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Events for Week of March 14, 2011

Upright Brewing Co. Picture courtesy of allecia.blogspot.com

And…here it is…your week in beer.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

$10.00 Tuesday Tasting – IPAs- New York, New York

7:30PM-9:30PM @ Jimmy’s No.43

Come try 6 different craft IPAs. Learn about the what makes these beers bitter and variations between them. $10 gets you a small taste of each beer and into the information session.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Irish (Inspired) Ale Class: Chicago, Illinois

7:00PM-9:00PM @ Whole Foods Market – Lincoln Park

Come one, come all and join our resident Beer Geek Sean Reilly as we explore the wonderful world of Irish and Irish Inspired Ales. It’s the eve of St. Pat’s and what a great way to usher in the evening. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased through Customer Service or  http://www.active.com

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy Firkin St. Pattys Day: West Chester, Pennsylvania

4:00PM-10:00PM @ Rams Head Bar And Grill

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! In celebration, stop by Rams for some Victory brews. They will be tapping a firkin of Victory’s newest beer Headwaters Pale Ale at 4 pm and there will be live music from local musician Pete Groch.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Firkin Friday Featuring Brewdog: Atlanta, Georgia

6:00PM-2:00AM @ The Porter Beer Bar

Brewdog is known for making beers that push boundaries. Tonight, try their Paradox Islay, an imperial stout.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Fairfax Brewfest: Fairfax, California

7:00PM-9:00PM @ Faifax Pavillion

Beer Festival which will have 16 Breweries as well as a Cider maker. Unlimited drinks for $25 if you pre-order and $30 if you show up. Breweries include: Iron Springs (hosting), Marin Brew Co, Moylans, Lagunitas, Anderson Valley, and Speakeasy, and many other that you cannot find anywhere else, but Marin. LAsts from 1 PM until 5 PM.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Upright’s Two Year Anniversary: Portland, Oregon

1:00PM-6:00PM @ Upright Brewing Co.

bb.com is going to this- Upright rocks and today they are relasing a sour cherry barrel aged version of the Four. A cask of the upcoming Gose with extra salt and dry hops will be poured. Get there early to get your hands on a bottle of their first anniversary apricot ale aged in gin barrels. Only three cases are available.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Oskar Blues Spring Beer Dinner: Stamford, Conneticut

7:00PM- 9:00PM @ Coalhouse Pizza

The menu will include …. sweet potato & beet chips with homemade tzatsiki sauce, an organic mixed green and fresh fennel salad, homemade split pea soup, a goat cheese & asparagus pizza, lamb tenderloin with a miso-chili sauce served with spring vegetables, and our homemade stout ice cream. Each dish is paired with an Oskar Blues brew – Mama’s Little Yella Pils, G’Knight IPA, Dale’s, Old Chub and of course, TenFidy. Two members from the band “Keltic Kick” will be joining us for the evening. Tickets on sale now ~ $60 per guest. Visit our website for more information – http://www.coalhousepizza.com or give us a call directly: 203-977-7700.

If you go to an event, want us to post an event or want to share something about beer- leave a comment or email me at jess@beerblotter.com.

The Hop Brief: Speakeasy’s Double Daddy Imperial IPA

February 10, 2011 Leave a comment

WA contraband

Enjoyed on 2/7/2011

Brewery: Speakeasy Ales and Lagers

Location: San Francisco, CA

Beer: Double Daddy Imperial IPA

Web: http://www.goodbeer.com/

Presentation: 22 oz. – Brown Glass Bottle – Capped

Vintage: 2010

Style: American Style Double India Pale Ale

Barrel: N/A

ABV: 9.5%

IBU: N/A

Hops: N/A

Malt: N/A

Commercial Description:

Doubling down on malt & hops, DOUBLE DADDY raises the stakes. With it’s good looks & No-Limit style,DD takes the pot every time.

Beer Advocate: B (3.65)

Rate Beer: 96 (3.61)

Timperial’s Notes:

Background.

This shit is contraband yo!

It’s rare that a brewery exits a market, but that’s just what Speakeasy did to Seattle about a year ago.  Obviously it sucks to lose the distribution of a great brewery, but I think I took it extra hard.  I have a lot of wonderful memories that revolve around this brewery.  This very beer was a long-standing number 1 favorite IPA of mine.  Speakeasy is one of the first breweries that I discovered in which I really liked every beer that they made.  They are one of the first breweries outside of the North Atlantic that I visited and toured.  Every time that I fantasize about my future brewery, I think of the aura, the people, the tunes, the beers, the setup of the Speakeasy brewery in San Fran.  I want mine to be like theirs.

