Unplugged Eisbock | New Glarus Brewing Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Unplugged EisbockUnplugged Eisbock
Unplugged EisbockUnplugged Eisbock

Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: German Eisbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews & Ratings
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 64 | Ratings: 76
Photo of mikesgroove
3.92/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

brown on the pour, nearly opaque as I try to look through the haze. No head at all at first but slowly but surely a thin tan cloud rises up and over the top and settles down giving a touch of light foam along the sides and the bottom of the glass.

Tons of rich toffee and caramel initially on the nose, once it warms up though it becomes one of the most complex aromas I have ever encountered. Light alcohol notes, hints of dark cherries and fruit, light chocolate and almost a root beer like touch as it really comes up near room temperature. To say the aroma was inviting would be an understatement, this was intense. Smooth, full, thick body on this one really let the flavor just coat your tongue, and again this was an expierence all its own.

 748 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.5/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Given JAXON's review, I am less-than-hopeful, but one never knows. I am slowly reducing some of the massive backlog in my basement and this is what surfaced.

From the bottle: "'Some people paint, some sing, others write ... I brew' - Daniel Carey"; "A few times a year we will cut Dan loose to brew whatever he chooses, uncensored, uncut, unplugged. Always handcrafted, the bottle you hold is brewed for the adventurous soul. This is a very limited edition and we make no promises to ever brew this style again."; "Eisbock"; "You hold the first of our 'Unplugged' series of beers. This Eisbock was lagered a full year and then frozen to incomparable smoothness. This is a big and complex beer, suitable for laying down or consuming immediately, serve at 55 F."; "Thanks for S[sic]upporting the Arts. (undersigned) Daniel & Deborah Carey".

I went with a gentle pour, resulting in less than a finger of light-tan head with low retention. Color was a hazy reddish-brown with ruby highlights at the edges. Nose had a molasses-like malty sweetness, but with the papery scent noted by JAXON. Mouthfeel was medium and it had a slightly medicinal taste, like some old cough syrup from my youth, or somesuch. Finish left me thinking of molasses and if you like that sort of thing, it would be for you, but despite the label, it was not meant to be "la[id] down" for this long. My apologies for allowing my cellar to get so out of hand that I could not keep up. I will have it emptied by the end of the summer break.

 1,509 characters

Photo of JAXSON
3.4/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From a bottle, pours a dark clear mahogany chestnut with a small ring of head. Nose is lots of rich malt, raisin, chocolate brownie, maybe a toasted nut. Mouth focuses on chocolate liqueur, toasted nuts. Paper oxidation takes over near the front palate. Thin and a bit washed out. The malts have faded a lot I would think, leaving mostly that liqueur and oxidized quality. Nose is good but the mouth reveals how past its prime this one is. Probably was nice 1-2 years ago.

 472 characters

Photo of levifunk
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at a small tasting recently. Reviewed from notes.

this was the most anticipated beer of the night.

a - purple/brown pour. low low carbonation.

s - caramel, campfire, fresh grapes (not an aged grape smell, which makes me think this will have a lot of life still), black cherry. wow, one of the best noses a beer could have.

t - damn. sadly somewhat watery flavor. brown sugar and raisins. quite the let down after that nose. I kept some in my glass for a long time just to keep smelling it.

m - medium body with low carbonation.

overall - mute flavor, but the nose is amazing.

 590 characters

Photo of mdfb79
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 7/9/10 notes. Had at a local DC tasting.

a - Pours a murky amber color, with one inch of white head,

s - Smells of caramel malts and dark fruits mostly.

t - Tastes of caramel malts, roasted malts, dark fruits, and lightly of other fruits.

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

d - An enjoyable beer with some nice dark fruits in the smell and taste. Would try again.

 375 characters

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

Thanks to Jon for this one. This is the late 2002 vintage I think. Served in a flute at Ben's place while watching the Lost finale.

A - Pours with a finger of tan foam that dissipates to a thin collar and some nice haziness. Decent retention, but not much in the way of lacing. The body is a dark brown color with some transparency and a bit of suspended sediment.

