21 February 2011

You call this doppel?

Just the other week I remarked, with regard to Schlenkerla Eiche, at its ease-of-drinking for a doppelbock, a type of beer I associate most with big sticky textures full of burnt caramel. At least, that's my memory of things like Salvator and Maximator, though it's a while since I've tasted any of them.

On a trawl through Redmond's recently, I picked up a bottle of Doppel-Hirsch for the missus, scarcely noticing, of course, that the swingtop bottle would make an ideal addition to my homebrew bottle collection once she had emptied it of beer. I was surprised to find that this is yet another light and easy-going doppelbock.

It came out the appropriate shade of mahogany, though quite flat. Caramel sweetness is of course the main flavour and aroma element, though the taste is balanced with just a bit of liquorice. But that's it, and to be honest there's not much of either.

Have I got doppelbock wrong? Are they all like this? I need to return to the classics soon.


  1. No, they're not all like this. But, I'm also beginning to think that maybe only half of them are in the too-sugary-and-sticky-sweet category, so it's worth trying them all. My former neighbour sent me some Salavator (for old times sake), perhaps the classic Doppelbock, and I quite like that. I also liked the Doppel-Hirsch, and seemed to get more out of it than you did.

  2. I have always had a soft spot for Maximator from Augustiner. I find it complex, with a nice herbal element to it.

  3. Slightly off topic (sorry), but I must be the only home brewer that doesn't like swing tops. I just can't trust them. Oxygen permeability worries me with long term storage and it just feels like they're too easy to "knock" open by mistake.


  4. What is this "long term storage" you speak of? :P

    In practice, because they're so handy, I do use them pretty much exclusively for quick-turnover beers.

  5. You worry too much, Mark :) I always reckoned that if the Germans will sell beer in them, I can use them for my own beer (as long as they aren't green glass!). Does speed up bottling day somewhat.

    Those kind of rubber seals are also used in "canning" jars for preserving foods.

  6. Good points. I know, I know .. it would be fine and I should just use them already :P

    I once had a really badly oxidised bottle of Orkney Dark Reserve though and I've found just it feels wrong to use them ever since.