Bourbon Barrel Aged Oatmeal Stout | Barley Island Brewing Company

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Bourbon Barrel Aged Oatmeal StoutBourbon Barrel Aged Oatmeal Stout
Very Good
42 Ratings
Bourbon Barrel Aged Oatmeal StoutBourbon Barrel Aged Oatmeal Stout

Brewed by:
Barley Island Brewing Company
Indiana, United States

Style: Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by zerk on 12-12-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 42 |  Reviews: 41
Reviews by swamiswamu:
Photo of swamiswamu
4.87/5  rDev +26.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber

I thought this was about as close to perfection as I've tasted. The interplay between the OS maltiness and the bourbon finish is purely stunning. The beer pours dark as night with a huge head and matching lacing. The head may be a little too big, but not a huge problem.The bourbon mellows as the beer oxidizes and warms, letting the roasted malt come to the front. This is a beer to sit with. I can't imagine drinking a bunch of this, but the 22oz wasn't too hard to take down.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of dirtylou
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, found at City-Wide in South Bend a few weeks ago...the 16% standard deviation of ratings on this beer is about as high as i can remember seeing. given my love for bourbon, i assume i'll be on the high end of that range

appearance: poured into a ND Soccer pint glass, big dark mahogany body, creamy chocolate cap...dark and strong body

smell: bourbon, bourbon, bourbon, vanilla, char, roasted malt and oats, dark chocolate, espresso

taste: holy schnikies - this thing is loaded with bourbon. It really masks all the oatmeal stout roastiness and only some vanilla and char seem to be making their way through. It's messy and boozy (in taste, not ABV) but the bourbon character intrigues me

mouthfeel: pretty smooth and creamy, upon exploration - this is lighter than i initially thought

drinkability: going to be a tough one

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Photo of Jon
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Barley Island's Oatmeal Stout aged in 12-year-old Bourbon casks from Buffalo Trace Distillery.

Opaque with a creamy tan head. Great retention and decent lacing overall.

Vanilla, oak, roasted malt, chocolate and straight Bourbon whiskey dominate the aromatics department.

Typical roasted malt qualities are livened by well-infused notes of whiskey, vanilla, oak, coffee and chocolate. Vastly complex flavor profile.

Elegantly smooth as a cask-conditioned offering served from the handpull. Modestly carbonated and wonderful.

From the balance of the well-infused oaky whiskey profile and the roasted qualities of the Oatmeal Stout that was conditioned in the barrel comes a very drinkable brew. While not as dry and quaffable as the original Oatmeal Stout, this is an even more complex, flavorful offering. I look forward to sampling the bottled version, which is apparently on its way.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle. Served in a Sam Adams BL glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with about an inch brown head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. The aroma is very nice, there's roasted malt, vanilla, bourbon, oak, and chocolate that I can smell. Taste is similar to the aroma, but with the addition of caramel, charred/burnt malt and a little bit of coffee. There's a good lingering bittersweet chocolate and oaky aftertaste. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit chewy and slick and has medium/low carbonation. It's very, very smooth and easy to drink. I think this is a pretty good beer, I'd definitely pick this up again. This was the first beer I've tried from Barley Island, I'll have to try more of their brews now!

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4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Still retains good carbonation after the barrel ageing as it yeilds a two finger head that is a rich milk chocolate brown. Body is 3000 mile motor oil black. Nose is a rich malty based sense experience. Including roasty coffee, and toffee notes laced with dark chocolate. On first sip you really get the bourbon up front. Very sweet on the palate with almost soured ripe dark fruit. Slightly bitter coffee twing twords the finish. Burnt malt throughout. This one is very good but a little all over the place. Could be more balanced. Slight sour thick mouthfeel. Realatively easy to drink.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into my delirium tremens tulip glass.
Pours a very dark brown, almost black color with a slight 1/4" head that recedes to a froth on top. Beer pours a little thin for my liking, but I can get by that.
Smell is bourbon and all bourbon. There are other smells fighting to make themselves present in the nose but the bourbon is just too dominant to let them show.
Tastes good. Theres a very good bourbon taste. There is some of the oatmeal stout coming through in the taste.
After letting it warm up a bit there is no change in the taste. Still dominated by the bourbon.
The mouthfeel is smooth with just a slight bit of carbonation. This is a very drinkable beer. I enjoy bourbon aged beers so I'm really enjoying this one. I just wish there was a secondary taste that showed up. If there was a noticeable chocolate or coffee taste then this would be a very solid stout.
This is a good stout. Appreciate the opportunity to drink it.