S - Cocoa, carob, dark bread, dark fruits, port and a low amount of sherry-like oxidation that works pretty well here. Alcohol is very well hidden - I was kind of shocked to see that this was 10%.

T - Taste is pretty similar. Very standard bock flavors, with multi-grain bread, molasses, chocolate, dark fruits, roasted malts, and surprisingly little oxidation or alcohol.

M - Chewy, bready, low carbonation, and a surprisingly dry, clean finish with minimal stickiness. No heat is apparent at all.

D - Split the 12oz with Ben and Justin, but definitely could have tackled it on my own. Looking forward to the long-rumored new batch in the works. New Glarus nails another German style here.

 1,060 characters

Photo of mbrasi
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Seems aroma is the same as the Uff-da bock. Sweet and malty some burnt and nutty aromas come out when swirled. Mouthfeel is watery and lacks carbonation. Flavor is a little watery but makes this eisbock very drinkable. The alcohol is almost non-existant. There is caramel, wood, toffee, and sweet malt in the flavor. This one is good, hopefully they brew it again since I have no more.

 385 characters

Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown in color with a nice quarter inch mocha head.
Smell is subtle dark fruits and lots of yeast.
Taste is huge. Big and creamy on the mouthfeel. Taste is darkness. Both in fruit and toffee. This is a good Eisbock and has held up well with time.

 264 characters

Photo of srandycarter
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours small head, dark cola.

S - Sherry, dessert wine, charred malt.

T - Nice fat malt center, pretty sweet, but satisfying. Fairly nice balance with hops. Taste falls a little short in the very last - kind of dies.

M - carbonated adequately, fair coating, medium body.

D -Not for all night.

 299 characters

Photo of joedon
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was a little uncertain about tasting this beer. I had bought a six pack of the "Unplugged" barley wine and had let it "age" for over a year in my cellar. When I finally got around to trying it, there was a big layer of chunks in the bottom of the bottle. Some kind of sediment that made the beer really cloudy and it wasn't yeast.

Anyhow, I poured this into a snifter with very little head. Beautiful, clear dark garnet color. Pleasing smell of caramel, malt and sherry.

Nice flavor; mostly dark fruit, caramel, more sherry notes and just enough hops to notice. Very good mouthfeel for a strong beer. Just a bit of fizz with medium-heavy body. Aftertaste of dark sugar and molasses.

This is a very drinkable beer for 10% ABV. Good winter warmer.

 750 characters

Photo of emerge077
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a 12 oz. snifter at 50º and given a few minutes to settle and warm slightly. 4+ year old bottle.

An initial two finger head recedes to a generous skim after several minutes pass. A dark ruddy brown seeps into crimson glints at the bowl of the glass. Audible crackle of carbonation on the second pour. A slight shift of bubbles appear beneath the surface as the glass is tilted.

Cocoa, carob, spiced cookies, raisins, roasted malt, and slight clay undertones in the nose.

Flavors continue from these aromas into dried plums, dates, almonds and raisins. Earthy, chocolatey roast underlies the fruit, and dissipates into a long, dry & roasty finish. Infinitely smooth after a year of lagering, and freezing. Lower carbonation but not flat.

A rare treat, hopefully Mr. Carey explores this territory again someday.

 829 characters

Photo of Wasatch
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to ThomasHardy for this brew.

Poured into a chalice a nice clean/clear dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tannish head, there's a tiny bit of sticky lacing around the edges. The nose is malty, prunes, figs, raisins, and a good dose of caramel. The taste is malty at first, nice touch of the dark fruits/caramel, with a nice warm feeling, ending in a slightly bitter/dry finish. The alcohol is hidden very well with this brew. Medium body, a well rounded brew. Very drinkable, what can I say, another awesome brew from New Glarus, thanks Brady.

 581 characters

Photo of roggae
3.77/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from sentry. Pours an amber. No lacing. Lots of carbonation. Mouthfeel is sharp, in a good way, and very carbonated. Taste is richly malty and complex. Some spicyness. Much dried fruit and plum/date/raisin taste. Some alcohol present, but not dominate. Good beer.

