Bocks are as rare as hen’s teeth in Ontario, especially so bocks with cool names that are clever riffs on old songs, so the arrival of the new Big Rig seasonal release, Bock Me Gently*, is especially welcome. Even more so because, as it turns out, it’s a pretty damn terrific bock.
It pours a bright and beautiful burgundy colour with an off-white and lasting foam and an aroma that is all dry malt, as a bock should be, with toffee notes combining with lightly toasted grain and a whiff of brandy-ish alcohol. The start carries a light sweetness with notes of beer nut – really! – leading to an off-dry body that is as soft and smooth as it is flavourful and warming, with sweet toffee mixing with more drying than bittering hop, a hint of apple, walnut and some very subtle spicy notes, especially cinnamon and nutmeg. The finish is dry, mildly bitter and wonderfully boozy, making this a most impressive bock, every bit the equal of or, in some cases, superior to well-known German versions.
If you live in Ontario or the west of Quebec and can get your hands on this, you should. It will help along your Christmas cheer most wonderfully.
* For those not in on the joke, the reference is to a 1974d Andy Kim song called Rock Me Gently.