Spotted Cow | New Glarus Brewing Company

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Spotted CowSpotted Cow

Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: Cream Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2002

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Reviews: 797 | Ratings: 3,464
Photo of martinfletwood
3.57/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Very good beer for an ale. I find most "ales" pretty basic, but Spotted Cow is a few steps above basic. With all the diverse flavors out there I find it difficult to drink boring old "ales", but if you're into them, give this one a try. Would drink again, but wouldn't go looking for, but that's just my taste.

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Photo of farrago
4.21/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Solid finger’s worth of bright white foam, even surface, tiny and tightly woven bubbles, retention is okay at best, the lacing is stronger than expected with thick streaks and good staying power. The liquid is mildly gauzy, golden color that is closely to orange than dilute, loosely arrayed large bubbles are active. The creamy vanilla and cola bean scents present in the nose without dominance, pastry flakes and cereal, cherry to banana fruit scents, the graininess firms up and stiffens the dissolve in the nostrils, overall just smells kind of like “old school” beer. Medium-bodied, not soft but you feel all the round contours and the creaminess is both textural and in flavor. Whipped cream, vanilla and yeast to baking dough, tastes like Dr. Brown’s cream soda. As in the nose, the grain and bread stiffen by the finish and lend punctuation. Retains the cherry, banana, white grape fruitiness. Every now and then you find a metallic, spring water note. The carbonation broadens the palate coverage more than prickles. Even as the sweetness lingers it feels balanced. Comes off as highly sessionable and easy to drink, well done.

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Photo of bluehende
3.99/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slight smell of bananas. Nicely balanced and creamy (can't believe I wrote that) beer. The finest cream ale I have ever had. I would seek this out for a nice drinkable beer.

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Photo of MAFC_Trainer
4.3/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours little to no head. Body is a light, pale, gold. Faint smell of crisp banana and yeast goes with its taste and a slight hint of fruit. Goes down smooth with the perfect amount of carbonation. Really great beer that as far I know is only sold in Wisconsin. I always find me a 6 pack of these when I'm in the state.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.69/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Undated bottle at 45 degrees into snifter
Aroma of wet grain and corn flakes, lasts entire drink
Head small (1.5 cm, aggressive pour), white, frothy, diminishing to irregular one cm ring and partial layer
Lacing – none
Body light yellow, hazy
Flavor slightly sweet, just a hint of disulfide, grainy; no hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium, slightly syrupy, soft carbonation

Appearance 3.25, Aroma 3.5, Flavor 4, Palate 3.5, Overall 3.5

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Photo of Griffin2
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pored from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. Nice lemon colored ale with a solid white head. Another simple beer that I could drink all afternoon. Very enjoyable beer.

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Photo of ilikebeer03
3.72/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

pours a slightly hazy light golden color. head fades quickly. nose is malty, bready, biscuit. the taste follows similarly. not much hop character. very easy drinking. good beer.

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Photo of NolaHopHead
3.57/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Clear light golden little fizzy head only around the rim. Mild aroma of cracker malt and yeast. Has that familiar Belgian banana fruity taste but the flavor is soft with a crisp middle and a dry semi tart finish. Very clean. Overall good for the style, could have easily had another.

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Photo of Lembeh
4.24/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A great example of a cream ale this. It does a great job of balancing the hops and malt to deliver a easy drinking ale. On the nose and taste you get a lot of barnyard hay, as if you were drinking this on a farm. It really encapsulates the hardworking midwestern ethos well. A winner from Wisconsin.

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Photo of SitkaSteve
4.21/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Finally got a hold of some of this. Thanks Jake.
This was poured into a pint glass.
The appearance was a nice looking hazy to semi-transparent golden color. A quickly dissipating less than a finger's worth of white foamy head just slides right on out into non-existence. Lacing, what lacing, but I'm not worried, read on please.
The smell takes sweet corn malts and blends into a super light sweet breadiness.
The taste copies the smell and has no aftertaste nor finish.
The mouthfeel was light bodied with a nice sessionable creamy smooth feel about it. Carbonation runs light and smooth.
Overall, as a cream ale this one works. I expected nothing less. When in Wisconsin, one doesn't drink AB products when you have this. I heard it's considered a saison on untappd, because people are idiots on that site. I'm glad Beer Advocate has it correct.

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Photo of SaltofOH
3.7/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle, no date. Pilsner glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy medium gold, leaves a frothy 3 finger cap that lingers. Very nice lacing, ample carbonation.

Aroma: Fruity, yeasty, clean Munich malt, a very clean graininess.

Taste: Sweet, clean, balanced, not much hop presence to speak of, sweet and slightly apple-fruity.

Mouthfeel: Light & fluffy. Pretty clean finishing. HEavier side of light; subtle carbonation given how bubbly it appears.

OVerall: Outrageously drinkable, though a little bland. If I lived in Wisconsin, this would be a regular 6-er; but even if it were available here, I'd probably pick Victory's Summer Action or MadTree's Lift first.

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Photo of Pocker
4.63/5  rDev +26.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is my favorite cream ale by far. New glarus in general makes so many great beers, but this one is so easy to drink regardless of weather or setting. Only bought in Wisconsin, I have to make the 15 minute drive across the border which I don't think twice about doing; even if it's just for this beer. Foggy honey in color, fresh--light hop scent and smooth yet full upon entering the hole in your face. The mozzarella cheese, sausage and mushrooms will go down so easy with this beer.

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Photo of beerchic
3.44/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A gift from a good friend coming home from Wisconsin. I never overanalyze flavors in a beer on a review, and I won't this time either. Very nice refreshing brew for the summer, quite tasty.

