Bockbiers come in many styles which include the traditional
dark known as Dunkelsbock, a Hellesbock which is a pale beer; Maibock, May bock; Weizenbock,
wheat bock; and Doppelbock or double bock which
is a completely different beer.
All Bockbiers fall under
the Reinheitsgebot, the German purity law established
in 1516 by Dukes Willhelm IV and Ludwig X of Bavaria.
This established that beer may be made of only water,
malt and hops. Little was known of yeast back then so
it was not included in the regulations.
Bockbiers generally have
a malty character with a caramel and roasted flavor
that finishes slightly sweet. Hellesbocks are light
in color with a dry finish, almost like a pilsner Maibocks
are somewhat darker and have a definite hops taste.
Although it is a style on its own, Weizenbock is basically
a wheat beer brewed to the strength of a Bockbier.
Doppelbock is a product
of the Protestant Reformation in Europe. At that time,
Catholic monks established monasteries in southern Germany
where they brewed strong beers to carry them through
the long fasting periods of Lent and Advent. The brew
was not fermented as long as other beers so it had a
slightly sweet finish.
The laws of the Munich
Brewer's Guild strictly state that new yeast and filtering
are required for each brewing of Bockbier which should
put to rest the notion that bockbiers are created from
the dregs or leftovers of the brewing process.
Bockbier is a traditional
Bavarian beer that is dark in color and relatively high
in alcohol content (as intoxicating carbonated beverages
go). Although the Bockbier season varies from country
to country, it’s available for a limited time
in any region--hence the need for a commemorative celebration.
includes lively German music by the Sacramento Turner
Harmonie, Bavarian folk dancing, German food, coffee
cake and Bockbier flowing like the Sacramento River.