Alaskan Troppelbock (Pilot Series) - Alaskan Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alaskan Troppelbock (Pilot Series)Alaskan Troppelbock (Pilot Series)

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35 Reviews
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Reviews: 35
Hads: 134
Avg: 3.68
pDev: 12.5%
Wants: 5
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: blakelive784 on 03-13-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 35 | Hads: 134
Photo of JohnnyHopps
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Appearance - Ther beer poured an amber hued murky brown color.

Smell - The malt begin the aroma, but there are some thick sweet notes here.

Taste - The oaks and malt come to the front. There is some stickiness that reminds me of maple in the mouthfeel. Even having cellared this one for more than a year, it comes off as a little hot. The aftertaste might be described as spicy alcohol.

Mouthfeel - The malts and their sweetness coat the mouth. It feels like an overly hot doppelbock.

Overall - I am glad I traded for this one. Still, I am not sure I would trade for another.

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Photo of pat61
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Bought this bottle 2 days before I drank it and then learned it was 9 months old.
Nose: has a spiciness unusual for the style, some banana and wet cardboard notes - oxidized.
Very beautiful beer pouring brilliant reddish mahogany with an off-white finely bubbled 1/2" foam cap.
The oxidized flavors are not working well with the imperial doppelbock flavors - getting banana on the palate, a little over sweet.
Full body, medium low carbonation.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.74/5  rDev +1.6%

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Celebrator pokal. Pours a medium to dark bronze amber with a thin off-white head that quickly dissipates to light patches; no lacing. Aroma of sweet caramel malt, toffee, brown sugar, dark dried fruit. Flavor follows aroma, with rich sweet caramel malt, brown sugar, dark dried fruit, particularly figs and dates, a hint of oak. Starting flavor is much like an English barleywine, but finishes a bit sweeter and lighter. Heavy, syrupy body with mild carbonation. A big, sweet ale that leans closer to a sweet barleywine than a doppelbock, although the malt body is similar. The sweetness could be close to cloying, but is balanced nicely by a bit of dry oak and some light grassy hops in the finish. Not exactly to style, but tastes good and made for a nice malty slow sipper If this is made again, I'd try it for a cold winters evening when the sweetness and alcohol would be quite welcome.

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Photo of woemad
3.4/5  rDev -7.6%

22oz bottle purchased at Mid Columbia Wines and Spirits in Kennewick, Washington, for $7.95. According to the label, this was bottled on August 10, 2013. I’ve sat on it for a while now.

Poured a color somewhere between copper and rust, with a creamy-looking tan head and enough chill haze to make me uncertain as to whether I’m seeing lots of tiny bubbles or little chunks of sediment. Considering that it was bottled 372 days ago, I suspect the latter. The head quickly receded to a thin skiff - not surprising considering how strong this beer is – with a sparse, spotty lace being the only other sign of its once-proud foam dome.

Very big banana-like aroma to this, so much so that it effectively crowds out other aspects, except for an ominous booziness.

Very sweet and malty, almost cloyingly so. There was quite a bit of alcohol heat as well. As it warms, this increases and approaches the point of being undrinkable.

This was a thick-bodied beer. The mouthfeel was coating and syrupy.

Not sure what a Doppelbock Ale is, but I’d prefer to try one in a 12oz bottle, if this beer was a representative of an actual style. As it is, I’m glad to have tried it but won’t feel the need to do so again. Way too sweet and boozy, and too expensive for its limited drinkability.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.15/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From: France 44, Minneapolis, MN
Date: Bottled 2013-08-10
Glass: Founders snifter

Doppelbock ale, eh? I suppose this isn't meant to be very "true to style," considering the rather high ethanol content and the oak aging. Fairly sweet and malt-one-dimensional, with the oak and ethanol trying to mask this a bit, but not really succeeding. A bit of honest lagering would have done this beer well, but it's rather rough as it is now. Not a bad beer, but nothing particularly exceptional or good-tasting that I'd want to have again. I'd choose any German -ator over this, any day.

