Salvator Doppel Bock | Paulaner Brauerei GmbH & Co. KG

very good
1,369 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Salvator Doppel BockSalvator Doppel Bock

Brewed by:
Paulaner Brauerei GmbH & Co. KG

Style: Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This unfiltered bottom fermented double bock beer has been brewed for over 375 years--always adhering to the original recipe. The taste is unmistakable, with its smooth chocolate flavor, robust dark caramel maltiness and a light note of hops--providing a nice intensity on the palate.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-23-2001

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,369 | Ratings: 2,702
Photo of Oahu
4.37/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First Dopplebock ever, but I was pleasantly surprised. Pours a dark amber, head dissapates rather quickly- leaves a pleasant lather on the side of the glass.

I made the mistake of drinking it too quickly, it needs to warm up a bit before it loses it's bite. Once it does so it's a phenomenal beer. I was stunned by it's lack of bitterness. Almost fruity and light. Goes down too easy. I could've had a bunch of these. Best with a heavy meal, not for the faint of heart. Taste hits you in several layers.

 507 characters

Photo of malthead
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Great color, the head's not as big as i would like, (although i may have poured it cooler than it should be) Smell is very malty, maybe a little caramel. As others have said, taste is pretty complex, a lot going on... starts with sweet malt, then a little hops, almost spicy, then maybe a little of the 'sour apple' that Venom mentioned (i can't exactly put my finger on the taste, so that's as close as i can get...) followed with caramel and a little bitterness for the long finish. Good mouthfeel, really sticks around, although maybe thinner than I would prefer. Drinkability would be around one or two at the end of the night - not my session brew, but a great nightcap.

 675 characters

Photo of canadianbarman
4.06/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

--330 ml bottle with no freshness/bottled date. $2.99 cdn.
--Poured a caramel/copper in color. Great, fluffy white head that stayed not bad but left nice lacing.
--Slight smell of caramel, even slighter smell of fruit.
This was my first foray into the Dopplebock style and I must say that I was truly impressed. I had no expectations whatsoever and will definetally try more of this style. That said, I think that it will be tough to top this particular beer. I liked everything about it. The one thing I would change is the alcohol content...only so I could drink more if it without feeling the effects so fast. I say give this one a try.

 647 characters

Photo of euskera
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Trying this as I write..

Purs out a caramel reddish brown with a nice fluffy off-white head with plenty of staying power..

Smell has a malty overtone with a little astringency in there.

Taste is good, but not great. The astringency is there with some alcohol overtones. I was expecting a little more malt sweetness, and find myself wanting more. An excellent brew for sure, but the Celebrator is much more my style. That said, I would never turn one of these down if offered one..

 489 characters

Photo of diablo14
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

they just got a new round of these puppies in after a few years of being unsighted and let me tell you, ive been going heel for leather on them. a classic bock by any standard, i can drink these to the point of excess and it still dont matter. karlos and i savored a couple of these not long back and it was a great experience. always a pleasure to see the look on someones face when they are trying a new beer and are clearly moved by it.

amazing look in the glass. almost angry orange brown color with a spectacular golden head that wont let go. the bubble action is there but not going too crazy. big time nose that screams malt, fruit, and roasty goodness. the flavor is complex yet marvellously balanced. the initial malt hit gives way to a raisiny fruit flavor with a rum butter and cookie dough taste. some tart cherry and caramel presence also. the hops are dry, floral, and provide more than adequate crispness and balance. as karlos suggested in his review, despite this it merely provides a supporting role that brings everything together in a brilliantly balanced package. its too easy to get a few of these under the belt before you know youve done it too.

one of the beers on this planet that any discerning beer drinker has to have tried, salvator is one of the benchmarks for the style. many have endevored to copy this little beauty, and not come within an elephants trumpet of succeeding. if you havent had this, and have the good fortune to come across it, it should be purchased and consumed no questions asked.

 1,539 characters

Photo of WetCoaster
4.79/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: A surprisingly pale amber with gold undertones; looks more like a WCPA than a bock. Still, it's a nice-looking beer that pours with a finger of rocky off-white head. The head fades quickly. Surprisingly active carbonaton. Thin lacing.

Smell: Wow. Rich and incredibly complex. Starts with rich sweet malt and apple yeast esters. Soon, wave after wave emerges, chocolate, caramel, cherry, buttered rum, vanilla--it would take a nose more trained than mine to pick out everything. Superb.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Ohhoho YEAH. Rich malt and chocolate coats the tongue, with hints of caramel, black raspberry, cherry brandy--it never ends. There's a bit of alcohol heat at the finish and perhaps the slightest hop bite. The mouthfeel is equally fantastic, smooth and chewy, with just enough carbonation to tickle the tongue. Where all of the initial fizz went, I have no idea.

