By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: October 11th, 2013
Amidst the excitement of the Great American Beer Festival, earlier today we gathered at Marlowe’s in Denver to announce the three beers that were crowned the 2013 Samuel Adams LongShot American Homebrew Contest winners.
Jim was on hand for the announcement and recognized the winners as a few of the most talented homebrewers in the country. The level of enthusiasm for homebrewing and brewing craft beer is at an all time high in America. One indicator is that the craft beer landscape has exploded into more than 2,500 craft breweries across the country, compared to the 83 that existed during the 1980s when Jim first got his start. The morning was filled with great discussion around regional homebrew clubs, what beers are on-tap for future homebrews, and we even heard a few attendees talking about a future collaboration beer in the future! That kind of creativity and collaboration is what craft beer is all about.
So without further hesitation, the 2013 LongShot winners are:
A big, malty Stout with notes of chocolate and coffee, Russ Brunner’s American Stout carries a velvety finish with notes of roasted cocoa. The LongShot judges were drawn to the richness of this stout and balanced taste, with hints of citrus and pine from the American hops adding a subtle bitterness. Russ shared that while he had been homebrewing for three years, this Stout was the first recipe he created on his own.
Perhaps the most unique style, Cesar Marron’s Grätzer (Grätzer was added to the 2013 Beer Style Guidelines earlier this year), is a light, Polish smoked wheat beer. This brew packs a punch of smoky sweet flavor from the heirloom smoked malt, and spicy and herbal notes from Saaz hops. Cesar says he drew inspiration for this unique recipe from a strong interest in the unusual, yet traditional, style.
Representing the Samuel Adams employees with a winning homebrew is Teresa Bury’s Pineapple India Pale Ale. This IPA is brewed with four different American hops that pack a punch of grapefruit character we’ve come to expect from these types of hops. However Teresa’s version provides mellow and complementary tropical fruit notes from the addition of real pineapples. We were interested to learn that Theresa had made it a personal challenge to brew a beer that carried a strong hop flavor but that was also balanced with her favorite fruit, pineapple. As she said, “I’ve been brewing beers to fit friends and family’s tastes for years, and I decided one day to brew one that fit my style.”
While we wait for these three brews to hit shelves next spring in the special LongShot variety 6-pack, we’ll be watching to see what these homebrewers brew next. Perhaps one of them could join the ranks of Bob Gordash (winner of the 1996 LongShot Homebrew Contest) and Don Oliver (winner of the 2006 Samuel Adams LongShot American Homebrew Contest) who have gone on to become professional brewers.
Congratulations to our three winners and to the more than 1,000 homebrewers who sent in entries! The passion for craft beer is stronger than ever because of the community of homebrewers who put so much time and effort into their craft, pushing the boundaries of better tasting beer.
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: June 17th, 2013
The beer has been brewed. The justice of the peace has been booked. And Jim is working on his best man toast. It’s time for Samuel Adams Brewlywed Ale.
Last summer we celebrated the tradition of brewing for weddings with Brewlywed Ale, a Belgian-style “bride ale” available one-day only at our Boston Brewery. And on June 26th, we’re inviting everyone back once again for the chance to get their hands on this year’s batch, available for purchase exclusively on this day at the brewery. We’ve brewed just 300 cases of this 750mL cork-caged specialty beer so if last year is any indication, people will be lining up early for their chance to purchase a bottle or a couple of cases.
Brewlywed Ale is a distinct, complex brew that’s perfect for celebrating. It offers layers of flavor including tropical, floral aromas of Stella and Summer hops with subtle hints of spice. The malt character and soft hop profile impart an upfront frutiness, followed by lingering notes of clove and honeysuckle from Belgian yeast.
We’ve noticed that drinkers across the country are starting to catch on to what brewers have known for centuries – beer is an essential component to a wedding celebration. In fact, the medieval word “ale” is rooted in the word “bridal,” which refers to a festive occasion where much ale is drunk in celebration. Beer was typically brewed by the brides-to-be. Our brewers at Samuel Adams have been keeping this brewing traditional alive; not only did Jim make a beer for his own wedding, but he also brewed the very first batch of Samuel Adams Noble Pils to celebrate his daughter’s wedding. Even Bob brewed a special beer for his wedding that eventually became our very own Samuel Adams Irish Red.
We’re also inviting beer-loving couples who have their marriage certificate in hand to tie the knot* or renew their vows at the brewery. We will have a Justice of the Peace available to perform ceremonies on the spot while string quartet Maestro Musicians serenades couples in the background. Need a Best Man (or Maid of Honor)? Jim will be on hand to witness your special day. Last year we hosted three weddings in the brewery’s hop garden!
If you’re headed to our brewery for the love of beer, here’s what you need to know:
WHERE: Samuel Adams Brewery | 30 Germania Street | Boston, MA 02130
WHEN: Wednesday, June 26, 2013; 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
- 7:00AM: Line up early. The first 50 people in line have the opportunity to purchase a bottle signed by our founder and brewer, Jim Koch. The first 20 people to arrive in bridal attire will be moved to the front of the line (guaranteeing one of those bottles).
