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Cuvée Alex Le Rouge (Jurassian Imperial Stout) | BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)

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Cuvée Alex Le Rouge (Jurassian Imperial Stout)Cuvée Alex Le Rouge (Jurassian Imperial Stout)

Brewed by:
BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.28%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Phyl21ca on 01-22-2008

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Reviews: 119 | Ratings: 258
Photo of kimcgolf
3.53/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Plenty of carbonation as it completely blew out the flip-top when I raised the lever. Poured to a deep dark black brown color with a nose of chocolate and coffee with a hint of licorice. Dark tan head lingered awhile and left okay lacing, but the taste was a nice follow-up to the nose. As the beer warmed, the 10+% abv began to make itself known in the nose, flavor and finish, which was warming and slightly sweet.

My first Swiss beer was not a disappointment. In fact, this should be what the St. Bernards carry in those little barrels.

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Photo of hopdog
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz flip top bottle.

Poured a dark black color with a large sized off white head. Aromas of roast, coffee, chocolate, smoke, and some pepper. Tastes of chocolate, pepper, dark fruits, vanilla, coffee, and some smoke. Alcohol hidden.

Notes from 3/1/08

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Photo of CrellMoset
2.99/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of dkachur - thanks! Split three ways w/ dkachur and proteus93 - my portion poured into an Allagash flute.

Appearance: Pours a deep, dark, thick black with a fast-fading one-finger slightly off-white head.

Aroma: The pepperyness is definitely there, and the tannins from the tea lend a distinctly tart, sour note. A faint vanilla note, but I am nonetheless frightened. Prune is the predominant fruity note. There's some faint chocolate in the background.

Taste: Tart apples, grapes, pears, and cherries, with some faint roasted breading in the background. Tastes like pain. There's some faint chocolate in the background, leafy notes (either from the hops or tea ... yeah, probably from the tea), a few lighty fruity notes. A smoky note, too, strangely enough, probably from the spice - dkachur gets cumin, and I don't disagree.

Mouthfeel: Mildly carbonated, a little tart and bitter from the tannins and light fruits.

Drinkability: This one was ... weird. Very strange, almost incredibly so. The alcohol was certainly well hidden, despite the high and strangely accurate (10.276%!?! Significant figures, anyone in Switzerland?) abv% level. This one's weird, and worth trying once just for the experience. One of the weirdest beers I've ever tried, hands down.

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Photo of ggaughan
4.15/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a few bottles of this in November 2007 at the brewery from their 10th anniversary party.

The beer poured a black opague color with an inch think head that is brown, bubbley that ran away quickly.

The aroma was a bit smokey, dried fruit with a touch of sweetness.

Taste is smokey and a bit oaky. There are some pepper notes but the main character has some dried fruit and chocolate. Very nice beer.

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Photo of Bov
4.38/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

draught at the Solothurner Biertage 2007 - very dark brown, almost black coloured; firm and stable beige foam; roasted, almost smokey with notes of tea, vanilla, pepper and chocolate; oily and full-bodied; rather low carbonation; a late and solid bitterness; aftertaste of vanilla and licorice with a warming alcohol touch - very complex and deeply pleasant

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.72/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours with a creamy, dense, initially two-finger thick, somewhat browned, dark tan colored head. The beer is quite black colored though it does show flashes of clear, dark chocolate brown when held up directly to the light. The aroma is an interesting mix of chocolate a perceived tartness, smoked almond aromatics (a mix of salt, smoke and toasted nut notes), earthy city roast coffee, a definite spicy wood-like note, a slight must note, as well as a distinct, toasted nutty character that seems to finish things out. After a bit some soft fruit notes of plums left too long under the broiler become noticeable as well. This has an interesting, very complex, yet hard to describe aroma.

Quite dry tasting and actually fairly light, especially considering the strength of the beer. My suspicions of the sour aromatic notes are confirmed towards the finish as this has a definite lactic character to it. There is a slightly smoky, salt-leaning almost peat like note here that mixes with the tartness to remind me a bit of the ocean. While tart it is only lightly so, the beer is very dry with no real sweetness noticeable at all. A very earthy leaning, slightly smoky seeming . The finish also has a faint vanilla note that adds just a hint of perceived sweetness that also makes me noticed a prune-like flavor and some tart plum flavors as this beer warms up. I am not sure what the tea adds to this beer, but I wonder if it influences the smoky notes, the woody character, some tobacco notes, and a certain leafy-like sort of tea quality that becomes a touch more noticeable as I work my way through this beer. This has a nice roast finish to it, though this definitely competes with the tartness to be noticed.

