Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout | Big Sky Brewing Company

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118 Reviews
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Slow Elk Oatmeal StoutSlow Elk Oatmeal Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company
Montana, United States | website

Style: Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
20 IBU

Added by Mitchster on 12-15-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
118
Ratings:
284
Avg:
3.44
pDev:
13.66%
 
 
Wants:
12
Gots:
25
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 118 | Ratings: 284
Photo of mulder1010
2.97/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A 330 ML bottle

A-- Poured black but looked more like a dark brown. No head at all.

S-- Roasted malts, coffee, chocolate, a little bit of brown sugar.

T-- Coffee, roasted malts, and oatmeal.

M-- Light but flavorful. Fairly carbonated and finishes dry. Malts seem a little overdone, as in burnt.

D-- Lighter ABV and drinkable but needs more of the oatmeal taste. A little too much of the malts.

 399 characters

Photo of CHSLBrew
3.8/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A-Big, frothy light-brown head off the pour, 2-finger, moderate-low retention. Darkest-brown beer, pretty much black, I suppose; shows brown highlighting in a strong light.

S-Chocolate, light roasty malt. Overall, a hearty aroma.

T-Yum. Plyaful chocolate malts, with a slight roast in the end. Bitterness is balancing, complimented by the slight, smooth roast. It tastes like a good old oatmeal stout.

M-Silky as it moves through my mouth, with a fine-bubbled carbonation and a medium-lighter body. Quite characteristic of a pleasant oatmeal stout.

D-Fairly drinkable. A standard brew, displaying the characteristics of the style. Quality, above average.

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Photo of supercolter
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Overall not a bad little stout. Appearance is as it should be- dark brownish black, nearly opaque and minimal tan head. Smell is a bit weaker than the taste, but I get a nice roastiness up front with slightly more coffee than bitter chocolate. Only a small hint of alcohol is present. Mouthfeel is decent, medium in body.
Very drinkable.

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Photo of SixpointJMH
3.88/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown to black colour with a tan head that is fairly minimal in size but leaves a nice amount of sticky residue on the glass.

The aroma is a blend of roasted malt, some chocolate, some coffee and a bit of alcohol.

Flavour essentially echoes the aroma, but has a bit more bite to it. The alcohol presence is a bit bolder and there is much more of a roasty flavour at the end of each sip. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and quite smooth.

This was an easy drinking, simple oatmeal stout to me. If the aroma was beefed up a bit this would be a top notch oatmeal stout, and it's still quite nice as it stands.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.1/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to pokesbeerdude for this brew.

Pours a very nice dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy tan head, nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is malty, very nice toffee/chocolate notes. The taste is malty, slightly sweet, very nice toffee/chocolate notes. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is a very tasty brew, wish we would get it here in Utah.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Burnt walnut brown... that becomes garnet with bright scarlet highlights when backlit with the rising sun. The upper quarter of the glass is filled with golden ecru colored foam that gets the job done. A generous amount of tattered lace helps as well.

The aroma is pretty classic for an oatmeal stout. Dark chocolate and dark caramel are out in front, with no real hoppiness trailing behind. In the final reckoning, there isn't enough power or presence for the the next highest score.

Slow Elk is a pretty simple stout. Since the brewers don't claim otherwise, I guess they hit their target. Speaking of which, a 'slow elk' is actually a cow that is shot by hunters who mistake it for an elk. That explains the cow on the label that has antlers tied to its head.

There isn't much malt and there isn't much hoppiness, so it all balances out in the end. A blip of bittersweet chocolate hits in the first half of each mouthful... and a lesser blip of herbal, earthy hoppiness (East Kent Goldings) makes an appearance in the second half. There may be a hint of black coffee and some dark caramel as well.

Even for a 'session stout', the mouthfeel is too wishy-washy. It drinks like the ABV is 4.0%, not 5.4%. An ideal fix would be to add more malt, while keeping the ABV low. Somewhat sparse carbonation works just fine.

Apparently, Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout used to be a regular release, but is now a limited release due to suboptimal sales. Instead of cutting back on the frequency of brewing, why doesn't Big Sky work to improve the beer so more people want to buy it? Just a thought.

It took some work, but I finally got the seal off the bottom of the cap so I could read what was printed there. And the answer is... 'Nuttier than a Squirrel Turd'.

 1,751 characters

Photo of morimech
3.89/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark, almost completely black with one finger of tan head that quickly settled to a thin cap. Just a little lacing is left on the glass. I smell coffee, mocha, and something reminiscent popcorn. Nice dark malt flavor of chocolate and coffee. Some graininess and a burnt taste is noted on the finish. Not the biggest body for a stout but still maintains a nice texture. A nice approachable dark beer for people that do not want to jump in the deep end of the pool. Drinking a few of these in an evening would be possible.

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Photo of demcorhip
3.68/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Almost black, with the faintest garnet highlights. A decent one finger pale tan head formed on the pour and displayed decent retention.

A decent aroma. Creamy oatmeal, the aroma of blackberries, and more roasted malt notes, albeit mild, of milk chocolate and mildly bitter coffee. A slight leafiness also present from the hops.

