Sunday, May 03, 2009
Field Trip: Sam Adams Brewery
With everyone on Facebook and Twitter these days, I feel like blogging is headed the way of the dinosaur. To spice things up around here at DCoE, I've come up with a new segment: the field trip. I mean, who doesn't love field trips? Back in the day, piling in the bus to go to Old Sturbridge Village, Museum of Science, or the USS Constitution was the highlight of the school year. Just the simple change in routine was enough to whip us all into a frenzy of excitement. I once had to stay home sick on field trip day, and even though it was like the lamest field trip ever- a visit to some quasi-planetarium at Natick High School- I'm still kind of bummed that I missed it. Even on television, field trips were fun. Remember Mr. Rogers touring the crayon factory? That was the shit.
For my first blog field trip, a few friends and I took a tour of the Sam Adams Brewery in Jamaica Plain. Despite the fact that I have been enjoying their delicious brews for years, I had never paid a visit to their local facility. It's actually not their main brewery- they brew test batches and kegs for local establishment, but all mass production and bottling operations take place at two larger breweries out of state. So I have yet to fulfill my lifelong dream of sticking a glove on a conveyor belt of moving beer bottles, Laverne and Shirley style. Alas. However, the tour was free and informative- we tasted different varieties of malted barley and rubbed fresh hops to release their scented oil. I also learned about a spice I had never heard of, Grains of Paradise, which are used to flavor the Summer Ale (my fave). The best part of the tour came at the end, when we sampled three Sam Adams products. They give out small souvenir glasses and pass around picthers, but if you're alert enough, you can consume 2-3 pints worth of ales and lagers. It was pretty crowded on Saturday, but the tour proceeded smoothly with plenty of beer to go around. I'd definitely recommend it, especially as a fun activity for out-of-town visitors. We saw several groups who looked to be families in town for college graduations. Okay, onto the pictures.
Ern inspecting a big metal tank:
These big copper kettles are where the magic happens:
And finally, the tasting room, and people who like beer: