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Monday, January 17, 2011

Samuel Adams Boston Lager

Dipping once again into the paltry selection of beers to be found in Anaheim... a Samuel Adams classic.

Samuel Adams Boston Lager poured the brown-orange color of black tea in the glass, with a loose head and bubble trails running up all sides.  The nose was lightly floral, with strange undertones of soap ad rubbing alcohol.  I check the bottle to make sure it wasn't detergent residue in the glass causing the smell, and it was the same in the bottle.

On the first sip, Boston Lager had a fruit, sugary taste of sweet bread that was slightly cloying.  There were a surprising number of notes coming through (the aforementioned fruit and sweet bread, floral essences, and some unidentifiable chemical tastes), but there was an underlying sweet-bitter combination reminiscent of artificial sweetener that proved to be the enduring characteristic, leaving a rather unpleasant taste in my mouth.

For "big" micro, this beer managed to avoid the generic blandness of the Samuel Adams White Ale I tasted earlier this month, but brought a whole bunch of funkiness to the table.  How this beer is able to sell in stores for the same price as so many truly great microbrews is a mystery to me, but to those who swear by the Adams... cheers!

On an unrelated note, I had the opportunity to eat at Oggi's Pizza and Brewing Company near Disneyland.  Although not ready to compete with the big boys, Oggi's offered a refreshing variety of beers, including a Light LagerCalifornia Gold AleDuck Dive HefewiezenMcGarvey's Scottish AleSun Set Amber AleParadise Pale AleTorrey Pines IPABlack Magic Stout, and two seasonals... a Pumpkin ale and a Summer Vienna Lager.  Why they appear to have a Fall and Summer selection in the winter I have no idea.  All were good, but most would have been better served not identifying with a particular style, as most tasted nothing like what they purported to be (a super hoppy Lager?).

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