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St. Nikolaus Bock Bier - Pennsylvania Brewing Company

Not Rated.
St. Nikolaus Bock BierSt. Nikolaus Bock Bier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

350 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 350
Reviews: 203
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 12.15%
Wants: 75
Gots: 20 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pennsylvania Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Bock |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Munich and various roasted malts give it a very malty, rich flavor with a hint of burnt flavor. 100% imported Hallertau hops, moderate bitterness and aroma.

(Beer added by: SheepNutz on 12-03-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 350 | Reviews: 203 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cooch69
4.88/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice deep mahogany with some ruby red highlights. The head on this one is really tiny. Less than a quarter inch of off white/tan head which leaves a nice ring around the edges for the length of the drink.

Nose on this one gets the senses going.
At first dry and roasted followed by nuts, mostly filberts. A nice dose of caramelized and brisk malt snapiness. Some brown sugar caps it all off for a wonderfully complex nose.

I've had this one two years ago as I could,nt find it last year. So I knew what to expect when I poured this one. Just a rediculious amount of goodness is contained in this bottle. My first sip almost brought me to my knees.

Really dry roasted and nutty at first. This one turns out to be semi-sweet with flavors of caramel, brown sugar, cocoa powder and even a slight bit of banana.

The mouthfeel on this one is a solid medium. The carbonation was perfectly in sync as well.

This is the definition of a winter session beer. For the colder months of the year, especially here in the good old northern US of A this beer has a nice solid body and tons of delicious flavor, yet is so drinkable at 7.5% abv. it is dangerous.

Enjoy this one in front of the fireplace and forget the rest of the night.

cooch69, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of VOW22
4.93/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a tall pilsner glass from a 12oz.brown long neck bottle.

Pours beautiful clear ruby red color,thick/rocky tan head.Good retention with lots of lace sticking on the sides of the glass,lots of strings of tiny bubbles racing towards the top of the glass.

A delightful fruity and spicy aroma,woody,very malty with a sweet carmell/roasty/light burnt,smoke and hints of chocolate,very complex and inviting. Addicting nose. Can't seem to keep my nose out of this beer. Ah.

A delicious,complex taste,malty and sweet carmell/toffee tastes, also
chocolate,a bit nutty,a nice tartness,finishes crisp,clean with a lingering spice.

A medium mouthfeel,very creamy and a treat for the palate.
Very tasty and enjoyable.I will drink this all nigh, but will have to watch the ABV does not sneak up on me. This beer gives me something to look foward to every Christmas season. A built in X-Mas gift for anyone looking to purchase something for me this holiday season. This is a must try for everybody. You need to try this Seasonal Christmas Superstar from Penn Brewery.

VOW22, Nov 23, 2011
Photo of imperialking
4/5  rDev +1.3%

imperialking, Nov 22, 2011
Photo of wfpalm
4/5  rDev +1.3%

wfpalm, Nov 22, 2011
Photo of ROGUE16
4/5  rDev +1.3%

ROGUE16, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of oline73
4/5  rDev +1.3%

oline73, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of rudzud
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jlindros for sharing this bottle with me. This is batch 002 from 2006 and was brewed back before the brewery closed and reopened. Poured into a tulip.

A - Pours a cloudy garnet with a light white head that leaves spotty clouding and a little side lacing.

S - Nice fruits and sweet malts as well as older hops. Brown sugar, molasses, and light chocolate.

T - Very nice and complex. Front has alot of smooth, sweet darker fruits that have really mellowed with aging. Past them is more sticky malt sweetness followed by older hops.

M - Nice carbonation for something thats 5 years old. Its somehow light and crisp!

O - Really enjoyed this older beer. Glad I got to try it from jlindros at his place. Aged very well considering the ABV.

rudzud, Nov 10, 2011
Photo of jlindros
4.18/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch 002 thanks to Noslenwerd, it's been sitting in my fridge for a while, and finally found a good time to break it out. This one was from the era before they were shut down and re-opened.

Hazy super dark molasses ruby brown color just hints of light, pretty much no head.