Pours a 1cm tall head of beige-colored bubbles, with retention of less than thirty seconds, the foam fading to a thin ring around the perimeter of the glass. Lacing is minimal, a few dots and lines cling to the walls of the glass. Beer is a dark amber brown color, with light bringing out moderately dark copper-orange-brown hues. Carbonation visible through the hazy (50-60% opacity) body, high in number and activity.

Aroma of moderate-dark caramel-like sweetness with notable oak, dried figs and dates, some cherry-like ester (ethanol?), and buttery diacetyl becoming particularly evident as the beer warms.

Overall flavor is of a notably oak-aged, heavily caramel-like sweetness colored by ethanol and dried fig and date esters. Front of palate tastes brown sugar and moderately dark caramel-like sweetness, oak, slightly spicy ethanol, and mild cherry, dried fig and date-like esters. Mid-palate of moderate-dark caramel malt sweetness, dried cherries, dates and figs, moderate ethanol, oak, and a bit of buttery diacetyl. Back of palate tastes moderate-dark caramel like sweetness, heavy oak, moderate ethanol, and modest diacetyl. Aftertaste of heavy oak, lingering ethanol, and much in-the-background caramel-like sugar sweetness.

Beer is medium-bodied with medium-low carbonation, leading to a lightly foamy (3/5) and otherwise smooth (2/5) mouthfeel that's suitable for the style, but somehow still manages to let the beer feel a bit watery around the edges. Ethanol felt as a moderate burn on the back of the palate and as mild warmth in the nostrils; not a poor showing for 10.5% ABV. Closes very dry, with heavy stickiness lingering on the palate.

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Photo of Bung
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22oz. Dark blood red/brown pour. Half finger of white head. Bubbles permeate throughout.

Aroma, Sweet toffee like malt, caramel and vanilla covered red fruits. Some white grape.

Taste, toasted brown sugar and malt. Some oaky vanilla. The fruit is more cherry like here. A little alcohol warmth.

Medium body, good carbonation level. Drinks well, though just a tad medicinal finishing.
Starts out strong, but fades a little from there. Still not bad for the price.

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Photo of cbutova
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Random shelf grab a month ago somewhere between Orange and Palm Springs, CA. Sampled about three weeks ago with Chico1985 and friends. Reviewed from notes.

A- Red bodied with a one finger off white head. Falls fast to a tiny ring, pretty much nothing after a while and lace is hard to come by.

S- Some Amber candi sugar and spiced dried fruits. Apples and red fruits are quite big, some estery hints and slight fresh oak hints.

T- Pretty much spicy yeast leading the flavor with huge spiced raisins, some cherry, dates and good brown sugar toasted malts. Hints of caramel, figs, oak chips are apparent but not overpowering as they can be. Just huge spicy dark fruits.

MF- Foamy and sweet body with higher end carbonation. Fairly silky and some bitter sweetness on the palate in the finish. Warming from the alcohol a bit.

Big spices and dark dried fruits with some malts and sweetness, oak adds some complexity.

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Photo of roblowther
3.77/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22 oz bomber poured into a Ayinger Celebrator glass. The beer is a dark caramel brown with minimal head. It smells of toffee, wood, and overall winter goodness. Is that a smell? I'm sure it is. The taste follows suit from the smell, caramel, toffee, and wood. The mouthfeel is slightly carbonated, slightly slick, and overall light. I like this one. Nothing elaborate, but it delivers as it advertises. If only those x-ray specs from the back of that magazine could claim as much...

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Photo of ZAP
4.38/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A different but delicious take on what seems more like an eisbock to me.

The aroma is, and goey caramel and dark fruits (black cherries, plums)....nougat and vanilla also evident from the oak aging I am guessing.

The flavor moves more towards a toasty maltiness which combines well with the oak aging...still some dark fruitiness along with caramel/nougat/vanilla

I thought it would drink a little bigger than it is....body is perhaps a bit light for the ABV and feel to this beer....there is a light dry finish...just a bit of a finishing snap that was a bit unexpected but seems to add a needed finishing touch..

Overall I absolutely love the aroma of this beer...the rest is pretty good as well....not your classic doppel but very tasty for what it is...

