Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series) - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series)Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series)

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BA SCORE
88
very good

1,094 Reviews
THE BROS
92
outstanding

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Reviews: 1,094
Hads: 1,872
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 95
Gots: 126 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 02-07-2009

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,094 | Hads: 1,872
Photo of Sammy
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark blackish-brown with reddish hues. Carmel and mollasses aroma, with ever-prent old ale alcohol. Deep and rich fruitiness and residual sweetness, fig and melange of pressed fruit. Medium-mouthfeel. Good to the end, and the tongue tingling and mouth drying, One of their best,satisfying. (297 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.7/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark brown with a 1 inch tan head that settles to a film. Small streaks of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of sweet malt, bread, caramel, earthy wood, and some spicy hops. Taste is of sweet malt, bread, caramel, and some fruity flavors. Mild bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a lower carbonation level with a smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but not something I would probably go for again. (476 characters)

Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy brown with amber hues. Nice lacing, tan-brown single finger head. Aroma is malty, cherry, plum and caramel; sweet and a touch boozy. Flavor is malty, musty dark fruits and a little boozy. Moderate carbonation and medium in body. Semi dry finish. The booziness is near the edge of being too much. Otherwise this is a nicely complex bock. (341 characters)

Photo of metter98
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy reddish brown in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin beige head that died down but consistently left a thin layer of bubbles on the surface along with a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: There are aromas of brown sugar and raisins in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and is malty with flavors of brown bread, caramel, molasses and raisins.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of alcohol warming in the finish.
O: This beer is like having liquid brown bread along with some additional flavors and is rather easy to drink considering its strength because the alcohol is well hidden from the taste. It is a good representation of the style. (798 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a dark toffee brown with an off white head and a decent amount of lacing on the way down my pilsner glass. Nose brings some caramel, toffee, and quite a bit of booze. Taste is booze, caramel, hints of dark fruit, toffee, and light maple flavoring. Mouthfeel consists of a medium body with a lot of alcohol presence. Good flavors, but--at least when fresh--this is dominated by a lot of alcohol warmth. (429 characters)

Photo of brentk56
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: The clear amber colored liquid is capped by firm beige head that leaves plenty of lace

Smell: Plums and caramel

Taste: Although the flavor profile starts out sweet, with almost a plum jam character, other flavors arrive, such as chocolate and spice cake that keep it from heading into cloying territory; the sweetness builds a bit after the swallow, but continues to stay on the right side of the equation throughout

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, but a bit syrupy; moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A fine domestic example of the style (548 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.62/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

the malt bomb you would expect in this style from this brewer, but a well done take on the style, bigger than most, authentically german, and memorably different at the same time. its so dense in grain, toffee and burning sugar in a fry pan. with a lager yeast that cant eat the sweet. there is a european nature to the malt, and a strong alcohol presence in there two. i like its weight, its great for the fall, but its a beer that i just cant drink real much of because of how big it is with all its sticky sweetness. seems to me like an awesome cooking beer, cheesy beer muffins, bread pudding, even a pot of chili would benefit from a brew like this. i appreciate it but i dont love it. cool that a brewery this big still does stuff like this though, this is definitely not rookie beer. (790 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Looks promising at the offset with a lable that states it's higher than average alcohol, big body, and malty sweetness. A beautiful brown / ruby hue with a fleeting, white-ish head. Very sweet and very bold aromas that take on a molassas, syrup, nutty quality. Lowly hopped for maximum preceived sweetness. Tastes sweet and thick up front with a hiding alcohol content that comes through only in the dry, tacky finish. Barley malt, nuts, and toffee flavors remain persistant from beginning to end. Bold enough to counter the sugar sweetness. A bite-ey graininess hangs up in the back of the throat that compromises the drinkability, but not enough to ruin the beer. Though it doesn't compete, it's good to see an American Double Bock that stands up to German counterparts. (772 characters)

Photo of Knapp85
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours out as a deep brown color, with a moderate brown head that doesn't really leave much lacing at all. The smell of the beer is rich with caramel and has a good malty base. The taste of the beer is big on malts and had a subtle sweetness. There isn't much of a hop flavor at all. The mouthfeel is medium and has a good amount of carbonation in it. Overall this is probably my least favorite of the Imperial series. (427 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Shp555: Poured a deep dark brown color beer with a nice light brown head with better then average retention. Aroma is dominated by some banana and cloves as well as some sweet malt. Taste comprised some subtle notes of banana bread with some cloves and some sweet malt. Body is about average for the style with alcohol well hidden. (350 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.41/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A lovely shade of rich, lustrous reddish copper that displays especial radiance when backlit with sunlight. A truly stunning color. The large, caramel-colored head is as creamydense as any you're likely to see and sets off the beer nicely. There isn't much lace, but even that can't dampen my enthusiasm. This is easily the best looking Sam Adams beer that I've ever seen.

