The Vixen Chocolate Chili Bock | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

255 Reviews
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The Vixen Chocolate Chili BockThe Vixen Chocolate Chili Bock

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ReelBigwigFish on 10-27-2011

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Reviews: 255 | Ratings: 611
Photo of Jason
3.18/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz brown bottle with no freshness date, batch #1 on back.

LOOK: Three fingers of froth, nearly pitch black

SMELL: Dark chocolate, faint coffee, peppery, mild spice, figgy, malty, toasted bread, caramel

TASTE: Sweet, creamy, slick, full bodied, mild mocha character, dark fruit, faintly peppery, modest hopping, light pepper warmth, sweet finish

Its a bock, I get it ... just too damn sweet for my liking. Not enough chili pepper or chocolate to back this beer up. Played it very safe here.

 495 characters

Photo of bum732
3.18/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

S: chipotle chili with quite a bit of maltiness, very clean.

L: Very dark brown, light tan creamy head that dissipates. Some lacing.

T: Cinnamon and cocoa like clean maltiness. Low herbal bitterness leading to a mellow earthiness with some cinnamon. Hints of cocoa. Not much chili detected. Subtle for the most part.

M: Clean, medium bodied, medium carbonation.

Not bad, chili doesn't really come through.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
3.18/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a Duvel tulip. Looking forward to this.

A- pours pretty much black with a one finger tan head. The head is very bubbly, and sticks around for a little bit before leaving some nice lacing

S- nice bit of chocolate, and a cola-like aroma as well. heat in the nose

T- there's some chocolate there, but it's not overly powerful. There's a sweetness to it. Heat is minimal, nearly non-existant. Very...bland tasting. Not necessarily bad, just....low volume

M- the body is actually pretty thick....which is weird, given how muted the flavors are. But whatever....I actually don't like how thick it is. Seems like drinking molasses

O- not a huge fan. Had huge expectations, but overall, this is worse than the Chocolate Bock

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Photo of superdedooperboy
3.21/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22-ounce brown glass bottle poured into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass. Served too cold initially, right out of the fridge, but allowed to warm naturally over the duration of consumption.

Pours a deep, dark mahogany; tinges of ruby show through when held to the light, but dark enough to nearly give the impression of opacity. A thick two fingers of light mocha foam rises up in a proud display, only to fall away with much snapping, crackling and popping to a thin crown without much lingering on the walls of the vessel.

Not a whole lot going on in the nose, which is rather disappointing; even more Bock-like malt character would be welcome, nevermind the fact that ingredients in this beer include chilies, cocoa nibs and cinnamon. The dominant (if rather subdued) character is of cinnamon, with a faint hint of grassy hops. Some extra sniffing brings about a little of that melanoidin-rich malt character I expect in a Bock of any kind, nicely sweet and slightly toasty, but still extremely subdued.

The palate opens up caramel-chocolaty sweet, with a body and mouthfeel rather lighter than perhaps would be expected from a brew with such a burly appearance. Cinnamon spice and a slight heat from the chilies combine in the middle with rich dark chocolate, bread pudding and burnt caramel, culminating in a character that is intriguing if nothing else; things fall away into a finish that is very long and mostly richly sweet, with a lingering hint of chipotle-like smoky heat.

Alcohol is well-hidden, and the lighter-than-expected body combined with the balancing spiciness help turn what could have been a heavy, cloying brew into a constant (if somewhat slow) sipper.

Interesting overall, but after the recent experience of Stone's 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale, spicy chili cravings left this beer wanting for a bigger dose of heat, which could have even made it a more well-rounded brew, as it leans a bit on the sweet side still. In afterthought, the combination of flavors is actually reminiscent of a peaty Scotch ale, with a similar weight and sweetness combined with that touch of smokiness in the finish. It seems that with this beer the brewers at Boston Beer Co. may have actually created, not a masterpiece, but a hybrid beer more worthy of its own "style" than the failed stylistic creation that is Infinium.

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Photo of mactrail
3.23/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Attractive dark brown with nice lacing and fine foam. Sweet with an attack of cinnamon. Chile flavor is evident in the nose but just a whisper of heat. Tastes like dried red Anaheim chiles. Cocoa comes along and stays with the aftertaste. Nose of cinnamon. Quite rich and candy-like.

I thought this was a barley wine when I opened it, not reading down the label. So that was pretty amusing on first gulp. Usual well-made product from BBC. It is not bad, just overly spiced and a very slow sipper. It's probably better with some flavorful food.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Appearance is deep dark almost black with ruby highlights once held toward a light source, with tan mocha head very creamy textures going on even scattered lace…looks pretty stunning.

Aroma dark chocolate roasted malts and cocoa nibs added, dark fruit I’d say plums/raisins, and a hint of chili in the nares after a few sips.

