Amsterdam Spring Bock | Amsterdam Brewing Company

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Amsterdam Spring BockAmsterdam Spring Bock

Brewed by:
Amsterdam Brewing Company
Ontario, Canada

Style: Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Derek on 03-11-2009

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Reviews: 55 | Ratings: 116
Photo of TerryW
2.83/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours clear dark brown under a big head that settles to a heavy film and gives up some early lace. Subdued aroma is of dark fruit, malt and sugar. Taste is sugar and malt, treacly molassess. Has bitter finish. Just too one-dimensional and a tad harsh on the palate. Not for me.

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Photo of
2.86/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark ruby-brown with little head. Distinct aroma of chocolate malt, molasses. A slight hops aroma is detectable, but not too much. The label claims “vast amounts” of hops have been added, and it suppose that must be true if I can smell them at all over the overpowering sweetness of this beer. Dark fruit flavours, black fig, deep sweetness. Overall impression is too sweet, clunky, lacking finesse.

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Photo of heebes
2.95/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Foil capped 500ml bottle. 7% alc./vol.
Vintage 2010
Part of the LCBO's Spring Seasonal Release

Pours a dark mahogany brown wih little to no head. Nose is phenol (strange for a 7% beer), dark fruits, slight malt. Taste is dark rye malt, dark fruits. Mouthfeel is light and watery. Perhaps it is the style I am not familiar with, but for me, not a very drinkable beer. Paired with cheese and crackers and allowed to warm up to make it more enjoyable.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a clear medium brown color ale with a relatively large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of dry caramel malt with a light very subtle toffee finish. Taste is dryer then expected with some caramel malt and not much else in terms of characteristics. Body is about average with good carbonation. A bit too bland and dry for my taste but no brewing flaws.

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Photo of mintjellie
3.18/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Rich mahogany brown body. An inch of beige head, moderate retention, patchy lace. Underpowered aroma shows muted bread, brown sugar, dried fruit, and floral hops. Pleasant fruit-and-nut flavour, sweet bready malt, and mild roast. Lacks richness and depth. Feels a little bit thin. This one doesn't really grab me in any way.

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Photo of uno99
3.21/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Picked this up at the LCBO, largely due to the attractive packaging. Yes, even an educated beer geek like myself can fall for shiny packaging and an attractive store display.

The bottle is a really odd size, especially for an Ontario brewer. In fact, the bottle doesn't even list the size! I can only guess its around 550ml. (strange since I thought it was a legal requirement around here to have the size listed on the bottle)

A: A really good looking beer Lots of lacing, nice eggy head, laces really well. Probably par for the course however for a bock.

S: Lots of chocolate. a little roast and coffee in there too. fairly fruity and sweet. not as pungent and complex as some of the better, authentic German bocks I've had.

T: Quite a lot of chocolate again. This could be re-named chocolate bock and sell decently in the fall and winter as well. Prunes figs and dark fruits are there of course. A decent hop bite in the finish.

M: Rich and thick? ..No. Smooth and velvety? ... Not really.

Overall: This beer is like a pair of glasses with good frames and bad lenses. Looks good, ticks all the boxes, but take a closer look and you realize things are little blurry.

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Photo of bartle
3.22/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A bottle from the brewery.

A - Ruby red. Thin head. Little retention. Still a really nice color.

S - Fruit - like with carmel and peppercorns. A slight barnyard sent filled with fruit baskets. In other words complex, and very appealing to the nose.

T - Rye bread and dry nuts. A little scotch flavor in there too. Bitter with a nice smooth sweet follow up. Carmel hints while the alcohol opens the palate and warms the body all the way down.

M - Seemed to be on the heavy carbonation side, yet a nice dry finish. Rich mouthful that was surprisingly smooth.

D - Very drinkable. The alcohol isn't as present as it should be. It would take me out pretty quick if I drank a few of theses. The alcohol is sneaky!

Props for this one. I like!

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Photo of spree92
3.23/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to ritzkiss for throwing this in on a trade.

