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Highland Oatmeal Porter - Highland Brewing

Not Rated.
Highland Oatmeal PorterHighland Oatmeal Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,182 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,182
Reviews: 538
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.63%
Wants: 37
Gots: 125 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,182 | Reviews: 538
Photo of d0ggnate
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A great pour left my glass full with this rich, dark chocolate brown beer. A minute later my glass is patchily laced.
S: Faint smokiness. Mild coffee. A bit roasted. Dark chocolate. Mmmm.
T: Continued smokiness, but more than faint. Slight taste of wheat bread. Mild coffee and cocoa flavors.
M: Every so slightly dry. Very slick and just the right bit watery.
D: This is a great porter. I could easily drink a few of these back to back. I am not a huge fan of porters, but would seek this one out if it was available in my area.

Photo of LauraAlberts
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark Ruby Red in light. Tan foam with some lacing.

Smell: Maple Syrup, Butterscotch, Chocolate, Raw Egg, Honey

Taste: Mild mocha, chocolate, mild spice

Mouthfeel: Soft, supple, very elegant

Drinkability: Either or - session or sipper. If it's really cold out side - session - but not too big of a porter to not be enjoyed in a pleasant climate.

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

Got this as an extra from Photekut (I think) - shared with my wife in matching FOBAB mini-pint glasses.

A - A finger of quick dissolving tan foam with some solid lacing. Unusually transparent and reddish for a porter - sort of a dark wood color with cherry hints to it. If I saw this I would think more wee heavy than I would porter. Not bad looking, but kind of inappropriate for the style.

S - Caramel malts, some berry flavors, a hint of oatmeal with honey, and a surprisingly high amount of floral hoppiness. Almost thought amber ale when I smelled it. This one takes a while to warm up and rewards with some cocoa and coffee flavors.

T - Super-sweet caramel and chocolate, with some floral hoppiness at the back end. There's also a nice mix of coffee astringency and hoppy bitterness in the aftertaste.

M - Somewhat thin body, with a mild amount of carbonation that tickles the palate. A fair bit of residual stickiness stays on the tongue.

D - It's pretty easy to drink, but seems a little style-confused. This is my second bottle so I know it's supposed to taste this way. No major knocks, although the aftertaste gets a little fatiguing.

Photo of johnmichael712
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured out of a 12 oz. bottle into a nonic glass. There is no freshness date on the bottle, but there is a cool picture of a jolly looking Scotsman with bagpipes and a huge mug of beer standing in front of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This beer pours an opaque mahogany color with a beautiful, dark ruby-red color when backlit. The head is medium tan/khaki colored and requires a fairly vigorous pour to reach the desired size. The head falls fairly rapidly, but leaves a nice ring around the surface of the beer as I drink along with some moderate surface covering in the middle of the glass. A hearty amount of Belgian lace is left on the glass.

Smell: This nose smells fairly stout like, with strong notes of dark and chocolate roasted malts. There is also a moderate bittersweet chocolate aroma that leads to strong, citrusy/grapefruity notes from the Cascade hops. The oatmeal adds a bit of sweetness to the aroma, making it very pleasant.

Taste: As in the aroma this beer has a very strong malt backbone that tastes thoroughly of black and chocolate roasted malts. This heavily roasted malt flavor moves to a strong bittersweet chocolate taste and nice sweetness due to the oatmeal that quickly shifts to a good amount of hoppy bitterness with strong citric notes thanks to those Chinook, Willamette, and Cascade hops. Even though Highland's website lists this beer at 32 IBU's I probably would have guessed it at a little higher. Regardless, I'm a big fan of the hoppy finish of this beer, and it really does make this beer the "American Porter" it claims to be.

Mouthfeel: This beer has a medium-full body and is a lot thicker than some of the other porters I've had. It's also nice and smooth due to the oatmeal, and has a pleasant softness about it due to the low carbonation. Overall it has a good, above average mouthfeel, especially for a porter.

Drinkability: I could definitely drink a few pints of these, and the smooth, creamy texture along with the full body makes for a really enjoyable brew. The hops also add a second dimension that lots of beers don't have, giving this beer excellent complexity and balance.

