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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout | Old Dominion Brewing Company

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Dominion Oak Barrel StoutDominion Oak Barrel Stout
BA SCORE
3.94/5
Very Good
1,536 Ratings
Dominion Oak Barrel StoutDominion Oak Barrel Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Old Dominion Brewing Company
Delaware, United States
olddominion.com

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#5,433
Reviews:
703
Ratings:
1,536
pDev:
12.44%
Bros Score:
4.47
 
 
Wants:
85
Gots:
204
Trade:
2
HISTOGRAM
 
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Ratings: 1,536 |  Reviews: 703
Photo of mklinger
3.78/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pour into a shaker pint glass. Two full fingers of head formed after a moderately vigorous pour. The head was a nice mocha, creamy and thick though it dissipated fairly quickly to a slim layer within a minute. The beer was deep dark brown, the barest smidge of light showed through. Nice looking stout though the head could retain better.

Aroma was quite mild, a little cocoa and roast, not much of the oak in the scent. Not much hops in the aroma either. The rich malt is quite nice, though.

Flavor is pleasant. The roast and oak both create a nice dry taste. This is an easy to drink stout with nice roast & oak flavors, a bit of dark plum-y fruits and just enough hop bitterness to provide some balance. This isn't one of those assertive American stouts. It drinks more like a British or Irish stout with the additional complexity of the oak. The only flaw, given this style, is that the mouthfeel is a tad thin for me. A bit more dextrinous character would be nice. Otherwise, very nice & easy to drink.

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Photo of thartman
4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle. The label is different from the one pictured, but I'm sure its the same brew. Deep, dark brown, almost black in color with a thin, tight head.

Nice aroma of vanilla, caramel, with hints of milk chocolate, and hazelnut.

Complex flavors, much hints of vanilla, milky chocolate kind of like a 3 musketeers bar, toasted malts, and a little caramel. The oak really comes through on the finish, mixed with sweet vanilla and a very slight hint of bourbon.

Smooth and creamy on the palate, medium to full bodied, with minimum carbonation. Slightly dry on the finish from the oak.

Easy drinker, nice stout with a twist, not too heavy. This is definitely worth seeking out.

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Photo of akorsak
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to CrellMoset for this one.

A: The stout is a robust brown color, dark enough to pass for black under most circumstances. A finger or so of off-white head really didn't make much of itself.

S: Caramel and vanilla really stand out in the nose, a sugary sweet blend of syrups that overtakes the stout aspect. A decent punch that reminds me of some of Southern Tier's wilder concoctions.

T: The roasted goodness of a stout is quick to jump out, roasted with a lactic twist. Vanilla beans, an excess of them, seemingly float in the stout like espresso beans in sambuca. A decent chocolate roast body supports the vanilla. Oak, present but not overpowering, leads to a nice finish. A mild sourness, lactic in nature, interacts nicely with the vanilla and oak at the end of each sip.

M: Not a bourbon bomb, this beer chooses to go the subtle route. The vanilla is full-bodied, sweet and sturdy, a nice compliment to the stout's roasted body. A subtle beer that rocks the tastebuds hard.

D: A mild stout, oak aged, and under 5.5%? Hard to believe. This one isn't a barrel aged behemoth, rather it is a complex stout that packs a lot of punch into a small package.

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Photo of advill88
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - This beer is black as night, with a one and a half finger tan head.

S - Nutty oaky aroma, with hints of coffee and chocolate

T - Starts off slightly sour with a touch of hops, but then a nice strong maltiness kicks in with hints of bourbon and chocolate, and a smooth vanilla finish and a bit of sweetness.

M - Fairly heavy bodied with strong carbonation and a nice creamy texture

D - This is one of the few stouts I could probably drink all night because of its incredible rich and smooth taste. One of the better stouts I've had - highly recommended.

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

From a 12oz bottle into a pint glass:

A - Dark as night, black as pitch, darker than the evilest witch....ok maybe thats an exaggeration. Rich thick head, laces nicely.

S - Sweet malty smells. Chocolate, coffee scents...

T - Smooth sweet malts tastes of coffee with hints of chocolate and other complex malts. Oak & bourbon hints are also evident.

M - Heavy bodied and very smooth.

D - Very smooth and enjoyable. Very drinkable.

