Le Coq Imperial Extra Double Stout - Harvey & Son Ltd.
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Ratings: 446 | Reviews: 390 | Display Reviews Only:
3.68/5 rDev +7.9%
This beer needs to air out and warm to the room. 2000 vintage. Inititially Cantillon sour and chemical aroma that becomes more coffee and above average. Thick black appearance that does not disapoint the palate. Just boozy and sourish at the beginning, then it tapers around the edges as it warmed. Recommended.
Two years later had 2001 vintage that was bourbon and wood and sour.
03-19-2006 04:08:39 | More by Sammy
3.7/5 rDev +8.5%
Strange-looking bottle. 2001 vintage shared by bmanning and served in a tulip.
Pours black with no head and some small bubbles resting on top. Nine years old so I won't take too much off here. The nose is cherry with a bit of black licorice. It's definitely oxidized, though not necessarily in a bad way. The flavor shows the oxidation a bit more with a bit of cardboard, though everything comes together and melds with the dark fruits and slight cherry and roasted characteristics. The mouthfeel is really quite smooth with some low carbonation. Drinks really well and I'm glad I got to try this. Thanks, Ben.
12-20-2010 00:57:25 | More by Thorpe429
3.15/5 rDev -7.6%
A: The beer is nearly jet black in color (it has a slight reddish tinge when closely held up to a light) and only poured with a few bubbles floating around the edges of the glass.
S: There are aromas of red wine and sourness in the nose.
T: Like the smell, there are flavors of red wine in the overall taste, which also has a slight amount of acidity.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate with a light amount of carbonation. It also feels thin and watery and has the consistency of soy sauce.
D: The characteristics of this beer don't seem to fit the style so I'm not sure if I would try it again.
Note: 2003 vintage
12-11-2010 03:43:13 | More by metter98
4.05/5 rDev +18.8%
2003 vintage. Midnight black with not even the suggestion of lightening at the edges. The cap is coffee-with-cream in color and is a small, loose collection of bubbles rather than firm foam. I should be thankful that it's carbonated at all, given what others have experienced. No lace graces the snifter.
The nose is intense (helped by the shape of the glass), impressively vinous and licorice-like. This is probably how the original Russian Imperial stouts smelled, not roasted malty and dark chocolatey, like modern American double stouts. 'Classic' is an overused word, but it fits here.
Do we really need Imperial, Extra *and* Double before Stout? Given the name, one could be excused for thinking that Le Coq is the biggest beast on the block. It isn't. Close to 5 years of rest might have something to do with that. Oddly enough, the alcohol is on the restrained side until the flavors fade, at which point it becomes a little hot and harsh. Nothing too bad, though.
The beer tastes like a cross between Hershey's syrup, concentrated Zinfandel (eiswine?) and Sambuca. If there's someone out there who wants to know what vinousness tastes like, have them take a sip of this stuff. The beer is also tremendously dark fruity (raisins and prunes) and tastes like blackstrap molasses. This certainly is a spicy, complex little sipper.
Even though the mouthfeel is overly thin for the style, it works in the grand scheme of things. English beer tends not to be chewy and viscous anyway. There are very few bubbles left at this point (bottom of the bottle), but it isn't quite completely flat.
Harvey & Son Le Coq Imperial Extra Double Super Premium Special Reserve Classic Stout is definitely interesting beer. It isn't something that I plan to buy again, but it's worth a look for anyone who thinks that all big stouts taste like Storm King.
02-22-2008 16:45:40 | More by BuckeyeNation
4.38/5 rDev +28.4%
2001 vintage, sampled in January 2007
Appearance: Pours a motor oil black color but I could only coax a modest head with a hard pour; no lacing
Smell: Wondrous combination of black coffee, blackstrap molasses and fermenting dark fruits
Taste: Starts out with a sour dark fruit flavor (like a vinous Flanders Red on steroids) that builds, mid-palate; after the swallow, some roasted bitter elements kick in and the sour cherry flavor becomes even more distinct through to the long-lasting finish; Is this a RIS or an unusual whisky?
