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Instigator Doppelbock - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Instigator DoppelbockInstigator Doppelbock

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

47 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 47
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 8.44%


Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: NeroFiddled on 04-07-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 47 | Reviews: 43 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of tobelerone
tobelerone

Connecticut

3.48/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On taping Phoenixville. Pours a highly red-tinted amber color. Minimal head without much retention or lacing. Beautiful coloring but the head was pretty suspect. Aroma of caramel, bready malt, banana esters, prominent fruit. Smells a bit more like a dunkel weizen than a doppelbock.

The flavor follows suit. It's quite fruity and again there is a bit more of a banana note than one might reasonably expect for the style. Also lacks the big and profoundly chewy malt breadiness of the best examples of the style. Decent dark fruit and caranel sweetness and a semidry finish. I see past reviews are quite favorable, so perhaps there was something a little.off with this batch? Hard to say.

I also found the body to be a bit thin for a dopplebock and the carbonation a.little fizzy, which cut down on the overall smoothness I was hoping for. Pretty mediocre, but I'd like to try this again sometime I suppose.

Serving type: on-tap

07-29-2012 16:40:43 | More by tobelerone
Photo of johnmichaelsen
johnmichaelsen

Oregon

3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap during the goat races.

The beer pours a copper amber color with good head retention and lacing. Don't get a whole lot on the nose... just some sweet malt and light dry citrus. The flavor profile replicates the nose, though the beer was bit sweeter/maltier than I had expected. Still, it's pretty enjoyable and easy drinking, with some nice cherry and baked apple flavors. There's a hint of bitterness on the finish that helps to buoy the sweetness. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a fairly long, quite malty finish. Alcohol is well integrated into the flavor profile, making for an entirely too easy to drink beer.

While nothing extraoridary, I thought this a very enjoyable, easy to take bock beer.

Serving type: on-tap

05-07-2012 16:35:53 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ Sly Fox Phoenixville on 5/1/11 during the annual Bock Fest and Goat Race. Served in a mug.

Pours a deep clear copper, with a finger of off-white head. This retains with some creamy bunching around the edges of the glass, leaving back a good looking cascade of foamy lacing. The aroma has a strong ripe fruitiness to it from the hops, which melds with rich notes of cocoa, caramel, and bread. The hops overall give this a real push in the nose.

The taste is a mix of toast, cocoa, caramel, and that same ripe citric fruitiness. This is all backed by a firm wave of earthy bitterness that leaves this dry with some lingering juicy fruit notes. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a bit fuller, with a sharp and lively feel to the carbonation, yet this still stays smooth with a low alcohol feel.

This seemed a little hoppier with the flavors than I remembered it being but I still rather liked this, as that ripe fruit just added another layer of complexity to all already rich malt profile here. Very smooth and easy drinking for the size as well, this is a nicely made Bock Beer.

Serving type: on-tap

05-06-2011 14:25:01 | More by Kegatron
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at the Brass Rail.

A: The doppelbock is a dark, concentrated tea shade of brown. Full enough to be opaque with a half a finger of head, the bock sits very still.

S: The nose is caramel bready, sweet with darker fruits lingering around. The grains are well-toasted, not burnt, with a toffee sweetness. Hops don't do very much.

T: The doppelbock is a comfort drink, loaded with rich malts that are calming. Toffee and toasted bread, a combination of sweet and not-so-sweet, is rich from the first sip. Hops are a little more evident here, earthy of course, but the bock can't escape its malty focus. While the beer is warming, booze is never really a factor (although it does hit pretty hard with no warning).

M: A rich doppelbock, a little to filling and big especially as the weather warms. The toasted malts and toffee deliver solid flavor.

D: A nice sipper, the bock is a little to big (and almost out of season) to be a go-to. I'm guessing that it'll be perfect at the Goat Races on Sunday.

