Sunday, August 9, 2015

The Session 102 - The Future Landscape of Beer

The Session is a monthly post by many bloggers discussing a question posed by one. This month's session is brought to you by ActiveBrewer and he wonder how we see the Landscape of Beer for the future.

When I look the the future for craft beer, I see more growth. For years and years, there has been talk of this Craft Bubble bursting. I don't see this happening. Sure some brewers will close up shop, but I think that is due to subpar product/marketing/planning, not due to a bubble burst. People love craft beer and want to drink good beer. 

The question also asked about the larger companies buying up smaller brewers and how there is a blurring of the line for "small and independent". Honestly, I'm all for the big companies buying the successful smaller guys. This can be seen as the payoff for the hard work the owners put into building the brand. Many of these buy ups do not result in inferior beer, rather the beer quality remains the same delicious brews. 

No one knows what the future holds for craft beer. Maybe it gets to the 20% market share goal that the Brewers Association would love for it to get to. I don't know. All I know is that many awesome brewers will be producing awesome beer. And that is what I am excited for.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Beer Bracket 2015

As in the past, the Beer Bracket can help you fill out your NCAA Tournament Bracket. 

How this applies to me:
A) I don't look at the teams when placing beers. 
B) I update my bracket according to the actual NCAA games. 
C) The winner (beer) will be the one I make sure to check out, or do my best to check out. 

Usually the Final Four turns out to be pretty good. I have in the past done tastings before the final weekend to develop my own analysis. 

Let the bracket help you!

Whoops. First mistake found. Peak should be East Coast, but what the hay. Sorry about that. 

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Jolly Traveler Winter Shandy

In comes the cold weather, so does the winter beers. Sometimes you have to get away from the big stouts and Belgian beers to quench your thirst. 

The Jolly Traveler Shandy is perfect for this time of year, and can be a bit better since it comes in at 4.4%. I definitely could have drank, and enjoyed, more than one of these. 

Pouring a dark amber, the Jolly Traveler released an bouquet aroma of fruit (pomegranate) and a plethora of spices. 

A combination of mild, yet present, carbonation and the inoffensive alcohol content helps this become a bit too easy to drink. 

Give yourself a break from the heavy beers and enjoy a Jolly Taveler. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Mad Elf

I cannot lie, I do enjoy Troegs Mad Elf. I can't sit around and drink a six pack of it, but to have one every couple days definitely helps to keep warm.  

The best part of having to buy a case (hopefully these laws change fast so we can get quality bottle shops) is that you have put a six pack in the cellar and save it for next year. Mad Elf is one of the best beers to hang onto. The flavors develop, alcohol settles and it becomes a great beer. 

If you haven't ever had Mad Elf, it is an 11%, Belgian style ale, brewed with cherries. One of my friends doesn't like it because he compares it to cough syrup. I don't see it that way, but to each their own. 

Did you get some Elf yet this year? 

On a Personal Note:
Hello again. I missed doing fun posts. I need to get back into it. I hope you can forgive my absence. It is a fun time when life gets into the way. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Beer Bracket 2014

Oh my, I am alive. Amazing.

Anywho, the NCAA decided to have another tournament this year, so everyone plus the President is filling out a bracket. What happens when you have no idea that Stephen F Austin is in Texas, or that Wichita State are undefeated?  Just use the beer bracket to find your winners!

Here it is, use it at your own risk!

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Session #74- Finding Beer Balance

This month's issue of The Session is brought to you by This is Why I'm Drunk, with the capable at the helm:

April’s topic is “Finding Beer Balance.” It’s a discussion I hope will offer a variety of responses as people consider their interests outside of finding the perfect pint.

Is beer your vice? Is beer your reward? Does beer really have to be either? Do you find lifestyle balance through work, hobbies, family or maybe even “Dry Days” like David Bascombe? There are a variety of ways to find balance.

