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Le Coq Imperial Extra Double Stout - Harvey & Son Ltd.

Not Rated.
Le Coq Imperial Extra Double StoutLe Coq Imperial Extra Double Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

444 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 444
Reviews: 389
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 26.98%
Wants: 19
Gots: 9 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Harvey & Son Ltd. visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: OldFrothingSlosh on 02-19-2001)
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Ratings: 444 | Reviews: 389 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sixpoint

New York

2.7/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Kind of a disappointment. According to my research, this beer was one of the original Russian Imperial Stouts. Maybe today's modern interpretations have strayed from the original.

At any rate, this beer was infected. Kind of a disappointment. The infectious bacteria was almost overwhelming, and kind of ruined the experience.

The beer poured with little to no head. Just a faint trace of bubbles at the top - otherwise, it looked almost like tar in a glass.

The aroma was the redeeming quality. This beer almost smelled like a fine Merlot. Very complex - even some oak tones.

The taste was pretty awful. The infection really came through harshly, and it distracted from the nice roasted and sweet flavors from the malt.

The mouthfeel was nice and full-bodied, but the beer was too flat. It was hard to enjoy because of its flatness.

Overall, it's just not that drinkable of a brew. Perhaps I just don't know... is it supposed to be infected?

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2004 20:27:28 | More by Sixpoint
Photo of horndecker

New Jersey

3.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2001. I tasted a 2000 last week and was somewhat perplexed by it, so I hunted down another bottle and it was much the same.

Nary a trace of a head. Full bodied, looks like black ink. A nose at first like a nasty week old table wine. I think I opened too cold, so I wait a bit for it to warm up. The aromas open up and I smell roasted malt, soy, cocoa, raisins, coffeeish, more soy. Quite interesting.

The taste is similiar, but without the soy. Roasted coffee, raisins, stewed fruits, and then an intense smoky finish on an oily, but not unpleasant, chewy mouthfeel. But still just the merest hint of carbonation. It's different, but it's tasty. The alcohol is present but not overwhelming.

My previous encounters with Russian Imperial Stout are limited to Sam Smith, Hercule, Old Rasputin and Smuttynose, and all those wonderful Baltic Porters, etc, so this was a new adventure. If this is closer to the original style, then perhaps I prefer the more modern interpretations.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2004 03:34:32 | More by horndecker
Photo of watermelonman


4.15/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured to pure blackness with a few bubbles at the top but no real head. There's no lacing either.

The smell is mostly of oak and molasses, and fairly strong. The taste is a blast full of flavors. Raisin flavor comes through strong in the front followed by malt. Alcohol and slight bitterness take over in the finish. The mouthfeel is flat yet full.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2004 07:13:18 | More by watermelonman
Photo of counselor


4.33/5  rDev +27%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pitch black wit a dark tan head that dissipates quickly. The aromas are intense licorice, alcohol, coffee and chocolate. The taste of this beer is huge, layers of dark semi sweet chocolate, espresso, coffee, intense licorice and warming alcohol. The beer grew more intense as it warmed sending aromas out of the snifter. I will be getting more of this beer and enjoying it by the fire

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2004 21:15:15 | More by counselor
Photo of mzwolinski


4.72/5  rDev +38.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2000 Vintage. Pours completely black without the slightest trace of carbonation. The aroma is chocolatey with hints of prune and toffee. A slightly sweet toffee comes out in the flavor as well, and nicely compliments the taste of dark, bitter chocolate. Dark figgish fruit flavors emerge mid-palate, leading into a spicy alcohol finish, and a really wonderful burnt malt flavor that lingers subtly into the aftertaste. Thick and chewy in mouthfeel, with a slightly dry finish. Really, really nice.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2004 08:04:09 | More by mzwolinski
Photo of Winter


2.83/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

2001 vintage.

Pours black with no head, except for a flat surface covering around the edge of the glass. Very vinous aroma. Almost port-like. Soy, chocolate, and raisin add the the mix. Mouthfeel is full-bodied and coats the tongue like an oil slick. The taste is acquired. Not your typical Imperial stout. This one's much more vinous. Unwelcome flavors of soy sauce and old wine introduce themselves first. Alcohol and stale tabacco follow. Dark fruit and red wine are present in the finish. Like most good imperials, this one takes time to consume and enjoy, kind of like a good cigar. Although, I'd much rather prefer the cigar, I think, in this case.

This strays from the more expresso, burnt malt and chocolate flavors of some Imperial stouts. Le Coq features vinous flavors in it's profile, which is often present in Imperial stouts, but this seems to be the primary focus.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2004 04:54:55 | More by Winter
Photo of GCBrewingCo

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The beer poured inky black and thick, a little viscous, light wished it could penetrate the beer to leave a highlight but it could not.. The head was none, nada, didn't even show up for the party and left not a trace on the glass.