Nose has a nice aged bock, lots of aged malts soft and complex, lots of dark fruit, huge raisin, fig, date, touch of hazelnut and vanilla, brown sugar and molasses, some darker wheats, hint of cocoa, and touch of booze and esters.

Taste is similar to the nose, lots of fruit with brown sugar candi and brandy soaked raisin, plum, fig, a bit nutty. Then soft aged malts, complex and malty with hints of dark wheat. Slight cocoa and vanilla, semi sweet brown sugar and molasses. Nice aged flavor, touch of booze and esters. Finish gets slightly bitter with slight dryness but a bit sticky, touch of black tea with the bitterness, dark fruits and lingering nutty soft malts.

Mouth is med bodied, very soft and almost creamy, decent carb for being quite a few years old.

Overall pretty good, great aged soft malts, nice dark fruits, complex, aged well. Really hits the spot when looking for a good doppelbock style.

jlindros, Nov 05, 2011
Photo of drabmuh
4.28/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I took this from Thorpe429 when he wasn't looking. Poured into a Bock glass, there is too such a thing look it up.

Beer is dark brown and mostly clear. Thin tan head, big bubbles are stuck to the bottom of the glass like they are waiting for a checkered flag to wave to tell them that's it's OK to go.

Aroma is mild, malty, good.

Beer is medium in body and really smooth. Mildly malty but not overly sweet. Easy drinking, great mouthfeel. A really wonderful bock, truly so.

drabmuh, May 24, 2011
Photo of Thorpe429
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks yet again to G311 for sending this to me just because he could. I owe you, sire. Currently the #1 Bock. After having it, I concur that it deserves the title. Served in a wine glass.

Pours a clear tawny-brown color with an average, creamy tan head with good spotty lacing as it moves down the glass. The nose carries through some heavy malt character. Brown sugar, caramel, chocolate, molasses, toast, and a hint of a nutty character come through. The flavor hits hard on the brown sugar and molasses plus some bread. Light hop presence in the background. Flavor is moderately sweet and has an average length through the finish. Lit bitterness. Smooth and creamy medium body with light carbonation. Really a fantastic version of the style. Thanks again, Vince!

Thorpe429, May 21, 2011
Photo of mdaschaf
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear, very deep ruby/mahogany color, when held up to the light, the red comes through a lot more. About one finger of head formed and reduced down to a ring of foam. Little bits of lacing remain.

S: Some caramel malt and grains, there is a sweetness as well and a little bit of dark fruit. Opens up a bit as it warms.

T: Nice malt flavors. The dark fruit is more prominent than the aroma, the caramel flavor is quite strong as well. Has a doughy/bready flavor on the aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied, very smooth mouthfeel. Slightly sticky finish.

O: Very nice Bock, really easy to drink. Nice representation of the style.

mdaschaf, Mar 24, 2011
Photo of DefenCorps
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another 75 cent beer. I could get quite used to this. After yesterday's disaster at work, I better drink something cheap 'cos I'm lucky I still have a job.

The neck label denotes that this is the 20th year of PBC, which would make this a 2010 winter release? Clear with a mild haze, this is a deep reddish brown with a dense, light brown head with good retention. Lacing is minimal. This looks good.

The nose is rich, bready and fruity. Rather like fruitcake with raisins, brown sugar, toffee and vanilla. I'm guessing there's some Munich malt here, it's got that intoxicatingly complex signature of this malt with a darker, more caramelized character. No hops are detected. The palate opens with a blend of burnt sugar, a little vanilla and a moderate fruitiness. Despite this, it doesn't really _taste_ too sweet, and my guess would be that the burnt sugar bitterness has something to do with it. The bready character I picked out on the nose isn't really noticeable on the palate, though there is plenty of malt complexity - brown sugar, burnt sugar, caramel, a little toffee and a little butterscotch too. Drying on the finish with some toffee and burnt sugar bitterness, this beer has a medium body and is rather excessively carbonated for my liking. Still, this is a great bock, though in many ways, it's closer to a dopplebock.

