Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

Smuttynose S'muttonator (Big Beer Series) - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose S'muttonator (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose S'muttonator (Big Beer Series)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

393 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 393
Hads: 616
Avg: 4.01
pDev: 13.22%
Wants: 80
Gots: 60 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company
New Hampshire, United States | website

Style | ABV
Doppelbock | 8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 01-11-2005

S’muttonator is a tasty mixture of German ingredients & good ol’ fashioned New England tenaciousness. Our brewers take 30 hours to brew a single batch of this traditional Double Bock. Take your time & enjoy its rich, malty & deceptively smooth flavor.

2007 - 9.8%
2008 - 8.8%
2010 - 9.5%
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose S'muttonator (Big Beer Series) Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 393 | Hads: 616
Photo of Lukass
3.99/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a semi opaque dark brown with a thin white head. Smell is sweet and bready, like a good doppelbock should be. Taste is rich, malty, and toasty, with hints of dark fruit, caramel and vanilla. Some definite warming from the alcohol but in a pleasant way. A good doppelbock by these guys and stays very true to the style. Another great one by smuttynose's 'big beer' series.

 377 characters

Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Copper brown, mostly opaque, with cap of foam and lacing.

S - Malt, caramel, slight tea notes, a floral aspect.

T - Open is sweet, with a doughy middle, and a mild bitter close.

M - Moderate stickiness, but clearing a bit.

O - A very pleasant, full beer, with lovely caramel and dark brown bread notes.

 310 characters

Photo of Jimlikesbeer
3.89/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a 22oz bottle. Absolutely no head. Beer had a good taste, but way too sweet for me. Caramel color. A hint of that alcohol taste but not over powering. Would be an excellent after dinner beer in a small 8oz glass.

 242 characters

Photo of polloenfuego
3.99/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice dopplebock. Poured a chestnut brown with a minimal finger of head that broke quickly leaving nothing it its wake. Smell was dried dark fuits, sugars and some malts. Taste followed the palate closely, perhaps with the malts moving forward a bit. Some hops presence, but really quite mild. Feel was medium, creamy and mid carbonation.

A good beer, and right up there with others I have had from Germany.

 412 characters

Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Pours brilliant chestnut crowned by a clingy cream to light tan colored foam collar with a fine bead. S: Light toast, bread, fruit. T: Malt driven liquid medium dark bread and bread crust with some prune to grape highlights. A light kettle sugar sweetness balanced by a mild to moderate hop accent. Nor harsh roast or burnt flavors. F: Clean, smooth, medium carbonation, full body. O: A go to doppelbock.

 408 characters

Photo of FFreak
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Purchased at Trader Joe's for ~$7.00 and poured into a tall tulip. Pours a dirty dark brown with a finger or two of tan head. Aromas of dried fruit, dates, brown sugar. Taste also has dates, dark brown sugar, figs, maybe some cherry. Very true to style. Mouth is medium bodied, silky and smooth. Easy to drink but tending more to sipping. Overall, this is a delicious doppelbock...well done.

 398 characters

Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
3.99/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a moderately dark amber into the glass with a small head. Some lacing that remains as you enjoy the brew. Tastes like a double bock. Enjoyable. Dangerous.

 164 characters

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.99/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bomber marked “Bottle conditioned 2014” at 42 degrees into imperial pint
Aroma of malt
Head small (2 cm, aggressive pour), off white, creamy with rocks, diminishing to 2 – 4 mm ring and partial layer
Lacing poor – few small islands of tiny bubbles
Body medium red-amber, clear
Flavor of malt with some hop bitterness coming through; no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium, creamy, soft carbonation

Appearance 3.75, Aroma 3.5, Flavor 4.25, Palate 4.25, Overall 4

 469 characters

Photo of Ohiovania
4.69/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2014 Bottle

Probably my favorite american dopplebock right behind troeganator. Dark ripe fruits in the nose with bready sweet goodness. Butterscotch and caramel. Mouth feel is outstanding. So glad I finally found more of this one.

