Anchor Bock Beer | Anchor Brewing Company

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Anchor Bock BeerAnchor Bock Beer

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by GClarkage on 05-26-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 576 | Ratings: 991
Photo of Goldorak
3.01/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Sampled multiple times at the brewery during my tour of the place, 12sep2006.

Appearance: Quite dark, turned sanguine red when exposed to the light. Very nice sustained half inch of head.

Smell: Interesting caramel malts, and as hoppy as a Bock can be.

Taste: Plenty of malt body and well dosed carbonation, it does have a bit of a vegetal taste to it, but I didn't really see it as such a bad thing. Kind of like bitter rhubarb, and the malt sweetness tames the harshness of it. But it's the finish that I didn't like, as it was ashy, something I don't like at all, at least not at this level.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a five finger tan head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Opaque black/brown color. Light carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Molasses nose. Starts with a roasted chocolate/burnt oak flavor, finish is dry bitter chocolate. Really this is a bock with balls. $1.55 for a 12oz bottle from Liquid Solutions Tigard, Or.

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Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown in color, some carbonation, nice creamy head, some lacing afterwards.

S - Scents of sweet/roasted malts, and toffee.

T - The taste of kinda sweet, there's some slight toffee flavor, and a hint of prune's. The finish is dry.

M - Medium body.

D - Drinkable. This is a pretty tasty bock from Anchor, recommend for sure.

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Photo of Beerzebub
4.24/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark reddish brown, a finger of tan head that goes down to a thin layer pretty quickly.

Smells very inviting - caramel malt, roasted grain, loads of brown sugar, Christmas pudding, mushrooms.

Tastes roasty and malty. Pretty dry - a little sweetness, but very restrained and well balanced against the roastiness. No detectable hops.

Really rich wheat mouthfeel, excellent. Eminently drinkable.

This is really worth a try. Seems like a versatile food beer, too. I bet it would be great with something involving bacon and mushrooms.

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Photo of Absumaster
3.96/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was not very much impressed by the appearance of this beer. A very small head, which can not be called a head, a microscopic thin layer of off-white foam. Not much carbonation and a pitch black color.

Smell was really good, roasted, with grapes and raisins and some sweetness. Really smooth and inviting.

Taste was roasted and dry, nothing like the sweet smell, just dry. The dark malts give the beer a good maltbitter, and there is a good hopbitter in there too. The special malts really add to the taste, giving ot complexity and body, which is medium. In my opinion this is a true bockbeer, according to the guidelines.

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Photo of scottoale
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow, suprisingly good stuff!

Poured from a 12oz. brown bottle with a typical anchor label and some sort of a freshness/batch code (6FF) on the back label. In my tulip, this is a black, deep ruby red ale with a finger plus of ivory cream head that sticks around for a while, leaving a fine delicate lace behind. The head settles to a ring and when aggitated, fluffs back up to almost a 1/4"

It smells of sweet, nut-roasty malt...nice and earthy, full and rich of caramel, molasses and some boozy alcoholic aspects as it warms.

Dark rich roasty sweet malt, that is full of flavor and body, lasting for what seems, a short eternity with an earthy malt aftertaste that lingers. The balance is good with a light chalk type of bitter, in and out to the finish. Somewhat complex with an alcoholic backdrop, this is the tastiest offering from Anchor Brewing that I have had so far and it is worthy of the style intended.

A very pleasant easy drinker, that packs a little punch as well.

Overall, I think this is a very good rendition of this style, give it a try if you get the chance.

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Photo of sacfly
3.95/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz, 6FF stamped on the back. Just put the freakin date will ya?

Pours very dark, nearly opaque black/brown. Medium head of hearty brown bubbles. Aroma is of caramelized malt. Taste follows suit. Medium body, on the light side for the style. Nice roasted grain quality to cut the sweetness. Roasted quality comes out even more in the after taste. A bit dry for a bock. Well made and well balanced bock. Easy to drink and looks great in the glass.

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Photo of guzzle211
3.71/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into half-pint glass. Thanks to malthead for driving this across the entire US to deliver to me in a burger king parking lot.

Bocks are a mystery to me. I do not know very much about the style, and it seems every time I sit down with a bock, determined to figure them out, I usually come away perplexed. I know Anchor to be very true to the styles they produce, so I sat down with this Bock thinking I might learn something today.