Mouthfeel: Thick and viscous; with almost no carbonation
Drinkability: One bottle once in a blue moon is enough for me, but what a treat when that lunar cycle arrives
01-22-2007 22:57:23 | More by brentk56
2.3/5 rDev -32.6%
Release 2000: I'm not as impressed as some of the comments that I'm reading. has a perfect color and opaqueness. Absolutely not head--flat. Shows good legs on the sides of the glass. Strong aromas of sherry and soy sauce. Pungent and musky. A thin molassas aroma, but not appealing. Flavors of soy sauce, sherry, and vinegar overwhealms the sparse flavors of roastedness, chocolate, nuttiness, and hop character. Lighter notes of ripe grapes and cardboard show in the body. Creamy, yet flat to the mouth. Finishes sherry-like alcohols with an aftertaste that is acidic and salty. I would like to try another--perhaps I bought a badly oxidized bottle. It sometimes happens to aged and corked bottles.
09-20-2005 18:24:37 | More by BEERchitect
4.1/5 rDev +20.2%
Brewed in 2008.
Black with a thick, pillowy and long lasting mocha brown head.
Nose is cherry whiskey coffee. Hints of soy, black chocolate and molasses.
Mouthfeel is thick and creamy chewy. Mouthfeel of manufacturer's cream.
Flavors are complex and huge. Big sweet black coffee, whiskied cherries, sweet soy sauce; brown sugar, molasses, roasted grains; everything you'd want in a big rich stout. There is a "tart" bitterness that detracts for me but this is a first class stout.
Bitter espresso finish rounds it out nicely.
12-24-2010 22:41:55 | More by GRG1313
3.43/5 rDev +0.6%
This one poured out as a deep black coloe with a brown colored head on top. the head settles pretty quickly with some scattered lace on the glass. The smell of the beer was a little on the musty side, very earthy and almost reminded me of a very old wooden barrel or something. The taste of the beer packs a little bit of a punch to it. I was surprised by the flavor but not really impressed by it either. The malts were roasted and that was ok but there were some other funky flavors going on that I wasn't too fond of. The mouthfeel of the beer was far too thin for an Imperial Stout in my opinion. Low carbonation and lacked depth. Overall I wasn't too thrilled with this brew. I can't see myself picking this one up ever again.
12-29-2011 05:10:28 | More by Knapp85
4.2/5 rDev +23.2%
2001 vintage,pours black as an oil slick with very small mocha colored head that is gone very quickly,wow the complexities in the aroma,raisins,cedar,roasted nuts with a lighter earthy dry earthy raw nutiness.Full almost syurapy mouthfeel coats the mouth,man there are alot of different flavors going on here starts out quite swee like that of brandy like a few others have noted in their reviews quite rasiny and buttery with hints of wood and drying earth in the finish.Wow what a nightcapper here even though Iam drinking this in the middle of the afternoon,whew this one exudes complexities.
01-26-2006 20:20:36 | More by oberon
3.88/5 rDev +13.8%
2008 vintage, (capped not corked) re-review. Seeing several positive reviews of this newer vintage made me curious enough to try it for comparison. Served at 50º cellar temp into a stemmed wine goblet.
Looks fantastic, three fingers width of tan mocha foam, creamy surface texture, and copious lacing. Floating island of foam in the center. Skim never disappears, and the sticky lacing coats the glass. Doesn't even look like the same beer as the older corked bottles.
Muted roasty aroma, notes of dry musty leather. A bit of dried berry and damp wood that suggests a Flanders Oud Bruin.
Roasty, tangy flavor, carob, coffee, chocolate. Sea salt chocolate caramels. Very viscous and palate coating. Bare hint of Brett yeast adds a leathery quality. Very rich, dry and slightly bitter, not sweet. Luckily no off flavors of soy, cardboard, or oxidation as was prevalent in the earlier corked vintages. Actually looking forward to drinking the rest of this...
12-26-2007 review #500. B/3.6
2001 bottle smuggled from Kansas City in my luggage.
The bottle and label remind me of some turn-of-the century esoteric "wonder tonic". Pours pitch black, darker than molasses. Zero head, little to no carbonation, and oily in texture and appearance.
Familiar aroma of musty, rich dark fruit, like black cherry soaking in port casks.
