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Thomas Hooker Liberator Doppelbock - Thomas Hooker Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thomas Hooker Liberator DoppelbockThomas Hooker Liberator Doppelbock

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661 Ratings

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Ratings: 661
Reviews: 504
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 195
Gots: 36 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Thomas Hooker Brewing Company visit their website
Connecticut, United States

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-15-2004

Hopped with German and Czech hops and fermented with Bavarian lager yeast, this traditional doppelbock blends an extensive amount of select dark malts to achieve its rich and creamy character. Rich and filling, this brew is a malt lovers dream.

24 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 661 | Reviews: 504 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mavbrew
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The color is a deep brown, very dark with some reddish highlights. The head is frothy and two fingers thick that takes a few minutes to dissipate and leaves some lacing.

S: Has a pretty malty nose (some breads or biscuits) but also has a bit of sweetness to it, maybe caramel. Some chocolate notes are also present with a slight bit of alcohol.

T: Excellent malt character coming through upfront and throughout. There is very little sweetness, a bit of some burnt undertones, very complex flavor but also pretty difficult to describe. Finish is dry and, of course, malty.

M: Light medium bodied with little carbonation. The feel is mostly malty.

D: I always find it difficult to describe the flavors in a Doppelbock. This one has less of a "Soy Sauce" flavor then some, but all of the flavors together kind of form that saucy characteristic. This is a very good beer and an easy drink, the 8% is hidden very well with the malts.

Photo of franksnbeans
3.91/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque almost black brown with a finger of creamy head and lacing throughout. Smells of sour fruit, plum, black licorice and a hint of chocolate. Taste is mostly of tart plum/fruit and a licorice aftertaste. Identical to the smell and with its very mild chocolate taste. This reminds me of a mild Earthmonk. Medium in the mouth and very smooth. Drinkability is limited by the odd tartness.

Photo of oregonskibum
3.55/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Pours a coca-cola brown. Fizzes on pour with a one-inch tan head that dies down to a flat appearance almost immediately. No real lacing.

S: Even though the appearance doesn't indicate, smells overly carbonated. Get some sweet caramel malts and raisins or other dark fruits. But there's another flavor that really shows up strong that I can't place. Kind of an earthy, almost leathery aroma that isn't entirely welcome.

T: The dark, bittersweet chocolate comes through more on the taste along with a strong bready note. The caramel and raisin flavors are still there, but much more mellow. Hops are pretty subdued, but there is a faint bitterness there. Get some cocoa on the finish with just a only a very minor warming affect at the back of the throat. The unidentifiable flavor from the smell remains, but it's not as much as a detractor on the taste. Beer seems to mellow and the flavors work better together as it warms.

M: Medium bodied with moderate to higher than expected carbonation on first pour.

D: I've had this twice now. The first from a 500ml swingtop that looked like it leaked in transit. Something wasn't right. This review is from a 12oz bottle and while it tasted much better, I'm still not convinced that this is an A rated beer. The flavors are well integrated, but the flavor picked up in the nose that carries through to the taste is a little bit of a turn-off.

Photo of rsant
4/5  rDev -5.2%

Photo of hu5om
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

thanks again to portia99 for the super solid extra!
a-dark brown with a purple hint. light khaki foam ring.

s-nutty and very malty. lot of caramel and some chocolate

t-again, nutty, caramel, malty. maybe a bit of cinnamon?

m-pretty smooth, very nice tingle that lingers while most of the big flavors are cleany out relatively quickly.

d-very good. not a huge bock guy, but this was great. super solid for an extra!

Photo of cretemixer
4.83/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

They don't look any better than this one. Firey auburn in color with a thick, dense tan head. Retention is solid and what does recede, leaves a sticky lace in its wake.
Toasty aromas with a hint of cookie dough and a nutty, earthiness to it.
Huge malts make up the flavor profile on this one. Bittersweet and complex, but oh so drinkable. There is just the right amount of a hoppy bite to this beer and the slightest hint of the alcohol lurking there. Smooth and creamy with prickly carbonation. The biggest fault to this beer is that the liter sized bottle just isn't enough! How about a 2 liter next time?

Photo of hawks10
3.8/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle - Bottled February 5th, 2010 - Poured into an imperial pint glass...

Pours a very dark brown, nearly black and appears completely opaque at first. When held up to the light though, it does show some burgundy highlights. Two fingers of pancake batter like head forms and slowly recedes...

