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O'Hara's Leann Folláin - Carlow Brewing Company

Not Rated.
O'Hara's Leann FolláinO'Hara's Leann Folláin

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

33 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 33
Hads: 131
Avg: 3.98
pDev: 19.6%
Wants: 17
Gots: 20 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Carlow Brewing Company visit their website

Style | ABV
Irish Dry Stout |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JohnfromDublin on 03-03-2009

O’Hara’s Leann Folláin (”leann folláin” being the Gaelic/Irish phrase meaning wholesome ale or stout) is a full-bodied extra Irish stout launched in 2009 following the very positive feedback to our limited edition O’Hara’s Celebration Extra Stout which was brewed in 2008. We have now included “Leann Folláin” in our 500ml bottle core brand range. O’Hara’s Leann Folláin at 6.0% abv is laden with complex chocolate and coffee flavours balanced by a robust bitterness and delicate spicy aroma imparted from the generous portions of Northdown and Fuggle Hops.
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Reviews: 33 | Hads: 131
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Best by 3/28/14.

Pours an almost opaque super dark crimson-brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. A foamy latticework of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, and coffee beans. Taste is much the same with cookie dough and cocoa powder flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and super easy to drink.

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Photo of metter98
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color - traces of brownish red are visible near the edge of the glass when held up to a bright light. It poured with a quarter finger high tan colored head that died down, leaving a large patch of bubbles in the center and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of chocolate are present in the nose along with faint hints of roasted coffee beans.
T: The taste is rather complex for the style and has flavors of chocolate and coffee beans along with faint hints of roasted malts. Ther is a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied, airy and a little dry on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is really easy to drink and is quite flavorful given its light-bodied nature.

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Photo of oberon
3.66/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep dark chocolate brown with some mahogany highlights when held to the light,a frothy one finger tan colored head atop.Ton of coffee roast with some woody smokiness,pretty much like a mocha coffee.A little sharper than expected in the mouth,I would like more of a smooth creamy feel.Dry heavy roast on the palate with some bitter chocolate underneath,it has a little more "oomph" to it compared to others of the style.Not bad but the feel takes away from a pretty good beer.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.65/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served on cask in the Salthouse, Galway, into an O'hara's pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a one finger head, tan, of fair cream, decent thickness, and fairly respectable retention. Black colour.

Sm: Caramel, chocolate, roasted barley. Light-medium scent.

T: Caramel, chocolate, slight toffee, and slight coffee bottle. A bit of cream undertone is dominated by the coffee. A bit bitter after the climax. Not as balanced as I'd like. Guinness is far better done.

Mf: Dry but not overly so. A bit too coarse. Too wet for the style.

Dr: Drinkable but not fantastic. Ignore this beer, even if you're a huge fan of the style like me. It's far too expensive for how mediocre it is.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.06/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this chilled in a tulip shaped glass -bottle purchased from half-time

The color is an opaque black shade with full on medium brown cream of 2 fingers like mocha with very fine bead and streams of lace cling. The smell is excellent with strong dark malt with coffee-like odors and subtle smoky scent with a light sweet nose and mild yeast aroma which has a mineral essence and light toastiness with some cocoa accents. The feel is good with some mild burnt malt tinges with moderate sweetness in the middle with some slight yeast textures with mild mineral elements and woody roasty textures adding a dry effect to the finish with moderate carbonation throughout.

The flavor is very coffee and biscuit from the malt up front with a slight caramel tinge in the mid palate and herbal hops add complexity in the flavor with the light mineral yeast accent and subtle smoke in the taste from the highly kilned malt delivers a nice amount of layered flavor with some light cocoa notes and wood notes with earthy elements in the background. Overall this is a very tasty stout...I didn't expect so much malt complexity but this is a topnotch example of the style. I would recommend this to any stout fan

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.94/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear but opaque jet black in color with light amounts of gentle carbonation along the sides of the glass and some faint dark cola brown highlights. The beer has a three finger tall foamy tan head that slowly reduces to a medium sized half finger thick cap in the center of the glass surrounded by a thick film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of roasted malts, coffee beans, and semi-sweet chocolate.

T: Upfront there is a light flavor of roasted malts which is followed by light to moderate flavors of coffee and dark chocolate. Light amounts of bitterness in the finish which lingers for a while.

M: Light to medium bodied with just shy of moderate amounts of carbonation. Light and airy with light amounts of dryness in the finish.

O: A lot more complexity than I expected with such a light and airy mouthfeel. Very enjoyable and easy to drink. Quite flavorful.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.52/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

O'Hara's takes it to the next level. with its version of extra stout. Watch out Guinness! On to the beer:

Black bodied beer and topped with a 1½ inch of tanned head. Retention is good and a few spot of lace stick to the glass. I was expecting something good, but I wasn't expecting it to be this good. The aroma of chocolate fudge along with smoked chocolate and coffee roast is succulent, and might make a great alternative for those scented candles that people put in their homes.

Lots of flavor in Leann Folláin. The fudge is the first thing to notice, and quickly bittersweet chocolate keep a sense of balance in this beer. There's also a roastiness aspect which compliments perfectly, and it also seems to bring a vague spice with it. The mouthfeel score was properly entered; it really is that good. It's as rich and full as many imperial stouts, but it doesn't weight you down and is very smooth.

So many surprise beers in so little time. Leann Folláin has the characteristics of a dry stout, yet has the flavor of an imperial stout. Excellent, excellent beer which needs to be sought out.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pitch black with tan head of foam.

I smell roasted malt that comes across as very dry and somewhat bitter. There is chocolate too and that adds sweet notes.

Tastes like it smells. Roasty, sweet chocolate, dry bitterness from coffee. Very tasty.

Smooth mouthfeel.

I had not even heard of this brew. What a pleasant surprise!

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a dimpled mug

Procured by Jebus3513 on a recent trip to Ireland. Thanks buddy!

One of the darkest brown bodies known to beer. Once settled, it's nearly an ink black through its core. A tight, creamy khaki head rises a couple fingers and falls slowly.

Aroma is of deep roast, coffee, bitter chocolate and a touch of a metallic aroma, but not off-putting.

The flavor profile follows the nose. Bitter chocolate, coffee grounds, dark roast, caramel and cream. There is an underlying sweetness that I can only equate to cream. It tries to undercut the roasty goodness, but it gets beaten up pretty good.

Medium body with a dryness that isn't as hearty as others in the style.

Overall, this is a fine example of the style and one that I am pleased to have tried. Will have again.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle brought back from Ireland by a buddy's dad, thanks Alex! Pours black with a creamy tan head. Spotty lacing and decent retention.

Nose is rich and fruity with even a hint of smoke. Roast is not too heavy and has a nice, mild sweetness.

Taste is excellent! After having the regular dry stout, this one is much better. Roast is exceptionally smoother than most dry stouts, an amazing feat that fades seamlessly into dark chocolate. Fruit is prevalent, but never goes overboard. Body is full without being sweet, another impressive aspect. The bitterness throws in a nice curveball too. Best 'o the O'hara bunch me thinks!

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.78/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a half-litre bottle into a pint glass.

A: Big, brown creamy head atop an entirely impenetrable body of the darkest brown. I look forward to this one.

S: Creamy, hoppy, bitter-dry. Not overwhelming, but very nice.

T: Like the smell, creamy-sweet malts and dry hops. This combine for a well-balanced brew. A bit too sweet for me; it's very milk chocolatey. The aftertaste is more dry (but not much more so). A spiciness lingers at the edges of my perception, and I can't quite pin down what or where it is. Nice stout.

M: Smooth thickness and pleasant carbonation.

D: All told, I prefer O'Hara's standard Irish stout. This is more akin to chocolate milk than I care for. Nice enough, but not recommended.

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Photo of StJamesGate
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tar black with only the slightest ting of garnet and rocky, puffy beige head. Tar, wet ash and black currant on the nose.
Black strap molasses, a hint of char, a brown sugar hit and some sarsaparilla bark hops to end.
Cola finish and lingering bitterness. Medium only hinting at full, chewy, oily, round, no burn.

All about the roast. Malt sweetness does get through, and there is a hop presence, but the roasted barley takes the lead. Not as full as I expected, but good deep flavor at 1.5% lower than Guinness FES.

4.50 4.00 4.00 4.50 4.00 29/10/2010

On cask at the re-launch party at the Bull & Castle.
Pours opaque black with a surprisingly thick and lush off white head. Nose is sharp roast with some licorice underneath. Big dark chocolate and coffee bean notes with a touch of ash then a big Fuggles hit. Smooth, round, medium-full, and creamy.
Supposedly a different recipe from that previously bottled under the same name; this is closer to their Celebration, apparently.
Note: Second tasting had more coffee on the nose and a touch of red berries plus some roasty sourness. So smooth!
Well balanced and very drinkable for an export strength stout. I hope they can reproduce this in bottles, especially the hoppiness.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.53/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz bottle poured into a Samuel Smith pint glass.

A: Pours an ultra-dark brown color. Not perfectly opaque, mind you, but nearly. The head is a two finger heavy cream color with nice texturing, before it settles to one finger. Nice retention, too.

S: There are a ton of roasted malts and coffee. Some chocolate pops up, as well, perhaps even a hint of smoke. It also smells hoppy, even - maybe it IS generously hopped? I mean, that character of grapefruit peel prominent in Cascade hops is unmistakable here.

