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Spaten Optimator - Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu

Not Rated.
Spaten OptimatorSpaten Optimator

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very good

2,423 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,423
Reviews: 1,260
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 12.34%
Wants: 54
Gots: 110 | FT: 0
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: 2,423 | Reviews: 1,260 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of arizcards


3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown color that poured a nice little head. Smells of sweet malts. Taste was a sweet malt beginning, almost creamy, finishing with a slightly bitter finish. Nice full mouthfeel to this brew. This is a very drinkable brew, very nice compared to most European beers I have had.

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2004 01:06:10 | More by arizcards
Photo of merlin48


4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another fine Bavarian brew in what has become my favorite style. This one pours a beautiful mahogany brown, with garnet highlights when held to the light. Beige head doesn't last long before fading into some minimal ring lacing and film. Aroma is Munich malts, big, creamy, and sweet. Caramel and toffee dominate the nose, while dates and figs dance in the background. A soft note of bittering noble hops is barely noticed. Mouthfeel is rich and creamy, with ample carbonation. Taste is similar to the nose. Lots of swwet maltiness here. Caramel and toffee run the show. Hops appear just in time to lend a delightful balance. Alcohol is well concealed. These Bavarian Doppelbocks are really worldclass, in my humble opinion. This one ranks right up there with Celebrator and Salvator, in terms of fine German doppelbocks. Highly recommended!

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2004 22:08:11 | More by merlin48
Photo of rkhaze


4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful mahogany color with a thick dense beige head. Sweet roasted malt in the smell with chocolate, caramel and some spice.
Sweet flavors of roasted malt, chocolate, caramel and some red fruit. Finishes spicy with a minimal hop presence.
Light to medium bodied with a rich, sticky mouthfeel and good carbonation. Great drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2004 02:34:50 | More by rkhaze
Photo of theozag


3/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Optimator pours a deep amber brown with a head that takes on a shade of light-colored sand as it forms. It's smell was an interesting twist of bittersweet chocolate and sweetened tea. I suppose that sounds a little ridiculous, but it was quite appetizing. This beer starts gritty with a caramel bent, then turns bitter and nutty (walnut, maybe) as it rests on your tongue. It is a full-bodied brew with a finish that reminded me of cough syrup (not exactly as pleasant as the smell suggested). Luckily, Optimator's aftertaste faded quickly from a strong beginning, and the last hint on your tongue leaves a dry feeling that gives you no choice but to consume your whole bottle.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2004 05:40:22 | More by theozag
Photo of WesWes

New York

3.38/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The beer pours a dark amber color with a thick frothy head. The aroma is decent. It has a pale scent with the addition of some crystal malts. The taste is good. It has a nice malty flavor to go with the pale malts and yeast. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. It drinks well. This is a very enjoyable doppellbock.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2004 04:05:16 | More by WesWes
Photo of jlervine


4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep dark brown with ruby highlights. Fine carbonation bubbles upwards towards a tremendous tan head that sticks around for quite some time. the malt scents drift upwards, kind of nutty and molasses-thick. Slight herbal hops thrown in as well. The tastes is smooth and rich. Chocolate hints, toasted nuts, miles of residual malt sweetness. This beer beats up your tongue with it's heavyweight malt profile, but is simply heaven to sip. Very tasty.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2004 00:09:03 | More by jlervine
Photo of Zorro


4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Subdued head pours a very dark clear brown.

Smells good, Heavy molasses and grain smell.

Heavy flavors, chocolate and molasses, malt, raisins.
It is a bit sweet and bitter, but it balances out.

Mouthfeel is good.

It is drinkable, one of my standard beers when I want something heavy.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2004 03:31:08 | More by Zorro
Photo of BeefyMee


3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured this and was surprised to find out that the bottle is actually green. The beer has a wonderful reddish hue when held up to light. The smell was a disappointment, as it was hardly even there. I only got a whiff of a little alcohol, malt, and a faint lager-like aroma. The taste, however, makes up for this. I'm a sucker for malt and this one has it in spades, like I was hoping it would. A little more complexity would have driven this beer into the upper echelon of great tasting brews, but I thoroughly enjoyed it nonetheless. Some alcohol is present in the flavor, and a butteriness dominates the aftertaste. The hops come through ever so slightly in the aftertaste as well.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2003 07:15:05 | More by BeefyMee
Photo of HappyHourHero


4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick airy hazelnut colored head leaves a small amount of struggling lace. Dark caramel brown colored beer has a glow to it. The aroma ia hard to put a finger on, a bit of sweet malt and a few alcohol soaked raisins. Malty caramel and burnt nuts dominates the flavor. The aftertaste is a little bitter and I swear there's a little alcohol in the flavor (doesn't make it to the stomach). The body is is just thick enough to carry the flavors. Overall a fairly complex and tasty beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2003 04:57:23 | More by HappyHourHero
Photo of NearerMyBeerToMe