The aroma was slightly sour and with a strong oak presence. Chocolate and roasty aromas were present, but in the background with a vinous winey aroma.

The flavor was thick and viscous with a coffee and chocolate and a winey vinous flavor. The flavors that were present were old and oxidized and not well done.

The finish was chocolate and coffee and vinous flavors lasting well into the aftertaste. The body was completely full and devoid of any carbonation whatsoever.

11.2 ounce bottle, sealed and corked. 2000 on bottle. More of an old ale than a stout. I'd suggest skipping it unless you want a winey flat stout that is well aged and devoid of most of the character.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2004 01:12:21 | More by GCBrewingCo
Photo of SeanChouffe

New Mexico

3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Vintage 2000
Well, I have had to rethink my definition of beer. At first, I thought I had gotten a bad bottle. I mean, there was little to no pop from the cork, and there was absolutely not fizz from the beer. No head. This is a different experience entirely.
It looks and acts like motor oil (old of course). The aroma is of oak, whiskey, dark fruits, cork and soy sauce. The flavor is very wine-like in its attributes as well as intensity. Again, oak, fruits, raisons etc., and a dry finish not unlike a wine. The palate is full bodied with no carbonation, and syrupy with a tannic aftertaste. At first I was wholly turned off by this rendition of beer, but as the glass warmed and the more subtle characteristics arose, I became fonder of its distinctive qualities. However, it was so intense that I was not able to keep up. Not your everyday beer. Complex and intense to its own detriment.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2004 03:01:33 | More by SeanChouffe
Photo of BrewMaster


3.23/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Corked vintage 2000 bottle. It poured from the bottle with no head. I mean nothing, zero, zip, zilch of a head. The beer is a dark brown opaque color. The aroma reminds me completely of red wine. Sweet oak, cork, and wine scents. This really does smell more like red wine or port than beer. The flavor is a mix of sharp alcohol flavor in the middle with roasty and sour dark malts flavors. There are also notes of tobacco and overall it has the character and flow of sherry or port...bad sherry or port. I just couldn't drink much of this beer. I love good port, but this is just an oddball beer. It is certainly not drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2004 19:52:56 | More by BrewMaster
Photo of crookedhalo


4.28/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2000 vintage corked bottle. Pours opaquely black with a thin brown head that dies to a small ring of bubbles hugging the edge of the glass. Mysterious aromas, treacle, brine, toffee, smoldering coals and port wine. Not your typical coffee-and-chocolate kind of stout aromas, this beer is really complex. The first sip has to be the best, your taste buds are going "WTF?..." One monster of a mouthfeel, velvety and rich. Big on the malty, vinous, winey character and has a nice bakers' chocolate-like bitter finish with enough woody esteriness from the hops to keep the palate cleansed (well, reasonably cleansed considering it's an global assault on the multicontinented palate). Salty and minerally taste in the background. This is a beautiful beer, one that I've tried a few times before and always enjoy. My only gripe it that it is such a slow sipper. Not so much a gripe, just every time I have one, it takes me 2 hours to consume. I guess that's love and caressing a beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2004 07:43:14 | More by crookedhalo
Photo of rajendra82


4.03/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This 1999 vintage bottle was a packaging rarity, with an 11.2 oz. corked presentation. As I extricated the cork, and poured out the beer, to my surprise it developed a very decent head. Not bad for a five year old beer. The labeling was very authentic looking, and projected an image of an actual English beer brewed for export to Russia, which it is. The label also provided a history lesson into the origins of the style, and the brand.

The body was very dark black-brown, and the head was brown as well. The aroma was quite faint, with a mix of oxidized, sweet, and sour smells.

The taste was balanced between roastiness, sourness, and saltiness. This was definitely a lot more subtle than most American Imperial Stouts, and did not come across as boldly roasty or vinous. There were definite notes of chocolate and brandy on the palette, and the alcohol had mellowed to the point of non detection. The aftertaste was creamy and dry.

This is a very sedate sipping beer, which has stood the rigors of aging very well.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2004 04:17:04 | More by rajendra82
Photo of Crotor


3.78/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

My only experience with this beer has been a '99 bottle consumed in '04. Unfortunately, it seems to have been a few years past its prime...

The beer poured flat, black, and almost purple-ish. Warm alchol and slight spice aroma dominated at first. Then there was a bit of funky raisin aroma. And an unfortunate bit of nail-polish remover...

The taste was surprising considering the aromas. At first there was all sorts of weird fruit going on, but then it left with a roasty, lingering tobacco component. The beer was completely dry, with no malt sweetness to speak of. I was intrigued by how strong the roastiness became, considering how strong the fruit was at first. I guess I'm not used to encountering these flavors in this succession?