Upon first whiff I swear I smell a bit of coffee and chocolate. Very unexpected. Somewhat roasty/smokey, sweet though with ripe dark fruits and some toffee as well...

Darker and more roasted flavors than any other doppelbock I have tasted. Somewhat smokey, but sweet too. Dark fruits and caramel/burnt sugar. A touch of alcohol presence. Some hop bittering in the finish...kind of reminds me of a quad...

Medium bodied with a slightly thick, creamy feel...

Photo of mhewes
4.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A : Pours a nice dark brown with a big tan head. Good retention and lacing from it.

S : Lots of roasted malt with chocolate and coffee notes

T : Bready malts at the beginning followed by some nice coffee flavors with a hop bitterness on the finish. Very nice balance.

M : Chewy, full-bodied, thick

D : A good sipper that's one of the better doppelbocks that I've had. It's one that I'd love to have again.

Photo of SaucyA
4.37/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml... Not sure how old it is.

A - Pours an extremely deep, opaque brown into the snifter. A soapy half finger, almost yellow head sits atop, but doesn't stick around long. Looks like cola.

S - Nice roasted malts, alcohol, raisiny undertones. Dark fruits also underlying, no notable hop presence. Second molasses as it warms.

T - Oooh this is a winner. Yes, an absolute winner. Chocolatey, roasty malts are constant through the drink, with dark fruits peeking in and out. Quite bittersweet, but alcohol really isn't anywhere to be found. I think this bottle may have a little age on it, which managed to pull everything together in a truly splendid way. World class, and the best Dopplebock I've ever had.

M - Slightly undercarbonated, but perfect body.

D - This is awesome stuff. It's going back on my wants list :)

Notes: On election day, what's better than being truly liberated?

Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am so glad that Hooker has made it to PA. Pours with a nice head. Big taste of roasted malts. This is a great beer to sip for a long time. Only a little taste of the 8% ABV due to the malt and a hint of chocolate. This is truly the best of the doppelbock style which is a style that I enjoy. Cheers.

Photo of SShelly
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark dark brown with some red, very little head.

Aroma is bready and sweet, there is something slightly tart to it as well.

Flavor is sweet and malt with lots of biscuit. Lots of bready tones left in the mouth after a sip.

Pretty tasty overall and nice and easy drinking.

Photo of smonice
3/5  rDev -28.9%

Photo of UncleFlip
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Arrived in my cup with a nice deep ruby colour; rather beautiful. The smell seemed a bit airy, yet nicely sweet, with tones of orange and molasses.

The flavour seeemed just a bit thinner than I had expected. It was nicely spicy, with a healthy maltiness and hints of fruit.

Mouth-feel was even and predictable. No real surprises here.

I found this one very nice and enjoyable. I look forward to getting my taste buds around more of it.

Be well

Photo of piconaut
3.75/5  rDev -11.1%

Photo of CurtFromHershey
3.91/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown, bordering on porter appearance. Minimal tan cap which recedes to nothing in fairly short order.

Smell is top-notch. Typical dark fruit character of a doppelbock with roasty undertones. Very, very nice.

Taste is great, but not what I'm looking for in a doppelbock. Minimal sweetness and moderately strong roasted character, while enjoyable, do not hit the mark for me.

Mouthfeel again is nice but not doppelbock-ish. A bit thin and not as sticky as you'd expect for the style.

Overall this is a great lager, but I'm hesitant to hold this in the same regard as celebrator, troegenator, or other great examples of the style. Style guidelines certainly won't stop me from drinking this beer regularly in the future.

Photo of GehenHerzog
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

Photo of deejaydan
4.83/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow, I finally got my hands on the beer with the latest buzz. First the appearance.. well, holy cow that is a impressive looking bottle. 1 full liter. Dang... nice flip cap on top, with the lil bit of tape noting bottling year. Nice touch. Poured into a glass (with a bit of glugging due to bottle design).. Pours nice and dark black, almost imperial stout dark. A head that starts nice and thick and then leaves itself stuck on the sides of the glass. Smells of Roasted malts, perhaps a bit too much of roasted malts as it is hard to pick up any sweetness in the aroma. Tastes of roasted malt, and some hit of alcohol in there. It's there, but it's not overpowering. Very very smooth for a beer of this magnitude... Nice rich and creamy mouthfeel.... all around, a great brew!

