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Anchor Bock Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Bock BeerAnchor Bock Beer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

965 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 965
Reviews: 570
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 13.97%
Wants: 26
Gots: 27 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Bock |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: GClarkage on 05-26-2005)
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Ratings: 965 | Reviews: 570 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of steveh
2.88/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

I've tried this one in the past and thought I'd reviewed it alread, but obviously not. Good timing as I was in the mood for something a little more robust.

A -- Clear, deep dark brown with ruby highlights. Sudsy tan head that settles slowly.

S -- Mildly roasty and vaguely licorice nose. Some clay-like earthiness coming through -- not exactly Bock-like, in any of its forms. Also some mild diacetyl with warming.

T -- Roasted malt hit right up front. Some light dark fruits and even light toffee with some licorice fighting to balance against the roastiness. There is spicy bitterness in the finish and an earthiness in the aftertaste. The dark fruit character becomes more prominent in the finish with warming -- near to tart. Again, not at all Bock-like.

M -- Mouthfeel is syrupy with a full body.

D -- There is nothing at all wrong with the drinkability of this beer, if you are expecting a Robust Porter! Just a little surprised that this is so far off base. I'd give it near to perfect points for a Brown or Robust Porter.

Further investigation on this beer at the Anchor web site says that this is brewed with 2-row barley and wheat malt -- no more. Based on the flavor characteristics, I think they're either leaving out that the 2-row is highly kilned, or the black patent malt was skipped from the info.

Photo of Jason
2.9/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle freshness code on the back label.

Decent head, a bit fizzy with only a ring of lace left on top. A pretty dark brew, a lot dark than expected though the shades of dark chestnut color let some light through. Hop resin, light burnt sugar, dark syrup, orangey hops at that ... at first smell I did a double take on the bottle that thought I had cracked open one of the Christmas ales. Big smoothness in a medium body ... little slick as well. Sweetness comes off like a hint of dark corn syrup with a mix of cocoa powder and lightly roasted coffee. Hops jump on with a thick bitterness and flavor combo that muddles the palate. Finishes with a watery orange hop tone and lingering burnt matter.

Not sure where this is brew is going, while there is a lot of flavor here nothing really fits together IMO. As far as being a Bock, perhaps on a distant circle of the style ... sort of like the outer ring on a dart board where no points are given but at least it stuck somewhere and did not fall to the floor.

Photo of scottfrie
4.03/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into DFH shaped pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark mahogany red with a billowing dense light brown head that slowly faded into a thick film that left a great network of sticky lacing down the glass.
S: Notes of sweet toasted caramel and toffee, brown sugar, molasses and whole wheat bread crust. Finish is lightly smokey and roasted with a herbal touch of hops.
T: Follows the nose albeit a bit sweeter and with a touch of raisin. Finish is lightly smokey and roasted with a touch of herbal hops. Big toasted flavor with maybe a suggestion of coffee and coco in the aftertaste.
M: Bubbly carbonation with a soft, full mouthfeel over a medium-light body.
D: If you love rich and malty this one is for you. Solid example of the style and another great beer from a classic brewery.

Photo of avalon07
4.33/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a mug. Had a dark brown color and a mostly thick consistency. There was an inch of off white, foamy, long-lasting head. Pretty good lacing.

S: A big, bold aroma of malt, sweets, and a slightly nutty quality.

T: Tasted of malt (very prevalent), toffee, caramel, and that nutty quality I alluded to with the smell. Not your typical bock flavor, but very complex and tasty.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: One of the most interesting and drinkable bocks I've tried.

Photo of metter98
3.9/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: The beer is translucent but very dark amber in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a creamy tan head that has good retention properties and consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: The smell is rather complex has moderately strong aromas of caramel, raisins, toasted malts and toffee.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has an excellent balance of flavors between hints of malty sweetness and a slight amount of bitterness from the hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied, smooth and a bit thin and watery on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
D: This beer is quite drinkable and isn't as filling as other types of beers in the style.

Photo of ItsTheLimit
4.3/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a cold bottle into a standard pint glass.

A: Deep, deep brown with some mild highlights. Extremely hazy and dense. Head is a light beige color, but dissipates quickly.

S: Lots of malt, with just a faint bit of hop aroma. A good amount of chocolate and a little roasted coffee, maybe?

T: Considerable malt sweetness with chocolate and a little earthiness. Carmel, with a slightly bitter finish.

M: Luxurious and smooth with decent carbonation. Really well done.

D: This is one of the absolute most drinkable beers I've ever had. At only 5.5%, this is a perfect spring session beer.

Overall, this is probably my favorite of the spring seasonals that are readily available in most areas. I would love to see this become a year-round release, but it's always nice to have it to look forward to.

Photo of thegodfather2701
4.22/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A-Dark brown with chestnut hues. It has a thick, billowy tan head that leaves some nice lacing.

S-Very, very malty. Loads of caramel, milk chocolate, and some toffee.

T-Much like the nose; chocolate, toffee, and caramel stand out the most. It is very malty with a touch of pine hop presence.

M-Thick and creamy.

