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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)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,819 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,819
Reviews: 1,087
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 13.01%
Wants: 84
Gots: 96 | 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.
View: Beers (120) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,819 | Reviews: 1,087 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of deejaydan
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was plesantly surpised to see this beer back in Michigan, it had been at least 6 years since I'd seen it here. Color is medium brown with amber highlights. Some carmely tones in the aroma, fairly standard. Taste is surpising to me. Not as lush and rich as I remember. Slightly vegetal, perhaps either oxidized or they used adjuncts. Taste otherwise is nice, grassy german hops, and some malt taste present. Drinkablity is pretty high for a double (or dopple) bock. Decent drinking beer.

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance is dark caramel color with a creamy, full-sized head. Obviously the aroma is malty, however it wasn't as strong or full as expected. Smell is caramel malt mainly, fairly standard. Taste is primarily of sweet malts with just a touch of hops spice. Malt flavor is very full as should be expected. Mouthfeel is a little bit creamy which adds to the expirience. This is a great beer, easily one of the best Samuel Adams I've tried.

Photo of asabreed
4.55/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I know I say it all the time, but a case of this for around $26 is indeed a steal. Since it's also fairly limited, I'd say if you're a DB fan, definitely try to at least pick up a 6 pack when you see one.

NOTE: This one I'm drinking is a year old, and it has indeed gotten better.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown / amber. On the darker side more than anything. Nice mocha colored head that leaves a thin line of white lace around the glass.

Smell: There's a lot here for sure. Malt presence is huge and welcoming. Caramel malt, sweet chocolate, raisins, some nuts, toffee. Very complex and very worthy of getting your nose in there to see what you can find.

Taste: Very complex. Toffee, some chocolate, raisins, caramel presence is huge in taste also. Very much like a dessert in itself, and as you swallow the mouthfeel is fantastic.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full-bodied, but not syrupy or extremely thick. The swallow is really where it feels and tastes amazingly nice, though. It may be ineffable, but there's something that happens that I've not gotten with any other beer.

Drinkability: I consider this, even though it's not the most expensive beer, somewhat of a delicacy -- for both it's sweetness and high alcohol percentage. So why would you want to make it a session beer, really? I've yet to pair it with a dessert, but I'd like to try. As I said before, though, it's pretty much a great dessert in itself.

Photo of carln26
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I’ve read the thread on this site about the beer that started people down the path of Advocacy. I couldn’t pick a particular beer at the time, but when I saw this in the store yesterday, I reminisced, and realized: this was it for me. Being a struggling engineer fresh out of college. SA was about the top beer I could afford, and I remember seeing this in the store, taking it home, and trying. WOW, this is what beer is supposed to taste like? That was what drove me to start trying other beers and styles. When I looked at this site, I was pleasantly surprised to see how high a ranking this beer is given, and I’d say I have to agree.

A great deep amber color with gentle ruby highlights is topped a medium, dense cream colored head. The malt in the beer gives off toffee and caramel aromas. It’s difficult for me to find any hints of the hops used in the brewing. The taste has more toffee flavors, maybe even some butterscotch. The hops don’t bring a ton of flavor to the beer, more a subtle bitterness that accents the rest of the flavor. The mouth feel is smooth and rich. Very drinkable. This beer deserves the favorable reviews.

Photo of Hibernator
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was pleasantly surpised to see a six pack of the Sam Adams Double Bock on the shelves this early in the season. It's January 14th and I know this must be a fresh shipment.

I had this from a 12 oz brown bottle and served in an imperial pint glass. Freshness date notched for November 2005. The label lets you know this is an 8.8% ABV Dark Lager. I was excited to pick this up tonight from the store.

Reddish brown in color with a great fluffy head. Some sticky lacings cling to the sides of the glass.

Strong aroma of caramel malts with some hops in the background. A little chocolate smell as well.

Creamy, juicy caramel sweetness blends with a strong malty backbone. The finish lends itself to a tangy hop snap. Nicely balanced, maybe with the chewy malts taking an advantage overall. I have no idea where the 8.8% ABV is hiding. Surprisingly, I can't detect any alcohol warmth. Rich and sweet with a full flavor.

Very nice...one of the better Sam Adams offerings out there. I'll be picking up six packs of this during the upcoming weeks.