The nose couldn't help but be a letdown. It consists of lightly roasted malt with a very faint sweet molasses presence. I don't pick up any chocolate or nuts or much of anything else that would make the nose the least bit interesting. Thankfully, it opens up with warming, pulling the score up in the process.

Back on track on the palate. Where was all that power and complexity in the nose? Double Bock reminds me a little of a wee heavy in that it has a sweet, smoky, brown sugary flavor with a wonderful alcoholic mini-punch to the chin.

The brewers did not skimp on the malt and it shows. This ain't no weak-kneed doppelbock, but a full-throated roar of lightly chocolatey, sweet and syrupy, dark caramelly, sticky date-like, three-dimensional, lightly boozy deliciousness. I'm not one to quote on style adherence, but it seems to me that this beer could also fit into the Scotch ale/wee heavy, the old ale or even the (lighter) barleywine categories with a little creative shoehorning.

The body is medium-full and the mouthfeel is slightly slick and infinitely smooth. The long, diminishing finish is especially nice with echoes of dark caramel intermingled with sweet citrus. Stealth carbonation is a perfect fit for the flavor profile and the body.

I'd be lying if I said that this beer is anything less than a stunning surprise. No BBC product that had previously crossed my lips led me to expect such an amazing beer, one that has been in my cellar for at least half a year, but one that I've passed over on innumerable occasions for more interesting looking fare. Unless you're an unrepentant hophead to the exclusion of all else, you'll find something to like about Sam Adams Double Bock. (2,088 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice color to this with a translucent reddish tint around the sides of the glass. A small white head of foam then rose up from the bottom of the glass and settled down nicely leaving copious amounts of side glass lace.

The aroma was again very solid. Rich caramel malts, hints of earthy hops and other tones and a nice and rich sense to it. Some light hints of a roasted note as it warmed and the belly of grain could start to be picked up. The flavor though was top notch. Smooth and coating, this one seemed to take on a mind of its own. First sip dripped sweet caramel malts all over, rich and deceptively smooth. Moving through a slightly bready mid palate it came back out the other side with a nice, almost pine like hop note that was just enough to peak my intrest before rolling back to a smooth and subtle finish of deep roasted notes. (845 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out ruby/brown color with a small, yet thick, tan, foamy head. It left small traces of lace.

S - It smelled biscuity and of rosted malt. Also, a fruity aroma was present.

T - It was bittersweet with a subtle spicy hop character. The warm alcohol presence added a fruity kick.

M - It was realatively soft and very smooth. A medium-bodied beer with a warming alcohol presence.

D - This is a good dopplebock. One of the most powerful that I've tried. (462 characters)

Photo of oberon
4.28/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Probably my favorite offering from BBC,pours a nice rich brown/red with a nice big rocky head.The aroma of roasted malt and caramel sweetness is very appetizing,taste is on the sweet side but not overpowering with a nice roasted background.There is some faint late dryness to balance this one out,one of the best doppelbocks I have had. (336 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, dark mahogany-hued body with a thin cap of white bubbles.

Smell: Toasty caramel nose with a rich, vinous vein of fruitiness and a slight solventy tone.

Taste: Very sweet, very strong taste of dark caramel with a distinct plum and golden raisin fruitiness throughout and a hint of sweetened dough. Tiny bit of spicy hops and imparted bitterness, but for the most part, this one's all sweetness. Luscious, syrupy finish with a pinch from the warming alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium-low carbonation. Definite stickiness to the mouthfeel.

Drinkability: A slow sipper suited for ice-cold winter nights, it's a rather well-made, respectable doppelbock that can easily be found for a good price. (732 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Sam Adams sensory pint glass.

Thanks to papollo for this bottle!