Serving type: on-tap

05-01-2010 13:08:49 | More by akorsak
Photo of ffejherb
ffejherb

Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Sly Fox Goat Race & Bock Fest on 5/3/09.

A - Chestnut-colored body with burgundy highlights and one-finger creamy beige head that deposited spotty lace around the glass.

S - Malty, earthy and slightly herbal with a leafy hop character. Malt is primarily roasty with a subtle toffee sweetness. A faint waft of alcohol also sweeps into the mix.

T - Sweet and malty with a warm alcohol presence and plenty of roasted and toasty malt character as well as sweet caramel and toffee notes. Touch of leafy, earthy hop bitterness in the finish.

M - Medium to full bodied with a chewy, syrupy texture and subtle carbonation. Sweet on the palate with a mild hop finish.

D - Fine Dopplebock with a well-concealed alcohol presence. Gotta have some bock for the goat races!

Serving type: on-tap

05-05-2009 01:20:55 | More by ffejherb
Photo of DavidSeanNJ
DavidSeanNJ

New Jersey

3.35/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-Tap

Poured into a pint glass...

A- Dark ruby brown color. Massive cream colored 2 finger head, some lace and sediment.

S- Smell was really chocolatey with a hint of earthy biscuit.

T- Taste was really sweet, tons of malts going on here. Candy like flavors with a toffee/dried fruit feel. Chocolate and coffee hints as well, but the sugary malts dominated.

M- This one had a chewy and sticky mouthfeel, really heavy beer.

D- I enjoyed this pint, but was not blown away at all. This was good, but nothing spectacular. I would not pass it down if given the chance but would not seek it out.

Serving type: on-tap

06-27-2008 23:25:37 | More by DavidSeanNJ
Photo of Foxman
Foxman

New Jersey

4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It came to me a rich deep chestnut, with garnet tinges at the edges. Two fingers of frothy light tan head dawdled for some time before slipping down to a thin sheen of tiny bubbles. Lacing was plentiful and intricate.

The aroma was rife with the products of sweet roasted malt, bringing caramel, toffee, and brown sugar to the fore. A black cherry note mingled with a trace of floral hops and a hint of alcohol.

upon sipping, the malt again stood tall, toasty and sweet, casting about notes of caramel, dark chocolate, raisins, and black cherry. A subdued citrus element poked through, a hoppy vestige, along with malt and hop general bitterness. A smidgeon of alcohol merged with a vinous hint to give a port-like character to the middle ground. The finish was sweet with residual malt, and lingeringly bitter from the chief aspect of the hops. While a bit ohppier than many of the style, it was still well weighted toward the malt, and very pleasing to drink.

Heavy bodied, the thick malt comes across syrupy and coating, while the modest but ambitious hops give a bit of tingle for the effort.

There's never any question that the malt is the headliner, but the hops make enough of a show to keep the interest high. Everything about this was fun to drink, and I enjoyed every drop, even mroe so as it warmed in the glass. It has plenty going on, but it's blended very well, and even balanced in its stylistic way. The ABV is just big enough to notice, but with proper care, it is in no way a hindrance. This is one beer I'll greet gladly each spring.

Serving type: on-tap

04-17-2006 16:29:05 | More by Foxman
Photo of Bierman9
Bierman9

New Hampshire

4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1/2 gallon growler. Deep ruby/garnet/chestnut hued bier... clear within. Thin, tan head tops things, mostly around the rim, though. Lovely highlights in the bier, especially with backlighting. Malty nose; sweet with toffee/caramel and just a hint of hoppiness. Body a solid medium to medium-plus with a bit of chewiness, and passed quite smoothly over the palate. Flavor was sweetness all over, a mouthful of malt. Yummy! Decently rich and richly decent. Toffee and caramel again, and just lightly hopped. Sweetness lingers. Reminded me a bit of Sam Adams. Verry nice!

Thnx V!!