Notes: I've had lots of Oatmeal Stouts before, and I really love what the oatmeal adds to the sweetness and the smoothness of them, and fortunately it does the same thing to this Oatmeal Porter. This is a really fine brew for such a small company, and it makes me proud to live in North Carolina to have such fine, local beer as this readily available. If you ever come to the North Carolina area do yourself a favor and pick up a six-pack of this stuff; you won't regret it.

Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a nice, rich mahogany. Light tan head. Moderate retention level, with some mild lacing.

S: some roasted malts. Sweet honey notes, light fruit notes, with a slight oatmeal aroma. Light hints of coffee.

T: very mellow flavor and well-balanced. Chocolate and coffee from the roasted malts.

M: very smooth and mellow from the oatmeal. Very bright, creamy, and robust. Good carbonation level.

Photo of Onenote81
3.32/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep cola-like color with a large frothy tan head resting on top. This retains perfectly and leaves with it some nice sticky lacing. The smell on this one is weak. Some roasted malts present, hints of coffee. Barely detecting anything.

This is so incredibly creamy and smooth. It slips down the throat so velvety. My tongue appreciates this beer. Wonderful. Like the smell, the taste on this is weak. I can see what they were trying to do, but they fell short on accomplishment. Hints of roasted coffee, very bready. It's a decent flavor, but nothing that knocked my socks off. Having said all that though, this has got to be one of the more drinkable porters out there. Great mouthfeel. Nothing terrible or astringent about it at all. Recommend.

Photo of ffejherb
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle into Sam Adams glass on 3/5/09. Thanks to Kegatron for procuring one of these for me during a trip down south.

A - Poured a deep brown color with lots of ruby highlights and a creamy tan (albeit diminutive) head that qas quick to recede into a thin veil but left adequate lacing around the rim of the glass.

S - Smooth milk chocolate notes and flaked oats dominate the nose, with just a hint of dark roasted malt and coffee to complement. Mild earthy notes, faint licorice and an ever-so-slight meaty character round out the fairly complex aroma of this porter.

T - Both the dark roasted malt and coffee is more pronounced in the flavor, but there is still quite a bit of chocolate sweetness paired with earthy bitter notes and a slight astringency toward the backend.

M - Quite a smooth, creamy mouthfeel with soft carbonation and a fairly slick, oily texture. Some residual hop bitterness emerges in the finish.

D - Another solid brew from Highland. I can't say I've ever been disappointed with anything I've had thus far. This oatmeal porter is certainly no exception. Smooth and flavorful, this went down quite easily.

Photo of southernbelle09
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tried this one on tap at Delaney's Irish Pub in Spartanburg, SC. I am ashamed to say this is my first beer by Highland. Not huge in to the porters, but this one was pretty good. Pours a dark, dark brown with tan head. Aroma was nice and sweet...really came alive as the beer warmed. Has a great taste, sweet and chocolately without much bitterness. Not a huge body, somewhere in between your average brown and stout I guess. Good drinkability for a bigger beer as well. Good beer all around! Looking forward to giving their other beers a try.

Photo of DIM
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a: This was pitch black, very dark for a porter. It poured with a thin light tan head.

s: Toasty, chocolaty malts with hints of dark fruit and a little milky sweetness. As this warmed the aroma really came to life.

t: Falls a bit short of the smell, but not by much. Smooth, toasty oats that suggest chocolate(slightly bitter) and a little plum. There was also a pleasant, lactic sweetness in the background.

m: Not nearly as thin as many small porters. Big bodied and smooth with gentle carbonation.

d: I'd never heard of this until I pulled it out of a box from joepais. Thanks Joe, this was damn tasty.

Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.77/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown, damn near black. Surprisingly there are quite a bit of hops in the nose. Taste is slightly bitter hops with some roasted ash as well. Medium on the mouthfeel. Quite an easy drinking beer. Very sessionable, but not overly complex at all.

Photo of LiveaHoppyLife
4.6/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - The color of this beer is very dark, a little transparent on the edges of the glass, but almost black in the middle. The color is a deep reddish brown.

