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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout | Old Dominion Brewing Company

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698 Reviews
Dominion Oak Barrel StoutDominion Oak Barrel Stout

Brewed by:
Old Dominion Brewing Company
Delaware, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
We use smoked and peated malts to create an intricate malt foundation. Our method of dry hopping with vanilla beans and oak chips pushes the depth of this stout’s flavor spectrum even further.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-12-2001

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Reviews: 698 | Ratings: 1,501
Photo of brentk56
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a dark coffee color with a tan head that has moderate retention and leaves a bit of lace

Smell: Caramel, oak, cocoa and a huge dose of vanilla

Taste: Starts with a caramel and oak flavor that is joined, mid-palate by roasty coffee bitterness; after the swallow, the cocoa, vanilla and vague bourbon flavors join in to produce a complex finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied (wish it were a touch thicker) with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Terrific brew with lots of complexity

(I have had this beer several times in the bottle and on tap and never know what to expect - sometimes great and sometimes disappointing. This was a great bottle - bottled 7/19/2006.)

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Photo of mjc410
3.86/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The pour into my Fuller's nonic raises a very thin, dark tan glass ring over a not-quite-opaque black beer. Lacing is minimal. Nothing impressive here. The nose is where the fun begins: definite oak, vanilla, and chocolate coming through. Not very intense, but lovely. The taste is fairly dry throughout, but has a very strong caramel/vanilla presence, which is more potent than the traditional stout flavors, which hide in the background. It has a lingering aftertaste that is essentially the same - no complaints! This beer has quite the thick consistency, with a lot of carbonation for a stout. I guess that helps to lighten it up a little. I will definitely reach for this beer the next time I can get some!

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Photo of weeare138
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appears a pitch, opaque black with only a dark, caramel toned brown yielding any light at the very bottom of the glass. A small tan head fades into a scattered cap and collar. Spotty lacing is left around the glass but slides back into the brew.
Smell is of dusty cocoa, caramel, vanilla, and oak. Perhaps there is a touch of creaminess as well.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas that leads to a balanced stout that seems sweet and not really roasty like many other stouts.
Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with light oak tannins complimenting the cocoa, caramel, and vanilla flavors that run along the palate but don't linger. Slightly sweet up front with a gentle, tannic, bitter end that is very soft, smooth, mildly slick, and semi-dry. Really nice IMO.
A nice drinking stout. That 5.2 goes down like nothing.

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Photo of alexgash
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark, oily, black at the core, dark brown edges. Small, light khaki head. Definite oak, oak chips, vanilla, roasted malt, sweet chocolate, creme brulee, caramel, and bourbon. Nice, complex aroma. Taste is similar, but a bit muted. Roasted malt bitterness up front. Oaky, peaty, earthy malt sweetness changes to vanilla and chocolate sweetness. Moderate body (a bit light for the style perhaps) with plenty of carbonation. I like.

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Photo of Ego
4.57/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

music: nailbomb

12 oz bottle, pours very nicely with one full finger of head that is a shade darker than off white, opaque and black, the head consists of very fine bubbles and I can see the head being replenished... so the head is retaining nicely, unlike size D boobs on a 50 year old. lacing is also very nice. a good lookin stout.

this is dry hopped with vanilla, so of course it is in the nose and blends expertly with the deep tones here, you can smell the toasty oak right underneath the vanilla, we have coffee notes, powdered cocoa... man alive this rules...

taste etc...
smooth as your girl after a brazilian wax, rich and velvety.. and the flavors.. they all come through, the vanilla taste is nicely pronounced here, the carbonation just barely approaches prickly and carries this brew well. the chocolate and burnt flavors all meld right in your mouth... this one is outstanding.. near perfect. if the flavors were slightly more deep and the beer a touch thicker this would rate 5's across.

worth seeking out for stout fans, and a great session beer for the winter!

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Photo of Saunapoika
3.55/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

First impression was one of suprise. With a name like Oak Barrel Stout, I was assuming a deep filling, hearty, dark brew.

Appearance is a slightly opaque black.

Aroma starts off with hints of vanilla and then is overpowering with the smell of bourbon. While quaffing this brew, I imagined a Guiness with a shot of Jim Beam poured in.

Carbonation was perfect but no head retention or lacing throughout my experience.

Overall, this is an enjoyable brew. I however, was expecting a bit more of a filling beer. Not to say it wasn't good but not quite what I was expecting.

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Photo of Cadyfatcat
4.67/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks like a stout, very dark brown with brown characteristic stout head.

A little lactic on the nose, with some cocoa, roasty malts, and vanilla

Roasted almond and macadamia nut with a deep chalky chocolate flavor. Many different levels of dark and bitter chocolate flavors in this one. Oak flavor comes through and adds to the extremely rich and creamy texture of this beer. Curious notes of vanilla in the background. This beer is truly a masterpiece. Humbling. This beer retains a softness to it and has no flavors that would prevent me from drinking it often and in succession. It also shows how a big ABV is not needed to make an exceptional beer. The subtleties in this beer are exceptional and perhaps may not be detectable with more alcohol.

