From the HBD Archive
From: (John Mellby)
Subject: Bock tasting
Date: 1990-05-18 16:45:03 GMT

The Offical Mellby Beer-Tastings, year 3.

This is the Eighteenth such tasting stretching back over two years.

The tastings, in reverse chronological order were of:
Belgians + Samichlaus
Misc. Lagers (including one Non-alcoholic)
Ales, mainly American
Oregon and Michigan (ok its weird, but this is where our last trips were)
Available Ales (i.e. purchaseable in Dallas)
Northern Beers (Northern US and Canadian)
Belgian (and other odd European Beers)
California Micro-beers
Lagers, mostly American microbreweries
Ales (an odd lot which turned out to be poor quality)
Ales (Strong, including porters, stout)
Mixed Lagers
Christmas and speciality beers
Mixed (mostly ales)

A few preliminary comments are necessary. In general we are tasting
beers which are not commercially available in Texas (curse these
state laws!). We're usually tasting special beers which may not move
off the retailer's shelves as fast as, say, Budweiser.
Hence some beer is not as fresh as it should be.

The most important thing we have learned is:
The condition under which the retailer keeps the beer is crucial!
Age, light, and handling all can cause a good beer to rapidly become bad.
Also we have learned to drink the beer rather than keeping it for
extended periods (except with a few bottle-conditioned beer, like
Celebration Ale, Thomas Hardy, etc.)

On with the beer:

- -----
5/17/90 A few surprises here. I guessed virtually every beer wrong, and
we haven't gotten too many good beers from Kessler, yet it tasted as good
as I expect a Boch can be.
JRM Tim Roy MikeG Cary Paul Total Ave
EKU 28 35 43 35 36 44 42 235 39.2
Franziskus 31 32 36 30 32 34 195 32.5
Garten Brau 27 26 35 38 32 158 31.6
Sam Adams 36 37 37 41 41 192 38.4
Kessler 45 40 41 39 42 207 41.4
Celebrator 35 32 33 37 35 172 34.4
Shiner 16 18 25 26 23 108 21.6
Berghoff 24 28 25 33 30 140 28.0

EKU 28, Kulminator Urtyp Hell, Erste Kulmbacher Actienbrauerei, Germany
I prefer to put the strongest beer at the end, but for reasons all his
own, Roy decided to burn out our taste buds early. EKU is VERY STRONG!
It is one of the few beers to have a strong smell of alcohol
It had a sharp, sweet, alcohol taste. The alcohol almost overwhelmed the
malt. This is so distinctive it is hard to rate.

Franziskus Heller Boch, Spaten, Munich, Germany
We named this the "Light American Skunk Bock" and were very surprised to
find it was by Spaten! It didn't really taste or smell like a bock.
Skunky aroma, and reminded me of Oktoberfest beer. A nice white head and
it was very light. It had too much hops and was astringent and unbalanced
for a bock.

Garten Brau Boch, Capital Brewing, Madison, Wisconsin
This had a taste of alcohol, but was also watery. It had a drying,
cardboard taste, with a thin, sour aftertaste. Molassas and malt in the
aroma and taste.

Samuel Adams Double Bock Dark Lager, Boston Beer Company
Lovely malt aroma! It had a nice taste, I thought I detected salt.
Very drinkable.

Kessler Boch, Helena Montana
We thought this was German in origin! Great malt aroma with some hops.
A clean, malty taste with a little alcohol. Excellent bock!!

Celebrator, Ayinger Bier, Germany
I have rated this much higher before. The bottle was probably old.
Caramel and old (but still nice) malt in the aroma. The taste
was burnt/roast malt, with alcohol, papery, and a little oxidized.
Still quite drinkable.

Shiner Bock, Shiner Brewing, Shiner TX
Vegetarian Delight! The aroma wasn't half bad, but it was completely
watery with strong DMS (sulfur dioxide). Yuch!

Berghoff Boch, Huber Brewing, Wisconsin
This was again old. It was probably a quite good beer earlier.
The aroma was still nice, but the taste and drinkability suffered.

Surviving the American Dream
John R. Mellby Texas Instruments P.O.Box 660246, MS 3645
Dallas Texas, 75266
(214)517-5370 (214)343-7585
* "A free society is one where it is safe to be unpopular." *
* -- Adlai Stevenson *

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