Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Big Red Coq - Brewery Vivant

Not Rated.
Big Red CoqBig Red Coq

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

62 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 62
Hads: 373
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 29.53%
Wants: 12
Gots: 46 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brewery Vivant visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SupaCelt on 02-13-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 62 | Hads: 373
Photo of Monkeyknife
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the can a bright reddish-brown color with a single finger of beige head. Good amount of lacing left behind.

The aroma was malty with red fruit and a bit of pineapple thrown in.

The taste was caramel maltiness upfront with red fruit, orange notes and a hoppy bite. Bitterness lingers.

Medium bodied and dry with a moderate carbonation.

A pretty good but not great Red Ale from Bon Vivant.

 403 characters

Photo of Tucquan
3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Had this on 2015-03-03 in Clarksville, IN from a 16 oz can

A - clear Amber with a 1-finger off-white head and mild lace.

S - Mango, orange, some caramel, hop floral. Sweet, mildish, not dank.

T - Tart cherry, toasted bread aspirin, pepper and orange zest. Very dry with a moderately bitter finish.

M - Light body and medium carbonation with a somewhat-prickly finish.

O - A style-bender for sure. From the smell I expected an American IPA with some malt sweetness. The tart, dry, cherry aspects were a surprise.

 521 characters

Photo of beesy
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a can

A - pours a clear bright orange with a finger and a half of eggshell white head.

S - slight belgian note. A touch of citusy hops. I don't know where its coming from, but I keep getting a big peanut/peanutbutter nose.

T - a lighter belgian profile throughout. Hops are slighty citusy throughout, shining a little more on the late palate. A very soft beer with a reserved bitterness. A firm malt backbone with a slightly bready profile.

M - medium bodied. Very soft on the palate.

D - medium to medium low for me.

Overall, I can't find much to hate, but I can't find a lot to make me love it. The appearance is fantastic, but as the name implies, I was expecting more of a mahagony color. I'm not sure where the nutty aroma I get is coming from, I'll have to see if it exists in the other cans.

 817 characters

Photo of sweett3k
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at a local Grand Rapids resturaunt. Nice redish brown color with great head and lacing. Not much going on for smell...notes of cherry and bread. Nice sweet taste of biscuit metalic hops. Nice and easy to drink. This is my first Brewery Vivant beer and I am quite pleased looking to go well with my fish tacos.

 320 characters

Photo of GTSeabolt
3.89/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Boozy taste overpowers what I would have hoped for in a red hoppy ale. Strong beer. Whatever craft there is seems to be disguised by high alcohol content and heavy hopping.

 172 characters

Photo of superspak
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 ounce can into tulip glass, no canning date. Pours fairly crystal clear orange copper color with a nice 3 finger dense light khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Nice thick soapy lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of caramel, pine, grapefruit, orange zest, herbal, floral, toast, mango, pineapple, and slight yeast esters. Nice, pleasant, and well balanced aromas with decent strength. Taste of caramel, grapefruit, pine, orange zest, pineapple, mango, floral, toast, earth, and herbal spiciness. Good amount of spicy pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, caramel, toast, tropical fruit, and herbal spiciness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance of malt sweetness with bitterness; and good balance of hop flavors as well. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and crisp mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is well hidden as expected of 6.5%, with pretty much zero warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice hoppy amber ale. I did not really get any Belgian influence from the flavors; but it had some very nice hop flavor complexity, and is very easy to drink. Really pleasant and enjoyable.