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Photo of Pegasus
3.76/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep mahogony color with a massive tan head, this gradually faded to a small ring at the glass walls.

Aroma: Overpowering, mildly sweet alcohol note, with some malt aroma hiding beneath.

Taste: Intensely sweet flavor dominated by dark malts, and a lesser note of medicinal hops. Finishes dry with a longering medicinal and metallic hop bitterness.

Mouth feel: Quite smooth and very thick, almost syrupy, with slight carbonation. The fullness of the body is likely due to the oatmeal.

Drinkability/notes: A quite interesting beer, well suited as an apertif or dessert beer. Thanks to Beer Czar Rick for generously sharing this.

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Photo of meathookjones
3.03/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out black with a tall dark brown head that leaves a slight scattering of lace as it dies down. Aroma is of light dark chocolate and a big sweetness that is a bit off putting. Notes of the bourbon barrel show through a bit more than any of your standard Oatmeal Stout flavors. Taste was of a slight alcohol up front before the chocolate malt sets in. A bit woody and a strong bourbon presence. Seems like the bourbon barreling has taken away from the aroma and the flavor in my opinion. Besides that its just plenty of sweetness. Mouthfeel is a bit too carbonated but otherwise as you would expect. Drinkability is about average, though the last bit was a bit hard to get down. Not bad overall just not something I would have again. Thanks to quarre and the Secret santa for this brew.

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Photo of GreenWBush
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gorgeous sludge-y black, with gooey milk chocolate head retention and lace rings.

The thumbprint of the barrel is overwhelmingly bourbon-y at cold, still very prevalent at cellar, and sizeable at warm. Once you've had you're first sip you can clearly make out the major sweetness this beer had, to a fault.

Though the aforementioned nearly cloying sweetness was a bit heavy, somehow the blending of flavors simply works in this beer. Sweeter than usual roastiness is balanced by a shockingly 'homebrew' raggedness of hop.

Big chewy mouthfeel with roasty acids and coffee/bourbon notes make this a damn good beer for the first really cold night of the year.

Can this really only be 5%?

Paired wonderfully with a falafel.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle obtained via trade with Lewis13 from RB. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1" dark brown head over the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head lasts nicely, with ample lace. Aroma is dark grains, oat sweetness, and moderate bourbon. Taste follows the nose almost exactly, dark maltiness upfront, segues into rich oats, and then comes on with vanilla character and bourbon lingering. Mouth is smooth and drinking for a BA brew. Wouldn't mind stumbling onto this one again...

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Photo of cameraman
2.67/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A dark pitch black color, with a brown, almost caramel colored head. The head is about an inch and half thick and has very good retention. Wow, what an aroma, the bourbon comes right out at the start, with sweet caramel and butter notes. That is followed by the sweet, distinct scent of oatmeal. The taste of oatmeal comes out very weak, the most dominant flavors are chocolate and coffee. The bourbon is almost non-existant, it comes in at the tail end of each taste. A very thin feel, almost as if it were watered down, I was expecting something more thick and syrupy. There is also the strong feel of carbonation coming in halfway and stays there till the end. This beer had a great start, a beutiful look and a fantastic aroma, was all for not. That was due to a weak flavor and a very unappealing mouthfeel. A note: After I wrote this review, I looked at the bottle it stated it was bottled in 2004. So, this beer did not age very at all.