Photo of GCBrewery
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of datalager
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%

Photo of steinlifter
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour: This poured a clear dark brown (color of coca-cola)..sudsy tan head that left spidery lacing down the sides of glass.

Smell: biscuity, slight sweetness.

taste: crisp clean, and no sickening sweetness, nice hop kiss, chocolate notes..slight sweetness.Peachy.
mouthfeel: again crisp, nice carbonation, slighly dry, but wet finish, medium body.

drinkability: this was a sheer joy!...great brew, probably one of the best "doppels" I've ever had!....highly recommended.

Photo of HiroProtagonist
4.55/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thomas Hooker Liberator Dopplebock was served from a one liter flip-top bottle with a "bottled in 2004" lid seal. In a pint glass, the beer was dark dark brown color and was topped by a thin and fine tan head. The nose was quite subtle, but yielded some very nice aromas...chewy creamy coffee malts, countering figgy sharpness, and dark fruit esters. The taste was anything but subtle. A big creamy coffee-raisen malt profile hit, then quickly opened up with tingling dark figgy-choco-sharp bitterness...laced with dried fruits such as apricot, cherry, and peaches. Nutty flavors then appeared in the transition to a drier cocoa-bitter nutty dark fruity finish. The distinct stages of flavors and sensations captivated me. This beer had just the right mix of malts, fruits, and bitterness. The body was well-composed for the flavors and character of the beer, as was the high-powered carbonation. The balance and excellent flavor of this dopplebock made for easy drinking. Liberator Dopplebock is not to be missed. Big thanks to Thrasher for sharing this treat.

Photo of BeerRun13
3.31/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Third time I've received this gem in a BIF or through a trade... time to review it. Unfortunately the little sticker across the swingtop is missing from this one, so I have no idea as of to the vintage.
Pours a very dark reddish brown into my mug. A thick cream to tan colored head isn't going anywhere.
Caramel notes and some a little heat in the nose.
Much more bitter than I remember the previous versions. It might be a little off... maybe from the trek it took to get here. I remember this being much more on the caramel, creamy, smooth, side. It gradually gets better as it warms up.
Still has a medium-full creamy body. and goes down well, the bitterness I'm getting on this one could be played down a bit.
Not as good as the previous bottles I've tried. A little more of an alcohol kick than I would expect for an 8% brew. I'll score it fair from past experience. I'd love to see another one of these come my way for a re-review.

Photo of orcasteve
3.68/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a nice robust dark malt and sour flavor, this has a mildly thick body and a clean finish. this get sourerer as it warms up and gets beter. this is a nice earthey brown like fresh tilled upstate new york soil, is very cloudy i would like to try one fresh one for comparason, mine was a 2006 and i was glad to have all of the one that made it to me. (leaked in shiping).

Photo of Bubba83
4.67/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to barnesy148927 for trading this to me. Really appreciate it! Poured into a snifter and drank at around 50 degrees.

This is a very appealing doppelbock visually, extremely dark brown, black in the middle of the glass. A one finger width light tan head tops things off and looks pillowy. Great retention and good lacing.

The smell blew me away. The complexity here is breathtaking. Dates, fig, plum, cherry, chocolate, caramel, vanilla, roast and even some hoppy citric notes resemble that of an orange blossom. Underlying molasses and brown sugar.

It doesn't taste as complex as it smells. A lot of the dark fruit aromas don't pull through as well in the flavor. Caramel is there, along with some cocoa, vanilla, roast, brown sugar, and cherries. I get some kind of non descript dark fruit flavor also, but it's not as crazy as the smell. Still tastes fantastic though.

Mouthfeel is perfect. I just love the texture of the beer, it's delicate and silky, has a somewhat mellow carbonation level, just enough to bring the beer to life. It's got a medium thickness, yet still remains fluffy.

Quite drinkable indeed. I'd love to try this again next to my other favorite doppelbock, Ayinger Celebrator and see how it compares. This is a style I'm generally frustrated with because most of the American examples are a hot/sweet mess. Thomas Hooker is the first American made doppelbock I've tried that woos me. A pleasure to drink.

Photo of BadBadger
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yum..a 500ML swing top bottle, opens with a olfactory smacking pop. An exceptional smell of strong roasted malts. A hearty head forms and lasts. The taste is closing in on perfection, with an amazing sweet malt vanguard and a slight bitter tailing. A wonderful doppelbock which should never be passed on, if the opportunity presents. Enjoy!!!

Thomas Hooker Liberator Doppelbock from Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 661 ratings.