Hercule Stout | Brasserie Ellezelloise

268 Reviews
Hercule StoutHercule Stout

Brewed by:
Brasserie Ellezelloise

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by zerk on 10-12-2001

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Reviews: 268 | Ratings: 450
Photo of ChrisBowers
4.97/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

In my book, as close to 5.0 as you can get. What a beer. Pours black, with a nice head. Flip top on the bottle is a nice touch. Rich, malty aroma. First taste is amazing... what starts off almost as red wine, turns to chocolate and then a warming coffee aftertaste with just a touch of sweetness. Mouthfeel is smooth and satisfying. Perfectly balanced for 9 percent ABV. Too bad its almost 5 bucks a bottle if you can even find it (this was procured at Chevy Chase Wine and Spirits). Just a truely exceptional beer. Now, back to my glass, time to finish the rest.

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Photo of 86MonteSS
4.97/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Aw hell, I'm at a loss for words. I saw this beer on the shelf and thought I remembered reading that other people liked it, but I didn't know for sure. So I spent the five bucks and now I'm enjoying an absolutely phenomenal "belgian stout."

It poured as you'd expect; dark tan head on an almost opaque body. I smell raisins, a little chocolate, and alcohol, making this one of the 2 or 3 most fragrant beers I've had. The taste is all over the place... you can concentrate on a different element on every sip. I'd say the malt is the most prominent flavor, but the hops and and pleasant alcoholic note do a very good job at bolserting the taste.

I must say it's been a long time since I've enjoyed a beer this much. Thank heavens I found a store that carries a decent stock of it.

Seriously, man, this is great. I'm stoked. Totally stoked!

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Photo of Frozensoul327
4.92/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

An excellent example of how a RIS should be. Pours out to a burnt chestnut wood with a pillow of cloud-like brown foam resting gracefully atop the beer. Medium low carbonation. Aromas of milk and dark chocolate, malts, sweet herbs. Wow. Taste? Heavenly... Flavors of chocolate, malts, sweet grain, spices, mild wood and dark fruits engulf the tongue and fill the mouth. The light carbonation and smooth flavors create a great mouthfeel, just short of perfect. Drinkability is world class. This is the definitive Russian Stout. At $6.00 a bottle, it's worth it. World Class, Highly Recommended.

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Photo of goindownsouth
4.92/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is one of the most amazing beers I have ever tried. I picked this one up at a wonderful Belgian bar here in Pennsylvania. It has a very deep and dark color with a fabulous aroma or sweetness without any hostile bitterness. This is one of the best brews I have ever had. Fantastic. Well worth seeking out, but not cheap, by any means. Prost!

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Photo of paulaner
4.9/5  rDev +21%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is an exceptional stout. The dark color with no light being let through is excellent, only being topped off when you get the chocolate, coffee aromas. One thing I love best is the yeast and sugar added to the bottle prior to bottling, I think this enhances the flavors so go ahead and poor this into the glass with the beer. As for the mouthfeel it is velvety smooth with no bitterness, now here comes the flavors prepare yourself because it is not short lived or weak. First chocolate then coffee then wet smoothness only to repeat itself over and over on your palate. This is not a beer for those who do not like strong flavors or beer with no after taste, but if your like me and prefer this type it is worth every penny you pay for it!

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Photo of Naerhu
4.85/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From which heaven did this devine brew pour?

Stark black, small foamy brownish-tan head.
Rich hawaiian soil and the aroma of the coffee beans at the Tavolo d'oro.

The salad of hops make each sip of this nectar extremely interesting, but not as bitter as I would imagine considering the aroma.

Mouthfeel is slick, creamy, smooth. The alcohol I imagine makes this feel as light as a cloud in a glass.

I would shave my head to have another bottle of this.

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Photo of mzwolinski
4.83/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Black in color. The head is dark tan, starts of medium-sized, and soon settles to a thin, diaphanous top. Perfect-looking stout. Aroma is malty, with a light roastiness, a mild alcohol scent, and an understated but sharp fruitiness. So far, so stouty. It's the flavor that really throws you off. It starts with a Belgian yest flavor which gives the impression of something like a Belgian golden. But then the malt picks up with an assertive but gentle roastiness with a light chocolate touch. This is followed by a surprisingly spicy hop bite, which nicely compliments the mild alcohol-spiciness which is present throughout the sip (hard to believe the label that there are no spices added to this beer!). The body is full, but not overwhelming. More oily than viscous. All in all this is a really unique, very tasty, and extremely drinkable beer. Love it!