T: Again, there's a healthy flavor of grapefruity hops right there in the midtaste. It starts a bit chocolaty before the hops come in full (well, moderate) force. Finish is pure roasted barley. Generally, it's mild in flavor; while this keeps the competing flavors in check, it makes it a bit dull. Luckily it's not overly acidic as many well-hopped stouts/porters tend to be.

M: Hits the clean dryness typical of the style well, but the finish goes too far into being astringent. A bit insubstantial and undercarbonated in its feel; par for the course in many dry stouts. Great drinkability nonetheless.

O: And as I finish my glass, I notice the bottle cap somehow fell down in there. How the hell did that happen?! Oh well, this a fine offering. Not great, but fine.

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Photo of MDDMD
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A-dark brown black color with a nice tan head and some lacing

S-dark malt, dark chocolate, coffee, slightly smoky

T-dark roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, slight char, mild bitter finish

F-medium body with light to medium carbonation, dry

O-nice dry stout with good flavor, wish it had a little more body

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Photo of mdagnew
3.77/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

355ml bottle bought from McHughs, Dublin...

Poured pitch black with no hint of colour even when held up to the light. Rich mocha head poured big thick and foamy then faded to half finger covering with thick edging... some decent random lacing...

Aroma - Sweet treacle and toffee up front, burnt / brown sugar, lightly roasted malts, toasted malt loaf, some leatheriness, light soy sourness, chocolate, prunes and blackcurrents, hint of strawberry, quite peppery, grassy notes, faint creosote, anise, sea salt, metallic notes...

Taste - Quite a lot of roasted malts and tons of liquorice to the fore, definite sourness coming through, slight hint of oakiness, bitter coffee, dark chocolate, blackcurrent and slight black cherry fruitiness, vanilla, some sweetness comes through towards the end, earthy...

Feel - Sharp and dry... medium bodied... pretty drinkable but maybe a bit too much liquorice flavours to have me coming back for another...

Overall - A very good and slightly unusual example of a Irish Dry Stout... definitely worth a try...

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Photo of beergoot
4.02/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Deep brown, nearly black body; creamy, light tan head. Heavy roasted grain aroma that gives way to heady anise, cocoa, and vanilla scents. Bold dark malt flavors; a twinge of sourness; dry hoppiness. Heavy body; smooth and velvety mouthfeel.

An excellent dry stout with very fine charred bread crust and malted milk ball flavors. It leaves a nice dry, slightly astringent aftertaste as the smooth malt sweetness fades away on your tongue. A great find for stout lovers.

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Photo of thierrynantes
3.73/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer bottle (50 cl.) purchased from Le Souffleur de bières, and tasted in 2012.

Appearance : dark brown color with tan foamy head.
Smell : roasted malt, chocolate and spicy aromas.
Taste & mouthfeel : roasted malt flavour with coffee and chocolate notes, moderate bitter with a average duration.
Drinkability : a good beer in the typical style Irish dry stout (but too expensive).

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Photo of flyingpig
3.49/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

500ml bottle from Reilly's, Lisnaskea (£2.29):a
An okay stout that has a enough flavour with some dark malts & touches of sweetness helping things down, there was the odd hint of smoke coming through & it was definitely strong enough but I didn't seem quite as good as the brewery's flagship Irish Stout & as such it's probably not one that I'd pick up again; drinkable but far from the brewery's best effort.

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Photo of shand
3.96/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Leann Follain is an excellent example of an Irish Dry Stout. It's got a bit more flavor than most Irish Dry Stouts, with the very well balanced chocolate, coffee, and roasted malt flavors mingling nicely. The flavor doesn't linger for long, leaving a nice, dry finish. Overall, a great Irish Dry Stout that's a bit stronger and more interesting than the pack.

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Photo of JohnnyChicago
4.57/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 355ml bottle into a seidel at The Bull and Castle.

A: Pous a deep, dark brown with a gorgeous mocha head. This is what a stout should look like.

S: Smells strong and sweet. Deep roasted coffee beans, rich dark chocolate, smooth milky malts.

T: Coffee and chocolate rule the taste, with a bit of mild hop bitteness in the finish.

D: Easy to down and very complex. The mouthfeel is prickly but very smooth. It is very dynamic for the style and ABV.

Overall: This is what Irish stouts should taste like. The best in this style that I've had. It isn't a Foreign Export, because it lacks the sourness and heavy hops, and it isn't a true Irish dry because it's a bit heavier and much more robust. Take it for what it is: one of the best beers Ireland has to offer. Recommended!

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Photo of cratez
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle purchased by my dad on a recent trip to Ireland. Thanks pop! Best before date of late October 2012, which suggests to me that this beer is pasteurized.

