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Samuel Adams Utopias - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Samuel Adams UtopiasSamuel Adams Utopias

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
99
world-class

1,565 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1565
Reviews: 452
rAvg: 4.47
pDev: 11.63%


Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  29.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 09-09-2005)
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Ratings: 1,565 | Reviews: 452 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of jjayjaye
jjayjaye

New York

5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My 800th Review. AMAZING. OVERWHELMING. ADDICTIVE.

This 2011 edition considered October 2013…while our dysfunctional government was shutdown because our elected representatives failed us in one of our greatest hours of need.

The experience begins as you consider the ale from its artisan copper colored porcelain vessel. A traditional plain gold bottle cap beneath the twist off top is a pleasant surprise.

Pours a still yet brilliant cherry mahogany color with absolutely no effervescence. It coats the walls of the chalice with the oily appearance of a fine distilled spirit.

The nose is aggressive and complex, smooth and beyond agreeable. INVITING.
It has a malty molasses cinnamon maple vanilla caramel sweet fig-like fruitiness that is altogether SWEET, UNIQUE and DISTINCTIVE.

The flavors are as complex and vibrant as the nose. The 27% ABV is completely hidden. The aroma commands your attention while the smooth lingering character of the mouth feel seamlessly serenades you with the world-class flavor experience.

I really appreciate the opportunity to have considered this fine ale thanks to Dustin Fargnolli of Sam the Beer Man…and it wouldn’t have been the same if I hadn’t shared it with a fellow advocate. Thanks Jay

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2013 23:29:43 | More by jjayjaye
Photo of rx-beer
rx-beer

Puerto Rico

5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Limited 2009 edition. Poured into a double old fashioned glass. Bottle reports a 28% ABV but this is likely to have increased over the years.

A - Pours a deep, clear, still amber that beautifully tears down the glass. After a few years, a fine sediment developed.

S - A delicious maple syrup aroma predominates, and is accompanied by notes of vanilla extract, raisin, and alcohol. There's also a hint of oak in there.

T - Initially dominated by maple syrup with a touch of vanilla, and then takes a back seat to the alcohol and oak flavors.

M - Glazes the tongue and leaves a light burn. I find it particularly enjoyable to take a small sip and let it linger for a while before swallowing. Goes down amazingly smooth.

O - My mind is blown every time that I try this very special brew. I love to sit and watch the amber elixir slowly tear down the walls of the glass. Not what I think of when I hear the word 'beer,' but that's part of the mystique surrounding the Utopias.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2013 03:31:48 | More by rx-beer
Photo of Cavanaghty
Cavanaghty

Maine

5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally broke down and open mine after almost a year of hanging on to it. Poured about an ounce into a Sam Adams Sample glass. It was 2012 10th Anniversary Edition.

Appearance: Darker reddish amber in color, no head at all, no carbonation.

Smell: Fruity like notes, figs and some nutty notes as well. Alcohol was prominent.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth, warm, full bodied beer. Taste was very complex. After several sips I could make out several flavors including vanilla, cocoa, alcohol, figs, sugar, citrus, tree nuts and some earthy, grassy notes in the background.

Overall: Glad I bought this one, however I really don't care for it. Yes I gave it all "5s", but I respect this beer. The complexity and the work put into it deserve full credit. It is truly one of the most unique brews I have ever tasted. It drinks like a cross between a fine wine and good whiskey. I would recommend that everyone try this at least once to say they did.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2013 15:35:07 | More by Cavanaghty
Photo of Immortale25
Immortale25

North Carolina

3.33/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a mini-snifter. Received as a surprise bonus in a trade from SatlyMalty and was told it's the 10th Anniversary.

A- Pours a medium brown color with no head and maximum liquid stickage to the side of the glass.

S- Boozy as all hell with that brown sugary brandy-like aroma you find in lots of high gravity barleywines and old ales although this is much stronger.

T- Cloyingly sweet with lots of sugary caramel and maple notes only it's not pleasant. Also just as much alcohol as one would expect from the 29% ABv, maybe even moreso. Astringent aftertaste. Big raisin bomb.

M- Thick, sticky and highly viscous. Leaves a coating of sugar on the tongue as it burns the throat. No carbonation and a fullish body.

