By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: December 6th, 2012
It’s no secret that all of us here at the brewery love lager. And we thought – what better way to celebrate National Lager Day on December 10th than with the brew that gave Jim his start back in 1984, surrounded by friends. So on Monday, we encourage you to raise a pint with us as we salute our favorite family of beer – lager!
For those of you not familiar with this style, lager is a type of beer that encompasses a wide variety of styles ranging from light pilsners to rauchbiers to darker bocks. So what links them together? Lagers are fermented and conditioned for longer aging times than ales at lower temperatures which yields clean flavors and allows the malt and hops in the beer to shine. Our Samuel Adams Boston Lager is brewed with two-row malted barley to give the beer its body and flavors ranging from slightly sweet to roasted, and Bavarian Noble hops which impart floral, piney and citrus notes. To take our brew a step forward we age Boston Lager longer to maximize and enhance the complex flavor combinations.
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By: Jennifer Glanville
| Published: November 28th, 2012
Most of us here at the brewery know what a great pairing beer and chocolate can be (as we’ve alluded to before), but we thought it would come as a surprise to others who might think of wine as THE traditional pairing. So to prove our point, we came together with our friends at TCHO (pronounced “choh”) to design the Samuel Adams Beer Lover’s Chocolate Box, a gift box that pairs a premium chocolate style with brews from our Winter Classics Variety Pack. (Who wouldn’t want to find this combo in their stocking?)
Truly the best of both worlds.
TCHO is an artisanal craft chocolate maker in San Francisco. They take their chocolate as seriously as we take our beer, so we jumped at the chance to work with them. TCHO’s Chief Chocolate Maker Brad Kintzer and I sat down to taste, discuss and thoughtfully pair our beers with their wide variety of chocolates.
Comparing both of our respective crafts, Brad and I were amazed by the similarities in the chocolate making process and the brewing process and how complementary the resulting flavors can be. Many of the flavors found in cocoa and chocolate can also be found in beer, and you can really taste the synergy when they are paired together. For example, my favorite pairing (if I had to pick) was probably our Samuel Adams White Christmas with TCHO’s PureNotes™ Dark “Fruity” – I was surprised by how nicely the berry notes of the chocolate complemented the citrus and wheat characters of the ale.
As many of you know, this is not the first time we’ve brought our crafts together and used the incredible flavors of chocolate and beer to enhance each other. Each holiday season we brew Samuel Adams Chocolate Bock, a smooth, rich and dark beer that is part of our Winter Classics Variety Pack, with a blend of cocoa nibs, including Ecuador nibs from TCHO, to impart complex aromas and flavors.
So what makes the pairing of chocolate and beer so good? For us, it’s the malty sweetness and rich flavors of craft beer that enhance and enrich the flavors of rich premium chocolate. The carbonation of the beer also cleanses our palate from the heavy finish of the chocolate. So after each sip our palate is ready for another taste of sweet chocolate.
We think this assortment of specialty chocolates will prove to any foodie that beer and chocolate are the perfect combination. Want to try it for yourself or grab a gift for your favorite craft beer lover? The Samuel Adams Beer Lover’s Chocolate Box is available by visiting TCHO online with limited quantities also available at the Samuel Adams Boston Brewery gift shop. Our Winter Classics Variety Pack is available through December and can be found by visiting our Find a Sam page.
The Samuel Adams Beer Lover’s Chocolate Box includes 12 8g chocolates, and the first 150 orders will also include two Samuel Adams Perfect Pint Glasses.
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: November 5th, 2012
Like any true craftsman, brewers never stop working at perfecting their craft. No matter how delicious a particular beer might be, a brewer will take each sip with the thought of “what could I do to make this brew even better?”
This brings us to our latest release of Latitude 48 IPA.
In furthering our experimental brewing process around India Pale Ale style, we’ve been experimenting with different hop styles over the past year and have decided to add Mosaic hops to the hop line-up in our Latitude 48 IPA. This newer style, from the Yakima, WA growing region, provided our brewers a floral and tropical fruit character and a fresh, unique flavor that we felt would be well received from Sam drinkers with a love for hop-forward brews.
Jim first encountered this unique hop style during one of his trips to the west coast back in the mid-2000’s and picked-out thirty pounds of the variety. He first used Mosaic hops in the creation of our limited-edition beer, SAVOR Flowers, which was brewed in collaboration with Sam Calagione and our friends at Dogfish Head for the SAVOR Festival back in June of 2011. If you were at SAVOR or had a chance to try this one-time brew can attest to the great floral notes that Mosaic hops provides in a beer.
Our 2013 batch of Latitude 48 IPA is driven by the new Mosaic hop variety, which adds a fresh, unique flavor to this already-complex brew. Latitude 48 will stay true to its name, showcasing only hops from 48th latitude along the “hop belt” of the Northern Hemisphere which includes: Bavarian Hallertau Mittelfrueh Noble hops for a citrus and spicy note, UK east Kent Goldings hops for an earthy and woody character, and US Simcoe and Zeus hops for piney, grapefruit flavors. An upfront sweetness will also will be present within Latitude 48 along with notes of honey and caramel from the malt, which nicely complement the complex hop character.
The 2013 release of Samuel Adams Latitude 48 IPA will roll out in February and will be available in 6-packs and 12-packs nationwide.
By: Jennifer Glanville
| Published: August 6th, 2012
Before you get the wrong idea, this post is not a fluff piece pandering to bloggers in hopes of securing a few positive pieces for Sam Adams. Variety is the spice of life and we know people have a wide variety of opinions on many of our beers and craft beer in general. The community of beer bloggers helps keep the beer industry healthy and dynamic. While we’re always happy to read a positive review, we respect the not so nice reviews and the downright negative ones as well. Honest feedback is the only way to get better at one’s craft and brewers are no different. We take feedback and review however we can get it… beer forums, blog posts and even check-in applications such as Pintley and Untappd. Of course the feedback we receive in a face to face conversation is always the best as it gives us a chance to really dive into the positives (or negatives) of a person’s thoughts of a beer we’ve created.
This brings me to the Beer Bloggers Conference I attended in Indianapolis a few weeks ago. Talk about a passionate group of people who love beer! While my visit was short due to family obligations back in Boston, I had a great time chatting with many of the bloggers in attendance. I loved feeding off their energy as we discussed their favorite beer style, the first Sam Adams they’d ever had, and what homebrew might have been aging back home. I was asked the tough questions too, like if we were ever going to can our beer (Jim’s said that day will come someday, I just don’t know when) and when I expected Jim to “retire” (I can’t envision that day, let alone speculate on when it would happen!)
One of my biggest takeaways from chatting with different bloggers was that drinkers today are more engaged than they were ten years ago when I started. As brewers have become more experimental in what they brew, the drinker has embraced the variety that craft brewing can provide. While I won’t pretend to be the second coming of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, I’d guess the rise of social media has helped seed the growth in engagement. And as the U.S. craft beer industry continues to rise, we’ll likely see the engagement and discussion for craft beer rise as well!
I also enjoyed (as I have many times before) listening to Garrett Oliver’s, brewmaster from Brooklyn Brewery, key note address before we headed off to dinner. Garret spoke about the changes he had seen over the years being in the industry and how brewers are like artists – we all listen to the feedback but at the end of the day we create the masterpieces we want to create. I’ll raise a glass to that! While there is always a time and place to come together and collaborate on a great beer, I agree that at the end of the day you have to brew the styles and use the ingredients you’re passionate about.
Enough blogging… time to get back to the brewery! Thank you to everyone who came up to say hello and introduce yourself. Maybe one day the conference will come to Boston so we can have you stop by the brewery for a beer!