Beer 151/365 – New Glarus Spotted Cow

Style: Cream Ale

ABV: 5.1%

Purchased at: Given to me by Chris

What makes this beer different: You can tell this beer was brewed with corn (like many “light” lagers)

Will I be drinking this again: If it was more accessible it would be a good tailgating beer

Grade: B

4/8/2010: Thanks to Chris for bringing this with him to the AC Beer show. I am always down to try some New Glarus. I wonder why their distribution is so limited? The demand is out there so what the heck?! Oh and why is this style called a cream ale? Doesn’t make much sense to me. Does anyone know?

I guess my nose buds are getting better at detecting certain ingredients because I could actually smell corn in this beer. After taking my own notes I later found out that corn is one of the major ingredients in this beer. The taste reminds me of a “good” Miller lite. You get that “cheapish” flavor you get with American Light Lagers, but you can tell some high quality ingredients were used in conjunction with the corn (pale malts?). By craft beer standards this is a bit below average, but I would take a case of Spotted Cow’s 100 times over a case of Miller/Bud/Coors Light.

Picture of the day: Hooray for Depressing Comic Week!

Published in: on April 8, 2010 at 9:59 am  Comments (4)  
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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. The way I understand it, New Glarus really likes the small distribution to focus on making really good beers and not worrying about distribution problems. They distribute to Wisconsin only, they did Illinois too a few years ago but ended it. I’ll have to find more on that sometime.

    As for Spotted Cow, it’s the most similar beer to BMC’s they make. It’s the bread and butter for them to get BMC and Craft fans to drink so they have the cash flow to make more niche beer. At this point, you’d think the following they have would be enough but it is a good way to protect yourself as a craft brewer, keep the mass-appeal beer out there to pay for the niche beer. Sometimes here in Wisconsin, Spotted Cow is the only craft beer on tap and I am glad it’s there; it’s also in most bars in the state thankfully.

    • Nice I can respect that. Nothing wrong with just wanting to make good beer for the immediate area. Its a shame though because I am sure they would have no problem selling beer all over the US

  2. Greeting from Wisconsin. You can google many interviews with Dan Carey where he talks about wanting to remain a small, local brewery. He and wife Deb are not out to conquor the beer market.

    As for the corn issue, I wouldn’t say that “corn is one of the major ingredients.” Those of us who homebrew know that the majority of ingredients in beer are the base malts. And something like corn would be a small percentage of the ingredients. Check the bottle too; it says right on there, “Brewed with flaked barley and the finest Wisconsin malts. We even give a nod to our farmers with a little hint of corn.”

    But you are correct that Spotted Cow is an easy-drinking tailgate beer.


    • Ahh okay from a few things I read on BA it sounded like corn was a pretty big chunk of the mash. Thanks for the info!

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