Dismiss Notice
We're celebrating 10 years of BeerAdvocate magazine with $10 print subscriptions for US residents.

Subscribe now!

O'Reilly's Irish Stout | Sly Fox Brewing Company

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
101 Reviews
no score
Send samples

Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Irish Dry Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 3.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This Irish Style Stout is brewed with imported Pale and British Roasted Barley and hopped with Cascade and East Kent Goldings. Black in color, light in body, and roasty dry.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-17-2002

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 101 | Ratings: 229
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.06/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 9/3/08. On tap at the Ginger Man. Pours black with a small dark tan head. Very pretty! Aroma of roasted malt and coffee. Aroma of roasted and sweet malt with a bitter hops finish. Quite dry. Watery, weak palate. Meh, not much to this one.
6/4/6/3/13 (3.2/5)

 269 characters

Photo of Kendo
4.09/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got it on-tap (the nitro tap) at Lionheart in Albany.

A: Nice cascading effect as you'd expect from the nitro tap. Body is pitch black with a creamy, khaki-colored 1.5-finger head that sits and stays for awhile, ultimately leaving behind rings and rings of foam.

S: Not much in the nose at all. A hint of roasted malts is about it, and that's faint. Not completely unexpected for the style, however.

T: Roasted malt up front with some coffee or espresso as well. Some hints of bitter, unsweetened chocolate more towards the middle of the sip, becoming more noticeable as it warms a bit. Finishes with a very nice dry bitterness that lingers in the aftertaste. Good balance between the roasted malt and that dry bitterness from the hops.

M: Creamy, as you'd expect from a nitro pour, body is on the light side, also about what you'd expect for this style.

D: Over the top in drinkability -- relatively light but nice in feel and with good flavors. Easily quaffed. A good substitute for Guinness, though my friend who drinks Guinness almost exclusively found it a tad bit too dry for his liking. Me, I prefer that dryness. Worth checking out.

 1,145 characters

Photo of ffejherb
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On nitro tap at Sly Fox Phoenixville on 9/1/08.

A - Black body with garnet highlights around the edges and one finger's width of creamy tan head. Moderate amount of carbonatiton. Head retained quite well all the way down and left a thick wall of lacing at the top of the glass.

S - Coffee and cream aroma with some dry roasted malts. Hints of bitter chocolate and brown sugar.

T - Much like the aroma, this stout features a dry roasted malt flavor with hints of coffee, dark chocolate and cream, the latter providing just a hint of sweetness to complement the otherwise dry, bitter flavor.

M - Medium body that's a little thinner than I was anticipating, but quite smooth and silky nonetheless. Finish is moderately bitter and quite dry.

D - Pretty solid dry Irish stout. Not the best I've ever had, but still quite tasty overall.

Brewslut's Quote of the Day:
"That's brown sugar... the wet kind, not the dry kind."

 925 characters

Photo of thequeen711
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A good Irish Stout from a local brewery does well!!! Rich dark chocolate brew that poured a hefty head that lasted the entire pint! Nose of coffee and malts...medium mouthfeel, not too heavy, not too light, just a nice stout. It was served at room temp, the way stouts should be served.

 286 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.28/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Nitro tap at the Tap and Mallet,black, big creamy head, creamy mouthfeel, coffee grounds for taste, roast and one-dimensional, that of course is mediocre compared to the stout I want to drink. ALso not overally dry. Would like more stout flavour, maybe in a bottle?

 265 characters

Photo of dsa7783
2.9/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

On-tap at Ginger Man in New York City...
Pours a murky, deep, dark-brown hue with slight carbonation and a minimal tannish head...
Faint aroma with slight hints of malts, barley, and light chocolate...
Taste strongly complemented the smell... My only complaint was that despite the very mellow ABV, this sample seemed watered-down and loose... Not much in the flavor department...
Definitely not Sly Fox's best...
Not highly recommended...

