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!

Old Chimneys Good King Henry Special Reserve - Old Chimneys Brewery

Not Rated.
Old Chimneys Good King Henry Special ReserveOld Chimneys Good King Henry Special Reserve

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

50 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 50
Reviews: 27
rAvg: 4.37
pDev: 9.38%
Wants: 135
Gots: 12 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Old Chimneys Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: rastaman on 09-10-2003)
View: Beers (7) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Ratings: 50 | Reviews: 27 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of His_Royal_Hoppiness
His_Royal_Hoppiness

United Kingdom (England)

2.5/5  rDev -42.8%

12-27-2013 18:37:28 | More by His_Royal_Hoppiness
Photo of chippo33
chippo33

Vermont

3.5/5  rDev -19.9%

04-03-2014 17:09:04 | More by chippo33
Photo of cpetrone84
cpetrone84

Pennsylvania

3.73/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2011 on the bottle. Pour is jet black with a small amount of very tight caramel brown head. Nose is full and well balanced, lots of oak with hints of vanilla and a nice brownie batter aroma. A bit of booze in the back. Taste has much less barrel, a sweetness in back that wasn't there in the nose. Light wood, some rich malt mid palate and berry sweetness takes over. Very full bodied with a boozy finish linger and fairly assertive carbonation. Quite a dry finish with a touch of sweetness lingering.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2014 00:50:23 | More by cpetrone84
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

3.8/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Big thanks to Mike for letting us try this on a random Monday night...Pours dark brown with almost no carbonation at all, few bubbles here and there on the side of the tulip...The aroma to me smells like a really expensive bourbon, more of a spirit than a beer. Really nice oak, vanilla, bourbon, very buttery. I'd love this as a bourbon night cap, as a beer, I'm struggling with it...The taste is dead on with the aroma, very spirit like. Butter velvet feel and taste, lots of oak and bourbon.

Everyone else pretty much loved this, I just don't get it. Its not beer like in aroma, taste or texture. Doesn't necessarily taste bad, just not what I'm looking for. A rare tick probably worth trying but I would not actively search this out.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2011 21:55:45 | More by jrallen34
Photo of JohnGalt1
JohnGalt1

Idaho

3.93/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ditmier provided this one at the weekend tasting... Thanks Eric and to the good person who made this possible.

Very short lasting dark tan head.. the brew looks still.

Nose shows good oak and hints of licorice... not as much "roast" as expected instead the dark malts show with deep dark fruits and a minor cocoa.

Virtually still on the palate lends toward a slick and oily palate.. sorta thick and obviously coating.. deep and rich from front to back... rich waves of "standard" RIS flavors.. deep chocolate without too much sweetness... a bit too much smokey char for my liking. I also thought a bit of cigar wrapper showed on the outside but without enough sugar to pull it out.

Body is very nice... carbonation is next to nothing, but is expected and I dig it.

Thanks Eric.. I truly appreciate the chance to try this gem.

3.5/4/4/3.5/4

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2011 04:43:21 | More by JohnGalt1
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to crusianbeer for sharing this bottle. Brewed 11/16/09.

The beer pours a black color with a tan head. The aroma is heavy on the roasted malt with a hint of dark fruit and some chocolate thrown in. The flavor is similar, with the dark fruit standing out more in the flavor than it did in the aroma. I also get some nice oak and chocolate notes, as well as a hint of soy and once again, some heavily roasted malt. Thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2012 15:32:01 | More by Mora2000
Photo of nmann08
nmann08

District of Columbia

4/5  rDev -8.5%

06-01-2013 03:14:29 | More by nmann08
Photo of XmnwildX12
XmnwildX12

Minnesota

4/5  rDev -8.5%

05-08-2014 02:21:43 | More by XmnwildX12
Photo of thagr81us
thagr81us

South Carolina

4.1/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had as a pre-game to the 2nd Annual Redneck Racin’ & Tastin’! Big thanks goes out to BRoss242 for this one! 2009 vintage! Served from bottle into an Ommegang Three Philosophers chalice. Poured a massively dark brown with a half finger brown head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, dark chocolate, and smoked ham. The flavor was of sweet malt, brown sugar, dark chocolate, wood, sweet alcohol, and smoke. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. While the aroma on this one wasn’t very complex it was just right in the components and intensity. The smoked ham going on in it was almost divine in my opinion. The flavor on this one was pretty good as well as the smokiness was quite pleasant. Definitely glad I got the chance to try this one and I honestly believe that everyone should. Still need to try the ‘OTHER’ King Henry now…

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2012 13:06:03 | More by thagr81us
Photo of Ineedabeerhere
Ineedabeerhere

Rhode Island

4.13/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, thanks again to Brad for this rarity! 2007 Special Reserve bottle, 11% abv.

