Oyster Stout | The Porterhouse Brewing Company

220 Reviews
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Oyster StoutOyster Stout

Brewed by:
The Porterhouse Brewing Company

Style: Irish Dry Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 08-29-2002

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Reviews: 220 | Ratings: 430
Photo of Agent1
3.35/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Definitely filtered. Deep, dark brown when poured and black in the glass. Bright white/ beige head with decent lacing -- nothing crazy. Mildly carbonated.

Smell - Baker's chocolate/ caramel, peat moss, sweet bread, plum and a mixer of subtle bitter hops. Not picking up much oyster at all at this point.

Taste - Detecting very little oyster. Cocoa/ cacao nibs, dry woody notes from the roasted grains, quite dry and bitter, light caramel, slightly smoky from the peat moss, subtle brown sugar and barely detectible dark fruits, such as dates and prunes. Slightly salty on the finish, but again, perhaps a little too conservative. Overall, taste is fairly flat and somewhat 2-dimensional.

Mouthfeel - Nice carbonation, probably one of the better aspects of this beer. It fits. This really sticks to the front of the mouth and seems to activate many of the bitter receptors. Not a full-bodied beer and it definitely could use more flavor (a much more concentrated mash would be nice) to help with mouthfeel. Personally, I would prefer a sticky, thick stout when drinking this style of beer.

Overall - Too reserved for an Oyster Stout, in my opinion. I want to taste the ocean, like having a mouthful of sea water. Obviously, this can be done well if one was to balance the meaty salts with nice, robust candi sugar and rich grain profile. Also, worth mentioning: this tastes like the same recipe used to brew their regular Stout, but with the subtle addition of oysters. It also reminds me of Guinness: boring and safe. Overall, rather bland. After having intense, true-to-style Oyster Stouts similar to those made by Upright Brewing and others, this just really pales in comparison. Won't be buying again.

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Photo of flyingpig
3.99/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

330ml Bottle from Beers of Europe website (£1.89):
Dark mahogany brown with a half centimetre tall head that is an light, tan brown and creamy looking with good retention.

Rich with a lot of dark chocolate and strong coffee notes with some roasted barely coming through as well. This is followed by a creamy, milk chocolate smell and some sweetness that is complimented by some light vanilla and fruits such a cherry and blackcurrant.

Sweet with the milk chocolate from the nose taking more of a front seat here along with some sugar and a creamy, roasted malt taste. There is a hint of the oysters that give the beer its name and some hints of cocoa as you get to the middle. The finish features some coffee and is rounded off with a slightly smoked taste, a touch of bitterness and some fruits.

Smooth and creamy throughout, this one was naturally dry given the style. Quite sweet and with a good balance on top of a light medium body, the beer is one that goes down well.

Good balance and some nice sweetness on top of the traditionally dark flavours. Without being a stand out in this one was definitely one of the better dry stouts I have tasted and was particularly good for an oyster stout.

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Photo of brentk56
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: For a stout, I expect something a bit more than this - here, we have a translucent coffee brown liquid capped by a quickly fading ecru head; some decent lacing picks the score up a notch

Smell: Chocolate with a caramel edge; underneath, there is a mineral quality that comes, I presume from either the water, the oysters, or both

Taste: At first, the taste is dominated by roast (a hint of smoke) and chocolate, with a blend of berry fruit and mint making an appearance, in the middle; the briny minerality of the oysters adds another dimension, in the finish

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly thin in the mouthfeel, with moderate carbonation

Overall: I seem to like this beer a lot more than others around here as I have found a surprising range of flavors in the mix

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Photo of fdig23
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From the bottle.

Appearance: deep brown with a thin, but dense khaki head.

Nose: Lots of very bitter chocolate, over-roasted coffee, chocolate-covered raspberries and creamy vanilla.

Taste: Toasty bread and bitter chocolate dominate. There's an accent of mint and vanilla bean as well. The oysters are noticeable in the finish here, as a bit of west coast oyster sweetness surrounded in charcoal smoke.

Mouthfeel: A bit thin and bubbly. Would have expected the oysters to contribute a denser body.

Overall: A great, classic-in-style oyster stout.

