Plum Rye Bock | Short's Brewing Company

52 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Plum Rye BockPlum Rye Bock

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by nickadams2 on 11-13-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 52 | Ratings: 76
Photo of malty
4.23/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Force poured into my stemmed tulip Ayinger glass showcased a vividly clear rust chestnut color with a settled creamy 1/2" very light beige head. Staring into this liquid reveals very, very little uprising carbonation. Elegant, consistent thin rings of lace all the way down.

The smell is of fig jam slathered atop fresh biscuits. Complex malt aroma is definitely bready and sweet. Very fresh and comforting to say the least.

The first component that strikes me is tartness - which I adore. The predominant flavor derived from the plums are the plums skins. The lush and yet tart flavors are very abundant and accurate. You can tell this wasn't made from any sort of concentrate. There's a ghostly flavor of toffee, which is a telltale element of a good bock beer, of this I'm also thankful. But this beer is all about the tart/sour/zesty plums.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with very fine carbonation that hides itself upon the initial quaff, then slowly builds to intermingle these beautiful flavors wonderfully. The finish is a bit chalky and dry and lasts a long time.

Drinkability (for me) is stellar. Due to its tartness, I tend to sip this. But I would have no problem ordering two or three in a row.

I remember having this fresh on tap about 11 months ago at HopCat where they were showcasing a couple dozen Short's brews for Joe Short's birthday. I also remember this being my first time trying it and completely loving it. And it's just as I remember it. A truly unique product with masterfully mixed flavors which is a true joy to savor. I also believe this to be the perfect season to have this brew released. It really would make for a great fireside sipper for certain. Good beer Short's!

 1,705 characters

Photo of ottovon
4.19/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

shared by whiterascal.

A: pours out a deep brownish color with ruby and orange hues. there is a thin off-white head.

S: it has a nice aroma. i get plum, raspberries, and a touch of alcohol. there is caramel malt in there as well. i also get hints of bittersweet chocolate and orange. there is a bit of rye spiciness in there as well.

T: this has a little sweetness in it. you get rye, plum, raspberries, and toffee. i also get a touch of chocolate, and it finishes slightly dry and a touch bitter.

M: it has a medium body with low carb. it is a very smooth beer.

O: i really like this beer. this is a beer that would be great with a fire and some colder weather outside. it is a little sweeter than i normally go for, which is keeping me from giving the taste a 4.5, but it is a good beer.

 798 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.1/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

deep black with a huge brown head and a huge amount of lace. Looks pretty much as good as it can look, awesome, can't wait! Smell is a strong licorice with hints of plums, smoked touches, light rye? and some other fruit notes perhaps rasberry. The taste is very very sweet. Deep flavors of licorice and candy, is that dark plum raisin taste I taste..yummy to say the least! Nice as thick as I would have liked, but it goes down very easily and could be an easy all night drink.

 477 characters

Photo of tectactoe
4.06/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a dingy copper color, very opaque and very hazy, impossible to see anything on the other side. Dark beige-colored head, thick and fluffy - this beer was very volatile, even with a modest pour. Musty plum sweetness on the nose, some funk and some crisp tartness, slight herbal notes; some malt and spice also in the background. Not really getting any rye in the aroma. The taste is actually nothing what I expected from the aroma - very, very sweet taste up front. Huge abundance of plums and grapes, the sweetness turns into a sharp tartness for a moment, almost puckering. The carbonation peaks at the same time, giving one hell of a mouth shock midway through. Apple skins and phenol comes to mind as well. The rye doesn't get picked up until about three-quarters of the way through and even more so when the beer warms up a bit. The aftertaste is like stale rye bread and yeast - this beer is malty all the way. Very light perfume-like florals can be picked up but play tertiary to the malt and rye. Medium body, crisp with lots of carbonation. Beer almost floats away on your palate.

I didn't know what to expect with this one, but my expectations weren't very high. Maybe that's why I liked it so much? I was very pleasantly surprised with this one. Delicious fruit beer (and I don't normally like fruity stuff), fruit tastes authentic and sweet and it isn't cloying or sickeningly sweet. I'd have this one over and over again.

 1,439 characters

Photo of bierenutz
3.97/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a clear amber copper color with a smallish head, but nonetheless left a moderate amount of lacing on the glass.
S-Dark fruity aroma of tart cherries and plums. There is clearly a sourness/tartness that can be expected in this beer.
T-As expected, tart cherries and plums give this a sweet and sour combo followed by malty breadiness at the finish and afternotes.
M-Mild feel and low carbonation.
D-Easy to drink and different but pleasant overall.