Flavor has a dark chocolate syrup rolling with each sip, bock character with this abv of dark earthy ripened fruit notes, claims to have chili additions but very hard to detect amongst the big malt layers and cocoa nib additions…roasted dark chocolate finishes pretty sweet!

Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied lingering sweetness and lack of chili kick makes me yearn for a dry spicy finish…instead I get lingering dark fruit and caramelized roasted dark chocolate sugars which linger…the carbonation is moderate but carries this beer quite well. Those chili notes could have saved this beer.

Overall, I’m glad It didn’t my mouth or south end, but I wanted more out of a chili chocolate bock called the Vixen I was expecting some S & M maybe get slapped around a bit…it wouldn’t have hurt the balance glad to see this in a 12 ounce format as part of a lager mixed case I picked up in PA!

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Photo of far333
3.26/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark chestnut colored with ruby highlights and an oatmeal colored head that slowly recedes. Aroma of cocoa and toasty malt. Rich flavor of cocoa, sea salt, woody notes, dried leaves, marshmallow. Moderate offsetting bitterness, subtle chili spice, not overpowering, would actually like more. Complex flavors, but just not that thrilling. Sort of vegetal, not sure where the saltiness comes from. Watery mouthfeel, could use more body for my tastes.

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Photo of harrymel
3.27/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch No.1 (Oct, 2011?)

A: dark brown with a finger of transient light mocha foam which stays as a central cap and border with diaphanous continuity. Spotty lace
S: I get the cocoa and cinnamon up front and the chili comes through toward the end, albeit subtly. Some sweet malts and vanilla tones.
T: sweet. The cocoa here is quite strong, and the cinnamon accents well. Theres really no bite or substantial addition from the peppers for me. Rich flavor.
M: Waaay too thin for this beer IMO. I would like it to be chewy and lower in carbonation. this would allow for better ressonance of the beer.
O: Not a bad effort, better than some I've had in the "Latin Stout" category. Wouldn't age it.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.27/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

2 hits and a miss for me thus far on the SA new releases... Maybe we can go 3 for 4 with this...

Pretty dark for a bock... Biscuit and chocolate malts are the main players on the nose here... Not detecting any chili but I might sense some cinnamon here and there... Not bad really... Pretty solid aromas...

Lots of chocolate malts present in the first sip with a slight smokiness present and a few dashes of cinnamon here and there... I'm surprised by how creamy the beer is though... Not thick per se but definitely creamy... The chilis don't show up until the finish... Very subtle heat on the back end... The chocolate seems a little overdone to me... A touch too much sweetness and not enough of the chilis for my taste...

Probably won't pick this one up again... It wasn't bad but really a little sweet for me and not something I would revisit...

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Photo of Sycodrummer
3.28/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from the bomber into a footed pint glass the beer is dark brown near black with faint red around the edges. One finger of khaki colored head formed but quickly fizzeled to tan wisps. Minimal lacing, but a few clingy bubbles.

The nose is milk chocolate. Malted milkshake like. A slight roasted aroma like weak coffee. I don't pick up any heat or spice in the nose.

Taste mimics the nose. Big milk chocolate to start. Some faint roasted grain but not even a trace of the chilie or spice. Very sweet with little to balance that flavor. Tastes like their chocolate bock used to.

Big chewy mouth feel. A meal in a glass.

A little disappointing. Too sweet with no heat balance. Comes off like a sweet milk stout.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.29/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tumbler pint, the beer is an extremely dark ruby-brown coloring, with a thick, dense, frothy, milk-chocolate colored head that starts massively above the beer, but settles into a solid inch and a half. Good lacing along the glass as the head recedes. Aromas are subtle, with a bit of spiciness noted, as well as some roasted grain scents. The beer's flavors are a little more substantial, with a round palate of chocolate and toasted cereal blends, and a hint of pepper spicing. The body is light and slick, giving the flavors a short shelf-life on the palate. The aftertaste gives a bit more of the chili pepper essence, but only slightly, with a filmy linger of chocolate as well. The finish is somewhat clingy and filmy on the palate and all over the mouth. Clears away given a little bit of time. I was really hoping for a little more from this in terms of the flavor profiles, but it's not bad.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.3/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

" I take a piece of paper, make a heart and send it to you. And I wanna cut a paper, I wanna scream and shout so don't cut me out 'cause vixen baby you're alright." Millencolin,The Vixen

Black with a Georgia clay head. My girlfriend had glass bottom retention on her glass and I had nothing. Alas, everyone likes her better, even beer.

Smells like chili...and chocolate. Tastes like earthy Hershey's chocolate syrup with a little bit o' peppery heat. The standout of this beer is the smooth mouthfeel.

Like most Sam Adams beers the taste and aroma are dead on, they're just not strong enough. I had hoped the the small batch series would be different but I guess you can't teach old brewers new tricks.

