Great Lakes Ohio City Oatmeal Stout | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

very good
101 Reviews
Great Lakes Ohio City Oatmeal StoutGreat Lakes Ohio City Oatmeal Stout

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States

Style: Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by aaronh on 02-03-2003

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Reviews: 101 | Ratings: 365
Photo of BEERchitect
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jus in time for cooler weather, the classic oatmeal stout emerges from a world of imperial-this and double-that for a robust flavor that's friendly to the palate and won't unnecessarily fatigue the senses. Great Lakes Brewing Company gets back to basics with Ohio City Stout.

Gentlemanly black and capped with a mocha-stained, whipped cream froth, As suggested in its appearance, its robust and earthy perfume wafts over the senses with coffee, cream, dark chocolate and burnt toast. Its malty upstart is of sweet char as the taste of seared caramels and toffees play a savory tune on the early palate.

The heart of the stout reveals a toasty and roasty focus as the stout opens up on the middle palate. Dark-roast coffee, bittersweet chocolate, roasting walnut and heavy whipping cream layer onto the tongue giving impressions of malted milk-chocolate candies. Modest bitterness is suggestive of coffee-like earth and wood as the beer's later taste is light of cereal and soil.

Medium-full in body, the beer's creamy and starchy texture trends drying and lightening late and suggests a high rate of drinkability and an almost refreshing mouthfeel. Hints of licorice and chicory shine through the creaminess of oats and keep the excitement coming with each and every sip.

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Photo of jwc215
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoy by 01/31/16 stamped on 12 oz. bottle:

Pours pitch black with a thin lasting head. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is of rich dark chocolate with a mild coffee-like roast.

The taste of dark chocolate balanced by mild roast and dark bready notes in the finish.

It has a silky smooth body.

A dark, smooth, enjoyable malty, slightly roasty, brew!

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Photo of SomethingClever
4.19/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into Spiegelau glass best by date of 2/13/16

A: Dark mocha blackness but with hints of light escaping at the edges was not much of a head but it might have been too cold.

S: Huge roasted nut and coffee nose with deep maltiness grainy oatmeal getting something almost salt maybe a little smokey like meat

T: deep rich oats taste with a nice sweetness that gives you big roasted flavors a little coffee some almost very light dates taste but it is gone in a flash

M: pretty full mouthfeel for such a low ABV beer makes the beer drink bigger than it is very rich texture creamy

O: This beer is fantastic I would almost say better than Edmund Fitzgerald. The only thing I am not crazy about is that salty roasted meat smell smokiness the taste is superb though and that smell does not translate to the taste. For such a low ABV beer this has exceptional flavor.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Dark walnut brown body, with excellent dark red edges and hues. Creamed top light tan with espresso creamy color apperance and a big crown bowled puck as it settles. Two fingers tall, and with a nearly nitro looking appearance. Very nice looking stout.

Classic roasted grain notes, a hint of cream and sweetness like flavors on the nose as well. Small hint of vanilla, a little bit of white flour, mild sensing milk chocolate as well.

Palate manages some of the basics, with a little bit of oddity. Lightly roasted and moderate senses of dark grains. Finishes kind of bitter with also a bit of prickly carbonation feeling as well. Slightly acrid and sour twinge a bit in the mid palate as well, which is a little distracting. Muted chocolate notes, not much creamy texture, but a hint of vanilla kicks in slightly.

Most of the pieces are there, but manages a little bit of sour grain that takes away from much of the other beers pleasurable qualities.

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Photo of Blueribbon666
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours cola colored w/a head that reduces quickly to a fine lace.
Smell is a wonderful nose of chocolate, licorice & espresso that is very reminiscent of GL's Blackout Stout.
Mouthfeel medium to thin, similar to a dry stout but softer w/the oats w/a bit of sweetness but not like a milk/sweet stout.
Solid overall. Perfect for sessions, nice to see another oatmeal stout. I believe I've had this @ the brew pub a couple years ago, not sure if they tweaked this for bottle.

