30th Anniversary- Charlie, Fred And Ken's Bock - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
30th Anniversary- Charlie, Fred And Ken's Bock30th Anniversary- Charlie, Fred And Ken's Bock

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

339 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 339
Hads: 516
Avg: 3.93
pDev: 12.21%
Wants: 22
Gots: 66 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Maibock / Helles Bock |  8.30% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: IrieJackalope on 05-29-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 339 | Hads: 516
Photo of JDizzle
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 25.4 oz bomber into a Imperial Pint glass.

After a money cork pop, the aggressive pour leads to a head that takes off like a mf'r. Bright White foamy head with a light hazy copper color that looks good. Smells like a biscuit with fresh sliced pears on top. A little Belgian tinge to it-which I don't like. Not my usual style, but I'm trying to venture out and explore. Really nice compare to a Lagunitas Bock I had! Taste is real bready, spicy. a banana flavor kinda comes out, but refreshing.
Not my usual style, but glad I picked this up. Can't wait to try the other styles in this series.

 601 characters

Photo of Haybeerman
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Gold/amber color; slightly hazy. Poured a 3 finger dense off-white head with good retention to a cap. Laced in wavy patches.

S: Big biscuity malt and sweet baked bread. Light grassy aroma.

T: Follows the nose; sweet, bready. Light-colored fruit character ahead of a warm and lighlty bitter finish.

M: Medium body. Moderate carbonation. Sweet and smooth, rich and warming. Though sweetness lingers, not cloying.

O: Nice malt character and some hop balance. A bit sweet and a little warm. All good for style.

 513 characters

Photo of ckeegan04
3.66/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Golden amber in color with a thick off-white head. Head is a solid three fingers and slowly recedes to about one finger of foam. Beer is clean and clear.

S - Lots of biscuty maly and toasted white bread in the nose. Just a hint of sweetness comes through with a touch of caramelized sugar. Very bready aroma.

T - Sweet and bready up front. Light fruitiness as well. Lots of biscuit and just a bit of toasted bread. The fruitiness comes through more as the beer wams with a touch of pear and a little peach.

M - Light to medium bodied with a moderate cabonation. Sweetness sticks long after the drink.

O - A nice beer here with a zesty feel and nicely moderated sweetness. Always fun to come across beers that show off their malts more than anything else.

 762 characters

Photo of warnerry
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours slightly hazy copper color with three finger off-white head. Head is creamy and has good retention.

S - Lots of toasted malts with some nice florals. A faint sweetness as well.

T - Similar to smell there is a nice toasted malt presence, faint sweetness and a hop presence that I didn't get from the nose. Really nice. Nice hop presence for a year old beer.

M - Medium, slightly sticky and creamy mouthfeel that finishes pretty dry.

O - This doesn't seem to get the same respect as the other 30th anniversary beers, but I really enjoyed it. A hoppier than average Maibock, which is a style I really enjoy.

 618 characters

Photo of Kinsman
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this bottle sitting in the cellar for a while but felt it'd be better to drink it sooner rather than later so here it goes. Pours a hazy orange body with a bone white head thats dense and slightly sticky and fills up the upper third of the glass.

Aroma is notably sweet up front with hints of toffee but this sweetness steps aside to reveal a strong note of toasted malt. The mild sweetness sticks around in the background though while a nice floral hop character rounds things out, albeit a bit faded.

Bread and grain set up the base for the flavor while nice caramel malt character adds a sweeter note. Hops a slightly floral but probably a bit faded as this bottle is over a year old now. Finishes with just a slight bitter kick and a little umphh from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and pleasantly creamy. Overall, The whole Sierra 30 series was a great success in my opinion. Each beer presented you with a solid representation of topnotch American craft beer and we owe so much to Sierra Nevada and their friends. Not sure about calling this an "Imperial Helles" but hey, I'll happily drink this tasty brew no matter what they call it.

 1,160 characters

Photo of meatyard
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a mostly clear, golden color with ample, visible carbonation and a short, dense, fluffy white head.

While not especially aromatic, the smell is crisp and bready.

The taste is clean, crisp, malty, sweet and balanced. Quite tasty and easy to drink.

Mouthfeel is medium towards thin with moderate carbonation and tends toward dry even with the sweetness.

Overall: I found it pleasant to drink but not overly impressed.

 425 characters

Photo of JayQue
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice!!!! Don't know why I waited so long to drink this one. Pours a hazy dark orange color from a corked and caged bottle into my Bud Select Pilsner glass. Not much in the way of lacing....big frothy white head with decent retention.