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Photo of mikeg67
3.3/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle. Pours dark brown with tanned, long lasting, foamy head and soda like carbonation. Aroma is of bready malt, spices, some chocolate and cacao notes. The body is medium and smooth. Taste is toasted malt, caramel, cinnamon, pepper, sweet cacao and chocolate. Long, very spicy finish. Interesting brew but it is too sweet for me. Pepper provides a burning sensation but does not offset sweetness like hops do.

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Photo of oline73
3.31/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with a reddish hue. There is just over a finger of light tan head and some great retention.

Smell: Definitely a bock. Sweet, dark fruit and some caramel. I think I'm getting a little roast/chocolate, but not much and no chili.

Taste: Sweet malt, picking up more dark fruit here. Mild caramel with a little bit of chocolate. There is a chili tingle in the finish as it warms, but I think they should have brought it more with the flavors.

Mouthfeel: The body is just on the thick side of medium with very fluffy carbonation. The finish is dry.

Overall: If they were going to do a chili chocolate beer, I wish they would have committed to it. Not bad, but common.

 751 characters

Photo of angrybabboon
3.33/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this bottle

Review adapted from notes taken 11/13/11

Appearance: Very dark, somewhere between super dark brown and black - nice beige head, keeps a great cap - good head retention, not much lacing

Smell: Burnt malts, chocolate, smells pretty clean - kind of like a stout - some vegetables, kind of adjuncty, maybe the chilis? - not particularly exciting

Taste: Interesting, not great - burnt, with some lager notes, yes, there are some chilis - but they aren't hot - it just kind of add a chili flavor, a vegetable edge - chocolate malts and some cocoa, chocolaty - some vanilla? - a burnt, vegetal aftertaste - not ideal

Mouthfeel: Thin to medium, fits for the style, nice carbonation, pretty smooth

Overall: Pretty good for a bock, but I was hoping for more chili flavors

This tastes like an interesting experiment. The chocolate works well, but the chili falls flat. I probably wouldn't mind, but it part of the name of this beer. I would drink this again, but I wouldn't seek it out.

 1,031 characters

Photo of ShanePB
3.35/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from the 22 oz bottle at Paradise, poured into two snifters.

A: Dull dark brown colored body with an off-white/slightly tan head. A thin bubbly retention ring is left behind with almost no lace, save for a few random splotches.

S: Milk chocolate, lager yeast, caramel and dark malts, and some faint cinnamon sticks towards the back end. Unfortunately, I get nothing really in terms of chilies, flavor or heat. The darker chocolate notes really are the focus, it's not overly aromatic but not a complete bust.

T: Rich milk chocolate again is up front with a nice crisp lager element. Yeast esters, dark malts, and cacao nibs come in mid-palate and into the finish. There's a flick of spice as the beer soaks into your mouth, but I'm not sure if that's from the buffalo wings I had previously or from the chili in the beer. Either way, it's nothing profound and sort of disappointing.

M: Thin, a little watery but very nicely crisp. For a lager-style, I guess I shouldn't have expected a full, rich and robust feel. It's okay but sort of a detriment to the experience.

I was so intrigued by anything and everything chili-fused in beer, especially if it's coupled with chocolate. Simply put, this falls short from what it's billed to be. The chocolate and bock qualities are there, albeit weak but the chilies are missing. Not a bad beer by any means, but nothing special at all.

 1,388 characters

Photo of tsauce2
3.35/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

P: 22 fl. oz. bottle in to a fluted glass

A: SRM is dark brown. Head is light tan, 1 in., dissipates to 1 cm. Medium/heavy carbonation. Light lacing.

S: Medium/light chocolate notes of chocolate come off the nose along with slight malt tones.

T: Medium/light chocolate flavor, medium/light malitness. Slightly light or watery flavor. Did not detect any chili.

M: Maltier than expected. Medium maltiness. Medium carbonation gives added texture.

O: Not bad. The biggest surprises were the lack of any chili notes and the lightness of body. I detected the similar "taste" that I get from 95% of all SA beers have. That being said, the chocolate was definitely detectable and nice, and the mf was pleasing.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.37/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

It pours fizzy, which looks nice. Ended up with almost three fingers of tan head on a dark brown body.
The aroma is boozy and a little chocolate. A bit of a letdown considering all the ingredients.
The taste is boozy as well. There’s a sweet layer throughout with just a little chili heat at the beginning and some chocolate in the middle. It’s an interesting mixture.
The texture is sticky with moderate carbonation and a thicker body.
It’s an interesting idea with the chocolate and chilies.