3.83/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours with a sandy, off-white head about two fingers deep that fades to a ring of foam that still sticks around pretty good before sliding down edges of glass. Beer itself is deep brown with rubyish, almost orange highlights. Aroma is sweet, with a caramelly maltiness that lasts throughout the nose akin to frosted breakfast cereal, though not as cloying. A vaguely fruity, almost grapey hoppiness brings things to a close. Flavor is lighter than I expect from a doppelbock, and sweet; near-syrupy maltiness with more touches of caramel. Pleasant butterscotch and otherwise buttery flavors meld with a hop bitterness that emerges as the beer warms. Yeast is present in the midpalate but never crosses the line over to breadiness. Mouthfeel is a bit syrupy, consistent with the sweetness of the aroma and flavor; not exactly firm, but consistently smooth with a clean finish. Drinkability is six-pack-worthy, but still on the sweet side. This beer doesn't strike me as being as complex as I once thought, but I still enjoyed this one.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2003 03:44:26 | More by NearerMyBeerToMe
Photo of DESTRO


4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this glugs out a deep dark ruby color with minimal head. aroma of big sweet malt, caramels, raisins and just all out sweetness come up swingin. upon first sip you realizes how filling and big this beer is. huge sweet malt is overpowering. raisins, toffees and alcohol kick eachother in the nuts and all fall down letting the huge malt once again be the star. a semi thick slightly sticky yet smooth mouthfeel round everthing out. this is def. a belt buster and is a great beer to warm up with. awesome.

$5.99 a 6 pack.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2003 20:23:50 | More by DESTRO
Photo of crookedhalo


3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper and ruby colored with a thick two-toned head. Top layer, fluffy and beige colored. After a bit, the head color merges as one, but I thought it was pretty neat that I thought my mind or the lighting was playing tricks on my eyes. Tart pungent malt aroma with some typical bock funkiness attributed from the yeast. Mild hop aroma in there, as well. Tastes rather sweet and malty, earthy, too. Pretty smooth. Had it before, but it's always good to shuffle up one's doppelbocks. Glad I chose this one tonight, because it hit the spot. Not too aggressive in any way. I'd like to try this one on draught.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2003 08:58:24 | More by crookedhalo
Photo of granger10


4.43/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was quite a treat. I have seen this one at my local store for so long without giving it a try, I don't know why. Anyways, it poured a deep brown color with a beautiful head that held up quite well. The nose was roasted malt mixed with a fruitiness, maybe plums. The taste was strong in the malt department, mainly with caramel but also some chocolate and earthy malts as well. The hops stay in the background but are needed to keep the malts within their limits. A slight alcohol flavor hits me in the aftertaste which really makes me only want to drink more. Quite a great beer!

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2003 17:00:51 | More by granger10
Photo of Dmann


4.6/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Now this is some good shit! I have heard a lot about this beer and other Doppelbocks but since I'm such a hop-head, I usualy pass them up when it comes time to go to the store. I will pass them no more. This poured a great brownish color with great head that settled on top till the last drop. The smell was filled with toffee and carmel. The flavor was out of this world with a great carmel taste and just a touch of hops in the end to round it all out. For an import macro, this is about as good as it gets.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2003 06:31:59 | More by Dmann
Photo of Dubblebock


4.53/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Spaten Optimator is one of those brews that sort of snuck up on me. I'd heard about it for a while, seen it many times, had one or two friends recommend it, but never tried it. Gotta tell ya, though, I'm sorry that it took me this long to give in. This is one well-made doppelbock, for sure. Spaten generally does not disappoint, and this beautiful beer is certainly no exception to their fine lineup.

It pours with a nice head that hangs around for a couple of minutes. Deep, rich, carmel-toffee-coffee coloring. VERY interesting nose on this sample. Hints of fruits, crisp apples or pears perhaps, clean and fresh.

The taste was very, very smooth for a 7.2% ABV beer. Lots of malty sweetness with only a slight alcohol bite towards the back of the tongue. Malt, malt, and more malt. Bits of toffee-caramel flavors collide with the fruity sensations. Nicely complex, but not overwhelming at all. The beer just got better as it warmed.

Very good mouthfeel...exceptional drinkability for a beer this big. Smooth and likable, this is a beer that I will invite home again soon. I'd like to pair it with some roast, or maybe it would make a good after-dinner drink around the holidays.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2003 21:33:00 | More by Dubblebock
Photo of feloniousmonk


4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark, chestnut brown, light- reddish at bottom, with a thick, full 1" toffee-toned, slowly settling.
Aroma: mild and dry, nutty, but assuredly unfolding with malt.
Taste: here's where it's happening: enormous malt, good, chewy mouthfeel, warm, delicious, generous with flavor. Swims in the mouth with vigor. Nutty, malty, warm, yet still clean and well-behaved. A nice, if tame, doppelbock.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2003 22:41:59 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of gnaussea


3.43/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A little plain for the style, but also nice not to have it over the top. I don't consider it an adequate tasting beer, but a very good drinking beer. Bit caramelly sweet, with few other flavors involved, at least as far as my mouth is concerned. A lethargic thumbs up.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2003 06:30:14 | More by gnaussea
Photo of Zraly


3.4/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A nice pour. Ruby brown with a decent tan head. Cling is in the modest range...a beer that is not necessarily "one" with the sides of the glass.

