O’Hara’s Irish Stout

Reviewed by on March 4, 2016 in Spring Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Carlow Brewing Company

  • Origin: Muine Bheag, Ireland

  • Rated On: March 4, 2016

  • Best Before: N/A

  • ABV: 4.3%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: Irish Dry Stout

  • Rating: GREAT !!

The Review

O’Hara’s is a brand produced by Carlow Brewing, a craft brewery in the Southeast of the Republic.  It’s always nice to see another Irish stout, from well, you know, Ireland!

This 500ml bottle pours a solid black, with prominent basal cola edges, and three fat fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and fairly bubbly chocolate milk brown head, which leaves some splotchy and stringy webbed lace around the glass as it slowly sinks away.

It smells of bready and doughy caramel malt, bittersweet cocoa powder, medium roast coffee beans, a twinge of free-agent ashiness, slim milky notes, and soft earthy, leafy, and floral noble hop bitters. The taste is grainy and bready toasted caramel malt, dry chocolate wafers, stale cafe-au-lait, a suggestion of creamed honey, and more understated earthy, musty, and herbal old-school hoppiness.  The carbonation is quite laid-back in its genial and inoffensive frothiness, the body a decent middleweight for the style, and considerably smooth, with a wee creaminess arising as things warm up a tad. It finishes off-dry, but not by much, the initial caramel sweetness now almost totally consumed by the varied roasted characters.

Overall, a very pleasant and engaging dry stout, lots of big roasty-toasty essences inhabiting this one. Easy to drink, and the sort that makes you feel a bit full before your time – not a bad thing here, not a bad thing at all.

Brady White

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