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Spotted Cow - New Glarus Brewing Company

Spotted CowSpotted Cow

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,018 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2018
Reviews: 677
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 14.05%

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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,018 | Reviews: 677 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of tyleeis


4.53/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance is light golden but hazy, one finger head....looks amazing!

Smell isnt strong, lemony and slightly bready....

Tastes great! Sweet nice banana aftertaste and malty.

Smooth mouthfeel, med carbonation.

Could drink this beer all day all year around but in the summer is the best. A must have for the fridge.

Serving type: on-tap

07-12-2012 01:53:48 | More by tyleeis
Photo of 44ouncer


4.2/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A perfect example that a beer doesn't have to be dark brown, brewed with pumpkin seeds (or some other gimmick) or hopped to the point of being undrinkable to be good.

Pours like a lager -- although with a slighty cloudy appearance. Golden yellow with a bright white head. Nice clean smell with a nice hint of hops. Wonderful taste. Light, bright and clean -- not overly hopped -- with a nice citrus edge to it. Terrific creamy mouth feel. A wonderful product.

Serving type: on-tap

05-06-2012 04:38:42 | More by 44ouncer
Photo of Auracom


3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

When in Madison, do as Madisonians do. On-tap at Monty's Blue Plate Diner. 16 oz. poured in a pint glass on May 3rd, 2012.

A - Hazy-golden pilsner coloring. One-finger of a soapy, white head reduces down pretty quickly. Very little retention but stirs up pretty good lacing throughout.

S - Touches of light, summer fruit and cracked pepper. Herbaceous with a clean malt bill.

T - Straightforward, no-frills farmhouse here. Less spice and more malt than the aroma. Bready rear-palate and short finish.

M - Light body, good carbonation, and a faintly-dry finish.

D - Why make things complicated? This is close to an ideal session Saison-esque brew. It's really what I wish adjunct brews could be.

Serving type: on-tap

05-05-2012 02:55:37 | More by Auracom
Photo of williamjbauer

West Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap in a pint glass at the brewery on 4/29/12

A - Slightly hazy straw yellow with 1.5 finger foamy white head with moderate retention and moderate lacing.

S - Low pungency of pale malts, a touch of citrus.

T - Pale malts, grain, oats, corn with a bit of floral hops.

M - Light body, moderate carbonation, wet finish.

O - Drinkable, crisp, but lacks complexity.

Serving type: on-tap

05-03-2012 01:37:32 | More by williamjbauer
Photo of sleuthdog


2.85/5  rDev -23%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap poured into pint glass

A: When this was brought to my table there was almost no evidence of a head but I did see a very slight white ring. The color is of a nice light golden hue. The lacing is minimal to none.

S: I have nothing to say here. I smelled absolutely nothing! I couldn't believe it so I jammed my nose way down in the glass numerous times but came up empty each and every time! It was served ice cold so maybe this is the reason?

T: Bready, and somewhat sweet and malty. There is a definite corn taste to this one and slight hop presence on the back end. Very smooth and mellow taste.

M: Carbonation is present but not much and this adds to the creamy mouthfeel. This is very smooth and creamy.

O: A good interpretation of the style and very easy to drink. I could easily drink a few of these or more in a sitting. Not one that will have you thinking about it too much in terms of trying to pick out taste and aromas, but nothing wrong with it either. Just a nice easy drinking cream ale.

Serving type: on-tap

04-13-2012 01:51:10 | More by sleuthdog
Photo of Lemke10


4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on-tap at Wedges in Janesville, Wisconsin in Early 2012. It was a 12oz glass for $3.

This fan favorite from Wisconsin pours a golden amber color with a pillowy white head. Has a very grassy, grainy scent. Taste is smooth and mellow as you take in the wheat flavors. Taste is clean and refreshing. Go anywhere in southern Wisconsin and I’m sure you’ll be able to find it.

Serving type: on-tap

02-20-2012 00:05:31 | More by Lemke10
Photo of willseph


2.53/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a very light, transparent, golden color with a healthy finger of head that only stuck around long enough for a couple sips. Lots of bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass. Not much of a nose, just a faint smell of lemon, wet wood, and other unidentifiable grains.

First taste is medium spiciness and vanilla but fades to a sweet grain taste as you drink it. Quite unremarkable, just a boring beer to me. It's a bit fizzy, burns the throat a touch on the way down. Overall, a passable beer but nothing to go out of your way for.

Serving type: on-tap

12-14-2011 02:48:20 | More by willseph
Photo of Dustysnail


4.8/5  rDev +29.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As a Wisconsinite, this is a beer that you see in many taverns and restaurants. I've had this in bottles, in a keg, and on tap at many different places.

I must say, while it isn't my favorite beer, it is up on the list.

The finish is one of a wheat style ale, but drinks like a lager. While you have the taste, the texture and density of a thicker beer, the beer itself is light, but with a full body.

I highly recommend picking one of these up if you stop in Wisconsin.

Serving type: on-tap

10-26-2011 03:00:56 | More by Dustysnail
Photo of brew3crew


2.7/5  rDev -27%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

On tap at uncle mikes for my first venture into wisconsin.

