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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #30 - Island Creek Oyster Stout - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #30 - Island Creek Oyster StoutHarpoon 100 Barrel Series #30 - Island Creek Oyster Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

221 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 221
Reviews: 181
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 13.1%
Wants: 6
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
English Stout |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Brewed by Harpoon brewer Katie Tame, using Island Creek oyster farmer Skip Bennett’s revered Duxbury Bay oysters, this beer has a rich body and smooth mouthfeel derived in part from a combination of roasted barley and chocolate rye malts. The roasted malt notes blend beautifully with the briny, mineral flavors of the Island Creek oysters. An addition of hops adds some bitterness to balance the malt sweetness. This, the 30th installment of the Harpoon 100 Barrel Series, is best enjoyed with a plate full of Island Creek Oysters.

35 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-21-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 221 | Reviews: 181 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev +7%

t0rin0, Oct 14, 2012
Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev +7%

zestar, Aug 06, 2014
Photo of Thorpe429
3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Served in a tulip glass. A nice throwback idea; at the same time, I didn't get anything from the oysters in this. To be fair, I've never had an oyster so I'm not the best person to judge. Pours a dark brown color with a thin off-white head. The nose brings some roasted malt, chocolate, and a faint hint of coffee. Taste is mostly roasted malt with just a touch of bittersweet chocolate. Medium body with good carbonation. Might be a novelty, but I enjoyed it.

Thorpe429, Nov 13, 2010
Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +7%

nmann08, Dec 05, 2011
Photo of metter98
3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is very dark amber (near black) in color and poured with a finger high creamy beige head that slowly faded away and left lacy patterns on the surface and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of roasted malts in the nose along with some salty hints of oysters.
T: The taste isn’t very strong but flavors of chocolate malts, coffee and shellfish are noticeable.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very easy to drink because it’s light-bodied and the taste of oysters is subtle.

metter98, Apr 19, 2011
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fudge brownie brown with orange and gold accents. At least three fingers of golden ecru colored foam is currently sitting atop the beer... and is taking its sweet time descending. Thick streamers of sea foam lace are appearing as the crown begins to fade.

The nose is more straightforward English stout than English stout brewed with chocolate rye and Island Creek oysters. There may be a hint of brine, but that's probably just an overactive imagination. Oh yeah, it smells good.

It's still difficult to pick out the flavor influence from the oysters. Then again, beer that tasted overwhelmingly of shellfish probably wouldn't be very good to someone (like me) who much prefers landfood to seafood.

Specifics include bittersweet chocolate (dominant by far), a black tea leaf bitterness, a light rye malt earthiness, and a very light lactic tang. Warming doesn't change much, other than flavor intensity. For what it was brewed to be, this is damn good beer.

Only the body/mouthfeel falls off a tad... and it's extremely close to holding the 4.0 line. A little more size or more completely integrated carbonation would have gotten it there.

Harpoon Island Creek Oyster Stout is much better than 'sea level' beer. The oysters are pretty far in the background, which makes it that much better for this landlubber. Good solid mid-ABV English stout here. Drink up.

BuckeyeNation, Aug 21, 2010
Photo of mikesgroove
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

dark pour, black with a large tan heading creeping up the sides of the glass. Nice touches of lacing ringing the inside of the glass and coming to head with deep spider web like lacing throughout. Aroma was interesting and not at all what I expected. Very smoked with lots of hints of peat and roasted malts. A touch of something different and my brain wants to say it was sort of fishy, but again the expectations going in could be clouding that. Light touches of chocolate start to mix in as it warms as well. Nice body here, with a good level of carbonation throughout. Rich notes of roasted and smoked malts coming through from the very first sip with a touch of something else bouncing around in there as well. This other taste is not bad at all, it's just different and gives it a bit of a kick. Nice dry finish and smooth, even flavor kept it coming throughout the rest of the session.

Overall very solid and really quite nicely done

mikesgroove, May 29, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Bobby for sharing this one.

A: The pour is almost black in color with a very minimal mocha colored head on top.

S: The nose is heavily roasty with a lot of coffee notes. There is a mild chocolate aroma to it along with a slight salt and pepper smell.

T: The saltiness comes through quite a bit more in the flavor, which I would believe comes from the oysters. There is a bit of a peppery flavor, along with a lot of roast and some coffee and a light bitterness.

M: The body is medium with a low-to-medium level of carbonation.

D: This was my first oyster stout, so I didn't really know what I was getting in to. I quite liked it and while the saltiness was noticeable, I think it added a nice dimension to the beer.

womencantsail, Apr 03, 2010
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Served up an opaque, dark brown body with a finger of beige-colored, creamy-looking foam. A fleck or two of lacing on the descent.

Smell: Modestly roast, coffee-scented aroma. Increasingly lighter notes of unsweetened chocolate, black smoke, dark fruits, and vanilla.