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Photo of Neorebel
3.28/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

This is a tough one... I will rate the appearance similar to the other Porterhouse beer I have had, as it looks very much the same. Nearly black, almost opaque, small head after the initial pour, no lacing. The smell is okay - salty, almost earthy, briny... a tiny bit of chocolate, and mostly... a cloying and alien sweetness. Perhaps also, some oxidized essence. When drinking, the smooth mouthfeel is the best part. Too acidic, salty, and most of all, too sweet. Even though I am inexperienced in Oyster Stout tasting... I'm sure there's much better out there in the style.

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Photo of angelmonster
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a midnight brown color, turns black when held away from light. Head is cream toned and about an inch thick. Head retention and lacing are pretty good.

Smell is of roasted caramel malts, rye bread, and faint burnt coffee. Sweet milk chocolate is also lingering in the nose. Hops and alcohol are undetectable.

First taste is of charred chocolate malt. Not as sweet as in the nose, flavor is more like bitter dark chocolate than chocolate milk. Dont know if my mind is playing tricks on me but I taste a slight salty brine in the finish. Beer has a pronounced hoppiness, not sure if its from roasted barley or actual hops. From the limited number of Irish dry stouts I've tried, this one seems to be one of the few ones that has a tiny alcohol bit, most are on the tame side.

Mouthfeel is somewhat light but has more substance than most Irish stouts. Carbonation levels are somewhat high but the head helped to tone down the over fizziness.

Overall this beer was good for its style but nothing amazing or near the top of my list of favorite stouts. Didnt get any flavor of oyster, which is probably a good thing. Went down pretty easy but not sure if I'd buy it again

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Photo of guityler83
3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Dark dark brown with hints of red hugh around the edge. almost zero head, slight ring of off white bubbles hanging on the edge.

S: Roasty chocolate malt smell, a very lager like fruityness that might be the yeast popping out from the yeast.

T: Sweet gingerbread, gram cracker and roasted flavors. The bitterness is is noble like balancing out the finish and leaving a lingering fruityness.

M: Slick and oily with very low carbonation. Moderate to dry body and slightly astringant

O: A very drinkable and balanced beer. The smell of lager like qualities threw me for a loop and reminded me of a schwarz, but a solid dry stout non the less

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Photo of smcolw
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Starts with a moderate head but it lasts and leaves plenty of ring lace with each sip. Ruby brown color where light passes easily.

Mild aroma of chalky darker malts. No coffee or even dark chocolate.

This is mild stout, perfect for introducing neophytes. There's a good blend of black patent malt and white pepper-like hop. The body is richer than most stouts. The carbonation is also high. There's a touch "band-aid" to the taste. The swallow has excellent balance of malt and bittering hop.

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Photo of BeerNinja007
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Purchased a 330mL single for $3.49 at Carl's Meat Market in Kittery, Maine. Nice beer selection they got there, hadn't been there before, wandered in on a whim. Oyster stout is one of my favorite styles and they're not very common, so I rarely pass them up. Funky pull-tab cap on the bottle, poured cold into a standard tulip.

A: A hard pour generates 3/4" of sticky, puffy, marshmallowy light brown foam. Retains pretty well and leaves a thick sticky layer on th glass as it slowly settles. Brew is nearly pitch dark, but a ruby red glimmer when held to a light indicates that it's pretty clear. Thick creamy layer endures for a long while after the head finished settling. Like a nitro tap for crap sake. Merangue or marshmallow. Really impressive head.

S: Robust dark roasty starchy malts, mild molasses sweetness, much fuller than I expected from a 5% brew. Distinctive savory brineyness from the oysters, nice and more robust than a lot of others, a good sign. Notes of chocolate syrup, tobacco, and smoke. Excellent!

T: Mild but complex, not nearly as robust as the smell. Feels like the flavor is really concentrated in the nose with little transfer to the taste. Briney notes with a good bit of herbal hop cuts through the dark stuff and gives it a thin flavor. Hop develops a strong lemony edge toward the end, hitting especially strong behind the tip of the tongue and in the back of the throat. A little buttery diacetyl hits the same parts as the lemon. Finishes with residual herb hop and a bit of caramel.