O- Thank God I didn't have to pay any money for this especially since it has such a ridiculous price tag. If I paid $200 or more for a whole bottle of this and found it to be this gross I'd shoot myself. Why people actually enjoy this, I'll never know. I wince every time I take a sip. Huge disappointment. At least I got a buzz off just a few ounces.

Update: Had the rest of the dram at room temp a couple weeks later and the flavor as well as the mouthfeel are drastically improved. Don't drink this one cold folks.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2013 05:00:56 | More by Immortale25
Photo of polloenfuego
polloenfuego

Ontario (Canada)

4.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

From the 10th anniversary bottle to a snifter.

A: pours thick like a port or cognac, there is no carbonation, rather than lacing what one gets is legs commonly associated with high alcohol liquors.

S: wow. Smells just like a port to me, sweet and a little boozy. There are definite elements of dark fruits.

T: sweet and rich. Reminds me more of a nice port than a beer, but I think that's the point.

M: smooth and warming. It's a bit slick, and the alcohol warms and leaves a nice finish.

O: definitely not what I would have expected, and definitely worth the chase. I truly enjoy this beer, and have to say it is a wonderful post dinner drink.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2013 20:02:17 | More by polloenfuego
Photo of Juuroumaru
Juuroumaru

Florida

4.84/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2011 Utopias
thanks go to Brian D for opening this bottle for us.
A- Pours a dark copper red with no head. Very appealing to the eye as you can see the legs cling to the glass.
S. Alcoholic raisins but in a good way with hints of toffee along with the slight burn of alcohol.
T- Raisins, toffee, burnt caramel. You definately get the alcohol but its not a bad burn at all very pleasant actually. very little to no carbonation.
M- has the feel of a port/sherry with medium viscosity and a slight burn on the outer part of the tongue.
O- This is an amazing beer if you can call it that. while $200 is steep if you can find a shot in a bar for $20-$25 i would definately say its worth it to those that want to try it atleast once. I on the other hand while mostly likely be tracking down each release if my bank account permits it.

AMAZING STUFF!

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2013 02:17:41 | More by Juuroumaru
Photo of paultierney1
paultierney1

Ohio

4.83/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Angelo generously shared his $145 bottle with some of his friends down at MBBC. What a fantastic treat! This hophead was overwhelmed. Every once in a while, I'll go for a Dogfish 120, but Utopias is way beyond that. What a fantastic brew -- one of the best ever! But at such a cost. Not worth it to me. That's a flaw in the Beer Advocate rating system. Obviously it should factor in the cost, but it doesn't. Yeah, I'd like to drink this every day, but not if I had to pay for it!

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2013 01:10:46 | More by paultierney1
Photo of wyatt13
wyatt13

Illinois

4.61/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Sampled some 10th Anniversary to celebrate my graduation today from Northwestern University. Poured a couple sips into a little snifter.

A - Pours a completely still brownish red that looks just like a whiskey to me. I'm not sure how to score this on appearance because it looks nothing like a beer, and the aspects that I usually touch upon such as head retention or lacing do not apply. Regardless, it is an attractive beer in its own way.

S - Insanely complex. A sweet maple syrup is joined with an oaky aroma. The booziness from the various barrels is incredibly apparent. There is some leathery or smoky qualities to the beer. It really stings the nostrils if I sniff too vigorously. There is so much going on here.

T - Holy macaroni! This thing borders on indescribable. Sweet port or madeira qualities at the beginning transfers to a nice oaky maple syrup flavor. The alcohol burn and sweet dark fruits bring up the rear. This is the definition of a sipping beer. I poured what I thought would be a miniscule amount of this beer into my glass & it is still taking me a substantial amount of time to drink.

M - Slick and heavy. Completely still like a spirit. Slightly sweet residual sugars in the mouth. A lasting burn that starts at the base of the tongue and goes all the way down to my toes.

O - This is something that must certainly be savored at a slow pace & in good company. I know this beer is a substantial financial investment; however, it can be opened with a friend at several occasions and re-sealed without a worry. Truly a unique experience, and one that is worth the price in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2013 04:48:46 | More by wyatt13
Photo of Jeffreysan
Jeffreysan

Maryland

5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The 10th Anniversary edition given to me for my 40th birthday. The latest release of Utopias is a blend of previous beers aged in various liquor barrels. Mr. Dzen reports that beer from barrels from the original Triple Bock 20 years ago, from subsequent Triple Bocks, from Millennium (released in 1999), and from each subsequent release of Utopias is blended into the 10th anniversary edition. Further, Mr. Dzen reports that the 2012 edition of Utopias was aged in single-use bourbon casks from the Buffalo Trace Distillery and also spent time in a variety of finishing casks, including Tawny Port casks and Vintage Ruby Port casks from Portugal and rum barrels from Nicaragua.

