Cheers to Small Business Saturday!

BTADSamuel Adams is celebrating 31 years of brewing, and despite our success, our Founder and Brewer Jim Koch hasn’t forgotten how hard it is to start and run a successful small business. That’s why in 2008, Jim created our company’s philanthropy program, Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream.

Brewing the American Dream provides craft food, beverage, and brewing business owners with the two essential ingredients for success and that Jim didn’t have when he started brewing Samuel Adams Boston Lager in his kitchen: financing and real-world business advice.

This Saturday, November 28th is Small Business Saturday and and we encourage you to  join us in in stepping out to shop local and support small food and beverage entrepreneurs across the country. Read More

Everything You Need to Know about 2015 Batch of Samuel Adams Utopias

Utopias_1_Social MediaFor beer fanatics, Samuel Adams Utopias has become one of the most sought-after beers on earth. Only the ninth batch brewed since the first release in 2002, this year’s Utopias, like previous vintages, is a beer unlike any other. Sam Adams Utopias is the “lunatic fringe” of craft beer – it’s radical and pushes the limits – challenging the idea of what a beer can be.

What does it taste like?

Utopias is meant to be savored like a fine cognac or port. This rich, uncarbonated beer is known for its extraordinary flavor profile and is a blend of previous vintages aged in a variety of barrels.  Wood, toffee, cocoa, raisin and maple aromas contribute to the distinctive flavor of Utopias, which ranges from notes of molasses, earthy wood, dates, and light smoke to nuts and toffee.

With each new batch of Utopias our brewers push for a complex flavor profile, and during this process have created brews with alcohol levels reaching over 30% ABV; this year’s beer is 28% ABV and is best enjoyed as a two ounce pour in a snifter glass at room temperature.  We often blend down because the goal is to create complex flavors, not an extreme alcohol percentage. Read More

A Limited Release Collaboration Beer: Time Hop Porter

ChuckAlekWe are excited to announce the release of Samuel Adams Time Hop Porter™, a limited-edition hopped porter brewed in collaboration with San Diego based brewery, ChuckAlek Independent Brewers!

Husband and wife team at ChuckAlek, Grant Fraley and Marta Jankowski, are committed to their mission of making “Old School Beers for New School Palates.”  ChuckAlek’s brewery is based just outside of San Diego and they recently announced their official plans to open a second location in San Diego to be called, ChuckAlek Biergarten!

It has truly been an awesome year for Grant and Marta as they were also selected as the recipients of the Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream Brewing and Business Experienceship. As part of the program, the ChuckAlek team came to our Boston Brewery in May to receive coaching from the our Brewery team and collaborate with us on a beer – Time Hop Porter.

“We learned so much about business planning and moving our brewery forward in the few days we had with the Sam Adams team,” Marta said about her time spent in Boston. “The advice and mentoring is already having a positive impact on our business as we look toward opening our next tasting room. Our favorite part about the whole experience was developing the recipe for Time Hop Porter and brewing the collaboration beer at the Boston Brewery.” Read More

Infographic: The Marriage of IPA’s and Buffalo Wings

To celebrate IPA Day today, our brewers enlisted the help of the Culinary Institute of America to prove once and for all what the connection between the hop bitterness in India Pale Ale’s and the heat found in spicy foods.

The scientific experiment involved two key ingredients – a flight of Samuel Adams Rebel IPA beers and Buffalo style chicken wings.

Checkout our findings below and read about Director of Brewery Program Jennifer Glanville’s trip to the CIA here.


IPA Day_Infographic_2015

Fire Up #IPADay with a Spicy Pairing!

Jennifer and the CIAAs a brewer and self-proclaimed foodie, one of my favorite things to do is pair our beers with food and I know I’m not alone. In fact, many brewers have a theory about pairing IPAs with food: the bitterness in hops affects the heat in spicy food.

To celebrate IPA Day (Thursday, August 6), we put this theory to the test and I joined the awesome culinary professionals at The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, N.Y. to “study” this theory. My excitement level was off the charts to conduct an official sensory experiment with food experts.  If tests at school had been this fun, I’d be back in a heartbeat!