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Photo of aracauna
4.01/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

True black body is topped by a thick chocolate milk foam head. The sticky froth chunks the side of the glass. Bourbon, vanilla and chocolate dominate the aroma. There’s a chocolate milk flavor that’s really interesting. Slight char. It’s a bit like a white russian made with chocolate milk. The stout is a good base, but could stand to be a bit more assertive as it gets lost in the bourbon by the end of the bottle.

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Photo of grub
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

group tasting may 26/07 with biegaman, Viggo, Lexx, crwills, [email protected], [email protected], and me (grub). everybody threw something into the mix and we had a great lineup of beer. blankboy contributed this one, so thanks paul!

22oz bottle.

pours deep brown, not quite black. a small dense tan head drops slowly and leaves spotty lace behind.

aroma is good. bourbon and vanilla. hint of alcohol. big bready malt. light roast. dark chocolate.

taste is great. big dark chocolate and bourbon. vanilla. light roast. bit of coffee. bready malt. slight hint of citrus.

mouthfeel is good. nice medium-low carbonation level. big body. smooth.

drinkability is excellent. well balanced and very enjoyable. a great brew.

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Photo of BlackAngus
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice brown head that retains really well. Very black, completely opaque color.

S - Bourbon dominates the aroma. Some vanilla aroma, presumably from the barrel, as well.

T - Nice maltiness, some chocolate, but bourbon is the star of the show here. I think it's nicely balanced.

M - Medium-full bodied, low carbonation, clean finish. Very slight sweet bourbon aftertaste.

D - This isn't a session beer. But it is extremely drinkable. I will pick it up again when I see it.

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Photo of hopdog
4.37/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottles acquired in trades with atpayne & Sephiroth (thanks!).

Poured a dark black color with brown edges and a larger sized tan head. Aromas of wood, vanilla, bourbon, roast, oak, light coffee, and chocolate. Tastes of vanilla, lighter wood, oats, bourbon, roast, and light coffee. Soft and creamy body. I really enjoyed it.

Notes from 12/23/07

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Photo of flexabull
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of Indybeer. Thanks again!

Pours a deep flat black color, with a sizable tan head.

Aromas are of bourbon, dark bitter chocolate, and a bit of oak. Nice nose on this one.

Flavors are of oatmeal, chocolate, and a hint of bourbon. I think the bourbon flavor adds a nice touch here, it's subtle, and not overpowering the other nice stout flavors. Finish is crisp, and biting. There is a slight hop bitterness that lingers on the palate. This is a pretty nice stout!

Mouthfeel is good. It is creamy, supple, full, and smooth.

Drinkability is very good. A full flavored stout, that won't knock you out with a ton of alcohol.

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Photo of brandoman63
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of goodbyeohio
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, hand-labeled and dated 2004 by copyright.. no bottling date

pours oily black with a three-finger cocoa colored head. fades fast with sticky, foamy lacing. smell is equal parts raw, bitter vanilla bean and chocolate malt shake. some tobacco notes in here as well. luscious aroma. this beer oozes the buttery wood of its bourbon barrel.. picks up this flavor and runs with it, adding a nice stouty bitterness that fades much quicker than the whiskey. hops are detectable and add a nice balancing tang. very drinkable due to low alcohol content but taste is rather large.. this would be a perfect dessert beer with chocolate cake. a little too rich for a low abv beer but a noble effort either way.

thanks patyoda.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle received from moose3285 as an extra. Thanks, man! Into my snifter.

A: Pours black with dark brown highlights. A massive three finger brown head with excellent retention. Leaves a ton of foam as i drink this. Must say this is pretty!

S: Tons of chocolate malt character on the nose, along with coffee and a good dose of bourbon heat. This smells delicious

T: Starts off with a good deal of bourbon on the palate with chocolate and coffee coming in behind. There's a mild sourness on the finish that's really pleasing too, similar to a souring milk. The finish is mildly burnt bitter and tasty

M: Carbonation is a little high and takes away from what oatmeal silkiness is there. The rest is solid, though - the beer's fairly light, carbonation is great too

D: At 5% ABV, I'd drink a lot of this. This is really good stuff - apart from carbonation. Thanks, Mike!

