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Anchor Bock Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Bock BeerAnchor Bock Beer

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974 Ratings

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Ratings: 974
Reviews: 575
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 13.97%
Wants: 28
Gots: 32 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Bock |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: GClarkage on 05-26-2005

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 974 | Reviews: 575 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mjurney
4.48/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep dark ruby red color, see through (clear). Nice amount of carbonation. Head looks thick and chunky, light tan color.

Dry maltiness, nutty, earthy, a little coffeeish.

Hearty malts, nutty, burnt caramel, slight coffee, dash of bitter chocolate. Earthy-leafy hops in the end, touch of spiciness. I could detect some dark fruit in the taste. Body is medium, nice carbonation.

Dry grainy finish, yet pretty crisp.

Very complex and hearty, yet very drinkable.

Photo of Snow81
3.91/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark reddish brown

Head: Big light brown head

Smell: Big notes of B-11 with a sweet maltyness and a grassy tone

Taste: Very earthy malts with floral hops that is quite subtle

Weight: Medium body with a low carbonation

Finish: A B-11 lingers

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

Had a powerful craving for a bock beer which is unfortunate because there isn't a lot to choose from outside of early spring. Not unlike a brown ale, this is a little higher in alcohol and easier to drink than many of the brown ales out today. Nicely carbonated with hints of brown sugar and a nice balance of sweet malts, a bready slightly bitter finish. This is the type of beer I imagine they would drink in Buffalo around the turn of the century. The type of thing you can have instead of lunch and then go back to working on the canal. Genessee makes a great bock that I wish was available all year round - but this will do at least until the Octoberfests come out and I can get my malt fix.

Photo of Shrews629
3.98/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - A very nice dark mahogony color. Almost looks brown. Some ruby highlights peircing through. A light tan head that looked very smooth and creamy. A very full head with very, very nice retention and some pretty decent lacing.

Smell - The aroma provided almost buttermilk type notes. Rick and malty. Rather robust. Tiny hints of lard. Even getting touches of dark fruit. It even smells rather sweet. Maybe even a touch of chocolate.

Taste - The taste was a smooth, more of a dark fruit type flavor. Nice malty touches. This taste is super well balanced. Low with the hop bitterness. Somewhat toasty. The lard taste is very well hidden. Again maybe even a hint of chocolate.

Mouthfeel - Medium mouthfeel. Super smooth. Glides across the palate slickly. Dry. Coats the throat and tongue very nicely. A bit more thin than what I was anticipating.

Drinkability - I'm not real big on "Bock" beers, but this one is the best Bock I have had thus far. Very well balanced in all aspects. Very sessionable and worth a try.

Photo of Extrajoker00
3.9/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a pint glass

A : Deep brown almost black

S : Roasted malt, coffee chocolate

T : bitter almost sour, coffee and alcohol, complex but still crisp

M : big heavy start, quickly mellows with a lingering hop finish

D : Strong tones make this more of a sipper

really a great take on a bock, worth a sample

Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
2.94/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Very dark brown. Decent bubbly head. Some retention. Not thick enough. Opaque. Light lacing.

Smell: Heavy molasses smell. Dark malts. Raisin brandy. Marshmallow. Not very good smell.

Taste: toasted malts. Decent taste. Overall quite bland. Nor exciting. There is not a lot of character in thus beer. Molasses. Sugar. The body is heavy.

Mouthfeel: thick. Syrupy. Goes down heavy.

Drinkability: I'm not too excited by this beer. It's not exciting enough in terms of taste to swallow this heavy brew.

Photo of Overlord
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark, semi-translucent brown. No real head.

Smells like slightly soured (??) malt with some coffee notes and a bit of sweet malt. The sour aroma is strange.

Thankfully, the sour doesn't carry over MUCH to the flavor, but it's still there. Kind of a harsh, astringent slightly sour/sweet flavor overlaid on coffee, sweet malt, some brown sugar, and a bit of of bitterness.

Would be a very good bock if not for that off-note. Decently thick. Not much carbonation.

Photo of isaiahcutright
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a deep mahogany with a tall head that has nice retention and leaves retention in glass. The aroma first hits with some piney hops then is followed by dark roasted malts. Lots of hops in the aroma. The flavor has a moderate dark malt flavor along with a strong piney hop character. The body is very thin for the style and the drinkability is good.

Photo of beagle75
3.17/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a becker glass.

A: Clear, dark brown color that drowns out all light at the center. On top is two fingers of beige foam head that leaves heavy lacing on the glass.

S: Brown sugar and fermented grain combine in a smell that is most similar to cola. It smells just like any other dark Anchor beer, but less interesting.

T: Begins off-dry, very thin with caramel and carbonic acid. Malt emerges in the middle, astringent at first but becoming husky and roasted, and complemented by some umami. The finish is short and clean, with restrained earthy bitterness.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, wet but slightly coating on the palate, with low carbonation.

D: It is difficult to avoid comparing this beer to others in the Anchor line-up, but its closest cousin surely appears to be the holiday special ale.While that other beer succeeds by being interesting (in an off-beat way) and in tune with the festive season, this bock is found to be lacking in key sensory areas. Most impressive is its appearance, with a darkness more commonly expected from a doppelbock. The smell is entirely too one-dimensional and even predictable, without being enticing. Flavors struggle to find purchase on the palate, but do present themselves cleanly overall. In the end it is a mediocre beer unmistakably brewed by Anchor, and it does pair well with sweet and roasted foods (such as roasted sweet potatoes).

Photo of steveh
2.89/5  rDev -20.8%
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
2.88/5  rDev -21.1%
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
4.32/5  rDev +18.4%
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
4.31/5  rDev +18.1%
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
4.23/5  rDev +15.9%
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
3.59/5  rDev -1.6%
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
4.14/5  rDev +13.4%
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
3.59/5  rDev -1.6%
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
4.03/5  rDev +10.4%
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
4.2/5  rDev +15.1%
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
3.62/5  rDev -0.8%
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.

Anchor Bock Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 974 ratings.