This will be the very first time that this website has reminded people about a beer that few have enjoyed. We speak of Utopias. Or as many in the craft beer community refer to it, ‘a really expensive beer’.
We are aware that there are others that can claim they are more valuable. But there is only beer that intimidates even the ardent fan of beer. I mean who wouldn’t be re-thinking their decision when they walk up to the shelf and see a copper bottle retailing for over $150. Does it mean that this beer is over-priced? The answer resoundingly is … we can’t say.
Still curious on what one Benjamin ($100), a Grant ($50), and a Jackson ($20) will get you? Let’s first learn more about what makes this beer worth every penny.
Brewed using traditional methods, we begin with the world’s finest, all-natural ingredients, including a blend of two-row Caramel and Munich malts that impart the rich, ruby-black color. Distinct hop character from Noble hops – Hallertau Mittlefrueh, Spalt Spalter and Tettnang Tettnanger – impart complexity and balance.Samuel Adams Utopias is brewed several yeast strains, including one typically reserved for champagne.
Rivaling the world’s finest cognacs and ports, our brewers recommend serving this strong, rich, uncarbonated dark beer as an ideal after-dinner drink at room temperature (about 70°F) in 2oz pours.
The 2012 batch of Samuel Adams Utopias is a blend of liquids, some of which have been aged in a variety of wood barrels for 19 years. This long aging process 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, Samuel Adams Utopiasinvokes 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.
After blending, Samuel Adams Utopias is aged in finishing barrels sourced from all over the world. This year’s batch was finished in single-use bourbon casks from the award-winning Buffalo Trace Distillery to enhance the beer’s distinct vanilla and maple notes. This year’s batch also spent time in a variety of finishing casks: Tawny Port casks and Vintage Ruby Port casks from Portugal and Rum barrels from Nicaragua. The Port casks contribute the slightly more elegant, dark fruit aromas while the Rum barrels add flavors of fig, chocolate, raisin, vanilla, and a slight spice. From these barrels, we created a completely new brew, never crafted before, for our 10th Anniversary.
The complex flavors intensify individually over time, making Samuel Adams Utopias a very special brew that becomes even better with age.
The 2012 limited-edition lot of Samuel Adams Utopias is bottled in a specially designed 10th Anniversary, black decanter, shaped like a brew kettle and etched with roots, a metaphor for the 20+ years of complex history and aging of the liquids that make up this final brew. Only 15,000 bottles of the 10th Anniversary batch are available, and we look forward to toasting this monumental occasion with our drinkers.
In the interest of being fair, we know many of you probably won’t go out and buy this beer, let alone ‘go all in’ with a few of your friends. But we thought we would remind you that Christmas is coming up and this might be a good time to impress or depress that special someone with a limited edition beer like Utopias.
Either by yourself or with 10 – 13 of our closest friends, you can find a bottle of this 29% ABV beast at bottleshops that carry other limited release Samuel Adams beers.
Thoughts by your Colleagues