In the divorce, I got one set of friends that could be termed “our friends.” Unfortunately, I only get together with them about once every quarter of the year. When I did this year, it was early January. My second quarter meeting will take place this coming weekend. I might post about those beers by December at the rate I’m going. Back in January though, they bought a variety pack of Samuel Adams. This company is another craft beer brewer that has fallen by the way side for me recently because it’s one of the oldest companies doing this kind of beer. I was excited when a bar had Boston Lager while at Kent State because they had the good stuff. It’s hard to find a bar without Sam Adams now. After having four beers in one evening with my good friends and children, let’s see if my beer soaked brain still likes Sam Adams.
Samuel Adams – Old Fezziwig Ale – I didn’t think I had seen this beer on the shelf in recent years so I was surprised it was still in production. It has a lot of Winter beer taste qualities with ginger and cinnamon notes but the orange peel they use in there was a bit off the beaten path. A lot of Summer beers employ orange in their flavor profile though. The beer is heavier on the malt than on the hops (25 IBUs) but is balanced well. It has an ABV of 5.9% so it won’t keep you too warm over the winter. But who cares considering that it’s spring, right?
Samuel Adams – White Christmas – This beer was an interesting follow up to Old Fezziwig because they were very similar beers. Instead of being more of a winter warmer style, this is a white ale. We’ve still got orange peel, ginger & cinnamon. There was also about the same amount of alcohol in it at 5.8% ABV. Because it is a white ale, the IBUs dip to 8. They’re both good beers and both out of season.
Samuel Adams – Cherry Chocolate Bock – This beer is hard to review. Do you know why? If you’ve ever had this beer, you know exactly what I’m talking about. This beer tastes like Dr. Pepper. I’ve never had their Chocolate Bock which is the base to this beer so I have no idea how they split the 23 flavors between both beers. I would guess though that the cherries is what really makes this beverage taste like Dr. Pepper. I’ve had enough bock beers and none of them have made me think of Dr. Pepper. Coincidentally, none of them had cherries in them either. It comes in at the beer average of 5.8% ABV and 11 IBUs. If you like Dr. Pepper, I suggest buying this beer. Again, you’re waiting to try this one though.
Samuel Adams – Juniper IPA – I have been warming to IPAs recently. This beer brought that to a screeching halt. I felt like it was heavy on hops but the 50 IBUs tells a different story. I also felt like it was heavy on juniper which I don’t think will every be a favorite of my palate. It may have exacerbated the hops flavor. It came with a 5.8% ABV so it wasn’t even a heavy handed IPA. As you may have noticed, I didn’t like this beer. So when Christmas beers do come around, feel free to skip this one. – Kevin