D-Very sessionable given its average abv. and good flavor. Great for enjoying a nice relaxing Spring evening.

Overall, I enjoyed this beer and think it is very good. I don't have much experience with the style, but it is very flavorful and smooth. My only complaint is that it tasted very similar to Anchor's Christmas ale. Maybe they use some of the same malts, but I just wanted it to be a little more unique. However, it is a great beer from a great brewery.

Photo of Giggy
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark Brown to Black color in appearance, nice and clear as a dark color can be. It had a bountiful off-white to light tan head. The aroma is malty and toasty, hints of alcohol even though it is only 5.5%, no detectable hops. Taste is rich and toasty, carmalized sugars, but not as sweet as I expected. It is slightly dry with low carbonation. All in all a pleasure to drink. But I prefer the Doppelbocks.

Photo of unit555
4.15/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Nice dark color that approaches black with a thin consistent head that lasted all the way to the bottom of the glass. I would consider this to be one of Anchor's best offerings. The alcohol content is modest which allows you to enjoy the easy drinking nature of this bock.

Photo of Landfill21
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this at the local beverage hole and decided to purchase a 6 pack.

Pours into a dark brown/almost black color that lets a little light through. Pours with a two fingernail head that follows the beer all the way down.

Has a nice smooth taste, hints of coffee, tastes of molasses, roasted nuts and a hint of hops. Nice carbonation as always from Anchor.

Has a light mouthfeel but not too light. Leads to a good drinkibility. Would def recommend this beer and all by Anchor.

Photo of augustgarage
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pleased to see this bottle finally, hadn't found it on multiple visits to San Francisco...

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock glass.

Brown bottle liquid, dark but clear with rufous highlights. A small lasting fluffy head of khaki cream forms a sizable cap. Pointilist lacing.

Brown butter (perhaps a hint of diacetyl?), bread, toffee, caramel, and postum in the nose.

Tart wheat notes, barley, karo syrup, a bit of underripe pluot, gentle melanoidins...no hops really, though there is a touch of hay in the lightly sweet, toasty finish. Malt could be more forward.

Soft, light-bodied, clean mouthfeel.

Hits the traditional bock notes, yet overall is a bit lacking in flavor and is a little too tart at times.

Photo of fsimcox
3.58/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep, dark black color. Fluffy tan head holds for some time. It eventually dissipates to ¼ inch. Lots of lacing.

Smells of licorice, roasted malt, and faint hints of coffee. Perhaps some sweet brown sugar, but very faint. Nice, but not as strong as expected.

Taste is roasted malt, coffee and bitter-sweet chocolate. Bitter-sweet and coffee in the aftertaste. A little alcohol in the middle. Taste is much stronger than the smell.

Mouthfeel is creamy, medium body, with some carbonation in the end.

A very enjoyable bock, especially during the winter months.

Photo of veinless
4.05/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark molasses brown with lots of tan foamy, lacy head on top that retained pretty well.

Smell is of roasted grain, some dark fruits like currants or plums, with a hint of caramel sweetness as well.

Taste is nice, with those dark currants coming through to go with a slightly phenolic, medicine taste that is nice. Aftertaste is slightly funky, but also pleasing. Caramel hits when needed, preventing too much phenolic/fruity/bitter tastes. This brew is full and well-bodied as is typical for the bock style, but right now this guy is hitting the spot even more than the average bock usually does. Just love how filling these beers are.

Mouthfeel is great, with perfect carbonation and that body I was just talking about. Drinkability is awesome, don't see any end to me drinking this if I had a six pack on me right now. Love it.

Photo of TheQuietMan22
4.22/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Straight pour into a becker glass. The color is a ruby brown. Three fingers of thick, tan head develop and dissipate slowly and leave a lacing along the glass and foamy ring around the edge.

Smell: A very enticing blend of slightly toasted and sweet malts. There's a little bit of chocolate, a little bit of caramel, and maybe a hint of coffee. A butterscotch aroma seems to be the backbone, though, which gives the smell a lot of its sweetness. I get a little brown sugar scent, too, as well as some dark fruit, probably plum.

Taste: It almost mirrors the smell, but the taste is much toastier and bitter, especially the caramel malts. The toasted caramel is most prominent, and it is followed by a slight hint of toasted chocolate. The butterscotch is also present, though in varying degrees from sip to sip it seems. One sip is bitterer, and another sip is sweeter. Each sip, though, leaves a nice, lingering bitterness in the back of the mouth. The dark fruit from the smell is also present in the taste, providing a slight tartness, which becomes more prevalent as the pint wants.

Drinkability: Incredible stuff. God, I hope Anchor's shameful corporate sellout does not ruin its ability to make awesome beer. It has not yet, and let's hope it does not.

