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Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series) - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series)

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very good

363 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 363
Reviews: 287
rAvg: 4
pDev: 10.25%
Wants: 77
Gots: 13 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Maibock / Helles Bock |  8.70% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
We brew our Maibock to be hugely malty & subtly finished with a variety of continental hops, with an eye-pleasing russet brown color. Prosit!

2008 - 6.2%
2009 - 8.4%
2010 - 8.7%

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 04-30-1998)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series) Alström Bros
Ratings: 363 | Reviews: 287 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of fitzy84
3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Moan and Dove. The drink had a good sized head which laced away quickly. General look was a rich, murky, orange-like appearance. The aromas were a bit intriguing mixes of citrus smells and some malt. The taste had the above flavors mixed wonderfully in a great carbonated, medium body. What I liked about this drink was that it definitely had a lot going for it but it also had simple tastes and structure. Wicked good.

fitzy84, Apr 14, 2008
Photo of Martin2D
3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Perfect yellow with a large white head that retains quite well.

S - Malty, breadlike

T - A ton of alcohol with tastes of spices and even a little bit of fruit. There is a slight malty/wheaty aftertaste. Complexity follows the apparent alcohol, however.

M - Medium in carbonation and medium-light in body. Very warming alcohol on the way down.

D - Definitely a sipper because of the apparent alcohol content. There are some delicate flavors that match alongside

Martin2D, May 08, 2009
Photo of deejaydan
3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to Wyllder for this bottle.

It is a nice looking bottle... pours a nice lucious light amber color, with a short head. Wonderful color.

Aroma rich of Malts

Taste... well, This beer should be served at 45 degress or so. I tried it first fridge cold, and it had a very spicy, dry finish that didn't sit well with me. As it warmed, the malts came more into play.

Mouthfeel is slightly thick and clingy... and very nice

Drinkablity... as long as it's warmed slightly, it's good.. but served too cold.. that dry finish just rubs me wrong.

deejaydan, Jul 28, 2004
Photo of rhinos00
3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a weizen glass.

A- Pours a light golden amber. Perfect clarity. Produced three fingers width of frothy, foamy head after an aggressive pour. Good head retention. Thick lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Toasted malts along with a bit of caramel. Has a bready quality to it. Almost smells like wort when my friend is homebrewing. Has a slight fruit aroma to it.

T- Immediately a bit of fruit and caramel malts come forth. Really tastes just like the nose. Develops a bit and finishes with nice toasted malts and a bit sweetness.

M- Light to medium bodied. Good carbonation. Finishes semi-dry.

D- Very smooth and easy to drink.

Overall, not my favorite, but still well done. Probably pass next time around.

rhinos00, Nov 21, 2009
Photo of weeare138
3.63/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Ortino's Northside. Appears a golden amber with a small off white head. Small streaks of lace are left around the glass.
Smell is of mildly sweet doughy, honey biscuit malt.
Taste is of the sweet aromas with a bit of apple and a bit of a citrus and vegatal taste coming through that wasn't overly appealing.
Mouthfeel was crisp, warming, and sweet with a lip smacking sugary syrup feel.

weeare138, Jun 29, 2006
Photo of John_M
3.63/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Max's the other night. I'm a big fan of Smuttynose beers, so had high hopes for this one.

Pours a solid amber orange color, with decent foam retention, but really minimal lacing. On the nose one gets some sweet malt and a bit of honey, but that's really about it. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose. There is some nice sweet malt, with some melon and honey, and a bit of roastiness. However, at least to me, this comes across as a very simple, one dimensional maibock. There's a little bit of dry hoppiness, right at the finish. The beer has a pretty good mouthfeel, pimarily from the relatively high abv., but there's nothing mind blowing about this beer.

A good, solid maibock, but nothing really memorable. Probably would not order this again, to be honest.

John_M, May 26, 2007
Photo of WanderlustNJ
3.63/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was my first Maibock so unfortunately I have nothing to compare it to. It was purchased at WholeFoods during a Smuttynose tasting in the Bowery Beer Room. There were 5 Smuttynose on tap and this one was the one I selected for my growler. The pour into the growler had excessive head and was a challenge for the pourer to fill. That was not the case when I filled my glass the next day. The negative on this beer was the strong alcohol aftertaste. That very well may be intended for the style but for me it overpowered the initial taste and was the single lasting impression.

WanderlustNJ, Jun 15, 2009
Photo of bum732
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale golden yellow, decent head with ok lacing. Smells of doughy malt, slight floral and herbal notes. Tastes of sweet doughy malt, moderate bitterness with a kiss of herbal. Moderate body and carbonation.