Drinkability: Smooth mouthfeel, fragrant, delicious... just keep 'em comin'. Oh wait, it's 7.5% ABV--don't.

IMHO, this is THE dopplebock. I can't imagine how it could be any better, absolutely fantastic. One of the best beers I've had, period.

 1,132 characters

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Nice dark amber with ample head

Smell- Sweet smelling, fairly complex, detected caramel or molasses smell

Taste- A sweeter beer than I normally like, but I have to admit it tasted really, really good. The sweetness had caramel or molasses flavor.

Drinkability- Probably this isn't a summer brew or something I could drink a lot of in one session. Salvator is a little too filling for a session drink. I really did like this beer a lot though.

I think a beer like this would go better in colder weather than in the humidity of a Houston summer. I will return to this beer again in colder weather and see how I feel then.

 643 characters

Photo of jdhilt
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a two-finger head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Deep, clear amber color. Low carbonation. Nose is malty. Medium bodied. Starts sweet, very smooth, the high ABV is not noticable. $1.90 for a 12oz bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

 252 characters

Photo of Dubblebock
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Paulaner's Salvator is a good, and somewhat unusual doppelbock. A bit less of a heavyweight compared to some of the other beers in this style, but still quite palatable and enjoyable.

Salvator pours with a beautiful head, thick but not cloying. It delivers a clear appearance for a doppelbock, with an amber hue rather than the traditional dark caramel coloring typically associated with the style. Good nose, malty and sweet, a slight alcohol singe coming through.

The taste was quite good on this sample. Sweet malts on the forefront of the flavor, followed by slight fruit hints and a nice grain richness. Nothing bitter going on here. The alcohol is masked by the malt presence, only a slight warming influence tells you that this is a 7.5% ABV brew.

Sweet finish, malty aftertaste. Good mouthfeel, not too thick or grainy. Very drinkable and enjoyable.

All in all, another winner from the folks at Paulaner. This is a bit off of the beaten path for a doppelbock, but I'd say give it go if you come across it. It's a different take on a time-honored and sometimes all too predictable style.

 1,106 characters

Photo of aracauna
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is on the pale side of doppelbock; it’s a dark tan and not really very clear. It's got a good head, though. The almost prune aroma and flavor dominates with a sweet caramel backup. It’s not too heavy but packs a definate punch. It does get a bit sweet, but not so much so that I had trouble finishing off a half liter.

 325 characters

Photo of usualpulp
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an amber color with a slightly tannish head.

The smells of this beer are somewhat complex, lots of malt and fruit tones to it, along with a strong alcohol smell.

The beer tastes very malty, strong banana flavors, and some clove, light hop bitterness. There is a bit of an alcohol aftertaste to the beer. Tastes like it would make a good winter beer.

Salvator is a good beer, rather complex, perhaps something that would take getting used to, definately not something I could drink a lot of, but seems like it would make a great beer to have on a cold night.

 572 characters

Photo of avylover
3.62/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This used to be one of my favorites, yet last time I had it it tasted "dumbed down." I was eager to give this one another shot...

Pours out a clear golden mahogony color with a hefty light brown head. Aroma is very sweet & malty, with almost a beef jerky type aroma. Nice spicy alcohol aroma. Unfortunately, the taste is not as full as the aroma. It seems most flavors are in the background. Starts off with a smooth mild maltiness, along with some somewhat blandish cardboard type taste. The taste is in the finish, where the maltiness turns sweet & sticky and the alcohol turns spicy. Mouthfeel is somewhat thin at first then becomes syrupy, which detracts from the drinkability. Good, but give me a Korbinian any day.

 723 characters

Photo of DPMomutant
3.36/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer is amber to copper in color....very clear. The head is fairly large, creamy, and has moderate retention. I see some stickiness as the head subsides.

The smell is not very strong, but I catch bits of banana here.

The taste is not quite as sweet as other doppelbocks I have tried. The alcohol is allowed to take over a bit here. Still some fruit in the front and the aftertaste though.

Good carbonation here but a bit more watery than others in this style. Very warming going down though.

This isn't the best dopplebock, but it isn't objectionable and it is certainly drinkable. Would rather have a Celebrator or even Sam Adams DB though.

