Lobotomy Bock | Indian Wells Brewing Company

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Lobotomy BockLobotomy Bock

Brewed by:
Indian Wells Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is a classic German Dopple Bock. Like all of our beers it is made in strict accordance to the German Reinheitsgebot Purity Law of Brewing, which is water, malt, hops and yeast only! Lobotomy Bock is made from five types of specialty malted barley including Munich, black patent and other premium malts. And finished with two types of hops, Sterling and Perle added at the boil and again at the finish for the perfect flavor balance. Lobotomy Bock is brewed with pure artesian spring water from the historic Indian Wells Spring. Lobotomy Bock is lagered for several weeks then finished to exacting standards.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-21-2004

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Reviews: 104 | Ratings: 202
Photo of Rzzzzz
2.61/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours dark brown with a thin but lingering sand colored head. Light aroma of raisin bread. Tastes surprisingly bland. Maybe just a hint of coffee with sugar (I prefer mine black), with an aftertaste that wavers between sweet and bitter without ever settling into a pleasant balance. Mouthfeel is thin and watery and the 10.5% ABV touted on the label is virtually undetectable. Not as enjoyable as I had hoped.

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Photo of srroos
3.52/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle (purchased from the brewery last winter) into a pint glass. Clear, dark reddish-brown with a small, quickly dissipating tan head. Smells smoky and malty. Taste is all roasted malt with a smokey finish. A little bit of bitterness at the end. Mouthfeel is thinner than expected, but drinkability is high. Like many others, I question the label's 10%+ ABV.

Very little change compared to what I had fresh at the brewery. Worth a try, but not a very good example of the style.

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Photo of tiger88
2.76/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got this in my beer of the month. I feel cheated this month, to be honest. The Lobotomy Bock should be mind altering if it lives up to it's name. It doesn't. The appearance was typical for a bock, Dark tan, a little transparent. It didn't really have much of an aroma and the head quickly dissipated. It definitely does not drink like a +10% beer. The alcohol is barely discernible. I'll be able to finish the other 3 I have left, unlike Lobotomy's Gold Mojave cousin.

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Photo of Francepants06
2.58/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Looks like a black lager with an off-white head.
Smells of roasted malts with hint of espresso.
Taste like flat watered down coffee.
mouthfeel is light to medium body.
Overall, just an average beer. The brewmaster needs to realize that making beer that taste like a bad homebrew doesn't belong on the market.

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Photo of bohemiandonut
1.86/5  rDev -37.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Lobotomy is an abomination of beer.

Appearance is okay, promising even, but taste and smell leave much to be desired. ABV is not there, though strangely enough a distinct methanol aroma seeps through. Taste is just so... bleh. Incomplete. Kind of a metallic, migraney taste.

Poured the first one of these down the drain. Actually looked for the receipt to return the other five. Couldn't find the receipt so kept in fridge to be drunk in emergencies. God this is awful beer.

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Photo of felipe2toes
3.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours black with thin head that dissappears into nothingness, maybe some crust and lace clinging here and there, but nothing really.

Smells of roasted malt, sweet caramel, and raisins.

Flavorwise, this beer is fairly one-note, just malt. Maybe the slightest bit of hops on the finish.

Really light-bodied for what I was expecting, kind of flat.

If anything, the abv is well-hidden in this beer, making for an easy drinker.

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Photo of DannyHartman
1.48/5  rDev -50.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

It's almost hard for me to believe this is a 10.5 ABV beer.... At first, the pour into the glass seems to nice.... That is, until you realize there isn't much head or body to it.... Though it's a dark beer, it doesn't have that deep of a taste to it.... Pretty bland characteristics.... I tried the Indian Wells "Insomnia IPA", and again, I wasn't too impressed with it's lack of hoppiness.... I'm still waiting to find a beer from this brewery that I fully enjoy.

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Photo of TeeCee
2.86/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Quick review: it's rather porterish for a bock or any beer for that matter. Doppelbock is my favorite style, and this ain't it. In any case, I rated this beer on its own merits, not the label on the bottle.