Strong resemblance to a blending of De Dolle Oerbier & Special Export Stout. Salty and fudgy, like chocolate yogurt covered pretzels. Carob and dried black cherry. There is a sour, tangy note, along with the salty/spicy, almost like olive brine, which is sure to make the less intrepid shudder. Beef jerky? Really at a loss for words at this point.
It becomes more earthy and medicinal over time, developing clay and soy notes, slowing the sips down considerably. Alcohol starts to really burn through after half an hour.
More than a little strange and left of center. It caught me off guard at first, and honestly became a little difficult to finish. However, it exists as a unique historical interpretation, and seems to be authentic in that aspect. Maybe this is what the Czars were sipping back in the day. Who knows...but it's certainly worth a try to the more adventurous seekers out there.
Edit: 2000 vintage tasting notes
Again, it pours completely still. Leather, raisin, prune aromas. Salty and smoky flavors that verge on jerky territory. Carob and faint cocoa make this tolerable. If you are still reading this, seek out a fresher sample. Sounds like the 2003 is still actually carbonated...i'll pick one up if I see it, and give this one last try.
04-03-2011 22:04:46 | More by emerge077
3.88/5 rDev +13.8%
2001 Edition. Sampled on my birthday with a ribeye steak.
A - Poured out avery opaque, jet black color with hints of ruby. No head at all and no lacing.
S - It smelled like a red wine, particularly like a merlot. It really had a strong fruit (grape and pear) aroma.
T - It tasted very sweet yet it had some spice. It was very malty with chocolate and caramel flavors. Alcohol flavors were present as well.
M - It was velvety soft and smooth. It drank like a port. A heavy-bodied beer.
D - This was pretty good, but it was simply too heavy to really be great.
07-26-2008 17:58:22 | More by zeff80
2.8/5 rDev -17.9%
Appearance: Black with a very dark brown 1/2-inch head. The head settles to a ring after a few minutes.
Smell: The nose is strange - it's rather woody and burnt, and it even has a slightly salty quality to it, reminding me a bit of soy sauce. If you soaked a cork in vinegar it may smell vaguely similar.
Taste & mouthfeel: Lightly carbonated, but definitely not flat as other reviews have suggested. The mellow carbonation lends itself well to the style. Extremely thick and heavy on the tongue. It has a red wine quality to it; it's dry, peppery and has a tartness that makes me think of a heavy zinfindel. The finish is a combination of roasted and sour notes, and it's dry all the way.
Notes: This is pretty far removed from most modern imperial stouts, especially those coming from the United States right now. Not something I'd care to drink agian, but it's interesting.
11-26-2007 05:34:28 | More by largadeer
2.05/5 rDev -39.9%
2003 vintage poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.
A: The beer is a deep black color, with a no head that fades slowly and no lace on the glass.
S: The aroma contains roasted malts, molasses, chocolate and a touch of dark fruit.
T: The taste is much the same as the smell with strong flavors of molasses, chocolate and some dark fruit but age has taken just about everything else out of this beer. The malt character is very hearty. The after-taste is slightly sweet.
M: Not crisp or smooth but quite viscous, heavy body, no carbonation left, finish is sticky.
O: Some flavor still left, a little filling, strong kick, I’m scoring the beer how it is at 9 years old but I plan on reviewing a fresher release of this beer at some point in the future.
11-14-2012 03:52:55 | More by TheManiacalOne
4/5 rDev +17.3%
A - Pours with a scant one finger head of dark brown foam that rests on top of a completely opaque, black body. The foam settles at an average pace and leaves a hint of foam clinging to the walls of the glass.
S - Surprisingly fruity with big notes of bubble gum, banana, and mango. Some moderately dark chocolate as well with notes of phenolic smoke, leather, and an aroma of fruity, unlit pipe tobacco.
T - Thick, malty sweetness up front with notes of dark chocolate, raisins, leather, and plums. The malt darkens in the middle with more brown sugar and molasses as well as some spice notes of cinnamon, allspice and coriander. Big, phenolic smoke notes come out in the finish with a peat richness that lends complexity and some leathery qualities. Lingering smoke flavors sit on the palate long after the liquid is gone with notes of smoke, plum, and molasses.
M - Thick, oily body, moderately low carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.