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Photo of StevieW
4.82/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle with the cool flip top. Murky dark pour, black is a fine description. Medium tan color. Laced the glass to the bottom, and left a thin covering on the top of the beer. Smell was initially heavy on the black licorice and burnt fruit side. Plums, chocolate covered raisans as well. Taste was a super smooth combination of the roasted nearly burnt fruit and coffee bitterness. A hybrid of a belgian dark ale and a traditional stout taste. Flavors melt together and wash over your taste buds. Smooth chocolate malt bitterness finishes things up along with a striking hop presence. Smooth going down, no harshness, not overly bitter. Roasted plums and candied apples also sneak by. Resounding hop burps. Medium to full bodied, and just the right amount of bitterness to linger. Not a hint of a watery finish. Burnt flavors are there, but not too strong. Different from any Stout I have tasted to date, and very impressive ! You would never know 9.5% abv. This one goes right to the top of my list, and I urge you to try it. I have seen this one in Florida and passed on it. Cheers to MJR for including it in the recent blockbuster trade. Who would have ever thought a Belgian Stout could be so good ?

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Photo of cokes
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A belgian dark strong ale tweaked to near imperial stout status. I couldn't ask for anything more!
Pours virtually black with just a trace of ruby around the edges. Gigantic fluffy, rocky tan head is as impressive as any I have seen. This is one beautiful beer.
Nose is stung with notes of dark chocolate, berry sweetness, and a strong spice of some sort (perhaps clove). Spicy hops too? Hard to decipher all that is going on here, but I am certain that a good deal of roastedness is evident.
Lots of dark chocolate riding on top of some burnt/expresso hues. Juicy black berries and dark fruit appear. Then comes a yeasty spice kick, which brings some heavy earthiness with it. Alcohol is slight and almost scotch-like. Faintly smoked. Some hops come in toward the end, adding a unique floral taste and bitterness. But they end up squashed under the chocolate-berry-roasted-smoky mix.
Highly charged, typical for a belgian.
Very smooth and creamy, typical for a stout.
It manages to find a middle ground in mouthfeel, and ends up being very drinkable.

Big time winner here. This one is a treat. Right up there on my list of favorites

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Photo of Bighuge
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer is pitch black. Quite nice. A thin film of a head recedes quite quickly to an edging of chocolate brown color. Very complex aroma. Sweet malt, candy sugar, molasses, dark plum on the nose. This is the first Belgian stout I've tried (needless to say, the first Belgian Imperial Stout). The body of this beer is almost full, but not quite. The drinkability of this beer for a 9% a/v is surpassed by a sparce few (one being the WorldWide Stout). Very drinkable. There is only the faintest hint of alcohol perceived on my tongue. The taste is very nice. A lot of things intermingle: chocolate malt, dark fruits, berries, molasses, bittersweet chocolate and java. Very nice. And there is a heavy bitterness quotient to this brew as well. Right up my alley. This is close to the World Wide Stout in overall greatness, but is not quite there in my opinion.

I've gotta give a Bighuge thanks to cokes for securing this sample for me.

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Photo of Boto
4.75/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

33cl. flip-top bottle: This poured an opaque brown color. A bit of a tan head to it. Typical roastiness and chocolate. Hints of yeast and fruit to the nose also. Chocolate taste is there, yet it is more than that. Some fruity sweetness coming through. An extremenly nice brew.

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Photo of janubio
4.73/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is in my opinion a really great beer that combines the best of the irish stout with belgian beers. Maybe even a neew style itself.
Black clour with a great head, not as thick as irish stout.
Aroma of coffee, liquorice, chocolate and dark fruits. Medium to full body, very good carbonation.
Taste of coffee, liquorice, dark fruits, some chocolate and even cherries open up their way.
Great beer.

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Photo of dictatorial
4.73/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is (as far as I have ever had) as good as it gets. I had it in Belgium, from a bottle to a weiss glass and it was truly memorable. The color is very dark (almost opaque) and the smell and taste were exceptional - smooth and not bitter, with a nutty aroma. The mouthfeel was smooth and enjoyable. Overall - its amazing and highly recommended!