 658 characters

Photo of Ellbert
3.3/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Very clear reddish brown color. There was a nice rocky tan head above this. Very light in color, this left something to be desired.

The smell was of molasses and a hint of alcohol.

The taste was of molasses and caramel. The alcohol was evident, moreso when it warmed. I could not find the hops in this beer. A very malty beer with an alcohol kick.

The mouthfeel was very good on this beer. It was meaty and rich with just enough carbonation.

 464 characters

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This doppelbock was a brownish amber color, in fact a lot lighter than I expected from a bock. It had a long lasting off white head that clung to the sides of the glass. Im not really into bocks (too malty) so I didnt expect much from this brew. It smelled like prunes or figs, other fruits (apple?), and alcohol. The taste was very sweet and malty, but definitely not cloying. The flavors of prunes, figs and rum stood out. There was little discernable hoppyness and a strong alcohol taste. The alcohol was the most unpleasant part of the taste, Ive had much stronger belgian ales that taste lower in ABV.

This is a decent beer, just not my style. I want to try Celebrator.

 678 characters

Photo of Jacobob10
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this one as a dessert after a meal of chicken and rice. Amber colored with a tremendous, frothy head. Great smell, apples and a touch of caramel. Very sweet smelling. Very smooth for a doppel bock. Mouthfeel was very smooth as well. A very tasty beer, very drinkable for a dopple bock.. I would have this one agian.

 319 characters

Photo of Onceeven
3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This one's been on my "To Get" list for some time. Kept looking at it, and finally snatched one up.

22oz. bottle. This is one great looking beer. Head didn't last too long, but the color is brilliant. Clear sparkling mahogany, with tons of bubbles rushing to the surface. Smells of fresh malt & spice. Mouthfeel is sufficiently chewy, par for the course for doppelbocks from what I've experienced. Couldn't get past the fresh malt taste. It brought back memories of my first homebrewing experience and smelling the roasted malt for the first time. Tasted pretty clean to me, not too much going on, but there was a pleasant spicey note coupled with the smooth alcohol finish. Could also detect a sensation of peppermint on one occasion? Anyone else?
Good beer, immensely drinkable. Could be a session beer for me if not for the 7.5% abv!

 840 characters

Photo of crackerpooch
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer presents in a 12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date. It pours a 2 finger beige head that is thick in consistency. The head has good retention and laces beautifully. A stunning looking beer. Color is a crystal clear reddish-amber. It looks a little light compared to the Sam Adams doppel bock that I am used to.

The aroma is very sweet. Almost smells like gingerbread cookies. A very pleasant aroma. The first taste overwhelms and I have to go for another to get a grasp of it. Definitely a sweet bready taste. A hint of alcohol can be detected. The mouthfeel is highly carbonated and seems a little thin for a doppel bock. Not my favorite doppel bock, but not a bad drink.

 689 characters

Photo of kegerator
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured a amber/brown color witha nice sized head that dwindled slowly leaving a good bit of lacing
smelled very nice, caramel, some faint citrus and spice and a bit of smokiness to this one
tasted just about the same as the smell, but it was a bit lighter and not as complex in the taste. Comparing to Celebrator this one left a bit to be desired but it is still a very nice beer. I enjoyed this one with a nice brat off the grill. It was good night.
mouthfeel was lighter then expected and a littel fizziness.
quite drinkable. I woudl buy this one again, but if i had my choice i would probably opt for celebrator

 618 characters

Photo of Rastacouere
3.42/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Totally limpid copper hue with a small off-white head that is quickly limited to a ring. Honest malty aroma with a light floral hops note. Mainly geared toward caramel, white chocolate, cashews, vanilla and not so well-hidden alcohol. Very sweet palate. Hazelnuts and crème caramel, licorice and marshmallows. Interesting flavor profile, but that's just because I love the style and this one doesn't have any of the balancing elements (smoke, light bitterness) that top examples like celebrator can boast about. It's all about the malt which can become rather cloying at the end of the bottle. Smooth creamy medium body displaying particularly low carbonation.

 661 characters

Photo of Beastdog75
3.33/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

When I see that a German brewery brews a doppelbock, it is usually regarded (either by the brewery, myself, or other beer drinkers) as the "crown jewel" in the brewery's lineup. In this instance, I found Paulaner's Salvator to be a respectable brew, but I would favor their hefeweizen the most. Salvator claims to be the originator in the style, but I was expecting a fairly complex brew here and in the end, I didn't find it in this brew.

