Skip to main content

Our First Taste of Samuel Adam’s New Ale and Lager Hybrid, Sam ’76

sam 76
Which do you prefer: ales or lagers?

This is a question many beer drinkers have heard over the years. It’s kind of a silly question, as the terms strictly refer to drink’s fermentation method and not necessarily the beer’s aroma, appearance, or flavor, although there are certain expectations. In a nutshell, lagers utilize bottom-fermenting yeast and ales use top-fermenting strains; lager yeast works best in cooler temperatures while ale yeasts like it comparatively warm.

A brewer’s creativity often pushes a beer beyond its basic, expected properties into something surprising and new. However, there are some aspects to a beer’s profile that are usually determined by the fermentation method. Lagers are routinely described as clean and crisp, where as ales tend to be more varied and flavorful. But in the expanding world of craft beer, you may be hard-pressed to truly tell the difference on taste alone.

Meet Sam '76

Samuel Adams has entered the ale versus lager debate with a novel suggestion: Why not have both? The new Sam ’76 offering is being dubbed a hybrid of sorts, thanks to its unique recipe. After a year of trial and error, the brewery landed on the technique of combining two batches of wort (unfermented beer) — one an ale and the other a lager — early in the fermentation process. That super-wort continues fermenting as a single batch. The yeasts then work together to finish the alcohol conversion and make beer. A late addition of extra hops adds to the product’s final punch.

But the most important question isn’t ale or lager — it’s “how does it taste?” The answer: surprisingly delicious. Sam ’76 pours a bright, clear gold from the can and has a fresh aroma of biscuit, floral, and citrus notes. The hops, including Citra and Mosaic, carry that aroma straight through into a refreshing, quenching beer that pairs perfectly with everything from tailgate hot dogs to lobster tail at your favorite hot spot.

Sam ’76 is available now across the United States in canned six-packs and retails for $9-$10, depending on the market. Find a retailer near you.

Editors' Recommendations

The Best European Pilsners To Drink Right Now
best european pilsner beers pils 2020

No continent does a pilsner quite like Europe. It’s far from shocking, given that the beer style was invented there, but even the slouchiest efforts from nations like Germany, the Czech Republic, and Italy are damn tasty.
Don’t get me wrong, there are some fine American pilsners. It’s just that beer, like so many things in this country, is relatively young. As such, the craft sector is often more eager to impress by way of experimentation than master an age-old category. Hence, the continued dominance of the European pilsner.
Why so good? European pilsners tend to have a remarkable cleanness about them, with equal smacks of freshness and crispness. They’re balanced, refreshing, and do well with just about anything, from pub fries to pizza. These straw-hued wonders show amazing clarity and often deliver flavors and fragrances like sweet bread, with subtle citrus, spice, and herbal notes. Many describe the style as a brewer’s beer due to its inability to hide flaws and tendency to possess a relatively quiet brand of complexity.
There are a few different versions of note. The German pilsner is probably the most popular, showing a lighter color in the glass and often being a bit less hoppy. The Bohemian style is slightly darker and shows a little more bitterness, generally speaking.
There are many worth checking out, readily available in most U.S. markets and shining examples of what can only be described as a longstanding European dynasty. Prost! 

Pilsner Urquell

Read more
A Quick and Easy Guide to Edible Flowers
edible flowers guide lavender flower

Think back to when you were dining in restaurants just a few short months ago. Chances are good that you may have enjoyed a few edible flowers while out and about on the eatery circuit. They add some colorful beauty to cocktails and salads and can even impart unexpected flavors.
Foraged ingredients are always in demand. Now, more than ever, you may be wanting to create something in your kitchen that looks as good as something your favorite restaurant turns out. In that spirit, here’s a brief compendium on edible flowers you should sniff out when wanting to add something a little extra to your plate.
In reality, the number of edible flowers is enough to make your head spin. Here, we focus on some of the most popular and easy to find and identify.


Read more
The 7 Best All-American Pilsners For Summer and Always

It took a while for America to get the hang of the pilsner. The incredibly clean lager beer style was long something Europeans excelled at.
The pilsner was born in the Old World in the mid-18th Century. It was first brewed in the Czech town of Pilsen, a place with a rich beer heritage that goes all the way back to the 13th Century. By the 1800s, there was a movement towards higher quality beer inspired by the goings-on in Bavaria. Brewers and drinkers alike wanted more consistency and the former looked to fine-tune their recipes with better ingredients and more sophisticated strains of yeast.
Thus, the pilsner was devised, a combination of Pilsen’s esteemed local water supply, native hops, and a bottom-fermented approach. It has been a sensation ever since, the most-consumed beer style on the planet. Countless labels specialize in the stuff, from Pilsner Urquell and Stella Artois to Beck’s and Warsteiner.
With so many European immigrants coming to the states a couple of centuries ago, one would expect a decent pilsner recipe or two. And while there likely were some tasty batches early on, it wasn’t long before the biggest breweries took the pilsner and stripped it of its personality. Bright and beaming domestic pilsners lost out to, well, Bud (and sibling beers).
Fortunately, the recent rise in the craft beer tide has lifted all styles within, including the pilsner. Today, you don’t have to sniff out the European section of your favorite bottle shop for the good stuff. Fantastic pilsners are being brewed in Oregon, Montana, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere.

Bayern Pilsener

Read more