This is available in six packs locally right about now. I don't remember seeing it until recently. I poured it into an American style pint glass, producing ~1" of creamy brown head, quickly disipating to about 1/8", leaving no traces. The body is a dark reddish brown, transparent at the edges (no signs of any cloudiness), with light coming through only about the lower half of the glass. No nucleation whatsoever (a recently used and rinsed glass - surprise! this isn't my first beer today).

It smells old, roasted, raisiny, and chocolaty. Following the style, no signs of hops in the nose.

The taste is rather porterish. There's a smoky flavor there that seems like a cross between a porter and a rauchbier with the spice I often notice in a porter (I'm beginning to think that's due to the roasted malts - someone help me here), and a bitterness on the tale end likely due to the roasted malts and some hops. This isn't making me think Doppelbock in any way. Finally, while it's smoky, it doesn't have that rauchbier bacon flavor to it.

The mouthfeel is a bit thin for the supposed style (Doppelbock), but seems appropriate for what I'm tasting. Maybe it's the ABV (10%). I get no fizz initially, but I get a mouthful if I swish it.

I could drink a few of these if I liked it more. I'd say it's sessionable if you like it and can stand up after a few 12 oz 10% ABV beers.

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Photo of PuckLSHS
3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer is just that, average.

Had this one on tap a couple days ago. I was excited about the new beer and the high ABV...hoping it would be full of flavor and depth.

Boy, was I surprised. The beer poured with little to no head on the beer. The head dissipated rather quickly leaving no lace and no smell but the malt/brown sugar offering in front of me. The beer was rather watery and received the 10% from all the brown sugar they threw into the brew.

There wasn't much beyond the sweet malt/brown sugar taste...so, I can't really offer much else up for flavor.

mouthfeel and drinkability were average, but I don't think I would get this one again. I just thought it was not much more than a watered down version of a good high ABV beer.

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Photo of geokills
3.26/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pouring dark with a finger or two of tan head that dissipated so quickly I wondered if there was really any head at all. Very mild malt aroma, upon first sip I was astonished how well they managed to mask the heavy alcohol content reported on the package. However, by the time I was halfway through this brew, it became abundantly clear that the advertised ABV is an outright lie - that is, unless these folks at Indian Wells managed to include some magical substance that counteracts the inebriation otherwise incurred by consuming alcohol! Very light body, lively albeit watery mouthfeel with a slightly sour flavor. Glad I got this one on sale.

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Photo of JamesP123
3.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A. Dark brown. Aggressive pur resulted in small head that dissipates quickly. Heavy carbination is visable.

S. Sweet/caramel alcohol. Slight roasted malt coming through.

T. Don't taste the 10% alcohol as I was expecting. Very sweet and heavily carbinated. Some chocolate flavor from the malts.

M. Thin body with high carbination. About what I expected.

D. The beer masks it high ABV content easily. Not my favorite Doppelbock, but a decent option that is very drinkable and affordable.

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Photo of Flyboyman
3.75/5  rDev +25.8%

Extremely drinkable, I didn't expect the abv to be above 6%. Nice malty taste nothing overwhelming, medium body, slightly oily mouthfeel. Smells slightly alcoholy.

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Photo of xgabe
2.05/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

For a doppelbock listed at 10.5%, I felt that the bar was set way higher than this beer could achieve.

The appearance from the get-go gave me the impression that this was not as high a quality brew as I expected: Medium head that dissipated quickly, more of a "pepsi-like" carbonation, not that great of lacing.

Aroma-wise, not much complexity on malts, and the dryness of the beer was already evident. Taste confirmed that. Mouthfeel was very fizzy. Almost tasted like I was having a weird remedy elixir.

I hope that in the future, the focus is more on backing off of the ABV for fine tuning of the ingredients.

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Photo of RobJTejas
2.58/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in a pilsner glass. Looks like a glass of Dr. Pepper, very dark with a finger thin line of head that quickly disipates.

Smells roasted, almost charred. A little nutty with a molasses finish.

I must agree with Nerudamann on this one. Roasty malts and molasses with a bitter initial hit.

