Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine and get 12 issues / year of fresh beer content delivered to your door each month.

Already subscribe? to manage your subscription.

Spotted Cow - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Spotted CowSpotted Cow

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

736 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 736
Hads: 3,115
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 13.5%
Wants: 235
Gots: 688 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 736 | Hads: 3,115
Photo of iSip
2.98/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

New Glarus Spotted Cow: This was the beer of choice while visiting the folks back in Wisconsin.

This brew has a champagne color with a slight clowdy look to it. The head is well developed and has some mass to it, but does fade. Aroma is rather thin. Very little carbonation to be had.

The flavor is clean with a finish of champagne. Will pare well with food, but not a beer that stands alone. Worth a try.... (410 characters)

Photo of Jho3325
4.16/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a fantastic everyday beer. It pours light with a relatively thin head. It has a nice aroma which agrees with the fresh taste. Simply put this beer tastes like beer. It has a great finish and is the perfect beer to sit around with your friends any time of year. I always stock up with spotted cow when I am in Wisconsin. (327 characters)

Photo of cyclonece09
3.74/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a 14 oz "pint" glass. Pours golden yellow with a small white head. Smells of sweet grain and corn, not like an adjunct but with a nice grain profile. Tastes of nice grain with just enough corn for sweetness. Beer is crisp and clear light bodied and perfectly carbonated. Overall a pretty good beer. (330 characters)

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

I had this beer on tap at Tornado Steakhouse in Madison, Wisconsin. In my opinion this beer tastes like what you would get if you tried to make Bud light with all very high quality ingredients. It was good, but very bland. There isn't anything you can complain about in it. It's even very drinkable, and I could probably drink this all night if it was available. But I really like a bit more flavor in my beer. (410 characters)

Photo of sixbluntsdeep
3.4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass.

A: A nice golden/yellow pour. A decent head, nothing special. Carbonation looks good. The head sticks around for awhile, and leaves a nice lace on the glass (once again, nothing special).

S: You can definitely pick up the citrus. Hints of the malt/corn. There isn't a huge aroma, but what you get definitely makes you want to take a sip.

T: Here's where we get to the downside of the beer. The taste in your mouth is quality. The citrus and malt make their way through, and the slight hops is a good balance. The aftertaste? Well, lets just say it makes you want to take another drink.

MF: Left a bit to be desired. The carbonation that I saw after pouring was absent after the first couple of sips. Thicker than I would expect by the pour, but still extremely light overall.

O: Split it down the middle. 3.5/5. (851 characters)

Photo of StoutItOutLoud
3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It is a nice 75 degrees in September in Chicago. Time for this fib to crack a bottle from the north.

A: yellow straw color. large creamy white head fades quickly, leaving little dimples of lacing here and there on the edge.

S: there is corn and a light tart lactic note. the ale yeast brings some lemon to the party. this is similar to a pilsner, but slightly more sour.

T: malt, buttered creamed corn. this is fairly ho-hum, but typical to style

M: dry finish, well carbonated, quick drinker (496 characters)

Photo of jwc215
3.35/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazed golden with a thin white head that fades to a wispy thin cover. Broken rings of lacing stick.

The smell is of a mild banana-like fruitiness with grain. Soft, but pleasant enough.

The taste is rather bland, but inoffensive - some sweet grain, mild hint of buttered corn and a touch of yeast. There is a mild hop touch in the finish to balance sweetness, but it doesn't add much to the flavor department.

It is smooth and creamy.

This is a basic, easy-drinking cream ale. Nothing special other than having a refreshing quality to it. (547 characters)

Photo of fitrock2112
3.46/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured Spotted Cow into a Belgian Tulip.

A - Pours a clear golden with one finger of creamy puffy head.

S - Some candied qualities, mixed with light fruit and malt. Just a little faint in this department.

T - Smooth creamy fruity beer here. Some lemon peel, light malt. Wish there was more flavor, but not bad.

M - Light mouthfeel, medium carbonation. Yeah, you can drink a few of these.

O - A nice change of pace beer. Smooth creamy, just not a lot going on. I like it for what it is. Cheers! (498 characters)

Photo of DrDemento456
3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Picked this up from the House of 1,000 beers for 3 bucks. Black market score!

A - Quite an epic head over an inch of creamy foam that sticks around for a while. Color is a bright semi hazy yellow. Mostly clear.
S - Very timid smell not very sweet or hoppy. Just mild grains, hops, and some corn skunk.
T - Taste is much better has a mild bit of vanilla like a creme soda. Grains are also balanced and sweet and hops are there and enjoyable. I like it.
M - Not very soda like which is nice. Taste like beer with a light to medium body for easy drinking.