 439 characters

Photo of LunaChick
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Noticed Recently that our usual spot isn't serving the beer nearly as chilled as we're accustomed to. Not sure if its intentional or not. So I've had this brew very cold and then only slightly chilled.
Very deep color, deep brown to black with a thick head that lasts to the bottem of the pint.
Smells slightly sweet with hints of bitter chocolate. Very rich brew, almost like drinking coffee with whipped cream. When chilled the taste starts sweet, hints of coffee and chocolate and ends very dry.
When slightly chilled the flavor was much more like chilled coffee. I could not detect any chocolate. Still it was very pleasing until the end. The last few sips were difficult--mostly I think due to the pubs lack of air conditioning.
Normally one of my favorites.

 767 characters

Photo of morebeergood
3.38/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tried this last weekend at the Blind Tiger in NYC. Dark brown color, slight head. The smell didn't do much for me. As for the taste, it was a nice stout, but it had nothing that really stood out. It was a good beer, but it did not make me want to order another. With so many choices at the Blind Tiger, I was a bit let down with my first choice. Oh well.

 354 characters

Photo of Donnie2112
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black, 3/4 inch of head, very little carbonation, eratic lacing.

Smell: Light on the nose coffee, toffee and the faintest notes of chocolate

taste: not much there light and inoffensive, coffee notes and a refreshing bitter hop finish

mouthfeel: Light and innocuous, smooth and very little carbonation

drinkability: just bitter enough to make it crisp, and with very little carbonation this becomes a stellar session beer.

 437 characters

Photo of nasty15108
3.04/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer was purchased on tap / Growler at Skibbo's Beer & Soda, Bronx, NY and drank from a pint glass. I'm always interested to sample something that claims to have beaten Guinness and Murphy's in taste tests. Needless to say it didn't live up to it's claim, not by a longshot!

A - Good, typical black stout appearance. Poured a thin and slightly watery with a tiny tan foam head. More porter like in appearance than Irish Stout.

S - I'm not sure if the pint glass or growler weren't properly cleaned (which I don't think was that case), but the smell was pungent. Not easily describable and not extremely overpowering, but definatly not very pleasurable to the nose. I'm chalking this up to a possible bad batch and I'm willing to try it again and hope for the best.

T - Malty, slightly burt coffee taste. Finished dry and bitter.

MF&D - Thinly coated the mouth, but better than I had anticipated. Oddly enough, It seemed get better with the second pint. If you can get passed the weird aroma its acutally not bad. I would like to try it again, possibly from another location to see if I get that same smell I experienced with my first tasting.
As far as their claim of beating out Guinness or Murphy's in a taste test, well I'm not sure who was tested, but it certainly wasn't me.

 1,288 characters

Photo of hyland24
3.49/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler into a pint glass.

The beer poured pitch black allowing no light through with about a 1/4 inch thick tan head which disappeared almost instantly. The lacing which remained fairly thick remained on the sides of the glass well after the last sip was drank.

The smell was unimpressive. I picked up coffee followed by a smell I really couldn't place almost like a wet paper towel.

The taste was good and got progressively better as the tasting continued. I tasted coffee, espresso with hints of smoke and finished slightly bitter.

The mouthfeel was medium bodied, and creamy but a bit thinner than I prefer. It left a thin coat in the mouth that remained several seconds after the swallow.

The overall drinkability was good. I enjoyed my second pint more than the first. Smooth and slightly creamy. I would drink this beer if I was in a bar that had it on tap but probably would not seek it out again in a growler. I recommend trying it but dont expect to be blown away.

 994 characters

Photo of beerthulhu
4.15/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a opaque black with a big, creamy tan head that had very good retention.

S: soft, with a very smooth and silky coffee aroma with some chocolate.

T: The flavor was very smooth with a soft roasted character that was light and clean. There was some slight hints of dry chocolate and vanilla as the beer finished with a light dryness of chocolate roast.

M: light, very smooth and silky from the nitro and slides off the tongue effortlessly.

D: Very good per style, incredibly clean and smooth going down.

 518 characters

Photo of goindownsouth
4.53/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Consumed from the source on 02.14.08.