2 ounce pour, poured into a cordial glass.

Appearance: Utopias pours a very viscous, yet clear dark amber, like an Armagnac, Cognac, or Spanish Brandy. Absolutely gorgeous in color.

Aroma: Whoa! You can really smell that 29% ABV! Utopias has a very strong, but pleasing not offensive, alcohol aroma, that reminds me again, of an Armagnac, Cognac, or Spanish Brandy. There’s also tons of dried fruit, (prunes and raisons) and caramel and toffee and vanilla. Finally, there’s notes of oak, from the barrel-aging. Absolutely outstanding.

Taste: Another Keanu Reeves, “Whoa!” Tastes very similar to the aforementioned Armagnac, Cognac, or Spanish Brandy or even a vintage port. Lots of fruit, and oak and vanilla and toffee, and caramel, with slight hints of tobacco, all wrapped up in a very long, pleasant malty, alcohol finish. Very pleasant, very complex. I know that this is a beer, but…this is a beer?! Damn, I’m extremely impressed.

Mouthfeel: Cloying in a GOOD way, like a brandy, meaning the alcohol nicely balances everything out.

Overall: This beer is awesome! Extremely flavorful, extremely complex, and extremely fantastic. Utopias will now be placed on a metaphorical shelf of honor next to my best scotches, Armagnac, Cognac, and Spanish Brandies!

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2013 21:47:21 | More by Jeffreysan
Photo of BeerResearcher
BeerResearcher

Massachusetts

4.54/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Let's start by saying Utopias changes from batch to batch. That aside, the first Utopias I sampled was 24% ABV. The next weighed in at 25%, the 2nd to last one from 2009 (this review) topped out at 27% ABV. The latest storms in at 29%!
Poured in a Utopias glass (a gift from A Taste for Wine and Spirits in Cohasset, MA)
It pours a very deep amber teak color with no head at all. When held to light the rich viscosity oils are admired.
The smell is port-like in its depth, although that's where similarities end. Big whiffs of strong dark rum come to mind, as does the smell of Sherry. There's also maple syrup, cola, cocoa and spiced brandy in the mix. The aromas last throughout.
The flavors of Sherry, creme brulee, rum, cherries soaked in rum, then bathed in port barrels roll across the tongue, mouth and throat. A minor taste of Grand Marnier peeks in, real or imagined.
I tried sipping, swigging, then gulping some. Swigging works for me!
Look forward to sampling the newest Utopias...when it can be afforded.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2013 20:33:24 | More by BeerResearcher
Photo of Andrew041180
Andrew041180

Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

This isn't a normal beer, or even an abnormal beer, and I will review it as such.

A - I really like this. Its mahogany in color with ruby highlights throughout. The light coming through the beer is fantastic. Looks like the liquor it more closely resembles.

S - the alcohol knocked me back initially. Normally I can taste and smell anything approaching 10%. Additional attempts yield vanilla, carmel, and maybe a little dark fruit.

T - follows the nose. Also some nice oakiness detectable. Strong alcohol, but the flavors still carry the day.

M - relatively thin, with a calming burn and slight tingle on the finish.

O - enjoy this an ounce or two at a time. I had mine after a nice thick steak and wanted to fall asleep shortly after. Make sure to share this with friends.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2013 02:02:22 | More by Andrew041180
Photo of Michigan
Michigan

Michigan

4.76/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

200th beer since joining the site!

10th Anniversary (2012) poured into a Utopias glass. Served at 65*. I will review this for what it is.

A- Pours perfectly still into the glass. Throws highlights of color into the room as it escapes from the depths of the bottle. Deep caramel amber color. Looks like a very very old spirit. Leaves beautiful, long legs on the glass when swirled. Slightly viscous (like an old ale). Definitely not thin like a spirit.

S- Wow. Let's make a list as we pick things out. There's a lot going on here. Much more complex than any other beer. Toffee, caramel, fig, date, maple, tobacco, leather, HUGE, full, Tawny Port, explodes in your head, rum barrel!!

