Saranac Bock | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

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Saranac BockSaranac Bock

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States

Style: Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by shirfan on 10-25-2006

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Reviews: 49 | Ratings: 73
Photo of tugdriver7
4.47/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A new-found variety to me. Not that I hadn't seen them before, but only recently have I bought (and enjoyed) traditional Bock beers. Most of the others from Germany. I'd tried another rather popular "Bock" style (from a US brewery) and found it drinkable, but nothing to write home (or write BA) about. So this was a pleasant surprise to try a version from one of my favorite breweries. Incredibly rich color and head retention, with a nice malty flavor and richness, augmented by subtle carbonation. Just enough hops (even a bit more than expected) to balance the flavor while not detracting from the malt. My sample bottle came from my 12 Beers of Winter variety pack, but I'd buy this by the 6-er or the case if I could.

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Photo of rohrbachsfan
4.34/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Got this in the Saranac 12 Beers of Winter Sampler. So far this is the best of the bunch. I once tasted Wagner’s Sled Dog Dopplebock and really disliked the strong flavor and wasn’t sure how I was going to like this bock beer when I saw the dark color. I was pleasantly surprised when I tasted it. It had a creamy mouthfeel, rich malty flavor and smooth finish.This was an excellent tasting lager and was much better tasting than Saranac’s Adirondack Lager. I would like to see Saranac add this one to their regular lineup as well.

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Photo of JimFalzone
4.33/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Saranac came out with the coolest kind of sampler. A 12-pack with 12 different beers. Anyone who buys these sampler 12 packs knows that folks like Magic Hat and Shipyard, typically only give you three or four different beers.

The other cool, relatively unique thing about Saranac is that on the neck of each bottle is an accurate picture of how the beer will look in a pint glass. It gives you an idea of the darkness of the beer, that you wouldn't otherwise see in the dark brown glass bottle.

The bock is a nice malty winter brew. It's mostly sweet but it has a counterbalancing hoppiness that makes it very drinkable. The pure white head follows the beer down the glass. The head is light but still present to the very end.

It sort of reminds me of the Smuttynose Old Brown Dog ale. Now I wish my sampler didn't contain just one Bock!

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Photo of oelergud
4.2/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful, lager clear, honey reddish body with low carbonation. Light tan creamy head with small bubbles irregularly dispersed. Falls to a thin even float without leaving much lace.
Mild clear typical lager scents of grasses and floral but more dominant is the faintly spiced honey scent that is then followed by a stronger caramel character.
Slightly burnt caramel and a toffee/molasses up front flavor over a very faint citric layer of floral notes. Aftertaste is lightly hopped and well balanced, the malts never letting the hops take over.
Full body and good coating even abit slick. Finish is fairly dry and there are some residual sugar making the lips stick.
This is a very drinkable offering from Saranac and a pleasant surprise. There is hope yet for this brewery.


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Photo of bierman2000
4.05/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark lager is the description and yes is a spring bock or doppelbock. It is closer to a doppelbock in color and a spring hybrid bock in flavor. Smooth chocolate overtones, malty nose, full body with very little IBU or hop bitterness. An adventurous enjoyable beer from Saranac.

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Photo of plaid75
4.03/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a medium copper hue with a one and a half finger creamy off white head. There was very good retention and sticky lacing.

The smell featured a sweet husky grain with a solid noble hop presence.

The taste consisted of a lightly sweet biscuity malt with a very good grain bill. There was a very good hop spice as well.

The mouthfeel was full and creamy.

Overall a very solid bock. Very drinkable and sessionable. A very nice offering from Saranac.

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Photo of billybob
4/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

out of a winter 12 pack. pours a medium amber with a two finger light tan head that held for a while then faded to just covering the beer with some thin spotty lace. fruity floral aromas with a big bready malt taste with a touch caramel and a slightly salty tasting finish. light mouthfeel with good carbonation. good session beer

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.92/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

F.X. Matt has delivered a beautiful beer in their Saranac Bock. From it's glowing orange-chestnut body and creamy tan head, to it's lingering finish, it's a winner! It offers a very nice appearance of slightly hazy deep amber and chestnut, with a crimson-orange cast and glowing orange and gold highlights. Good head retention. Good lacing. The beautifully malty aroma expresses a bit of toastiness and dark caramel as well as some floral, leafy, and spicy hops. In the mouth it's smooth with a lightly dextrinous body; and just enough very-fine-bubbled carbonation to give a gentle zest to the tongue. The flavor is well-balanced, and malty but not sweet. It's grainy, toffeeish, and caramelish; balanced by a firm bitterness, spicy and floral hops, and an underlying acidity. It finishes dry and floral with a spicy hop and alcohol accent. It's not the biggest, or the most malty, or even the most drinkable... but it is really well done and accessible with a decent amount of character. Worth trying!