D - Wow, if I have ever had a throwback beer, this is it. The most distinctive characteristic of this beer is the rich, fruity smoke character. The combination of smoke, plum, and spice is something that is truly evocative of burning peat. If you have ever been in the presence of a turf burning stove in Ireland or the UK, then you would understand what I mean; the finish of this beer tastes the way a peat fire smells (though perhaps a bit more pleasant). I can't call this a drinkable beer, and I don't know that I would want another one, but it is so unique that I would urge anyone with the opportunity to try it to do so at least once.
06-08-2010 06:01:49 | More by nickfl
3.75/5 rDev +10%
Presentation: 11.2oz vintage looking bottles, corked and finished with a silver plastic wrap. The year 1999 in noted on the label a the vintage year. Actual history on the label about the beer.
Appearance: Pitch black with a brownish lace that holds tight.
Smell: Hints of ripe bing cherries soaked in alcohol and whiffs of roasted grain and wood.
Taste: Syrupy mouth feel and full bodied with a minimal carbonation ... deep bitterness from the roasted grain and hops, acidic twang from the wood and roasted character cut through the sweetness. Then a quick burst of date like fruitiness followed by a complex dark roasted coffee and wood taste that lend to a long lasting finish.
Notes: Flavours are quick yet complex. Stylistcaly speaking this is as close as you can get to an Imperial Russian Stout in modern day. Truely a interesting and remarkable brew. A great brew today though a few if not several years of aging could benifit this brew. Brewed for A. Le Coq & Tartu Brewery Estonia.
02-19-2001 23:34:04 | More by Jason
3.93/5 rDev +15.2%
2001 vintage 9% abv on her pours an absolutely opaque shade of black although comparing this beer to motor oil may seem extreme it's pretty accurate to it's appearance leaves a nice creamy texture tan head lacing is thin and sparse. Oak aging is prevalent in the nose with some strong port wine vinous notes and deep dark chocolate edge and some dark roasts as well are thrown in there. After the first sip it's hard not to compare the flavor to something out of Asian cuisine deep plum and raisin notes, bitter dark chocolate, and a soy or teryaki tone to the flavor it's extreme, once again the oak aging peers through the taste and you can tell the woody tone is in there, wow so this is an Russian Imperial Stout. The sheer texture is a bit cloying coats the palate with a layer of sticky syrup after each sip, it's hard to say that I have had a thicker beer full bodied by all means heavy on the palate. Drinkability for me would questionable it's an experience to sample a beer of this magnitude there is much complexity and alcohol and body but does it creat an experience that I will crave over and over again, probably not.
03-21-2004 22:56:22 | More by WVbeergeek
3.95/5 rDev +15.8%
2003 vintage (9.0% abv) pours black/purple as night with 1" deep mocha colored head. Minimal lacing & head retention
S: Sour & oaky & horse blankety
T: Sour & dry with raisins up front. Chocolate & more dryness follows. Earthy mushroom notes, booze & coccoa follow, with soured oak. Finishes with vanilla, bakers chocolate & lactic sourness
mF: Oily & dry, near zero carbonation
Drinks alright, I assume this is supossed to be this idiosyncratic style-wise, I hope so, otherwise a diasater of Ivan imp stout; more like a heavy belgian lambic with identity issues. Some belgian beer freaks will absolutely love this. I just consider it over priced & confused at $7 a 11 oz bottle. Not sure what this would round into with time, this was a 2003 vintage
04-14-2007 06:03:35 | More by russpowell
4.28/5 rDev +25.5%
Deepest, darkest, blackest color you can have, with a head that doesn't foam, just exists as a slight toasted brown ring, that swiftly diminishes away.
Aroma: incredible! Dark as possible, whiskeyish, licorice, cherries, chocolatey, dark rum, mollasses, every sensation that ever wafted from an Imperial Stout is here in ample supply, more twisted and viscous and damnable as ever.
Taste: small, if even, evidence of hops, but a vast buttress of dark, tangible malt is fully in command of this entry, here. Rich, thick, sticky sweet, with a mouthfeel that doesn't get quite as full as I like...a bit too slick, with a finish that clings for a time, but not long enough.
