HOME > Chowhound > Beer >


Sam Adams Triple Bock and Thomas Hardy's Ale

I was a HUGE fan of SA Triple Bock and TH Ale back in the 90s but as far as I know neither are available anymore. So what is the CLOSEST ones I can try that are similar in taste and consistency?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. hello, I enjoy trying different artisan brews in the style/method of the Hardy, that is to say, bottle conditioned ales with live yeast. It usually takes reading the labels closely, and many of them have the wired-down cork enclosure like a sparkling wine. It's been so lone since I've had a Hardy that I can't name something similar. cheers

    1 Reply
    1. re: moto

      I have always preferred American barley wines such as Sierra Nevada Bigfoot. Many of these are bottle-conditioned. However, many of these are markedly hoppier than the British varieties.

    2. I think you can get triple bock on the Sam Adams site.

      Try Sam Adams Utopias, if you can find/afford it!

      1. It's been some time since I had a Thomas Hardy but I remember it as malty. I find a Scaldis to be a malty, high gravity ale of superior quality. You might also enjoy Samichlaus or Belzebuth or EKU 28.

        1. Thomas Hardy's Ale went out of production for several years due to new ownership of the Eldridge Pope brewery. Two or three years ago the US importer secured rights to the brand and it has been produced at O'Hanlon's since then. More info here: http://www.mythbirdbeer.com/thomashar...

          1. Gale's Prize Old Ale is a fanatstic barleywine, very similar to Thomas Hardy, needs at least ten years to mature in my opinion. Bigfoot, Rogue's Old Crustacean, and Brooklyn's Monster Ale are all great too.

            2 Replies
              1. re: Jim Dorsch

                What terrible news! Thanks for letting me know, I'll stock up on a few bottles and try to ration them out to last the rest of my life.

            1. Where are you located? If you are on the west coast try to get some Bridgeport Old Knucklehead. It's been a few years since I've had one (and I will disclose that one of my friends worked there throughout the 90's), but I always enjoyed that one as much as the Hardy of old.

              If you can't get it then try the Anchor Old Foghorn. Both beers are a little hoppier than the Hardy's if I remember correctly, but not nearly as hoppy as the other American Barleywines like Old Crustacean or Bigfoot. Also- and I hope my memory isn't failing me here again- I believe that maple sugar was added to the SA Triple Bock, and the Old Foghorn definitely has that going for it.

              3 Replies
              1. re: TongoRad

                JW Lee's Harvest Ale is very good. They also did runs with different barrel finishes a couple of years ago (Laphroaig, port, sherry, calvados).

                Gale's gets good reviews, but the only times I've had it, it was completely flat. I can drink the homebrewed barleywine I made in the late 90's, if I want a flat one ;-)

                1. re: ted

                  I just tried one of the JW Lees barrel-finished Ales and it was as close as I have found so far to what I am looking for. Granted, it was $8 for one bottle...so I will be savoring it over the next week..

                  Thanks all!

                2. re: TongoRad

                  IMO, any of these West Coast Barleywines is preferable to SATB. SATB was just too cloying for its own good, similar to Samiclaus (the current iteration).

                3. wow, what timing. just this weekend i was moving some stuff in my basement and i found a 1994 bottle of sam adams triple bock. my question - is it still drinkable?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: xman887

                    What a find. I'd drink it for sure.

                  2. While not a Triple Bock, you ought to try Bells 3rd Coast Old Ale. It's mainly available in the midwest and it is worth a detour. Though, it's kinda hot to drink any of these beers today. At least in NYC.

                    1. There is lots of info on Thomas Hardy's Ale at:


                      Some bottles for sale as well last time I looked.

                      1. fyi, i just saw the triple bock on bevmo's website

                        1. hello, Hi-Time in Costa Mesa (Orange County, CA) had a good stock of T.Hardy when I visited them last month, in a very big walk-in that had all sorts of interesting brews. cheers