I stumbled across this bottle at John’s Marketplace in Portland and I had a mini freak-out.  God, I really hope that they send their outstanding wares to Seattle again in the near future.

Appearance.

DD is much lighter in color than most IPAs.  I’d call it gold or pale orange.  Based solely on the color, if I didn’t know better, I’d think it was a lager.  It’s maybe just one shade darker than most lagers.  It’s also very clear and displays a fairly soft carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass.  The head is full on white and is pretty subdued on the pour.  It fades quickly down to a thin sheet on top of the liquid but manages to leave a fairly dense lacing on the inside of the glass.  It is this lacing that is really the only impressive element to the appearance.

Odor.

The odor kicks ass!  It’s so perfectly balanced that I want to lift my glass high and toast the brewers of Speakeasy.  It has become all too common lately for the hops to completely dominate imperial IPAs.  Often, it seems the hops are used to cover up what would otherwise be a highly mediocre beer.  Here, with DD, you know that you have a quality crafted beer before you, prior to even tasting it.  That’s impressive.

I’d tend to concede that the grainy element of the scent is most prevalent here and that the hops are actually just slightly positioned in the background rather than the much more likely foreground.  The malty element seems very natural and almost uncooked.  It’s a bit confusing because I’d estimate that the boil would be, at least, in the 90 minute range to allow for various hop additions but there is little caramelization noted.  Clearly the crystal used, if at all, is very low in intensity.  It’s like sticking your head in a freshly opened sack of 2-row.  Pure, unadulterated malted barley.

At first, the hops lend a sappy, pine like earthiness with a little bit of grapefruit tang.  The malts are very round and soft within the nose, but the hops are sharp, as is the booze’s heat.  It’s a contrasting experience that might just be a text-book worthy anecdote for “balance” in beer.  As the beverage warms, the pine bite seems to fade a bit and bitter orange peel is all that I can think about.

Mouthfeel.

This beer feels like 100% silk in my mouth.  The low carbonation and heavy body cause the liquid to glide down my pipes with ease.  Dare I say too much ease.  There is nothing negative to speak of here.  I’d say that this is well on the more viscous side of the scale, which can be read as a higher score for me, at least when it comes to impy IPAs.

Flavor.

The flavor of DD is all about balance.  Do we sense a theme?  Probably the best theme possible when reviewing an imperial IPA.  The interesting thing about this one is that the “imperial” element is only really found in the abv.  I can understand them not choosing to use the word “double” because that may be misconstrued as double the hops.  Don’t get me wrong, I do not doubt that DD has more hops per barrel than Speakeasy’s standard IPA, Big Daddy (named after the owner of Toronado in San Fran), but hops really do not dominate this beer in any way.

The whole experience of this beer is soft, mellow and soothing.  The bitterness is dampened by the hefty grain presence (there’s your imperial).  The alcohol isn’t fucking around, but it’s not harsh, simply warming.  The hops are all sorts of bitter orange and grapefruit, which kind of brings thoughts of a cool breeze on a hot summer day.  With each sip, I wonder… if a thirsty bee may have fell into good graces, only to be awakened when slurped and bring a foul sting to my tongue, awakening me from this much-needed fantasy escape from the chilled clutches of winter.

The malts continue to exist in a very unencumbered fashion.  This is beer in its purest sense, and that gives me goose bumps.  How a brewer is able to encapsulate that within such an extreme style category is highly impressive.  I feel like the recipe is probably built on a lager platform.  The grains were magnified, the yeast was shifted to that of an ale, and it was all intensely hopped.  Pretty simple and wildly successful.  Why didn’t I think of that?

Aftertaste.

The aftertaste is most hot with booze and lingers for quite some time.  Both graininess and bitterness can easily be perceived.  It all blends itself so pristinely that details fail to manifest.  It just exists as a brilliantly developed beer that had sadly departed from the pleasure sensors.  Each and every sip tragically leads to a swallow and each passing swallow tragically leads to an empty glass.

Summary.

Lately, few beers have transported me to far away places like DD has tonight.  I feel stimulated, provoked, inspired.  It’s amazing!  If I could give extra credit I would.  The oddest part about this review is that I have given very high scores to almost every area except for the area with the most weight, hop flavor.  That’s pretty rare.  Though I fucking love this beer, it probably deserves to be punished for that fact.  This is The Hop Brief.  Or, maybe my scoring system is flawed and an exemplary beer deserves an exemplary score.  I’ll mull over this existential question and happily field your thoughts on the matter.  Email me or comment below.

