Beer of the Week: Sam Adams Stony Brook Red

Posted on February 1st, 2011

About the Beer:

It’s a difficult task attempting to place the  Sam Adams within the American beer culture. As far as craft brewers go, one would be hard-pressed to deny their influence on America’s beer economy. In stark comparison to the American Macro-brewing industry, Sam Adams has remained an independent force providing a fine selection of brew over the past three decades. One of the most intriguing series of brews of late to come from the Boston Beer Company’s first home in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts, is their trio of brews known as, “The Barrel Room Collection“. The most stellar of which is the Stony Brook Red. All three beers are meant to represent Sam Adams’ take on several Belgian style brews.

The Stony Brook Red is done in the style of a Flemish red, containing woody notes and successive malt tones, each providing their own type of sweetness, that help to balance very the very earthy sourness brought out by the long conditioning process this beer undergoes before shipping.

In a Nutshell:

A surprisingly enjoyable, full-bodied, and extremely aromatic sour one would neither expect from a Belgian monastery, nor an American beer company.

Full Review:

No matter what you think of Sam Adams, this beer is a must have. The bold, hearty, and extremely complex notes help accentuate the tart sourness without making it overwhelming. The extra bottle conditioning this beer undergoes helps add significant carbonation without detracting from the taste which makes it all the more enjoyable. However, as this beer begins to warm, and the earthy notes begin to expose themselves, the malty body becomes a bit too sweet to bear. This is such a minor problem, however, that considering it’s so delicious, I drink it all almost immediately.

This beer is easily on my top 10 list of great beers. While a lot of people in America don’t have access to this small production brew from Boston, should you find yourself the opportunity to try it, I highly recommend it.

Rating: 4 out of 5