The recommended serving of this 28% ABV brew is just 1 oz. at a time.
If you’re a fan of high ABV beer, you’re going to want to try Samuel Adams Utopias craft beer, an extremely rare and highly alcoholic barrel-aged beer that they only make every two years. But good luck finding a bottle.
To brew this 28% ABV beer—which comes with a $199 price tag and is so alcoholic it’s banned in 15 states—Samuel Adams starts with a blend of two-row pale malt combined with Munich and Caramel 60 malts, which gives the beers its deep, ruby color.
Then three varieties of German Noble hops, including Spalt Spalter, Hallertau Mittelfrueh, and Tettnang Tettnanger, are added to balance the malt’s sweetness.
Once the beer is brewed, special yeast strains are added including one that’s usually used in the making of champagne and a “ninja yeast,” which can survive in a highly alcoholic environment.
“My original idea for Utopias was to push the boundaries of craft beer by brewing an extreme beer that was unlike anything any brewer had conceived,” Jim Koch, founder of Boston Beer Co., the parent firm of Samuel Adams, told Fortune.com. “I’m proud to present to drinkers this lunatic fringe of extreme beer worthy of the Utopias name.”
This year’s Utopias is a blend of multiple batches, some of which have been aged up to 24 years in a variety of barrels, including Scandinavian Aquavit barrels and Moscat barrels, both firsts for this beer.
This special brewing and aging process delivers a non-carbonated beer, since the high alcohol levels destroy any CO2. The final product tastes more like “a rich vintage Port, old Cognac, or fine Sherry with notes of dark fruit, subtle sweetness, and a deep rich malty smoothness,” according to a statement from the brewery. Because of this, they recommend drinking it in 1 oz. servings, instead of like a regular beer.
Only 68 wooden casks of Utopias were made this year, which means that only 13,000 bottles will go on sale in the United States this time around. But that’s not the only caveat to finding this extreme beer.
Because of its high alcohol content, it legally cannot be sold in 15 states including Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont and West Virginia. As for the rest of the country, you’ll be able to find it in stores starting early next month.