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Spaten Optimator - Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu

Spaten OptimatorSpaten Optimator

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very good

2,274 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2274
Reviews: 1247
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 12.34%

Brewed by:
Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu visit their website

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  7.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-06-1999)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,274 | Reviews: 1,247 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of wingman14


3.23/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark maple syrup brown with a white head. Smells sweet with malt and some caramel notes. This beer has a good and unique flavor with good balance and a very small bitter sweet finish. It is medium in body with an average amount of carbonation, and a decent mouthfeel. This was a good brew, worth checking out, not something I would seek out though, or pay to much for. Enjoy!

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2006 02:24:24 | More by wingman14
Photo of jletts


3.23/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from a bottle into a tapered mug. Poured deep caramel amber with off-white, rather quickly fading head. Aromas of green apple and brown sugar emerged with notes of drunken cherry and yeasty whole grain bread. Tasted of caramel and ripe plum, with a hop bite at the end and a sour apple fade. The mouthfeel was smooth, silky, and refreshing. Finished thin. Tasty and enjoyable, but not one I’d go out of my way to find.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2007 22:41:17 | More by jletts
Photo of pdangler


3.23/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I am trying every beer available at my corner store. They have a decent but fairly small selection. This is my first review of a beer other than the Bass, Sierra Nevada, or Mendocino offerings that I usually buy.

Tried the first sip out of the bottle, very strong sweet and syrupy flavor. Did not really go down smooth and easy. Noted the ABV on the label and decided to pour it on into a pils glass. Beautiful color. A little better out of the glass, small head excused itself pretty quick.

I like a dark beer in the stout/porter vein; this was the first doppelbock I've had and it winds up in place between a light and a dark that I'm just not fond of.

Overall, this beer is just too sweet for me and probably not the best selection for a few beers while watching Sunday Night Football. I don't think I'll be able to down more than a couple in one sitting.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2008 01:18:17 | More by pdangler
Photo of blitheringidiot


3.2/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Russet brown yet clear pour with zero head cap and zero carbonation visible. A wafer thin beige cap can be mustered. Proper pour into a Spaten glass.

Nary a scent beyond some grain and rye.

First swigs: Wheat grain doppelbock with slight banana and dough. Light flavors.

Crisp feel and medium bodied.

Last swigs: Malty grain lager-esque doppel. Quite clean and easy.

Serving type: on-tap

03-24-2005 01:26:49 | More by blitheringidiot
Photo of goblue3509


3.2/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown almost black color with ruby hues around the edges. There is a small head which is slightly khaki and gives way to some lacing. The aroma is a little faint, there is some breadiness, dark fruits, and caramel malt. The taste is nice but not super complex, caramel malt some breadiness and a hint of hops. The mouthfeel is dry and moderately carbonated. The drinkability is above average it is a smooth easy drink, however it lacks some complexity to keep you really interested. The beer is solid.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2011 13:49:20 | More by goblue3509
Photo of Schneic8


3.2/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

bottle poured into a mug.

Appearance: Nice dark color with a red tones. It has the same appearance as cola. It had a nice head that lasted a while with a little lacing.

Smell: Sweet smell with caramel and dark fruit smells.

Taste: Has a nice deep flavor of ripe fruits and a caramel sweetness. There is a raisin and plumy flavor with a fair amount of molasses.

Mouthfeel: Mild carbonation that has a crisp feeling. It has a smooth and creamy touch that sits well in the mouth and goes down smooth.

Drinkability: This is an easy beer to drink but it is pretty sweet with a strong dark fruit flavor. I could probably drink one more of these but not another. Not my favorite but I would drink again.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2011 02:17:54 | More by Schneic8
Photo of raszputini

North Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From the bottle. It pours dark mahogany brown with a thin head. The nose is rich and malty with understated hops - you can tell its a dopplebock. Very rich malty flavor. The hops are deeply buried. Rich malty taste to match the nose. Has a somewhat "salty" finish? I enjoyed it a lot.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2011 02:42:45 | More by raszputini
Photo of grindcore666


3.18/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a fabulous marble-like cascade of deep brown and root beer. Outstanding color. Head retention and lacing on the other hand is 'meh', unfortunately, but I have to give credit where it's due...looks superb.