The two-horse local race between Victory's Donnybrook and Sly Fox's O'Reilly's continues... Dark in tint, almost black/ruby black in color with a thick creamy nitro head which left a fantastic lacing along the side of the pint glass. Aromas thick of roasted coffee, some subtle hop infusion and hints of great doughy goodness. Taste follows through with chocolate and overlying notes of freshly roasted coffee as well. Amazingly quaffable and smooth, an absolute gem in Lager Land, Pennsylvania.

While the style is not mine, at least by birth, this is a brew I will seek out every time I am home to visit.

 646 characters

Photo of ajhod
4.76/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Simply put this is one of the best pints of stout I've ever had. Bar none.

Its a deep rich dry stout totally accurate to the style, complex roast flavors balanced by the tiniest residual malt sugar. Hop levels are minimal, allowing the roast to take the fore.

Most bars serve this slightly too cold because of the demands of keeping several beers cold at the same time. The owner of the Mermaid inn in Chestnut Hill gave me sage advice: order two at the same time. Drink one slowly, appreciating it as it changes as it warms. During this time the second pour will sit there in front of you warming. Enjoy that second beer. It will be nearly the perfect temp and full of rich roast flavors. Coffee, black cherry, rich pipe tobacco.

This beer, more than anything else, makes me want to change my home draft system over to Nitro-blend.

I bid you peace!

 854 characters

Photo of ColForbinBC
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(from notes)
Had on tap at The Drafting Room in Exton, PA

Arrived in front of me a big thick stout with a nice creamy off-white head. Nice sticky lacing and quality retention.

Smells of cocoa powder, roasted chocolate malts, and coffee.

Flavors of roasted malts that leads way to a dry sweetness.

Very creamy and dry. Drinkability is on par for the style.

This is a nice take on the style, not the best I have ever had, but a good alternative to some other irish stouts.

 475 characters

Photo of Jerzdevil1116
3.43/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Had this beer on tap at Goodnight Irene's in Wildwood, NJ.

A- Dark brown almost black body. I finger of off-white tan head that stayed for a while. Nice lacing left on the glass.

S- Earthy, roasted coffe and hints of dark chocolate.

T- Much like the smell. Earthy roasted coffe and hints of dark chocolate. Bitter. A lingering metallic aftertaste.

M- Smoothe, but a little on the thin/ watery side.

D- Light body made it very easy drinking, but the lingering aftertaste was a slight turn off.

 498 characters

Photo of AltBock
3.44/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was able to try this Sly Fox brew on tap at High Street Bar & Grill on 1/20/08. They poured it into a Sly Fox American pint glass. The beer had a beautiful jet black color with a long lasting silky 1 inch head of beige foam. It looked good enough to eat. It had a faint aroma of roasted malts, dark chocolate, and a pinch of sweet caramel at the end. The taste was dry (no duh!) with dark roasted malts, a splash of sweet caramel, a hint of bitter dark chocolate, a pinch of herbs, and then all of this ended with some dried roasted bitter hops. The mouthfeel was light and dry with a faint aftertaste of dried roasted malts and dried roasted hops. Even though the aftertaste was faint, the dryness of the roasted flavors lingered on for a few minutes. It wasn't the best Irish Stout I've had, but it was still a good one even though the aroma was faint and it seemed like the flavors needed to come out just a little bit more.

 929 characters

Photo of jscondon
3.38/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

tap pour, 20 oz.

My dry stout palette is not very matured, so this review is not very educated. The O'Reilly's pours very dark with a minuscule head (about 2mm). To me the aroma was undistinguished, but I had been in the restaurant a while and its subtlies were lost on me. I did detect roasted barley but not much else. The taste was predominantly earthy with a little bitterness. The mouth is ok on this one, as it is a mellow beer, but I found it to be a little too thin.

In fairness I need to give this beer another shot, if it were the first beer of an evening I am sure it's profile would have been different. As it stands right now I will have to say that this is not a bad beer, but it is undistinguished.

 715 characters

Photo of Kadonny
3.63/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial stout glass from the nitro tap at the brewery.

A: A deep black color with an off white creamy head. It was served at a table so the head had time to calm down. Lacing was nice.

S: Toasted malt with a bit of coffee and caramel. I could swear I picked up a hint of nuttyness too.