A: dark dark brown with deep purple hints in the light (which can only penetrate at the top, no light breaks through to the bottom of the glass.) a mildly aggressive pour produces a healthy light tan head that takes its time to dissipate. Very little lacing.

S: mostly malty with a slight hint of the sweetness I describe below.

T/M: the taste changes drastically as it warms. Hints of caramel and a slight sweetness emerge, but the sweetness is nowhere near overpowering; a pretty well-balanced brew for being relatively complex. There is spicing in there that I can not place, but it reminds me of minced-meat pie (I will have to ask my grandmother what she puts in there.) As it warms and loses carbonation, it reminds me of prune juice. Mouthfeel is pleasantly plump. I like beers I can feel in my mouth, but I despise over-carbonation and don’t like to surprised by brews that need to be cut with a knife (don’t get me wrong, I love full-bodied beers, I just like to be able to plan when I drink them.) That being said, I felt this brew was spot on.

D- if i were a bock fan, i would find this very drinkable. if i had another one i would drink it immediately, its one of those things where once your pallate is adjusted to it, it goes down very smoothly.

Even at the end of this review, I am still unsure where Bocks fit into the whole scheme of things. I try to put brews into a roy-g-biv spectrum of the rainbow in my mind, where styles overlap in shades and blend into the next: but for the life of me I still can’t place bocks. My best guess would be somewhere between porters and abbot ales. The closest thing I have had to this is Stepan Razin Porter (which makes me believe Stepan Razin isn’t really a porter, which I have always felt, maybe its just labeled as such for the US market?) I am setting my sights on figuring this style out, it won't be long before I try it again . . .

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

Very nice offering from Anchor thats a little harder to find then most of their products. I had this in California from a 22oz bottle.

Poured a dark mahogony with a very small tight head that faded completely after a few minutes.

Smells of roasted malts primarily. with a little sweetness and some nutty smell I can't quite place.

Tastes on the drier side for a bock. Roasted grain with a whisp of caramel on the end, and a pronounced graininess.Alittle bitterness in their to balance as well.

Mouthfeel is very dry, with little creaminess.

Pretty drinkable for a Bock- the dryness avoids any lingering sticky feel and makes this quite sessionable.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.13/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pecan shell brown with candied cherry highlights... that is actually darkest crimson when backlit. This is, without a doubt, the darkest bock that I've ever seen; excepting doppelbocks of course. The beer is crowed with a gorgeous brown sugar milkshake of a head that deposits vertical streamers of sea foam lace from the glass rim downward. A great start.

Given the dark, rich color, I shouldn't be surprised that the nose is dark and rich as well. Dark toffee, dark brown sugar, molasses... I can't believe that the beer will be as sweet and sticky as it smells. I keep looking for chocolate/cocoa, but the nose is solidly in the caramelized cane sugar family. With more power, it'd be a world-beater.

When I drink Anchor beer, it's hard for me to escape the notion that I'm drinking--if not the necessarily the best version--the definitive version of that particular style. I felt that way about Anchor Porter, about Old Foghorn and now about Anchor Bock. It tastes exactly like I'd always thought, and still think, a bock should taste.

It's darkly malty and continues to favor caramel over chocolate. There are, however, some cocoa powder notes on the palate that I didn't appreciate in the nose. Some variety of earthy hop has been used and provides exactly the right counterpoint, both in terms of flavor and bitterness, to the primary maltiness of the beer.

As expected, it isn't all that sweet. As is often the case, it favors (mildly) sweet early and (mildly) bitter and dry late. This is an extremely well-crafted lager that is a cinch to drink. The 5.5% ABV may put it on the low end of the style scale in terms of alcoholic punch, but it's definitely on the high end in terms of flavor and overall quality.

Keeping in mind that it isn't a doppelbock, the body/mouthfeel is just about where it needs to be (I'll resist the urge to call for bigger). It isn't what I'd call full, or even medium-full, but it has enough sustainability to keep that beautiful bock flavor on the taste buds long enough for them to deliver the goods. I love the contrast between the full flavor and the relatively light body.

I haven't had a great deal of bock experience, but I recognize quality beer when I taste it. Anchor Bock is a truly wonderful effort from a brewery that specializes in brewing 'gold standards' and is one of my new favorites of the style.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.42/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to my big glass mug. Very nice DARK color. Bam, looks like a schwartz bier. Good carbonation and a nice big brown head that fades to a covering and a small lace.

