Doppelbock | The Fort Collins Brewery

very good
86 Reviews
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Brewed by:
The Fort Collins Brewery
Colorado, United States

Style: Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by GilGarp on 03-13-2009

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Reviews: 86 | Ratings: 129
Photo of number1bum
4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of NEPA BC split #12, and a much criticized contribution!

Pours a reddish light brown color, good clarity and lots of bubbles rising to the top. Only about one finger of creamy light beige head but it retains a great lace throughout and leaves some stick, too.

Smell is equal parts smoke and doppelbock, with caramel and toasted malt aromas combining with a woodsy, woodsmoke scent.

Taste starts of with a hit of smoky flavor but then has a nice bready, biscuity malt base with a little bit of caramel sweetness. Through the finish there is some smoke that is also earthy, woodsy and somewhat bitter. This is actually really tasty and the smoke is a nice complement here, rather than dominating the flavor profile. I just realized as I'm almost all the way through this that it's 10% alcohol. I didn't notice it at all; very well hidden.

Mouthfeel is quite creamy yet drying through the finish. It's on the heftier side of a medium body.

This is actually a really good beer. Well beyond expectations, and I would drink one of these every now and then for sure.

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Photo of rallison
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Oxymoron for this one!

A: Pours a reddish amber color with a 1/2 finger off-white head that settles to a ring around the liquid and leaves a touch of lacing.

S: Beef Jerky smokiness mixed with a touch of caramel sweetness.

T: Caramel and candied date sweetness with a wonderful smoked meat flavor. Maybe a touch of raisins as well. The flavor is not hugely complex, but is overall an enjoyable interplay of flavors.

M: Somewhat creamy with just enough richness while being far from heavy. Alcohol is not present at all. 10%? I pegged this as no more than 8%. Nice!

D: Very good given the high ABV especially.

Highly recommended. One of the most enjoyable smoke beers I have had. This one especially grew on my as I got closer to finishing the bottle.

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Photo of Riggsy
4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into goblet.

A: Pours a beautiful, very clear dark ruby in color. Vigourous pour yields about 1 finger of off-white head, not a biggie with a beer this big. This just looks so good when held up in the light.

S: Hickory - like smoky aroma combined with a toffee / caramel sweetness. Also mild hints of dark fruits.

T: Again, smokiness is what I get first. It dominates without being overbearing. Sweet malts, dark fruit, and some alcohol also present.

M: Full bodied, heavy on the palate. Enough carbonation to sweep the sweetness from the palate before taking another sip.

D: Scary drinkable for 10%. I don't usually enjoy smoked beers (thought this was a straight-up dopple when I bought it) but this one has re-opened my mind to them.

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Photo of rye726
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 offering aged for an additional year. Poured at 45F into a goblet.

Nice dark amber color with a thick orangish tan head. The aroma is very smokey and sweet. Lots of ripe fruit and dark sugar. Some piney hops linger in the background. The taste is again very smokey. This is very complex, but finishes a litle sweet. Perhaps better fresh. A good medium body helps out the balance.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.15/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ft. Collins- Doppelbock

On tap at Isaac Newton's- Newtown, PA

A- Deep amber and mahogany brown with no head. Little to no carbonation.
S- Smokey sweet caramel malt.
T- Sweet with a smokey/ syrupy malt. Earthy hops, mild nut (walnut, chestnut) flavor.
M- Sweet and flat. Low to no carbonation.

Overall- Lackluster. Possibly a flat keg on tap?! Higher carbonation would kick up the flavor a bit.

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Photo of edskirk3
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It took me a while to find this one on the Beer Search since it doesn't say "Rauchator" anywhere on the label. Though, I suppose you can deduce if you know a little German and a little about Doppelbocks.

The label says that this is an award-winning smoked Doppelbock. Smoke in German = Rauch. And so on...

Enough with the detective work. Pours deep, deep ruby red with a creamy beige head, about a finger in thickness.

Nice smoky aroma with touches of sweet malts. Very clean.

