Lobotomy Bock - Indian Wells Brewing Company

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Lobotomy BockLobotomy Bock

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192 Ratings
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Ratings: 192
Reviews: 104
rAvg: 3.06
pDev: 22.88%
Wants: 2
Gots: 19 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Indian Wells Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-21-2004

This is a classic German Dopple Bock. Like all of our beers it is made in strict accordance to the German Reinheitsgebot Purity Law of Brewing, which is water, malt, hops and yeast only! Lobotomy Bock is made from five types of specialty malted barley including Munich, black patent and other premium malts. And finished with two types of hops, Sterling and Perle added at the boil and again at the finish for the perfect flavor balance. Lobotomy Bock is brewed with pure artesian spring water from the historic Indian Wells Spring. Lobotomy Bock is lagered for several weeks then finished to exacting standards.
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Ratings: 192 | Reviews: 104
Photo of Jaskeller
4.85/5  rDev +58.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

This is my favorite bock that I have come across thus far. Really hard to find up in the Northeast, but I had it in Texas and couldn't get enough. It is a little darker and more viscous than most bocks but balances that with a slightly smokey smoothness that just makes it epic.

I prefer darker beers and sweeter beers, so perhaps my pallette gives this brew a little more creedence than others, but if you come across it worth a try for sure, and if you don't like it (comes in a six pack) send me the other five!

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.47/5  rDev +46.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown, reddish-edged body bordered by a small ring of white bubbles.

Smell: Golden raisins and a small handful of roasted grains blended into rich, dark caramel.

Taste: Flavor of dark caramel, though it only imparts a mild, restrained measure of sweetness. Dark fruits. Touch of roast, a touch of booze (but not at all what you'd expect from an abv over 10%). Lightly sweet on the finish with a taste of crème caramel.

Mouthfeel: Slightly beyond medium-bodied. Mild carbonation.

Drinkability: Though it seems I'm the only one to think this, I felt the beer was a treat from start to finish.

Photo of Osagason
4.4/5  rDev +43.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Ok. This beer has gotten a bad rap. Hopefully if you get to this review it will set some things straight.

This beer is a LAGER.

It says as much on the bottles. With that in mind the thin mouth texture and light watery feeling is to be expected and not taken as a pitfall. What isn't expected is the black amber opaque color or the speed at which this beer with make your head buzz. This is coming form a guy who's top three is Abyss, Stone 12th anniversary, and Victory at Sea. Because I can't afford to drink those all the time something lighter and cheaper with the same kinda kick fills the session beer position better than anything previously. Lobotomy covers the alcohol like a surgeon disguised as a hobo ready to cut out your prefrontal cortex before you can say six pack. Seriously, try this beer if you have the opportunity and think "This is a LAGER!!!".

Your mind shall be blown

Photo of OneLowChevy
4.39/5  rDev +43.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This was first brought to me by some family members in Ridgecrest, Ca who came to visit me. I visited the brewery when i went to visit them for a camping trip. I was amazed at how smooth it was for a bock. I didnt get a bitter after taste like with some. This one hit me with almost a smokey wood flavor that i loved. Since i was camping while drinking it, it was perfect. I recommend this beer for a nice camping trip or backyard BBQ.

Photo of jheimiller
4.25/5  rDev +38.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Good flavor for a lager. Nice crisp feel going down. High alcohol content. Overall great dark lager.

Photo of davexisxrabid
4.2/5  rDev +37.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice dark brown almost black color with a half inch thick tan head. Looked almost like Pepsi, and I do love my Pepsi...

Aroma of sweet malts with a floral undertone.

Slightly sweet malty, bready flavor with very little hop in the background. For a beer with an advertised 10.8% abv, you can't really taste the alcohol.

Smooth with little to no aftertaste, which is good because the sweetness of the brew doesn't cling to your palate for the night.

Very drinkable although I'm not sure I would want to test it out and see if this beer really does have 10.8% alcohol. Might have two or three in a night and thats about it.

Photo of Travix1516
4/5  rDev +30.7%

Very drinkable, with dark chocolate notes.

Photo of Texan816
3.94/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I like the lobotomy bock, not to harsh, smooth, taste great! I found this at Central Market HEB in San Antonio, Tx. I was looking for Lobo Bock which is a Texas double bock but they are still a small brewery so when I came across this I was continent and have been on the lobotomy kick since!

