Trader Joe's Hofbrau Bock - Trader Joe's Brewing Company
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Ratings: 264 | Reviews: 187 | Display Reviews Only:
3.43/5 rDev +2.4%
Best by 6/10/12.
Pours a clear gold with a 1 inch foamy off-white head that settles to a thin film on top of the beer. Small streaks and dots of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt/grain, grassy notes, and a light fruity aroma. Taste is of malt/grain, grassy hops, and some light fruit flavors. There is a mild bitterness on the palate after each sip that quickly fades. This beer has a lower level carbonation with a slightly crisp but medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but the mouthfeel is a bit off in my opinion.
02-15-2012 01:58:27 | More by UCLABrewN84
3.68/5 rDev +9.9%
A: The beer is relatively hazy yellowish orange in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a short off white head that quickly died down, leaving lacing on the surface and a thin collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light aromas of sweet malts are present in the nose along with notes of earthy yeast and spicy hops.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste is a little sweet and has notes of bready and caramel malts along with notes of spicy hops. Slight bits of alcohol are noticeable.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is quite drinkable for a mailbock and is a relatively good representation of the style.
06-24-2013 00:53:36 | More by metter98
3.88/5 rDev +15.8%
Polished 24-karat gold with bright bumblebee borders and a passable looking crown of bone colored foam that hangs around long enough. A few small scraps of bubble bath-like lace manage to stick.
The nose is appropriately bockish. It's pale malty with a moderate musky earthiness from the Hallertau hops. If the aroma translates to the palate, we'll have ourselves a pretty decent version of the style.
TJ's HB gets it right. It's relatively mild with respect to flavor intensity, but as someone who doesn't usually groove on bocks of any stripe, that's more positive than negative. Besides, a bit of warming should help (note: it does).
Modestly sweet pale malts? Check. A balancing amount of earthy-herbal Euro hoppiness? Check. Mid-range ABV? Check. Although the beer's lager yeast cleanliness deprives it of some personality, its easy drinkability cannot be denied. Gotta go with the higher taste score here.
The mouthfeel has more positive than neg... wait just a doggone minute... it has no real negatives. A lush creaminess and plenty of mouthfilling expansion earn the 4.0 with ease. A highlight for sure.
Trader Joe's is a pretty good place to buy beer if you're on a budget. Hofbrau Bock is an excellent example if you're a fan of the style. Hell's bells, it's good beer even if you aren't.
04-13-2011 12:20:14 | More by BuckeyeNation
3.63/5 rDev +8.4%
amber color with a nice head of white that reached a height of around an inch and half before settling back down to earth and leaving just thin lacing in its wake, but for the style nice and a classic look. aroma of sweet bready malts and a classic caramel aroma that was cut with a touch of grain. nice and clean with a semi crisp feel and an overall nice balanced body that really seem to let the taste pop
12-04-2011 05:04:53 | More by mikesgroove
3.68/5 rDev +9.9%
Two finger thick white head with good retention but little lacing on a clear golden amber body. Aroma is malty with gingerbread and a light spicey note. Flavor is more of the same with full malt backbone and gingerbread notes. Fairly smooth with medium body and light to moderate carbonation. A flavorful beer and a nice version of the style, just not very memorable.
04-06-2012 23:29:42 | More by kylehay2004
3.08/5 rDev -8.1%
This beer pours out as a golden yellow color with a clumpy white head. The aroma that this brew gives off is of some fresh malts and just a little bit of grassy hops. The taste of the beer is a little weak I thought. Mostly a hefty amount of malts with not much else to back it up. The mouthfeel was decent. Very drinkable and on the lighter side. It's a decent brew but it's just not for me.
04-15-2011 22:56:09 | More by Knapp85
3.45/5 rDev +3%
Served in a Sam Adams sensory pint glass.
My first Trader Joe's beer. It pours a clear straight amber topped by a short-lived finger of white foam. The nose comprises caramel, orange peel, flowers, wheat, buttery biscuits, and rye bread. The taste doesn't stray too far from this formula, with the orange coming through a bit more, joined by a sorta clove-ish flavor. The body is a heavy light, with a light carbonation and a very fluid feel. Overall, a bit on the flimsy side, but a pretty decent and drinkable beer.
11-30-2010 03:39:58 | More by TMoney2591
3.05/5 rDev -9%
Pours a high-clarity golden orange, initial thin head of foam that faded fast to nothing. Barely any carb visible in a Duvel tulip, maybe one bubble per second emanating from the etching. First whiff was skunky hops, five minutes later it's puffed wheat cereal. Sweet grains, rice, corn.