A solid maibock, i had the Berkshire maibock before this and much preferred that, had more flavor. I thought this beer was a little to agressively hopped as well. Not bad, but probably wouldn't try it again.

bum732, Jun 01, 2010
Photo of akorsak
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bomber purchased at Well's Liquors.

A: The bock has a nicely vigourous head, stirring up a finger and a half worth of foam that affixes itself to the sides of the glass. The body of the lager is a paler (relatively speaking) orange-yellow color, looking like a weizen without the more amber color I was expecting.

S: The nose is malty sweet, strong but not concentrated to a doppel level. Green grapes and raisins, dry tart fruits adequately define the aroma profile.

T: The flavor supports the nose, creating a bigger grainy tart fruit flavor that ends with a bitter flourish. The graininess is apparent, creating a cereal dryness that brings out a concentrated grape and raisin flavor that is slightly tart. The malts also manage to create a sweetness that could easily be mistaken for Belgian candi sugars. The finish has a bit of alcohol heat and some hop bitterness.

M: The mouthfeel leaves a long warm finish, sweet with a nice dry undertone.

D: The beer is a little too big for really dive into. A bomber is nice though, another solid entrant in the Big Beer Series.

akorsak, Sep 09, 2007
Photo of biegaman
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650ml bomber, 2007 Edition, thanks to Hogtownharry.
Big fluffy white head over a clear golden body. Orange-ish in colour. An unmistakably lager aroma. Off-fruity notes in the smell. Border line foul like aroma. The flavour boast a big malt bill but is drowned out by an obvious alcohol level. All considered, given the style and especially given what the aroma offered, the flavour is damn fine. It taste quite nice. Finishes on a toasty, dry note. This is good, but I can't say I'm a huge fan of the style. I wish I could say more but this one is largely forgettable.

biegaman, May 18, 2007
Photo of burnstar
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark gold with a medium sized head that dissipates quickly. Lots of visible carbonation. Smell is sweet. Honey. Malty. Herbal hops. Taste is huge malt. Toasty and sweet. Big hop bitterness coming in the middle. Very herbal through the finish with a strong lingering bitterness. Extremely flavorful throughout. Full bodied and well carbonated. I believe this is my first bottled Maibock so I'm fairly unfamiliar with the style. I have had a Maibock at a brewpub and it was excellent, although I'm not sure how true to style it was. I think this beer tastes good but I'm not loving how the flavors are combining. I feel like the particular big toasty light malt flavor in this is not complementing the strong bitter and herbal hops. Again, not bad but not as good as I had hoped.

burnstar, Jul 29, 2011
Photo of cjgator3
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle

A- Pours a clear copper color with an off-white head.

S- The aroma is very malty with caramel, dark fruits and hints of hops.

T- The aroma is a lot of sweet caramel malt and dark fruits with a mild hop bitterness in the finish that helps balance out the sweetness.  

M- The mouthfeel is somewhere between light and medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. 

D- Overall, this is another solid brew from Smuttynose that is reommended!

cjgator3, Jul 16, 2009
Photo of djeucalyptus
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a near-buttercup straw hue with potent effervescence yielding a solid two-finger head with moderate retention and ample lace.

aroma is sweet with undertones of earthy malts and a hint of spice. some crisp apple, a bit of grass, some herbal overtones and more honey sweetness.

taste is potently malty with a pungent grassy, herbal hop blast. for some reason reminds me of a helles lager kicked up to 11. boozy, rich caramels, fruit, toffee, lots of herbal and grassy notes with a potent finish that has a lingering bitterness.

mouth is smooth, almost slick but not quite. ample carbonation helps cut through, as does a good bit of bitterness that trails in the finish.

all in all, an impressive interpretation of the style. a touch boozy for my liking, but that's just me. the flavors are interesting, the mouth solid, and hell - it looks great. so I'd take another in a heartbeat.

djeucalyptus, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of SixpointJMH
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

my first dip into smutty's big beer series, and while i wasn't blown away, i was impressed with the effort here. the maibock pours a nice amber colour with a decent lasting head, it has an immediate malty, caramel smell which is echoed in the taste and finishes with a hoppy flavouring. the main concern here was that at times this sweetness and caramel flavour was a bit too pronounced. also, there was a metallic/sulfur taste at times, which may have been a hint of the beginning of a skunked beer, but it wasn't consistent enough for me to get a reading on it. strange nonetheless.

