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 jamie2dope
3.52/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Maibock has in recent times become one of my favorite styles of beer; I only wish it was produced by more breweries. I gave this a rigorous pour in to a large English style pint glass, and was met with an orange colored brew, with a small white head. Carbonation seems lively, as evidenced by the bubbles rising in my glass. Creamy smell, with a lot of complexity going on here; i get some chalky characters, maybe some honeysuckle, and black pepper. First wave from the taste is honey, followed closely by some spicy pepper, and ending on a somewhat boozy alcohol trip. Body is close to viscous; it definitely seems to be intending to pack a malt punch. Still, perhaps the alcohol could be toned down some. One bomber of this was the perfect way to get things going for tonight. Aging this one might be a good idea to let the alcohol subside. Final verdict is that this is a pretty good Maibock that I buy whenever it is released. This year I will make sure to grab one to lay down. Cheers to Smuttynose for brewing this cool German style. I would love to brew one of my own some day.

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Photo of EPICAC
3.52/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear copper. Topped by a sudsy, off-white head that thins to a film, leaving no lace.

Smell: Malty, spice, grassy hops and strong alcohol.

Taste: Sweet and malty upfront, some juicy fruitiness. The finish is a peppery alcoholic spice with a mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, high carbonation, smooth.

Drinkability: The alcohol is very evident.

Overall: This is a pleasant enough beer, but the alcohol really masks a lot of the other flavors and aromas.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cheery-looking orange body with a small, white head.

Smell: An aroma filled with honey and spice and everything nice (i.e., dough and lemon).

Taste: Light, sweetish caramel flavor with notes of bee-fresh honey and citrus fruits. Noticeable doughiness. Hop flavor and bitterness remain quite light. Wraps up with a very drying finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-body. Medium carbonation. Somewhat sticky mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Works for me! A pretty good maibock.

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Photo of mcallister
3.55/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Signs of thunderstorms in the forecast is this brew isn't overly clear. Pale off yellow bordering on orangish brown. White head is thin and whispy but large. Moderate retention with more moderate lacing.

Bready cereal malt aromas with hints of toffee. A light floral hoppiness with carbonated aromas.

Nice toffee infused malt but a little off in the alcohol integration as it leaves a unpleasantry in to my liking. Sweet caramel on the finish with really no fruit in the mouth. Butterscotch with a slight chewy ness. Mouth is thick rich and creamy.

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Photo of MrSeth
3.55/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours with a 1/4" white head with some lacing on the glass. An amber body. The nose is honeyish, with butterscotch in the mix. Along with that almost grapey "bock" aroma. There is also honey and lightly toasted english muffins in the nose. There is almost an apple juice taste to it. This is an interesting style of beer and another good effort on the part of Smuttynose. Cheers.

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Photo of wyllder
3.57/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, orange-amber with a small ivory head.

The nose is a pleasant candied caramel malt smell with a bit of apple behind it.

Fresh from the fridge, this is really too closed up and has a bit too much carbonated bite. Until it warms up some, very little of the flavor comes through. Even warmed, I didn't get a lot off this until the aftertaste which is a pleasant mild caramel with just a bit of a husky bitterness to it.

Drinkability and mouthfeel are both above average, but nothing to write home about.

Overall, not bad.


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Photo of ArrogantB
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz 2008 bomber courtesy of Dyan, thanks for the opportunity. The color of this beer is orange and has an odd brightness to it. It smells yeasty, cloves, malty. The flavors I get are fruits like apples and fruit with acidity. I am sure fans of the style will like this but my palate is still unable to really appreciate lagers.

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Photo of nickfl
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Two fingers of bone white head on a clear, light golden colored body. The head settles slowly and leaves thick lace.

S - Pilsner malt aroma, honey and graham crackers. Light euro hop character.

T - Alcohol and moderate hop flavor up front. Some sweet malt shows up in the middle to try and balance but is not sufficient to push back the spicy alco-hops. Much of the same flavors in the finish, very spicy, almost like belgian yeast character.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a somewhat sweet finish.

