Shiner Bock is a cult legend in Texas. If you go to Texas, you should not do three things: first, you should not insult Texas; second, you should not in any way imply that the women in your state are more beautiful than the women of Texas; and third, you should not insult Shiner Bock. But as a Louisiana native, I have a natural, inborn rivalry with Texas, so it is my birthright and duty to insult their beer. After all, we have Abita Beer, and we are darned proud of it. So when I review Shiner Bock, of course I approach it with a bit of good-natured bias. But in all seriousness, in the review itself, I pride myself on objective stance. So though I am a Louisiana native, and proud of it, please be assured that this review will be objective.
Shiner Brewery (aka Spoetzl Brewery) in Shiner, Texas, is mostly known for its iconic Shiner Bock. It receives average to above average ratings in general, but for many people, it is the only craft beer available in certain bars and small towns. Fair enough. It is not my favorite beer, but I would choose it in a heartbeat over Bud Light.
Shiner Bock (4.4% ABV) has traditionally been a beer of the South, unavailable in many northern states. But this is changing in an interesting way. First, Shiner Bock will be available in Rhode Island starting immediately. The company was able to work out a deal with a chain of stores there to sell the beer. It is also now available in New York City, so the company is definitely growing in leaps and bounds.
Everything On Tap Review: Shiner Bock:
Bottle: This iconic bottle is an example of good product design. The very dark-brown glass forms a squat bottle with at dark yellow label that is frilled at the top. The lettering is dark brown and red, and the image of a ram adorns the lower right corner of the label. It is instantly recognizable on the shelves.
Pour: The color is deep orange-amber. The head is about two fingers thick and calla-lily white. It dissipates relatively quickly, leaving almost no lacing.
Aroma: The bouquet is nice, but it is disappointingly mild. It begins with sweet malted grains, rises with some caramel, and finishes with the mildest of hoppy bitterness. There is nothing wrong with the aroma per se, but it would be nice if it were a bit stronger.
Flavor: The flavor is clearly dominated by malted grains and caramel, though in light proportions. There is a bit of yeasty, toasted bread on the palate, and the very faintest addition of lemon peel. Overall, the flavor is nice, but there is just not enough flavor there.
Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is watery and light. The carbonation is mild but frothy, which is a nice surprise. The swallow though is too watery and without character.
Structure: The structure is light and weak. It is not particularly well-balanced, and the flavor palate is fairly simplistic.
Food Pairing: A light beer like this would do fine with boiled or broiled seafood, like oysters, clams, squid, or crabs.
Overall Rating Out of 5 Possible Beer Mugs: