Cinder Bock | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

167 Reviews
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Cinder BockCinder Bock

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

Style: Rauchbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.45%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Jason on 01-09-2012

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Reviews: 167 | Ratings: 465
Photo of seand
3.84/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a clear mahogany color with a fair amount of tan head. A spotty thin layer retains, which is enough to leave reasonable walls of lacing.

S: Smoky resin sweetness; it's deeply sweet, hinting at the ABV, but is nowhere near boozy.

T: Not much smoke. Sweet, and full flavored, with nice complexity. There's enough smoke and hop flavors to keep the sweetness from going out of control.

M: Full body, medium carbonation.

Overall, pretty good. It's also dangerously drinkable for nearly 10%.

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Photo of tlazaroff
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First impressions on the nose are quite nice. The smoke comes though really nicely, not like bacon, but maybe like candied bacon. It has that nice molasses, kind of sweetness quality to it. I don't get any hops at all, just nice, sweet and smokey malt.

Appearance is nice, it pours out a slightly hazy, opaque rust color that supports this tan head that approaches a pinnacle of about one finger and then falls back into the beer, but never quite dissipates completely.

Tastes better than expected! The smoke comes out right away and sticks around through the finish. It reminds me of breathing in smoke from a burning fireplace. It has that ash quality to it is very distinct. I hate to repeat myself, but the other thing I get is molasses candy! It comes in the mid-palate and lingers for a little while.

Carbonation resides on the low side and it has a body somewhere between medium and full, it's almost a bit sticky. Overall I would say this beer is quite good, I enjoyed it thoroughly.

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Photo of Ford
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Holy smokes.... plenty of smoke in this beer. I poured into a normal pint glass.

Lots of smoke flavor and caramel.

I like this, but it's not love. I probably won't purchase again as I'd be more attracted to a Dopplebock over this beer.

Glad I tried it, it's good, but not great.

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Photo of Rschis16
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick and slowly dissapating cream colored head sits on top of this one, leaving a patchwork of lacing with it as it goes. Great clarity to its darker color, a nice shade of ruby red or mahogany. Clean malty nose with a funky smokiness behind it that is a bit remeniscent of a campfire, no doubt. The clean smell comes from the light toffee and caramel notes, but the smokiness definitely dominates.

Rich and inviting caramel and toffee notes begin the taste wonderfully in the front of the palate. They are soft and not overbearingly sweet or cloying. It moves towards a touch of booze in the middle of the palate, with a subdued but definitely present dose of piney hops near the middle-back end. The smokiness of the malts doesn't fully hit the palate until the back end and finish, where it then engulfs the mouth with the smoky malt taste. In some rauchbiers I've tried, this smoky flavor has been overbearing to the point where it completely distracts from the other flavors in the beer. Not the case so much with this one as that smokiness complements the sweeter toffee notes and the bit of hops and booze, giving this beer a deep complexity. The toffee and caramel actually come out on top here, the smokiness being a close second. The mouthfeel is silky smooth, with a slight prickle in the middle from the booze and hops, with a medium body, but full of flavor.

I was a little wary on this one because I don't get into rauchbiers too much, but this was definitely a balanced and deliciously pleasant surprise. Pick it up if you're looking for a unique and tasty beer.

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Photo of PintOHops
3.76/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Glass - Mug

A - A clear amber colored brew with lots of visible carbonation, and a 2-finger head. Head is dense and creamy looking, and it held well. I got some splotchy lacing left on my mug.

S - Lemon citrus like hop characteristics. Jerky, bacon like smokey notes. A bit of tree bark, cinnamon, brown sugar, and a touch of alcohol. Raisin and plum like alcoholic notes.

T - Wow, very sweet. The first thing I notice is alcohol, with dark fruits, and candy like qualities. Brown sugar, caramel, toffee. Smokiness, charcoal, bacon/jerky like flavors come in towards the finish, in a sorta background/as you swallow way. Alcohol is noticeable but masked well with lots of sweetness. It finishes with low bitterness, and soft, lingering smoky notes.

M - Full bodied, creamy, smooth, and soft crispness.

O - I'm not one to like sweet beers, and being that the ABV is so high, I new it was going to be sweet, but decided to give it a try anyway. I thought that the aroma was inviting with the nice smokey notes I picked up, and the appearance was very nice as well. The taste however needed to be a bit more smokey, a little less sweet, and the body should be a little thinner, in my opinion.

