1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series)Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series)

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

1,765 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,765
Reviews: 1,078
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 13.23%
Wants: 68
Gots: 75 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 02-07-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series) Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,765 | Reviews: 1,078 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of berkey


4/5  rDev +1.8%

From notes 08/03/09

Poured into a tulip. Forms a medium tan head with good retention. Deep but fairly clean brown body that shows some garnet hues when held to light.

Aromas are of mellow chocolate along with an underlying fruitiness, especially berries which hasn't always been my experience with Bocks. Some leafy hop character is also in there along with a mild peppery spicyness.

First sip was a little sweeter than expected but fairly balanced. Some cherry and yeast flavors join the chocolate and bitter hops that were picked up earlier on the nose. On the aftertaste I'm getting some roasty flavors and a figgy character.

Good balance keeps it pretty drinkable despite the ABV but can't see myself reaching for another bottle.

Overall a well done beer and one of the better Sam Adams I've had. Probably not a repeat purchase as it's not exactly to my tastes.

08-08-2009 15:47:28 | More by berkey
Photo of mdwalsh


4.2/5  rDev +6.9%

A: Pours a milk chocolate brown with a one finger tan head, but as that goes away, which it does fast, the greater light turns it to more of a redish brown. There's minimal carbonation. It looks pretty boring, and light for a double bock.

S: Smells super sweet and malty, no hops. Awesome. Perfect for a dobblebock and hopefully a harbringer of taste to come. It could use a little more complexity though.

T: Smooth, not as sweet as I would have expected from the nose, but that's a good thing I think. Still very malty. I get some brown sugar and sweeter fruit like cherry. Even a little savory. Reading the bottle, this makes sense. Half a pound of malt in every bottle. Awesome. As I continue drinking there is something that reminds me of cola or rootbeer. Yum.

M: Smooth and creamy. Not sparkling at all.

D: Pretty heavy and sweet to drink too much of it.

08-04-2009 16:59:11 | More by mdwalsh
Photo of BamaBeerBuff

North Carolina

3.8/5  rDev -3.3%

A: Pours a clear crimson-cherry color with a small, dense, and creamy tan head. Head falls quickly, but a nice cap of foam remains over the top. A few spots of lace on the glass. Color is quite vibrant and lovely.

S: Rich. Dark fruits caramelized with brown sugar is the primary aroma here. Burnt caramel, some toffee, and very light chocolate also make contributions. Alcohol presence is highly noticeable and, at times, a bit distracting.

T&M: Dark fruit, molasses, caramel, alcohol, and a dry finish of toasted grain. Finish is quite interesting--an upshot of fruit and light alcohol combine in an interesting manner. Body is very full, with a highly velvety, almost syrupy feel. This one has a boatload of malt.

D: It's a whale of a doppelbock, chock full with flavor and a high ABV. Not a gulper, but still enjoyable. Well done, BBC.

08-03-2009 04:22:27 | More by BamaBeerBuff
Photo of OldSchoolGamer


4.03/5  rDev +2.5%

I have had all the beers out of the Sam Adams Imperial Series. They are all decent beers, but not up to the craft beer standards, which has been set extremely high by so many talented brewers around the nation.

A: Pours a deep reddish brown. Very clear with lots of carbonation. Head is dark tan and dissipates rather quickly. No lacing present.

S: Smells pretty typical for a Doppelbock. Very sweet malt with some dark fruits in there. A little musty smelling.

T: Of the three beers in the Imperial Series, I think this one is the best tasting. Alcohol is the most hidden and this has the smoothest taste overall. Lots of sweet malts. I taste a lot of brown sugar, cinnamon and some dark fruits. Figs, raisin, and maybe plum. You get a touch of alcohol, but I think it adds to the overall flavor. Pretty good.

M/D: This is definetly on the heavier side. Drinks very smoothly with a nice alcohol warmth in the finish. The easiest drinking of the three in the Sam Adams Imperial Series. Hard to drink a lot of, but could down more than one easily.

Sam Adams has a winner on their hands. Considering I am not a huge Doppelbock fan, this might be one of the best tasting ones I have had to date. Good mix of flavors and a nice thick body, this is one to sip on and savor. Pretty good effort from Sam Adams.

07-30-2009 18:15:57 | More by OldSchoolGamer
Photo of Spidey13


4.03/5  rDev +2.5%

Samuel Adams Double Bock pours a beautiful deep amber color with a small white head. The nose has some chocolate, molasses, prunes, and cherries. Maybe a hint of alcohol.

