Holsten Maibock | Hanseatische Getränke-Industrie (HGI) Holsten-Brauerei AG

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Holsten MaibockHolsten Maibock

Brewed by:
Hanseatische Getränke-Industrie (HGI) Holsten-Brauerei AG

Style: Maibock / Helles Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by canadianbarman on 11-30-2002

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Reviews: 72 | Ratings: 111
Photo of PEIBeerGuy
2.06/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Looks average... very clear, golden yellow. Lots of head that disappears in a couple of minutes, leaving some lacing down the glass.

Smell is nearly non-existent. Smells like a lot of similar beers. Nothing stands out as good or really bad.

The alcohol surely stands out. It's got an OK aftertaste, and you can taste some OK sweet notes in there, and some mildness, but over top all of that is that overpowering shadow of sharp alcohol. Drinking this is almost like trying to grimace down some straight hard liquors.

Trying to separate this from flavour, it "feels" OK. A little creamy, fairly smooth, OK carbonation.

I can drink it, but I don't like it.

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Photo of Seanstoppable
2.93/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I stayed with some friends this Christmas, and they knew I "liked beer", so I ended up with an assortment of imported tall cans.

Pours a gold color with a finger or two of fizzy, rapidly dissolving head. No lacing whatsoever.

No real perceptible scent.

Alcohol content is apparent from the taste. Not overly hard, but definitely detectable as greater than 5-6%. Some sweetness is also apparent, but is mostly second fiddle to the alcohol. Might be true to style, but I found it somewhat unappetizing.

Alcohol character made it feel somewhat heavy for me. One or two of these might be drinkable, but I don't think it is very favorable for a longer session.

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Photo of MeisterBurger
2.66/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a light straw color with a fizzy white head. Very clear. A ring of head shrinks a little more with every sip until it finally vanishes into the ether.

The aroma is...lightly toasty. Malt sweetness. Really it's barely perceptible.

The taste is a sweet pale malt and noticeable alcohol. Slight spice. Low bitterness. Alcohol dominates in the end. Meh.

Mouthfeel is creamy, full with good carbonation keeping the sweetness light.

Overall this is just bland and inoffensive, and yet I'm having a hard time choking it down.

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.04/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Picked this one up at the LCBO - liked the festbock, thought I'd try a bock-off!

Pours a pale yellow, lots of carbonation. White head that disappears very quickly, leaving only a thin ring around the edge. Not fantastic.

Smell is hoppy with a bit of peach, maybe some malt there.

Taste is uninspired. The alcohol kick at the finish ends up dominating the palate after a smooth, sweet entry. Nothing really too exciting here, but hard to nail down.

Mouthfeel is thin, decent carbonation.

Drinkable, but nothing to write home about. Probably won't pick this one up again, although for the price, it's not bad.

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Photo of decimator
2.53/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

500ml can poured into a pint glass.

A - Typical Lager appearance. Golden color with a 1/2" head that was quickly gone.

S - Mild mix of malts and hops, and some alcohol.

T - A little sweet up front but then it's mostly hop & alcohol bitterness.

M - Average feel. The alcohol is not well masked.

D - Looks & smells ok but once it's in my mouth it loses some of its appeal. One is enough. Not as good as some of Holsten's other beers.

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Photo of RyanBelle
1.45/5  rDev -48.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This is not a bad beer. It has a personality at 7% ABV that really acts as the redeemer for this bock. I personally don't mind bock's at all and absolutely love dopplebock's usually.

A - Looks good, nice and golden but average.

S - Average Lager smell, exciting but not really a "bock" smell. It's not as strong as it tastes.

T - Not bad. It's a very passable bock that gives Holsten a good name so far from what I have tried. It has lots of warming alcohol characteristics and it tastes a lot like a fine wine, almost moreso than a beer because of the high alcohol content.

M - Not great, because warming alcohol dominates.

D - Not great, because although this will get me drink quick, I like more flavor in my bocks/dopplebocks. This one is a slightly bland example of a bock and drinks somewhat poorly.

Try it if you have experience with bock beers, as this may turn you off or turn you on to that type of beer. It's literally a love it or hate it kind of beer.

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Photo of ZorPrime
3.14/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tasted this on July 8th, 2009.

A: Copper like color with a head of big bubbles.
S: Average intensity smell. Mainly malts and caramel.
T: The taste is similar. However, way more caramel than in the nose. Not bad, but not great too. Get some nuts.
M: Medium body.
D: One is enough.