M: The feel is pretty thin and clean, nothing like the appearance implies. Carbo is crisp but not sharp or overpowering.

O: This beer is completely bipolar. The appearance and smell are huge, thick, robust. Then the taste and feel are thin and timid. Rather an odd combination of traits.

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Photo of popery
3.49/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From notes on 3/21/11. Pours a transparent reddish brown with a smallish tan head. Some lacing persists.

Aroma is mostly roasted malt with some acidic fruitiness, a cold coffee note and a bit of chocolate-y, caramel-y malt. The caramel presence grows as the beer warms. No real oyster flavor, except perhaps a hint of brine, which may well be the result of perception bias.

The beer is a bit underwhelming in the taste department. It starts off with some fairly weak caramel sweetness, transitioning to a bitter coffee/roast flavor. The aftertaste is actually rather nice, as some good coffee/dark chocolate flavor lingers.

Carbonation is fairly low. Pretty good body for a ~5% abv Irish stout.

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Photo of Brenden
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Stout it is, and appropriate: not a crushing Americanized version, but the look you'd expect and hope for from an Irish Dry straight from the source. Some brown highlights sneak through at the edges, and a tan cap of head rests on top. It offers reasonable retention and a pretty good volume of patchy and spotty lacing.
It's mostly roast in the nose, with a bit of some sweeter elements (caramel, a touch of vanilla) that's more those notes than the sugary aspects of them. A bit of a metallic element comes out, likely from the oyster, though it's not outright evident. A lightly tangy element (a factor of the roast?) sits underneath.
There's little sweetness in the flavor, but a choking dryness is avoided pretty skillfully considering what would be necessary to balance those elements. Otherwise, the taste is the same as the smell, and that metallic note is ever present.
The feel is good, appropriately full-bodied but not a huge American bruiser, nor should it be. It's mostly dry but might lean a touch gentler than some. There's enough smoothness at first, though it gets a little tough in the texture toward the middle.

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Photo of czechsaaz
3.86/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

One of those breweries I've heard a lot about but never seen their product until now. Guess some WA beer distributor thought it would sell for St. Pat's. So here goes.

Nice roast aroma. Black Barley and coffee notes with just a little fruity yeast ester.

Dark. Just like you'd expect, dark. Nice long lasting half inch head that's not quite white but not tan either. Looks exactly like a glass of stout should.

Funny, tastes like a stout. Full of roasty bitterness and hop bitterness balanced by sweetness of malt. But roasted malt is the big flavor. It's got all the bold roast flavor of a quality stout without any astringent or burnt flavors like some stouts. Also, I've had oyster stouts where you can really taste the ingredient. Here, there's something in there that sets it apart from what you might be used to but if you didn't know, you wouldn't be able to put your finger on what it is. A subtle added bit of complexity.

Not as big bodied or as creamy as other stouts. The carbonation level is more lively and aggressive than the two 'famous' Irish stouts.

It's a very nice well balanced beer. I don't think it is so different that it would convert your average industrial stout drinker but it's every bit as good. I like the little guys so I'll get it again. Need to get back to Dublin some day so I can try this fresh.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 11.2 oz. pull tab bottle into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark blackish brown with hints of amber. Lots of rising bubbles and a huge four finger light tan head. Good retention and lacing around the glass.

Smell: A very creamy and sweet dark aroma with fruit and a kick of oyster. Dark roasted malts with hints of cocoa, coffee, cream, milk, caramel, toffee, grains, and yeast. Hints of the salty oysters come through giving an ocean like scent. Fruit hints of dark cherry, raisin, plum, and fig. Fairly earthy with some hints of floral and grassy hops. A pretty interesting and nice aroma.

Taste: Follows the nose with a creamy and sweet taste of roast, oyster, and dark fruit. Roasted malts with a taste of chocolate, coffee, creamy milk, grains, caramel, toffee, yeast, and smoke. The oyster taste is pretty noticeable giving a fairly salty, mineral like taste. Notes of dark dried fruit including plum, dark cherry, raisin, and figs. Some earthy, grassy hops provide some balancing bitterness. A pretty good Irish Stout taste.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a fairly high level of carbonation. Very creamy and somewhat slick. Finishes fairly dry.

