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Samuel Adams Utopias MMIII - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Utopias MMIIISamuel Adams Utopias MMIII

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

37 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 37
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 14.7%
Wants: 11
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  25.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 06-16-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 37 | Reviews: 23 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BigPlay1824
5/5  rDev +20.5%

BigPlay1824, Dec 28, 2013
Photo of goodonya
5/5  rDev +20.5%

goodonya, Sep 21, 2013
Photo of Phatz
4.9/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

WoodyChandler is a Saint! Thank you friend, for sharing this with me. I love sweet. I love maple and vanilla. I love boozy brandy-like alcohol (I drink my night cap every night) This Utopias is everything I love and I love everything about it.
That said.
It is not beer - (technically it is I know) but It is Maple brandy liquor as I see it. It is 50 proof. It looks like a bourbon, it smells like brandy and it tastes like only something called Utopias could (essentially calling it self perfection). Some people have said it tastes like the Triple Bock but I have never had that one, so, I must say this is like nothing I have ever had before and is only even comparable to top self liquor. I have paid 75 - 85 dollars for a bottle of Scotch but curently $125 for a bottle of 'Maple Liquor' is ... well, it something I may not have had the opportunity to enjoy yet, if not for the amazing generosity of my man Woody.

Appearance: Pours a clear honey color with no head or lacing it is what I'd except in the appearance of a brandy. Excellent clarity.

Smell: The aroma of Bourbon Barrel vanilla bean, and maple, and caramel, a hint of pecan and butter and *booze* ... lots of maple booze it excites every cell in my body just thinking about it.

Taste: Queue the music.
I wanted fall to my knees right there in Woody's kitchen and throw my hands in the air, "I have seen the light" would come bellowing out of soul, but I restrained myself. If you have ever heard 'Angels We have Heard on High' sung in 4 part harmony by a huge congregation It goes Angels we have heard on high... etc ... in reply Echoing their joyous strains - and then sopranos take off on the chorus with Glooo OOOO oooo OO o oooo ooria meanwhile the chello plucks out the harmonizing line - while the baritones gently harmonize in step with Glor-ia is thy name oh ... UTOPIAS ;-)
Well, that moment is the only way I can describe this Utopias. In both cases every single hair on my arms stand on end. I get the goose bumps and chills run up and down my back and a fully satisfying moment and feeling where all is right every takes over my entire being to the deepest level.
How to describe the flavor that causes this reaction? Well, it is rich and syrupy with an exceptionally smooth body that delivers the flavor of oak wood barrel vanilla, bourbon, caramel, cherries - or a splash of port with other subtle fruits. Although it is boozy the mouthfeel seems more driven by the sweetness than any alcohol burn. It would be a perfect nightcap and a regular of mine at $49. For me personally, this is RIGHT ON! At $125 ... well, it would be perfect if money were no object at this point.

Thanks Again Woody!

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers!

Phatz, Nov 20, 2006
Photo of Puttenham
4.88/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I was lucky to spot a bottle of this at Plan B in Simsbury, Ct tonight. Despite the price ($30 for a snifter glass) I had to try it because...well...why not? Glad I did. Just plain fun.

Like everyone else has already stated, yes, it's more of a Cognac than a beer. It comes in a beautiful copper bottle and pours with no absolutely zero carbonation. It has a ruby copper color to it much like a brandy or scotch.

The smell is like a maple syrup flavored brandy, but the maple aroma is subtle not overpowering. It reminded me of Grand Marnier somewhat (I mean that as a compliment).

The taste is very much like the aroma, a good Cognac with subtle maple syrup overtones. It has a sharp alcohol aftertaste like a brandy, but not as much bite as a Scotch Whiskey.

Mouthfeel is smooth. Yummy!

Drinkable? Yes, if you are a beer enthusiast, this is interesting and a lot of fun. Be prepared to pay though. I give Utopia high marks because it's different and adventurous. Is it technically a beer? I don't know. Either way, thanks Sam Adams!

Puttenham, Dec 24, 2009
Photo of edbeer
4.85/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

As many have said this beer is more like a sherry or cognac it has a beautiful bouquet and the taste is warm and smooth. The maple syrup used in the brewing process is mildly perceptible and also lends a caramel taste at the finish. Despite its sweetness I didn't find it to be too cloying or overpowering and heavy like some barley wines.

