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Highland Oatmeal Porter - Highland Brewing

Not Rated.
Highland Oatmeal PorterHighland Oatmeal Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

543 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 543
Hads: 1,263
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 17.36%
Wants: 40
Gots: 164 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Highland Brewing visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pezoids on 09-17-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Highland Oatmeal Porter Alström Bros
Reviews: 543 | Hads: 1,263
Photo of superspak
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle, no bottle date. Pours crystal clear dark brown color with a small fairly dense 1 finger light tan head with good retention that reduces to a thin lacing cap. Aromas of caramel, chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, oats, and some spicy hops. Some nice and decently strong aromas here. Taste of big roasted malt, chocolate, oats, spicy hops, and caramel. Nice amount of bitterness present on the finish; with lingering notes of spicy hops, caramel, and chocolate. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a fairly nice and creamy mouthfeel despite slightly high carbonation. Decent balance of flavors as well, but spiciness seems to take the prominence. No alcohol noticed except for a small warming after the finish. Overall a solid and drinkable porter, but definitely not memorable.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Brown 12 oz. bottle served into a pint glass. This oatmeal porter pours a deep brown and sports a thin creamy tan head, clear and crimson in the light. Cap settles out to a light cap and leaves good lace.

Nose of chocolate and some roasted malt. Hops are there but subtle at first, gathering a bit of steam as the beer warms up a bit and mellowing out the chocolate spice component. I'm picking up on a bit of yeast character that's clean and somewhat fruity in nature, perhaps English, but then the hops keep it from being too clear to me.

Roast and chocolate carry to the taste of the beer, particularly up front. More of a baker's chocolate follows and with a light bitterness to conclude. Feel is a bit thin however to really pull it off. Offers a pleasant lingering finish. Overall decent though a bit thin and unassuming.

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Photo of fmccormi
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Straight pour from 12oz pry-off bottle to Cigar City snifter. No bottling / freshness date that I can see.

Appearance (2.0): Dark brown, almost black, with a grey-brown tinge at the edges when held up to the light. Almost no head here—is this normal? It looks almost like flat cola. Just small, tan ring at the edge of the glass and a couple legs of lace.

Smell (4.0): Modest dark chocolate note mixed with a smooth cereal earthiness—that must be the oatmeal. I do love dark beers with oatmeal in the grain bill. Some herbal / grassy hop notes in back.

Taste (3.0): Kind of tame early on, when it’s cooler. Some coffee / roast barley bitterness, with a nice undercurrent of oat smoothness. What’s there is nice, just wish there was more of it. As it warms, it evens out to show a nice balance between modest sweetness and mild roastiness. Hops aren’t big in this picture that I can tell, but they do add an herbal bitterness in the finish which goes well with the smooth oat component. Yeast is pretty neutral, don’t pick up on much here. Not bad as it warms.

Mouthfeel (4.0): Body is watery and just a bit dry in the finish. Carb is active but smooth, with fine bubbles rollicking over the tongue—nice carb, actually.

Overall (3.5): Maybe I was expecting too much from this beer, maybe it was old or I didn’t have a great bottle. Either way, it was decent. I bet this would be a satisfying session on cask, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to buy a sixer of this. Not bad, not great.

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Photo of Misfit138
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass

A- Nice dark brown with tan head that went away fairly fast, but left lacing.

S- Sweet roasted chocolate malts with hints of caramel and even marshmallow.

T- Smooth upfront with hints of vanilla, caramel and oats before some roasted chocolate malts that make a bitter finish.

M- Medium body, fair carbonation.

O- Pretty good porter. Seems to have a little more bitterness than some other porters.

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Photo of ccrida
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown with a tan head that leaves nice lace.

Smell is sweet dark malts, a little diacetyl, buttery.

Taste is light on the roasted malt, and it's a little heavy on the caramel, accentuated by the herbal hops, a touch minty.

Mouthfeel is fairly creamily carbonated, and medium bodied, a nice smoothness.

Drinkability is pretty good, a tasty stout with a nice hop snap, I always dig the English nobles.

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Photo of billab914
3.82/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a pint glass at Harry's Taproom. It poured dark brown in color with a thin khaki head sticking to the glass. It seemed a little light and thin for the style visually.

The aroma is roasty with bitter chocolate and a little smooth oats coming through. pretty decent aroma, but not anything outstanding in the style.

The taste has a lot of burnt, bitter, roasty flavors to it up front. I get more bitter sweet chocolate in the finish. A little of the oat smoothness is there in the flavor, but its more noticeable in the mouthfeel.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a nice creamy and silky texture towards the finish. Carbonation is moderate. Overall it was a pretty solid beer that I really enjoyed. Very nice roasty bitter character with a great mouthfeel.

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Photo of HardTarget
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Holds its finger of tan tight head proudly lacing the glass to show its passing. Black glass shows a sliver of brown at the edges with back lighting.

Smell: A bit earthy, almost dusty nose with some chocolate syrup and roasted malt.

Taste: Very balanced, smooth flavor with the sweetness coming out in the finish. The earthiness is there but very mellow, almost a lager quality to the package the profile is so gentle. The malt comes through a little stronger toward the end of the glass.