D - Not bad, but a bit off for the style. The alcohol is a bit hot, or at least spicy, and there is none of the requisite smoothness of even a strong lager. Not a bad beer, but not a good Maibock.

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Photo of fitzy84
3.6/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Moan and Dove. The drink had a good sized head which laced away quickly. General look was a rich, murky, orange-like appearance. The aromas were a bit intriguing mixes of citrus smells and some malt. The taste had the above flavors mixed wonderfully in a great carbonated, medium body. What I liked about this drink was that it definitely had a lot going for it but it also had simple tastes and structure. Wicked good.

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Photo of Martin2D
3.61/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Perfect yellow with a large white head that retains quite well.

S - Malty, breadlike

T - A ton of alcohol with tastes of spices and even a little bit of fruit. There is a slight malty/wheaty aftertaste. Complexity follows the apparent alcohol, however.

M - Medium in carbonation and medium-light in body. Very warming alcohol on the way down.

D - Definitely a sipper because of the apparent alcohol content. There are some delicate flavors that match alongside

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Photo of biegaman
3.61/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650ml bomber, 2007 Edition, thanks to Hogtownharry.
Big fluffy white head over a clear golden body. Orange-ish in colour. An unmistakably lager aroma. Off-fruity notes in the smell. Border line foul like aroma. The flavour boast a big malt bill but is drowned out by an obvious alcohol level. All considered, given the style and especially given what the aroma offered, the flavour is damn fine. It taste quite nice. Finishes on a toasty, dry note. This is good, but I can't say I'm a huge fan of the style. I wish I could say more but this one is largely forgettable.

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Photo of rhinos00
3.61/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a weizen glass.

A- Pours a light golden amber. Perfect clarity. Produced three fingers width of frothy, foamy head after an aggressive pour. Good head retention. Thick lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Toasted malts along with a bit of caramel. Has a bready quality to it. Almost smells like wort when my friend is homebrewing. Has a slight fruit aroma to it.

T- Immediately a bit of fruit and caramel malts come forth. Really tastes just like the nose. Develops a bit and finishes with nice toasted malts and a bit sweetness.

M- Light to medium bodied. Good carbonation. Finishes semi-dry.

D- Very smooth and easy to drink.

Overall, not my favorite, but still well done. Probably pass next time around.

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Photo of John_M
3.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Max's the other night. I'm a big fan of Smuttynose beers, so had high hopes for this one.

Pours a solid amber orange color, with decent foam retention, but really minimal lacing. On the nose one gets some sweet malt and a bit of honey, but that's really about it. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose. There is some nice sweet malt, with some melon and honey, and a bit of roastiness. However, at least to me, this comes across as a very simple, one dimensional maibock. There's a little bit of dry hoppiness, right at the finish. The beer has a pretty good mouthfeel, pimarily from the relatively high abv., but there's nothing mind blowing about this beer.

A good, solid maibock, but nothing really memorable. Probably would not order this again, to be honest.

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Photo of deejaydan
3.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to Wyllder for this bottle.

It is a nice looking bottle... pours a nice lucious light amber color, with a short head. Wonderful color.

Aroma rich of Malts

Taste... well, This beer should be served at 45 degress or so. I tried it first fridge cold, and it had a very spicy, dry finish that didn't sit well with me. As it warmed, the malts came more into play.

Mouthfeel is slightly thick and clingy... and very nice

Drinkablity... as long as it's warmed slightly, it's good.. but served too cold.. that dry finish just rubs me wrong.

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Photo of akorsak
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bomber purchased at Well's Liquors.

A: The bock has a nicely vigourous head, stirring up a finger and a half worth of foam that affixes itself to the sides of the glass. The body of the lager is a paler (relatively speaking) orange-yellow color, looking like a weizen without the more amber color I was expecting.

S: The nose is malty sweet, strong but not concentrated to a doppel level. Green grapes and raisins, dry tart fruits adequately define the aroma profile.

