1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection) - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection)Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

672 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 672
Reviews: 231
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 15.2%
Wants: 39
Gots: 78 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Aged in oak barrels; hand-bottled corked & caged; bottled-conditioned. A greater percentage of "Cosmic Mother Funk" was blended into this beer.

(Beer added by: Todd on 10-30-2009)
View: Beers (117) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 672 | Reviews: 231 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cwd
4/5  rDev +6.7%

Photo of Tumble
4.25/5  rDev +13.3%

Photo of ThePaleRider
4.35/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Very dark red/brown. Looks like black tea. Nice two finger head. Color of the head is very close to tan.

S - Very sour smell. Tangerines, cranberry, raspberry, and grapes. Very aromatic.

T - Lots of barrel aging flavors. Not as sour as I was expecting. Chocolate, dark cherries, alcohol, wood, and green apples. Very sweet with a little bite of tart on the front.

M - Lots and lots of carbonation. Smooth transition from tart to sweet to warming.

O - Very unique and super complex. Every sip left me guessing what was next. Sometimes I forget that Sam Adams is a real brewery because of their commercial appeal, but this beer is pretty amazing.

Photo of Andrew041180
3.95/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Note: This beer has been improperly stored for at least five years. Temps reaching well over 90 degrees in the summers.

A - Poured gently into a tulip glass. The beer is a hazy orange brown with virtually no head. No lacing.

S - The aroma is actually quite nice. I really gives good insight into what to expect. Strong, but not overpowering acidic notes. A little sweet.

T - Given how long this had been sitting for, I was a little worried. Worries were all unfounded. The dominant flavor is something like brown sugar, but it's subdued and contrasted with a tartness that grows with each sip and/or as the beer warms. Lightly citric acid. There is also oak in the background. The 9% alcohol is barely present in terms of flavor.

M - Not too much here. Billed as full-bodied but it doesn't feel that way to me. More like medium. Mild heat/tingle of the alcohol on the finish is nice.

O - This is a nice refreshing beer! I was surprised that it held up for so long and I'm strongly considering picking up another just to see what it would be like fresh. If I do so I'll certainly update the review.

Photo of shockrocker65
4/5  rDev +6.7%

Photo of Casey10
2.68/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Picked this up when it first cam out in about Sept 2009 been letting it sit for a little while.

Even with some time on it this beer is not impressive or even that good. I would not waste my money on this particular beer again.

I can say that it appears waterdown coppery and the smell is not even there. The taste is like a flavorless medicial cough drop.

The feel is similar but harsh.

Maybe I am missing something but with some great sour beers out there this is not my first choice.

Photo of montrealbcr89
3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

Photo of Fordknox
4.34/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of dextermcgurk
4/5  rDev +6.7%

Photo of DaveAnderson
3.86/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'll admit it -- I'm not a huge fan of Sam Adams. I respect what they do, and recognize that they cleared a lot of trail for the American craft brew industry, but every time I drink one of their beers, I end up wishing they would take a little more risk. Their beers always end up on the safe side of interesting. So when my local shop told me they had a Sam Adams "Flanders Red", I was ready to take a pass.

However...

It was priced too low to blow off -- less than half the price of any other sour in the store. And the flip side of playing it safe is that Sam Adams has a high floor. At minimum, this beer won't suck, right? Only one way to find out.

A vigorous pour into a goblet produces a foamy, almond-colored head over a murky, mahogany and blood orange liquid. This quickly reduces to a thin head, leaving little lacing.

It smells like a sour. I'm also picking up cherries. And maybe it's just the power of suggestion, but now that I've written about the color, I smell almonds. This is supposed to be barrel-aged, but I'm no picking up any oak at all. As it warms, the cherry begins to take on a Ludens cough drop quality.

I don't catch any almond on the tongue. The cherry flavors are still abundant, however. And now I get a hint of the "toasted oak" promised on the label. Unfortunately, this just isn't sour enough. And I end up with a not entirely pleasant aftertaste.

If this had a more complex nose or more acid, I would probably be happy with the mouthfeel. But now I feel like being picky, so I'll say it: I wish it were more carbonated. On the other hand, it hides the 9% alcohol quite well.

I know I criticized Sam Adams for playing it too safe. With this beer, they show that they can color outside the lines just a little. It's pretty drinkable. I'm definitely going to buy some more, just to see how it ages. But for now, it's not going to replace any of my go-to sours.

EDIT: 2013-03-20
I keep finding this beer on the shelf at a price way too cheap to pass on, so I keep buying it and drinking it. It has grown on me considerably. It reminds me of before-the-best-after-date Dissident. I am nudging the taste and overall scores up a little.

Photo of h4ger
3.75/5  rDev 0%

Photo of sneezye
3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

Photo of toppoop
2.75/5  rDev -26.7%

Photo of TheMrFarnham
4/5  rDev +6.7%

Photo of Hopdaemon39
2.5/5  rDev -33.3%

Photo of kerry4porters
3/5  rDev -20%

Photo of MenardMa
3/5  rDev -20%

Photo of jmathis
3/5  rDev -20%

Photo of Cavanaghty
4.34/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a Sam Adams Glass.

Appearance: Deep red almost brown color. It had a beige head that was about 3 fingers thick, and then went down to about 1 finger thick and it lasted a long time. No lacing.

Smell: Fruity and Spicy. Hints of cherry, citrus, hops, maybe pepper too.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth medium to full bodied. Taste fruity up front with cherry and citrus, some peppery and sweet after taste. Definatly can taste some alcohol.

Overall: Another great brew from Sam Adams! I would buy this one again.

Photo of iKrystin
3.75/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Beefytits4
4/5  rDev +6.7%

Photo of fivetime
3.75/5  rDev 0%

Photo of addiwilliams
3.75/5  rDev 0%

Photo of bmoney
3.25/5  rDev -13.3%

Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
85 out of 100 based on 672 ratings.