In a world of extreme beers this one is very high on the list. I am fortunate enough to have another bottle of the same year cellering for future use and I can't wait.

edbeer, Jul 14, 2008
Photo of woodchopper
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

woodchopper, May 13, 2013
Photo of Marc0d0
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

Marc0d0, Sep 09, 2014
Photo of BEERchitect
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

It's certainly not your fathers beer, now is it? From other BA ratings, I expected a beer that was either over-the-top or misunderstood. I beleive that it is both. Nevertheless, probably the most intense and serious beer that I have ever had. Aromas are mothwatering or sweet alcohol, caramel, vanilla, brown sugar, barley malt, maple syrup, molassas, and a little Vick's 44 to remind us that this one does not belong in the candy aisle. Cashews and brandy bring up the rear of the aromas. Tastes very alcoholically sweet, strong, and a bit harsh initially, but then mellows over the toung and down the throat, leaving a pleasant warming in the throat without the abrasiveness that was experienced earlier in the sip. Mouth coating with flavors of those characteristics in the aroma, but with fruitiness of dates, raisons, plumbs,... The texture is slick, oily, and sugary (in a good way). One sip goes a long way as it lingers sweetly into the next sip. Clings to all surfaces in the mouth. The aftertast is far more flavorful than the initial sip. If the beer tasted this way entirely, I would rate it a 5 across the board. This beer must be treated like as a congac, perhapse a B & B. Remarkably smooth for such intensity, but powerful and intimidating neverttheless.

BEERchitect, Nov 16, 2005
Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at the Pop The Cap gathering in Raleigh.

What does one white ticket get you? An ounce of heaven. Heaven in the form the Utopias. Can you really call this a beer? It's tough to think of something so big as a beer.

Appearance is very much like a good scotch. No head. When I brought the glass up to my nose to sniff it, my eyes watered. It took me 10 minutes just to smell this one. The alcohol is so dominant in the aroma. I also detect butterscotch and vanilla. Flavors are breathtaking, with a myriad of perceptions mingling with the alcohol in a dance of beauty. Scotch aged in oaken barrels, maple syrup, vanilla, smoky undertones...something like this is tough to describe. Mouthfeel is very nice, very coating on the palate. Drinkability is way up there, too. For something this high on the ABV scale, it is extremely drinkable. One to visit again and again, when that special moment calls for something truly extraordinary. Would I pay the price for a full bottle? After tasting this, I just might.

OldFrothingSlosh, Mar 29, 2004
Photo of kbuzz
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

kbuzz, Nov 28, 2013
Photo of BeerResearcher
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Fellow BA, Genaro and I bought each bought a bottle from our friend, Brian at Luke's, in May. One bottle would be opened within the year, the other in the distant future. The resealable twist cap is supposed to keep the "beer" in fine condition much as brandy or sherry can be recorked (time will tell).

The collectible brew-kettle shaped decanter is a copper-coated ceramic. A limited Edition # is stamped on the bottom (01644).

It pours a dark toffee/amber color. There is no head or lace, just a light syrupy slide down the inside of the glass when tilted.

A sherry-like aroma mingles with maple, lemon peel, caramel and alcohol.

Nutty caramel, sherry, raisins, maple, honey and candy sugar are housed within a solid, slightly smoky malt. A mild lemony citrus flows from the middle to the back of the tongue. Traces of milk chocolate and oranges are noticed, as is a slight saltiness. Fumy and warming alcohol is present throughout.

This brew still maintains a distant ale quality, however creamy, oily and brandy-like.

I'm saving the rest till Christmas Eve.

BeerResearcher, Oct 13, 2003
Photo of ObiWanKushnobi
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

ObiWanKushnobi, Aug 19, 2012
Photo of marburg
4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"Smells like whiskey!" Got lots of those comments as we cracked a bottle of this on Saturday evening; got even more of the same from a friend with whom I shared some of the leftovers on Sunday.