DefenCorps, Jan 26, 2011
Photo of billab914
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Alesmith pint glass. It poured a dark caramel color with a very thin and fizzy head barely covering the beer. The head completely faded away rather quickly unfortunately.

The aroma has a big malty presence with caramel being the most dominant. I get some bready qualities to it with a little bit of some fruity, cherry like notes as well.

The taste also showcases the maltiness throughout the flavor. It starts out with more of the bready and malty flavor along with just a hint of bitterness. As you get to the finish it shows more sweetness to it with caramel and cherry flavors coming through.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, it had some very nice flavors to it and it doesn't hurt that it's one of my favorite styles. A pretty solid beer and was a great choice to drink while watching some football this afternoon.

billab914, Jan 16, 2011
Photo of brendanbeer
2.93/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

barcade in brooklyn. on tap.

a. dark brown, little head. at first is appealing, but the head soon dissolves into nothing, and it looks less than satisfactory.

s. not much, spicy bock notes... a little.

t. also not much. mellow spicy bock with slight malt and yeasty vibe. not much hop balance. unimpressed.

m. average beer mouthfeel, a little smoother and mellower.

d. easy to drink. im not sure what my "average" 3 is... but its closer to "not impressed" territory. its not something i would pay for and be excited about. but, regardless, cheers!

brendanbeer, Jan 03, 2011
Photo of OneDropSoup
2.65/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured into a stemmed tulip: Just translucent, dark brown with nice ruby highlights & a thin, bubbly collar, just barely a wisp of head.

Nice smell -- lightly roasty chocolate, some dark licorice, & just a little coffee. Yum! Very clear malt smell, good stuff.

Huh. Taste is a bit of a letdown: a little watery, even mineral or aluminum, with some vaguely roasted notes hanging around. Even at a pretty reasonable ABV, the alcohol comes through too strongly. Man, that sucks! I was hoping for a nice, full malt taste, it's like the bottom just dropped out of this one. Aftertaste is like weak coffee, but that you got stuck with the grounds at the same time, slightly charred.
A little caramel sneaks in, but that's it, that's the high point.

Mouthfeel is thin & watery, & leaves behind a kind of astringent feeling.

Wow, what a curveball. I've had this in the past & loved it, & the aroma was right where I remembered it, but the taste was really lacking - in just plain wrong, too! Don't know if I got a bad bottle, but this in no way lives up to my memory of it.

EDIT: As I was rinsing out the bottle, I noticed a crescent of white residue on the bottom. I don't know if this had something to do with it not being up to snuff, but if it did, I'd hold the brewer accountable for that.

OneDropSoup, Dec 30, 2010
Photo of scootny
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cola brown with a light beige head. Decent retention and lacing on the sides. Very clear but still opaque. Smell has notes of toffee and sweet roasted malts. Some banana tinged fruity yeast esters. A bit of plum wine. Mild earth. Taste had toffee and brown bread fused into a roasted grain coffee. Sweet fruity desserts with light spice. Coffee gets bigger toward the finish with a faint sweet alcohol flourish. A bit of sourness. Bitterness flows into tea leafiness and leaves a dry caramel graham with toasted biscuits. Feel is light and crisp with spot on carbonation. Super drinkable. This is a great winter beer but it is so good that anytime is a fine time for this brew. A real winner and something to seek out.

scootny, Dec 30, 2010
Photo of beerphan
3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle -> american pint

Pours a dark brown with some chestnut highlights A small head recedes quickly to a starred puddle of dish suds. Only some small dots of lace.

Nose: Some charred malts, caramel, candy

Full bodied. Huge malt blast up front with charred grains and caramel mixing. Light molasses and candy sugar add to the sweetness. A balancing spicy bitterness fights a loosing battle against the plentiful sweetness. Finished very boozy and warm.