T: Sweet but dry toasted malts with some coffee and dark chocolate flavors and some fruit flavors. Not bitter, but very light and creamy. Not overly complex, but just enjoyable.

M: Light mouthfeel with a very creamy character to it. Nice light alcohol so there is no real taste of it in the mouth.

D: Very high. A very easy drinking lighter creamy stout that you can easily drink all night long.

Overall a nice Irish style lighter stout that can't rival the serious stouts, but Sly Fox made it that way. This beer was made to enjoy as a light offering that one could drink anytime. I really enjoyed it, but it is not something I would pick again if I was heading to Sly Fox since so many of their other beers are kick ass. Don't get me wrong, I would drink one anytime, but there are beers I enjoy more from them.

 1,122 characters

Photo of tempest
4.15/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the Spinnerstown Hotel.

This is exactly what an Irish dry stout should be. Just plain delicious. It's a very creamy body with a thick head and lacing. The flavor is a slightly milky, deep roasted flavor with an aroma to match. A great example of the style and oh so drinkable. Find this and get someone else to drive you home.

 337 characters

Photo of Stimack
3.81/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gave this brew a try the other night while over at the Royersford. The brew was served in a nice imperial pint glass with the etching of O’Reilly’s on the side. One thing that I must say is that they do a good job serving their brews in the appropriate glassware. Had a very dark black color with a think, creamy, tan head that head great retention and left a lot of lacing through out. The aromas where of burnt grain with some coffee and chocolate highlights. The flavors seemed to mimic the aroma highlights but a coffee bitterness really came through which was nice being mixed with chocolate flavors. Had a very nice creamy feel and finished dry which is expected. Overall this is a good brew, would be excellent on a cooler evening.

 740 characters

Photo of plaid75
4.03/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep black hue with amber streaks and a one finger creamy tan head. There was very good retention and excellent lacing.

The smell featured a light burnt grain with some traces of coffee and dark chocolate.

The taste was upfront burnt grain with a nice coffee and semisweet chocolate bitterness. Good use of black malt.

The mouthfeel was of average fullness and creamy.

Overall a very tasty dry stout. A nice fresh allternative to Guinness.

 455 characters

Photo of SixpointJMH
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice near black colour with a creamy off-white head that has nice retention time and a good amount of stickiness to it.

The aroma is a decent if not somewhat faint roasted malt, chocolate/cocoa blend, with a touch of earthiness to it.

The flavour is more of the same, but perhaps beefed up a touch. It's simple and to the point, but good stuff overall. Roasted malt still leads the way but there's a nice dry sweetness here too. While a nice creamy mouthfeel is expected for a nitro poured beer, the fact that there is so much dryness here was a bit of an unexpected match, but it was good nonetheless.

This is a nice beer overall. I'd like to try it as a non-nitro pour. I bet it'd accentuate some aromas and flavours and bring a fuller overall experience to this one. Still, no complaints about how this one pours now. Recommended.

 844 characters

Photo of iceball585
3.7/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Thick black color, 2 finger thick white head

S- Roasted malt, smokey, dry smell w/ hints of cocoa

T- Very smokey start, hints of toffee and cocoa near the end

M- Thick full feel, very smooth w/ a dry finish

D- Typical dry stout

When they handed this pint to me I thought they poured me a Guinness. Has a very typical dry stout look and feel but has a very smokey flavor to it.

 384 characters

Photo of soupyman10
3.59/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look is a solid stout appearance, dark brown (nearly black) with a surprisingly light finger of nice off-white head that leaves impressive lacing as the beer goes down. Nose is fairly mild, pretty dry roasted malt smell. A touch sour. I guess this is what gives the beer a little more character. Sourness comes through throughout the beer, very limited sweetness. Roasted malt as well. Feel is creamy and full bodied, solid. Overall, I could have a few of these, but the sourness might be a little limiting. I prefer my stouts a little sweeter, although that might not be this style.

 583 characters

O'Reilly's Irish Stout from Sly Fox Brewing Company
3.74 out of 5 based on 229 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!