 231 characters

Photo of gillagorilla
3.16/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.25

650 ml bottle poured into a Heavy Seas tulip (2014 bottle, 9.8%)

A: Burnt Sienna body color with a mild head on the pour but leaves some lacing and a bit of a collar.
S: Interesting scents here. Lots of spices with a sweet malt base. Just a tiny bit of yeast in there.
T: Weird flavor here that is yeast, bread and some sweet malt. Weird spices that dominate the flavor profile. Sweet malt base undertone. Yeast and bread with some spice is the aftertaste.
M: Nearly no carbonation. Maybe I should have waited for it to bottle condition a bit more, but I don't think I should have had to wait.
O: Just weird flavors here, that make for an uncharacteristic doppelbock. Not like the doppelbocks that I'm used to.

 723 characters

Photo of RickS95
3.56/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a thin dark brown liquid with a thin, slow forming off white head. There's a bit of chill haze that eventually settles into a dark iced tea color. The head is disappointing as it teases you into thinking how awesome it's going to look but never really gets there. Lacks size and retention.

Smells German, full of malts and any hops present must be of the spicy Noble variety. Very high alcohol but the nose doesn't detect it.

While the nose ignores the alcohol, the taste buds account for it. Has a German bock-like Earthiness to it. I thought there would be more of a malty flavor but I get more yeast than malt.

Strong spicy character, along with a lot of bite and heat from the 9.8%. Faint sweetness up front, then a combination of spice and heat as the beer coats the tongue and never really let's it free. Full bodied with a semi-dry finish and a lingering heat.

This is one of the stronger beers I've had in a while; by feel not by ABV. Very aggressive features and something you'll want to sip. Not an easy beer to drink, but something to enjoy as you nurse it for an hour.

 1,105 characters

Photo of scotorum
3.77/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the 22 oz, bomber into a Samuel Adams nonick.

a: Clear copper with an inch thick offwhite head which receded to even surface foam and dense lacing.

s: Slight spiceness.

t: Caramel/bready malt balanced by some peppery spice and a significant hop bite.

m: Medium, good body and lots of carbonation tingle.

o: Good double bock or winter warmer, although I prefer one sweeter and more malt dominated than this fairly strong spicy version.

 454 characters

Photo of fscottkey
3.42/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: [3.75] The beer is a brown caramel color. The beer is bottel conditioned but is very transparent. It pours out with a minimal 1/4 finger of off white head. The head is gone pronto leaving some bubbles along the edge of the glass. The bottle lists the ABV (9.8%) and the "Bottle conditioned" data "2014".

S: [3.50] Big caramel and bready smells. I think I can smell some booziness too.

T: [3.25] The taste has a lot of the bready character. As it warms a bit there are nice malt characteristics with caramel and honey. There is a bit of alcohol or hop bite on the back end. There is also a hint of spiciness throughout the beer.

M: [3.50] The beer is smooth with low carbonation - but there is a finish of booziness that lingers on the palate until the beer warms up.

O: [3.50] If this was labelled "Christmas Ale" (or something) I would believe it. It has a hint of some spices that remind me a of a Christmas seasonal. The sweetness gets a little cloying over time so it is a sipper.

 1,004 characters

Photo of JohnCJr
4.52/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: Medium red-brown with thin white head. Very little retention.
Smell: Sweet brown sugar, nutty.
Taste: Very malt forward. Smooth with no hint of the almost 10% ABV.
Feel: Medium. Coats the mouth nicely.
Overall a superb beer.

 243 characters

Photo of tfsimpkins
2.74/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

Bottle marked 2014. I'll start by saying this beer seems young for a doppelbock. I am scoring based on my 'off the shelf' experience. Merely a warning.
The malt is there but the young astringent, bitter flavor begs attention. The alcohol is quite overwhelming as well. I believe this beer will do much better with some age. A true Doppelbock should be all malt forward, almost chewy, with a warming flush affect from the alcohol. You shouldn't taste it on the front end.
Do the dilligence where the brewery may have left off and lay this down for 8-10 months. Could be intentional to lengthen its shelf life? Again, not brewery bashing. rating based off of experience. I will purchase a second bottle and throw some age its way. it would be worth the wait.

 759 characters

Photo of Gbgbrouge
3.44/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle, slightly hazy dark red copper with low off white head. Aroma is mild with notes of caramel, dried fruit, vanilla and whey butter. Taste is sweet with a big malt body and some bitterness in the finish. Didn't like the whey butter aroma at all, spoiled the whole experience.

