Follow beer writer, Troy Burtch, as he explores the wonderful world of craft beer and the pubs that serve it. Great Canadian Beer is a place to come to catch up on beer news, read tasting notes, check out event listings, and for pub previews and reviews.


Monday, January 26, 2009

Sam Adams Utopias

I did something I've never done before. I sampled the world's strongest beer this weekend in Buffalo at Coles. I was down for the Rare Beer Festival with Jon Graham (Cameron's Brewing Co.) and he just happened to see the lovely bottle behind the serving area.

He came back with a sniffer of Sam Adams Utopias (2007 Vintage), a 27% (not 24% as I previously mentioned - I wasn't sure of the year when I first posted) beer for us to share and what an experience! The nose on it was unbelievably strong, strong port like, traces of a bourbon. My palate was punched out when the liquid hit my tongue and a heat wave hit my body. Vanilla, raisins, candied fruits, booze, booze, booze, and hints of sweet wood floated around inside my mouth, overpowering but pleasant. The best thing about the Utopias was the aftertaste which lingered around for quite some time. As dry as it was, I didn't want to reach for my glass of water any time soon. I wanted to savour the taste. The second and third sips were just as nice, but that was enough for me.

It was then on to other strong potent beers, but they seemed subdued after the Utopias.


Stephen Beaumont said...

Actually, Troy, if that was the 2007 edition of Utopias, it was about 27%. The 2005 was around 25% and the original, 2004 vintage, was 24%.

Troy Burtch said...

Thanks for the note, and correction Stephen. I remember the server saying it was 24% and at that point of the night, I took his word for it.

Anonymous said...

Does it even matter what year it was? 24% - 27%!!! I would have loved to have tried it too.


Anonymous said...

Having been a home brewer for 20 years, I always thought the highest alcohol yield from yeast is 18%, specifically champagne yeast.

Either they are using an uber strain of yeast or it is being distilled.

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