Spotted Cow - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Spotted CowSpotted Cow

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

730 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 730
Hads: 3,077
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 235
Gots: 654 | FT: 17
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: 730 | Hads: 3,077
Photo of Wasatch
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
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. (354 characters)

Photo of TexIndy
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
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) (680 characters)

Photo of Atricapilla
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
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. (437 characters)

Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.18/5  rDev -12.4%
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. (682 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
2.79/5  rDev -23.1%
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. (397 characters)

Photo of stereosforgeeks
3.5/5  rDev -3.6%
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. (350 characters)

Photo of Derek
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
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. (338 characters)

Photo of msubulldog25
3.67/5  rDev +1.1%
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. (1,177 characters)

Photo of tempest
3.18/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Spotted Cow is a nice beer, but I can't really say I'm impressed. It's about the same as Genessee Cream Ale. The flavor is sweet and bland. It's hard to make out the grains or any concrete flavor. You know, on a hot Wisconsin summer day, this would probably hit the spot, but that's about it. (292 characters)

Photo of BeerTruth
3.87/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Monsone for this one!

12 oz. bottle poured into a nonic.

Pours a a somewhat murky bright sunshine yellow with a one finger fluffy white head that quickly dies down to a very thin layer. No stickiness, no legs, not much in terms of holding on. Smell is very fresh. Clean lemon and floral odors, very inviting yeasty notes. Soft flavors on the tongue of biscuits, grass, and mild lemon. Aftertaste is almost not even there, but has a weak pale malt flavor. Very pleasing mouthfeel, soft medium body with just enough carbonation for a good balance in the mouth. I could put a lot of these down pretty easily. I gotta trade for some more of this one for sure. (671 characters)

Photo of Cresant
3/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to nflmvp for the opportunity to try this one. Poured this undated, 12 oz. brown bottle into a pint glass and received a hazy golden yellow body with a bright white head. The head faded quickly but lazy, random bubbles percolated upward.

Smell was vegetal. Cooked corn and a slight sourness.

Taste was pleasantly sweet and sour. There was a light bitterness that lingered. Creamy yet refreshing. Seemed to be true to the style.

Mouthfeel was medium to thin in the body, medium to light in carbonation. (518 characters)

Photo of benito
3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a Spotted Cow pint glass that came with the six pack.

Spotted Cow is pale gold in color with a thin, persistent head and less carbonation than I would have expected or liked from a cream ale. The aromas are muted, as it takes a good swirl and sniff to get some corn aromas (though not the light fruitiness that separates great cream ales from the rest of the crowd). It is well-balanced, with a light, corny flavor and a slightly bitter, finish.

This brew is almost exactly what it purports to be: an easy-drinking 'lawnmower' brew that conjures up a certain nostalgia for the rolling hills of Wisconsin farmland. It will never have the collector's-item/"let's trade" cachet of other New Glarus brews, and it doesn't seek it. This is a brew meant to buy, drink, and enjoy in Wisconsin. (820 characters)

Photo of cdkrenz
3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

$8.00 / Pitcher
The Final Score Bar & Grill
Stevens Point, WI

Appearance - A hazy orange with 2 inches of head on the pitcher. This is a good looking and very inviting pour.

Smell - Theres a sweetness to the aroma. It's a citrusy sweet scent accompanied by a malty heaviness. The scent almost matches the color.

Taste - This beer doesn't taste as sweet as it smells. That's a good thing. To the taste the malt really comes through while maintaining the citrus just enough.

Mouthfeel - The feel of the beer is smooth with a suble grain of carbonation on the outer edge on each side of my tongue.

~ This is a good summer beer. Great on hot days when ya wanna sit outside on the porch and have a couple. Even better if you're out boating with friends. If the opportunity presents itself, Have a Cow! (814 characters)

Photo of akorsak
4.35/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 12 oz bottle courtesy of nflmvp.

A: The ale is a pale straw yellow, much hazier than I expected (it looks like a saison). The head was not large on pour and remained only as a small white pool of foam.