Sweet with some cleansing bitterness and unexpected carbonation. All I can muster is candy corn, maybe some factory made square caramel candy, if you close your eyes and free associate. Some type of hops are in there, giving it some German credbility, but ultimately it's kind of flaccid. Pretty dull candy flavored alcohol delivery device...
05-21-2009 01:19:39 | More by emerge077
3.4/5 rDev +1.5%
A - Poured out a clear, bubbly, golden orange with a white, bubbly, foamy, two-finger head. It left little to no lace.
S - It smelled of grains and caramel. Not much else for aroma.
T - It tasted of sweet caramel with a nice bitter hop kick. Grain flavors and a slight molasses touch add a nice backbone.
M - It was crisp and sharp with a mildly dry finish. A light bodied brew.
D - This is a pretty good brew from Trader Joe's. It is not a bad deal for a buck a bottle.
06-20-2009 00:43:23 | More by zeff80
3.88/5 rDev +15.8%
You really can't go wrong with these Trader Joe's beers. At the price they're nice everyday beers. I quite often go to the fridge and find only beers that I want to hang onto for a tasting, or more basic stuff that just doesn't have enough flavor. Up steps Joe. And they're great for taking to parties where you never know what you'll find. And, they make great intro beers for the non-initiated as well. But OK... The Hofbrau Bock pours a deep amber with golden highlights. It'd be nice if it was a little darker, but it certainly fits the style as is. The aroma is restrained and clean, only revealing a hint of honeyish malt and a suggestion of floral and grassy hops in the background. The flavor is fuller, of course, and the maltiness is like honey-drizzled bread. It opens up as it warms, and the toastiness really becomes apparent in the finish. It's balanced by a firm bitterness, and along with the alcohol, it finishes dry and spicy with spicy and gently grassy hops swirling here and there as it slowly fades. Could it be better? Yes. A bit more malt girth at the center would really help to focus it, and then round out the overall flavor. But as it is, it's still a really nice, balanced and flavorful bock. I won't say I could drink 50 of these, because we all know what 50 eggs did to Luke, but I could easily drink 3, and maybe 4 of these in a night. So, overall, not great, but pretty good.
07-03-2009 21:50:51 | More by NeroFiddled
3.65/5 rDev +9%
12 oz brown bottle with a batch # and freshness date on the back label.
A- A quick froth quickly turns into a thin pasty looking off white lace. Deep golden hue show a good clarity off.
S- Big grassy aroma of hops and malt. Spicy from the alcohol and hops as well ... relatively clean.
T&M- Semi-thick chewy body with ample crisp and smooth features. Spicy palate of bitter hops and a slightly fuming alcohol. Solid pale malt palate with a slightly rough biscuity character. Big waves of herbal hops and toasted malt run through the semi-sweet finish.
D- This beer is not half bad. Quite a deal @ 5.29 a six-pack. Nothing earth shattering but certainly worth the try ... a good beer to mix things up a bit but not something I'd stick to all night.
01-11-2006 02:56:54 | More by Jason
3.9/5 rDev +16.4%
Some may not like the sweet and raspy taste, but it's clean, well-made and rich with flavor. Quite attractive with a big head, golden amber color, and nice lacing down the glass. Tart and malt at the same time. Some bitter aftertaste, but it's a nice counterpoint to the malt.
I have been drinking this stuff for years, so might as well make it official. When so many average beers in San Diego go for over 9 bucks a six, this is almost half that. Especially a bargain for a strong flavorful bock. Even better, it stands up well to big hops as a mixer with the other half of that IPA bomber.
10-06-2011 06:03:04 | More by mactrail
3.05/5 rDev -9%
Pours a full, clear gold color and is topped by a frothy thin tan head that disappears fairly quickly. The aroma is grainy smelling and has a bit of alcohol in the finish. The aroma is pretty subdued, and because of that fairly disappointing. The taste is sweet up front with a solid sweet malt taste that has a hint of toffee to it. There is perhaps a hint of spicy hop notes here in the flavor and a bit of bitterness in the finish. This is clearly a well made beer, but it just is lacking in flavor and depth.
02-26-2005 02:26:49 | More by Gueuzedude
3.7/5 rDev +10.4%
12 oz. bottle,
A: Pours the lightest of ambers with a medium-full white head. Very good retention, spotty lacing.
S: Lots of bready malt, almost like a boozy Oktoberfest. Smells a little meaty on which smelling I was taken aback.
T: More strong malt flavour, a little cloyingly sweet at times, but works itself out as it warms. Light noble hopping on the back end.
M: Medium-full body, fairly long aftertaste for the style, creamy, pretty smooth.
O: Got quite a bit better as I drank, my inital impressions were none to good. Solid example of the style at very good price point as the majority of the TJ's beers I've had have been.
