Spaten Optimator - Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu

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Spaten OptimatorSpaten Optimator

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BA SCORE
87
very good

2,813 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,813
Reviews: 1,314
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 12.34%
Wants: 77
Gots: 303 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu visit their website
Germany

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  7.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-06-1999

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (18) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,813 | Reviews: 1,314
Photo of russpowell
4.53/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

.5L bottle

pours dark caramel with a 1" tan head. Zero head retention & lacing

Smell: Big breadiness and spice (peppery)

Taste: Malt, vanilla, and peppery (like a dick cheney 28 gauge shotgun blast). Dryness, slight nutiness, some hop bitterness and alcohol on the finish

MF: Slick& chewy , good carbonation

Pretty drinkable, but I consider this the low end of the dopplebock spectrum abv-wise. yummy just the same! Just didn't quite come together from the crtical beer drinkers's view point. Enjoy!

Photo of Rifugium
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Brauhaus Schmitz, Philly, PA

A tasty, toasty German bock. Poured a hazel-brown with reddish highlights, moderate carbonation, and a thin off-white head. Mild and smooth aroma of sweet, toasty malts and caramel. More sweet toasted malts in the taste, toffee, raisin, and apple peel. Maybe just a hint of alcohol. Medium mouthfeel, and pretty easily drinkable.

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

The when I was first getting into beers over the summer I picked up a couple different products from Spaten, one of them being the Optimator. Had no clue what I was getting myself into at the time, and I didn't even know what a dopplebock was. I think I thought it was really thick and off flavored at the time, so I saw it on tap at the Sharp Edge Creekhouse had to give it another shot. This beer is definitely toned down in comparison to most dopplebocks that are made today, but this isn't a bad thing because it is still a solid representation of the style. A deep ruby red tone with a thin cream colored head settles quickly. The aroma consists of a light bouquet of malty goodness, and with the first sip I couldn't get over how drinkable this beer is. With a nice trace of figs and plum to the taste, this beer had a very sweet finish very balanced and enjoyable. Like a said a little on the lighter side for a dbock, but the lighter body gives this beer an increased drinkability.

Photo of kojevergas
3.17/5  rDev -18.5%
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.

C+

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.

Photo of drabmuh
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle without a freshness label or a brewing date into a standard pint glass. Beer is dark brown and completely clear. Carbonation moderate and the head is made up of small off white bubbles that form a uniform layer on the top of the beer. Lacing in moderate.

Nice sweet aroma. Some caramel, no hops or roast to speak of. Smells like a good doppelbock.

Full bodied, some tinge of bitter in there, but mostly sweet and a slight darker malt almost schwartz character. Drinkability high and mouthfeel is great. This is a wonderful beer and a great experience. I reviewed this on draft and in the bottle now, both great ways to drink.

Photo of jwc215
4.17/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a reddish-brown hue. It's foamy, bubbly white head left a nice lacing. There was medium carbonation that quicky settled to a slower carbonation.
I was impressed with the smell. It had a nice aroma of gentle caramel and hints of toffee, chocolate and coffee. An alcoholic odor was slightly evident, but not overwhelming.
It had a pleasant, warming taste - a good example for this type. It was a bit on the thin side, but the slight wateriness did not take away that much from its overall taste.
It left a nice feeling to the mouth, as it was not too thick - though nothing overly exceptional.
The finishing touch was a warming alcohol taste at the end and a reminder of the flavors in the aftertaste.
While I've had better of this style (Celebrator comes to mind), I prefer it over other standard doppelbocks (such as Paulaner Salvator) because of its well-balanced taste and its covering of the alcohol taste.

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 5/9/2012. Pours fairly crystal clear dark reddish brown color with a nice 2 finger dense light khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with moderate streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of caramel, raisin, apple, molasses, toffee, toast, brown bread, floral, brown sugar, light roasted malt, and earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of malt and fruity esters. Taste of caramel, raisin, apple, molasses, toffee, brown bread, toast, brown sugar, light floral, light roasted malt, and earthiness. Lingering notes of caramel, light fruits, molasses, toffee, brown bread, toast, and light roast on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of malt and fruity ester flavors; with nice robustness and zero cloying sweetness present after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a moderately slick and creamy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with almost zero warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent doppelbock. Very nice balance, robustness, and complexity of malt flavors; and very smooth to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of chinchill
3.63/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle served in pint glass. No date on bottle, but bottle has new white, black and red label.

pours nearly black with dark reddish-brown highlights. Bright light reveals a clear but nearly opaque brew. Limited head quickly dissolves to a ring with a few thin patches.