S: The nose is soft graininess with an evident pale fruit flavor (some dry pear, apple) and a hint of lemongrass.

T: The soft flavors of the nose continue into the taste. The grainy biscuit flavors and softer fruits, including a subtly sweet lemongrass flavor, make for a very easy drink. The finish of the ale brings back the grainy dryness and puts a nice exclamation on the beer.

M: The ale is very restrained, full of strong flavors that never overdo it, tastewise. Another please!

D: This is a real sessioner, light on alcohol without skimping on taste. The beer is going right back on my 'wants' list. (826 characters)

Photo of
3.3/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle.

Cloudy, pale straw yellow body. Modest, just off-white head. Might be called creamy if there was more of it. No legs or lacing.

Aroma is sweet, reminds me just a bit of creamed corn. Some fruit. Very little bittering. Fairly mild, overall.

Taste has good balance, initially sweet, with a nice nip of bitterness at the end. Sweetness is honey and flowers, maybe a taste of orange. Bitterness at finish is hard to pin down. Herbal, perhaps? A little pepper in there also. Faithful to style in that the urge to overhop was resisted.

Light body. Fairly low carbonation, could be turned up a bit. Refreshing and thirst quenching.

OK, not something I am terribly interested in drinking more of. Too sweet for my taste. (741 characters)

Photo of WJVII
4.6/5  rDev +26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer has a fruity smell when opened with a hint of yeast. Poured into a pint glass it has a cloudy golden color from excess yeast left to finish it's work in the bottle. It has a modest white head that once settles leaves a slight lace on the glass with the yeast continuing to leave a cloudiness letting you know you are drinking a Spotted Cow.

This is one of the most drinkable beers from New Glarus. This beer is even enjoyed by the most picky of my beer drinking buddies. It has a light taste on the pallet with a fruity entrance followed by a yeasty finish.

I highly recommend this beer to those who are looking to branch from the mainstream flood of commercial beers. It is a good gateway beer for maturing connoisseurs and is a fan favorite of even the most particular pallets. (797 characters)

Photo of mwagner1018
4.17/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pale amber/reddish color, slightly foggy (showing its unfiltered characteristic), very quickly diminishing thin head from tap.
S- Very nice subtle, refreshing, sweet and tangy.
T- Instant great satisfying, flavor, reminded me of several tasty Belgians that I have had many times in the past....fruity, light spice, bold, yet airy.
M- Full, yet light and nicely carbonated but not overpowering...good refreshing style.
D- Very drinkable, perfectly fit the nice mild/cool spring evening while I was enjoying this one! (522 characters)

Photo of logansboat15
4.2/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Highly regarded among both my older and younger friends, Spotted Cow by New Glarus Brewing is Brewmaster Dan Carey's most popular beer. It is as close to an everyman's macrobrew as you can get, yet this fine brew has a tad more character. Pours a clear light amber with nice head and a lingering white lace. Smell is fresh and lightly hoppy and sweet. Taste is crisp, lightly refreshing and as Michael Jackson likes to say, moreish. Very light mouthfeel, but there is slightly more there than the watered down swill that is consumed by the clueless. Very drinkable and satisfying. (580 characters)

Photo of IntriqKen
3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very interesting.
Pours a cloudy yellow with a half finger head that melts away to nothing.

Aroma is almost non-descript althought some sweet malt and corn comes through.

The taste is almost belguim with a sourness to it reminiscent of wild yeasts. Moderately sweet pale malts initially then sour yeast and very little hops to speak of.

This could be a very refreshing summer brew.
Thanks nflmvp for another new NG beer to try. (438 characters)

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.67/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - a lemony, hazy pour. Two to three fingers of creamy white foam fall back pretty quickly but make for a nice start.

Aroma - a fruity, sweet lemony smell, almost like candy, that maintains well after the beer settles. One dimensional but worthy of props.