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Photo of TheHammer
2.84/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Appearance - Came in a green and gold can with the Holsten knight on it. Poured with half a finger of head that retains decently and laces quite well. The beer itself is a nice bronze color with solid signs of carbonation. However I do notice quite a few particles floating in the beer.

Smell - Not much going on in this department. Catching dry grassy hops and that's about it. I think I might be catching a slight bread scent, but the hops seem dominant. It's fairly mild, but it's not really anything to write home about.

Taste - Hmm..interesting starts with a mild barley taste and then turns to some form of sweet vegetable flavor, kinda like sweet potatoes but not that strong and ends with a solid hop presence. All in all interesting but not exactly good.

Mouthfeel - Slight sweet vegetable aftertaste which isn't bad. The carbonation feels a bit excessive though and finishes a bit dry. I've certainly experienced worse, and it all in all it's not bad.

Drinkability - This is really where this beer suffers. The taste is oddball for a single tasting, but I wouldn't want to drink this on a regular basis. It's not very refreshing due to it's dryness and sits a little heavy on the stomach. It does go down smoothly though.

Final Thoughts - The main reason I bought this beer, was because I had a good experience with the festbock. This one however, is nowhere near as good an offering. One beer was enough of this stuff. Anymore then one, I think it would outstay it's welcome.

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Photo of Shadman
2.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Decent looking beer. Nice rich color, sort of a first-pee-in the morning kind of amber. Nice head and lacing.

Sort of smelled like musty grain, sweet malt, not much in the was of hop.

Big wave of sweet malt followed by some serious alcohol warming. Slight hop edge there, but it gets clobbered by the sweet, somewhat stickiness of the malt. Finish is quite sticky, with maybe a hint of licorice or ainse.

Fuller in body than what I expected due to the high ABV and the sweet/stickiness.

1 and done for me. Someone mentioned it needs more hop to balance it out. Very 1 dimensional.

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Photo of prosper
2.45/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Looks good, smells good, feels good... too bad about the taste.

Pours a very clear, dark yellow with a dense, frothy white cap. Lots of lace.

Smells grainy, with a hint of sulfur. Soft malts, and characteristic vegetalness.

Taste - pretty bad, all things considered. Sticky sweet, slight grainy pils malt character. Something vegetal in there. It does have a sort of 'cheap-malt-liquor' flavour to it, that's hard to explain. Finishes softly malty - the finish is actually quite nice. Does have some 'lowenbrau-like' highlights. Leaves some alcohol warming. Not sure I'll be able to finish this can, or end up pouring it out. Boil it down a bit, and pour it on pancakes might be ok...

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Photo of woodychandler
3.58/5  rDev +27%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Woody's doing the CAN-CAN yet again. CAN you believe it?

Cue Fred Sanford on vacation in HI (sort of): "I'll have a Maibock. That's my bock. Dummy over there CAN have his own bock. I want what's mine. He CAN have his own if he CAN handle it. Big dummy."

CAN you get excited over a beer? I love watching the head approach the top of the glass as I hang out on somebody's C/S couch. This got a finger's worth of weak, bone-white heas with low retention. Color was a deep golden-yellow with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a definite lager-sweetness. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full with a really sugary taste on the tongue. Finish was syrupy-sweet. Man, it just needed to be toned down a wee tad. A steady diet of this would make me a diabetic.

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Photo of nighthawk
2.73/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a hazy orange/yellow with one finger of head that idssipated very quicly, leaving no lacing on the glass. Smelled mildly grassy, a little grainy. Grassy taste, some more mellow bitter hops notes. Alcohol comes through as the beer warms. No real discernable malt tastes. Fairly strong carbonation bites the tongue, low-medium body. Bitter taste clings to the tongue for some time afterwards. Not an unpleasant brew, but the alcohol hits you pretty strongly.

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Photo of cyrenaica
2.49/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

500ml can
7.0% ABV

I tried this beer on March 18, 2008 after purchasing from one of my local LCBO outlets. The beer poured a translucent orangy-gold colour with a generous white fluffy head that disappeared quite quickly. The aroma was very grassy with very little other discernable aromas. The mouthfeel was medium-bodied, ample carbonation, with a little bitterness. The flavour was again a lot of grass with a little bit of hoppy bitterness. When it comes to Holsten brews, this is not as good as the Festbock, but better than the Premium.