10-19-2011 02:19:10 | More by Halcyondays
2.33/5 rDev -30.4%
33cl brown glass bottle acquired at Trader Joe's in Los Angeles, California, and served into a Hard Rock cafe hefeweissbier glass. Reviewed live.
A: Pours a 1.5 finger head of fair cream, nice thickness, and good retention. Colour is a transparent copper.
Sm: Cream, light milk (I know...), and very light caramel. A mild strength aroma.
T: Tastes like a German festbier - which isn't really a good thing per se. Very simple barley, malt, and light caramel in a very generic fest combination. Meant for consumption by the hoi polloi. It's decently built and balanced, but far from special.
Mf: Very sharp affront, with smoothness and wetness to boot. Isn't tailored to the flavours of the body at all.
Dr: It's drinkable enough, but the ABV does come through more than it should and it feels produced for the mass.
08-22-2011 05:27:06 | More by kojevergas
3.53/5 rDev +5.4%
02/26/05- Purchased at Trader Joe's in San Francisco, CA
Presentation- 12oz bottle with a batch date on the back label of 1/31/05. Poured into my Ayinger weisen glass.
Appearance- Fat thick clumpy white head, light copper pour and slight lacing.
Smell- Heavy malt and caramel scents.
Taste- Seems more like a lager rather than a bock. Hearty malt and a tad of hops. Definite caramel flavors throughout.
Mouthfeel- Moderate to light carbonation.
Drinkability- Fairly impressed with this one, but not as a bock. Good sample brew.
02-26-2005 23:21:31 | More by GClarkage
District of Columbia
3.53/5 rDev +5.4%
12 oz bottle poured into a pilsner. I always enjoy the TJ beers in this label for being adequate examples of their styles for a very reasonable price, and this one isn't any different. Served in a pilsner glass.
A: Straw golden color with a dense white head that has great retention and a little lacing. Lots of active carbonation.
S: Not very remarkable. Clean, slightly grassy, lemon, spicy smell.
T: Malty, slightly sweet. Light bodied, smooth carbonation. Bready body with a floral hop taste to balance the malt. The finish leaves a slightly watery taste in the mouth. No strong alcohol presence. Not the best bock, but very drinkable and great purchase for the price.
04-02-2008 04:29:03 | More by yourefragile
3.5/5 rDev +4.5%
Pours a clear golden color.
Smell is sweet and clean with whiff of dry hops to it. Bit of alcohol and butterscotch in the scent.
Taste is sweet and fairly strong in the hops department sharp bitterness in the aftertaste. Tastes like a stiffly hopped lager.
Mouthfeel is good.
Not a bad beer, I suspect that this is Gordon Biersch Blond Bock relabeled.
01-23-2005 23:45:24 | More by Zorro
3.65/5 rDev +9%
I want beer...gimme! Single 12 ounce bottle, on to the beer:
Closer to ornagish gold in color with a translucent body. Head on top is okay, lacing is spotty around, retention is poor. The nose is pleasant....well, it's not a booze mess that I've come to expect from the style. I get some vanilla extract aromas and cream that are easily distinguishable from the blanket aroma of subtle grasses and pale malts. I'm surprised so far.
Now we're coming a little back towards reality. It's got booze that isn't afraid to show off, but it also has a pretty good taste. It's a vanilla extract bomb! The alcohol has a peppery sensation in the mouth, which does keep the sweetness from going overboard. Hints of bubblegum and clove work into the formula. The beer has a medium feel with a spicy sensation.
Trader Joe's Hofbrau Bock is a fair attempt at the bock style. Coupled with being less than a buck a bottle, this is one to try.
05-09-2011 06:23:39 | More by DoubleJ
3.08/5 rDev -8.1%
Clear light golden. Slight, wispy white head. Moderate lace. Light malts. Sweet aroma overall. Not much hop presence, but that's o.k. Would like some more bready malt aromas though. Taste starts with light caramel malts and a hay like accent. Nothing special here, but nothing bad either. The mouthfeel is agreeable enough. Lightly carbonated. Medium-full obdy. Pretty easy to drink, but not as malty as I like my maibocks. Average beer here.
08-09-2006 02:39:49 | More by Bighuge
3.1/5 rDev -7.5%
Can't believe these guys have freshness dating, but some more prestigous brews dont. Gold pour, fluffy head. Smells crisp, slightly hoppy.
Taste, a little bland, the aroma made me think this would be super dry and relatively hoppy for style, but instead, it tasted like it had diminished carbonation and by virtue, any of the prickly hop spice feel you'll get in a good version of this style. Good price on this stuff though.
11-04-2010 00:24:04 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Trader Joe's Hofbrau Bock from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 264 ratings.