Salvator pours a really nice reddish/amber (almost brown) color with a 1 finger off-white head that disappears within 30 seconds, leaving no lace. The smell was quite neutral and unsensational. Some sweet, malty aromas, caramel-like notes and some alcohol were detectable in the nose. The mouthfeel was a bit thinner than expected with a light carbonation. The flavors that were present were good, albeit a bit simplistic. The dark, caramel like malt flavors were the main attraction, with some "dark fruit" notes to accompany it. The flavor of alcohol was present as well. Some nice citric hoppy presence added a slight bite to this beer, but make no mistake this beer is more malty (and alcoholy) than anything. A nice dryness shows up in the finish and continues into the aftertaste, along with some more continued alcohol flavors and graininess. A decent warming sensation finishes out the beer.

I did not find the complexity I was looking for in this beer, and I thought the alcohol was more present than it should be. It struck me as around on par with Samuel Adams Double Bock, but I still like Optimator the best out the doppelbocks I've tried (I've yet to try Aventinus or Celebrator). A respectable brew by all accounts, but I've had better.

 1,697 characters

Photo of JISurfer
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was a decent beer, but nothing super crazy or anything. It had many great smells with it, as well as tastes. It was fairly sweet, but still had the bold malt flavor that is associated with this style. The alcohol was a little strong for the other tastes, but it wasn't anything too unbearable. There was the flavors of "dull" or "dark" fruits, but they kind of took a side stage to the malt. I am a big malt guy, so this was a drinkable beer to me. The head was a little disappointing, but I guess you can't have everything all of the time.

 545 characters

Photo of goindownsouth
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

"Danke schoen" to Bierman9 for allowing me the opportunity to sample this winner of a Bier...

This Bier, vibrantly bubbly and copper in color, presented with a decent head at the start, and held on to some of it throughout the tasting of this brew. The aroma was sweet. Maybe some fruit, but I cannot make out specifically which one(s). Definately notes of caramel in the nose. The flavor carried through with the caramel theme, and offered a good dose of the (in)famous Hallertau hops, which I love dearly. A solid example of this style. One I will be visiting again soon. Well worth seeking out.

Zum wohl!

 613 characters

Photo of ColoradoBobs
3.41/5  rDev -13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

After all the reviews I've read, I was expecting this to be some kind of nectar. Hmmm, well, it wasn't. I've got five more bottles to drink, and I hope to have my initial impression changed by them, but though the first one was good, it certainly was not a "4.13" in my book. From a doppelbock, I had expected more complexity, more depth, and a denser mouthfeel. It for sure didn't taste like a $1.69-per-11.6-ounce-bottle beer.

Malt and hops dominated the aroma and the taste, pleasant enough, but it was nothing like the rich roasted darkness or chocolate-spice-raisin taste you might expect from a much touted d-b, not at all like what I find in say, a St Martin Dunkler Doppelbock by Aktien-Brauerei in Kaufbeuren (which is just a few dozen miles from Paulaner house in Munich) or the wonderful d-b brewed by the monks at Andechs.

Mind you, this is a nice-looking, very drinkable beer. Indeed, it is really pretty in the glass -- nice light-tan head, though not very long lasting, and a lovely red-brown color.

Really easy to drink as well -- could this be one of the few "light" doppelbocks? [;-)

Okay, here's a second go-round: 3-29-2004. Just finished a Celebrator -- it's my birthday, so I'm Celebrator-ing! -- and wanted to compare it with the Salvator.
I must say this is certainly a pretty beer! Nice clear amber color and a full head with good lacing that gives way quickly. Really lovely to look at. Unfortunately, it's in the tasting that it fails to stand up to its name -- it doesn't save me from anything.
A lot more hops-bite to this brew than Celebrator, not nearly as much character or depth. After this comparison taste-test, I'm standing by my earlier numbers -- a nice beer, but too hoppy and light-feeling to stand with its superiors. This is a "light" doppelbock!

 1,806 characters

Photo of soper2000
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My first doppel. Picked it up pretty much on a whim and I'm glad i did. It pours a nice amber color with a white head that disappears pretty quickly. Aroma is of malt and alcohol. On first taste the alcohol is definetly present but so is a ton of malt. This is a malt monster, notes of raisin are also apparent. Mouthfeel is decent. I just don't know how drinkable this one is. 1 will do me for a long time. Maybe it's just not my style so i can't mark it too low.

 464 characters

Salvator Doppel Bock from Paulaner Brauerei GmbH & Co. KG
3.92 out of 5 based on 2,702 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.