When we last left off I had 15 more breweries to chose in my top 25. If you missed the intro and the first 10, check this out. Remember, these are in no particular order. No sense in delaying any further… here is my next 8.
Weyerbacher Brewing Co. – If I where to say that these guys are the best production brewers in my home state of PA, I’d be telling you that they are better than Stoudts, Troegs, and Victory. That would be a very bold statement, so I’m not going to make it, but they are the only one of the four that I’m putting on this list. I miss their brews severly. Double Simcoe IPA is outstanding, as is pretty much anything they attempt in the Belgian realm. Oh, and Blithering Idiot Barleywine…what I wouldn’t give to have one of those in hand right now…
Hoppin’ Frog Brewing Company – You have heard our OH contingent gush about these Akron brewers for a while now. HFB makes some seriously extreme stouts and IPAs. It seems as though they have an endless supply of recipes for both. Or maybe they just take one and let it manifest in as many ways as possible. Either way, it’s very exciting to follow, and I know I’m not alone on that. We all know what styles the beer nerds like the most – stouts and IPAs. Good game plan boys. Keep it up.
Captain Lawrence Brewing Company – Over the past few years this NY brewery has been getting loads of praise from media sources of all kinds. I’m sure being based just north of the Big City doesn’t hurt on that front, but they do have 20 beers with scores of 90 or greater on ratebeer.com. From what I have read, they have a passion for sours and they do them very well. Stroll up to their booth, ask about Flemish influence and see where it leads you. I don’t think you will regret it.
Portsmouth Brewery – There is this little beer that comes out of a little New England brewery called Kate the Great. Ever heard of it? Talk about outlandish hype. No matter what feelings you may harbor about wildly hyped beers, you know full well that, given the chance, you would want to taste and build your own opinion. That’s where I’m at and that’s why I want to visit their booth. Even if they aren’t pouring Kate, are they a one hit wonder?
Short’s Brewing Co. – My knowledge of Short’s is actually quite, well…short. Since I have plans to go to MI for the first time this Christmas, I have been doing extensive research about breweries and bars to visit. MI has to be one of the best states in the entire union to visit for beer purposes. There are so many fantastic breweries there, it’s kind of absurd. I’ve already mentioned Kuhnhenn, and will follow this addition with Founders. I’ve decided to leave off Bell’s because, though I love them, they simply aren’t in the top 25 for me. This is not to mention Jolly Pumpkin, Arcadia, Dark Horse, Dragonmead, New Holland, good god… so many to chose from. Alas, I can’t chose them all. Of those that I have never tasted, Short’s seems to have the most community support behind them at the moment, and thus, they make my list. Oddly enough, I received a tweet from Short’s very recently announcing the beer that they will be pouring at GABF. Instead of just posting the link here, in fear of you not taking my word for it and following said link and reading what they are bringing, I’m going to just paste it in below. This is insanity to the nth degree.
In true Short’s fashion, and keeping with the tradition of past Great American Beer Festivals (GABF), this years list of beers to be poured at the 2010 GABF certainly does not disappoint. Short’s will be pouring everything from cult favorites, to popular concept beers, and will even be including a highly rumored yet rarely seen barley wine behemoth!
Blood Orange Wheat Wine
Estimated ABV- 9.6%
Estimated IBU’s- 76
Hops- lots, Simcoe
Malts- lots (from Briess in WI)
Notes- Blood orange puree fermented w/ a super hopped wheat wine, dry hopped and spice w/ blood orange zest and green peppercorns. The blood oranges lend a wonderful purple hue to this amazingly sessionable monster of a beer.
Barley Wine aged in Bourbon barrels for 10 months
Estimated ABV- 12%
Estimated IBU’s- 50+
Malts- 6 different varieties
Notes- This beer had a boil time of 6hrs and 66mins, and was batch number 666 brewed on devils night 2008. It was also fermented w/ 30 lbs of raisins. Big sweet toffee flavors complimented by the sweetness of the raisins. The bourbon barrels add some subtle vanilla tones and slight oak qualities. A very session worthy barley wine.
Black Licorice Lager
Black Lager spiced w/ Vanilla bean, chocolate mint, and anise
Estimated IBU’s- 24
Notes- Sweet chocolate and roasted malt characteristics compliment the additions of vanilla bean, anise, and chocolate mint. The vanilla aromas are found in the nose and in the initial flavors up front, followed quickly by the anise. The finish (especially when it warms a bit) contains the chocolate mint, preventing the anise from becoming too overwhelming.