Photo of dwilson01
3.88/5  rDev +26.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from a 12 oz bottle into my new belgium tulip, thin light brown colored head tops the brew made of a black body. No tinting detectable around the edges even when held up to the light.

The scent is very smooth, none of that 10.5% shows up at all, it's a sweet brown sugar and molasses that I get. Hoppping is very background, sweet malts and breadiness is in there as well.

The flavor is great, it starts out with a sweet molasses and honeyed flavor which is augmented later by the flavor hops which are quite fruity but very backseat at the same time. I get prune, pineapple, and pear. Interesting flavors to be sure, intriguing combination.

The mouthfeel is good, smooth and creamy buy not thick like a porter or stout. It goes down real easy which is dangerous because of it's alcohol content. I get none of that abv at all, this is definitely my favorite brew from indian wells, at least of the ones I have tried so far.

Photo of charlzm
3.87/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Consumed June 23rd, 2010. Bottle obtained directly from brewery on May 30th, 2010. Consumed in "special" Samuel Adams glass.

Beer is a clear, dark cola color with mahogany highlights. Very fine tan head (I swear it had a greenish tinge to it) subsides to a uniformly sticky, coating skin of foam in very short order. Subdued though still present carbonation apparent in glass.

Aroma is sweet cane sugar and moderately roasted malt. A touch of smoke and vanilla as well.

I was shocked to have an Indian Wells beer that had no flaws! It has a mild, English brown flavor (think Newcastle, but more subdued) that mirrors the nose but with more maltiness. Nowhere near world class, but nothing wrong with this one. Alcohol slightly noticeable, but not a problem. Only a faint dash of bitterness and fleeting mineral water on the finish.

Beer is slightly thick and creamy in the mouth.

The most drinkable beer from Indian Wells I've tried so far; in the greater world, a mediocre example of the style, But for IW, a triumph!

Photo of PTB25
3.85/5  rDev +25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer may be a gimmick, if in fact it's 10.8 ABV is the real deal. It doesn't taste that strong, not even close. It's even surprising.

12 oz bottle into pint glass

A - dark reddish to brown, very little head, although doppelbocks tend to have less head, I notice.

S - Not a strong aroma, befitting the taste. Maybe a little nutty.

T - So much lighter than you would expect. Almost watery. It doesn't taste bad at all - but it doesn't taste like a doppelbock. I think it's more similar to a schwarzbier, if anything. It lacks any complexity whatsoever. This is not necessarily bad, unless you are looking for something in the style of an Optimator. It turns into a very easy drinking beer that could knock you out fast, although it's tough for me to comment on the ABV since I have never had more than one of these in a day.

M - Smooth city. No aftertaste. Again, much lighter than expected.

D - For a doppelbock? I could drink a bunch of these. I may have to try it to comment on the ABV.

Photo of jujubeast6000
3.84/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Reviewed 4/16/2009 (Bottle):

Pours a dark clear reddish body, wit ha small head off-white in color and quickly diminishing. Sweet molasses aroma, dusty, with some alcohol. Some dark chocolate. Has some sweet coffee, light roast. Some nuttiness. Pretty tasty. A little watery.

Photo of Flyboyman
3.75/5  rDev +22.5%

Extremely drinkable, I didn't expect the abv to be above 6%. Nice malty taste nothing overwhelming, medium body, slightly oily mouthfeel. Smells slightly alcoholy.

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
3.73/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Very dark brown color with a big, active head. Retention is low

S- Roasted, black malt, a touch of caramel malt, boiled veggies, and a touch of alcohol

T- The taste is very sweet almost as much so as a cola. The carbonation is actually the bulk of the flavor along with some bitter chocolate

M- Highly carbonated and thick, but not sticky due to carbonation

D- If this beer really is 10.8%, then it's really hidden well.

Photo of EgadBananas
3.69/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This is my first time reveiwing a beer, but a good start I think.

My girlfriend bought me a 6 pack of this on a whim, though I have wanted to try it for some time now. I am glad that I never spent the money on it.

The beer pours a very dark color, somewhat red.
There is hardly any head...you kinda have to throw the beer into the glass to produce a decent head.

The beer is tasty...not too heavy despite the high ABV. You can taste hardly any alcohol.

Here is my first complaint: I consumed 6 bottles of these plus 3 Rogue Dead Guy Ale's and got only a slight buzz. There has to be something wrong here. I can drink 4 Optimators and be close to drunk off of those...

