What a Long Hard Road It's Been!
A Review of St. Victorious by Victory Brewing Co.
Posted on 5/27/2011 by Chops
                   
Delicious
Ladies and gentlemen, I have a very important announcement to make. Today and 8pm EST, my long personal quest has officially come to an end. For I have officially found a great American bock! I would like to thank my loving wife for all the support, my co-founder for the continued encouragement, the kindly beer gods through which all things are good, and the genius brewers over at Victory Brewing Co. I couldn't have done it without you!

I give you... St. Victorious, a great American bock. Course, there is only one caveat that prevents this beer from competing with it's German counterparts: it's just strong enough to be a doppelbock. If this beer was half a percentage point lighter, I could rub it in German faces as a fantastic traditional bock from America (to any Germans reading this, just kidding, your beers give my life purpose). But I'm not one to discriminate over small technicalities, this beer happily rides the line between bock and doppelbock.

Once in the glass, you can immediately see that wonderful bock coloration. A gorgeous deep copper bordering on reddish brown. The aroma is delectable, big sweet malty goodness coupled with caramels and roasted nuts. Then comes that highly anticipated first taste. You immediately catch those signature caramel and toffee flavors up front, all nicely balanced with the alcohol. The middle ground slowly transforms into roasted nuts and dark chocolates before dissipating into a very rich cocoa-like aftertaste. This is a really complex flavor train and I recommend taking your time with it. I'm getting a lot of different notes as I progress. It warms about halfway through and I'm starting to pick out some savory dark fruits, namely cherry. It has a more medium-bodied mouthfeel which makes it quite smooth and easily drinkable.

Overall, St. Victorious is a fabulous bock and I'm still quite surprised that I managed to find a great American version. As I have said many times before, even the best of what America has to offer fails in comparison to even standard German bocks. But this beer is strong evidence that the majestic bock formula is indeed crackable in the States. I won't say that St. Victorious can compete with the German pinnacles, but it certainly deserves to be on the field of battle. Hats off to Victory Brewing Co. for one hell of an accomplishment.

I can't believe I found this beer right before BrewChief's Victory Round Table discussion this Wednesday, as if I couldn't be more excited. In closing, I can't think of a more appropriate homage than the Star Wars Victory March. Enjoy.

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St. Victorious by Victory Brewing Co.
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