Light-moderate level of malt aroma with light smokiness and some caramel sweetness. Good quality but low quantity of aromatics.

Taste - Far more malt and roasted flavor than indicated by the aroma alone. Rich malt flavor, but a bit too sour.

M - smooth and creamy with a medium body and light carbonation.

Photo of WesWes
3.36/5  rDev -13.6%
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.

Photo of dbrauneis
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque yet clear very dark reddish brown in color with light amounts of active visible carbonation and amber + garnet red highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense foamy tan head that reduces to a thick film covering the entire surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of dark malts, brown bread, and some light notes of dark fruits (raisins). Lightly sweet.

T: Upfront there is a moderate to strong flavor of dark malts and brown bread. That is combined with a moderate amount of dark fruit (raisin) sweetness. Light amounts of yeasty flavors in the finish. Minimal amounts of bitterness which fades almost instantly.

M: Just shy of full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: Alcohol is pretty well hidden in this beer but you can almost subtly taste it as the beer warms up. Enjoyable but rich enough in flavor and aroma tat I would likely not be able to have more than one of these in a session. Overall, this beer drinks like a meal - filling.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint served at the Fort Worth Gingerman.

The beer pours a dark brown color with an off-white head. The aroma has notes of caramel with some dark fruit mixed in. The flavor is just as good if not better. I get some caramel malts, bready malts, grapes, dark fruit and molasses. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of mdaschaf
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes.

A: Pours a ruddy brown color with a small, off-white head on top. Not much retention, and leaves behind some very thin lacing.

S: Some dark fruit, raisins and a little plum, some brown sugar and caramel.

T: Rather sweet. Caramel, brown sugar, and a good bit of dark fruit. More raisins and plums as well as a little bit of fig.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinks smooth.

O: Pretty good beer, seems to fit the style well, but not my favorite. Wouldn't have a problem drinking it again.

Photo of mothman
3.68/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a light tan head. Good retention. Color is a dark copper brown.

Flavor profile: A lot of caramel malts. Raisins, plums, molasses, toffee, and some bready flavors. Dark fruits and malts. Sweet.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy. Medium to full bodied. Ends a bit sticky.

Overall, a nice doppelbock, but it seems to have a slight skunky flavor to it. It might be the green bottle playing tricks on my mind. Pretty solid offering.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.61/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a brilliantly clear ruby-amber color when held up to the light, otherwise a drab deep amber. It is topped by a frothy tan head that is held up by a medium-low carbonation. The aroma is a bit lighter than I was expecting, it is malty and bready with notes of molasses, caramel, and a light sweetness. The beer is malty sweet with a smooth finish that has a hint of dark malt character reminiscent of chocolate. The beer is quite a bit more tasty than the aroma suggests. Somewhat light on the palate, though only in so much as I was expecting it to be a bit thicker, it is actually about medium full in the body. In the end this seems to be lacking a little bit of malt character, though it is quite tasty, it just does not distinguish itself enough from a "standard" Bock.

Photo of Gavage
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was my first experience of this on tap. It poured a lovely dark brown / burgandy color with a very thin head. The aroma was nice, but I expected some more sweetness and roasted malt in the nose. I expected a thick malty beer, and that's exactly what I got. The malt lingered long on the tongue and the sweetness was not overpowering. The drinkabilty of this good, as I could have easily had more than one in a session. This would be a great to drink on a cold winter night, as the alcohol definitely warms the insides.

Photo of tdm168
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - dark brownish amber with a red hue; half of an inch of thick, soft, brownish head; great retention

S - musty, caramel, yeasty, toffee, faint chocolate, very faint dark fruit

T - chocolate, caramel, dark fruit, faint cherries, faint alcohol, toffee, lingering bitterness in the finish

M - medium bodied, smooth, a crisp carbonated finish, a bit warm

This is a pretty decent beer. The flavor is solid, but the bitter finish doesn't mesh well with the rest of the profile. The nose is also pretty decent, but it has that traditional euro musty note. Overall, it's definitely worth checking out

Photo of Halcyondays
3.87/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16.9 oz. bottle, with regal label, says Since 1397,

A: Pours a medium shade of brown, with an initial tan, cola-coloured head, which quickly degrades into a thin film.

S: Smells of lots of caramel malt, fragrant, but kind of one-dimensional.