The deep, thick black brew pours into my tulip with no head formation whatsoever. A faint bubble or two are resurrected by a generous swirl. No real lacing to speak of, but some nice wine-like legs.

This one REALLY needs to warm up to reveal the complexities. Even cellar temp will not do it justice. Barrel impact is evident with some sweet vanilla and caramel combining with (and somewhat masking) a bit of booze. To say the Oak is evident would be an understatement. This is a very woody beer. As it fully warmed, more dark chocolate flavors became apparent with a dash of soy sauce.

Very rich and viscous flavor profile here. Robust dark chocolates and roasted malts, booze soaked cherries and a waft of a nearby campfire. Plenty of wood and a good helping of molasses. The extremely low level of carbonation only exacerbates the thickness of this beer, making it somewhat oily. Alcohol is well hidden. I split this ~9.3oz (275mL) bottle and probably sipped on my glass for an hour while doing some other things this afternoon. It was a very nice stout and a definite sipper, but I was satisfied. Thanks for the chance, Brad!

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2010 03:22:04 | More by Ineedabeerhere
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero

Illinois

4.2/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A big thank you to ygtbsm94 for a very generous trade. Sampled with Alex, Sean, and Jason.

A - Black beer with a very small tan head that quickly dissipated. It's a good looking, dark beer, but does look slightly flat.

S - Oak, butter, cream, chocolate, slight sweet fruit, wine. A really great subtle medley of smells that are all complimentary, with nothing over powering. The vinous qualities come through with a little bit of edgy booze and oak, suprising for a beer that has this much age on it.

T - A rather big difference here between the British and American RIS. The flavors on this are much more subtle and less powerful than an American RIS. Smmooth butter, cream, dark chocolate (nothing overly sweet) and dark fruit all blend together. There is some hard oak taste, and some rather vinous qualities with a touch of leather. All very smooth, other than an edge of hot alcohol that isn't too strong, but a bit surprising given the age.

M - Full, very smooth, very low carbonation. It works for this beer, although I am not sold on if I would like it more or less with more carbonation.

D - Drinks easier than an 11%, and is very good. I am not convinced I can fully appreciate the subtlties of this yet, particularly when used to be American RIS, and would love to try another one.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2011 21:29:23 | More by AgentZero
Photo of CHILLINDYLAN
CHILLINDYLAN

Washington

4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

05-14-2014 17:45:40 | More by CHILLINDYLAN
Photo of WeisGuy
WeisGuy

New York

4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

09-23-2013 23:41:23 | More by WeisGuy
Photo of bmwats
bmwats

Louisiana

4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

01-01-2014 08:44:57 | More by bmwats
Photo of bsuedekum
bsuedekum

Missouri

4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

01-10-2012 05:31:49 | More by bsuedekum
Photo of tom10101
tom10101

Quebec (Canada)

4.25/5  rDev -2.7%

08-30-2013 14:17:44 | More by tom10101
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium

Florida

4.28/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

275 mL bottle to a Kate the Great snifter. 2009 vintage, brewed 11/16/2009 (a), whatever the (a) means. Huge thanks to Paul for this bottle.

Appearance - Viscous looking black with almost no bubbles until I begin to pour into the glass vertically. A mocha ring around the beer with some lovely legs.

Smell - Oh my. Easily one of the most compelling stouts I've ever smelled. Chocolate malt and probably the two most dominant aromas, but dark fruits pierce through with oak and a slight smokiness that adds an earthy complexity that is just wonderful.

Taste - Perhaps the nose was a high standard to set. It lacks a bit of the refinement of the aroma. Oak immediately permeates a dark chocolate flavor that becomes bitter and smokey as it lingers. The oak dominates the aftertaste, giving it a slight astringent and vinous character.

Mouthfeel - If I'm honest, I feel it's a touch thin. Maybe the oak makes it feel that way. Low carbonation helps simulate some body.

Overall - It would be unfair to say I was let down by the taste, but it just smells so wonderful. The flavors are all there in the taste, but at different proportions from the aroma. If it lived up to the nose, it would be one of the best stouts out there.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2012 02:14:09 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4DAloveofSTOUT

Illinois

4.33/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Huge thanks to Pacamacca for this long time want!

