1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Leffe Vieille Cuvée - Abbaye de Leffe S.A.

Not Rated.
Leffe Vieille CuvéeLeffe Vieille Cuvée

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

76 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 76
Reviews: 52
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 10.29%
Wants: 8
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Abbaye de Leffe S.A. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Mitchster on 08-17-2002)
View: Beers (12) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 76 | Reviews: 52 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of thierrynantes
thierrynantes

France

3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sorry but this following comment is in french :

Appearance : Bière marron orangée, léger trouble, belle mousse onctueuse, mais qui s'aère ensuite, de tenue correcte toutefois.
Smell : Arôme caramélisé avec des nuances liquoreuses.
Taste and mouthfell : Goût moelleux, surtout en 1ere bouche, bon corps, bière assez sucrée.
Drinkability : bonne bière dans le style dark strong ale

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2007 20:56:19 | More by thierrynantes
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.25/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a deep burgundy and brown color ale with a great big foamy head with some good retention and some lacing. Aroma of candi sugar with some nice Belgian malt. Taste was to be honest a little bit disappointing with a watery body and a unrefined sugar taste that didn’t do much for me. The body is watery with some great carbonation and a nice creamy texture. I’m not the biggest fan of this brewery but I have to admit that this beer featured some great characteristics but lack some cohesion and a malt profile to hold the whole thing together.

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2007 14:52:04 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of janubio
janubio

Spain

3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This one pours a pretty red colour, with a small head that doesn't last for too long. Aroma is floral, cherries, chololate, cinnamon. Flavor is smooth, very creamy. Taste: is an explosion in the mouth, flowers, honey, chocolate, cherries, cinnamon... but all of them very shy. I think to remember a heavier body years ago.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2007 12:06:27 | More by janubio
Photo of atigerlife
atigerlife

Hawaii

4.18/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark brown with orange highlights. Medium sized fluggy light brown head. Moderate carbonation seen rising. Good head retention and lacing. Overall, a very attractive and interesting beer to look at.

Aroma is sweet, caramel, malts.

Taste is sweet, malts, dark fruits, winey with some spiceyness.

Mouthfeel is cleansing and medium bodied.

Overall, a very nice beer. Quite warming. Wonderful digestive. Wish I had more...

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2007 04:45:19 | More by atigerlife
Photo of rec
rec

Australia

3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It pours well, quite similar to the other brews in the Leffe range. A big beige head comes to life quickly, and even when gone presents quality lacing..

Sweet malt, orange, lighter fruits and spice hit the nose up-front.

Herbal spice and sugar cane are evident with first sip, the yeast and a mild citrus also reach the tounge quickly after. Rich malt and nuts are present in the sweet, moist and sour finish.

It's a beer I'll never turn my nose up to, but I still prefer the Brune, and I'm sure it will remain my favourite from Leffe.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2007 10:26:05 | More by rec
Photo of Vancer
Vancer

Illinois

4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A fresh, best before 24/03/08 brew. Whoo, a opaque brown, make that black, pour capped by a frothy, sticky tan head. Fresh!

Quite an unique aroma, malty, yes, but mixed with a pilsner like euro yeast. Sweet caramels, Belgium yeast, sugar cane, banana, orange and malt grace the quaff, even some lite coffee notes. Geez, every brew I get envious of the Belgium’s that get to enjoy this on an everyday basis.

Dry and crisp, this is just top shelf stuff. Man, I need a case of these bad boys. At 8% I could sip these all day, albeit slowly.

Thanks to my great son, “studying” overseas in Amsterdam, I was sent this for the unique chance to enjoy.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2006 20:32:47 | More by Vancer
Photo of Kulrak
Kulrak

Australia

3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber color with about 3 inches of chunky head that sticks around for a while and laces the glass. Smells estery and yeasty, with hints of cloves and citrus. Tastes very sweet, malty & woody with some estery fruitiness in there. Very tasty. Mouthfeel is heavy and a little creamy, but with a lot of carbonation burn on the tongue. Finishes very cleanly. All in all, a very drinkable beer, once again Leffe hasn't let me down.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2006 12:16:28 | More by Kulrak
Photo of Beeryce
Beeryce

Virginia

3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 33cl bottle into stemmed bowl-shaped Leffe chalice creating a foamy lather of slightly off-white extremely stable head which surprisingly produced very little lacing. The color of the beer was a clear amber brown with a slight purple hue that I am not sure was real or imagined due to the combination of the purple foil topped bottle and exquisite framboise and vinous nose.

The taste starts out slightly bitter with a spicy mildly alcoholic tang to it. The body of this beer is unique and excellent with a complex mixture of currants, dark cherries and blackberries melded with sweet creamy maltiness. These flavors balance the alcoholic characteristics of this Belgian Strong Dark Ale with out overpowering them.

The aftertaste however was somewhat unpleasant with an overpowering metallic tinge. I don’t know if this is from the bottle cap or contact with the foil during pouring. I will try this beer again in hopes that it was just a rare occurrence.

The mouthfeel was nice with a crisp effervescence that is definitely more carbonated than other Belgians. I am not sure what the Cuvee refers to as, at least with wine, it can refer to multiple things such as: the best the producer has to offer, a special reserve batch of a particular style or a blend of two or more varieties or styles.

