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Gorch Fock - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub

Not Rated.
Gorch FockGorch Fock

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

528 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 528
Reviews: 177
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 13.42%
Wants: 33
Gots: 42 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
A light golden colored Franconian style Helles Lager. With a slightly sweet malt body, a noble hop profile and a crisp finish this beer is as traditional as we’ll ever get.

(Beer added by: cretemixer on 04-04-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 528 | Reviews: 177 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this as an extra in a trade with fogdog. Thanks Kevin!

Poured into a flute.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, pale gold with only a thin, white halo for a head (and even that disappears after a minute or two). Pretty good looking carbonation. EDIT: following pours netted pretty decent heads, though they still didn't retain long.

Smell: Mango, green grapes, and maybe some pineapple along with some clean malt.

Taste: Bready malts, lager yeast, and some melon flavors. Tart citrus can also be found, especially when swished. A pinch of herbal hops cleanse the palate at the end. Malt and hops appear to be pretty well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Malt produces a bit of chewiness and hops give it a clean, crisp finish. Light in body. A bit prickly. Nice.

Drinkability: I could definitely knock back a few more of these. Citrus and melon assert themselves more as the session continues. This is the perfect fit for a warm winter day in San Luis Obispo.

ThreeWiseMen, Jan 30, 2009
Photo of akorsak
3.9/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bottle Christmas present from my sister.

A: The lagerbier is a pale tea color, a shade or two darker than straw gold with a noticeable haze. A 2 plus finger head is slowly receding and leaving a thick trail in its wake.

S: The nose is grainy, filled with lightly toasted bread and apple and melon fruits. No sign of hops.

T: The taste is very clean. Sweet up front, watermelon flavors come through. Following quick on the tale of the melon is a crisp bread flavor, toasted but not burnt. Hop bitterness is fleeting, rarely rearing its head (a real coup for a FFF beer).

M: The beer is malty, creamy with a solid flavor. The trademark FFF hops are gone but not missed. Maybe FFF should stick to German-style lagers from here on out.

D: Very drinkable. I'd be content with another bottle or two.

akorsak, Jan 02, 2009
Photo of RustyDiamond
3.83/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A pal purchased from Binny's and brought back.
Poured a clear yellow with no head. Slight aroma of sweet melon with some light spice. Light bodied on the taste with a touch of honey sweetness on the nose. Crisp & clean with a nice hop bitterness. Very easy drinking.

RustyDiamond, Nov 23, 2008
Photo of pwoods
2.63/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Shared with beachbum1975.

22oz. brown bomber poured into a pint.

A: Light yellow pour. No head or lacing.

S: A bit of oats. Oats? Grainy, a touch of sweetness. No hops. FFF?

T/M: It's a light beer. Or is that lite? There might be a touch of hops in there... lightly floral. Grainy and lightly sweet. I still think of oats. Light body is lowered carbonation.

D: It's light but not good enough to want to drink.

pwoods, Nov 21, 2008
Photo of david131
3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- A beautiful, luminescent, cloudy orange liquid. There are some streams of slowly rising carbonation, but there is no real head to speak of.

S- Slightly fruity with a small caramel malt backing. Slightly sour. not very aromatic at all, but not bad.

T- Surprisingly fruity with hints of spice. Not all that complex, but it is really tasty.

M- Very creamy and clean. Impressive.

D- This is a great fall lager. I am really impressed with this. Too bad it wasn't cheaper.

david131, Nov 18, 2008
Photo of BMoney575
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on 11-17-08

Pours a cool cloudy orange color, out of an awesome-looking bottle. No head, and clean, filmy lacing.

Smell is thin, slightly malty, just a hint of spice, and a light hop ending.

Taste is good, very oktoberfest, very light caramel malt and tiny hoppiness in the finish.

Mouthfeel is epic, carbonation is perfect, silky smooth.

Drinkability is very good, but the price ($8.99 a bomber) is not.

Overall, good, but too bland to warrant another try.

BMoney575, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of dnichols
3.9/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured a capped bomber into a large Spaten mug.

A: It poured a slightly hazy straw yellow body with a large volume of carbonation, and a sticky moderate one finger head. The head sank slowly leaving a moderate thin but even curtain of lacing.

S: It had a distinct malty aroma profile complemented by hints of citrus and white spices.

T: It began with a creamy, semi-sweet toasted malt flavor that had hints of lemons and tangerines. On the back side the floral and bitter hops gave it a touch of kick that reminded me of white pepper and cloves. T

M: It was light to medium bodied with a creamy, smooth front and a bitter and spicy back. It had plenty of carbonation and finished relatively clean with little aftertaste.

D: It is a tasty brew that is easy on the tongue and light on the ABV. It would make for a great session beer.

dnichols, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of spointon
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured this one from a 22oz brown bomber bottle into my Sam Adams lager glass.