Decent enough taste as well. You know you are drinking an oatmeal stout, although it does take a milder, more approachable take with the use of roasted malts. No surprises here, taste is much like the aroma.

Nice mouthfeel. Medium bodied, somewhat rich, smooth and velvety like one would expect for the style. Roasted malts could be more refined and more assertive, they leave a mild impression of milk chocolate and slightly stale coffee, its not bad, but it could certainly be better in that regard.

Very good drinkability as this brew chose the approachable versus the challenging path. A tasty enough example of the style, and something that would be easy enough to knock back all night long, and at 5.4%abv this would certainly be considered a sessionable brew here in NA. Worth a try for fans of the style, and may be a good choice for those interested in tackling the darker, more roasted styles.

 1,235 characters

Photo of sleazo
3.04/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A_Pours a dark brown/ruby colour with a very small tan head. This diminishes quickly and leaves a small island of bubbles afloat on top of the brew. Too light for the style.

S_A bit sticky sweet like coffee cake. The aroma is mild but not altogether unpleasant.

T_Mostly sweet malt with a mild coffee note. The aftertaste provides a subtle bitterness akin to roasted chicory.

M_Light bodied with a middle of the road carbonation. For an Oatmeal Stout it lacks presence.

D_A decent brew that might veer more towards the porter side of the world. As an OS it is lacking but is a decent brew otherwise.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep garnet color, the head modest in size, frothy in texture and the residual lace fine sheets. Smell is lightly toasted grain aroma with sweet candy like tones and is quite pleasant with the start sweet and the top middling. Pretty good brew in my opinion.

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Photo of bunnyhustle
3.22/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a deep, deep ruby with mocha brown head. Had a six pack and I think everyone had different head. Some had a nice thick one, others it was very thin and non-existant. Smell was enjoyable. Its was a nice mix of chocolate syrup with some dark caramel and a bit of cream to it. Taste was ok but a little bland. This, as with many stouts, is meant to be enjoyed at a warmer temperature. At first the taste is very bland however, as it hits the back of the tounge you notice some milk chocolate and a touch of bitterness with some bakers chocolate. Mouthfeel was far to light and watery for me. I think if this beer had a fuller body I'd be a good B+ brew. Overall good and pretty easy to put a few away in a sitting.

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Photo of Bighuge
3.88/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear garnet body. Thin and bubbly light brown crown. Lacing is plenty sufficient. Decent aroma of oats, cocoa, milk sugar and smoke. Lactose and milk chocolate are the presiding characteristics on the palate. This definitely has some Milk Stout qualities to it. The oatmeal is noticeable however, in the taste and in the mouthfeel, which is smooth and velvety. Roasted malts add a little depth, but the charm with this beer is in its simplicity. Good beer.

 457 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.1/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown body with a small, bubbly, beige-colored head.

Smell: Roasty coffee and creamy nose with notes of bakers chocolate and licorice.

Taste: Dark caramel paired with an earthy chocolate character and a hint of licorice. Mildly sweet. Slight roasty bitterness. The lightly roasty finish leaves you with a watered down chocolate flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Pass. Errs on the side of drinkable, but ultimately, it's a bit thin, and leaves you (or me at least) looking and wanting for more richness, more creaminess.

 585 characters

Photo of yemenmocha
3.35/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours bblack, off tan head that retains well.

Nose has an off metallic note, nougat chocolate, and fairly clean.

Palate is noticeably thin bodied, almost watery, faint oat & roasty flavors, and a surprisingly clean finish.

Is this an oatmeal stout lite?

 256 characters

Photo of BradLikesBrew
2.71/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

a: Dark brown to black with a fluffy head.

s: Light, sweet roasted aroma.

t: The base flavor is cola with light roasted/smoky notes. Lacks depth, not as rich as I was hoping for. A bit too sweet for the style, more robust roasted malts would improve this.

m: Light for the style.

d: Compared to other Oatmeal stouts this is below average, but that's not to say this isn't a nice, enjoyable beer.

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Photo of rowew
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz longneck, normal badly drawn Big Sky label, but this one has a cow with antlers tied to its head. Bad day of hunting - guess we'll be eating the slow elk tonight.

Appearance: Very dark, just a hint of ruby around the edges when held up to light, Nice tan colored head with decent retention.

Smell: Slightly sweet, some caramel aromas with just a bit of coffee.

Taste: A bit lighter bodied than I expected, roasted flavors with a bit of caramel. Some coffee nights in the finish.

Overall impression: Drinkable, a bit lighter than most oatmeal stouts, Doesn't have the slick mouthfeel I expect from an oatmeal stout.

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Photo of DesMoinesMike
3.38/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I don't often try stouts, but Big Sky has produced some good brews and I figure they would be worth it.

It poured an opaque red with a very thin brown head. The aroma was very caramel with a bit of chocolate. It tasted more of caramel/nutmeg in oatmeal, a bit of an odd combination that, complex. The mouth feel was medium for a stout.

I would say this beer is decent but I wouldn't go out of my way for it.

