Spotted Cow - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Spotted CowSpotted Cow

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

3,037 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,037
Reviews: 761
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 13.67%
Wants: 229
Gots: 622 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Cream Ale |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,037 | Reviews: 761
Photo of BrewerB
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to greenvilleguitar for the hookup on this beer!

A - Poured into my Old Rasputin nonic pint glass, this brew is a medium golden color with great clarity. Formed a two finger white head that thinned down but retained well. Little lacing left on the glass.

S - Moderate cracker-like graininess with hints of pilsner malt and a touch of corn. Light floral hoppiness. Modest ester profile.

T - Hints of corn along with an upfront ester character. A touch of grape with saltine crackers in the background. Slightly perfumy.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth.

D - An excellent warm-weather brew, light and refreshing but with enough complexity and flavor to entice you in for another sip.

Photo of richwhite420
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Over all, not bad. Light and smooth. You do get a nice IPA taste. No bitter after taste.

Photo of Dukeofearl
4.01/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Brought back by my ex-pat Wisconsin-Michigan buddy who went back "home" to spend a week "fishin' at da cabbin" with his Packer-lovin' family (thanks Jeff!).

Pours kind of slightly cloudy pale yellow, not much to look at. A small head went to nothing in no time- and I do mean nothing. OK, I count 10 bubbles on the side of the glass. Unimpressive.

Aroma, kind of sweet, and yes, milky. A faint beery-hoppiness that is very subtle, and somewhat pleasant. More than anything, the aroma reminds me of a warm, buttered English Muffin. That is pretty cool.

Flavor is malty, sweet, with a nice hop balance. This a nice round, but not full, mouthfeel, and has very very high drinkability, very refreshing. This is not a sipper, this is for gulping down a bunch. Good stuff. Too bad it just isn't nicer to look at! The real problem, though is my girlfriend stealing this from me while I'm trying to review it!

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.01/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a light to medium golden amber with a creamy white two finger head with good retention and lacing. Mild aroma of biscuit malt, grains, hints of citrus. Flavor is very pleasant semi-sweet bready malt, slight grassy hops, lightly buttery wheat, faint citrus. Finishes with mellow sweet malt and wheat. Unexpectedly moderate creamy body with a great mouth feel. I see why locals are so happy about this ale. This is the beer that I think the mass producers *think* they are brewing, simple, mellow and pleasantly drinkable. When I'm this satisfied with a style that I'm not that excited about, the brewers have really excelled. Easily the best cream ale I've ever had. Nicely done. Thanks to Vikki for bringing this back from Wisconsin.

Photo of weatherdog
4.02/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz. bottle poured into a spotted cow pint glass

It pours a pale gold with a little haze. There is a rather unimpressive head that dies a little too quickly.

The smell is relatively absent. There seems to be some crisp cereal type grains (like 6-row) and a faint corn type smell. It is subtle and unoffensive.

Grainy malt dominated the taste but I also detect just a slight grassy hop flavor. It's full bodied and palatable to even the most inexperienced drinker.

The mouthfeel seems just a little slick and oily. The carbonation is mid range which is lower than I would expect coming from the nose and initial taste. The drinkability is phenomenal as I can and have pounded these as fast as BMC all through out college.

Growing up in Wisconsin I know first hand how popular this beer is among almost every resident of the state. This is the best designed gateway beer from BMC to craft that I have ever tasted. I have never met anyone who didn't like it and for this reason it can be found in pretty much every bar in WI, even the most grungiest of biker bars. This beer is practically a state symbol, and even though it isn't the most exciting of the NG offerings, I applaud it's ability to open up the palettes of Miller Lite swilling residents of Wisconsin one pint at a time.

Photo of NuclearDolphin
4.02/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a 16oz Pint Glass. Picked this up while in Wisconsin last weekend after hearing about it through friends

Appearance - Pale Golden Yellow color with a slightly hazy look and some slight carbonation. Head pours around a 1 finger width with an aggressive pour. Lacing is very spotty here.

Smell - Bready-Biscuit/Yeasty scent with a very sweet smell to it. There are some corn notes in here, but in a good way that it makes it even more enjoyable to smell. There's also a pretty solid malty backbone here too.

Taste - Much like the smell, it's combination of yeasts, barley and sweetened malts and corn. Normally I associate corn with being an adjunct ingredient, but here it's openly a part of the beer and it fits very well with the flavor.

Mouthfeel - Carbonation is light as well as the body. This gives the beer a very creamy feel to it, which adds even more drinkability to what is already an easy drinker.

Overall - It's good enough in flavor without being too complex and it's an easy beer to drink that's perfect for any occasion. Put these two together and you have an excellent beer that manages to strike a balance between drinkability and flavor!

Photo of snaxcat
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slightly cloudy pale straw color.
Smells of banana, bready malt, pineapple.
Tastes of straw, bread, banana, sweet fruits. Decent hop bitterness not overpowering.
Smooth, light, refreshing.