On the whole a very good beer that is a must try in my opinion. It was complex and full of flavors that were very pleasing with the exception of the metallic aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2006 04:40:14 | More by Beeryce
Photo of vancurly
vancurly

Australia

3.55/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Burnt orange, brown. Beige head.

Nose first of fresh hops, then some complex malts. Even an earthy hint of mushroom or somesuch....

Flavour is spicy. Some yeasty phenolics, fruity candy hints. Lolly shop.

Foamy mouthfeel, with good malt body that balances the bitterness that comes out.

I reviewed this in parallel with the Radieuse... this is not as harsh, and more approachable.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2006 07:09:05 | More by vancurly
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very pleasent surprise to find - in Venice of all places - by chance, while seeking shelter from the most fierce thunderstorm I've ever experienced. Neck and cap wrapped in purple foil. Poured with good level of head, clung for lacing. A glowing ruby with some transparency. Aroma is a biscuity yeast cake smell, notes of dried fruits and nuts. A fairly rich aroma, what is often characteristic of a British Ale.. Different.. The beer's style is not overly apperent right away, character takes some searching for and the beer did seem to benefit to a little warming. A crisp and earthy finish. Light spice and unique flavouring. Carbonation and flavour are strong enough that it prevents an passive, overly light drinkability, but doesn't offer much to sit and sip and ponder over. In many ways, the beer carries itself like a macro and doesn't posess the subtleties of fine Belgian craft beers. All the same, this is above the average in my opinion, a pleasure (and huge surprise) for me to find.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2006 19:56:31 | More by biegaman
Photo of ernie
ernie

Russian Federation

4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reddish-brown color, rather dark, with an occasional spark of orange. Beautiful dense head, moderate carbonation.

Smell malty, spicey, winey, with a hint of black berries and ripe fruit.

Start sweetish, high alcohol content well felt but not overwhelming, malts and fruit very well balanced. Mouthfeel anything but watery, this brew isn't shy of its gravity. Nice acidity in the finish, long fruity-bisquity aftertaste.

Recommended!

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2006 18:36:24 | More by ernie
Photo of Daredevil
Daredevil

Switzerland

4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

color: elegant dark brown
texture: creamy, portish
palate: rich malt and roasted grain with aromas of caramel, cashew nuts
finish: a hint of herbal spiciness

A well brewed and well presented beer, well worth the slightly higher price than blonde or brune from the same brewer

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2006 18:06:43 | More by Daredevil
Photo of descartes
descartes

Oregon

2.73/5  rDev -28%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from 33 cl bottle.

Appearance: A redish brown with a nice quarter inch of white head.
Smell: Grape smell with a sharp alcoholic smell as well as a hint of hops.
Taste: Really strong hops taste, strong bodied but otherwise very muddled spicy and sour flavor. Uggh strong but something is wrong, cann't quite put my finger on it.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2006 16:01:19 | More by descartes
Photo of Finite
Finite

Australia

4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Amber red, good head retention, good lacing. Sweet malts with floral smells. Tastes of vanilla and caramel malts. The whole mix was smooth and satisfying. The after taste was present with sweetness still there on the edges of the palate and bitterness on the middle.

Leffe didn’t let me down. Is a good session beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2005 07:39:07 | More by Finite
Photo of jarmby1711
jarmby1711

Australia

3.43/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

In general higher alcohol beers so far for me have just been too strong , and this is no exception
The colour is teak to deep brown and the large head was loose and persistent There was litle bead.
The smell had a lot of clove like spiciness and plenty of alcohol.
The taste was dominated by the alcohol ( which I dont particul;arly enjoy ) however there was some fruitiness in there which I thgink was bananaish.
It was well balanced and smooth to oily
Always hard to judge a beer when ou realise that the style just doesnt suit.
For me a novelty but hard to think about trying again.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2005 09:31:34 | More by jarmby1711
Photo of DaveFL1976
DaveFL1976

Florida

3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

With a fairly conservative pour, Leffe Vielle Cuvee pours a 50-50 mix of body and head. The body is a beautiful crystal clear copper/amber while the long-lasting, frothy tan head takes forever to settle down. The nose is a combination of malt, toffee and some fruity flavors (plums, maybe?) with a bit of alcohol. For 8.5%, the alcohol smell isn't as strong as I'd expect.
Taste is quite delicious. Sweet, plummy, with a bit of alcohol bite that I wish were a little more mellowed, but well-balanced nonetheless. The sharp, not smooth alcohol character of the beer knocked the taste down by a half a point, in my book. Aftertaste is that of toasted barley and that alcohol-bite leftover taste.
The mouthfeel on this is beer is just about perfect. It starts out creamily carbonated in your mouth, has a medium body and just coats your mouth. Drinkability on this is good, but that slightly astringent alcohol bite makes me slow down a bit.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2005 02:27:53 | More by DaveFL1976
Photo of hefevice
hefevice

