Harpoon Leviathan - Quad - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon Leviathan - QuadHarpoon Leviathan - Quad

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288 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 288
Reviews: 178
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 14.67%
Wants: 15
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  11.75% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-02-2009

Leviathan Quad was fermented with a blend of two traditional Trappist yeasts. A mixture of two-row pale malts, caramel malts, and special aromatic malts gives the Quad its richness and texture. The subtle hop flavor imparted from Brewer’s Gold hops lingers in the background and provides just enough bitterness to balance the malt sweetness. The addition of imported Belgian Dark Candi Syrup rounds out the beer, giving the Quad its full body and deep auburn color. Expect notes of honeyed dry fruit with peppery phenols in the aroma, a velvet-like mouthfeel, and a superbly drinkable beer.

44 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 288 | Reviews: 178
Reviews by Soozy:
Photo of Soozy
3.56/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured with a decent half-inch mocha head that quickly faded to lacing. Would've liked a little bit thicker head on this, but I'll attribute it to the abv. A great dark red copper color.

Alcohol is definitely present in the smell, some caramel, some burnt grain, a little plum. The aroma on this beer is a little bit of a lot of different tones, with nothing over-powering, really nice.

Taste is decent. The high alcohol is clearly present and takes away from really picking up on the characteristics of the malt. Can pick up on some burnt tones, some berry flavor, and a smooth bitterness. The carbonation is a little bit too much as well.

Not the best quad ever, but a pretty good representation. The alcohol is a little bit too prominent for my liking - even at 12%. A little bit over-carbonated, which takes away from it a little bit.

More User Reviews:
Photo of lordofthewiens
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a goblet, this beer was a hazy red/brown color with a small tan head. It had a sweet fruity aroma, and was also a on the peppery side. The fruit came through more in the taste, with the pepper aroma loosing out. The beer was rich and yeasty. Alcohol was hidden at first, but quickly asserted itself. Be careful with this beer.

Photo of Jason
3.4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date though I am sure this beer will cellar well in cool temps.

Crackle ... snap ... there goes the head other than a thin ring of lace. Somewhat expected with a higher alcohol brew. The chestnut darkness still lets a good amount of light through. Booze soaked raisins, beef broth, overripe brown apples and some caramel make up the aroma. Creamy slick full body. Alcohol hits the palate right away, overripe fruit and booze. Caramel sweetness and a nutty toasted biscuit flavor kick in middle to end. Kiss of herbal / medicinal phenols. Plums and alcohol in the boozy sweet finish.

Not as fine tuned as the original Quads, alcohol seems to cloud the palate and there is some loss of depth. Aside from that this would do well with some age.

Photo of Billolick
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler filled at the Green Growler Grocery, Croton-on-Hudson, NY

Pours darker brown, tan head quickly goes from 2 inches to nothing. No film, no collar and no lacing.

Light malt and light chocolate sniff

Malty brew with chocolate, minty chocolate brownies/chocolate chip cookies and waves of caramel notes.

Alcohol present but not really intruding onto the enjoyment of this flavorful, bold and flavorful offering.

Happy to enjoy a growler fill, as a lot of the reviews from bottled samples are middling to downright negative.

Not the worlds greatest quad, but I found this to be a fairly drinkable and pretty tasty take on the style.

Photo of bl400315
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours a brown/dark amber/red with a thick head that fades after a minute and good lacing. can smell the alcohol right off the bat- malty with various fruits. fairly sweet, good balance between the hops and fruit, fruity taste becomes more prevalent in the pellet after taking down with alcohol lingering from the throat to the tongue- pretty hard to miss. wholesome body- pretty thick, almost creamy. great one from harpoon, needs to slow down on the alcohol- a bit too pungent for me, but a must try none the less.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark reddish-brown color with a tan head. The aroma is full of cherries and plums, as well as some bread and brown sugar. The alcohol is also quite present. The flavor is similar. The beer is very boozy, but the dark fruit, candy sugar and Belgian yeast notes also are strong. The beer is very fruity overall, with a lot of cherries and figs in the flavor. Medium to thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of kingcrowing
2.77/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured in a fancy glass.

