New Belgium Brewing has been around for 20 years now. Wow! They have surely come a long way. So long, in fact, that they find themselves sitting in the number 3 position in the rankings for top craft breweries (sales) . There is very little doubt that their Fat Tire Amber has played a massive role in their great success.
In celebration, and in tribute to the beer that acted as a stepping stone for so many of us beer geeks into the world of better beer, New Belgium has packaged up the old classic in a new and exciting manner – unfiltered, dry hopped, and in cask format. From what Seattle Ranger Todd told me yesterday, 6 total firkins were sent to the Seattle area, each dry hopped with a different hop variety.
This has never been done before at New Belgium and each tapping is going to offer a very rare and unique take on the beer that put the brewery on the map. If I were you, I’d keep your ear to the ground (or your eyes on beerblotter.com) and do your best to attend as many of these special tapping events as possible. It’s not only an opportunity to celebrate with NBB, but it’s a chance to thank them for all they have done for the craft community and, obviously, to have some tasty and rare beer in the process. For me, it most exciting to get the chance to take in what each hop variety can lend to an amber ale. It will be educational, without a doubt.
So when is the first tapping? What hops will be featured first? Tell me. tell me, tell me!! Don’t fret, I have your answers!
This Thursday, February 10, the first two firkins will be tapped, simultaneously, across town from each other. One in Magnolia, at Mulleady’s Irish Pub and the other in Green Lake, at Latona Pub. Both are planned to be tapped around 5pm, for happy hour, and should be pouring for several hours. This will give you ample opportunity to maneuver between the two and make a night of it, without completely destroying all hope of being productive on Friday (not that you ever are you crazy slackers).
The Mulleady’s cask will be spiked with one of the “Three Cs” – Centennial. This is a moderate to high alpha hop that is very similar to Cascade and completely kicks ass! It’s pungent, citrusy, and mildly floral. Yum! The Latona cask will feature the uber-high alpha and somewhat rarely seen Bravo hop. This is surely a treat! This one has the potential to be a bit harsh and is often described as having an earthy spice, herbal, fruity and floral essence. Giddy-up.
Our friend Ian Roberts is back at it with another offering of Seattle Beer Week!
Fresh off a trip to Belgium, Ian is back in town and recently launched a nice website laying out the schedule for Seattle’s best beer extravaganza.
With a massive bevy of sponsors, the Week looks to offer even more juicy beer magic than last year. You can check out the amazing lineup by navigating through the Events portion of their website.
This year Hales Brewery has been selected to put together the brew for the Week, a double IPA. We cannot wait!
When Beer Blotter isn’t enjoying craft beer, learning about Belgium, discovering new places, or researching fun beer events to attend, chances are good that they are out running off their beer bellies.
Our affinity for both bipedal trajectory and beer causes us much elation for the annual Henry Weinhard’s St. Patrick’s Day Dash in Seattle. Though this year, a single tear will fall from each member’s respective eye, for we will be missing it due to a little trip to EUROPE (yeah that’s right, only one tear each). This doesn’t mean that we can’t inform you all about it.
Mark your calendar for Sunday March 14 at 8:30 am.
HW’s SP’s DD is, according to the website, the largest St. Patrick’s Day fun run in the country. Lets not ask how many fun runs there are on St. Patrick’s day. Point is, it’s pretty big and it has been a Seattle tradition for 24 years now.
Not only is this fun run a “fun” run because it’s only a 3.7 mile course (hahahahaha! just kidding), but you are encouraged to dress up with the Irish spirit in mind, and most importantly, there is beer at the end!
It’s $25 to register, which included a t-shirt, a number, a timing chip (if you chose to race) and post-run activities. The course starts at 3rd and Mercer, crosses the Aurora Bridge, loops back to Mercer and finishes in the oddly shaped shadows of the Experience Music Project. Then, after you regain your breath, simply drag your sweaty self over to [another section of] Seattle Center for Irish music, free food, give-a-ways, awards ceremony, best costume contest, and extensive frolicking in the confines of the Detlef Schrempf Beer Garden where Henry Weinhard’s will be flowing freely (not free of charge but without inhibition).
At the very least, you can pre-burn the calories you will imbibe at the end, and have fun doing it.
