[written by Vinnie, posted by Zuch due to Vinnie's internet filter restrictions]
If asked to form a static rank of favorite beer styles, I don't think I could do it. Mood, season, time of day, and other such variables factor so heavily that I would find the task impossible. That said, any attempts at such a list would typically have bocks in the lower half (for taste, that is--not for pun-making). With a few notable exceptions--Capital's Autumnal Fire being the first--I find bocks to be too syrupy, too musty, or downright bland.
California probably isn't the place to go for good bocks, but after the nice things I had to say about Sierra Nevada on Sunday, I thought I'd try the 30th Anniversary Charlie, Fred, and Ken's Bock (yes, that's one beer) on Tuesday night and a Glissade last night. The Glissade is a golden bock, the Charlie more of an amber, but if you asked me which was which, I could only tell the Charlie by the overpowering boozy taste. Other than a little bit of the musty flavor, both beers are flavorless, odorless, and way too sweet to my tongue.
But rather than writing off these beers completely, I have to wonder whether it's just me. Maybe everyone's palate has its ageusic spots--something akin to color-blindness--and one of mine is whatever quality redeems the bock. If that's the case, I owe my sincerest apologies to Charlie, Fred, Ken, and any other brewers whose bocks I'll inevitably pan on this blog. In the meantime, I'll continue seeking out those rare ones that do stand out.