I’d Tap That: Sam Adams adds a little nitro to its beers and the results are wonderful
Glassware: Glassware for nitro beers is a little different than others, if you are pouring it yourself. Half the fun with these beers is in the pouring because you can be as aggressive as you want. Sam Adams released a line of glasses for its nitro beers with a bulbous area for the beer to expand. If you do not have one of these available a nonic pint glass is good too.
Description: Nitro White Ale pours a hazy golden yellow once it settles, but pouring this beer is a great deal of fun. The white whip cream head is thick and leaves huge traces of lacing on the glass. The aroma has notes of coriander, orange, lemon, and sweet pale malts. The aroma is somewhat subdued, but very fresh and alluring. The taste has wheat malt up front with citrus notes and coriander present throughout. The nitro has really beefed up the body on this beer giving it a medium-full and extremely smooth mouthfeel that is very enjoyable. The carbonation is low as you would expect in a nitro beer, but the velvety feel from the small bubbles is great. White Ale is a very unique beer as it is not a style normally seen on nitro. It is an experience that is perfect for the spring and the approaching warmer weather.
Food Pairing: The addition of nitro in the light wheat beer style adds a bit of body that widens the scope for this beer into many areas not typically thought of with lighter styled beers. However, this is still a great beer to have with a light salad, especially one topped with grilled chicken. Don’t be afraid to use a thicker, creamier dressing such as blue cheese or ranch; this beer can hold its own. Many wheat beers are overwhelmed by heartier dishes, but Nitro White has a wonderfully full and smooth mouthfeel that make it a great pairing with a hearty roasted chicken or even barbecue ribs. While other beers may become lost in the spice profile of the dishes and lack the boldness to stand on its own, this beer has enough subtle spice kick. The microscopic bubbles scrub the palate clean and leave you wanting more. Wheat beers are typically last when it comes to desserts, however this workhorse just keeps on going. Try pairing with an array of desserts like cherry pie, fruit tart, peach cobbler (pile on the ice cream), and even strawberry cheesecake makes for a wonderful end to any meal.
The Final Word: Sam Adams is one of the largest craft breweries in the market today. However, when most people think of large companies the last thing they tend to discuss is innovation. Many tend to view larger businesses as dinosaurs churning out the same old product upon which they built the name. However, this definition certainly does not fit Sam Adams as the brewery is constantly experimenting and coming out with new beers and new ways to release the beers. Earlier this year they unveiled their deliciously fresh Rebel Raw Double IPA with a 30-day shelf life and they just released their Nitro Project line of beers.
This line contains the White Ale, IPA and Coffee Stout. They worked on this project for a number of years and finally settled on a small widget in the bottom of the can, don’t worry its not rattling around inside. The result is a perfect nitro beer straight from the can. Sam Adams proves that no matter how old, or big a dog gets it is still able to do new and very delicious tricks!
Derek Warren is a beer fanatic, avid homebrewer and beer historian. Derek can be heard weekly on the Beer Geeks Radio Hour at noon on Sundays on WILK 103.1 FM with past episodes available on iTunes.
Brewery: Boston Beer Company (Sam Adams)
Beer: Nitro White Ale