Australia

3.55/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Unfortunately I tasted this after Chimay Blue followed by the white. Leffe does not seem to balance the high alcohol of its strong ales anywhere near as well as others it seems. Looks fantastic, a wonderful clear deep strawberry amber with a good dense head and plenty of lacing. Aroma is a little spicy, a little fruity, with a lot of alcohol apparent. Taste is a more subtle and balanced than the Radieuse but it still finishes very dry and alcoholic. Mouth is light and fluffy, seems to be quite complementary. Wondering whether the Leffe strong ales could do with some secondary fermentation to improve balance.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2005 11:07:36 | More by hefevice
Photo of joecast
joecast

Australia

4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours with a fluffy, beige, 1cm head, and a nice clear, dark amber color.
sweet aroma of ripe dark fruits. almost an intense concentrated goldings-like smell. no obvious sign of alcohol on the nose.
taste is sweet maltiness turning to alcohol warmness as the temp rises.
mouthfeel starts bubbly, but carries a filling thickness as the end nears.
a seriously full beer all around. good or bad, it would be difficult to stuff anything else in.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2004 22:14:36 | More by joecast
Photo of Sigmund
Sigmund

Norway

4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(33 cl bottle, bought in Denmark). Deep golden brown colour, no haziness, large head. Aroma is not very strong, but pleasant - yeasty and fruity (canned plums), some spices and herbs too. Full bodied sweet flavour, still quite smooth. Brown candy sugar, Christmas fruit cake spices and herbs prevail. Some alcoholic warmth, but not dominant. A great sipping beer!

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2004 21:25:59 | More by Sigmund
Photo of Andreji
Andreji

Colombia

3.6/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saw and bought it for the first time in Lugano, CH.Very dark red tone which seems almost fully opaque but not too dense. the smell is dominated by its sweetness, from the malt, but is also very spicy and inviting. The flavour is a very, very broad and spicy blend that mixes and triggers in your mouth, ranging among several different sensations among which the overwhelming sweetness- excessive, IMHO, dominates and rather renders it overall a bit less gratifying. still, worthy of a repurchase. nice overall.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2004 09:46:24 | More by Andreji
Photo of Naerhu
Naerhu

Japan

3.48/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark, dark amber with off-white clotted lacing.
Dark bread and tree bark.
Honey flavor, w/o being overly sweet. Complex variations on dark malt and dried fruit (past expiration date dried fruit). Baroque in complexity. Roses. Nice rich mouth feel.
For all of that it just does not add up to a drink I will be reaching for again.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2004 15:27:36 | More by Naerhu
Photo of koolk
koolk

Australia

3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clean red/light purple with a nice creamy head and good carbonation.

A spicy sweet clover aroma heads out first follow by crisp malt and fruity notes. Other deep herbs and spices in a very complex nose.

What a satisfying taste. Dry, slighty tart and bitter with deep flavours that last. Similar spicy fruit flavours with a metallic touch on the aftertaste.

I really enjoy the Leffe range of beers, with this being no exception.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2003 10:29:49 | More by koolk
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark violet color, flirting with brown, with bright crimson poking through the cracks, adorned with a large, fluffy white head.
Aroma: Bam! Big fruit explosion, wild and tasty, winey,and bit sour, a little sharp, juicy, hoppy, and over-all dominated by grape flavor.
tingly on the tongue, vibrant, and again, juicy is a most appropriate adjective. Fruit all up in the yin-yang, folks. A bit light-ish in body, with great hops, excellent balance, and eminently drinkable, tantalizingly tasty.
Full-flavored, rich and bountiful, rosey, happy, delicious.
Great desset choice, if you're lucky enough to try one.
Large thanks to jeffboo for hauling this bottle over from merry old Europe for me!

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2003 00:14:00 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of Mitchster
Mitchster

Michigan

3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought this in Venice, Italy, and drank it in Lucerne, Switzerland. Clear, dark amber with caramel highlights, forms a moderately dense beige head with flocculent clusters atop medium sized bubbles with good retention and good lacing. Carbonation is moderate. Aroma is spicy with phenolic cloves, bananas, and a slight amber earthiness. No alcohol is evident, and the aroma is not distinct from the other Leffe beers I've had. Mouthfeel is immediately spritzy upon the tongue with a wet finish and medium body. Taste begins with spicy cloves and herbal hops, fading into a ruddy hopiness, a hint of nickel, followed by a warming estery alcohol, and finishing in a earthy wheat malt with mild balancing bittering hops and somewhat cloying mouthfeel. Alcohol is barely perceptable, but gives one a pleasant buzz. This is a well-made brew, but the ruddiness halfway through limits its drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2003 05:06:13 | More by Mitchster
Photo of John
John

New York

4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep ruby/brown. Head is tight, creamy and sustained. Rich aroma of raisins, prunes, dark bing cherries & alcohol. The dark ripe fruit is the predominate flavor with some alcoholic undertones but overall the alcohol is masked quite well. I thoroughly enjoyed this brew. In fact, I snuck in a Chimay Red in between two of these and IMHO, the Leffe was clearly fuller flavored. This and the Radiusse are impressive beers.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2002 10:38:54 | More by John
Leffe Vieille Cuvée from Abbaye de Leffe S.A.
85 out of 100 based on 76 ratings.