Happy BirthdAversary to me...mybeerbuzz.com

30 November 2008

Last week we quietly passed a few mybeerbuzz.com milestones and since I can be fairly superstitious, I decided to celebrate them all late.

From our humble beginnings in April 2008 we've turned 8-months old. I know in human years that means we'd still be pooping in our underwear, but in terms of beer blogs it's not bad. The stats guy in me would also love to point out we closing on our 250th post and our 200th comment.

Now I know all of these are still puppy-land sort of stats so here's the big dog. In just 6 months and with limited promotion, mybeerbuzz.com has over 14,000 hits. Anyone who has tried to promote a website will tell you that getting 1000 hits in a year is big, so to get 14,000 hits in 8 months is very promising and very satisfying. Better yet, it means what we're putting out here is info people want and info that hopefully people enjoy. Thanks to all of our readers and a special thanks to everyone that contributes. Cheers!


To Review or NOT to Review...That is the Question

26 November 2008

To quote Mrs. Beerbuzz...."Beers are for drinking...not reviewing"

We've had this discussion many times at many bars, and after chatting with Lew Bryson at the MBAA meeting, I started thinking (a very dangerous thing) about beer reviews. We've all seen them, we've all read them, and I suspect we've all chased or avoided a beer based on them. But why?

Beer reviews are subjective. Beer reviews are simple opinions. Beer reviews help and beer reviews hurt. Most would say that a Michael Jackson review is worth it's weight in gold for a beer lover. And as much as I'd normally agree with that, lately I am starting to disagree. Why you ask? Well I've done some readin' of reviews on various sites on the interweb, and I'm finding it more and more disturbing. People review beers. Some people are nice, some are mean, and some even review beer after beer of a particular style they clearly just don't like. I started asking myself why do they feel compelled to shed their opinions on me and why do I read them?

Time after time I find a beer that reviewers hate, that I love. Time after time I find a beer I hate, that reviewers rate A-super-duper-plus great. So whats going wrong here. Shouldn't a majority of people loving a beer mean that I'm most likely going to love it also....Nope. Sad to say but I find beer reviews useless. I'll be the first to say, who cares what mybeerbuzz thinks about a beer. I'll also be the first to say, who cares what anyone thinks about a beer, Michael Jackson included. For me they're all just opinions which means I probably have a 50-50 shot (or perhaps a 60-40 shot with Michael Jackson) of liking a beer...but that's it. So what's the point?

Now don't get me wrong, I love the beer-chatter that goes on at Happy Hour every Friday. We talk about beers we like, we talk about beers we dislike and it's all fun. The key difference here is that I know my beer-buddies tastes. I know what beers we've agreed on in the past and what styles they like and I respect that and enjoy that and it doesn't leave the bar (and doesn't get posted for the world to see.)

But here's where it takes a disturbing turn. Beer reviews hurt. When some self-appointed "beer expert" decides he or she is going to slam a beer on a popular beer-review web site, that beer takes a hit. Somewhere on the Internet there's some other person or persons that don't buy that beer because of Mr. Expert Reviewer;-- and somewhere out there is a brewer who's making less money because of it. Lets say I brew 35 different beers in a year and they all come out fantastic. I guarantee somewhere out there is some stooge that's going to dislike one of them AND take the time to slam it in a high profile forum where it becomes part of my "permanent" brewing record. Ten thousand people may love that beer and NOT write a review, but one bad review and beer sales CAN be hurt. Opinions are opinions, but are opinions really helping anyone? To me it's simply not fair, not meaningful and down right mean in the end. Beer reviews do hurt.
Also the next time you're surfin' the reviews...ask yourself this. Does the site I'm reading have any financial interest in the beer world? Do the people making money running this web page stand to profit based on what brewer gets a good review and what brewer gets a bad review? Is this site an impartial member of the beer community, or do they have a conflict of interest going on that we're not aware of? You'd be surprised what you'll find if you dig deep enough.

You'll notice I don't allow any reviews on mybeerbuzz.com. So what do you think? Are we smart enough to ignore a silly review? Is EVERYONE that reads a review smart enough to understand it's just one person's opinion? Does it help or hurt to review beers? Are people making or losing money based on subjective opinions of the taste of a beer?

