Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series) | Smuttynose Brewing Company

very good
286 Reviews
Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series)Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series)

Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company
New Hampshire, United States

Style: Maibock / Helles Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.70%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
We brew our Maibock to be hugely malty & subtly finished with a variety of continental hops, with an eye-pleasing russet brown color. Prosit!

2007 - 7.0%
2008 - 6.2%
2009 - 8.4%
2010 - 8.7%

Added by Bierman9 on 04-30-1998

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 286 | Ratings: 368
Photo of pabstsmear
4.95/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This brew is bottled conditioned, so I'm going to put a few in the cellar and try them at 6 month intervals.I found this brew to have bold lacing and a bright amber hue with an exceptional head. I detected a sweet malt aroma with hops, however the alcohol was hardly detectable. It wasn't until I drank two that I realized that this is potent stuff. Very drinkable and enjoyable, you can't go wrong here.

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Photo of vladtheimpaler
4.87/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz Bomber. I have to say I was very impressed with this one, being a huge Maibock fan and not seeing a good one very often. And the bottle conditioning is a nice added touch. Pours a nice deep yellow with an orange tint, and a fluffy white head. Aroma is clean and malty that says welcome to Spring, its Maibock time! Flavor is big, bold malty and clean. This certainly beats last years version by a long shot. And because of its strength, you may want to have someone to share the bottle with...

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.7/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a large fizzy head the bursts and bubbles down to a thinner skim, but it takes its time. Fed by lots of bubbles that swim inside a rusty gold color. Decent lacing.

Aroma is big honey and big flowery hops. Malty layer running throughout. There's a juicy, sweet, candy-like essence in the background, giving nice depth. A really attractive smell.

Flavor is pretty much like the aroma, only bolder. Maltier, too, and with a bitterness that keeps things balanced and interesting. A banana-like slickness/mellow sweetness comes in as it warms. Totally juicy pear/peach combo. Creamy mouthfeel is also light, tickling the tongue with polite carbonation. Finishes with a combo of toffee creaminess, apple-pie sweet/spice, and grassy bitterness, plus a pleasant dryness to top it all off. Pretty much one of the best-tasting beers I've ever had, and definitely the greatest lager I've ever had.

This is freaking phenomenal. Kicking myself for not buying more than one bottle. I know the style itself is a seasonal thing, but c'mon, Smuttynose, make this a regular year-round offering. Please!!!???!!!

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Photo of hoptualBrew
4.65/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz beautiful bomber bottle conditioned marker as 2011.

Poured into an oversized wine glass a thicker honey orange brown with a huge white cloud-like head that is taking forever to receed. Lacing is beautiful thin microscopic fine & overtly sexified.

Nose on this is amazing! I cant quite place alot of it - very spiced smells like maybe honey, toffee malts, citric zests, touch coriander, a tad of nutmeg maybe? I dont really know, its an orgy of a nose though - very spicy, sweet & fruity.

Taste follows the nose, but decieves the appearance. Such a light hued brew, but damn does this one pack on the complexity! Malty up front with honey citrus zest & coriander is what I'm getting on the mid-palate. Finishes with a little hop & alcohol bite. Malty sweet agglutination on the back of the tongue. Delicious as the honey lingers around.

Body is moderately heavy (7/10) with a touch of carbonation. I was suprised that more carbonation couldnt be detected on the tongue - as the head on this one was enormous. That last statement was most likely an observation taken from a lack of knowledge in the science of brewing. Forgive me.

$7.99 for this one at Total Wine & More - very fair price.

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Photo of bbeerman
4.6/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A..Nice, light brown. Not too much head though.

S..Strong on the hops (nice!).

T..Very matly, which I was hoping for and received. A slight sweetness that adds to the overall delicious taste.

M..Very good; pleasing on the palette.

D..I could have a couple of these in a session as this was VERY drinkable. Overall, a wonderful maibock, but more importantly, a wonderful beer.

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Photo of ThreeDimesDown
4.59/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very nice brew from Smuttynose from start to finish. Pours a slightly hazy burnt gold color with a big fluffy white head.

The nose is blended nicely with light spice, banana, cakey malts and farmhouse funk. No ingredient overpower another.

The taste follows the aroma, with additional light fruit hints and sweet caramel malts.

Creamy even with very active carbonation that gives it a crisp finish. ABV% hidden and almost non-detectable.

This beer is a real treat and damn near perfect!

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Photo of goz
4.57/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a clear reddish-brown, with a medium sized tan head, mostly diminishing, leaving some lace. Aroma is big & strong - tons of caramel, bread, and some appple and pear, backed with a mild hoppiness that keeps all the malt aromas in check. Flavor starts sweet, like caramel covered apples slapped between a couple pieces of whole grain bread, ends with a pleasant and subtle bitterness. Huge, bombarding mouthfeel, a lot of different flavors mingling about, coating the tongue, and lingering forever. An amazing brew.

