Name: Boston Beer Company
Location: Seriously? You’ve got to ask? For the geographically challenged, the Boston Beer Company is located in Boston, MA.
Type: Production Brewery
Available in DC Market?: Yes
What you need to know: What do you need to know that you don’t know already about the Boston Beer Company? Well, their Boston Lager is one of the most successful and widely available craft beers available nationwide. The Boston Beer Co. is the largest craft brewer (and the fifth largest brewer overall) in the United States at just over 2 million barrels produced annually. They produce a huge variety of beers (well over 30 at current count on their website) in a number of different families (they produce seasonal variety packs, the Imperial series, etc.) One of their most famous beers is the Utopia series, which is a massively high-gravity beer that is not made via the eising process. This is a brewery that knows how to do both quantity and quality well, and has been doing both for a long time.
Beer #1: Sam Adams Boston Lager
Notes: Not sure what can be said here that hasn’t been said already. The original. The beer that started it all for the Sam Adams brand. A Vienna style lager that uses two-row malt and noble hops for a complex malty backbone finished with a refreshing hoppiness. I’m a little surprised that they decided to bring this beer, of all of the beers they could have brought, to SAVOR, because chances are almost every attendee will have tasted this. Maybe they wanted to show off how it pairs with food. But see the summary for how the Boston Beer Company might be making waves in other ways at SAVOR.
BeerAdvocate Grade: B+ (2,211 reviews)
Ratebeer Grade: 72 overall; 97 style
Beer #2: New World Tripel
Notes: A member of the new Barrel Room Collection (along with the American Kriek and the Stoney Brook Red), the New World Tripel looks like a very interesting beer. This is a heavy hitter, weighing in at 10%. I’m a little nervous about how it’s going to carry that high gravity. Some folks I’ve talked to have said this beer was overly syrupy and not light and crisp the way the best tripels are. I am excited to see how Sam Adams incorporated Brettanomyces and Lactobacillus into this beer. That funk should play nicely with the herbal notes from Saaz hops and the spicy fruitiness of the Belgian yeast strain. Definitely worth a try to see how all of the elements come together. This beer could be a little “hot” in terms of alcohol, but I’m guessing it won’t taste like it’s 10%, and this is one that will creep up on you like a silent and deadly Trappist monk.
BeerAdvocate Grade: B+ (68 reviews)
Ratebeer Grade: 90 overall; 83 style
Summary: There’s no doubt that the craft beer community owes a lot to the Boston Beer Company and its Samuel Adams brand. This is a company that produces, by far, more volume than the next highest producer (Sierra Nevada), but is still pushing to create new beers (American Kriek, anyone?) The commitment to craft beer is still going strong up in Boston, despite the gargantuan volume level. It’s a little surprising that they’re bringing Boston Lager down for SAVOR, but this should be balanced out nicely by the New World Tripel and the Savor Flowers collaboration that Boston Beer did with Dogfish Head. Swing by and check out the Tripel, but unless this is your first time at the rodeo, pass on the Boston Lager and try something you haven’t already had umpteen times.
This profile is a part of the DCBEER.COM SAVOR Brewery Profile series. For more information, follow the link to see profiles of all 2011 SAVOR participants.
Beer Review Disclaimer: The beer reviews found on Beer Advocate and Rate Beer do not represent the opinions of this site. We provide these in the hope that they will serve as a resource showing what some craft beer fans have thought of the beers. These reviews can be a helpful guideline, but are not the be-all end-all about a beer’s strengths or weaknesses.