Tasting the Harviestoun Ola Dubh 12

March 23, 2010

“Ola Dubh” means “black oil”, and is a fitting name for this beer. The Ola Dubh is a beer which I had been aware of for some time, however it had only first crossed my path at the end of the summer 2009. I had done some reading about this beer previously, as well I have had a few of Harviestoun’s other creations. So knowing that this is a Harvieston Imperial Stout aged in 12 year old Highland Park Single Malt Whisky Barrels encouraged me to buy several bottles.

The Ola Dubh is a bit different than other cask conditioned beers aged in oak whisky barrels; its not aged in fresh oak barrels, but rather the barrels in which the Imperial Stout is aged are previously used 12 year old Highland Park Whisky Barrels. The Harviestoun Brewery and Highland Park Distillery have formed an alliance ensuring that this will be the only beer aged in Highland Park Barrels.

The 12 year is one of four expressions of the Ola Dubh. Harviestoun also ages their beer in 16 year, 30 year, and 40 year old Highland Park Barrels. These bottles do get pricey jumping to upwards of $20 for the 40 year old. But consider that the Highland Park Cask Strength 40 Year Old bottle is $800. It is a different beast, but that is the type of prestige that we are living in here. Read the rest of this entry »