Cellar Series: Öö XO
Põhjala Brewery

Cellar Series:  Öö XOCellar Series:  Öö XO
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Porter - Baltic
Ranked #14
Ranked #2,442
4.27 | pDev: 8.2%
Põhjala Brewery
Cellar Series:  Öö XOCellar Series:  Öö XO
Notes: A special version of the Öö, aged for months in cognac barrels.
View: Beers
Reviews: 32 | Ratings: 91 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of bluejacket74
bluejacket74 from Ohio

4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

11.2 ounce red wax capped bottle, born on date of 09022021, best by date of 09022024 stamped on the top part of the bottle. Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with not quite an inch tan head. Head retention is decent, and there's a small amount of lacing. I like the aroma, the brew smells like dark fruit, cognac, oak and some chocolate. For the most part I think the taste is similar to the aroma, but with the addition of roasted malt and some earthy flavors. I think the dark fruit stands out here compared to the other flavors. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's coating and a bit creamy with a moderate amount of carbonation. I liked this brew, worth picking up if you get a chance!

Nov 25, 2021
Photo of mkh012
mkh012 from Colorado

4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours near-black with a persistent finger of tan head.

The nose is chocolate, cherry, apple, cognac, and sherry.

The taste follows. Chocolate and red fruit with hints of cognac and sherry. Medium sweetness.

The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium for the style.

Overall, tasty.

Oct 17, 2021
Photo of hman43
hman43 from North Carolina

4.59/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Look: It pours dark brown with a brown head. It has moderately low head retention.

Smell: It has aromas of chocolate, plums, and raisins. The dark fruits are very aromatic. There are also some dark cherries and hints of cognac. There is also a hint of licorice.

Taste: The taste has toffee, chocolate, and coffee flavors. There are notes of cognac and dark fruits with a bit of dark cherries. The dark fruits are not as pronounced in the flavor as in the aromas, but are still noticeable.

Feel: It has strong alcohol presence with pleasant alcohol warming. It has a full body.

Overall, an excellent beer with plenty of malt flavors and fruity esters.

Aug 01, 2021
Photo of BEERMILER12
BEERMILER12 from Maine

4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a deep mahogany, almost black, color with 2 fingers of head that quickly fades down to a thin cap

S: Roasted malt, cognac, dark fruit, dark chocolate, oak, and some caramel

T: Follows the nose. Roasted malt, cognac, and dark fruit up front. Picks up the dark chocolate, caramel, and oak. Some light vanilla present as well. Finishes with lingering roast, cognac, and oak

M: Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A very good cognac-BA Baltic porter that makes for a nice sipper. Cognac is definitely present but not overpowering. Worth checking out

Jun 28, 2021
Photo of Anders91
Anders91 from California

5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Look: black with a thin mocha head

Smell: chocolate, dark fruit, malt, barrel, super complex and delicious smelling

Taste: wow exactly like the smell, in the order listed too. This is delicious!

Feel: velvet smooth

I will definitely have this again, and look forward to trying more in Põhjala’s cellar series

Feb 14, 2021
Photo of Sigmund
Sigmund from Norway

4.23/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

330 ml red waxed bottle, from Vinmonopolet, Nettbutikken. ABV is 11.5%. Pitch black colour, large to moderate beige head. Aroma of roast malts, molasses, brown sugar, oak and cognac, hints of liquorice, vanilla and chocolate. Sweet flavour with the same elements as the aroma, moderate bittering hops.

Feb 04, 2021
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
JonnoWillsteed from England

4.18/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L- I find most black beers are shades of very dark ruby-red when held right by a very bright lightbulb. This one however, in the lyrics of the 1977 disco hit by Belle Epoque; 'Black is black, oooh-ooh, I want my baby back'. Pours with 3mm fine-bubble deep tan head.
S- Toasted, raisons, some timber, and a mildest suggestion of an ABV%
T- Raisons>stewed-prunes, super-deep/rich malts, and now after several sips I see how the cognac/liquor note fits right in between the raisons and malts. Interesting how subtle the cognac is as a result...
F- It's pretty rich but the punchy ABV% brings balance. A lovely slow-sippin' special occasion beer, perfect for winter.
O- Shame it's so $$$ as this is a real treat. Big, bold, beautifully crafted and balanced. I'd very happily drink this again, especially if someone else bought it for me ;;
Bought from TremblingMadness/York as part of a large mixed consignment to London. £6.10/330ml bottle.
BO: 27/01/20 BB: 27/01/23 stamped in black in @ neck.

