Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

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: 165 | 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 doubleipa
3.43/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice crown head on top of the black body. A good amount of lacing. Typical aroma for a porter: coffee, burnt, toasted, but little in th eway of hops. Didn't smell much that would label this an "oatmeal" porter. I would've expected a little more bread/dough aroma. Taste was good, but not great. A nice little bit of coffee in the long finish.

 342 characters

Photo of johnd513
3.43/5  rDev -11.1%
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.

 361 characters

Photo of Reaper16
3.42/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle served into a pint glass
Quick Hits!

Pours a dark cola-brown, sort of like molasses mixed with maple syrup. Red is inflected throughout the brown body. Less than a finger of ashy gray head sits on top with little lacing to show for it.

Typical sort of porter aroma. Slightly roasted malt, some grassy hops, caramelized sugar. The oats don't really come out in the aroma.

Taste follows the nose, only with a stronger oat flavor. There is a mealy grain taste that sort of clashes with the roast. But it tastes pretty good anyway.

Oats make a beer creamier in mouthfeel, right? So why is this porter so thin in body? I'm not getting the benefit of the oats here, which is a disappointment. It remains solidly drinkable regardless; comfortable ABV% and pleasant malt flavors.

A decent porter. Nothing to throw rocks at.

 834 characters

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.

 503 characters

Photo of Beer_Runner
3.41/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

No bottled on date on the label or the bottle.

A: A slow pour into a standard pint glass yielded one finger of thick and clumpy head that was a darker shade of tan. Over a few minutes the head dissipated to about a quarter-finger and lasted the remainder of the session, and also left some very nice lacing. The brew was very dark brown and opaque.

S: This beer did not have much detectable aroma at all.

T: The taste began with some sweet dark roasted malt and a hint of some very tasty, almost burned, oatmeal. Next, some grassy and earthy bitter hops kicked in for balance.

M: The body was smooth and just barely crossed the line from medium to heavy.

O: This oatmeal stout just missed the mark. It did not have much sweetness or grainy, dark roasted bitterness and coffee-like flavors. And, the hops just did not seem to fit the malts. It was not a bad experience, but it just did not work together for me. But, the tasty oatmeal did go some way toward redeeming this beer for me. It is a good and solid offering in the oatmeal porter and stout style, but it just did not make it to the top tier.

 1,105 characters

Photo of TheycallmeTim
3.39/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Had on-tap at Barley's in Greenville, SC. Served in a shaker pint glass.

A--Deep ruby highlights toward the bottom keep the body from being black, which is on point. It's the head I had issues with--almost two fingers of light, cottony white foam. Looks like a homebrew, an amateur homebrew. Liquid yeast?

S--The best part, I felt. Pretty rich and bitter, with coffee and chocolate. A lighter chocolate smell, maybe due to the addition of oats---kind of sweetened it, though not like the toffee notes you get in a traditional oatmeal stout.

T--enh. Decent, but not outstanding. Just OK. Standard bitterness and definitely mellowed out by the oatmeal, but nowhere near big enough in the flavor dept. for the abv. Not /bad/ by any means, just not very interesting, either. And in this style Americans are doing lots of interesting things.

M&D--Mouthfeel's fine, though a touch watery. Drinkability, again, is not that high for me because if you're going to get near six percent you gotta pack more of a whallop. Either that or or tone down the abv so I can throw back a few of these without feeling it. Would make a fine session ale in that case, but right now there's just too much bite in that dog--and not enough teeth.

 1,224 characters

Photo of kneeland
3.39/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Not much of an oatmeal thing going on here. I got more of an IPA taste. That was drinking out of the bottle. Then when I tried it in a pint glass, it got better. Hints of chocolate, pretty stouty, very rustic with malt.

The appearance is really nice. Really dark, but it isn't too heavy. And the head is a pleasant surprise. Tan, foamy, it sticks around a while and keeps thing afloat.

Overall I'm not in love with it, but I don't really have anything negative to say about it either.

 486 characters

Photo of scott
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


Dark with mahogany highlights. Scant lacing. Subdued aromatics, but once sipped this has a very nice hop bite. Actually, this is the hoppiest porter for me to date. The malt takes a backseat to this bad boy's desire. Honestly, it's more like a black IPA.
Easy to drink, but messy.

 286 characters

Photo of dgallina
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Arrived a very dark (nearly black) brown with ruby edges and a small creamy tan head and light lacing. Smells are *very* subdued; slight sweet chocolate malt notes with a grapefruit hop overlay. Flavor is quite weak for a porter, though it improves significantly as the beer warms. Sweet malts initially dominate, developing sweet chocolate flavors and finishing with strong grapefruit hops. The hops are overly strong considering the lack of balancing roasted malts. Mouth-feel is very good, however. Nice and smooth and creamy due to the oatmeal.