I like the idea behind this ale, and the historical connotations, but it's not as well-balanced as it could be. The strength, somehow, didn't stick out..wait, no, here it comes...the missing IS qualities had me reaching for the Old Rasputin bottle waiting for me, but might that be tempting a sadder fate than my evening deserves...
This is quite an interesting, and a good, stout, but isn't going to vault to the top of list of favorites any time soon. Save for special occasions only. Not an everday drinking IS in the least.
11-30-2003 11:00:16 | More by feloniousmonk
3.53/5 rDev +3.5%
For International Stout Day, how about an international stout, a foreign Imperial Extra Double Stout, sounds epic. However, I also noticed the version imported here to U.S. is only 9% while BA lists at 10% so either it changed or they gave us the weaker version.... oh well.
2008 vintage on this puppy.
it pours out like thick black coffee, and reveals a huge fluffy head of 2 fingers, dark chocolate colored, fades slowly with lots of lacing that just coats the glass itself, over an essentially pitch black beer with no real light coming through.
Unfortunately nose starts with an infection set in, which is interesting as there was no infection appearance. A light sour tangy aroma, but behind that is a nice stout, a light acrid roast, bit of cocoa, fluffy nougat and caramel candy aromas, the chocolate caramel candies like milk duds, a hint of earthy malts and a touch of dark chocolate. The tangy infection fades very quickly luckily.
Taste doesn't really have any infection flavor, maybe just a hint in the background luckily. it does start with fluffy airy chocolate, a weird light bitter but slightly milky chocolate that's hard to really explain, with tons of caramel as well, and some fluffy nougat, adding just a touch of nutty flavor in the back makes this a combination of almost every candy bar out there, with much less sweetness thankfully. It brings just a touch of roast and acrid flavor but very little. It does bring some bitterness, but I think more from the charred roasty malt flavors, although a little earthy hop kick as well. It has that foreign extra stout like bitterness and earthiness which is unique and is that flavor I get an itch for from time to time. The chocolate flavor turns more towards baker's or dark chocolate as it goes, and fairly rich at the same time. Finish is like melted baker's chocolate, slightly creamy and thick, coats the mouth well with more bitterness and stoutness, little caramel and chewy malt like flavors, and a long bitterness that turns slightly salty even.
Mouth is fuller bodied, rich and thick with lots of carbonation that is infused well to give it a fluffy feel.
Overall pretty good. Other than that slight infection set in on the aroma it's nice. Good candy bar flavors without the sweetness, nice chocolate characters that change as the beer moves along, quite a bit of nice stoutness and bitterness throughout. Long finish as well.
11-09-2012 04:30:06 | More by jlindros
3.93/5 rDev +15.2%
Bottled in 1999 - 11.2 oz. corked bottle:
Pours black with a few brown bubbles that disappear. A vanishing thin brown film sticks to the glass.
The smell is of molasses, dark fruits - plums/dates/raisins, sugar cane and vinuous (red wine). Some tar and a hints of chocolate and vanilla/oak emerge in the second sniff. Dark and complex.
The taste is of figs, dates, and plums. Red wine/grapey notes come through, as do hints of chicory/coffee and oak/vanilla. Sweetness turns to a dry finish.
Pretty smooth, though it lacks carbonation. Medium-bodied.
This is an interesting on - quite a bit going on. Seems to have aged rather well - alcohol is very mellow with a wonderful aroma and a nice taste. Still, it is a sipper - an interesting one, though.
07-03-2008 23:21:12 | More by jwc215
2.68/5 rDev -21.4%
1999 Vintage Sampled Oct 6, 2003
Pours completely flat. It is oil black in color, there is no head what-so-ever. The aroma is of dark malt and sherry, with a bit of alcohol in the nose. A barely perceptible funky aroma seems to also be evident. This beer really could use some carbonation. My first impression is that the flavor is a bit flat. It is a bit wine like in its profile. Definite roast malt profile, but seems fairly soft and mellow. The beer is thick and has some syrup type consistency to it. Finishes somewhat sweet. Strong malt flavors dominate. In the end a bit disappointing, really needed a bit of carbonation in order to shine.
11-07-2003 19:31:04 | More by Gueuzedude
Le Coq Imperial Extra Double Stout from Harvey & Son Ltd.
78 out of 100 based on 446 ratings.