The flavor is very sweet and malty with some alcohol in there. Chocolate. There is more hop bitterness than expected, which is a nice suprise. The mouthfeel is a bit slick with medium/low carbonation.

Overall, this is a very good doppelbock.

07-30-2009 10:55:47 | More by Spidey13
Photo of yesyouam

New York

3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Samuel Adams Double Bock is a very clear red lager with a light khaki head that has great retention and lacing. It has a boozy and peppery aroma that's slightly sweet with notes of toasted grain. It's pretty full bodied, smooth, fluffy and creamy, with a sticky finish. It tastes slightly sweet, malty and pretzely. I can taste alcohol and black pepper, especially at the finish. It's pretty strong stuff.

07-30-2009 05:13:38 | More by yesyouam
Photo of ChuckR343


4.18/5  rDev +6.4%

A - Dark amber in color, tan head which dissipates quickly, but leaves a small ring around the edge.

S - Complex smells of molasses and caramel, a faint hint of smokiness.

T/M - Wow. This beer tastes nothing like it smells. Very smooth, creamy All the flavors of spices, caramel and bread come out at you. A little on the sweet side. Alcohol is very subdued for a 9.5%.

D - A very delicious beer. A 4-pack would do quite nicely.

07-28-2009 01:16:53 | More by ChuckR343
Photo of MunchkinDrinker


4.22/5  rDev +7.4%

A - Dark clear amber/mahogany with a fizzy ten head that dissapates quickly. Leaves some lacing.

S - Rick molasses and caramel with some passive spiciness. Solid if not complex.

T/M - Better than the smell certainly. The molasses and caramel flavors come together with some mild non-sweet fruity notes. Some alcohol is present in the taste, but it doesn't hurt the flavor. Some very faint chocolate notes. Feels pleasantly frothy and a little slick, but not sticky.

D - Certainly delicious to drink, but not sure how many I'd want to have in a sitting.

07-26-2009 00:59:48 | More by MunchkinDrinker
Photo of ABOWMan


3.6/5  rDev -8.4%

THis ale poured a nice rich brown/red in color with near perfect clarity. Little to no head which lasted less than a minute. No lacing evident.

The aroma is of rich roasted malt.

The flavor sweet malt, then more sweet malt with roasted notes. There is also some nutty notes and sweet spice. The flavor is robust, and pleasing although slightly sweet.

The mouthfeel is thin for such a full flavored ale. I would have expected the slight turbidity to feel richer on my palate.

The drinkability is only average due to this beers intense sweetness. Not bad for such a large craft brewer.

07-25-2009 21:59:19 | More by ABOWMan
Photo of AmberMan22


4.55/5  rDev +15.8%

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: A dark reddish/brown, leaves about 3/4 inch head of large bubbles that stay put. Sticky and pronounced lacing.

S: Smells strongly of sweet, toasty malt.

T/M deep, caramelly malt, roasted flavor, wonderful to behold. A fairly heavy beer across the tongue, even with a pronounced head the beer is not over-carbonated.

D: Certainly a heavy beer, one to savor -- putting down the fourpack in one sitting would be unpleasant for any number of reasons, including those monetary and physical.

07-25-2009 00:46:22 | More by AmberMan22
Photo of enfield249


3.7/5  rDev -5.9%

A - Pours a beautiful copper-brown, with a khaki colored head of about 2 fingers that fades to a thin layer of foam.

S - Caramel, Munich malts, sweetness.

T - First is some nice caramel maltyness, roast, slightly sweet.

M - Full, fair amount of heat from the Alcohol. Slightly cloying.

D- Very nice beer, a bit strong to drink all the time.

07-25-2009 00:23:12 | More by enfield249
Photo of GbVDave


3.58/5  rDev -8.9%

Poured from a 12oz bottle into two small snifters. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pours a reddish, coppery hue with a light orange/light brown head. The foam dissolves to a thick ring and sticky lace.

S: Smells sweet. Caramel, apples, vanilla, and brown sugar and/or molassas.

T: See above. Boozy dark fruit and caramel creams. Spicy hot booze drenched apples and spices.

M: Sweet, thick, and chock full of hot boozy burn. Far too hot for our liking.

D: Pretty good, but just too upfront with the alcohol.

07-23-2009 00:42:43 | More by GbVDave
Photo of maddogruss

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev -6.4%

Got this on tap at the Cloverleaf Tavern in an 11 oz snifter glass.

A: Pours a dark amber body with a small, white head with nice retention and lacing until the finish.

S: A sweet, roasted toffee smell with some alcoholic undertones.

T: A sweet, cherry roasted toffee malt taste to it with some strong alcohol notes. Alcohol made itself more present as the beer warmed up. This beer reminding me of a sweeter tasting Robitussin.

