Boston Lager Remastered

Discussion in 'Beer News & Releases' started by gyorgymarlowe, Sep 12, 2020.

  1. gyorgymarlowe

    gyorgymarlowe Initiate (80) Aug 24, 2019 Colorado
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  2. DEdesings57

    DEdesings57 Defender (615) Aug 26, 2012 New Jersey
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    O wow I can't believe they are altering their most iconic and flagship beer. I assume "brighter" means hoppier and also that they will reduce that malt sweetness of the brew a bit.

    Also I wonder if this change is a sign of the company being in trouble?
     
  3. thuey

    thuey Disciple (329) Nov 13, 2015 California

    Granted I haven't had a Boston Lager in years, every time I do I'm pleasantly surprised. This news of a reformulation is not a good one - but I recognize that I'm part of the problem. :neutral_face:
     
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  4. beaulabauve

    beaulabauve Disciple (383) Aug 5, 2011 Louisiana

    That’s stupid. You don’t change perfection.
     
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  5. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,081) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
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    The company? Doesn't seem like it:
    Boston Beer Reports Second Quarter 2020 Results
    The beer itself has seen better days...but the current COVID-caused changes in the beer market has seen it doing a bit better lately, IIRC.
     
  6. shand

    shand Meyvn (1,452) Jul 13, 2010 Florida
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    The company is not even close to being in trouble, they are doing better than ever off of the success of Truly.
     
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  7. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Meyvn (1,495) Mar 12, 2013 California
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    What are the odds its all a marketing ploy and they are just putting it in new labels that say its a new recipe?

    Moot.point for me, I'm not positive I can buy boston lager at any of my usual stops and it's not something I would go out of my way to find
     
  8. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Devotee (417) Jun 13, 2017 California
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    That's not illegal?
     
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  9. Crusader

    Crusader Disciple (330) Feb 4, 2011 Sweden

    Boston Lager Extra Dry? (I already thought it tasted dry thanks to the hop flavor and bitterness). One obvious way to make it drier and easier drinking would be to make cuts to the original gravity, say from 13% plato (the last number I saw listed for the beer while they were still listing such specs) down to, or closer to, 12% plato yet keep the abv the same (which they've already increased somewhat from 4.8% to 5% in recent years).
     
  10. IMN0P

    IMN0P Initiate (25) Oct 19, 2019 Massachusetts
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    Looks like the stepped up the abv a little from 4.5% to 5% abv
     
  11. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Meyvn (1,495) Mar 12, 2013 California
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    Isn't that the hazy boi business model? I think Jamil Zainashefd called it Same Beer Different Label in his AMA.
     
  12. flanders_ed

    flanders_ed Initiate (70) Mar 2, 2015 California
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    The company is incredibly healthy (according to their stock price over the past 6 mos) thanks to the likes of their Hard Seltzer Truly and their Twisted Tea, but yea I would guess that the Sam Adams, Boston Lager especially, is struggling for them to make a change to this iconic lager
     
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  13. ScaryEd

    ScaryEd Poo-Bah (2,508) Feb 19, 2012 New Hampshire
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    I think it has always been 5%.
     
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  14. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,807) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
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    If that means getting back to where it started I'll be all for it.
     
  15. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Devotee (417) Jun 13, 2017 California
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    What do you mean?
     
  16. Tallerboy

    Tallerboy Initiate (151) Jun 17, 2017 New York
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    I think OH has handful of IPA recipes, and they just slide the hop profile around. Let's change Mosaic/Citra/Simcoe from 30/40/30 to 25/40/35 and call something new.
     
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  17. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,807) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
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    It may not have been a dry beer by any means, but it used to be less caramel sweet and a hell of a lot hoppier. Especially the dry hop aspect, it had a distinctive Hallertauer aroma that you'd get as soon as you popped the cap.

    So, yeah, let's go back to original recipe please.
     
  18. billandsuz

    billandsuz Devotee (449) Sep 1, 2004 New York

    "Remastered"

    I have to give a lot of credit to the blockheads working OT in the propaganda department.
    Improved? Nah. Enhanced? Nope. Refined? No way. How about upgraded?