One for the ages, I am blown away.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade from phisig137, so a big "thank you" goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a small but foamy tan head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: There’s a very strong smoky & malty vanilla smell with hints of caramel & coffee.

T: The taste is creamy and rich with vanilla, roasted coffee & caramelized malt. It’s very sweet and there’s very little trace of any alcohol. The after-taste maintains the smokiness and sweetness.

M: Extremely smooth, heavy body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is a little sticky and syrupy.

D: Very tasty, very easy-to-drink, slightly filling, this is a good beer to sit and relax with.

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Photo of orfeu
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in a recent trade from BA nriech, bottled on July 19 2006. Pours a deeply dark chocolate brown, almost black, with a rather thin light mocha head. Roasty black malt aromas mix with a faint vanilla sweetness. Some coffee undertones and a bit of earthy hops appear as well, but overall the nose is surprisingly restrained, since this is served at just about cellar temperature and no colder. I'm not sure if this is a good or bad thing. Meaning: It's not overpoweringly vanilla-scented, but I'm not all that excited by the nose either. Okay, the taste helps me decide: the nose is good. Regarding the flavor, the vanilla sweetness and the roasted malt characteristics mentioned above really come forward in the taste, but not too forcefully in either respect. They are quite well balanced, in fact. A dry oakiness is also present in the taste, lingering for a while afterwards, lending a vinous aspect to the finish. Slight carbonation, a bit slippery in the mouthfeel, leaning towards a velvet smoothness. Medium body. Not the dryest stout in the world. I like mine to be pretty heavy on the roasty side of things, and the vanilla beans prevent that from really taking over in this beer. But it's got a very compelling flavor profile nevertheless. I'd like to try this on tap someday as I get the feeling it might be a little more exciting that way. Easily sessionable, as long as you don't mind a slight, persistent vanilla flavor in stouts.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.67/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

thanks to aprilluvsbeer for this via trade! I make an occaisional stout and love to try all sorts. Many times, my own variations on a recipee included, I'm better off sticking with favorites.

This brew is the definition of tasty sbulime stout! Wows without needing to hit you over the head with any one flavor.

A - Rich ruby black with a creamy light tan head

S -Rich malts, oak, vanilla, chocolate, coffee and toffee.

T - like it smells but velvety smooth and very well balance. Almost soft if that makes any sense.

M - very smooth and creamy .

D - goes down very easy.

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Photo of tattooedtolley
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Almost black, really dark brown in color, with a brown head. No lacing really.

Smell - Much more subtle than I had guessed it would be. A touch of oak, some chocolate aroma, and some roasted malts, really subtle overall.

Taste - Flavor was also extremely subtle, hints of oak, roasted malt, and some vanilla. Not a bad stout overall, I expected something bigger, but this was not dissapointing at all, a very well made single stout.

Mouthfeel - Medium/thick bodied.

Drinkability - Very easy to drink.

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Photo of BlackJeremiah
3.13/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter.

A: Really dark, still-looking, with little bubbling and no capping. A rich brown. Aeration gives a very temporary coffee-colored head.

S: Oak, vanilla, light coffee are all present. Slight roasty aromas linger about without asserting themselves overmuch.

T: Hershey's Dark Chocolate and vanilla extract. Oaky flavors are not as present as I expected. Roastiness reigns around the middle, as much as anything can dominate in this very mild beer. Coffee/espresso visits briefly, then leaves. Interesting flavors, but light, and not in an oak-aged way. Given that it was only oak chips that were used rather than aging in a oak barrel, I wonder if the lightness and mellowness is supposed to convey a faux-aged sensibility.

M: Mild, almost weak or watery. Does not have stout presence at all; feels like flat cola, if anything. Really a disappointment from a local brewery.

D: One of the only stouts I could describe as light and refreshing. You could easily drink this in summer--in fact, better than in winter. Not so much stout, as slightly husky.

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Photo of MSchae1017
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer was tasted in a pint glass from the 12oz bottle.

This beer pours a dark black with hints of red lace with a smallish tan head that disspates to just some whisps of foam with a decent amount of lacing down the side of the glass. The smell is roasted malts with hints of vanilla and wood. The taste is up front with the roasted and black malts. Again the vanilla and wood make a lingering presence here. The mouthfeel is rather thin but not bad on carbonation. Overall a good stout, but not one I was so thrilled with I'd like to get over and over again.