Overall I enjoyed it, but I would definitely only drink about 6-8 ounces of it, before it became sickly sweet. Worth a try though. Cheers!

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Photo of rdilauro
3.4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I really want sure what to expect with this one. I've been tasting several of the Samuel Adams from Boston Beer Company editions and each one has had its surprises.

I assumed that being a Bock, it was going to be full bodied, low in carbonation, hardly any crispness and lacking of hops.

When I taste new beers or wines, I never read the labels or any other review. I dont want to be influenced by what someone else stated.

The aroma of this one was average, malty, but what I would normally expect from a bock. But then the first sip!, I could have be next to a camp fire. The smoky taste was right there , up front, very pronounced but at the same type not over powering. I couldnt wait until the second sip. Now, I appreciated the smoky flavour so much more. I only wish I had some good smoked ribs or steak to go with this one

The finish was just right for this one.

When I talk about this beer to some of the customers, I will talk about the smoke flavour. Its the same thing I do when a customer is looking for a Sauvignon Blanc, and I explain the differences between California, Washington State and New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs. The ones from New Zealand are loaded with citrus and its almost like biting into a fresh pink grapefruit.

This is one I will be again and put some away for later on

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Photo of lstokes
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice ruby color but no head to speak of. My main impression is that this is a very sweet Bock! The smell is sugary instead of smoky--not ideal--and the base beer is also too much caramel and booze for me. Nice hickory-beech smoke, but I would turn the sweet-sticky characteristics down a LOT before I would drink this beer again. Glad to see the attempt at the style, though!

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Photo of alaimoa
2.81/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Purchased in 2012 - pours a brown light coffee color with not much of a head. Tastes nutty and toffee flavors with thick coating aftertaste. Not the most pleasant on smell, taste or aftertaste.
Overall: I probably wouldn't buy it again but sometimes the Sam single bottles are surprisingly good. Just not this one

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Photo of Drinkerofales
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear caramel copper color. A big fluffy khaki head leaves tons of lacing, and a nice ring down the whole glass.

Smells of char, stone, with a nice caramel malt underneath, though it was hard to find through the smoke. This gets a little easier as it warms.

Taste is lightly smoked, not overpowering. I can still get caramel malt, a nice hint of booze and richness, and another lightly smoked aftertaste.

Texture is smooth, with a medium body that coats the tongue. Almost syrupy, and right where a bock should be.

I love smoke beers, so this was right up my alley, not too strong on the smoke in the flavor, which makes it even better. Nicely done, another beer, that were it under a different label, it would be getting a better score.


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Photo of gueuzeonhigh
3.46/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear red-amber with a tan tight knit short lived head with some lacing to boot.

Not much of a nose that I could detect.

Flavor-- I think that the "rauch" gets in the way of the bock flavor. The "Rauch" part reminds me of smoke sausage. If I tune out the "Rauch" part of the flavor- there's a hint of a light bock. It's got a good helping of malt, alcohol (but not too overpowering).

The mouthfeel is a quite cordial blanket-- with a tart finish that lasts a while.

Overall this is an enjoyable beer-- I don't think I'd choose it as an example of a bock. But regardless of its strict adherence to a particular style-- it's still an enjoyable beer for it's perhaps offbeat whim of smoke.

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Photo of jar2574
3.31/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Dark red/brown beer under little pale white bubble lacing. Not enough lacing or head retention.

Smells excellent, smoked meats and mesquite wood.

Taste is meaty, smoky BBQ beer, very unique flavor upfront and then malts make it sweet rather than hoppy on the back end. If you like BBQ you'll like this; if you don't, you probably won't.

Mouthfeel is disappointingly thin, with average carbonation and texture. On the positive side though, the high ABV is completely hidden.

Overall, I'm torn because this is a unique beer - or at least I've never had the style. I'm glad I tried it, and it was interesting. But the look and mouthfeel were disappointing. I love BBQ, but maybe not in a beer, I guess.

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Photo of microbrewlover
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours a soild amber/copper color. There is maybe a half finger of head which dissapates quickly and light lacing which stays in the glass until the end.

The smell is of toasted malts, toffee, carmel and smoke.

