Alaskan Birch Bock (Pilot Series) - Alaskan Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 103 | Reviews: 48 | Display Reviews Only:
4.53/5 rDev +25.8%
22 oz. bomber,
A: Pours a dark amber to brown with a medium tan head which leaves some thick lace.
S: Heavy birch and maple syrup, dark turbinado sugar, distinct and inviting.
T: Classic malty dark dopplebock flavours. Dark bread, molasses, the birch is a nice addition. Sweet for sure, but never gets overbearing.
M: Full-bodied, never cloying which was astonishing in an American dopplebock with this much residual sugar. Crisp carbonation.
O: This was a really good effort from Alaskan. The best new beer I've had from them since the Baltic Porter. The bomber was pricey, but the QPR is good, a delicious strong beer with a unique touch. Well worth a pickup.
06-11-2012 20:18:43 | More by Halcyondays
4.43/5 rDev +23.1%
A - Clear red brew, moderately-sized white head, no lacing. Initial pour coats the glass in bubbles. Brew has a thin ring of white head linger around the interface of the glass and the beer.
S - Strong, very fragrant malt. I am not sure where the malt ends and the birch syrup begins, because I'm not terribly familiar with birch syrup. It smells like malt with a bit of an almost rye-like spiciness. A bit of faint hibiscus and currants. Very nice.
T - Extremely potent malt with a hint of umami herbal balance, kind of like a mild sage and mushroom (but without the earthiness of most mushrooms). Very rich. Aftertaste is a mild sweetness and a bit of the earth-less umami mushroom. It is an incredible flavor in a beer, unlike any I can recall.
M - Very thick, smooth, refreshing.
D - Fantastic. I hope Alaskan keeps making this. Its a great tasting brew with more than just novelty. The birch syrup contributes an impressive flavor, but it is actually presenting something unique and delectable. I will definitely buy a bottle of this again (assuming I can find it).
03-23-2012 04:20:19 | More by mrasskicktastic
4.2/5 rDev +16.7%
Enjoyed on-tap @ the Beer Shoppe in Yakima, WA for $4 (special). Tapped from a Non-Labeled Tap Handle into a 16oz Beer Shoppe Pint Glass. Saw this one in a 22oz bottle at the shop so decided to enjoy on-tap instead.
Aroma- Tons of sugar and maple sugar hit the nose first. The sweetest malt you can find as well. Strong and enjoyed it!
Appearance- Received with no head... Tapping issues? Deep amber/light brown body with decent clarity. Leaves a few suds behind.
Flavor- Burnt sugar and caramel comes around very rich and dominant. Awesome! Malty and has a light bitterness at the finish.
Mouthfeel- Medium Bodied, Medium Carbonation, Sweet, Smooth, and a finish like a dessert beer.
Overall Impression- Wow! Not too traditional for the style but enjoyed GREATLY! Reminded me of an aged Thomas Hardy's Ale. This is a great compliment to this beer! Would love to get a bottle of this but have many others to drink first. Maybe next year. Highly recommend!
07-22-2012 19:39:32 | More by DCon
4.18/5 rDev +16.1%
Alaskan Birch Bock (Pilot Series)
Appearance: dark amber, small head, and some lacing.
Smell: birch and alcohol.
Taste: nice malt and birch notes.
Mouthfeel: medium and smooth.
This is a very nice brew. The flavors are very well balanced.
06-08-2012 03:10:50 | More by megahurts4
4.16/5 rDev +15.6%
A- A deep amber colour, which seemed to fluctuate a little with ruby towards the center and murky brown towards the edges.
S- Delightful, huge berry notes with a massively appetizing, malty bouquet. The best thing about this beer!
T- Sweet with a tart maltiness. Taste of rasberries and cherries. Pretty much what you'd hope for from a doppelbock with added syrup.
M- Fairly low carbonation which I liked. Slightly cloying and thin, but not to the extent that it detracted too much from the overall experience.
O- I would definitely have this again based purely on the beer, although it was quite pricey at $8. Would have only given it a 4, but it disguised the relatively high ABV of 8.5% so nicely that I had to bump it up a notch. I could drink it all day, and at that ABV, that's impressive.