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Photo of cnybrewblog
4.54/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I am not all that familiar with the maibock style, but I love this beer.

The smell was so raw and malty that it smelled like a light, prefermented wort with a high gravity. It's like nothing I have ever smelled before out of a commercial brew. It's like I drew it off of the fermenter.

The bottle describes this as a "brown" color and I would totally disagree. It looked to me more like a deep gold color. The head rose and fell quickly leaving light lacing on the glass.

The taste was phenomenal. It has such an earthy bock flavor, but lacks the heavy body of some other brews in the bock clan. That raw wort smell lends well to the taste and gives a flashback to the first time I drew unfermented wort out and tasted it.

It's really something to behold. Smuttynose has never been a beer I go out of my way for, but they really won me over with this one.

Cheers to them for kicking ass.

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Photo of PEBKAC
4.52/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A maple-orange colored brew, hazy & impatient. It seems perfect for the fall season(screw spring!). There's an orange tint in the head, but the head does not last. Only gurgling sea foam remains after just a minute of settling. An army of bubbles march slowly to the surface, never breaking rank. It's absolutely gorgeous when pouring, but the magic sadly dissipates.

Honey, bubblegum, lilac, & melon hit me on the nose, all backed by the comforting heat coming from the alcohol.

I taste more honey, some freshly buttered toast, & enough sugar for four pots of coffee(They sell syringes of insulin over the counter right?). A bitter edge develops in the finish with a suggestion of red lettuce & burnt pretzels.

The body is more creamy then syrupy, but characteristics from both are there. The carbonation is immaculately soft on the tongue, but once it fades, it slithers down a little more slimy then one would like.

The alcohol isn't unnoticeable, but only by the nose. My tastebuds went largely unaware, though right after consumption, my equilibrium soon realized what had transpired. It's delicious. I think I can manage another bomber before naptime sets in. :)

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Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Purchased at Stateline in Maryland. The beer has a bit of foam to the pour which settles quickly. Pale orange in color. Sweet and malty smell. The taste is malty and sweet with a banana-ish flavor. Mouthfeel is very smooth and this may go down too quickly. I have been on a bock kick recently & this is a very good maibock.


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Photo of avalon07
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a mug. Had a yellow-brown color and a cloudy consistency. There was an inch of foamy, long-lasting head. OK lacing.

S: A big odor of malt, with some sweet element as well.

T: Tasted of sweet malt (which dominates the flavor), caramel, and an acidic fruitiness. Very complex and easy to drink.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a super dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: One of the most drinkable maibocks you're apt to find.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Love the growler. Makes life wunderbar.

This is a fabulous maibock - if you know what maibock can/should offer.

Gorgeous thumb of head topping a hazy, true amber composition. Gifted a streak or two of lacing.

Mucho malty waft. Overtones of musty sour and post-storm funk. Real eau de rustic farm.

Malt wallop with a lazy phenolic tang. Wants to scream band-aid, but luckily only a faint murmur. Underneath the malt malt, supported with artisan metallic sweetness. Substantial and welcoming on the tongue. Hearty and satisfying going down.

Wow, I would drink this anytime, especially on draft. What an insanely drinkable, not at all ridiculously overdone maibock. As close to a bullseye as any domestic version I've had.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of jwc215. Thanks Joe!

A hazy light gold colour with a 1 finger head of foam. Lacing looks to be at least good.

The smell is very malty with a big bready profile and some caramel malt sweetness. A wee bit of citrus finds its way to my nose as well.

The taste is bready and malty sweet with some notes of ummm...chocolate and toffee(nice!) with just a very light taste of some citrus hops that peeks through and then disappears quickly. Very tasty and I'm glad I don't have to worry about a hefty abv so this is very easy to drink.

Medium mouthfeel with lightish carbonation. Very smooth brew.

Drinkability? It is malty but not too sweet, it has a better than average mouthfeel, and it isn't going to grind you down with the alcohol. What's not to like? :^) Near exceptional in every categoy.... I enjoyed the hell out of the session.

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Photo of rapidsequence
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber,$5.85 from Pints O Plenty. 2010 vintage.

Appearance: This is a fine looking beer. Clear, light orange color (not the "Russet brown" claimed on the label, but that would be too dark). Thick white head with aboe average retention leaves some spots of lacing.

Smell: Malty and a little bit toasty. Some fruity notes, floral hops, and pretty obvious alcohol. Very strong malty aromas, like a barley-lager, or a lager-wine.