The smell is very roasty, Dark caramel and some chicory.

The taste is very good, slightly sweet Dark roasted malt flavors of coffee and chocolate, the burnt toast finish is dry. Lip smackin good!

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, Oh yeah swish it around and enjoy.

Drinkability is very high every thing here leads you to want another. MK

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Photo of Solomon420
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Anchor Brewing during a recent tour. Great overall taste on this one, great beer! Its a newer beer for them, and they have hit the nail on the head with this one. Not as heavy or sweet as their barleywine, but just as enjoyable to drink. Recommended to anyone wanting a slightly thicker, more complex darker beer.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle purchased at Hollingshead Deli in Orange Ca. for $2.19 in May, 2006; consumed and reviewed in June 2006.

Pours a deep dark brown with the slightest hint of red-brown highlights when backlit. A pretty tan head fades to a solid cover that doesn't appear to be planning on going anywhere (except my tummy!).

Aroma is roasty caramel/chocolate (slight sweetness) but also slight bitterness- nice yin/yang. The bitter is almost a sharp tangy barbeque like notes. Quite fun!

Taste is rich deep roasty malts. A very sharp ending in the back of the mouth.

Mouthfeel is nice and solid- not overwhelming, and not thin. Just right!

I am not necessarily a big fan of the bock style in general, but this is quite tasty- I like it!

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Photo of JanM
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Anchor's dark beers have been appearing on my table at Christmas dinner for some years now. This one pours with thick, creamy foam, brownish in color. The color of the beer is reddish, dark brown. Smelling sweet, with hints of fruits and coffee. The taste is bitter with roasted hops and bubble-gum. It almost has a powder-like mouthfeel. It definately measures up to Anchor quality, although the tastes could be a bit more pronounced.

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Photo of Fugazme
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very dark... near black, ruby highlights against light... smallish, tan head. Lots of lace.

Aroma is complex. Alcohol, chocolate, malt, caramel... very strong.

Mouthfeel is creamy upfront... a touch dry on the swallow, but finishes sweet. A tad chalky. Some cola-like flavors with roasty malt tones. Little hop character.

This is a decent bock... wouldn't be a first choice, but highly drinkable.

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Photo of Foxman
4.09/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It came to me a dense brown with chestnut highlights, and the merest smidgeon of light tan head that disappeared before my eyes. Minimal lacing dotted the glass.

The aroma was fresh and busy with sweet malt and caramel, as well as dark chocolate, raisins, plum, and black cherry. A flit of floral hops dashes across the landscape.

Upon sipping, the deep malt sweetness rushed forth, bearing a slight charred molasses note, as well as chocolate, coffee, and raisins. An understated but present yeast note came through in the middle, doughy and slightly tart. As the close drew near, the residual malt carried a more mellow fruitiness, with cherry and berry popping up, before a soft hop bitterness lingered fairly in the finish. It's not stunning or remarkable, but it is a fruity fest, and a fun flavor profile.

A bit short of medium bodied, the malt feels chewy on the palate, and the flavor remains some time.

The look was kind of blah, but beginning at the aroma, it redeemed itself nicely, carrying a flavor that seems dependable and lip-smacking good. I had one, but had I not had kids in tow, I would gladly have had another, and it would have been every bit as good as the first. This is the kind of beer that makes bock season a's basic but fairly complex, and goes down smooth and mellow. That's a fine Springtime scenario.

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Photo of IrishRedRock
4.35/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Never did see this on the east coast, nor had I really known about it, so I had to grab a bottle of this upon finding it in CA. Crimson brown with a well held tan head. Spicy nose hints at plums and licorice. Flavor is really toasty with very nice complexity; subtle coffee, plums, an enormous chewy malt profile and a fair smattering of hops on the palate make this one interesting brew. Kind of reminds me of their OSA without the pine/spruce element, but still has a flavor profile all its own. Extremely drinkable at 5.5% as well. I'd be happy drinking stein after giant stein of this one.

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Photo of tonistruth
3.9/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- dark brown color with a 1" tan head, good retnet. Some lacing

S- sweetness, raosted malts, and coffee aromas as well

T- sweet roasted flavors, some hints of fruit flavor also (but very slight) no bitterness that i could pick up, roasted aftertaste.