SixpointJMH, Nov 05, 2003
Photo of IBUnit63
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I missed this round last year but snagged a few at Julio's yesterday. As the season finale of 24 winds down, I crack the cap on this deal and bring it to the Portsouth snifter since I can't find my friggin' Smutty pint glass.

Now that's the first beer with real head I've seen all friggin' evening. 1 1/2 fingers of buttery-eggshell hue atop a honey-colored cloudy note of goodness. Is crystal clear with only faint, slow wisps of carbonation rising through the utter viscosity of it all.

Now I don't know a whole lot about Maibocks but I didn't expect the huge silage bite of Saaz upon my generous olfactory. Downright stewy with some bitter German qualities along with a dire muscat plea for help. There's a dry, evaporating note of honey syrup that has an astringent quality.

Much, much, much lighter in body than expected. So crisp but the driest honey anyone could imagine...alongside the corny, silagey Saaz-ish presence. Maybe not so much clean as unadulterated. For something with solid weight it has a nice dryness that must be harvested and enjoyed. There;s carbonation that helps it along but light honey and that silage deal makes a high-maintenance yutz such as myself need a little more clarity.

Sweetness is there. It's layered, though...you have the Saaz stewy mess underneath as well as some astringency. Finish is dry with a little booze burn. Am a little upsset that I sent a few things in trade before trying them first. This is good but I should enjoy it more.

Smutty puts together solid product. This is solid. It should have a little more meat on the bone, but it's still good.

IBUnit63, May 19, 2009
Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle

Pours a slightly hazed golden color with a frothy white head that maintains. Thick lacing on the glass.

Aroma is very yeasty and bready with a caramel malty background. A hint of hops show up as it warms.

Tastes mildly sweet upfront leading into a nice yeasty and bready flavor. A faint smokiness appears before a slight hop flavor and bitterness sets in. Finishes rather clean with a slight sweetness.

Medium-full body, creamy texture.

Overall, a solid maibock and another good offering from Smutty. I had no problems finishing the bomber. Certainly worth a try if you have it available to you.

MaltyGoodness, Jun 01, 2007
Photo of dfillius
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a pint glass.

A: Aggressive pour yields two fingers of just off-white head with stellar retention. Cloudy amber liquid. Cloudy lager?, that's the only negative.

S: Delicate, highly malty nose. Crisp euro-herbal-hop nose with some spice aspects as well. Very delicate, only picking up an aroma infrequently. I'd like more smell.

T: Strong and sweet maltiness with a decent complexity. Tiny alcohol hint grows with first few sips then subsides. Tiny metallic note somewhere in the distant background is a negative.

M: A bit prickly. Round full feeling, a bit chewy?

D: Good. Strong though light bodied, round and complex.

dfillius, Nov 08, 2008
Photo of m1ked
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a little something random at New Beer Distributors, love that plasce.

A- A slightly hazy/clear golden apricot color with an inch white foamy head that gives way to a thin, yet full whate cap. Multiple streamers visualized with tight bubbles.

S- A sweet summer fruit...can't put my finger on it...it's not berries, maybe stone fruit...like almost peachy with honey. Some carmelized sugar, like candied-corn. A touch of alcohol.

T- Starts out with that sweetness, not overwhelming though. The malt backbone really takes over and fills the mouth. Some more of that carmelized sugar, no fruitiness. A slight bitter finish that ends with some heat. It's not that exciting to me.

M- This beer is actually a full bodied brew that has plenty of carbonation that tingle on the tongue for quite some time.

D- I would not categorize this in the session category, and it is not very exciting to me. Its good and all, and it is fun to try the big beer series, and different/unique styles. It just doesn't float my boat.

m1ked, Aug 12, 2009
Photo of falloutsnow
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased at Friar Tuck's in Savoy, IL. Bottled in 2011.

Poured into a standard pint glass.

Beer pours a cloudy orange-colored body, semi-hazy, with visible active carbonation. The carbonation supports a sizable head, about 1.5cm, of off-white foam composed of mostly small bubbles, lending it a somewhat creamy appearance. Head retention lasts for a few minutes, and sipping leaves a bit of lace.

Scent is overall held together by a heavy malt sweetness. Adequate herbal and floral hop tones underscore this, along with notes of ripe bosc pear and honey.

Taste opens with strong malt sweetness and a fair bit of herbal hops. Alcohol flavors mixed with malt quickly return for a lingering presence, giving strong sense of caramel and simultaneously fermenting and syrupy fruit. The alcohol is, I feel, a bit noticeable on the palate, contrary to what other reviewers have said. Its heat becomes known if you search towards the end of the sip, and is more noticeable as the beer warms. It's not in your face, but it's there.