Taste: Again, malty and very sweet with toasted bread flavors and a little caramel. Quite boozy and the alcohol goes along with the hops to give a nice balancing bitterness. Finishes pretty clean with just a little toast and grain.

Mouthfeel: Soft and smooth. Pretty full for the style. I like the carbonation level-- its just right.

Drinkability: This is one of those beers that I bought without having an interest in trying it. What a great surprise though. Really tasty with some nice complexity. A little too much hot alcohol. Seems a little unfair to compare this beast to a run of the mill helles, but when you do, it really stands out.

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Photo of TheBrewo
4.48/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A hard pour reveals a three finger foamy head of gargantuan bubbles, which greedily cling to the side, leaving thick patterned lacing throughout. The brew itself is an initially translucent orange honey color, with visually low carbonation, that becomes cloudy when joined by the bottle's sediment. The aroma is fruity, with apple, orange, and plum as the highlights. The nose is otherwise filled with big, fresh malts, and the tiniest sting of alcohol. The taste's front is exhibited by the malts and fruit from the nose. This is quickly balanced by an enjoyable hoppiness that is both tart and appley. We end on a note that is rich in alcoholic character, which creates a spicy pepper flavoring that takes us into the aftertaste. The brew is medium to full bodied, deliciously creamy, and mildly coating, leaving the mouth satiated. While everything remains inviting about the brew, the abv keeps you from quickly draining your glass.

Overall, what stands out most is the well balanced flavor, between the big malts and the bitter hops. The flavors meld together to form an expertly crafted, creamy brew.

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Photo of putnam
4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A creamy, gut quenching model of a beverage. Loaded with dry, crispy malt vanilla-tinged deliciousness... dry but thick on the palate. Fresh hops and predictable, vanilla cream flavored mouthfeel make this a slightly vacant rendition of a classic style. For sweet-toothed amcraft geeks, this must be heaven. For me, it is merely recognizable as premier quality. This is what everyone drinks in Blue Velvet. PBR nowithstanding.

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Photo of ZAP
4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A big ol malty nose....smells like a doppelbock...reminds me of Salvator...good breadiness......a deep gold/orangish/brown color...looks the part...mouthfeel is sticky sweet, and full bodied.......big on the malt...feels like a doppelbock...taste is sweet dark fruits....I love the maltiness of this one...the hops are hidden but do provide a tight finish that keeps this from becoming too oversweet....I like this a lot....I suggest they bill it as a doppelbock though because it tastes, feels and even looks like one (Salvator is about the same color)...Thanks again to Bierman9 for hunting this baby down...

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Photo of Bierman9
4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The "new" Maibock is out, after a hiatus of 3 to 4 years. Scored one today (16MAY07) at Jaspers here in Nashua. I, for one, am glad to have her back in the Smutty lineup. The label still has the same description on the side, though the main label pic is no longer a map of the Isles of Shoals (now on the Imperial Stout) but a repro of a 16-17th century painting of a European couple... Anyhow, to the Bier!
Russet colored? No way! Now a clear, golden hue, with some sporadic carbo ascending within. Head is thin, fine and stark white, with decent lacing. A nice bready malt sweetness emanates, with a noble hop bite melding in. Body is medium-plus, bordering on chewy, and the Maibock is quite smooth and velvety on the tongue.

Flavor, too is bready, with a touch of toasty malt also blending in well, producing a surefire, light sweetness coating the tongue. Has a honeyish lean to it as well, with a hint of fruitiness. Then some noble-like hop action kicks in, with a bit of spicyness along with some fragrant characteristics. Finish is dry and refreshing. Tastes very good, imho.... Yes, very glad to have my Mai back....

Zum Wohl!!!

overall: 4.4
appearance: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | mouthfeel: 4.5 | drinkability: 4.5

*** ***

Enjoyed this offering both from the bottle (today 14APR02), on 06APR02, on tap... Enticing dark-copper (or, as the label says, "russet") color.... Has a small, creamy head, leaving a ring o' lace down the glass. Malty nose, albeit milder than in years past. It is medium-bodied, and beautifully smooth passing over the tongue.

Lots of maltiness in the flavor... including some caramel... and some flavors I have a hard time describing... reminded me of green-peas smothered in butter... huh? (so I'm weird...). Actually its finish is a pleasant, smooth hoppiness, which gives it a good balance. I enjoy this sucker, feeling it's quite drinkable, overall....! (4.5/4.0/4.5/4.5/4.5 = 4.40)


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Photo of greencovesteve
4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: hazy orange with a nice head and lacing.

S: bubblegum. Sweet grape, strawberry fruit blend.