Why is the style listed as doppelbock when it's actually a double bock? (Tee-hee!) It pours a clear dark-ish amber brown topped by a half-finger of off-white foam. The nose comprises caramel, blackened biscuits, honey, and that English-style toffee we always hear about. The taste mostly holds true to the caramel and toffee, along with some less-burnt biscuits, figs, and a light touch o' booze. The body is a hefty medium, with a light carbonation and an almost chewy (gummy, perhaps?) feel. I find this to be the best of the SA imperial series, in terms of taste and overall interpretation of style. A fine doppelbock, indeed. (708 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A three-fingered head of frothy dark tan foam rises majestically as you pour Samuel Adam's dark and malty Double Bock. It's clear mahogany in color with a ruby cast, and crimson and orange highlights when held to the light. The head retention is good and it leaves thin streaks and tiny spots of lace about the glass.

Rich, doughy, toasty, drizzled with sweet dark caramel, and with a flicker of alcohol, the nose entices you to imbibe!

The flavor follows through on the promise made by the aroma with a grand delivery! It's remarkably full-flavored, unlike some other "doppel bocks" on the market; and it's really nicely balanced to display its maltiness, rather than alcohol, bitterness, or hops. There are some spicy and grassy hops to it, but they don't really compete with the malt up front, they just keep it in check. They do, however, show themselves at the swallow and into the lingering, surprisingly soft finish. Alcohol is present as well, and once again, unlike many other examples, it's kept well in-check. You know it's there, you can feel it in the mouth, and taste it amidst the malt, but it's not really obvious until the finish - it works with the bitterness to dry the sweetness of the malt, and it's quite nicely balanced from start to finish, never becoming cloying or sticky, and never becoming hot or overly bitter. Very nicely done! One of the best doppel bocks on the market. (1,408 characters)

Photo of jlindros
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a creamy rich 1+ finger head that fades at a medium pace over rosy auburn brown colored clear beer, with a bit of lacing as well.

Nose has some sweet darker wheats and malts, toasty reddish malts, bit of fruits like a plum or raisin, slightly syrupy and molasses.

Taste is fairly sweet, some syrupy malts again, molasses, more dried dark fruits, caramel, toasted reddish malts, a little boozy, a slight lager fruit. Finishes warming with booze, a little sticky and sweet from the syrups.

Mouth is medium to a bit heavier bodied with decent carb and plenty of warming booze.

Drink is meh, definitely shows through with the booze, a little sweet and syrupy, sticky finish, and hint of minerality. (704 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.21/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

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

A: The beer is a reddish brown, with a thick, off-white head that fades at a moderate rate and leaves a thick lace.

S: Very malty aroma, with caramel, vanilla spice, fruit (I want to say apple & apricot but I could be wrong), and a faint bit of hops.

T: Caramel & vanilla sweetness hit you right away and prevail throughout. There’s a slight taste of hops to provide the Sam Adams signature and it leaves a very sweet after-taste.

M: The heavy sweetness causes the beer to leave a sticky residue in your mouth; however it’s very smooth with a heavy body and medium-to-high carbonation.

D: It’s smooth and sweet so it goes down quite easily and masks the 8.80% ABV. However, it’s also very filling, which I don’t say about a lot of beers, even most full-bodied beers. Plus, even on an empty stomach, I don’t think I’d drink too many of these especially if there were something else to choose from in the fridge.

Typically I like the Sam Adams beers, but I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from this beer. I did expect it to be darker in color. The smell gave me flashbacks to the miserable Cranberry Lambic from the holiday sampler pack. However, I was able to get past that as the beer doesn’t taste like the Cran-Lam at all. It does taste more like the Winter Lager & Old Fezziwig Ale though. Overall, I just wasn’t impressed. (1,401 characters)

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.13/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Last one to try of the SA imperial series. Loved the stout, white not so good, now time for the double bock. Pours a nice reddish brown color, not too much of a head.. slight lacing. Smell is booze, booze, and more booze... whoa that will clear your nostrils. Nice mouthfeel to this one though, lighter body than I expected and some great dark fruit taste to it. You get the booze at the end but this tastes like a fine spirit right here that will put some hair on your chest. A great night cap and a beer to sip and appreciate for sure... highly recommended. (559 characters)

Photo of mactrail
3.36/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Big and rich brew. Coppery amber in the Affligem chalice. Nice foam and lacing along the glass. The usual attractive and well-made Sam Adams product. Scent of caramel and fruitcake.

Full of caramel and roasted malt. Quite sugary and rather hot with alcohol. Buttery with a little sharpness. Ends with a bitter twang. Quite fruity with figs, mixed fruit jelly, and a hint of candied orange peel. Less complex than you might like, though for a speedy hit to the brain and a rush of glucose, it can't be beat.