And it's true. It has a dominant wet, woody alcohol presence and clear malt sweetness in the nose. Maple syrup envelopes everything else as it's allowed to breathe a bit. A little vanilla perhaps? Golden brown; light, clear amber. Flat, of course, the rumors are true: This really does ressemble some sort of liquor moreso than a beer.

Lots of intense malt sweetness all over the flavor as well. Caramel, maple syrup, alcoholic sweetness. Oaky vanilla, peat, and natural dark brown honey add interesting, if not tongue-numbing, highlights. 25%? Yeah; it's all there. Something of an intense burning astringency that reminds of me of old, nasty, dry sherry closes this out.

With a syrupy feel to it, this is an ass-kicker of a "beer." Do I even know what beer is anymore? Do I care? How does one rate this beer fairly? I sure don't know.

I won't say that I *like* this, but I certainly respect it. And it was worth drinking -- and noodling over in my brain. Intriguing beverage experiment.

marburg, Nov 08, 2004
Photo of UncleJimbo
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at the EBF 2004.

This beer poured a clear, reddish amber color with no foam (almost looks like a brandy or cognac). The smell was strong and aromatic: alcohol, phenols, malt sweetness. Very similar in aroma to cognac, and just as good for "snifting". The taste was ever so slightly sweet and malty with flavors of whiskey and resinous hops. The mouthfeel was buttery smooth as silk with full body and low carbonation. It was very warming due to the high ABV. Is this a "beer"? Whatever it is, it is wonderful to smell and sip. I will drink this whenever I can find it.

UncleJimbo, Feb 21, 2004
Photo of ecoboy
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle 1016 of 2003.

I wish I didn't have to do this. Utopias barely belongs on this site. By style, not a "beer." A malted aged beverage with maple syrup that approaches cognac. So style-wise, there's nothing in this website to compare it to.

Pours like a dry sherry, more viscous than scotch or brandy, but not as thick as a liqueur. No head. The color suggests a light grade or maple syrup with a hint of ruby.

Lovely smell with loads of alcohol warmth... apricots, raisins, burnt caramel and some vine aroma.

Burst of fruit quickly warms to the woodsy round maple middle. I keep expecting some cloying mouthfeel from the maple, but it never arrives. Finishes as both fruit and maple. No residual sweetness in my sample. Unable to detect any flavor of hop that I recognize.

How does one rate the "drinkability" of something that one drinks by the ounce?

ecoboy, Jun 16, 2003
Photo of francisweizen
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drawn from a firkin it seems, at the 2005 EBF. A nice score indeed. This is one I have been dying to try. The pour was liberal, perhaps too liberal in fact, with my sample cup more than half way filled! This is a pretty brew. Flat, yes, but pretty none-the-less. Dark reddish amber, and very Cognac-like in appearance, how can one turn away. The aromas jump out at you whilst you take in the colour of this brew. Yes, they are that strong and seem to shout things like Alcohol!, Sugar!, Raisins!, Sherry!, Port!, Cognac!, Malts, and Plums! The taste is burning and singing with alcohol, but in a good way like a fine strong port, or a nice French Cognac. The taste is all alcohol, molasses, other sugars, dark fruits, nuts, syrups, and more. Truly a "beer" to behold. Mouthfeel is liquor-like and coating and the drinkability is actually quite good for a beer that you drink by the shot, or snifter. Truly a one-of-a-kind brew. I hope every BA gets to try this, without having to spend $100!

francisweizen, Jan 31, 2005
Photo of PopeJonPaul
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had to admit I was initially worried about the Utopia, I had the Triple Bock before and am not a fan, I was prepared for something that tasted like cognac mixed with wood grain alcohol. Nothing of the sort!

The Utopia has a beatiful tawny brown color, not much of a head to speak of, and looks great in a snifter. Incredibly syrupy-smooth and drinkable, as long as it's in small sips. Sweet but not as sweet as I expected, there's a "strength" to the taste from the alcohol but it won't ignite your nose hairs or anything. One of those best-served-warm beers, I would treat this as an after-dinner cordial more than a beer, I'd pass on a bottle of port wine for this any day (and I like port.)

The big question though, is it worth $100? I think so. I've dropped more than that on a night out in Manhattan; bring this to poker night and your friends might let you win.