The mouthfeel is bready and chewy; also a little grainy.

The taste is as promised both a bock and a Rauchbier. The drinker climbs a malt wall and is rewarded with toffee and carmel. There is also a bready and toasted grain taste. The smoke hits the palate on the back end and tastes just like a campfire smells. I am talking about one of those really good smelling campfires. However there is a little bit of 'ashy-ness' at the end of the smoke taste but not on every swallow.

Overall this brew does a good job of mixing the Rauchier and Bock styles. Watch out for the 9.45 ABV content because it will hit you at the end of the glass.

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Photo of ryanonline
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this beer has a deep dark brown hue to it with a strong red background. lots of off white foamy head that dissipates quickly.

smells smokey and slightly heavy on the rye presence. Light on the hops.

taste is the same, heavier on the smoke. bit of sweetness too.

mouthfeel is slightly spritzy and dryish, overall still sweet though.

this has a truly remarkable drinkability, given the flavorful and high alcohol nature of this beer.

I approve.

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Photo of ElCommodoro
4.36/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich, clear mahogany. A beautiful sight in a beer. Little head, but that bothers me little. A high alcohol beer needn't much head. What little head it had stuck around quite a while, so that was a pleasant surprise.
The smell was very sweet. Mostly of overripe bananas and garbage. Not in a bad way. But that's sort of what it smelled like.
The taste was surprisingly more of the same. I wasn't aware it was going to be a smoky beer. All I knew is it would be a bock. I mean, it had a goat on it and rauchbier isn't something I've heard of before. The beer is VERY sweet, VERY malty, and definitely smoky. But not at all overly so. It smells a bit like it might be peat-smoked even though there's no indication that it is, but that would explain that garbage smell. So would highly fermented malt heaviness, though, I suppose. This beer has a lot of doppelbock qualities. It doesn't taste like what the description of rauchbier describes. The smokiness is not too upfront and well balanced with sweet maltiness. The name and flavour would indicate to me that this is part doppelbock, part rauchbier. I'd say it's more on the doppelbock side, but that's just me. Damn if the combination isn't delicious as hell. Love the big malty sweetness of it, even if it is a bit sticky, almost cloying. Love the alcohol burn. And love that unique flavour added by the rauch (smoke). I would HIGHLY recommend this to other lovers of big, sweet beers.

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Photo of fank2788
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle served in a pint glass
Beautiful dark amber color in the glass with an off white head that settles to a thin layer of film with some lace. The aroma is a bit light but I do get a solid caramel malt base with a touch of sweetness on top of that, reminiscent of ripe fruit. The whole thing is tied together by a touch of light smokiness, not a campfire smoke but a nice sweet smokiness. The taste is sweet bready malt somewhat thick with a bit of the alcohol apparent. The smoke is right there too my first thought was of bacon or at least the smell and taste of smoked bacon, that thought fades but only slightly as the meaty character does persist. This is a pretty thick beer as the carbonation is low and it has a drying smoky finish with the evident alcohol. Overall this is definitely interesting. I'm not a huge fan of rauchbiers but the smoke in this one is balanced pretty well with by a good malt character and the high alcohol content seems to help too. If only the smoke character wasnt as meaty I think this beer would be more enjoyable.

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Photo of irongator
4.27/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

great brew. High ABV and you can definetely taste it. I have not had any true Rauchbiers but this one tastes like a great cross betweens SA doublebock and Wee Heavy, which I freaking love. The smoke is there, not overpowering like in a wee heavy but enough to give the beer a nice flavor. I let this brew sit out 1 hour before I drank it and it was very tasty.

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Photo of raznug
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It pours a hazy dark ruby color and is topped with 1” of tan colored head .
Smell: I smell the aroma of a smoked ham or bacon and it dominates the nose as I expected it to. This beer is making me hungry for ham for supper now.
Taste: The blend of the rauch and bock styles isn’t a very far stretch but I didn’t know what to expect when I went for the first sip and I was pleasantly surprised with the tasty job that Sam Adams did with this brew. The smoke flavor is the first taste that hits your palate but it is followed quickly by the rich smoothness of the bock and I must say that they play well off of each other.
Mouthfeel: This is a very smooth and easy drinking beer but it has a richness to the mouthfeel that makes it even better drinking than a lot of bocks that tend to be on the heavy side.

