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Beer Blotter’s Guide To Brouwer’s Big Wood Fest 2010

December 1, 2010 4 comments

Can't miss.

If you live in the Seattle area and you like beer enough to read this blog, chances are pretty good that you will be hitting up Big Wood Fest at Brouwer’s Cafe, if not on opening night (Thursday Dec. 2), at some point this coming weekend. Hopefully you have already gazed upon the outstanding preliminary list which can be found on our site here and on Brouwer’s blog.

Clearly, there’s a lot of options to chose from, and all of us, most unfortunately, only have one measly liver to assist us in tackling them.  This is where we come in.  We drink a lot of beer.  We have been to BWF several times now. If you want to make sure that you order your barrel aged beers wisely, heed our advice.  We don’t think that you will be disappointed.

I’ve decided to choose my top 15.  These are the beers that I plan to sample, based on the current list.  It’s my game plan.  I know what you are thinking, and yes, I actually do think that I can try 15 beers.  When bb.com goes to big beer events at Brouwer’s, where there is never a cover, we make sure to roll deep.  We bring out as many friends as possible, we direct them on what to order, and then we drink their beers (of course we let them drink ours too).  Always be sure to order the smallest size that is offered, every time.  These events are all about getting your hands, and tastes buds, on as many special and rare beers as possible.

This list is, as always with Brouwer’s events, subject to change because it is very likely that the final list will include a few eye-popping secrets.  This year I’m hoping to see a few more special Hair of the Dog beers, more vintage Bottleworks Anniversary beers like barrel aged Ivan the Terrible, and maybe some more killer locals like Petite Mort from Black Raven or some Big Time treats.

 

15. People’s Barrel Reserve – Brouwer’s has started a little trend in the past few years with bringing in some Midwest offerings that are rarely, if ever seen in WA.  Last year we were graced with Stoudt’s (PA represent!) Barrel Aged Fat Dog and some absolutely insane Founder’s beer.  I think it was a maple barrel aged Breakfast Stout or KBS.  Dunno but is was bonkers!  If this is the People’s Brewing Co. from IN, then this is a beer that you will most likely not see in Seattle for a very long time to come.  Why not give it a whack?

 

14. Skagit Oak Aged Gospel – Gospel is an IPA.  I had to have at least one IPA on this list, and I’m proud to support SRB.  You might remember reading us gush about the Bourbon Barrel Reverend at Hop Fest.  If this one is even close to as good we are in for a treat.  Brewer Mike Armstrong is an amazing guy and an amazing brewer.  He almost always attends these event on opening day so seek him out and shake his manly brewer hand.

 

13. Snipes ??? – What will it be?  My guess, Twangzister, their barrel aged sour cherry stout.  If I’m right, this beer deserves to be much higher on the list, but I can’t just go around making bold moves on pure speculation now can I?  I do feel confident putting this on my list either way, because Chris Miller makes amazing beer, some of the best in the state.

 

12. Cascade ??? – Those erotemes could easily read “Barrel Aged Bile” and I would still order it, yes…mostly because I wouldn’t believe that it was actually bile, but also because Cascade shits gold.  Hand me any Cascade beer, any time, any day, and I will love you forever.  Just get this, please.

 

11. Boundary Bay Imperial Oaked Oatmeal Stout – BBB Impy Oatmeal Stout is, like their Imperial IPA, a beer that I can never see and not order.  It’s just so smooth and dark and mysterious.  An oak aged version…shut the f…ront door!  Purchased! Beer Blotter couldn’t heart a brewery more than we heart Boundary Bay.

 

10. Hale’s Rye Whiskey Aged Imperial Stout – Ok, I admit it, I rarely recommend a Hale’s beer in my festival previews.  It’s not at all because I have a problem with the brewery, in fact, I’m a fan.  The things that they do with that hopback of theirs really impress me… but this is not an IPA…  What excites me about this one?  Well, it’s quite simple actually – when I see the words “Rye” and Whiskey” and “Imperial” and “Stout” all lined up in order like that, it’s such a thrilling sight that I absolutely must participate.  Yeah, I’ll be trying this one.