Overall a great introduction to the brewery if they can make this tasty year round offerings I may want to step it up and trade for more rare offerings. (707 characters)

Photo of alphagnome
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance:
Pours a cloudy golden color topped by a thin white head and gobs of carbonation. Minimum lacing and head retention is awful.

Aroma:
Leaves a bit to be desired but hints of honey and slight cloves and citrus. It's earthy and quite welcoming.

Taste:
Sourdough with some citrus, clove and a bit of corn.

Mouthfeel:
This is a very light-bodied beer that is incredibly smooth and heavily carbonated. It's fantastic and refreshing!

Overall:
A great beer - It's not complex by any stretch of the imagination, however, it is super easy to drink and insanely refreshing! (581 characters)

Photo of Axnjxn
4.03/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours an off golden color with a very slight head. Smell has a lot of farmhouse characteristics, yeasty and malty with a lot of lemon zest. The taste is extremely crisp and refreshing. Very apparent malt backbone with a good amount of sweetness as well as lemongrass and citrus. This screams farmhouse ale. Light in body, low in carbonation, but very very drinkable.

Overall just a superbly easy to drink session beer. I could down a whole six pack of this in a hurry. (499 characters)

Photo of BWED
3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a tumbler.

A- Slightly hazy straw color in the body. White head. Retains well but is very thin throughout the drink. Some lacing.

S- Grainy malt aroma, with some fruit as well (apple, pear).

T- Light grain flavor with some fruit, and a hint of some spices.

M- Light and sweet.

O- This is simple, but so tasty. Very light flavors but they come out so well and work well with each other. The fruitiness is refreshing as well. (455 characters)

Photo of Scotchboy
3.59/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Another bottle gifted by the in-laws, into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

A: Clear, pale straw body with a good finger of pillowy white head and OK retention.

S: Very clean malt breadiness and sweetness. Faint fruitiness, maybe even the impression of banana? Very little to NO hop presence at all.

T: Clean malt sweetness of bread and grains (not grainy - just grain flavors). Some faint, estery & fruity yeast notes. No hop bitterness really.

In the nose as well as on the palate, there is the faintest suggestion of vanilla or extra light brown sugar, can't quite place it...

MF: Light, creamier body with medium carbonation.

O: A decent cream for sure, easy to drink. Anderson Valley's offering is still my standard for the style but this drinks just fine. (760 characters)

Photo of breakingbland
3.69/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Poured a cloudy golden. The scant head dissipated into a ring of foam fairly quickly.

Aroma: Some sourness with a slight bit of pleasant funkiness along with some fruit and malt. Not a strong aroma profile overall.

Taste: The main flavor component is sweetness. Nonetheless, the beer has a crispness. The bottle says that corn is used in the brewing, and I can imagine some fresh ear-of-corn sweetness in the flavor profile. The hops come out as a floral with slight sweetness. The hops linger along with perhaps a slight breadiness.

Mouthfeel: The beer has a medium body and medium carbonation which seem appropriate for this style.

Overall: This is a very drinkable and refreshing beer. (705 characters)

Photo of deeznuts420
2.92/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

this style isn't my favorite but i was in a place traveling that didn't have hardly any craft beers to choose from. it was also one of the first craft cream ales i had so i'd have to say it was fairly good although it did have a corny taste. but overall i can't complain. it was a decent beer. (293 characters)

Photo of Mavigo
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Got this at Via in Milwaukee. Served in a pint.

A: is a clear light golden color with a short white head that dissipates quickly leaving little. lacing.

S:smells light, grassy, wheat, spices, malts

T: light, sweet, wheat, citrus, grass, spices, hint of hops

M: light body with good amounts of carbonation

O: overall this was my first cream ale and it was pretty good. (372 characters)

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
3.7/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Ah, the famous Spotted Cow.
Poured into becker pint glass; bright clear yellow with lively carbonation and a bright white fizzy thick head that doesn't leave much lacing. Smell is slightly vinous, light lager yeast and corn with a bit of grassy crisp hops. Taste is light and crisp, light grain and corn with a pinch of crisp hops to dry out the finish, which is lightly sweet and a bit sticky, but mostly clean. Mouthfeel is crisp, clean and carbonated.
While I'd prefer a steam beer or a kolsch when it comes to lighter, lager-influenced ales, this is a good beer. It'd be a great beer for introducing a BMC drinker to craft. It's nothing special, but I can see why it has such a fervent local following, spanning all spectrums of beer drinkers. (748 characters)

Photo of Franziskaner
3.06/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Golden colored ale with a pretty minimal head. Very good clarity on this beer. The aroma is pretty straight forward with the smell of light malt and corn. Very smooth mouthfeel. Just a quick splash of light malt and corn flavor. Aftertaste is non existent and watery. This is not my thing, but it isn't bad. (307 characters)

Photo of thinkinflicka
4.18/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

First New Glarus poured into a pint glass

Pours a hazey yellow with a thin white head

Smeel is sight citrus, grassy with a tiny bit of funk

Taste is biscut malt, slighty floral with bit of fruit, clean and crisp with just a tiny farm house style funk to make it great.

