Samuel Adams Triple Bock

On Tap has a review of Samuel Adams Triple Bock this morning. Not very favorable, but the beer sure sounds different.

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….


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.

Wow, $13 a bottle? Seems a bit much, but I hadn’t heard of this beer yet, so I checked it out on the Samuel Adams website (quick aside: I was ranting before about beer sites that prompt you to enter your birthday before you can enter; Sam Adams’ website not only does that, but then prompts to enter the year again! Wrong, wrong, wrong!!).

Samuel Adams® Triple Bock® is the beer that truly started our odyssey into extreme brewing. Its deep, full flavor explodes with notes of maple, vanilla, oak and toffee. This flavor, along with its heavy, still mouthfeel has drawn comparisons to a vintage port, sherry and cognac. And Samuel Adams® Triple Bock® should be enjoyed in much the same way. We recommend serving it at room temperature in a snifter a few ounces at a time – one bottle should generously serve two to three. Its warming malt character and fruit esters make it an ideal after dinner aperitif.


Due to legal restrictions, Samuel Adams® Triple Bock® can not be sold in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, Washington, and West Virginia.


Samuel Adams® Triple Bock® stretches the definition of beer, but beer it is. Jim Koch wanted to brew a beer so extraordinary that in a single sip it would do away with all preconceptions of the taste and flavors that are usually found in beer. There have been only three vintages of Samuel Adams® Triple Bock®: 1994, 1995 and 1997, but bottles can still be found in the marketplace. Unlike regular beer which has a very limited shelf life, Samuel Adams® Triple Bock® seems only to improve with time, becoming even more complex, and slightly dryer.

Can’t sell in Oregon? (Or even Idaho or Washington.) Well, there goes my hopes of trying a bottle, unless I want to drive to California to find some. Or someone wants to send me a bottle. :)

No wonder, though: this beer has a whopping original gravity of 1.171 and is 18% alcohol by volume. Wow.

Beer Advocate ratings are mixed; it has an overall score of 80 and average rating of 3.38. Many either love it or hate it, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of middle ground. Either way, it sounds like an interesting beer.

2 Responses to Samuel Adams Triple Bock

  1. Aaron Rossell says:

    that paragraph at the top, "…Upon first inspection" is probably the worst critique of anything I’ve ever heard. Riddled with spelling, grammatical, and contradictory errors, whoever wrote it must have downed the whole bottle and gone immediately to the computer to write about it. Anyway…I haven’t tasted it so I can’t comment on the drink. I only wanted to read comprehensive opinions online, but I couldn’t even do that I guess.

  2. CLIFF AULTMAN says:

    My first taste of this nectar from the gods was "it’s about time somebody had the balls to brew the cognac of beers".
    I plan to go out and buy the rest of the stock at my supplier’s to keep on shelf for a few years. Truly to become a "$100.00 Bottle" in a few years. All you wussies out there that can’t handle "real beer" can go back to your goat urine bud lite. Leave the drinking to the real people who know how to savour real brewing craftsmanship. NO WHINING WIMPS!!!!
    GROW SOME GONADS AND DRINK UP…..