Nice smoky flavor, too. And a very pleasing sweetness. Creamy and chocolaty, with dark juicy fruits. I'm loving this. Ends with a soft, lingering bitterness.

Feels a little heavy on the tongue. And sticky. I'd probably have one of these after dinner. Or better yet, FOR dinner.

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Photo of biking4beer
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a one finger head that diminishes quickly and leaves a few bubbles. Deep crimson in color.

Strongest aroma is roasted, smoky smell. A touch peaty. Slight caramel and a touch of grain and floral aromas.

Taste is smoke, peat, nutty. A slight tartness with a good level of bitterness. smoke becomes more prevalent as it warms.

This one has an appropriate level of carbonation. Not too much, but enough to break things up. Nice and thick with a bit of oil.

Drinkability is a bit low. While I really liked this beer, diving in to a second one would put me over the edge with the smoke. Pop this one open on a cold night, and if you don't have a fireplace, this is a good substitute. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of russpowell
4.79/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This year's offering, thank you Coal Train Liquors!

Pours a reddish chestnut with 1 finger of tan colored head. Above average head retention & lacing

S: Smokey (alder &oak) & bready

T: Smokey (bacon), licorice, & rich caramel up front. Some herbal hops blend with praline sweetness smokey oak in the back of the throat, once this warms. Finishes warming with cakey notes, a bit of brown sugar, dryness & loads of caramel sweetness, a bit of smokeyness & a hint of leafy hops

MF: Chewy & sticky with low carbonation & perfect balance.

Not quite as good as last years, still a great dopplebock!

I could drink this stuff all day ( if I took naps). This is the stuff of which I'm thinking sustained the German monks back in the day (top fermented most likely then)!

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.53/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This pours from Growler a clear reddish brown with a huge tannish head of foam that is very long lasting. Near the end of my first glass, there's still a solid layer and it has some nice lacing. Beautiful looking beer in the glass.

The smell is of caramel malt with some smoke and chocolate and a bit of vanilla.

The taste is malty but not too sweet and has some smoke, dark fruit(fig mostly) some dark chocolate and a touch of vanilla and...this is with my drinking it directly out of the fridge so I'm going to let it warm up some and see what happens.

While I'm waiting for it to warm, I have to say at this point, for being 10%abv, it is *very* well hidden. I get just the slightest bit of warming after the swallow and that's it. Pretty impressive.

Ok, it's warmed up some now and I get some more smoke(just the right amount, imho) and more malt and more chocolate and overall, this is one fine smooth drinker. I could see myself sipping on it all day long but...I'm going to cap it and save the rest for tomorrow.

Bottom line: I liked last year's version but thought the smoke was overpowering the other flavours. This batch, I think, brings out the best in *all* the flavours and for that, FCB, I salute you. I can't wait to try a bottle and see how it compares. I highly recommend you try this DB if you see it in your area!

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Photo of fartingdog
4.09/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown, slightly hazy with ruby hints in the light. Little head, receeds to a ring at the edges rather quickly. Nose is sweet, malty and rich with only the faintest hint of smoked malt, very nice. Taste is good, slightly rich and has just enough smoke to be a pleasant addition and not overwhelming like many rauchbiers I've had. Body is not quite as full as many dopplebocks, but it manages well.

I had been hesitant to drink this one for a while, as ruchbiers can put me off. But I was pleasantly surprised with this- it's a great twist on the the style, and they certainly kept balance in mind. A very pleasant and enjoyable beer- perfect for the cool, gray fall today that is today. Well done.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from mushroomcloud via Secret Bunny '07

A - this brew pours a dark mahogany reddish brown and draws a thick caramel colored head that quickly fades to a bubbly film, almost nonexistant carbonation

S - smells like i spilled some hickory BBQ sauce into my Hooker Liberator, quite a nice scent combination, rich and malty like a quality doppelbock, with the associated dark fruits, i.e. raisins and dates, then in the back of the aroma a rich and thick smokiny aroma, like a fresh bag of beef jerky, but to a subdued level, its not overdone, which i feared

