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Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout - Big Sky Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Slow Elk Oatmeal StoutSlow Elk Oatmeal Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

232 Ratings
THE BROS
73
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 232
Reviews: 111
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 13.51%
Wants: 12
Gots: 16 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company visit their website
Montana, United States

Style | ABV
Oatmeal Stout |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
20 IBU

(Beer added by: Mitchster on 12-15-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 232 | Reviews: 111 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Pintofbrown
3.95/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I poured this one into a glass stein. I love the art work for this bottle!

Appearance- Slow Elk builds up a good, two-finger, maple syrup shade head. The consistency is pretty dense with just a few bubbles on the cap. It has decent retention with some lace on the side of the glass.

The body is dark and opaque with just a little bit of dark brown highlights noticeable.

Smell- There is some sweet toffee malt in there and some brown sugar notes. Oatmeal is only noticeable because of a slight mealy smell. Roast is also really light, but there.

Taste- A sweet, creamer quality note leads off the profile. It is slowly accompanied by some toasted oatmeal and general roast. Some brown sugar rears up near the back side of the drink adding a nice touch.

A little boozy character that settles in about mid-drink, but it is not particularly distracting.

Mouth feel- This beer has a very good feel and the oatmeal is probably what can take most of the credit for that. This one does a wonderful job of coating the mouth. It is bordering on full bodied, and the the slight carbonation tingle is just a touch off of creamy.

Overall- This is a nice little beer! And by far the best I have had from Big Sky. The malts and roast on the tongue are solid, if a little formulaic, but that is not always a bad thing. And this beer has a glorious feel that makes it more than a pleasure to drink.

Pintofbrown, Nov 22, 2011
Photo of Whadawookie
3.83/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured without much head, retention or lacing. It smells pretty good, but the aroma isn't very strong, some roasted barley character for sure.
Taste is pretty darn good, it does feel a little light for a stout, but flavor-wise they have done no ill. I taste coffee, then chocolate which settles into an oatmealy aftertaste. The aftertaste is very pleasant... almost like after downing a whole sheet of mother's fresh cookies and then lapsing into a comforting coma. I am not a regular oatmeal stout drinker, but I'd be into trying more of them after this pleasant experience.

Whadawookie, Nov 08, 2011
Photo of TheQuietMan22
3.03/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Straight pour into a pint glass. The color is black, but it is not opaque; a lot of light passed through when I held it to a lamp. Three fingers of thick, tanned head dissipated slowly to leave a billowy lacing and, eventually, just a ring around the edge.

Smell: It smells enticing but is little weak. Oats and cocoa are complimented with a nice, roasted malt presence of (mostly) coffee. There are also hints of black licorice.

Taste: Flavor wise, it exhibits the same enticing feature from the smell, but is also a bit on the weak side. However, this is, I guess, oatmeal stout; there should not be an overwhelming bitterness. Each sip offers rice roasted coffee characters that are kept in check by the oats. There is a little cocoa and that hint of black licorice. Overall, though, it lacks the oomph, character, and body of bolder oatmeal stouts.

Drinkability: It is a good effort, and I think it is on the path toward high quality, but I expected more since it is a limited release.

TheQuietMan22, Nov 08, 2011
Photo of JuicesFlowing
3/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a conical pint glass.

The beer is a dark chocolate black, with a lot of brown coming through the light on the edges, even ruby in the body. An oatmeal colored head recedes somewhat quickly to a film. Light lacing sticks to the glass, initially.

The beer smells of faint oats and of bitter chocolate.

The beer tastes chalky and faintly malty up front. There's also some bit of roasted, burnt malts. A watery, subdued bitter chocolate emerges in the middle before an also watery bitter hop finish.

The mouthfeel is also watery. This feels more like it could be labeled as a porter.

Overall, really disappointed as I love all other Big Sky brews. This may be their weakest effort, and it's my favorite style. Just too thin.

JuicesFlowing, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of NuclearDolphin
3.3/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a 12oz. Tumbler Glass

Appearance - Black appearance with tinges of dark brown around the edges, there's a head that pours about an inch thick that has an off-white brownish color to it.

Smell - Burn oatmeal and malt notes are noticable, along with some toffee/caramel scent at the end. It smells fairly sweet for a stout

Taste - Has an oatmeal/burn malt flavor, along with the standard coffee/cocoa flavor. It's good, but it's also fairly average so there's nothing really too much going on here.

Mouthfeel - It's a very easy to drink for a stout style of beer and it's very smooth. Body is more on the heavy side, and it's a thicker feeling beer.