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Photo of superspak
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, best before 8/10/2013. Pours slightly hazy ruby red color with a 2 finger dense light khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with some moderate streaming carbonation. Aromas of big raisin, fig, pear, caramel, molasses, toast, biscuit, brown bread, brown sugar, pepper, clove, oak, light vanilla, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Nice aromas with solid balance and complexity of malt, oak, and yeast ester notes; with good strength. Taste of big raisin, prune, fig, pear, caramel, molasses, toast, toffee, chocolate, brown bread, brown sugar, vanilla, oak, pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of dark fruits, caramel, molasses, toast, toffee, chocolate, brown bread, brown sugar, vanilla, oak, light pepper, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity, robustness, and balance of dark malt, oak, and yeast ester flavors; with a great malt/fruitiness balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and full bodied; with a very creamy, slick, and slightly syrupy mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is extremely well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice doppelbock style. All around good balance, complexity, and robustness of dark malt and fruity yeast ester flavors with moderate oak presence; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of chilidog
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was my first pilot, the big10+ abv really caught my eye.

Poured a dark ruby, tan head that faded to not even a film. No lace to be had.

Aroma of dark fruit, sweet malty booze.

Taste is roasted malts, burnt brown sugar, prune, toffee, and wood.

Mouth was a bit thin, carbonation on the flat side.

Overall, worth a buzz try, an ok Dopple, I will continue to seek the pilot series.

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Photo of artdob
3.46/5  rDev -6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This serving didn't begin with a good impression. Very small head gone before you could count to twenty. What is left is a dark tea colored brew.

Nose is malty, some roastiness and light fruit. Taste is sweet and somewhat unique. I'm getting sherry barrel, vanilla, light coffee, and cherries. Roastiness hits after the taste buds settle a bit.

Mouthfeel is mildlycarbonated and leans toward the chewy side.

I chilled this one more than I usually do with my beers. Bet it would be even better closer to cellar temperature. A good after dinner drink in lieu of cheesecake or a chocolate sundae. Watch out cause those other options will kill ya, you know. Beer is better.

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Photo of CurtFromHershey
3.93/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber with fluffy beige head which quickly calms into a persistent cap. Great clarity for a beer that has seen oak. A little lighter in color than I typically look for in a doppel, but otherwise very attractive

Smell is heavy on oak and sweet raisiny malts. Hints of caramel and alcohol. I think the oak detracts alittle bit from this beers potential

Like the nose, the taste is big on oak. Alcohol and fig then take over. Finishes with a decent hit of piney hops. Well played, Alaskan. I rather enjoyed that surprise.

Thick and chewy without being overly sticky. Definite alcohol warming presence. Quite nice

Overall a great doppelbock which I think could hang with the big dogs without the prominence of the oak.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.21/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep brownish amber with a moderate amount of bubbles. About two fingers of off white head that fade into a thin patchy layer. Leaves a decent amount of lacing on the glass.

Smell: A rich and toasty aroma with sweet hints of caramel and dark fruit. Toasted malts upfront with hints of sweet caramel, toffee, biscuit, yeast, and nuts along with some roasty hints of chocolate. Hints of oak and vanilla. Brown sugar sweetness. Big hints of dark fruit with some fig, dates, raisin, and prune. Slight hint of apple and banana as well. Subtle earthy hop presence in the background. A scent of booze as well. Very good full aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a big sweet toasty malt driven taste with lots of biscuity caramel and dark fruit. Toasted malts with a taste of biscuit, sweet caramel, toffee, nuts, yeast, toasted bread, and some roast chocolate notes. Notes of vanilla, oak, and sweetness from some brown sugar. Big presence of dark fruit with notes of figs, dates, prune, and raisin. Slight taste of dried apple and banana fruit. Slight earthy hop backing and alcohol in the taste. Very rich and good.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Rich, creamy, and sweet. Some alcohol heat is felt.

Overall: A very solid take on a Doppelbock. Good dark biscuit and caramel flavor with some solid dark fruit undertones.

