Unplugged Smoked Rye Bock | New Glarus Brewing Company

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Unplugged Smoked Rye BockUnplugged Smoked Rye Bock
71 Ratings
Unplugged Smoked Rye BockUnplugged Smoked Rye Bock

Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: Smoke Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 71 |  Reviews: 62
Reviews by coldmeat23:
Photo of coldmeat23
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

More User Reviews:
Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.41/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 4 pack for $7.99 from Jenny St. yesterday. Good price for Unplugged.

Appearance: Perfect.

Huge bubbles. Loads, upon loads of bubbles like this beer is from a cheesy 80’s beer commercial where the bubbles just keep coming and coming. It’s completely alive. Thick, violent swirls and waves clashed within the beer for a solid minute after a careful pour. Simply brilliant. Great to watch. Thick and lasting white head. Light but rich amber color.

Smell: Roast. Hints of apple and pear.

Taste: sweet malts balanced with a warming alcohol, grapes, fig, and pear. Plenty of roasted rye. Very doppelbockish. Perfectly balanced.

Mouth feel: Meaty, tough and raw. Loaded with thick fleshy fruit. Again balanced with a smooth, drinkable finish.

Drinkability: Extremely good, especially considering the alcohol content.

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Photo of weatherdog
3.84/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a tulip glass. Age is roughly 4.5 years old. It's been in my possession for about 3 years. I broke it out at a recent tasting with Gonzoillini.

It was a crystal clear light brown with a tan head. I has the last of three pours and mine had an ungodly amount of sediment and chunks in it. I'm not offended by it but it hurts the appearance score.

It had a fair amount of smoke in the nose but not over the top. I have a feeling age has mellowed it quite a bit. I'm also getting just a little bit of rye as well. Overall a pretty muted nose.

The taste had a lot of burnt smoky carmelness to it. It was also pretty crisp at the end. Body was a little thin I thought and not as chewy as I would have thought for a 12% bock type beer. It was unbelievably smooth though and didn't hint at the ABV at all. A little bourbonesque notes to it but that could also be the smoke.

It was very smooth and very drinkable. I'm really glad I saved my last bottle for so long. I really hope NG makes another smoked beer soon.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.14/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The Unplugged Smoked Rye Bock pours out of the red foil covered 12oz bottle and into my tulip glass with a murky copper/gold hue with some suspended yeasties. An arid white head with prickly bubbles of carbonation. Aromas begin with sweet caramel, nutty malts with a somewhat subtle underlying smokiness. Floral and fruity with a dash of rye spiciness. Banana and clove esters sneak up out from the yeast and add an extra dimension to the brew. Unique no doubt!

First sip brings a sweet dense caramel maltiness upfront with a wisp of smoke from a dying campfire. A mix of fruity flavors move in along with a touch of spicy rye. Flows down with some yeasty banana and clove hints. A tasty beer that sets itself apart from the pack. I could have gone for a bit more smokiness in the flavor as my only minor complaint.

Mouthfeel is fairly big with a slight slickness to it. Mellow carbonation is nice and active. Alcohol is incredibly well hidden and this one goes down almost too easily to be clocking in at 12%. A tasty conglomeration of styles that I'm glad I had the chance to try. I have a couple more bottles that I might let sit a bit longer to see what happens. Check this one out if you can still find it!

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Photo of merlin48
3.97/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a cloudy, golden caramel body with a small, almond hued head. Lots of "floaties" suspended in the body. Lacing is substantial at the beginning, and fades to a few wisps as it warms.

Aroma is intriguing and unlike anything I've experienced. Belgian yeast aromas produce some melon and clove notes that one would expect from a Belgian Pale Ale. Caramel malt is noticed, but is understated. Campfire smoke and spicy rye add to a bouquet that is very pleasant, but quite strange.

Mouthfeel is unique. Thick, sticky, and heavy. Moderate carbonation.

Taste: Lightly smoked malts have a campfire smoke taste that is understated, but present all the way through. Pepper and orangerind evoke notes of a Belgian wittbier. Very bready, with rye and pumpernickel wet bread. No hint of the 12% abv until the spiciness gets a bit hot toward the finish. Some caramel malt sweetness is always lurking underneath. Lots of things going on here. Exceedingly complex, and perhaps a bit too busy for its own good. Very enjoyable, overall.

A very unique experience here. Tasty and enjoyable, a challenge to review but not to drink. Thanks to kmpitz2 for this unusual brew.