A darker beer than I was expecting. A dark hazelnut with a small head on top. Disapated rather fast but left OK lacing. Not much aroma. Some roasted malts but pretty one dimensional. The taste is the same, not much happening. The mouth feel is the top of this bevvy. A moist drink that is full bodied.
This is a beer I would have never seen in Moncton, so again, thanks ritzkiss for the chance.

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Photo of Stocean1
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance pour a dark reddish brown with a two finger head - plenty of lacing and decent retention.

Smell - roasted malts some fruit and alcohol

Taste - up front roasted malt with a lingering bitter aftertaste - hint of coffee

Mouthfeel - more watery than I expected and like with medium carbonation.

Overall not bad but not sure I would seek it out again

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Photo of Mit
3.26/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Saw this in the LCBO and grabbed a couple.

a-Pours a dark brown colour, quite cloudy. Minimal head.

s-brown sugar smells, some dark fruit smells, alcohol.

t-hmmm dark malts, some raisin or dark fruit flavours...

m-somewhat thick...not as thick as I would have thought for a 7% beer.

d-uhm...wasn't feeling this nearly as much as I thought i might.

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Photo of korguy123
3.27/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Notes from 3/23/2011

A- Cola like pour, two finger soapy egg shell head recedes to thin cap. Lacing is sheeting the sides and hanging on for dear life. Tight bubbles floating to the top.

S- Dark roasted malts, brown sugar, faint vanilla. Slight coffee notes.

T- Roasted malts, bitter coffee, slight dark chocolate. Vanilla and brown sugar but not as sweet as the nose would lead on.

M- Thin to medium bodied, carbonation is a little lively. Alcohol is not noticeable at all.

O- Not bad, not great. Definitely a one and done.

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Photo of Sammy
3.33/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Twist-off bottle, courtesy of Derek Hyde, who innovated the recipe. Love to have had this unfiltered, on cask. Poured dark brown with crowning head and lace. Unfortunately overcarbonated, but drinkable and balanced with chocolate malt. A little bitterness, above average for this brewery.

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Photo of Ralphus
3.34/5  rDev -9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark, opaque amber color. The little head recedes to nothing. Fairly poor overall.

The smell is initially fairly muted but opens up in the middle of the glass with molasses & cherries. Decent.

The taste is a stronger point for this beer. While not exceptional, it is good and well balanced. Medium rich malts and molasses and a balancing bitterness have good interplay on the tongue. Alcohol is well hidden.

Mouthfeel is a step above average. Carbonation is tight small bubbles which work well. Drinkability is fair. I could have more, or less, and not be to upset either way.

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Photo of Roke87
3.36/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle, chilled, and poured into a duvel tulip.

Appearance- Poured a hazy brown colour with about 3 fingers of off white head, good head retention, and maximum lacing throughout this one.

Smell- Is very muted, not much shining through on this bock, dark fruit smell and a little bit of roasted malts still come through. Also get a hint of caramel on the nose.

Taste- Not too much as far as taste goes either, some chocolate actually comes through in the taste at first, lots of roasted malts from finish to end, and raisin/fig fruity flavours come through as well and finishes with a sweet taste in the end, especially when it starts to warm up. No hop flavour as far as I am concerned.

Mouthfeel- Light to Medium bodied, not much carbonation but an easy drinking brew none the less, really hides the 7% ABV very well.

Overall- A quality bock worthy of good praise, although not the best I’ve ever tasted it still stands strong, Too bad it’s a seasonal because I would drink this all year long despite not having a complex smell or taste.

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Photo of biegaman
3.38/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Amsterdam Spring Bock looks nice, but it obviously doesn't have a clue about fashion. For a *spring* beer it's wearing all the wrong colours! Far from pastel, this dark, earthy reddish-brown coloured beer shows a deep scarlet hue and even a few strands of dark violet. And forget about rejuvenation: this is still barren and lifeless.

To oversimplify a little, a classic doppelbock requires one thing and one thing only: strong, rich maltiness. This bouquet suggests the beer has some maltiness, but that the pistol is only half cocked. This chocolaty smell and the dark fruits (plum, grape), light caramel and light toast notes it contains is on target for the style but...doesn't quite do it.