Taste: A start of well-roasted barley supported by complimentary tastes of baker's chocolate and chilled coffee with a few smokey and briny undertones to it. Medium level of sweetness. Indeed, it's got a mineral bent to it, like sucking on a big, fat oyster shell. Hint of dark fruitiness. Just enough bitterness to help balance. A tad chalky on the dry, roasty finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Not bad at all for a pint! Sadly, it's not everyday you come across an oyster stout. More meat-based beers, please!

ChainGangGuy, Apr 01, 2010
Photo of oberon
3.38/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I believe this is only the second oyster stout I have had,Whitstable (spelling?) oyster stout was the other.Poured a deep dark brown with a large creamy-like off white head atop,it settled into a creamy froth leaving broken layers of lace behind.Mainly big roast in the nose with a tinge of iron,flavors are deeply roasted with a linger salty and mineral note imparted from the oysters,pretty abrupt in its flavor profile.Eh its ok but really not a whole lot going on outside of the roast and weird salty-mineral finish,I wouldnt buy again I dont think.

oberon, Mar 17, 2010
Photo of TMoney2591
3.55/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Pours an opaque black with a miniscule bit of light ecru bubbly head that dissipates further into a cirrus tail. No real lacing is formed. The nose is loaded with coffee, though some chocolate, tea, and salt water are also evident. The taste generally follows, though that salt water, seashore-influenced plays a much more advanced role. Still, there's a good amount of coffee, dark malts, chocolate, and wheat. The body is a handy medium, with a small bit of carbonation and a somewhat sandy feel. Overall, a bit of an oddball brew, one that takes a bit of getting used to, but still fairly drinkable nonetheless.

TMoney2591, Mar 20, 2010
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.22/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance nearly pitch black but when held toward the light this dark stout has brown highlights peaking through at the edges. The head forms at lest three fingers thick with a dimpled texture rising well above the rim of my 20 ounce imperial pint. Lacing is intricate and evenly spread this is quite the sight to be had before a night out of drinking on St. Paddy's.

Aroma has deep roasted barely and slight caramel toffee nearly burnt or caramelized sugars interplaying with a slightly salty ocean breeze and mineral water note as well. Even a touch of vanilla/or toasted marshmallow hanging out there with herbal hops blending in with the dark malts.

Flavors brings dark chocolate a mild black licorice with a heaping load of mineral/rusted nail tones. That sounds worse than it actually plays out, it's more along the lines of mineral water with dark roasted malt flavors playing together. A really nice drinking experience mild in alcohol but big in flavor, between big roasts and oyster additions.

Mouthfeel is medium to fuller bodied, but it never sits heavy on the palate. Carbonation is smooth and silky, easy going all day kind of drinking beer this was an excellent drinking experience.

Drinkability overall is one of those brews that should make it into rotations somebody out there needs to make a year round oyster stout now that Love Stout is gone from the Yard's lineup, even if Love Stout is still around it's no longer an oyster stout. A very interesting and tasty brew, that I will be glad to sip on again in the future.

WVbeergeek, Mar 20, 2010
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a mug glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of roasted malts, coffee, chocolate and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste is creamy and very malty up front with flavors of black coffee and milk chocolate. Then a mild but complementary hops presence comes in and brings a very good balance. If the "oyster" part of this beer is supposed to make a difference, I didn't detect it for better or worse. The-after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, mild kick, very good representation of style, this is a very sessionable stout that is worth drinking for a whole evening if you're in the mood for the style.

TheManiacalOne, Jul 18, 2010
Photo of Slatetank
3.55/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap at the Sunset Grill in Allston MA. Served chilled in a shaker pint.

A - An almost opaque black w/ garnet hues that poke through at the base, light tan cap w/ small beading

S - A dry roasty nose w/ coffee, spice and mild dark baked bisuit w/ roasted malt scents presenting highest, but there is a hint of cocoa

M - A very dry feel w/ a hint of sweet malt - medium light body w/ mild spiciness and the middle is slightly creamy. The finish is dry and almost mineral in quality

T - The taste has a strong earthy quality w/ mild cocoa notes and slightly toasted malt flavor. The taste comes of kind of woody w/ a dry mineral finish

D - an ok stout - not great, unfortunately I guess my expectations were higher than they should have been for this. I found it a bit high on the roastiness and the dry feel is not something I find to be highly drinkable

Slatetank, Mar 15, 2010
Photo of jlindros
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Fluffy 1 finger head gives way semi slowly to a dark black beer.

N: Roasted malts mostly, some crystal and dark other malts, slight syrupy, little bitter roasty earthy aromas, chewy malts, and a slight creamy nose.

T: Starts with more roasty dark malts, roasted and crystal malts, porter flavors, slight creamy even. Then a little bitter earthy roasted with a slight briny salty flavor, minerality even. Weird creaminess flavor too, with a little chewy malts and smooth oatmeal like feel and flavor. That weird briny flavor I'm sure stems from the oysters which adds a strange flavor, but could blend well with a very mineral laden heavy stout roasted malt beer.

M: Medium body with good carbonation.

