Written by SBN contributor Chris Clemetson.
In celebration of spring, this week we spotlight the Beer Judge Certificate Program (BJCP) style 5A. Maibock. Bock beers were originally brewed in Germany and are usually a stronger and darker variation of lighter pale lagers. Maibock is a relatively recent style compared to other bock beers and was originally brewed to celebrate springtime and the month of May.
What the BJCP style guide says:
“Can be thought of as either a pale version of a traditional bock, or a Munich helles brewed to bock strength. While quite malty, this beer typically has less dark and rich malt flavors than a traditional bock.”
Thoughts on the Style:
When people tend to think about lagers they might initially think of pilsners or mass produced American beers. But bocks are a bold expression of what can be done with lagers and the Maibock is my favorite. It is a more approachable bock in that it is lighter in color and less malty then it’s cousins. Despite that fact, it can also push the style and be hoppier with mild spice characteristics. Being a bock they have higher alcohol content, usually ranging from 6% to 7% by volume. Besides, it’s May so go out and grab one based on that alone.
Local examples of the style:
Mai Oh Maibock by Anacortes Brewery – this seasonal has just been released and is named in honor of Mariners announcer Dave Niehaus’ classic exclamation.
Maritime Pacific has a classic example on tap at the Jolly Roger Taproom.
Elysian has their Ambrosia Maibock on tap at the moment as well.
Other examples include:
We’d love to hear what some of your favorite examples of the style are.