- 9:00AM: Doors open and Brewlywed Ale is for sale! One 750ml Bottle of Brewlywed Ale will cost $14.99 and a case of 12 bottles will cost $179.88 (5 case maximum purchase).
- 1:00PM: Last call. Brewlywed doors close at 1PM. (If any beer remains, drinkers may purchase at the brewery gift shop until 4 p.m.)
Hope to see you and your loved ones there!
*A wedding license can be obtained in any Massachusetts City or Town Hall. There is a three (3) day waiting period after application before couples can pick up the license; it is valid for 60 days after it is picked up. A license must be present in order to be married. If you’re interested in potentially getting married or renewing your vows at the brewery, email email@example.com
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: March 6th, 2013
With one of the most revered and challenging races in the world quickly approaching, we’re happy to announce that we are brewing our Samuel Adams Boston 26.2 Brew again this year to celebrate the running of the 117th Boston Marathon®.
The beer is going to be available EXCLUSIVELY at official race-related events, as well as at the following bars and restaurants along the Marathon route and in the Greater-Boston Area (see up-to-date list below).
For those curious (or need a reminder from last year) of what Boston 26.2 Brew tastes like… it’s a Gose style which dates back to the year 700. Boston 26.2 Brew offers a lighter body with a slightly lower alcohol level (4.5% ABV) than many of our other styles – it turned out to be the perfect compliment for the record heat we experienced in 2012! In terms of flavor, drinkers enjoy light cereal notes from malted and unmalted wheat, rounded out by a spicy, peppery character with a soft mineral quality from a touch of salt. The result is an unusual and delicate brew that is full of flavors to discover… and worth crossing the finish line for.
Where Boston 26.2 Brew is being poured:
5 NAPKIN BURGER – 111 HUNTINGTON AVE, BOSTON MA
ANTHEM – 101 S MARKET ST, BOSTON MA
ATLANTIC BEER GARDEN – 146 NORTHERN AVE, BOSTON MA
ATLANTIC FISH CO – 761 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
BEANTOWN PUB – 100 TREMONT ST, BOSTON MA
BERTUCCIS BRICK OVEN PIZZERIA (Boston) – 22 MERCHANTS ROW, BOSTON MA
BERTUCCIS BRICK OVEN PIZZERIA (Newton) – 275 CENTRE ST, NEWTON MA
BILLS HOUSE OF PIZZA – 753 BEACON ST, NEWTON CENTER MA
BILLS PIZZA – 14 MAIN ST, HOPKINTON MA
BOSTON PARK PLAZA HOTEL & TOWERS – 64 ARLINGTON ST, BOSTON MA
BRITISH BEER COMPANY (Framingham) – 120 WORCESTER RD, FRAMINGHAM MA
BRITISH BEER COMPANY (East Walpole) – 85 PROVIDENCE HWY, EAST WALPOLE MA
BUKOWSKI TAVERN – 1281 CAMBRIDGE ST, CAMBRIDGE MA
BUKOWSKIS – 50 DALTON ST, BOSTON MA
BULL FINCH PUB CHEERS BOSTON – 84 BEACON ST, BOSTON MA
CACTUS CLUB – 939 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
CAMBRIDGE COMMON – 1667 MASSACHUSETTS AVE, CAMBRIDGE MA
CHEERS OF BOSTON – 29 QUINCY MARKET BLDG, BOSTON MA
CHRISTOPHERS – 1920 MASSACHUSETTS AVE, CAMBRIDGE MA
CIGAR MASTERS – 745 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
CITY SIDE AT THE CIRCLE – 1960 BEACON ST, BRIGHTON MA
COLELLAS SUPERMARKET – 61 MAIN ST, HOPKINTON MA
CONOR LARKINS GRILL – 329 HUNTINGTON AVE, BOSTON MA
CORNELLS CLUB – 229 HAYDEN ROWE ST, HOPKINTON MA
CORNER PUB – 1 WUNION ST, ASHLAND MA
CORNWALLS – 654 BEACON ST, BOSTON MA
DANTES ART BAR – 5 CAMBRIDGE PKWY STE B, CAMBRIDGE MA
DILLONS – 951 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
