Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout | Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
2,259 Reviews
Samuel Smith's Oatmeal StoutSamuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
United Kingdom (England) | website

Style: Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-05-2000

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,259
Ratings:
6,520
Avg:
4.2
pDev:
19.05%
 
 
Wants:
363
Gots:
1,192
For Trade:
6
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Reviews: 2,259 | Ratings: 6,520
Photo of biboergosum
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

550ml bottle, something to sip on whilst dinner melds.

This beer pours a clear, deep, dark brown colour, with prominent red highlights, and three fingers of dense, foamy, and puffy beige head, which renders some random inkblot lace around the glass as it slowly meanders away.

It smells of fruity, musty, and lightly roasted caramel malt, bittersweet chocolate, an oily nuttiness, percolating coffee, wet ash, and mildly floral, earthy hops. The taste is more faintly toasted caramel malt, oaten cereal, milk chocolate, dried orchard fruit, almond-flavoured coffee, and some mild woody, leafy hops.

The carbonation is on the low side, just a lulling minor frothiness throughout, the body rather creamy, smooth, and inhabiting the north end of medium weight. It finishes off-dry, the dark fruity malt and fading cocoa notes pushing through.

A lovely, lovely sipper - quaffer - drinker - whatever, this goes down oh so very well, the oatmeal softening, and at times, leading the way. Not hard to see why this is considered to be among the progenitors of the style.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired at Trader Joe's as part of their 3 beer/1 glass for $9.99 pack. 550 ml brown glass bottle with foiled-over pressure cap served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are through the roof given its current ratings and reputation as the best oatmeal stout in existence.

Served nearly straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a two finger light tan colour head of good cream and thickness, and good retention. Body colour is a solid nontransparent opaque black. Not quite jet black, but it's very dark. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Looks as it should for the style.

Sm: Roasted barley, chocolate malt, dark malts, and caramel. The roast is particularly attractive. Very evocative and inviting. I don't detect alcohol or yeast. I'm looking forward to this one.

T: Roasted barley, chocolate malt, dark malts, fired kiln malt, caramel, chocolate, milk, and cream. Some cream. A balanced, enjoyable flavour all around. Well layered. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Any hopping is floral and backgrounded at best. Tasty. Oats come through as it warms; I didn't detect any in my initial pass. Some cola notes throughout, even some herbal character as it warms. Oddly enough, I get some pear fruit. Some earthiness at the base, but subtly executed. Some vanilla/creme brulee hits in the late second act - a highlight of the beer, but one that directly challenges style conventions; it's ballsy, but I like it.

Mf: The coarseness of the roast duels with the rolling smoothness of the oats; the only winner is the consumer. Ideal thickness and carbonation. Wet enough to keep it drinkable but dry enough to satisfy the needs of the style and to complement the flavours. Above all, it's balanced and tailored with/to the flavour profile. A bit heavy on the palate for the modest ABV, but it suits the flavour. It could use more cream.

Dr: Quite drinkable considering its heavy bold flavours and assertive mouthfeel. I rather fancy it. A solid oatmeal stout, and one I'd love to try on nitro/draught. Tasty and enjoyable. A satisfying brew from Samuel Smith's. Is it their best beer? Possibly. I look forward to finding out.

I'd like to try this side by side with the Stockyard Oatmeal Stout also available at Trader Joe's. I worry that I'm rating this a bit high based on outside influences, but it's so yummy.

High B

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice, dark brown with a fairly-nice tannish head with some lacing. The smell is lots of malty bread with a bit of a roasted character. Taste adds a little bit of chocolate to the mix. The mouthfeel is very, very nice with a beautiful smoothness from the oats. Very drinkable. A beautiful cold weather session brew.

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Photo of zeff80
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a dark, dark brown color with a foamy, capucino-like head that left soapy rings of lace.

S - It smelled of chocolate, hazelnut, and coffee beans.

T - Great chocolate and caramel flavors blend with a mild bitterness from the oats. It also had a slight nutty quality and floral notes.

M - It was soft, smooth and creamy. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a great oatmeal stout with a wonderful balance of sweet and bitter.

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Photo of oline73
3.69/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with some light coming through. There is a finger and a half of thick tan head and great retention.

Smell: Sweet malt and a bit of caramel. Mild roast. Not a super strong smell overall.