A quick introduction to a new series that will appear on http://www.beerblotter.com. Every week, Beer Blotter will venture out to the unknown and have a beer at new venue. Many of these places will by default be in our local city of Seattle. However, Beer Blotter is mobile and other cities will show up quite frequently. So check back every week.
Tonight marks our first of fifty-two weeks and we are going to Summit Public House in the Capital Hill neighborhood of Seattle, Washington. Since it is just almost time to drink the sweet nectar that is beer, we will report back this week about our experience at the Summit Public House.
If you have any suggestions as to where Beer Blotter should have a beer (all cities and countries are welcome), please leave a comment or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!
After the holiday week, Beer Blotter is back on track and ready to plan your New Year’s Eve night. Celebrating the new year amongst friends, beer lovers and great beer seems like the obvious thing to do. So we present you with a list of beer bars to stop by or beer events to attend tomorrow night, December 31, 2009. The focus will be on 2 cities, Seattle and New York City (where we were and where we are now) Check back on Monday for Beer Blotter’s regular weekly event posting.
Uber Tavern will have beer specials galore on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, so bring your sleeping bag and crash there. A list of specialty beers from our neighboring state, Oregon on tap for the occasion include Cascade Blackberry Nightfall ($4.00/goblet); Cascade Sang Noir ($5.00/goblet); Old Lompoc Old Tavern Rat ($3.00/schooner); Old Lompoc C-Note ($3.50/pint); Old Lompoc LSD ($3.50/pint); Old Lompoc Holiday Cheer ($3.50/pint). Enjoy your brews along side a smorgasbord of cured meats, cheeses and chocolates.
Fremont Brewing is hoping to entice Seattleites that may over indulge on New Year’s Eve to join the Resolution Run 5K and Polar Bear Dive. That will cure a hangover! After a 5K run and an OPTIONAL Polar Bear Dive into Lake Washington, Fremont Brewing will provide participants (over the age of 21) with unlimited beer and chili to warm them right up.
New York, New York (home to a beer lover’s dream NYE)
Blind Tiger Ale House will have unlimited beer and food from 9:00 PM-2:00 AM for $120.00/person.Call 212-462-4682 for reservations and details.
Rattle-n- Hum features an amazing tap list and karaoke to usher in the new year. Patrons have the option to pay-as-you-go, or buy a $150 open-bar ticket, which includes all beers, liquor and a Brooklyn Brewery’s Black Ops toast at midnight.
Beer Table is a modest establishment in Brooklyn, New York and is hosting the Past, Present and Future Dinner with two separate times to dine. The special menu includes three beers (from the past present and future) paired with spicy black eyed pea salad, Bamberg onion (stuffed with pork and topped with bacon) and potatoes, and Bayley Hazen Blue with honey and hazelnuts. The two sittings are at 8PM for $45 and 10PM for $55.
Then start start 2010 off right with Schneider Aventinus Eisbock from a gravity keg and butter beans with bacon.
If your in the mood for some R and R, some Dick Clark and beers in the warmth of your own abode. Then check out these winter warmers and Christmas beers, chosen by Timperial Stout.
The ice bock, also known as “Bavarian”, owes its discovery to a coincidence. According to the chronicles of the Kulmbacher brewery, some time around 1900 an apprentice forgot on a cold winter day to carry two barrels of bock beer into the brewery cellar. The barrels stayed outside, were covered by ice and snow and weren’t discovered until the following spring. The barrels had burst and the apprentice was reprimanded. But the carelessness was a stroke of luck because under the thick ice coat, a bock beer extract remained, strong tasting and high in alcoholic content. Even if the dark, tasty speciality is not produced in this spectacular way anymore, the chance that gave birth to this beer became a tradition. Today this beer rarity is brewed in a modern brewing and freezing process, but the incomparable taste is still the same and can always be enjoyed in winter months.
Mikkeller – To/From
From the website:
The second Christmas porter from Mikkeller. A spiced porter with fine malt background and lovely hop aroma and flavor. The label is designed as a ‘From To’ card – fill in the names and put the bottle it under the Christmas tree. The perfect give away gift for the lazy man/woman…!
Ingredients: Water, malt (pale, smoked, cara-crystal, brown and chocolate), roasted barley, dark cassonade, hops (amarillo, saaz and cascade), spices (star anise, clove, cinnamon and coriander seeds) and yeast.