Pours with a ruby/amber color with very little head or lacing. Smell is not too great, it's very sharp and alcoholic. Spicy and complex, but hard to move past the booze.

Wow. taste is very boozy as well. Raisins, vanilla, sweet fruits, very complex, slightly syrupy so you could age this for a few years without issue. A lot going on here. I like it but it's a bit too much to drink too often. I'd go for their IIPA or Imperial Pilsner over this.

Photo of jondeelee
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Given that this is a quadruple Belgian, it comes as no surprise that even the aroma is thick and heady, combining syrupy oranges (reminiscent of Cointreau in their heaviness), ripe bananas, caramelized brown sugars/molasses/honey, and not-so-subtle hints of cloves and coriander. The "peppery phenols" noted by the brewer didn't come across for me quite so much in the nose.

They did appear strongly in the flavor, however--that is, after the immediate wash of huge fruity esters, including all of the fruits and sugars noted above. The brew borders on cloyingly sweet because of such potent sugars, but they are balanced by the aforementioned peppery phenols, which temper the brew by providing a bitter sting that leaves the tongue and soft palate slightly buzzing (helped along by the 44 IBU's).

Quad reminded me of a cross between a Unibroue beer and Samuel Adams' Imperial White, the only drawback being that, unlike in those brews, Harpoon didn't quite manage to hide the strong alcohol flavor as well, leaving a bitterness to the aftertaste that didn't match the rest of the mouthful. Mouthfeel is indeed velvety, as noted in the brewer's blurb, and while I (mostly) agree that this is a "superbly drinkable beer," I would also caution that this is not one for chugging. In fact, it should probably be savored like a glass of port.

Photo of dogfishandi
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

poured into oversized wine glass, bottle at cellar temp. pours a slightly hazy deep ruby maghony color with a lot of chunks floating around. nice biege colored head with some pretty nice retention. some lacing.

the aroma is full of solvent like alcohol along with some bubblegum, dark fruits and some belgian yeast. quite a bit of spice in their as well, but the alcohol dominates.

the taste is better than the aroma for sure. lots of solvent alcohol again but with an array of other flavors. sweet dark fruits, dark candied sugar, spice, clove. finishes with a lingering taste of sweet malts, cherry, and alcohol. almost sour like aftertaste.

thick syrupy mouthfeel with lots of alcohol warming in the mouth and chest. fine light carbonation.

this is definately a sipper of a beer. prolly wouldnt want more than one of these in a night. the high amount of the solvent alcohol taste is the only thing that really prevents this from being a really great beer, still good nontheless. not for beginners. put 2 away in the cellar, hopefully after a year or 2 the alcohol will become less harsh.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appears a BIG plum tinted amber brown, with a nice light tan head forming thick with fine Belgian style lacing speckled down my Piraat chalice.

Quite the malt monster like any great Quad, big alcohol fruit soaked plum brandy notes with Belgian yeast spiciness and sweet candi sugar additions. A sharp poignant tart fruit note blares through my nares with raisins and tart cherries.

Flavor is huge complex layers of dry spicy yeast and soothing alcohol with almost too much sweetness grabbing ahold of the palate. Cherry skin earthiness with tart alcohol soaked fruit layers, that 11.75% abv is kickin' and it may be tamed with some time. However, I love Harpoon's new edge taking on all of these big bold beers from the Baltic Porter to the Big Bohemian Pils they are just releasing.

Mouthfeel is big and chewy carbonation surpisingly carries it all well, a nice feel to it with some signs of effervescent Belgian like bottled conditioning. Of course the alcohol and sweet syrupy malt layers lay heavy and wouldn't allow or make you desire multiple bottles of this brew in one setting.