All in all, it is a very tasty treat, but don't expect the kick.

The feel and drinkability of this beer kind of skew the rating, but if that is what you are after, then you have found your soulmate.

Worth a drink, (or two or seven) to get the full affect.

Photo of theopholis
3.57/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Pours a clear, deep mohogany with some dark ruby highlights. Very pretty.
the head is light beige head with very little retention and just a hint of lacing.

Aroma- Lots of malt sweetness with a big malty aroma. Hints of brown sugar and caramel; very inviting.

Taste- Nice mix of malt sweetness, maltiness, and just enough bittering hops to let you know it's a beer. Has an odd smokiness to it, which not to style, is very pleasant. Hints of toffee or caramel in there to.

Mouthfeel: smooth- Body is a tad lighter than I would expect, but good overall. Carbonation level is pretty good. Works well with the flavors.

Drinkability- Not the best bock, but pretty good.

Photo of wagenvolks
3.57/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle into a Delirium goblet.

After a disastrous experience with Indian Well's IPA (DRAIN-POUR), I was skeptical about cracking open their "Lobotomy Bock". Even more so after seeing its 10.8% ABV! Nevertheless, this dopplebock pours an attractive coffee brown body, with hints of deep mahogany creeping in around the edges. The paperboard-beige head diminishes somewhat quickly, leaving an off-centered patch of large bubbles and a ring of foam. The aroma is quite enjoyable, with multiple layers of dark toffee and chocolate malt sweetness that gives way to intricate yeast esters of raisin, fig, and plum.

The flavor is a milder version of the aroma. There's really not much sustenance to it, save a mild note of caramel toffee and a crisp mineral finish. Where did the dark fruits go? Where is this 10+% alcohol? Disappointing to say the least. Still, the mouthfeel is that of a crisp, medium-bodied German lager and finishes dry and clean with a hint of residual sweetness. THANK GOD, because Indian Well's IPA finished with notes of bitter aspirin and stank veggies! Lobotomy isn't the best dopplebock out there, and I'm still scratching my head as to how this beer can register at such a high alcohol level, but it's certainly drinkable.

Photo of GClarkage
3.54/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

07/30/08- Purchased at Whole Foods in San Maeo, CA.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with no freshness info found. Poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance- deep browm in color, almost looks syrupy. Really starts with no head and finishes with none either. No lace really to speak of.

Smell- Smells perfectly fine. Fair amount of malt, mostly semi-sweet caramel with a light chocolate malt nose. Nothing offensive.

Taste- Tastes like a decent to good bock. Lots of malt with a light caramel flavor and some roasted dark chocolate...minor hops accompany the malt flavor.

Mouthfeel- Average carbonation, medium mouthfeel.

Drinkability- I really had no idea how to rate this beer. I rated it as a bock rather than doppelbock. I came it with a lowered expection, but came out kinda liking this beer. I am, however, calling extreme bullshit on the listed abv. There is no way in hell this beer is over 10%. I would guess between the 6-7 range..if that.

Photo of srroos
3.52/5  rDev +15%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle (purchased from the brewery last winter) into a pint glass. Clear, dark reddish-brown with a small, quickly dissipating tan head. Smells smoky and malty. Taste is all roasted malt with a smokey finish. A little bit of bitterness at the end. Mouthfeel is thinner than expected, but drinkability is high. Like many others, I question the label's 10%+ ABV.

Very little change compared to what I had fresh at the brewery. Worth a try, but not a very good example of the style.

Photo of jbphoto88
3.45/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of the darkest doppelbock's I've ever seen. Lobotomy pours almost stout dark with ruby amber highlights and not much of a chance for light to pass through. The head is khaki and thin but doesn't last as long as I'd prefer.

The nose is very well done. There is a prominent sweet malt with nothing even close to smelling like a hop. There is also aged dried fruits in the raisin family peaking through the cloud of grain. Again I am reminded of stouts with the thick sweet smells.

I find the characteristics in the scent falters in the flavor department. The result is a thinned musty malt flavor and a over all watered down feeling. Even the slight presence of those dark fruits are thinned and muted.

The mouthfeel has a metallic twang to it and also has a crisp dryness. The beer coats your mouth in the finish and the feeling reminds me of eating that thick greek yogurt. As a whole I don't think this a bad beer but it isn't great. I find myself bored halfway through the glass and not really interested in any more.