07-21-2013 00:51:50 | More by abeeronthebeach
4.11/5 rDev +14.2%
In my opinion, the beers in the Pilot Series are some of the best work from Alaskan. The taste is general bold and lacks the bothersome oily texture that I can not overlook in their more noted brews.
Poured into a glass, the beer was a murky brown with variation in the shades of brown. The aroma was the expected malty doppelbock type aroma. In fairness, I am not exactly what birch syrup is supposed to taste like, never having had it. I can only assume it is similar to maple syrup. In the initial taste, one detects the sweet malt as well as a certain syrupy sweetness with hints of dark fruit. There was a certain smokiness in the taste, but it was not overpowering. The thickness reminded me a little more of a barleywine than a doppelbock, but this was not a big detractor for me. In the aftertaste, one will notice the maltiness continues with a twang of sourness. The taste on this doppelbock is well developed and nicely rounded. I would certainly do this one again.
03-31-2013 23:13:27 | More by JohnnyHopps
4.08/5 rDev +13.3%
Poured from 22 oz bottle into a Surly Darkness Chalice.
Appearance: Pours a deep, dark, and slightly cloudy brownish copper with a little ruby red. Moderate bubbles and about one finger of off white head that recedes into a few thin patches. Lacing is light.
Smell: A sweet smell of caramel malts and toffee with the birch syrup and a hint of spices. Some hints of citrus and earthy hops in the background. Also a light hint of dark fruits. Smells more like an English Barleywine than a Doppelbock, but it smells good and interesting.
Taste: A nicely sweet mix of bready caramel malts, birch syrup, and toffee. Hints of figs and other dark fruits. A little bit of spice. Nice presence of earthy and citrus hops giving a little more of a bitter bite than you would typically expect from a bock. The syrup blends in nicely. Well balanced.
Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Chewy and somewhat syrupy as expected. No noticeable alcohol heat.
Overall: A pretty interesting and tasty beer. Sweet but well balanced by the hops.
04-07-2012 06:06:50 | More by MattyG85
4.03/5 rDev +11.9%
Bottle purchased from Berkeley Bowl West in Berkeley, CA. Brought back to Australia and shared with @tobeerornottobe and @Laituegonflable.
Pours a lovely clear and bright reddish umber hue, with a mild creamy beige head of fine bubbles. Minimal lacing, but the body is very solid. Body is very solid, and leaves fine carbonation when tilted. Very good looking beer.
Nose is smooth and round, with a bite of slightly medicinal astringency, which cuts through it and prevents it from being unanimously sweet. Sweet banana bread characters, hints of cinnamon bun and a wafty, slightly boozy phenolic note. It's very pleasant.
Taste is, ooh, surprising. I expected that phenolic or biting astringency to be very prominent, but instead, we get a truly sweet, syrupy beer, that doesn't ever get too heavy or overpowering. Mild maple syrup notes, along with a slight piney fragrance (is this birch? I wouldn't know). Feel is clear and smooth, almost glassy as it goes down.
Overall, good stuff: the birch syrup, I think, really comes through and gives an interesting twist, and the base beer is solid. Overall, I'm pretty happy with this.
07-28-2012 02:32:58 | More by lacqueredmouse
4.03/5 rDev +11.9%
Hazy ruby color with a small head which vanishes quickly, leaving no lacing. The aroma has sweet caramel malt, toasted malt, and birch syrup. Smells like this should be quite sweet.
The taste is also sweet, but not as much as the aroma. The taste has caramel malt, birch syrup, and toasted malt. Not very complex, but pretty good.
Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. The alcohol is well disguised. Definitely worth trying.
05-05-2012 03:05:30 | More by hardy008
4/5 rDev +11.1%
Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a red-orange amber with active carbonation. One finger fine light tan head with good retention and lacing. Looks nice. Aroma of sweet malt and a hint of birch beer. Flavor is sweet and caramel malt, toffee with a rather dry birch syrup finish. Low hop levels. Medium bodied with a bit of creaminess. A interesting, but low key, take on a doppelbock. The birch syrup counteracts the malt flavors somewhat, so it seems like it could use a bit more malt flavor as a doppelbock. Still interesting and enjoyable to drink. (Reviewed in 2012, moved here from a duplicate listing in the archive section, since this seems to be the main listing).
04-15-2014 02:54:46 | More by LiquidAmber
Alaskan Birch Bock (Pilot Series) from Alaskan Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 103 ratings.