Sam Adams is one of those OG "craft" outfits. They've been around in the "import" beer section for as long as I can remember -- although I always find it funny that something made in Boston is considered imported. As long as I can remember watching my dad grab a 12-pack of Heineken on occasion, I can remember seeing a sixer or two of Sam Adams.
And to be honest, I've never been a huge fan. Their beers tend to run a bit towards the hoppy side, which I've never enjoyed. Although, given that I've been a little more open to experimenting with those types, maybe I should reconsider.
Anyways, at a recent crawfish boil a friend had some of Adams' Summer Ale. I enjoyed it, so I gave it another go at a recent stop in at the Chimes:
Crisp and tangy with refreshing lemon peel and a hint of pepper from rare Grains of Paradise. Golden, hazy, & thirst quenching, this American wheat ale balances bright citrus, Noble hops & spice for a lively brew that's perfect on any summer day.
As I've come to expect from Sam Adams beers, the bouquet is very floral and hoppy. But it lies on the beer, which has a very even, soft open. There's just a note of hops that gives it some spice in the middle -- just enough to let you know it's there and to balance out the body, which is malty and sweet without being heavy. Overall, it's a very well-balanced, consistent brew that is very sessionable and would fit really well with some outdoor grilling or any other kind of party. I give it a solid 3.5 out of five stars - very surprising.