DOYLES – 3484 WASHINGTON ST, JAMAICA PLAIN MA
DUBLINER PUB – 2046 MASSACHUSETTS AVE, CAMBRIDGE MA
E CARBONI S CAFE – 280 CEDAR ST, HOPKINTON MA
ELEPHANT & CASTLE – 161 DEVONSHIRE ST, BOSTON MA
FIVE HORSES TAVERN – 400 HIGHLAND AVE, SOMERVILLE MA
FOLEYS BACKSTREET GRILLE – 531 PEARL ST, STOUGHTON MA
GALWAY HOUSE – 710 CENTRE ST, JAMAICA PLAIN MA
HARVARD CLUB OF BOSTON – 374 COMMONWEALTH AVE, BOSTON MA
HOLIDAY INN # – 1200 BEACON ST, BROOKLINE MA
ITALIAN AMER MILFORD – 4 HAYWARD FLD, MILFORD MA
JACOB WIRTH – 33 STUART ST, BOSTON MA
JERRY REMYS SPORTS BAR – 1265 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
JIMMYS – 1653 BEACON ST, BROOKLINE MA
KITTY OSHEAS – 131 STATE ST, BOSTON MA
LENOX HOTEL – 61 EXETER ST, BOSTON MA
LUCCA BACKBAY – 116 HUNTINGTON AVE, BOSTON MA
M J OCONNORS – 27 COLUMBUS AVE, BOSTON MA
MAGGIANOS LITTLE ITALY #139 – 4 COLUMBUS AVE, BOSTON MA
MARRIOTT HOTELS & RESORTS # – 110 HUNTINGTON AVE, BOSTON MA
MARRIOTT HOTELS & RESORTS # – 2 CAMBRIDGE CTR, CAMBRIDGE MA
MILLERS ALE HOUSE – 617 ARSENAL ST, WATERTOWN MA
MISSION BAR &B GRILLE – 724 HUNTINGTON AVE, BOSTON MA
MORSE TAVERN – 85 E CENTRAL ST, NATICK MA
O’LEARYS – 1010 BEACON ST, BROOKLINE MA
REMMINGTONS – 124 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
SALVATORES (on Northern Ave) – NORTHERN AVE, BOSTON MA
SALVATORES (on Washington St) – WASHINGTON ST, BOSTON MA
SEAPORT HOTEL – 1 SEAPORT LN, BOSTON MA
SHERATON HOTELS & RESORTS – 39 DALTON ST, BOSTON MA
SMITH & WOLLENSKY – 101 ARLINGTON ST, BOSTON MA
SMOKEY BONES BBQ #7612 – 301 TECHNOLOGY CENTER DR, STOUGHTON MA
STADIUM – 232 OLD COLONY AVE, BOSTON MA
STATS BAR & GRILLE – 77 DORCHESTER ST, BOSTON MA
STODDARDS PUB – 48 TEMPLE PL. PIER SHIPYARD, BOSTON MA
T J SPIRITS – 355 W UNION ST, ASHLAND MA
TERRY O’REILLY PUB – 45 UNION ST, NEWTON CENTER MA
THE 4 SPORTS PUB – 666 WAVERLY ST, FRAMINGHAM MA
THE BACK DECK INC – 10 WEST ST, BOSTON MA
THE BLACKSTONE GRILL – 15 UNION ST, BOSTON MA
THE CAFETERIA – 279 NEWBURY ST, BOSTON MA
THE FIREPLACE – 1634 BEACON ST, BROOKLINE MA
THE LAST SHOT – 559 WASHINGTON ST, STOUGHTON MA
THE PENGIUN – 735 HUNTINGTON AVE, BOSTON MA
THE WHISKEY PRIEST – 150 NORTHERN AVE, BOSTON MA
TRUSTEES OF BOSTON UNIVERSITY – 225 BAY STATE RD, BOSTON MA
UNION PUB – 550 WASHINGTON ST, WEYMOUTH MA
UNO CHICAGO GRILL (on Boylston St) – 731 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
UNO CHICAGO GRILL (on Brookline Ave.) – 1 BROOKLINE AVE, BOSTON MA
WEST ON CENTRE – 1732 CENTRE ST, WEST ROXBURY MA
WHISKEYS PUB – 885 BOYLSTON ST, BOSTON MA
YARD HOUSE BOSTON - 126 BROOKLINE AVE, BOSTON, MA
ZIO S BISTRO – 15 MAIN ST, HOPKINTON MA
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: January 14th, 2013
January marks the beginning of another exciting year of brewing for Samuel Adams with many new releases scheduled, but perhaps none more exciting than the return of New Albion Ale! First brewed almost 40 years ago by Jack McAuliffe, a Navy veteran, this American Pale Ale was the product of Jack’s desire to replicate the quality, great tasting beers he had enjoyed while serving in Scotland and other parts of Europe.
Brewed solely with American Cascade hops (why? Because that was all that was available to Jack at the time), New Albion Ale is a golden American Pale Ale that holds a distinct citrus hop note and subtle piney character. A delicious brew, it’s no wonder New Albion Ale inspired so many of the Pale Ales we drink today. In case you missed it, checkout the video from our brewing day with Jack back in July.