Carbonation seems on the mark. Smells of alcohol, malt, and a tad leathery. Flavors are sweet and malty, burnt coffee, and cream. Alcohol is prominent. The finish is extra dry, something like a red wine finish. Overall, not bad but it seems like it lacking a dimension in the flavor department. It doesn't finish as smooth as it potentially can.

Not my particular cup o' tea, but I can see how and why one might like this. And I think if you paired it up with a nice roast, a ladle of mushroom gravy, and some garlic mashed potatoes...I wouldn't say no.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2003 23:45:03 | More by Zraly
Photo of francisweizen


4.6/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An excellent doppel that is fit for year-round consumption if you ask me. The doppelbock pours a rich, dark reddish/brown colour with an ample beige head. The aromas are all malt, and plenty of it! The taste is malty as hell, with a nice alcoholic, spicy kick to it. The mouthfeel is thick and rich, but not over-the-top and the drinkability is excellent for a doppel.

High marks!

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2003 22:10:02 | More by francisweizen
Photo of DagFishHead

New York

4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep dark cherry-amber body, Lush, finely-bubbled light tan head. Super retention and lace.
Big malt nose... refreshing change from so many hoppy beers. Alcohol very apparent.
Taste: Surprise: MALT. Sweet, smooth grain...tastes like a mash tun smells. A little dryer finish than others in the style... I like this touch.
Mouthfeel: Full, rich malt. Bring a knife and fork.
Drinkability: Very enjoyable, although the sweetness and alcohol level tend to saturate me rather quickly.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2003 03:14:46 | More by DagFishHead
Photo of Gusler


4.18/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draught @ Papago
What can I say about this beer other than I “Love It”, have for many years and last night for the first time in years I was able to get it on tap.

The beer pours an unblemished deep mahogany color with a massive head that is frothy and a light tan color, the resultant lace a thick and clinging sheet. Nose is sweet malt, caramel, plum like and also a hint of toasted grain, front is ambrosial, top is middling in feel. The beer finishes with a spirited hop spicy bite, light to moderate in carbonation and a somewhat tart and very dry aftertaste, a real treat I must say.

Serving type: on-tap

10-26-2003 15:11:08 | More by Gusler
Photo of Rumrunner


3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16.9 oz. bottle.

Pours a healthy ruby red mahogany color. A deep tan head. This one left some great lacing across the glass. The scents seemed held back by a grassy and grain scent. I could also smell some sweet malts. Dark bread an spices. Good scents.

Flavors are rich and ripe. Nice sweet malt. Molasass and maple. Some peppery spice for bite. A bit of hoppiness. Nice sweet fruits and raisins with a creamy milk flavor. Some smooth carob at the end. Good balance of flavors.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied. A slight hop crispness in the middle of a taste. There is a nice stickyness to its drinkability. A bit of an alcohol sting on the mouth but it is only a wake up call. A fine drinking dopplebock.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2003 06:59:52 | More by Rumrunner
Photo of shippos

New York

3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured with a clear dark ruby/brown color and a very good off-white head. malty aroma with some alcohol. not much as far as hops, jsut enough to balance off some of the malt. smooth balanced mouthfeel and then the alcohol kicks you in the back of the throat. good doppelbock but not neccessary my favorite one of choice.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2003 17:42:28 | More by shippos
Photo of chaduvel


4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark chocolate brown and thick. Head doesn't stick around for long, but coats the sides of the glass and floats around the top. Rich sweet malt aromas, hint of sour. Big chewy malts, very sweet and another hint of sour bread. Metallic chocolate flavors and sweet bready flavors all the way through. Definitely contains those unique dobblebock flavors. This one could substitute for a lunch or dinner.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2003 14:12:39 | More by chaduvel
Photo of silks636

New Jersey

3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. green bottle. No freshness date indicated.

Appears a rich reddish brown. Clear with little carbonation, very slight tan head that dissipates quickly. Hearty aroma consists of combination of toasted and sweet caramel malt. Slight grassy as well as alcohol aromas are detected. Starts out lighter than I would expect, but packs some serious flavor going down. Begins with coffee and caramel which becomes a heavy roasted earthy taste toward the finish. Retains a pleasant touch of sweetness throughout. Very light grassy hops provide a perfect bitterness. Finishes with toasted grain, alcohol, and more serious hop sting.

Surprisingly easy to drink and tasty to boot. A nice cool-weather session beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2003 21:49:38 | More by silks636
Spaten Optimator from Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu
87 out of 100 based on 2,423 ratings.