 

9. Stone Lucky 13 – According to Brouwer’s twitter/facebook, this is a blend of Arrogant Bastard, Oaked Bastard, and Double Bastard.  I guess that would make this aka Lukcy Basartd (yeah, that’s how they spell it).  Despite the fact that I don’t particularly like any of those three beers (I know, I’m pure freak), I’m really intrigued.  This is a one time, limited release from Stone, so give it some rare points.

 

8. Port Townsend Maple’s Best BBN Imperial Stout – PTB has always been a great brewery, but lately it seems that they have really been stepping up their game.  I have a personal rule, if I see a PTB beer on tap that isn’t one of their standard offerings, I will never let it pass me by.  I think you should have the same rule.  In this particular case, you had me with impy stout, and then you really rubbed in it with the maple.  Gimme.

 

7. Midnight Sun Beserker – MSB makes a lot of really sick beers that rarely make it out of AK.  Berserker is one that was bottled and came to Seattle in a very, very limited supply.  I only have a bottle in the cellar because DSR and Jess were in the right place at the right time and they hooked it up.  I think all that I really need to do to sell you on this one is to tell you the description… it’s a 12.7% imperial stout brewed with molasses and maple syrup and aged in oak.  Game over.

 

6. The Bruery Three French Hens – I was fairly recently informed that bottles of Partridge in a Pear Tree (the first in their 12 Days/Years of Christmas Series) were going for nearly $300 on ebay.  Ever since, I’ve gone to great lengths to find and procure each new release in the series.  The cellar is caught up, but you better believe that I’m not going to crack one for another 9 years, that is if I don’t just sell the set and retire young.  This will be my chance to actually try one, and you better believe I’m going to take it.

 

5. Hotd Matt – Just in case you had a brain aneurysm in the past few seconds, HotD stands for Hair of the Dog, and it’s in all three members of Beer Blotter’s top 10 breweries in the world list.  Alan Sprints is beer royalty.  We love Matt, which was specially brewed for the owner’s of Brouwer’s/Bottleworks for Bottlework’s tenth anniversary.  It’s sour, and like every beer from this Portland brewery, it’s fantastic.  We are very hopeful that this is not the only HotD on the taplist come Thursday, but if it is, we will never complain, because we just savored Matt (the beer, not the person, but hey Matt(s)…call me).

 

4. The Bruery Coton – I know, I’m sort of obsessed with The Bruery, but god damn it they deserve my obsession!  Coton is The Bruery’s second anniversary beer and it’s basically a blend of oak barrel aged Papier (their first anniversary beer) and a new, un-aged brew of Papier, which is an old ale.  When I bought a bottle of Papier in ’09 I thought it was a little overpriced, but Coton is probably the most expensive “new” beer I have ever bought.  Get it on tap, if for no other reason than the fact that it will be slightly more affordable.  Oh yeah, also because old ales are amazing and their version is beyond amazing, and very rare.

 

3. New Belgium Sour Blackberry Whiskey – So I’m not 100% sure of this, but some mild research has lent me to believe that this is NBB’s Love (true lambic, foeder #3, blended into La Folie & Le Terroir, insanely, amazingly good, amazed that it’s made in America and not Belgium…), transferred into whiskey barrels and aged with blackberries.  If I’m right, this might be the greatest beer on Earth.  Again, speculation, blah, blah…

 

2. Firestone Walker 14 – Like far too many beers, I went to great lengths to get this beer in the bottle and could only afford one, so I have it but have never had it, if you know what I mean.  DSR and Jess had it during SD Beer Week and said it blew their collective mind.  If I went into what this beer consisted of here…well…this article would take a lot longer to read than it has already taken you.  Just check out this post by the good people over at beernews.org and salivate yourself into a puddle.