Dec 15, 2020
Photo of Ozzylizard
Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

3.84/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Cellar Series Oo XO Cognac barrel aged from Pohjala. $ 16.16 (Including shipping)/11.2 oz bottle ($1.44/oz). From Craftshack, San Diego, CA. Received 9/22/20. Reviewed 10/9/20.
Printed on label “Best before/Batch: see bottle”. On the neck in black ink below the wax seal “BO 27012020 BB 27012023” Stored at home at 42 degrees and served at 55 degrees (Per label instructions of 54 -60 degrees) in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter. Final temperature 65 degrees.
Appearance – 3.
First pour – Amber brown (SRM 18), hazy.
Body – Black (SRM 40), opaque. When held to direct light, black but slight effervescence is noted.
Head – Large (Maximum 4.3 mm, aggressive center pour), earth yellow, initially fizzy but quickly settles to high density, short retention, diminishing to a five mm crown and no cap.
Lacing – None – not unexpected at 11.5% ABV.
Aroma – 4 – Initially strong bitter chocolate and coffee. No hops, no yeast, no cognac. As it warms to 60 degrees, the nose weakens and sweetens a bit as the cognac comes through.
Flavor – 4 - Begins strong, harsh, and slightly bitter with coffee and chocolate predominating. As it warms to 60 degrees, it mellows out, again with the cognac pushing to the top. No hops, no yeast. No alcohol (11.5% ABV, as marked on container) taste or aroma. No dimethylsulfide or diacetyl.
Palate – 3.5 – Medium, slightly syrupy, lively carbonation.
Final impression and summation: 3.75 Ordinary appearance for anything on the porter-stout spectrum. Aroma is decent over the temperature range but improves as the brew warms, as does the flavor. Overall, a decent brew but not exceptional. The suggested temperature range seems a bit low for optimum aroma and taste. Nearly a third of the price point is tied up in shipping.

Oct 09, 2020
Photo of janubio
janubio from Spain

3.63/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle at Las Buenas Pulgas, served in a snifter glass. Black color, medium beige head that fades slowly to a ring around the glass. Compact lacing. Aroma of chocolate, vanilla, some coconut, cake, cognac. Full body, sticky texture, good carbonation, sweet finish. Taste follows the aroma. Good, bur not the best of the cellar series.

Sep 13, 2020
Photo of Bierschenker
Bierschenker from Belgium

4.91/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bought at a supermarket in Stein (NL) during lunch.

Bottle says: Öö XO, Cognac Barrel Aged Imperial Baltic Porter, A special version of Öö, aged in Cognac barrels.
The cap is covered in red wax.

Served in my trusty "Seef" tumbler. With hinesight, I better used a Tulip.
Pours a black brownish liquid. No abient adour noticable.
Head is a full, companct and creamy caramel brown. Retains at 0,5 cm.
Odour is marvelous. A combination of ripe fruits (blue berries, pear, blackcurrents, raisins), bitter dark chocolate, old wood, alcohol and vanilla. Floral overall.
Flavour is an explosion in my mouth. excessively rich bitter sweet. Real dark chocolate bitterness, latte macchiato, custard, coffee liquor (Sheridans pops to mind).
In the aftertaste the cognac becomes noticable. As a dry sweet and creamy mouthfeel settles in, the alcohol is present in the mouth as well as a moldy wooden flavour. It's warming as well.

One word, wauw! This is such a flavour bomb. It's so rich and in so many ways. It's more a liquor then beer. A true cameleon.

Aug 18, 2020
Photo of StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser from Georgia

4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: that’s a really dark brew. Not much light getting through this.
Smell: roasty cognac. Not a lot happening but very nice and unique.
Taste: more going here. Creamy, roasty cognac, and bittersweet chocolate. A bit of char and bitter in the finish.

Jun 11, 2020
Photo of OlaB
OlaB from Norway

4.29/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep dark-brown color with a medium top off cappuccino colored head that dissolves slowly.
Aroma is of roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, caramel, vanilla, licorice, dark dried fruits, wood and cognac.
The taste is strong roasted and burnt malt with notes of dark chocolate, caramel and coffee.
The malty notes is ballanced with sweet notes of dried fruits and some slight cognac notes.
The roasted notes is there until the end. The finish also has a slight bitterness. The aftertaste is long and strong.
Mouthfeel is creamy and oily with a medium carbonation and a full body.
This was some solid stuff. A really impressive and delicious baltic porter.