T - the flavors go well together as well, but are coupled not blended, great doppelbock flavors up front, and a nice rauchbier aftertaste, similar to the aroma, also a barrel aged-ness to it, probably the woodiness from the smokiness, all in all a nice flavor

M&D - not quite smooth, a bit strong, and definitely not a session beer at 10%, but still a great flavor and easily enjoyable

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Photo of neonbrown82
3.7/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Interesting. Finally a rauchbier that I don't feel like pouring out after a few drinks. I was kind of wondering about that, since it is listed as a doppelbock instead of a rauchbier. It has qualities of both, but the smoke is still powerful enough that I would call it a rauch. Anyways, thanks to Crosling for providing this as an extra in a trade.

The beer pours to a very sexy dark amber hue with an active carbonation supporting a very nice off-white head. Retention is pretty good, and so is the lacing.

The smell is great as well. Has the strong munich and caramel malt presence with a very well balanced smell of smoked malt. Smells like beef jerky, or worcestershire sauce.

The taste is almost as good as the aroma, but doesn't seem as balanced. It leans more towards the rauchbier than to the doppelbock side of the scale. The complexity of the doppelbock maltiness is lost in the almost briny tasting beef jerky flavor. That being said, the smoked malt that causes this flavor is also much more balanced than any other rauchbier I've tasted, rivaling on the Aecht Schlenkerla Helles Lager, but I'm just a sissy when it comes to rauchmalt, I guess.

The body is fairly full. Lots of residual sweetness.Carbonation is mild. The smoke lingers on long into the finish with a whole host of barbecue flavors. Sure doesn't seem like 10% alcohol to me, but nonetheless, it doesn't help the drinkability, which just a personal bias of mine against rauchbier. With that said, I still was able to enjoy this beer more than any other rauchbier I've yet tasted. I nice sharp cheddar or smoked gouda might really improve drinkability.

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Photo of kirok1999
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Beautiful in the glass, deep amber with a thick rising head and super sticky lacing. Didn't read the label so I didn't know exactly what to expect. Smells of smoke, peat, earth. Taste is super smoky, full of earth and sweet malt. Mouthfeel is super dense, thick and dark. This much smoke is hard to drink more than one of. But you'll enjoy the hell out of the one you do drink.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.47/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So, is it one of the best dopplebocks I've had in ages? Before I tell you that, we need to go over a few things.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown body with ruby hues around the edge and a khaki-colored head.

Smell: A malty caramel aroma with a delicate, yet meaty, smokiness pervades the nose. Also, there's some light, fruity notes hidden just beneath the smokescreen.

Taste: A healthy dose of caramel malt starts the flavor crisscrossed by the earnest, ever-present smokiness. The dark fruitiness is more expressive in the flavor, showing up as plums and raisins. Hints of brown sugar and chocolate, too. Gorgeous. That's a gorgeous taste they've got there.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Gentle carbonation and a reasonably creamy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: A supremely enjoyable, well-balanced beer. I really wish I could get a six-pack, listen to some Pinback and get my picture taken with the bottle. And how!

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Photo of weeare138
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to hopdog for sharing this one...
Appears a semi-transparent light caramel color with a small, off-white head that slowly fades into a collar and mild cap. Spotty lacing quickly slides back down like an oil slick into the mild collar of foam.
Smell is of light smoke, heavy malt, meaty, caramel, cocoa, freshly cracked grain, and toffee.
Taste is of the aromas with light cocoa and caramel hanging on top of the beef jerky flavors.
Mouthfeel is sweet and smokey, medium bodied, & mostly smooth

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Photo of Beertron
4.29/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm a huge fan of Doppels, so I couldn't resist the urge to try a double (!?!) smoked version.

A - One inch of head on a pretty vigorous pour. Creamy orange-tinted head with thick, thick lacing and decent retention. Dark, clear brew with a red-orange tint noticeable only when held to light (or maybe the tint was the light -- I'm not sure).