A= This beer poured a pale straw yellow color with a 1/4" white head. There was a very faint haze to the body, with tons of actice carbonation release going on.

S= I found some nice fruity aromas reminiscent of a Belgian witbier, only ten times less pronounced. Mild citrus, sweet bakery malt, and some grass give this one a very fresh aroma.

T= Slight malt sweetness leads off followed by a very short burst of fruity esters. The fruit fades fast into a clean dry finish. Aftertaste of mild hops.

MF= Light body with a crisp biting carbonation make this a real palate cleanser.

D= Like the big boys say, this beer tastes great and is less filling. Not my favorite style due to its muted flavors and aromas, but I can certainly appreciate the craftsmanship here. This beer would pair very well with food, and at 4.5% abv, its certainly sessionable.

spointon, Nov 11, 2008
Photo of Metalmonk
4.03/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up at the brewery on a fantastic day of great beer, great food and great company. I already have expectations about this, as Three Floyds never does anything in the normal way (befitting of their "it's not normal" slogan); I'm assuming that includes even a low-ABV German-style lager. [Opening to the tune of "anticipation, an-ti-ci-pay-yay-tion"...]

Appearance is your run-of-the-mill golden-yellow with a thin head that sinks to a skim quickly. Nice haze in the body, with thin dots and strings of lace here and there.

Honey, straw, white grape (champagne), yellow cake batter, and something like "skunk"-- but not as in bad skunked beer.

What the malt does in this beer is wonderful, definitely the most appealing aspect of the flavor. It's like cookie dough, sweet and bready, also resembling cake batter as in the aroma. Lemon-drop candies, young green apple and a touch of honey also. Hops are crisp and fairly sharp, well-balanced with the malt side, while the dry finish provides a sizzling burn. Texture is very nearly soda-like, thanks to the sharpness of the bubbles, but its buttery slickness balances things out, and reminds you you're dealing with a quality lager.

Okay, so it's not as left-of-center, style-wise, as something like Gumballhead. And not your typical Three Floyds offering in any way. It's not overloaded with hops and/or alcohol, but very much like most other Three Floyds stuff in that it's a quality product, expertly conceived and lovingly crafted. The name and label, as with all 3F stuff, is just awesome icing on a tasty cake.

Metalmonk, Oct 01, 2008
Photo of msubulldog25
4.05/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 22 oz. bottle, picked up on a recent visit to Three Floyds. In honor of that visit some 24 days ago, in honor of the ongoing Oktoberfest in Munich, and...well...because it's a gorgeous afternoon in the backyard, low 80's and a waning sun, it felt right to open this one. Poured to a tall pilsner glass.

Named to honor the 'Gorch Fock', a 1930's-era German sailing ship which was, in turn, named for German writer Johann Kinau's pseudonym; he died in battle during World War I. Thanks to Wikipedia for providing such historical insight; otherwise I'd believe the folks at 3F were hitting the sauce and making up words...or weren't good at spelling profanity.

A: Golden-caramel orange color, it's nearly clear. As is, there's a nice fuzzy haze, through which a plethora of bubbles rise effortlessly. Not much lace; what there is sticks in clustered bits

S: Generally sweet aroma, a fair cereal-grain aroma and a trace of spice. A little fruity, apple and green raisin.

T: Spicy Saaz meet caramel-like grain and lightly toasted, sugary nuts. Beneath the maltiness lies a fruitiness like sweet apple or ripe pear. Finishes somewhat dry, a dusting of pepper.

M: Oily/buttery mouthfeel is light-medium and smooth. Viscous, with soft carbonation. Seems to grow in depth as it warms.

D: Superbly drinkable. Don't mistake this for a 'bland' lager; this has a wonderful complexity. Excellent for sipping, outstanding 'session' potential. Well done version of the style. Would love to have this available; I'd get it again without question.

msubulldog25, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of kmeves
3.48/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazed pale golden with a small white. Aroma is medium sweet with some grass, light fruit and bread. Flavor is bread, fruit, light grass and light citrus. Light body, very clean texture. Something a little out of the normal for three floyds but altogether a good beer.

kmeves, Sep 11, 2008
Photo of Oxymoron
2.95/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

From 1960-90 the Gorch Fock was on the 10 Deutsche Mark making it one of the most portrayed ships in the world. Um, ok pours a semi-hazy golden color with a soft white head. Needed a little help but did have some retention, though did not last through the full tasting.

The nose is light overall, but some stronger grainy notes with a touch of biscuit on the back end. Some minor nutty notes as well. Some noticeable yeasty notes with some lighter esters is off for style. Not big but some lighter figs and rose peddles. A light lemony finish which is off as well.

