Oakspire | New Belgium Brewing

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OakspireOakspire
BA SCORE
3.82/5
Very Good
104 Ratings
OakspireOakspire
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States
newbelgium.com

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
A limited-edition collaboration between New Belgium and Knob Creek, Oakspire is a unique bourbon barrel ale aged with bourbon-steeped oak spirals and char from inside the barrel. Smooth notes of toffee, vanilla and caramel wrap up with a pleasantly warm finish. Oakspire: Where innovation meets tradition.

Added by superspak on 07-02-2018

BEER STATS
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
36
Ratings:
104
pDev:
8.9%
 
 
Wants:
3
Gots:
20
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 104 |  Reviews: 36
Photo of Jcarriglio
3.78/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

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

12 ounce bottle into signature globe glass, bottled on 10/2/2018. Pours slightly hazy deep orange/amber/light copper color with a 1-2 finger dense and rocky cream colored head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of grapefruit, orange, citrus zest, raisin, peach, plum, cherry, fig, date, pear, apricot, red apple, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, bourbon, coconut, toasted oak, spicy rye, biscuit, nuts, and brown bread; with lighter notes of roast, oak char, smoke, herbal, grass, pepper, pine, and yeast/oak/toasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/earthy hops, fruity yeast, dark/bready/light roast malts, and bourbon/oak spiral notes; with solid strength. Taste of big grapefruit, orange, citrus zest, raisin, peach, plum, cherry, fig, date, pear, apricot, red apple, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, bourbon, coconut, toasted oak, spicy rye, biscuit, nuts, and brown bread; with lighter notes of roast, oak char, smoke, herbal, grass, pepper, pine, and yeast/oak/toasted earthiness. Light-moderate pine, herbal, grassy, peppery hop; charred oak bitterness; and bourbon/oak tannin spiciness on the finish. Lingering notes of grapefruit, orange, citrus zest, raisin, peach, plum, cherry, fig, date, pear, apricot, red apple, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, bourbon, coconut, toasted oak, spicy rye, biscuit, nuts, brown bread, roast, oak char, smoke, herbal, grass, pepper, pine, and yeast/oak/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/earthy hops, fruity yeast, dark/bready/light roast malts, and bourbon/oak spiral flavors; with an awesome malt/bitterness and bourbon/oak spiciness balance; with no cloying/astringent flavors after the finish. Light-moderate increasing dryness from lingering bitterness and bourbon/oak tannin spiciness. Medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a very smooth, creamy/silky/bready, and fairly sticky/tannic mouthfeel that is great. Minimal warming alcohol for 9%, with no barrel booziness lingering after the finish. Overall this is an excellent bourbon/oak aged American strong ale! All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/earthy hops, fruity yeast, dark/bready/light roast malts, and bourbon/oak spiral flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to drink with the mellowly bitter/tannic/drying finish. Reminds me of a less bitter/aggressive BBA Arrogant bastard. Awesome balance of juicy hops, fruity yeast, and nicely rich malts; with great barrel spiral presence/integration. Not overly sweet/heavy from lingering dryness. A very enjoyable offering, and impressive spot on style example.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.11/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

New Belgium Brewing "Oakspire"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, "ENJOY BY: 59785 03FEB19..."
$3.49 @ Total Wine & More, Cherry Hill, NJ

Notes via stream of consciousness: So this is done with oak staves, not full barrels? OK. Why not. Especially for a lighter beer, but this isn't exactly a lighter beer, is it? What's the strength? 9%, that's respectable. OK, so it's poured a hazy copper colored body beneath a short head of white, but the head has already dwindled. Ahhhhh, the aroma is nice. Lots of caramel, lots of wood, Bourbon, some vanilla, some coconut. Nice. On to the flavor... pretty much the same. There's some additional yeasty fruitiness, but it's mainly a caramelish malt base. Medium-dark caramel, and a little bit of almost burnt sugar but not much. Nicely balanced by a moderate bitterness, but not sweet for sure, and the dryness of the oak is at least partially responsible for that. But it's not a really rich brew. I could drink straight through this, slowly of course, but not as nearly as slowly as I would a barleywine or Imperial stout or something similar. I guess what I'm really saying here is that it's not as complex or rich as it could be. There are a lot of nice notes, and it's layered well, nicely balanced, and nicely polished. I could drink one of these out with the lads; just one, mind you, and I haven't taken the price into consideration on that, just the flavor and alcohol content - I generally would not drink a barleywine or Imperial stout. So maybe I'm saying it's really drinkable? Or am I saying that maybe I wouldn't feel like I was missing to much after the first 5 or 6 sips? I'm on the fence on this one. I'll just leave it at that. Medium bodied and gently crisp-then-smooth. Overall quite nice but it probably won't knock your socks off.
Review# 6,388