Photo of Sixpack595
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Overall a fairly good beer. Not the best doppelbock, but enjoyable. Head is thin and fades fast, color is a slightly hazy redish brown. Aroma is sweet malty caramel with a very slight hint of alcohol sneaking in. Flavor is caramel, toffee and sweet with a light bitterness cleaning things up in the end. Mouthfeel is quite good, full and just a touch of sticky, syrupy thickness. A good beer but not nearly as good as the German Doppelbocks I've tried.

Photo of JackStraw22
3.77/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a cloudy amber orange with a thin tan head. Not really an lacing. Quite sweet aroma, lots of malt, apple, cherries, grapes. I like this smell in beers in general, but not how they translate into the taste. I'm more of a hops guy, but for the style, this has a nice taste, just like it smells, except there's some chocolate I can taste, but can't smell.. No real hoppiness to speak of, very sweet, can taste the alcohol some. It flows quickly over the top of the mouth and is then gone, quite thin, not as sticky as I was expecting for how sweet it is, I like that. I just had the Otter Creek Alpine Ale last night, this reminds me a lot of that, I like this better though.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.41/5  rDev +12.5%
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.

Photo of yankeeheel
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

03 vintage

Pours a dark brown/red with a small, slightly fizzy, cream colored head. Nice sheet of lace sticks around. Fruit bomb to the nose. Fig, cherry, licorice, vanilla, and cocoa all come roaring through. Swirling it only makes it better. I think I will have the next one in a tulip glass just to soak it up. Taste wise it is classic Bock. Big malty dark fruit waves roar over my tounge. There goes cherry and fig. Now it's grape and anise. Then it's caramel and coffee. It's massive, it's delightful, it's refreshing. I could drink this until I pass out, which would be after aboout a six of these because the alcohol is creeping in the dark. I can't recomend cellaring this strongly enough. 1 year and it's nectar.

When SA can make a lager this good, you really have to question some of their other brewing decisions.

Photo of ALESwhatCURESya
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is probably one of my favorite Samuel Adams. The crazy thing is, my favorite store was selling this for $5.49/ 6pack. Nice deep amber color with a beautiful light beige head. The aroma was nice with sweet sugared smell, but a little weak for a double. The taste was with heavy caramel, malty overtones. The finish is candy-like resemblence. The high abv is very well hidden and this one could easily catch up on you. Great fall beer!

Photo of kmpitz2
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Clvand0 for the opportunity to try this one. This pours a coppery red color with 2 fingers of head that falls fairly quick. The nose is heavy in malt, with a sweet caramel character to it. Wow. Kick me in the mouth flavor on this one. The alcohol is WAY too apparent for my tastes on the first sip, but this mellows out as I drink it. The malts are dominant with a very sweet caramel in the flavor as well. The aftertaste is nice and mellow. Mouthfeel is thick and full, with mininal carbonation. Drinkability is fairly good for a style I'm not a big fan of. I wouldn't want more than one, but I could handle having this one again.

Photo of Admiraldinty
4.32/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was one of the first doppelbocks I ever tried, and it helped me get interested in better beers. Still just as good even today.
Poured a dark brown with reddish highlights. Sticky, tan head.
Nose is sweet malt, alcohol, and a little hops.
Oh so smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Caramel, and toasted malts. Warming and spicy alcohol. Very balanced.
Great beer and one of the best from SA. Watch out though, this one will sneak up on you.

Photo of malthead
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice light, rich brown color with a decent head. Smells of sweet malt and some caramel, but the dominant one I get is a fruity, plum-like smell. Taste is a little too sweet for me... there's brown sugar, plum, dried cherries, etc. in addition to the usual maltyness. Good mouthfeel, but overwhelmed by an almost cloying sensation. The drinkability is affected by this too - I think it's just too sweet to be as enjoyable as most true doppelbocks... it reminds me of a nice tawny port, but is too fruity for my personal tastes and for what I consider the style to be.

Photo of clvand0
2.73/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a dark copper/red color with a very thin head that doesn't stick around long. The aroma was malty and had a caramel and sweet - maybe some friut in there. The flavor had some hops, but much more malt - very malty. The alcohol can be tasted in this one as well. Very sweet. Not a bad brew, but could deal with being a little more dry in the taste.

