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Spotted Cow - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Spotted CowSpotted Cow

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,331 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,331
Reviews: 687
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 13.75%
Wants: 161
Gots: 234 | FT: 7
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: 2,331 | Reviews: 687 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of alexgash


3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle.

Mostly clean, clear, golden straw body. Tight, pinkie finger of cotton white head. Good lacing. Nose of sweet cereal malts, honey, bits of fruit (apple), and some spicy, peppery hops. Soft, clean, bread malt flavors up front. Doughy. Touches of grain and honey sweetness arise (and a bit of apple, again). Slightly metallic, mildly spicy hop bitterness picks up near the finish. Cooked veggies in an otherwise clean finish. Moderate body with perfect carbonation levels. Very easy drinking!

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2010 23:03:31 | More by alexgash
Photo of adamette


3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Live review. Poured from the 12 oz. bottle that my friend Wally gave me. Thank you so much Wally. I would not likely have had the chance to enjoy this beer if you had not given it to me. Poured into my Cooperstown Beverage Trail pint glass. No observed "best by" date.

A Straw yellow, translucent body under a meringue like white head that dissipated to a single layer on the top of the beer after about 2 minutes. 3.0

S First impressions of the smell was of an SNPA but then I realized that SNPA has more smell to it. There is some light malt but the smell is very distant. 2.5

T Taste is just like the smell suggests, a very light cream ale. There is mostly a water taste with a bit of sweet malt and a bit of hops. 3.0

M Some carbonation makes it dance across my tongue but otherwise this is a very light beer. That is not really a quality that impresses me but it is true to the style. 2.0

D Well very good but unfortunately the drinkability is good in a way that Bud Light's drinkability is good. It is good but I would probably not attempt to test that theory again. 4.0

Notes: I really wanted to like this beer. I love the whole "Spotted Cow" image and it being from Wisconsin and all but this beer was boring.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2010 04:12:32 | More by adamette
Photo of mikereaser


2.93/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle on 11/16/09

A - Pours a slightly hazy straw yellow with very little foam

S - light grain, sweet malt

T - light malt, corn, grainy

M/D - slightly carbonated, light, crisp feeling, nothing too outstanding, just a nice crisp beer

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2010 16:30:38 | More by mikereaser
Photo of mjwoolley33


3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased from the local store and enjoyed in a tall glass.

Poured a good yellow color with a small amount of head. Very little lacing left over from this beer.

Smelled rather sweet, full of malts.

Taste was quite good, and rather smooth. Seemed like very little carbonation which I found to be more enjoyable.

Very easy to drink and very good as well. New Glarus knows their stuff and I will be back for more.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2010 21:10:30 | More by mjwoolley33
Photo of billyzoom666


3.48/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. It pours golden yellow with some carbonation and a bit of lacing. It has a very fresh fruit smell. It's sweet with just a hint of grain. Nice! Not much here in the way of taste. It has a bit of grain flavor up front. It's just sort of bland. I've always thought of Spotted Cow as the microbrew for people who only drink Miller Lite. It's a gateway micro I guess, which isn't a bad thing. This is a light beer. It has a little bit of tingle across the tongue when ingested. It has a high drinkability. It's totally a beer to kick back with when you don't want to get bloated.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2010 04:05:34 | More by billyzoom666
Photo of tr4nc3d


3.28/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

taken from notes

Hazy golden color with a 1 inch slightly off white head. Little lacing is left behind on the sides of my glass

Smell is pretty much sweet with some malts

Taste is light and slightly sweet

Light bodied with high carbonation. Very easy drinking beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2010 02:43:16 | More by tr4nc3d
Photo of EddieTheTrooper


4.03/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In my opinion, this beer is the only excusable reason to venture up to Wisconsin. Creamy, sweet, and malty, smooth and well-balanced, the spotted cow is the crown jewel of New Glarus' catalogue (though I do like Stone Soup too). I just with this were more readily available in the Chicagoland area.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2009 00:13:18 | More by EddieTheTrooper
Photo of dbtoe


3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass
This beer is every place in Wisco. Everyone except me seems to like this beer. I don't get it. To me there just isn't anything I like about how this beer tastes. I'd rather have a Bud. Looks like a macro smells like one too. Taste to me is just off somehow, grainy. Feel is carbonated and to me is a little harsh. Not drinkable to me I do have one every now and then just to make sure I still don't care for this beer. Have had on tap also.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2009 12:11:13 | More by dbtoe
Photo of Mora2000


3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to slasher007 for this bottle.

Pours a hazy straw color with a small white head. Aroma is malty sweetness with a little citrus and floral mixed in. The beer has a malty flavor with a slight corn flavor. There is also some hop flavor. This is a very tasty beer with a creamy mouthfeel that is easy to drink. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2009 03:50:19 | More by Mora2000
Photo of BadBadger

New York

3.25/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours, from the bottle, a slightly hazy golden color into the pint glass. The head is white and foamy to abut an inch in height. I does not stick around long, even though carbonation bubbles continual rise from the bottom. The smell is faintly fruity, though not at all convincing that there is any thing there for the palate to await in anticipation. The taste is like the smell, average at best. Being a HUGE fan of some of the New Glarus offerings, I was more than a bit disappointed in this beverage. Not an awful beer by anymeans, but not a brew I would go in search of.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2009 22:26:39 | More by BadBadger
Photo of Gtreid


3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at BW3 in Milwaukee. Poured into a shaker pint.