 292 characters

Photo of Red34
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a medium-dark brown with little beige head. The most impressive things about this beer are how the malty flavors coat your mouth, and considering the high ABV how un-boozy it tastes. Smuttynose has done an excellent job at replicating a long time German offering. Bravo!

 277 characters

Photo of craftbeersweden
3.81/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Clear, dark mahognycolored beer with a two finger high, beige head. Lacing stays on the glass when the head dissolves.

Nose: Plum, apples, raisin, brown sugar, caramel malt and nuts.
Taste: Sweet caramel malt, a LOT of malt! Raisin, toffee, nuts and bread.
Body: Medium to full body with small carbonation. Ligth bitter together with a high malty sweetness.
9.8% ABV made me think of a alcohol-bomb but it's well hidden in the sweet malt. To my suprise it's not at all boozy!

Great doppelbock! Not as great as some "original" German versions but still very pleasant!

 570 characters

Photo of HipCzech
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%

Serving: 750 mL bottle poured into a stemmed Pilsner (beer tulip) glass (bottle marked "bottle conditioned 2014").

Appearance: Lightly hazy, deep caramel brown. Modest tan head leaves little lace but persists as a crowning haze.

Smell: Sweet, rich and lightly toasty malt; brown sugar, caramel.

Taste: Big, sweet and toasty malts, sweet dried fruit (raisins), caramel. Slightly earthy hop bitterness provides dry balance to finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and gentle carbonation.

Overall: Big and malty without being either overly sweet or alcoholic.

 554 characters

Photo of goochpunch
3.04/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours out a hazy brown with a barely-there head. Smells of brown sugar, figs, lots of toasty malts, some booze. Flavor does not remind me of a classic, chewy doppelbock. It reminds me more of an imperial dark amber lager or something. Loads of toasty malts overwhelm the more caramelly/dried fruity malt aspects. Alcohol isn't overly present. Mouthfeel is rather flat and slick. Not impressed with this, at all.

 418 characters

Photo of mac31
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

22oz to tulip

Sweet, big caramel entry. Big, bold beer. Sipper. Cooked caramel and brown sugar. Bready malts. Deep, deep black cherry, raisin is present. Touch of warm orange hues. Just enough earthy, subtle hops to keep the beer honest. Soft (very), clean bitterness. Alcohol adds a drying effect (in the finish) to a sweet beer, another aspect that keeps the beer honest. Slight cereal graininess noted in the finish. Lager finish is apparent in the first few sips, but dissipates as the rest of this big beer takes over. Slight warming effect as the beer is quaffed, welcomed. Syrupy body with soft carbonation. Complex yet balanced brew. Serve at appropriate temp for best impression. Served mine slightly chilled, slightly astringent. Much better as the beer warmed (as all big beers do.) I definitely will by again. Have not had many bocks, reminds me almost of an English style barley wine, one of my favorites styles. 2014 version, 9.8%. Good stuff!!!

 962 characters

Photo of ksimons
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-a dark caramel color with two fingers worth of khaki colored head

S-heavy caramel malt backbone, brown sugar, and light raisins

T-brown sugar, raisins, caramel and toffee with a light hop bitterness in the finish.

M-medium body, moderate carbonation, very smooth

Overall a delicious beer for the style, nice chewy body with just enough hop bite

 352 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.35/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

BOTTLE: 650ml brown glass bottle with apt label art and a branded black and lime pry-off pressure cap purchased at a local bottle shop.

Expectations are high given its current 91 rating. 9.8% ABV. Reviewed as a doppelbock per the label. "Bottle conditioned 2014." Served cold into a pilsner glass and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: Half finger wide. White colour. Decent creaminess and thickness. Not real frothy. Leaves no lacing as it recedes. Retention is pretty good for the ABV - about 3-4 minutes.

BODY: Dark copper with amber hues. Average vibrance. No yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible. Translucent. Semitransparent.

Appears aptly carbonated. Not unique or special for the style, but certainly within conventions, and appealing.

AROMA: My first whiff yields only a simplistic impression of generic malty sweetness.

Trying again, I pick up on caramel, some brown sugar, vague indistinct fruit, and caramelized fruits and malts.

