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Beer #38, February 7, 2010: Hofstetten Granitbock

February 7, 2010

Note:  I had initially listed this beer as part of “German Week” since I found among many other German beers on the shelves.  However, I now see that this beer is from Austria.  Close, yes, but would you call Molson an American beer since it hails from just north of the border?  You see why I must make this correction.

Beer: Ettaler Kloster Dunkel

Brewery: Brauerei Hofstetten, St. Martin, Austria

Style: Doppelbock

Serving Type: 500 ml (16.9 oz) bottle

Price: $3.99 / bottle

Availability: Year-round

Glassware: Mug

Strength: 7.3% ABV (alcohol by volume)

Drinkability: This is a beer that drinks like a meal!  See more below…

Tasting Notes

Appearance: Pours a deep, dark clear chestnut brown, nearly black, with a moderate tan head.

Aroma: Sweet and malty.

Mouthfeel: Thick and syrupy, with moderate carbonation.

Taste: Bocks are a strong lager style of beer, and doppelbocks are an even stronger take on a bock.  Since this is a lager, the flavors are not as complex as many ales, but clean and straightforward.  This beer starts with an initial sweetness, and builds into a thick, tangy, earthy, doughy, molasses middle, with a quick slightly bitter finish.  And while clean and straightforward, it is also big, thick and flavorful.

Pairing: One of my favorite all-time pairings is short ribs with a doppelbock.  So filling that you’ll skip dessert, but so delicious you won’t mind.

Trivia: Doppelbocks are referred to as “liquid bread”, and were initially brewed by monks to provide sustenance while they fasted during Lent.  Such strong beer on an empty stomach?  I guess it made for rather merry monks!


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