It is odd listening to people describe things. Jim Koch of Boston Beer was on NPR today being interviewed about this new-esque beer that was made along with the Weihenstephan Brewery of Germany. Aside from learning he pronounces his name "Cook" and not "Cauch" - you know, like the former NY Mayor, Ed - it was interesting to learn that the beer claimed to be a newly created something. This is how Mr. B described it a few weeks ago for Wine Enthusiast magazine:
Infinium represents nothing less than a revolution of brewing under the Reinheitsgebot - the Bavarian purity law that limits ingredients to water, malted grain, hops and yeast... Koch says he envisioned a “white space” within the limits of the Reinheitsgebot. To fill that space, he says, they had to rethink both the brewing and malting process, so they could create a strong, all-malt beer that was not overly sweet, cloying or heavy. “I imagined a beverage somewhere between a Champagne, a dessert wine and the Samuel Adams Noble Pils,” says Koch... Infinium pours a light gold color. Its perfumed aroma offers generous spicy notes against a backdrop of honey and florals, while the full and off-dry body carries gentle notes of peach and pear alongside biscuity malt and clove and ginger spiciness, leading to a finish that’s warming without being hot.
Is it that new? In the NPR interview, there is certainly something a bit not completely truthful about the implicit suggestion that beer with a corked top is new. There was no explanation that there are many great strong ales under corks. Something about that art deco label, too. Reminds me of something. What could it be. And look at that description in the passage above. Could be a strong saison or a gueuze or another class of beer we already know, couldn't it?. Or even a hybrid. A tweek of Brooklyn's Local 1 would get us in the neighbourhood, wouldn't it? But maybe it is truly something new. Maybe this isn't all just puffery.
So, I am looking forward to trying this as one thing Sam Adam's has been known for is offering innovation at a reasonably affordable price. Will it break new ground? I don't expect so but it may well be worthy in its own right. Isn't that enough?