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

L: Pours a nice dark brown/black color with a medium sized and medium bodied tan colored head that laces the glass nicely on the way down.
S: Smells of deep roasted malts, caramel, chocolate, and then a nice oak barrel aroma with hints of vanilla and coffee.
T: Tastes like the nose, deep roasted malts, caramel, chocolate, coffee, hints of vanilla and bourbon in the oak flavor. The oak is a pretty big part of the flavor.
M: Very smooth, warming, perfect amount of carbonation.
D: Very drinkable considering the oak and bourbon are the prevalent flavors and the low abv for a barrel aged stout.

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Photo of guild337
3.9/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I have had this beer multiple times over the years, especially after moving back to Virginia 3 years ago. But this is the first time since AB (Coastal) bought out Dominion. But I was aware of the purchase, and expected to see that my keg was indeed a AB branded one. None the less, my experience was an overall pleasant one.

A - Deep and dark brown, with a slightly redish brown lovely head (once I got the CO2 pressure correct).

S - Coffee, dark chocolate, and hints of the vanilla bean. A tiny bit of earthiness.

T - A very nicely ballanced stout. It was on-tap in my kegorator for a Halloween party and the diverse crowd really seemed to like it. I enjoyed the subtle coffee and vanilla flavors.

M - A little syrupy and thick, but not unpleasant. And it was great on a crisp evening.

D - Low alchohol and not so overbearing bitterness lend to a somewhat sessionable brew. But I wouldn't recommend overindulging. The sugar content lends to quite the hangover the next day. All in all a great little (formerly) local stout. On-tap that is.

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Photo of philbe311
3.67/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 10/24/09 - Retrieved via Google Cache after system crash.

A - Slight dark brown creamy yet fizzy head doesn't last long and give way to an uneven splotchy lacing...

S - Overall, the aroma is quite subdued... Coffee... Vanilla... Roasted malt... Chocolate... Some very minor wood notes... Very pleasant, but quite passive...

T - Bitter roasted malts... Coffee... Vanilla... A touch of licorice... The oak character rises towards the end and remains as part of the aftertaste...

M - Medium bodied with a lot of fizzy carbonation... The taste doesn't fill the mouth... Clean... Chalky and somewhat dry...

D - Respectable... Not great... Not bad... A very pedestrian stout... The low ABV of 5.2% and the attractive sticker price are positives, but not enough to make this anything other than a marginal stout... Overall this suffers from a lack a assertiveness and complexity...

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Photo of coldmeat23
3.87/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

GLASS: Sam Adams Perfect Pint
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 50 degrees

This pours a deep, dark, brown color. A thin, foamy, head of brown, sits on top. Retention is okay and the lacing is nothing special.

Big oakiness is leveled out by a nice touch of vanilla sweetness. Good notes of dark roasted coffees. A mild touch of dark chocolates. Light earthiness (due to the hops content?).

Big notes of roasted malts and oak char. Vanilla presence is smoothing but not really that sweet. Notes of dark coffee and bittersweet chocolates. The finish is quite dry.

Full-bodied with a good, medium level of carbonation. Fairly smooth with a nice touch of creaminess.

It's a touch too roasty and charred for my tastes. I also think that the body could use a touch more 'oomph'. Still, it's drinkable, despite my minor, personal, quibbles.

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Photo of aaronh
3.41/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

As an update to my on-tap review - this beer really suffers in the bottle. Aromas are crushed and flat, flavor is simply better than average. Nothing spectacular in the bottle. I was very disappointed when I bought some of this. Drink it on tap - the bottle doesn't do it justice.

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Photo of droomyster
4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown with a small tan head. Smells are big on the vanilla element, with a strong coffee roastiness. Taste is big on burnt wood and vanilla, with a chocolate truffle bittersweetness that is delectable. Body is too thin for my taste but overall this one tasty beer.

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Photo of drtth
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Lightly chilled and poured into a Duvel glass. A glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: The beer pours out almost black with a ½" dark tan head that begins to recede immediately. As the foam recedes from the first sip it leaves on the glass a partial ring and some leggy patches of lacing. Soon the foam has receded to a small ring and a thin layer of foam with a few patches here and there. By the end of the beer there is still some patching but sparse lacing.

Smell: The first reaction is that the aroma is only vanilla from the beans and chocolate from the malts. Since I don't find any hints of bourbon here I think the goal is to use just the vanilla, the hints of woodiness from the oak to simulate bourbon barrel aging. There are hints of dark chocolate, molasses and faint coffee from the malts. While the aroma is not strong, it is present and unobtrusive.

