Bocks are synonymous with springtime, but these big doppelbocks blossom after a few seasons have passed. Their higher ABV means they can handle some age; just don’t hang on to them forever or you’ll lose the enjoyable, full body.
BRING OUT: 2010 Boulevard Seeyoulator Doppelbock
A meatier version of the traditional monastic bock, doppelbocks often hit their stride after a few years when the alcohol has smoothed into bready malts. True to its name, this version, aged over cedar rings cut from a tree on brewery founder John McDonald’s farm, benefits from some time under wraps. Today, a pleasant must tempers raisin sweetness over chewy malt. Don’t hold this much longer; the texture risks thinning out.
LAY DOWN: 2014 Flying Dog Doppelbock
The 8.5% ABV is relatively mellow in this limited release, but a pronounced caramel sweetness and tongue-coating mouthfeel needs a year or two to develop into the nutty, toffee richness that makes this style shine. In time, fig and plum flavors should become more pronounced to counter cellar notes of must and leather, wrapping up cleanly with
a tight, bitter finish. “This beer will mature nicely. The bready malt notes will likely evolve into more caramel characteristics, and the overall malt dominance should intensify,” says Flying Dog brewer Matt Brophy.