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Spotted Cow | New Glarus Brewing Company

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Spotted CowSpotted Cow

Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States | website

Style: Cream Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2002

User Reviews
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Reviews: 784 | Ratings: 3,337
Photo of BMoney575
3.87/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on 9-28-08

Pours a cloudy pale yellow, with a quickly fading head and zero lacing.

Smell is clean, slightly yeasty, with a super subtle hop character. Very unoffensive, for being so light.

Taste is light and slightly fruity, with a very pleasant easy bitterness on the finish. The malt is almost invisible, and is not adjunct in a any way.

Mouthfeel is good, just the perfect amount of carbonation.

Drinkability is astoundingly good, you could pound these all day.

Overall, almost like a lager with a excellent creamy hop edge. A shame we can't get it here in MI.

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Photo of scottg
3.55/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a pint glass at the Tundra Lodge in Green Bay, WI.

Pours a straw yellow color with a one finger white head that dissipates quickly with no lacing. Light malt, grass and sweet fruit aromas. Toasted malt flavor mixes with lemon hops with a slight biscuit flavor. Medium body, medium carbonation, mouth cleansing with a nice hop finish, easy drinking.

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Photo of TenEighty
4.75/5  rDev +30.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden with a slight copper hue, somewhat cloudy, nice head with good retention and decent lacing.

S: Malty aroma, with almost an apple smell.

T: Wow, this beer continues to impress me and the taste is nothing short of exceptional. I find that this trait is quite typical of any New Glarus Beer, there is a slight bitterness that makes itself present, and it disappears with the beer, exceptional.

M: This is easily the best cream ale to graze my palate.

D: I could easily have another one of these, I just might now that I think of it.

Yet another example of New Glarus greatness, I would recommend this beer to anyone.

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Photo of ckeegan04
4.11/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Clear dark golden yellow color with thick wite head. Slowly recedes leaving a thin white layer of foam. Excellent lacing.

S - Sweet pale malt aroma, biscuity. Also a hint of some spicy hoppiness in the background.

T - Light, almost fruity sweetness up front. A biscuity flavor begins to sneak in before a quick spicy hop bite comes through. Nice hop presence for a cream ale. Finishes clean and sweet.

M/D - Light to medium bodied, very crisp and well carbonated. This would make a great session beer.

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Photo of theboozecruise
3.45/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank straight from a 12 oz. bottle

Hard to say too much about the appearance... appeared to be a golden ale hue. The beer has a nice but not overpowering aroma, and the taste follows through on that hint. There is a tinge of citrus but it goes down smooth.

A solid choice to spend an afternoon relaxing drinking some beer, but nothing that blows you away.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.72/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle; the label shows a Holstein cow and the state of Wisconsin.

Appearance: A decent pour produces a good thick 1-finger head which quickly is reduced to a thin ring, which leaves no lace. The beer itself pours a dark golden hue, and there's a decent amount of fine-grained yeast sediment suspended in this beer.

Smell: The initial aromas are of fairly simple sweet malt. There's not much if anything in the hop aroma department. As the beer begins to warm, the malt notes become more intense, and I'm starting to get something very earthy, almost like baking potatoes, fresh out of the oven.

Taste: At first there's a taste of sweet malt, with just a bit of very light hopping in the background. The malt flavors are not complex, but they're not unpleasant either. Upon exiting the palate, you can definitely pick up on the corn adjunct, and the finish ends slightly dry and fairly crisp, with a slight metallic note.

Mouthfeel: The weight and mouthfeel of this beer is moderate, and appropriate for the style. It's not heavy by any means, but is definitely more substantial than a typical American lager.

Drinkability: High.

Conclusion: This is my first experience with an American Cream Ale, and I wasn't sure what to expect. It's not bad by any means, but there's not that much to it. I think it would do nicely washing down simple fare like burgers and fries, but might be even better for introducing your BMC friends to craft brews, as it's something like a richer, fuller, and more robustly flavored American macro-lager.

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Photo of brdc
2.71/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Small capped bottle, poured into a pint.

Good looking dark yellow brew with an average white head but not a lot of retention. Aroma is faint, and not really that easy to describe, since there is not much there; grains and light alcohol.
Light bodied, easy to drink, but corn and other grains is as much as I can get.
A little better than BMC. Certainly a lot worse than most NGs out there.

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Photo of roadhouse
3.92/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appears a golden yellow color with a one finger white head that sinks down to a very thin coating. Some fine particulates are visible in the light.

Aroma is not overly complex. Grainy with a sweet lemony note. Not very great in the big scheme of beer, but it is quite nice for the style.

Taste is quite similar to what the aroma projects. Sweet malty graininess with a bit of lemon on the finish along with some earthy hops.

