Harviestoun Orach Slie review

Alright, I know, I'm starting to look like I'm sponsored by Harviestoun... I'm not, for the record but luckily they seem to like me and send me beers to try which is awesome!

Yeah, I'm a massive Harviestoun fanboy but when I first read about their whisky barrel aged lager Orach Slie I wasn't convinced. I'd never had a BA lager before. I'd read about them but I've always thought the idea was a bit odd and gimmicky and didn't understand how it would work so I avoided them. Maybe out of fear. I don't know.

Anyway, last night I got home to find 3 bottles of Orach Sile waiting for me and couldn't wait to crack one open. Can Harviestoun change my opinion of spirit barrel aged lagers?

This is what Harviestoun say about the beer:

"Our brewers specially selected a high abv (6%), lightly-hopped version of our craft lager, Schiehallion, to complement the classic, honeyed-sherry notes of Glenfarclas single malt whisky."

So what does the dawg say?

Pours golden but is slightly darker than you'd expect from a lager, presumably from the wood. Lovely foamy head that seems to stay a while too.

The aroma is lager malt, citrus hops and that unmistakable whisky tickling in your nostrils. The kind of aroma that makes you think "Fuck! This is probably going to burn as it goes down!"

It didn't though, it's smooth. You get all of the pleasure from a lager, but at the same time it's like you're drinking a decent whisky. Except a whisky would get you fucked up in a 330ml measure (please don't do that!). It's supremely enjoyable... citrus hops, lager malt, wood and whisky. Brilliant.

It's yet another beer from Harviestoun that I really like, which is surprising given my initial skepticism. I mean, I know they make really good beers all the time but the concept was what I doubted.

Has it convinced me on spirit barrel aged lagers? In general, no. I like this but I can imagine this is a rare gem. I mean, if I hadn't been sent any I probably wouldn't have bought it even though I've heard it's nice, purely because of the concept. I'm not going to rush out looking for other spirit BA lagers because I'll probably be disappointed.

I really am a Harviestoun fanboy, but what do you expect when they're making such good beers! Even convincing me that a spirit BA lager isn't actually a terrible thing.

Fuck you, Harviestoun for making me fall in love all over again!



  1. Sounds good Nate, looking forward to trying this one!


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