Photo of LXIXME
3.41/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Medium sized light brown head dies into a kinda weak lacing above a clear very dark brown beer.

A very light sweet caramel malt aroma on this medium bodied beer.

Light grapes on a caramel malt taste leaving a light dry aftertaste.

Kinda a weird little taste to this beer but that not necessarily a bad thing, I kinda liked it for a one shot type drink, can't say I'd like to drink a six pack in one sitting.

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a deep, dark ruby brown with a half finger of khaki colored head. Sub-par retention, leaving behind a broken layer of surface suds and a fair ring around the edges.

Smell - Caramel with light hints of chocolate. Faintly grassy hop character.

Taste - Weaker than the nose would indicate, but follows along the same profile. Fair caramel notes backed by lesser chocolate and a hint of roasted malt. Virtually no hop presence. Finish is a bit watery with light malty sweetness.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium in body with low carbonation. Goes down with a smooth, watery finish.

Overall - How is this beer over 10% ABV? It's watery and relatively bland with no bite from the alcohol. That's the easily the most impressive thing about this beer, because the other aspects are just decent.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled June 2009
A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a four-finger thick, very lightly browned, tan colored head. The beer is a dark, concentrated, well burnt amber color that shows a brilliantly clear, bright ruby hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells thick and sweet with a ton of bright fruitiness that reminds me of raisins, and prunes. The malt is pretty big in the nose, concentrated malt notes even start to get into the savory side of the spectrum, though they predominantly are sweet. There is a brightness to the sweetness here that seems to be lacking in the rich, complex sweetness that I really like to find in a strong Bock; it is almost a bit too simple-sugar focused, more caramelization and Maillard browning richness would be a welcome addition that is lacking in this beers aroma. This doesn't seem to be the cleanest fermentation profile either as there seems to be some bubble-gum like aromatics here and a touch of fusel alcohols that provide a touch of warming. The aroma is actually pretty enjoyable, but it is more of a Belgian interpretation of a Bock. I am able to pick out notes of cotton candy, caramelize fruit notes, perhaps a hint of toasty malt and just a wisp of underlying malt richness.

Wow, fairly light bodied and not nearly as sweet as the aroma suggested; this last makes it all the more apparent how un-Lager like the fermentation character in this beer is, definitely not a good example of a clean Lager fermentation. The beer is actually quite thin for a Bock, much less a amplified DoppelBock. I do like that this isn't nearly as sweet as I was dreading, the sweetness that is here is a bit simplistic and is missing that rich, concentrated malt depth that should be in a decent version of anything with Bock on the label. The relative dryness does allow the toasted, dark malt character to come out a bit more. The beer finishes with a toasted, biscuit like and browned bread crust character. There seems to be a touch of phenolics here almost, though it is more like some fusel alcohol notes in the finish. The lack of overt sweetness also seems to make the fruitiness here lean towards the almost tart plum / prune side of the spectrum.

I am a bit conflicted on this beer, from a stylistic standpoint this beer is a complete mess, but it is actually not half bad, especially if you think of it as a Belgian interpretation of a DoppelBock. In the end though the body and flavor is lacking the richness and complexity that is need to really carry this beer.

Photo of wajacobs
3.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I happened upon the indian wells brewery on my way home from recent trip Death Valley. I've seen their beers at the local Whole Foods but never took to much interest in them. We stopped in hoping to find lunch but the steak house isn't open for lunch so we headed into the brewery. Based on the merchandise on hand it was quickly appperant that the Lobotomy Bock is their flag ship beer so we grabed a sixer to go.

It's a big malty doppelbock for sure with just enough hop bitterness to give it a crisp finish.

Photo of dirtylou
3.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz single, courtesy of IrishSnake and the phenomenal "These go to Eleven; A Bif"

appearance: pours into a snifter...clear glowing amber body, light beige head with little retention...pretty nice lacing

smell: big malty aroma, brown sugar, fair amount of smooth booze on the nose...lightly toasted, big gummy caramel aroma

taste: I am hoping this is not really an attempt at a doppelbock (and I dont think it really is)...tastes more like a boozed up bock bock to me. very smooth brown sugar - malt structure, pretty one dimensional in that aspect though

mouthfeel: smooth, abv is rather smooth and not abrasive as well, medium body

drinkability: fine

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Lobotomy Bock from Indian Wells Brewing Company
71 out of 100 based on 192 ratings.