Key Lime Pie
Golden Ale made w/ fresh limes, milk sugar, graham cracker, and marshmallow fluff
Estimated ABV- 5.5%
Estimated IBU’s- 21
Hops- Cascade, Simcoe
Malts- Pilsen, Munich, Vicotry
Notes- This beer sounds too good to believe, but it’s exactly that. Attempted last year as a new concept beer, it has already been remade twice, and there are plans to distribute a limited amount in six packs. Made w/ fresh limes, milk sugar, graham cracker, and marshmallow fluff we were able to recreate this popular dessert into a heavenly drinkable version.
Imperial Spruce India Pilsner
Imperial Pilsner hopped as an IPA and spice w/ Blue Spruce needles
Estimated ABV- 7.2%
Estimated IBU’s- 90
Malts- Pilsen and maze from Briess Malt in WI
Other Notes- fermented w/ tons of N. Michigan blue spruce tips. The spruce presence is enormous giving the beer a refreshing “gin like” quality when it is cold, that almost becomes “sap like” as it warms up. Surprisingly light bodied considering the big flavors of spruce and complimentary summit hops
Founders Brewing Company – Everyone that I know that has ever tried the product of Founders considers them to be one of the best breweries in America. I have tried their product and I think they are one of the best breweries in America. If you go to their website and take a look at their 5 year round beers, 3 seasonals and 7 specialty releases, you will most likely be impressed. What they do, they do extremely well. This is one of those breweries that you could blindly approach their booth, outstretch a finger, and no matter what ends up in your glass, you will not be disappointed.
Clipper City Brewing Co. – You may know these guys as Heavy Seas. Not at all unlike Founders above, each and every beer that CCB makes is outstanding. I’m a beer geek, and light pilsners are generally boring and worthless to me. Hand me a Small Craft Warning Pils and I’d thank you twice. The thing that would most excite me about visiting the CCB booth at GABF is the fact that, when I lived and drank in PA, the Pyrate Fleet (see brewery website) was all there was. I want some of that Mutiny Fleet so bad!
Three Floyds Brewing Co. – I just laughed to myself. You know, of all of the breweries I have listed so far, for some reason this one seems the most obvious. It’s Three Floyds people, it’s Three Floyds. Ok, I’m sorry, I shouldn’t make such assumptions. TFB makes a beer called Dark Lord. It’s an imperial stout. It’s amongst the most sought after beers in the world. TFB also makes an imperial IPA called Dreadnaught. If Dark Lord didn’t exist, Dreadnaught would easily take it’s place as one of the most sought after beers in the world. Oh yeah, and everything else that they make is delicious. Another note – they host the best brewery tour that I have ever experienced.
Sorry folks, but you are going to have to wait just a bit longer for the remainder of my choices. Don’t fret, you’ll get them before your plane leaves for rocky mountian high…
Another weekend has wizzed by leaving us lost and alone on a Monday evening. But do not fret, Beer Blotter is here to liven up your week with some great beer and beer events. So lets take a gander at what is “goin’ down” this week.
Monday, December 14, 2009
Swift Hibernian Lounge 14th Anniversary: New York, New York
5:00 PM until close @Swift Hibernation Lounge
Featuring beers such as Troegs Mad Elf, a cherry/honey infused ale, Goose Island Boubon County Stout, (need we say more?) Sierra/Dogfish Life and Limb, a strong beer brewed in collaboration by head brewers Ken Grossman and Sam Calagione , Dogfishead Chicory Stout and Ommegang Adoration, a strong, dark Belgium beer. What a line up! Located in the East Village, Swift Hibernation Lounge has an old world pub atmosphere which is great for a relaxing Monday night!
Jolly Pumpkin Maraciabo Especial Release Party: Ann Arbor, Michigan
4:00- 6:00 PM @ Jolly Pumpkin Brewery
Get it while its hot and off the market! Come taste Jolly Pumpkin’s Maraciabo Especial, a rich brown ale inspired by the monastic brews in Belgium and the flavors of the tropics. With a complex palate and an overall sour quality, www.ratebeer.com gives Maraciabo Especial an A-. This beer sounds amazing and please report back to Beer Blotter if you get the chance to try it!