Hmm. There aren't many notes in the aroma. As it warms a bit, though, it does start to take shape: light fig, faint sugarplum, the beginnings of a trace of red apple...it's not a muted or subdued aroma, it's just a withdrawn one.

Pleasant, but light in strength.

No yeast character, alcohol, or off-notes are detectable.

TASTE: Caramel, prune, light fig, a kiss of sugarplum, caramelized indistinct fruit, amber malts, traces of cherry and juicy red apple, brown malts, dextrins, Vienna malts, and some fruity breadiness on the finish. I find myself working in overdrive to find these notes; it's not a reticent or muted flavour profile, and it does have depth of flavour, but everything melts together so nicely it's tough to break it down into its constituent notes. A bit of cinnamon spice; if they played that note up this beer might be wonderful. A hint of pecan, a whisper of walnut...this is a tough nut to crack.

The malty sweetness is well-checked, and the fruitiness guides the flavour profile nicely, tying it together with a rare (for a doppelbock) cohesion. As it warms, fruitcake enters the equation. Maybe even some raisin. The subtlety of the dark fruit is notable, yet it retains a distinctly German vibe, never venturing into Belgian dark fruit territory - I guess because it never tastes candied?

No yeast character, alcohol, or off-notes come through. I'm surprised many other reviewers are calling it warm and/or boozy; I find the alcohol quite well concealed.

Overall, I find it well-balanced and cohesive, and it almost feels like a gestalt whole. Complex enough for a doppelbock, with surprising subtlety and an initial inaccessibility. Sure, it could be more intricate and nuanced, but that goes for damn near every beer. Sweetness is high in general, but just right for the style.

TEXTURE: Sticky, smooth, wet, full-bodied, heavy, thick, and lush without ever venturing into syrupy or viscous territory. It's only slightly over-carbonated, and while it's unrefreshing I do think it's a quenching meal-in-a-glass kind of brew. You could see a glass of this nourishing a tired German monk on a winter's night, and I suppose in the end that's what the style is designed for.

Has a good overall presence on the palate. This mouthfeel complements the taste quite well, but doesn't elevate the brew beyond the potential of the taste.

OVERALL: Drinkable for its high ABV, but nevertheless a very filling beer. You wouldn't want more than one in a night, and while I'll finish the bottle alone, I don't know that I'd recommend that to most beer drinkers. This will definitely satisfy fans of the style, and it's one of the better American offerings in the style I've had recently, but it's certainly not world-class. Smuttynose has done a good job brewing the intended style and I could see myself aging one or two of these if I had the disposable income on hand (I don't). It's perhaps a bit more subtle than my palate is currently able to contend with; I'll have to revisit this one when I'm more experienced. In any case, it's certainly worth trying at least once.


 4,186 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.43/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Marked as bottle conditioned 2014

Appearance - Poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass to reveal a relatively clear reddish copper color with a khaki, near 2-finger head. Strong retention, eventually settling to a thin, consistent layer of surface suds. Virtually no lacing.

Smell - The toffee notes come through from a mile away with hints of caramel and distant raisin bread.

Taste - Toffee, toffee and more toffee! Hints of earth, raisin and walnut toward the finish, but they are overshadowed by the sheer strength of the toffee dominance.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with low carbonation. Slick, and maybe even a light syrup stickiness in texture. Goes down easy enough and finishes on the

Overall - Decidedly malty with an emphasis on toffee sweetness; this one is on the richer side, even for the style. I really wanted to like this beer, but the nigh one-dimensional flavor profile makes it hard to enjoy even past half a glass. Ayinger Celebrator it is not. It's not dislikeable, but a hint of balance (coffee or dark malt roastiness) would go a long way.

 1,066 characters

Photo of BEERMILER12
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a mahogany color with a fingers worth of head that fades down to nothing within a minute

S: Some light fruity esters and sweet maltiness up front with a hint of nutty notes in the back

T: Starts off with the big maltiness that provides some sweetness and nutty notes, and then goes into some fruity esters and alcohol. Alcohol is very well melded and is hardly noticeable. Finishes with a light sweetness and more of the esters

M: Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth and chewy

O: A very nice American doppelbock that combines the huge maltiness with some nice fruity esters and alcohol. Impressively easy to drink at just under 10%. Great value and definitely worth picking up

 706 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Smuttynose S'muttonator (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 393 ratings.