 

1. Russian River Deviation – HAHA!  Wow…where to start.  Ok Tim, try to keep it together… Every time that I see this beer on tap at Brouwer’s I treat it like it’s the last time I’ll ever have it.  Deep inside I know that that isn’t really true, because I have a bottle in my cellar that I bought on the day that it came out in ’08, but who knows, my house could burn down some day or global warming could scorch the Earth’s crust and it could boil itself undrinkable.  I consider that bottle to be the most valuable bottle of beer that I currently own.  Yeah that whole Partridge in a Pear Tree thing, if it’s true, might prove me wrong, but there’s more to it than monetary value alone. 

Deviation is the best Russian River beer that I have ever had (and that puts it very high on my all time list, if not at the top).  Also, Bottleworks periodically pulls some out of their cellar and sells it for nearly $100 a bottle.  I think I bought it for $15.  This beer is the epitome of rare and the epitome of mind-blowingly delicious.  Please, don’t order this so that I can drink it all, that is, if it really does still exist…

 

Terrible

 

Events for Week of February 8, 2010

February 8, 2010 1 comment

Jolly Pumpkin Cafe and Brewery

A quick shout out to something unrelated to beer.  Congrats to the New Orleans Saints for their incredible season and Super Bowl win. New Orleans is a city close to Beer Blotter’s heart and we couldn’t be happier. So a toast in honor of a team and city well deserving of a celebration.  WHO DAT??  And now, without further ado, your weekly beer events.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Jolly Pumpkin Madrugada Obscura Release Party: Ann Arbor, Michigan

6:00PM @ Jolly Pumpkin Cafe and Brewery

Be one of the first beer drinkers to taste this stout by Jolly Pumpkin tonight at 6:00PM. Madrugada stands for “Dark Dawn”, and this Belgian inspired stout is as dark as a moonless midnight, and brimming with roasted malts and bitter hops.  This beer is seasonal, so get it while it lasts!

New Belgium Beer Tasting: Greenville, South Carolina

7:00PM-9:00PM @ Brixx Wood Fired Pizza

This tasting will feature New Belgium‘s spring seasonal Mighty Arrow, newly released Ranger IPA, 1554 Black beer, and of course Fat tire. Enjoy all of these with a few snacks while New Belgium’s local rep talks about the brewery and answer some questions.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Russian River ‘tion Night: San Fransisco, California

6:00PM-12:00PM @ Toronado

Stop by San Fran’s legendary beer bar and indulge in all the goodness Russian River Brewing Co. has to offer. Beers such as (this is not official, just an assumption, so call 415.863.2276 if your looking for a specific brew) Publication, Consecration, Deviation, Damnation, Sanctification, Supplication….Temptation. Seriously if only 3 of those beers are on tap, its worth the trip.

Smuttynose Tasting: Hooksett, New Hampshire

4:30PM-7:30PM @ Berts Better Beers

On the docket for tonight, Smuttynose Brewing Co.’s Big A, Baltic Porter, Wheat Wine, Barleywine and (hopefully) the Imperial Stout.  We recently had the Wheat Wine and it is AMAZING. GO THERE, DRINK BEER, REPORT BACK!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Stone Brewing Co. Cask Tasting and Meet and Greet: Washington, DC

6:00PM-10:00PM @ Birch and Barley

What to expect on cask tonight from Stone Brewing Co.? LEVITATION ALE; SMOKED PORTER; ARROGANT BASTARD. Done, Done and Done.

St. Bernardus Beer Dinner: Tampa, Florida

7:00PM-9:00PM @ Mr. Dunderbak’s

Not only will you be able to taste amazing food and sample St. Bernardus beers, you will be able to meet the brewer, Marco in from Belgium. Lamb, mussels, salad and brie tarts will grace the menu tonight.  The Witbier, Triple, Prior 8 and Apt 12 will be paired with the delicious menu.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Meet the Brewers of New Old Lompoc Brewing Co.: Portland, Oregon

6:00PM-8:00PM @ Green Dragon

Join all the New Old Lompoc brewers: Dave “Chowdah” Fleming, Bryan Kielty, Zach Beckwith, Sam Orlansky and Jerry Fechter for a meet the brewers session.

