St. Nikolaus Bock Bier | Pennsylvania Brewing Company

St. Nikolaus Bock BierSt. Nikolaus Bock Bier
410 Ratings
St. Nikolaus Bock BierSt. Nikolaus Bock Bier

Brewed by:
Pennsylvania Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Munich and various roasted malts give it a very malty, rich flavor with a hint of burnt flavor. 100% imported Hallertau hops, moderate bitterness and aroma.

Added by SheepNutz on 12-03-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 410 |  Reviews: 211
Photo of RickKrumenacker
3.51/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - One-finger head with mostly tight, small poured to a deep cherry-wood color...head dissipated pretty quickly but a thin ring was left around the edges of the beer

S - Some upfront alcohol...maybe a little bit of black licorice...sweetness once the beer warmed

T - Alcohol presence builds as the beer warms...fairly sweet, with hints of caramel...smokey malts...mild bitterness hits the back of the tongue

M - A little thinner than anticipated, but still crisp...tight carbonation

D - pretty easy going down...not necessarily my favorite style, but still pretty good

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Photo of blackie
4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: allagash glass, the beer is a clear, deep brown in color, good retention, light lace

s: toasted german malts supported on a clean lager malt body, crisp noble hops, malty but well in balance, dark grain breads, munich, toffee and an elusive cold-smoke, raw sugars, very nice

m: carbonation on the low side of medium, full-medium body

t: flavors of lightly toasted munich malt and toffee ride a generally clean lager base, delicate roast astringency, the moderate sweetness is well-checked, intriguing hardwood smoke in the finish, crisp noble hops give a mild bitterness and spicy flavor

d: a well crafted, authentic, very drinkable bock

single from Norm's, Vienna, VA

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Photo of TheycallmeTim
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into an American pint glass.

A--Penn St. Nick pours up a delicious reddish caramel color with a one finger creme colored cap that fades to skim pretty fast. Lots of little bubbles pock the rim of the skim throughout the tasting. Nice and lively for a lager.

S--That grain liqueur of melanoidins you expect from the style reign mightily here, providing plenty of syrupy nostril-coating sweetness. Undercurrent notes of bing cherries linger behind the sweet bready aromas. Sulfur and hops are nonexistent, as they should be.

T--More of that concentrated malt punch--I know calling a lager fresh is a little contradictory, but I can tell a difference in the brightness of the palate on this beer as opposed to the German imports. It's a welcome one, as it keeps the malt sweetness from being overbearing or stale. Bread notes range from biscuit to honeyed whole grain to dark pumpernickel. Minimal fruit, and again no sulfur, although some weird sour/bitter tug comes in on the finish, which is my only complaint. It's almost hidden by an interesting smoky flavor that creeps in as you near the beginning of the end, so to speak, and the finish starts (the "burnt" flavor the label mentions? dunno). Overall a satisfying and steady dose of the full profile of what malt can do, as even the bitterness I think is more from the grain than from hops.

M&D--Mouthfeel opens up with some lively carbonation, enough to make this creamy rather than watery, as the Mahr's Christmas Bock I tried was. Drinkability is average as this is a little strong for the style, but nowhere near unforgivable.

This holds its own not just as an exceptional domestic version of a style I hardly ever see from US breweries, but against the top German representatives in its class as well. Worth seeking out.

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Photo of philbe311
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - A finger and a half of off-white head composed of various sized bubbles... Respectable retention give way to an intriguing lace... Bronzish copper color... A limited amount of very slow paced carbonation... Coats glass well...

S - Not quite what I expected, but still pleasant... More mild than expected and if blind-folded, I could have mistaken this for a Czech Pilsner... Grains... Bread... Toasty malt... Mild hops... Corn...

T - Malt... Bread... A brisk spiciness... Faint caramel... Faint toffee... Apple... A very unique blend of flavor leads to an intriguing complexity...

M - Dry, start to finish... Creamy and smooth... Crisp... Sophisticated...

D - Honestly, I'm not sure how I feel about this brew... Probably need another to reach a solid conclusion... There's a lot I like, but overall I'm not sure I'm overly impressed...

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Photo of PatrickJR
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Clear, darkish brown with some rust colored highlights. 1-2 fingers of light tan head rise with decent retention. Head falls to a thick collar with some lacing.

S - Roasty malt with aromas of dark bread and hints of chocolate. Caramel sweetness is blended with a metallic scent.

T - The taste comes in roughly the same order as the nose. Early palate is some mildly roasted malt. Flavors of dark bread open up and the sweetness grows. With the sweetness there's some caramel flavor going on mid to late palate and there's a hint of cinnamon-like spice. Late palate/finish drops this score a half a point due to the big metallic character. Once the sweetness dies down there is a big mineral-like, earthy, and dusty finish which doesn't particularly suit the rest of the beer. Still very good.

