Presented with a lovely pewter label on a bomber (and retailing at $14.99 a bomber, this was the perfect beer for the holidays). Produced in 2008, but I cellared the bottle until 2010 and served it at Thanksgiving. It was a big hit – subtle and mellow, with rich chocolate flavor and other flavor notes from its special brewing process, which paired well with turkey and pumpkin pie. This beer was aged on a bed of cocoa nibs from Felchlin – Grand Cru Savage from Bolivia. The nibs imparted notes of honey, vanilla, and dried fruit to the malt backbone of Chocolate Bock. Despite being aged for 2 years, the beer held up very well, even with a low ABV. It transformed into a wonderfully decadent and complex beer that finished smooth (without any bittering).
I only wish that I had bought more of this vintage. The “new” Chocolate Bock that got introduced in 2009-10 changed the formula, going from a premium beer to a mass-produced beer that could be put into the variety packs and six-packs at a reduced cost. I’d still prefer the premium cost of the 2008 Chocolate Bock over the more recent version. If Samuel Adams decides to produce another premium version of this beer, then pick it up immediately.