Thank you Speakeasy, and please, come back to WA.  You are missed.

Color/Head/Retention [maximum of 1.00 point possible]: 0.80

Odor [maximum of 2.00 points possible]: 1.98

Carbonation/Mouthfeel [maximum of 1.00 point possible]: 1.00

Hop Flavor [maximum of 3.00 points possible]: 2.52

Malt Flavor/Balance [maximum of 2.00 points possible]: 1.98

Finish/Aftertaste [maximum of 1.00 point possible]: 0.98

Total [maximum of 10.00 points possible]: 9.26

Notes of a Beer Nerd: Simple Pleasures – Beer Desert

April 29, 2010 1 comment

Happy Birthday to me!

**Notes of a Beer Nerd is written by Timperial Stout, our resident cellar dwelling mammal. Reach out to him at timperialstout@beerblotter.com or write a comment below.***

Tuesday I celebrated my 30th birthday. Well, actually, I use the word “celebrate” loosely. The real celebration was about 2 weeks ago when the greatest friends and family a man could ever ask for threw me a “Dirty 30″ surprise party (thank you all so very much!).

I also just completed a long weekend away at Treehouse Point, yet another surprise provided by my wonderful girlfriend. Point is, I’ve already done a lot of celebrating, so Tuesday, the actual anniversary of my birth, was more or less comprised of a bit of self-pampering.

After a long day at the brewery helping out Rhett Burris of Burris Brewing cook up another batch of his delightful Jackrabbit Pale Ale, I stopped at Ballard Market on my way home and grabbed some ingredients for an epic Skooby-Doo style sandwich (you know, the kind that is so tall that you need to crush it down with both hands in order for it to fit in your mouth) and, of course, some tasty adult beverages.

A Dogfish Head 90 Minute Imperial IPA paired very nicely with my turkey (and a ridiculously lengthy list of accompanying ingredients) sandwich. The scent of palisade hops that filled the air of the brewery earlier in the day made me crave this member of the Seven Wonders of the Hoppy World (doesn’t exist, but it should).

Honestly, the herbal and malty sweet balance of 90 Minute is so perfect that I believe it would pair nicely with just about anything.  I mean, if you told me I had to eat a shoe but I could wash it down with a 90m, I’d eat the hell out of that shoe.

The most exciting and noteworthy element of this pampering came at the very end of the night.  A simple pleasure, but a pleasure without a doubt – an ice cream float!  I took the simplicity to the extreme, using Rogue‘s Chocolate Stout and vanilla bean ice cream, both of which are very easily obtained at almost anywhere selling foodstuffs.  I decided to give it a little pizzazz and added a few fresh raspberries.

This made me think…surely, in the vast reaches of culinary creation, there must be countless ways to pair beer with ice cream and make it delicious.  With all the styles of both out there, what possibilities await us?  I did a bit of brainstorming and some research, and I thought I’d share a few thoughts.  Maybe the next time your sweet tooth comes a knockin’ you’ll whip up a beer float and tell us your thoughts.

Sticking with the stout motif, The imperial stouts of Southern Tier would be killer combos with vanilla, chocolate, or even fruit flavored ice creams.  Try Choklat, Jah*va, Mokah, Creme Brulee, or Oat.

How about fruit lambics and ice cream?  Just about any offering from Lindeman’s would be killer with vanilla.  A Cantillon Kriek or any of the New Belgium Lips of Faith beers would work wonderfully as well.

What about a nut brown ale like Troegs Rugged Trail?  A coffee flavored ice cream might go well with this one, or paired with a milk stout like Left Hand‘s.

A sweet barleywine like an aged Speakeasy Old Godfather or even an eisbock like Kulmbacher‘s could go exceptionally well with a mildly flavored ice cream.

Playing mad scientist with beer and ice cream seems like a darn productive use of time to me.  Beer Blotter suggests that you give it a whack and let us know what pairings work best.

Beer Events You Should Attend for the Week of April 12-18, 2010

April 12, 2010 1 comment

No, not this Chocolate Yeti - check out Great Divide's 2010 Chocolate Yeti Release this week!