Clearly for me....Beers are for drinking and not reviewing...


Bavarian Barbarian Releases Dunkelweizen w/Andechs yeast

From Mike Hiller:

Square Feet Wheat for Fall/Winter has been released to the masses. This is a dunkelweizen of distinction. Fermented with a weizen yeast strain from the Andechs Brewery in Germany, Square Feet Wheat Dunkelweizen bears a taste of clove along with some fruity esters that include apples and pears. Heartier than a mere hefeweizen, this dunkelweizen is the perfect match for the Fall and Winter seasons as it boasts a 5.5% ABV and flavors that will complement holiday meals.

Next up for Bavarian Barbarian Brewing Company is a winter warmer called First Snow Ale. With a recipe built completely from scratch, First Snow Ale promises to be a unique holiday offering that captures the spirit and warmth of Christmas and New Years Day.


Rock 107 & Purv's Christmas Party

25 November 2008

From John & Chip...

Friday Dec 19th 6AM - 10AM @ Purv's Beer & More (Peckville, PA)


Kclingers Tavern in Hanover, PA now On!

One unexpected benefit of the Split Rock Beer Festival, was getting to meet beer lovers from our western mybeerbuzz.com territories. After speaking to Sean, we've added Kclingers Tavern from Hanover PA to our list of great beer bars. be sure to chekc out their tap list and stay tuned for upcoming info. On a related note Kclingers Tavern has a beer club, that when you reach your 1000 beer, Otto's in Stat College will brew a beer in your name and they'll tap it at Kclingers Tavern. Apparently Sean is on his 800th beer...so stay tuned for Sean's custom beer in the future.


Split Rock Great Brews of America 2008

23 November 2008

We arrived to a room full of strangers and left with 2000 new friends. To everyone I met and those that shared the beers....Cheers to Split Rock 2008! (Be patient it's a fairly large video...but worth the wait).


MBAA @ Lion Brewery - More Photos

As promised here are a few more photos from the Lion Brewing facility. This is the first I've ever been in the room with their bottling line running at full song. Amazing to see the bottles flying by. Here's a full tower of thousands of empty bottles, the bottling line in action and a picture of what happens to you if you're a bad bottle of Malta! Amazing how fast bottles are labeled, filled, capped & packaged....fascinating stuff!


Weyerbacher Charlie to Become Seasonal - Fireside Ale

From Weyerbacher:

Charlie to become a Seasonal in January '09 (11/07/08)We've been ecstatic over our latest one-off beer named Charlie, an intriguing dark ale with 10% smoked malt. Feedback from industry insiders and the reviews on Beer Advocate have convinced us that we need to add this beer to our seasonal lineup. So, beginning in January Charlie will be renamed Fireside Ale, and will be available in 12 oz. bottles as well as draft in all areas that carry Weyerbacher! Charlie is on draft right now in select locations in Massachusetts, New York City, and the Philadelphia region. Be sure to give it a taste if you see it listed, and let us know what you think.


NEPA Beer Club Tasting @ Sabatinis

21 November 2008

The NEPA Beer Club held a beer tasting Thursday night at Sabatinis. I'll post up our list of beers, but first a few thank yous. To Lindo and the staff at Sabatinis...thanks for hosting the event and taking care of all of our needs throughout the night. I'm sure we went through a weeks worth of glassware in a night and I know it was a lot of work to clean up after the event. To Bob & Leo from Lion Brewery, thank you for joining us and sharing your knowledge and conversation. I can't tell you how interesting it was to taste beers with you both, and to gain your unique insight into the make-up of each beer we tasted. Hopefully we can get you both out to join us more often. Finally to the club members who came out on a Thursday night (some with very long drives) to share their beers and join us in the tasting...Thank you for a fun evening. OK so now on to the list of beers.....in no particular order (much like we tasted some of them):

Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout (2007 & 2008)
Bear Republic Big Black Bear Stout
Ommegang Ommegeddon
St. Bernardus Watou Triple
St. Bernardus Xmas Ale
Town Hall Masala Mama
Terrapin/Left Hand Terra-Ryzed
Troegs Scratch #14
Three Floyds Fabulous Resplendence X
Malhuer 12
Les Deux Brasseurs Brett
Bananatana (shhhhhhh)--don't worry I think everyone hated my Brett more that the sultanas
Allagash Musette
Val-Dieu Grand Cru
Bluegrass brewing Jefferson's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout
Dark Horse Brewing Co. Scotty Karate Scottish Ale
Zywiec Porter
Bavarian Barbarian Hammerin Ale
Thirsty Dog Siberian Nights
and a few more I'm sure I forgot....(even with the BEFORE and AFTER photographic proof above.) So NOW do you want to join the NEPA Beer Split club??