Mouthfeel is light and smooth but it leaves a bit of a coating on the mouth after the swallow that isn't really desirable.

For a Cream Ale this stuff is pretty damn good. I haven't had anything from New Glarus yet that I haven't enjoyed.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.99/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

That does it, I'm moving to Wisconsin.

The 12 oz. bottle pours a bright & hazy, goldenrod hue with hints of amber at its core. A thin, quickly receding head dissipates to a wisp of foam and a ring of bubbles around the edge, leaving little in the way of lacing. This beer smells fantastic: sweet floral and citrus hops give way to yeasty notes of creamy mandarin orange, vanilla, and white grape juice. A light, peppery kiss rounds out the aroma, sealing it as one of the better smelling Cream ales I've encountered.

The flavor is well-designed and tasty, without being overly complex. A light lemon meringue note floats effortlessly beside a backing of wheat, cream, and allspice. Very tasty for a Cream ale, and the mouthfeel is even better: light & crisp, with a creamy finish that lingers and brings hints of lemon peel and orange cream-sicle. Perfectly carbonated, too. New Glarus continues to surpass my expectations, delivering (yet again) a phenomal beer from a lack-luster beer style when compared to the vast sea of Double IPA's, Imperial Stouts, and Barleywines. Great Job!

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Photo of bilyboy65
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Pilsner glass. No BBD on the bottle.

A: A cloudy golden yellow. Head dissipates fast leaving no trail it existed. Medium amount of carbonation can be seen. No film is left on the glass.

S: Seems to be a yeasty vanilla scent. Some mild hops can also be detected. Given a few swirls it actually seems to smell of cream.

T: Tastes of corn and yeast. No bitterness to it. Tends to be yeasty on the after taste.

M: Medium bodied with a medium carbonation.

D: Flows over the tongue very easily. Leaving a very nice taste behind making it easy to have more.

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Photo of david131
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- slightly hazy, light golden with a few streams of rising carbonation. A very thin, splotchy white head forms.

S- Pretty light and fruity. Not bad, but there is not much there either.

T- Biscuity and fruity. Pretty simple, but damn tasty.

M- Creamy. Damn. Very impressive. The carbonation level is very nice.

D- This would make a wonderful session beer. The flavors are good, but not too in your face.

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Photo of corey0212
4.03/5  rDev +10.4%
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.

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Photo of katan
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle out of a New Glarus Sampler

A - Very light clear and golden color. Lots of carbonation bubbles. The head was strong and bright white, but dissipated into a film after settling.

S - I smell the citrus and piney notes of a cascade hop. Nice and sweet smelling.

T - Not strong in taste. Very light sweet malty beginning that continues to some hops bitterness. Does finish with a nice creamy note that would seem to fit the style.

M - Starts with the light and watery beginning that goes with the light malt flavors of the initial note. However, interestingly, it goes to a creamy texture when reaching the latter end.

D- Very easy drinking. The drink is light, the flavor is not dominant, and the alcohol is manageable. No wonder its in every pub in WI.

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Photo of MDekker
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at a bar in Madison, Wisconsin, while watching everyone else drink Bud and Miller.

It looks like a wheat beer - pale gold in color, hazy, with a disappointing white head. The aroma is mostly lemony with notes of the wheat malt too. The taste is similar - dominant wheat and lemon flavors, some spices I can't name, and banana, which I noticed more as time went on. Pretty good. The mouthfeel was nothing special - a little watery, perhaps. It went down easy though. Overall, it's a good summer brew.

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Photo of therica
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reminds me a little of a real Koln Kolsch, nice summer drink.

A= light modest head, slightly cloudy pale-yellow hue more common to a Weissen.

S= light scent, some florals, citrus and hints of hops and corn.

T= nice combination, the corn addition is apparent, also nice mild citrus, malt and hints of hops.

M= clean, nice finish and aftertaste.

D= very drinkable, single or session.

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Photo of hiikeeba
4.1/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have heard good things about New Glarus, and when a friend returned with a couple of bottles, I was excited.

A - Pours up cloudy yellow with a white head that disspates quickly.

S - A sweet malty beer with a hint of hops.

T & M - Malt sweetness dominates the flavor, with a bit of hop bitterness. Lighlty carbonated, but still full bodied.

D - Extremely drinkable beer.

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Photo of KeefD
4.45/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This was the first beer I had by New Glarus, many moons ago, on tap and this was the first time I've had it in a bottle. Picked this sixer up at Stanley Liquor, in Stanley, WI.