T: The flavor supports the nose, creating a bigger grainy tart fruit flavor that ends with a bitter flourish. The graininess is apparent, creating a cereal dryness that brings out a concentrated grape and raisin flavor that is slightly tart. The malts also manage to create a sweetness that could easily be mistaken for Belgian candi sugars. The finish has a bit of alcohol heat and some hop bitterness.

M: The mouthfeel leaves a long warm finish, sweet with a nice dry undertone.

D: The beer is a little too big for really dive into. A bomber is nice though, another solid entrant in the Big Beer Series.

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Photo of weeare138
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Ortino's Northside. Appears a golden amber with a small off white head. Small streaks of lace are left around the glass.
Smell is of mildly sweet doughy, honey biscuit malt.
Taste is of the sweet aromas with a bit of apple and a bit of a citrus and vegatal taste coming through that wasn't overly appealing.
Mouthfeel was crisp, warming, and sweet with a lip smacking sugary syrup feel.

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Photo of WanderlustNJ
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was my first Maibock so unfortunately I have nothing to compare it to. It was purchased at WholeFoods during a Smuttynose tasting in the Bowery Beer Room. There were 5 Smuttynose on tap and this one was the one I selected for my growler. The pour into the growler had excessive head and was a challenge for the pourer to fill. That was not the case when I filled my glass the next day. The negative on this beer was the strong alcohol aftertaste. That very well may be intended for the style but for me it overpowered the initial taste and was the single lasting impression.

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Photo of mlazzaro
3.66/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy light brown color. White head is holding nicely.

Smell is subtle, but what I can smell is appealing.

Roasty lager. I feel like I can taste wheat which would explain the haziness as well. Taste good. Really interesting, it a bit hard to accurately describe because I haven't had too many beer like this one.

It didn't say on the bottle, but I am not surprised to see that this beer was 8.7% ABV. It was drinkable, but the alcohol was quite noticeable.

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Photo of bum732
3.67/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale golden yellow, decent head with ok lacing. Smells of doughy malt, slight floral and herbal notes. Tastes of sweet doughy malt, moderate bitterness with a kiss of herbal. Moderate body and carbonation.

A solid maibock, i had the Berkshire maibock before this and much preferred that, had more flavor. I thought this beer was a little to agressively hopped as well. Not bad, but probably wouldn't try it again.

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Photo of burnstar
3.67/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark gold with a medium sized head that dissipates quickly. Lots of visible carbonation. Smell is sweet. Honey. Malty. Herbal hops. Taste is huge malt. Toasty and sweet. Big hop bitterness coming in the middle. Very herbal through the finish with a strong lingering bitterness. Extremely flavorful throughout. Full bodied and well carbonated. I believe this is my first bottled Maibock so I'm fairly unfamiliar with the style. I have had a Maibock at a brewpub and it was excellent, although I'm not sure how true to style it was. I think this beer tastes good but I'm not loving how the flavors are combining. I feel like the particular big toasty light malt flavor in this is not complementing the strong bitter and herbal hops. Again, not bad but not as good as I had hoped.

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Photo of djeucalyptus
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a near-buttercup straw hue with potent effervescence yielding a solid two-finger head with moderate retention and ample lace.

aroma is sweet with undertones of earthy malts and a hint of spice. some crisp apple, a bit of grass, some herbal overtones and more honey sweetness.

taste is potently malty with a pungent grassy, herbal hop blast. for some reason reminds me of a helles lager kicked up to 11. boozy, rich caramels, fruit, toffee, lots of herbal and grassy notes with a potent finish that has a lingering bitterness.

mouth is smooth, almost slick but not quite. ample carbonation helps cut through, as does a good bit of bitterness that trails in the finish.

all in all, an impressive interpretation of the style. a touch boozy for my liking, but that's just me. the flavors are interesting, the mouth solid, and hell - it looks great. so I'd take another in a heartbeat.