A: Cloudy, straw yellow color. There was about one and a half fingers of slightly off white head that receded to a thin rim and left no lace.

A: Not much going on here. I get a touch of lemon and definitely some pale malt. But the nose is rather subdued.

T: Pale malt, adjuncts, and lemon. There might be a touch of wheat in this brew as well. Just a touch of bitterness in the finish from the low amount of hops.

M: Thin, but good amount of carbonation. Very crisp finish.

D and overall impression: Drinkability is quite high, I could have a few of these. Overall, it is what it is with this brew. This is a good example of a cream ale, the style just doesn't lend it's self to a complex flavor profile. I won't go out of my way to get this beer, but I won't pass it up either. Skal.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2009 14:23:30 | More by Gtreid
Photo of NeutroMan


3.2/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

Pours a pale straw color with a half-finger whitish head that had surprisingly good retention. Mostly clear and sparkling due to high carbonation.

Some faint malt notes on the nose. Also getting some adjuncts (I think corn, but it's hard to tell, there's not much aroma here). Can't detect any hops at all.

Taste is a little bit of malty sweetness with a lot of cereal grain adjunct stuff. Not much going on here, although certainly better than others in the style.

Mouthfeel is light and crisp, and the high carbonation along with the high attenuation gives this one that "thirst quenching" quality. Certainly drinkable, if not the most enjoyable beer out there.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2009 00:26:37 | More by NeutroMan
Photo of FreshmanPour77


3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed 12-15-19
Cold from a bottle to a glass

A - Cloudy dark yellow, 1/2 finger of foam, very little carbonation but is present

S - Smell citrus notes, more hop aroma then malt

T - Light bodied brew, heavy on the malt aftertaste even though I couldn't pick it out as much. Sweet tasting

M/D - A decent brew but not too overpowering except for the malty aftertaste, Pretty light on the tongue. I could indulge myself with more than 1 at a sitting. The brew didn't blow me away but enough to have me come back for more

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2009 18:21:31 | More by FreshmanPour77
Photo of ColForbinBC

New Jersey

3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap, served in a pint

Appears a pale golden color with a milky body. A frothy off white cap bubbled up and receded rather slowly.

Toasted grains and undercooked white bread hit me off the bat with some tropical fruits quickly in tow.

Very dry and crisp. Light bodied with a residual sweetness. Flavor profile is similar to the smell. Toasted grains and doughy yeast with a juicy fruit sweetness.

Very easy to drink, low abv. Easily sessionable, however I am not a huge fan of the flavor profile.

Serving type: on-tap

12-13-2009 20:29:10 | More by ColForbinBC
Photo of Gavage

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a clear golden yellow color with a 2" fluffy head that lasts a while. Some spotty lace develops.

Smell: light malt sweetness and bits of grass are tough to pull from the glass.

Taste: mild grainy malt base with some grass, hint of lemon zest, and a mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Lightly crisp throughout with a relatively clean aftertaste.

Drinkability: this beer is very easy to quaff and has a decent flavor profile. For the style, this one hits the spot.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2009 13:09:01 | More by Gavage
Photo of Jwale73

Rhode Island

3.78/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle courtesy of jrallen34. Served in my SA Sensory Pint. Poured a hazy golden yellow with a half inch, loose, bright white head that eventually settles into broken skim with some swaths of lacing. Nose is virtually non-existent - pretty much adjuncts here. Very light taste - a little fruity, some cereal grains; pretty tasty. Mouthfeel is light-bodied with a pleasant and consistent background carbonation; finish is fairly clean. This is a really drinkable beer - simple flavor profile that is light and sessionable without being dominated by the taste of corn. I was pleasantly surprised by this one. Definitely a good gateway beer for macro drinkers.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2009 21:29:54 | More by Jwale73
Photo of maximum12


3.18/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Anybody else have the 'problem' of people giving them beer? My wife & I have a well-known love of beer, & friends, family, & people we barely know end up bringing us random beers from vacation, dead friend's attics, etc. Sometimes this is a great thing, but mostly it's well-intentioned but useless. But, hey, thanks to a buddy for this bottle. He's from Wisconsin, so he doesn't know any better!

Spotted Cow, beer of choice in questionable 'sconnie bars. Pale, pale yellow, with a nice, camera friendly ring of white. Smell is...beer. Nothing more, nothing less.

I have to say, this is a bit better when one is in enemy territory watching the Vikes rough up the Packers than it is sitting home in front of a computer monitor. Honestly, way too heavy on the cereal for me, with bursts of grassiness almost reminiscent of a decent hefe. Not much to it. It is creamy,

Decent enough beer, & one to look for in dark places far in the north woods of Wisconsin when the banjos start playing.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2009 04:11:40 | More by maximum12
Photo of zebulon


2.93/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

I have had it from a bottle and on tap several times.

