Reviews, Commentary and Opinions on Midwest Craft Beer and Microbreweries


Beer Reviews

Honey Bock

New Glarus Brewing Company
New Glarus, WI

Style: Bock

Jug’s Rating:
one beerone beerone beerone beerone beer   (Drinkable, but flawed)

Eddie and Nigel are hopheads. I’m a goathead. Big, rich bock (which means goat in German) beers are my vice and I got pretty excited when I found out New Glarus was going to release a “Honey Bock”.

Honey, of course, is not traditionally used in any bock style so I was really curious how this would turn out. New Glarus had a decent bock in Uff-da Bock, and they make some pretty radical shit with their Unplugged series, so I was confident the Honey Bock would turn out fine.

Man was I wrong.

The Honey Bock pours golden and clear with a fine, white head of tiny white bubbles that lingers. It’s so light and clear I questioned the malt character right away. It is a pretty beer, but that is the only compliment I can give it.

The malt nose is, well, missing. Not even a faint scent of malt and only a slight Hallertau-ish hop bouquet. At this point I am getting really suspect of this “bock”.

The first taste is fizzy water. I’m crushed. There is no malt flavor. I mean absolutely none. It’s fairly heavily carbonated, which I could let slide if there was any backbone to the beer at all. Finally there is a slight, sweet honey flavor exposed after the over-carbonated fizzing dies down.

I had to double check and make sure I poured the right beer and not some macro-swill honey bullshit. Surely this cannot be a product of New Glarus. I actually poured another one just to make sure this wasn’t some cruel trick Eddie devised.

As a beer, it is drinkable if you don’t like flavor. As a bock, this beer is absolutely terrible. Our rating system won’t allow me to give it a 1 mug unless it is undrinkable, which it is not, so I’ll give it 1.5 mugs here, 2 on the board. I can’t believe this came from New Glarus. The bottle says it’s a “Wisconsin Style Honey Bock, easy going and more approachable than its traditional dark German cousin.” Well, there is no fucking way this is a bock, and I demand a DNA test to prove this is related to any dark German cousins. I’ve often praised New Glarus in the past for its quality beers, and I reserve the right to expose this one harshly for what it isn’t. The only words I can find to describe this I have to borrow from my teenage daughter:

OMFG WTF? This beer got pwn’d! Epic fail </3

Reviewed by Jug Dunningan on January 18, 2010.
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