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Photo of Illinick
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Mad Mex-Monroeville
A: Very dark, opqaue brown that displays mahogany and ruby-ish colors when held to light. Small head that shrinks quickly and remains as a semi-sticky ring, milk chocolate in color. Some decent lacing, but nothing to right home about.
S: Faint at times, but when a good whiff is had it displays scents of caramel, slight oak, a roasted, almost charred vanilla bean smell, and some well rounded bourbon scents. A sweet smelling brew that has a charred oak back bone.
T: Delicious and complex. Very little carbonation and sweet flavors of caramel, oak and roasted malts up front with sweet vanilla and bourbon flavors ending the sip. The bourbon flavors are not harsh, but are on the sweet side pairing nicely with the definate vanilla. A nice off-set to the charred oaky flavors up front. A nice flavor profile.
MF: Chewy and medium.
Overall: A delicious brew that exhibits a complex flavor profile. Nicely done carbonation. If the appearance were a little better this one would be tops. The flavor is top notch nonetheless. Definately worth a try and at the ABV, a few can be had.

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Photo of edmundfitzoil
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to BA Himerman for adding this bad mofo in as a surprise in our trade, which had been a spectacular one to begin with. I poured mine, which had a bottled on date of 041606 into one of my pint glasses from a 12 oz. brown glass bottle.

The beer poured a very dark brown with a finger of tan, soda like head. The nose was dark malts and strong vanilla tones. A very nice aroma on this beer. The flavor of a distinct, mellow dark maltiness to start that mellowed into a vanilla and then lightly oaky flavor after the swallow. It's a medium bodied beer, but incredibly drinkable, and a stout that I wish were available here in Jacksonville.

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Photo of OStrungT
4.73/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a very dark brown. It boasts a nice looking brown head. The head fades surprisingly fast, leaving no laces. Pitty.

This beer has a pleasent vanilla aroma. I smell some coffee also. Roasted malts make an appearence. It has a slight oak aroma also. The vanilla aroma is very nice.

Wow. This beer tastes great. It has a strong vanilla flavor. Behind that, I get some oak notes. Coffee flavor is very subtle. It has a sweet caramel like malt flavor also.

This beer goes down smooth, leaving a vanilla like aftertaste. It is low in carbonation, well for the style.

I think this beer might be a good session beer. It is low in alcohol, and it tastes great. It might get a little heavy after a few, but I think I could drink it all night.

Overall: Thanks go out to HimerMan for this great beer. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to try this beer. Thanks also for a great trade.

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Photo of kimcgolf
4.06/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured to a typical stout opaque-black, with thick tan head that lingers and then leaves good lacing. I couldn’t detect much aroma, but the flavor was a tasty mix of vanilla with a hint of malty chocolate. Finish was very smooth, yet not too sweet. I generally don’t consider stouts for session beers, but could actually see drinking several of these over a few hours. A darn good beer.

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Photo of sacfly
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz, bottling date 022306
Pours a nearly opaque black/brown with just a hint of light penetrating the edges. Thin head of small brown bubbles. Aroma is mostly coffee. Just a hint Bourbon and vanilla. Taste is dominated by vanilla, maybe just a bit too much. I don’t get any coffee in the taste, just vanilla with hints of dark chocolate and just a dash of bourbon. The dash of Bourbon is perfect in my opinion. Not overdone, just an accent. Creamy texture. Aftertaste long and mild. Burnt grains and a touch of bitterness. Impressive. This is one case where the bottled version wins out. I have had this on draft before and I don’t recall it being as complex and creamy. Grade A stout. One I will keep in rotation in the coming months.

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Photo of HimerMan
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle purchased at BeerYard on my last trip (part of the back to back trips). Poured into a standard pint glass.

Pour - very nice deep dark brown/almost black with a coffee color head that is rather nice. Immeidate smell of vanilla peeks even before you are done with the pour.

Smell - Again, very nice here - vanilla, mild oak, and chocolate. Not a huge smell that comes off, but nice nonetheless.

Taste - Not a huge amount of flavor, but a very easy stout to drink. Flavors blend very well together; strong creamy vanilla, chocolate very mild oak and not any hops after taste at all. This is not a burnt or black chocolate flavor with the beer, which is great since its a stout (less alcohol) than an imperial or double.

Overall - this is a very easy beer to drink with a very reasonable price per bottle. No reason to not try this beer, its very good. I'd suggest having this with vanilla ice cream or as a float. Definitely worth trying. I was surprised that this beer tasted the way it did, in a good way.

Perhaps I need to visit someone in Virginia to try this on tap - I've heard it is much better on tap than it is out of the bottle.


