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Spotted Cow - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Spotted CowSpotted Cow

Educational use only; do not reuse.

747 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 747
Hads: 3,166
Avg: 3.65
pDev: 28.77%
Wants: 243
Gots: 729 | FT: 18
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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 747 | Hads: 3,166
Photo of Tballz420
3.55/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pale straw-gold body, somewhat hazy. Medium white head tops it off. Sweet malt nose, hints of citrus. Sweet malt dominates the flavor, hints of hops, touch of citrus. Could use a bit more malt to bring out the flavor. Medium bodied, somewhat creamy. Not horrible but not my favorite.

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Photo of emerge077
3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Burlington. Ask for the "house beer" with the antler handpull.

Pale yellow tone, small thin head of foam. This settles to a ring soon enough. Slightly hazy due to the yeast content. Slight corn in the aroma, mixed with pale malt. Taste is light with malt and mild citrus, vaguely bready. Mild overall, not unpleasant. Slightly fuller feel than your average lager, not really "creamy" though. Easy to put back a couple pints. Having these drafts, it felt like being in a speakeasy...

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Photo of sauron681
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a medium hazy-yellowish color. A nice light creamy head that starts nice, but thins rather quickly. Faint lacing that really sticks around the whole glass. Aroma of citrus with a buttered croissant smell. Very inviting and intriguing. Medium mouthfeel that is refreshing also. Possibly a little lemon zest as well. For a cream ale this is towards the top of the list.

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Photo of Homerbag
3.25/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This has become one of my favorites. Think its part Wisconsin pride, part taste, and just good times drinking it. I took a mild hiatus from beer (yes I am a sinner) and this brought me back. I like the detail that this brewery puts into beer. They are not trying to be the biggest, just the best.This always has a place in my fridge.

A re-review from having this on tap while out to eat a nicer establishment. Maybe my tounge is getting better or maybe the formula changed, but this is not as good as it used to be. The corn was over bearing, the taste did not blend well with my food. On it's own it is still a good beer, but with simple food that should blend with it, it is a no go

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Photo of morimech
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy yellow with a bright white head that quickly dissipates to just a faint ring. Leaves slight lacing. It smells like sour corn and yeast. The taste is rather dull but I get bread and sweet citrus with a hint of cloves. It has a creamy texture and is medium bodied. Very drinkable on a hot day and a good alternative to a witbier.

This concludes my New Glarus sampling. Although they were all solid beers, nothing really stood out except the bock.

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Photo of Strix
3.62/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pale golden color. Smells light and sweet. Tastes light, with a sweet finish, almost like bubblegum. Mouthfeel is smooth, but a bit light. This was pleasant enough, but a bit watery. Could have just been the batch on tap, I only had one glass. Not bad by any means, but I wasn't blown away.

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Photo of zerofear13
3.55/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad brew. 12 oz. bottle brought to me by a friend from Wisconsin. I've never tried a cream ale before and was a bit taken back. As my friends and I joked, "There are real bits of cow in Spotted Cow." Smells of biscuit and cream, and tastes pretty milky. The mouthfeel is pretty velvety, but it was a bit sweet so drinkability was brought down. Overall, I enjoyed the flavor and thought it fit the category well, but I'm not a huge fan of cream, so I can't rate it too high.

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Photo of svraines
3.55/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Straw colored with good head that holds up well. Nothing much to note about the smell, can tell that you are in for a little sweetness. A summer thirst quencher, sweet and sour with no after taste to distract you. Sweetness is reminiscent of sweet corn. Just enough body to feel like you are drinking something decent. Goes down fast by the pitcher. Packs more of a punch than I expect and I always forget. Makes riding bike home from the Memorial Union terrace fun after work on Friday.

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Photo of tapman
3.35/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My first in a sampler pack of New Glarus.

Golden with a creamy white head. Appears to be see-through, but is actually quite dense up close and is indeed opaque and, though not quite hazy is not see-through.

Smells bready like a mild sourdough loaf yet has a creamy, plain yogurt-like aroma that I've only sensed once before in Unibroue's Don de Dieu. A concord grape tartness bites at the nose.

Taste resembles a bland creme soda, interesting though not too exciting. Tangy hoppiness with a very light, pale maltiness.

Mouthfeel is better than average due to its creaminess and I'm guessing lactase for smoothness. Carbonation and thin body leave a very dry aftertaste eclipsing that of wine.

From the draught I bet this is amazingly good beer to drink when its on sale for $3 a pint.

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Photo of pmcadamis
3.1/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I was up at Lake Delavan for a wedding when I happened by a crappy looking little gas station on Geneva Road that had an outstanding selection of beer (at least for a tiny little gas station)! I picked up some New Glarus stuff. When in Rome..., right?