Edit: I am totally perplexed by the animal on the logo. It's a cow with elk antlers. Perhaps after a few beers you actually understand it. I may never know.

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Photo of flexabull
3.57/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown color with a decent tan head. Looks more like a porter than a stout.

Aromas are of chocolate, oats, dark sugars, and sweet malts.

Tastes of chocolate, cola, brown sugar, and creamy malts. A touch of bitterness, like bakers chocolate, and a bit mineral like as well. Finish is short, and crisp.

Mouthfeel is thin. Feels a little weak to me. Not bad, but not great either. And not thick enough for a stout though.

Drinkability is ok. A pretty tasty stout that could use a little work with the mouthfeel. I still won't be upset drinking a couple of these.

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Photo of ATLbeerDog
3/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From a 12oz bottle - Pours a dark clear root beer color with small quickly dissipating head. Below average carbonation. Smells of roasted malts and some oats First sip is smooth with roasted malts leading the way. There is a fairly weak malt backbone. Very nice and drinkable. Excellent bitter finish.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.68/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours a dark brown with a creamy tan head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is sweet chocolate and oatmeal with a little smoke and coffee.

The flavor is sweet chocolate and caramel with some nutty grainy malts, molasses and coffee and enough roasted bitterness at the finish to balance it out. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and a little watery.

Overall, a solid and tasty stout. A little much on the sweet side for me.

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Photo of Buebie
2.49/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12oz bottle with no freshness date, into a snifter.

Black in color, but a dark red hue appears when held to light.
Tan, 1-2 finger head that quickly fizzles away. Leaving a thin layer of tan retention. Lace is almost non-existant.

The aroma is mildly present, fruity, some veggie like quality. A mild burnt grain scent.

Mouthfeel is silky and overcarbonated. This is almost watered down in flavor and aroma. Some roasted grain flavor, a touch of coffee, finish is watery and plain.

Go ahead and skip this. If there is oats in here, they sure skimped on them. Volume appears to be the priority.

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Photo of katan
3.43/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle

A - Dark as night. Very thick looking. The head was very light, and not near as dark a head as other stouts.

S - The smell is very light - in fact I can't quite discern much here. Only a small amount of roasted and chocolate notes are present.

T - Not really all that strong of a flavor here. It starts with some sweeter notes that transition to a light balancing here. Finishes with a mix of the oatmeal of oatmeal and sweetness.

M - No carbonation present. The beer is light in body for other stouts that fit this category. Nothing bad per se, but may not be an Oatmeal variety.

D - Not hard to drink. The beer is not weighty by its carbonation or its thickness. The ABV I'm sure is higher than normal, but so far has not affected me.

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Photo of schanker21
3.91/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Poured from a bottle with an elk standing in front of a mountain range with the moon rising over it on the label into a pint glass. Pours a dark, dark brown that lets very little light through. Two finger head sticks around for a while and leaves some lacing.

S- Roasted malts is about all I can get out of the nose on this one.

T- Big roasted malt and oatmeal flavors up front followed up by a little bit of vanilla-like sweetness and then some very subtle hops balance it out at the end. One of the best-tasting oatmeal stouts I've ever had. Tastes much better than it smells.

M- Maybe a little thin for a stout, but not bad.

D- Could definitely have more than one of these, and I just might.

EDIT: I was reading the other reviews and realized that my rating was a lot higher than average, and also that I'm the only one that's reviewed it this year. The bottle does say "Limited Release" on it, so either my taste buds are pretty different from average, or this beer has improved. I say if you've had this in the past, try it again. And if you haven't had it before, don't let the average C+ rating scare you off. It's a pretty good stout.

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Photo of RoyalT
3.15/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – Very dark brown in color with a head that rose up nicely but fell like a rock.

Smell – This one had a blend of burnt coffee and oatmeal. The oatmeal though is very subdued and not the prominent smell.

Taste – There’s a nice balancing hop in here, but again the pure oatmeal flavor is lacking. I can pick it up, but it doesn’t dominate like it should. The other flavors aren’t bad, though. There are nice coffee notes and a sweet chocolate compliment.

Mouthfeel – This was one of the thinner Oatmeal Stouts that I’ve had. Style requirements are one thing, but I like my Oatmeal Stout to be big and chewy like, say, a bowl of oatmeal.

Drinkability – This went down very well, so I’m giving the highest rating of the beer in this category. I could drink this all day, really, as a session ale, but it’s just not what I expect when I buy an Oatmeal Stout.

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Photo of Mitchster
3.76/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear, black in color with brown highlights, forming a large, slow-growing light tan head atop small to medium-sized bubbles. Retention and lacing are excellent. Aroma is at once oily with earthen hops, dark mellow grains, dark coffee, and artificial chocolate. Taste is of dark chocolate and coffee, weak vanilla, chestnut, rubbery malts, and a very mellow bitterness. Mild carbonation with a wet finish and a medium-thin body.

A very accessible and tame brew for the stout novice, but lacking the creamy mouthfeel and residual sugars of a typical oatmeal stout.

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Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout from Big Sky Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 118 ratings.
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