In 1976, Jack McAuliffe was quietly starting the American craft beer revolution when he opened the New Albion Brewing Company in a former agriculture warehouse in Sonoma, CA. Jack’s first brew, New Albion Ale, is the original “micro-brewed” beer that started it all. When he got started, no one was selling small-batch brewing equipment. So Jack (a skilled engineer who studied physics and became an engineer after his Navy days) built a three-level brew house of 55 gallon drums that utilized nature’s most accessible energy source: gravity. Jack would lug all the ingredients he needed up a ladder (including heavy bags of hops and malt) to the top level where he would start his brew. The entire brewing operation was homemade, including the copper tube cooler that Jack made and utilized gravity to move the brew through the different brewing vessels. Primary fermentation was in four open drums; which was kept in an air conditioned room. After five to seven days, the beer was racked into 55 gallon drums on their sides with little fermentation locks.
After the beer had settled (typically another week or two), Jack would hand-pump the beer into a ‘bottling tank’ where it sat before bottle filling and cap crowning, which as you guessed it, was done by hand. For the six years Jack was brewing, he remained close to his passion by creating a loft above the brewery floor for eating and sleeping.
Jim and Jack look through vintage New Albion artifacts.
As for the name New Albion, you have look back to the late 1500’s of British history for an answer. While exploring the west coast of North America on his ship (the Golden Hinde), Sir Francis Drake landed on what is believed to now be northern California. Drake claimed the land for England and named it Nova Albion. As Jack recalls the time in history, almost 300 years after Drake landed, an Englishman established the Albion Brewery in San Francisco (better known today as Bayview-Hunters Point) because of a strong water source found on-site. So when you look at your New Albion bottle or 6-pack carrier, you’ll notice the label (the original design to what Jack used) displays the Golden Hinde departing the now San Francisco Bay area.
Unfortunately like many start-ups in the late 70’s/early 80’s, Jack was forced to close New Albion in 1982 because he could not obtain the additional financing needed to expand his operation. The U.S. was in an economic downfall and the idea of lending money to a craft beer brewer (the first of his kind at that) was unspeakable. As Jack recalls it, banks just didn’t understand what he was doing… they couldn’t wrap their head around the idea of a small brewery. (My, how the times have changed…)
But this month marks the return of New Albion Ale and we’re excited to share this historic brew with you. We used the same malt, hop, and even the same yeast strain (thanks to University of California – Davis, who preserved Jack’s yeast strain profile) to recreate this brew to its original form. We hope you enjoy it (be sure to check out our Find a Sam page to help you find some near you), and when you’re enjoying remember that you are truly tasting a piece of craft beer history! Cheers!
New Albion Profile:
Style: American pale ale
Malt Varieties: Two-row pale malt blend
Hop Variety: American Cascade
Color: Deep golden / 9 SRM
Alcohol: 6.0% ABV
Yeast: New Albion ale yeast
First Brewed: 1976; rebrewed for the first time in 2012
Availability: Limited Release starting January 2013. Find New Albion Ale near you by visiting our Find a Sam page.
Appearance: Deep gold
Aroma: Subtle malt character with the pleasant citrus-floral notes from Cascade hops
Flavor: Upfront cereal and malt notes with a spicy, fruity, and light pine character; clean but moderate bitterness
Mouth feel: Medium-bodied
Finish: Finishes with a little sweetness from the malt and a lingering citrus-orange, floral, and spicy hop flavor
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.
Now back to National Lager day. To help pay homage to this style of beer, we’re hosting The Great Samuel Adams Boston Lager Log Off on Monday night. We want you to close the computer and put the phone away for a few hours and kick back with a delicious craft lager at your favorite watering hole in celebration of good beer and good conversation.
Here’s how to celebrate National Lager Day and participate in the Log Off with us:
- Step 1: Follow and tweet @SamuelAdamsBeer with the hashtag #BostonLagerLogOff and where you’re celebrating National Lager Day; or post on Facebook and tag Samuel Adams (be sure to snap a photo of you and your lager).
- Step 2: Then log off, just for a bit. Shut off your phone and/or computer and join us in celebrating National Lager Day with a Boston Lager, free from distractions.
Let’s face it… the best conversations are held in-person and usually with a beer in-hand. Don’t believe us? Here are two great stories from Jim and our Boston Brewery manager:
On December 10th be sure to put down the phone and pick-up a Boston Lager!
“One of my favorite things about being a brewer is coming up with ideas for new beers and experimenting with ingredients. Some of the best ideas we have ever come up with have been when a few of us brewers are together, relaxing and enjoying a pint of Boston Lager. A few years ago we were drinking some Boston Lager and talking about how much we love the Noble hops we use and the flavor these specific hops give to the beer. We thought how great it would be if we could make a beer with Noble hops so fresh that they got from the vine in Germany to our kettle in Boston in under 24 hours. Well, we made it happen with only 45 minutes to spare. And it’s times like this I’m grateful for good conversations and good beer and the role they both had in making this special beer happen.” – Jennifer Glanville, brewer
“My best experience over a Boston Lager would have to be one time at a restaurant, on a blind date. I disconnected from everything I had going on, and had a great lunch with great conversation. We were married a year later.” – Jim Koch, founder and brewer
“Craft beer lovers are a special bunch. You talk to them about a beer they drank years ago and they remember every detail…the color, the nuanced aroma, how long the hop flavor lingered…They even recollect where they were and who they were with when they had it. The best beers can be like liquid time machines!
