Dismiss Notice
Extreme Beer Fest:Los Angeles

Join us December 9th in Los Angeles for the ultimate throwdown of craft beer creativity!

Learn more...
Dismiss Notice
Introducing: Project Extreme Brewing (a Dogfish Head + BeerAdvocate project)

Ola Dubh Special Reserve 16 | Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Ola Dubh Special Reserve 16Ola Dubh Special Reserve 16
BA SCORE
4.13/5
Exceptional
637 Ratings
Ola Dubh Special Reserve 16Ola Dubh Special Reserve 16
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
Scotland, United Kingdom
harviestoun.com

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bitterbill on 02-15-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,886
Reviews:
302
Ratings:
637
pDev:
10.17%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
42
Gots:
113
Trade:
5
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 637 |  Reviews: 302
Photo of FLBeerGuy
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of neurobot01
4.34/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

May 2014 bottle into a Teku at cellar temp.

Look: dark brown, but light peeks through around the edges. Minimal light tan head.

Smell: smokey and sweet. Hint of alcohol heat.

Taste: smokey and sweet. Strikes me as richer and more complex than the 12-year I had a while back. Light-roasted coffee, strawberry, cream, vanilla, char, and kiwi/grass are all notes I get.

Feel: medium/thick, with low (but stylistically appropriate) carbonation. Leaves a strange sort of dryness.

Overall: I'd lowered my expectations for this based on the 12-year, which was fine but nothing special. However, I enjoyed this considerably more. Will contemplate picking up another bottle, even at the steep price.

 695 characters

Photo of Grackos
4.38/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Brolo75
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle poured into a snifter

A: Pours dark brown, almost black, with ruby red around the edges, no head retention, no lacing, low carbonation, looks pretty good.

A: Vanilla, toffee, picking up some dark fruits like raisins, no alcohol on the nose, not getting any of the barrel notes, reminds of a barley wine.

T: Sweet toffee, caramel, vanilla, oak and barrel come through in the aftertaste, lingering oak, wood notes, hints of raisins and figs, alcohol is well hidden. Picked up some dark red wine notes as the beer warmed.

M: Medium bodied beer with low carbonation.

O: This is really solid but I think it's overpriced at $12 for a single bottle, doesn't pop with as much flavor as I was hoping, pretty subtle flavors and aroma. It's very smooth, drinkable, and balanced.

 783 characters

Photo of Jason_cs
4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.58/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle number and date: 08676 / Sept 2007

Appearance - Pours black with a cluster of bubbles that find their way to the edge of the glass and slowly pop away.

Smell - Slightly sour notes, along with traces of charred oak, vanilla and chocolate.

Taste - Dull, distant flavors that follow the nose. Mostly old, earthy oak. A hint of smoke, vanilla and chocolate.

Mouthfeel - Medium in body with almost zero carbonation. Slick, smooth texture with a slightly dry finish.

Overall - I got this for a Christmas present. I hadn't noticed the bottling date until now. Nearly 9 years old, yeesh! I'd say it passed the optimal age quite a few years ago. What's left is remnants of what I can only imagine was a pretty darn tasty treat during it's peak. This is one I'll have to keep an eye out for and review again.

 810 characters

Photo of Thankin_Hank
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of capnamerica
4.04/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of spacecake9
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Was happy to find this on a local shelf.
A - Pours black with a small white-ish head.
S - The aroma is sweet and smoky.
T - The flavor is smoky, woody, perhaps some caramel.
M - Thick with little carbonation.
O - I allowed this to warm to room temperature before tasting. But I did not get the complex flavors I was hoping for. Not bad but does not justify the price.

 368 characters

Photo of damndirtyape
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle, served in a thistle glass. Bottling date of April 2013. Bottle number 07462.

Appearance: Very dark brown approaching black. Thin light tan ring of foam. An occasional strand of lacing that would very slowly slide back down the glass.

Smell: I had to let this warm all the way up to room temp to really bring out the aroma. Molasses, toasted malt, whiskey, charred oak.

Taste: Lots of flavors going on here. In no particular order: buttery toffee, caramelized malt, fine scotch whiskey, oak, and at the finish, a bit of smokiness blended with sweetness. The smoke gets more peaty and lingers a bit past the sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Nice thickness, lightly carbonated. A bit sticky on the teeth.

Overall / Drinkability: A fine sipping beer, and one that you need to let warm up all the way before drinking - it's much better warm. Not as smoky / peaty as I was expecting from the description, but good none the less. One is enough though at the price. Not amazing enough for me to get again but definitely worth having once.

 1,068 characters

Photo of DucksFan16
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle #06475, dated June 2014. Consumed on 12/02/2015.

56 characters

Photo of YvesB
2.55/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of cp45
3.77/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of durlta
4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tronester
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear very dark brown, with almost no head. Smells of molasses and some smoke. The taste begins with a bit of scotch whisky, then some chocolate, followed by peat, and finishing with a earthy bready flavor. Mouthfeel is good. Overall an excellent beer. I aged this one for years, and it was no worse for the wear.

 326 characters

Photo of Kiro
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JackieKu
4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. Best before 2015-08.

A: opaque. No head.
S: Roasted. Salty. Coffee. A little woody.
T: Herbal: mainly thyme. Cocoa. Low bitterness. Nearly dry and dry finish.
M: Full bodied.
O: Interesting and flavorful oak aged stout.

 233 characters

Photo of samtrillo
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of zenithberwyn
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jmikepool
5/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of JandJMD
3.77/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Saviour
4.6/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours into a snifter.
L - opaque black with almost absent head.
S - really rich aroma including wood, tar, chocolate and toffee notes.
T - almost the same as smell with a tobacco aftertaste.
F - full-bodied and low carbonized, great aftertaste.
O - what can I say? Another masterpiece of brewing, for sure.

 307 characters

Photo of BayouMafia
4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Wobbly
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of chippo33
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Ola Dubh Special Reserve 16 from Harviestoun Brewery Ltd.
Beer rating: 4.13 out of 5 with 637 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.