Taste: Very malty and not as much roast as I remembered. A bit nutty with some dark fruit notes. The finish is mildly bitter.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with smooth carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: I would have liked more roast but still very good and smooth. I will probably have another given the chance.

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Photo of oberon
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I think the best of the oatmeal stouts out there,pours a deep brown with a nice tan colored head that sticks very well.The aroma is very much like brown sugar and and roasted malt.The taste also has a brown sugar taste but a little more subdued with a nice roasted coffee taste ending nice and soft.Drinking this beer is a beer lovers experience.

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Photo of nickfl
3.96/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Large, tan head that settles quickly and leaves decent lace. Dark brown to black body with ruby highlights.

S - Toasty malt with some chocolate. Sweet oatmeal aroma with slight roast and a hint of hops.

T - Dark chocolate and sweet malt with oatmeal. Milk chocolate, balanced by a slight hop flavor in the middle. the finish is roasty with moderate malt and hop bitterness.

M - Thick and oily body with moderate carbonation and a moderately sweet finish.

D - Fairly drinkable, but not a session beer. Sweet and malty overall with a nice, malty chocolate flavor. Not quite enough roast in the aroma.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours nearly black with a light tan head which retains well and leaves spotty lace. Mild roast malt aroma with a nutty and chocolate flavor. Creamy and smooth finish.

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Photo of jlindros
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Huge head of a whole hand, dark black color with no real light coming through.

N: Rich malts, oats, chocolate milk and milk chocolate, slight sweet malts.

T: Rich and very creamy, lots of chocolate milk, oats, velvet chocolate oats, some rich malts and lightly sweet, lush.

M: very creamy and rich, almost velvety, decent carbonation.

F: Still a little somewhat sweet, some roasted flavors come out as it warms, the milk chocolate lingers with a very slight bitterness.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.4/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Deep, dark mahogany brown with lighter brown, almost ruby, highlights. The cap has the color and surface texture of a freshly-baked oatmeal cookie. It's frothysticky, reasonably persistent and leaves a few small sheets and a few wisps of lace behind when it fades.

The nose is a little more subdued than some stouts, but a chocolate-covered coffee bean character is evident. Flavors include warm molasses cookies and coffee, along with very little chocolate. Oatmeal comes to the forefront as it warms and the beer becomes even more delicious as a result.

The mouthfeel is medium in heft, smooth and not especially creamy. There's a little too much carbonation for my tastes.

This is supremely drinkable beer that I'm enjoying immensely. Here's the short version of this review: Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout is a widely available, easy drinking, delicious version of an oatmeal stout and is one that will always have a place in my beer fridge.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black in color and topped by a creamy dark tan head that holds well and leaves very good lace. When held to bright light ,some clear, brown highlights can be seen. The aroma offers a bright fruitiness, some light chocolate, a mild roastiness and a hint of butterscotch. The body is light-medium with a very fine, restrained carbonation that gives it a silky smooth mouthfeel. The flavor is sweetly malty with a good dose of fruitiness up front, followed by some bittersweet & dark chocolate notes as it crosses the palate, and finishing with a more noticeable bitterness, some nuttiness, and a long lasting gentle roastiness. Clearly balanced toward the sweet side. There's a mild diacetyl here that seems to pull the whole thing together. It never appears to become more than just a light butterscotch note, but it helps to round everything out so nicely - smoothing out the roastiness, and maybe even helping to keep the sweetness in check.(?) A very nice, and highly enjoyable beer, that is soft & sweet & light but also offers alot of character - allowing it to fill a variety of different roles. Highly recommended.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.65/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours an opaque black body with a small, creamy, light yellowish head.

Smell: Sweetish, malty aroma with hints of milk-soaked, cinnamon-sugar coated bread crusts and red wine.

Taste: The flavor is predominately sweet with flavors of chocolate, coffee, and molasses. There's also a slight roasty balancing bitterness, though it still manages to finish semi-sweet as the chocolate emerges once more.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body with a soft carbonation, but its silky smooth, I must say!

Drinkability: A nice, light, sweet stout fit for any time of day, including 8:30 in the morning!

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.68/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I am sorry but this has to be one of the best beers ever made. A staple of my early craft years, I had long forgotten how good it was. I picked up a bottle on the local shelf on my way home tonight and cracked it open after dinner, poured into a pint glass and consumed on 08/13/2010.

