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Prepare for spring with these great bock beers

The best bock beers for spring

Bock beer
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Originating in Germany, bock beers got their name because of a mispronunciation. Its history can be traced to Bavaria in the 14th century. When it began to gain in popularity and moved south to Munich in the 17th century, it was initially referred to as Einbeck (named after the city where it was invented).

But a mispronunciation led to it being mistakenly called “ein bock” which translates to “billy goat.” This is also why many bock beer bottles and cans are adorned with a goat image.

While there are different types of bock beer when you crack open an American brewed beer labeled simply as a “bock,” you’re going to find yourself with a beer loaded with caramel malt flavors, roasted malts, nutty sweetness, and floral, lightly bitter hops.

Beer taps
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Why are bock beers imbibed in the spring?

You might wonder why this malty, sweet beer is labeled a spring beer. This is because, traditionally, this style was brewed in the autumn, lagered in the winter, and served in the spring. On top of that, medieval monks were known to imbibe bock beers to get some nutrients and sustenance while they were fasting during Lent.

And while nobody says that you should try the beer-only diet during Lent, you can spend the end of winter and all of spring imbibing bock beers. Just try to pair them with a full belly of actual food.

Bock beer
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Our six favorite bock beers

When the winter begins to turn toward spring, not only are we excited about the milder temperatures and longer days, but we’re looking forward to the bock beers. Breweries all over the country make a version of this seasonal classic. Keep scrolling to see six of our absolute favorites.

Troegs Troegenator

Troegs Troegenator

While this beer is best enjoyed during the still chilly spring months, Troegs Troegenator is luckily available all year long. This 8.2% ABV double bock is brewed with Chocolate, Munich, and Pilsner malts as well as lager yeast. It gets its hop presence from the addition of German Northern Brewer and Magnum hops. The result is a complex beer featuring caramel malts, toasted grains, dried fruits, and gentle hops. It’s crisp, sweet, and memorable.

Shiner Bock
Shiner Bock

Shiner Bock

When it comes to American-made bock beers, there are none as famous as Shiner Bock. This Texas-made bock beer has been available all year long since 1973. This award-winning brew is known for its mix of roasted barley and imported German hops. This creates a highly sippable beer with notes of caramel malts, dried fruits, cereal grains, and lightly bitter, floral hops at the finish.

Genesee Spring Bock

Genesee Spring Bock

You’ve probably heard about the beloved Genesee Cream Ale, but you should know about its spring seasonal Genesee Spring Bock. Brewed and lagered every spring since 1951, this cartoon goat-adorned beer is known for its palate of candied nuts, toffee, dried fruits, toasted malts, and lightly floral hops. It’s sweet, lightly hoppy, and perfect for spring.

Rogue Dead Guy

Rogue Dead Guy

If you haven’t realized it, Rogue Dead Guy is a bock beer. Specifically, it’s a Maibock. It’s brewed with 2-row, C15, and Munich malts, as well as the brewery’s proprietary Pacman yeast. It gets its hop aroma and flavor from Sterling and Perle hops. This creates a memorable beer known for its flavors of caramel malts, toasted malts, honey, and floral, earthy hops.

Community Beer Texas-Style Bock
Community Beer

Community Beer Texas-Style Bock

Available year-round, this traditional amber lager sits at a very drinkable 6% ABV. It’s loaded with caramel malt flavors paired perfectly with floral hops. The result is a sweet, crisp, easy-drinking Texas beer that has enough alcohol content to cut through those still-cold early spring days.

Saint Arnold Spring Bock
Saint Arnold

Saint Arnold Spring Bock

Proving once again that Texas is the heart of American bock beer, Saint Arnold Spring Bock is brewed with five different malts (including some from Minnesota and Belgium) as well as Perle and Saaz hops. First launched in 1998, this seasonal favorite is known for its caramel and toffee sweetness and floral hop presence.

Dark beer
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Stock your fridge with bock beers

Depending on where you live, you might still see quite a bit of snow outside your window. But, if the groundhog was right, spring is coming soon. The time is right to stock up your refrigerator with bock beers. Loaded with caramel sweetness and gentle, floral hops, bock beers are perfectly suited for spring drinking. Pick up a six-pack of one or more of the above beers. You’ll be glad you did.

Editors' Recommendations

Christopher Osburn
Christopher Osburn is a food and drinks writer located in the Finger Lakes Region of New York. He's been writing professional
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