    Wait a minute, REMASTERED!
    Johnson you're a genius!

    How exactly does one go about remastering a beer? Like an Elton John album, only sounds better? This is goofy corporate bullshit at its finest.
    Good job.
     
  19. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Devotee (417) Jun 13, 2017 California
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    How many times have they changed? This whole time, I assumed it was the same (or similar)
     
  20. Peach63

    Peach63 Zealot (548) Jul 17, 2019 New York
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    You'd think they would've learned from Coca Cola changing their formula a while back.
     
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  21. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,660) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    I suppose we will collectively know more very soon but my anticipation is similar to what y'all have expressed. My guess is that this 'new and improved' Boston Lager will have a diminished caramel-like flavor and perhaps a lower final gravity to provide an increased aspect of dryness to the beer.

    I will try one when it becomes available for scientific research purposes.

    Cheers!
     
  22. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,807) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
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    The copy in the OP's link says "decades of improvement", so...

    The big change seemed to come in the late 90s, imo. Prior to that the hops were more pronounced.
     
  23. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Devotee (417) Jun 13, 2017 California
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    I wonder why they changed...
     
  24. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Meyvn (1,495) Mar 12, 2013 California
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    They should make a Boston lager flavored seltzer
     
  25. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,807) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
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    It's kind of why craft beer exists in the first place. To continually appeal to the most people leads to a dynamic of becoming more 'homogenized' over time.
     
  26. billandsuz

    billandsuz Devotee (449) Sep 1, 2004 New York

    All this time I thought I was the one who changed. For a lot of us, SA was a fine gateway beer. Readily available. Better than most everything else, at least when SNPA wasn't around.

    Last many years, I might have had one of those giant 18 ounce pours at the airport, waiting for a flight. And well, that's not happening either I guess. But I am not buying it in a store that is for certain.

    Hope they get back to less C-60 and more Tettnang.
    Cheers
     
  27. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,081) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
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    Previous to around 2016, the labels said 4.9% (further back, they didn't list ABV) - since '16, it's been 5%. That is within the TTB tolerance of ± 0.3%, so it doesn't necessarily signify a change of recipe.
    [​IMG]
    MJ's Pocket Guide to Beer (1988 ed.) said "...original gravity of 12.5, and emerges with 3.5 percent of alcohol by weight."
    (Today the SA website says "3.8% ABW").

    Yeah, IIRC some exported SABL labels said 4.8% (probably you pointed that out to me :wink:) might have been from a country that actually measures imports? Think I've got a jpeg in my BBC files...
     
    #27 jesskidden, Sep 12, 2020
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2020
  28. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,660) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    FWIW, that is my guess:

    "My guess is that this 'new and improved' Boston Lager will have a diminished caramel-like flavor..."

    Cheers!
     
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  29. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Devotee (417) Jun 13, 2017 California
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    *sigh* That's what "we" were fighting in the first place
     
  30. Tilley4

    Tilley4 Poo-Bah (2,229) Nov 13, 2007 Tennessee
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    Man... this has been sort of a "go to" when I just wanted a beer. Just a good solid beer... hoping they dont f**k this up...I I will for sure try the new "Remastered" version and I'm hoping for something even better....
     
  31. DEdesings57

    DEdesings57 Defender (615) Aug 26, 2012 New Jersey
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    I dont think that the case at all. If anything I would image the original Boston lager to beer more malt driven with darker hues.
     
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  32. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,509) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
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    I hope they make it less sweet, I might buy it.
     
  33. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,509) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
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    Would work for me.
     
  34. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,660) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    Boston Lager was introduced in the mid-80’s but I suspect that I never drank one until the early 1990’s sometime. My best recollection is that it was very hoppy by AAL standards and it also had a noticeable caramel-like flavor. Were those Boston Lagers different from today’ Boston Lager. Hmm?:thinking_face:

    The person who would very much know the answer to this question is Jim Koch:

    “1. What’s your desert-island beer?