For me, one of my favorite memories of having a Boston Lager is actually the first time I had one. It was one of my first “beer memories”. I can tell you the year I had it, the pub I was at, the friends I was with and even the band that was playing. I specifically remember the beer…how much I loved the aroma, then the flavor…and then I was hooked.” – Grant McCracken, brewer
Be sure to join us on Monday as we log-off and enjoy time with friends and family… in-person! Cheers!
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: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: October 26th, 2012
In chemistry there’s something called the “collision theory” that is often summarized by the idiom: “You can’t react, unless you collide.”
Fate has a way of ensuring the right collisions happen to occasionally create something remarkable. The story of New Albion is proof that random events can collide in such a sequence to spark something incredible.
In 1976, Jack McAuliffe created New Albion brewing, the first craft brewery to be started from scratch in decades. Jack, a true do-it-yourself guy, did everything from building the brewery, to brewing the beer, to delivering it to the bars himself. Unfortunately, he was a man before his time and in 1983, New Albion closed its doors for good.
The next year, Jim founded the Boston Beer Company and began a revolution in brewing with the introduction of Samuel Adams Boston Lager. A few years later, the trademark for New Albion lapsed and fell into public domain. Not wanting it to fall into the hands of mega brewers, Jim applied for and was granted the New Albion trademark. Jim considered himself a custodian of brewing history, as if preserving a historical brewing treasure.
Fast forward to 2011 in San Antonio, TX. Meagen Anderson, a local sales representative is preparing her homebrew for the company homebrew competition, when she meets an older gentleman in her local homebrew club who seems to know a fair bit about brewing. Meagen, a true beer lover recognized the name right away when he introduced himself as Jack McAuliffe. Really? What are the odds?
Meagen arranged to have Jack come to the Great American Beer Festival to witness for himself what had blossomed from the early seeds he’d sown. While in Denver Meagen introduced Jack to Jim, as the two had never met, and an idea was born.
On July 3, 2012, Jack visited the Samuel Adams Boston Brewery…
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: October 23rd, 2012
For those who have not heard, this year marks the 10th anniversary of one of our greatest brewing accomplishments: Samuel Adams Utopias®. As with every release of this special brew, Jim and the other brewers get excited about sharing this beer because of the passion and innovation that went into brewing. The extreme ingredients and techniques used to make this beer are unlike any other style we brew. Look for this years release to hit stores in November.
It all began with Triple Bock …
Cheers to 10 years!
Over 20 years ago, Jim started thinking about the far reaches of the beer universe. As big brewers were making their beers lighter and lighter, Jim was curious about the other end of the beer spectrum and wanted to continue exploring the uncharted territory of extreme brewing. After several years of trial and error, we released Samuel Adams® Triple Bock in 1994 and set the record for the strongest beer ever (17.5% ABV) but Triple Bock wasn’t just about breaking the historical ABV ceiling. Jim found that aging the beer in whiskey barrels helped mellow the harsh ethanol attack on the palette, while adding some wonderful complexity to the beer. This was also the first time that any brewer in the U.S. had aged a beer in barrels previously used for spirits, a practice that is now fairly common among American craft brewers.
Triple Bock, the backbone of all of our Extreme Beers, served as the archetype for Samuel Adams Millennium®, a rare (only 3,000 bottles produced) style we brewed to commemorate the year 2000. In 2002, we introduced Samuel Adams Utopias which shocked the beer world with an incredible 24% ABV. With each new batch of Utopias, we pushed for more complexity and strength, producing brews with alcohol levels reaching 27% ABV over the last 10 years of Utopias’ existence. With that said, this year’s batch is coming in around 29% ABV though some of our barrels have reached over 33% ABV. With taste as our primary goal, we refined the liquid back to optimize the flavor best.
Popular questions around Utopias…
Where can I get a bottle of Utopias?!
The most important thing to remember is that Utopias is a very (and we mean very) limited brew, with fewer than 15,000 bottles released each season due to the long aging process. While our Find a Sam page will outline where Utopias bottles are sold (Utopias will be added to the list once the beer starts shipping), it is likely that many locations will sell their few bottles quickly. If you are traveling a far distance to acquire a bottle, we strongly recommend calling the retailer ahead of time to ensure they still have one to be purchased.
NOTE: Thirteen states prohibit its sale because its alcohol content exceeds the legal limit for beer: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont and Washington.
How much does a bottle cost?
Retailers are free to set their own price, but we have placed a suggested retail price of $190.00 per bottle.
What does Utopias taste like?