Photo of pezoids
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This poured a deep and dark amber-burgundy color with a small and creamy off white head. Generous amount of carbonation. The aroma has sweet, buttery and caramel-like notes. Fermented fruits are evident along with cherry liqueur. The taste is bold and heavy, but the beer remains quite drinkable. Fruity, bittersweet with caramel and licorice notes in the finish. Some rubbery notes were detected. Overall, a very nice bock beer here. Heavy, sweet and hearty. This will put hair on your chest.

Photo of mattcrill
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear ruby/carmel color with a tight tan head.

Smell: Very fruity, sweet, and malty. Definitely a strong aroma of sweetness that spills over the edges of the glass.

Taste: A veritable fruit basket in my mouth! Dried cherries, plumbs, and raisins dance all over my tongue. Very sweet to start with a nice smoky finish.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy. Almost like drinking a milkshake. Not quite that thick but towards the end of that spectrum.

Drinkability and overall: Very sweet! Drinkability suffers some just b/c it's so damn sweet. Still, it is a malt lover's dream and a tasty after dinner treat. A fine offering from SA.

Photo of granger10
4.46/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow, this is definitely a big beer. Much bigger than most Dopple's I have encountered. The pour left a copperish bronze-like color with a thin head that left quickly. Lots of sticky lacing though which I liked. The aroma came out and hit me with strong maltyness and lots of alcohol. The alcohol, however, was much more hidden in the taste. The hops were also weak. This beer is all about the maltyness. Very thick in body and rich in taste. The malts begin with caramel in flavor but a dry maltyness follows that. Butterscotch becomes more prevalent the further I go. A smoky woodsy flavor hides in the background and keep this beer from being too cloying, but it's still slightly cloying as caramel takes the show. Alcohol, even though not real noticeable in taste, lets me know it's there in the burn. OH MY! I really liked this beer. Rich and Smooth, kinda like the Michelob Amber Bock advertisement.

Photo of maek228
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

this is one bad boy. truly, a man's beer. i got a 6 pack of this for the fourth of july. drinking it gave me a patriotic feeling. i bet our founding fathers drinked beer like this.

appearance: dark amber. a deep brown. the head, although not that big, has a real frothy look to it.

taste: this one knocks you on your feet. malty at first, like a colt 45 double malt. thick, full taste...some caramel, malt, and maye even toffee tastes, rounded out by some bitter hops. the alcohol is not hidden at all, which actually works to the beers advantage. it gives you a warm feeling in your chest.

mouthfeel: malty and bitter

drinkability: you can put this down better than most 8% abv beverages

Photo of MattFrenzy
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Deep, dark, ruby. Medium sized brown head that recedes fairly quickly but leaves a bit of lace.

Smell: Tons of roasted malts, caramel, fruity, sweet.

Taste: Deep taste, spicy, copius amounts of malts. Lip smacking beer, sticky, strong smoky aftertaste that just stays on the roof of your mouth. Alcohol comes through midway but takes off before the spicy conclusion. Decent brew.

Photo of mobyfann
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Paid $1.49 for a 12oz. bottle...

The appearence was really nice, classic bock or dunkel colored base with a hint of amber color. The head was very large of a nice golden-brown color that subsided after about 5 minutes and after that the lacing took a nice effect as well. Nicely done. The aroma was good in this doppel; I got a few hints of caramel, malts and some sweetness.

The taste didn't really jump out on me, it was just ok, nothing like the smell hints a bit weak but it still works. The mouthfeel is great for a doppel, could not believe how well this beer went down, great stuff. The drinkability is nice as well, with a strong 8.4%+ ABV content I was pretty satisfied. Very nice.

Final Thought: For some reason I thought the taste was semi-bland as compared to a nice aroma, well worth the price for all the other aspects, one I will have to try when first available in the next season brewed, it is late for doppel season...

Photo of taez555
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a big thick tan head with a dark ruby brown body.

The nose has a BIG malt smell. Alcohol, some spice, brown sugar, sweetness, some earthiness even a slight touch of mint. Slight slight slight touch. Basically a huge malt smell.