This is quite easy drinking for an Imperial Stout of this strength. The only thing that keeps me from drinking this faster is that it has some really interesting, unique flavors that are quite subtle. This beer is defined by the balance the many competing, yet intertwining components achieve in the glass. This beer has got to be drastically different than when it was first bottled, but it has certainly developed into an interesting departure from the traditional Imperial Stout. My biggest complaint is that it is perhaps more complex than it is good tasting; it almost seems like a better intellectual exercise than a truly tasty beer.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

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Photo of qchic
2.53/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Oh boy, this is not what I was looking for in a beer for the evening. I'll admit that the list of ingredients on the bottle (black pepper, vanilla, and tea) intriegued me at the shop, and I was hoping for a unique experience with this one. Unfortunately, this "imperial stout" is laughably thin and so acidic with tannins from the tea. Tastes more like wine than beer.

When poured aggressively, a creamy tan head forms and then settles to a fine layer atop the opaque black beer. Smells fruity (grapes) with some chocolate, vanilla, and wood. Tastes fruity with some red fruits sneaking in. Perhaps the acidity is masking the 10%+ ABV. My guilty pleasure for this beer is the black tea finish. I just continue to wonder where the big malts are.

It hasn't been too difficult getting through this beer as I try to figure out what is going on. It got a little better as it warmed, but I will not be revisiting this one again. Especially not at 9 bucks/11.2 oz bottle. I think I'll drink something straight forward now to alleviate my confusion.

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Photo of Buebie
3.03/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from my 11.2 oz bottle with swing-top cap. Very attractive looking bottle, with a, interesting lable.
Ingredients clearly printed in detail. No freshness date on the bottle.

Poured a jet black with no transpareny or glow around the edges. Into an oversized merlot glass.
Head was big and fluffy. Creamy brown in color, very nice retention that really hangs around for the life of the beer.

Smell is rich and malty with a molasses/ black licorice quality. A spiced fumieness with a hint of alcahol at the knose.

Taste is very odd, but original. I cant say I've ever tasted anything like this ever.
Starts out simple and smooth with a slight touch from the carbonation. Thin mouthfeel, with a thickness that gradually steps into play.
Sweetness through the middle then at the swallow, this foreign bittering flavor comes in. I cant say I recognise it or can compare it to anything really.
Some dark tea like flavors, a grape like wine quality to the taste, in a white wine chardonay kind of way.

No alcahol warming, this is one strange Brew!

Cant say I love it. Cant say I dislike it either.

I'm left wondering what this is. Its not beer, or is it? hmmmm

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Photo of BucBasil
3.07/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

This is labeled as an Imperial Stout brewed with black pepper, vanilla, and tea.

Appearance: Poured from the 11.2oz swingcap bottle into a snifter. The beer is a pure black color, even when held to light, and is topped with a quickly dissipating 1 finger thick tan head.

Smell: Vanilla is immediately evident, as is a woody character. Bittersweet chocolate is evident, as is a tobacco richness underneath that may be coming from the tea added. Finally some hops show up for a fleeting moment, and spiced fruit finishes things out. This is one seriously complex aroma...

Taste: Surprisingly the tea flavor jumps out first, and it is very sweet, somewhat fruity, and not an altogether pleasant introduction to the tastebuds. Very shocking first taste, but once you get used to it, things seem to get better. Fruity flavors become more and more pronounced, revealing raspberry and sweet cherry flavors and the beer progresses along the tongue. The huge, almost overbearing sweetness carries through the finish, leaving a slightly milk chocolatey flavor in the mouth. No hops to be found in this sugary bomb.

Mouthfeel: A bit thin, but the right amount of carbonation and a smooth finish.

My final thoughts were, "What the hell did I just drink?" This was a great workout for the nose and tastebuds, but unfortunately, the whole thing just didn't come together very well. Maybe with some age, it might work, but I doubt it. I don't think I'll be picking this one up again.

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Photo of ibbjamin
2.2/5  rDev -39.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Paid $9.99 for an 11.2 oz bottle from City Beer Store in San Francisco, CA. Poured into a snifter.

As written on the bottle:
Ingredients: water, barley malts, hops, cane sugar, yeast, Sarawak pepper, Russian tea, Boubon vanilla.
This Cuvée was created in the honor of the Jurassian revolutionist Alex Le Rogue. Enjoy this wonderful Cuvée at about 10°-12° Celcius (50°-53°F), with a crunch of bitter Chocolate or a Cigar. Cuvée Alex Le Rogue can be sequestrated for a few years in a cellar.

A very small head after an very aggressive pour of this thick brew. Black as night. Lacing coats thick, but falls quickly.