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Photo of Domingo
4.17/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow - this is a truly excellent beer. One of the best oak aged/flavored beers I've had.
Pours a murky black color. Not quite "imperial" level murkiness, but still thick and dark. Has a nice head that forms almost like a nitro can would.
Smell is a complex mix of vanilla, malty chocolate, an oak backbone that adds to the vanilla, and a little smokiness.
Flavor reminds me of a hearty stout crossed with a vanilla porter's flavor. Not much hops in there, but with all of the flavors that are, who cares?
Mouthfeel is also kind of nitro-ish. I actually really like that just because it's unique. Admittedly, this was taken from a full-size clear plastic cup...but that shouldn't affect the mouthfeel dramatically. Goes down very easy, but would make a great beer for the fall.
I could definitely drink several of these on a cooler evening.
Next time I'm in Virginia, I'm definitely picking up a lot more of this rather than the single bottle I did pick up.
This is truly a great one.

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Photo of hiikeeba
4.65/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was bottled on 6/29/06 at the brewery. It wasn't pastuerized.

The beer pours up nicely. It is black with a smooth tan head. It has a smoky, malty aroma. Starts with a malty, almost chewy flavor; has a velvety mouthfeel and finishes on the back end silghtly sweet.

I love all stouts. Most have a coffee like finish as a result of the roasted malts, but this is an exceptionally smooth beer. It is one of my favorites. My only regret is that I live 1200 miles away from the source!

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Photo of Phatz
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 12/8/05 enjoyed on 6/5/06
Served just chilled below cellar temp. and warming to room temp.

Appearance: Pours pure black with a think 3 finger head. The head fades relatively quickly but maintains a frothy cap. Moderate lacing.

Smell: Dark malts hint the nose first followed by some vanilla and a bit of a charred aroma. I did get hints of molasses but very little if any wood in the aroma. To me it came through more as a subtle hint of dark leather.

Taste: Darkly roasted malts and a hint of chocolate and molasses lead, followed immediately by the vanilla and the finish is bittering woodiness with a balancing hop character brilliantly displayed. The finish is smooth but leaves you in the aftertaste with a bitter chocolate and tobacco/wood aftertaste in the mouth and a hint of vanilla on the back of your throat. Very balanced, pleasant, and easy to drink.

Mouthfeel: As it reached room temperature the mouthfeel seemed to grow a bit. Still it has a thin spot through the center, other than that it is quite creamy and rather fluffy for a stout.

Drinkability: I believe the best feature of Old Dominion Oak Barrel Stout is its drinkability. This is not the biggest or most complex stout I have had but it is tasty and quaffable. I am a fan of simple Stouts as session beers and this certainly qualifies.

Hope this is helpful.

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Photo of doppelmeup
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass. Very dark brown, with a rich, creamy head that was mostly white.

Aromas of vanilla, chocolate, coffee and toffee.

Taste was very smooth, with nice vanilla accent to the typical stout flavors of coffee and dark chocolate. Hints of bourbon complemented. An excellent beer.

Very smooth and creamy mouthfeel, closer to a porter than a really heavy stout. Nice clean aftertaste.

Very drinkable brew that I'd highly recommend.

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Photo of Westsidethreat
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Espresso dark with an oatmeal head with medium sized bubbles that seem to be holding on. Not a lot of lace going on.

S: Vanilla latte, black patent malt, touch of oak and breakfast cereal.

T: Immediate over the top vanilla, sweet grains, mild red grape juice, raisinettes. Gentle dark roasted grains, mellow coffee flavors and a bit buttery aftertaste.

M Medium to thin body with a fuzzy mouthfeel which rounds while the carbonation chills out.

D: Not bad but the flavors seemed a little fake. Its very obvious that this isn't aged in bourbon barrels but oak chips and vanilla beans are used. Certainly drinkable but not stellar.

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Photo of jokelahoma
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Has the good fortune of trying this one at the brewpub in Virginia.

Glass is filled with a not quite opaque, deep, deep black liquid, with garnet around the edges. Deep khaki colored head doesn't stand extremely tall, but what little is here lasts a good while.

The aroma is understated wood. In fact, this smells exactly like ... wait for it ... a stout from a wood barrel. Go figure. There are toasty, spicy, almost cedary overtones to this. There's a little sweetness to the smell as well. I thought I had detected diacetyl on one sniff, but if it was there it ran away, as I could never find it again. Just the smell of a good English style sweet stout.

The taste is also quite woody, perhaps more so than any other wood aged beer I've tried. It's almost spicy from the wood, in fact. Even the aftertaste seems more akin to a pepper beer than to a wood aged one. There's little else to give away that this is a stout other than a very mild roastiness at the very end of the aftertaste, once the pepper flavors have died down. This isn't terribly complex, between the spicy wood and barely perceptable roast malt flavors, but it is good for the sweet stout style.

The body is thin, more like a porter than a stout, really. It isn't bad, but it could be more substantial.

This was interesting, to say the least. The beer really picked up the wood flavors, almost to the point of overkill. Again, it isn't a bad beer by any means. But it's not something I'd want to order over and over, either. Good for what it is, and worth at least a shot.

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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout from Old Dominion Brewing Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 1,501 ratings.
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