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Bell’s Two Hearted Cask Night: Raleigh, North Carolina
6:00 PM- 12:00 AM @ Busy Bee Cafe
This IPA by Bell’s Brewery is sweet and floral as opposed to bitter. The crisp finish and hop presence is smoothed over when served at room temperature. This beer is well balanced and available year round! Tonight is Busy Bee Cafe’s inaugural cask night.
He’brew Brewery Night: Brooklyn, New York
Starts at 6:00 PM @ Bar Great Harry
The beers are priced as usual, meats and cheeses will be free and the line up for goes something like this:
- Bittersweet Lenny’s R.I.P.A. / NY / 10% / 12oz
- Genesis / NY / 5.6% / 16oz
- Jewbelation 12 / NY / 12% / 12oz
- Jewbelation 13 / NY / 13% / 12oz
- Messiah Bold / NY / 5.6% / 16oz
- Origin (Barrel-aged) / NY / 8% / 12oz
- Rejewvenator / NY / 7.8% / 16oz
Made under the Schmaltz Brewing Company, He’brew, “the Chosen beer” makes quality products and a wide range of styles. People from the great borough of Brooklyn, come support a once Western, but now local brewery!
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Extreme Winter Beers: New York, New York
5:00PM until December 22, 2009 @ Rattle N’ Hum
Today marks the day that Rattle N’ Hum unveils their winter beer tap list and man is it a list! Just to name a few, like 1/3 of the list (click on each beer for a description): 21st Amendment ‘Monks Blood’, Allagash Grand cru, Dupont Avec le bon vouex, Rogue Yellow snow, Lagunitas Cappuccino, Southern Tier Old Man Winter and Scaldis Noel.
Tasting of Harpoon’s limited edition Harpoon 100 Barrel Series, Ginger Wheat Ale.: East Hampton, Massachusetts
7:00 PM- 9:00 PM @ Amy’s Place
Come warm these cold winter nights with a pint of Harpoon Brewery’s Ginger Wheat Ale. The Harpoon 100 Barrel Series Ginger Wheat Ale is an ode to brewer Scott Shirley’s favorite spice, ginger. The earthy, warming flavor of this golden-hued ale is derived from fresh ginger.
Cask Alert: Renton, Washington
4:00 PM@ Black Raven Brewery
Enjoy a glass of the brewery’s sold out Wisdom Seeker Double IPA, the only cask of it made. Get there early and drink up!
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Puget Soundkeepers Alliance Event: Seattle, Washington
7:00PM- close @ The Beveridge Place Pub
Featuring Fish Brewing Co.’s Soundkeeper Pale Ale, a cask of Winterfish and Mudshark Porter. A portion of the proceeds will go toward the Puget Soundkeepers Alliance, an organization dedicated to reducing the pollution of the Puget Sound by making polluters accountable to the law and promotiong education and cooperation in the effort to protect the Sound. Drink some beer for a good cause. Save the Sound!
Brooklyn Invades Staten Island: Staten Island, New York
8:00 PM – until close @ The Wild Goose
Brooklyn Brewery takes a trip across the Verazzano bridge into the neighboring borough of Staten Island. Brooklyn Brewery will be featuring seasonal favorite Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout, the latest Brewmasters Reserve, Backbreaker, another secret vintage Brewmasters Reserve no longer available, and more! In addition, look for new Brooklyn bottles never before seen here including Brooklyner-Schneider Hopfen-Weisse, Monster Ale, their barley wine, Brooklyn Weisse, and of course both Local 1 and Local 2.
Friday, December 18, 2009
Heavy Seas Firkin Friday: Ellicott City, Maryland
5:00PM-8:00PM @ Judge’s Bench
Join the founder of Clipper City Brewing Co.’s Heavy Seas, Hugh Sisson, and have a very special one-of-a-kind Heavy Seas firkin. Maryland grown hops have been added to the Loose Cannon, a hop monster with over 3 pounds of hops along with a few secret ingredients. Other Heavy Seas beers on tap too! Great beer & free stuff!
Yoga Holiday Happy Hour: Philadlphia, Pennsylvania
6:00 PM- 8:00 PM @ Yoga on the Ridge
Yoga + Beer: It’s two of your favorite relaxations combined in a one-of-a-kind evening of holiday cheer. Join owner, Teresa for a Vinyasa Yoga Class. After class, attendees will gather for a tutored tasting of unusual, richly flavored holiday beers and winter warmers. Good for the mind and the soul!