Taste - sweetened grain, some light fruitiness/floral stuff, but not much development beyond that. Considering it's a cream ale, I think it is an overachiever even with its lighter flavor. Some basic corn/grain presence, little if any hop element. It's a step above the macros but not much more beyond that.

Mouthfeel - a good smoothness makes this disappear quickly. Muted carbonation and medium body are a good fit.

Drinkability - all things considered, despite the average taste, this beer has a lot going for it elsewhere. Thanks to jj21 for this sample, toasted in honor of the birth of Monkeyknife's 3rd child. And another toast in the hope that he gets four or more consecutive hours of sleep sometime between now and the end of May. (1,018 characters)

Photo of BeerCheese
3.76/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Took from the fridge and poured right into my glass. Poured slightly cloudy yellow with small white head comprised of big bubbles. Head dissipated quickly. Aroma was barely detectable. More CO2 bite in the aroma than anything else. Taste like any average ale. Not bad. Not great, but very drinkable. (299 characters)

Photo of BeerRun13
3.11/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a slightly pale golden color. Firm creamy white head is fed by one of the most spectacular bubble shows I've ever seen.
Lightly malty, subdued aroma.
Malty a touch of tart fruitiness. Corn is a major playa' in this one.
Light, smooth, and slightly creamy. Easy on the palate.
This ones okay. Par at best. (314 characters)

Photo of happygnome
3.56/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: cloudy yellowish color inch or so of head that disapears fast, no lace no carbonation
s: sweet, creamy
t: almost like a sweet flavor not sure i did enjoy though kinda get a corn flavor in the finish
m: medium to full bodied surprising given light color

overall I really enjoyed this beer a deffinate session type beer would be very nice on a hot summer day (365 characters)

Photo of neonbrown82
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a decent beer. I've actually been told that this is a lager, but after reading the bottle and noting that it categorized as a cream ale on this site, I was surprised to see that it is not a lager at all. For what it's worth, it still seems very lager-ish, but I can see the ale characteristics in it, notably the fruity esters. I think the corn and the light appearance are the source of misconception.

Anyways, the beer pours to a slightly cloudy yellow color. Could stand to have better clarity, but I suppose the protein from the corn and the bottle conditioned yeast are responsible for that. The head starts off moderately thick, but falls quickly back to a very thin, almost non-existent collar. Leaves no lace in its wake. Carbonation does not appear to be too active either, further distancing itself from the appearance of a light lager.

The smell is alright. Most notably the corn sticks out from the rest of the grist. Also has a sweet pale malt backbone with a hint of herbal hops. It is not unpleasant, but I am just not accustomed to smelling corn in a micro.

The taste really isn't half as bad as I was expecting from the nose. In fact, it's actually quite good for what it is. And for what it's worth, it is easily the best cream ale I've tried. Very light and quaffable. Not much in the way of a specialty malt bill, as one would expect. A light pale malt sweetness followed by a light corny finish. Not nearly as corny as in the nose. Also has a fairly light and crisp herbal hops finish. Also a light fruity ester lingers on in the aftertaste. Not bad.

The high protein levels in the corn and flaked barley give this a nice creamy feel. While the carbonation may not seem active to the eye, it sure does pack a wallop on the palate. Sure, it may not be the most complex and interesting beer I've ever drank, but it's very easy to consume and doesn't offend. For what it is, it's a well crafted brew, and I appreciate the fact that they use all local ingredients. Kudos for that. Yet again, thanks to my fellow John's Grocery asshole: Joe. (2,077 characters)

Photo of Beerman420
4.8/5  rDev +32.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

My Favorite beer of all time. The citrusy flavor is the key to this beers unique presence in the beer world. Very drinkable but not watered down like many "drinkable" beers.
A - Orange color, thick head from tap.
S - Attractive, so much better than any AB beer.
T - Mmmm....my favorite part. Thick rich flavor with a hint of citrus.
M - Very good
D - My 2nd favorite part. I have never regretted partying with this prime choice.
Try if you can, it will be worth it! (475 characters)

Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 730 ratings.