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Photo of superspak
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into signature pint glass, best before 1/31/2016. Pours crystal clear very dark brown color with a 1 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of chocolate, cocoa, coffee, toasted oats, dark bread, light smoke/dark fruit, herbal, floral, and roasted earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of roast/bready malt and light-moderate earthy hop notes; with good strength. Taste of chocolate, cocoa, coffee, toasted oats, dark bread, light smoke/dark fruit, herbal, floral, and roasted earthiness. Light herbal/roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, coffee, toasted oats, dark bread, light smoke, and herbal/roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity, robustness, and balance of roast/bready malt and light-moderate earthy hop flavors; with a great roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-moderate roasted dryness after the finish as well. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/silky/bready, and slightly chalky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with zero warming present after the finish as expected of 5.4%. Overall this is a damn good oatmeal stout. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of roast/bready malt and light-moderate earthy hop flavors; and very smooth and easy to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Brutaltruth
3.77/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Enjoyed from the 12 oz bottle in a snifter. This nice oatmeal pours a nice blackish brown with a pale tan head of foam that dissipates to a thin ring, thin layer, and decent lacing. Nose of moderate to dark roasted malts, light nuttiness, and a touch of cream. Flavors exceed the nose with dark roasted malts, smoothed out by oats, and followed mid taste with light cocoa and a touch of coffee and cream mixed with a touch of cola. Warmth brings out more flavors, yet there is a touch of metallic on the back that is odd for this brewery. Good mouth feel, good carbonation, moderately coating.

Nice minus the metallic flavor which is hard to say since I am a huge fan of this brewer.


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Photo of Caveworm
4.69/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Great Lakes Ohio City Oatmeal Stout - Great Lakes Brewing Co. Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, this brew's head is three fingers thick and eggshell brown, with solid lacing, and an extremely dark brown body.

Smells like full, yet mild roasted malts. Also get a whiff of oatmeal.

I taste caramelized/roasted malts tamed by perhaps the oatmeal. Not much coffee or chocolate, but they do appear mid-palate. Also a very small tartness at the end. Very well done execution.

The mouthfeel here is smooth and clean.

Overall, I'll give Great Lakes Ohio City Oatmeal Stout - Great Lakes Brewing Co. a 4.75. This is a very sessionable stout and could probably get skeptics into this style. I'll definitely grab this again.

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Photo of GOBLIN
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

An overall terrific oatmeal stout. I can't really put into words how happy I am with this sout from GLBC. In a year where I believe the overall quality of many GLBC beers has fallen considerably . . . Ohio city stout is a beacon of light for one of my favorite breweries. Along with the likes of session wheat, lawn seat and Albert clipper. Ohio city is a stand out this year.

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Photo of robear
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very good example of a traditional oatmeal stout. Just a hint of smoothness and body from the oats differentiates this from a standard stout, and a good malt balance give this beer enough edge and roastiness so no one will mistake it for a milk stout.

Those who are getting any harsh or metallic flavors- this beer really shines when it warms up to 40-50 degrees. Take it out of the fridge and let it warm a few minutes before pouring and drinking.

Well done and great price point. This will please any beer lover looking for a stout packed with flavor that is a decently low abv.

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Photo of barczar
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I could smell the oats and toasted, nutty malt as soon as I opened the bottle. Underlying roast notes and hints of chocolate emerge late.

There's an acidic dark malt/metallic bite upfront, which becomes toasted and nutty mid palate, finishing with a roast bitterness and dark chocolate.

A good beer that would be even better without that acid/metallic character.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.09/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, best by January 16, 2016. Served in a snifter glass.

Pours a medium-dark brown body, one finger offwhite head with fairly short retention time. Not much lacing. Smells of oatmeal, rich cocoa, chocolate, a bit of espresso. A very nice dense aroma that clearly evokes oatmeal stout. Not porter or imperial stout, oatmeal stout. Flavour is similar; very nice cocoa, milk chocolate, touch of espresso, mild earthiness rounds things out. No char or smoke. Very clean but fairly cocoa/chocolate-heavy for a 5.4% oatmeal stout. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, not thick by any means but not thin, with plenty of depth. Good carbonation. Smooth, easy drinking oatmeal stout. Overall, this is a pretty prototypical oatmeal stout that's very well crafted. I think beers like this are underappreciated in the era of big, bold imperial beers, but this is yet another beer done in the GLBC fashion- clean, stylistic, approachable yet complex.

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Photo of K-Dog
3.46/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Didnt expect this this to be great but thought it would have been at least decent. Very thin appearance. Smelled of slight liquorice. Taste at first was slightly mint, then just watered down nothing. I know it's basically a see soon stout at 5.6 percent but this was just not good. Oh well blackout stout will be avaiable shortly.

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Photo of glass_house
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Just a very solid all around oatmeal stout. Nothing jumps out as incredible but it so smooth, bordering on creamy, with plenty of mild coffee and soft cocoa. A bit light, but full enough to carry the flavors, subtle as they may be. Finishes clean with a slight semi-sweet chocolate bitterness. Excellent option when a lighter stout is what you seek.