S - This simply reeks of blackstrap molasses. (I was surprised when looking through the reviews for this sucker that only one person mentioned that. He looked like and older fella and maybe that's why -- not a lot folks from my generation probably even know what blackstrap molasses is.) You can certainly smell the smoke too but, after a few samples now, I've learned that the smokiness is most apparent when its cold. As is warms up, the molasses comes in with his suitcases and boxes, unpacks, and calls this beer home. There's a few other things going on too. There's a hint of orange rind somewhere in there and there's a prominent scent of malted milk powder. This has some strong scents of cured Italian pork sausages and I'm guessing it would pair famously with them. Finally, there's just a faint light scent of spice in the background, like a soft nutmeg/clove combination. It's not so different than acetone, so I'm guessing this to be the alcohol coming through. At 10%, it's amazing that the alcohol is buried this deeply. Man oh man. This is, hands down, the best-smelling beer I've ever had in my life. With each that I've had, I've taken twice as many sniffs as I have swigs.

T - Holy crap, there's a lot going on in this beer!! First, there's the expected smoky malt flavors. Then, there's the cured/hardwood-smoked meat flavors (heavily umami if that means anything to you). Next, there's the burnt sugar impurities (brown sugar, molasses, sorghum syrup). There's a toffee component which led me to decipher some nuttiness (is this known as self-awareness??), black walnuts to be specific. Lastly, there's a tinge of black cherry hidden inside, giving the smallest hint of the alcohol. That you can barely taste the alcohol in this is mind-numbing ('ll drink more than you probably should and freeze up the brain activities). I'm boosting my taste rating up a .5 notch solely based on the complexity of this beer.

M - This is strikingly smooth. Considering the numerous and complex flavors in this brew, I'd expect more of a roller coaster of flavors but, no, it's just nice and smooth with a long lingering finish. It's not as thick as the nose leads you to believe but this is far from water. It has a syrupy quality.

D - This is pretty dang heavy stuff, in terms of both flavor and alcohol. A person probably shouldn't drink a lot of these in one sitting, but it's so damn good that you probably will drink till unconscious and awake with a axe-splitter (and it will have been worth it).

Food - Pair with cured meats, seared steaks, wild mushrooms, beef-based sauces (esp. with a sweet component), darker non-chocolate cakes, cider-braised pork (or a whole host of pork products), and peanut butter. Avoid anything that doesn't have a strong umami flavor. Here's a dish I'd make specifically for this beer: Seared NY Strip with applewood-smoked bacon and mushroom ragout, roasted garlic-wilted spinach, quinoa and maple veal glace de viande.

This beer is amazing. I'm happy that I took the chance on this "import."

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Photo of goodbyeohio
4.92/5  rDev +26.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

big thanks to mikey and someone else (kim?) for giving me two opportunities to try this outstandingly bold brew.

this brew pours a dark crimson with clear cherry highlights. the surface is dusted with foam brulee and encircled by a dense border of randomly air-peppered cream. the color here evokes warmth and size, the head screams density. more lacing would be nice, but i'm not really the visual whore that most BAs are.

aroma is extremely rich, honey smoked ham comes to mind almost immediately. still, an element of brown sugar-spiked prune puree balances the smokiness with a rich malty essence. finally, a note of dark chocolate-enrobed black cherries dwells once the initial profile has been accepted by my senses.

first sip is full of charred wood yet finishes rich with caramel and seedy fig pulp. even without breathing, the smokiness seeps into my nostrils, taste buds, and stimulates a physical taste sensation. a bit of spicy cinnamon and white pepper follow through in the finish. bitterness fades quickly and lives up to the cleanliness of a well-rounded lager.

for 10%, this beer is insanely drinkable for smokeheads. i think the fruity malt character assists here, and the beer is going down alot quicker than a 10% double ipa would. even the body is essentially perfect... perhaps the beer could be complimented nicely by a bit more thickness, but carbonation is spot-on and i think at this point i'm just fishing for flaws.

overall, a masterfully conceived beer and one that eclipses even the master of smoked beers across the atlantic. the best beer i've had in 07 so far.. and lucky me- i got to have it twice! fucking a!