M: A full-bodied and silky smooth mouthfeel that was very nice on the palette. A nice feeling beer overall.

D: A decent mouthfeel and taste combo made this beer pretty drinkable. The alcohol that came out later got to me a little bit, but it helped in complimenting the cherry tastes. Worth a go.

07-22-2009 20:36:41 | More by maddogruss
Photo of OtherShoe2


4.13/5  rDev +5.1%

Pours a deep ruby, but a tiny bit on the brown side. Head is almost non-factor -- a skim around the rim. No to slight lacing.

Classic bock malt scent here, with heavy caramel and fermented dark fruit. Decent.

Heavy toasted malt flavors, with some burnt caramel sweetness and boozy fermented raisin as well. A little chemical alcohol, much less present in taste as I expected (for 9.5%). Toasty, almost smoky, dry-ish finish that lingers - and not a hint of sweetness there.

Massive body in this one. You HAVE to sip.

A sipper, and a case where this is so heavy and complex, one is enough. Not the best DB I've had, but far from the worst. Absolutely fantastic domestic effort here. If you do not generally like bock/double bock, don't bother with this one. If you like the style, you must try. Would love to see how this fares in a blind BA tasting. probably holds its own against some of the big guns.

07-17-2009 01:19:28 | More by OtherShoe2
Photo of PaleAlien2


3.6/5  rDev -8.4%

Has kind of a dirty ruby red color. Not much head to it. Looks not so much good as interesting.

Smell is sweet with a strong alcohol scent.

Taste is sweet bread with some citrus sweetness in the back end. Alcohol warming is there, but not overpowering.

Surprisingly drinkable for 9.5% alcohol.

Probably a great beer for the style--I just don't think it's my style.

07-14-2009 03:13:25 | More by PaleAlien2
Photo of jrallen34


3.85/5  rDev -2%

I drank this from a bottle into a chalice.

The color is medium brown with a full tan head and a decent amount of lacing.

There is a slight coffee smell but nothing signifianct.

Smell and head are nothing to write home about but its good a strong flavor and 9.5% it will put you on your ass. It tastes like coffee and has a smooth finish that allows you drink quite a few.

I really enjoyed this beer, reminded of some good Belgians.

07-13-2009 19:08:44 | More by jrallen34
Photo of DoctorDog


3.8/5  rDev -3.3%

Presentation: 12 oz bottle into a Sam Adams Boston Lager glass.

A- Mahogany color with some ruby highlights. 1 1/2 fingers of tan head, which fades slowly into a thin cap. Fair amount of lacing.

S- Pronounced malty sweetness, and a fair amount of herbal hop and alcohol in the nose.

T- Sweet caramel malt flavors, offset by a blend of hops and slightly boozy kick.

M- Moderate carbonation and reasonably full feel. Moderate alcohol warming presence.

D- Decent, though perhaps a touch boozy to get too carried away

Future outlook: Good offering from the Imperial series by SA. I'm sure I'll end up having again.

07-12-2009 06:35:25 | More by DoctorDog
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

3.58/5  rDev -8.9%

A: Dark brown with hues of red. Small head w/ lacing

S: toasted and roasted malts, hints of carmel, toffee and light chocolate

T: Sweet to first taste with a slightly too strong punch of alcohol which hides some of the great malt flavor

M: smooth and lightly carbonated, but a too much zing from the alcohol

D: The 9.5ABV is heavy, but the alcohol punch could be hidden a bit more.

07-10-2009 15:54:56 | More by rfgetz
Photo of CarlP2


4.05/5  rDev +3.1%

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle.

A- Dark brown with strong red hues. Off white head that recedes to a ring around the glass with some lacing.

S- Strong malt smell. Sweet smell of dark fruits.

T- Strong taste of malts with a little fruit and caramel too. Alcohol is definitely noticeable, not overpowering, but there is a little warmth. The alcohol was only noticeable for the first few sips.

M- Medium body with a bit of a sticky viscous feel. Not a lot of carbonation.

D- I could drink another one or two, but I'm sure the alcohol would limit me there. Very good representation of the style.

07-09-2009 02:04:16 | More by CarlP2
Photo of SpdKilz


4.33/5  rDev +10.2%

Appearance - Pours nicely with about two fingers of head (fades quickly but sticks to the glass). When I shine a white LED flashlight through the cup there is a very nice amber/brown hue.

Smell - One word - fruity. The first and foremost smell is prunes and there is most definitely a raisin after tone. Extremely aromatic.