Photo of Star80
4.13/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a very dark mahogany color with some ruby highlights. It has a nice tan head with some lacing on my glass. The smell is of sweet toasty malts, some faint chocolate and dark bready malts. This beer smells pretty spot on for a bock beer, lots of sweet bready malts. The taste is big bready and sweet, but nicely balanced by a finishing bitterness, could be from the dark roasted malts, could be some hops. I am guessing the latter from Anchor. I am somewhat familiar with their beers, taste a lot like their basic dark beer, kinda a bit like the Christmas Ale minus all the accoutrements. Anyway, not a huge bock fan, more a huge Anchor fan and this beer does not disappoint. I especially like the back end hoppyness to give a little more bitterness and balance away from the sweet malt. Anchor Bock is perhaps not the most authentic bock but a nice drinkable one nonetheless!

Photo of gkunkle
3.63/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a transparent brown color with a fluffy off white head. Head has decent retention and leaves a little lacing. Smell is of roasted malt, slightly sweet. Taste is roasty and malty, with hints of chocolate and coffee. Mouthfeel is on the heavier side of medium with average carbonation. Drinkability is fine, but i'd say I liked this just as much as shiner bock.

Photo of nezelrac
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a beer that I should be drinking more of...

A - opaque brown/black with mahogany highlights topped by one finger of light tan head with modest persistence

S - toffee, malt, roasted coffee, burnt butterscotch

T - good malt profile, good depth of flavor and a nice bitter edge, hops are largely hiding, there is a full reprise of the nose on the soft palate; good length

M - quite light on its feet

D - quite easy; session-able

Photo of JRed
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown topped by foamy off-white head. Strong scent of syrup, bitter chocolate nibs, sour grape, herbs and earth. Tastes of grape, herbs, slight syrup, dryness comes towards the finish but the sour grape with some chocolate returns in the aftertaste. Medium bodied with light carbonation and a coating mouthfeel. A delicate, drinkable brew worth checking out.

Photo of rtepiak
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a surprising similarity to the christmas ale. i am starting to question whether all those fantastic flavors are induced by added herbs or interesting changes in malt recipes each year based on the supply offered for such high volume brews.

either way. pour is dark for a bock but still sufficient head with a nice lager looking body. nose is a sweet citrus cake of persimmon and clove. palate is like that but quite dry in comparison to the holiday beer. mineral crisp on the tongue and smoked malt in nature but chalk dry. i can see that quality be a big turn off to some drinkers. lager lean feel. distinct pear clove spice.

Photo of abaer123
3.9/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I recently visited Anchor Brewing Company and sampled this beer. It was delicious when served in a 4 ounce portion. I saw it in the market today and picked up a six pack of 12 oz bottles of which I am drinking the second now.

Appearance - I am having it out of the traditional squatty Anchor classic bottle. The glass is tinted, so hard to "see" what the beer has. I can see a small head inside the bottle. Not too exciting, but worthy of a mention.

Smell - smells of malt with some coffee and ever so slight hops.

Taste - carmel and fruit best describe. Afterlinger of chocolate and coffee. Rich and delicious.

Mouthfeel - rich, not too much carbonation to make it unpleasant.

Drinkability - 2 of these is good and satisfying. More is not worth it.

I would buy this again as the season allows.

A good offering from Anchor. Go Anchor!

Photo of civilizedpsycho
3.43/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color that is near black. It's almost completely opaque with only a little bit of light showing through.

Smell: It had a fair aroma consisting of roasted malt. However, there was nothing terribly exciting.

Taste: Has a good, strong roasted malt flavor with the slightest hint of coffee. Not too hoppy and very smooth.

Mouthfeel: Has a fair body that's not too thin.

Drinkability: While this beer did not blow me away, I did enjoy it and will probably drink it again when I'm in the mood.

Photo of bloomlax33
4.6/5  rDev +26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a dark brown with a thin tan head, very nice looking pour.

S: Smells of coffee and dark fruit with some caramel malt and some hops.

T: Very similar to the smell. Coffee with a finishing taste of chocolate. One of the better tasting beers with a chocolate finish.

M: Medium with a nice amount of carbonation.

D: I think this is a very drinkable beer and wish I would have picked up more of this.

This was the first time that I have tried a beer from Anchor and I would buy more.

Photo of depechemode1983
3.08/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark mahogany color with a rocky brown head. There is medium head retention and the lacing is kind of lacking. Smells sweet and toasty with earthy/caramel notes in the middle. There a small amount of hops present in the finish of the nose. All in all pretty well rounded. Taste is malty with medium sweetness. I taste mostly sweet caramel notes with a bit of coffee and then there is a hops finish to it. It is light bodied with a little bit too much carbonation. Not very drinkable. I could knock back a couple of these at most. Seems a little too bland.

Photo of yemenmocha
4.13/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with light brown head. Nose has fresh dough quality, perhaps from an oatmeal brown bread. Palate has medium sweet caramel with modest hops to balance. Body is on the lighter side, and it is very drinkable as far as bocks go. Alcohol is subdued, or, rather on the low side compared to many bocks I've sampled. Good beer.

Photo of 7beerphil
4.55/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

drank straight from the 12 oz bottle

slight hoppy smell, no strong notes to the nose.

tastes very light for a bock, has notes of caramel, not much hops in the taste. sweet taste overall.

for a bock, this is very drinkable, not highly carbonated, as expected, no harshness at all.

could easily be a session brew

Anchor Bock Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 965 ratings.