Overall: A pretty good Irish style dry stout. Good roasty flavors and a nice kick from the oyster.

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Photo of Durge
3.51/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on March 17th at My Place in Newtown, CT, this Irish made specialty stout seems to be out there out of nowhere this Saint Patrick’s Day season. It shows a semitransparent dark black-brown color with a giant, thick and creamy tan head and very good sporadic but chunky lacing follows. I pick up mild wheat-malt and vague charcoal grass in the nose hit but it’s a bit weak, definitely not bold. The first taste brings a charcoal flavor with oyster shell edges and floral grass hop hints. I also pick up some grape/wine ideas. There's a chalky feel on the surface of this medium light bodied stout with modest carbonation, very much a cask ale feel. Not bad, although there's a very slight touch of soapiness and its a bit thin for my tastes. Decent flavor overall.

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Photo of LampertLand
4.16/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Porterhouse Brewing 'Oyster Stout' an Irish Dry Stout @ 5.2% served from a 330 ml bottle with the somewhat annoying pull tab bottle caps purchased for $3

A-pour is dark brown/almost black in the glass with a good size off white head that leaves large spotty lacing along the pint glass

S-salty ocean surf after a storm , some sweet smelling floral/fruit hints

T-smooth tasting smoked oyster's on the shell , almost sweet tasting , smokey , salty , creamy

MF-thin viscous medium body , low carbonation , dry roasted finish

Ov-oyster thru out this beer but is never overpowering , easy drinking beer , yes I'll have another it's St.Patrick's Day , not the best Irish beer butt a damn good one

sampled alongside 'An BrainBlasta' & 'Plain Porter' also of Porterhouse Brewing

prost LampertLand

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
3.51/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: The color is dark brown with hues of red. The pale brown head is somewhat compact and leaves fantastic lacings.

S: Hard roasted almost burnt dark malts. Bitterhops and dark dried fruits, but not sweet. Quite some tobacco. Cocoa.

T: Very close to the smell, but also with smoked ham and some vanilla. Quite strong black coffee.

M: Aftertaste is short, the body on the thinner side while carbonation is mild.

O: Not bad, but not very exciting.

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Photo of Maltmaiden
3.06/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Very dark brown with some amber. Clear.

S: Smoky, caramel malts, salty, tiny bit of floral hops. tobacco.

T: tobacco, caramel malts. salty. Some bitterness comes through. I keep getting lots of saltiness. Feels like i'm at the beach...savory though.

M: Thin. No carbonation. Bitterness stings the tongue.

O: Not sure what to make of this. This is the first oyster stout I"ve tried so I don't know how this does in the style. I did enjoy drinking it even though I found it salty.

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Photo of atr2605
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-pours black with a tan head with good retention that leaves a thin lace
S-roasted coffee, caramel, unsweetened cocoa
T-more roasted coffee and some minerally taste, unsweetened cocoa in the finish
M-medium bodied
O-Oyster adds complexity and nice flavor with the roasted notes. Pretty solid stout

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Photo of gcamparone
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Purchased at Nikki's Liquors in North Providence, RI.

A- Pours a very dark brown body with amber highlights. Leaves a small 1" head with little retention.

S- Coffee, toffee, dark chocolate. Not too strong, I really had to strain to get a good whiff.

T- Upfront I get a coffee, malty, caramel flavor that transcends into an indescribable sweet-chalky flavor. Interesting. It kind of works.

M- Medium carbonation, slightly watery. I'd prefer a little thicker for the style.

Overall and interesting stout with a twist. I'll admit that I've never had an oyster before, which is probably why I can't put my finger on the strange mineral-like note that's present in this beer. For the price, I'd recommend another oyster stout if possible.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle, thanks to the anonymous rep (to me, at least) who left this for we discerning beer vendors. Another of those weird-ass pull-cap enclosures.

This beer pours a very dark chestnut brown, cola-highlighted colour, with two hefty fingers of rocky, foamy beige head, which leaves a complex pattern of chunky, disparate, honeycomb-esque lace around the glass as it evenly sinks away.