Overall - It's your typical run-of-the-mill stout that plays it safe and sticks to what makes an oatmeal stout drinkable, and that's okay. I would've liked to have a bit more flavor, but in the end it's a drinkable stout that manages to be decent and at least appeasing .

NuclearDolphin, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of pBRale
4.13/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From tasting notes 10-19-11
Poured into a snifter

Appearance: Dark, Dark brown-black pour, some deep ruby highlights, a 3-finger light caramel head that settles fairly quickly and has mild to moderate retention throughout. The lacing left behind is fairly thick.

Smell: Deeply roasted malts, a small bit of dark chocolate and surprisingly I can smell the oats in this one.

Taste: Excellent coffee taste up front, some roasted malts, and such a delightfully creamy finish that the oatmeal lends creates an outstanding beer.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, medium body with medium carbonation and a beautifully smooth yet crisp finish.

Overall: A damn good beer. Great coffee flavor and a very coating, creamy mouthfeel to boot! I loved it.

pBRale, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of bagpiper2005
3.2/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pour: Deep brown with red around the edges. Two fingers of tan head that had big bubbles and decent retention and lacing.

Smell: Light aroma of chocolate and coffee. A touch of oats but very, very faint.

Taste: Sort of bland with hints of roasted malt and a bit of coffee in the back. No oats to speak of. Pretty one-dimensional. Too bad.

Mouthfeel: Light-to-medium, generally thinner than I think of a stout being. Medium carbonation.

Drinability/Overall: Drinks pretty easy, I'll give it that. It's just rather unexciting.

Final Notes: This is another one of those "not a bad beer, just a little lacking" beers. The smell and taste it has are good, but I just wish there was more substance to it. It happens.

bagpiper2005, Nov 02, 2011
Photo of coldriver
3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into Sam Adams glass. Pours a nice two finger head - lacing and bubble action is impressive. Root beer opacity. Aroma is roasted malt and coffee. A little light and thin for the style but very smooth - I'm not getting that bite that you come to expect. Still a decent offering, just not the best.

coldriver, Oct 29, 2011
Photo of bump8628
2.9/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Big whiff of Cain's diner coffee from the outset, leading into a caramel and toffee heavy body. Light milk chocolate and more weak coffee with a dash of creamer. A nice burst of earth and meadow comes from the Goldings, while it finishes with a subtle balance of fruit from the English yeast. This is a solid English-style Porter, too bad it bears no resemblance to any sort of Oatmeal Stout. Where's the creaminess? Another bag or two of roasted malts and a higher mash temp would go a long way. Not bad beer in the least, but it misses the style mark completely. I'm just relieved I'm not relying on this to get me through a long Montana winter's night.

bump8628, Oct 20, 2011
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.53/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very dark brown pour on this one, substantial beige head to it. Mild notes of chocolate in the aroma, decent roasting, pretty fair, but nothing offputting.

Good smooth silky taste, mild notes of chocolate, coffee doesn't seem all that present, oatmeal did a good job of rounding and smoothing this out, nothing is big and bold, its consistency is just right, not huge, but chewy enough and keeps the beer sessionable and not at all intimidating other than the color. Similar at times to a milk stout, just not as sweet. Definitely stays out of bitter territory.

I liked this one, I think this big sky brewery is a good one. One of the lighter oatmeal stouts, but when I want oatmeal, I want a lighter stout experience, so this one delivered to my expectations.

Beerandraiderfan, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of zoso1967
3.43/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Slow Elk pours a dark brown that is almost black but shows through with some woody highlights when held up to a bright light. The head is light tan in color and while it does not have great retention, it does leave fairly nice lacing.

The aroma is slightly roasty with hints of coffee, cocoa and molasses. The malt sweetness is like that of a dark bread and there is a signature British yeast smell to go along with it.

The flavor matches the aroma quite well with the same slightly roasty and chocolaty character complimenting the bready and molasses malt sweetness. There is just a hint of chalkiness to it and some oat like character as well.

The mouthfeel is medium in size and a bit of a letdown. It has some smoothness to it but is not as substantial or velvety as the best oatmeal stouts tend to be. The brew finishes fairly dry with some nice bitter cocoa flavors.

