Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout | Big Sky Brewing Company

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79
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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
bigskybrew.com

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:
13
Gots:
25
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 118 | Ratings: 284
Photo of angrybabboon
3.57/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Consumed 10/13/11

Appearance: Dark brown with some ruby around the edges when held up to the light, starts off with a little tan head, fades quick, minimal lacing

Smell: Very good - burnt, roasted malts - some coffee, some chocolate, some licorice - kind of earthy - definitely a stout

Taste: Sadly, not up to par with the aroma - very mild - slightly roasted, slightly burnt - thin, dark malts - some coffee, some chocolate, some molasses - slightly bitter, some acidity - tastes more like a brown ale than a stout

Mouthfeel: Light-medium body, low carbonation, smooth, but should be a lot smoother considering this is an oatmeal stout

Overall: Not bad, but certainly not great

The only thing about this beer that really blows my mind is how much it reminds me of the results of an extract homebrew recipe. After brewing it in 2009, my partner in crime (Goblinmunkey7 here on BA) and I agreed that it was too thin, and decided to describe it as a dark ale. However, after sitting for a few months, it became great. I wonder if this gets better over time, too.

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Photo of FreshHawk
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark black with a deep, cola brown hues on the edge. Full, thick, cakey, white head. Good retention leaving a nice thin layer of lace.

S - Some flaked oat with a good amount of dark bittersweet chocolate. Decent amount of coffee as well. Slight astringency but not bad.

T - Starts with some charred oat and black coffee along with some mocha. Gives way to some bittersweet and semi-sweet chocolate. A hint of nuttiness underneath that chocolate. Finishes with a slightly astringent coffee and chocolate taste.

M - Light to medium body. Average carbonation. A little thin and watery, but slick.

D - Flavors didn't mesh as well as I hoped and there is a subtle astringency that I wasn't a huge fan of. These reduce how drinkable it is, but it is fairly quaffable overall.

Notes: Average Oatmeal Stout. It wasn't great and there was a subtle astringency that I wasn't a huge fan of. Flavors aren't horrible but they just didn't quite mesh entirely.

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Photo of jera1350
3.8/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Solid black color with a creamy head of darker khaki. Excellent retention and some nice sticky lacing.

A nice balance of roasty and sweet malt.

The taste is more dark roasted malt than sweet malt. The flavor kind of drops off a bit it seems. It's fine, but just doesn't have much more than a bit of sweetness with a solid roast.

Heavier end of medium bodied. Smooth feel for the most part.

I would call this a good run of the mill oatmeal stout. It doesn't wow or really stand out, but it is enjoyable and well done. I will certainly have no problem finishing this off in short time.

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Photo of freehafe
3.07/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours deep brown, head quickly thins out.

S: Roasted malt, chocolate, oatmeal.

T: Strong roasted malt and oatmeal flavor, slight chocolate/coffee flavor, initially bitter then mellows out.

M: Thinner body than most stouts I'm used to

O: It is an ok beer, not upset I drank it, but would not go out of my way to purchase again.

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Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.88/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark stouty like stout color, but a little light makes it through the dense dark quagmire that presdies under a finger of ivory head.. Milk chocolate, and mild whiskey barrel hits the nose which is strange because I don't think it was put in barrels. Some sweet caramel malts smell great as well. Sweet oatmeal and brown sugar hit the palate first and take you on a smooth ride to light roasted malts. there is cocoa but really no bitter which is fine. Smooth, creamy, and medium bodied.

Overall...I would give this to a breastfeeding mother on any occasion.

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Photo of harrymel
2.47/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Fall 2011

A: Pours dark brown with less than a finger of transient latte foam which leaves a scratched mirror surface with a border of foam. No lace. When available near excellent clarity.
S: Oats, bitters, roasted malts, earthy hops (faint), slight sweetness.
T: Semi bitter with some earthy flavors from the malts. Slight american ale yeast flavor.
M: thin for the style with moderate carbonation. Semi dry finish.
O: Meh, not at all impressive for the style.

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Photo of AmericanGothic
3.94/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Sam Adams pint.

A: Pours a nearly opaque, dark brown color with 1/2 finger of pale tan head. Little retention and lace.

S: Sweet chocolate and some roasted notes.

