Sunday, September 14, 2014

September 13, 2014

This week we examined the fantastic San Francisco based 21st Amendment Brewery through drinking of course and also talking with owner Shaun "Sully" O'Sullivan!  We were joined in studio by the always enjoyable and knowledgable Backyard Billy from Backyard Ale House and returning guest Jason Jerecki to partake in these wonderful beers.

This weeks beer lineup:

Bitter American: An unbelievably flavorful and balanced American Pale Ale that is also extremely sessionable at 4.4% ABV.  An incredible beer that should be a great go to anytime you are out for an evening!

He Said Pumpkin Belgian Tripel: A collaboration beer with the also great Elysian Brewing Company this Belgian styled Tripel is enhanced with delicate spices and pumpkin for a unique spin on the popular pumpkin beer craze.  A must try for pumpkin beer fans, also try the Baltic Porter with pumpkin that comes in the special 4 packs with this beer!

Brew Free or Die!: One of the best American IPA's on the market.  Very balanced with hop presence throughout but dried out perfectly and leaves you wanting more and more and more and more!

Back in Black: Another great take on a style this time the Black IPA.  If you have had a Black IPA in the past and were maybe a little put off by it than do yourself a favor and try this one.  The roasted malts are kept in check and the hop selection perfectly compliments the overall beer.

Hop Crisis: One of the best DIPA's on the market! (are you picking up on a theme here?)  This 9.7% ABV DIPA drinks like a session IPA and has a ton of flavor locked within and the oak stave adds even more depth to this beer.  The only knock to it is that it is WAY too drinkable for being 9.7% ABV... a MUSt try!

Lower De Boom: This 11.5% ABV American Barley wine pack a wallop and lives up to its names.  The hops dropped out a bit from this sample from 2013 and leaves behind a sweet malt backbone with a fair amount of booziness.  Barley wine fans rejoice your favorite style can be enjoyed in a can!

We also had another amazing giveaway this week from 21A!

Monday, September 8, 2014

September 6, 2014 Show

This week we drink and discuss all things Cleveland as we enjoy the great beers from Great Lakes Brewing Company!  This week we are joined by the wonderful Billy from Backyard Ale House in Scranton, PA and the all things Cleveland super fan Rocky Rhodes from 98.5 KRZ!  We also enjoy a great special beer brought back by Billy from his recent trek to Vermont!

This weeks beer lineup from Great lakes:

Elliot Ness- A super smooth and highly drinkable lager that features a deep amber color and imparts a slight sweetness in the beer.  Fans of lager will love this beer!

Burning River- A great example of a perfectly balanced pale ale.  The hops are present but do not dominate as some "pale ales" have been known to do in recent times.  Balance and drinkability are the highlights of this world class beer.

Commodore Perry- This English styled IPA features a strong hop presence but more reserved than the west coast IPA's many American craft beer drinkers have become accustomed to in recent years.  Very smooth and a great mouthfeel and maintains a great balance and is not dominate in hops or malt.

Edmund Fitzgerald- An absolute world class example of the porter style.  notes of chocolate and coffee dance throughout with a slight hop bitterness dancing on the tongue.  A porter than can be enjoyed long in to the night and a must try for all fans of dark beer.

Nosferatu- This seasonal imperial red features the wonderfully creepy and classic vampire Nosferatu.  The beer is a beautiful red amber with hop highlights balanced against a sweet malt, at 8% ABV no hint of alcohol heat which means this be careful because like Nosferatu, this beer can bite you!

This week we featured a fantastic giveaway from the Great Lakes Brewing Company, one lucky winner took home all of this!

More proof that is pays to listen live!!

Our super extra special beer this week was provided by Billy after a return trip from Vermont.  Billy brought us the unbelievable Abner Imperial IPA from Hill Farmstead Brewery.  This beer is full of incredible IPA characteristics and a veritable hop bouquet in the aroma and nose.  It rivals some of the best IPA's available on the market, even the renowned Heady Topper from fellow Vermont brewer The Alchemist.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

August 30, 2014 Show

This week we drink and discuss the world class Deschutes Brewery with this amazing lineup of beers!  We were joined by Deschutes Brewery rep Jeremy for an inside look at the brewery and were also of course joined in studio by the always enjoyable Billy from Backyard Ale House to discuss some of the happenings at the bar!

This weeks beer lineup from Deschutes includes:

Mirror Pond Ale:  A textbook example of the pale ale style with a sweet malt backbone and subtle hints of hops throughout.  Extremely easy drinking and well balanced, everything you could want from a pale ale!

Black Butte Porter:  The porter style is one that many craft beer newbies sadly overlook in their excitement for IPA's, but thankfully Deschutes paid a lot of attention to the style.  Black Butte Porter is their flagship beer and has been that way since the breweries inception.  One sip of this beer and you will gain a new perspective on the porter style with its rich chocolate and subtle coffee hints and enjoyably smooth body, this is a beer that you could drink for days!