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Photo of DissentFatsquirrel
5/5  rDev +37%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Why New Glarus Brewery is on the map, a very welcoming beer that is not too strong, and no matter the setting, delivers that farmhouse ale taste we have become accustomed to.

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Photo of Bill4515
4.99/5  rDev +36.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Damn good beer. Slight taste of citrus along with hops and malt. Overall, delicious beer. One of my favorites. And only made and sold in Wisconsin :)

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Photo of govlady
3.87/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: golden, light, a little bit of head
S: banana, fruity
T: malty, corn, light with a tiny bit of hop to it
F: medium carbonation, creamy, very smooth
O: solid beer. very refreshing. ive had a few after playing 9 holes in the heat of the summer in WI and it really hits the spot.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.93/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Thanks, Tony!

A : A hazy honey glow, about 70% opaque. The head is exceptional, making a beautiful paper white crown reaching 3 fingers tall, and then receding to a fat ring leaving hilly lace on the sides.

S : Some light tropical/fruity aromas - banana, pineapple, mandarin orange. Light white bread crust, and a faint yeast aroma. A bit of cereal grain in there, too. The bouquet is pretty faint however.

T : First word? Delicious! Malty, rich, flavorful. Banana, clove, marshmallow, and light grains. Slight hop slap but keeps it minimal. A little white bread crust. It ends with a bit of burnt cinnamon and banana peel.

F : Creamy, creamy, creamy. I love it. It just devours your mouth into the beer. It has a spritzy carbonation that keeps it lively, and ends woody and semi-dry.

O : The best cream ale I've ever had. Not kidding here, guys. Would not change a thing. Love this representation. Do not pass this one up.

Follow up. Golden color with creamy head and a fuzzy lacing. Aromas of honey and biscuit, creamed corn, some vegetal, and general sweet grain aromas. Flavors are grainy, with golden malts, general sweetness, some banana, a hint of clove, and crisp pilsner finish. Feel is carbonated, refreshing, with a semi-chalky finish. I'd buy a 12 pack, or maybe a couple sampler packs with this in it.

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Photo of onklsven75
4.45/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Spotted Cow is one of my favorite beers. Very easy to drink. The only thing I don't like about it is it has a little bit of a metalic aftertaste, not sure if that is just me though.

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Photo of golf_sierra
3.83/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very clean, smooth mouthfeel, refreshing experience. Not much hoppyness or bitterness, but very tasty. Perfect carbonation. Definitely worth trying when in Wisconsin.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.16/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A- pours a slightly hazy bright yellow color with a one-finger creamy white head that retains long after the pour, leaving some short lasting lace behind

S- a little bit of cream soda sweetness up front, followed by some corn, yeast & grainy, a hint of green apple

T- light grains and corn add a little bit of sweetness up front, mild grassy hop bitterness, earthy yeast, clean finish that leaves you wanting more

M- medium body with moderate prickly carbonation leads to a thick and creamy mouthfeel that finishes silky and smooth, it almost has the mouthfeel of a nitro beer

O- the best cream ale I've had thus far. Creamy drinkability through the roof, would make a perfect summer beer. This would stay in my summer rotation is it were available, very well done

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Brilliant straw color, 1” foam collar, dissipates quickly, some light lace.
S: a little apple – a touch of esters, some other fruit but not real strong, very faint esters but the apple is fairly strong – also some corn.
T: Sweet, light, some malt, no hop, a touch of sour, sweet lingers, refreshing, crisp, no corn, moderate malt, delicate beer with a touch of DMS.
F: medium light body, thirst quenching, medium high carbonation, creamy.
O: pleasant lawnmower beer – drinkable, a little more malt and hop would have been nice

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Photo of GRPunk
3.96/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle (gifted by neighbor) into a nonic pint.

A- 1-1/2 finger, marshmallow- like head tops a clean, golden-straw body with light carbonation. The head drops to a light film. Nice rings left on the glass.

S- Slightly sweet. Husky grains, light lemon. Starts out faint, but really opens up with a little time.

T- Clean and refreshing. More lemon than the aroma initially let on. Grainy and sweet corn malts. A little gummy. Slightly grassy in the finish.

M- Medium-light body. Dry. Clean and crisp.

O- It's been a decade or more since my last one. I'm happy to get my hands on another. It doesn't do anything to stand out, though I don't think it's supposed to. A refreshing beer as we got back from the pool. A real crowd pleaser. I'd love to get a case for a cookout.

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Photo of sarient
3.44/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

This beer is highly regarded in the southern parts of Wisconsin. It's a great beer to get when your here. Taste isn't very sharp or flavorful, but smooth from start to finish, and has a nice color with a nice head consistency. Good show lad! 3.7/5.

How many?: Have this beer anywhere, anytime. 5 does the job nicely.

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Photo of vainosuomi
4.13/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Clear, pale yellow color. Smell is very grainy. Taste is grainy, with hints of corn, sweet, slight citrus hoppiness. Medium mouthfeel, fizzy. Clean finish. This beer is great, and one that anyone can enjoy. There's a reason it's so ubiquitous in WI.

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Photo of Emersonio
3.62/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour: 12oz bottle into a nonic pint. Appearance: Light gold with some haze. Thin white head and lacing present. Aroma: Light floral and malty notes. Taste: Malty forward beer. Can detect some light hops. Aftertaste: Lingering malt profile through the back end. Overall: Consistent brew. A Wisconsin classic! Overall: Good-3 out of 5.

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Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewing Company
3.65 out of 5 based on 3,464 ratings.
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