Style Details

Oat­me­al Stout
Dark Bri­tish Beer
BJCP Style Code
16 B
Medi­um brown to black in color. Thick, cre­a­my, per­sis­tent tan- to brown-colo­red head. Can be opaque (if not, it should be clear).
Mild roas­ted grain aro­mas, gene­ral­ly with a cof­fee-like cha­rac­ter. A light mal­ty sweet­ness can sug­gest a cof­fee-and-cream impres­si­on. Frui­tin­ess should be low to medi­um-high. Diace­tyl medi­um-low to none. Hop aro­ma medi­um-low to none, ear­thy or flo­ral. A light grai­ny-nut­ty oat­me­al aro­ma is optional.
Simi­lar to the aro­ma, with a mild roas­ted cof­fee to cof­fee-and-cream fla­vor, and low to modera­te­ly-high frui­tin­ess. Oats and dark roas­ted grains pro­vi­de some fla­vor com­ple­xi­ty; the oats can add a nut­ty, grai­ny or ear­thy fla­vor. Dark grains can com­bi­ne with malt sweet­ness to give the impres­si­on of milk cho­co­la­te or cof­fee with cream. Medi­um hop bit­ter­ness with the balan­ce toward malt. Medi­um-sweet to medi­um-dry finish. Diace­tyl medi­um-low to none. Hop fla­vor medi­um-low to none, typi­cal­ly ear­thy or floral.
Medi­um-full to full body, with a smooth, sil­ky, vel­ve­ty, some­ti­mes an almost oily slick­ness from the oat­me­al. Cre­a­my. Medi­um to medi­um-high carbonation. 
Over­all Impression
A very dark, full-bodi­ed, roasty, mal­ty ale with a com­ple­men­ta­ry oat­me­al fla­vor. The sweet­ness, balan­ce, and oat­me­al impres­si­on can vary considerably.
Typi­cal Ingredients
Pale, cara­mel and dark roas­ted malts (often cho­co­la­te) and grains. Oat­me­al or mal­ted oats (5-20% or more) used to enhan­ce full­ness of body and com­ple­xi­ty of fla­vor. Hops pri­ma­ri­ly for bit­te­ring. Can use bre­wing sug­ars or syrups. Eng­lish ale yeast.
A vari­ant of nou­ris­hing or inva­lid stouts of the late 1800s using oat­me­al in the grist, simi­lar to the deve­lo­p­ment of sweet stout that used lac­to­se. An ori­gi­nal Scot­tish ver­si­on used a signi­fi­cant amount of oat malt. Later went through a shady pha­se whe­re some Eng­lish bre­wers would throw a handful of oats into their par­ti-gyled stouts in order to legal­ly pro­du­ce a ‘healt­hy’ Oat­me­al Stout for mar­ke­ting pur­po­ses. Most popu­lar in Eng­land bet­ween the World Wars, was revi­ved in the craft beer era for export, which hel­ped lead to its adop­ti­on as a popu­lar modern Ame­ri­can craft beer style that uses a noti­ceable (not sym­bo­lic) quan­ti­ty of oats.
Gene­ral­ly bet­ween Sweet and Irish Stouts in sweet­ness. Varia­ti­ons exist, from fair­ly sweet to quite dry, as well as Eng­lish and Ame­ri­can ver­si­ons (Ame­ri­can ver­si­ons tend to be more hop­py, less sweet, and less frui­ty). The level of bit­ter­ness also varies, as does the oat­me­al impres­si­on. Light use of oat­me­al may give a cer­tain sil­ki­ness of body and rich­ness of fla­vor, while hea­vy use of oat­me­al can be fair­ly inten­se in fla­vor with an almost oily mouth­feel, dry­ish finish, and slight grai­ny astrin­gen­cy. When jud­ging, allow for dif­fe­ren­ces in interpretation.
Com­mer­cial Examples
Ander­son Val­ley Bar­ney Flats Oat­me­al Stout, Brough­ton Scot­tish Oat­me­al Stout, Figue­roa Moun­tain Stage­coach Stout, St-Ambroi­se Oat­me­al Stout, Samu­el Smith Oat­me­al Stout, Young’s Oat­me­al Stout
Ori­gi­nal Gravity
1.045 - 1.065 SG
Final Gra­vi­ty
1.010 - 1.018 SG
22 - 40 SRM
4.0 - 5.0 %vol
25 - 40 IBU