T: Starts with chocolate, bitter at first but gradually sweetening, then ends with minerals and a bit of cola. Seems odd in writing but makes sense in the mouth. As the beer warms, some roasted notes emerge.

M: Not too heavy, nice balance of creaminess and fluffy carbonation, a bit of oil on the finish.

O: A nice oatmeal stout, easy-going and smooth. Tried it at a tasting last week and happy to have a sixer and a real review. Will look forward to it returning next year.

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Photo of goodbr3wz
3.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours dark dark brown with a nice head, leaving long lasting traces of lacy foam.

S- Roasted malts and coffee where the two smells that jumped out at me.

T- Oats, chocolate, roasted malts...

M- Mouth feel is a lot thinner than i would like it to be, almost a watery feel.

O- Overall it was a decent beer, a little watered down but some fantastic smell.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.58/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: nearly black but permitting some light to transit with a ruby tinge. Head poured a thick finger of creamy tan foam and has decent retention.

Smell: roasty aroma with some coffee notes and a little bit of tartness. Decent.

Taste: lightly chocolatey flavor with a smooth bitterness and some vegetal hop flavors. Again, decent.

Mouthfeel: pretty smooth; medium body with a good carbonation and a nice, silky feel. Not bad.

Overall: this is a pretty unremarkable beer. It's not bad, but I won't go out of my way to get this again.

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

A: The bottle design is probably the best part about the beer. Big Sky has great continuity with their design. However, the idea of calling the beer "Slow Elk" with a drawing of a cow with elk antlers roped on is pretty funny. I digress...the wear pours terribly into a snifter, for a stout that is. Foams too heavy, carbonation does not rise like a stout usually does. Dark body with an amber touch when put up to light. Head is lumpy and whitish tan.

S: Probably the best part about the beer. Has the odor of a traditional stout with hints of heavy grain.

T: Meh, nothing really too impressive. I feel like the "oatmeal" taste they were going for misplaced the essence of what a stout beer should be.

M: Not as thick as I like my stouts.

O: Under-impressed. Big Sky usually makes a good push with their brews. Slow Elk is on the weaker side of things. I guess it's a good thing that it's a limited release...

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Photo of zeff80
3.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a jet black color with a one-finger, tan head of long lasting foam. It left thin traces of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of oats, coffee and roasted malts.

T - Good and roasty with a coffee-like bite. Some nice toffee and chocolate flavors are in the background.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is a nice oatmeal stout. The label itself is worth picking one up.

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Photo of Scotchboy
3.77/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a stein.

A: Pours a thin dark brown which I can clearly see light through. Ruby red highlights. Off white settles quickly but leaves some lacing behind.

S: Aromas of chocolate and dark malts, some char, vanilla and molasses...a bit of coffee too but not a lot. A slight woody character as well. Smells sweet. Not a whole lot of hops.

T: Those same sweet notes; chocolate, vanilla, molasses, wood. The roasted malt character is perfect, keeping the sweetness in check, and on the finish the hops (I'm assuming) arrive with some decent bitterness. Smooth, with just a bit of bite.

MF: Slightly thin and wet, although it does take on a creamy, lactic character as it warms.

O: A good oatmeal stout, light on the body but not on flavors.

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

inky jet black, and thick looking as well with an almost oil like appearance, really quite nice. Rich chocolate colored tan foam that rose up a good two inches

starts off kind of light, but hits its stride with notes of sugar, molasses, chocolate and a touch of coffee that carry over well in the flavor. smooth with loads of chocolate and a nice and mellow balance between the rich chocolate and roasted malts. easily drinkable and a nice and solid beer.

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Photo of rlee1390
3.67/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Deep black with a one finger brown head that doesn't stay around long.

S-Oats, chocolate and coffee, plus some roasted malts.

T-Lots of oats with chocolate, coffee and roasted malts.

M-Medium bodied, not much carbonation, a little flat.

O-A decent beer that I got as an extra in a trade.

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Photo of arizcards
3.45/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a single from AJ's in Scottsdale back in late February for $1.59. Best by 12-23-09.