A - A hazy honey-gold brew looks like nectar from the honeycomb, and is topped with a one finger head that leaves a good deal of lace on the glass. If the glass is left alone, the head recedes to a collar but even gentle agitation results in a fat finger of foam! This looks refreshing...actually, it sort of looks like a witbier.

S - Light honey notes on top of saltine cracker malts. Hold on....I can't smell it anymore because I just let the nastiest fart. Ohweee! Ok I think all of the ass-blast is gone. Smells a bit Belgian in it's sweet yeastiness, and there is a bit of lemony twang. Corriander also? Almost smells like a wit, but much more sweet and honeyed.

T - Sweet confectioner's candy and honey at first, and then tart citric flavors next. Really crakery, sugary, and sweet. This has a very light hint of wheaty twang behind a powdered sugar sweetness. Big yeast flavors too. Pineapple juice from the can....Dole's.

M - A bit dull to be honest. The syrupy sugar levels and lack of hop bitterness, alcohol warmth, or sparkling carbonation results in a less than stellar mouthfeel. It's sort of heavy and dumb. Not vibrant like a beer like this should be. It's moderately carbonated but feels like it needs more tingly bubbles.

D - This isn't all bad, but it is a very awkward beer. It's sort of wit-like but it's too syrupy sweet and heavy. It needs to make up it's mind and be a vibrant summer quencher or a yeasty Belgian brew. It's not really either, but it did hit the spot on a hot summers day so it's not terrible.

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Photo of Metalmonk
3.94/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Always a joy to pop the top on a New Glarus beer. This one poured into the glass a light yellow color, with a thin head.

Aroma is light and fruity, with some honey notes sneaking in there. Perhaps a little banana and bubblegum. For a very laid-back aroma, there's still plenty going on here.

Flavor brings in light lemon and other fruity sweetness, a hint of honey, fresh bread, just a small trace of corn (which was indeed used in this beer), a nice hops kiss...subdued and subtle, but enjoyable nonetheless.

Mouthfeel is appropriately creamy and stays that way, with an ever so slight stickiness.

Cream ales are a complete unknown to me. Judging from this one I'd call them extremely drinkable, only mildly exciting but great for the summer, and generally porch-sittin' mellow. I only have more respect for New Glarus thanks to this beer and their Totally Naked offering, because what they're doing is neither pandering to extreme gonzo-beer fiends or trying to garner mainstream appeal. They just do it for the love of the craft, and that's why even their least remarkable beers come out winners.

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Photo of grub
3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

the last bottle from a trade i did with nflmvp a few months ago. thanks steve for the hookup on a great linup of wisconsin's finest.

12oz bottle.

pours slightly hazy pale yellow with a small dense white head. drops fast with no lace.

aroma is nice. light fruity character. hint of corn, but not unpleasant. fresh hoppy character that makes me think of a kolsch. big bready malt.

taste is good. hint of grape-like fruit. touch of sweetness. light cracker malt. bit of bread. low bitterness level. bit of yeast. hint of lemon.

mouthfeel is good. nice light carbonation level. medium-light body. silky smooth.

drinkability is excellent. a fairly straightforward beer, but well balanced and very enjoyable.

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Photo of Atron67
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- poured a foggy wheat light yello with a pretty frothy head, although it didnt last long

S- smells like wheat, slightly sweer but pretty malty, can smell the yeast and some light spices

T- has a really nice strong flacor as you would expect from above, malty creamy body with wheat and spice flavors

M- has a solid body but not as creamy as i would expect,

D- a solid beer easily drank multiple times during the night

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Photo of diverdownrick
4.6/5  rDev +26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a great anytime of the year beer. Like all New Glaurus Brewery beers, it has a strong flavor, taste, and body...those cheeseheads know their beer! It has a smooth after taste that sits well in the mouth and is easy to down in summer or winter. I was also impressed that it tastes equally fresh in bottle as it does on tap...that is great aspect of this brewery.

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Photo of shadow1961
3.58/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

New Glarus Spotted Cow pours a finger of foam over a slightly cloudy
yellow brew. Carbonation is steady, and the nose is ale yeast and barley
malt. The flavor is crisp, slightly sweet barley malt with notes of citrus and
corn, with the smallest hint of herbal hop and grain in the finish. It's smooth,
crisp, and quenching- all you really want out of a cream ale. Good stuff!

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Photo of mbatley
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Chris and Marcie for this one!

Pour true to the labeling with a cloudy, yellowy tint. Small head that lasted for only a little bit. Nice aroma of faint lemon, hops and a slight sweetness on the back end--faint but there.