Unfortunately, the mouthfeel suffered dramatically from the aging. The beer seemed thin and astringent, and ultimately too weak to pair with the fullness of the flavor.

I'd like to try a younger version of this beer, and see if it has the malt and body necessary to make this beer great as opposed to just good.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2004 09:46:30 | More by Crotor
Photo of wyllder


1/5  rDev -70.7%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This is vile.

There are no two ways about it, you might as well drink soy sauce.

This pours midnight black. It might be appealing if it had a head, or maybe some hint of carbonation or some hilights around the edges. It has none of that. Inky black with a few small, clear bubbles that immediately gave me the impression all was not well here.

The nose. For me to describe anything other than a cloying, briney, downright reminescent of soy sauce scent, would be pure and utter fabrication.

The flavor is no better. I've had other Russian Imperials, and if this is/was the essence of the style, then I'm grateful to all the breweries who decided to experiment. Any chance at the complex flavors others have noted is washed away in sea of salty, soy sauce, brine. This beer tastes like a severely over salted syrup.

Mouthfeel is puckering and downright offensive.

Drinkability should be negative numbers. This stuff has Fear Factor potential.

I'm sorry. I've had the unfortunate occasion to encounter this twice now. The first time I had only a sip, and the second time I braved a full bottle. The bottle took me over an hour to work my way through and every sip was torture. Warming only helped to accentuate the brinyness and actually made this worst. If you like this, more power to you. If you tried this and didn't like it, I hope this review lets you know there are others who feel the same way.

btw, I let 3 others at the bar sample this and they all thought it tasted like shit.

I can only hope this is the only beer I ever 1-out.


I have since sampled this when two friends ordered it. One was significantly better, and I would probably rate in the high 3's as Russian Imperials go. The other, however, was nearly as repulsive as the one I reviewed above. Subsequently, I will not be changing my rating.


Serving type: bottle

09-12-2004 04:06:52 | More by wyllder
Photo of canucklehead

British Columbia (Canada)

4.03/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A lot of reviewers seem to be of two minds after tasting this beer. I happen to love this beer for all its non stout-like qualities. It pours black as a moonless night with almost no head. This 2001 vintage had the nose of an old Normandy cider. The Taste was of aged chocolate and vinous notes. Smooth as silk with only the vestiges of anything resembling a stout. Truly unique and a beer for those who want the far reaches of the brewing craft.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2004 05:15:42 | More by canucklehead
Photo of HopGoblin


3.63/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2001 Vintage: The beer was un-corked and poured out beautiful black and thick. There was very little carbonation. Brown bubbles appeared around the edges of the glass. The aroma and taste of this beer was surprising. The beer gave off aromas of fortified wine, mainly sherry. This brew did not taste that of Imperial Stouts that I am used to. The taste was deep and wine-like with hints of caramel and raspberries. The finish was long and tart. When all was said and done this was a good beer, but not what was expected.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2004 06:17:05 | More by HopGoblin
Photo of Sixpack595


1.53/5  rDev -55.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

This beer is horrible. Oily mouthfeel, strange sickly sweet flavor with an acrid bitterness in the finish. Completely flat with no head. Aroma is weak but a bit cloying. Very strange, but not in a good way. I can honestly think of nothing good to say about this beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2004 08:09:27 | More by Sixpack595
Photo of studentofbeer


3.95/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This 2001 vintage poured a greasy black color with hints of brown at the edges and nary a head to be seen except a bit of brown lace sitting on the top. It smells pretty intense: black cherry, port, bleach, leather. This is not your typical stout or even imperial stout.

The taste shocks the palette more than the smell — the mouthfeel is rather light and a bit oily, and the first taste is acidic, very salty and funky. Then comes a strong fruit presence mostly consisting of that black cherry taste, some sweetness, very dark chocolate and roasty espresso.

It's bizarre, tasting like a lambic stout or something.

The hop bitterness seems relatively low and melds with the roast edges, leaving a dry finish on the back of the tongue while the salty taste continues to mull around the front of the mouth. The aftertaste lasts a very long time, and it's a bit of a strange sensation to have these various aftertastes lingering for so long in different parts of the mouth.

I like it, but I'm not sure I totally get it. The very strangeness of it makes you feel like your tasting a bit of history though.

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2004 17:38:20 | More by studentofbeer
Photo of faernt


4.5/5  rDev +32%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I bought this because it is a classic. I have a 2001 vintage before me. It's closed with cork and opened still. Still is not my favorite choice for a first impression of a beer. The aroma is of wine and as I poured it into the glass the wine aroma expanded. As I bring it to my nose a little oakiness comes up and when I drink it the wine and oak increases to the level of some of my favorite Chianti. The chocolate and coffee then kick in and, really, l am finding little to separate this from a robust earthy wine except it is a little more full bodied.

