You've heard of wine and chocolate together, but how does beer fare? Samuel Adams brewery paired up with Tcho chocolate to create a craft beer and artisanal chocolate pairing to gift to loved ones during the holiday season. Although sold separately, the Samuel Adams Winter Classic Variety ($14 for 12-pack) is intended to complement the flavors found in Tcho's Samuel Adams Beer Lover's Chocolate Box ($17). We tried each of the pairings to see if beer and chocolate really do go well together. Take a look!
Just like Champagne, Infinium will retail in 750-ml bottles, at a price of $19.99, and have foil-covered cork tops, as much alcohol content as some wines, and a finish that's crisp and dry like a brut sparkling wine.
For now, Samuel Adams is only releasing 15,000 cases in North America, but founder Jim Koch hopes to send a strong message. "Beer has all the same dignity and nobility that wine has, it just hasn't been accorded the same level of respect — frankly, because brewers haven't treated it respectfully," he said. "Beer has been marketed with a lot of sophomoric humor and scantily clad women."
It'll be interesting to see how Infinium — the first beer release in a collaboration between Samuel Adams and Germany's Weihenstephan Brewery — will fare.
Could any amount of repackaging and strategic marketing affect your perception of beer?
Since 1996, the American brewing company Samuel Adams has hosted an annual homebrew contest. This year, both of the winners were Bay Area residents, so I found myself at a tasting that celebrated the chosen beers. While I enjoyed Alex Drobshoff's Traditional Bock and Mike McDole's Double IPA, it was Carissa Sweigart's Cranberry Wit that was particularly memorable.
Carissa, a sales rep for Sam Adams, was the winner of the employee section of the competition. She used ingredients from her howetown, Cape Cod, to create a sensationally complex beer.
With hints of orange zest, cinnamon, and cranberry, this beer was different from any brew I've ever tasted. Topped with a creamy head, the Cranberry Wit has a cloudy yellow color and medium body. The autumnal flavors of the wit seem ideal for the colder months.
Have you tried the Cranberry Wit? Or any of the beers that come in Sam Adams Longshot Six-Pack ($9.99)? Which was your favorite?
Beer lovers beware, your favorite microbrews may be at risk. Last year, beer prices were on the rise due to the cost of barley, and this year a worldwide shortage of hops is making things even worse. Due to a bout of bad weather in Europe — along with decreased production in the US — the price of hops has risen 20 percent for most varieties, and up to 80 percent for specialty hops. This leaves many specialty microbreweries scrambling.
The purpose of doing this is to get some hops to the brewers who really need them. So if you don’t really need them, please don’t order them. And don’t order them just because we’re making them available at a price way below market. Order them because you need these hops to make your beer. We’re not asking questions, so let your conscience be your guide.
We hope this makes brewing a little easier for those hardest hit by the hop shortage.
I think this is a really interesting choice for Sam Adams. Instead of taking advantage of the situation, they're reaching out to help the community. I find their actions to be rather diplomatic and selfless. How about you? What do you think of the situation?