Events for Week of April 12, 2010

Hope its sunny where you are and that you are drinking good beers this week.  Where can you enjoy a brew this week? Well check it!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Speakeasy Pint Night: Oakland, California

6:00PM-9:00PM @ Barclay’s On College

Speakeasy Brewing Co., located in San Francisco will features the following beers on tap: Big Daddy (single IPA); Double Daddy (Double IPA- hop monster), Prohibition and Scarface Stout.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Nogne O Tasting: Indianapolis, Indiana

4:00PM-5:00PM @ Khan’s Fine Wines and Spirits

Ok, a free tasting of this killer brewery, Nogne-O- cancel all and any plans you might have tonight to join brewer, Scott Larrick for some samples. Tiger, a Tripel just arrived and will be featured along with the Mikkeller collaboration brew, IPA, Winter Ale, Pumpernickel Porter (just arrived) and their barleywine, among many more.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Ballast Point Brews, Burger and Beats: Alhambra, California

7:00PM-1:00AM @ 38 Degrees Ale House and Grill

Ballast Point Brewing Co. from San Diego is the main attraction tonight. Order a Ballast Point flight of tasters or a pint and keep the glass, also try the brewery’s very own gin, “Old Groove.”  The Draft Lineup looks a little like this: Ginger Big Eye, Yellowtail Pale, Victory at Sea Coffee Vanilla Porter, among several others. You basically get to try an array of style and see where the brewery’s strong points are. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Cooper’s 8th Annual IPA Fest: Seattle, Washington

11:30AM-11:30PM @ Cooper’s International Ale House

First, let me rave about the wings at this establishment- so good. With a variety of sauces, chipotle maple, hot buffalo, garlic…you cant go wrong. What better way to complement your wings than with an IPA? I know, exactly my point.  Over 50 IPAs will be poured during the fest which runs for the entire month of April. The first week featured only Washington state brewers, so they are onto nationwide breweries. Call ahead if you are looking for something specific.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Chocolate Yeti and Dunkel Weiss Release Party: Denver, Colorado

6:00PM-9:00PM @ Great Divide Brewing Company

Both of these beers are scheduled to appear on shelves for all consumers to enjoy TODAY. So kick off the celebration and fork over $15.00 to enjoy three drink tickets and food pairings.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Third Annual Firkin Festival: Portland, Oregon

11:00AM-2:00PM AND 3:00PM-6:00PM @ Green Dragon Brew Pub

Here are the details: great space, $30 ticket will get you 8 6oz pours, 2 food tickets and a commemorative glass. This festival will feature a mix of cask conditioned beers from Oregon breweries.  Tickets to the event are available in advance and can be purchased in person at the Green Dragon Bistro & Brewpub; or by phone at (503) 517-0660. Tickets for both sessions are also available online at  http://rogue.com/store/.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Seriously Slacking on Sunday (not much on the docket)

My suggestions:

Go to Beveridge Place Pub to try out there IPApril, which features a plethora of IPAs on tap all month.

If that doesn’t tickle your fancy – throw something on the BBQ and crack open some special beers.

If you know of something to do on Sunday or any other day for that matter, please leave a comment or email us at beerblotter@gmail.com! Cheers!

Events for Week of March 1, 2010

Bert's Better Beers in Hookett, NH- No, we don't know where that is, but its worth going to!

A week in the life of a beer drinker:

Monday, March 1, 2010

7th Annual Barleywine Bacchanal: Seattle, Washington

3:00PM- 2:00AM @ Beveridge Place Pub

The madness continues all week with events almost every day. Many of these barleywines were aged by Beveridge Place.  Check out Beer Blotter’s guide to the Bacchanal by clicking HERE!

Monk’s Mad Monday: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

11:30AM-11:30PM @ Monk’s Cafe

A special Russian River event featuring six of their beers on tap. There will be three IPAs and three ‘Tions on tap. Check it– Pliny The Younger, Pliny The Elder, Blind Pig, Damnation, Consecration and (sweet, sweet) Supplication.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Unibroue Tasting: Hooksett, New Hampshire

5:00PM-7:30PM @ Bert’s Better Beers

Join Richard Delmonico as he pours Canadian brewery, Unibroue beers-Quelque Chose (enjoy warm and/or on ice), Maudite, Terrible, Don de Dieu, La Fin du Monde, Blanche de Chambly, Chambly Noire, Trois Pistoles and Ephemere. Cheese and chocolate will be paired.

Sour Beer Night: New York, New York

7:30PM-9:30PM @ Jimmy’s No. 43

For $10.00 a person, you can come sample amazing sour beers from Jolly Pumpkin, Cantillon and others from the Shelton Brothers portfolio.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Meet the Brewers: Escondido, California

6:00PM-8:00PM @ Stone Brewing Co.