A dark range of scents: an overdrive of roasted malts, soil, alcohol, burnt brownies, and prunes.

A molasses bite bleeds out into an aura of earthy flavors. Complex and well done. Feels very syrupy with mid to low carbonation.

Though this one has some great characteristics, it's just not very versatile. Plus, it's syrupy mouthfeel might make just one or two of these enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2005 05:30:52 | More by grindcore666
Photo of SirSketch


3.18/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Small film of beige head. The beer is dark brown with amber hues. Very much like most doppelbocks I have tried.

S - I found it hard to get much aroma out of this one. Then again I was in a crowded restaurant so there were plenty of other smells to distract me. Faint graininess and dark malts.

T - Chocolate notes and a sweet aftertaste. Very well-balanced with hops it seemed. Just OK.

M/D - Medium body and carbonation. It is drinkable, I suppose, but I don't know if I enjoyed the taste enough to continue drinking more. I guess I just expected more out of the Optimator

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2008 21:25:12 | More by SirSketch
Photo of rosmhuire

New York

3.18/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

HAd this on tap at a German bar in San Fran (Schroeders). Bartender was smokin hot!

A: Dark brown coloring, significant head that dissapates quickly

S: All malt on the nose.

T: Very sweet and malty. Almost too sweet. I'm unfamiliar with this style, so I don't know if this is representative.

M: Medium-bodied

D: Average. I could maybe have 2 of these.

Serving type: on-tap

06-11-2010 21:55:06 | More by rosmhuire
Photo of GolgiIPAratus


3.15/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sampled: 10.10.05

Appearance was dark brown and a small head fizzling head.

Smell was light, not too much actually. Poured a bit cold and I believe it has everything to do with that. Some roasted sugar characters were present however as the brew warmed.

Taste was sweet malts, brown sugar with a bitter finish to attempt a balance. However, it wasn’t quite balanced in the end. Malty sweetness overruled. The beer was heavy and full, low carbonation and sat mightily in the belly.

I’m new to the Doppelbock realm, but this one was so sweet and malty that one was enough, and I had to take my time for the most part. Still have more to sample and despite the score, I’d try this again given that the opportunity was right for something this full and sweet if for nothing more than to really give the style a worthy chance to be a part of my repertoire.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2005 20:25:40 | More by GolgiIPAratus
Photo of kevinjosephlee


3.15/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a glass

A: Clear, dark color, coffee-ish with red hues when held to the light.

S: Malts, spicy nutmeg,

T: Raisins on the back of the mouth

M: Some alcoholic warmth.

Notes: Better than Ayinger's Celebrator because it was not as cloying.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2010 18:21:13 | More by kevinjosephlee
Photo of heavy216

New York

3.15/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A: Bottle was 12oz, amber with s light tint of red. 2 finger head, good lacing that lasted the whole time.

S: malt smell.

T/M: Enjoyed when very cold, as it warmed up it got sweeter, a little heavy mouth feel..strong after bite
Carbonation is perfect, hides alcohol level.

D: good cold, however as it got warmer not as good.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2011 12:44:59 | More by heavy216
Photo of kojevergas


3.15/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 fl oz green glass (really!?) bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Uinta brewing pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are fairly high; I usually dislike the style but I love this brewery.

Served straight from the refrigerator. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a one finger khaki colour head of nice cream and thickness, and decent retention. Colour is a nontransparent non-opaque dark brown. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Pleasantly nutty, with very bocky dark and biscuit malts. Some cream comes through. No real obvious hop aroma. An average strength aroma.

T: Pleasantly malty, with subtle nut notes. It's rich and layered, but lacks true subtlety or complexity. Some nice caramelization on the finish. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Hop character is very mild; background floral hopping adds depth but doesn't really contribute to the flavour profile. It's got a nice full body; it's quite filling. I could subsist on this if I were a badass German beer monk. That said, there's just nothing impressive or unique about it.

Mf: Smooth, full, wet, a bit creamy on the finish, and moderate on the palate. It has presence, but there's little to intrigue. Suits the flavours well, but it still comes off as boring. Dry on the finish; it shouldn't be.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable for the style. Definitely one of the better ones I've had. It's quite filling - and I'm sure I could use this for sustenance on a fast - but it's not fantastic. This brewery has better beers. Well priced. Hides its ABV well. Very well done for the style, but still underwhelming all around. I wouldn't get it again, but fans of the style should definitely give it a spin.


Serving type: bottle

10-24-2012 05:39:52 | More by kojevergas
Photo of gentlebubbles


3.13/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

on tap at Redbone's

Dark brown with a low whiteish head. Sweet malty scent, foretelling heavy, syrupy caramel with tones of butterscotch. Leaves but a hint of hops on the breath. Not all that interesting, and as I slowly sip it, it seems to grow duller and duller.

Serving type: on-tap

08-13-2004 01:06:49 | More by gentlebubbles
Photo of OWSLEY069


3.13/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a Spaten tall half liter glass with a deep dark amber hue, a white head that that did not last too long. Aroma of dark fruits and slightly alcoholic. It has a lighter body and a nice bitterness to the dark fruit sweetness. The alcohol is not as noticable, but it does pack a punch.

Serving type: on-tap

06-08-2007 11:08:03 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of Kemmerlin


3.13/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown and amber. Pours a thin head that quickly diminishes.
S: Has an interesting smoked aroma with some roasted nut in the back.
T: It actually has a kind of sour taste with some smoked wood flavors.
M: Has a dry feel to it with a little carbonation but not impressive.
D: It was ok but not one that I would by again.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2007 21:31:39 | More by Kemmerlin
Photo of tlazaroff


3.13/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown with highlights of dark ruby red when held to light. Had an off-white, tan colored head.

S: Mostly malty goodness. I get a big caramel note followed by some cherries, and a little bit of skunking, probably due to the green bottle it was imported in.

T: A little tart, but it has a nice toasted component that stays strong throughout the finish. It has a nice caramel, sweet flavor with little hop presence.

M: Moderately carbonated and medium -full bodied. Slightly sticky.

D: Good drinkability, it's a nice, filling beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2011 04:55:49 | More by tlazaroff
Photo of N3rdM3t4l


3.13/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Green bottle with gold foil into standard pint. Served fridge temp.

A: Pours deep amber with reddish highlights and two fingers of light caramel colored head that receded into a good millimeter thick foam cap that is leaving good lacing. It looks good.

S: Malty and slightly medicinal. A touch of hops on the nose. Lighter smelling than I would guess based on the color.

T: Not sure what is going on here really. Kinda dank roasty flavor. The hops is a little piney. Leaves a unique aftertaste like slightly bitter dried fruit (raisins mostly). Not bad but kinda weird.

M: Feels good in the mouth. Smooth and light like a lager should be, not watery like American macros. Best part about this beer in my opinion.

O: Pretty av erage brew, doesn't make you say "wow!" more like "eh not bad" so it gets an "eh not bad" 3.0 overall.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2012 08:45:44 | More by N3rdM3t4l
Photo of mfnmbvp


3.13/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, given to me gratis from the bar at a funeral banquet, RIP to my neighbor Bob. No bottled on date present on this beer. Poured into some kind of pint glass looking thing, forgive me beer god for not knowing what it was. Reviewed in detail on the back of a CVS reciept.

A - Pours out a fizzing cherry cola type appearance with some visual carbonation and virtually no head whatsoever.

S - Smells of malts & vague bourbon spiciness. Aside from that, there isn't much action happening.