The taste too is agreeable, and probably even surprisingly so for those who didn't think they liked dark beer, but is far, far from profound. The taste of chocolate is a little too prominent, and borders on being roasty. It reminds me of some of the weaker stouts I've had the (dis)pleasure of trying. The finish is dry and perceptibly ashy.

Doppelbocks are notoriously rich and they get that way via a painstaking decoction program and an extensive, melanoidin-enhancing boil. Don't ask me to explain it, it's very complicated. I'm sure Amsterdam would tell you the same thing - it's clear that it gave their brewer troubles. This has nowhere near the sweet malty richness the style dictates.

It'd be easy to blame the obstruction of toasty melanoidins, the suffocation of dark fruits, the suppression of sweet maltiness on over-hopping. But that ain't the case. There's scarcely a trace of earthy, noble hop and, by extension, a very negligible bitterness. Likewise, the water could have used harder minerals. At least the alcohol was left out too.

The best doppelbocks reach heights of intense, powerful flavour that are seldom evinced in non-traditional German brands. Amsterdam Spring Bock - while a fine, cleanly brewed lager by any standards - is not the exception I was hoping it'd be. So far each batch has considerably varied year to year. Here's hoping next year's batch is a bit better.

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Photo of bryehn
3.42/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very nice dark ruby-nut brown colour with a moderate, but thick and spongy tan head that leaves a thick layer of lace.

I find the aroma to be rather subdued, even after warming. What's there is deep and malty, with a dark fruit tone and a hint of chocolate syrup.

This tastes like dark fruit and chocolate, syrupy sweetness and a strong, but not overpowering bitterness. I find it very well-balanced, but nothing really stands out until a subtle spiciness shows itself after warming.

Very hearty mouthfeel, but also fairly creamy. Does a great job of masking the ABV without feeling or tasting weak. Like most decent bocks, it's dangerously drinkable. The fruity taste tends to linger in the finish, along with a pronounced woody flavour.

Pretty good overall, I'll buy it 'till it runs out this year. Probably the best Amsterdam beer I've had yet.

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Photo of kevinlater
3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500mL bottle into snifter. 7.2% abv. smudged & illegible date code on the neck of the bottle

a: a beautiful and clear dark mahogany (just like the bottle says) with a finger of off-white head

s: raisins and bready malts. hints of figs, slight caramel as well. not a strong or complex aroma but it definitely smells appetizing

t: mostly raisins and toasted bread. slight apple, nutty, grassy, and chocolate flavours on the back end. a little bit of alcohol comes through. finishes dry and bitter. good stuff

m: medium body with good and appropriate carbonation

o: it's one-dimensional but it's tasty

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Photo of decimator
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle poured into a pint glass.
ABV 7%

A - Poured a very dark mahogany brown with a 1cm tan head which quickly reduced to bubbles.

S - Brown sugar, chocolate, sweet, floral.

T - Honey sweetness, hint of brown sugar, toasted malts, mild bitterness. Alcohol is well hidden.

M - Creamy, smooth, slick, sticky.

O - Not outstanding but still a decent Bock.

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Photo of Digimaika2
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Near black that appears ruby red held up to light. A sufficient amount of creamy dirty tan coloured foam head. Quite a good retention and lacing. Surprised at how good looking this is.

S: Caramel, lightly toasted elements (evident dark chocolate & coffee), banana, pineapple, and walnut. Good mix of varied aromas, but slightly difficult to detect.

T: Large caramel-like malt backbone, dried dark fruits (dates & raisins), banana, molasses, and nuts. Bit of a boozy warmth is there. Not as robust as I would prefer but quite tasty nonetheless.

M: Medium bodied with an appropriate carbonation. Sticky and syrupy with a bit of a semi tart hop-like finish.

D: Quite a good above-average doppelbock. Certainly worth a try. Wouldn't mind trying this on-tap.

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Photo of tpd975
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark nutty brown with an above average tan head. Pretty good retention with some spotty lace.

S: Sweet aromas. Lots of toasted brown sugar, caramel, and hints of dark fruit.