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Photo of IBUnit63
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I missed this round last year but snagged a few at Julio's yesterday. As the season finale of 24 winds down, I crack the cap on this deal and bring it to the Portsouth snifter since I can't find my friggin' Smutty pint glass.

Now that's the first beer with real head I've seen all friggin' evening. 1 1/2 fingers of buttery-eggshell hue atop a honey-colored cloudy note of goodness. Is crystal clear with only faint, slow wisps of carbonation rising through the utter viscosity of it all.

Now I don't know a whole lot about Maibocks but I didn't expect the huge silage bite of Saaz upon my generous olfactory. Downright stewy with some bitter German qualities along with a dire muscat plea for help. There's a dry, evaporating note of honey syrup that has an astringent quality.

Much, much, much lighter in body than expected. So crisp but the driest honey anyone could imagine...alongside the corny, silagey Saaz-ish presence. Maybe not so much clean as unadulterated. For something with solid weight it has a nice dryness that must be harvested and enjoyed. There;s carbonation that helps it along but light honey and that silage deal makes a high-maintenance yutz such as myself need a little more clarity.

Sweetness is there. It's layered, have the Saaz stewy mess underneath as well as some astringency. Finish is dry with a little booze burn. Am a little upsset that I sent a few things in trade before trying them first. This is good but I should enjoy it more.

Smutty puts together solid product. This is solid. It should have a little more meat on the bone, but it's still good.

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Photo of dfillius
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a pint glass.

A: Aggressive pour yields two fingers of just off-white head with stellar retention. Cloudy amber liquid. Cloudy lager?, that's the only negative.

S: Delicate, highly malty nose. Crisp euro-herbal-hop nose with some spice aspects as well. Very delicate, only picking up an aroma infrequently. I'd like more smell.

T: Strong and sweet maltiness with a decent complexity. Tiny alcohol hint grows with first few sips then subsides. Tiny metallic note somewhere in the distant background is a negative.

M: A bit prickly. Round full feeling, a bit chewy?

D: Good. Strong though light bodied, round and complex.

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Photo of CHADMC3
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This orange to copper colored brew gives way to an abundantly fluffy, white head with big bubbles of carbonation and plenty of sticky lacing.

A sweet or citrus aroma is first to appear, accompanied by toasted malt, and a bit yeasty. Beyond that, I am struggling to identify anything else specific on this brew. After a good 20 minutes + of warming, it actually takes on a slightly milky aroma as well.

Much deeper flavor, starting with sweet malt, caramel, a toasted or biscuit presence and a pleasant alcohol burn to finish. The malty sweetness really becomes more pronounced as this beer warms, and the slight hop finish also arises.

Medium to fuller in body, medium carbonation, and really a great palate as you reach the bottom.

This becomes a very drinkable beer, be careful not to serve too cold, as it seemed to hide some of the character until it warmed a bit, but now there is a great hop/malt/alcohol balance.

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Photo of eberkman
3.69/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at Trader Joe's in the 'Ham. A pleasant surprise -- it had been a while since I'd seen anything new on the shelves other than their house-brand pilsner. I don't imagine this will be there long.

Pours a slightly hazy bright golden orange into a pilsner glass leaving a big, tight khaki head that reduces to a finger in a couple of minutes. The one-finger head sticks around a long time, leaving some sticky lacing on the side.

Sweet malty aromas with some pungent fruitiness but accompanied by a strange, subtle sausage or bolognalike smell.

A very honeystung brew with tatstes of sweet, mildly toasty, biscuity cookielike malts with some citrus leading to a somewhat hoppy but not at all bitter finish. Finishes clean with few lingering taste trails.

Mouthfeel of crisp carbonation. Not a particularly strong tasting beer, but the sweetness and high ABV would keep it from being one you're going to pound all night.

Nonetheless, a very refreshing spring beer. Not cheap ($4.49 at Trader Joes for a 1.6 pint bottle) but another winner for the Smutty Big Beer Series. Me likey.

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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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