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a rich ruby amber, very nice hue. Pillow like one inch head, the just ever soo slowly faded leaving lots of creamy frothy lace all over the glass. Nice visible carbonation. Smell was very sweet, lots of bready and grainy tones. Hints at caramel and candied sugary smells. But the big time player here is the smoke. They said it was double smoked, and they ain't kiddin! The smell may overwhelm at first but just give it a minute and it will warm and all the other flavors will come out. The taste is very thick and pronounced. Again huge smoke flavors get you right from the start, but there is much more to it then that. As it warmed some very sweet, and sugary tones started to make their presence known. This was followed by a nice bitter, dry, and long lasting finish that put the cap on this one. This is a very rich and complex brew, with great feel, consistency, and just overall drinkability. Very full of flavor, and body, a really great call. I really enjoyed this one.

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

Thanks gbontrag

Pours a nice clear dark brown/amber color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy head which leaves pretty quickly, but does lead to some nice sticky lacing. The nose is sweet malty, slightly smoked/roasted, and a nice touch of caramel. The taste is sweet malty, slightly roasted, and caramel. The alcohol is hidden very well. Medium body. Very drinkable, this brew reminds me of a Imperial Stout in taste.

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Photo of hoppymeal
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with deep red hues, a medium sized buttery yellow caramel head. Strong smokiness in the aroma, tobacco leaves, smoked meats, and a sweet maltiness behind it all. Taste shows some smokiness but not as prominent as the aroma. The malts are more represented here with a sweet rich plum and prune flavor, brown sugar sweetness and a cola and smoky finish. Rich and heavy body is balanced by a slight tanginess as well as a smoky dryness in the finish. Hops show up only for a brief moment with a slight tingle oin the tongue in the finish. Definitely a rich and heavy sipping beer, alcohol is incredibly well hidden. Thanks Crosling for the opportunity.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.48/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle acquired from Northertimber As an extra in a tread, to a tall glass mug. The Liquid is a deep clear auburn with very good carbonation. The Head is an exceptional 2 fingers, of white and leave nice lace.

The smell is smoked nuts, and some sweet fruit notes.

The taste is a most Stein worthy smoky sweet malt flavor. This brew is a true work of art. But not for everyone. The Smoky flavor is great, not as strong as some Konig Rausch beirs from Bamburg but defiantly noticabe. This beer is also quite complex with flavors of nuts and dark fruit. The more I drink the more I like this one

The mouthfeel is spot of just wonderfull to feel it roll over the tounge and flow down my throat. The body is just less then full and the carbonation is excellent adding to the enjoyment ad very satisfying feeling.

The drinkablity is hight for a rauch beer as the smoky flavor is not one to knock to out. I really like this beer. To bad I only wave 1 left. Thank you Northertimber.

Prosit und Zum Wohl. MK

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Photo of Domingo
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Ah, Ft. Collins brewery. You have to respect their German beers as they're pretty authentic.
Pours a reddish brown that's surprisingly bright. For a beer over 6% it actually forms a pretty impressive head. It also has some impressive lacing for a stronger brew, too.
Smell is of smoked meats, dried fruit, sugars, but still with the smokiness dominating. With that said, most Rauchbiers have minimal depth on the nose and this one actually does have a decent amount.
Taste is very smoky and jerky-like at first, but then a lot of sweetness comes through. The joke is that Rauchbiers taste like drinking BBQ sauce, and that's not that far off. This one has an extra kick of doppelbock sweetness. Definitely has some depth where others don't due to the extra malt.
Mouthfeel's just like any other doppelbock. It's got the trademark lager thin texture, but it retains flavor like a much thicker brew.
Drinkability's where this one loses me. It's great for about 5-6oz, but after that I've just had enough of it. It's a killer beer in small doses, but a full bottle wears on me after I'm about 1/2 done. It took me the about a month and a half to finish a 6-pack just because it's more or less the anti-session beer.

