. Not bad at all. A bit of a change from Guiness, but not something I'll be drinking regularly.

Photo of Winter
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served near black in appearance with a thick airy, yet creamy light tan head. Aroma consisted of roasted malt, chocolate and coffee. Smooth full-bodied mouthfeel. Rich burnt malt flavor accompanied with roasted coffee tones. Hop bitterness is very apparent in this stout's finish. Signature hop bitterness might be what makes O'hara's stand out from the other big three (Guinness, Murphy's and Beamish). A very good stout and a nice change of pace from the others.

Photo of WanderingFool
3.93/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Like most stouts, this beer is jet black with a nice foamy tan head that leaves traces of lace on the glass. The aroma is mild with coffee and chocolate odors and earthy overtones. Each sip is thin to medium bodied with a nice roasted malt flavor and bitter finish. Very well balanced. It seems dry and leaves a mild bitter coffee aftertaste.

I guess I'm used to hearty full bodied stouts, but the thinness of this beer makes it easy to drink. Overall, the flavor is good and does not overwhelm you. This may be a good starter stout for the less adventurous.

Photo of proc
3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

While not a flavor powerhouse, this stout is highly drinkable. Pours out to the usual darkness that is associated with this style with a generous light brown head. Nice roasted malt presence. A tad thin but evens out with a slight sweetness that mixes in with the roasted malt in the end. You could drink these all night.

Photo of OatmattStout
4.32/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This stout when held to a light had a cherry and copper color that penetrated through the darkness. The head was nice out of the bottle and would love to see this one in a nitreo can. Very nice roassted nose and and semisweet chocolate. The taste followed with nice deep roasted and espresso flavors and a nice drying hop preasance that compliments the mild sweetness of this stout. There is a certain twang in the hops and finish that is unique but good. Also I did get the very small metalic taste as noted by another reviewer but it did not detract at all from the beer.

Photo of rabidawg
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Deep ruby body with a soft, rocky head that sticks and sticks and sticks.

Smells wonderful, with roasted coffee notes backed up with the slightest hint of hops. Slight metallic twang, but not distracting.

Taste profile follows the nose. Quite carbonated, smoky, and dry. More hops in the finish than the smell let on about. Incredibly easy to drink, although the mouthfeel was a bit thin for my taste.

Highly recommended, and it was a great bargain at under $6 for a sixer (on sale from $8 - on St. Patty's Day - at Crazy Bruce's in New Britain).

Photo of oberon
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a jet black color with huge pillowey head took a while for it to come down.Smell was of bitter chocolate and pretty sweet.I thought the taste was real smokey and burnt and somewhat dry and oily.Like the firm body of this not thin and watery by any stretch.Good to find another fine example of a dry Irish stout.

Photo of Scooter77
4.45/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I’ve sampled both draught and bottle versions of this beer and both contain quite similar properties. Pours a dark, almost black color with a thick creamy tan head. The aromas were of dark roasted malt and coffee. Taste if full of roasted malts and dark roasted coffee beans, with mild undertones of hops and chocolate, which leaves a slightly bitter aftertaste. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy; an extremely easy drinking stout. This is a must have for any stout lover.

Photo of fattyre
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a clear dark red/brown with a large rocky tan head with a slightly oily mouthfeel. The smell was of roasted, smokey malt overwhelming any hop smells. The taste was smokey malt with a slight chocolate sweetness and a mild bitter finish. A very nice dry Irish stout that is I think superior to most others.

Photo of cokes
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The closest ruby can possibly get to jet black. All underneath a supple, buttery tan froth.
Quiet roasty aroma.
Big flame-roasted barley smoky kick intially. Charcoal transitions to creamy mocha-ness. Interjections of liquorice and cola-sweetness in the later half, before a swooping hop bite gobbles them up. Touches of lingering roastedness.
Standard just-shy-of-medium Irish Stout body. Kudos for the lack of nitro gadgetry.
Pretty decent stuff.

Photo of putnam
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The nose is neutral, as a good stout's should be. The foam is a nice, healthy, scorched cream color.
The palate features big, smoky, burned grain flavors. The finish displays an iron grip of charred bitterness which obscures any sweetness that this beer has. There is a fluffy, yielding texture as well. Serve with blackened seafood.

Photo of AudioGilz
3.96/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an easy-drinking, smooth stout. It has a guinness-like appearance, but a much better aroma of roasted malts. A well-balanced brew, the roasted malts, chocolate, and coffee subtly come through, and then hops come through a little bit on the dry finish. I enjoyed this stout quite a bit, obviously thinking it's a wonderful session stout.

Photo of Bunnyhop
4.74/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very dark red-black Stout; it is so dark light barely passes through it. It pours with a large, rocky, tan head. It has a sweet, roasted, and smokey smell. The smell is so fabulous I want to savor it for some time before drinking it. The taste begins very smokey, then malt, and mild chocolate, finishing with a very slight pepperiness. It is smooth and oily in my mouth. Overall, I have to say SMOKEY, an outstanding stout.

(source: Savannah, GA)

Photo of BeerAngel
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful black with a creamy 2-1/2 finger head that dissipates to a nice thick lumpy layer. The smell of light roasted malts with a coffee background makes this an enticing aroma. The taste consists of burnt malt (in a good sense) and a light coffee and a hint of chocolate with perfectly blended hops. The creamy mouthfeel of this medium to heavy bodied brew goes down nicely. It finishes lightly on the dry side and goes down with ease. Thank you McCall for the opportunity! Sláinte

Photo of Thrasher
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Interesting... this doesn't taste like Guinness to me at all. My first Irish micro. Nearly black with big poufy head that subsides. Excellent roasted barley aroma. Very bitter, almost biting; a combination of sharp-tasting hops and the dark malts. A big hit of black coffee. At first sip I thought there were some unappealing off flavors - mostly the hops which are grassy and grating. However I grew accustomed to them and began to enjoy them. I think the lasting, persuasive finish has something to do with it. If you're looking for a replacement for Guinness, get some Beamish. If you want something different - a rawer, less creamy, more uncompromising beer - check this out. It could be the effects of their marketing, but I like to imagine this is what Irish stout tasted like in the days of yore.

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm betting that if you poured this brew into an empty bottle of Guinness Extra Stout, you could fool most of the people most of the time. By the numbers interpretation of the classic Irish dry stout style. Roasty, but smooth and quaffable with no surprises. Goes down easy, puts the mind at ease.

O'Hara's Irish Stout from Carlow Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 838 ratings.