 270 characters

Photo of Erdinger2003
4.69/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The color is dark brown and the head isn't large. The lacing doesn't stick very well. The aroma of sweet sugar candy and dark fruit come through very well. The taste is roasty and sweet. Sweet dark fruit and roasted malts come through very well. Mouthfeel is very good and smooth, I like it very much. If this wasn't so rare I'd buy this very often.

 349 characters

Photo of Sephiroth
3.87/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to JHop for the bottle. Pours with nice head, no lace, color is a deep ruby. The malty aroma is well blended.

Taste has plenty of caramel, nutty malt. There is a slight fruitiness, overall this has a dry taste that lingers. Mouthfeel is thick, pretty good drinkability.

 280 characters

Photo of badbeer
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The first of New Glarus' Unplugged brews, feel special to try it.

Pours a dark midnight red color with an off white head that quickly disappeared but left a ring around the glass. Others noticed a lack of carbonation, but is bubbling up like a fountain, never seen this before. Smell is of burnt molasses, brown sugar, cherries, and currants. Very sweet, caramel greets me first, with a little bit of toffee, and even some bitterness comes into play. Dry finish, but has a nice lingering taste of plum and cherry. Nice mouthfeel, it was medium-high carbonation, medium to full bodied, but I expected it to be thicker. Very drinkable, I wish they would make this more often, or even just one more time I suppose would be great.

 729 characters

Photo of granger10
4.36/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This Unplugged NG offering pours a ruby red color with mohagany on the inside. A slight off white head disperses quickly. Spotty lacing.

Aroma is quite fruity and complex. Cherries and strawberries and plums all seem to be mixed in. Notes of woody and floral esters come out. No real alcohol noticed on the smell. Malts are not the main players here as they are with most Eisbocks but they still show a molasses and grain mixture.

Taste is fruitier than most of this style. NG really gets fruity flavors from their beers even if they're not trying. This beer is sweet but its not the malt heavy, cloying sweetness but more of a natural byproduct of a clean beer sweetness. Light fruits are very noticeable but there's still a lot of caramel in here. This beer really is complex and soft. A nutty toffee flavor lies underneath holding the base. There even seems to maybe be a slight hoppiness or some kind of bitter floral flavor to match the fruity sweetness a bit. Finish leans toward the dry side with a slight candy like flavor.

Mouthfeel is soft and light for the style. 10% abv!? No way. I think this beer is a year old and maybe the age has smoothed it out and created more of a complexity out of the flavors. Still, there's not that intensity that one looks for in Eisbocks. It's not as heavy and powerful as some might want.

Drinkability is superb and drinking more than one of these beers, if I could get my hands on them, would be enticing. But after doing a side by side comparison b/w this and Kulmbacher, I'm feeling like another beer would do me in. Very enjoyable though, get it if you can.

 1,618 characters

Photo of hopsaplenty
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle, no date info

Noisy, fizzy towering head of fine off-tan bubbles that slowly settles. Deep ruby highlighted amber with no carbonation streams. The smell is rich and full sweet, thick malt, dark fruits and alcohol laced. The taste is sweet and malty, filled with alcohol and loaded with dark fruit, jammy. Brown sugar and plums. Sweet all the way through, finishing with a warming alcohol presence. Full bodied with a thick heavy mouthfeel, the lack of carbonation only adds to its weight. Slightly creamy with a milk fat slick feel. Enjoyable.

Thanks to stonecrusher for the opportunity. How's that tasting thimble working out for you?

 659 characters

Photo of mynie
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a flat ruby. Tiny head. Very smooth, with almost no carbonation.

Smells like chocolate, A1 sauce, and caramel burned black. Pretty intense, and strangley enjoyable.

Zupity do! It kicks you right in the face, but it doesn't taste nearly as sweet as the smells leads you to believe. Starts with dull caramel that moves into dark baker's chocolate and ends with a very strong burst of natural licorice and allspice.

Very nice. Way too easy to drink.

