Lump Of Coal | Ridgeway Brewing

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Lump Of CoalLump Of Coal

Brewed by:
Ridgeway Brewing
England, United Kingdom

Style: Foreign / Export Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ybnorml on 11-25-2004

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Ratings: 614 |  Reviews: 366
Photo of kimcgolf
3.55/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours to a black coal-like color with medium thin tan head that lingers awhile and leaves okay lacing. Nose is malty nuts and chocolate, and the mouthfeel is sojmewhat sweet, but also slightly biting. Flavor accentuates the nose, but also adds a hint of licorice. The 8% alcohol never made its way into the nose or flavor, but added to the warming finish. Not a bad beer.

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Photo of Damian
3.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Drank from a 1 pint .9 fl. oz. bottle purchased at Crazy Bruce's Liquors, West Hartford, CT

Poured a somewhat thin yet near opaque brown/black with faint mahogany highlights when held to the light. The bubbly, one-finger, coffee-colored head quickly faded to a persistent ring of froth.

The aroma was chocolatey, roasty and malty sweet. Oaky with strong bourbon and brown sugar notes. Some butterscotch aromas were also detectable. As the beer warmed, the bourbon and sweet brown sugar notes really came out. Spicy and cookie-ish. Quite impressive.

The flavor was a bit thin. Roasted malts and black coffee were most apparent. Sweet-ish caramel notes became noticeable as well. Slight char in the center with some warming alcohol on the back end. The 8% ABV was prevalent on the dry, mild English hop finish. As the beer warmed, the alcohol became a bit sharp. The aftertaste was somewhat bitter and astringent with a rather unpleasant alcohol sting.

Mouthfeel was quite watery and a bit overly fizzy.

Drinkability was decent, even for a lighter bodied stout.

While the aroma was excellent, I found this beer to be lacking in both flavor and mouthfeel. Overall, this is a rather average stout. At $6 a bottle, I would not buy it again.

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Photo of CNeilP09
3.66/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

first of all, this beer i drank with a pal, in a situation where we basically had to down it rather quickly.

i enjoyed the swill.

the appearance of the beer was expected and typical. thick, opaque, and rich. basically looked liked molasses in a glass, after the cocoa colored head resided.

smelled a bit of burnt wood, a bit of peat and a bit of sick.

this beer tasted rich, robust and delectable. very light notes of nutmeg and cinnamon, with a dry-ish hoppiness. very roasted fruit waxed below the overall conflict between the malt and hops grain bill.

mouthfeel--quite exquisite. smooth, soft, yet bullworth enough to let you know you were drinking a man's beer.

drinkability--i would allow myself to drink a pint or two of this beer, but given the alcohol content, i would decline after the second and move on to more adventurous brews.

not a bad beer, not a great beer. subtle and reserved. a lovely bedtime brew. which is exactly the point for which this beer was brewed.

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Photo of charlzm
3.06/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Bottled, consumed on 12/21/07.

Pours a very clear dark brown (like cola). A substantial tan head arises and remains for at least five minutes or so. Aroma is roasted malt with an off note of mustiness. Flavor has a nice bite at the beginning that turns metallic by the end. Thin but creamy mouthfeel. Light flavor of roasted/bitter grains with a hint of vegetable and/or oxidized character. Lightly astringent, totally non bitter finish.

Not a winner.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.59/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a dark mahogany brown when held up to the light, with an average off-white head, fair retention, no lacing.

S: Roasted coffee notes, chocolate, and sugar.

T: Dark chocolate is the predominate taste here, matched by some slightly acidic coffee beans, molasses and alcohol.

M: Viscous and syrupy for the style, creamy, definitely does not drink like 8%.

D: A pretty good beer overall, once I got into it, I'd buy again next Christmas season for sure.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.95/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a five+ finger light tan head that quickly fades leaving a good lace. Nose is malty. Almost like a lump of coal - faint mahogany highlights. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Flavor is caramel and malts. Finish is bittersweet chocolate. $5.95 for a 500ml bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

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Photo of McDiddyPop
3.58/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I definitely had higher hopes for this one. I have recently become a bit of a Stout guy, so I am always into trying new stuff. Got this in a 4-pack of Holiday Beers for Christmas. Looked good when I poured it, but I wasn't very fond of the smell. The alcohol was very apparent. Felt really strange in my mouth, almost chewy. In the end, I would say that unless it's free I won't be trying this one again.

note: This is my first review on Ba so in the future I will try to be more technical.

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Photo of Drewcifer
3.02/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a solid dark brown to black, with about a half inch of creamy tan head. The head settles down a little, but leaves a nice tan sheet over the top, with a little bit of lacing.

A very subtle aroma that you have to actually concentrate to catch, slight smells of roasted grain and coffee, not much else.

The taste is a bit weak, which can be a good or bad thing, depending on personal tastes. Some coffee, a little chocolate, a little bitterness.

It is well carbonated, maybe overly, and a bit on the thin side for a stout. Not an unpleasant mouthfeel, but also not what I was hoping for.