M- nearly everyhing about this brew makes me think stout except that the body isnt as full as a stout. Smooth with the refined clean lager feeling.I think its a lager but i've never tasted one like this.

D- i see this as a nice to try every season it comes around. I dont plan on stocking it in my fridge. Awesome play on the bock style.

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Photo of tgbljb
4.35/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a very deep brown color with impressive reddish notes. Smell is loaded with malt infused with a nice dark fruitiness (raisins, figs, dates, prunes). taste is fruity sweet with the prune and dates really showing through. Finish is initially very sweet but a pleasant hoppy bitterness begins to assert itself. A very nice creamy mouthfeel is the perfect ending for this beer. Great drinkability. Really a winner.

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Photo of Gusler
4.22/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Upon the beers disemboguing the 12-ounce stubby bottle a deep chocolate brown with a massive creamy dark tan head that ever so slowly erodes leaving a thick blanket of lace upon the glass. Nose has a molasses like sweetness, big malt aroma, hints of hops and a bit of chocolate to this old schnozzle, start is somewhat sweet with a good grain presence, the top moderate in feel. Finish is lightly acidic, the hops pleasant in the spiciness, very dry aftertaste, a throwback to the old Bock’s like Pabst.

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Photo of jockstrappy
3.83/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a rich, dark mahogany color with a frothy and sticky 2" head. Aroma is roasted malts, with chocolate and toasted bread notes. Taste is sweet maltiness up front, with a mild alcohol kick mid-sip, and an ever so slight hop bitterness. This beer finishes VERY indeed, nothing lingering afterwards....very nice! Not a huge fan of this style, but this is one beer that will have me trying a few others.

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Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a beautiful black hue with a two finger creamy caramel head. Good retention and lacing throughout.

The smell was of malty sweetness with a hint of coffee.

The taste was of a deep roasted barley and coffee. A nice subtle sweetness, but a dry finish.

The mouthfeel was light and finished dry.

Very drinkable.

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Photo of edskirk3
4.62/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It's the 12oz, signature stubby bottle of Anchor Brewing fame, with a goat's head ("bock" is German for "goat") on the label, holding hops in his (he has horns, although if you study his face he looks a little effeminate) mouth.

Pours very dark brown, just barely translucent, showing shades of ruby in the light. Almost no head to speak of. One barely forms and goes away in the blink of an eye.

Anchor Bock has a rummy, raisiny, bready scent. It smells more alcoholic than it actually is. The taste is reminiscent of wheat bread, except darker, like pumpernickel or something. There are also undertones of figs, rum and hop bitterness. Very very slightly medicinal. More complexities are at play here that are beyond my limited senses.

As indicated by the near absence of head, this beer is almost flat, and is syrupy and sticky by the end of the glass.

Put it all together and you got yourself one swell Bock. Delicious enough to sip, but not too strong that you HAVE to sip.

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Photo of soulgrowl
4.1/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very nice, thick and dark maple-chestnut color with a mighty, sparkling, stained cedar pompadour of a head. Creamy foam breaks up into huge bubbles but retains well anyway.

Smell: Pine. Fig. Plum. Dark rum. Yum. Also: cherries, glutamic acid, wheat, a little coffee, and a little sour yeast.

Taste: I never thought I could enjoy a bock this much, but damn! Chocolatey malts, rich but not mean in their bitterness. Great hop character, adding just a little leafy snap mid-sip. Finish is mostly dry, but kind of weak. This could practically be a Doppelbock.

Mouthfeel: Syrupy, but well-carbonated.

Drinkability: Pair this with figs (or Fig Newtons). It really brings out the chocolate and rum flavors beautifully.

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Photo of bennetj17
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark coffee color, with red hues as you can see through it in the light, revealing nice clarity. The slim head doesn't last long at all, and leaves a very faint ring in its wake. Aroma of tangy brown malt, sweet with licorice, nut, and brown sugar notes. Flavor is of clean, nutty sweet malt, slightly tangy in the finish. There is a slight roasted character present and perhaps a hint of cherries. Mouthfeel is decent, medium thick, adequate carbonation. This is fairly mild, with solid, clean flavors for a darker beer, making it an excellent choice for a session ale. Another fine offering from Anchor...

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Anchor Bock Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
3.73 out of 5 based on 991 ratings.
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