I had acquired a couple of Samuel Adams "one-off" beers, specifically "The Vixen (stout)", "Merry Mischief (gingerbread stout)", "Griffin's Bow (barley wine)" and "Norse Legend (Sahti)". These bottles are either first, second or third batch, according to the label mind you. I had these beers for 2 years in a cellar, almost no light touches them and at room temperature.

I know that most of this types of beer gets better with time, except for the Sahti, hadn't explored much of that type, but I would like to know if it's safe for the beers to be kept and for how long, and at a given time, what's the best way to drink them (chill them, room temperature, etc.). Thanks.

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    Safe to keep that long? yes, now how they will taste is the unknown answer. I would serve them at a temperature I normally would for a stout or barley wine Commented May 9, 2015 at 12:58

1 Answer 1


Beers that are high in ABV, have been bottle-conditioned or have been barrel-aged are prime for aging and cellaring. Usually the brewer will say on the bottle or their website what the max amount of suggested aging time is. For instance, Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Stout state "develops over 5 years in the bottle." I bought a case of 2012 and have one about every 6 months...and they get better and better.

They should have been kept at about 50-55 degrees over the time of aging. What did you have them at?

  • Thanks, although I do not know if these have been bottle conditioned they have high abv, I do have some bcbs bottles from 2013 and indeed they had tasted better with age. They have been around that temperature, although I can't say exactly, but at least I know they're safe to drink. Commented May 20, 2015 at 21:38

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