The taste is closer to style than the nose indicates. The malt is prominent with a great grain and malty backing. Some nice bready notes on the backend leaving a great backing. Some nice yeast notes as well, with a smooth finish. Some fruity esters come out which is off for style. Some wine and rose like notes that are good, but not for style. Some fusel like notes as well. There is a spicy hop note is a bit strong for style, but has that nice Saaz finish.

The body is light to moderate. A bit full for style. Overall, if I were to judge this I would say that it fermented to high with too much finishing hops and too much malt. As a consumer though, this is definitely pushing the style to more of an America character with more body and flavor.

Oxymoron, Sep 08, 2008
Photo of OWSLEY069
3.55/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a orange-ish/ copper color with a small white head. In the aroma, a grainy, small sweet malt. In the taste, a small sweet maltiness, and fresh. A smooth and medium mouthfeel, with a small semi dry to clean aftertaste. Very fresh, cleanand nice, with just a touch of fruit.

OWSLEY069, Aug 30, 2008
Photo of Deuane
4.1/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from dashirey after our trip to FFF land!

A-Slighty hazed bright golden yellow body with a medium white head that diminished to a thin ring leaving spotty lacing.

S-Spciy grass hops with a pleasant aroma of bouncy fruit (white grape and apple). A bit of biscuity malt sneeks in at the end.

T-Peasant fruit flavour up front with a decent hop punch following up. Nicely balanced out with a good dose of biscuit malt.

M-Medium-light body with a good crsip smoothness and a bit of lingering hop bitterness.

D-A lager from FFF...and they do it up the FFF way with a bit more hops and character than is usual....and of course it works! A good beer overall, when added together, the sum is greater than the parts! Wish I would have bought more of this...

Deuane, Aug 30, 2008
Photo of emerge077
4.25/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at the Beer School bar @ Sheffields, also Local Option.

Golden body with a lasting head of foam. Lacing works itself around the edges and down, as the beer is quaffed. Clean malty aroma, light breadiness.

Light apple-y yeast and mild bready malt flavor, very clean aftertaste, exceptionally easy to drink. This is a great summer session beer, possibly the most sessionable out of all the 3 Floyds beers.


emerge077, Aug 27, 2008
Photo of Slynger
4.28/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Gorch pours a deep, clear golden / bright orange hued color with a fuzzy cap of fine white.

Very nice feel to it. It's a solid creamy medium, lightly crisp, and lightly dry.

Real nice balance of lightly sweet, bready, pale malts and lightly toasted ones. Mix it with a solid amount of lemon and a perfect amount, though not the characteristic 3F hop bomb, of noble grassy-earthy hops with a bit of peppery spice.

Really a dead ringer for the style and a damn tasty lager, though I don't know if it's so good that I would pay another 9 bucks for a bomber. Never-the-less, really well done.

Slynger, Aug 26, 2008
Photo of mcallister
3.78/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber colored with a white head that leaves a foamy cap after a quick fizz out.

Nice biscuity malts with a noble hop aroma. Zesty with a scent of carbonation. Slight bit of cereal grains.

The descriptor for the aroma is nearly identical to the flavor. Cereal grains show through more however with a slight sweetness that really shines through on the finish. Lightly hopped to match the malt and give a hint of bitterness on the end. An unbelievably easy drinking helles bock showing good carbonation with a creamy middle.

mcallister, Aug 24, 2008
Photo of ffejherb
4.1/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22oz. bomber on 8/23/08.

A - Golden body with a slight haze and half a finger of creamy, white head that diminished into a thin ring of retention and left a bit of spotty lacing.

S - Aroma is fruity and spicy with hints of white grapes and some sour apple. Hops emit a light noble character with a bit of grass in the nose.

T - Fruity flavor up front with white grape and apple sweetness mixed with some mild grassy hops to provide a touch of bitterness. A spicy, bready malty character emerges in the finish.

M - Light to medium body with mild syrupy texture and soft carbonation. Smooth and sweet with minimal bitterness on the palate.

D - Nice drinkable Helles from FFF that's sweet, but not overbearing. Very nice sutble flavors in this brew all work together quite well.

ffejherb, Aug 24, 2008
Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.58/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bomber off the ware house rack at DLD the liquid is pale yellow with a slight cloudiness and ok carbonation. The head is a good two fingers white and leaves a bit of lace.

The smell is strong and fruity, yeasty bread and a dash of spice.

The taste follows, Say 3F's nailed this one, I would order this if it was von fuss at HB. Generous Malt make this offering a winner, what a treat on such a Schone Tag. Hops are correct for the stlye but to be honest I was expecting a bit of flash there and might have liked it better but anyhow...Truly a very fine and well done a Helles too be sure.

The mouthfeel is good nice body maybe a bit thicker then the norm and the carbonation is good as well might need a more but that all evens out.