Drinkability overall is good for the style I've had much worse from American brewers and I must say this is one of the best on the market in some time. A beefy beer that will get you through many mid summer nights or hold to a couple until this coming winter rolls around and light a nice cigar and enjoy the combo.

Photo of jbphoto88
3.02/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A clear reddish brown brew with a lackluster head. The color is nice but it's a very sad looking Belgian quad with no head. It doesn't make me look forward to drinking it.

The nose is almost as disappointing with very little of what makes this style great. There is a sweet malt nose that is sugary but not candied or toasted like you would expect. The yeast fragrance is also stale and not as good or distinctly Belgian as it could be. On the other hand there is a nice dark fruit nose that slightly makes up for the poor showing on the other fronts.

This one tastes just like it smells. The sweet is processed sugar sweet and not very palatable. Malts are stale and not great but like the nose a nice candied dark fruit flavor makes up a little ground. The yeast also perks up the flavor but isn't the best.

Mouthfeel is ok but again far from great. It has a nice dry finish but the sweet lasts too long and doesn't really compliment the other flavors in the finish. The carbonation is nice and sharp but the beer overall is syrupy and just not great. A poor attempt at a quad and close to undrinkable.

Photo of degerbah
3.84/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark red with about an inch of eggshell head. There is an absolute ton of yeastie beasties floating around. I feel that there is way too much sediment floating around in my glass, even if it is an unfiltered beer. The head dissapates quickly, but leaves a ton of lacing atound the edge of the glass. The aroma is extremely sweet malt. eviathan Quad is extremely thick and malty with a very sweet beginning and an ending that has more than a hint of boozey warmth. Not quite as complicated a taste as a Bernardus or any of the great Quads, it's more of a simple type of sweetness similar to Troeggs Mad Elf. This just feels like the high abv beer that it is. This makes it a little harder to drink, especially the way the sweetness coats the tongue and contributes to a sweet aftertaste. Finally, the sediment floating around actually makes the odd taste chewy and for me that is a problem.

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.27/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A reddish hued amber, totally clear with a quick to recede, off-white head and a wee bit flat look.

Darl cherries, red and dark fruity, dates and figs, hot heat tingle, syruppy sweet malt, strong, bold and brash aroma.

Well, the high heat is pretty strong and pops out right off. Ripe dark berries are sweet with sour, musky yeast, not huge complexity as far as the style goes. The flavor's don't gel togather in the amazing harmony that some authentic Trappist versions do. flavor's are bold but seem seperate, almost competing with eachother instead of working together.

Dry, crisp bite, earthy effect from the hops in the feel, not very smooth or lush like some great quads can deliver. Too much heat bite throws it all off, oak and vanilla sweetness as it warms up a bit, earthy dry medium feel, mostly juicy and hot. The yeast doesn't pack a very complex punch like you would want to see from this style of brew.

Sip this slow, 11.75% is hot with too little yeastie complexity.

Photo of Sammy
4.02/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I like this style. Pours dark, with quickly dissipitating white head. Rich smelling, maltish more than yeast. A tad above average mouthfeel, very drinkable, rich. Booziness is covered up, until too late. Caramel, decent demonstration of style. A little Dark fruit.

Photo of secondtooth
4.01/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours red-amber, with limited carbonation and no discernible lacing.

Nose is strong -- fruity, yeasty, grapes, alcohol, peppery spice. Complex, for sure.

Taste is fruity, with a bold and well-blended spiciness.

Definite strong alcohol presence at the finish, no doubt about it, making this one a slow sipper.

A solid and strong Belgian-style Imperial quad here, definitely worth enjoying again.

Photo of hreb
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Cold 12oz bottle of Harpoon's new Leviathan Series titled simply "Quad." Beer pours a dark brown with a hint of red and forms a thin layer of chestnut-brown head on in my Bavarian-themed snifter. Smells of rich, sweet, flavors: fruitcake, raisins, apricots, caramel.