May 26, 2020
Photo of Sabtos
Sabtos from Ohio

3.84/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Matte black to dark brown with a tall tan foam head slowly settling to a soft blanket.

Roasty, nutty and a little astringent with its metallic pine backing, there's a touch of milky oak, but it's not imparting that much character.

The smooth medium-light body has a soft fizz that comes to a semi-dry finish, bringing out a hint of red fruit heat, but not much, exhaling faint grape.

May 17, 2020
Photo of Bruno74200
Bruno74200 from France

4.04/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The cognac is there it has some fermentation flaws and it's overly carbonated. It's mostly about coffee and cognac. It's almost a bit boozy. Not their best offering in my opinion

Dec 26, 2019
Photo of LiquidAmber
LiquidAmber from Washington

4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, appearing opaque black in the glass with a patchy head that dissipates to nothing with slight lacing. Aroma of dark toasted malt, dried plums, dates, cherry, light cognac and oak. Flavor follows, with more cognac character, full bodied dark dried fruit, licorice and some light woody astringency. Medium bodied with light creaminess. Lots of barrel character in this aged Baltic porter. The classic dark dried fruit of the base porter are present, but mellow and smooth. Woody and clear cognac notes, especially in the finish. Has a lot of character I'd expect from an American strong ale, but the Baltic porter roots are obvious. Nicely done. I bit of booziness, but alcohol is well balanced. I like everything I've had from this brewery.

Nov 09, 2019
Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
Oh_Dark_Star from Washington

4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Opaque black beer with a three finger dark caramel head of tight foam slowly dissipating to a cap with some clumpy lacing.

S: Powerful aromas of toasted malt, dark cherries for certain, and some other dark fruits... prunes, dates, etc. Some vanilla, sugars, and oak from the barrel.

T: Follows the nose - not boozy. Nicely bitter. Very much stout like. Divine.

F: Medium-heavy feel. Right carbonation. Smoother and creamier than most Baltic what-have-you's.

O: Wow. My second Põhjala brew was nearly as good as the first. I'm lovin' these brewers!

Aug 31, 2019
Photo of stcules
stcules from Italy

4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cognac Barrel Aged Imperial Baltic Porter.
Black. One foinger of brown head, not bad giving the alcohol.
Intense smell, cognac, toasted notes, alcohol, dry fruit, light oxidation. Barrel present but not overwhelming.
Dry figs, plums.
Intense and full taste, long. Well, yes, alcohol, but well hidden.
Then again, artichoke.Vanilla, dry fruit, dry dates. The right amount of bitterness. Liquorice.
Great beer, complex and pleasant.

May 04, 2019
Photo of rjp217
rjp217 from Massachusetts

4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Total gusher so i thought it was going to be infected but luckily it wasn’t. Black licorice, dark chocolate and good amount of cognac, this is made really well.

Apr 04, 2019
Photo of Sammy
Sammy from Canada (ON)

4.05/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

a bit more boozy aroma. made or cognac., heightens the taste. mellow and extra dimensions, says Radek. had again a whole later and silky smooth with malt balls.

Nov 18, 2018
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca from Canada (QC)

4.71/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of sweet black chocolate notes with some light roasted malt notes and huge notes of Cognac and oak. Taste is a mix of black chocolate notes with some heavy residual sugar notes which are offset by woody and Cognac notes that are more prominent than expected. Body is full with nice oily texture and good carbonation with some warming alcohol notes that are discernible. World-class barrel-aged Baltic porter.

Nov 09, 2018
Photo of Jeffo
Jeffo from Netherlands

2.08/5  rDev -51.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Got this one at The Mitra in Maarssen

From a bottle into a snifter
Cellar Series
Best before 13-03-2021

APPEARANCE: Clear black pour yields a three finger, medium looking, slightly foamy tan head with excellent retention. Had to pour this one rather carefully. Black body with lots of carbonation for the style. Head gets potholed quickly and slowly fades to a thick, foamy cap. A splotchy wisp and ring remain leaving touches of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Woody with some slight metallic notes and staleness as well. This doesn’t smell all that great.

TASTE: Woody flavors with a touch of vanilla and some alcohol up front. A bit of a metallic note but not as much as in the nose. A medium but lingering finish of cognac, alcohol, wood, a bit of sour berries and a slight metallic hint. This is mostly woody, boozy and a bit stale.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. A touch foamy on the palate, goes down fine with a bit of a burn and finishes slightly mouth-coating. Some heat lingers for sure.