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Photo of Glanzman
3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle served in a pint glass.

Pours a jet black color with a 1/2 fingered, tan head. Minimal lacing.

Smells of dark toasted malts and biscuit.

To be honest, not much flavor. I was expecting a robust, roasted malt flavor with stronger bits of coffee and chocolate. For me, there's not much to this beer. Kind of like a Guinness... a stout and nothing special to it.

I really wanted to love this beer. I live a few miles from the brewery (and love most of their beers)... I had it on tap once a few years ago (I thought I remembered it being better)... I love stouts... it had a cool looking "wintery" label on the bottle... and so I was excited when they announced they were being offered in a six pack and bought them the day they came out. Now I am wondering what to do with the other 5.

UPDATE: After a week and 3 of them downed, its grown on me a little more. Still not great, but better than my original review.

I still won't be buying these again (too many great beers out there) but I will finish the six pack instead of giving them away.

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Photo of AC-Mivsek
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours black, with hints of red when held to light. Khaki head quickly fades leaving a good amount of lacing. Smells of dark roast malts, coffee, dark chocolate. Taste is similar except with a slight smoky quality. Very smooth and creamy, medium body. Another outstanding offering from Great Lakes, this is the first time I've seen this beer bottled and I'm thankful for that. I could see this as a dark beer staple like their Edmund Fitz. This is a sweeter, creamier version of that.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at The Old Toad in Rochester, NY.

This one pours a fairly dark black, with a very small, essentially non-existent head, and not a lot of lacing.

Smells like chocolate, oats, and roasted/charred malt.

Like most everything that Great Lakes makes, this is spot on for the style. It's got a good amount of flavor for the lower ABV, a nice roasted malt character, some creamy vanilla like flavors, and powdery chocolate. It's not too sweet or too bitter.

This is medium bodied, fairly creamy on the palate, with a moderate level of carbonation.

Pretty solid stuff here, tasty and very drinkable.

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Photo of utopiajane
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours black and opaque in the full glass. as you drink it down it's a lovely brown and quite clear. Thinner head of tan foam that does persist. Mild with the scent of light cream and an earthy coffee like impression. No hops on the nose and only a low presence of dark fruit. Taste is smooth and creamy. Oats do not give much oily feeling or slickness to the palate. They finish without astringency or harshness. The dark fruit presence is a faint hint on the palate. Drinks easily with no abv to speak of and without any hops flavor. The hops do their job and balance the beer so that it finishes mostly dry. Leaves with the impression of a touch of sweet cream. Silky rich but not heavy and a only a tempting bit of sweetness to linger and bring you back for more.

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Photo of damndirtyape
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap (NItro according to the board) at the Great Lakes brewery in Cleveland/Ohio City, OH. Served in a tulip stout glass.

Appearance: Black with a thick tan head. Lots and lots of persistent lacing all over the glass. Big sheets, islands, and lots of strands. Held up to the light the black is more of a dark ruby red color.

Smell: Not a lot of aroma. A barest hint of oats and roasted malt.

Taste: A solid oat + roasted malt flavor. Some chocolate notes, but not bittersweet or cocoa. Subtle chocolate would be a good description. Definite oat and roasted malt flavor - a good sweetbread/oat cookie flavor, but not overly sweet. The more and more I try to describe it, the more and more the word "restrained" comes to mind. Very tasty, but it's not pounding you over the head with it. The bitterness at the end is mild, a little bit English in style, a little bit of your roasted malt bitterness as well.

Mouthfeel: Smooth with a light mouthfeel. Not watery, but not as thick as I was expecting it to be. A little bit sticky on the teeth.

Overall/Drinkability: A very drinkable stout. At 4.8% ABV I was able to have 2 12oz glasses over the course of a meal and I wouldn't mind another on top of that. Went well with a Cuban sandwich, but I think it would be even better with a burger. Full flavored, but restrained and very nice. I can see why people rave out this beer when it does finally come out at the brewery. I wish they would bottle it...but then I might not get the Blackout Stout so never mind. Other than not having a lot of aroma, an outstanding beer.

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Photo of wedge
4.24/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

@ Tyler's (Raleigh)

Black with a tight beige head that reduces to a permanent covering on the surface. Patches of drippy lacing coat the glass. Malty, powdery cocoa aromas greet a significant oatmeal presence, nuts, and some light fruit. Super smooth coffee and chocolate malt, hazelnut, and big time oat flavors. This may, in fact, be the most oat-forward beer I have ever had. Light and drinkable, but with a silky, creamy quality that prevents any notion of wateriness. Very enjoyable!