Overall: a solid, go to, easy drinking summer beer.

Photo of Wisconsin
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Cloudy and pours a nice head that sticks around for awhile

S - Nothing really stood out to smell wise

T - Smooth and hoppy, along with a bit of carbonation

M - Smooth, malty and some hops

D - I could drink this all day. In fact, I have in Madison before some football games.

Overall, if this beer is available on tap at a local bar take this any day over the Millers and Buds of the world. Just because this is New Glarus' most recognized beer doesn't mean they threw a bunch of crap in it.

Photo of RTrain12
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a cloudy golden yellow with a 3/16" white head that faded away quickly. Lots of carbonation. Yeast sediment is very visable in the glass.

S: Malt and some hops. Not a whole lot of smells goin on here.

T: Smooth cream ale with a crisp clean finish.

M: Thin bodied with light carbonation.

D: Drinkability is very good in this one. Very refreshing and flavorful. This is a well balanced beer!

Photo of elNopalero
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

This pours a cloudy golden color with a light white foam atop it. No hop aroma to speak of, although I get a light orange peel & coriander whisper. The flavor is light, crisp, and has a pleasant sweet wheat note with a clean finish. The Spotted Cow has a crisp, fruity note on the flavor with a light corn malt sweetness. I imagine this could show the BMC macros a thing or two. In fact, I could drink this all day on a summer day.

Photo of Axnjxn
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours an off golden color with a very slight head. Smell has a lot of farmhouse characteristics, yeasty and malty with a lot of lemon zest. The taste is extremely crisp and refreshing. Very apparent malt backbone with a good amount of sweetness as well as lemongrass and citrus. This screams farmhouse ale. Light in body, low in carbonation, but very very drinkable.

Overall just a superbly easy to drink session beer. I could down a whole six pack of this in a hurry.

Photo of corey0212
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Got this one from Monsone in the Brews n' Books BIF!

Pours a hazed, glowing yellow color, bright white head fades fast into a thin ring around the beer, just a few spots of lacing left behind. Smell is sweet lemon, wheat, slight citrusy hop aroma. Taste is tart lemon rind, hearty wheat taste, and just a faint hint of banana in there too. Crisp and refreshing, the tartness and drying effect are somewhat intense, but I like it. Very tasty....if I lived in Wisconsin, I'd be drinking this all the time.

Photo of CMW
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a cloudy yellow with a fluffy white head. Not much in the way of retention but there is some decent lacing. This looks very similar to a wheat beer.

S - Strong yeast, freshly baked bread, and just a touch of sweet spice.

T - The yeast dominates the taste. It provides a very bready note which is quite pleasing. There is a small amount of sweetness that mixes well.

M - Very creamy with light carbonation.

D - In the summer time I would have no problem drinking a few of these. This is a very seasonable beer.

Photo of elmore
4.04/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass, but have had this from the tap multiple times in the past.

Pours a light straw color. Just a shade darker than a lager macrobrew. Creamy 2 finger head with good retention. Medium lacing. Smell is subdued - yeast ,some bready malts, very little hops. Smells similar to a good lager. Smooth, well balanced taste. A great session beer. No hints of alcohol. Light and effervescent dances off of the tongue. Not an overly exciting or extreme beer. A very solid tasty refreshing beer made with quality ingredients and a staple here in the dairy state.

Photo of cfrances33
4.04/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a Three Floyds pint.

Pour: Completely clear, pale orange with two fingers of puffy, soapy white head. Decent lacing. Lots of effervescence throughout the glass.

Smell: Some bright citrus and heavy breadiness. A touch of clove and banana. Lightly floral and grassy, and some yeast.

Taste: Follows the nose with a light citrus and heavy doughiness. Lots of yeast, and some more banana and clove. Finishes doughy and refreshing with citrus.

Mouthfeel: Exceptionally drinkable, and highly carbonated. Light, and slightly watery, but good given the style.

Overall: A tasty, easy drinking beer. Good for what it is, but not exceptionally impressive in any category

Photo of Beric
4.04/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving: Bottle into footed pilsner
Served: 4 July 2014

Appearance: Pours a pale, slightly hazy yellow with a huge two finger creamy white head. Huge carbonation coming up from the bottom of the glass. Looks wonderful.

Smell: Doesn't smell like much. Sweet, sweet malts and a harsher earthy edge. Easily the least inspiring part of this beer.

Taste: Marvelous flavor for a beer that is supposed to be easy-drinking and not complicated. The beer has a sweet malt backbone, lightened by the use of corn but you can tell the corn is actually adding some reasonable amount of flavoring too, in a very good way. The beer has light hopping levels which adds just a pinch of flavor and bitterness on the back end. A very easy drinking beer that makes it wonderful to drink.

Mouthfeel: High carbonation with a light body.