 455 characters

Photo of Rhettroactive
3.92/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 7/12/11
*From notes

A: Pruney-plum in color. It's deep amber red and quite dark. A standard pour yields a 2.5 finger head and decent stickiness.

S: Big time rye, first and foremost. Faint amounts of sun dried fruit, but they're not discernible.

T: Fruity, and that's clear right away. Up front it's a bit malic and tart. The rye kicks into gear soon after and stands strong through the finish.

M: Appealing. This carried decent weight and was much fuller in body then I'd expected.

O: Short's Plum Rye Bock is my first encounter with Short's brews. I can say that I was genuinely impressed with the balance here. This beer wasn't as obnoxious as I feared it may be.

This is a pretty solid rye offering, and the plum flair really adds a nice complexity to it. Recommended.

 820 characters

Photo of DannyDan
3.89/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours nicely into beer mug forming a reddish purple body with a thin reddish white head that has some decent retention and a little lacing, and decent carbonation. The smell is plums, rye, grassy hops, and the taste is similar to the smell but not quite as good since it has a little bit of an alcohol taste to it, and has a strong plum after taste. The mouth feel is a nice medium body that is rather smooth and very drinkable. This would be a better beer if the rye and hops were more noticeable in the taste and a little less plums to balance the flavors out. Not a bad fruit/vegetable beer, but not as good in taste as the Soft Parade from Short's Brewing Company.

 668 characters

Photo of trappistlover
3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(12oz bottle courtesy of rayl101!!). Pours hazy orange-amber color with massive tan head. Loads of carbonation on this one. Aroma has loads of ripe pit fruit, maybe a hint of orange, and some hay notes. Unique. Taste is sweet like a very ripe plum-a bit tart as well. Medium bodied with a slick texture. Tart finish. This is a different beer and one that I like quite a bit. I couldn’t drink it all night, but it has some nice flavors that are new to me in a beer.

 466 characters

Photo of nickadams2
3.87/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A_Dark red/amber. Almost burgundy. Thin white head that subdues into a thin ring. No lacing.

S_Plums,dark fruits,rye malt and grassy hops.

T_Same as nose. The plum comes through sweet and a little tart. Balanced nicely by rye malt and a touch of earthy hops.

M_Full bodied with plenty of carbonation.

D_Easy to drink but wouldn't want to drink more than one in a sitting.

 383 characters

Photo of BBP
3.85/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours burgundy chestnut with a large amount of short lived head. Lacing is slight, but exists.

Plum and rye form the aroma in that order, with plum being quite dominant. A bit of caramel peaks through.

The taste is largely different than I was expecting. I guess I had a bit of a negative predisposition against it since it was a lager, but I sort of figured that the plum flavor would just be on top of a watery base, which is far from the truth.

The plums, and what tastes like grapes as well, form a considerably thick and potent taste. It doesn't taste weak or too light at all. Bready malts and caramel give it some character and it takes on a bit of a belgian taste. At the same time, it has hints of sourness which again add to the character.

The body is slightly below medium. Carbonation does it's job quite well by making it light and a bit fuller at the same time. Swishing this around feels just right, and the carbonation at worst is slightly prickly.

Overall, this was a lot better than I expected. I love a local store that features Short's beer in singles or in a mixed 6 for savings. It really lets me try the plethora of their offerings without the potential risk. I can certainly say though, that there are few beers I wouldn't buy again.

Shorts has an ability to make the strangest sounding things work. This beer is no exception, and actually less far out than most. I recommend it to anybody looking for their hit of fruit.

 1,457 characters

Photo of Stigs
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from the brewery, served in a Sam Adams perfect pint glass

A - pours with a short lived quarter inch of loose fluffy white foam. quickly falls to a thin film and ring within a minute. the beer is clear, deep amber in color.

S - mostly mellow, with soft dark fruits...cherry and raisins, plums. doughy, malty sweetness sit alongside some toffee.

T - little bit of the unexpected right away. slightly tart cherries and red grapes dominate the mouth with a lightly acidic sourness. light toasted nuts and caramel malts hoist up the lively fruit. barely picking up any rye here, which is fine.

M - light body, with moderate carbonation. just slightly puckering fruitiness, with a moderately dry, acidic finish.

D - not bad. nice lively tartness brings some much needed character and finesse to a Short's beer. refreshing, and easy to sip.