The Bruery – Two Turtle Doves
From the website:
2 Turtle Doves is the second in the 12 Days/Years of Christmas Services. We decided to take our inspiration from the name and base the beer on the “turtle” candy, brewing it with cocoa nibs, toasted pecans, caramelized sugar and a lot of caramel malts. Somewhere between a Belgian-style Dark Strong Ale and an Imperial Porter, this beer is designed to take the journey through time until 12 Drummers Drumming.
Alesmith Brewing Co.- Yulesmith Holiday Ale
From the website:
For the winter season, YuleSmith is brewed as an Imperial Red Ale. This version is maltier, more balanced, and darker in color than the summer version. Although quite malty, big hop flavors and aromas are abundant making this an unforgettable winter warmer. Winter YuleSmith is packaged in traditional holiday red and green.
Ommegang – Adoration
From the website:
Ommegang Adoration, brewed in the authentic style of Belgian winter, or noel beer, is dark, strong, malty and assertively spiced. At 10% abv Adoration is not a lightweight beer, and is best sipped before a roaring fire, or on a sleigh ride over the hills to Grandma’s house. (But let someone else drive.) It would also be a tasty accompaniment to dark roasts and wild game. Even at the strong abv, the beer is well-balanced and not at all hot or fiery. The dark malts give it lush, malty flavors and aromas, strongly complemented by the five spices, including coriander, cumin, mace, cardamom and grains of paradise. Hopping is modest, as befits such a beer.
Troeg’s – Mad Elf
From the website:
The Mad Elf, a cheerful creation to warm your heart and enlighten your tongue. The combination of Cherries, Honey, and Chocolate Malts delivers gentle fruits and subtle spices. Fermented and aged with a unique yeast, this ruby red beer has significant warming strength that underlies the pleasant character of this intriguing yet delicious Ale. The Mad Elf, a jolly and delicious beer for the Holidays.
Nogne O – Winter Ale
http://www.nogne-o.com/ (website is having some technical difficulties)
From the website:
A dark ale brewed specially for the Christmas season, with a rich, complex taste of caramel. This is a strong, dark and rather sweet Christmas Beer – just the way we think a Christmas beer should be.
Recommended serving temperature 12°C/53°F. Great with cheese or nuts. Ingredients:Lager, Munich, caramel, black, and chocolate malt; Chinook, Columbus, and Centennial hops; English ale yeast, and our local Grimstad water.”
Jolly Pumpkin – Noel de Calabaza
From the website:
Noel de Calabaza – Deep mahogany and malty, layered hops, figs, raisins, sugar plums, cashews betwixt rum laden truffles.
Port Brewing – Santa’s Little Helper
From the website:
Each and every year, the Jolly Old Fatman sits down and compiles a list of who’s been naughty and nice. It’s curious that he never knows which list to put our brewers on as this is one naughty but incredibly nice beer.
Originally brewed at the Pizza Port in Solana Beach in November of 1997. As dark as the biggest lump of coal Santa can deliver, this beer has earned a dedicated following and is code named Satan’s Little Hangover by those who have indulged in a holiday like manner from time to time.
Originally shipped from London to the Czarist rulers of Russia, Imperial Stouts are stronger, richer and more robust versions of traditional stouts. The increase in alcohol content means that literally, many of these beers are a meal in a glass all on their own. Made from copious amounts of Roasted and Black Barleys, our stout invites you to share a silky black body with hints of freshly pulled espresso from the coffee house, melding with dark bitter sweet chocolate from a Belgian Chocolateer and the ash of a smoldering fire on a dark winters night.
Just remember that somewhere out there, the jolly old fat man is making a list and checking it twice. He knows who’s been naughty and nice… Might we suggest that you forgo the Milk with the cookies this year and leave him of bottle of something incredibly nice- Say like Santa’s Little Helper? Mrs. Clause would probably like some as well. That is if Rudolph doesn’t drink it all himself. Bad Reindeer.
Malts- Two Row, Wheat, Domestic and English Crystal, Roasted, Black and Chocolate Malts
Hops- Phoenix, Challenger and East Kent Goldings
Yeast- White Labs California Ale and Proprietary Yeast Strains
Most importantly, while enjoying yourself at home or out on the town, be safe, have fun and HAPPY 2010!!!!