A-hazy yellow with a little bit of head that sticks around

s-pale malt and grain is all I get

t- follows the nose. Not really a whole lot here. Kind of upset I ordered it

m- light bodied and smooth. Only thing that's nice

o-decent lawnmower beer. That's about it

Serving type: on-tap

08-09-2011 00:02:22 | More by brew3crew
Photo of TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Notes from 7/27/11. On tap in Milwaukee

A - Poured a cloudy yellow colour. Hazy. One finger of white head.

S - Light citrus notes with bready malts.

T - Bready malts with a slight sweetness. Light citrus notes in the background.

M - Light body; light carbonation.

Serving type: on-tap

08-02-2011 13:52:01 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of RoamingGnome


3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Took the family out for dinner the other weekend and jotted these notes down on the kiddie placemat. My options were mostly mass produced swill so New Glarus was a no brainer. Spotted Cow on tap. I could go 16 oz or 23 oz per the waitress, once again a no brainer.

A) Looks tasty, kind of thick looking. A hazy yellow, with a good inch of white head that faded pretty quick, nice lacing in the pilsner style glass.

S) No wow factor here. I'd say fresh bread, little bit of fruit scent.

T) Very creamy... Made me think of Sleeman's Cream Ale. I haven't had one of those Canadian beers in way too long. Good after taste is a plus.

M) I like it. This stuff just sticks right to my grill.

O) I really enjoy this brew, but how this is New Glarus's best seller is a mystery to me. They have many offerings that I routinely purchase in favor of it.

Serving type: on-tap

05-21-2011 02:28:28 | More by RoamingGnome
Photo of chicagoabbot


3.4/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Emma's Bar in River Falls, WI.

I'm surprised that this is labeled as a 'cream beer'. Interesting. I've had this beer as much as any in my life, drinking it all through college in Madison. I'll do a bottle review soon too. I'm surprised that it's rated so low, but maybe I'm just partial to it from long habit, although they don't distribute in Chicago so I barely drink it anymore except when I'm up north. I do like it slightly more out of the bottle--it's cloudier.

Pours a bright pale golden cloudy straw body with a head that attenuates well. I've always liked the way this beer looks.

Not as much yeast character on-tap as out of the bottle, but still decent. Some malt sharpness. Not that hoppy at all, which is fine for the style.

Overall, I highly recommend this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-27-2011 17:43:51 | More by chicagoabbot
Photo of kgotcher


3.93/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Med to low carbonation, very pale and opaque. Pretty light aroma. Taste is smooth and mellow vey very drinkable. Drinks more like a lager. Med body with easy finish.

Frankly not much depth but the taste is clean and good and it is extremly drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2011 22:59:19 | More by kgotcher
Photo of smm


3.13/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the bar in the Telemark Lodge, Cable, WI.

A- Straw yellow cloudy pour with a thin lacy white head.

S- Corny and sweet.

T- Sweet and a bit malty. Notes of whole grains.

M- Medium body and high carbonation. Creamy on the tongue.

D- Low alcohol, nice feel to it. A nice upgrade from an average adjunct... Price might hold it back though.

Serving type: on-tap

02-26-2011 00:24:32 | More by smm
Photo of chickenflea


2.93/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tried this in on tap in the airport on my way out of Wisconsin. I had heard it was good, so I anticipated a treat.

Poured a light straw color with a medium white head. Medium cloudiness. Looked like a wheat beer without the massive head.

Not much aroma, but what there was smelled of light crackers, wetted grains, and wheat-like malt. Herbal and grassy hops play lightly in the background. Lightly sulfury.

Flavors of corn, raw barley, and grain husk round out in a lager-like way. A bit more rich, the beer has a briney, yeasty taste that keeps the grassy hops in check. Finishes with that unmistakable corn taste.

Creamy, the beer holds onto its weight until the very last second when the subtle hop bitterness ushers in a mild crisp and dry finish.

It was OK, but I wouldn't call it a great beer by any stretch. It was refreshing, but I finished it unsatisfied. It drank more like a lager than an ale.

Serving type: on-tap

01-16-2011 18:58:34 | More by chickenflea
Photo of SkunkWorks

New York

3/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Review from notes.

Had on tap while on a layover in Wisconsin. Had on tap and served in a pint glass. This is my first cream ale so take this review with a grain of salt.

Look: looks pale straw colored, a bit of sediment but no haze, a thin eggshell head forms and leaves an incredibly small amount of lacing.

Smell: smells malty, with a bit of honey, a bit of caramel, but nothing in the way of hops and its certainly not complex.

Taste: tastes like a step up from an American Adjunct Lager, truthfully. A bit of maltiness but otherwise, nothing really here.

Feel: thin, carbonated thoroughly, a bit crisp without much bitterness.

Drink: obviously, this is meant to be sessionable and it lives up to that aim. I had quite a few of these and it could be a good substitute for BMC if you are out getting your drink on.