Pours an opaque jet black with a sliver of mocha froth and a few spots of lacing on the tulip. Head retains well.

Smell is black licorice, molasses, dark chocolate, roasted malt, floral hops, table cream, slight earthy/mineral note, black currant, mild vinous aroma, leather, and smoke. Very good.

Taste mimics the nose with roasted malt, a vinous and tart wine-like flavour, subtle coffee and chocolate undertones, a balanced English hop bitterness (earthy, floral, grassy), and some ashtray on the cough. An assertive, tasty brew.

Mouthfeel is silky, medium-bodied, moderate carbonation, chalky parched finish.

Overall, Leann Folláin is one of the better Irish Dry Stouts that I've tried. Its bold flavours and layered aromas make it an unusually intricate example of the style. A great brew that I would recommend to any beer geek.

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Photo of Onslow
4.12/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

wow, what an aroma! coffee and chocolate- easily in the top ten of any beer i have ever had! the nose is wonderful .. . tastes of coffee, chocolate, light tar, minerals, and earth..lots of minerals actually, very unique! - very tasty, this is great stuff! .. . delicious and quite unique, nothing really like it .. carlows best and an exciting beer that would love to have again, thanks ma! .. . .

What's the matter, Craig?

What does it say on this jar?


Well I'm glad someone around here can read. The jar holds fourteen pickles. I had three yesterday, two for lunch today, and one and a half for snack. And now there are six and a half pickles in this jar. Simple math indicates...

Are you counting the one in your hand?

Ok, false alarm.

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Photo of BogBoyJD
4.23/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried to get this brew for St Patrick' s day. But wasn't back in stock till April. Like the look of the bottle, small Carlow brewery.

Poured beautiful black viscous liquid head turns from fizz into a dark dense cream topping. Like froth from a malt milkshake. Really want to drink this!

Taste is of treacle, whole cream, an burnt sugar. Maybe sligh tobacco. Similar to Guinness FES. Really like this one. Blows a brew like Bad King John away!

Mouthfeel is syrupy, creamy. Very pleasant.

This was very much like a chocolate stout. Wasn't t expecting it. Tried the pale ale from this brewery and wasn't t near as nice a brew as this one. A dessert beer, no doubt. Enjoyed, will get another one for ageing.

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Photo of MusicaleMike
4.92/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

The perfect beer to review for St. Patricks Day. Best before date reads March 28, 2014. Poured into a balloon glass.

Leann Follain was originally O'Hara's Celebration Ale that they made for Easter years ago. It was well-received and they decided to make it a year round product.

It pours with a rich black body topped with a tan head that sits two fingers thick. The tan head recedes slowly into a craggy, rocky head that does a great job of sticking around. When held up to light, brown highlights shine through at the very edge of this beer. An otherwise very dark beer.

Initially served a bit too chilled, but first impression was that this beer had a HUGE roasted malt aroma, possessing a great smokey, ashy aroma. Not as intense as a rauchbier, but certainly present and perfect for a cold winters day. Notes of campfire, chicory, carob, and vintage leather all underlay a chocolate and dark fruit aroma. This beer has more complexity and depth than you would normally find in any Irish Stout. Simply amazing.

On the palate, it starts with a creamy full body. A tinge of hop bitterness up front, followed by flavors of roasted grains and smoke towards the finish. For something this full-bodied, it possesses a surprisingly dry finish. Lingering flavors of cigar, campfire, cocoa powder intermingle in the aftertaste, joined by a light earthiness from the hops. Well-balanced flavor that sits somewhere between hoppy and malty. The carbonation is just spot on as well.

This is just about the most perfect Irish Dry Stout I have ever had, from the bold, complex aroma, to the perfectly balanced body, to the fantastically dry finish, this beer has the style down in spades. Absolutely will be drinking this again...today, and in the future.

Pairs well with Irish Beef Stew!

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Photo of JohnfromDublin
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a new brew (Feb/March 2009) from Carlow Brewery. I picked up a couple of bottles from Superquinn, Dublin at €2.39 for a 35.5cl bottle. Very nice presentation; brown glass with cream label with celtic design. At the top of the label, it reads "full-bodied extra Irish Stout". I reckon this is brewed mainly for export.

It pours a very dark brown brew with a dark tan head that subsides, smelled of some bitter coffee grinds with spiciness.
The taste was not what I was expecting; mainly chocolate in the flavour with maybe just a touch of coffee coming through. It came across as a sweet stout/milk stout, but without the sweetness. There would be very little similarity here with, say Youngs double chocolate stout.
Mouthfeel was very very smooth!

This is a very interesting brew and certainly worth a try.

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O'Hara's Leann Folláin from Carlow Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.