Mouth feel is tricky. The bitter taste up front almost makes you think it is medium to medium heavy bodied but swill it around a second and you realize its actually almost light. Once again its almost cola-esque. Medium carbonation, very little alcohol taste.

Overall not a bad beer. Like many others on here I don't think I could drink this alone all night, (and with so many fine brews out there who would?) but I would definately drink the whole bottle.

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Photo of wajacobs
3.4/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I happened upon the indian wells brewery on my way home from recent trip Death Valley. I've seen their beers at the local Whole Foods but never took to much interest in them. We stopped in hoping to find lunch but the steak house isn't open for lunch so we headed into the brewery. Based on the merchandise on hand it was quickly appperant that the Lobotomy Bock is their flag ship beer so we grabed a sixer to go.

It's a big malty doppelbock for sure with just enough hop bitterness to give it a crisp finish.

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Photo of Direx
2.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

A: A handsome color when poured; appears black but is a dark blood crimson under light.

S: Smells like a red lager, similar smell to Mojave Red. I really had to shove my face in the glass to get a good whiff. Some caramel and nutty notes.

T: Pleasant, light taste--similar to the Mojave Red. Not very flavorful and residual flavors leave the mouth quickly. Uncomplicated flavors, watered down. Unoffensive, mildly pleasant aftertaste.

M: Lobotomy Bock is a thin beer with a bland mouth-feel.

O: Unimpressive Bock that has tons of potential. Firstly, you'd never guess that Lobotomy is 10.8%. It tastes like a 4-5% brew--although I guess this is a plus for some. Mouth-feel and taste are forgetful. Lobotomy is too filtered and restrained for its own good. If I had to describe this brew in one word it would be "withdrawn". It has a lot less personality than I was expecting and I predict it will speak to very few individuals.

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Photo of jim1904
3.22/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a - deep dark red, very little head, yet good lacing. confusing.

s - well it certainly SMELLS nice. very much like sweet pastry, chocolate, a little whiff of licorice.

t - the dominant flavor here is dissolved CO2 sharpness, which is definitely disappointing. none of the bready richness of a true doppelbock, but not bad nonetheless. a little bit of earthy noble hop twang. some coffee notes. poor, poor, astringent finish.

m - thin, good carbonation. feels like a bock.

d - there's some kinda law that says that brewers have to be true to their abv reporting, right? if there isn't, i'm half tempted to call this one a mislabel. there's the barest hint of an alcohol burn on the throat, but then again, i have a bit of a sore throat. other than that, i would have pegged this one at 7%, tops, just based on drinking it.

not a bad beer, but definitely not the best representation of a good doppelbock. not quite a drain pour, but eh, it's unimpressive.

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Photo of Muchosnachos
2.82/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

If somebody handed me a pint of this at the bar I'd drink it. It doesn't taste terrible. I am however offended by its claim that it is a doppelbock. It's watery. It's so watery in fact that I don't believe the claim that it is 10.8%. Maybe the first batch that they brought down to the lab tested 10.8% but it doesn't taste that alcoholic and it doesn't have the effect on me thinking nor me balance that I expect from 10.8%.

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Photo of Cowboystout
3.15/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is my first review so please be gentle. This was recommended to me by the "beer expert" at the liquor store I went to so i bought it with high expectations. It was average at best

Pour: I poured it out of the bottle into a standard beer glass. Upon pouring, it had a very nice brown color to it. Dark but not so dark that you can't see through a bit. The head was very small, maybe 1/8 of an inch. I was hoping for just a bit more head.

Smell: had an average smell to me, did not smell like what I want a high quality beer to smell like. Not appetizing.

Taste: this is where the beer falls down. The taste was very average. I didn't get a lot of complexity, it just tasted like a very watery beer. Although I don't agree with the label that it's 10.5% alcohol, it definitely has more alcohol tha your average beer.

My recommendation would be to keep moving on if this beer looks interesting at the store, you can find a better beer.

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Photo of PTB25
3.85/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer may be a gimmick, if in fact it's 10.8 ABV is the real deal. It doesn't taste that strong, not even close. It's even surprising.