T: mild and malty with a fruity center and a near peppery end. Allot going on here.

M: solild carbonation generates a building peppery heat with bitter semi-dry ending.

O: solid. I like the maibock.

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Photo of bultrey
4.46/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I've been a little lax about writing reviews lately, but every now and then, a beer comes along that just makes me stop and sing its praises. This is one of those beers.
Smuttynose has really been knocking my socks off lately, whether it's the obvious IPA, or the smooth-as-hell barleywine, or the wonderfully bittersweet porter, but this beer tops them all, in my opinion.
This pours a slightly hazy, beautiful caramel color, just a clue as to the striking caramel malt characteristic of the flavor. The head is frothy, foamy, fluffy and gorgeous, and stays put about an inch or so above the surface of the brew, making for a particulary appealing appearance.
The smell is nice and understated -- some very nice notes of toffee and caramel, with an ever-so-slight grassy/herbal note.
The taste is a caramel malt explosion, the toasty toffee and burnt sugar notes have just been masterfully coaxed from the barley. At the same time, the beer strikes a quite delicate balance, with a nice, just slightly bitter floral note, and a crisp, dry finish.
Mouthfeel is fantastic. Everything I want in a beer. I could swish this around before bed like mouthwash, and I'd be a happy man.
Hop heads will obviously not be crazy about this, but probably aren't crazy about Maibocks to begin with. As good as any German beer I've ever had.

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Photo of Jason
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bright and bold garnet hue, good lacing effect down the glass. Honey malt sweetness in the aroma and flavour with a twang of hops and alcohol. The alcohol has warmth but a lightly toasted biscuity malt melds well and brings out further complexities. A relatively sweet brew with a clean palate.

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Photo of RyanLigeia
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light very hazy beautiful golden color. Looks inviting.
Smells sort of like sweet caramel and candy with both hoppy and malty notes mixed. I cant even describe what it smells like exactly but this smells AMAZING.
The taste does NOT disappoint! Im getting some alchohol but mixed very well with all the scents described above. Doesnt stray from an actual beer taste at the same time.
The mouthfeel fits this one great. Very BIG. SOme carbination but that doesnt take away from the heavy smoothness.
Overall its a little different than most maibocks Ive had before but that doesnt mean its not a great beer that shouldnt at LEAST be tried!!

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Photo of rasta16ry
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a bargain bin at Blanchard's in Boston. A nice pickup found by my friend Seth. Poured it into a Leffe chalice.

It has a real copper glow to it, well-carbonated and the malts are very sweet to the nose. The head is very good-looking, about an inch and sticky on the sides of the glass. I get a little spice in the smell too, at the end, and maybe a touch of hops. The alcohol is there in the scent too, but it's not overpowering. One of my favorite-smelling types of beer, and the Smutty might be my new favorite.

Anyway, the taste is just as good. Not only is it balanced, but it has all the bases covered about as well as it could. Starts off malty and sweet, there's a sort of hoppy bite toward the end, and it finishes nice and smooth. I think this is a great beer, and I'm sorry I can never find it around.

I can drink this one at any time of year, I think, but having it in the winter is just as good as any other time. It's extremely well balanced and has a very appealing mouthfeel. I think it's 7.7% ABV, but it hides it well and I have no problem pounding a bomber of this with some tunes on. Rock'n'roll McDonalds!

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.43/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2007 release poured from a 22oz. bottle into a Smuttynose US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright amber color with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is very spicy along with honey, caramelized malts and a touch of hops in the background.

T: The taste is very malty and has strong flavors of honey, citrus and coriander spice. The spice is a bit stronger than any other beers that I’ve had in the style and is such that you’d normally get from a Witbier or Hefeweizen, but it works very well. A mild hops presence provides a very nice balance. The after-taste is bready, spicy and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, very clean finish.

D: Quite tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, excellent representation of style with a big twist, nice strong kick, I haven’t been disappointed yet with the Smuttynose Big Beer Series (I’ve had Big A IPA, Imperial Stout & Farmhouse). Really Old Brown Dog, Wheat Wine & Scotch Style Ale are still to come. Looking at the beer itself, I find it to be an excellent beer and one that I could drink for a whole evening and enjoy the entire time.

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Photo of Slaille
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle was a 2007 vintage, bought at the brewery in April 2012.

A complex and inspiring beer.
Barley candy joy, but not too sweet. Dry finish.
Malty, splendid. Wish I could have tasted the 2012 version, before aging, just to see what 5 years does to a good brew.

Damn, I only bought one... Next time.

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Smuttynose Maibock (Big Beer Series) from Smuttynose Brewing Company
3.99 out of 5 based on 368 ratings.
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