Taste was good but I kept wanting more from it. Good flavors but only three/quarters of what I wanted. Glad it was a gift because I wouldn't buy again.

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Photo of supercolter
3.52/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

An obvious choice to have when only BMCers are available to drink with. Appearance is ok with a small head and that unfiltered look.
Smell and taste are quite similar, they both resemble cream (obviously) and sweet malt with a touch of spice.
Mouthfeel is not as creamy as expected.
Drinkabilty is increased by the lack of creamy body.

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

Thanks to ThomasHardy for this brew.

Pours a slightly cloudy golden pale yellow color, nice carbonation, tiny fizzy white head, some islands and sticky lacing to follow. The nose is malty, sweet, yeasty, cloves, and a light touch of spices. The taste is sweet, malty, and yeasty. Medium body. Drinkable, a good session brew for a hot day, recommended.

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Photo of TexIndy
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got in a trade with jeffkrenner - thanks! Poured from a 12oz bottle with no dating system into my pint glass. It was a hazy paleish yellow with bits of yeast floating around in it. It had a very small head that was gone in a blink of an eye. No lacing. The aroma was malty with lemon overtones. At first, it had a wet grass smell like a lawnmower beer but it faded. Good aroma for a summer beer. The taste was pretty good. It won't knock you on your ass with flavor but it does go down smooth. Would make a great session beer or a trainer beer for you macro friends. Overall, a good solid session beer that is worth trying if you can easily get your hands on it. (4, RR-NAH, T, Y)

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Photo of Atricapilla
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer reminds me of the Bavarian "Kellerbier" I drank so much of in Germany. It is a hazy golden color with a bit of carbonation and a decent head that diminished, but did not entirely disappear. It had an aroma of corn and barley with a slight yeastiness/mustiness to it. It is fairly light beer, with a slight sweet corn flavor and goes down fairly easy. It's also the best beer I've used for parboiling brats before grilling them.

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Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.18/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

i was anxious to try this as i was at a crap bar on some lake in wisconsin and knew there was only bmc there. when i saw the spotted cow sign, i thought it was a tease, but they actually served this at this fucking shithole bar. this one did not live up to my excitement over finding a new glarus brew for the first time, however. this was a light gold in color and just a tad hazy. nose was very subtle, some sweet, doughy malts and a hint of buttery corn and straw. taste is a light malt sweetness and just a touch of hops. this one is balanced more by the creamy carbonation. light and lively mouthfeel. drinkable, especially when your only other options are bmc and jaegerbombs.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
2.79/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of Monger: Poured a bright golden color ale with a big pure white head with good retention. Aroma of corn with light diacetyl is not extremely pleasant. Taste is dominated by too much corn with a light buttery note which is again unpleasant. Body is pretty full for the style with some great carbonation. This is probably the worst beer that I had from this otherwise fine brewery.

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Photo of stereosforgeeks
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Hazy golden color. White bubbly head. No retention or lacing.

Smell - First and foremost lemon but there are some bread, yeast and spice notes.

Taste - Like the smell but it's all nicely balanced and easy to drink.

Mouthfeel - Thin mouthfeel and light carbonation.

Drinkability - This is an easy to drink perfect summer beer.

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Photo of Derek
3.98/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy straw, white head, very little retention, some lace.

S: Fruit-bread (with candied tropical fruit).

T: Tropical fruit (mango, pineapple), slight spicy-grass hop flavour, hint of breadyness in the background. Very fruity. Certainly different.

M: Light to moderate body is smooth; moderate carbonation.

D: Very drinkable.

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Photo of msubulldog25
3.67/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz. bottle from Wasatch, poured on 6/23. Is it a 'cream ale'? A 'farmhouse ale'? The label lists flaked barley, WI malts and the use of corn as ingredients. Yeast in the bottle, too...interesting...

A: Slightly clouded golden-honey color. Capped with a tight, creamy head, slightly off-white. Snap-crackle-pop - this head has some energy, but not much stamina as it fades rather quickly to a thin film. Very little visible carbonation and little lace.

S: Fruity, yeasty, malty and sweet - definitely a farmhouse-style. Hops are lemon, grass/hay. Sugary and a little bubblegum.

T: Definite grain upfront, toasted very lightly and with a definite corn sweetness. Just enough bitterness to cut into and balance some of the sweeter aspects. Lemons and some tangerine citrus, even pineapple (?) all offset the maltiness. I liked the balance, though it's definitely sweeter/maltier than I'd estimated.

M: Soft and smooth - creamy. Lighter mouthfeel makes it fairly clean & refreshing. Lacks some crispness/refinement but is pleasing in the mouth with a light-medium body and soft carbonation.

D: One I'd drink again. Seems pretty easy to drink and summer-worthy.

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Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 747 ratings.