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Photo of JustinBathurst
2.18/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured clear straw gold with a slight tan head.

Smells of cider, honey, and a floral/strawberry licorice.

Mouthfeel is watery and under-carbonated.

Taste? Well, aspirin. This beer was so astringent that I could barely make out anything else for around 10 minutes. Then I noticed some honey sweetness. Obviously, it's hoppy, but it's far too astringent to be enjoyable. However, you couldn't detect the higher alcohol content. I'm not sure if that's a plus or not.

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Photo of ozmodium
3.35/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First off, I purchased this beer as I wanted to try all the "cheap" beers at the BC liquor stores. This was on sale for $2 along with its darker Holsten brother (can't really remember what they call that one). BTW $2 for a pint can in BC is cheap. Anyway. I was actually pleasantly suprised. Although my expectations were not high... So...
I poured it into my big beer stein, icy cold.

Poured a light orangy amber with a nice, but quick to dissapate pure white head. Fizzy. To hide the delicious 7.0% alc. I assume. (which it does well). No lacing.

Smells of sweet malts, and a nice hoppiness. A bit of baking bread yeasty and um lemon maybe? Something kind of odd, but not bad really. No skunkiness. Cool.

Suprisingly nice taste. Tastes like stronger Lowenbrau. Not watery. Malts malts malts. nice hoppy finish. Something odd about it again. Strange as this is apparently brewed to 1516 standards.

Nice carbonation levels hide the alcohol well and keep the undesirable odours and tastes away when cold. DRINK COLD.

All in all this is actually not bad for a cheap, get you drunk beer. Sure is better than any malt liqour out there. I can drink this, and even choose to drink it on occasion now.

Anyone whos ever drank Lowenbrau (the stuff that's actually made in europe) will recognise the flavours of this beer. It almost seems like Holsten stole the Lowenbrau recipe and fortified it a bit.

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Photo of crwills
2.78/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Purchased a can of this at the LCBO. Poured into a pint glass. Pale yellow, not much head -- but lots of bubbles! Something not quite right about the aroma. It's almost sickly sweet and (sadly) reminds me a bit of overripe garbage. Flavour is a little better, and those "garbagy" notes go away as it warms -- however, when it gets too warm, it's just plain unpleasant and hard to drink, so you really can't win. High carbonation, lots of sweet malt, little in the way of hop flavour (although it's got enough bitterness to be reasonably balanced).

I'm not a fan.

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Photo of jayfarley3
2.53/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

poured from a 500ml can, poured a golden yellow with a small head that dissapated very quickly, has lots of carbonation.

smells slightly sweet, malty and maybe a little citrus.

tastes like sweet malts, reminds me of a cheap malt liquor, the alcohol is covered up very well.

mouthfeel is pretty thin with a lot of carbonation.

this beer is drinkable but i would much rather have somthing else.

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Photo of Quej
3.53/5  rDev +25.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - An nice orange colour and very clear. Lots of visible carbonation and lots of thick white fluffy head which disappears quickly.

S - Has shints of fruitiness, but mostly tin and metal smells (possibly from can). Smells slightly hoppy and a bit bitter.

T - Lots of sweet citrus and thick biscuity malt sweetness up front follwed by bitter dry hoppiness. Long lasting sweetness in the aftertaste despite quick finish and its refreshin hop bite. The coppery metallic twinge suits the colour of the beer quite nicely. A rather bitter beer, with good leafy hops.

M - Slightly drying , mostly thick and heavy-ish. Very refreshing, clean finishing beer.

D - Great drinkablility, and very refreshing. Not too strong or powerful to be hindering on the drinkability.

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Photo of ManWithHat
3.06/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - Pours a clear amber. Active carbonation, but the head fades quickly and leaves only a thin lace.

S - A strange mix of tin, hops and fruit notes. Unusual, but not bad.

T - Starts slightly metallic and acidic and finishes with an alcoholic and faintly malty warmth. The flavours become more assertive and brash when the beer is served warm.

M - Mouthfeel is a bit thin, but the beer has a crisp and refreshing carbonation.

D - Surprisingly drinkable given the strength of the beer and its odd flavours.

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Photo of drinkininthewood
1.6/5  rDev -43.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

served from a 500ml can

A- piss yellow colour, tiny head that disappears in seconds leaving nothin....no bubbles, nothing. your basically left with a beer glass that looks like its filled with scotch.

S- Macro. Maybe a little pilsner malt.