 1,192 characters

Photo of Urbancaver
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep reddish brown. Nice clear appearance. Looks gorgeous. Nice white head. Very pretty. 5.0
Smells bitter and malty. A nice roasty undertone. 3.5
Tastes sweet and hoppy. Lost of red moss earthiness. Bitter hops. A bit harsh. 4.0
Well carbonated. Nice mouthfeel 4.0
Overall this is a style that doesn't impress me but the beer is fairly solid 4.0

 354 characters

Photo of bwood06
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%

A - Dark red amber in color. Clear. 1 finger foamy white head that is slow to dissipate. Slight foaminess remains throughout the duration of drinking this beer. 4.5/5

S - Pineapple, mango and citrus hit me right off the bat. As the beer warms, a slight graininess and some sweetness make their way out as well. Earthy. 3.75/5

T - Definite tropical fruits here. Same as the nose. Lingering bitterness on the back end but not overwhelming. Grassy hops. A bit of resin. Definitely hop forward. Hint of toffee up front as the beer warms. Malt is somewhat muted. Earthy and leathery. 3.75/5

M - Very light, crisp, and dry. Very refreshing. Moderately carbonated. Clean feeling beer. Except for the lingering bitterness, I wouldn't know that I just had something in my mouth. 4/5

O - I thoroughly enjoyed this beer. Hops are powerful but balanced out by the earthiness of the malt. My favorite part was actually the appearance. Love seeing a beer that can hold it's head throughout the duration of drinking it. 3.75/5

 1,040 characters

Photo of buschbeer
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

One Pint
Served in a snifter

A - It it reddish orange in color with some suspended yeast. The initial pour yielded about three inches of tan head.

S - I smell some tea and floral hops.

T - The taste is similar to the smell. I get some tea flavors and floral hops.

M - Medium

O - This is a tasty red ale. The hop profile isn't overpowering. The floral hops compliment the malt bill and make a very drinkable beer. It is a little too high priced to make a regular for my humble means, $11.99 for a four pack of sixteen ounce cans.

 536 characters

Photo of FaceYourBeers
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First vivant beer. First BA review. First legit canned craft brew.

A. Intense head. Decent retention. Classic bright mahogany.

S. hoppity hop! Citrus. Floral. With a sweet punch. Mmm.

T. Malts hit you first. Moves to hops. Moves to bitter finish. Where's the belgo? Barely there. Nice blend tho. Love the style. Reminds me of a sessionable version of the FFF Brian Boru.

M. Not sure if the can makes the carbonation extra intense at first. But it dies down to a perfect creamy burn.

O. Wish I had more than 4! Definitely seek this out. Great session beer.

 565 characters

Photo of GRPunk
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap served in a tulip.

A- It had a deep, red-brown body that was pretty clean. Head retention was so-so. My first glass seemed to be better than the second. In the end both were a light film that left decent sticky spots on the glass.

S- Really interesting. Initially a lot of caramel and nutty aromas mixed with signature Belgian funk. Medicinal and spicy aromas really played a major role. Warmth amplified the medicinal and spice (black pepper), and brought out a honey-like scent.

T- Pretty true to the aroma. A real mix of traditional amber flavors and Belgian twists. Caramel and nutty malts. Really spicy features (hopping or yeast?). Further in the peppery flavors really took center stage, staying just the right side of overwhelming. Not as malt centric as many red/ambers.

M- Straight forward. Moderate carbonation and viscosity. Right in the middle of sweet/lingering and hoppy/drying.

O- A really interesting beer. I had two and could have put back a third. A nice twist on the traditional amber. A solid beer to be a staple on their menu.

 1,060 characters

Photo of CloudStrife
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz can poured into a tulip.

A: Pours an opaque reddish gold with a 1 finger off white head. Some visible carbonation in the body. Head sticks around for a minute or two leaving some lacing.

S: Lot going on with the smell here. There is belgian yeast flat out up front, but also a hopping on top of that and a solid almost sweet carmely malt backing.

T: Balanced comes to mind as I take my first sip. Has a smooth malty taste balanced by some yeast and hops. I'd say malt lingers more in the aftertaste

M: Full bodied with lots of carbonation. Has a nice clean finish, easy drinking.

Overall this is a beer I could enjoy on a regular basis. Has the Belgian drinkability with some amped up American malts and hops.