 1,806 characters

Photo of mudROCK
4.3/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jettjon
3.94/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass, it’s a clear brown color with a clingy tan cap. Nose is sweet with hints of bourbon and vanilla. Taste is the same; the flavors are there but are muted. Overall, tasty. Mouth is mid-chewy, overall satisfying. 9% is very well masked. Overall quite good but not exceptional. Would try again.

 337 characters

Photo of reaganrvltn
3.74/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of glf60
3.58/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of beersampler6
3.56/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ugh - not bad, just very disappointing. I had high hopes given this brew’s origins and the great reputations of the two makers. But boy was I let down. Pours an amber color with minimal lingering head or lacing. Smells of just a little ale, bourbon, wood and dark stone fruit. Tastes are very muted - where was the bourbon barrel aging? All I taste is faint malt, orange, caramel and a little raisin and fig. Barely any hops, bitterness or bourbon and certainly no wood or depth. Smooth thin mouthfeel and decent carbonation. I let the beer warm and unfortunately not much happened. Decently well-hidden higher ABV. Just didn’t live up to my expectations at all.

 666 characters

Photo of jeschaefer
4.52/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Tigerbrau
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Met expectations, good, but factoring the higher price I probably won't buy again. Fantastic as a single! Definitely worth a try !!

133 characters

Photo of zotzot
3.96/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Johnnyc3
3.76/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Underwhelming! It's smooth for 9% but lacking so much potential for the style.

78 characters

Photo of WhiskeyRomeo
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Birdlegs
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of golf4collet
3.86/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of 1971bernat
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Roguer
3.84/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Slightly murky but overall attractive brown ale with orange highlights. Solid head production from a strong pour; good retention and very nice lacing.

Sweet and mellow aroma: brown sugar, figs, prunes, caramel, toffee, banana, and mild hints of oak and coconut. Touches of orange and pine.

Flavor is similarly restrained. Brown sugar, toffee, raisins, pine, orange peel, caramel grains, honey. A touch too sweet.

Smooth and easy drinking. Solid representation of a 9% ABV brew.

 480 characters

Photo of themayorkoch
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Amb3do
3.76/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of probert
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of zbooks
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of WickedBeer
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of MoreBeer4me
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This one finally made an appearance here last week so I obviously picked up a sixer. 9% ABV? Really? Where is it? I certainly can't taste it. Now this wouldn't be a bad thing if the beer was a flavor explosion of "bourbon barrel aged goodness". But guess what? It's not. The beer is good, but definitely needs a rework if ever to be released again. I held big hopes for this one as their Abbey is one of my favorite brews and an absolute bargain. Oh well....................

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served in a snifter glass from the bottle.

Appearance: Transparent but dark amber body with medium bubbles creating an orange tinted white head. Drops quick after two or three sips with sticky lacing to the glass.

Smell: Floral and wood chip scent. Dissipates pretty quick.

Taste: Semi sweet and heavy malt with a light whiskey note to accompany it. Honey notes and a touch floral. The beer as far as taste is all over the place and very easy to like.

Mouth: Semi sticky, carbonation is definitely s medium to full with a almost full body. Could have a more potent after taste considering the ingredients.

Overall: Good brew, definitely could use some tweaking which could be improved if this becomes a yearly release. Worth getting, if not just one glass won't kill you. Salud!

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Photo of Keepnitrl
3.6/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

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Oakspire from New Belgium Brewing
Beer rating: 3.82 out of 5 with 104 ratings