Taste - Very flavorful - I do not taste the alcohol (granted having an Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout before may make me not notice this) though I do feel the warming after.

Mouthfeel - Syrupy and thick. Very enjoyable on a cooler summer night. I can't wait until winter to fully enjoy this beer!

Drinkability - Honestly, quite drinkable. At almost 10%, this is a very potent brew and I can honestly say after two of these I will be feeling quite nice.

Serving type: bottle

I am on a quest to drink every available Samuel Adams beer. This is one of the more potent, and enjoyable of the ones I have had as of late. I won't lie, I can't wait until the Autumn/Winter seasonal beers are released. Those were my favorites last year and some of the first "real" beers I tried.

07-07-2009 03:35:08 | More by SpdKilz
Photo of tai4ji2x


2.85/5  rDev -27.5%

12oz bottle. on the base of the neck, printed on the glass:


the back label, in the lower left corner, has "6565"

tasted in late april/early may 2009.

clear, dark coppery amber. 1-finger tan head, fades to wisps and ring. decent lacing, especially in the 2nd half.

aroma: malty caramel, almost savory, with a plum fruitiness. faint noble hops. but then the boozy alcohol comes in towards the back, plus phenols.

taste: starts out okay - malty, hint of figs and spice, but then boozy with distracting phenols or fusels. mild to moderate bitterness from the noble hops helps clean things up, but only ever so slightly.

feel: starts out hinting towards syrupy, but then the booze, phenols and fusels just come right in and ruin it all. astringent and solvent-like. carbonation is moderate, and even fluffy at times, but doesn't help.

a shame i never got to try the original version. these new "imperial series" beers have all sucked so far. god, i hope they don't mess up the hallertaur pilsner next...

07-05-2009 13:27:03 | More by tai4ji2x
Photo of Seru1


3.73/5  rDev -5.1%

Poured in a Pint

Appearance- Rich Copper Brown with a light tan head, decent carbonation with a finger and a half of thickness. Brilliant color not that hazy. You really wanna take a picture

Nose- Honey Dominates the nose like a fine sauterne followed by caramel and white grapes. A sweet smell for a sweet beer.

Taste- Coriander Spice melds with Caramel and Figs. There seems to be an odd wheat taste that blunts and otherwise delightful experiance. Don't let this one get warm though. I think I would have liked mine better were it ice cold.

Mouthfeel- Extremely full bodied and rich with little carbonation appearing on the tongue.

Drinkability- It's very enjoyable but one or two in a sitting would suffice. Not the best summer beer I've had but I'm coming back to this when things get cold.

07-03-2009 05:55:49 | More by Seru1
Photo of biggred1


4/5  rDev +1.8%

Chestnut brown with ruby highlights when held up to the light and sporting a creamy light tan colored head that leaves blobs of lace behind as it slowly melts. Dark fruit, toffee and roasted coffee are all present in the nose. Brown sugar, raisin, oaky vanilla and warm alcohol are balanced by a slightly charred bitterness, the flavors grow more complex as it warms up. Full bodied and smooth, a beast of a lager at 9.5% ABV. I dig the "Imperial series" BBC stuff and I hope that they continue to devolop different extreme style beers.

07-02-2009 23:22:34 | More by biggred1
Photo of runesead


3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Appearance: Great pour. Good head retension. Clean, translucent brown appearance.

Smell: Average Big Beer smell. Deep malty aroma.

Taste: Fruity and malty, lightly sweet. Creamy flavoring. Pleasant aftertaste. Tastes like a Bock

Mouthfeel: Smooth and velvety.

Drinkability: I don't get tired of this beer. It's a as good from the first sip to the last gulp.

This beer is 9.5 percent alcohol but it doesn't taste it, so be careful. That is a trait I admire in beers. If I can't taste the alcohol, then it gains a point in my book.

07-02-2009 01:09:01 | More by runesead
Photo of deanhead


4.1/5  rDev +4.3%

Poured a nice amber color, brilliantly clear beer, with a nice head, and good lace.

Aroma is bready and malty, with an herbal touch

Rich malty taste that finishes with a very slight hop bitterness Easy drinking and malty, but not overly sweet. Very well balanced.

Medium to full bodied rich drinking experience. Viscous, with a slightly sweet finish.

This is clearly a big beer that I could enjoy several of in one sitting. It is highly drinkable so be careful however as it is a big beer, and will certainly sneak up on you if you are not careful.

Two thmbs up to Sam Adams for this classic style. They havbe really done a great job with this one. Enjoy!

06-29-2009 16:03:35 | More by deanhead
Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
88 out of 100 based on 1,765 ratings.