T- Follows the nose. Carmel/toffee dominates the palate. Well masked alcohol. This lingers forever!!! Like toffee spun out the ass of Tinkerbell

M- Sticky. Syrup. Coats the lips in sweet deliciousness. Viscous at room temperature.

O- an experience I will never forget.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2013 02:32:31 | More by Michigan
Photo of donkeyrunner
donkeyrunner

Massachusetts

4.48/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In honor of my deceased father in law we did a vertical of the 10 year anniversary Utopias and a more recent bottle. This review is from the 10 year anny bottle.

Deep chestnut with auburn highlights. No foam at all, not even a single bubble. I don't think there's supposed to be.

Lotsa, lotsa smells: vanilla, a fair amount of triple bock squeamishness, licorice string, blackberry brandy, maple, caramel coated nuts and many, many more. One of the more complex things I've put in front of my nose, beer or otherwise.

Big and chewy. Vanilla and a whole lotta butterscotch. Maple and fig in back. Still pretty hot.

A tough beer to rate because I don't have much to compare it to other than the travesty of Sam Adams Triple Bock. I'm told it's similar to cognac but I'm not a cognac drinker. I like it and methinks it's very good.

Cheers Ed Lachapelle.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2013 13:40:14 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of sh00ky
sh00ky

Hawaii

5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bought two bottles of the 10-year, one to drink and one to save. First time I ever dropped so much coin on one bottle of beer let alone two, but in the end it was an eye opening experience that caused me to go back and readjust all the top beers I've rated. Entirely worth the price if you can find it and have the extra cash saved up to spend on it.

The beer has a great history behind its ingredients and is unparalleled in it's balance between complexity and flavor. Should definitely be enjoyed a little at a time as it would be a shame to get too buzzed to truly enjoy the experience.

To date the only beer I've rated 5-star.

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2013 00:26:37 | More by sh00ky
Photo of DenverHopHead
DenverHopHead

Colorado

4.15/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I really enjoyed this one! I don't typically drink an American Strong Ale, but couldn't resist the opportunity to try Utopias. Surprisingly smooth, like a good Cognac. This would be fantastic on the front porch on a cool night with a fine cigar...which is how I intend on enjoying this if and when I ever get another opportunity!

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2013 15:19:10 | More by DenverHopHead
Photo of ECBS
ECBS

Ontario (Canada)

5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

10th Anniversary Edition.

Immensely enjoyed by our Beer Society on April 20, 2013. Served at room temperature in 2.5 oz. samples.

Tasted alongside a tawny port, madeira, amontillado (medium dry) sherry, cream sherry (all of which were highly rated online, and only ran between $15-$25 at the LCBO) and Unibroue 17 Grande Reserve - all for comparison's sake. Not surprisingly, the Utopias was much more similar to the fortified wines we tried than the dark ale.

Out of our group of about ten men (none of whom had much experience with fortified wines), the vast majority found the fortified wines to be cloyingly sweet, while the unanimous consensus was that the Utopias was more complex, more drinkable (even with its higher ABV, as most of the fortified wines rang in at about 20%), and much more delicious.

As others have already mentioned, the taste is quite sweet without being cloying. Notes of maple syrup, dark fruits and chocolate. Plenty of warming alcohol. Beautiful colour - dark golden brown/ruby.

Highly recommended for a group tasting.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2013 17:32:30 | More by ECBS
Photo of FliryVorru
FliryVorru

Alabama

4.95/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Utopias are an experience of a lifetime. I just happened (!!!) to find a 2009 vintage bottle in a store in St. Petersburg, Florida in 2010. I dropped the cash and have been sipping ever since. Yesterday, on the 2nd anniversary of buying the bottle, it finally emptied.

It's beer that has become the finest madeira you'll ever taste. Caramel, maple, toasted oak, molasses covered raisins, and every other flavor you can imagine!

If you like madeira, port, or sherry, you need to buy a bottle once in your life. You won't regret it!

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2013 17:39:21 | More by FliryVorru
Photo of ktblue22
ktblue22

Vermont

4.69/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This beer's rating is really a shot in the dark, since I have nothing really to compare it with, but I was extremely impressed with this beer! The experience around the taste also added to each wonderful sip. I was able to try it with my co-workers at a private tour oF Sam's in Boston - one of the brewers came out to let us sample it (The case of Heady we brought to share may have helped!!) and we had such a great time all trying the beer together.