The taste is right along the same lines. Medium to thick bodied. Big malt, sugar, slight chocolate, some hints of meat, sweet malt. There’s definatly a bitterness but it really takes a back seat to the malt. There’s just this classic german earthy hop flavor from start to finish.

Sam Adams can make some amazing beers when they’re not trying to hard. A damn good bock beer.

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This great offering from the BBC poured a deep, clear dark copper in color. Miniscule layer of off-white head does a nice job of patchy lace on the glass as it was consumed. Aromas are M-A-L-T-Y. Lots of caramel, brown sugar, and the like floating around in this one. Flavor is tasty as well. Heft dose of sweetness on the front side but balanced nicely in the end by a bitterness from the hops. Lots of chocolate-covered raisins detected. Only near the end do you get a slight note of the ABV of this one. Mouthfeel is great...big body and definitely on the creamy side. Very, very drinkable. Well-done!

Photo of UnionMade
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours a deep caramel brown, topped with a froth that looks like whipped pancake batter. Incredibly creamy, with a warm, yellowed color. Incredibly clear, a fiery glow when held to light. Very attractive. The head reluctantly settles into a thick, misty coating, leaving a streaky film of lace sticking to the glass. Thicker layers of belgian lace form, as well.
The aroma is deeply malty, a rich fruitiness weighing heavy above the head. Tons of caramel, with generous heaps of coffee, chocolate, raisin and prune. A vague whiff of floral noble hops, struggling to present themselves above the malt. A faint whiff of alcohol comes through as it reaches cellar temperature. The fruity malt is excellent, but perhaps a bit one sided, lacking the complexity of the best examples of the style.
The flavor starts out almost cloyingly malty. Huge heaps of raisiny caramel, with a soft undertone of dark roasted coffee. Maybe a bit of molasses and tobacco leaves, especially as it warms. Some cocoa slides through the middle, with the raisin fruitiness intensifying, a bit of prune and red grape juice blooming. The grape adds an ever so slight sourness to the finish, although the malt does get rather cloying, especially as the brew warms. The hops lend a whisper of floral flavors, doing nothing as far as bittering goes. The roasted malt adds some bitterness, dulling the fruity caramel sweetness some, enough to be drinkable. A huge, sticky caramel aftertaste, laden with heaps of dark, juicy fruitiness. No apparent alcohol until it warms, where it presents itself in a mild tingle on top of the tongue. The malt films over the tongue with a sticky layer of sugary sweetness, I'd almost like to cut this with some ice. Full, heavy body, with a syrupy, slick mouthfeel. Mild, german styled carbonation, perhaps bordering on too bubbly.
Very, very sweet, but a pretty fair example of the style. The sweetness gets cloying, especially as it warms a bit. I always seem to have trouble with the last couple of sips, even if I start this beer ice cold. The fruitiness is very nice, and this is obviously a well made beer. I'm just inclined to believe that it's geared for a sweeter palate, as it feels like more of a dessert than a beer. My introduction to the style, and it's still pretty good.

Photo of ChrisBowers
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my favorite brew from Sam Adams. Pours a deep reddish brown color with a nice head. Smell is rich, malty, with alcohol, fruits and a bit of sweet spiciness present. Taste is brilliant, with a rich malty sweetness that perfectly balances the high amount of alcohol present. You'll notice the alcohol, but it balances out so well that you won't care. Buttery toffee like finish. Very warming, satisfying beer. I wish I could get my hands on some more. Guess I'll have to wait until next year.

Photo of Gasp100
3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The first one I had just overpowered me with alcohol, but since I've had a chance to really pay attention to this next bottle it's growing on me. The pour is dark red mahogany with a thick tan head and medium lacing down the glass. The smell is of deep, overripe fruit and candied nuts, sugar and alcohol. The taste is thick and very rich, decent carbonation and heavy duty sweet malts just overpower the senses. There is a smell of almost tree bark, earthy, old, heavy duty engine oil... I like it. This definitely has the most character of any Sam Adams brew I've ever had. The alcohol is like another flavor in this one and I like it --- couldn't drink more than one or two, but it's nice and I could see buying this once a year along with Victory St. Vic as a comparison. Nice...

Samuel Adams Double Bock (Imperial Series) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
88 out of 100 based on 1,819 ratings.