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Photo of daledeee
3.54/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 22 oz bottle poured a very dark brown, almost opaque with an off white head that was large but went away pretty soon.

Nose is sweet, caramel.

Taste is malty, caramel, sweet, spicy and hints of licorice. That all sounds good but I found it to be rather medicinal overall. Mouth feel is about right.

I will stick with Aventinus and Celebrator.

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Photo of GilGarp
4.13/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bomber served cold into a goblet.

Troppelbock has a beautiful amber red color with good clarity but almost no head. It looks like an old ale or something similarly strong and low in carbonation.

Aroma is sweet like candied cherries and grapes. Very sweet and with a hint of vanilla.

Flavor is balanced but leaning towards sweet with the same pit fruits from the aroma. It doesn't taste oxidized but I'm really surprised this is fresh off the shelf. It is very mellow and mild for a new beer over 10% ABV.

Mouthfeel is medium-plus bodied and perfectly carbonated for the style.

Overall this is a really impressive beer. It's a fresh beer that drinks like something that's been sitting in the cellar for years.

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Photo of beertunes
2.98/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Stupid 22oz bottle format. Poured into straight pint glass. Poured an attractive clean, clear copper-amber color with 1/2 inch of slightly rocky, tan head that had moderate retention and and light lacing.

The aroma was very sweet, with some malt showing through, and a strong alcohol scent. A bit sweeter smelling than typical. The sweet malt was strong on the tongue, but not as strong as the the very hot alcohol taste that burned all across the tongue. The burn really lingered at the back of the tongue/top of the throat.

The body was nicely full, but it was so sticky I had to ding it a bit. Drinkability suffered from all the alcohol heat, it was kind of a chore to finish the whole bottle. Overall, an average-ish example of the style. Maybe buy a bottle and put away to see if some time will soften out the heat.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A : Pours a deep amberish color with some brownish and purple highlights. A big khaki, off white cap sits atop of this. After a few sips a good dose of lacing remains.

S: Loads of oak, candy, dark fruits and a pronounced booze sting.

T: Holy sugary sweetness. Candy covered dark fruits and vanilla go head to head. A big breadiness for malt base, toasted notes with a kick in the pants of booze. The finish is more of the same with a lingering booziness, candy and cloying oak notes with just hint of vanilla.

M: Full bodied all the way. Cloying, sticky sweet, plenty of heat. Syrupy to a degree. Loads of flavor but man is this beer a hot mess on the mouthfeel department

O: Looks good, tastes good, smells good but the mouthfeel was just to hot, sweet and sticky for me.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On-tap at Beachwood I.

A: Pours a red brown with a small off-white head, creamy soapy look.

S: Heavy toffee and malt, dark syrup, smell is a little cloying.

T: Big residual sugar flavour but surprisingly enough with really no cloying flavour at all. Lots of sweet cola and maple syrup with a light undercurrent of oak.

M: Full-bodied, soft carbonation, crisp at the finish to alleviate the sometimes overt sweetness

O: Reminds me a lot of their Birch Bock, just a good well made effort.

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Photo of ElCommodoro
4.93/5  rDev +34%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was better than I could have imagined. A perfect blend of malty lagering, earthy tones, roasted malt, sweetness, and oaky whiskey feel. It's like you poured a wee bit of an amazing scotch whiskey into a ridiculously good doppelbock. Except it's better than that because that could never taste as good as something brewed and aged to taste that way. The smoothness, complexity, and balance are unparalleled in any doppelbock I have ever tried. Get some of this!

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Photo of kojevergas
3.08/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

651ml brown glass bottle with branded standard pry-off pressure cap acquired at Sunset Beer Co. and served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average; I like Alaskan's work but I've never had a double or triple bock that blew me away. Pilot series. 10.5% ABV confirmed.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a one finger head of light khaki colour. Thin and devoid of cream. Retention is average: about 1-2 minutes - which is acceptable given the high ABV. Body colour is a glowing understated ruby-amber. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Light even lacing as the head recedes.

Overall, it looks pretty good for the style. Not unique or special, but there are no overt flaws.