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Photo of treehugger02010
3.92/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A solid beer. I poured from a 12 ounze bottle into a pint glass, and was suprised at how much less head i got from this than any others from Saranac. The smell was sweet yet not sweet. I know that doesn't make sense, but that's the best I can describe it. The taste was a good bitter taste, but not awful strong. It went down very smooth. Don't drink and review.

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Photo of akorsak
3.88/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 2006 Winter Seasonal Case.

A: The bock is a deep amber/copper red, coming close to a brown color. There is no head retention, save for a small white ring.

S: The bock has a grainy malt aroma that is ramped up quite a bit, resulting in a slightly sweet malt smell.

T: Saranac seems to have the malt body component of their beers down pat and this is no exception. The malts are thick and well concentrated, giving the beer a sweeter, bigger malt flavor. Hops are an afterthought but that malts don't make me miss 'em.

M: The malts are big and chewy, finally allowing Saranac to really hit the mark.

D: Very drinkable with a moderate abv, this is a real star from the Winter case.

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Photo of maddogruss
3.83/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured 12oz bottle into a glass mug. Nice, dark lager. Deep amber color, with almost a tannish head. The smell of the malt immediately rises to the top of the glass after the pour with the malt hitting your lips as soon as you taste it. German style beer, with almost a dubbel taste. Nice, thick mouthfeel. Saranac's description of a "rich full-bodied" beer is right on the nose. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Redwood21
3.83/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this beer has a nice golden hue with a nice sticky white head that has a nice lacing that sticks around. there is not a huge aroma from this beer but no unplesant aromas either. the flavor is very nice, not too hoppy and and has a nice almost smokey malt flavor. smoke may not be the right term but it has that feel. the body is medium and smooth very drinkable and enjoyable. This is a very solid very enjoyable beer to consume.

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Photo of rarevos
3.71/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into pilsner glass.

A: Dark, coppery-amber with fluffy, pillowy head. Head is a bit off-white. Sticky trails remain as it recedes. Carbonation rises slowly. Pretty good looking beer.

S: Malty and toasty. Slight perfume hint. Really, really mild.

T/M: Toasty malt up front, gives way to a sweeter malt in the middle, like mild caramel and roasted hazelnuts. Finish is nicely bitter with a long bitter tail. Mouthfeel is a little slick.

D: I'm sampling this from their Winter 12-pack, and I'm not sure if that's the only way to purchase it (I believe it is). This was honestly better than I expected. It's still milder than German Bocks, but it's not bad. I'd enjoy this again.

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Photo of WesWes
3.7/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours an amber color with an offwite head that fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a smooth, malty scent along with a dry lager yeast aroma. The taste is decent. It has a dry, yet malty flavor that boasts of a mild crystal malt and not much else. It goes down easy and finishes with some residual sweetness. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a decent brew, but nothing too impressive.

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Photo of tgbljb
3.68/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a medium copper color with moderate slightly off-white puffy head.
Smell is noticable for sweet caramel malt
Taste brings more of the caramel taste, backed by a firm hop bitterness.
Nice and full in the moth with good taste retention.
A nice middle of the road beer. Easy to drink.

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Photo of PBRstreetgang
3.68/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very clear bronze with copper highlights. Dense two finger head, off-white in color and holds a cap well, leaving spotty lace. Crystal and lots of pale malt in the nose, with a light noble hop aroma. Toasty Munich and Vienna maltiness upfront, followed by caramel and slight dextrinous taste. Hop profile is perhaps more assertive than appropriate, but the bitterness in the aftertaste really balances out this malty beer along with plenty of floral Hallertau and spicy Saaz flavor. The medium-full body and light carbonation exaggerate the rich malt character creating a heavier mouthfeel and lingering sweetness without cloying. Finishes residual with an evenly matched german hop acidity, allowing a good drinkability.

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Photo of tempest
3.6/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A pretty decent beer considering Saranac's low price. Looks a touch light for a bock but still managed a pretty amber color with off-white head. I'm never quite sure how to describe bock flavor, but I know it when I taste it or smell it. The sweet, caramel and licorish-like malts are there, although not terrible rich. There's also a bit of a spicey, hot hops element to this brew. It seems Saranac has been uping their hops in a couple brews lately - awesome. Overall, not a bad beer for a the price. Tasty and very drinkable but no award winner.