Some Like it Hop: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

6:00PM-8:00PM @ Allegheny HYP Club

The tasting includes beer samples, gourmet appetizers prepared by Chef Shawn, and a presentation on the selected beers.  The cost to attend is $15 per person. Please RSVP for the event at the Malt Daddy website.  Featured beers include: Troeg’s Nugget Nectar; Weyerbacher Double Simcoe IPA; Dogfish Head Olde School Barleywine and Victory Old Horizontal Barleywine.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Launch of Midnight Sun Brewing Co.: San Fransisco, California

6:00PM-9:00PM @ City Beer Store

California Beer Week continues into the weekend with a launch party for Midnight Sun Brewing Co. Although the beers are not listed, even on City Beer Store’s website, draft and bottle products will be available!  This brewery has so many great beers, you really cannot go wrong!

Sour Ale Tasting: Aliso Viejo, California

6:00PM-8:00PM @ Pacific Park Market

CHECK THIS OUT—-> Jolly Pumpkin La Roja; Russian River Supplication (batch 4); Russian River Consecration (batch 3); Bruery Oude Tart; Russian River Beatification and Weyerbacher Riserva. Its only $5 per person to enjoy all of these amazing sour beers. Don’t miss out!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Big Woody 2010: Brooklyn, New York

11:00AM- 12:00PM @ Spuyten Duyvil

Bottles, Drafts and Casks…this event is not only at a extremely cool beer bar in BK, it features some AMAZING beers. For the full list, go to Beer Advocates’ website or click here.  Here is a glimpse into the epic beer drinking that those of you in attendance will endure (oh yea, these beers are all 10% and above- enjoy): from the tap-Mikkeller Black (17.5%, Denmark); In Gravity Poured Wooden Barrels-Schneider Aventinus Weizen-Eisbock (12%, Germany) and on the bottle list-Brooklyn Black Ops 2008 (10.7%-Brooklyn, NY, USA).  Make sure to store the cab company’s number in your phone before going to this event!

Strong Ale Fest: Boyertown, Pennsylvania

12:15PM- 12:15AM @ Union Jack’s Inn On The Manatawny

Similarly themed to the above event, this Strong Ale Fest will feature beers all 10% and higher….so keep that in mind when your throwing ‘em back tonight. A few of the beers available for these 12 hours include, Dogfish Head World Wide Stout 18%; Founders Black Biscuit Barrel Aged Porter 11% and Lost Abbey Angels Share 12%.

February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

Valentine’s Day Beer Dinner: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

6:00PM- 8:00PM @ Hawthornes

We cant think of a better way to show your love for another than with and among amazing beers.  Tonight at  Hawthornes, celebrate your love with three courses and the following beers, Southern Tier 07 Choklat; Kasteel Rouge; Rosee d’ Hibiscus (Dieu Du Ciel) and Bells Oaked Aged Two-Hearted Ale. All for $60.00/person. Call (215) 627-3012 for reservations!

Have a Heart for Haiti: Bellingham, Washington

11:00AM-9:00PM @ Boundary Bay Brewing Co.

Ribeye Steak with Wort Compound Butter, Sea Bass in Pappilote, and Mussels in Spicy Red Sauce with Chorizo are just a few of the Special menu choices for Valentines Day. The menu will be available at 5pm along with our regular menu choices. Tables set for two and Music sets by The Mt Baker Toppers starting at 6pm and 7pm. Reservations are recommended. Servers will be donating a portion of their tips & all the proceeds from our Have a Heart dessert will go the Red Cross.

