Brew Review: New Glarus Back 40 Bock

23 Feb

Brew: Back 40 Bock

Brewed By: New Glarus (New Glarus, WI)

Style: Bock (5.5% ABV)

Back 40 Bock from New Glarus is a cute beer. Reggie Bush dancing-around-in-the-backfield-and –covering-thirty-yards-to-gain-two cute. It’s the guy who always seems to immediately fall into the ‘friend’ category with the pretty girls and never gets another shot at the big time. Granted, it’s better than being Brandon Jackson or the creepy guy who girls avoid at all costs, but it’s not really where you want to be.

Bocks were originally brewed by Belgian and Bavarian monks as sustenance to get them through the fasting of the Lenten season. They are supposed to be big, strong, calorie-filled, malty brews that stick to your ribs and warm your soul. In Germany it is sometimes referred to as ‘liquid bread’.  Not so much with Back 40. Although it’s a nice, drinkable cerveza, it doesn’t really hit you like an excellent bock can and should.

Usually stellar New Glarus brewmaster, Dan Carey, takes a long-lived traditional lager and puts training wheels on it, making it more broadly acceptable beverage, but one that will neither wow you nor get you through 46 days of piety and hunger. This is a solid beer that I would gladly drink, but probably won’t buy anymore sixers of it myself.

Enjoy it while it lasts, make it breakfast in the morning, give it a kiss on the cheek, and move on to bigger and better bocks.

Final Grade: B-

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