Mouthfeel: The oats do their job giving a smooth silky texture, medium body and low carbonation lead to quick, easy pulls.

Overall: Expected a monster, was surprised by the courtly gentleman instead! Easy drinking, great (if subdued) flavor, nothing wrong here; a well executed beer.

Thanks to Illudium for the sample!

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Photo of nandemo1
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark chocolate brown with a finger of tan head that leaves a lot of lacing as it recedes.

Smell contains a bit of oat and a dark fruit/chocolatey mix. Taste is mostly bitter with coffee notes but has a bit of a sweet oatey malt flavor.

Mouthfeel is pretty silky, medium bodied.

Overall, a solid brew that is drinkable anytime, including breakfast.

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Photo of RSchaeffer
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Review #17
12oz bottle into Portsmouth pint glass.

A. Pours dark brown in color, almost like a cup of black coffee. Nice 1 finger of khaki head.

S - Roasted malts, oats, and a bit of caramel. Very faint hops.

T - Spicy roasted malt, with hints of oat and chocolate. Lingering roast finish in the aftertaste.

M - Slightly creamy mouthfeel, though on the lighter side in body and carbonation. Dry, slightly bitter aftertaste.

O - Meh. My roommate brought this home with him after a visit to NC and I was interested in giving it a try. It is drinkable and has a few nice qualities, but not overwhelming or memorable.

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Photo of jsanford
3.52/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Pint Glass.

Pours a dark brown with a thin off-white head that fades to a slight haze. Subdued aromas of chocolate, toasted oats, coffee, and roasted malt. Taste is close to the nose, nice flavors of chocolate, caramel, and roasted nut. Very nice and drinkable. Mouthfeel is smooth and fairly creamy, with a medium-thin body and good carbonation. Overall a very solid Porter, the oatmeal adds a very nice creaminess.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Highland oatmeal
A: half finger head. Black. Nice thick lace.

S: very mild smokey aroma.

T: No one flavor dominates. Mix of coffee, roasted malt, oats and chocolate. Seems a little watered down for a porter.

M: moderate carbonation and medium to full body.

Overall: smooth, not a lot of aroma. Its an ok porter but not going to be getting this one again.

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Photo of chinchill
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle served in a Highland Brewing pint glass.

Pours a very dark reddish-brown. Nearly black but with just enough transparency to see that the beer is clear. A vigorous pour only yielded a 1-finger tan head, but the head had some retention and left plenty of irregular lacing.

Aroma: rather hoppy for style, meaning that there is a clear hop note, and suggestions of spices, mixed with the aroma of toasted grains.

T - the hops are just strong enough to be present in the mouthfeel and taste, but take a backseat to the strong flavor of dark roasted barley. Some spicy and citrusy flavor in with the malt. Lasting, dark roasted malt finish and aftertaste with hints/traces of oatmeal, hops, peat smoke, coffee and dark chocolate.

M: smooth, semi-dry finish; medium body; Very good carbonation.

Overall score bumped up to 4.25 owing to the strong performance on all dimensions.

{revisited in June 2013}

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Photo of Jeffo
2.33/5  rDev -39.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Mom & Dad got me this on their last trip to the USA. Thanks guys!

From a bottle into a snifter.

APPEARANCE: A very light pour makes a one finger, medium looking, very light tan head with decent retention, fading down to a light wisp. Black body and no carbonation evident. A decent wisp and ring remain leaving some good lacing down the glass. Fine, but quite a light and thin a pour for the style.

SMELL: Caramel and oats. Very faint hints of dark malts as well. Some earthy hops perhaps, but this is just too faint.

TASTE: Very little flavor as well. Some dark malts and licorice in there, as well as some oats through the middle. Sweet dark malts on the finish with a mild and lingering aftertaste. Not much going on, and very little hop presence here.

PALTE: Here’s the best part of the beer. Medium body and medium carbonation. Very light on the palate, but also very creamy smooth as well. Goes down smooth and finishes slightly dry on the palate. Quite light for sure, but very nice and creamy smooth the whole way.

OVERALL: There was no bottle date on this one, so I’m not sure what to think. In any case, the beer I have in my hand is nothing worth remembering. It’s not off-putting or anything, there just isn’t anything to remember. Too mild in flavor and aroma. This would need some serious beefing up to bring it on par with some of the top example of the style. Avoid this one I’d say.

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Photo of HoppyZymurgist
3.82/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Sam Adams glass. Half inch head that left quick with very little residual, even with their spcial lasered etching. Minimal lacing. Nice dark, clear color.

Some coffe and malt nose

Taste is very pleasant. Good mouthfeel and jsut the right of carbonation. Oatmeal comes through nice. A bit light on the roasted malt flavor for a Porter. Very smooth and drinkable

Overall a very solid beer. Probably not quite as good as some of the others I have had from Highland.

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Photo of andrewinski1
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Curtis! Poured into a mug. Nice three quarter inch mocha head on this one. The body is quite black.

The aroma s full of chocolate and quite powerful when pouring. The aroma eventually tapers and the biscuity malt is more evident.