Mild aroma of caramel malt and floral (hops?).

Tastes good!!! Bready and caramel malts, floral hoppiness and a warming touch of alcohol.

Mouthfeel is a bit light...the alcohol may be involved in thinning this beer out a bit. Still solid enough...the alcohol is warming and the crispness is there also.

This is a good beer. I am in the process of drinking the whole bomber myself...enjoying every sip.

 638 characters

Photo of Thads324
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

nicely presented, corked bottle I have been saving for a while.

A : pours a slightly hazy golden orange. A nice thick and tight slightly off white head. really nice spiderweb lacing all over.

S : the smell is musty and biscuity. some bread and a solid german yeast aroma in the back end.

T: starts a bit sweet and has that nice light bread malt flavor. A tinge of honey sweetness and a good hop bitterness. The hops have a good earthy flavor that stands out better as the beer warms up a bit. Finishes with a good german yeast that is mild and enjoyable.

M : nicely carbed and full flavored. very easy to drink and very little boozy for its high alcohol. finishes crisp and smooth.

A really nice beer. I wasn't expecting it to be as drinkable. Not much else to say here, but I really liked it.

 800 characters

Photo of eclaycamp
3.46/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I’ve been hanging onto this one for awhile, and with the temperatures in the triple digits all day it felt like today would be a perfect day to bust out a Helles, even if it’s of the imperial variety.

The cork pops with a nice sound, and the beer pours quite clear. I’m using a flared lip pilsner glass for this affair. The color is actually darker than I expected, as it comes across as more of a deeper gold than that of a light straw. Classic pillowy head that offers nice lacing and sticks around for days.

The beer has a nice bready characteristic followed by crisp lager sourdough character. It comes across as somewhat muted.

The first taste gives a sense of lively carbonation. Mouthfeel is light and refreshing. You just start to get a sense of the grainy malt character when alcohol takes over. There’s also some alcohol warming in the finish, along with some alcohol character. That’s one of the problems with this style of beer – be it imperial pils, helles, or whatever – there’s just no where for the alcohol to go, so it feels in some respects like a regular beer spiked with vodka. That’s not to say this beer isn’t well crafted – it is – but I’m just not the biggest fan of the imperial style when it comes to lighter beers. I do like the initial impression that this beer gives. There’s a wonderful grainy malt flavor that shines through. Unfortunately, for me anyway, it’s just obliterated by the alcohol in the finish. The more you drink it the less pronounced the alcohol character is, as it’s taken over by a sort of honey malt sweetness that I suspect is a byproduct of the high alcohol levels – alcohol sweetness in other words.

Overall this is a very nice beer and a rather unique take on the Helles style. It’s crisp and clean, though the heavy alcohol profile may not be for everyone.

 1,855 characters

Photo of Knapp85
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured out as a slightly hazy golden color. The head was pretty strong looking and left behind a nice scattered lacing. The smell of the beer had some aromas of grain and some sweet malt aromas. The taste of the beer had some bread flavors to it and a bit of citrusy fruits. The mouthfeel wasn't overly thick, somewhere around a medium body I'd say. Overall this brew was really good, Not my favorite of the series but pretty close.

 442 characters

Photo of gabedivision
3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a big bottle to a SA imperial snifter glass.

Looks good, clear burnt orange, reddish hue, 3 finger head, nice retention. Bready malts fill the nose then crisp citrus hops on the follow, with banana and apricot melt with plumes of alcohol throughout. Malt forward again on the tongue, then a caramel sugar rush,tastes like a trail mix of dehydrated fruits and nuts with a bitter sweet finish. Light body, crisp, sweet very sweet. This was a nice treat from a good friend, a nice enjoyable maibock.

 510 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.92/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light honey orange color with a 2 inch off-white head that fades to a thin cap. Random smears and streaks of foam stick to the glass on the drink down. Smells of sweet malt, bread, and light fruit aromas. Taste is of grape-like fruit flavors, honey, and sweet malt. The carbonation is a bit flat making for a slightly thick and sticky in the mouth. Overall, this is a good beer and the first of the 30th anniversary beers from Sierra Nevada I have had. I am looking forward to trying the other 3.

 504 characters

Photo of cdkrenz
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cellared at 43 degrees for 1 year.

A - Pours a crisp golden yellow with a hint of orange. The head is big and is an extremely pale tan color with nice frothiness and moderate stamina.