 499 characters

Photo of BerlinBomber
3.38/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This really wasn't what I expected, but maybe it was

I have lived in the Northeast my whole life and Sam Adams has always been IMO average at best

Nothing different here

Was hoping for a whole lot more chocolate with a nice chili bite

Thought it would be like Stone 11-11-11 with chocolate

Really didn't taste the chili

Mouthful was fine and was easy to drink, but taste was just ok

Wouldn't try this one again

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Photo of pschul4
3.38/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 220z bottle into pint glass. Been curious to try this one for a while

A- Dark brown with 1/2" head. I didnt know what to expect from the look but it certainly looks "bock-ish"

S- Smells like a bock with a little extra sucrose. Not picking up much chocolate or chili

T- Definitely pick up some chocolate malts in the taste but nothing drastic. Where's the chili? It's a sweet brew but not necessarily in a good way. Some stronger chili notes would do wonders for this "chili bock"

M- Low carbonation, quite a pleasent mouthfeel as it coats but doesn't linger

O- Bad? No, but not what I was expecting. Glad to try it but won't buy again

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Photo of tigg924
3.4/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Appearance: 1 inch head, clear, dark-brown colored, with high carbonation

Smell: cocoa, milk, and faint pepper

Taste: milk chocolate, dark chocolate, Bosco, light cinnamon, and pepper that gets stronger as the beer warms. It leaves a nice hot sensation in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy body, sweet with slight peppery heat, moderate carbonation

Overall: Was fortunate to find a bottle of this laying around. When I picked it up, I was thinking that the pepper would be all gone. I was surprised to find that there was still decent heat especially in the aftertaste as the beer warmed. While I would have liked more heat, my problem with this beer is more the chocolate flavors that were ok, but far from the best I have had. It seems like the dark chocolate and milk chocolate do not mesh as well here as in other beers. Would love to try this one fresh, but in reading other reviews, the taste seems to hold up.

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Photo of popery
3.41/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark reddish brown with a creamy beige head. Not too dark to see its color in the light. Pretty nice looking, and the head sticks around for quite awhile. Aroma is a surprisingly mild. There's some light cocoa, caramel, chili pepper spice, a touch of cinnamon and some very light roast character. What's there is decent, but you have to look for it. The taste is better. There's more pepper flavor and mild but noticeable spice, and that spice blends well with the chocolate flavor. The chocolate is still just kinda sweet and boring. It's nice enough, but there are much more interesting chocolate chili beers around. Fairly clean finish. Some lingering caramel-chocolate flavor. Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth. It's a fine beer, but the flavors need to be refined and amped up. That said, I do think it's a big improvement on the normal SA Chocolate Bock.

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Photo of StevenBilodeau
3.43/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Opened this brew after work.

American Bomber style bottle. 22oz.

Poured into my glass a deep coffee brown/blackish. Head forms quick after the pour, however only stays for a minute. Good lace.

Aromas of chocolate, burnt wood... smoke. Not so much of chili, but some linger of the cinnamon.

The taste is chocolate. Not too sweet though. The Bock style really does bring the body of this beer down a lot vs a Chocolate Stout or Porter. This quality is rare though, and is proven worthy.

Overall this was a good beer. I hope Sam Adams re-releases it again, and also that they keep up the work inventing new stuff.

Good time, Cheers.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.44/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark murky red. Head is beige - maybe a pink tinge. Dense, some visible bubbles. Lacing is great. It's ALL great, yes.

Smells sweet - plenty of English toffee as a base, and a slight solventy note, giving this a malt liquor kind of character. Touch of carob, too. A bit meh.

Taste is similar. Sweet toffee, with needlepoints of sharp spicy coffee interlacing. Finishes slightly roasty, but with more of that carob sweetness and maybe a root vegetable sweetness. Yeah, not bad. Some more roast/spice would be nice though.

Decent body, finishes really surprisingly dry. Just cracks up at the end.

Overall a bit sweet/heavy for me. Something more safe and grounded on the palate would keep me coming back for more.

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Photo of Gambrinus1184
3.45/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22-ounce bottle into a brandy snifter.

A: Dark brown, near-black, cola-like color with a thin veil of sudsy, tan foam that leaves a ring of carbonation around the edges of the brew.

S: Sweet, roasted chocolate and fruity, dark malt aromas. Hints of cinnamon and licorice cross the nose.

T: Initially sticky and sweet, deep-roasted malts give flavors of chocolate, gummy fruity and spices. Cocoa nibs and cinnamon add a baked-good sweet and spicy characteristic before the brew finishes with a slight alcohol burn and the resin of sticky, rich malts. Did not detect any peppery or chili spiciness at any point.

M: Rich, full-bodied and sticky sweet with some heat thrown from the higher ABV and added spices.

O: Another novelty bock much akin to SA Chocolate Bock, this 8.5% ABV flavored beer tries to do many things, but it succeeds at relatively few. Alone, it's a bastardized American bock that carries some sweet satisfaction. However, the chili niche is lost on me as well as the intended flavoring.

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The Vixen Chocolate Chili Bock from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.7 out of 5 based on 611 ratings.
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