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Photo of warriorsoul
4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up one of these at the brewery...glad I did.
Honey color with less than 1/2 a finger of bright white head...a thin layer remains with no lacing forming.
A sweet honey flavor with a clove spice snap...
The taste is fantastic...besides it being a bit light for me, it is well balanced and the sweetness is coming across so well...not cloying at all.
Rye is a nice addition and it sure does have a smoked flavor in the finish.
Mouthfeel is decent...seems to get thicker as I work my way thru the pint...carbonation is perfect.
Holy hell...just noticed this is 12%...very well masked. I almost thought I could use another one after this...too bad I don't have another.
Very well received this evening...must be the constant rain...no this is just a solid brew.

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Photo of badbeer
4.72/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy golden orange color with a half inch of head that leaves excellant lacing. Smell is wonderful with banana, yeast, bread, bubblegum, and a very slight smokiness. Slight smokiness in the taste, banana, clove, and various breads finished with a bit of orange at the end. Mouthfeel is full bodied with little carbonation making this silky smooth. Drinkability, if I had more of this or better access my fridge would be full of this.

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Photo of dwvarner77
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to orbitalrox for giving me a bottle, and thanks to kmpitz for giving a sixer to him.
Pours an apricot orange color, head falls quickly, leaves a ring of retention. Lots of yeast suspended, dancing amid the active carbonation.
Nose is big; malty, orange, peppery, and a bit of a banana-clove like a weizen. Smoky aroma very subtle.
Taste is thick and malty, a brief rush of weiss flavor followed by a lingering smoky malt with a bit of pepper. ABV doesn't present. Flavor blends and becomes more smooth as it warms.
Mouthfeel pretty good, a bit syrupy. Drinkability good considering the high alcohol.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a warm brown dark body with a creamy tan head that last a good bit. The body is too dark to see any carbonation.

S- The soft smell of a slight sweet smokiness gives a faint bubblegum flavor that is very odd yet kind of nice. It starts to smell a bit more like a tart earthy smoke but now I can't get the bubblegum image out of my head. I think it is a combination of slightly sweet malt and alder smoke but that is a guess. Is this the right beer in the bottle?

T- There is a slight sweet toasted malt note that has hints of pot caramelization to it finished with a soft spicy note. The spice is nice but I can't tell if it is hops or grain, which is nice. As it warmth there is a faint note of earthy smoke in the background of the malt.

M- This beer has a full mouthfeel with a slight creamy texture but no alcohol warmth.

D- This is a nice well-built beer where the flavors are very nicely blended but I would have a tough time classifying it if it didn't say on the bottle.

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Photo of cokes
4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Blurry pumpkin hued with a floating vanilla rigging.
Scented of weizen phenols, all banana, and clove, and allspice, slapped quickly with a campfire smokiness, and all laid into caramel.
From the offset, this is a striking weizenbock. Full of caramel, apple peels, pears, and green raisins. Spicing is equally bright, with notions of peppercorns, clove, vanilla, and ginger. The smoky quality is a bit player, a co-star without much air time. But it tows a burnt wood, meaty quality that never supercedes the weizen-based core. From my own standpoint, I'm sure I would want more smoke to make this truly stand-out. As a rauchhead, I go for Cheech and Chong; this is barely Randy Moss as it apparently only smokes on special occasions.
And rye? Even less.
Those points are, however, mute. This succeeds on all accounts. The smoke adds a textured nuance. The weissbock frame is impeccable. The body is medium with a syrupy quality canceled with a percolating bead. It is fully flavored, yet fully drinkable.
And fully special, but in a much different way than I expected.

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Photo of Sammy
3.97/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jpm30. A greyish tinge to the bock. Malt and smoke and roast barley and rye and yeast aroma, kind of walking through a European deli. A bit aggressive carbonation, yet refreshing. Understated smokey flavour. Smooth easy drink.I like rye,m I liked the spice notes from the yeast.

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Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single of this precarious-sounding brew at Riley's here in Madison, in anticipation of New Glarus' new barleywine and cherry stout due out this week. The boys out there are busy now aren't they.

Pours a dark amber color, some cloudiness, with a finger of white head. Nose starts off with a short burst of subtle smoke which quickly fades into clove, pear and fig with some light hops to round it out. Not exactly what I was expecting from a "Rye Bock", not that I've ever had one before. Taste mimicks the nose with a quick, very subtle flicker of meaty smoke then clove/olive, dark sweet light and dark fruits, a strong caramel backbone that I was waiting for from a purported bock. Kind of reminded me of a dopplebock mixed with a belgian strong dark. Mouthfeel is full but not thick, with nicely velvety carbonation. Not sure what the abv is, but I imagine it's up there, but hidden immaculately.

