Samuel Adams Winter Lager
Sam is a friend. He brings me good beer. He is a patriot. He is a brewer. He is long dead.
Today, he brings me his Winter Lager. It's part of the seasonal sampler pack that I've been going through. I have grown to appreciate lagers as I've been writing for this blog, and it's good to enjoy one every now and then. While winter typically sees seasoned ales, a lager tossed in with the bunch is a nice change.
The color is a hazy copper. The head is kind of sticky, and it goes away to leave a good film across the top. The aroma is pungent, which typically indicates a beverage that will have quite a bit of taste. I can definitely pick up hops, which is odd for a lager. The malt smells sweet, too. I'm thirsty, so I'm going to take a sip.
First sip is good. The malt and hops are well balanced, and the kind of caramel in there just makes things better. It has just the right amount of flavor with just the right amount of bitterness to be smooth. I'm really starting to hope that the big swig which comes next doesn't change the taste too much. But, it's time to find out...
Tip-in is a fresh baked bread taste with the light carbonation giving a bit of a fizz. The middle hits with a strangely smooth caramel (more so than the sip let on) as the carbonation fizzles across the mouth. The finish is simple. It's like the flavors just kind of stop, and a hoppy bitterness takes hold. It's not altogether bad, but it kind of throws a bit of disharmony into the beverage that doesn't really need to be there. Still, it's a small price to pay.