The taste is dry and bitter, with a bit of coffee in there as well. This finish particularly bitter, with the hoppyness being very subtle and in the background (quite a contrast to the last porter I had from Smuttynose that was very hoppy).

This is relatively light but has a nice strong slightly creamy mouthfeel.

I like this one, nothing like a good porter on a rainy summer day.

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Photo of brandoncox
3.42/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Soda clone pour as far as color. Nice one inch khaki head.

Wow, great hop notes for such a dark brew! I'm getting hints of robust oatmeal and chocolate along with a sherry dominant nose.

Sweet and sour chocolate with a smooth malty body finishing nice and bitter.

Very smooth on the palate but not creamy like I was hoping. Minimal carbonation.

A good beer all in all but I don't like the sherry notes it's providing, it dominates a good portion of the taste. But overall it is a solid dark brew.

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Photo of Paincane
4.33/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass provided a dark almost black color with aroma of malt. Roasted malt, oats, and chocolate with some coffee flavor. One and a half finger beige head dissipated rather quickly without leaving much lacing. Excellent porter with wonderful flavor, smell and finish. A lucky find at my local Kroger supermarket.

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Photo of brstls4drmrs
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured in a pint glass. Dark brown coffee-like color with a nice tan froth. Good lacing.

S - Strong oats and malt scents.

T - A solid oatmeal, malty taste with some coffee in there as well. Some caramel on the finish.

M - Dry and slightly bitter.

O - A very nice porter and not too filling.

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Photo of jgurley
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I used to drink this often when I lived in upstate S.C., just found it today in Destin. Pours dark brown into a pint glass. Thick head with really sticky lacing. Sweet, smoky, malty, milky nose with a touch of cappuccino. Taste is sweet up front with a full malty, espresso punch and a surprise of hop bitterness. Full, milky mouthfeel, not too carbonated, with a slightly bitter aftertaste. A good all around porter.

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Photo of BeerBeatnik
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Eminently flavorful and redolent of vanilla, and chocolate roast malt, Highliand Oatmeal Porter is silky and medium-bodied on the tongue. Topped with a rocky persistent tan head and dripping with roasty malt character, this porter was slightly sweet and finished on a dark chocolate note. Hop character is present, but very well balanced with the roasty malt profile.

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Photo of airforbes1
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is quite dark, even for the style, as only a smidgen of red appears at the bottom of the glass. The head didn't stick around for as long as I would have liked, but I'm not going to ding the beer too much for that. The smell is a bit faint, although I do detect some sweetness, almost certainly from the oats. The taste is not as sweet as I'd suspect, however, as I get a lot more roasty (almost smokey or even chalky) malt than oat sweetness. With each passing sip, I get a some hop bitterness, although not a large amount. I enjoyed this brew, but a little more sweetness from the oats would make me enjoy it a lot more.

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Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
4.02/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a tulip

A: A translucent, dark brown color with a foamy, off-white head.

S: Smells nutty with a light hop profile, spicy coriander and hints of gingerbread. It’s a lot like other oatmeal stouts, but just a bit more tangy.

T/M: Taste is nutty with a medium amount of carbonation. Gingersnaps linger throughout and it finishes with a smooth but tangy bite.

It’s the ideal, full flavored porter, I’m not really sure why it’s not considered a stout.

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Photo of corby112
3.26/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From notes:

Pours a dark chestnut brown color with amber/mahogany edges and a 1.5 finger foamy beige head that slowly settles into a lasting ring. Sporadic lacing.

Roasted malt aroma with hints of chocolate, oatmeal, caramel and nut. Slightly smokey/burnt smelling with faint earthy hops.

Medium boded and very roasted, almost burnt tasting with an overly carbonated mouthfeel up front. Slightly smokey with hints of chocolate, caramel, nut and of course oatmeal. Slightly watered down and a bit too bitter for my liking with a dry finish. Decent but not something I would seek out again.

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Photo of CharlieMurphy
2.83/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: 1/3" cream head that laces out a bit. Translucent red amber tinted black-brown in color.

S: smells like a very mild porter that you would expect to be lighter in color than it is. Some smoke and coffee hints

T: Crisp mild coffee like flavors beckon through a light porter body with a dry stout like roast finish. I don't get any oatmeal unfortunately. Basically no sweetness either.

M: Thin, on point for carbonation, slightly too dry.

O: Everything could work together a lot better. This would be better if it were bigger beer.

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Photo of shangwang
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up during a recent trip to the Outer Banks at Chip's in Kill Devil Hills.

No date on bottle.

Poured very dark, almost black, with just a little tint of red. Two thick fingers of frothy head the shade of a latte formed and slowly dissipated leaving chunky lacing on the glass. Smelled of roasted coffee and malt, but not a strong, distinct smell. Lots of bitterness in the taste- not particularly hoppy although some hoppiness showed through. Most of the bitterness tasted like burnt coffee. Surprisingly clean finish; no tastes really linger. Very drinkable- doesn't taste boozy at all, which makes sense given the low ABV.

A fairly average porter, nothing incredibly special but worth drinking a 6-pack of. Give it a shot.

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Highland Oatmeal Porter from Highland Brewing
87 out of 100 based on 543 ratings.