PopeJonPaul, Feb 24, 2004
Photo of jkane101
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

jkane101, May 24, 2013
Photo of ThreeFishes
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%

ThreeFishes, Jan 29, 2014
Photo of armock
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very special thanks to GregMcQ for sharing this at the Houston BA gathering at his house.

This beer is nothing like I've ever seen before its almost hard to call it beer but thats what it is. Poured a nice dark amber color and produced no head at all. The smell is of strong alcohol upfront thats very noticeable kinda like a bourbon. The taste is very similar to the smell in that the alcohol hits you first then the sweet malt comes through with some oak flavors. The mouthfeel is a little syrupy withe no carbonation at all to it pretty smooth over all. Its hard to rate the drinkability of Utopias I think that for the unique beer that it is and the 2oz suggested serving size its good. This was a beer that I was glad that I got the opportunity to try and think every one should try this beer at least once.

armock, Jun 19, 2008
Photo of Running4beer
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tasted at Extreme Beer Fest.
Holy F@#king F%&k F@%K....Wow this blew me away. This is one hell of a "beer" if you want to call it that more like everyone else said a cognac or brandy. Pours out the color of amber something like a henessey cognac. Very sweet aroma much like brandy, some oak and some alcohol not to strong though. Flavor was also sweet like brandy and alcohol that warms you right up. It was actually quite drinkable not harsh or anything. No carbonation and left a film on the glass like a syrup. This was definitely a good beer I enjoyed it and I'm saving some money to by a couple of these bottles.

Running4beer, Jan 22, 2004
Photo of HardTarget
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle Inspection: The very cool copper boil kettle bottle, with sliding doors, is one of the best packaging I’ve seen for a beer. Screw off top reveals a standard bottle cap which opened without any pop at all.

Aroma: Strong alcohol, but maple, leather, and some whiskey notes make it very complex. Paint thinner intensity made me fear the kick that was coming.

Appearance: Headless shoe leather brown with good clarity and legs that went all the way to heaven. It seemed like it just wanted to give the glass a solid clear coat. Amazing legs.

Flavor: The feared kick was long delayed, in fact at first swallow I never felt the alcohol until about mid chest when the bomb went off instantly warming me. Maple is the strongest flavor, but very little sweetness. Whiskey and mild leather notes round it out, it really is closer to a maple liqueur.

Mouthfeel: Flat, but seemed very appropriate. A bit slick and light in body. Again, closer to a whiskey feel.

Overall Impression: Wow. I guess the major question is: is it worth it? I never thought it would be, but I see the value in this beer. It’s a small glass sipper for sure. For a suitable celebration, I could see dropping the money. Maple is a preferred flavor for me, so it really worked for me.

Major thanks to Marius, owner of Trinity Hall in Dallas for providing this. A very gracious nod to our BA gathering.

HardTarget, May 13, 2007
Photo of CharlesRiver
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Wow! Hello Scotch! I mean beer! The smell to me is much more aggresive than the bite. Make no mistake, this is a HUGE beer! I sampled about 2 oz. of this which was enough for me at the time. The smell is sweet, scotch, butter and plenty of alcohol. The taste was very similar but I must stress the smoothness of this beer. Scotch and other whiskeys just hit you hard, this beer is subtle for it strength. Buttery, milky, earthy and smooth. I am suprised and happy. Would I pay the $100 plus for a bottle? I don't know. Still, I like it.

CharlesRiver, Mar 13, 2004
Photo of charlzm
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2003 bottle, purchased in 12/07 for over $200.00. Opened and consumed on 01/14/08.

Wow, where to begin? Slightly cloudy golden pour with the thickest legs this side of cough syrup. Intense aroma of alcohol. No carbonation whatsoever. Mouthfeel is thick and sticky, but in a good way. Flavor is redolent of the sherry and port barrels used to age the brew. Sweet with an alcohol burn. The flavor reminded at least one person tasting with me of Harvey's Bristol Cream. Unlike any beer I have ever had. Really something else. Fifty proof beer...

charlzm, Mar 02, 2008
Photo of David_kent
4/5  rDev -3.6%

David_kent, Apr 11, 2014
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Samuel Adams Utopias MMIII from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
91 out of 100 based on 37 ratings.