S - Slight fruit aroma amidst sweet malt.

T - It has a citrus note to it, but not that found with hops. More of an orangish mango flavor accenting the mild malts. There is a hinting at some hops as the brew wears on.

M - Watery feel with a slight coarseness in the end.

~ This is a beer that I wish I had not paid $12.49 for. I'd say this is a Helles worth about 2/3 of that. Either way, I have it and it is a decent beer, just not one I would seek out or suggest to a friend.

 666 characters

Photo of chinchill
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A bright light copper/amber body with an attractive creamy white head

S - Sweet and malty (pils?), with hints of bread, brown sugar, and spicy hops.

T - Malt flavors dominant, and the high ABV is nicely hidden. Tempered sweetness. True to style but enhanced flavor profile that has more boldness (although this isn't a bold beer) and complexity than usual.

M - Medium;light body and smooth, but with moderate-to-lively carbonation.

O - A hearty Helles bock. Normally, not one of my favorite styles but this beer was very pleasing and work work well as a session beer. Recommended for Maibock fans.

 608 characters

Photo of jsanford
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

C&C bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada 30th Anniversary Tulip.

A - Pours a hazy light copper with a 1-inch white head that dissipates to a slight pillow and ring, leaving behind a tiny bit of spotty lacing.
S - Sweet aromas of biscuit malt, honey, and caramel with a good amount of orange peel hops and a slightly spicy yeast profile.
T - Again, sweet is the operative word here, lots of caramel and honey malt with a candied orange peel hop character. Very smooth, with an ever-so-slight bitterness in the finish.
M - Slick and slightly creamy, with a medium-full mouth-feel and moderate carbonation. Slight burn in the finish from the +8% ABV, but it doesn't detract much.
O - A solid effort from a great brewery, I just wish I was more of a Bock fan so I could truly appreciate it.

 785 characters

Photo of WastingFreetime
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Reviewed from yesterday's notes.

I found a bomber of this recently at the walk in cooler at the store, and I have to assume that this has been sitting in the cooler all this time, as there is such a predominant hop presence in this brew. Lucky me!

Its very orange and has a big poofy solid head, smells like biscuits and incredible amounts of lemon / orange peel citric hops. Seriously, I have never smelled so much lemon hop without detecting any tropical fruit / pine tree hop scent before. Has the effervescent and refreshing mouthfeel of a pilsner, the hops of a Really Lemony IPA, and the bready scent and taste of a good bock. Despite having so much style confusion, I really like what has resulted. Well, maybe not the thin body so much. Could have been heftier.

 771 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Transcribed from notes dtd Sa, 13 Nov 2010. I was at TJ's, BTW!

It came with a thin white head with low retention. Color was a deep gold with NE-quality clarity. Midas would have been proud. Nose had a pleasant sweetness to it, but I also picked up some alcohol heat. Mouthfeel was slightly hot with a welcome effervescence to burn/wash out the day's previous indulgences. Sometimes H2O just does not do the trick. Taste was honey-like, but with a slight tang, probably of hops and with some heat. Finish was also slightly hot, simmering down to a glowing coal in the back of my throat. Frankly, this needed to age a while longer, IMHO.

 637 characters

Photo of ebrauser
3.46/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

App: Thick and creamy looking orange color with a heavy, cake-like, beige head.

Aroma: Fruity esters, grapefruit citrus hops and a little flowery and peppery.

Flavor: Sweet pale malts and European hops, though the hop character is not prominent. Caramel flavors in the malt with a touch of creamy sweetness. Thick and dry finish with almost no lingering tastes.

MF: Great body, goes down very smooth without abrasive tastes or a tongue-deadening bite.

 454 characters

Photo of csiewert
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a slightly hazy amber color with a finger of off white head that retains and laces well. The aroma has hints of honey, orange and floral notes, with a slight bit of maltiness. The taste starts malty sweet, with a hint of floral... followed by honey and a bite of bitterness. The mouthfeel is smooth with a very slight bit of over carbonation. Overall a good beer to try.

 386 characters

Photo of Arithmeticus
4.6/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured at basement temp in straight ale glass

A: 3-finger head; rich clear orange; good carbonation; decent lacing
S: beautiful sweet hoppy smell
T: very unusual; hops predominate; hints of plum; bitter, much like an IPA; fellow drinker suggested it was like a barleywine
M: heavy, but smooth

overall, quite an amazing beer; very difficult to describe, in part because of how hopped the genre is

 397 characters

Photo of CHickman
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasting review from 6/12/10; pours a hazy amber orange in color with a creamy 1 finger beige head that lasted a while; decent lacing that slides down fast.