This is a very interesting beer with a lot going on. The flavor is very full, lot of fruits, malts, and that meaty smoke that lingers in the background never getting out of control or over-dominant which impressed me. I really didn't know what to expect from a "smoked rye bock" but I would be quick to try another in the style if it existed and managed all these flavors as aptly as New Glarus has done here, a truly inventive and well-executed brew here. Hat's off.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

8/19/06 update: man oh man has this beer changed over the last 10 months...aromas are way more smoke driven than before with a strong bacon scent, same things follow in the taste and it has acquired a big buttery taste/feel to it. lovely little beer
picked up a 4 pack at Riley's in Madison

appearance: pours a cloudy light amber color with a small bubbly white head....not exactly what I was anticipating this beer looking like but I guess I really didnt know what to expect

smell: fresh fruit aromas hit the nose first, primarily pear and green apples...im not getting a lot of smoke in the nose, mostly just sugary sweet fruit...perhaps some fig, very sweet malts, faint citrus hops

taste: very sweet maltiness, a nice subtle smoked flavor but not anything overpowering which tends to be a turn off for me...sweet pears and apples are heavy, perhaps some light grapes as well, alcohol warming is definately present, very subtle rye bread taste, kind of a slight peppery burn on the way down...subtle smoke is a nice touch

mouthfeel: medium bodied, sweet on the tongue, alcohol tingle

drinkability: very drinkable

this beer is kind of confusing to me. dont expect to get your run of the mill "smoked beer" as this thing is classified.

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Photo of Jon
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of UncleFlip
4.04/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow...as an Alabamian, am I really the first non-Wisconsinite to review this? Cool....and I'm writing the review from somewhere in Kentucky at midnight.

Appearance is very nice...rather dark honey-ish, with a one finger foamy just-off-white head which leaves behind some wet lace when it goes off to the pub for a pint... Oh, wait. It IS the pint. Or the 3/4 pint...nevermind...

Smell is not quite as impressive- partly because it seems kind of weak. In there somewhere (if you try to snort the head), you'll find brown sugar and yeast.

The flavour is a really deep, strong hefe, in a sense. It's tangy, smoky, and sour- with a bit of licorice and some bitteness on the end. Not bad.

The mouthfeel is rather thick, with carbonation that swells just after the begining.

I find this one complex enough to keep my attention, but not so strong it drives you away. Nice and drinkable without being boring.

Be well

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Photo of Beertracker
5/5  rDev +21.7%

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle from NFLMVP ( Thanks Bro ) to a glass mug. The liquid is a dark gold with good carbonation, The head is one fat thumb white and leaves some lace.

The smell is toasty nut bread and a mild smokey aroma.

The taste follows. Nice mild smoke over a bready malt.

The mouthfeel is think and syrupy with good carbonation for the style.

I love a good sipping bock and this one works for my. Prosit und Zum Wohl. MK

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Photo of Jliebert
5/5  rDev +21.7%

Photo of emerge077
3.25/5  rDev -20.9%

Photo of ClearDog
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance -- Poured a hazy, dark honey color. Thin white head that dissipated quickly. Slight carbonation.

Smell -- Reminds me of a hefe weissen. . . smells very floral with hints of citrus. One can also pick up a slightly smoky scent. It's interesting.

Taste -- Citrus upfront with a smoky finish. The malted rye also shows itself at the end but it is hard to differentiate it from wheat. The taste for the most part reminds me of a hefe weissen, but not as carbonated and the smoky finish. I actually like the taste quite a bit.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-to-light and creamy

Drinkability -- I like this beer very much and can see myself drinking a few of these. Alas I only purchased one bottle to rate. I think I'll probably be seeking out a few more of these beauties for enjoyment later. Another solid offering from New Glarus!

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.87/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle split in a stemmed glass. No date or info.

Thanks to Bnieman for digging this old brew out of his Dad's deep cellar!

A - This aged Unplugged pours a hazed golden amber color with a low off-white head. Low retention and a small ring of foam. Some chunks of floating yeast are expected.

S - Lightly smoky sharp rye and caramel malt aroma. Low earthy hoppiness with a larger smoothness.

T - More smoke appears in the flavor with a nice rye bite. Heavily malted bock flavor with an earthy finish.

M - Smooth, a little carbonation loss isn't really surprising. Medium-bodied, crisp and smooth finishing.