Sm: Toffee, oak, caramel. Some kind of syrup - perhaps birch. Cream. Residual sugars. Brown malts. Some amber malt. A nice aroma, but surprisingly weak for a doppel/troppel bock. Pleasant, though I'd like more oak character from it. Could be more evocative. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

T: It's got a nice malty backbone comprised of brown malts, caramalts, and toffee. Hopping feels English in character; I'd guess Fuggles? No yeast character comes through. I do get some alcohol; it's a bit warm though I wouldn't call it boozy. Plentiful residual sugars. Malting is definitely to style. Well balanced but shockingly simple. Some maple and/or birch syrup. I'm not getting as much oak character as I'd like; it's quite timid. Oak doesn't feel naturally integrated; it's just a light undertone. Lacks a full body.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Nicely thick. Good carbonation. Lacking body. Suits the flavour profile okay; it certainly doesn't feel custom-tailored to it. Unrefreshing. Not oily or gushing.

Dr: Drinkable but disappointing. I hoped for better from Alaskan, but this just isn't up there with the best bocks I've had. ABV does come through noticeably. I wouldn't get it again. The light oak character is a highlight; I wish there was more of it.


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Photo of JackieTH
3.86/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Coppery with a small but persistent head. Nice opening of toasted cereal, maple syrup, hint of bananas, malt and oak on the nose. Taste similarly. Lightly toasted cereal, and pronounced sweetness. Like toasted mini wheats with banana bread and a hint of maple syrup flavor. There is also something a bit off on the finish, unexpected sourness-bitterness, like sour grapes. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with mild carbonation and a medium heavy body. Overall this has many good elements, the sweetness is there but not overdone..but with one or two unexpected distractions, such as the late blast of bitterness, it could use a bit more tuning.

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Photo of hardy008
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark copper color with a one finger beige head, which settles down to a 1/4 inch disc of foam, and leaves spotty lacing. the aroma has toasted malt, and a lot of caramel malt, and pecans.

Very sweet flavor, with caramel and toasted malt, pecans, oak, and some dark fruit. There is some hop bitterness at the end, but it is overpowered by the sweetness of this beer. There is no alcohol taste at all, which is surprising for a beer with 10.50 % abv.

Full boded with low carbonation. Very smooth and easy to drink. While this beer is sweet tasting, it doesn't go over the top with the sweetness, which I appreciate. I'm glad I had a chance to try this.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I really thought this one was excellent, as the whole pilot series is really. on tap at the new renegade publik house on university. the pour is rich dark copper in color, glowing in my goblet, with an excellently tall off white head of big airy bubbles and leaving beautiful lacing as it sips. the nose is sweet like birch syrup, very similar to that beer in fact, but balanced by piercing alcohol strength and a gentle woody center. I love the flavor, decadent german malts break the ice, while dried apple notes swirl around with the intense alcohol. this to me is an excellent early spring beer, probably a little past its best month for drinking, but still close to right on in mid may. the sweetness doesn't stay through the finish, but the alcohol does. this becomes a bit of a firebreather as it warms. the subtle complexities of this are what make it stick, its unlike any bock ive ever had, and is probably one of, if not the single best. its a huge malt forward beer that isn't at all filling. mellow carbonation but its enough for this barleywine sized bock. the body is quite full, and the alcohol is sharp. I had no problem with a 10oz. pour of this, and could have pleasurably had about three of them. a really lovely spring offering from Alaskan, not to be missed for anyone waiting to be a bock convert.

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Photo of mothman
3.91/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very little head. Color is a caramel brown.

Flavor profile is of oak, vanilla, toffee, caramel, plums, raisins, and other dark fruits. Some molasses. Rich. Very malty no hops.

Mouthfeel: Warming and smooth. Medium to full bodied. Ends dry.

Overall, I really enjoyed this beer. It had a lot of flavors that I liked and the oak really put this beer over the top for me. It was very drinkable. I was surprised to see the low reviews.

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Alaskan Troppelbock (Pilot Series) from Alaskan Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 35 ratings.