How We Did It: The Taste Panel & Sample Ballot

At the CIA, we tested this theory using an easy method and delicious materials. We tasted the three West Coast-style IPAs in our Rebel family – Rebel IPA, Rebel Rider Session IPA, and Rebel Rouser Double IPA – alongside a single recipe of Buffalo wings. I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect. Read More

Samuel Adams and Duke’s Raise a Pint to Father’s Day

Dukes_GingerCitrus_SAcanHere at the Boston Brewery, we’re getting ready to toast dads all across the country on Father’s Day. Of course, we’ll have a Boston Lager in hand, but this year our brewers teamed up with the meat experts at Duke’s Small Batch Smoked Meats to raise the bar for the ultimate Father’s Day DIY: Samuel Adams Boston Lager-infused beef jerky.

Perfect for creating and enjoying with dad on his special day, Boston Lager-infused jerky is both easy to make and delicious, and while you’re marinating the thinly sliced beef in beer and spices, you’ll have plenty of time to catch up with dad over a Boston Lager.

For the recipe below,  Boston Lager Fresh Ginger & Citrus jerky, the citrus flavors in the marinade and meat rub are enhanced by the citrus character from the Noble hops in Boston Lager. The malt character from the Boston Lager also imparts an underlying flavor that perfectly complements the flavors of the meat. The end result is a deliciously complex jerky with lingering spiciness. Read More

Elevate Your Summer Beer-B-Q with Summer Ale Soaked Wood Chips & Recipes

What’s better than combining two of America’s favorite summer traditions – grilling and craft beer?

As a brewer and self-proclaimed foodie, I’m always trying new ways to incorporate beer in my recipes. With a summer of grilling and enjoying refreshing Summer Ale ahead of us, we worked with grillmaster Kevin Kolman from Weber Grills® to develop a fun DIY activity for craft beer-loving and backyard BBQ pit masters alike: Samuel Adams Summer ale-soaked wood chips and beer infused recipes.

Soaking wood chips in Samuel Adams beer adds a new element to smoking on the grill. When placed on the hot coals of a charcoal grill or in a smoker tray on a gas grill, Weber Applewood Chips soaked in Samuel Adams Summer Ale infuse flavors into grilled food. The unique flavors  imparted by this method include a slightly sweet and citrusy note imparted by the lemon peel in Summer Ale along with a subtle peppery flavor from Grains of Paradise used as a spice in the brew.

If you’re firing your grill this this summer, wow friends and family with our easy method for wood chips soaked in Summer Ale and check out this flavorful recipe for Summer Ale salmon filets. Read More

For the Love of (Learning About) Beer

We’re proud of an important benchmark we recently hit at Samuel Adams. This milestone isn’t directly tied to brewing, but it’s certainly beer related. We’re excited to share that 16 members of our Samuel Adams team were recently named Certified Cicerones® after passing a rigorous day-long exam. That puts us at over 100 employees that have passed, with 115 in total!

If you aren’t familiar with the Cicerone Certification Program, it is a program that seeks to ensure that beer drinkers receive the best quality beer possible by designating experts in the field who are well versed in five focus areas:

  • Beer Storage, Sales and Service
  • Beer Styles and Culture
  • Beer Tasting and Flavors
  • Brewing Ingredients and Processes
  • Pairing Beer with Food

Much like a sommelier is an expert in wine, Certified Cicerones® and Master Cicerones® are experts in beer who have to pass written and sampling exams to be labeled with this distinction.

Studying isn’t anything new for us though… training has been engrained in our culture from the earliest days of the brewery. Jim believes that the more you know and understand about beer, the more you’ll appreciate craft beer. This passion for beer is why we have robust beer and brewing training programs for our employees (yes – even for the folks in finance and IT) including specific Cicerone Certification Program trainings.

All new employees at Boston Beer, no matter what their role is, start their careers off with a week-long intensive orientation program focused on everything from beer ingredients, the brewing process, beer styles, identifying “off favors” in beer and the reasons why, and even pairing foods with different Samuel Adams beer styles. Need help setting up your home kegerator? Chances are our Account Payable manager in Finance can help you.

