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If it’s the bitterness in chocolate that attracts you to it – or simply the taste of chocolate — you will love Lake of Bays’ Midnight Bock, from its one-off Wild North series.

This comparatively low-alcohol bock (5.5 per cent) is a chocolate lover’s dream — so much so, that I could hardly stop nosing it.

Really smells like chocolate, right? Sure, but I’d better be certain.

Inhale, just once more.

Or maybe twice. No need to hurry. Have another hit.

And that’s even before the first sip! Superb.

Taste-wise, Midnight Bock starts with a cool sweetness, followed by a chocolate bitterness that grows from mild to medium-strong. It lingers much longer than I expected. And it all contributes to a distinct, full taste that I’m attributing to in part to what the company mysteriously calls “specialty malt.” Probably molasses has something to do with it, too.

And while there’s no mistaking this for an entry-level bock, the overwhelming chocolate presence and moderate alcohol content will make it accessible to a wide range of beer lovers.

Lake Of Bays reminds us that bock was originally brewed to sustain fasting monks through self-imposed, intense periods of no food. Who knows when we might be faced with that perilous situation again? Better stock up.

What the brewery says:

Get lost in the midnight dark chocolate and ruby toned colours, capped with a soft tan foam. Pairs perfectly with gentler cheeses such as provolone or mozzarella, seared or cured antipasto meats, and chocolate-covered almonds Brewed with malted wheat, specialty malt, and molasses, this smooth-sipping, full-bodied treat will carry you through a long winter’s night.