    That’s a stupid question. Everybody always asks that. The quick answer would be Boston Lager. That’s the original. Put it this way: If you go to my house and open my refrigerator, or open the kegerator, that’s what you’ll find. I drink a lot of beer, and I love to try new beers, but when I go home, I’m done with that. I don’t want new, or interesting, I want a reliably rewarding glass of beer. That would be Boston Lager.”

    https://vinepair.com/articles/jim-koch-boston-lager/

    Jim Koch has historically been a loquacious fellow and at times he has also been quite the huckster.

    I feel confident that at some point in time (soon?) he will be spouting off about this “Remastered” beer and provide his unique perspective on this topic.

    Cheers!
     
  35. pjeagles

    pjeagles Initiate (164) May 29, 2005 New Mexico
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    I'm surprised more people haven't focused on the "easier drinking" part of the announcement. Sounds like an attempt to dumb down the beer to appeal to the marco masses.
     
  36. cid71

    cid71 Initiate (116) Mar 2, 2009 New Jersey

    Well Jim got rich making good business decisions. I don't like to see old recipes remastered but frankly I wasn't buying it anyway. Sales are way down im sure so you have to try something different. So many of the old school beers are like this. Classics but with so many choices today we spread our love and money around. There's a dozen big brands you could plug in here like Anchor Steam. Just something I don't buy much with all the beers out there. When I do buy these beers it tends to be an impulse buy in a 19 ounce can , stone, dogfish head , lagunitus, etc
     
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  37. Crusader

    Crusader Disciple (330) Feb 4, 2011 Sweden

    I remembered having read that in an old post of yours and thought "that's different, a beer getting a bump in original gravity as opposed to a cut". Keeping the elevated abv and reducing the original gravity back down some, if in fact they have done so this time around, would be a more typical MO. I think I saw it listed as 12.7% for one year or more via the Wayback Machine. Then again I've seen swings as big as that in original gravity from early 1900s Swedish brewing logbooks, from one brew to another of the same beer (though likely blended to greater uniformity in the cellar). Maybe his ancestral recipe came with not just a target OG but a target span of OGs :stuck_out_tongue:.

    Ah, thought I remember 4.8 being listed on the US site. Might have been an old archived version that I looked up in the past. Speaking of relabeling beers for export here's an example from this year of Karmeliten Festbier which I thought was interesting, the beer has a white sticker on the front and back label covering the abv as stated on the label. This beer has been sold here for a few years with the label reading 5.5% and now they've either been caught with a higher abv, or they changed the recipe and didn't want to bother with a new label, leaving it up to the importer to put stickers on the labels. Then again going back to the Boston Lager even EU legislation allows for a 0.3 variance in abv.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  38. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,509) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
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    I don’t buy SA Lager because I don’t like it, flat out it’s too sweet, maybe as Jack mentioned it’s the caramel I don’t like. It’s also I normally steer clear of Highland Whiskey, tends to be sweet almost honey to caramel as well. I don’t generally like any Amber beer, it’s the odd one that I do like.
     
  39. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Devotee (417) Jun 13, 2017 California
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    I love honey/caramel. If you have any suggestions (beer), please!
     
  40. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,660) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
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    FWIW it has been my experience in the past that as the beer ages the 'sweetness' aspect becomes more notable - I suspect because the hop aspect fades with time.

    A number of years ago I helped my elderly neighbor to do some 'heavy lifting' for a lawn/gardening project. It was a lot of work but I was happy to help him. As a thank you he bought me a case (24 bottles) of Boston Lager. I was grateful for the thought but Boston Lager was not exactly a favorite of mine. I did eventually drink all 24 of those bottles over a period of many months (all beer consumed before the best by date). Those later beers were notably more sweet/caramel-like in flavor than the earlier beers.

    I have read posts of folks who consumed very fresh Boston Lager while touring the small brewery in Boston and expressing how vibrant & hoppy those beers were. I always thought to myself: if I am ever visiting Boston I should tour the Sam Adams brewery to get me some super-fresh Boston Lager.

    Cheers!