Congratulations to our newest batch of Certified Cicerones® and cheers to being passionate (and knowledgeable) about beer! More than 600 of our employees have passed the Cicerone Level 1 Beer Server Exam, so we look forward to adding more Certified Cicerones® in the coming years.

Interested in learning more about the Certified Cicerone® program? Click here to learn more and get started.


A Letter from Jim: It’s LongShot Season!

LongShot 2015I’m pleased to announce that the 2015 LongShot American Homebrew Contest, celebrating its 19th year, is now open! For those not familiar with our LongShot contest, this is a special competition we like to host here at Samuel Adams that looks to find and recognize some of the best homebrewers in the country. Each year we choose two amateur homebrewers and one Samuel Adams employee winner to have their beer brewed and distributed nationally. This year we’re introducing a new twist to the competition – we will select one winner from east of the Mississippi River and one from the west, to join the Samuel Adams employee winner in the final 6-pack.

Homebrewing is a big piece of the DNA that makes up our Samuel Adams team. Over 30 years ago I was just another homebrewer in my kitchen, constantly sanitizing equipment and tinkering with ingredients as I worked on my craft. After several batches made their way to the sink drain (happens to the best of us homebrewers), the first batch of our Samuel Adams Boston Lager was born in my kitchen and the rest is history. To this day much of our research and development for new brews are first created on brew systems that are not much different from what you’ll see in an avid homebrewer’s garage or basement.  And I still look forward to each issue of Zymurgy. Read More

Cooking with Sam: Samuel Adams Brined Corned Beef and Samuel Adams Beer-Braised Red Cabbage

With St. Patrick’s Day coming up, it is the perfect time to celebrate with a traditional Irish dish! You don’t have to be Irish to appreciate a great corned beef.  And to make the ultimate corned beef, using Samuel Adams Boston Lager or Irish Red as a base for this classic brine will only make everything better.

Try our recipe for Samuel Adams Brined Corned Beef and Samuel Adams Beer-Braised Red Cabbage:

corned beef

Samuel Adams Brined Corned Beef
Serves 4-6

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#CheersToYou262: Boston 26.2 Brew Returns

We’ve been experiencing (nearly) record snowfall here in Boston this winter, and we’re all ready for signs of spring. One of the momentous occasions that lets us know spring has finally arrived is the Boston Marathon, which has been celebrated on Patriot’s Day for more than 100 years.

This is especially meaningful for me because I had the official release of my first batch of Samuel Adams Boston Lager to the public on Patriots Day in 1985.  About half of our first 25 bars were within three blocks of the finish line.  So, the Marathon’s finish line was my starting line.

This is our fourth year as a proud sponsor of the Boston Marathon, and for the fourth year in a row we are brewing a commemorative beer for the race – Boston 26.2 Brew – to toast the runners and spectators.


Yesterday, we tapped the very first keg of Boston 26.2 Brew at Back Bay Social Club, a bar that shares an address with the race course. I was joined by Christopher Laudani, the bartender who inspired the city (and a lot of folks on the Internet) when he shoveled the Boston Marathon finish line during a blizzard on January 27th. We were also joined by Tom Grilk, Executive Director of The Boston Athletic Association. After seeing Chris’ dedication and passion, we knew we wanted him to help us celebrate the return of this very special beer.

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Play Boston Bingo to Support Small Businesses

As you may have noticed, we’ve gotten A LOT of snow here in Boston over the past month. While the snow is a big pain for us as we shovel out our sidewalks and driveways and navigate narrow, snow-filled streets, one community that has been really negatively impacted by this weather is a community we are very passionate about: small business owners.

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and his Office of Economic Development share our love for our hometown and have developed a fun game for all of us in the Boston area to support local businesses: Boston Bingo!