 851 characters

Photo of ne0m00re
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

07/09/11- Review of a 12 oz bottle of this.
A: Deep red, cream head with decent lacing.
S: Relatively clean, toasty caramel, nice earthy barnyard plums. Good.
T: Caramel covered tart plums, cleaner finish. Nice balance with a good linger.
M: Medium body and creamy carbonation, but crisp in the finish.
O: Not too bad. Way to go, Short's.

 338 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.79/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this bottle up in Michigan over the holidays. Served in a Cantillon tulip.

Pours crimson-hued with a dense, creamy head and a good amount of lacing. The nose has a bit of malt with some mild spicing. Pretty plain. The taste takes off quite a bit from there with a nice backbone of malt along with a bit of zesty rice and a nice finish. Red plum skins come through in the finish, though it's also a bit tannic. Medium body with somewhat-high levels of carbonation. Quite good overall.

 491 characters

Photo of Urbancaver
3.78/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- pours a brilliant reddish with very little white head.

Smell- tart plum on the nose. A bit of malt on the backbone.

Taste- tart fruit flavors with a bit of malt on the back of the tongue.

Mouthfeel- Pretty good mouthfeel. Highly carbonated.

Drinkability- a bit sharp. Fairl drinkable though

 307 characters

Photo of webmanspidey
3.78/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a pint glass. This is a reddish amber color with a light and fizzy appearance. Smell is sweet and sugary with a malty backbone. Plum and grape are both present. Taste is both sweet and tart with noticeable plums and a sour finish. Excellent drinkability.

I go out of my way to try every new beer from Short's and this lives up to their standard.

 365 characters

Photo of rtepiak
3.71/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

abv is 6.2%

for a fruit added beer this is fantastic. there is notes of the original brewed format as an undertone. the fruit sour note is primary andy would recommend that this be a beer you don't add the additional sediment. it makes it more fruit forward.

pour is nice and sticky white head and a nearly clear orange body. nice carbonation that is consistent after the pour but not too much. nose is fruit pulp like that of a food leather chew. palate is sour with a hint of malty sweetness and subtle straw and dry honey notes. this is replaced rather fast with a fruit domination. not that much balances but i imagine excellent as a summer yard beer. better than some of the fruit beers by this brewery.

 711 characters

Photo of billab914
3.71/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish shaped pint glass. It poured a deep caramel color with a bit of a reddish hue to it. It started with a pretty nice looking and thick frothy head to it. The head settled only to leave a bit of lacing as I drank it. The color was really cool though.

The aroma has the bready and slightly spicy rye flavor coming through. I get a little of the fruity, plum flavors to it but it's very reserved compared to the taste. It has some lager crispness to it as well.

The taste shows the sweet and fruity plum flavor pretty well without being overwhelming. I get a lot of cherry flavors out of it too, which I really like. It's definitely on the sweet side, with an almost fruit punch like quality to it. The finish shows a modest bitterness along with some tartness to it. The plum fruitiness is the real story here, there isn't much else noticeable.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, I liked it a lot better then I thought it would. The plums were nicely done and provided a nice mix of sweet, tart and bitter flavors. I get a hint of sour to it but not nearly the amount other reviewers mention. Maybe I got a better bottle. Very interesting and tasty beer overall. I love to try interesting beers like this.

 1,299 characters

Photo of glazeman
3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into a snifter

A: The beer is amber in color with a little bit of gold. There was only a 1/3 finger off white head that faded into a swirl of bubbles that remained for the duration of the drink. No lacing was apparent on my glass.

S: There's not much on the nose of this one. A yeasty acidic smell dominates what some lighter fruit notes there as well.

T: The plums definitely shine through in this beer. They taste pretty good, and define the beer. I don't know how many other plum beers are out there, if any, but this is quite good.

M: About what you'd expect, although a little under-carbonated. There is a nice aftertaste though and light-bodied feel.

D: Fairly high. It is not the most interesting beer in the world, but it goes down easy, is pleasant and is enjoyable to drink.

 806 characters

Photo of gordavidson
3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- A clear deep ruby red liquid with some orange highlights. The light brown head is thin and bubbly.

S- A light aroma of plums blends nicely with the rye and sweet malt. A little simple, but enjoyable.

T- Sweet and slightly tart. Sweet caramel and fruit meld nicely with the rye.

M- A sweet and almost sticky body with a lasting tartness on the finish. Unique to say the least.

D- A unique beer that should be more of a sipper (because of the sweetness) but goes down rather nicely (because of the tart finish). I would sum this beer up with one word- entertaining.