Prosit!!

overall: 4.15
appearance: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | mouthfeel: 4.5 | drinkability: 4

834

Serving type: on-tap

09-06-2005 14:35:49 | More by Bierman9
Photo of grassrootsVT
grassrootsVT

Vermont

3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Recently had this on tap at Johnny Brenda's.

Had been anticipating trying this brew since i first read about it. Due to this, perhaps i was let down. At pour, there was little to no head, and the carbonation level was rather low. Usually a lower Co2 level aids in the accentuation of malt depth, but not the case here. The color was perfect, true to style, a caramel [munich or cara-munich?] and chocolate malt enriched doppel - and the smell was as easily indicative of its ingredients. However, upon the first sip my reaction was: "this is not a decocted bock." Surely, i am a malthead; i try and take this into account when i experience new beers - but having tasted the riches of decocted doppels - i felt like the malt depth was lacking on this one. Therefore, the choc. and munich malts were present in the taste, but the mouthfeel and general taste impression were not quite as i would have expected. I could be wrong, I'm not sure - perhaps Brian did use a decoction mash - but, either way, suffice to say, i think it could have used more munich malt...
However, i find this to be a very drinkable beer - a well attempted outing and i think i will venture back to try it again....just to be sure.

Serving type: on-tap

05-10-2005 17:12:33 | More by grassrootsVT
Photo of goindownsouth
goindownsouth

Pennsylvania

4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A wonderful version of this style. Deep and rich without being overly cloying. Deep and rich malty notes in the nose, as this dark, almost black brew presented before me with a modest head. The caramel-like notes combine well with the almost chocolatey goodness on the palate. The mouthfeel was a bit lighter than I had expected, and the ABV makes this one a tricky brew to consume in volume, but this is one dame fine dopplebock that I am glad I went out of my way to try.

Prosit!

Serving type: on-tap

04-26-2005 20:05:38 | More by goindownsouth
Photo of weeare138
weeare138

Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was psyched when I saw it('05 version) on the board as this has been a perennial favorite of mine, usually rivaling those of the German lineage doppelbocks. The appearance was what I expected of the brew...blackish with a slight head and lacing as it goes down. Smelled nicely blended with a malty, fruity(black grapes), perhaps, roasted almond smell to it. This wasn't as carbonated as I had anticipated but there where some slight bubbles as I would bring the glass away after a sip. Hides the alcohol nicely and is very smooth sipping and going down. This is a pretty good drinking double bock.
In my opinion, a very good brew, although it seems to be missing a component of years past. IMHO, this one would make a world of a difference if aged but it is still a tastey critter to sink your teeth into. I actually like this one more than the St. Vic.

Finger licking good!

Serving type: on-tap

04-05-2005 01:20:33 | More by weeare138
Photo of Boto
Boto

Connecticut

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draught: This one pours a dark mahogany color. There was some head, but I believe that there was too much CO2 pressure, and the barkeep was having a few issues pouring. Sweet, caramel nose. Very malty taste. Some subtle fruitiness hiding down in there. About zero carbonation. A very good brew!

Serving type: on-tap

07-06-2004 21:00:46 | More by Boto
Photo of sublimesipping
sublimesipping

Pennsylvania

4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

beautiful dark mahogony color with nice buttercream glass lacing. Falvors are subtle, serious, enticing with hints of caramal and chocolate covered cherries. Nice balance to the mouthfeel and a sweet nuttiness to the aroma make for a beer that presents smooth, confident sophistication. a worthy, memorable experience in a truly wonderful quality brewpub. May I pull my Bryon out now for the growler in the fridge.

Serving type: on-tap

05-05-2004 02:50:17 | More by sublimesipping
Photo of pezoids
pezoids

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On a Saturday night, I finally had a chance to settle down with a growler of Sly’s Doppel. This poured a very deep and dark ruby color. Much darker than I had imagined. Very clear and even after a week in the fridge, it still managed to produce a decent and creamy head of foam. Which kept bouncing back after subsequent pours.