The beer - really more like a lovely sweet bourbon - was intense yet delicate, sweet yet subtle. At near 30% I was pretty silly by the end of my generous portion. Every sip was delicious and different! Mostly what I remember is a milk-chocolate, maple syrup sweetness. Rare to try, but if you ever have the chance, I highly recommend it!

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2013 06:30:35 | More by ktblue22
Photo of TheCuriograph
TheCuriograph

New York

4.33/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

1 oz. tasting at Bierkraft (Brooklyn). Obviously, I may not have caught all (or even most) of the subtleties, but here we go:

A - Deep brassy mahogany; clearly there is no carbonation left on this thing, but its oily and you can see the sturdy lifting of the meniscus around the glass. As you swirl, the Utopias clings.

S - Abrasively boozy and overflowing with bourbon, toffee, molasses and dried fruit.

T - This is I guess what you'd expect 16 years of blended ales barrel-aged to taste like. The hops have long since faded to oblivion, leaving sweet whiskey notes and fig, caramel, berries and allspice. Only a durable bready maltiness reminds you that this is, in fact, beer.

M - Utopias has the consistency of canola oil, coating the full surface area of your mouth and tongue.

O - Nothing like it, but the rich whiskey taste and heavy alcohol content (not to mention the price tag and rarity) would relegate Utopias to the same dining location as a sweet single-malt scotch. A nice treat for a cool evening, but not something I'd seek out.

***

Politics, Art, Beer. A Compendium of Worldly Facts
The Curiograph
www.thecuriograph.com
Twitter: @TheCuriograph

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2013 02:06:07 | More by TheCuriograph
Photo of HattedClassic
HattedClassic

Virginia

4.78/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2013 Edition
The beer pours no head and leaves no lacing except for traces of alcohol. The beer itself is a lovely brownish red that is see through. The beer has a very strong maple syrup smell that mixes with hints of oak barrel and vanilla. Other notes that make a strong appearance is toffee with a bit of the alcohol smell as well as tiny notes of cherry. The smell is interesting in that the smells are, at best, balance and, at worst,, complementing each other very well. The taste is strong and sweet with maple syrup dominating the tongue. The beer has a cherry flavor and very noticeable funk from their KMF line. The taste also has hints of vanilla as well as bits of alcohol. The 2013 edition definitely has a tartier taste than the 2012 edition. The aftertaste is very sweet and sugary. The mouthfeel is extremely smooth bordering on slick but with body. No carbonation but definitely heavy. The beer has a tiny bit of alcohol burn at the beginning but goes out towards the end. Overall, a fantastic beer and one that I will continue to look out for every year.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2013 02:27:44 | More by HattedClassic
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

4.71/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

10th Anniversary Edition. Poured in to Utopias glass.

A - Deep ruby in colour with an amber glow along the edges. As expected, no head whatsoever.

S - A huge port aroma up front. Charred oak, bourbon, toffee and dark caramel aromas with a big sweetness are complimented by a big noticeable alcohol presence.

T - Port, bourbon and toasted oak flavours in the forefront give way to toffee, dark caramel and spiced rum noted. Some grape and raisin flavours in the background and a huge warming alcohol presence throughout that cuts through the massive sweetness. Given the 27% ABV, the alcohol is somewhat well hidden. Incredibly complex.

M - Full bodied. Thick and viscous. Next to no carbonation but that doesn't detract from thsi beer at all; in fact it is complimentary.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2013 00:00:52 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of Fux
Fux

France

4.8/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2009 vintage sampled at Mikkeller bar in May 2012. Review fro notes.
A: Pours a clean, dark copper with no head at all. This looks like a heavy barleywine.
S: Nose is mostly the one of an English Barleywine with chocolate, caramel, dried fruits. Surprisingly, I couldn't detect any alcohol at all. Deep and very nice smell.
T: The taste mainly follows the nose but is deeper, with some bready malts, also fruity, strong but with a low alcohol presence despite a small kick on the aftertaste.
M: The mouthfeel is similar to a liquor, a bit flat, but smooth and still very drinkable given the ABV.
O: I was really impressed with this one. It's definitely a sipper but I would never have guessed the alcohol content. So deep, so rich. Awesome!