Beer and the industry has definitely become somewhat of a hobby to me. Not necessarily finding the perfect pint, the next great beer, but rather the people that are involved in brewing such beer. It all stems from sitting at Max's Taphouse with a friend and chatting with others sitting near. Meeting one person, which leads to another, which leads to another and eventually at some point I met Steve Jones of Oliver Ales, Brian Strumke of Stillwater and others. To see that they love beer, and love what they produce (and it isn't just a job) made me appreciate what was in the glass in front of me. But let me get back to the topic:

Outside of beer, I feel that I have very typical interests. I have played many sports: soccer/basketball/baseball in high school, soccer in college, and soccer/slowpitch softball/flag football/dodgeball our of college. Not to mention the million times we picked up some random sport to try it out. I still run up and down the basketball court for 1.5 hours every Wednesday. Being active was excuse for grabbing a beer (after I turned 21 of course). It doesn't matter what it is, I'll try it (beer or sport).

The #1 thing that keeps me active happens to be a 24 lb monster that roams my house every day from 8am -9pm.  This 1.5 year old tornado is probably the coolest person on the Earth. Our devoted time has paid off, as she has helped me lose 20 pounds (even though I wasn't looking to lose weight, she made us chase her when she went for the dog food).  She has created reasons for us to get out of the house, go for walks, and meet new people.  Babies and dogs are the social catalyst that could keep a world running.

So there it is, sports and a baby. My hobbies and life.

There she is, the Tornado.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Beer Bracket 2013- The Sweet 16

After the first weekend of play, there have been some major upsets and surprises. Below are the beers that made it through, and my thoughts on them.

(1) Boulevard Bully Porter- the dark roasted flavors make this porter no little brother to Tank 7. A beer to keep your taste buds on key.
(12) Anchor Porter- not to be out done by the Boulevard, this beer is often forgotten when placed next to Anchor Steam, but alas, it is a classic example of a perfect porter.

(3) Evolution Lot 6- this is a big beer with big hops. New on the scene when compared to Nugget Nectar, HopSlam and others, Lot 6 will soon be on the list as a go to for many people.
(2) Sierra Nevada Bigfoot-a standard since 1983 (one year after I was born), this beer is a beast of a brew. Perfect to cap off a night, it is awesome fresh, better after a year in the cellar, and even better after 2. Plus it is at a price point that doesn't kill the wallet. ($55 a case)

(9) Evil Genius Good n Evil- American style Golden beer, comes light and refreshing. Makes me think of warm spring/summer days. Nice balance of malt and hops, not heavy on either.
(13) Goose Island Sofie- a saison fermented with wild yeast is always close to my heart. The different flavors leave my mouth watering just thinking about the beer.

(6) Weyerbacher Winter- this English Brown ale leaves everyone satisfied. Has a touch of hops to even out the strong malt backbone. Very easy to drink.
(2) Iron Hill Berliner Weisse- whether you drink it straight or drop some syrup into it, this beer doesn't disappoint. The lemon turns to sour apple, and remains light and refreshing. I prefer a touch of raspberry syrup, but also order it without.

(1) Troegs Nugget Nectar- a perennial #1 seed. The explosion of floral hops in your mouth leaves you wanting more. The malt keeps a strong presence, and the 7+% keeps you honest.
(4) Chimay White- classic Belgian Trappist triple.  Slight bitterness from the hops and the not too sweet malt keeps this balanced beer one to always have on hand.

(3) Burley Oak Pale Ryeder- a nice pale ale that has the zing of spiciness from rye.  Easy to drink and smooth going down.
(15) Duvel- another classic Belgian. This Strong Golden Ale is a delight on the palate. Nice sweetness is broken up by a slightly higher carbonation.

(1) Oskar Blues G'Night- an Imperial Red that is dangerously drinkable. hoppy 8.7% beer has a huge malt character, while still giving you a mouthful of hops.
(4) Great Divide Hoss- based on a Marzen, this lager adds rye to give it more character. Another easy drinking beer, this is perfect for spring picnics, summer poolsides, fall ball games, and next to the fire in winter.

(3) Flying Dog Raging Bitch- this Belgian IPA combines hops of an American IPA with the yeast of a nice Belgian- giving this beer wicked complexity. Instantly became one of my favorite beers from the first sip.
(2) Orval- the final beer in the bracket, and another sour. This beer should have its own style, as its unique taste lingers on, begging for you to get another bottle. Oh and the beautiful shaped bottle it comes in. I must try for any Belgian beer lover.

The Beer Bracket Sweet 16