This is a decent tasting oatmeal stout, but nothing to write home about. It is easy drinking and well balanced, but for me this style is all about mouthfeel and in that aspect this does not really deliver.

zoso1967, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of russpowell
3.33/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours black with 3 fingers of mocha colored head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Roasty malt, cocoa & woody hop notes & some coffee

T: Follows the nose, some coffee as well & cocoa up front. Herbal & woody hop notes, some charred notes, some smokeyness as well as this warms. Finishes roasty with a touch of chocolate sweetness

MF: Medium bodied, firmly carbonated, never really smooths out like I hoped it would

Drinks easy enough, but was hoping for so much more from Big Sky. Glad I didn't by a sixer of this

russpowell, Oct 18, 2011
Photo of angrybabboon
3.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Consumed 10/13/11

Appearance: Dark brown with some ruby around the edges when held up to the light, starts off with a little tan head, fades quick, minimal lacing

Smell: Very good - burnt, roasted malts - some coffee, some chocolate, some licorice - kind of earthy - definitely a stout

Taste: Sadly, not up to par with the aroma - very mild - slightly roasted, slightly burnt - thin, dark malts - some coffee, some chocolate, some molasses - slightly bitter, some acidity - tastes more like a brown ale than a stout

Mouthfeel: Light-medium body, low carbonation, smooth, but should be a lot smoother considering this is an oatmeal stout

Overall: Not bad, but certainly not great

The only thing about this beer that really blows my mind is how much it reminds me of the results of an extract homebrew recipe. After brewing it in 2009, my partner in crime (Goblinmunkey7 here on BA) and I agreed that it was too thin, and decided to describe it as a dark ale. However, after sitting for a few months, it became great. I wonder if this gets better over time, too.

angrybabboon, Oct 14, 2011
Photo of FreshHawk
3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark black with a deep, cola brown hues on the edge. Full, thick, cakey, white head. Good retention leaving a nice thin layer of lace.

S - Some flaked oat with a good amount of dark bittersweet chocolate. Decent amount of coffee as well. Slight astringency but not bad.

T - Starts with some charred oat and black coffee along with some mocha. Gives way to some bittersweet and semi-sweet chocolate. A hint of nuttiness underneath that chocolate. Finishes with a slightly astringent coffee and chocolate taste.

M - Light to medium body. Average carbonation. A little thin and watery, but slick.

D - Flavors didn't mesh as well as I hoped and there is a subtle astringency that I wasn't a huge fan of. These reduce how drinkable it is, but it is fairly quaffable overall.

Notes: Average Oatmeal Stout. It wasn't great and there was a subtle astringency that I wasn't a huge fan of. Flavors aren't horrible but they just didn't quite mesh entirely.

FreshHawk, Oct 13, 2011
Photo of jera1350
3.78/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Solid black color with a creamy head of darker khaki. Excellent retention and some nice sticky lacing.

A nice balance of roasty and sweet malt.

The taste is more dark roasted malt than sweet malt. The flavor kind of drops off a bit it seems. It's fine, but just doesn't have much more than a bit of sweetness with a solid roast.

Heavier end of medium bodied. Smooth feel for the most part.

I would call this a good run of the mill oatmeal stout. It doesn't wow or really stand out, but it is enjoyable and well done. I will certainly have no problem finishing this off in short time.

jera1350, Oct 12, 2011
Photo of freehafe
3.05/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours deep brown, head quickly thins out.

S: Roasted malt, chocolate, oatmeal.

T: Strong roasted malt and oatmeal flavor, slight chocolate/coffee flavor, initially bitter then mellows out.

M: Thinner body than most stouts I'm used to

O: It is an ok beer, not upset I drank it, but would not go out of my way to purchase again.

freehafe, Oct 12, 2011
Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.9/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark stouty like stout color, but a little light makes it through the dense dark quagmire that presdies under a finger of ivory head.. Milk chocolate, and mild whiskey barrel hits the nose which is strange because I don't think it was put in barrels. Some sweet caramel malts smell great as well. Sweet oatmeal and brown sugar hit the palate first and take you on a smooth ride to light roasted malts. there is cocoa but really no bitter which is fine. Smooth, creamy, and medium bodied.

Overall...I would give this to a breastfeeding mother on any occasion.

JoeAmerican77, Oct 11, 2011
Photo of harrymel
2.42/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Fall 2011

A: Pours dark brown with less than a finger of transient latte foam which leaves a scratched mirror surface with a border of foam. No lace. When available near excellent clarity.
S: Oats, bitters, roasted malts, earthy hops (faint), slight sweetness.
T: Semi bitter with some earthy flavors from the malts. Slight american ale yeast flavor.
M: thin for the style with moderate carbonation. Semi dry finish.
O: Meh, not at all impressive for the style.