F: Semi dry with lingering roast and dark malts, lots of bitterness and briny flavors, roast with some more minerality, and a little syrupy sweet stickiness. A touch of creamy porter linger as well.

jlindros, May 23, 2010
Photo of drabmuh
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No obvious date on the bottle. Beer served in a tulip. Beer is black and forms a 1 finger head that falls away quickly leaving no lacing on the glass. It breaks and clings to the sides. Beer is brown at the corners of the glass. OK, now the beer is leaving some lacing. Looks fine.

Almost a porterish smell high in roasted grains and some sweetness. Slight coffee in there I suppose.

Beer is medium in body and finishes nicely with nearly no aftertaste. There is a roasty bitterness that lingers late on the palate but overall a really nice beer. Second taste, sweet up front, again some coffee in there but its not overpowering. I'm not huge into stouts but I think this one rises above the chaff. I really am enjoying this beer. Nicely done Harpoon.

When can I get some vampire's nemesis in the bottle?

drabmuh, May 09, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
4.33/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 3/6/10 notes. Had a local DC tasting. Thanks to Justin (Jslot38) for brining it.

a - Poured a dark brown color with little head. Little carbonation evident.

s - Lots of malts here. Smells of roasted malts as well as some burnt and sweet malts. Also smells of chocolate and coffee. No oyster or seafood smell evident.

t - Taste was very similiar to the smell at first. Lots of roasted malts, coffee, and chocolate, with a little bit of sweetness to it. Then there was a nice aftertaste of oysters after all that, that made this a very interesting and enjoyable beer to drink.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation, a nice thickness to it.

d - Overall I really enjoyed this beer. Had a great stout smell and taste, but the taste got better and more complex with some oyster aftertaste that was great and not overpowering. I enjoyed this quite a bit and would love to pick up a bottle of this.

mdfb79, Mar 08, 2010
Photo of WesWes
3.38/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer pours a dark brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a thin black malt roasted character with some mild crystal malt aroma. There appears to be nothing going on with the oysters, besides a bit of mineral character. The taste is decent as well. It has a bone dry roasted taste with some light mineral flavors, but nothing too noticeable. There is little complexity here. It's just a middle of the road stout. The mouthfeel is average. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an above average beer at best. It's nothing extreme or even remotely exciting; another 100 barrel flop.

WesWes, Feb 26, 2010
Photo of Mora2000
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark brown color with a tan head. The aroma is chocolate with some roasted malt and coffee notes. The flavor is roasted malt, chocolate, briney salt/oysters. You can really taste the oyster character in this beer. Medium mouthfeel and low to medium carbonation.

Mora2000, Mar 19, 2010
Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +7%

Rochefort10nh, Dec 06, 2011
Photo of smcolw
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Nice starting head that is generous with the lace. Dark brown, but not black. Light opaquely shines through.

Classic dark chocolate smells. Very little chaulkiness.

Thin bodied, but otherwise excellent stout flavors of bitter malt flavor. No milk or sweetness, but I can detect subtle hop in the background.

smcolw, May 15, 2010
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.43/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled April 2010
This beer pours from the bottle with a black, lightly browned body and a frothy, brown-hued, two-finger thick head. A rich, roasted chocolate character and dark-sweet malt notes are quite evident in the nose. This actually has a huge cocoa character to it; sweet, rich and well browned, the cocoa also contributes a touch of chalkiness as well as some mocha-like aromatics.

The flavors is not as sweet as the aroma suggested, but still has enough to accentuate a nice chocolate character. This is actually dry tasting somehow and is really light bodied and quaffable. It is quite tasty and I would never have guessed that there were actual oysters used in this recipe. Smooth chocolate flavors are brought out by just enough sweetness and there is also a chalk-like cocoa character to the finish. There is an interesting oily quality to this as it warms up as well as a hint of umami flavor (though I could be just imagining this).

The oyster character, if it is noticeable, is definitely very subtle here, but I am really liking this beer; it drinks much richer and tastier than the alcohol would suggest, but it is not anywhere near heavy or cloying. Very quaffable and one I would be happy to drink on a regular basis.

Gueuzedude, Oct 06, 2010
Photo of GClarkage
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%

GClarkage, Jul 03, 2014
Photo of wrightst
4/5  rDev +7%

wrightst, Aug 07, 2014
Photo of corby112
3.25/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a deep dark brown color with slight mahogany edges when held to a light source and a one finger light head that slowly settles into a thin lasting ring. Not much in the way of lacing.

Nice roasted dark malt aroma with lots of dark chocolate, toffee, roasted coffee bean, lactic creaminess and burnt toast. The salty seafood/oyster presence is there but is masked by the deep roasted chocolate notes.

Medium bodied and extremely roasty with lots of burnt chocolate malt, toast, toffee and roasted coffee. Slightly spicy with hints of peppery zest and subtle hops. Again, there is a slight saltiness from the oysters but they are used to provide balance rather than to dominated the flavor. The ABV is well masked but this beer is intensely roasty, hurting it's drinkability. Interesting but a bit one dimensional.

corby112, Mar 07, 2010
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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #30 - Island Creek Oyster Stout from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
85 out of 100 based on 221 ratings.