Bottoms up ... or maybe not.
Samuel Adams released a new—and limited—batch of its seasonal Utopias beer that some states are already banning from shelves. While an average beer’s alcohol by volume, or ABV, falls below 10 percent, the new release is the highest naturally fermented beer at 28 percent, according to Forbes.
Only 77 wooden casks of the “extreme barrel-aged beer” were brewed this year, which also leads to its limited availability, Fox News reported. States that are already barred from selling the brew include Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont and West Virginia.
“In Utopias, you will get a beer that breaks all the rules and boundaries for beer,” Jim Koch, the co-founder and chairman of Boston Beer told CNBC. “It’s a labor of love. ... [And] it’s a fair statement to say it’s iconic.”
The custom 25.4-ounce bottle retails at $210. Previously, the brewer has distributed somewhere between 13,000 and 15,000 Utopias bottles, but it is unclear how many bottles will be distributed this year, according to Fortune.
The initial release of Utopias came in 2002 and now the beer company’s 11th release is the most “time-intensive” and “complex process” yet, according to Samuel Adams. With the latest batch, this blend of malt and hops have been “aged up to 24 years in a variety of barrels.”
“The brewers utilized several yeast strains during fermentation, including one typically reserved for champagne, and a ‘ninja yeast,’ created for its ability to survive and continue fermenting in an environment that has such a high alcohol level,” Samuel Adams’ website says.
Samuel Adams describes the taste as “deep, rich, malty, smoothness reminiscent of a vintage port, cognac or fine sherry.”
And as for food pairings, the brewer say the Utopias tastes best with clam chowder, cobb salad, fish & chips, mango-chili chicken for dinner and pineapple upsidedown cake or fruit topped bread pudding for dessert.
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