Light yellow clear but with some slight clouding.
From the bottle a fast build up of foam which disappears quickly. On tap much less foam which also disappears fast.

Weak aroma, sweetness like honey and malt. No hops.

Light cereal taste, caramel but not sweet, dry but without the bite of hops.

From the bottle lots of fizziness, almost like pop. As the carbonation dies then the lightness is the dominant characteristic. This could be a good beer to intro a Miller fan to craft brewing. Nothing to offend here.

Can drink this all day, but it is uninteresting. Its lightness is its strength, but also its weakness.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2009 19:03:58 | More by zebulon
Photo of champ103


4.08/5  rDev +10%
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.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2009 16:43:30 | More by champ103
Photo of vishneda


3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a mug.

Pours out looking like a very thin beer. The color is a light pale yellow with moderate cloudiness. There is a thick foam head about a half finger thick which quickly fades. No lacing.

The aroma up front is like juicy fruit, even out of the bottle. A very sugary smell. A small hint of herbal hops and maybe a little sourness from the yeast, but this is very light. Pretty pedestrian on the overall scent.

The flavor is not as sweet as the aroma would lead you to believe. Now it does have sweetness, and there really isn't an awful lot of bitterness to balance that out. However, there's just not a great deal of flavor going on here. There is some substance to the overall blend; juicy fruit flavors with hints of yeast and corn and maybe a touch of grassy herbs. However, the overall impression I got was that it was a watery beer.

I'll give it this -- Spotted Cow is drinkable. I can imagine it as a great lawnmower beer. The watery profile and light body help it go down easy, and the mild carbonation makes it feel pretty smooth. If the brewery set out to make an easy going beer with broad appeal I believe it hit the mark with this beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2009 05:40:56 | More by vishneda
Photo of lester619


2.98/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Poured a cloudy, golden color. A few shades darker than miller lite. Big, bubbly white head, a lot of carbonation. Not overly impressive. Smell is somewhat citrus with earthy, yeasty undertones. I've had a quite a few of theese from the bottle, this is the first one on tap. Not much differance. People go ape shit for this stuff around here. I'm not sure why. The taste up front is the same as the smell. Fruity citrus and pear with the yeasty finish. Mouthfeel is very watery and unsatisfying. I find myself waiting for a nice bitter finish to pull this beer together that never comes. Overall this ok drinkable beer. Why people love it so much I don't know. O-VER-RA-TED!

Serving type: on-tap

10-28-2009 16:17:54 | More by lester619
Photo of nickynick


3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Spotted Cow poured a cloudy gold/pale amber with a nice 2 finger sized white head and good lacing. Smell was faint of yeast. Taste was slightly sweet with hints of citrus. Mouthfell was ok, a little thin. Drinkability was very good, easy drinking. Session beer for sure. Overall this is an easy drinking ale, not overly complex, but offers some good flavors. Would buy again.

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2009 16:14:17 | More by nickynick
Photo of wiseguy142

New York

3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy light orange... head is gone almost immediately. Moderate lacing as the time passes and the beer disappears.

Aroma is very light and somewhat tart... almost like green apples but with a little more fresh citrus in there. From the yeast mostly, not an IPA here.

Taste is different than I expected... this beer really could be about anything you name it. A light Oktoberfest, Farmhouse Ale, American Lager, American Wheat beer. Flavor profile is a little fruity.. but I've seen that exact flavor from a S-23 and I highly doubt they used that. Flavor is very dry and muted around the edges with very little residual sweetness. Some nice noble hop character.

Mouthfeel has nice carbonation and perceptibly good water quality but the "middle of the road"-ness of this beer's flavor sort of drops the drinkability of it. It could be PBR or it could be a unique farmhouse ale. I have no idea.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2009 02:13:43 | More by wiseguy142
Photo of davexisxrabid


3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received this beer from LJArsenal. Thanks!

Poured a very clear gold color with lively carbonation and a half inch thick head. Little head retention and lacing.

Aroma of sweet corn and brown sugar; couldn't detect any hop aroma.

Flavor identical to the aroma with an added earthy hop kick making the beer marginally bitter at the end.

Medium bodied but the carbonation makes it feel much lighter. Flavor kind of fleeting from the palate after each drink.

Damn good drinkability actually, pleasantly surprised. Good for drinking a few rounds. Nothing spectacular, but I would try it again.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2009 21:55:59 | More by davexisxrabid
Photo of birchstick


3.03/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - a dark, golden yellow with a very small head...nothing too exciting

S - smells similar to a pilsener - grainy malt and some grassy hops.

T - taste follows the nose. Very grainy in its taste. There is also a subtle hint of hops on the finish; bubblegum was detectable as well.

M - medium-bodied and very smooth as it goes down

D - this was a decent brew. It was easy to drink, however it never really held my attention. I liked some of their other offerings better than this so I don't know if I would go out of my way to get this...

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2009 22:52:33 | More by birchstick
Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 2,331 ratings.