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

BA SCORE
88
very good
45 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
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Samuel Adams Utopias MMIIISamuel Adams Utopias MMIII
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States
samueladams.com

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 25.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 06-16-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
45
Reviews:
23
Avg:
4.1
pDev:
14.63%
 
 
Wants:
16
Gots:
12
For Trade:
1
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 45 |  Reviews: 23
Photo of bigbelcher
2.38/5  rDev -42%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

This really should not be considered a beer. It is full of maple sugar. It is definently more like a port than a beer and could really stand to age at least ten years. I bought two bottles, opened one and am putting the other away for many years before opening it. SHared the open bottle witha bunch of my homebrew buddies and we all agreed that this should be left alone to age. It is sickly sweet as is.

 405 characters

Photo of hotstuff
2.85/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Wow!! This reminds me more of brandy than a beer. No head, no carbonation, clear body, red hue, no lacing, and a burning sensation in the mouth and throat. The nose was caramel, malt, and most of all, alcohol and lots of it. The flavor was sweet, alcohol, but reminded me of brandy from start to finish. The texture was dry. Thanks to thedm for the opportunity to rate this one!

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Photo of cbl2
3.03/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance:

A still brown with slight hints of red. No carbonation at all.

Smell:

Reeks of brandy. There is no odor here even reminiscent of "beer".

Taste/Mouthfeel:

Tastes like a blend of sherry & port with caramel undertones throughout. Alcohol feels stronger than 25%. Interesting, but not at all what I expected. Too much like a liquor for my tastes.

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Photo of UnionMade
3.33/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at Extreme Beer Fest 2004.
The "beer" is a deep coppery amber, strangely similar to scotch. Absolutely no head at all, furthering the comparison to whisky. Very attractive for an islay single malt.
The aroma has more in common with bourbon or scotch than beer. I'm not too familiar with cognac or anything else, so I base much of the spirit quality on the whisk(e)y family. Huge fusel alcohol, like hard liquor, with an underlying malty sweetness. The alcohol is strong enough to create a litght burning sensation on my eyeballs. Definite maple sugar influence adds a buttery, woody sweetness, with a strong caramel quality to the malt. Some molasses, with noticable oak and a touch of tobacco. I couldn't detect any hop presence.
The flavor starts with a heavy caramel maltiness, the alcohol punching through quickly, providing an unescapable liquor comparison. The alcoholic burn evaporates some of the subtler features, sitting on the tongue with some astringency. Hints of molasses, honey, maple sugar, and vanilla. A faint nutty woodiness claws through the alcohol in the finish, providing a rather pleasant hazelnut and almond quality, somewhat hinting towards amaretto, finishing with a last blast of alcohol burn in the swallow. A lingering, combustible alcohol presence sits on your breath, likely ignitable. Some sweet caramel and maple syrup lingers, providing a sweetness that offsets the burn somewhat. Heavy, liqueur-like body, still carbonation, and a slick, oily mouthfeel all hint towards something that isn't beer.
I guess you could call this beer, but it would find a much better home in a liquor cabinet. Rather tasty and surprisingly drinkable, despite my lack of finer appreciation for spirits, but there is no way in hell I'd pay $100+ for a bottle of this, however pretty the presentation. If I was more inclined towards aperitifs, maybe I'd drop the loot. I applaud the effort and imagination, but I'm hard pressed to think of this as beer.

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Photo of allengarvin
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Thanks Marius, owner of Trinity Hall in Dallas for providing this. The pour is a nice dark-red amber with no head, but it's not carbonated so that's no matter. Aroma is very "hot", completed dominated by strong alcoholic notes. Taste is very sweetly malty mixed with lots of vanilla-oakiness. Alcohol is noticible but not as strong as I'd suspect for such a hefty beer. Very full-bodied and very heady.

The second time I've had this beer. It's interesting, but a bit overpowering.

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Photo of rab53
3.5/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of twelvsies
3.65/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

Woah there. I'm glad I got the chance to try this beer at the Extreme Beer Fest because I've always been curious but not curious enough to spend $100+ on a bottle of this craziness. Basicaly a beer flavored liqour. It's kind of difficult to review because it's so atypical but I'll try. A bright orange brassy color. Very clear. Of course there was no head at all on this thing. Looks inviting though. You can smell this stuff a mile away. Very strong alcohol in the nose with a super intense sweetness. The taste is much the same. Intense alcohol, intense sugariness. Mouthfeel is surprisingly good and interesting. Gets a low score with drinkabilty because it's so strong. But a good and interesting treat overall. I'm not reviewing any other beers I had at the fest due to the small sample size, but I feel like even if I had a whole bottle of this particular beer I would still only drink the small size. Enjoy at your own risk! This stuff is psycho.

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Photo of Kenny411
3.68/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a connection that had their bottle filled up the day prior to my tasting it. The bottle and appearence of this beer was great. It smelled sweet and looked like a brandy in the glass. For all the hype of this it wasn't all that it was worked up to be. I know this beer takes a very long time to be brewed and processed but wasn't something that I'd be willing to go out and purchase on my own to have a bottles. Jim Koch is a great guy I've met him a couple of times but this beer if you want to call it a beer more of a brandy to me wasn't what I was looking for from a Sam Adams. The good points of this beer is you can't tell that its 25% alcohol. And you don't need much of it at all to tell if you really enjoy it or if its just not your beer.

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Photo of jaydoc
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of David_kent
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of pmoney
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of army01
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of HardTarget
4.08/5  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.

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Photo of charlzm
4.1/5  rDev 0%
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...

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Photo of CharlesRiver
4.12/5  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.

 536 characters

Photo of hockeypuck
4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Running4beer
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
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.

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Photo of armock
4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
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.

 815 characters

Photo of jkane101
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of ThreeFishes
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of BEER88
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Agentveba
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of PopeJonPaul
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
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.

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Samuel Adams Utopias MMIII from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
4.1 out of 5 based on 45 ratings.
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