The overall drinkability is pretty decent. The ABV is well-masked, and the taste is not bad, but it seems like the entire brew is an epitome of a weak stout. The aroma and taste are both underwhelming. Not an awful brew, something I could drink now and then, but nothing that will perk up my interest if I see it in the future.

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Photo of Onslow
3.41/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

low burnt molasses smell, weird and abit unappealing ... solid medium head, abit disappointing in the taste department ... some burnt ash flavours... for 8% well masked .. lacks complexity but extremely smooth..."giggling granny"... lowest rated of the giftpack...

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Photo of joe1510
3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml Bottle
Binny's Orland

I've had this bottle in the fridge for maybe a month now. Figured I better get to drinking it. Pours mahogany with glowing ruby highlights when backlit. Although the head took some time to form it grew to two fingers of creamy beige head. The head eventually falls to a small cap and leaves some respectable mountain-esque thin lacing.

The nose seems to be a little on the weak side. There's some goodness coming out of there but also some aromas I would be happy without. Mild roastiness combines with weak coffee, slight cream, and overripe dark fruits. There's also a mineral character I'm not all that fond of.

Flavor goes hand in hand with the aroma. The mineral characteristic isn't as noticeable but neither is the roastiness. The ripe dark fruitiness seems more prominent than I would have expected from the smell. There seems to be a touch of sourness present but what it's from is beyond me and actually works to make a nicely balanced beer.

The body of this stout is medium but seems a little thin at times. Sluggish carbonation lets this beer work through at it's own pace which is leisurely. Alcohol fumes work on the swallow as this beer warms.

This pint goes down pretty easily but one bottle in a sitting is enough for me. This beer does sport a higher than expected alcohol for the style.

This is a decent beer in the Winter Series from Ridgeway. Seems that's the only time I see their beers are around Christmas and every year I see more and more. Again, this is a decent beer but there's so many others out there it's difficult to justify picking this up again.

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Photo of DackAchan
3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours dark with a very thin head and no lacing.

S- Not much smell from this beer. Little bit of roasted barley.

T- Decent taste. Spices and hint of roasted barley. It is pretty bitter.

M- Very light mouthfeel for a stout. Too much bite in the end.

D- Okay beer, nothing fantastic. Might try it again.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
3.75/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

At the holidays of 2007, I received 2 of the Shelton Bros. holiday 4-packs from Ridgeway Brewing. This was from one of them.

Pours a deep rich brown with slightly ruby highlights. A decent head drops to an espresso crema cover that is quite nice.

Aroma- well, when I first smelled it, I just said "Oh, that's good!". A bit of very dark bitter chocolate, some caramel, and a bit of spiciness.

Flavor is also pleasant, toasty and a little sweeter than the aroma suggested. Winter spices are there, but not overpowering. Finishes on the dry side of the scale.

Mouthfeel is fairly rich and full for a stout, pleasant and a good choice for a cold winter eve.

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Photo of JayTheFinn
3.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm always leary of beers with quaint little names like this one, but Lump of Coal delivers more than just a seasonally clever name, it's got taste.

A - Nothing outstanding, but it looks good. Dark brown body with a one finger head on the pour that lapses into a thin ring pretty quickly.

S - Not much really besides some slight sweet roasted chocolate.

T - Licorice and caramel sweetness! Very enjoyable if you have a sweet-tooth...not so much if you don't.

M - Solid sweetness on the tongue.

D - Good taste and a just lively enough carbonation keeps this one going down easy, especially as a dessert beer.

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Photo of GPHarris
4.15/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

aged one year

a - poured a one finger thick light tan head into a goblet that left nice sheeting and lace throughout. the body was a dark brown color.
s - strong aromas of chocolate and dark fruits.
t - chocolate and roasted coffee with hints of fruits with some underlying spiciness.
m - very rich and creamy.
d - goes down smoothly, a nice sipper. to quote my girlfriend, "it's smooth going down and doesn't bite you back."

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Photo of jeffmonarch
3.36/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

1 pt. 9 oz. bottle in a pint glass.

A - Dark brown color with a thick dark tan head. Pours lighter than I expected.

S - Slight chocolate smell. Very light smells.

T - Very sweet flavor. Creamy with a nice malt taste.

M - Medium to full bodied with good carbonation.

D - Good beer. This is a descent holiday beer.

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Photo of allengarvin
3.81/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a liter mug, this dark brown-black beer leaves a thick, lasting head on top. Not much to the nose though: very lightly roasted malt, sweet with a little bit of a tart edge. Flavor is not very complex, but is reasonably tasty: lightly roasted coffee, a little bit of dark chocolate, some modest bitterness. Yeast character is moderately fruity.

Surprised it hits 8%. It doesn't taste like a very big beer. Still, not too bad.

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Photo of mnapier
3.63/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Service Temperature, 45 degrees. Service Glassware, 12 ounce tulip.