D - Wow, 12%? That must be a joke. With the age on this there wasn't a HINT of alcohol in it. Decent drinkability for a beer that's aged pretty gracefully.

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Photo of lou91
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer looked and smelled like a Belgian triple – orange/golden and hazy with a subtle sweetness with lots of floaties. The label described it as a “dark” ale but it is not dark at all. The taste is similar to an American triple with a very light smokiness. There is a sweetness that throws the taste slightly off even as it warmed. The alcohol was masked very well. The unique malt tastes demonstrate the high quality and skill put into this beer. Thanks to dirtylou for sharing another New Glarus brew.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.47/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another in the unplugged series. I only have two left I believe to complete the whole line, so I was thrilled to be able to knock this one off the list. Served chilled and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 05/21/2009.
The pour was interesting as at first there was a very nice amber color with amazing clarity. A nice head of white came up and over the top, settling down nicely into a firm pillow that coated the sides and really looked very nice. As it settled though, along came the floaties, and lots of them. This does not really throw me off per se, but I must make a note about it. Wondering how this was going to continue I lean in gently, finding a rich sour aroma, hmmm. Sour apples are the first thing that comes across my mind, but it was much more then that. Sweet, candy like notes as well, like sugary syrup mixed in with a rich sour note and a hint of some light grain, not sure what to make of this so I lean in for a sip. Quick hit of spice up front, rye I am assuming melds back in a delicious candy like flavor with a light tart bite to it. Not sure what I would call this still, but I am surprised, intrigued, and very happy with what I am finding. Light all around as the flavor was not heavy at all and lended itself very well to a fine session. As it warms the taste stays the same, smooth, even, delicious.
Overall this was easily the most interesting of the series for me and really had me guessing the entire time. Really nicely done and an interesting mix of flavors and feels. Again not really sure what to call it other then very, very good.

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Photo of blackie
4.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: The pour produces a low, dirty white head that soon becomes just a ring around the glass and a few bottom-fed islands of bubbles. The beer is a clear, prehistoric pine sap amber color.

smell: Okay, I am not getting as much smoke as I expected...the smokiness is very subtle, as if the grains were only smoked a very short time or if a very light wood were used. Up front I get the estery aromas I would usually associate with a hefe...overripe bananas and banana bread, but it seems that they have a little bit more to them here. I suppose this is due to the Weiss yeast used. I also get a light note of peach, apple, and pear. I also get some aromas of feed corn, in a good way, and in kinda gives the beer a "harvest" type feeling to me. The aroma is pretty sweet, but not overly so. I really like the smells that the rye contributes to a beer, always have. Light aromas of noble hops are found.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is medium, but the bubbles that make it up are very smooth and gentle on the tongue. The body is a silky heavy medium. I like the mouthfeel here...it has plenty of character but is smooth and "light" at the same time. A slick feeling lingers on the tongue for awhile.

taste: The taste is considerably sweet, and the hops are very low, yet it does not come across as cloying at all. More flavors of overripe bananas and moist banana bread, as well as red apple and bosc pear. The pulp of dried figs warmed in the oven comes to mind. Hints of peach candies and dried coconut in the aftertaste. The hop flavors are just barely there, and the bitterness is practically nonexistent, but that's ok by me...I don't think they'd fit too well here. Finishes with a lingering sweet flavor. Again, very subtle smokiness that you really have to look for.

drinkability: Pretty easy to drink considering that it is not very balanced as far as malt and hops go. I don't really see this as a smoke beer either, but a good one nonetheless. Very German. I can't believe that this is 12% ABV, as the only hint I get of it is a slight stomach warming.

Brought a couple of these back from my trip to Madison...this one has been sitting in the cellar for a few months. When I drink the other bottle, I will definately pair it with some homemade jagerschnitzel, red cabbage, and spaetzle.

10-18-06: Although the sweetness seems to have gone down a bit, I think that overall the beer has lost some complexity. Still good, but if you are holding onto a few I would drink them soon.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
4.51/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Cellared for five months.

It pours a sight head that dissapears and doesn't have a lacing, but it does have a golden clear color that is very inviting.

The smell is smokey and malty with some very flowery fruitiness.

Smokey with a lot of lightly roasted flavor of malts with flowery fruity tones in the nose.

Mouthfeel is smooth with a slight bite of carbonation.

It's very drinkable, I need more since I have only one left.

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Unplugged Smoked Rye Bock from New Glarus Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.11 out of 5 with 71 ratings