Harviestoun Brewery – Ola Dubh Special Reserve 18

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Harviestoun Brewery of Hillfoots Village, Scotland did a limited release of beer aged in Highland Park 18 Year Scotch barrels named Ola Dubh (Black Oil) for it’s viscous texture.

This beer certainly looks like oil, black and opaque, no light gets through even at the narrow part of the glass and viscous looking.  The head is dark brown and rough looking.

The nose on this is so rich and round, full of caramel and molasses with an acid undertone.  A burnt sugar note is subtly tagged onto the end of the aromas with a rum-soaked raisin scent complimenting it.

The flavours don’t disappoint, balancing bitter and sweet and rich and acidic.   Similar to the nose up front is caramel and molasses, the burnt sugar bitterness is more pronounced with an apple cider vinegar tinge that I think is intentional to add balance.  There is a boozy warmth to it and a rum flavour that brings good sweetness.  Thick on the tongue it almost coats the inside of your mouth and flows down the palate.

A really nice sipping beer, I don’t think this should be  paired with anything, it should be sipped slowly on a chilly night, preferably in front of a fire.

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