Brewers from the East head West- Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head and Victory Brewing Co.’s Bill Covaleski. Join them at the Bistro’s outside bar with Stone’s own Greg Koch to celebrate their collective achievement. Have a pint with Sam, Bill, and Greg and congratulate them on a job well done! Special taps of Dogfish Head and Victory rarities, including World Wide Stout, will be poured outside.

Ninkasi Beer Dinner: San Francisco, California

5:45 PM- 9:45 PM @The Monk’s Kettle

Ninkasi brews such as Total Domination IPA, Tricerahops Double IPA, Believer Double Red Ale and OATIS Oatmeal Stout will be paired with a delicious 5 course meal. Menu items include a Portobello mushroom soup, a coconut curry shrimp dish, pork tenderloin, a special pallet cleanser and a dessert that will make you feel right at home.

New Belgium Tasting: Portland, Oregon

4:00PM-6:00PM @ The Beermongers

New Belgium Brewery will in the store providing samples of several of their more unique beers including two from their Lips of Faith series Biere de Mars and Transatlantique Kriek, Ranger IPA, certified organic Mothership Wit and Trip IV on draft a collaboration between Elysian Brewing Co. (Seattle) and New Belgium.  This event is free.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Great Lakes Happy Hour: Akron, Ohio

7:00PM-9:00PM @ Johnny Malloys

Come and sample 6 differtent Great Lakes Brewing Co. beers on tap/bottles available to everyone. For those interested, there will also be a limited beer and cheese tasting featuring a couple brewery exclusives that are only available for the tasting. The tasting fee is $10 and includes 5 samples of beer and 5 cheese samples. A few people from the brewery will be there giving out glassware and other Great Lakes memorabilia.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Beer without Hops: The Illegal Brews: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

7:30PM- 9:30PM @ The Beer School of Philadelphia

This is an appropriate venue for this event. Not only do you get to sample fine beers, you get to learn a bit about beer history. These beers do not contain hops, therefore at one point in beer past, they were not considered beer. Due to this concept, they have become rather rare. Well, these “illegal” beers (gruits) are making a comeback, so stop by, taste and learn all about these amazing brews.

Jolly Pumpkin Beer Tasting: Ann Arbor, Michigan

5:00PM-7:00PM @ Whole Foods Market

Join Vice President of Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales Michael Turriff at the Fine Wine and Craft Beer Bar. Michael is there to enjoy the JP brews, discuss beer and answer all of your questions.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Let’s try some Belgiums!: Naperville, Illinois

3:00PM-5:00PM @ Malloy’s Fine Wines and Spirits

This tasting is FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE. So you have no excuse to head out on the town in Naperville and try some amazing Belgium brews. What will you be sampling? Triple Karmeliet, Maredsous 10 Triple, Gouden Carolus, and Pauwel Kwak- among others. Get out, get cultured.

Lucky Lab’s Barleywine & Big Beer Fest: Portland, Oregon

12:00PM- 10:00PM @ Lucky Labrador Brewing Co. (NW Quimby Beer Hall)

More than 35 barleywines and big beers (stouts, warmers, old ales and more) on tap! Some are recent releases but many are aged vintages.  Just to name a few, as the list is very very long (check it here): ’07 Great Divide’s Old Ruffian; ’08 Speakeasy’s Old Godfather; ’09 Fish Tail’s Leviathan and ’09 Lucky Lab’s BBL-Aged Son of Old Yeller.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

11th Split the Brooklyn Skull Festival: Brooklyn, New York

11:00 AM-11:00PM @ Mugs Ale House

Interesting name, but what does it entail? Tis the time for barleywines and strong ales, so you guessed it! Come to Mugs and enjoy beers, most of which are over 8%.  For the full list click here, but for a sample, you came to the right place: Speakeasy Old Godfather Reserve 10%; Left hand Widdershins 10%; Nogne O #100 Barleywine 10.0%; Goose Island Brown Goose 9% and Weyerbacher Old Heathen Imperial Stout 2008 8.0%.

Nikki’s Second Annual Beer Dinner: Providence, Rhode Island

6:00 PM-10:00 PM @ Julians

We will leave the food a mystery, but check out the featured beers, mainly all Trappist. We like their style! La Trappe Isid’or; Achel Blond; Westmalle Trappist Dubbel; Orval Trappist Ale; Chimay Grande Reserve (blue); Westmalle Trappist Tripel and with the dessert course, you get all three Rochefort beer (6, 8, 10)!!

Oh man…that is it. But of course, there is so much more. So if you have an event you want us to add, have a comment about an event you went to, or just want to tell us how much you love beer, leave a comment or email us at beerblotter@gmail.com. Thanks for reading! Cheers to another week!

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