Smells of malt, light caramel, faint hops, grains, barley or yeast, grass and corn or other euro macro-brew lagers.

Tastes of roasted malt, light caramel, floral hops, grains, barley, yeast, grass, corn, and a sweet alcohol taste like rum or beer aged in a wine barrel. Very nice German bock flavor, and nice traditional feel.

Mouthfeel is smooth and crisp, creamy on the tongue, with medium carbonation which is on the light side, and a medium body with a toasted grainy / malt finish.

An enjoyable beer that has good flavor and seems on par for the bock style, but not great flavor and what I had hoped for; a solid beer overall that was good, but nowhere near as good as the 30th Anniversary Stout, which I thought was an exceptional beer.

 906 characters

Photo of TheWhiskerReview
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy golden orange with a solid 1.5 finger white head which recedes quickly and leaves no lace.

The nose is rather delicate, with honey soaked biscuits and background notes of orange zest and hoppy flowers.

The palate's malt is creamy and mildly buttery but light in presence as it is quickly overtaken by the hoppy bitterness (a bit faded in character) and some big, peppery alcohol- flavors of orange blossom and more honeyed biscuit.

Much hoppier than a normal bock, as expected from SN, but the faded character makes me think I got a bottle that's a touch old. I'm not sure when this beer was released, but if it was a few years ago then I'm guessing this bottle most likely was in the store I bought it from since then. Not that it's bad, but I don't think this is a style of beer that's meant for aging.

 822 characters

Photo of TKEbeerman
3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Poured into my SA perfect pint, this bock pours a murky straw color with a billowing white capped head that is quickly to succeed to almost nothing.

S: At first pour the aroma is bold and sweet like honey. Very natural aroma like biscuit mixed with caramel malt.

T: The flavor is again like caramel covered biscuits. Very natural and bready. Nothing too deep, and a little thin in body and flavor.

MF: Mouthfeel is on the thin side. This beer would have benefited something a little bigger.

Overall, my least favorite of the 30's, but still a good beer. There isn't much you can do with a bock to satisfy the beer geek, and if you do Weihenstephaner and Ayinger have you beat!

 683 characters

Photo of akorsak
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 750 mL corked and caged bottle. In celebration of Sierra Nevada's 31st year (okay, I'm a little late to the party).

A: The golden bock has an orange radiance, brilliant despite a mild haze. The base of the glass is more translucent than the mouth, where things are a little darker. A 3 finger head, all off-white foam, is struggling to lace.

S: The lagerbier is bready, light with fruit aromas. Citrus is plentiful but the beer doesn't come across as a hoppy one.

T: There's the hoppiness, Smooth Hoperator taken up a few notches. Alongside the brilliant hops, biscuity malts are sweet and strong, adding fruitiness. The beer tastes very strong, a full bock that I'd prefer to think of as closer to a doppel. The body, despite the strength, is very smooth and light-tasting. The hops do seem to have an older taste to them, maybe a step or two off the original. Still good though.

M: The mouthfeel is a bold pairing of hops and bock, plenty of both aspects makes the beer work.

O: I went out of order on the series and it was a good choice. A full golden bock to get things starter properly.

 1,099 characters

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.43/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - uncaps with a vehement pop. Not a gusher but it sounded like it could have been. Pours a very effervescent tangerine color. Not sure of its clarity, the bead of bubbles is so intense it makes it hard to tell. Solid finger of flat white head, very batter-like. Excellent stick all around.

Aroma - sweet orangey citrus. Can't remember the last time I had a bock of any kind with this much hop character; nice.

Taste - big malty sweetness, though it leaves quickly in favor of the hops. Moderate bite with lots of fruity character. Orange mostly, some pithy grapefuit on the aftertaste. Slightly warming on the finish. Great stuff but could use a little more malt footprint.

Mouthfeel - good smoothness for the style. Awfully ramped up with carbonation. I suppose that will settle as it sits but it's disappearing fast.

Drinkability - more sessionable than any 8% brew oughtta be. We shared a box of oranges from our local wholesaler with folks we hung out with today (Easter Sunday), and this orange-forward beer was an ideal pick to celebrate the Resurrection and toast an end to Lent. Bring on the desserts once again.

 1,135 characters

30th Anniversary- Charlie, Fred And Ken's Bock from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 339 ratings.