OVERALL: I’ve had two bottles of this. The first bottle had a best before date of 14-03-2020 and it was horribly infected. This bottling, whether it was a different batch, barrel, or whatever, is better, but it’s still pretty lousy. Boozy, slightly foamy, and certainly a little metallic and stale, I have definitely had better big, barrel aged beers from these guys. Pass on this one and try any other of their fantastic offerings. Meh.

Oct 24, 2018
Photo of Bierman9
Bierman9 from New Hampshire

4.42/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I had 2 bottles of this at Cafe Frape in Maastricht while enjoying a return to Europe with my older daughter, Caitlin. Each 0.33l bottle cost €7.50.

Served in a shaker pint, it was a dark, opaque brown, with a creamy mocha head. The foam lasted well, and left nice lacing. It had a lovely nose, with lots of malt, choco, caramel, and light hints of cognac. Body was a solid medium, leading to a good overall feel.

Taste had loads of choco, mocha and coffee, along with some dark fruit. Cognac was also detected, though it was subtle and light. The finish was a bit semi-sweet, with no bitterness at all. A lovely brew! Prosit!

4.42/5 rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5


Oct 08, 2018
Photo of crosenkrantz
crosenkrantz from Switzerland

4.15/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Liquid silk in your palate. It tastes strong, with chocolate, caramelized sugar and dark fruits. Strong cognac found on the nose, also a certain wood. Sticky and very sweet. A tad too sweet for me. Alcohol present in the aftertaste.

Aug 10, 2018
Photo of mwilbur
mwilbur from Minnesota

4.53/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 11.2 oz bottle into snifter. Best before 14 03 21. Batch 622
A: Pours an extremely dark brown with 2-3 inch dark mocha head with excellent retention. Thick and viscous appearing.
S: Smooth dark chocolate, red berries, herbal mint, Cognac, and some dark dried fruit too. Potent stuff.
T: Smooth dark chocolate and dark dried fruit (figs in particular) quickly followed by a burst of Cognac, berries, cherries, caramelized sugar, and a hint of herbal mint.
M: Super soft and velvety smooth feel. Silkily coats the tongue, lingers and matures beautifully. Darkly sweet, mildly bitter, and just a hint of alcohol burn. Wow!
D: Certainly a sipper, but still an amazingly drinkable beer. Complex, but not overly so. Cognac barrel aging brings some intriguing elements to the brew. Would pair well with a meatier meal, but also would do well at dessert or after the meal. Very nice!

Jul 27, 2018
Photo of Damian
Damian from Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Drank from a 0.33L/11.2 fl. oz. red wax dipped bottle purchased at Fort Point Market, Boston, MA
Best Before 14 03 20
Served in a snifter

Slighter thinner on the pour than I anticipated. The dark brown body was topped by a two-finger tall, super tight and creamy, saddle brown head that slowly dropped to a thick, lasting cap. Some drippy streaks of lacing cascaded down the glass after each sip.

The aroma was really intriguing. Roasted malts came through strong. There was a big, sweet boozy quality too. I might guess that this was aged in Port or Sherry barrels, but I would not be surprised it were Cognac barrels either. Very raisinsy. Nice brown sugar-like sweetness. Good amount of vanilla too. Powdered cocoa notes were also detectable. As the beer sat, the sweet, boozy notes intensified.

The flavor was solid but definitely less complex than the nose. Roasted malt came through strong from the get-go. Bit of char and smokiness. Sweet, boozy notes appeared in the center. Like in the aroma, Port or Sherry came to mind. Quite raisiny. Moderately oaky. A strong metallic quality was noticeable at first, but it dissipated with time. More roasted malts, booze and bitterness on the finish. Somewhat ashy and acrid.

The mouthfeel was the only really disappointing aspect of the beer. It was super light and highly over carbonated initially. This reminded me of some infected stouts I have encountered in the past. As the beer sat, the carbonation settled to a somewhat more tolerable level, but it was still fairly excessive.

Põhjala Brewery’s Öö XO Baltic Porter is an interesting and rather complex beer that improves considerably as it warms. Be sure to serve this around cellar temperature and give it plenty of time to open up.

Apr 30, 2018
Cellar Series: Öö XO from Põhjala Brewery
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 91 ratings