Oatmeal Stout

Glassware: Nonic pint
  • England
  • Ale
  • ABV = 4.2 – 5.9% (Lower to normal)^
  • IBU = 25-40
  • SRM = 22-40
A dark, full-bodied, roasty English ale with a complementary oatmeal flavour.

Generally between Sweet Stout and Irish Stout in sweetness.


  • Colour^ = Brown to black
  • Clarity = Can be opaque; if not, should be clear

Key Aromas & Flavours:

  • Malt = Low; grainy, roasty, coffee-like, with a light malty sweetness that may give a coffee-and-cream impression
  • Hops = None to moderate; earthy or floral, if present
  • Yeast = Low to moderate; fruity
  • Other = Low grainy-nutty oatmeal aroma may be present
  • Malt = Low; roasted coffee, milk chocolate, or coffee-and-cream
  • Hops = None to moderate; earthy or floral, if present
  • Yeast = Low to moderate; fruity
  • Other = Toasty-nutty, grainy or earthy flavour possible from the oats
  • Perceived Bitterness^ = Moderate
  • Balance = Towards the malt

Medium-sweet to medium-dry finish with a malty, roasty, nutty aftertaste


  • Body = Full
  • Carbonation = Medium
  • Creaminess = A smooth, silky, velvety texture from the oatmeal

Characteristic Ingredients/Processes:

  • Malt = Pale, plus crystal/caramel and dark roasted malts (often chocolate)
  • Hops = English or American hops, primarily for bittering
  • Yeast = British ale yeast
  • Other = Oatmeal or malted oats (5 – 20%) to enhance flavour and fullness of body

Historical Development:

A variant of the nourishing stouts of the early 1900s, using oatmeal instead of lactose as in the Sweet Stout.  Most popular in England between the Word Wars; was revived during the craft beer era for export, making it a popular American craft beer style, too. (American versions tend to be more hoppy, less sweet and less fruity.)

Commercial Examples:

Anderson Valley Barney Flats Oatmeal Stout, Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout, Young’s London Stout

^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus (Version 5.0)
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2021 Style Guidelines.

Discovering Beer is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Cicerone® Certification Program.

Brought to you by Beer with Nat

Instagram | Twitter | YouTube