Black Butte XXVI Birthday Reserve:  This beefed up version of Black Butte Porter tips the scales at 10.2% ABV and is full of intense flavors and aroma.  Strong notes of chocolate, vanilla, and coffee seemingly dance with hints of pomegranates and cranberries that impart a subtle tart finish.  Very easy drinking despite the high ABV, hunt this beer down and also get 2 bottles and let one age for a bit, it is said to be even better after a year of aging!

Obsidian Stout:  One of the most popular American Stouts in the craft beer industry with its rich and luscious chocolate and coffee notes give way to hop flavors that melt into one another.  The 6.4% ABV is a pleasant surprise and is not apparent at all in the beer, so be careful on this one as it drinks like a good stout should but has a bit more heft to it, another must try!

Fresh Squeezed IPA:  The bee that was the darling of the Beer Geek Festival this past April makes it triumphant return to the show!  Quite possibly one of the most easy drinking IPA's available, it is extremely fresh with hops apparent throughout the nose and taste but without being overwhelming bitter.  It is perfectly balanced and leaves a dry finish.  Just find this beer already and drink it all down!

Doppel Dinkel Bock: This collaboration between Deschutes and Distelhauser produced one fantastic beer!  Somewhere between a Doppelbock and a Weizenbock lies this beer with a strong malt backbone and notes of bananas, cloves, caramel, and toffee all play off one another.  The 10.5% will also sneak up on you fast, a limited brew but worth hunting down if you are a Doppelbock fan!

We also had this amazing giveaway for listeners this week provided by our good friends at Deschutes Brewery!

If you are looking for Deschutes Brewery beer in your area, try checking with the brewery's beer finder here, and don't worry they are a brewery on the move and are expanding into new markets!

Monday, August 25, 2014

August 23, 2014 Show

This week we not only enjoy great beer, but great cheese as well as we discuss cheese and beer pairings with author Janet Fletcher whose book Cheese & Beer covers the topic in great depth.  We are also joined in studio by our wonderful repeat guest Ed and of course the wonderful Billy from Backyard Ale House

This week's beer lineup with cheese looked and tasted great, here is a teaser picture!

Beer Lineup:

Oskar Blues- Dale's Pale Ale:  A perfect example of the easy drinking pale ale style, we were able to enjoy this one out of a tall boy as well which added to this beers wonderful allure.  It is a must try for Pale Ale fans and we paired this with some delicious New York cheddar.

Jolly Pumpkin- Bam Noire:  Jolly Pumpkin is a world class brewery and what makes them even better is that they produce amazing flavored filled beers such as Bam Noire and also manage to get the ABV at 4.3%.  This dark farmhouse ale has subtle notes of raisins and cocoa balanced with hints of tartness and funk making for a very enjoyable experience.  It was paired with a wonderfully creamy Triple Cream Brie cheese.

Victory Brewing Company- Wild Devil:  A unique take on Victory's already well established Hop Devil.  This beer takes the aforementioned beer and spikes it with Brettanomyces giving it s subtle sour characteristic and added an extra layer of complexity, a fantastic beer that would be an interesting beer to age to see what the Brett does over time, this beer was paired with a studio favorite Humboldt Fog from Cypress Grove Chevre a cheese that is also a must try for those who are unfamiliar with it!

Allagash Brewing Company- Four:  This Belgian Quad boasts an impressive 10% ABV, but does not give any hints to it from the taste.  It is smooth and easy drinking and has all the lovely dark fruit characteristics we love in darker Belgian beers, find this and try it now!  We paired this beer with an aged Gruy√®re cheese.

Great Divide- Oatmeal Yeti Stout:  Another well established beer from a well established brewery.  The Yeti imperial stout series has a cult like following and it is easy to see why, strong notes of coffee and cocoa play off of one another while the addition of the oatmeal create an even creamier version of this amazing stout.  This beer needed to be paired with something strong enough to hold up to this beer and we chose Maytag Blue Cheese, an excellent pairing!

After chatting with Janet about her book we gave away a copy as well, it is a highly recommended book and features a layout that is perfect for the subject matter.  A must read if you are interested in beer and food pairings!  Click on the cover below to pick up a copy for yourself!

Monday, August 18, 2014

August 16, 2014 Show

This week we drank and discussed all things Brooklyn Brewery with the one and only Garrett Oliver!  The man is a wealth of beer knowledge and always great to talk to and we of course enjoyed just a small sample of the amazing beers from Brooklyn Brewery.  However, we did have one small change to the lineup right before airtime we swapped Pennant Ale for Post Road Pumpkin Ale, it's getting to be that time of year!

The Beer Lineup:

Post Road Pumpkin Ale:  This is an extremely sessionable pumpkin ale and comes in at 5% ABV but still has that wonderful pumpkin aroma and taste that we love in the fall season.  It is brewed more to be a traditional pumpkin ale than the newcomers that can become over the top spice bombs.