The drinkability is just great, Very well done.

Prost prost Kameraden Prost Prost. MK

MuenchenerKindl, Aug 09, 2008
Photo of ppoitras
4.18/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle obtained via trade with kmpitz2. Thanks for the opportunity.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" white head over the slightly cloudy bright golden brew. Head quickly recedes to a thin layer of bubbles, with little to no lacing. Aroma is balanced, with biscuity character. Taste is lightly sweet upfront, balanced in the middle, with a crisp, clean close. Mouthfeel and drinkability are superb. Could drink many of these, nice to see FFF does something besides the in-your-face brews we always hear about.

ppoitras, Jul 31, 2008
Photo of JamesS
3.63/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a nice golden yellow (straw-like) color, although with very little head, almost no lacing, and a lot of lasting carbonation. Nice scent, a very clean and malty aroma, although it is a very weak scent. Excellent taste, very clean and refreshing, very malty with just a little hint of peppery spiciness. Nice feel, quite smooth, with just a little roughness from the overcarbonation. A good beer, a nice Helles, but not 3F's best.

JamesS, Jul 29, 2008
Photo of plaid75
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a medium straw hue with a half finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and good lacing.

The smell featured a light doughy malt and a moderate noble hop.

The taste consisted of a soft graininess with a touch of honey sweetness. The subtle noble hop dried out the flavor.

The mouthfeel was average for the style.

Overall a tasty and easy drinking lager. The sweetness was a bit annoying, but not too overpowering.

plaid75, Jul 10, 2008
Photo of TurdFurgison
4.38/5  rDev +20%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I bought a 22oz bottle at Kahn's in Indianapolis, $10. The beer's appearance was a little bit of a letdown, there was almost no head at all even with an aggressive pour. Below the beltline everything was all right, the beer was pale yellow and hazy, almost looked like a wit. The smell was good, light aromas of malts and a little grassy funk. The taste is very well balanced, light but tasty, semi-sweet malts and just a hint of hops bitterness, this could be right out of Bavaria. Light mouthfeel, correct for the style, keeps the drinkability about as high as possible.

I've had the pleasure of drinking many helles lagers in Munich so I was hoping that 3F would keep to the style with this. In my opinion they did an excellent job of not getting all hoppy on it, this was a very good helles lager.

TurdFurgison, Jul 08, 2008
Photo of BeerTruth
3.45/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to younger35 for this bottle in a recent trade.

22 oz. bomber poured into a pilsener glass.

Pours a somewhat foggy light golden hue with a one finger white head that quickly dies down to a whispy layer of foam. Lots of bubbles racing to the top of the glass with virtually no lacing left on the sides. Smell begins with faint grains, lemon, and honey. You really have to dig your nose deep just to get these aromas, so unfortunately this is about it. Taste starts off with a buttery biscuit like malt with a hint of lemon. Toasted grains some noble hops midway on the tongue. Aftertaste is moist with honey, fresh cut grass, a pinch of pepper. Light, smooth, and creamy in the mouth with a steady but subtle carbonation. Not a bad beer, but nothing I'd seek out again.

BeerTruth, Jul 06, 2008
Photo of beachbum1975
3.78/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I missed the initial bottling and distribution of this late last year, but I had the opportunity to share this 22 oz bomber last night with pimpp, thanks again for sharing! No freshness date on this one.

I googled the name of this beer and learned via wikipedia that the "Gorch Fock" is a three masted barque (or old barge) commissioned to the German Navy in 1933. Currently, she serves as a museum ship. I guess the skeleton on the label of this beer is sorta nautical (?) - I love the label on this one, quite unique, (but I like all 3 Floyd's labels!).

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gorch_Fock_%281933%29

A: Poured a bright, clear golden color with a small white, almost fizzy head that dissipated quickly, leaving a small white ring around the edges of my pint glass. Little to no lacing seen on my pour.

S: Very light breads mixed with light & tangy citrus. Not a whole lot on the nose.

T/M: Very light bodied, smooth and crisp. This one had a lightly toasted malt backbone with the slightest bit of citrus hops. Being a Three Floyd's beer and their slogan of "We're not normal", I was surprised it wasn't a thick, chewy and uber-hopped version of a "Light Helles Lager"! At any rate, the taste was true for it's style and quite well done.

D: Not my favorite style and it's nothing I would run out of my way to get, but for what it's worth, it's extremely easy to drink and enjoy. This is definitely a light and sessionable beer for most. On a side note, my wife's a Miller Lite fan and this is the first Three Floyd's beer she was actually able to "tolerate" ;) .

Thanks again, 3F's, for another fine interpretation of a beer style.

beachbum1975, Jun 26, 2008
Gorch Fock from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
83 out of 100 based on 528 ratings.