Traveling for work isn’t always easy or convenient but I do my best to make the best of it. Just last week, I spent a fast two days in Boston. I didn’t get to explore much of the city but what I know for sure is there is great craft beer in Boston.
I was fortunate to check out a handful of places; here’s a quick rundown of what I got to do while in Boston.
Knowing how important Sam Adams has been to the craft beer revolution, I knew that visiting their location in Boston was a must. And since the tour is free and includes a beer tasting, it would be crazy to skip it.
When you arrive and check in for the tour, you get a “ticket” which is a beer bottle label. Each tour uses a different label; our group got the iconic Boston Lager label. You also get to keep this which is a cool souvenir.
The brewery tour is broken into four main parts.
Beer Ingredients – They primarily talk about what goes into their Boston Lager. We tasted malts and smelled hops. It even got a little technical with water chemistry and the difference in yeasts.
Sam Adams History and Brewing Process – This brewery is for R&D and small batch beers made for Boston. In this area they also talked about how Jim Koch brewed his uncle Louis’s recipe in his kitchen which would eventually become their Boston Lager.
Beer Tasting – The group was led into a large room where pitchers of Boston Lager, Summer Ale and an experimental Green Tea Pale ale made their way around the room. The tour guide discussed how to use our senses to appraise and enjoy the beer. And the best part was we got to keep the small tasting glass.
Gift Shop – A tour isn’t complete until you get to the gift shop. In addition to the standard souvenirs, they sell limited edition beer to go. As you leave, there is a small beer garden where you can enjoy a pint or two before leaving.
If you get to Boston, make time to visit Sam Adams. They helped pave the way for what we know as craft beer today.
Related Post: Craft Beer in Columbus
When I travel, I try to get recommendations and this time I got them from @bostonbeerhunter. He has a great Instagram account and knows Boston. When I asked for a place to get some great food and craft beer, he didn’t hesitate to suggest Row 34.
When we arrived it was really busy and we were told a table for two would be at least 30 minutes. However, a reservation cancelled and we were sat within minutes of arriving. I jumped right into the beer list to see that they definitely knew their stuff. Here’s what I got to try during dinner.
In addition to great craft beer, Row 34 offers a menu full of seafood. Clam chowder, lobster rolls, mussels, and oysters are just a small sample of what they offer. If you want to read more about Row 34; check out my Yelp review.
I’m not the biggest baseball fan but there is something special about being at a ballpark. So I wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity to see a Red Sox game at Fenway Park.
I can now say that I’ve been to the historic Fenway Park and the Red Sox won too!
What wasn’t great was the beer selection. I didn’t explore the entire ballpark but I only saw beer owned by AB InBev and Sam Adams Summer Ale. Honestly, I am not surprised but was disappointed. I happily drank Sam Adams Summer Ale which proved to be thirst quenching on a really hot day.
I can’t continue on without noting that Fenway sells Lobster Poutine. If you follow me on Instagram then you probably saw me post it to my InstaStory. They take fries and then smother them in lobster bisque type of mixture and chunks of cheese. It was really filling and equally satisfying. If you go; get this.
It would have been a shame to visit Boston and not get to one of their modern craft breweries. Luckily on my final night there, I got to visit Night Shift Brewing.
I’ve heard a lot of great things about this brewery and constantly see their canned beers posted on Instagram so I had high expectations. Their taproom is simple but offers a lot of space to spread out including a huge patio area. This was important because even on a Wednesday night, they were really busy.
Per usual, I started with a flight as did the others in my group. All in all, I tried eight of their beers and enjoyed them all. Check out my Untappd profile to see what I tried. Here were my two favoites:
El Lechedor: Horchata-style milk stout aged in bourbon barrels with poblano peppers, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla beans.
Craigerator II: Pool Party: American IPA with Cascade, Citra, Simcoe, and Topaz
I grabbed a four pack of Craigerator II to bring home with me as well. Needless to say, this is a brewery to put on your list of places to check out.
Related Post: Why The Independent Craft Brewer Seal Is Important
Boston is a crazy city. The streets are packed with cars that are navigating some of the most confusing roads I’ve ever seen. And the highway tunnel systems are amazing but a little nuts too.
But on a positive note, there is great craft beer in Boston and I hope I get the chance to check out this city again in the future.