Described on its bright blue bomber-bottle label as “a hoppy bock,” Über Düber is a funky seasonal beer from Bauhaus Brew Labs. It’s the second of two winter seasonals from the German-inspired brewery, the first being Jingle Fever, which was released in late 2014. Bock beers are lightly hopped lagers with strong malt bills, but Über Düber packs a heavier wallop. As a dopplebock, it has a 7 percent ABV, twice the alcohol content of a Bock; you can taste the alcohol, but it doesn’t pop you in the jaw. The beer would pair nicely with a pork roast, which would bring some of the more latent smoked notes to the forefront and restore some balance to the brew.
Dark and heartwarming, the Über Düber tastes like a classic winter beer. It is malty and roasty, with hints of black currant and cherry. The fruit notes are a departure from the style and can be attributed to the yeast used, which gives it its funky flavor. Although bocks are traditionally brewed with lager yeast (the yeast used in the Bauhaus Schwarzbier Stargrazer and Wonderstuff Pilsner), Über Düber is brewed with an ale yeast instead. The more versatile ale yeast accents the citrus hop notes and allows for a greater breadth of expression in the almost-barnyard nose.
While it definitely could have gone a step further and been even bigger, with a higher ABV (still within range of the style) and funkier to the point of being sour, the Über Düber pushes all the German Reinheitsgebot-minded boundaries without offending. Lightly carbonated, it has good head retention and a thick mouthfeel. The first glass is surprisingly hoppy and fruity, while the second offers a nuttier, more robust experience reminiscent of Summit’s Frost Line Rye, re-released earlier this month.
Über Düber will debut at the Beer Dabbler Winter Carnival on January 24 and will be available in liquor stores and select bars and restaurants the week of January 26.
Über Düber by Bauhaus
7 percent ABV
Sold in 22 oz. bottles