This beer seems to be right on the style, which I am still acquiring a taste.

beerphan, Dec 26, 2010
Photo of dmamiano
3.35/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

fairly dark brown with a decent tan head that left some lacing behind.
Malt dominated in the nose as expected.
taste was pretty good, not as 'big" in the malt as I expected though. Hints of burnt sugar, fruts but seemed to be a bit thin on the mouthfeel

dmamiano, Dec 26, 2010
Photo of dtivp
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy cola brown with a very small light tan head no lacing on the glass.

Aroma of caramel and some malt and dark fruit.

Taste is very smooth not sweet caramel with lightly roasted malt and a hint of clove.

Mouthfeel was medium / light with light carbonation, very smooth and not bitter.

This is a nice seasonal bock, a very good Christmas beer.

dtivp, Dec 24, 2010
Photo of confer
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Chestnut -brown with a fluffy tan head.Traces of th ehead remain after a few minutes.
S-Smells like a piece of caramel.
T- A copy of tastes are apparent. There is a hint of smokiness and alsoi a small chocalate'
MD- A bit on the thin side for a bock. But everything else makes a very good bock. It goes down way to easy. It is a great thing that these guys are up and running agian.

confer, Dec 21, 2010
Photo of Kolsch
3.55/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap: Headkeepers, Greensburg PA

Appearance: Dark mahogony cola like. Even as the bartender did a pretty decent pour on this, virtually no head to speak of. Carbonation problem?

Smell: dark fruit and caramel smell. Tastes like this is going to be a very sweet beer.

Taste: not as sweet as it smells. Dark malt imparts dried fruits, chocolate, molasses and a hint of cinnamon. As the beer warmed, it became blander in taste. Carbonation needs upped on this. Alcohol was well hidden and could drink a couple of these no problem.

Overall though, I wish this was amped as I felt the malts were too muted. I was little let down on this but would have again. I definitely want to try St Niks cousin the "Reserve" to do a comparison.

Kolsch, Dec 20, 2010
Photo of david18
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had a number of sixteen ounce glasses of this at the Amsterdam Ale House in Manhattan. I think Penn brewing almost borders a macrobrewery and has been around forever in Pennsylvania, where my wife is from. However, with Pennsylvania's german tradition (the state and the brewery) I was not surprised that they made a bock that's as good as any american made bock that I've had.

Color is very dark, even for a bock with a dark but not very carbonated head. Aroma is alcoholly but that's kind of what you'd expect from a bock. The flavor as well had some kick to it but also very well balanced with other flavors such as bread, raisons and yeast. The bar serves weaker beers in 16 oz glasses an stronger beers in 12 oz. Somehow, the st. nik made it into the former category. You can get drunk quickly on sixteen ounce glasses of this beer, which is very easy to drink.

david18, Dec 19, 2010
Photo of DrDemento456
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pours a hazy dark brown/amber with very little head.

S - Slight caramel and roasted malts with a bit of bitter hops. Smells strong.

T - Wow creamy without being too bitter! The roast and caramel come great in taste next to hops and finishes creamy with little bite. Tasty bock

M - Medium to heavy. Kind of a sipper.

D - I liked this one over the private reserve since it has less body and more taste. Great overall beer!

DrDemento456, Dec 15, 2010
Photo of StretchZep
5/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I love this beer. It is unbelievably smooth and rich with just the right amount of tartness to keep it from being a chocolate smoothie! I love this beer so much that I find myself only having 1 or 2 at the most when I feel I am actually worthy of the reward. It is that good trust me. "-) Makes winter here in Ohio a little more bearable!

StretchZep, Nov 20, 2010
Photo of muskiecf
4.58/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I am not normaly a darker beer fan...but this is the bomb. Smooth with a roasted carmel sweetness, not too sweet, just right in my book. I dont have many other bocks to compare it with as most I've tried I didn't much care for. This brew is something special. Thanks to Tom Pastorius for bring the Penn Brewery back to greatness. This brew will make for a great holiday season! lol If you enjoy lagers that aren't pussy beers...try this, it just might surprise you.

muskiecf, Nov 03, 2010
St. Nikolaus Bock Bier from Pennsylvania Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 350 ratings.