S - The aroma of the beer is very rich. It has a dark, sweet scent, and this may sound weird, but it is a little similar to the smell of molasses.

T - The taste is wonderful. This porter is one of my very favorites out there. The flavor is very rich, and is not something that can be fully enjoyed with food. You really should devote your entire palate to this beer, because there are so many flavors to enjoy.

M - I think the texture of this beer is what really sells me on it. It is silky smooth. It is not as thick as a Guinness, but is thick nonetheless.

D - I scored it high, because if you are enjoying a pint or two of this at your local watering hole, then it is very drinkable, however if you are planning on drinking more...it isn't the best for high quantity.

Photo of gabe23
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark brown with reddish highlights around the edges. The tan head doesn't last long, but it leaves behind some nice scattered lacing.

S - Sweet, toasty malt and dark chocolate dominate the aroma. Some black coffee notes are present as well.

T - The taste matches the aroma quite well. Burnt toast, dark chocolate, and bitter black coffee all mingle together. A nicely balanced flavor that stays with you for a while.

M - Thick and smooth with a velvety texture. Perhaps a bit more carbonation than I expected.

D - This is a very drinkable porter. The balanced flavor works well and isn't overwhelming in any one area.

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

A: Poured a very dark brown with a great almond colored head about 1/4" thick. The fringes appeared the color of tannic stained water. The head was nice and creamy and left generous lacing throughout the glass.

S: The nose was dominated by nutty toffee aromas. There is definitely a hoppiness to it and slightly smokey.

T: Smokey flavors persist over the palate and are accompanied by a welcome bitterness provided by the hops. Just the tiniest bit of baker's chocolate comes through.

M: Medium bodied that leaves the mouth with a crispness and clean feeling. It is pretty smooth with nice carbonation. Just enough to let you know its there. There is a little bitter drying action on the finish.

D: Very nice home grown porter. I have always been impressed with Highland and this beer is no exception. There are no overbearing characteristics with this beer. Mellow and very enjoyable from the very first sip to the last.

Photo of johnd513
3.43/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks goes to MSchae1017 for this one.
This beer pours dark black with a small offwhite head that quickly fizzles away. Smells of sweet malts and oats. Taste follows the smell with roasted malts and ends with bitter chocolate. The mouthfeel is smooth and nicely carbonated. Drinkability is moderate. Overall a solid porter but not something I was crazy about.

Photo of Gyle41386
3.87/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights. I thought I poured this pretty vigorously, but only produced a small head that dissipates to a fine, creamy line. After reading other reviews, it's apparent my pour wasn't as aggressive.

Smells of roasted malts, dark fruits, some sweet chocolate.

Taste matches the scent. Rich flavor. Somewhat bitter finish kind of reminds me of a stout.

Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth. Very nice feel.

Photo of kimcgolf
3.71/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured to a dark chocolate brown with a hint of ruby at the bottom of the glass, a thin tan head that disippated quickly and little lacing. Nose is malty choclate with a hint of oatmeal. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, leaning only slightly to the watery side. Taste is a satisfactory follow-up of the nose, and the finish, though nothing spectacular, is tasty and of medium duration.

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

A good solid Porter. Pours a dark brown with light coming through....many ruby highlights. Good size tan head and thick lacing. Smell is a bit mild...roasted malts

Good taste: roasted malts,a hint of vanilla, followed by milk chocolate (somewhat sweet) and a slightly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel not quite as smooth and silky as Samuel Smith's, but it is rich enough and not watery. The bitterness at the end gives it a nice crispness.

Drinkability is good. A very pleasant experience and well worth a session.

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

From a bottle.

Pours a dark coffee black. Thin, buttery head that never quite disappears all the way.

Smells of nuts and dark fruits. Kind of a sweet chocolaty smell under there too.

The taste is like mocha, kind of a chocolate coffee mix. The flavor is deep and layered. A mild bitterness follows in the aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is mostly very smooth and a bit syrupy, but there's a subtle kick of carbonation in there too.

Overall, a very good dark beer. Easy to like if you enjoy darker beers.

Photo of SLeffler27
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fills a Nonic with rich, dark, brown, which is only discernable when put to bright light as the rest is a shade off black. A one-inch, creamy, dense, coffee cap drops ample lace on its way to a thick blanket.

Roasted oatmeal and chocolate dominate the nose from a foot away, followed by sweet molasses, cedar, and cookie dough. Some dates and possibly Bourbon take over once immersed in the glass. Nice complexity unfolds throughout the experience.

The flavor brings a hearty and welcome dose of hops and bitterness without neglecting the malts. Some sweetness is evident within dark wheat bread, while espresso and cashews are also present. The depth of these flavors becomes richer and more complex with each sip all the way out through a moderate, malty finish.

Highland's Oatmeal Porter is a full-bodied, almost dense offering with a smooth texture and a touch of carbonation. By no means a palate cleanser, it is hearty in character with some warming alcohol.

Lunch is cooking, soup with grilled cheese, and this seems like the perfect precursor. Surprisingly thirst quenching, Highland has served a winner, worthy of a couple of rounds. North Carolina has some excellent brews waiting for us to sample this holiday season. :-)>

date consumed: 28 Nov 2008

Photo of dolemite77
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours nearly opaque, with a thin frothy tan head. Aroma is the typical roasted malt aroma of a porter, but with a minimal amount of the sour aroma and taste that many have these days. The flavor is similar in the fact that it is very roasted, but not to the overroasted point, which is where I think the sour acidity comes in. Chocolate flavors throughout this one from the malt. The hops are more prevalent thank expected. The history of the porter tells us that the beer originated when train porters would essentially order beer "suicides" that included whatever was on tap--- can't really remember why they thought this was a good idea... anyway, this tastes very much like someone mixed a great stout, and an american IPA... very good porter... the biggest gripe I had with it was that it seemed a bit thinner than I had wanted- especially since it has the added oatmeal.

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.54/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark mahogany to black with a two finger beige head. Great lace and retention for a porter. Smells like blackberries.

Highland OP is all about oaty smoothness. Soft roasted malt and gentle coffee with mild char are the predominant flavors. Hints of blackberry. MUCH smoother and a nice change of pace from more aggressive porters.

Photo of PEBKAC
3.61/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Soggy coaster notes courtesy of ncvbc & bboven. I got the privileged of trying most of Highland's staple lineup between them, yet I only managed to legibly record this one.

Poured straight down the middle of a standard lop-sided DFH pint glass. A sturdy inch & change of sandy tan head throwing whipped wavelengths as it regressed.

Dusty cocoa, dairy creamer/nougat, bare notion of roast, a petty amount of zest finishing off the nose. A watery anticipation, but it gets stickier as it warms. Everything is on the milder side of mild.

Light lactose opening, followed by a very chalky introduction to everything else: sharp & charred caramel, lightly nutty, with an overall mellow roast.

Feel is more scratchy or "cat tongue-like", then the velvet type of qualities I associate with oatmeal beers. Soothing in a numbing sort of way. Negligible alcohol. A definite dryness on the tail end that consumes the finish & lends itself to more stoutly comparisons(& room for one more bottle).

Photo of TeamSeabass
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark and the pour generates a light brown head. Its leaving some good sticky lacing.

Smells like sweet roasted malts.

Good roasted malt taste. Chocolate comes in also. Its well balanced with some hop bitterness playing a small role that helps with the overall flavor and character of the beer.

Good solid body but not too heavy.

Photo of aubuc1
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a 12 oz bottle in to a tulip glass

pours a dark clear brown with ruby highlights and a tan head that didn't last too long.

smell is a well balanced malt with maybe some light hoppiness

taste starts slightly sweet then the roasty malt comes in.

silky smooth mouthfeel is excellent and this beer is verrrry drinkable.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.77/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a clear black color porter with a medium size foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma of dry coffee notes with some subtle black chocolate. Taste is a mix between some chocolate note with some dry coffee and lightly sweet notes at the end. Body is a bit thin with some average carbonation. Very well done overall apart from body too thin.

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Highland Oatmeal Porter from Highland Brewing
87 out of 100 based on 1,182 ratings.