Review: Samuel Adams Summer 2018 Releases
The ever-inventive Sam Adams is out with its latest passel of brews, all designed for summer sipping. Here’s a look at a quintet of barley-based goodies.
Samuel Adams Summer Ale (2018) – This venerable wheat ale, brewed with lemon peel and grains of paradise, comes across as more refreshing and balanced than it has in recent years, but that may have something to do with the warmer weather and my general state of mind. As objectively as possible, I do believe the malt — a bit more caramel-heavy and sweeter, is better complemented by the citrus here, giving it a slightly festive bent on the back end. 5.3% abv. B+
Samuel Adams Pale Ale – Quite bitter, with a skunky character, this is a pale ale that wants to be an IPA, but forgets that aromatics like citrus and pine are required. All earth and dirt, with a tough, tannic finish. 5.4% abv. C
Samuel Adams Raspberry Lemon Gose – As close to raspberry lemonade you can get, in beer form. Tart and bursting with fruit, it’s fresh and approachable, though a bit unserious, with a jujube-meets-cotton-candy sweetness on the finish. 5.0% abv. B
Samuel Adams Hoppy Wheat Ale – Exclusive to Sam Adams’ Summer Variety Pack, this hybrid wheat ale sees a modest dose of hops added, giving a pleasant bitterness to the grain-heavy wheat ale that makes up the beer’s backbone. Pleasantly fruity on the finish, it’s a perfect blend of serious and superfluous. 5.5% abv. B+
Samuel Adams Golden Ale – With almost no hoppiness at all, it’s up to the malt to carry the day here, which the brew does well, lending a gentle sweetness to a beer that features a chewy, toasty core. Initially uncomplex, a nutty element emerges with time in glass. 5.0% abv. B
each about $8 per six-pack / samueladams.com
If Sam Adams would simply fix Boston Lager so that it’s no longer too thin, then all of this “innovation” would be unnecessary.
Message to Boston Beer Company: Boston Lager is clearly thinner than it ever has been. Don’t think we haven’t noticed.