 570 characters

Photo of GRPunk
3.66/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a mug.

A- A normal pour left a foamy, 2-finger, tan head that crests the glass and lasts the duration. Tons of carbonation is showcased within a hazy, bronze body. Lots of foamy rings are left behind as I drain the glass.

S- Definite fruity aroma (assuming it's mostly due to the plum addition). Sweet and toasty malts come off as a little caramel at first that becomes more of a toasted whole grain or rye bread. At points it seems a little one dimensional toward the sour, plum qualities, but the grains always seem to kick in toward the end. It's a little subtle at first and more pronounced with warmth.

T- Very plum-like, somewhere between sweet and sour. It could really be mistaken for cherry qualities if I didn't know it was plum. As I drank I felt like I was really being taken through the experience of eating a plum. You get that tartness from the skin and sweeter qualities from the flesh. The flavor is enhanced by the underlying rye contribution. A bit of a grainy finish. Very flavorful, ending up a little overwhelming in the end.

M- Loads of carbonation. Quite clean. Sweetness comes off as a little sticky at points.

D- I love it when Short's names a beer and it totally tastes like the description. They've done that here. It's not a session beer, but a flavor experiment gone right. Something I'm glad I tried, though not something I'd necessarily seek out (they have so much good stuff out there).

 1,443 characters

Photo of Kkottonmouthkngz
3.65/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: nice ruby hues, rather miniscule off white head, doesnt last very long. bit of lacing left on the sides of the glass.
S: smells faintly of tart plums, rasins, darker fruits. little smidge of sweetness, but nothing overwhelming.
T: more of the same on the palate... tart plum, interesting malt balance, it makes you kind of want to come back for more, without really explaining itself.
M: crisp carbonation with given flavors make for a pretty smooth mouthfeel, and a rather nice lingering tartness in the back of your mouth.
D: i can make my way through this with no problems, so its very drinkable, however i dont see myself drinking much more than one at a time... in the future again? definitely.

 705 characters

Photo of waltonc
3.63/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

More thanks to kzoobrew for this fine beverage. I always appreciate the opportunity to try new Short's and Bell's beers.

A: Actually pours a plum-like purplish/ruby/orange color with light tan head. Lots of columns of carbonation bubbling up from the depths of my glass.

S: Nice fruit tartness on the nose from the obvious plum presence. Nothing complex, but very good.

T: Tart, slightly bitter plum flavor; fairly dry. I don't find this to be very sweet, which is good. The plum is very well integrated without turning this into a fruit bomb.

M: Light bodied, high carbonation, slightly astringent.

D: Overall, another good, creative beer from Short's. The plum is appropriate for the holidays.

 702 characters

Photo of BierFan
3.62/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Thin pale khaki head. Hazy reddish amber body.

Smell: The smell is what you would expect from a bock. Malty with an appropriate amount of noble hops. Slight dark fruitiness coming through.

Taste: Delivers exactly what the name promises. Tart plums, subtle rye, and a good bock to showcase the plums and rye.

 371 characters

Photo of Onenote81
3.62/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cool extra from readbaron.

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a murky amber with an ever-so-thin off-white on top. Minor lace sticks around. The nose is lightly musty with hints of wet wood, some fruity quality that I can only imagine is plum, and faint syrup. Pretty sweet aroma.

The mouth is moderate. Good carbonation level, with a light bubbly finish. The fruit aspect comes full force in the flavor. Plum, sour grapes, figs, and sweet malts. This is almost drying on the back end, but subtly. This isn't bad. It was an easy-enough drinker as my glass was empty before I knew it. Not something I could have much of, but a good tart fruit beer anyways.

 667 characters

Photo of glid02
3.61/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Jeremy - much obliged!

Pours a clear and bright ruby color with a one-finger slightly off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of moderately sweet caramel malts with hints of spicy rye. Also present are solid amounts of red grape aromas.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Smooth caramel malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by loads of red grape flavors with hints of cranberries. Midway through the sip the fruit flavors fade a bit and mild amounts of spicy rye comes into play. The rye and fruit flavors carry through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with decent carbonation.

Drinkability is OK. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass however I'm not sure about another.

Overall I wasn't expecting much from this beer and it delivered almost exactly that. I didn't find much plum influence, rather it was skewed more toward dark grape juice with hints of slightly tart cranberries. Not a terrible beer but not one worth seeking out.

 1,062 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Plum Rye Bock from Short's Brewing Company
3.56 out of 5 based on 76 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.