Easy drinking, but disappointing overall. The advertised chocolate malts just aren't present in enough quantity to balance the hops.

 684 characters

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.

 1,511 characters

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

Generous extra from BeerLovinGrl...Poured into snifter.

A--Deep red tint to the otherwise dark, opaque brew. Minimal lacing.

S--Minimal smell to this one. Kinda faint notes of malt.

T--Malt, Oatmeal is definitely there, nothing noteworthy.

M--Decent mouthfeel, not too carbonated, smooth.

D--Very solid for its style. What can I say, I have been spoiled by big beers, but certainly very decent beer...

 406 characters

Photo of tpd975
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep black hue with a creamy somewhat light colored head for such a dark beer. Okay retention with very light spotted lace.

S: Aroma is nice and roasty with hints of coffee, toasted malt, and chocolate.

T: Big on the dark fruit, hints of oatmeal and coffee. Too much dark fruit here for my liking.

M: Medium in body smooth most likely from the oatmeal.

D: Not my favorite porter but does have a very nice mouthfeel.

 422 characters

Photo of Yetiman420
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

iPhone review
On tap at the sunspot in knoxville tn
$2 pint Tuesday pint night

Presented in a standard plain pint glass
Clear solid dark brown with red gold agents
Thin light tan foamy head

Light roasted malt aroma
Solid frothy lacing

A little off flavor on the finish masked by the roasted malt
Could benefit from some more oatmeal body

 341 characters

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

Appearance: Dark brown brew topped with a thin beige-colored head that soon departed the glass.

Smell: A severely deficient aroma. Just the very faintest whiff of chocolate and oats.

Taste: Ready with a lightly sweet malt flavor. Sparse roastiness. Slight chocolate notes. Light flavors proportionately balanced by a minute hop bitterness. Overall, the flavors are just a hair too thin for me. I'll keep to their Black Mocha Stout next time!

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body with a rather sharp, pronounced carbonation.

Drinkability: The experience was a bit amiss, as the lacking flavors and near-watery body left me unsatisfied and wanting.

 642 characters

Photo of aracauna
3.36/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Decent porter. A bit hoppy and has a really faint thin burnt bitterness towards the end. Would be better if it were more balanced with the malt. Great moutfeel, though. Really velvety. Nice appearence, really dark, good tan head tops it off.

 241 characters

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.36/5  rDev -13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark burgundy color. The head is a two finger light khaki color with a great texture. It never really fades fully, topping the body off like mocha.

S: Cocoa powder, grains (not roasted), vanilla, and faint coffee beans. A bit reminiscent of a really good brown ale more than a porter/stout - but that doesn't mean it isn't a nice aroma.

T: More bitter than the aroma. It actually seems to feature a healthy hop bill, finishing with a decent amount of earth, pine, and even a touch of grapefruit. The bottle says this has a 'well-balanced hop character', and I can actually agree to that - only thing I don't like is the slight vegetal touch on the finish. Before the hops kick in, the flavor opens with roasted coffee beans and chocolate (with both flavors bleeding through to the aftertaste slightly). It's a bit mild, but balanced very well.

M: Classically bone dry and clean. The flavor leaves the palate as quickly as it enters, but I like how the hops never come across as being overly acidic. This is very easy to drink with spot on carbonation aiding its nature.

O: A solid no-frills hoppy porter. This isn't a world beater, but I'd buy a 6 pack of it given a limited selection at a store.

 1,249 characters

Photo of Retsinis
3.35/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked this up as part of a mixed six pack at Total Wines in Springfield while on vacation in Virginia. Made a point to try as many local, or locally available beers that I do not see here in California while I was there, and this was one of them. Brought this one back to Cali though, and split with my wife.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Bruery tulip glass.

The beer pours a rich, dark brown with a half inch mocha colored head. Lightly carbonated, very little to light lacing on the glass.

The aroma's are of roasting black coffee, dark chocolate, some earth or wood and some dark malt.

The flavors in the taste are of coffee blended with roasted almonds, toasted oats, semi-sweet chocolate, and a caramel sweetness. A little smoky bitterness, that finishes dry but crisp.

The mouth feel is an interesting dichotomy of sticky to velvet cream. Medium body, but enough carbonation. No real heat to me from the alcohol, which is not all that high, at least to me.