Photo via Mike Bednarsky, West Roxbury Patch

Mayor Martin Walsh, Carlene O’Garro of Delectable Desires, and Jim Koch Photo via Mike Bednarsky, West Roxbury Patch

All you need to do to participate is download this official Bingo card, visit your favorite corresponding local businesses between now and March 15th, and enter electronically or in person (instructions for how to enter here). People who participate have the chance to win great prizes such as coffee with the Mayor, Bruins tickets, and more! Most importantly, you’ll get to support some really great small businesses in the area.

Looking for ideas of great small businesses to check out in the Boston area? We got you covered! Through our Brewing the American Dream program, we work with a lot of awesome small businesses in the food and beverage industries all throughout Boston by providing them with access to small business loans, and small business coaching and mentoring.

Here are some suggestions of places where you can check off squares on your Boston Bingo card:

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Q&A with Carlene O’Garro, Owner of Delectable Desires

The Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream program began in 2008.  Our very first loan recipient was Carlene O’Garro, owner of Delectable Desires Pastries. Specializing in custom cakes and French pastries, Carlene has had a lifelong love of creating delicious (and beautiful) pastries. Up until this point, Carlene has been running her business out of her home and baking in the Crop Circle Kitchen Incubator in Jamaica Plain – coincidentally across from the Samuel Adams Brewery.   To celebrate the grand opening of her brick and mortar shop in West Roxbury, MA today, we caught up with her about the challenges and joys of being a small business owner in the food and beverage industry and how the Brewing the American Dream Program has been with her every step of the way.

Delectable Desires

Q: How did your passion for pastries begin?

A: It began when I was a little kid; I baked in the kitchen with my mom on Sundays. When I was about four, my parents bought me an Easy Bake oven so I could bake on my own instead of using the real oven. From that moment, I was hooked! I find baking to be so relaxing, it just comes naturally to me. Cakes are my main passion – I love creating desserts that look fake! When people take a step back and say “is that really a cake?” that is my favorite reaction.

Q: What ultimately made you decide to turn your passion into a business?

A: I didn’t want to go through life working in a 9-5 job, waiting on a promotion, and waiting on someone else to say I was good enough to get the corner office. I wanted to do my own thing and I knew that I could work hard doing something that I love and make it happen.

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Celebrate Small Businesses and Game Day with Boston Lager Cupcakes

We’re sad to see another season of football come to an end, but we’re really excited to enjoy the big game. While it is a big weekend for our hometown team, it’s also a big weekend for Carlene O’Garro, our very first Brewing the American Dream loan recipient and owner of local bakery and cafe Delectable Desires.

Please join us at 1PM on Friday, January 30th for a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the grand opening of her brick and mortar shop located at 1755 Centre Street West Roxbury, MA with some very special guests – our founder and brewer Jim Koch, and Mayor Marty Walsh. Be one of the first 100 people to arrive and you’ll receive a Samuel Adams Boston Lager Cupcake on the house!

Can’t make it to the event? Here’s how you can make them at home:

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Caputo Brother’s Creamery: A Q&A with the 2014 Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream Pitch Room Competition Winners

While on their honeymoon, David and Rynn Caputo made a big decision; they would quit their Fortune 500-company jobs and enroll in culinary school in Calabria, Italy – they haven’t looked back since! Based in Spring Grove, PA, Caputo Brothers Creamery (named for their two young sons) makes the country’s only fermented cheese curds that can be stretched into fresh mozzarella cheeses, providing a high quality cheese product for cheese lovers and restaurants around the country.

The Caputos competed in (and won) our 2014  Brewing the American Dream Pitch Room Competition, which earned them a $10,000 business grant and extended business coaching and mentoring from our team. We had a chance to chat with Rynn about their cheese and how Brewing the American Dream is helping their growing business.

caputo bros

Q: How did you and your husband get into cheese making?

A: Cheese making really found us. We had gone to culinary school in Italy and as part of our program, we spent time making cheese. At that point we weren’t like, “oh yeah this is what we’re going to do” – but basically, when we came back to the states, we couldn’t find the type of mozzarella that we had in Italy.  We started out of pure necessity – to have it at home for ourselves. We got a great response from our friends, so we started researching artisan cheese making and worked with master cheese makers in Italy to bring it to the states.

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