First sip is immediately sweet, smooth, rich, and fruity. Even though the temperature is too cold when I first poured it, the well-developed flavors of the malt are completely apparent. Unfortunately the beer doesn't follow through nearly as nicely. it's alcoholic, and it's bitter. There's even a hint of chalk.

I really wanted to like this beer, but this just ruins it. Not much better than mediocre.

Photo of bamojr
3.92/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a rich amber with a tanish frothy head.
very floral in the nose with some coriander and malt background.
I can smell a hint of chocolate I believe.
A bit of a metallic flavor with a good bit of alcohol coming through as well in the flavor. A bit on the bitter side but it still has a very aromatic and flowery flavor.
Finishes with an almost thick coffee taste left on the tongue.

Photo of prototypic
3.48/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Quad pours a reddish copper color. It's a little hazy due to yeast particles swimming around. Backlighting gives it a strong scarlet appearance. A creamy, vanilla colored head tops it off. It's about a finger and a half tall and recedes to a surface covering quickly. Lacing was a little sticky, but light.

The nose is pretty good, but is a little weak. Dark fruit notes of raisin and fig hit first. They blend well with a strong malt presence. It's a little earthy and spicy. I'm getting light cinnamon, clove, and pepper. There's a little yeast noted, but it's not the thundering Belgian yeast presence it needs. That's an obvious deficiency. Alcohol is noted. Tough to hide at 11.75%. Not bad. It could use a little work here.

The flavor is easily above average, but doesn't dazzle in any way. Quad has a big malty backbone that's the centerpiece. It's complemented by flavorful dark fruit varieties (most notably raisin and fig). Cinnamon, pepper, and clove spices work their way in nicely and add depth and complexity. The lack of Belgian yeast flavor is a bummer. There's some yeast, but it doesn't taste distinctly Belgian. That needs to be rectified. It does have some light earthy and herbal notes. Alcohol is easily noted and sticks around through the aftertaste. Not a great attribute. It finishes spicy and a little warm.

Quad has a medium body that feels thick and chewy as its temperature rises. Carbonation is light and gives it a smooth feel. This is honestly its strongest asset. Drinkability is about average. The flavor here is pretty good, but it's far from an award-winning Quad. There are much better out there. It doesn't help that it's warm and slightly boozy. Did I mention it's almost 12% abv?

Harpoon continues to disappoint a little with this Leviathan series. I'm still waiting to be blown away by one of these beers. Quad is okay, but could use a bit of work. The nose is a bit weak, it's warm and boozy, and lacks a strong Belgian yeast presence. Despite those shortcomings, it still manages to be an okay beer. One that's definitely worth a try. If the opportunity is available, grab a single bottle and skip the 4-pack.

Photo of Kinsman
3.82/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark ruby red and brown colored body with a light tan colored head, just shy of 2 fingers thick to start.

Malt and spicy notes with a touch of alcohol greets the nose. Dark fruits such as raisins and figs add a bit of a fruity aspect to the aroma.

A wide array of flavors, from fruity and caramel maltiness to a nice yeasty clove spice. A bit of a warm alcohol flavor comes along too.

Warm and a bit chewy full bodied mouthfeel. Overall, a plenty drinkable quad but it doesn't quite stand up with the best of them.

Photo of Beertracker
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Harpoon Leviathan Quad pours up rather neat with a moderately lacy tannish cream head that sustains nicely over the deep tawny-reddish brown body. The clarity suffers initially from a touch of chill-haze, but becomes very bright as it warms in hand. The aroma is quite enticing with a hint of spiciness (coriander, cinnamon-nutmeg & vanilla) supported by a lusciuos fruitiness (banana schnapps, black currant, cherry cordial). The alcohol adds complexity to the underlying rich, almost cloying-honeyish malt notes. The nourishing flavor starts off very rich with a sweet/candied Melanoidin maltiness that carries all the way through the slightly chewy finish that's balanced by the faintest touch of spicy, hop bitterness. This quad shows some finesse with age which differs drastically from when it was young & brash delivering a lusciously rich maltiness with surreptitious alcoholic warmth. Hats off to Harpoon for even trying to haul in this sea monster!

CHEERS! Beertracker

Photo of alleykatking
3.87/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle.

A- Pours a dirty murky brownish red color. Half finger tan head comes and goes rather quickly which is what I expected with this beer. Whisps of foam left on the top of the beer that kind of took me by surprise. No lacing on the sides of the glass which was expected.

S- I think a little age on this beer did it well. Banana and clove are two of the main aromas in the nose along with a caramel malty backbone. Some light notes of brown sugar and daker fruits. Also, the alcohol has toned down a little bit and is not so hot anymore (meaning doesn't burn the nose when sniffing).

T- The age on this makes the beer taste a lot better than the first time I had had it. Caramel malts come through at first making up the backbone. Lots of darker fruits running around with a sweet alcohol taste (rum). Some light candi sugars in this as well making everything blend in together really well. The alcohol is still present in the ending of this but not to the overbearing extent that it was when I first has this.

M- Medium heavy mouthfeel. Carbonation was a little on the weak side for me and the style. Caramel malts were left on the palate and a light alcohol taste into the aftertaste. The alcohol was a bit drying on the palate with every sip but I expected that for a higer ABV beer. Flavors were mostly clean and blended well together.

D- This beer, although I could only have 2 and be done, turned out to be a good beer after all said and done. I would suggest looking for this if you can. Not the greatest of true to style beers but this was a tasty treat that cellaring did some justice to.

Photo of Treyliff
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

A- pours a murky dark brown color with a small foamy light tan head, short retention that fizzes out, leaving just a ring of lace

S-lots if dark fruit, dark licorice, some herbal-medicinal notes, sweet caramel malt and some alcohol burn in the aroma

T- the medicinal flavors follow the aroma, lots of dark fig and licorice, herbal hop, toasted bready malt with sweet caramel-toffee flavors, sweet finish with alcohol on the finish

M- thick, viscous and syrupy mouthfeel, low carbonation, sticky finish as it seems to coat the tongue, alcohol heat on the finish.

O- huge flavors with some nice dark fruity notes, wasn't a fan of the mouthfeel but a worthy American example of the style.

Photo of bucklemyshoe
3.2/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle at 50 degrees into a Chimay chalice.

A: It pours a very dark brown and purple with no head or lace to speak of. It is depressing to look at its murky qualities.

S: Sweet and super-ripe dark fruits, a bit of yeasy spice, and a touch of booze. Even after warming, this does not really change.

T: Currant, fig, date, and plum puree mixed with some peppery, earthy spice. It is incredibly boring and lacks complexity.

M: The body is medium-thick with very low carbonation and a sticky finish.

O: This is too simple; American versions all seem to be similar to this; strong dark fruits, a lack of complexity and carbonation, but well-hidden alcohol. I'm still searching for a decent American-made Quad.

Photo of puboflyons
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle simply marked 026. Sampled on May 7, 2011. The pour is a handsome reddish-brown with little to no head and good clarity. The aroma is powerful with its malts and slight alcohol note. The body is between light and medium. The taste is full of sweet malty notes and a dry hop bite at the end. It is a reasonable take on the style.

Photo of DBoone
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter-dark brown with a mediocre brown foam that dissipated moderately. Some minor lacing with decent carbonation.

I liked the smell, some cherry? dark fruit, alcohol going on here.

Sweet on the tongue and some hops noticed on back of mouth and throat. Alcohol noticeable, in a good way.

Coats mouth, kind of thick and chewy.

I like the way this beer drinks. I have 4 bottles left that I am going to keep for a few months, hopefully longer, to see how this brew develops.

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Harpoon Leviathan - Quad from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
83 out of 100 based on 288 ratings.