 722 characters

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4/5  rDev +3.6%

16 oz can poured into a Brewery Vivant glass.
6% ABV,

A - Bright and clear amber in color, Big Red Coq is a vibrant beer topped with a loose and fleeting ivory cap of foam that settles to a thin skim with little lace left behind. 4

S - Ripe stone and tropical fruits come together with a jammy presence spread across slightly burnt whole wheat toast. Belgian yeast nuances trickle in on the finish, delicately imparting clay and spice notes to the otherwise American hop-forward beer. 4

T - Earthy, dry malt pulls the toast overtones from the aroma but also dusts in some cocoa and dirt before Belgian yeasty clay and bright fruit notes finish out. 4.25

M - Big Red Coq's dry entry leads to a medium-full body and a wonderfully balanced bitter finish from the hops that comes full circle and lingers with dryness. 4.5

O - This might be the first (and last) time I've said this; I like this beer better on tap. It was mindbogglingly different than anything else while experienced at the brewery. Great in the can, it's lacking the explosive combination of Belgian yeast and American hops. This review captures some of that uniqueness for an amber but, not quite everything it can be, had fresh at the source. It's a damn good beer regardless. 4.25

 1,251 characters

Photo of meepmeep
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can, no dating.

A: Clear golden reddish brown, bubbly off-white head.

S: Bitter hops up front, fading to caramel malts and some slight hint of Belgian yeasts as well.

T: More hop taste than a regular red ale, but most of the hop taste is up-front. The slight Belgian banana taste in the body off-sets the malt quite nicely. Could use a little more flavor on the end though.

M: Well-carbonated, crisp mouthfeel, a little light on the body though.

Overall - another enjoyable beer from Vivant. Generally I am not a huge fan of red ales, so I was pleasantly surprised. Glad they have this out in cans at the moment!

 623 characters

Photo of SupaCelt
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: This brew pours out with a rich red hue and a fluffy and luxurious white head.

Nose: The nose throws off some mouthwatering hops pokes. Substantial florals and pings of grapefruit bounce off the bready malt frame.

Taste: The flavor is very pleasing. The hops shine through while belgian ale yeast adds a twist to the the traditional red ale characteristics. Mildly dry. Very enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: An oddly light medium body tries its best to support the bill here. It holds its own and makes this beer a snap to drink.

Drinkability: This is fit for a session. Very easy to appreciate.

 601 characters

Photo of ModemMisuser
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Vivant. The waiter would not say "big red coq" when repeating our order - instead he called it "big red." :D

Aroma, color, and mouthfeel are pretty much what you'd expect for a Red. It's a reddish/brown color, and has a light to medium body/mouthfeel.

A solid session beer. No off characters, nothing bad about it. Tastes good, drinks easy. If you like the style, or are at Vivant and DON'T like any of the other offerings, you're not going to go wrong with this one.

 488 characters

Photo of Ryan011235
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip on 6/14/12

Many thanks to beesy; I'd never heard of this brewery before.

Solid-looking beer; medium dark copper/amber with a mild layer of haziness. A billowy, two finger head collapses slowly, retaining a smooth, yet quite uneven grade. Scatterings of lace are left on the inside lip of the glass. Lace is thicker farther down.

The aroma has a pretty good showing of hops: piney, earthy, some floral and faint hints of citric zest. The hops are offset by toasted bread and some caramel; it's a decent enough balance between the hops and malts. I'm not picking up too much of the "Belgo," aside from a modest fruity twang buried within the mix. Smells like it'll be pretty dry.

And dry it is. Resiny, piney hops mingle with zesty citric tones; the hop flavor has a nice punch to it. Thankfully, the floral and earthy notions in the aroma are minimized here. Malt-wise, the focus on more on dry, toasty bread than on caramel; suits me just fine. As with the aroma, the "Belgo" yeast is rather unobtrusive; adding some of the aforementioned fruity twang, albeit in a slightly more prominent measure than the nose.

The feel is medium with an enjoyable amount of sticky resin hanging around. Carbonation bolsters the hops without outshining them. The finish is surprisingly on the clean side.