275ml bottle with black pressure cap; label says that this beer was brewed on 3.11.2010.

Poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: black bodied beer with a medium brown colored head that is 1 full finger high. Head drops down to a thin cap.

Smell: roasty coffee, bitter bakers cocoa, and very woody and oaky. Meaty smoke and ripe dark fruits. Surprisingly, I smell some cinnamon.

Taste: This stout starts out with lots of meaty smoke and dark fruits especially prunes. A hint of soy sauce and black licorice gives this beer an oxidized and vinous flavor profile like a port wine or sherry. Notes of vanilla, tobacco, and molasses offer some sweet and rich flavors. Dark chocolates and woody oak. Peat moss and earthiness. As this beer nears room temperature, all these flavors seem to blend together and balance in an exceptional and unique way. I like how the smoke mellows out and other flavors become predominant as the beer opens up.

Mouthfeel: medium almost full bodied beer with low carbonation. Thick, chewy, oily, creamy, and silky mouthfeel accompanies the flavors of this stout. Such a smooth drinking sipping beer. A slightly dry finish on this stout. The beer thins out a little bit as it warms up.

Overall: This is a really unique RIS. Its not like most RIS that I have tried. Well integrated and balanced stout flavors once this beer opens up. I thought this beer was too smokey when it was cold, the beer get much beer as it warms. This RIS definately has a non-american feel to it. That smoky whiskey barrel notes is something that screams England.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 02:24:43 | More by 4DAloveofSTOUT
Photo of jegross2
jegross2

Illinois

4.36/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Reviewing the ever elusive Good King Henry Special Reserve from Old Chimneys Brewery out of England.

Score: 93

275 ml bottle. Brewed 09/11/2011, best before 09/11/2021. Served in a snifter glass and enjoyed on 05/04/14 while camping out for Great Taste tickets. Review is from iPhone notes. Major thank you and shout out to Adam C. for hooking me up with this long time, personal white whale.

Appearance: Pours an ink black color with a thin layer of khaki head that settles to a ring around the glass. Awesome lacing and retention. 4.5/5

Smell: Oaky vanilla, dates, fruity oxidation, dark fruit, tannic woodiness/sherry/red wine, and chocolate. Black currant and cherry comes through more and more as the beer warms up. Also present is a hint of coffee and licorice. Really nice mix of chocolate, dark fruit and positive fruity oxidation that is well-integrated. 4.75/5

Taste: Chocolate, red wine, oak, black currant, cherry and dates. Some licorice towards the finish as well, but this beer is not an anise bomb by any stretch. Lasting fruitiness and oak. Nom nom nom. The nose integrated better than the taste, but the flavor profile is still quite nice. 4.25/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-full bodied, low carbonation. Oily, slick mouthfeel. Very mild sweetness overall. 4.25

Overall: A really lovely stout that, while not one of the best out there, was quite delicious. Ample dark fruit/licorice and red wine define this stout. I would drink this one again, but not go too far out of my way to seek it out.

Cost: Unknown.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2014 15:57:52 | More by jegross2
Photo of Sean9689
Sean9689

Illinois

4.38/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes to Mike for this one! Poured into Darkness snifter.

A - Pours black, very small tan-colored head which quickly vanishes to a few bubbles and whisps on top of the beer.

S - Smooth booze, dark chocolate, oak, hints of caramel and dark fruits. The chocolate and booze really work well together, and this nose is unlike any other barrel aged stout I can remember.

T - Chocolate, smooth booze, oak, slight dark fruit notes. The booze is much stronger on the nose and it really just a flash on the palate. Quite a lot of wine-like notes from this one, which made this even more enjoyable by adding another dimension.

M - Medium (a tad too light) body, light carbonation, smooth creamy finish.

D - I really enjoyed this one. The booze, wine notes, and chocolate really combined together to create some different and special. I would def drink this one again, if given the chance.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2011 20:19:17 | More by Sean9689
Photo of KickbacksSteve
KickbacksSteve

Florida

4.46/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Brewed on 03.11.10. 275 ml bottle poured into a small snifter. Black body, tudor brown head, low retention. Mostly clear lacing. Aroma includes leather, beef jerky, soy sauce, dates, coffee, chocolate, brown sugar, prune. Mouthfeel is exremely thick and viscous. Warming but alcohol is very well hidden, very smooth for the abv. Tastes closely follow aromas. Nicely treated imperial stout with high drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2013 23:26:01 | More by KickbacksSteve
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Alfrantzell shared this one last night. Thanks, Arne. 2007 vintage. Pours black and nearly flat, only a thin mocha colored collar forms from a hard pour. Viscous with syrupy legs.