 461 characters

Photo of Jredner
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lots of concentrated caramel, brown sugar, rum-raisin and pumpernickel aromas waft up from the glass. Dark brown with lots of red hints...almost no head..just a wispy white smattering. A big dose of caramel and sweeter rum-raisin flavors in the fore. More malts some spice, toffee and heartier bready notes in the middle. Finish is sweet and savory with more caramel and a little bit of cocoa. Quite tasty. There is a peppermint-like spiciness that comes out in the aftertaste as it warms.

 489 characters

Photo of weeare138
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Much thanks to hopdog for bringing this over and egajdzis for deciding to crack it open...
Appears a hazy amber with a light off white head and scattered lacing.
Smell is of super malty caramel, vanilla, cream, oak, whisky.
Taste is of sugary malt with vanilla and nutty light maple notes mixed with whiskey coming through.
Mouthfeel is sugary with alcohol noticeable.

 372 characters

Photo of jahred
4.34/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Notes from a review on Nov 9 '05. Pours a dark reddish-brown color with an exceedingly quickly fading white foamy head. I see on posts that this beer isn't made anymore - maybe I should get my friends in Madison to pick up more for me.

The aroma is strong. Sherry, honey and bready malt aromas. Yum. The taste is filled with honey notes, smooth malt and flavors of chestnuts. Little bubbles of prickly carbonation dance on my tongue. There's a surprising amount of bitterness for an eisbock, which makes this really easy to drink - it's much less cloying and much more balanced than I would expect from 12 oz of an eisbock.

The beer warms, and continues to be ridiculously smooth for a 10% AA beer. Caramel and toffee notes, along with toasty warm bread flavors. Mmmm - OK, I definitely need to get more of this stuff.

 824 characters

Photo of waldowin
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep ruby, with a thin white head that fades immediately.

Smells of strawberries, bourbon, and a hint of alcohol.

Tastes of strawberries, sherry, bourbon, and a very thin hint of smoke in the finish. Hops slam in at the end, with an edge of grapefruit.

Starts out thin and cold, and finishes hot and huge. This beer definitely sneaks up on you. Very tasty indeed!

If it weren't for the ABV, this stuff would be sessionable easily.

Thanks to Jetsbeer for this rare treat!

 493 characters

Photo of OldSock
4.62/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance – 12 oz bottle, obtained from ThomasHardy in a trade. It pours a deep red/brown with a 3 finger head that quickly falls to 1 and finally to just a thin coating. No lacing to speak of.

Smell – Loads of dark fruit, plums in particular. Shockingly that there is only a hint of spicy alcohol. Definitely a lot of candy sweetness. It’s a wonderfully complex aroma that I am really fond of.

Taste – Sweet fruit and malt upfront with coffee late in the aftertaste. Really smooth and sweet, without being cloying. Some alcohol, just a slight warming. Tastes great and has a lot of complexity. My only complaint is that the alcohol is so well hidden, I like some real alcohol flavor in my Eisbocks.

Mouthfeel – Thick body with medium carbonation, really smooth.

Drinkability & Notes – Easy to drink and easy to enjoy. The best Eisbock I have had by a wide margin, sad to know that this beer was retired awhile ago. Another real gem from New Glarus.

 968 characters

Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.52/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

and I’m deeply sad about it. This beer has really improved with time, or my taste buds have, since I first purchased it in 2002.

This is a big brew. Loads of raisons, prunes, and caramel in the nose. Porty.

Taste is big rich malts, kind of like what one might find in a Belgian Duppel. Plums and raisons return in the tastes along with grapes and a touch of coffee and other dried fruits. Heck, this beer is a regular bulk dried fruit section at your local co-op or a great big bag of trail mix complete with dried banana, mango, pineapple, and apples.

Super easy to drink. Can this really be 10%? This is less warming than one would expect and the alcohol doesn’t exactly smack you upside the head like it should. Smooth as silk.

I hope that Carry brews another batch of this one some day.

 805 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Unplugged Eisbock from New Glarus Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.24 out of 5 with 76 ratings