The subtle "Belgo" characteristics are a welcomed addition to the Hoppy Red/Imperial Red style and a nice change of pace from the floral/caramel combo that plagues so many of the lesser reds out there. I'd drink this regularly if I could.

 1,560 characters

Photo of codysjb
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a pint glass
A: Excellent red color with small head that holds a long time. Great lacing.
S: Saison zest with hop smell. Really balanced smell.
T: A little watery on the front that gives way to mild malt and some floral hop on the end.
M: Hops and some minor belgian zest.
O: A really balanced good beer. Tastes like a hoppy saison and I would bet that fresh this is absolutly amazing.

 411 characters

Photo of soze47
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Not much to look at but has nice color. Smell is nice - good sweet bread/caramel malt compliment the greener hop notes. This is very easy to drink. Well balanced and light on the palette for a beer with so much malt forward character. Belgian yeast compliments it all with a little candi sweetness to it.

 304 characters

Photo of SerialTicker
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

No canning date. $3.49 for a 16oz can. Poured into S.A. Perfect Pint Glass

Appearance: What the hell. I barely moved the can, but even then, I poured it into a glass and the whole pint glass filled with foam with maybe an ounce of beer. Because the head wouldn't go anywhere, I had to spoon out a bunch of foam. Big Red Coq is a beautiful, hazy red color with a light tan, creamy head, and great lacing. I give it a 3 for appearance though because I had to spoon the equivalent of three ounces of beer out of my glass. Looks great after that though.

Smell: It smells a touch Belgian, but it's not much. There are plenty of hops and malts to go around in the aroma. The hops are mostly grassy, and the malt gives a sweet note to make it even more inviting. Smells fantastic.

Taste/feel: Quite interesting. That slight, Belgian sourness is definitely there, but it's not too much. The hops aren't as "bursting" as I thought they'd be, judging by the taste. The malt flavor is of caramel and sweetness, and it works well. This is an odd beer, and I'm not sure how to describe it, but it's really good. This is sour, sweet, and a bit bitter. The aroma makes Big Red Coq smell like an IPA (I wish MINE did...), but the taste is distinctively Belgian. For some reason, it's difficult for me to pull out specific flavors in this beer. It's just interesting. It's like a red in that it has plenty of the malt and sweetness that you'd expect, IPA-esque in that it smells like one and has a pretty significant hop flavor, and then it tastes Belgian because of the yeast. As it warms up, the sourness becomes more prominent. The feel on this beer is middle of the road, with a pretty active-but-pleasant carbonation.

This is unlike any other beer I've had before... an amber with more hops than usual, and Belgian yeast. Extremely unhelpful review, but I CAN tell you that it's a very tasty beer that's worth picking up if you can.

 1,924 characters

Photo of carlborch
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful copper brown,with an ever-so-slight haze. 2.5-inch, creamy, tan head forms and dissipates slowly to 1.5 inch. Distinctive hop and yeast nose. Suggestions of sour-dough bread. Most pleasant. Medium body. The palate is bright with lingering malt and bitter notes. Much Belgian lace. Dry. Great aperitif beer! This ale made me hungry. Highly moreish! A definite repurchase.

 388 characters

Photo of StoutHunter
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a can of Brewery Vivant's Big Red Coq the other day for $2.59 at The Lager Mill. This is the newest beer from their Brewers Reserve Series, I am really starting to like this Series after having their Zaison, so lets see how this beer turns out. No visible bottling date but I know it's fresh, Spring 2012 Vintage. Poured from a 16oz can into a tulip.

A- It comes in their Brewers Reserve Series can with a nice looking big red rooster on the sticker that looks like it could be on a coat of arms, looks good to me. It foamed slightly out of the can and it poured a nice darker red color that took on a nice bright red/copper/ruby color with two and a half fingers worth of slightly off white head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left some nice spotty lacing. This is a good looking beer, I see no flaws with it's appearance.