Overall, not really impressed. Perhaps its the style and this seems like a good representative of the style but there's not much flavor here. This is my first New Glarus beer and given the hype around the brewery, I was excited when I saw it on tap and disappointed when I got this in my pint glass. I dunno if this is just not a great beer by them or what, but this doesn't give me much hope for New Glarus.


Serving type: on-tap

01-13-2011 03:29:04 | More by SkunkWorks
Photo of donkeyrunner


3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At the Milwaukee airport. Hazy, dull yellow with a large white custard head. Craggy lace aplenty despite so-so retention.

Aroma is light grains and a nifty spice of some sort. Upon further review I found that nifty spice to be corn. I'll buy corn. Taste is similarly led by light grains and corn chip with some lemon zest. Doughy drying in back gives this beer a saison-like refreshing quality albeit less dry and more lawn mower.

For what it's worth, one of the best cream ale I've had. That said I'm not a cream ale fan.

Serving type: on-tap

01-09-2011 01:45:25 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of richkrull


4.78/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I absolutely love this beer. It has a great taste, a great name and it's brewed in Wisconsin. Just doesn't get much better than that.

Spotted Cow has a nice cloudy golden color with a bit of a citrus smell/taste. It's a really easy to drink beer, even in large volume.

I highly recommend this beer to everyone.

Serving type: on-tap

01-02-2011 21:34:24 | More by richkrull
Photo of BeerLover99


3.45/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: straw yellow hazing body, very little head.

S: sweet slight malt, hint of citrus and hops...very faint.

T: slight sweet, malt, and hops. goes down smooth.

M: decent carbonation, light-to-med body, slight bitter aftertaste.

D: Great summer beer and session beer. Not the best offering at New Glarus, but I have started many new beer drinkers with this solid brew.

Serving type: on-tap

12-07-2010 21:30:05 | More by BeerLover99
Photo of Thorpe429


3.5/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours yellow with a slight white head. The nose is pretty plain with some really light malt and some slight fruits. Very mild hops. The taste is just a tad bit of lightly-sweetened malt and really not much else. Body is light and somewhat creamy with good carbonation. Drinks quite well and I can see how it sells so much.

Serving type: on-tap

10-29-2010 02:49:07 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of NorthwoodsPro


4.5/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I chose this beer after tasting 3 different on-tap brews at Piggy's restaurant in La Crosse, Wisconsin. It was so refreshing and went well with a Norwegian salmon dinner. The next night, at a different restaurant, had it with a chicken dinner.

Excellent straw color with a crisp and clean finish.

Not much of a head. But I definitely want more of this beer!

Serving type: on-tap

10-20-2010 07:50:49 | More by NorthwoodsPro
Photo of TMoney2591


3.63/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a shaker pint glass at Twelve Pines.

When in northern Wisconsin, drink as the locals do. Enter: New Glarus. This offering pours a clear pale straw topped by about a half-finger of white micro-foam. The nose comprises green apple, peach, mandarin orange, corn, and a slight yeasty character. The taste holds notes of red apple, orange zest, lemonade, hard water, and corn syrup. Honestly, I didn't see so much fruit being involved here. The body is light, with an active carbonation and a crisp, dry finish. Overall, a nice li'l brew, nothing all too special, but definitely a highly drinkable bit o' Wisconsin-y goodness.

Serving type: on-tap

09-20-2010 05:12:30 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of Vdubb86


3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a pint glass

Got this on tap at Twelve Pines in Eagle River, WI
This was part of Northwoods Man Weekend.

This brew pours a nice light golden color with a little head, but not much at all. The smell is a bit corn syrupy, but after that is through there is a nice orange zest with the malts as well as what we best described as an apricot aroma to finish off the nose. The taste is much richer than the color would let you on to believe. There is no bitterness and the beer is epically smooth. A rather solid and highly drinkable beer to enjoy in Wisconsin.

Serving type: on-tap

09-20-2010 03:06:14 | More by Vdubb86
Photo of samie85


3.13/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Uncle Mike's Hwy. Pub in Kenosha; reviewed from notes, originally 6/6/10.

A-Pours a golden color with a white head. Leaves some light lacing.

S-Corn and grain with some very light citrus hops.

T-Follows the nose with corn and grain, finishes dry and a little bitter.

M-Thin bodied with med. carbonation, pretty smooth and coats the mouth.

D-This is a pretty decent beer, and miles better than Totally Naked, but it's ultimately one of New Glarus's weaker offerings. It's really easy drinking and I understand why they make it... it sells really well and allows them to make their better beers.

Serving type: on-tap

06-19-2010 15:25:54 | More by samie85
Photo of scottchesterhall


4.47/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On the pour, it seemed a little dark for a farmhouse ale, but nice lacing and pleasant appearance.

Smell was mild, slight fruit on the nose, but not a lot there.

Taste was nice, well-balanced. Some wheat, nice solid malt, with gentle fruit and very understated balancing hops.

Mouthfeel was nice: pretty viscous and full.

Very drinkable beer...easy to have a few of these and they seemed to get better over time.

Nice beer.

Serving type: on-tap

03-25-2010 04:19:02 | More by scottchesterhall
Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 2,018 ratings.