Taste: The flavor is full and reasonably complex, with some vanilla and chocolate, some dark roast, but not burnt, malt providing dark chocolate and the flavor of dark roast coffee. Nothing really dominates the flavor on this one except some nice sweet vanilla character to round it out and soften it a bit.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium to full-bodied with minimal carbonation. The moderate length dry almost astringent finish seems to come from the oak chips rather than the hops.

Drinkability: While there are other stouts I prefer this is a pleasant enough stout to have again sometime and I certainly could see spending an evening with good friends, good conversation, and a few of these.

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Photo of zplug123
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a beer mug:

A: Black as oil, with a strong tan head that disappears into a ring of lacing. No light escapes from one side to the other.

S: Complex roasted characteristic, with dark chocolate tinge and vanilla after note.

T: Malty beer with notable oak tone, even bitterness throughout the taste. Sweet (vanilla?) end

M: Moderate-bodied but smooth, clean aftertaste. Could be mistaken for a porter, as it goes down easy.

D: On a cold autumn day, nothing warms up better than a good stout. Went through two bottles in a night and that was just the right amount.

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Photo of mtstatebeer
3.71/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle served in a tumbler glass. Pours a completely opaque black with about a finger of frothy light brown head that diminishes to a line around the top of the beer. Aroma is roasted malts, chocolate, a hint of vanilla and wood. Flavor is what makes this one, roasted malts, vanilla, chocolate, and bitterness from the oak aging. Mouthfeel is on the higher side of medium, creamy, with a bitter finish that sticks around for a while. Good beer, lots of good flavors, very drinkable.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.78/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on draft at the Old Dominion pub in Hyattsville, MD. Beer is dark, brownish black. Thin head, brown bubbles that leaves some lacing on the glass. Head falls away rather quickly. Can't really comment on the carbonation levels, hard to see in such a dark beer.

Smells like roast, a lot like a porter. Beer is smooth to drink. Sweetish on the front end and finishes with some roast / bitterness from the grains. No hop bitterness or aroma at all. Cookie cutter stout. Not disagreeable.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.85/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep dark black in color with nice khaki head, fades quickly but good lacing. Smell is of chocolate, vanilla, brown sugar and oak. Faint hints of coffee. Taste is more pronounced with vanilla extract, sweet brown sugar, oak and dark chocolate with coffee hints trailing. Silky smooth with a little aftertaste. Very good stout, but the vanilla begins to take over and can appear to be artificial.

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Photo of TheFightfan1
4.47/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours an almost opague black some lighted areas of ruby coloring.Thick creamy caramel colored heading.No lacing or legs at all and kind of flat looking.

Smell is heavily in favor of roasted malt followed by bitter sweet chocolate. Slightest of vanilla on the backend.

Taste of oakness hits you all at once at first. Followed by a very smooth dark chocolatey maltiness.Vanilla comes toward the end to add some creaminess and sweetness. Also there is a slight tasting of bitter hoppiness in the end.

Mouth is a little flat no real pop of retention. But it is ridiculously smooth and velvety in texture. Making this a little too smooth for school.

Easily drinkable and for sure a new handy beverage to have around the house.

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Photo of Aenema
3.92/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a deep, dark brown with a thin head and leaves no lacing.
Smell - Roasted malts, vanilla and oak. The oak gives off an impression of bourbon.
Taste - Similar to the nose; chocolaty, roasted malts followed by vanilla and oak.
Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied, especially for a stout, with moderate to low carbonation and a dry finish.
Drinkability - Relatively easy drinking stout.

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

Poured from a 12oz bottle into an imperial pint. Thanks to alen for this extra from our recent trade!

A: Pours a very dark cola brown/black with only a hint of lightening at the edges. Capping this is a dark khaki colored head that quickly fell off to a creamy skim with some whisps of skim. No lace.

S: Aromas of fresh vanilla bean, roasted malt, cocoa, dark fruit, and new oak.

T: Vanilla and roasted malt lead the way with some supporting help from cocoa, fresh oak, mild citrus, and some caramel and/or toffee and fudge in the finish.

M: Starts sweet and smooth but gradually takes on a drier, bitter edge as the middle progresses to the finish. Finish is pretty long with a touch of pepper.

D: A nice, sessionable stout that offers a little more to keep things interesting.

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Photo of kirchnak
4.48/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had it on tap at Dulles airport in DC at the Old Dominion pub next to gate B14. Pours beautifully with a nice head. Slight sweetness with hints of vanilla and even a little chocolate. It is not overly bitter which makes it very easy to drink. It may be a little to sweet for some, but I am a big fan.