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Photo of BlindPig
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- About a 1/4" tan head on a deep ruby body with a few orange hues. Thin lacing that doesn't even cover all of the top. Leaves a little lacing on the glass.
S- Some smoky and wood aromas. Pretty big caramel malts with very faint hint of darker fruits in the back.
T- Pretty big smoke flavor. Light oak also. Caramel, dark fruits, big bitterness that lingers on the tongue in the aftertaste. Hides the 10%abv very well.
M- High carbonation with a medium body.
D- It is alright. Pretty tasty but I wouldn't go crazy over it. It is a bit different than the average dopplebock though.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.32/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

When held up to the light the is beer shows a brilliantly clear, deep, ruby red color that otherwise sits a drab, dark amber-brown color in my tulip glass. The head starts out at three fingers thick, and slowly recede to a crown of light tan colored froth that never disappears entirely. The aroma is certainly smoky, but there are some other notes underneath the dominant smoke character. A touch of caramel-like sweetness, a hint of bready malt and perhaps even a touch of caramelized raisins are all at least subtly noticeable. But really this beers aroma is all about the smoke, but I would not say that it is over the top in any way.

The beer is fairly sweet up front, though not in a sticky, sugary way, instead it is the type of rich sweetness that is quite appropriate for a Doppelbock. Malty sweet driven notes are quite bread-like at times (if you can imagine that); I get notes of caramel, large Maillard malt by-products and browned rustic bread crust. Of course there are smoke flavors here too, but they are note nearly as pronounced as the aroma would have suggested. It infuses a smoky back drop to all of the rich, typical Doppelbock flavors; adding a bit more complexity to an already complexly malty brew. This is quite good. I could easily drink a few pints of this, which might be a bit dangerous. In the end this is quite tasty and gone way too fast.

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Photo of shbobdb
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I picked up this beer not knowing what it was.

I knew that I loved their Spring Bock, so one good Bock deserves another, eh?


When I poured this guy, I saw the word 'rauch' on the side of the bottle. Indeed, as I licked the top of the now-empty bottle, I even tasted a little bit of that bacon-bits taste I associate with rauchbier. I wasn't too worried about it, after all, St. Victorious is supposed to have a little bit of rauchmalz in it, and that is a fantastic beer, right? Then I read the bottle and realized I was in for a world of something (hurt? I don't really like Rauchbiers, after all).

But let's break this baby down:

Appearance: It pours a beautiful ruby-red with a wonderful off-white head that quickly collapsed into small islands atop the beer -- all of them warring for my attention.

Smell: The smell is of candied ham and sweet malts. A wonderful blend, a wonderful sensation.

Taste: Sure, it tastes like pork. But, wow, what an experience! Perhaps I like this beer because lately I've been something of a vegetarian? But, seriously, the full-on rich dopplebock sweetness pairs wonderfully with the smokey BBQ taste of the rauch. I think the alcohol helps cut the meaty-ness, which is great.

Mouthfeel: Not too thick, not too thin -- this beer manages to hover between having a really HUGE mouthfeel that can be truly astounding in some Doppelbocks and the pleasant crispness that I associate with most German/German-inspired beers. Usually when a beer treads this middle ground, it falls flat on its face, but this bad-boy manages to really capitalize on the best of both worlds.

Drinkability: Well, it's a rauchbier and I am enjoying it! That should say something! I'm enjoying this beer with some baked spiced brie and it is wonderful! The basil, rosemary, oregano, and hot pepper all compliment the rich taste this beer has to offer. Totally unexpected and totally delicious.

So, here is my question: why is it that Colorado, of all places, manages to grab onto continental European brewing traditions and place an unusual American twist on them in the same way that the rest of the country is doing it with British brews? You'd think that Penn. or Wisconsin would have that honour . . .

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Doppelbock from The Fort Collins Brewery
3.9 out of 5 based on 129 ratings.
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