Life

This rare Sam Adams beer is $200 a bottle — and it's illegal in 15 states

A typical beer's alcohol content is between 4 and 8 percent, but if you're willing to shell out $200 for a bottle, you can try Samuel Adams' most deluxe beer, which packs a whopping 28 percent alcohol content.

"It's kind of the Starship Enterprise of beer — it takes beer where no beer has been before," Jim Koch, the billionaire founder of Sam Adams, tells CNBC's "Secret Lives of the Super Rich."

Jim with Utopias
The Boston Beer Company

The brew, called Samuel Adams Utopias, is aged in barrels that once held bourbon which are emptied and refilled with beer. The ingredients include multiple malts, three varieties of German hops, and a yeast that is typically used for creating champagne, according to the company.

Barrels
The Boston Beer Company

"One of the things I wanted to do is bring to beer the same dignity and respect and nobility that's been accorded to wine," Koch says.

The beer is then put into bottles that are replicas of the company's giant brewing kettle.

Utopias bottle and glass
The Boston Beer Company

"You don't pound it like a regular beer, you just sip it," Koch adds.

In 2017, only 68 casks were produced, creating 13,00 bottles available for purchase. The specialty beer is only brewed every two years, so aside from those bottles, the next batch won't be available until 2019 according to a representative for Sam Adams.

There's just one catch: The brew is illegal in 15 states in the U.S., including Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont and West Virginia, according to the company.

Koch says it's illegal "because of the high alcohol [content and] the unique brewing process," which he calls the "lunatic fringe of brewing."

"As a brewer, I'm okay with that," Koch tells "Secret Lives of the Super Rich." "To me, there's only one thing better than great, wonderful beer — it's great, wonderful beer that's illegal."

This article has been updated.

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