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Photo of devilben02
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Truth be told, I want to dislike this beer. Old Dominion used to be a great example of local craft beer culture with the brewery and attached brew pub strangely located in a commercial park and an annual beer festival that was always a fun afternoon on the lawn enjoying a variety of regional and nationally-distributed selections. All of this seemed to change when the brewery was bought out by a bigger fish in the brewing world. The beer fest ended, the brewpub closed, but at least Dominion's core varieties can be found in more markets, right?

All of that being said, this is still a respectable stout. The deep, dark brown color lets you know that some heavily roasted malts are in this selection. The aroma presents this dark malt sweetness with a hint of vanilla. The vanilla flavor is even more pronounced in the taste, seeming almost overly sweet and almost artificial at times. It is lightly carbonated and has an overall smooth mouthfeel. Despite my acknowledged bias, I have to admit that this is a decent stout that would be a nice (albeit unspectacular) addition to any beer-drinking session if only for the interesting balance of bittersweet dark malts and added vanilla and oak flavors.

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Photo of Daniellobo
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A pleasant stout with a faint vanilla/oak touch.

Presentation: 12 oz bottle. Revised label design leaning on a more contemporary legibility with a tree, barrel and buck within. Short description of the brew on the bottom part of the label and a perfunctory repetition of the same on the back. Lacks bottling date or freshness, neither shows IBUs or °Plato, or Alc. by Vol. Poured into a jar.

A - Dark brown with a hint of transparency towards the margins. 1/4 inch head that fades leaving thin layer and minimal lacing.

S - Roaster malts with a touch of vanilla. Not very fragrant.

T - Sweet malt with notes of chocolate and coffee. Minimal oak feel.

M - Quite carbonated giving it a light bubbly feel to an otherwise decent smoothness.

D - Not too complicated or sturdy a stout , it goes down well without many complications or memorable notes.

Notes: It is a nice and reliable stout. But neither the oak nor the vanilla beans are present in a very memorable manner. They are there subtly adding a hint to a bit of a thin stout for my linking.

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Photo of thekanna
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Nice tar black color with a very thin tan head even after a turbulent pour.

S: Roasted malts, some smokiness, and faint vanilla beans. Gives off the general aroma of old wooden furniture, or an antique barn, full of age and complexity.

T: Good balance of roasted malts, oak, and espresso. There is some cacao powder-like bitterness to round out the end, with just a hint of phenols reminiscent of good scotch.

M: Medium, almost slightly too thin body. Would have liked more heaviness in the mouthfeel to complement the gravity and complexity of the oaky taste.

D: Nice to sip and admire the woody notes.

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Photo of montageman
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

Bought a 6 pack of this in Outer Banks, NC. Big vanilla/oak aromoa hits the nose right off the bat. This stout doesn't mess around. Coffee, vanilla, brown sugar, & chocolate make appearances in the taste. Quite complex & accessible. Mouthfeel is a touch watery, but other than that - this is a very tasty brew. Recommended.

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Photo of AltBock
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was able to grab a fresh pint of oak Barrel Stout at Stephanie's In Doylestown, PA around 8/9/2009.

It wasn't the most properly lit bar in PA, but from what I could see when I held this beer up to the light, it was a solid coal black colored beer. There were no highlights along the sides. It was just pure blackness. Sitting on top of this black beer was a creamy 1 1/2 inch mocha colored head of foam. It had great retention that left behind a few mocha blots of lace and a tiny skim of foam.

This beer had a nice roasted and slightly sweet aroma. The one aroma that stood out had to be the bitter dark chocolate. Behind the dark chocolate was some dark roasted malts, a pinch of of roasted coffee, a subtle whiff of bourbon and charred oak, and a drop of sweet vanilla.

The taste was pretty much the same as the aroma. It was roasted and slightly dry with dark roasted malts, dark chocolate, bourbon, charred oak, roasted coffee beans, and just a subtle pinch of sweet vanilla. The two biggest flavors in this beer had to be the dark chocolate and the bourbon. Toward the bottom of the glass, the dark chocolate and bourbon combined their powers to create a sweet alcohol flavor.

This was a medium bodied Stout with a decent level of carbonation and a dry aftertaste of dark chocolate, roasted malts, charred oak, and touch of bourbon.

For some reason, I've always wanted to try this beer and after I've tried this beer on tap, I know why. It was an easy drinking Stout that wasn't all that heavy with bourbon and oak. If I saw this in a bottle shop, I'd probably buy one or two bottles.

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Dominion Oak Barrel Stout from Old Dominion Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.94 out of 5 with 1,536 ratings
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