To Infinium & Beyond
Like a lot of readers of this blog, I was caught up in Infinium-fever yesterday to the point that I called three liquor stores and visited two others spanning the length of the metro. For anyone still looking to acquire a bottle, Bubbles on North Oak is supposed to get their shipment today...so I would guess some of the other Northland stores (Red X, Gomer's Parkville, etc) may be in the same boat.
Anyways, I toyed with a couple of ideas on how to set my review apart from the rest. The first was to make a crude attempt at a Black & Tan with Infinium and Utopias. That could still be on the table since I bought two bottles. Instead, I went with a side-by-side comparison: the champagne-like Sam Adams Infinium against the champagne of beers, Miller High Life.
I started off with Infinium. The suggested retail price for this is about $20, and you'll be getting about 25oz of 10.3% ABV beer. You're paying a premium based off of what you can get in bomber bottles from other breweries, but that's what these breweries are going after with their rare/collaborative efforts. Speaking of which, Sam Adams collaborated with Weihenstephan to create this one. There's a lot of other special details I could get into, but I'm writing a review comparing it to High Life so I obviously don't give a crap.
The bottom line is that Infinium is good beer. The musk and the carbonation certainly echo the champagne-like description, but there is enough of a fruity twinge to the taste that makes it much more drinkable compared to the dryness of a good champagne. It really kind of reminds me of the cheap champagne my wife likes that we had at our wedding. I'm very happy that I grabbed two bottles of this beer. Hell, I may grab another bottle from the Northlanders.
I was so excited to drink the Infinium, that I initially forgot about the High Life. I poured a taster for the wife, sipped a bit of my Infinium and then saw the mason jar I set out for the champagne of beers. While I was at Gomer's, I was a bit surprised to see that the champagne of beers was at a 90% discount compared to a beer that was simply champagne-like. You also get 7 more ounces of beer than with the Infinium, but at 4.7% ABV you're only getting about half as drunk.
I took a small sip of Infinium for reference and then grabbed the High Life. The nose actually made my stomach turn. Luckily, the flavor was reminiscent of water thanks to the flavor-packed Infinium. I ended up drinking the entire bottle of Infinium before really digging into the High Life. Oh yeah, I finished them both. Thankfully, the High Life stayed cold in it's can after being left alone for an hour. The sweetness is overpowering to the point that I'm not sure why someone would want to drink 32oz at one-time.
In summation, if you're reading a blog like this, you probably enjoy craft beers, and Infinium is completely worth the trouble of tracking it down and throwing $20 on the counter. There's lots of hate going around, but if a champagne-like beer is something that actually interests you, this beer delivers. If you don't like champagne, I'd guess you definitely won't like this beer. If you like passing out at multiple places in your house before 10pm, you should totally pitch in $2 for the High Life chaser.