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Photo of iconoklaztor
4.37/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow what a find!!

I heard about this brew from the brewmaster himself. He told me that the oatmeal stout was placed in Buffalo Trace Bourbon barrels for aging.
On to the review!

The smell of this brew is phenomenal. It's like smelling a bottle of bourbon without a doubt. The head started out as a 3 finger brown beauty that quickly resided at about a quarter of an inch. The taste is....(speechless)
As I stated its like a FKBS on steroids. A true extreme beer IMO. The mouthfeel is full and velvety. It's strong taste of bourbon and coffee could scare ppl away. The drinkability is the only problem because its so extreme it could freak ppl's taste-buds out.

Overall: I will be going back tomorrow to buy all of these they have remaining. I love this brew!

Edit: I just opened another bottle of this brew. I can't help but want to drink this all the time. I am a whiskey lover as well as I beer lover and I must say this really hits the spot. I can taste all of the bourbon notes and all the coffee stout notes. I LOVE THIS BREW. enjoy

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Photo of mcallister
3.51/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is my second time reviewing this beer. First time was from bottle and the beer was well below par. This was served from cask at BW'3 in Indianapolis. Not sure why it's listed as retired.

Black ink in a pint glass. Frothy mocha head of a half inch retains itself quite well. Thin trace lace.

Bourbon aromas explode out of the glass. Not sure if you're going to be drinking a beer or sip a glass of Makers. There is a hint of bitter chocolate and anise in the background of the aroma.

Overpowered by the bourbon. But once I let it sit awhile it kept getting a little better and balanced in the glass. A nice roasted chocolate malt at the core with anise, and hints of creme de brulee. Still it is overwhelmed by the bourbon aging and could use being aged in older barrels or for a shorter amount of time. Definitely worth trying on cask.

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Photo of crwills
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasting at biegaman's place with grub, viggo, lexx, blankboy (RB), and tupalev (RB). I didn't write down who brought what, unfortunately, so thanks everyone!

Fantastic colour to this one -- deep black with a tan head. Aroma is completely unsubtle bourbon -- POW! Others here said they were tired of it, but I guess I haven't had enough bourbon-barrel aged beers yet to get to that point, so it was great for me! Cakey yeast follow-up in the aroma and initial flavour, which was surprisingly sweet. A little bit weaker in the body than I'd like for the style, but nothing major. Definite smokiness in there with the bourbon as well.

Probably one of my top 2 or 3 in this tasting!

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Photo of Viggo
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at biegaman's super extravaganza spring Saison tasting! blankboy (RB) brought this one!

Pours a hazed brown/black, quite opaque, thin tan head, nice lace, leaves a solid layer. Smell is great, sweet, very malty, lots of roast, vanilla/oak, bourbon, more roast, chocolate, really nicely put together. Taste is caramel malt, chocolate roast, bit of coffee, light bourbon, oaky vanilla, rich flavour. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, warmth going down from the bourbon. Nice example of bourbon aging, really integrates well with the beer, very nice. Thanks Paul!

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Photo of clvand0
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark color with a tall head that falls quickly and leaves some lacing on the glass. The aroma is a mixture of dark malts and vanilla and bourbon/alcohol goodness. The flavor comes across with roasted malts at first, then follows up with some bourbon/whiskey notes. Fruits and vanilla follow in the flavor. The finish is quite dry, but somehow there is also a bit of sweetness that remains. The dry finish usually lends to a thin finish, but this one has a fairly full body about it. I really enjoyed this brew. A bomber is a bit much, but the flavors are very nice.

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Photo of deejaydan
3.47/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Either very overcarbonated, or infected. Good looking brew, ouside of the wispy huge head that took 5 minutes to settle down. Aroma of wiskey char, and some of that in the flavor, but mostly an expolsion of bubbles takes away from the taste. Not a bad brew, I would imagine that it would be great as a cask brew, less carbonation and whatnot...

Thanks to quarre for the sample!

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Bourbon Barrel Aged Oatmeal Stout from Barley Island Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 42 ratings