Wednesday, February 28, 2007

On the road

I'm sorry I haven't been posting more often. It seems like I've been running 16 hours a day for the last week or so between one thing and another. All work and no play (well, at least not a lot) makes for a dull blog. Right now I'm in Athens, GA attending a conference. Some of us hit Copper Creek Brewing and the Globe to sample the beer at these fine establishments.

Last Saturday we spent a fine evening with Deuane and Caroline of Harrisburg, PA who write and maintain the Pubcrawlin' blog. Check out their Asheville trip reports. They write a great beer blog.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007


I haven't been too pleased with the new blog format being pushed by Google since they took over Blogger. My inital mistake was taking the bait to change to the new format. Then today I made the cardinal mistake of clicking on one of the blog administrator links under the guise of "I wonder what this does?"

What it did was f*** up my blog template beyond all repair. I finally had to reselect the template which wiped out all my customization, hence all of my links to breweries and other blogs are gone. I'll get them back on here as soon as I can.

Craft beer enjoys double-digit gain in 2006

BOULDER, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The continuing growth of craft beer entered double-digit territory in 2006, with sales by craft brewers up 11.7% by volume for the year. This comes on top of strong growth in each of the prior three years and illustrates the ongoing surge of consumer interest in craft beers.

“American tastes are clearly changing thus the demand for more flavorful and diverse beers is exploding,” said Paul Gatza, Director of the Brewers Association, which tabulates industry growth data.

The Brewers Association estimates 2006 sales by craft brewers at over 6,600,000 barrels (one barrel equals 31 U.S. gallons), up from an adjusted total of just under 6,000,000 barrels in 2005. The increase totals over 690,000 barrels or 9.5 million case-equivalents. For 2006, craft beer posted a retail sales figure of $4.2 billion.


Read the rest of the article here.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Courtesy of Ash, posted at BlogAsheville:

Ashvegas City Council tonight will vote on the following resolution. This is why it's important to keep abreast of your local government:

Resolutions making provisions for the possession and consumption of malt beverages and/or unfortified wine at the following 2007 Special Events:

-Mountain Sports Festival on May 4-6

-Asheville Downtown Association’s Downtown After 5 events on May 18, June 15, July 20, August 17, and September 14

-Fourth of July Celebration on July 4

-76th Annual City of Asheville Open Tennis Championships Picnic on July 19-20

-GoomBay!Festival on August 25-27

-Lexington Avenue Arts and Fun Festival on September 9

-Fiesta Latina Festival on September 22

-11th Annual Brewgrass Festival on September 22

-Asheville Greek Festival on September 28-30

-The Asheville Grizzlies home games on various dates during the summer.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Samuel Adams Longshot Dortmunder Export

I was in my local Ingles on "Lee-chester" Highway and spied a pile of Longshot mixed sixers in the aisle near the beer cooler. These beers are the winners of the 2006 home brewing contest sponsored by the brewery. The whole thing has generated some controversy in the beer blog world since the recipes produced by Boston Beer Company are allegedly not completely true to the submitted entries. As the price was right at $6.99 I decided to see for myself.

The six-pack contained two bottles each of three brews: the Dort, an old ale and a boysenberry wheat. The winning brewer's picture was on each label along with his name and hometown.

The Dort poured a medium-yellow color with average head and good carbonation. The aroma was a bit like freshly-mown grass with a hint of malt. The taste was malty with a hoppy finish, well balanced, and a medium body that was heavier than I expected. The hops are readily apparent as the bitterness lingered on the tongue. Overall, it's not bad but not outstanding. I'm looking forward to trying the other two beers in this box.

Monday, February 12, 2007

50 Beers to Try Before You Die

Our friends over at The Brew Site have been busy compiling a list of beers that a true beer lover should try at least once. Now that the final installment has been posted we offer the list for your enjoyment.

American West Coast (Part 1)

1. Anchor Steam
2. Widmer Hefeweizen
3. Shakespeare Stout
4. Sierra Nevada Bigfoot
5. Alaskan Smoked Porter

European Icons (Part 2)

6. Celebrator Doppelbock
7. Paulaner Oktoberfest Märzen
8. Lindemans Framboise Lambic
9. Guinness Extra Stout
10. Pilsner Urquell

Extreme Beers (Part 3)

11. Samichlaus
12. Cave Creek Chili Beer
13. 90 Minute IPA
14. Midas Touch Golden Elixir
15. Samuel Adams Utopias

United Kingdom (Part 4)

16. Young's Bitter
17. Fuller's London Porter
18. Theakston Old Peculier
19. Samuel Smith's Nut Brown Ale
20. Orkney SkullSplitter

Belgian (Part 5)

21. Saison Dupont
22. Jenlain Original French Ale
23. St. Bernardus Witbier
24. Rodenbach Grand Cru
25. Trappistes Rochefort 8

American East Coast (Part 6)

26. Sam Adams Boston Lager
27. Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout
28. Victory Prima Pils
29. Black Radish Dark Lager
30. Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

German (Part 7)

31. Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier
32. Reissdorf Kölsch
33. Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen
34. Köstritzer Schwarzbier
35. Aventinus

"On the scene" picks (Part 8)

36. Düsseldorf, Germany: Altbier
37. Belgium: Lambic
38. Munich, Germany: Oktoberfest
39. Burton upon Trent, England: Bitter (and others)
40. Portland, Oregon: Varied

Around the World (Part 9)

41. Sapporo (Japan)
42. Sheaf Stout (Australia)
43. Flying Horse Royal Lager (India)
44. Singha (Thailand)
45. Baltika Porter (Russia)

The Final Five (Part 10)

46. Arrogant Bastard Ale
47. Style: Sahti (Finnish)
48. Style: Kvass (Russian)
49. Homebrew
50. Your local brewery's beer

All in all a fine list indeed. As there are a few brews we haven't yet tried (mostly from Parts 7, 8 and 10) we need to get busy tracking these untasted nectars down. After all, life is short and it looks like trips to Germany and the West Coast are in order.

Thanks to The Brew Site for putting the list together.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

De Proef Knock Out (K-O)

I picked up this beauty at Bruisin' Ales a couple of weeks ago. It's a Belgian tripel weighing in at 10% ABV. The cork stopper was secured by the usual wire cage. The stopper was tight and after unsuccessfully trying to remove it by using a towel for friction I finally had to resort to a pair of pliers. A slight twist and the cork let go with a satisfying pop.

The beer poured into a tulip goblet a yellow-orange color with a rich, meringue-like head. The nose was of slightly sour yeast and mild apple. The taste is classic Belgian yeast with prominent bananas, mild citrus, and apple. Mouthfeel was creamy and smooth. The finish was moderately dry with an alcohol bite. It left a beautiful lace in my glass. Classic and recommended.