M - Medium bodied with a nice moderate carbonation.

D - Very drinkable, and probably the best bock I'v ever had. Loads of flavor without being watery or too roasty as some bocks I've had.

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Photo of sonicdescent
4.14/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

According to my notes, the biggest difference from this on tap Over the bottle are a slightly enhanced taste and look. The head sticks around much longer and while the tastes are mostly similar, the Christmas touch of honey and other spices are allowed a bit more room to show off. Mouthfeel and drinkability are still great, and smell is unfortunately still unremarkable.

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Photo of umtox
4.09/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep dark reddish brown with a tan bubbles.

Smells of molasses and spice

Tastes of roasted malt and spice. A nice full bodied,yet creamy texture on the palate. A tiny bit of the aftertaste associated with an American lager is present.

Highly drinkable for a beer of this ABV. I had many on New Years eve and never tired of them.

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Photo of auxiliary
4.33/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance - Nice mahogany color with a small tan head that left some nice lace o the glass.

smell - Smells of malt and cimmamon here.

taste - Little bit of a spicey beer,taste of malts here. After it goes down, I said, taste a little bit like a lager. I dont have the bottle in front of me, but i think it did say something about a lager on the side of the glass.

mouthfeel - Medium - light body.

drinkability - This is a real good beer, worth trying. Nice winter beer to try on a cold day. Lots of taste here.

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Photo of righthereisay
4.23/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was very satisfied with this bock. Very full flavored. In fact, when served at a Christmas party with folks who have no idea about non Bud/Miller beers, they all loved it. The case was finished quickly. I was very satisfied.

This beer was not Penn's best, but almost. I would have to try them both at the same time though.

And of course, Santa on the front added to the festive atmosphere.

This version is not as flavorful or full bodied as the Reserve. I would recommend the Reserve, definitely on tap.

Although it is high in alcohol, you cannot taste it. Great beer. Clap Clap Clap.

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Photo of Gmann
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear ruby brown color with a fairly small white head that settles into a light ring. The aroma is faint, I pick up some munich malt and a hint of red wine. The taste is of the bready/doughy munich malt, mineral water, and a nice lightly toasted grain. Quite a clean taste. Perhaps some red grapes in the end. The bock has a moderate body with crisp carbonation, nice malty sweetness, very easy on the palate. A highly drinkable bock, very clean and crisp, nice malt flavor. The 7.5ABV is nowhere to be found. Good brew.

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Photo of wedge
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle says 6.9% ABV

Dark mahogany color with a nice creamy head that leaves some drippy lace on the glass. Malty, bready aromas followed by some pale fruit and berries. Rich malty flavor...sweet berries, caramel, raisins. Clean and a little sticky. Medium bodied and smooth. Not bad...not the greatest bock in the world though.

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Photo of plaid75
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a murky deep amber hue with a half finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured sweet cereal malts with an earthy hop and dark fruit.

The taste was spicy and malty with a nice earthy sweetness.

The mouthfeel was full and creamy.

Overall a tasty and unique Christmas beer.

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Photo of BeerSox
4.03/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into mug.

Cloudy dark mahogany hue with a one finger tan head that settles to a thin cap.

Dark candy sugar with a bit of caramel, and a touch of dry and toasty malts.

Burnt caramel comes up first with some lingering roasty grains that are similar to what you find in a porter. Hop bitterness is on the low end. Full bodied.

I always liked the darker Bock beers than the lighter ones, and this one is a good example of the former. Recommended.

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Photo of mbrasi
3.54/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Aroma is sweet with noticible alcohol not pleasant. Flavor is smooth with a partially clean finish. A little staleness in the finish. Malt dominates the flavor profile as expected for the style. I just think the finish can be a little better. After the undesirable aroma I was expecting an bad experience but the beer is actually quite drinkable.

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Photo of Jmamay22
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Great traditional depiction of St. Nick on the bottle. It gets you into the festive mood. The beer itself is a dark ruby red. The faded khaki colored cap settles to a thick collar that leaves minimal lacing behind. Smells of lightly roasted chocolate malt. The hops are subdued in the nose, but balance out the relative sweetness.

Tastes initially of sweet chocolate, but quickly finishes with a surprisingly assertive hop bitterness. The hallertau are quite noticeable and outweigh some of the more interesting and complex flavors imparted by the malts. The mouthfeel is medium and the carbonation provides a rich impact, but I would have hoped for something a bit more chewy for this style and beer. A little to strong on the hops in my eyes for the style, but its an enjoyable beer that would likely be improved when paired with some traditional German pork.

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Photo of IronCitySteve
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A dark amber color. Gives a thick brown foam head with more than sufficient lacing.

S: Nothing stands out, some bready malts, caramel with some hints of spice.

T: A good amount of bread and caramel dominate the flavor. Some spice comes through in the middle. The flavors combine rather well.