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Photo of JosiahS
3.81/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

glass: Mug

Mahogany color, clear with medium bubbles. 1-finger tan head, acute sudsy lacing.

Initially tart and sweet on the nose. Some grape, caramel, alcohol, ripe banana and a smoky somewhat leather-like aroma.

Mouthfeel is thick, oily with low-medium carbonation.

Taste is prominently sweet, full of syrupy, candy-like malt. Not as sweet as a double bock might be though. Mid-pallete the smoked wood comes in, a bit of leather and taste of what smoked pork may smell like. Finishes rather neutral, mildly sweet and some heat.

Nice effort from Sam Adams. It has all the makings of a great smoked beer but this thick and oily 9.45 ABV brew is just a bit too much for my tastes.

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Photo of Merkur
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer pours a rather thick dark amber color with a good amount of tan head that stays throughout.

Beer smells smokey, but not strongly. Also, notes of caramel are present. A bit sweeter smelling than expected.

Taste follows the nose. A good bit of sweet smoke that is not quite as balanced as I prefer. Notes of caramel and a bit of a nutty taste are also present.

Beer is a bit thick with very little carbonation.

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Photo of Krakistophales
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a really dark brown with a creamy head that disappears quickly

S: Lots of malts, toffee/caramel, and lots of woody/oaky aromas

T: Up front lots of malts and bready sweetness, followed by a thick peat and wooden smoke, with the aftertaste just coasting off with a smoky goodness. Pretty nice.

O: Another one that surprises me from sam adams. Pretty good and I'll be looking for more of these specialties.

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Photo of DirtyPenny
3.06/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one is really hard to review because it's great in smll doses, but also becuse the "a" key on my keyboard is broken and I keep having to hit ctrl+v to insert a copied letter "a" into various words. I refuse to correct any I've missed.

Poured in several small doses into a Sam adams tasting glass and then a Medieval Manor glass.

a: Woody brown with 1 finger of light beige head. Slightly hazy. Leaves weblike lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: Smoky, nturlly. Just a touch nutty as well but the smoke dominates the nose.

T: Very savory with sort of a smoked sausage flavor to it and a harsh tang. Smokiness gets overpowering as this one warms, and it takes on a little sweetness nd a bit of a medicinal taste. Too much at a time nd it just ends up tasting like that bottled liquid smoke stuff that never quite seems to work in any recipe you try.

M: On the heavy side of medium. Just viscous enough to let you know it's a hevyweight, but not so much that it becomes cloying.

O:I had it with marshmallow. Makes sense, right? Smoky cmpfire beer and a marshmallow? Don't you judge me.

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Photo of Dodt
3.51/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

decide to try something different with this review . since there is two suggested glasses i thought it would be fun to try this beer in both glasses mug and stange . appearance is the same , for aroma i prefer the aroma in the stange and for the taste and mouthfeel there is no difference . i cannot wait to try the other beers in this same batch series from sam adams

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Photo of VALIS666
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sweet smokiness all the way through from the nose through the taste, like backyard barbeque brisket that’s been smoking under coats of sauce all day. Nice creamy head, deep red color. Not a taste I’d want all the time but a good beer in that style. Sweetens dramatically as it warms.

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Photo of Vierenner
3.05/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer started out well but lost its lustre as consumption contunued. I'm not exactly sure what it is ... perhaps the yeast? I'm not a fan of belgian beers and this seemed to have some of those belgian taste qualities. I certianly don't get any "rauch" flavors as the style catagory would suggest.

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Photo of EkimGram
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From my beer journal dated 2/18/12

Batch No. 1

Appearance: 22oz bottle poured into Duvel tulip. Colour is a rich brown with a nice garnet hue. Finger-thick, pillowy head fades slowly leaving some lacing. Slight visible carbonation.

Smell: Moderately smoked malts followed by a bitter hop aroma.

Taste: Starts off with a nice, sweet smokiness followed by a nice balance of malts and a slight bitter finish. Not very deep or as complex as I had hoped but not bad at all.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, silky and oily with a surprising amount of carbonation. Finishes a little sticky.

Overall: A solid brew. There isn't really much to say. The masking of the high alcohol is impressive. Another solid Sam Adams beer.

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Cinder Bock from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.68 out of 5 based on 465 ratings.
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