12 oz bottle into pint glass

A - dark reddish to brown, very little head, although doppelbocks tend to have less head, I notice.

S - Not a strong aroma, befitting the taste. Maybe a little nutty.

T - So much lighter than you would expect. Almost watery. It doesn't taste bad at all - but it doesn't taste like a doppelbock. I think it's more similar to a schwarzbier, if anything. It lacks any complexity whatsoever. This is not necessarily bad, unless you are looking for something in the style of an Optimator. It turns into a very easy drinking beer that could knock you out fast, although it's tough for me to comment on the ABV since I have never had more than one of these in a day.

M - Smooth city. No aftertaste. Again, much lighter than expected.

D - For a doppelbock? I could drink a bunch of these. I may have to try it to comment on the ABV.

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Photo of OneLowChevy
4.39/5  rDev +47.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This was first brought to me by some family members in Ridgecrest, Ca who came to visit me. I visited the brewery when i went to visit them for a camping trip. I was amazed at how smooth it was for a bock. I didnt get a bitter after taste like with some. This one hit me with almost a smokey wood flavor that i loved. Since i was camping while drinking it, it was perfect. I recommend this beer for a nice camping trip or backyard BBQ.

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Photo of USMCretired
1.08/5  rDev -63.8%
look: 1.25 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

An all around horrible beer. It has a strange grittiness to it, light alchohol and some oxidation. Claims to adhere to reinheitsgebot but i taste some additions in here. Interesting to know what their interpretation of reinheitsgebot is.

Boozy, caramely warm aftertaste. Thin off white head that quickly fades to a snapping beer. Too many things going on, i like my doppelbocks simpler.

Wouldn't buy again

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Photo of Jaskeller
4.85/5  rDev +62.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

This is my favorite bock that I have come across thus far. Really hard to find up in the Northeast, but I had it in Texas and couldn't get enough. It is a little darker and more viscous than most bocks but balances that with a slightly smokey smoothness that just makes it epic.

I prefer darker beers and sweeter beers, so perhaps my pallette gives this brew a little more creedence than others, but if you come across it worth a try for sure, and if you don't like it (comes in a six pack) send me the other five!

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Photo of Texan816
3.94/5  rDev +32.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I like the lobotomy bock, not to harsh, smooth, taste great! I found this at Central Market HEB in San Antonio, Tx. I was looking for Lobo Bock which is a Texas double bock but they are still a small brewery so when I came across this I was continent and have been on the lobotomy kick since!

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Photo of BasilBock
2.91/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is a hard beer to review and that is why I choose this to be my first review. I had high hopes for the Lobotomy Bock. The first one I had was marginal, but it was also one of the first few beers I ever had that strayed from the American Pilsner route. I had one and didnt give it much thought afterwards. Now a few years later, I picked up a case at the local Calandros.

The first beer of the case, I served in a glass from the bottle. The pour was acceptable, with a thin head. The color was a dark brown with a strong hint of golden red. I didnt have much time to admire the aesthetics though, because after a few years I was eager to drink up. The first taste that hit my palette was something I would rarely use in a beer description, Worcestershire. The taste I later refined down to a unique blend of smokey malts and cola. The first glass I had, was mediocre. But I would never leave a 6 pack with only one missing from the slot.

Over the next week I had a few more, until half-way through the case, the taste began to make sense. When I was trying to enjoy it as a normal Bock the flavor was too complex until I understood the cola additions. The beer felt weaker than expected for such a strong taste, and I am beginning to doubt the listed ABV. I still have a few left in the case and I am nervous about whether the next drink will be better, or if the tastes will be incoherent.

Overall - The best way to describe this drink is like a Mona Vie. It is not a drink for everyone, and many might find it down right disgusting at first, but after a few you will find yourself craving one every now and then. My recommendation is to try some other drinks first, but if you elect to buy a case, make sure you have more than just one. This beer takes some sophistication (possibly more than I currently have.)

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Lobotomy Bock from Indian Wells Brewing Company
2.98 out of 5 based on 202 ratings.
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