Beer poured a dark brown with an OK tan head. Nose has hints of chocolate and roasted malts. Taste is slight roasted chocolate malts, finishes with a small slightly dry hop. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth but is thin for the style. Drinkability is pretty good, this is a sessionable beer with decent flavor but no overly exciting qualities. Glad to have tried and will have to find a fresh version for next time.

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Photo of tapman
3.33/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A dark brown, though not altogether opaque; a little see-through around the edges. Foam is dense w/ small bubbles and a medium tan complexion. No rolling cascade, but no necessary for the style, just fun to see.

Raisins and dark chocolate, a small amount of hop aroma blends with the dark malts creating a fine balance in the aroma. Te hop dark malt is something I only came to appreciate after brewing several dark beers and this one's got it. Small astringency, but not too bad.

Too thin a taste for me. Was expecting something a little thicker unfermentables-wise; the flavors don't fit well with the thinness of the brew. Dark chocolate and a small roast come through as wellas the balanced hoppiness and ome caramel, toffee notes, and as good as the grain bill is I'm just missing the oatmeal. Even at this lower abv% the oatmeal should thicken up this beer. Isn't that the point of the oatmeal anyway? Did they toast it and mean for it to be a flavor component instead of a thckener?

Mouthfeel is much too thin for my taste per the style. I feel it could have more body even at the alcohol level.

A very quaffable oatmeal stout and for me that is the problem. I like to sip my oatmeal stouts and to me this is right between and American stout and a traditional outmeal stout. Some more hops would have been good to make it American and more body for an Oatmeal, but hey, not terrible. I just wouldn't guess is was an oatmeal stout in a blind test. But who am I, right?

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Photo of augustgarage
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Hollywood. Served in a generic wide-mouth tulip.

Dark reddish brown liquid, though not opaque. Faint auburn and bole highlights. Solid, persistent beige collar, with thin islands dotting the surface. Average lacing.

Light toasty malt, a touch of stale caramel, and not a lot else as far as aromatics go.

Very mild malt, faint citrus (or maybe even lactic) note - though not one that comes from hops - and light grain.

Weak, watery mouthfeel.

Sessionable, but not particularly impressive flavor-wise. Not Big Sky's shining moment I imagine.

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Photo of AmberMan22
3.7/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 6 pack recently, split it with a friend.

The color isn't quite as dark as I'd hope, which makes it look less full looking. However, there is a nice tannish head on it that sticks lace down the sides as I drink.

Smell is delicately balanced, which is nice, but I want it to pop out at me. Maybe some lightly spiced oatmeal is there, some bitter chocolate and caramel, some malt presence.

Taste is much like the smell (weird!), though the oatmeal comes out a bit stronger which is pleasant.

Mouthfeel seems more porter-esque than a truly hefty stout.

Overall, it's enjoyable, but in such a solid category and considering other great offerings from Big Sky, I'd probably get something else first.

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Photo of nsmartell
3.46/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I enjoyed this beer from the comfort of my own living room. From the 12oz bottle with a 122309 stamp to a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours black with a light red/brown tinge when held to a light. Thin mocha colored head that sticks around for some time.

Smell: Roasted malt and dull bitter chocolate.

Taste: The sweet malts now dominate but the bitter chocolate is still there as well. A bit off but could be because I am beyond what I assume to be is the best by date.

Mouthfeel: Thin to medium bodied and smooth. Nice carbonation.

Drinkability: Fairly tasty and easy to drink oatmeal stout. Taste is a little bit off for my liking, but would recommend to those macro-drinking friends looking to try something different.

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Photo of jwc215
3.51/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Assume code on neck of bottle of 122309 refers to best by date - if so, I cut it close, as that's when I sampled it - Anyway, on to the beer...

Pours black with dark brown highlights and a tan head. Lacing sticks.

The smell is of dark fruitiness, mild chocolate and hint of coffee. Very mild.

The taste is of chocolate, hint of roasted coffee with an earthy, tangy fruit undertone and a slightly roasted, bitterish touch. A bit of alcohol shows. Seems to fade at the finish, but a bit of it comes back in the aftertaste.

It's pretty silky, slightly slick, light side of medium-bodied.

An easy-drinking oatmeal stout. I've had porters that were more robust. Oatmeal porter? Maybe, even then thin. Inoffensive. A light oatmeal stout, and not bad for that.