Pours a superb hazy golden color. If I didn't know any better, I would guess that it was a heffeweizen, with a nice two finger head that dissipates quickly leaving behind a nice enough amount of lacing. Smell is of some grainy malts and some fruitiness. Taste is fruity, hints of apple and pear, slightly spicy, a nice hop undertone that doesn't take away from pale malts in the least, and lots of carbonation. Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, medium bodied and quite delicious. I have not been disappointed from a New Glarus offering yet!

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Photo of Slynger
3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Spotted Cow pours a pale maize color with a dense fog to it, and a slim but creamy cap of white.

Sweet grains and light lemon in the smell. Not to much else.

Flavor mimics the nose. Light grain sweetness along with light creamy lemon. Light bodied but it does have a very creamy smoothness to it.

Not a lot going on, but it is a pleasant enough beer. I don't mind it as something light and a little different.

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Photo of KI9A
3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours hazy, deep golden. Head disappears quick.

S: Sweet. Apples, malt. Corn?

T: Sweet. Again, apples, malt, lemon, grassy. Not hoppy-grass, but, fresh cut, green grass.

M/D: A bit sweet, but enjoyable. Just a great session beer. Right ABV, refreshing, fantastic! Great job, Dan!!

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Photo of Chugmonkey
3.48/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

More like a heavy lager than a light cream ale. Kind of yeasty with some fruityness. Kind of like a Wit without the spiciness. A nice mellow beer, nothing to get excited about here. Yet I'll jump on it on tap vs. big macro swill. Popularity has soared - is on tap all over WI.

Drinkability is great, especially on a hot day you can really knock them back. Great crowd pleaser to ease people into the craft scene.

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Photo of gford217
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright, hazy fluorescent yellow with a big puffy white head that lingers quite a while leaving some delicate lacing. Smell is dominated by the light sweet malts and yeast with a hint of hops, mainly lemony. This taste almost like a scaled-down hefe with very light malts and sweet grains. There is a hint of lemony hops in the taste as well. The mouthfeel is fairly light but a little creamy with a crisp finish. This is a fairly sessionable ale that would be a nice summer beer.

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Photo of Stoneman78
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

On draft in Milwaukee

Appearance is slightly translucent yellow straw hue, thin layer of white foam, watery lacing

Smell is clean and crisp pale and bread malts, light bubblegum sweetness, hints of grassy hops and light fruits

Taste is mostly pale malts and yeast, light hop bitterness creeps in, hints of apples and pears, finishes dry and bubbly

Mouthfeel is light/medium-bodied, watery texture, overly high carbonation

Drinkability is high, this is one smooth and sessionable 'cream ale', nice balance of hops and fruit tones, good body and flavor, the MVP beer of my hotel's bar :P

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Photo of MMAJYK
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A. Bright yellow, golden color. Transparent and little to no head.

S. Wheaty, grassy, and smells of corn with a subtle citrusy aroma of lemons and oranges.

T. Wheat malt is super rich and sweet. Again, corn and fresh cut grass dominate. No hop profile whatsoever. Not my cup o' tea, but not a bad beer. It is too sweet for my liking, but it's true to style.

M. Medium thickness and high carbonation.

D. Seems light enough to session but maybe a tad sweet for an "all-dayer".

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Photo of Oxymoron
2.73/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Are you saying you spotted a cow or hey there is a spotted cow? Pours a light sunny yellow color with ok clarity. A good head but limited retention which is ok per style. Limited lacing throughout.

The nose is off. There is a more sweet corn nose, which is ok, but no malt presence at all. Some noticeable sour smells which makes me think infection. Some hoppy notes that balance well. Clean as far as yeast notes but some minor vegi/cabbage notes on the back end.

The taste is a bit off as well. The malts come out more with a more 2 row flavor but plays second to more of a corn essence. Would have like more malt but ok. Some grainy and husky notes helps the accent the malt flavors. There is a light bitterness that comes out but a more noticeable floral finishing hop. On the backend there is a metallic almost copper taste that is more perceivable as it warms. Fairly clean yeast finish but some minor fruity notes that is boardline acetaldehyde.

The body is light which is spot on (pun intended). Decent carbonation helps accents the corny and hop notes. Overall this is limited with some noticeable off flavors with a beer that is hard to high them.

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Photo of Zorro
3.08/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sampled through Monsone and Brews N Tunes 3 BIF.

Mildly chill hazed gold colored ale with a small white head.

The smell quite sweet and fruity and reminds me a bit of malt liquor. Not much hop aroma here but there is a vanilla and candy aroma.

This starts out a bit sweet with a slight vanilla aftertaste. Very mild flavor and not near as sweet as it smells.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Inoffensive but kind of boring too. A mild ale for those who want a very mild ale, personally I need more flavor.

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Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 784 ratings.