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2013 16:54:59 | More by Fux
Photo of chrisgalvin
chrisgalvin

California

4/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Holy cr@p this "Strong Ale" kicked my arse. I bought a 2007 from my local bottle shop and I've yet to drink it. The owner of the bottle shop mentioned that a place down the street was serving it in a shot glass for $15.00 per sniffer. We made or way down to the bar and had a chance to taste it and, fheew, this beer was strong, maple syrupy and really well balanced for a 29% beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2013 04:27:34 | More by chrisgalvin
Photo of Zbyler
Zbyler

Connecticut

4.51/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- Looks like a nice 10-20 year old tawny port. Nice brown, redish hues throughout.

S- Smells like a port for sure, a little oak in the nose as well.

T- tasted just like a tawny port, a little less sweet, but a little more full bodied. Very complex. Lots of flavors coming through. Vanilla, oak, caramel sweetness, dark fruits, definitely didn't taste like a beer.

M- Thick, heavy, warming sensation from the alcohol.

0- This was my first time having the legendary Utopia and after hearing some grave reviews I was pleasantly surprised. I am a huge port fan so this was a nice treat for me. I definitely enjoyed this beer. Would I pay $200 for my own bottle? Probably not. But an ounce an a half was enough for me to experience something great and finally know what it tasted like.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2013 01:48:38 | More by Zbyler
Photo of Thehuntmaster
Thehuntmaster

South Africa

4.96/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle 27,0% Abv.
Multiple servings (obviously on different days) ranging from 100ml – 300ml.
Servings ranged in temperature between room temperature and chilled.
Glassware: Over sized snifter and over sized wine glass.

Review from combined notes of each session.

2011 Vintage.

A massive thanks to JAXSON for sending this gem all the way to South Africa. This is really a beer I never thought I would get the chance to try.

Appearance: Sam Adams Utopias pours out incredibly thick and viscous and settles a very dark brown in the glass. A back light reveals beautiful deep red highlights and golden-amber edges. Obviously even the roughest of pours doesn’t generate an ounce of head. A swirl coats the glass in some of the heaviest alcohol legs I have ever seen.

Smell: My god, I knew this would smell good, but this is just ridiculous – you can literally smell it from across the room. The complexity of the nose far exceeds any other beer I have had to date, with every sniff seeming to yield something new, even during my third and fourth servings there were new characters that I had not yet noted. I am nowhere near eloquent enough to express how well the all flavours combine and interact, so I will simply list some of the notes that I detected over the course of multiple servings. These include: Bourbon, vanilla, big fortified wine notes (sherry and port), raisins, currents, chocolate, maple syrup, brown sugar, deep caramel, dark treacle, toffee, stewed plums, cherries, a little oak, brandy, molasses, dates, some leather and obviously at this Abv, some nose tingling alcohol.

Taste: Holy hell, as the nose promised, the flavor here is absolutely massive! The first few sips completely overwhelm your palate and not with alcohol as one might expect, but simply with the sheer size and complexity of the flavor. The flavor is incredibly sweet upfront, however the combination of barrel character and alcohol somehow manages to keep it from becoming cloying.
Flavour notes include: Rich caramel, maple syrup, fresh honey, fortified wine (sherry and port), butterscotch, bourbon, vanilla, oak, cognac, brandy soaked raisins, a toasted nutty note, dark toffee, a little molasses, a touch of leather, treacle syrup, caramelized brown sugar, a general dark fruity note and of course some alcohol (mind you, not as much as one might expect from 27%).

Mouthfeel: Well this is a first, a beer that even I cannot call over carbonated!
All jokes aside, at first glance Utopias seems to be devoid of any sort of carbonation, however after a long while and careful consideration, I have a feeling that there might just be a few uber small bubbles floating around in there.
The body is, in my mind, nothing short of perfect. It is incredibly full, sticky as hell and completely mouth coating. I actually kind of wish that some of my favorite whiskeys had a body like this!

Overall: As a lover of massive sweet beers, it was a bit of a no-brainer that I would love Utopias, but even in my wildest dreams I did not foresee it being quite this good! It is easily one of the best beverages I have ever had.
I purposely avoided using the word beer in the previous sentence as I think Utopias holds equally much in common with spirits such as bourbon and cognac as it does with other beers.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2013 19:00:38 | More by Thehuntmaster
Samuel Adams Utopias from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
99 out of 100 based on 1,565 ratings.