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Photo of stumac
4.71/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

thanks to Onslow, I enjoyed this bugger at Stumelagram VII

pours up black (or dark dark brown) in color with a huge frothy brown head. decent lacing. the nose is malty, nutty, with subtle sweet chocolate. the taste is the same as the nose but with roasted malts added. medium bodied, low carbo. a good brew. This is a very awesome Belgium Stout. Glad I got to try a good version of this style.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.7/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black in color with a deep tan head that holds well and leaves a good lacy surface coating and solid collar. No lace around the glass, however. Overall, a very nice appearance. The aroma is somewhat surprising in it's fresh, youthful, sweetness & fruity character. It's also fairly intricate with notes of sweet malt, rich dark fruit, some brown sugar and molasses, and limited roastiness. The body is medium-full with a solid and very-fine carbonation; giving a somewhat zesty - and oily- mouthfeel. The flavor is quite complex, offering different flavors throughout the range of the tasting including dark fruits, rum, chocolate, caramel, molasses, floral hops, berries, very creamy coffee, not so creamy coffee, and spent espresso grounds. These flavors are all fairly sweet in the mouth but the underlying bitterness keeps everything from whirling away; and the finish leaves a distinct bitterness at the back of the throat. The aftertaste lingers with some lightly sugary, grainy, and roasty notes. Still, the sweetness can become somewhat cloying towards the end of the bottle. The alcohol is very well hidden at first, but becomes more apparent toward the middle of the serving. An extremely enjoyable beer with great complexity. A very interesting and highly unique beer that probably deserves more than one tasting. Absolutely worth seeking out.

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Photo of OttoPeeWee
4.7/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. This has to be the best stout I have ever had. It smells like mocha and raisins. It has very little carbination, which I prefer in a stout. It is thick, almost the consistency of hot chocolate. I tastes out of this world, like an not too sweet chocolate liquour with a roasted-smokey aftertaste. I don't taste any alcohol and at 9%, it is pretty unbelievable. This stuff is a knockout.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.65/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour this one slooowly, serious light brown head leaving some lace. Never one to pass up an imperial stout this is one to savor. Absolutely jet black, sunlight will not pass through it. Starts sweet and hoppy and finishes with a slight hoppiness. Very smooth, the high ABV is not really noticeable. 11.2oz is not enough.

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Photo of ajayma
4.65/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours murky opal with a bare tint of red. Head is thin, but its tan-colored lace is creamy and lasts.

Subtle interplay of figs, dark cherry, raisin, cocoa and just the faintest whiff of damp wood.

Smooth and yet delicate, balanced, barely sweet. Cocoa powder, figs, prunes, raisins, and slight roasted bitterness, kick off with a pleasant micro-fizzle. A fudgey note pops up in the middle. Finishes with notes of fruity-coffee, bitter-cocoa, wet oak, even tobacco.

I'm smitten. Dark and comforting--but not heavy or sweet. Seductively complex--but not the least bit boozy and superbly drinkable (nevermind that it's 9%). It evokes so many subtle and unexpected flavors while balancing them beautifully. Great with smoked fish, pasta w/ carbonara, or chilly fall weather.

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Photo of RuudJH
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Together with only a few other brewers, Brasserie Ellezelloise makes excellent stout, a good RIS, this on the European market.

Very darkbrown with beige head, naturally. Clean yeast, smell of roasted malts, coffee, chocolate, and also dark dried fruits like raisins and plumbs, also a bit of banana.

Taste similar, with sweetness and bitterness. Alcohol is well masked, mouthfeel creamy.