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Photo of SportsandJorts
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: a nice black stout. opaque and a thin tan head that sticks together pretty well

Smell: roasted malts, graininess, chocolate

Taste: very smooth blend of a roasted malt base and nice sweet chocolate, the oatmeal is a little subtle but plays around in the background nicely

Mouthfeel: nice and light. a very pleasant drinking and smooth stout.

Overall: as all GLBC beers crafted the way the style should be.

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Photo of Bung
3.28/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Tap at Duckworths. Cola black pour, layer of tan with some bubbles within. Some minimal lacing.

Aroma, roast malt, milder coffee dark chocolate and milder yet anise.

Taste, definetely some oats upfront, along with a tad bit of peanut and cardboard. Nice light chocolates. Some mineral water. Very light coffee and roast in the finish.

A tad thin, a tad high carbonation, may be more a result of the establishment. Very easy drinker. Session type stout as I imagine it was intended. Not sure where the ratings anywhere near 4 could be coming from.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Great Lakes : Ohio City Oatmeal Stout

Look: Pours a dark opaque brown. Retention ok, off white head. No real lace to speak of, looks fairly simple.

SMELL: Roast, smoke, somewhat meaty. Malty, nutty and chocolatey.

Taste: Coffee, roasted malt, mild vanilla and cocoa. Pronounced oatmeal like flavor. Mild herbal hop character. Agreeable and session able ale, I found that one was not enough and had a second pint. Solid roasty American stout with black malt flavor.

FEEL: Medium bodied, smooth and well carbonated. Oats doing their work here to smooth out the brew.

Overall: A tasty oatmeal stout. One I could easily have a few of. The oatmeal was present in the flavor and could remind the casual drinker of a hearty breakfast.

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Photo of siege06nd
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I had to review this one.

A. Dark mahogany with a finger and a half of light brown head that effervesces to a light khaki, off white with each swirl. Lacing adorns the glass in right proper fashion.

S. Excellent with big roasted coffee and thick chocolate malts. Toasted grains and subtle hops give this a classic dry stout aroma.

T. Subtler than the nose implied. While I was expecting something thicker and chewier, this has a nice burst of coffee and toasted biscuit, then eases into a clean, drying, mild hop finish. A refined, traditional take on a sessionable stout.

M. Relatively high carbonation as compared to most stouts out there with a slightly grainy feel.

O. No one does "traditional" quite like Great Lakes and this certainly fits that bill. I would have guessed it was an Irish Dry Stout based on flavor and feel. Highly sessionable and scratches that stout itch without the thick, cloying sweetness that has become accustomed to the style these days. This is a delightful take and I'm sad to see it won't be returning in 2016 (yet hoping for a surprise come next fall).

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Photo of BradtheGreat7
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Review taken a week ago(late winter 2013)

On tap at Ashland beverage Centre(Ashland, KY.) I didn't see the tap handle, but GLBC usually have some good looking designs. Poured this into a tulip style stout pint glass.

A - basically black. But we will say very dark brown in the light with the darkest of amber edges. Light brown/khaki colored head sits very well on top. Im actually surprised at how fluffy and beautiful it looks. Head lasts a good portion of the experience leaving pretty good stick along the way.

S - Hmm.. Sweetness all over of cocoa and milk chocolate. A real nuttiness to it as well. Nice roasted malt aroma and mild chocolate with brown sugar whiffs.

T - very nice chocolate. Nothing too dark yet nothing too sweet. Just zipping through the middle of both sides. Milk chocolate sweetness with a mild dark chocolate bitterness. Semi sweet brown sugar as well as a GLBC style roastiness. Solid oat and grain backbone with downright powerful nuttiness.

M - this little stout drinks bigger than the abv suggests. It has a smooth, legit medium body that booms with flavor. Coats the mouth nicely and is a ridiculously smooth drinker. I could drink this stuff by the growler yet as rare as it is i think I'll save some for the next mornings breakfast which I did :)

O - idk why GLBC doesn't release a lot more of their stuff in bottles. This is the perfect session stout for the stout lover. Low on abv and big on that black oatmeal flavor. Roastiness reminds me of Fitzgerald as well as texture but the oats and grains say hey, I'm just a sibling. This would be an excellent fall bottle release and I hope to see this brilliant stout again next year. If you can get it you need not think about it. Buy it! It's a very good oatmeal stout

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Great Lakes Ohio City Oatmeal Stout from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
3.92 out of 5 based on 365 ratings.
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