Perfect mouthfeel for the style light and crisp.

This is the perfect hot summer day beer, i could drink a bath tub full of this. Its not quite a farmhouse not quite a cream ale, kind of a perfect mix of the two. This is a great beer that appeals to the masses i cant think of any one not likeing it. (574 characters)

Photo of JWearda
3.86/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served: in a New Glarus glass straight from the tap at New Glarus Brewing!

Appearance: Slightly hazy yellow color with a sudsy white cap. Carbonation cascades throughout the body.

Scent: yeasty with a touch of orange. A dash of sweet corn and some cloves. A nod towards "Belgian-like" in it's smell?

Taste: lots of colors for the palate: mild notes of citrus, orange peel, yeast, and a touch of grain. None of them overpower each other and everything seems to blend together very nicely.

Finish: the flavor is sweet-n-yeasty, zipping quickly to a short and quite fruity finish, snipped off by a sharp zip of carbonation.

Overall: this is a delight to have and will make it a regular for its smooth, easy, satisfying taste. Finely crafted and not an over the top beer. (773 characters)

Photo of Chaney
3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The #9 ranked Cream Ale here on BA with only an 84% rating. Obviously, the love for this style is lacking.

Served in a Delirium Tremens glass.

A: Poured a very murky, tangerine-orange color, with a wispy off-white head that didn't add up to much.

S: Sweet bread, wheat, corn, and a bit of vanilla extract. I actually dug the nose.

T: Not too sweet and certainly nothing wrong with this one. Straight down the middle, easy drinker with a sour-dough disposition overall.

M: The drinkability on this suck is unhinged. So friggin smooth an gulpable with perfect carbonation bill. Not a dry drop in this puppy.

O: Been to Cheese Land a couple of times and remember this one being on tap just about everywhere I went. Obviously NG's best-seller. I can see why. (761 characters)

Photo of MickeyBeer
3.43/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a beer that I have had dozens of times, but decided to finally write a review on it.

A- Pours a slightly cloudy, golden color. Head was rather minimal, leaving only about a half a finger of white head that dissipates rather quickly. No real lacing to speak of.

S- Smell is sweet and malty with a little bit of a wheat aroma. Doesn't exactly hit you in the nose, but some nice aromas are present.

T- This beer has a good deal of flavor, but in many ways is hard to describe. It has an almost fruity flavor similar to that of a cider. Also has a spiced presence to it. Hops are not very prominent in the flavor, and mostly the sweetness of the beer comes forward.

M- This beer is smooth and drinkable. Makes for a great summer session drinking beer in my opinion.

O- A unique brew that is widely available in Wisconsin. It is tasty and reasonably priced. Not the most complex beer that I have ever had, but I will certainly continue to purchase it. (959 characters)

Photo of muddyh2oblues
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

You ever butter a piece of bread, then roll your sweet corn in it to butter the sweet corn, and then eat the buttery, sweet corn slathered bread? That's what I get when I drink Spotted Cow, which according to New Glarus is a Wisconsin Farmhouse Ale. (249 characters)

Photo of SerialTicker
3.59/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had at a Milwaukee Brewers game last Friday when I was in town. $6.25 for a 12oz bottle. My first from New Glarus. This wouldn't have been my first choice, but it was all they had from them.

This is a Cream Ale? I don't know what style I would have guessed this to be, but it doesn't taste like any Cream Ales I've had... then again, I haven't had a craft Cream Ale, I don't think. Uh. That probably makes a difference. This has that "beer" color -- sunset orange. There's about two or three fingers worth of a creamy looking head. Lacing is above average. Nice start... gotta love a good looking beer. The smell is initially what made me wonder what the damn style was. Mild grassy/earthy hops and Play-Doh/dough just about hit the aroma on the head for me, although seeing others mention banana and clove isn't a surprise... I can see that. Taking a sip, I get the same thing. How does a beer that has a pretty big "dough" profile taste good? Leave it to New Glarus. While I'm not a huge fan of this, it's memorable. I'm pretty confident that I won't taste another beer quite like this. A respectable beer. (1,109 characters)

Photo of bluesbrewsguys
4.5/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Now this is what I love to drink every day of summer for the past two years. This golden goodness of this beer has a hint of citrus and is slightly sweet and with a touch of hops to bring your taste buds all together and cheer. Sad that I can't get this beer here in Chicago, but at least it gives me a reason to go to Milwaukee to pick up a few cases when visiting friends. So great to enjoy on the back porch when listening to some Blues records on a summer day. Made my birthday just golden today. (500 characters)

Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 736 ratings.