harrymel, Oct 10, 2011
Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle, best by 01/12/12 printed on the bottle. "Big Hole Cologne" printed inside the cap. Pours crystal clear dark brown color with a nice and fairly dense 1-2 fingers of light tan head with great retention that reduces to a lacing cap that lasts. Some fairly thick lacing clings to the glass as well. Aromas of chocolate, caramel, roasted malt, oatmeal, and bitter coffee. Some surprisingly nice aromas with good strength. Taste of light chocolate, oats, caramel, light coffee, and roasted malt. Finish is fairly dry, but there is some light bitterness with lingering notes of roasted malt, caramel, light chocolate and coffee. Alcohol is completely hidden as expected for a beer of 5.4%. Medium body and carbonation, with a decently creamy mouthfeel. Very smooth and easily drinkable. Nice balance of flavors. Overall a nice oatmeal stout I thoroughly enjoyed.

superspak, Oct 09, 2011
Photo of AmericanGothic
3.95/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Sam Adams pint.

A: Pours a nearly opaque, dark brown color with 1/2 finger of pale tan head. Little retention and lace.

S: Sweet chocolate and some roasted notes.

T: Starts with chocolate, bitter at first but gradually sweetening, then ends with minerals and a bit of cola. Seems odd in writing but makes sense in the mouth. As the beer warms, some roasted notes emerge.

M: Not too heavy, nice balance of creaminess and fluffy carbonation, a bit of oil on the finish.

O: A nice oatmeal stout, easy-going and smooth. Tried it at a tasting last week and happy to have a sixer and a real review. Will look forward to it returning next year.

AmericanGothic, Oct 08, 2011
Photo of goodbr3wz
3.53/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours dark dark brown with a nice head, leaving long lasting traces of lacy foam.

S- Roasted malts and coffee where the two smells that jumped out at me.

T- Oats, chocolate, roasted malts...

M- Mouth feel is a lot thinner than i would like it to be, almost a watery feel.

O- Overall it was a decent beer, a little watered down but some fantastic smell.

goodbr3wz, Oct 05, 2011
Photo of flagmantho
3.58/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: nearly black but permitting some light to transit with a ruby tinge. Head poured a thick finger of creamy tan foam and has decent retention.

Smell: roasty aroma with some coffee notes and a little bit of tartness. Decent.

Taste: lightly chocolatey flavor with a smooth bitterness and some vegetal hop flavors. Again, decent.

Mouthfeel: pretty smooth; medium body with a good carbonation and a nice, silky feel. Not bad.

Overall: this is a pretty unremarkable beer. It's not bad, but I won't go out of my way to get this again.

flagmantho, Oct 01, 2011
Photo of genitempo
2.68/5  rDev -23%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: The bottle design is probably the best part about the beer. Big Sky has great continuity with their design. However, the idea of calling the beer "Slow Elk" with a drawing of a cow with elk antlers roped on is pretty funny. I digress...the wear pours terribly into a snifter, for a stout that is. Foams too heavy, carbonation does not rise like a stout usually does. Dark body with an amber touch when put up to light. Head is lumpy and whitish tan.

S: Probably the best part about the beer. Has the odor of a traditional stout with hints of heavy grain.

T: Meh, nothing really too impressive. I feel like the "oatmeal" taste they were going for misplaced the essence of what a stout beer should be.

M: Not as thick as I like my stouts.

O: Under-impressed. Big Sky usually makes a good push with their brews. Slow Elk is on the weaker side of things. I guess it's a good thing that it's a limited release...

genitempo, Oct 01, 2011
Photo of zeff80
3.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a jet black color with a one-finger, tan head of long lasting foam. It left thin traces of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of oats, coffee and roasted malts.

T - Good and roasty with a coffee-like bite. Some nice toffee and chocolate flavors are in the background.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is a nice oatmeal stout. The label itself is worth picking one up.

zeff80, Sep 30, 2011
Photo of Scotchboy
3.78/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a stein.

A: Pours a thin dark brown which I can clearly see light through. Ruby red highlights. Off white settles quickly but leaves some lacing behind.

S: Aromas of chocolate and dark malts, some char, vanilla and molasses...a bit of coffee too but not a lot. A slight woody character as well. Smells sweet. Not a whole lot of hops.

T: Those same sweet notes; chocolate, vanilla, molasses, wood. The roasted malt character is perfect, keeping the sweetness in check, and on the finish the hops (I'm assuming) arrive with some decent bitterness. Smooth, with just a bit of bite.

MF: Slightly thin and wet, although it does take on a creamy, lactic character as it warms.

O: A good oatmeal stout, light on the body but not on flavors.

Scotchboy, Sep 25, 2011
Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout from Big Sky Brewing Company
78 out of 100 based on 232 ratings.