S- The aroma is pretty complex. The first thing that I pick up in the aroma is nice a malty presence that had a high amount of medium sweetness and imparted some lightly toasted malts, caramel malts, and a slight toffee like aroma. Next comes the yeast that distinctly smells Belgian, it imparts lots of spicy aromas like cloves, along with a good amount of bananas. After that I get some hops which are spicy, floral aroma but it was the citrus hops that stuck out the most. This was a good, unique, and very complex smelling beer, I like it, it has a little bit of everything.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma just a little bit more balanced, it starts off with loads of malts which have a lower amount of medium sweetness and imparted a nice caramel malts, lightly toasted malts, and biscuit like flavors. Next up is the Belgian yeast which isn't as spicy as it was in the aroma, but the banana flavor still comes through as much as it did in the aroma and adds some nice complexity to this beer. Towards the end I got a nice dose of hops which are mainly floral and citrus and it had a lighter amount of medium bitterness with a malty, yeasty, and slightly hoppy aftertaste. This is a good tasting beer, just like the aroma it was pretty complex and there was a little bit of everything in this beer, I like it.

M- Pretty smooth, crisp, slightly dry, medium bodied with a good amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel worked nicely with this beer, I have no complaints.

Overall I enjoyed this beer and I thought it was good and unique example of an American Red Ale, it had some things you wouldn't expect to see in the style but they all seem to come together nicely. This beer had pretty good drinkability, it went down pretty smooth, was a little refreshing, and it had a unique flavor that held my attention, I could see me drinking a couple cans of this if I was in the mood. What I liked most about this beer was the aroma and flavor that were nice and unique, there's no way you could mistake this beer for the Average American Red Ale, it's everything but average. What I liked least about this beer was that this was a special release, I think it should be added to the year round lineup. I would buy this beer again when looking for a good unique Red Ale and I highly recommend giving this beer a try. The first beer in this series was a little disappointing but after that they have all been good and solid beers, Brewery Vivant really knows what they are doing and are doing a great job with this series, if they keep the trend up this might be one of the better special series of beers around. I am glad they switched things up with this beer and put their own signature twist on it, it worked out pretty well, good job guys.

 3,634 characters

Photo of dfillius
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass

A: 1.5 fingers head from a moderate pour. Head is off-white, tight and pillowy. Clear copper liquid.
S: Citra? hops, maybe Simcoe, it's very fruity in a tropical way. PNW characteristics. Slightly dusty yeast aroma. Mostly hops. Like a nice IPA in fact! Some caramel malt upon warming.
T: Funky and hoppy up front with a bitter bite holding on. Much more Belgian taste than was hinted at in the aroma. Though it is still only slightly "Belgian" Grapefruit bitterness.
M: Very dry. Thin; I would like a tad more body as it borders on watery.
O: Enjoyable brew that I'd love another of and would buy again. Mouthfeel brings the overall down. Could be great with slightly more character in the mouthfeel.

 727 characters

Photo of Mitchster
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I think this was $4.19 for a 126oz can at BigTen in East Lansing. 6.25% ABV. Pours out to a clear deep garnet, forming a tall whipped meringue like creamy yeallow head with superior retention and beautiful thick lacing. The nose is hops galore...I'm getting cat-pee Simcoe but also some pine and grapefruit. The mouthfeel is really gorgeous. Beautiful carbonation level, about 2.5 carbs with a medium body. Finishes really dry. Nice notes of tropical fruit like pineapple and pear from the yeast...very subtle compared to the hops. The bitterness is well-balanced with the dry finish, making it really quite drinkable.

 618 characters

Photo of Tripel_Threat
4.14/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Drank this one straight from the can. Aroma is sweet caramel malt, citrus and floral hops. Prepares you well for the taste which is pretty amazing. Toasty, sweet, and that beautiful Belgian yeast. Ridiculous name, great ale.

 224 characters

firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Big Red Coq from Brewery Vivant
86 out of 100 based on 62 ratings.