The 2012 batch of Samuel Adams Utopias has its entire lineage in it, some of the beer has been aged in a variety of wood barrels for 19 years. This long aging process and variety of spirit barrels enhances the beer’s distinct vanilla and maple notes, and its high alcohol content creates a heated aroma of ginger and cinnamon. As a result, this big brew invokes the flavors of a rich vintage Port, fine Cognac, or aged Sherry while feeling surprisingly light on the palate. The brew has sweet flavors of honey, toffee, caramel, cocoa and vanilla, balanced by distinct notes of molasses, raisins, plums and berries.
I’ve got a bottle of Utopias, now what?
Congratulations! Our brewers recommend serving this strong, rich, un-carbonated dark beer as an ideal after-dinner drink or toasting a special occasion at room temperature (about 70°F) in 2oz pours. Because this beer is un-carbonated and high in ABV, it can be opened and closed to be enjoyed when you want to enjoy it. No need to keep this beer in the fridge… a cool/dark place (basement, closet, etc.) will do the trick. Don’t be afraid to hold onto the bottle… the liquid will only get better with age!
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: July 26th, 2012
The day is here! The one-day special release of Brewlywed Ale! Be sure to check back all day for updates from all the days events!
10:53 a.m. EDT – Are we near the end? Still roughly 40-50 people in-line to get Brewlywed Ale!
10:01 a.m. EDT – Our second marriage of the day! Can you get a better marriage location then a hop garden at a brewery?
9:32 a.m. EDT – This great couple felt today would be a great day to get married… and why not have Jim act as their witness! Cheers to many years of happiness!
9:03 a.m. EDT – The first purchases of Brewlywed Ale! These people were at the brewery around 4:00 a.m. this morning!
8:54 a.m. EDT – Jim in the hop garden outside of the brewery to toast the hundreds who have lined up to grab a bottle of Brewlywed Ale! Bonus points for those who are now standing out in the rain!
8:38 a.m. EDT – The calm before the storm. A look inside the Brewlywed Ale tasting room!
7:44 a.m. EDT – We’re wrapping around the building with roughly 100-110 people in-line!
6:53 a.m. EDT – The first Brewlywed Ale folks are lining up! First people in-line were here around 5:00 a.m.! Wow!
Nothing says "For the love of beer" like getting up before sunset!
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: July 12th, 2012
We know beer is the centerpiece of a great wedding. In fact, beer has been an essential component of weddings for centuries. The medieval word “ale” is actually rooted in the word “bridal,” which refers to a festive occasion where much ale is drunk in celebration. We hold this tradition near and dear; in fact, Jim brewed the first batch of Samuel Adams Noble Pils for his daughter’s wedding day.
Mark your calendars for July 26th for your chance to enjoy a specialty brew as you say “I do!” We’re inviting all brides, grooms, couples, recently engaged and recently married (or anyone looking for a unique, beyond-the-registry gift) to line up to get a bottle of Samuel Adams Brewlywed Ale, a limited release Belgian-style pale golden ale. A distinct and complex brew, Samuel Adams Brewlywed Ale offers layers of flavor including fruit and honeysuckle notes from the Belgian yeast, sweetness from malt and citrus character from hops. With only 350 cases brewed, this beer will be available for one day only, July 26th, at our Boston brewery.
Throughout the morning we’ll also have wedding experts on hand to provide beer pairing suggestions for wedding menus, expert advice and answers to wedding questions from TheKnot.com, a toast from Jim and the chance to have Samuel Adams foot the tab* for your rehearsal dinner. For the most die-hard of beer fans, it could also be your actual “big day” – a justice of the peace will be available to perform ceremonies on the spot (all you’ll need is a legit wedding license**). This would be a first for us… just saying.
WHERE: Samuel Adams Brewery | 30 Germania Street (Jamaica Plain neighborhood) | Boston, MA 02130
WHEN: Thursday, July 26 2012, 7:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
- 7:00AM: Line up at the brewery. The first 20 people to arrive in bridal attire will be moved to the front of the line, ensuring a bottle from the 50 bottles signed by Jim Koch.
- 9:00AM: Brewery doors open and Samuel Adams Brewlywed Ale is for sale while supplies last.
- 9:00AM-1:00PM: Wedding menu beer pairing suggestions from Samuel Adams brewers and local food businesses; raffle to have Samuel Adams pick up your rehearsal dinner tab*; wedding photo booth; expert advice and answers to wedding questions from TheKnot.com, the #1 wedding website and more.
- 1:00PM: Last call. Doors close at 1 p.m.
We asked our friend Carley Roney, Co-Founder and Editor in Chief of The Knot.com, what she thought about the marrying of beer and weddings. She told us that brides and grooms today are more daring than they’ve ever been when it comes to giving beer a seat at the wedding table. She even suggested that couples say goodbye to the standard wine and cocktails and incorporate craft beer bars, beer tasting stations and beer and food pairings into their big day. We couldn’t agree more!