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Photo of aristeros
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Purchased as a single from Total Wine in Tucson, AZ. Fun label, 3-7-77 under the cap. Poured into a pint glass. pours a dark, cola brown with little head but some lacing. Smells of dark chocolate, some nuts, some caramel.

Tastes of black coffee, walnut, and some sweetness in there. Some dark cocoa on the back end. Less like a stout combination and more like a nut brown. Thin, almost watery. Again, like a nut brown. I'd have a six pack of em if I was in the mood for a brown, but this hurt, because I was really after a stout.

Without categorizing it, it's a solid B+. Simple, but good. However, taking style into account, it suffers.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz brown pop top with sweet label, freshness date of 12/23/09. The inside of my cap says "Hell yeah, I got a wiener dog!" I love this brewery

Appearance: Fairly bright dark walnut beer; even a hard pour doesnt produce much in the way of head though, sadly...I get a small, large-bubbled light tan cap which doesn't really seem to want to stick around.

Smell: Light roasty grains and a ton of dark sweet caramel...sweet, nice, and simple...not really the richness I expect from the style, however.

Taste: This definitely...tastes much more like a good nut-brown than a stout. It's nutty, toasty, lightly fruity, with lots of dry dark caramel, and just a bit of roast. Don't get me wrong, this is really tasty, but not much like your typical oatmeal stout. Sadly, this has to bump the score down in the "taste" category, as I'm not judging it as a brown ale, I'm judging it as a stout.

Mouthfeel: Pretty light for the style; again, for a brown ale, it'd be just perfect...

Drinkability: High

Conclusion: Good beer, awesome packaging, just not really right for the style. Slap "Nut Brown" on the label and I'd even pay the 8.49 to pick it up again.

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Photo of matjack85
4.32/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Found this single 12oz brown bottle at Binny;s in Glen Ellyn, IL for $1.79. The elk on the front label looks more like a cow with artificial antlers attached to its head. It's pretty comical. What's not comical is the lack of any freshness date on the bottle, but the beer's website assures us that this beer is only brewed in September and October, and since this is only November, I guess it's still pretty fresh.

The beer pours a rich dark brown color that shows off some garnet red/purple hues when held to light. It makes a 1½ finger tan head that lasts a few minutes, leaving behind a really nice amount of lacing.

It smells like roasted malt and powdered cocoa.

The taste is also malty and chocolaty with a touch of hops that provide a subtle bitterness. The oats are also noticeable in the taste and help to smooth everything out.

The mouthfeel is a little thin for a stout, but it's not watery either. Medium bodied with medium carbonation with an overall smooth texture.

Very easy to drink. Wish I had bought a 6 of these instead of a single bottle.

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Photo of dbossman
2.9/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Quite dark brown (but in the light there is a redish tint) with a tan 1.5 finger head that dissipates to a nicely thin head; lacing is average

S: typical roasted malts and oats with subtle chocolate undertones; something else sweet and slightly funky

T: Initially it's good but it gets pretty weak on the back end and kind of has a generic adjunct-like flavor; there are some good roasted malts and oats going on here but there is just something a little funky, especially in the aftertaste. I first tasted this out of a bottle (no other choice) and liked it much better than I do now that I'm tasting it as it should be tasted from a glass

F: Pretty carbonated and watery for a stout; also not the creaminess that I like my stouts to be

D: It's drinkable and because it's light, you can have a couple but there is something funky (just slightly) that makes you not want to go crazy with it; this really doesn't feel like an oatmeal stout and the more I have of it the worse it tastes

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.01/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Best by 122309 stamped on bottle.

It pours a very dark reddish brown with a half inch of tannish foam and some good lacingt.

The smell is a light dose of roasted malt, very mild chocolate, and a touch of bitterness.

The taste is of some roasted malt, a milkshake like chocolate flavour that brings a muted sweetness, and some hop bitterness. The finish is kind of messy..light sweet tones and bitterness that do not bring any sense of balance at all.

The mouthfeel is light and it's, imho, over carbonated.

Drinkability? This is not a very good example of an Oatmeal Stout at all so it isn't all that drinkable for me. I think the recipe for this needs some serious work.

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Slow Elk Oatmeal Stout from Big Sky Brewing Company
3.44 out of 5 based on 284 ratings.
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