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Free Brewery Tours of Chelsea Brewing Co.: New York, New York
2:00 PM, 3:00 PM, 4:00 PM, 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM @ Chelsea Brewing Company
Come take a tour of the brewery located on Pier 59 in Manhattan, receive FREE samples and discounted pints after the tour. The brewery consists of a copper and brass 30 barrel brewhouse, six 60 barrel uni-tanks, four 30 uni-tanks, two 60 barrel bright beer tanks and six 15 barrel servers.
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Closing Day of Beachwood BBQ’s 3rd Anniversary: Seal Beach, California
All day @ Beachwood BBQ
Beachwood BBQ, local barbecue joint boast craft beers on a daily basis. Today is the last day to get beers featured for the restaurant’s 3rd anniversary. The tap list for the week of their anniversary includes: Hair of The Dog Fred 06, Port Brewing Santa’s Little Helper, Lost Abbey Barrel Aged Gift of The Magi 08 and Mikkeler Santa’s Little Helper. We highly recommend ordering Fred by Hair of the Dog, an amazing beer with a caramel flavor that coats your mouth.
Specialty Bottle Sale: Seattle, Washington
1:00 PM- 5:oo PM @ The Beveridge Place Pub
Stop by Beveridge Place Pub and check out the inventory being sold at retail prices. We don’t know exactly what will be up for grabs, so get there early and stake your claim!
And that’s that, the week of December 14, 2009. Stay merry during the days leading up to Christmas and if you go to one of these events or have an event suggestion, leave a comment or email us at email@example.com! Cheers!
Its Monday again, we know, its getting cold outside and the last thing you want to do is start a work week. Well lets cure those Monday blues by going through all of the exciting beer events coming up this week. Just think, you work so you can pay for beer!
Monday, December 7, 2009
Get A Pint of Black Raven’s Wisdom Seeker IPA: Seattle, Washington
3:00PM- 11:00 PM @ the Beveridge Place
Come get a pint of Black Raven Brewing Co.’s Double IPA. Trickster, the brewery’s single IPA won Beveridge Place’s slot for regular draught IPA. Wisdom Seeker is bitter, hoppy and refreshing.
Granite City Batch 1,000 Tapping: Fort Wayne, Indiana
5:00 PM- 8:00 PM @ The Granite City Brewery
For all of you “Mug Club Members” grab a friend and stop by Granite City Brewery to try a very special beer. This beer was specially made in honor of the 1,000th batch of beer brewed. Quite an accomplishment!
The Remainder of Big Wood Fest: Seattle, Washington
11:00 AM – 11:00 PM @Brouwer’s Cafe
Today makes 5 days of Big Wood and there are still 40 woody beers on tap. Check out our previous blog by clicking here and if any of the beers mentioned in our post are still pouring. GET ONE, GET THREE!!!
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Heavy Seas Takes Over the Taps: Mount Holly, New Jersey
7:00 PM until 11:00 PM @ High Street Grill
Clipper City Brewing Company out of Maryland, is pouring their Heavy Seas line of brews tonight! This list features, Red Sky Saisson, Hang Ten, Big DIPPA, Uber Pils, Category 5 Winter Storm, and Yule Tide.
Brewer’s Night: Seattle, Washington
No time posted @ Naked City Tap House
Tonight is the unveiling of four in house brews by Naked City, Seattle’s local beer bar. The Big Lebrewski, an Imperial Cream Stout aged on Kahlua soaked oak is featured along with the Yankee Drifter, a light Pilsner, Hoptari 664, a fresh- hop harvest ale and Bing, an English Style Old Ale with a surprising twist!
Big Time Brewery is Finally Legal: Seattle, Washington
5:00 PM- until close @ Big Time Brewery
A micro brew out of Seattle’s University District, Big Time Brewery is turning 21 today! Come eat some cake, celebrate in style and go home happy. This event will be featuring a tap list full of IPAs and guest beers brewed by previous brewers.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
A tasting of Goose Island’s Bourbon County Stout: Villa Park, Illinois
Starts at 7:00 PM @ Lunar Brewing Co.
Join Goose Island’s Market Manager, Eric Hobbs as he pours Bourbon County Stout 2007, 2008 and 2009. This Imperial Stout is one of the best and this is a wonderful chance to compare and contrast the taste through the years.