It smells of roasted, grainy caramel malt, a saltwater, ever so slightly seafood essence, some bitter cocoa notes, a prominent mineral character, and leafy, earthy hops. The taste is dry, grainy, lightly toasted malt, a strangely earthy, more than sea-borne meatiness, some powdery milk notes, a childhood chalkboard essence, and tame leafy, weedy hops.

The bubbles present as a low-fi burbling effect, the body a middling medium-weight, and smooth enough, I suppose, nothing really screwing with it. It finishes rather dry, the lightly toasted malt, and ethereal salmon smokehouse effect still lingering, some bitter chocolate and sassy weedy hops adding to the offsetting mix.

A quite interesting twist on the Irish Dry Stout trope, wherein the soft, dry roasted malt mainstay is gently nudged by some mild seaside characteristics. Enjoyable, surely, but more for the memory of Eire, than the promise of a current pub session, methinks.

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Photo of Cozzatoad
3.59/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

may have been nitro-tap but i'm not sure about that

A- Great appearance, very much guinness-like. Black body with some reddish hints if seen through light. Dense, creamy and greatly persistent off-white head, that also leaves tons of dense lacing. Maybe not as big as guinness (a couple of fingers) so this takes away half a point

S- Not much showing through the dense head. Dark malts, a bit of chocolate, a slight roasted hint. On the back of things, some very light kind of salty/metallic sourness if that makes any sense

T- Very much a dry stout. Moderate roastiness, bittersweet notes of dark bread, chocolate, maybe liquorice. On the back of things and in the aftertaste there's a salty, mineral feel that adds a bit of a peculiar character and let's you know this is an oyster stout, though it's mostly a pretty classic dry stout: clean, simple, highly drinkable

M- Super-soft mouthfeel as per style. Very creamy and soft on both tongue and palate, just a slight hint of fine carbonation on the tongue. Nothing impressive (i was expecting just that) but still nice and fitting

O- What you look for in a dry stout are typical stout notes among a soft feel and great drinkabilty. This one has all that plus a bit of a peculiar feel. Nice

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Photo of ThickNStout
1.68/5  rDev -54.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

330mL bottle from Hop City (Atlanta, GA). 4.29. No discernable bottling date. Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Pours a deep golden hued dark brown with a frothy two and a half fingers beige head. A good bit of lace anywhere that the head settles.

Aroma is strange and almost off putting. Sweet and sour malty. Not quite like anything else I've tried.

Taste is just as odd as the nose. Salty cheap bitter cocoa and something I can't identify. I want to say fishy/ oyster but that's most likely because I know it's an oyster stout.

Thin body with sharp carbonation. Long sharp nasty aftertaste. I know it's subjective, but nasty is about as accurate as I can describe.

As my first oyster stout, this proves that I can't unilaterally say that I like stouts. Apologies to anyone upset if I'm not rating "to style" but I just couldn't finish this. To me this was foul, weak, thin and devoid of merit.

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Photo of dogma46an2
4.18/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

sooo good. appearance was dark and rich, like midnight. the smell was decadent with robust malt roasted notes that had a hint of mineral trueness. taste didn't let anyone down, it had deep rich black notes of chocolate and tobacco with a slight finish of a fresh briny mineral note. the mouthfeel was solid and coated the pallet well. overall it was the best.

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Photo of BhamBeerLover
4.55/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Overall an impressive beer and seemed true to style. While not in the least an Oyster Stout afficianado, I greatly enjoyed this beer and give it high marks. Slightly on the hoppier end from my taste buds but the mineral qualities seemed right on cue for this style. Will buy again anytime I am in the mood for a saltier sort of beer with good malt and hop qualities. Thanks Ireland and Porterhouse!

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Photo of JamesMN
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Very dark brown (and translucent when held up to the light). Thin light brown head.

Aroma: Soy sauce and some malt.

Taste: Light and decently malty. Sort of milky and chalky. There's really not much flavor here so it would pair well with food (i.e. oysters). Dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Between light and medium bodied. Above average carbonation and average drinkability.

Final Thoughts: A little disappointed in how thin and watery this one was. There just wasn't much to taste. Although there is an interesting aftertaste that I can't define. Would I drink it again? Nah.

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Oyster Stout from The Porterhouse Brewing Company
3.68 out of 5 based on 430 ratings.
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