Allthough I bought this mainly to try out the stout-style, this beer makes me want to try more from the same brewery.
Also, trying this regularly (as i've got easy access to it), it's consistent. It's got a clear Belgian character to it (yeast), but it's got plenty of body to compete with other RIS.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark nearly opaque ruby, with blood red edges and a small head of espresso coloured foam that dies quickly and is reduced to just swirling swirls of bubbly coffee coloured carbonation. The aroma is very vinous and cabernet like, grapey, if you will. I also notice hints of anise, currant, deep/dark belgian chocolate, cherries, and other fruits in the aroma. The taste is not as complex as the aroma would lead you to believe. However, this is a very well balanced imperial stout with hints of various dark fruits, european hops, bitter dark chocolate, caramel, coffee, and more. The mouthfeel is is thick and decadent, cake like. Drinkability is very good as this is a well balanced and complex imperial that is very different from its counterparts.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I sampled this brew at room temp. The brew comes in a 11.2 oz bottle with a pop top. As I open the pressure release is so strong it spins the top around a few times.
The brew pours a rich dark brown color with no light getting through. I get a tan fluffy head to foam up about 1 inch pretty easily. THe head has great staying power and is very clingy on my glass.
Aroma is sweet malty up front with some faint chocolate and mocha hints. Also a spice that I cant ID it is fairly sweet and rich smelling but I dont know it.
First sip gives me soft gentle carbonation and a fairly thick body and creamy texture. The flavor is malty up front with chocolate and a brief grassy hop hit that is overtaken by roasted malt and burnt coffee tastes. This flavor is very pleasant and lingers long after I put the glass down.
A very enjoyable and tasty beer. Not what I expected but an incredible brew nonetheless!

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Photo of MinorThreat
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from a swing top bottle into a New Belgium Tulip.

A-Super thick and black. It looks like used motor oil... or TenFidy. Nice mocha colored head with good retention and lacing.

S-Lots of roasted grains, subtle malt sweetness and some esters of dried fruit.

T-To be blunt; This sets the bar for most RIS's as far as I am concerned. Tons of toasted grains, malt and hop bitterness, dried fruits such as figs and raisins with a malt sweetness that rounds everything out. This has so much going on and yet keeps it so well integrated, it blows me away. Not even a hint of the 9% abv is detectable.

M-Rich, viscous and silky with just enough gas to keep it lively.

D-Very very high, this is as close to stout perfection as it comes. Well integrated, balanced and infinitely enjoyable.

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Photo of TheSSG
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a frothy, tan head that laces slightly. Floral hops and a slightly acidic, toasted malt aroma. This smells absolutely wonderful. Black. Starts with a rich, deep flavor; toasted malt, slight acidity and bright, floral hops. Builds in acidity to become dominated with coffee notes. A mild, pleasant bitterness throughout. Finish is toasted malt with lingering floral hop bitterness.

Wow. This is the smoothest Russian Imperial Stout I've ever had. Just lovely.

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Photo of gfreed
4.58/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had at Poechenellekelder, Brussels. This is an RIS? I'm surprised, but then, the only RISes I've ever had have been American, and by comparison they've been tasty but heavy-handed and stingingly hoppy. This was smooth, even, roasty and absolutely wonderful. A dark head that lasts for years; aroma of licorice, prunes, raisins... mushrooms? The body is quite dense, the carbonation light but evident, and the taste is buoyant, fruity, roasted and just a bit sharp at the finish. The alcohol does not clobber, either. I've had my last American RIS. This was exceptional.

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Photo of marc77
4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Near black in hue w/ clear deep garnet around the rim when held to light. Dense, uniform, tan head leaves lace. The aroma is comprised of milk chocolate, spicy pepper, pungent star anise, and a prominent woody note with deeply caramelized sugar and buttery malt as constant undertones. One of the most appetizing and unique aromas I've ever encountered in a beer. Dark caramel sweetness and raisiny Special B hit the palate upfront, and are quickly ensued by black licorice and carob. Coffeeish roasted barley contributions are very smooth and devoid of any sharpness whatsoever, while chocolate malt complements the spicy, fruity notes from the Belgian yeast strain used. Moderately bodied, but with a lower relative carbonation for a Dark Strong that helps lend a smooth and pleasant mouthfeel. Hop bitterness is nearly lost amongst the myriad of roasty and spicy flavors, but manages to nudge in contrast to malt sweetness. Finishes with residual sugars and roasted notes lingering, while mellow alcohol warmth superbly integrated into the finish teases the palate for another sip. Hercule possesses many of the qualities of an imperial stout and combines that with the complexities of a Belgian Dark Strong. Absolutely delcious and truly unique.

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Hercule Stout from Brasserie Ellezelloise
4.05 out of 5 based on 450 ratings.
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