doppelbock style was one that took me a long time to grow accustomed
to, but now that I “get” the style I really enjoy it and the best
examples are a nice treat. Paulaner Salvator was one of the first
authentic German examples of the style I ever had. I thought it was good
when I first tried it, but six years later I realize it’s more than
just good - it’s a classic.
I poured a 500ml bottle into a mug. It had a best before date of 5/2015 and cost $2.79 ($0.17 per ounce).
Appearance: Hazy/foggy appearance. Rusty burgundy hue. Pours to a
one-finger, tan, soapy head which mostly dissipates and leaves no
Smell: Strong rich malty aroma with plenty of confectionery notes. A
hint of alcohol and slight cider-like character (probably an old
Taste: If there’s any style known for being a “malt bomb,” Paulaner
Salvator is it. From the first impression of the first sip it’s all
malt-dominate. Strong, sweet, delicious flavors of toffee and caramel
right away with milder notes of toast and milk chocolate towards the
back. Bitterness is dry and perhaps a tad spicy (most likely Noble hops
are used in this brew). I detect a hint of mulled cider-like character
towards the finish. This might be due to the bottle being old or it
might just be natural melanoidins. Alcohol gives the palette some
intensity, but adds little as far as flavor or distraction. Overall, a
very tasty beer that would be fantastic when fresh.
Drinkability: At 7.9% ABV, Paulaner Salvator is a big beer to be sure.
The mouthfeel is surprisingly comfortable, though. Soft in weight and
smooth in texture with intense flavor that’s not abrasive. There is
significant warmth from the alcohol, but this is by no means an obese or
obtuse brew. A liquid meal in and of itself, though it would pair with
Easter dinner for sure.