Overall, an interesting mix. Seemed to be a cross between a roasted porter, and an oatmeal stout, which I would assume it what they were going for with this one.

 1,141 characters

Photo of dancinwillie
3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A caramel colored head, on top of a very dark opaque reddish brown beer. The head is a tightly wound sponginess, looks almost like nerf. The beer looked dark brown (black?) until I held it up to the light. Some grainy aroma, with a toasted oat scent also.

Bitterness up front, and a really great sweet grain flavor. The graininess also has a roasted facet that comes through, as does a slight nutty toasted one. Medium bodied, and the aftertaste is short and sweet.

A pretty interesting concept, I can't ever remember having a oatmeal porter, although it now seems perfectly reasonable. This is another really hearty beer from Highland. I've had 2 of theirs and liked them both quite a bit. I'll have to try and get my hands on more, and soon.

 745 characters

Photo of shivtim
3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a deep black/brown with slight red hints, and a nice off-white head that fades. Nose is roasty malts and a surprising amount of hops, with good sweetness all around. Taste is some chocolate and burnt malts, and a bit of strange ash flavor on the finish. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both slightly above average. Not the best, but a solid brew.

 355 characters

Photo of Onenote81
3.32/5  rDev -14%
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.

 756 characters

Photo of PartyHatjo
3.31/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Complements of AKSmokedPorter...
Appearance: The head is quite airy...has the density of a cafe frappe and the color of the tan m&m (man I miss those, stupid blue ones).

Smell: Strong maltiness, with a hint of chocolate in the background.

Taste: This tasted like a lot of oktoberfest beers that I've had. Very malty. There's some grassiness in the palate as well that's a bit of a disappointment. Chocolate is prevalent in the initial taste.

Mouthfeel: Quite smooth...with no alcohol flavor. Bitterness is balanced with maltiness. Carbonation adequate.

Drinkability: Not one of my favorite porters. Something about it made it hard to finish the bottle, but I couldn't pinpoint it.

 693 characters

Photo of Radome
3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served from 12 oz bottle to snifter.

A - The color is pitch black with some red highlights when held up to light. The head is tan and thick, creamy and long lasting. Very attractive.

S - The aroma is malty with a bit of roastiness. There is also a sweet chocolate milk aroma. I don't get any hops in the aroma, but maybe a hint of alcohol.

T - There is a moderate hop bitterness up front that blends into a burnt, smoky taste. There is no malt in the middle to round things out. The aftertaste is like cigar smoke. This is more acrid and burnt than I expect in a porter--more characteristic of a stout.

M - The body is moderate with fizzy carbonation. No apparent creaminess or oiliness from the oatmeal.

D - This is a fairly acrid porter, verging on a stout. I don't detect the positive characteristics usually given by oatmeal. Not a bad beer, but not a great example.

 875 characters

Photo of TheDinger
3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass. A nice deep brown, nearly black pour with a generous 2 finger tan head. Smell was very coffee up front with a bit of chocolate and wood quality. Taste was where this was a bit disappointing. Comes off very strong coffee and a bit metalic. Almost no oatmeal quality IMO. More like a stout than porter. Taste is somwhat distracting with some burnt wood notes. Feel is a bit dry and stout like with some cream at the end. Overall- It's an okay/average beer. The taste was the biggest letdown. Too metalic and woody. Heavy coffee like a stout. Worth a try, but I won't be back-

 609 characters

Photo of Macky20
3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a New Belgium globe. Half finger of toffee colored thin head with very little retention. Aroma is on the light side but consists of milk chocolate, some oatmeal of course and a hint of brown sugar. At first taste my impression is that the beer is too thin, but then I remember to concentrate on the taste. It's much drier than I would have thought. The beer is described to be very malty, but I'm not getting the same impression as it doesn't balance well with the bitterness really. Roasted chocolate on the palate with a touch of bread. Mouthfeel is too thin, but even with the lack of carbonation and balance the beer is one I might pick up once in a while if I'm in the mood for a porter and the choices aren't remarkable.

 758 characters

Photo of sidetracked
3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Mellow Mushroom in Myrtle Beach, SC. Pours a clear dark mahogany brown with a cream colored head.

Smells of roasted malts with a slight brown sugar sweetness.

Tastes of roasted malts with a bitter roasted and burnt coffee finish. Nice lingering bitterness.

Medium body, but lacks the creamy mouthfeel an oatmeal porter should have. The lack of creaminess makes the beer seem thin and over carbonated.

Really easy to drink due to the lighter body--flavor and mouthfeel could be more robust. Not really impressed.

 525 characters

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