Its the middle of the week and time for some Holiday Cheer!: Seattle, Washington
Elysian Brewing Company is pouring their holiday ales all week. Its getting dark early, its cold outside, you deserve some holiday cheer and beer! Featured festive ales include: Elysian Bifrost, Bye-Bye Frost, Bete Noel, Arboreal Chestnut Brown and Valhalla Christmas Ale.
Rouge Winter Beer Kick Off Party: New York, New York
6:00 PM- 2:00 AM @ The Ginger Man
New yorkers, come one, come all and get a taste of the West Coast. Oregon’s Rouge Brewery will feature their Chocolate Stout, Yellow Snow, Hazelnut Brown, Mogul, Brutal Bitter, Dry Hopped Red, Imperial Porter, Collaborator, and Dead Guy. The Hazelnut brown is a dark ale with an amazing nutty, sweet flavor that does not overpower the beer. A must try!
Cask Firkin of Old Bawdy: Seattle, Washington
6:00 PM- 9:00 PM @ 74th Street Ale House
Tonight, the 74th Street Ale House is featuring Pike Brewing’s 2009 Pike Old Bawdy Barley Wine. Come join Pike headbrewer, Drew Cluley, and sales manager, Andy Walls when they raise a pint of the 09 vintage of Old Bawdy.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Sweet and Sour Event: Norristown, Pennsylvania
11:00 AM- 1:00 PM @ Capone’s Restaurant
For all of you who live in Norristown or the surrounding areas and if you are reading this post, we are SO ENVIOUS of your close proximity to this event. Southern Tier’s Mokah, Dogfish Head Brewing’s Red and White, RUSSIAN RIVER TEMPTATION, Ommegang Rouge. Great List!
Beer Belly Dinner: Portland, Oregon
Begins at 6:30 PM @ The EastBurn
The EastBurn will be serving up 5 courses of great food and 5 courses of Deschutes’ finest Ales while brewer Cam O’Connor answers all of your questions about Deschutes Brewing Co. and brewing. The $35.00 ticket price goes to RideOn, a non-profit that turns to horses in order to benefit people physically and emotionally.
Friday, December 11, 2009
Friday Night Sampling of Yards Brewing Co.: Wayne, Pennsylvania
5:00 – 7:00 PM @ The Beer Yard
Have we got an early Christmas present for you! Yards Brewing co-founder Tom Kehoe, the last man standing from Philadelphia’s craft brew revolution of the mid-1990s, will be gracing us with his presence and pouring all of your favorite beers. Meet a pioneer and enjoy an ESA, Brawler, Philly Pale Ale or one of the Ales of the Revolution.
Avery Mephistopheles’ Stout Release Tasting: Boulder, Colorado
5:00- 7:00 PM @ The Avery Tap Room
A once in a lifetime opportunity to be the first to taste the 2009 vintage of our Mephistopheles’ Stout along with vintage years 2006, 2007 and 2008. This is a great chance to see first hand how well this beer cellars. The $15.00 will be well worth it!
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Stone Brewing Company Open Late: Escondido, California
8:00 PM- Close @ Stone Brewing Company
Just because Stone Brewing loves filling growlers, they are staying open late! Stop by for some live music and to get your growler filled with Ruination, Levitation or the many other beers on tap.
Cask and You Shall Receive: Newark, Delware
Begins at 12:00 PM until the beer runs out @ Iron hill Brewing Company
Join Iron Hill in Newark for the tapping of not 1, not 2, but 8 different brewery’s beer. Real Ales from Iron Hill as well as Victory, Stoudt’s, Stewarts, Yards, Sly Fox, Troegs, Flying Fish and Nodding Head.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Holiday Folly for Charity: Fort Collins, Colorado
Tour of the brewery begins at 3:45 PM, event from 6:00 PM- 10:00 PM @ New Belgium Brewery
Come listen to live music, partake in a silent auction, sip on some amazing New Belgium brews and you might go home with a New Belgium Crusier! All proceeds go to the Larimer County Food Bank and New Belgium is brewing a “special” beer just for this event. It will be a one of a kind, so if you end up going, please report back to Beer Blotter!
And that concludes the week of December 7, 2009. Beer Blotter welcomes events that we did not post and comments on events attended this week! Feed back! Monday has come and gone, now we can face the rest of the week knowing there is good beer to be drank and events to attend.