March 2005 Archives

Sam Adams Triple Bock

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This evening my shipment of Sam Adams Triple Bock arrived. It is an unhcarbonated, well, beer according to Sam Adams.


Upon first inspection it's dark color was reminiscent of raisin juice, and it smelled of fermented raisins and maple syrup. Upon tasting, it had the sweetness of barleywine, but the similarities to beer ended their. The distinctive strong burnt raisin aftertaste is a bit much for me. The best part was definitely the aroma, the taste left something to be desired approximately $13.00 a bottle to be exact.


I would have much rather had a six pack of Brooklyn black chocolate stout. I guess I am partial to a brewer properly classifying his brew. Garret Oliver does this. How Jim Koch can call this a triple bock, well I'm not sure. This is nothing like any bock I have ever had. I guess that in itself does not make it bad.


A little bit about my palate. With all honesty the very first time I tried a stout I thought it reminiscent of a naturopathic laxative and couldn't finish the bottle. Incidentally it was a Sierra Nevada Stout, which is an excellent brew. But I was simply not accustom to it. The first time I had a martini made with Bombay Sapphire Gin I thought it tasted like pine trees. Now I enjoy both gin and stout. In fact it's probably my favorite style of beer.


I am not a port or sherry drinker so perhaps my palate is simply not trained to appreciate the complex flavor of Sam's Triple Bock. Admittedly as I let it warm up in the snifter it did begin to grow on me a bit.


In my opinion this is not beer. Barleywine for me is the end of the line for beer.

According to Sam Adams website Jim wanted to go to the extreme opposite end of watered down pilsner beer. Well I guess he has definitely done that, perhaps he's gone past beer altogether.


The next day ...


One More Taste


Ok, I just have to come back with a couple more comments about the Samuel Adams Triple Bock. It did grow on me. Will I ever buy another bottle, maybe. It is it's best at room temperature. It has a real warming effect much like a glass of scotch on a cold night. For some reason the first half of the bottle had the strongest burnt raisin thing going on. After it sat half empty for a couple of days it seemed to mellow, or perhaps I just knew now what to expect. It seems to me to be more along the lines of a fortified wine than a beer. Anyone that says this is beer smokes crack if you ask me. First beer and ale are carbonated, this is not carbonated. Second if this were a bock it would have to be a lager, but it's an 'ale'. Third a Tripel would indicate that it is a Trappist ale. We know it's not. And who ever heard of a beer brewed without hops of any kind. I guess I wasn't on the brewfloor when they brewed it. But if it has hops somebody please let me know.


So my suggestion is this, if you get a bottle don't sit down and drink it all in one night. Save some, drink it a couple of days after opening it and just fill your snifter about one third full. Maybe it will grow on you like it did me. So the big question is where does this put Sam Adams on my list of breweries? Well I am still thinking about that one.



The next day... Final Comments


Regarding Sam Adams Triple Bock here is what David Ziegler, a wine connoisseur and beer drinker had to say:


"I concur that I didn't think 'beer' as I was sipping this. I found myself thinking, "What's the common denominator with this stuff, that makes it "beer" and not something else?


I loved the smell. But I was prepared for it by a product that is a dead match on smell. It's called Marmite in England (Kraft) and Vegemite in Australia (don't know the maker), and it's a by-product of brewing. You put it on toast, and after trying it a couple of times, the flavor really grows on you. I was delighted to finally be able to see (actually smell) a connection between Marmite and brewing.


No matter what my end opinion would have been, I was very glad to have had the opportunity to try this. High marks to the Brewmaster for that.


I am a big fan of both port and sherry (dry and dessert), and there's not a whole lot of similarity. Maybe just in fullness of body and strength of the flavors. Although - I once got a chance to try vintage port, and there was a strong flavor of tobacco. This brew reminded me a little bit of chewing tobacco, so there you go.


I found myself wishing that the finish wasn't quite so bitter. If only the bitterness was a little more balanced with the other flavors, I think I would like this 'beer' a lot. Even so, I enjoyed it, and I would have it again if I had the chance or the money.


The strength was nice, just because you can sip it, put it away, and sip more of it later and still feel a little kick. I actually finished the brew while ice fishing, which was a perfect setting for the stuff. Warmed me right up. I don't know if the fish could smell it, but they were biting. "


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When I visited a few years ago these were closed. states that David Ryder a VP at Miller Brewing Company, has arranged for the Miller Caves, located below the Miller Inn on State Street in Miller Valley, to be the site of a Museum of Beer & Brewing Fundraising Dinner to be held on June 9, celebrating Miller Brewing Company's 150th Anniversary. The last time a dinner was held in the Miller Caves was December 17, 1954, for a luncheon meeting of the Wisconsin State Brewers Association. Only a handful of events have been held in the Miller caves since that date.


So I decided to ask Miller about it. Here is what they said:


"We do not comment on any future promotions, advertising ideas,


products, etc. until they are released to the general public.


We appreciate your interest in our company.



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This page is an archive of entries from March 2005 listed from newest to oldest.

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