Smell is somewhat lacking in strength, especially for a Stout variation. Malts foremost, but hints of dark chocolate and alcohol.

Tastes a bit funky. The malts are masked by the complexity of other flavors; leafy hops, some yeast, chery sourness similar to a Flemish Sour and a variety of other flavors I can't really put my finger on. A lot going on, but nothing is triggering the pleasure centers.

Full bodied. Thick and creamy. Smooth finish. Mild carbonation.

If you are looking to try something different, this may be your ticket, but I guess I'm not too big of a fan. The hefty price tag on this one makes the decision even easier for me in the future.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.88/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My 600th review! -Acuired this bottle as a gift from mughugger, I poured the 11.2oz brown flip top at cellar temp into the BFM goblet also a gift from inmyblood, thank you so much. The ale opened with a high pitched "floot!" kind of like a raquetball striking a wall at high speed.

A - Deep brown, almost black w/ a tan toasted bread crust shade for a head, the cap is about 1/4 inch of ultra tight bead. There is a quick settling of foam leaving a moderate amount of lace on the goblet.

S - A hint of funky leather and pepper(Sarawak according to the label) and slightly biscuit arom w/ a bit of sour cherry and dark molasses and black grape notes. There is a hint of vanilla and musk w/ an almost cedary woodiness

M - Warming both in its 1o.276%? abv and at 50 degrees sampled, this is a unique feel - it is all over the map and has great crisp carbonation. There is spice/ creaminess w/ the malt texture and dry vinous textures w/ a slightly husky grain and cider-like sour tinge w/ a nutty spiced tip

T - The first sip has a black tea like jolt w/ a tannic edge and a cracked pepper spiciness and then the creamy vanilla seems to come in under the radar. The flavor has slight vegetal notes of tea that combine w/ sweet dry malt that has almost no roastiness. The paper taste returns in waves adding an interesting hint w/ a warmth of abv in the flavor too. The fruit flavors are there, but much more subdued and there is more stone fruit/grape tinges w/ subtle apple rind notes. I was hoping this would have more roasted malt since it is an Imperial stout, but heck the tea and pepper seem to be more in focus and it really refreshes like tea as it nears room temp

D - A fine experimental spiced Imp stout I would definitely like to taste this again. This has an interesting mix of flavors and I enjoyed how tea pepper, and vanilla were utilized. I could see this as something that may cellar well.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.02/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Okay, this beer is definitely unusual and a very different take on Russian Imperial Stout. Approach this with an open mind and try to appreciate the interesting components of this beer. Ding must have been having a bad afternoon when he did his review, or more likely it's the fact that he doesn't appreciate sourness in places where it is unexpected- especially in styles where it is unexpected. I on the other-hand appreciate the sourness sometimes found in Belgian interpretations of Russian Imperial Stouts, or in a beer like Madruga Obscura from Jolly Pumpkin. This beer is reminiscent of those with the addition of some unusual ingredients. The label says it is made with black pepper, tea, and vanilla. Those ingredients come through in different ways.

Pours black with a decent head that fades to a very thin tan cap. The aroma is quite complex. The black pepper is is prominent up front, the vanilla less so, and the tea lends some astringent tannins to the nose. Some light roastiness combines with the black pepper and tea to create an unusual depth of aroma. The taste is also quite interesting. Slightly sour to start with grain and a plumminess, and then developing first tea and then black pepper notes. Mouthfeel is a bit thin and somewhat tannic, but the overall effect is quite interesting. I wouldn't drink one all the time, but I'll give them marks for creativity and the unusual nature of the beer.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.28/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ow! My ears! This thing popped so loud when I flipped the cap that it really did give me a bit of a ringer.

Pours very dark with a thin tan head.

Nose is fruity and spiced, yes. Do you know what the problem with it is though? It reminds me of those markers I would get as a kid that each had its own fragrance. I take a sniff and just think of my old purple marker with the grape fragrance.

As the label so kindly informs me, this beer is "Extremely Complex". Oh really. Thanks for the help there buddy. Sure it is complex, but it seems like everything was thrown together. All the characteristics of this one just jump into my mouth together and don't stand alone to let me savor it all. Seems a bit messy.

The liquid feel is thin. The carbonation is decent.

Overall this is not worth the price. A bit of a mess and not really bringing enough interesting character. Pass.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.78/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Jurassian imperial stout brewed with Sarawak pepper, Russian tea, and burbon vanilla.

A: Poured a viscous cola color with dark ruby highlights as it left the bottle producing a thin, fizzy dark, khaki layering.

S: subtle with warm, pleasant English tea scents with a dash of peppery spicing.