Perfect dark brown color with a creamy tan head that reached about an inch up the side of the glass and had incredible retention. One of the best looking beers of any style I have ever seen, looking at it now some twenty minutes in the thick coating all along the glass is immense.

Aroma is sweet roasted malts, oasts, chocolate, rich an creamy caramel and vanilla. So full and rich, with a creaminess to the feel that is unmatched in the style. Each sip starts with a smooth, almost mousse like feel across the tongue, which evolves into rich chocolate and incredible depth of roasted malts. Light touches of hops come across on the finish giving it the slightest hint of bitterness in the finish before the final taste of sweet malts wrings itself out across the palate.

Overall it really does not get better then this, the hallmark people should strive for.

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Photo of chinchill
3.93/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Portion of fresh bottle served in 6 oz glass.
(revised 1/2011 with 550ml bottle served in pint glass)

This is what an oatmeal stout should look like: nearly opaque with a frothy light brown head.

S - more subtle than expected, given appearance. Floral, earthy and malty; toasted grain aromas dominate.

T - starts smooth and soft. with predominately malty flavor. Noticeable chocolate. A bit bitter at finish. This classic is good to the last drop.

M - smooth, full bodied, significant carbonation.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

550 ml bottle into imperial pint glass, bottled on 8/3/2012. Pours crystal clear almost opaque dark brown color with a nice 2 finger dense and fluffy light tan head with incredible retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of caramel, cocoa, molasses, oatmeal, dark bread, toast, light apple, floral, and earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt notes with some light fruitiness. Taste of caramel, molasses, cocoa, oatmeal, toast, roasted malt, dark bread, floral, and roasted earthiness. Light floral bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, molasses, oatmeal, cocoa, toast, roasted malt, dark bread, and earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of dark malt notes with moderate hops; with great flavor robustness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a creamy and slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent oatmeal stout. Very nice balance and complexity of dark malt flavors; and very smooth to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 18.7oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours to a very dark brown with a thick, beige head and a decent amount of lacing on the glass.

S: You smell a chocolate & coffee sweetness and a roasted malt aroma with just a bit of alcohol.

T: The taste isn’t as sweet as the smell containing a smoky coffee flavor. No bitterness at all and a slightly sweet after-taste.

M: Very smooth, with a heavy body and light/medium carbonation. I’ve seen the word “chewy” thrown around in other reviews and this is the first beer that I’ve had that identifies with that term. I’m considering that a good thing.

D: Despite being heavy and a bit filling, this beer goes down very easy. It’s very flavorful and not over-powering. This is a beer that you can just chill out and relax with.

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Photo of mothman
3.58/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into Samuel Smith Pint Glass.

Pours a 2 finger full tan head. Color is a deep deep mahogony brown. Pretty much black. Good retention and a lot of lace sticks to the walls of the glass.

Aroma: Very sweet oatmeal stout. Chocolate, caramel, and coffee are the main notes I get. This is quite a light stout as compared to others I have had.

Taste: Sweet toffee. Chocolate, caramel, and coffee is also there. Again, a very sweet tasting beer. Beer roasted malt taste.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and creamy. A very small touch of alcohol pokes through. Very sweet beer. Full bodied. Medium level of carbonation.

Overall, this is a decent oatmeal stout. It isn't on the top of my list, but it is worth a try. One of their better beers in my opinion.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.83/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of the most drinkable oatmeal stouts I have ever tasted. I enjoy the results of fermentation in slate tanks. It has the best appearance, taste, and smell of them all. I like the fact that it is not too strong, so you can have several. I enjoy that it has no cloying sweetness and a crisp aftertaste. This stout has a luxurious mouthfeel and can be counted on to deliver everytime.

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Photo of dcmchew
4.44/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Almost pitch black, medium head, nice lacing and retention. The roast dominates the smell, along with vanilla and dark fruit.
The taste follows, very roasted malts, sweet also, with big dark chocolate notes, big coffee and some mild caramel. There is also a stronger grainy note. Dark fruit follows, with sweet dark fruit (raisin, dried fig, dates) and some mild acidity (red apple). Big dark spices, like cocoa, cinnamon, with vanilla, but also a faint anise and piney note. Probable because of the hops, with some green herb coming through, and creating a great bitterness, a bit dry in the aftertaste.
The beer is creamy, but does have a bit of carbonation, just enough for the alcoholic content to pinch, not just warm up.
A beautiful (oatmeal) stout, balanced perfectly if not for just a tiny bit of extra sweetness, but i guess it's a matter of taste. And i loved it.

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Photo of russpowell
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark mahogany/black with a thick, creamy tan head. Very good lacing and head retention

Smell; Chocolate, honey, fruiity & vanilla notes

Taste: Bitter choclate, licorice & grainy bitterness. Fruitty/quinching finish

MF: Perfect, silky smooth & great carbonation

Great quaffability, I highly reccomend this ressurection (decades ago) of a classic from sam smith's

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Photo of Jason
4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz clear bottle that has gold foil on top, no freshness date to be found.

Appearance: Ink black with a wonderful light tan lace which leaves rings all the way down the glass.

Smell: Mildly acidic dark malt twang, a little earthy and some sweetness also.

Taste: Smooth as silk with a crisp full body to boot. A strong roasted malt flavour pushes everything aside ... to make way for a creamy sweetness. There seem to be an hidden earthy undertone throughout ... most likely from the Yorkshire yeast. Hop bitterness is vague yet keeps the sweetness in check. A semi dry falls on the palate as soon as the sweetness fades. Dark roasted coffee, over caramelized buttery toffee and dark sweetened chocolate flavours swirl around the tastebuds to make for a bitter sweet finish.

Notes: A cult classic among beer geeks dating back to 1980 ... lets have a moment of silence in honour of this fine brew ... if you want to jump into the world of stouts give this one a try, you might be surprised and actually love it ... I did that is for sure.

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours an opaque very dark brown to black with brown highlights when held up to the light. The beer has a two finger tall creamy tan head that slowly reduces to a thick layer covering the entire surface of the beer. Significant lacing is observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of dark malts, oatmeal, light sweetness, and hints of chocolate.

T: There is a nice complexity to the flavors - dark malts, chocolate, nuts, oatmeal, and some light sweetness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Creamy.

O: I like this beer, another return to years of past when I was just starting to appreciate craft and import beers. I think this beer is easy to drink and sessionable - goes down perfectly on a cold autumn afternoon, preferably by a fireplace.

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Photo of smcolw
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Impressive and lasting rocky head. Excellent lace on the side of the glass. Nearly black in color.

Strong caramel aroma--semi-sweet. Some chocolate and cocoa. No hop.

Awesome balance of dark and light malts. Not as sweet as the smell suggests. Some hop in the finish but the swallow is mostly black patent malts. Very full body--almost like whole milk. Low carbonation, but perfect for how dry this beer is.

This is one of the best stouts in the world and worthy of tasting in a flight of the world's best.

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Photo of billab914
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 550ml bottle into my Portsmouth tulip. Poured dark brown in color with a thick tan head to it. The head kept a nice covering on top of the beer as I drank it and left some excellent lacing as well.

The aroma has a smooth oat and chocolate flavor to it. It's not overly complex or extreme, but it's a very solid and appealing flavor.

The taste shows a big oat flavor to it that is similar to an oatmeal cookie. It has a roasty and rich milk chocolate flavor to it as well that is very nice. Pretty balanced with sweet and bitter in the finish. I typically love oatmeal stouts, and they really don't get much better then this.

The mouthfeel is thick and creamy and carbonation is moderate. Drinkability is very good for me. I love the oat flavors and what it adds to the mouthfeel. Excellent beer overall and pretty much a benchmark for the style for me personally.

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Photo of mdaschaf
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

550 ml bottle

A: Pours a very dark brown color with a thick layer of beige/mocha colored foam on top. Decent retention and very thick lacing left behind.

S: Surprisingly faint, there is a bit of chocolate and lightly roasted malt. Slight sweetness from the oatmeal and a little bit of dark fruits at the very end.

T: Slight sweetness, with chocolate and a little bit of dark fruit. There is a little bit of coffee and cream as well. Again, rather sweet, which wasn't completely unexpected.

M: Very smooth and creamy, but touch thin for my liking. Goes down easy and is very drinkable though.

O: A solid beer, I don't love it, and I am not sure I would get it again, but it has its place.

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Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
94 out of 100 based on 2,259 ratings.
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