M: A thick creamy taste last on the palate. A decent amount of carbonation.

D: Despite a slightly higher ABV, I could enjoy more than one in a sitting.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
4.37/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Another beer I have tried numerous times and am just now getting around to reviewing. A beer I like a lot.

A very dark amber to brown body with a finger of tan head that has only a little retention. Leaves spotty lacing behind on the glass.

Smells slightly burnt with some choclate and earhty notes.

Tasty bock. Combines toasted malts, nice chocolate flavors and noble hops. Roasted, chocolatey and earthy spicy notes come together nicely. Extremely well-balanced and tasty brew.

A pretty light mouthfeel, well carbonated.

Drinkability on this one is absolutely fantastic. I can put these back one after the other. I had no idea that this beer was 7.5 %ABV until I went to write this review. Hidden extremely well, not even a trace of alcohol.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Bocktown. Actually my first experience with this beer though I have had the option of trying it many times.

A- Crystal clear Mahogany body that is served with a nice 1 finger light tan colored head. Head retention is great and traces of lacing are left all the way down the glass.

S- A little bit of sour fruitiness with a hint of cinnamon and German malt.

T- At first the fruity tartness comes through but it is quickly overshadowed by the big spicy presence that becomes the dominant flavor of the beer. Mainly cinnamon but other spices are in there too (maybe nutmeg). The malt comes through a little more for the finish and has the slightest roasted flavor but is mostly cinnamon.

M- Has a nice, light drinkable lager body with medium carbonation. Just what one would expect.

D- This is an awesome beer. I was able to finish two pints of it fairly quickly and i wanted more. One I will definitely be consuming more of this holiday season. Also the 7.50% is completely unnoticeable.

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Photo of Biscuit033
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark auburn with a 2+ finger head that leaves some lacing.

S: Bready malts, earthiness, and some sweet caramel hints.

T: Caramel, bread, and earthy/minty hops.

M: Full and creamy with a clean finish.

D: Nice winter beer. The alcohol creeps up on you but the beer is something that I would order more of at a bar.

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Photo of JamesS
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very nice dark copper color, with some light coming through, with good head and some nice lacing. Nice malty scent, earthy, but not as deep and strong as I'd like. Excellent taste, very thick and smooth, a lot of malty goodness, a real earthy flavor with some nice caramel finishing. It goes down very well for a higher gravity beer. An excellent Christmas bock.

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Photo of shaebs99
4.33/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice brownish color with a touch of red in the light. A tan foamy head leaves some lacing throughout.

Smell is of dark and roasted malts with a hint of spiciness (from the yeast/alcohol or maybe hops)

Taste is of roasted caramel malts with a slight burnt taste that finishes dry with a feel of hops. Really well-balanced flavors. Mouthfeel is smooth with a nice carbonation

It could just be that I was really in the mood for it, but I could drink this all winter. A nice malty step up from the Oktoberfests that got me through the past few months.

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Photo of UA8
4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the few bocks that i have tried and I must say its quite the tasty specimen. It reminds my a bit of and english brown ale. It has a nice dark chestnut color to it.
The flavor has nicely caramelized malts which fades in sour cherries and a touch a hop backing. feels fresh and smooth in the mouth. Overall a very tasty beer I guess Ill have to look for another quality bock to try.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a cold Steelers Mug. A large off white head appears on the light brown body. A nice show of lace ensues.

S. Munich malts, bready yeast, a whiff of alcohol?

T. Smooth and malty, slight bittering hops. Fairly complex. Some wheat notes. A slight roasted taste comes out as it warms a bit. Caramel malt as well. Very earthy hops make an appearance too. Carmelized brown sugar.

M. A little thin, a bit chewey, but also quite smooth and drinkable.

D. Drinkability does very well despite the ABV. Worth checking out, I'm going to save one and revisit it later.

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Photo of therica
3.9/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very nice bock.

A= dark amber-brown-red, modest head, some lacing.

S= malts, candied-raisins, apple, some florals.

T= nicely robust, bold bock, very present hops but balanced bite, apple, raisins, slight reminiscences of brandy from the ABV, very nice.

M= slight sweetness with roasted malts, balanced hops-bite residuals, all the fruity hints.

D= very drinkable but modestly limited by the ABV for quantity. Also slightly heavy for quantity.

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Photo of Riverwarrior
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

S = Sweet malts, molassas, and a hint of fruity "Twizzler" candy in the background.

T = Sweetness all around....which is great! Malty sweetness upfront, raisin and molassas near the end, with some sweet bread rounding out the finish. There was no perceived bitterness at all. Alcohol is completely hidden.

MF = Smooth as silk. Medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall, this is one solid bock beer. Very easy to drink and very delicious!

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St. Nikolaus Bock Bier from Pennsylvania Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.94 out of 5 with 410 ratings
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