This ale appears dark and lightless with a dark tan mild head with a weak lace. The aroma waves some oats, a little bit of chocolate, and some molasses. After closer examination I pick up some biscuit, medium alcohol, and a little bit of licorice. Overall this mouthfeel is medium as expected with no surprises.


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Photo of IntriqKen
3.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark black with amber undertones and a whitish half finger that melts but leaves a film of white bubbles on top for a very long time.

Aroma is very subdued with only hints of caramel and coffee.

Taste is more than aromas. First coffee...espresso coffee with cream...then a touch of caramel flavors coming from the sugars and burnt malts. Leaves the mouth very clean with merely a rememberence of the coffee and caramel and some alcohol.

Aftertaste is fairly clean...nothing cloying at all.
A really nice English Christmas (strong) stout.

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Photo of OtisinAZ
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poored a very dark color with a tan colored head that lasted about half the glass. Strong smell of caramel chocolate malt no noticeable hop aroma. The beer had a well rounded stout like taste but was a little to sweet for me. The 8% alcohol was not evident up front. Made me wonder if it was 8%. Need to drink more to find out.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.1/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark black that some light can get through to show a ruby reflection. Minimal head. Very sweet on the nose and definite malt influence. Flavor is rich and beautiful. I will admit that off such a hokey label, it kind of lowered my expectations, but the truth lies in the bottle. Rich and chocolate-like (strong, but somewhat mild at the same time), but still bears strong stout characteristics. More even and smooth than I would have expected. Still though, it seems to drop off on the tail end in a way that I really don't want it to. On the finish you get a slight spicy kick. Feel is a little thin, but still good. Highly drinkable.

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Photo of Squelch
3.42/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

a: Pours dark, almost black, with a thick, creamy, cascading brown head that lasts a while.

s: No noticable hop or malt aromas

T: Taste of toffee and roasted malts dominates a slight to non-existant hop flavor and bitterness. Hop to malt ratio is low. Starts sweet and finishes sweet.

M: Heavy beer due to the sweetness

D: Overall I liked it quite a bit. I'm not a Stout freak but I would definitely get this one again. Could use a bit more hopping but overall a decent beer.

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Photo of mountdew1
3.39/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Color was a very dark brown, just slight of black, but had reddish undertones. Head was a chocolatey brown, maybe 1/4 in thick. Aroma was at times alcoholy/stringently, and other times had a slight brown sugar sweetness to it. Taste had hints of bitterness, but also had touches of cherry flavors. Felt outstanding in the mouth. The only detraction was that it was a little thin. Had slight carbonation, but not enough to be annoying. The beer was very drinkable, hid the ABV well. Could easily drink more of this than is wise.

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Photo of tayner
3.33/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tall glass rather rough and got a 2 finger foamy head that died into a thick ring and thin top coat that laced the glass okay, but not boldly.

smells, well, sweet. brown sugar and raisins, slight vanilla bean scent. I dont smell any roasted malt or hops.

Tastes as it smells, sweet. I love malty beers, and this one is nearly too much for me. Brown sugar, raisins, vanilla, and almost like candy sugar. When i think stout i think chocolate and burnt flavors.. this has neither. Not saying that is bad, just not what i was expecting. After swallowing i get the dark fruit flavor with some warming alcohol.

It feels quite thin for a stout, but not overly fizzy so it still works.

This is a malt lover's beer for sure. I could drink one, maybe two, before it became too sweet to drink... and the 8% is pretty well hidden so it might kick my butt before i realized it as well.

This was a gift, and a pretty good one at that, and if i were to get it as a gift again i would be okay with that! Thanks mike!

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Photo of iceviper22
4.03/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a bottle of this in a variety pack for christmas. It pours a nice jet black color with bits of brown/red shining through and a small quickly fading tan head. The smell of it was pretty sweet and fruity for a stout. Kind of like cherries, but with some coffee, chocoate, and smoked smells backing it up. It has a good drinkable taste and mouthfeel overall to it. It tastes sweet and smokey, with a somewhat dry finish and little to know hop or bitterness. I like this brew overall and would enjoy some more of it, especially around the cold holiday season.

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Photo of montageman
3.18/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a tall mug.

It's the day after Christmas and I'm finishing the last of my holiday beers. Next to Santa's Butt, I thought this one had the best label. Oddly, both were brewed by Ridgeway, but disappointingly, both are less than stellar.

Pours and looks like Coca-cola with a decent white head that goes away quickly. There is a lot of carbonation here, which goes along with the soda description. The aroma has coffee up front with notes of chocolate and vanilla, but nothing stands out too much. There is a nice alcohol burn at the end and some nice chocolate and roasted coffee as well. This is way too carbonated for a stout in my estimation - more creaminess would be welcomed here. This is by no means a bad beer, there is some good sweetness and it could be served as a dessert. Nothing I'd go out of my way for. Mild recommendation.

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Lump Of Coal from Ridgeway Brewing
3.45 out of 5 based on 614 ratings.
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