The aroma gave off faint fruity notes which seemed a bit muddled and indistinguishable. Something like an orange liqueur came through along with winey cherry notes. The taste is very subtle with light malts and a buttery sweet tang of light citrus fruits. Also detected some caramel spice and almond extract. Very mellow with some soft bitter qualities coming through.

As the beer warms up, the flavors slowly emerge from deep inside this beer. Has a nice solid body of malt but comes across only semi-sweet, unlike say a Salvator. Although light in bitterness, this is more definitely more accented towards the hops. I guess you could say it is somewhat of an American version of the more sweet and bolder German Doppel. Overall this is extremely drinkable. I finished off a growler by myself in only about an hour and could have had some more. A damn fine beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-20-2004 04:51:27 | More by pezoids
Photo of PSUDREW
PSUDREW

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

MMMmmm, Best brew I had tonight. And, in honor of the last night of lent, this is indeed my "lenten treat"

It pours witha nice, thick, foamy head, with a nice tan color. The best way I can describe the look of the beer, is, aside from the head, like cola. Dark, ruby, and opaque color. It smeels sweet and ready to drink.

The taste is like..a nice nutty, malty balnce. It has the sweet malt/rum flavor, and only slight trace of hop. The hop flavor is presnt through out the brew, but only ever so slightly. Very much a mixture of fruity/bready essence, with sublt coco notes. It all comes together so nicely.

This was my favorite brew from slyfox so far. Well put together, and a range of intersting taste going thourgh- out the beer. Very nice, indeed

Serving type: on-tap

04-11-2004 03:38:56 | More by PSUDREW
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.95/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer pours a deep black color with a thin tan lace head. The aroma is perfect. It has a rich malt scent that is dominated by an intense caramel aroma; awesome!!! The taste is great! This beer has got the best damn flavor for a doppelbock. It has an intense dark malt character. It is rich with caramel malts and finishes sweet. The mouthfeel is perfect. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is the best doppelbock ever. It goes down slow and is very enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2004 14:37:13 | More by WesWes
Photo of rdrummer
rdrummer

New Jersey

3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The doublebock poured a dark reddish-brown color with a tan head that lasted a short time. The aroma was very earthy with the smell of roasted malt, grain, and a hint of smokiness. The taste was mainly roasted malt with some caramel taste to it with a bitter finish from the Hallertauer hops. The feel in the mouth is creamy and slightly thick. Another Sly Fox draft that tasted good from beginning to end and begged for another.

Serving type: on-tap

04-03-2004 23:11:11 | More by rdrummer
Photo of Jarod
Jarod

Pennsylvania

4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When this beer was served to me it had the appearance of a deep dark walnut color that had a reddish/brown hue to it. Very rich looking. When first sent it had a rich, full beige/tan colored head that was not very lasting and fell to a small thin skim that covered the top of the beer. The lace that was left behind was more of a thin covering more then lace. The aromas that came from the glass were of fresh grass, flowers, some dark fruit, big dark roasted malt, and fresh hops. The tastes that came out of the glass were better then the aromas. I tasted like dark roasted malts, some hints of smoked nuts, roasted nuts, caramel, floral and bitter hops, and alcohol. Kind of sweet, kind of dry, kind of roasty this beer takes you through the whole spectrum all in one glass. Nice and creamy, fresh and full of flavor. These are all words that I would use to describe this beer. Well done, nice beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-08-2003 07:50:25 | More by Jarod
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An almost black body reveals deep mahogany highlights when held to the light. The foamy tan head drops slowly to a thin but solid cap and remains in place throughout the serving. As it drops it leaves temporal sheets of lace. A very nice appearance! The aroma expresses floral and mildly grassy hops amidst a deeply toasted malt character with hints of light fruitiness. As might be expected, its firmly malty body is creamy and smooth across the palate. The flavor is rich and surprisingly complex with more hop flavor than is usually associated with the style. It starts with some dark, mildly roasted, and lightly acidic malt that warms to become much more caramelish and softly sweet before crossing-over into a lingering, dry, roasty, and bitter finish. Very nicely done! It's exceptionally clean and well brewed with a subtleg alcohol and vibrantly fresh malt and hops. It's a bit more roasty than many examples, but that gives it an edge of distinction. Certainly worth trying.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2003 18:53:58 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of bierman2000
bierman2000

