It’s time to embrace the fact that pickle is the flavor of 2018, and now there’s a new beer to add to the line of everything pickle: a sour beer called Sam-Sam the Pickle Man. It’s made by Massachusetts brewery Down the Road Beer Co., and sounds like a fever dream of someone who loves both Boilermakers and Picklebacks.
The beer is brewed with brine from a jar of spicy Grillo’s Pickles from Boston. The beer base is an American kettle sour, which is a light and slightly tart style. According to Gary Dzen from the Boston Globe, it smells like pickles and cucumbers at the same time, and is tart with the taste of lemons, cucumbers and berries. Down the Road founder Donovan Bailey compared the taste to being sort of like a Gin Rickey with Hendricks.
Bailey didn’t come up with this Frankenstein beer just by mashing up trending keywords like “sour craft beer” and “pickle.” Sam-Sam the Pickle Man was made for the Boston Pickle Fair held in the end of June. Word of the beer passed around longer than the festival, which is not surprising considering the proliferation of everything pickle, from dill pickle vodka to canned pickle juice to pickle juice made specifically for picklebacks.
The beer was only available at the festival and at the brewery in a limited amount, and it quickly ran out. In other words, it was kind of a big dill. Here’s to hoping it’s brought back for the rest of us to try.