T: The initial flavor was spicy prunes, with warm tea notes and light citrus and cola hints. Progresses to a vinous burbon vanilla flavor along with ripe oranges and light peppery notes. The alcohol is extremely well hidden at 10.276% abv. The spicy warm tea flavor highlights this flavor with a quick, sharp peppery finish compliments of the Sarawak pepper. The finish was clean with only a minute trace of acidity.

M: very light, oily with a flat carbonation with warming spicy tea notes which gives way to a nice quick, sharp peppery finish.

D:Where in the world is the 10.276% abv? Besides from being a tad light body wise it does present a nice unique flavor which keeps you coming back sip after sip. Spicy, peppery and truly unique.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.15/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours out a dark brown body, reddish-hued at the edges, and capped by a small, beige head.

Smell: Aroma of dark malts, dried herbs, tart fruits and fainter notes of licorice and molasses.

Taste: Dark malts with a thinned taste of chocolate. Salted plum flesh. Sprinkling of licorice water. Hint of wood, molasses. Light bitterness. There's never any real sweetness. In its place, there's a pervasive tart fruitiness, like a wine cooler past its prime. Pinch of earthy spice on the creosote finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Very mild carbonation.

Drinkability: Different, for sure, but it's just not what I'm looking for in an Imperial Stout.

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Photo of Chaz
3.93/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown in color. A rather firm pour produced a pleasantly dark, orange-tan head, a good two-fingers and of good duration. Lacing was moderate to very good,and lasted throughout the duration of the drink.
Plenty of cake-y, suspended yeast here.

The nose is lactic, tannic,and spicy. As stated on the label, spices are a component of this brew, and the vanilla is the first spice I made note of. There is also a something I can only call "green olive", a component of the lactic sour character. As per the label there is a fair amount of alcohol in this brew, but on the nose it is easily masked by the other characteristics. A beer this big should offer some sweeter malt notes on the nose and yet this one appears almost dry. Roasted and dark malts blend well with the spices, and overall.

Semi-sweet on first sip, with prominent licorice, roasted and bready malt notes, and a mild sweetness creeping up towards the end, and a fairly dry finish. Astringent. Black pepper is not very noticeable, but seems to come through along with the warming alcohol in the aromatics. The "Russian tea" on the label is something I've not heard of as per use in a beer, but if anything the tea adds to the astringency, and lends a lightly vegetal character. Dry, roasted, and biscuit malt notes are subdued throughout the mid-palate yet seem to appear at the end and linger nicely. Notes of cocoa appear amidst this malt backdrop, particularly as it warms. Likewise, as this warms the spices contribute greatly to the complexity of the aromatic aspect, giving this a liqueur-like appeal.

Mouthfeel is rather thin; no doubt the addition of cane sugar was something of a factor here. Lighter mouth feel would seem to add to the drink-ability, but not so much for the style.

Altogether this is a very challenging and interesting brew. It's altogether different than what we've come to expect of imperial stouts from craft breweries in America, and is much more in line with what the Belgians and others have done with the style. Recommended for those who have time to sit back and savor a brew; a "cigar beer" if you will.

(Note: I allowed this to warm sufficiently; the intricate flavors and effects of the spices would have been lost on this if served too cold.)

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Photo of dsa7783
2.97/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2 oz swing-top bottle purchased from Buy Rite on Oak Tree in South Plainfield...
Very unimpressive pour - the result was a dark-black, purple-colored hue with hardly any head at all and very minimal lacing...
Juniper-berry aroma noticeable along with hints of cocoa powder, thick roasted malts, and slight caramel tinged by a touch of vanilla...
Poor, average at best, watery taste consisting of the aforementioned nuances depicted in the aroma...
Watery mouthfeel without too much going on in this department...
For the five or six bucks I paid for this one, can't say I would really recommend it...

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Photo of dedrinker
2.37/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Nearly black in color, and rusty red algae around the edges when held to the light. No head. Aroma of vinegar/ cherries - sour/ acidic. Flavor was a Flemish Brown type of deal with faint roast dominated by wet leaves in a rain gutter followed by oxidative notes. Not my thing. Light body and sour finish. Gross. Hard to tell if it was spoiled when there is only one other review so far.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.83/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a big dirty brown color head with some good retention and some lacing. Aroma of roasted malt with some sweet malt. Taste is a mix between some roasted malt with medium bitterness, some notes of liquorice are also noticeable with a nice sweet malt base. Full body with great carbonation and no alcohol was noticeable. Definitely different then most imperial stout around but very satisfying nonetheless.

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Cuvée Alex Le Rouge (Jurassian Imperial Stout) from BFM (Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes)
3.64 out of 5 based on 258 ratings.
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