The mouthfeel is a little viscous. Spiciness is kicking in and I'm gettng allspice almost like a jerk rub and a little heavy on the cloves. The complexity is enjoyable and now the stillness is more justified. I like the sensory explosion of this. I think I'll buy more if I can find some and try it with my wife's chicken cacciatore over polenta. This is the most interesting wine/beer experience I've had. I find the ambiguity intriguing.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2004 04:11:03 | More by faernt
Photo of cbl2

New York

3.38/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Note: 1999 Vintage


After removing the cork from this vintage brew, the liquid pours a viscous black with almost no carbonation, and just a hint of dark brown head.


Soy sauce springs to mind, perhaps worsteshire sauce.


This one rolls on the tongue, with soy dominating, followed by a touch of sweetness, before a burnt coffee bitter finish. This one has held up well over time, though it isn't my personal favorite.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2004 13:45:16 | More by cbl2
Photo of granger10


3.63/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2000 version. This beer poured into my goblet with no head to speak of. It was had a definite black color and a purple shade to it. This resembled a dark wine in my glass. No lacing. Carbonation was very, very minimal which made the flavors very intense, good at times and bad at times. The nose is complex with plums, soy sauce, thick molasses, and chocolate covered cherries. Taste is also big and complex. This is an extremely thick beer, very syrupy. Lots of vinous flavors here. Plums and cherries are noticeable. There's a strong bitterness from the hops and roasted coffee flavor. Tarty towards the finish. As it warms it gets much better. I would definitely recommend drinking this one at cellar temp and not much cooler than that. The flavors seem to work better the warmer it gets. I can't believe that the alcohol isn't stronger as this beer seems to be up towards 15% or so. Reminds me a lot of the Sam Adams Triple Bock, but not quite as good. This beer is still not my favorite imperial stout and was too expensive to buy this too often. But I am glad I tried it. 11.2 oz was enough though.

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2004 15:58:47 | More by granger10
Photo of DESTRO


1.85/5  rDev -45.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

hyped to find it, not hyped after i drank it. something is wrong with this sample, i hope. cracked it open to find no carbonation at all. dead flat. ok i can deal, pours (glugs) pitch black with no head. looks like cold dense old motoroil. aroma? alcohol and stank. yummy! taste? alcohol, sour stank and that often sought after soysauce character. i will admit it was velvety and smooth, quite nice...but that really dosnt help the fact it tasted like spoiled milk mixed with everclear and kikkomans. ok maybe thats being a tad harsh. something must have gone wrong somewhere, (the cork was dry as a mofo) and this beer up and kicked the bucket. i know i need to try this one again, and i will. just a bit expensive to go running back to.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2004 17:17:14 | More by DESTRO
Photo of GuinnessSmurf


4.13/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours a heavy, thick black color with obviously no carbonation. Watching this beer pour is some serious beer-foreplay. I felt like I was given a bottle of thick molasses. The taste, like the name might suggest, is very stout. The dominating flavor is the alcohol. There is a sweetness and a bit of coffee, but not until the beer has a chance to live in your mouth ( a few sips in). This is a serious, fierce beer - one made for sipping. I'm a stout man - and this one is DEFINATELY worth trying, but odds of making it an oft repeated beer are slim.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2004 10:15:49 | More by GuinnessSmurf
Photo of xgrigorix


3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Short 11.2 ounce brown bottle, 2001 vintage.

Pours out thick & pitch black, raising a thin head of dark tan.

Burnt fruit, prunes & raisins, whiffs of alcohol & a sublte smokiness.

Initially sticky sweet, prunes, dates, figs, & raisins bounce back & forth. Dives into a long, smooth, & slightly acidic finish, that is dry & warming. Slick, oily, & very slight carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2004 17:11:37 | More by xgrigorix
Photo of Fish113d


3.73/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Served into a goblet from a bottle (2001 brewed), it looked like motor oil after I empty my oil pan after 6,000 miles! However, it does not appear to be very very heavy. But it is very dark (no light getting through) with very minimal head on it. To discuss the smell is much like discussing what wine smells like (a dark red dry wine) with hints of oak, maybe some mollasses and maybe some raisins in there as well. Upon tasting it, it gives a very dry, malty taste w/ lots of oak in there. No way this was brewed in anything BUT oak!!!! I also got the slight hint of molasses flavoring in there, but I can't be sure. The texture is actually heavier by mouthfeel than what appearance tended to want to show. Not my favorite beer in the world but very interesting, and I love when I can taste the oak barrels!

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2004 01:50:48 | More by Fish113d
Photo of WVbeergeek

West Virginia

3.93/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

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.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2004 22:56:22 | More by WVbeergeek
Le Coq Imperial Extra Double Stout from Harvey & Son Ltd.
78 out of 100 based on 444 ratings.