Mouthfeel is expectedly medium to heavy, but with adequate carbonation to keep this moving freshly across the palate. Finish is fairly dry.

Overall, this is fairly good, and I like malty beers, but this one is, I feel, starting to get a bit too big for itself. Perhaps rein in the malt tastes a bit and bring down the ABV a notch. I would definitely try this again, but depending on how I feel, that might be my last.

falloutsnow, Sep 12, 2011
Photo of mlazzaro
3.7/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy light brown color. White head is holding nicely.

Smell is subtle, but what I can smell is appealing.

Roasty lager. I feel like I can taste wheat which would explain the haziness as well. Taste good. Really interesting, it a bit hard to accurately describe because I haven't had too many beer like this one.

It didn't say on the bottle, but I am not surprised to see that this beer was 8.7% ABV. It was drinkable, but the alcohol was quite noticeable.

mlazzaro, Aug 11, 2010
Photo of Bierguy5
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bomber, 2007 edition. Darker golden color, only slightly hazy. Foamy white head that holds well for a bit.

Malty, and floral in the nose. Pretty clean.

Big malt character, a good amount of sweetness. Maybe a bit bready. Seems to have a warming, spicy finish. Pretty big beer. Floral hops round out at the end.

Great body on this one. Pretty clean, but seemed pretty big, which hurts drinkability for me.

Bierguy5, Jun 26, 2007
Photo of eberkman
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at Trader Joe's in the 'Ham. A pleasant surprise -- it had been a while since I'd seen anything new on the shelves other than their house-brand pilsner. I don't imagine this will be there long.

Pours a slightly hazy bright golden orange into a pilsner glass leaving a big, tight khaki head that reduces to a finger in a couple of minutes. The one-finger head sticks around a long time, leaving some sticky lacing on the side.

Sweet malty aromas with some pungent fruitiness but accompanied by a strange, subtle sausage or bolognalike smell.

A very honeystung brew with tatstes of sweet, mildly toasty, biscuity cookielike malts with some citrus leading to a somewhat hoppy but not at all bitter finish. Finishes clean with few lingering taste trails.

Mouthfeel of crisp carbonation. Not a particularly strong tasting beer, but the sweetness and high ABV would keep it from being one you're going to pound all night.

Nonetheless, a very refreshing spring beer. Not cheap ($4.49 at Trader Joes for a 1.6 pint bottle) but another winner for the Smutty Big Beer Series. Me likey.

eberkman, May 07, 2007
Photo of billab914
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into my Southern Tier glass. It poured a gold like color with a big fluffy white head filling the top two inches of the glass. The head faded to a thin layer but remained through drinking it and left some moderate lacing.

The aroma has a nice mix of grassy, peppery, herbal hops and grainy, bready malts. I get a little alcohol to it as well. Pretty nice mix of flavors, it felt relatively balanced as well.

The taste also has a lot of the herbal, peppery, grassy hop flavors to it throughout the beer. Some big grainy, bready flavors come out as well and lead into some sweetness in the finish. Again a little alcohol is present, but not too bad and seems to fit with the style.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side for the style with carbonation being above average. Overall it was a pretty good beer with some very interesting flavors. It had a nice balance to it which definitely helped the drinkability out. It was probably the biggest version of the style I've had, which was apparent at times with the alcohol showing through though. Overall it was pretty good beer.

billab914, Jun 11, 2011
Photo of CHADMC3
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This orange to copper colored brew gives way to an abundantly fluffy, white head with big bubbles of carbonation and plenty of sticky lacing.

A sweet or citrus aroma is first to appear, accompanied by toasted malt, and a bit yeasty. Beyond that, I am struggling to identify anything else specific on this brew. After a good 20 minutes + of warming, it actually takes on a slightly milky aroma as well.

Much deeper flavor, starting with sweet malt, caramel, a toasted or biscuit presence and a pleasant alcohol burn to finish. The malty sweetness really becomes more pronounced as this beer warms, and the slight hop finish also arises.

Medium to fuller in body, medium carbonation, and really a great palate as you reach the bottom.

This becomes a very drinkable beer, be careful not to serve too cold, as it seemed to hide some of the character until it warmed a bit, but now there is a great hop/malt/alcohol balance.

CHADMC3, Mar 15, 2009
Photo of patrick802
3.75/5  rDev -6.3%

patrick802, May 05, 2014
Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 363 ratings.