T: Actually not too bad. Nice roasted malt. Subtle smoke with lots of candy sweetness. Brown sugar and molasses mostly with hints of caramel. Dark fruits are noted as well.

M: Medium in body, ample carbonation.

D: Not bad, Solid beer

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Photo of ludachris
3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A fitting beer to kick off the first day of spring. I'm glad to see this local offering as part of the LCBO's spring lineup.

A clear and deep chestnut brown body gives off dark amber red highlights when held up to the light. About two fingers worth of creamy tan head is left after the pour with a thick ring still left hanging minutes later.

Staple dopplebock notes make up the nose of this beer with everything screaming sticky. Raisons, figs, caramel, and rich bready malts. That guy giving up all foods and liquids except for water and dopplebock for lent almost makes sense. Almost.

A rich nutty backdrop spreads itself across the palate that allows only hints of sweet raisons and figs to peak through. Caramel at the back of the palate helps to balance the pleasantly bitter and dry bite the nuttiness imparts before bready malts jump in making for a tasty finish. As the beer warms, a raison-like sweetness is made more apparent throughout.

Medium bodied with an enjoyable richness and smoothness. The dryness in the finish invites you to take sip after sip. The nearly 8% ABV is wonderfully hidden.

Overall, a good offering from Amsterdam but taste wise, I'll take the Salvator over this. It has everything I look for in a dopplebock but nothing jumps out at me. Without the suggestion of aging this on the bottle, I would have never thought to place one or two of these in my cellar. And I might just do that out of curiosity.

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Photo of bylerteck
3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from LCBO. From notes.

A - Poured bright with a dark red colour. Two finger beige head. Lot's of carbonation and a creamy head with a half finger of retention. OK rings of lacing.

S - Burnt sugar, strong stewed fruits, yeast, sweet spice, and dark malts.

T - A little alcohol, burnt sugar, fruit, yeasty, sweet spice, caramel and toffee.

M - Medium carbonation and medium body. Kinda boring.

O/D - Not bad and definately worth a try. Not an amazing bock but a welcome treat for the winter.

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Photo of MattyV
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark chocolate colour with ruby/mahogany highlights. Creamy beige head laces nicely.
Nose is predominantly toffee notes with minor roasted/dark fruit aromas.
Taste is a mix of caramel/toffee with cocoa, raisins, and nuts. Bitterness not as high as I expected given the bottle, but was adequate and imparted a pleasing light roasted flavour. Starts to become a bit boozy as it warms.
Body was medium with nice creamy carbonation. Decent, but could've used a bit more of a hefty body. Still, very enjoyable and will gladly pick up a few more since this trial run definitely surpassed my expectations.

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Photo of markaberrant
3.67/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - deep red, brilliant clarity, fizzy off white head

S - clean, malty, some dark fruits, not overly dense, but clean and inviting

T - huge maltiness up front, bready and fruity munich malt, sticky toffee, some residual sweetness, just enough hop bitterness to balance, clean throughout, aftertaste is pleasant, but a little abrupt

M - medium full body, medium carbonation, somewhat creamy, but also sticky, warming alcohol is evident

D - this is a pretty nice Canadian bock, quite enjoyable

This has just about all the classic components, and is very well brewed. The only knock is that it comes across as almost "too clean," which sounds odd for a lager, but makes me think it has been overly filtered instead of given an extended lager (another website said it was lagered for 2 months and then filtered, so there you go).

Definitely one of the better beers I've tasted from Onterrible. Way to go Derek!

Thanks to Viggo for the bottle!

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Photo of kwjd
3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an dark brown colour with hints of amber. Thin white head and some lacing. Smells of lots of dark fruit with toasted grains and sweet caramel. Flavour has some alcohol there, but not too apparent. Very sweet flavour, with a fruity aftertaste. Thick mouthfeel. I think I preferred this when I had this a year or 2 ago on tap, but still pretty nice in the bottle.

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Amsterdam Spring Bock from Amsterdam Brewing Company
3.67 out of 5 based on 116 ratings.
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