Although I've been living in Jamaica Plain for over 6 months, I had never visited the Sam Adams brewery. So when I found out that Gilt City Boston was hosting an Infinium tasting and a brewery tour, we had to check it out! To make things even better, Jim Koch, the founder of Sam Adams, was giving the tour.
Jim Koch is an interesting man. Not only did he create the recipe for one of the best selling American craft beers, but he's got a good wit about him. Among his stories, jabs at the "big guys", and general banter, I managed to note some of the more interesting topics that came up on his tour of the brewery:
- The original Jamaica Plain brewery is actually leased by Boston Beer Company, they do not own the property
- Jim Koch comes from a family of brewers-generations before him were brewers. Jim Koch was the first to breakthrough the competition and maintain the profitable and productive brewery that stands today.
- It was apparent during the tour that the average age of attendees was somewhere between mid 20s to mid 30s. Jim admitted and made it clear that this demographic was the future of craft beer.
- Sam Adams 48 IPA, which was only released for the first time in 2010, is the only India Pale Ale to use hops from three different countries: Germany, UK, and the US.
However, the star of the night was Infinium: a collaboration between Boston Beer Company, the largest craft brewer in the US, and Weihenstephen, the oldest continuously operating brewery in the world. The beer was presented in Champagne style flute glasses, sporting the Infinium logo in gold lettering. The beer was brewed as a traditional ale under the German Reinheitsgebot, however it was finished and stored as a Champagne. This storage allowed the beer to finish light and refreshing, with a fairly high carbonation.
Thanks again to Boston Beer Company, Gilt City Boston, and Jim Koch for an awesome night and great beer!