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Photo of Stimack
3.58/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Beer is amber in color with a fair sized off-white head that has some retention and left a good amount of lacing. The aroma is mostly malt; caramel seems to come out the most but also a biscuit like property. The taste is mostly of malts, caramel again along with a roasted flavor that seems to go pretty well together and finishes with the lightest of hops as it is there a sec and gone the next. Over all this is a middle of the road brew, not something to write home about but not a bad offering, it is easy to drink.

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Photo of beerphan
3.58/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle -> pint
2006 12 beers of winter

Pours a clear deep copper orange. A great color. A thin head settles quickly to some slightly rocky film, but leaves no lace. Carbonation is typical Saranac, bubbles all over the glass off the pour.

Malty nose.

Caramel malt and a dry bitter aftertaste. I really couldn't smell any hops but they show up on the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium-to full. But leaves a drying sting.

I could probably drink these for a night if my choices were slim.

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Photo of Suds
3.53/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a very light brown color that’s accented with a reddish hue. It’s very clear, with a nice, albeit thin, white head. The aroma is of lightly toasted malt. The beer presents a significant sweet malt smell, but its richness and depth could be a little more intense. The beer is modestly sweet with a clean fresh bread crust flavor. The finish has a slight herbal bitterness. Appropriately, there’s not much hop flavor in the beer. Medium body and fairly medium carbonation. This is a clean and drinkable bock. Although it’s respectable, there are a lot of better bocks out there.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears an amber hue with an off white toffee toned head hue leaves ample lacing all around my glass. Aroma has a nice warming biscuit malt with sweet caramel and evident herbal hops with a touch of metallic character. Flavor has a mild roasty caramel malt with more herbal hop flavors and light alcohol in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with even smooth carbonation I'm diggin their take on the bock not a bad brew. Drinkability is quality with six percent abv it has some flavor with some nice drinkability going on.

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Photo of sabrills70
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date. Pours a medium amber with a one finger head, OK longevity and decent lace. Good caramel malt smells mixed with just enough hop aroma, although perhaps a bit much for a bock. Nice rich caramel malt flavors but a bit too much hop flavor/bitterness at the end - at least for a bock anyway. Good flavor though, better than the Black Diamond Bock IMO. A decent offering.

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Photo of NEhophead
3.45/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 fl oz brown bottle, served in a tumbler.

Pours a clean-toned copper in color. Half-inch, creamy off-white head that lingers as an intact sheet. Scattered, webbed lacing down half of the glass' sides.

Sweet caramel and mild toffee malt aromatics. Powdered mustiness from the yeast; stiff, malted wheat and grains.

Creamy, sweet flavors of caramel and toffee. A lot of grain and wheat that is clean tasting, yet somewhat adjunctory with flavors of rice and corn. The sweetness is broken by the noble grain presence and is followed by an airy bitterness. The aftertaste is diacetyl-laden biscuit and a bit of sweetness.

A light, medium in body; more thin and watery than I'd like or expect from the style.

A Bock that is too thin and lacking in flavor and mouthfeel for my taste. Not a terrible lager, but not 'well crafted' stylistically.

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Photo of RedChrome
3.45/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A light coppery red colored beer. Small white head shrank almost instantly. Almost no carbonation can be seen at all despite crytal clear body. Lacing in thin ring all the way down.

Sweet malt aromas dominate the first whiff. A scent of toasted oats. A faint hops aroma gives the smell a slight but appropriate bitterness for the style.

A very light roasted oat flavor. Bittering develops in the back of the throat as the flavor shifts. A second sip had a faint caramel sweetness on the edges of the tongue.

Average thickness in the beer. A lack of carbonation made the tastes sit flat on the tongue.

Ovarall a decent bock. This one would go great with a pork roast dinner. A decent offering in the 12 beers of Christmas pack. Worth a try if you can pick up the mixed case.

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Photo of oberon
3.43/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Its nice to see a few new things coming from Matt even if they are not great,poured a medium broze color with a thinner quick to fade head.Muted aromas mainly caramel malt with a light toastiness,pretty thin mouthfeel for even a "smaller" bock like this not quite watery but not where you would want it to be either,somewhat sweet up front flavor wise definent caramel malt flavors a decent peppery hop profile comes thru late.A decent but subtle stab at a bock here its drinkable but lacks alot of character in my mind.

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Saranac Bock from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
3.46 out of 5 based on 73 ratings.
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