So have a great week, give some love to Haiti, give that someone special a big kiss and drink great beer!  If you go to an event, would like us to report on an event or just want to spread the BB love, leave a comment or email us at beerblotter@gmail.com


Events for the Week of January 11, 2010

January 12, 2010 1 comment

Bodega Cafe, Columbus, Ohio

After an amazing beer weekend in Portland, Oregon (more on that tomorrow), Beer Blotter is back on schedule with your weekly events. The weeks just keep passing us by and many great beer related festivals await us here in Seattle (Belgiumfest 2010 and Strangebrew festival). But for now, here is what’s going on in Beer USA.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Stout Fest: Chicago, Illinois

11:00 AM until close @ Quenchers Saloon

We are already on day 11 of 31. Yes, thats right, Stout Fest runs from January 1, 2010 until January 31, 2010- every single day. The goal? Well Quenchers has created four groups with five stouts in each group (buy four stouts, get one free). Spend the month of January drinking as many stouts as possible and “closing out” each group and winning congratulatory stouts. Here a beer from each group: Founder’s Breakfast Stout, Avery’s Out of Bounds Stout, Hitachino Espresso Stout and Left Hand Oak Aged Imp. Stout.

Bridgeport Tasting and Meet the Brewer: Portland, Oregon

6:00PM- 8:00PM @ Belmont Station

Come join local craft brewers for a tasting at Belmont Station. BridgePort Brewing Co. is considered Portland’s oldest craft brewing company. Tonight you will be able to sample, the Highland Ambush Scotch Ale, Hop Czar, Bourbon Barrel Aged Ebenezer and MORE

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Founders Black Biscuit Tapping Party: Columbus, Ohio

7:00-9:00 PM @ Bodgea

Details from ratebeer.com state, “Special guests Michael Bell and John Host from Founders Brewing Co. will be in to tap Founders Black Biscuit, an old ale/porter that was aged in a maple bourbon barrel that was stored in the old gypsum mines beneath Grand Rapids. 11% abv 50 ibu’s .” Founders is a one of a kind brewery and specializes in stouts and porters. This event is not to be missed. It is free and 50% happy hour prices will apply between the hours of 7:00PM and 8:00PM.

Weyerbacher Fireside Ale Promotion Night: Mount Holly, New Jersey

7:00PM- close @ High Street Grill

Stop by High Street Grill and enjoy a pint of Weyerbacker’s Fireside Ale, a dark ale with a hint of roasted, smoke flavor. From 7:00PM-10:00PM this beer will be featured along side 16 other taps, live Irish music and $10.00 all you can eat mussels. A perfect food paring for a beer with a rich maltiness, slight bitterness and robust flavor.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

3 Floyd’s Night: Jefferson, Indiana

4:00PM until close @ Rocky’s Sub Pub

If you do not go to this event, we will be so disappointed!  Not only can you enjoy a pizza from Rocky’s, you get to try 10 or more beers from 3 Floyd’s Brewing Co. What the beer drinkers of Seattle would do for such an event! Here….it….is….Moloko, a sweet stout, Dreadnaught IPA, Ham on Rye, Broo Doo, an Oktober style brew, Pride and Joy, Alpha King, Gumballhead, Alpha Klaus, Robert the Bruce, Großer Kurfürst, and Alpha King on cask. Not to mention, Lincoln Anderson will be there from the brewery!

Goose Island Beers Galore!: New York, New York

5:00PM- until close @ Rattle-N-Hum

20 taps are a flowing tonight and all of them are from Goose Island Brewery. In our humble opinion here are a few you should try: Matilda, Bourbon County Stout, Pere Jacques and Demolition.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Dogfish Head Night: Glenside, Pennsylvania

starts at 7:00 PM @ Union Jacks

The following Dogfish Head beers will be tapped this Thursday, World Wide Stout, 120 Minute IPA and Burton Baton. Do not forget all the free giveaway and the buffalo wings that patron’s rave about!