Whiffs of dark chocolate, smoke and licorice are immediately noticed in the aroma, with some whiskey-like heat behind it. Barrel aging is evident, as is alcohol. As it warms, I get currant-like fruit notes. I'm not certain which kind of barrels are used for the aging process, but I'm guessing it's some form of whiskey.

The first sip reveals flavors of semi-sweet chocolate, caramel and smoke. The alcohol is plainly noticeable, warming but not harsh. There are dark fruit undertones, prune and fig like in character. Full bodied with a firm roasty bitterness, this finishes chocolatey, mildly tannic with some vinous and oak lingering on the palate long after you've swallowed. Very enjoyable stuff, it's complex and rich without being particularly sweet.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2010 06:23:44 | More by largadeer
Photo of gford217
gford217

Georgia

4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to Jan for getting me this rarity, 275mL bottle 2006 vintage, poured into a snifter. ABV listed as 11% on this bottle.

It pours a very viscous-looking black that has a small tan head develop right after the pour which quickly fades back to a bubbly collar and leaves only traces of lacing.

The aroma is like a mix of imperial stout and barleywine, and in the best ways possible. There a lot more sweetness that a typical RIS, with lots of caramel, vanilla and dark fruits. There are dark roasted malts and some dark chocolate that bring in the stout character and it's got a huge whiskey and oak presence in the nose on top of that. Unbelievable nose.

The taste has much of the same characteristics as the aroma but there is more peat and smoke than the aroma suggested. The underlying dark malts and sweetness from the fruit and licorice is all there but the finish really brings the smoked peat into play and finishes almost like a scotch with a slight alcohol burn going down.

THe mouthfeel is extremely slick and carbonation is minimal. Overall, it's not the most robust of RIS's I've tried but it's got plenty of body.

This is an extremely interesting beer from Old Chimney's and probably the best beer I've had from the UK. The aroma attests to how complex the beer is with a dizzying array of things going on and coming together very well. Highly recommended!

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2009 01:44:02 | More by gford217
Photo of tpd975
tpd975

Florida

4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to gunhaver for providing the bottle.

A: Pours a rich shade of dark brown or light black depending on how you look at it. The head is on the smaller side, with just a touch of lace.

S: Oak and bourbon bounce out from the start, not overpowering though. Vanilla, roasted malt and molasses are there as well in equal amounts.

T: Nice dark fruit flavors up front. Roast, molasses sweetness carry you through the middle. The oak and vanilla along with some chocolate come in the finish.

M: On the fuller side of medium, nice subtle carbonation.

D: Really good, probably the beer English beer I have ever had.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2009 13:27:49 | More by tpd975
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to ygtbsm94 for this brew. This is the 2007 vintage, best before November 14th, 2012. Served in my Darkness snifter.

A - Pours with a thin tan foam that settles to a solid ring and some wispy film, leaving behind spotty but plentiful lace. The body is midnight black.

S - Huge oak and vanilla notes, milk chocolate, cake, fudge. There might be the slightest hint of diacetyl, but it could just be the incredibly intense "buttery oak" flavor - in any case it reminds me of chocolate buttercream. There are also elements of booze-soaked fruits, roast malt, and port. As it warms hints of sweet balsamic vinegar and smoke emerge as well. This must have been aged in some sort of whisky barrel, as there's no other way to explain the rise in ABV between this and the regular version. Still a bit boozy, even after three years.

T - Vinous notes, dark fruits, vanilla, buttery oak. This is quite a different beast from American barrel-aged stouts with significantly less overt whisk(e)y and charred malts, and much more fruit character. There's some light port-like oxidation, and a slightly tannic, and bitter finish that also features light sour grapes.

M - The rich full body is incredibly smooth and silky, with extremely low carbonation. It's not quite cask-like, but it's pretty close (nitro-like?). Tannic finish and a bit of warmth in the back of the throat.

D - I had no problem finishing the 275ml bottle on my own (my wife just didn't dig this beer). The barrel presence is quite brash at times, but it isn't an inhibitor by any means. That being said, this is probably best shared. I'd love to score another bottle to see what a few more years does.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2010 15:38:14 | More by MasterSki
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | next › last »
Old Chimneys Good King Henry Special Reserve from Old Chimneys Brewery
95 out of 100 based on 50 ratings.