Samuel Adams Brewlywed Ale Details
- Samuel Adams Brewlywed Ale will be packaged in decorated 750mL, cork-finished bottles; and available for $14.99 per bottle, or purchased by the case of 12 (maximum of 2 cases per purchase).
- At 8% ABV, Samuel Adams Brewlywed Ale is a distinct and complex brew that offers layers of flavor including fruit and honeysuckle notes from the Belgian yeast, sweetness from malt and citrus character from hops.We recommend serving this beer at a temperature of 40-45° and enjoying it before your one-year anniversary.
- Check our Tab on Facebook for updates: www.facebook.com/samueladams
- Follow our live Brewlywed at the Brewery tweets @SamuelAdamsBeer #Brewlywed
* Up to $1,000
**A wedding license can be obtained in any Massachusetts City or Town Hall. There is a three (3) day waiting period after application before couples can pick up the license; it is valid for 60 days after it is picked up. A license must be present in order to be married.
For the Love of beer, we hope to see you there!
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: June 18th, 2012
As some of you may have heard, today we announced an exciting collaboration with Berkshire Mountain Distillers to distill two of our brews into two completely new spirits. Samuel Adams Boston Lager and Cinder Bock will be transformed to create a unique spirit taste (more on that below). For those not familiar with BMD, they are the first legal distillery in Massachusetts since prohibition and a pioneer in the craft distillery movement.
Chris Weld, BMD’s founder, came to us with an idea of distilling beer and we started tossing around ideas while sampling several of our beers and some of his distilled products from trial distillations before deciding to use Boston Lager and Cinder Bock for this project. From our first meeting it was clear that Chris carries the same passion for his spirits that we have for brewing beer. This looks to be the beginning of a beautiful collaboration.
This follows in the tradition of past unique brewing adventures such as Triple Bock (which lead to Utopias) and Infinium, so we’re excited to explore another uncharted boundary of brewing. We’ve never worked in a distillery and Chris has only briefly experimented with brewing, but we’re all excited about what the possibilities could be. The mutual respect of one another’s craft and the willingness to do something challenging has us excited for the next few years!
The distilled Samuel Adams Boston Lager will be aging in a vintage wooden bourbon barrel, which should create a silky whiskey with a hint of sweet fruit and a touch of bitterness, according to our early test findings. The distilled Samuel Adams Cinder Bock, will age for two years in wooden, oak barrels (some previously used for extreme beer, including our Utopias®), should produce a rich and bold whiskey.
Chris and Jim share a pint at Berkshire Mountain Distillers
This sounds awesome! So when can I sample this “super distilled beer” in my area?! As any whiskey aficionado can tell you, the aging process of whiskey is extremely complex and takes time… a long time, as in two to three years, if not longer depending on the blend. You remember the old saying good things come to those who wait; well you are in for a worthwhile wait!
We’re energized to see what comes of this collaborative adventure in the next few years! To cross back and forth and bring craft beer and spirits together as one has our brewing team’s minds going in a variety of directions. As we sample the progression of these two evolving spirits, we’ll be sure to keep you posted with updates.
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: May 17th, 2012
You may know that each year, Jim and our brewing team make a pilgrimage to Bavaria to hand select the hops that will be used in Boston Lager. However, our curiosity and obsession with hops doesn’t end there as we’ve been experimenting with many newer varieties of late which led us to explore new and different combinations of beer styles and regional hop varieties.
In 2011, we rolled out a limited-edition Latitude 48 IPA Deconstructed pack.
Last year, we brewed a limited-edition Latitude 48 IPA Deconstructed pack, which featured two beers each featuring one of the five varieties of hops (Hallertau Mittelfrueh from Germany; East Kent Goldings from England; and Ahtanum, Simcoe, and Zeus from Washington state’s Yakima Valley). Tasting these 5 beers side by side was a great way to experience just how much impact different varieties of hops can have on the taste of a beer.
This year, we’ve taken that exploration in different direction. Our IPA Hop-ology variety pack is a hop lovers dream. Each IPA in this package takes the wonderful hop character that is familiar and builds upon it with layers of complex flavors inspired by unique combinations of ingredients and/or fusion with other beer styles.
Hop-ology is perfect for getting together with fellow hop heads and sampling the entire line and the spectrum of flavors available in IPAs today. Brews included in IPA Hop-ology, in the order we recommend sampling:
Whitewater IPA (5.8% ABV • 60 IBUs • 14 SRM) – This hazy & flavorful brew fuses two styles with a twist of our own. We brought together the crisp wheat, citrus orange peel, and spicy coriander of a white ale with the big hoppy grapefruit notes of an IPA. Our addition of apricots brings the combination to a new level creating a slight sweetness to balance the hops.
Grumpy Monk Belgian IPA (5.7% ABV • 55 IBUs • 10 SRM) – A spirited reinvention of a Belgian tradition. To the monk’s dismay, their long held traditions can be broken. We reimagined the distinctive spicy clove & fruit notes of Belgian yeast by combining it with the brazen hoppiness of an IPA. The citrusy, piney, and earthy hops are balanced by a hint of malt sweetness for a complex & playful brew.