Pennsylvania

4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a dark almost black Doppelbock. Malty and smoky with an excellent finish. It is highly drinkable and being a malt lover it is very refreshing. Not too sweet and a beer to enjoy slowly as the alcohol does not seem to kick in till the end of the pint.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2003 14:13:40 | More by bierman2000
Photo of claspada
claspada

New Jersey

3.53/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark burnt caramel color with ruby hues along the edges. There is a rather large tan head with great retention that left loads of lacing as it receded.

Aroms begin with toasted malts, brown sugar and sweet caramel covered apples. As it warms you get notes of smoked wood and red grapes as well.

The tastes begin with apple cider and dark red grape skin. Then it's quite caramel malt forward with hints of smokiness. As it warms you get more and more dark fruits; figs, dates and raisin.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium'high carbonation. Finish is on the sweeter end of the spectrum but the ample carbonation helps to balance the large malt presence.

Overall this is a nice American example of a classic German brew. Nothing worldly or revolutionary here or up to the quality of the authentic examples but a fine showing for a low price point.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2012 17:04:05 | More by claspada
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

brown color with a smallish off white head. Quick fade left behind a somwhat flat looking brown liquid with no head, lace, or side glass contribution.

Aroma was decidedly smoked with a nice hint of caramel in the back. There was some earth grain present and more of a dark grain tone.The flavor was nice, classic dopplebock with lots of smoked flavors and a great overall malt profile. Thick flavor with a somewhat tangy finish

Very smooth with little in the way of carbonation

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2011 02:47:44 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
JoeyBeerBelly

New York

4.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served in a glass beer mug.

Caramel color with a fizzy beige head that thinned to a light layer leaving bits and pieces of lace.
The aroma is filled with sweet dark fruits and molases.
The taste is worthy of this brew being called a 'malt bomb', sweet and sticky all the way through.
Medium bodied with mild carbonation.
Goes down way too easy. If you like sweet malty beers this is a 'must try'.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2009 20:35:52 | More by JoeyBeerBelly
Photo of beerthulhu
beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark mahogany red with an initial 1 finger foamy reddish-beige head that quickly settled leaving only a fair and splotchy lacing.

S: a sweet caramel aroma, light chocolate and bread on nose.

T: Light cherries, lots of dark molasses and brown sugar add sweetness that is compliment by a nice bread backbone. There is a rich chocolate nature and some alcohol upon warming is detected. Starts out very sweet then warms to a nice dried fruit and bread palate.

M: Light mouthful with a very sweet caramel malt presence.

D: Very clean as most of their beers and is very easy to drink for a doppelbock.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2008 22:39:29 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of naproxen
naproxen

Connecticut

3.58/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

For a Doppelbock this was pretty standard fare, nothing mindblowing going on. If they were looking to be a mediocre textbook doppelbock, they win.

Poured from the bottle with a big frothy head, high on malts in aroma and taste. Also, as others have noted, pretty sweet as well. Given the aroma and rich auburn/dark brown hue I expected more complexity in the taste, alas the body was lacking something, and it left a sweet off tasting malt residue in my mouth. I was glad to be sharing this bomber, because had it been a solo mission it would have failed down the drain.

I have had much better doppelbocks, and this one is not really bad, just not amazing either. To me, that's just Sly Fox all together.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2008 15:45:40 | More by naproxen
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Instigator Doppelbock from Sly Fox Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 47 ratings.