T- alcohol, acid, i honestly couldnt describe this, its like trying to convince a beer geek that Steelback beers are "premium Canadian Beer"

M- Stingy, acidy, no carbonation whatsoever ( i this even a beer?)

D- i guess you could drink it if you had to.

Overall this is the last Holsten beer im ever having, maybe i got a bad one or something

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Photo of vanrassel
3.07/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The label on this beer's Canadian-imported can sports a red flag trumpeting its 7 per cent ABV. It may be a bit of truth in advertising, because, really, there isn't much else that sets this beer apart from the multitudes of nondescript beers out there.

It poured into my mug with a miniscule one-finger head that retreated immediately to a soapy ring topping a clear, dark gold body. The beer smelled a bit fruity and alcoholic, elevating it momentarily above blandness.

Sadly, the taste didn't offer much in the way of thrills. It was malty and a bit fruity with only faint hops leading to a dry finish. Thin and watery mouthfeel. This may be a bit of a crazy observation, but it almost tasted like a watered-down Belgian tripel to me.

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Photo of BDTyre
2.69/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Holsten is familiar to me from the grocery store with their non-alcoholic products (grocery stores in Canada can't sell liquor or beer).

The red "German Specialty 7.0% alc/vol." tag really set me off. What was I thinking?

Looks okay: light copper with thin white head.

Smell is blah: malts and tin, very faint hops. Aren't maibocks supposed to be hoppier? On a second quaff, it is mostly a cold and tin scent, traces of alcohol.

Taste doesn't change my opinion much. Better developed malt profile, but still lacking any real hop presence. Tin taste, but very bland overall. Maybe I refrigerated it too long? Alcohol is there, but lacks warmth.

So-so mouthfeel; not unpleasant. Barely drinkable due to its underwhelming, very boring flavour.

This may have set me off Holsten for life.

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Photo of ByTor2112
2.83/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I brought this back from Canada.
Off white head dissipates quickly. Smells like a European macro lager, smells like a bale of hay and I can barely get whiff of sweet malt.
Crisp hop bitterness hits the palate with a decent malt body but it tasted like the can somewhat. No alcohol was detected whilst it was cold. A good froth in the mouth sweetens it up and releases the alcohol presence. A good smooth beer but still feels like a european macro with a higher alcohol content. As it warms up the alcohol is more present on the palate. Not bad, but all the while I still felt like this was a Heineken with a higher grain bill.

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Photo of entheogen
3.09/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I am reviewing a 500mL can of Holsten Maibock in a pilsener glass: best-before date is December 2006.

A: The beer looks to be a deeper yellow color, kind of like a light bronze. There was initially about 2 fingers worth of head, but it had dwindled down to a 2mm covering within about 3 minutes, leaving a very small amount of lacing that was very linear. It is pretty.
S: The smell is mostly citrusy and a very tiny bit smoky. Something about the smell turns me off: there's something a little fetid there... it's horrible to say this, but the off smell reminds me of Alberta Genuine Draft (which brings to mind beer-induced vomiting). It isn't horrible, just the presence of an unexpected (and not too enjoyable) element.
T: The initial taste I get is metallic, probably to do with how long it's been sitting around in the can. This is followed by sweetness, then a little zing from the hops. Carbonation is pretty low, alcohol is not really that obviated. It is there, but it is a background hum. This stuff is pretty good.
M: Kind of beefy, my first expectations were for this to be light, but this stuff hangs around in the mouth for a little while. Kinda creamy at the very very end.
D: This stuff is as smooth as the festbock (the only other Holsten product I can get). This isn't overly intrusive, and is very cool for a higher alcohol beer that is relatively inexpensive as well.

I could see myself drinking this in the future, if only to supplement the festbock. Although the smell is not very nice, you get used to it after a couple sips.

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Photo of Conrad
2.83/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The quick version: It's okay.
A: Deep clear gold yellow. Thin head that left quickly.
S: Hops upfront. A bit of citrus, minimal malts.
T: Nice. Not terrific, but nice. A bit sweet but not syrupy or cloying; lower bitters than I would have thought, considering that is the smell that hits you first.
M: Medium to light body, smooth, medium finish.
D: Have one, then move on to something else that will challenge your tastebuds.

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Holsten Maibock from Hanseatische Getränke-Industrie (HGI) Holsten-Brauerei AG
2.82 out of 5 based on 111 ratings.
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