Overall: If I needed a go-to summer beer, lawnmower beer, or party beer and lived in Wisconsin, I would buy nothing else. This beer is perfect for drinking in quantity when you want something lighter for yourself (and guests) and still be craft with decent flavor. A perfect beer for summer. Marvelous.

Photo of larryarms847
4.05/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is light yellow with slight golden hues.

Smells like fresh wheat and the slightest hint of orange.

Taste is rather meh, but slight hints of wheat, malts, and cereal dominate this brew.

Mouthfeel is the only thing above average here. I can see why they call it a cream ale, very silky smooth, lightly carbonated but constantly fizzing head.

Overall an alright brew, would buy again but nothing to write home about.

Photo of y0tommyb
4.05/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Unlike any beer I've had before, very refreshing and delicious. I can't wait to try this again in the middle of summer!

Photo of nomad
4.05/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Like the previous review of this beer says, within the style of Cream Ale the Spotted Cow is very good. Drinking Gennessee Cream in college back east, its hard for me to think of a Cream Ale that could be made with care and artistry. Proof that any style is tasty if done well...

Pours a lightly hazy but glowing soft gold, quite alluring in fact, with a billowing head. Soft, fluffy, bilious - truly cloud-like. Looks like a summer thirst quencher.

Smells fairly moderate in general, but compared to most cream ales it does shine with artisanal touches. Scents of mashed corn, wheat, and pale malts swirl together to form a cornucopia of farm smells. This beer does come from Wisconsin, so...

Tastes of all the grainy aspects of corn and wheat with a great pale malt base. Barely sweet, and incredibly soft and easy on the palate without being bland. Little to no hop bite and possesses a small dash of creaminess toward the finish.

This beer goes down like a report on the various grains possible to a Midwestern brewer. A tasty drinker and a good choice for a flagship brew.

Photo of brstls4drmrs
4.05/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a cloudy, yellow, pine straw color with a 1" froth sponge head. A nice thick ring is left behind.

S - Very nice malt scents with some fruits in there that are pearlike and some hints of corn.

T - A nice creamy malty tone to it. Very interesting and quite delicious. Some banana taste with a little citrus zest in there too.

M - Very mild and exceptionally smooth and creamy. Very easy to drink.

O - A very nice refreshing type of cream ale. One I enjoyed very much and wouldn't mind getting more.

Photo of champ103
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a semi hazy golden/orange color. At first a two finger white head forms, but recedes in a second. Not much lace to speak of.
S: Sweet malt up front with light cereal aromas. A surprisingly substantial grassy and floral hop aroma that is really well balanced with the malt.
T: Again, a nice caramel malty sweetness and cereal flavors. Well balanced with the floral and grassy hops that linger on for a bit.
M/D: A medium body that is very creamy and smooth. Crisp and dry. Very easy and smooth to drink. I have made this a session several times.

This is a great no frills kind of beer. An easy to drink session with lots of flavor. Something I always enjoy when I get a chance to have it, and something I would recommend.

Photo of Yetiman420
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a New Glarus "Drink Indigenous" standard pint glass.

Clear golden color with no head. After reading the description about the sediment, I swirled the bottle and included the sediment for an initial psychadelic haze.

Unique aroma of malt and most likely the lager yeast. Also seems sweet.

Worth mentioning that this one is reviewed outside on the deck on a cloudless 65 degree day after lots of yard work (introduce bias for higher rating for this style).

Flavor has upfront sweetness. A result of the corn? Certainly a unique flavor profile. I continue to suspect the lager yeast and corn are playing a role in this. Nothing too sharp and quite enjoyable.

Even if you're not a fan of this style, this beer is easy to appreciate, is well done, and is ultimately an enjoyable session beer.

Photo of cadenwhitaker
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy yellow with a bright white head. Drink is smooth, grassy, corn, sweet some fruits and spices. I wouldn't say this is very complicated, but there is a certain amount of depth to it.

This is a fantastic gateway beer and is quite drinkable. I don't think an experienced (or even intermediate) BA will find anything new from this beer.

Photo of nortmand
4.08/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours straw yellow and cloudy with some white head.

Smell is grass and bready malt.

Sweet-tart flavor, with some noble hop balance and a bit of malt.

Refreshing and summery, a very drinkable beer, but would become world class with a bit of wheat or rye.

Photo of Greggy
4.08/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A-Pours a light yellow color with a nice 2 finger head that recedes rather quickly into a transparent thin lace. Light clinging lace.

S- Some light toasty grains with a very nice hop balance. A light hint of lemon is also there.

T- A very light malt/hop structure that is in great balance. Some light toasted grains, like the nose is apparent and also the same lemon in the nose.

M- Medium carbonation that has a great body.

D- Drinkability scores excellent here as it is very light, lower alcohol and easily drinkable. I can see this being a great crossover beer for BMC drinkers and a great session brew for beer geeks.

Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 3,037 ratings.