Latitude 48 IPA (6% ABV • 60 IBUs • 20 SRM) A unique IPA brewed with a carefully selected blend of hops from top German, English, and American growing regions all located close to the 48th latitude within the “hop belt” of the Northern Hemisphere. The intense hop character is balanced by a slight sweetness and full body from the malt blend.
Tasman Red Red IPA (6.75% ABV • 60 IBUs • 40 SRM) – Bold, lively, and a bit rugged. This wily red IPAgets its character from Tasmanian hops that are full of grapefruit, pine, and earthy notes woven throughout the taste. The hops are balanced by a core of roasty malts that provide a rich body with hints of toffee. This flavorful brew is rounded & smooth with a dry, citrusy hop finish.
This years IPA Hop-ology, a limited-release 12-pack of six different IPA styles!
Dark Depths Baltic IPA (7.6% ABV • 55 IBUs • 60 SRM) – Dark, fierce, & blustery. Across the cold and brackish Baltic, the English porter was transformed from a mild ale to a dark complex lager that confounds definition. Immersed in dark, roasted malts and a bold citrus hop character, these big contrasting flavors have the underlying smoothness of a lager for a rugged and mysterious brew.
Third Voyage Double IPA (8.5% ABV • 85 IBUs • 24 SRM) – Bright & intense with a vivid hop punch. Inspired by Capt. James Cook whose 3rd voyage made him the first to navigate a treacherous route from England to New Zealand to the Pacific Northwest. We used Cascade hops from each of these regions for a brew that’s citrusy, earthy and full of bold character.
Getting thirsty? Visit our beer finder page to locate these limited-time variety packs near you!
By: Sam Adams Editorial Team
| Published: March 22nd, 2012
Hopefully by now you’ve heard that our brewers have been hard at work, training and preparing for the 2012 Boston Marathon. Although Bob and Dean running up Heartbreak Hill is a great visual, it’s not quite what you think.
We’re the official beer sponsor of this year’s event, one of the most revered and challenging races in the world. To celebrate the runners and their cheering fans, we announced that we’re brewing a special, commemorative beer – Samuel Adams® Boston 26.2 Brew.
Photo courtesy of Michael Casey
The beer is going to be available at many race-related events, as well as the following pubs and restaurants along the Marathon route and around Boston (see list below, or head over to the Find a Sam page). Jim Koch rolled up his sleeves today and loaded the first kegs onto the truck today.
In case you’re curious what the Boston 26.2 Brew tastes like… it’s a Gose style which dates back to the year 700. This unique brew is going to offer a lighter body and slightly lower alcohol level (4.5 percent) than many of the beers in our line-up. In terms of flavor, you’ll enjoy light cereal notes from malted and unmalted wheat, rounded out by a spicy, pepper character and soft mineral quality from a touch of salt. The result is an unusual and delicate brew that’s full of flavors to discover and worth crossing the finish line for.
Give it a try and let us know what you think: #262Brew
Photo courtesy of Michael Casey
Important Note: This is a list of pubs and restaurants that will be offering Boston 26.2 Brew. When the beer is tapped and available on draft is at the discretion of the establishment. This is a limited release beer and will be available for a short time – until it runs out.
|THE BOSTON BREWERY (during tours only)
|5 NAPKIN BURGER
|ATLANTIC BEER GARDEN
|BACK BAY HOTEL
|BACK BAY SOCIAL CLUB
|BILL’S PIZZA (Hopkinton)
|BRITISH BEER COMPANY (Framingham)
|BULL FINCH PUB
|CHAMPIONS @ MARRIOTT COPLEY
|CHEERS @ FANEUIL HALL
|CITYSIDE BAR & GRILL (Brighton)
|CONOR LARKINS GRILL
|COOLIDGE CORNER CLUB HOUSE
|CORNELL’S PUB (Hopkinton)
|DICK’S LAST RESORT
|FIRE & ICE
FIVE HORSES TAVERN (Davis Square)
|HILTON BACK BAY
|JERRY REMY’S Waterfront
|JERRY REMY’S (Fenway)
|JIMMY’S BAR AND OVEN (Brookline)
|JOHN STONE INN (Ashland)
|M.J. O’CONNOR’S (Columbus Ave.)
|M.J. O’CONNOR’S (Summer St.)
|MCCORMICK AND SCHMICK
|MORSE TAVERN (Natick)
|O’CONNELS PUB (Framingham)
|PARISH CAFE II
|PIZZERIA UNO (Boylston)
|PIZZERIA UNO (Kenmore)
|RAILROAD 6 (Framingham)
|THE CORNER PUB (Ashland)
|TJ’s SPIRITS (Ashland)
|UNION BREW HOUSE
|YARD HOUSE (Fenway)