I like malty, sticky brews, but this one is a little too sweet and candy flavored. From the 12 oz bottle, a single from Best Damn (soon to be Krisp) in San Diego. (671 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
4.55/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle cold into my dimpled lager mug. The bottle displays a besty before Oct 08 freshness date.

A - Deep bronze w/ 1.5 fingers of light tan that caps this dark lager and drops to a ring around the mug

S - Boozy, malty, creamy, rich malt + vanilla tinged milky caramel odors w/ sweet fruit in the nose w/ a hint, oh so slight of banana

M - Very malty w/ sweet fruity textures, mild to medium carbonation w/ nutty almost amaretto like qualities. Dense and full of body, almost chewy w/ the thick yet sweet finish w/ out any hint of cloying.

T - A very pleasant fig and very ripe banana taste w/ milkly caramel and sweet cream flavors. The nutty aspect is sweet also w/ a hint of pistachio. A lot of subtle stone fruit notes w/ more creamy wheat malt and caramel malt flavors w/ subtle floral and herbal hop hints. Minor notes of alcohol appear as it nears room temperature w/ hints of marzipan and honey that make this buttery smooth American Bock w/ the faintest hint of toasted malt.

D - Even at 8% this bock is so drinkable the calories are worth every sip of this national treasure. It verges on dessert in a glass, I really consider this one of the top Doppelbocks I have tasted in the U.S. or Germany so far for that matter. A well crafted beer, but not easy to drink 3 without feeling the potency of a very well made strong lager.

edit 9/25/10 bottle A-4 S-4.5 M - 4.5 T-4.5 D-4.5

A - a burnished copper color, clear with thick pale cream cap. The carbonation is visible and bead is tight with solar flare streaks of lace cling to the glass]

S - a sweet creamy scent w/ mild vinous tinge and caramel notes w/ a subtle floral hop accent and slight berry odor

M- feel is moderately carbonated and mild alcohol w/ a full feeling malt body, semi-dry as it finishes w/ light spice and subtle caramel creaminess

T - The taste is very good I enjoy the way the caramel and bready flavors intermingle with a slight spicy and dried fruit flavor there is a nice balance with alcohol flavor low in the overall taste. There is a slight hop bitterness keeping the malt fullness from becoming cloying and the light toasted notes are very pleasant

D - This is a seriously drinkable bock, I was told by a distributor that it has not been selling well so they are discontinuing it which sucks since it has always been one of my faves by Samuel Adams (2,374 characters)

Photo of Jason
3.58/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Color: Dark chestnut.

Smell: Malty. Brown bread, caramel, brown sugar, dried plums but more bready than anything else.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Thick creamy body, delicate smoothness. Semi-stodgy maltiness, thick slice of toasted bread, treacle, dried raisins and plums, sweetness throughout. Herbal hop, warming but mellow alcohol. Toasty and warms finish is semi-sweet.

Overall: A good stab at the style, fits it at least though the benchmark has been raised over the years ... this one at least meets that mark still. (560 characters)

Photo of russpowell
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

BBD of Oct 07 pours an effervescent chestnut with 2 fingers+ of sand colored head. Good lacing & fair head retention

S: Big bready maltness, a little cinnamon & alcohol as this warms up.

T: Big malt & breadyness up front. A little brown sugar & caramel work their way in as this warms. I also get a little toffee & maple syrup. Finishes sweet (brown sugar & toffee), warming & slightly dry

MF: Chewy, a little sticky, medium to heavy bodied with low carbonation. My lips (probably cracked from the cold) are picking up a persistently alcohol sting

Drinks pretty easy, a nice take on the style & better than last years IMO. I will try to hold some back & see how it ages (674 characters)

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.28/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a huge off white cream head, with an amazing deep ruby tone tone. This beer just looks like a treat, and once you smell feel the sweet malt and wrap around your taste buds you will be sold. WIth full syrup flavors of figs and almost a mild brandy this beer is amazing. A standard in double bocks, definitely incredible in the amount of malt. A beer that is 8.4% purchased in WV was a dream come true, and I felt like I was being rebel breaking the law. It was sweet, then I realized they labeled the bottle malt liquor , and that might be why WV can import the Sam Adams Double Bock. A full mouthfeel that fills you up, nice and chewy. I still find this one very drinkable. (679 characters)

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Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
88 out of 100 based on 1,094 ratings.