Millennium madness

Bottles of new Sam Adams beer fetch thousands of dollars

Nov 23, 1999 - And you thought champagne was expensive.


Bottles of the new Sam Adams Millennium beer from Boston Beer Co. carry a recommended price of $200 per bottle, but they are commanding a much higher price in online auctions these days.

Millennium is the strongest beer ever brewed for distribution. It is 20% alcohol by volume. The brewery released just 3,000 750 ml bottles of the special brew. The package contains a cobalt blue wine bottle with platinum lettering, finished with a natural cork and sealing wax, encased in a cherry wood box. All 3,000 bottles have been signed and numbered by Boston Beer Company founder and Jim Koch

Boston Beer put bottle No. 1 in a Yahoo! Auction beginning Nov. 15 and running until Saturday. The proceeds of that auction go to the Colorado Outward Bound School, hence an opening bid of $1,000. By Tuesday afternoon, there were 18 bids on the bottle and it was up to $4,910.

While that was for charity, check out what has happened in the last few days in auctions at eBay and Yahoo! Bottle No. 2020 sold for $1,110 in a three-day auction at Yahoo! that closed Tuesday. Another auction started Tuesday with an opening bid of $1,500 but there were no bids later in the day.

Even though eBay has banned the sale of alcoholic products, the Millennium bottles are apparently being considered "collectible" because they are limited edition products.

An eBay auction that ends on Thanksgiving started at $1 and was up to $1,025 by Tuesday afternoon. That bottle is being sold in Collectibles: Limited Editions. A bottle for sale in Collectibles:Breweriana:General closing on Saturday was at $535 but the seller's reserve was not yet met.

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