Brooklyn Blast- At 8.4% ABV this DIPA is surprisingly sessionable and easy drinking.  Brewed more towards the East coast style of IPA's and not intended to be a hop bomb, but still delivers the goods that hop heads enjoy.

Sorachi Ace- The first repeat beer on our show and it is making it's second appearance for good reason, it's a fantastic beer!  This Saison is brewed with a wonderful dosing of Sorachi Ace hops that impart a delicious bouquet of lemons, words cannot fully describe how great this beer truly is, so try it for yourself!

Local 1- Brooklyn Belgian Pale Ale again is surprisingly sessionable despite it's 9% ABV.  In fact Garrett informed us that a sign needed to be hung in the brewery to warn drinkers of the higher ABV, delicious Belgian aromas and flavors abound!

Local 2- WOW! What a great beer, again at 9% with no alcohol heat, this Belgian Dark Strong Ale is also imparted with honey and sweet orange peel.  The dark rich characteristics of this beer must be experienced first hand.

We also had a fantastic prize pack to give away this week, a signed copy of Garrett Oliver's AMAZING book The Brewmaster's Table.  If you do not own a copy of this book already, click on the cover below and get a copy now!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

August 9, 2014 Show

This week we drink and discuss aged beer with a great selection of styles to showcase aged beer and also learn how to properly age beer in your beer cellar with author of Vintage Beer Patrick Dawson.  We were also joined in studio by our wonderful guest Billy from Backyard Ale House.  It was a great show with a lot of great information and of course GREAT beer!

Beer Lineup:

Allagash Brewing Company- Golden Brett:  This world class sour beer kicked things off with a great sour tart character that seemed to sooth the palate while at the same time deliver that puckering quality we love in sour beers.  A rare one from May 2013, but definitely holding up well and is a true showcase for the wonders of Brett!

North Coast Brewing Company- Old Stock Ale Cellar Reserve (2011)- Words simply can not do enough justice for this beer. It is truly on a level of its own.  Strong aroma of cherries, chocolate, vanilla, pretty much everything delicious and sweet that you can imagine is in this beer.  The complexities run deep and it also tips the scales at 15.2% ABV, so this is certainly a sipping beer, an absolute MUST TRY!!

Avery Brewing Company- Hog Heaven: A 2013 bottle of this dry hopped barley wine.  It carries itself like a super beefed up DIPA but with great balance and high drinkability, another big one at 10% ABV, another sipper, but very enjoyable and fans of barley wines will want to hunt this one down!

Brew Dog- Rip Tide (2009)- This 5 year old bottle of imperial stout still holds up pretty strong and imparts a wide array of flavors from coffee to chocolate to hints of red fruits.  At 8% ABV it is surprising how well this beer held up over time, if you can find this one around don't be afraid of the date, crack it open and give it a try!

Thirsty Dog- Wulver (2012)- This Scottish Wee Heavy was aged in bourbon barrels for an extra kick and the flavor profile on this beer reaches far beyond typical Wee Heavy beers.  The bourbon barrel impart strong notes and flavors of coconut and vanilla, but flavors of chocolate and hints of coffee also come through, another sipping beer, but a great one!

After talking with Patrick Dawson we also gave away a FANTASTIC copy of his book Vintage Beer, the aging beer topic is covered in much more depth in this book and is highly recommended reading, check it out by clicking the cover below!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

August 2, 2014 Show

In honor of Mead Day we are drinking and discussing some great commercially available versions of the style as well as some homebrewed versions brought in by our special guests this week.  The discussion ranges from history to style guidelines to variations within the style and we even go into some unexpected and hilarious areas, it is a GREAT show packed with A LOT of great information!

Mead Lineup:

Chaucer's Mead-  The most widely available mead in the United States currently, it has a very clean profile with a smooth body and a sweet honey aroma and finish, great introductory mead for the style.

B. Nektar- Kill All the Golfers: B. Nektar Meadery is an upcoming meadery from MI that is not afraid to experiment with the style.  This statement is proven with their wonderful take on the mead style with this wonderful example, the honey notes take a back seat to iced tea and lemon flavors and all blend wonderfully to create a wonderful Arnold Palmer-like taste (but MUCH better of course!) a must try for those who say "I have had meads and I don't like them."  Also the 6% ABV is great and makes this a pretty sessionable mead!

Moon Light Meadery- Desire: Moonlight Meadery is certainly leading the charge of quality meads and this is their flagship mead and it is easy to see why this meadery is winning over fans everywhere they go.  Strong notes of blueberries, black cherries and blackcurrants meld with honey for an incredibly smooth mead and the 16.7% ABV is completely hidden!

We also partook in some homebrewed meads brought in by our lovely guests from the Scranton Brewers Guild and we of course had another great giveaway this week featuring a book helping to introduce meadmaking at home!

Making Wild Wines and Meads gives some introductory lessons and great started recipes for those looking to make meads and other types of wine at home!  Click on the cover below to check the book out for yourself!