T: Malt city, full of sweet caramel malt, with a bit of a metallic tinge, which I always found to be a bit off-putting, but interesting, though it is a minor fault with this beer. The hops are there, but the malt steals the show.

M: Smooth, thick and heavy, quite robust.

D: A good dopplebock, for me not up there with Salvator and Celebrator, but a very good example of the style. A great beer and style for spring and the cooler months.

Photo of BARFLYB
3/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On Tap

Spaten Optimaor is a dark ruby red that has brown blotches. Not much as even a cap even off of the tap, just some faint squigglies. Smells is dark fruit, plum, pear, roast, big malts, caramel and toffee. The taste is the same but maybe not in the above order. It's very sweet and caramel/tofee rich, too much for my liking. The feel is syrupy and above medium and it reminded me of fresh Mad Elf from the tap. Sweet and a bit cloying. Drinkability was low.

Photo of BlackHaddock
4.34/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

7 Feb in my room at The Fishermans Wharf Sheraton in San Fransisco, picked from some all night store round the corner. This beer is wonderful, even out of a plastic beaker!

Deep brown body with a creamy biege head.

The nose is malty sweet: roasted/toasted caramel, red berries, toffee and trees.

The taste is a lovely sweet malty molasses mix: too sweet for some maybe, but not for me, I loved it.

The body is rich and full, the alcohol just about noticeable within the flavours.

A true classic.

Photo of Billolick
4.07/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, no freshness dating.A classic that pours dark and ruby, best described as a cola color. The first thing that struck me that is this is a full flavored brew and that its strong alcoholwise. Malt dominates. Toffee, chocolate, licorish. Not much bittering going on here. In general, rich, strong and smooth stuff. A nice example of a dark German lager.

Photo of yourefragile
3.21/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz green bottle poured into a pilsner glass

A: A dark, clear brown liquid with a off white head that rather rapidly dissipates and leaves a nice trail of stringy lacing.
S: Nothing remarkable to me. Some malt, but theres a slightly sour, alcohol smell that really detracts from anything pleasant.
T: Malt body and aftertaste dominates this, but like the smell, there is something not quite agreeing with me. There is a slight hop bitterness which is ok to balance the malt, but still a slight sourness. Alcohol also rides in on the aftertaste and that might be throwing off my perception of everything else here since it is unpleasant.
M: Medium body with medium to high carbonation. Aftertaste isn't pleasant, following the lead of the body, but still not all together bad.
D: I've tried this a few times now and this just doesn't seem to agree with me. There's nothing bad here, I just don't enjoy this guy. Generally has a nice flavor, but a little too high in alcohol for me to want to drink this regularly for this style.

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

Poured into pint glass.
A nice dark brown/black color with a small yet thick head. Tints of amber poked through in the light.
Smell of roasted malt, biscuit, chocolate and anise.
Taste was very good. Good balance of roasted malt, hops, chocolate, coffee and caramel. The anise took a back seat and didn't play out much at all, which is good for me.
Good thickness to it with a nice finish.

Photo of DoubleJ
4.06/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the Eisbock of last night to the Doppelbock of tonight, on to the beer:

From its 500 ml bottle into a glass, it's a light bronze color. Smells of sweet bread (what'd ya expect?) and a subtle hop aroma rise from the beer. the taste of it is a little more polished for the style, no flavors will overpower you, but plenty of it to enjoy. Malty, with a hint of caramel, finishing off a tropical fruit flavor from the alcohol. Pretty easy to drink considering the style and ABV, as I enjoyed this offering from one of Munich's famous breweries.

Photo of tempest
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a tall head that quickly disapates and sadly leaves no lace. However, it the body its a beautiful darker than dark amber that lets little light through.

The smell is a bit weak, but its a classic strong bock smell. A little bit roasted, and a little whatever "bock" is.

Very smooth and mellow for a doppelbock or really anything at 7.2% abv. Its actually so smooth that it reminds me more of a normal bock. I'd expect at least a little kick from a doppel, like an Ayinger doppel. It's a rich taste that finishes with a bitter note and a slight, but pleasant aftertaste.

Feels great in your mouth, nothing extraordinary, it just does what it supposed to here.

Great drinkability. Goes down easy for a high content beer and tastes good at the same time.

While not an amazing beer, $8 a sixer is very hard to beat if your looking to get buzzed or even blotto off of real beer. For a doppel it could use a tad more punch, but its still a solid beer. Recommend to anyone who likes bocks and likes to feel the effects of alcohol. Cant say I dont.

Spaten Optimator from Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu
87 out of 100 based on 2,813 ratings.