T - Dark fruits reminiscent of fig, dates, and dark cherry. Light unsweetened chocolate taste. Not phenomenal by any means, but still a worthy drinkable beer,

M - Smooth clean, slightly watery finish. Decent level of carbonation. Highly drinkable, and not a heavy sitting beer.

Overall, a drinkable, smooth, light doppelbock, if anything it is one to turn the beginners on to craft beer. Probably not a beer I'd go out of my way for, and in no way is it compatible to the world of true craft beers, but decent enough, worth a try, and clearly the best beer that this banquet hall had to offer.

Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu Spaten Optimator ---3/5

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2013 23:23:18 | More by mfnmbvp
Photo of santoslhalper


3.1/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Had on tap at the Southside Saloon. This was the yeastiest tasting Doppelbock I've ever had. That almost made it undrinkable, but it wasn't. The other flavors were tasty, and had an odd fruitiness to them. I think this is an overrated doppelbock. I'll stick with my Troegenator thank you very much.

Serving type: on-tap

03-27-2005 17:16:39 | More by santoslhalper
Photo of shbobdb


3.1/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A Benchmark beer for the style. It has all the qualities of a good Doppelbock . . . it just somehow falls flat. It pours a deep, dark grape colour with a delicate head that quickly falls into a ring around my MaB . . . Mass . . . So tricky with the symbols.

Anyway, it tastes of cherries, and prunes and tobacco . . . all good flavours, but they are somehow marred and I can't give justice as to why. There is something out of balance here and I can't put my finger on it. The mouthfeel is the same way, where it is smooth and rich but somehow wrong.

All of the traits of a good Doppelbock, just not as well executed as others. I don't often say this, but perhaps a pinch of chocolate malt to bitter it up a tad? I don't know.

Good, but by no means great.

Serving type: on-tap

03-04-2006 05:40:17 | More by shbobdb
Photo of timconnel


3.1/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

poured from a 500ml bottle into a pokal glass.

A: Deep caramel brown with a thin short lived head. Very minor lacing.

S: Malt and caramel with just a little tartness.

T: Malt and caramel sweetness up front with some raisin like flavor. Bitter with some toasty flavor and something a little herbal in the finish. The alcohol is detectable but not over the top. The one downfall was that it started tasting a little medicinal as it warmed up.

M: Medium body, medium to low carbonation.

D: It's pretty heavy in flavor, I don't think I'd usually drink more than one or two.

This probably deserves a better rating but I don't get into doppelbocks as much as some.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2008 23:45:37 | More by timconnel


3.09/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Taste-^-^- well it taste like it's half guinness and half moose head. You can taste the hops and the malt. A little caramel and a slight hint of salt. Almost like a pretzel and it almost needs something a slightly acidic substance. This is to cut threw it like mustard take a drink then pretzel with mustard. Lingering taste of malt and salty caramel.

Obor-^#^- yeah it smells... like malt and the bush in your front yard the one without flowers.

Manifestation-^@^- it manifested like nothing. It's flat not complexed and finished as it started. Basic with slight hop. I pour it down the drain. Looked pretty brown kinda frothy. Not like the Nigeria but like irish creme beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2014 07:24:11 | More by UKTOMCAT
Photo of blakelive784


3.08/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

11.2 fl oz bottle served in a pint glass:
A - Pours an incredibly dark ruby/amber color that's transparent when held to the light. It has a soapy head of 2 fingers, and retention is solid.

S - Strong malty goodness, cotton candy, and fruity esters abound. Medium strength.

T - Full malt foundation gives way to candy, fruity and peppery notes. Finishes with a nice ethanol bite. Not as yeasty as the nose predicted, but built well for the style. I wish it had a bit more character though.

M - Nearly full bodied, slick and smooth, Carbonated rather highly. Contradicts the flavors.

D - A good beer within the style, but I think it lacks character. I'd have it again, but certainly not a go-to.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2011 23:30:40 | More by blakelive784
Spaten Optimator from Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu
87 out of 100 based on 2,274 ratings.