Michigan Microbrew Night: Lansing, Michigan

7:00PM-9:00PM @ Reno’s Sports Bar West

For only two hours, you can come experience the great beers of the Mid-western state that is Michigan. Featured breweries include Atwater, Founders, Arcadia, Michigan, Mount Pleasant, Shorts, Bell’s, New Holland, Dark Horse and Dragonmead. $15 Advance, $20 at door, includes 10 samples, snacks, and a raffle drawing.  There is a whole lot going on in these two hours!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Great Alaska Beer and Barleywine Festival: Anchorage, Alaska

5:00PM- 10:00 PM @ William A. Egan Convention Center

The price of this festival rivals that of many at $30.00. The major difference is that you get 30 tastes! Make sure you grab some food during and stay hydrated! Live music and amazing food will accompany a line of beers worth the trek across Canada.  Dogfish head features their Chicory Stout, Great Divide’s Old Ruffian Barleywine will grace the stage, Midnight Sun Brewing Co. has 10 beers for pouring (TEN!), Brewery Ommegang., Orval, Rochefort, Rodenbach…it certainly does not start nor stop there. Check out the event’s official website here!

Black Tot Day with Avery Brewing: Boulder, Colorado

5:00PM- 8:00PM @ Avery Brewing Co.

Straight from “source”–> Be there to make sure you get some bottles of this incredible and indelibly unique brew. Imperial Oatmeal Stout aged in Gosling’s Rum barrels. Huge. Chewy. Endlessly deep. Smooth beyond belief with endless amounts of subtle flavors that work their way out as you sip. This beer is so good that you can quaff a pint or sip and savor a few ounces with equal ease. The only difficult part is deciding what you want to do with it! $8 per 12oz bottle. Max 6 bottles per customer. We’ll have just a tad over 300 cases of this beer (24/12oz.) to go around. Limited one time release, with a few cases being sent to select states. Coming to Black Tot Day at the Avery Tap Room is the only way to GUARANTEE that you get your hands on some bottles! We’ll also have 5 gallon kegs tapped of unoaked, rye barrel and bourbon barrel versions of the Imperial Oatmeal Stout, along with Black Tot itself. We’ll be pouring a single 5 gallon keg of each and no more…when they’re gone they’re gone! $3 per taster. No door charge!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Great Alaskan Beer and Barleywine Festival Continues from 6:00PM-10:00PM

Brooklyn Brewery Night: Greensburg, Pennsylvania

7:00PM- 9:00PM @ Mister Bones Bistro and Brew Hub

Seating is limited at a cost of $15.00 and you will be able to sample Brooklyn Brewery’s Lager, IPA, and Brown ale. Brooklyn will also bring a limited release beer for everyone to sample. The bistro will be creating a special menu for the evening, full of foods that will compliment the different styles of beer featured. The signature light hors d’oeuvres will be included with the purchase of an event ticket. (The full menu will also be available)

World Beer Festival: Columbia, South Carolina

(2 sessions) 12:00 PM- 4:00PM & 6:00PM-10:00PM @ the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center

With over 150 vendors, local music and 300 beers, for $40.00 you can sample has little or as much as your heart and liver desire. For more information about the event click here and for pictures from the event last January, click right….here.

Sunday, January 27, 2010

Valley Brew Beer Dinner: San Francisco, California

starts at 6:00PM @ Anchor and Hope Restaurant

Join Brewmaster Steve Altimari from Valley Brewing Company and Chef Sarah Schafer of Anchor & Hope for an evening of an exquisite pairing of beers and food.  Click here to see the menu.

Victory Brewing Beer Dinner: Grand Rapids, Michigan

6:00PM-8:00PM @ HopCat

Victory Brewing out of Pennsylvia is featured at tonight’s beer and food pairing dinner.  Tonight four beers will be paired with four dishes. The beers you can expect to taste include, Yakima Twilight, Wild Devil, Baltic Thunder and the very rare V-12.

The holidays are surely over, as this week proved difficult in chosing which events to feature. From large beer festivals to small, intimate dinners, we hope those in attendance have a damn good time. If you attend any of the mentioned events, want to share an event or have any suggestions for the event blog, leave a comment or email us at beerblotter@gmail.com. Cheers and have a great beer drinking week!


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