PS For anyone that tried Tom's brownies made with Brooklyn Chocolate Stout and would like the recipe, Clicky HERE and for anyone that hasn't been to Sabatini's lately...the beers selection is 1st class and the food is fantastic.


Chip the Beer Guy Rock 107 - Stone Smoke Porter

Today's show was a twin-benefit show...Toys for Tots and Beers for Boys...of course the former being the only real charity. Chip ran down the GABF awards and talked about how many of our local brewers made out. It was nice to see many of our mybeerbuzz.com members on the list and also many of the guys I met at the MBAA winning awards, including Terry from Bullfrog winning a gold medal, and our own Lew Bryson winning a beer-literary award.

I'll admit from there I spent most of the rest of the show saying to myself...wait Stone Smoke Porter for $2.50 @ Grotto, wait...really? Somehow I don't think 22oz Stone Smoke Porters will be going out the door @ Grotto for $2.50 any time soon, but perhaps someone should take one for the team and check it out...honestly even for the 12oz bottles (which I think we do get on the east coast), this is a good deal. If you've not had this beer, listen to Ruthie and check it out. I'm not a real smoked-beer fan, and I'll admit when Steve the former owner of Elmer Sudds suggested I try one years ago, I was skeptical. But Stone pulled it off very nicely. This is a beer worth trying, and at $2.50 a bottle you can't go wrong.

Cheers guys.....great show as always.


MBAA @ Lion Brewery Part # 6 Special Surprise!

20 November 2008

I promised a Special Surprise photo...so here it is. I'm sworn to secrecy on any further details, and yes the photos are intentionally blurry (as were many of my other photos) and intentionally censored. I can confirm that this photo was taken inside the Lion Brewery last Friday, those are oak barrels, and there IS beer inside them. Beyond that you'll have to stay tuned here for further details to come when Leo and Bob say it's OK. Thanks again Leo & Bob.


MBAA @ Lion Brewery Part # 5

19 November 2008

High-tech brewing & Low-tech brewing...and YES the pictures are intentionally blurry.


MBAA @ Lion Brewery Part # 4

If you've never been in the Lion Brewing & Bottling facility, it's an amazing place. Crazy stairs, low doorways, huge cellars, giant storage & fermenting tanks, a giant kettle, a giant mash tun, tunnels, hoses, pipes and beer, beer & more beer. It's truly a piece of brewing history and an amazing place to visit. Here are just a few of the photos I have. I'll add more in later posts just so you can see how cool the Lion facility is. The photos show the giant cold storage tanks, some kegs of Holiday Warmer & Lionshead waiting to go out, and a giant fermentation tank.


MBAA @ Lion Brewery Part # 3

18 November 2008

Here's another great shot of the Lion Brewery tasting room during the MBAA meeting. If you lock in on the Liebotschaner sticker on the tap tower, you'll miss Tom Kehoe (Yards), Leo Orlandini (Lion) and Bob Klinetob (Lion) behind the bar....among others.


Backyard Ale House to Open in Scranton

I'm just starting to collect some info on the Backyard Ale House in Scranton. Here's what I have so far:

Backyard Ale House (523 Linden Street)
Their Grand Opening will be this Fri (Nov 21st)
Their hours will be Wed-Fri 4PM-2AM and Sat 11AM-2AM

Looks like their initial tap list will be:
Sierra Nevada Celebration
Sam Adams Winter
Dogfish Head 60-min IPA
Stella Artois
Magic Hat # 9
Blue Moon
Yuengling Lager
Coors Light
Miller Lite

...and around 70 bottles.
I'll let you know more as I find out...Thanks Kevin.


MBAA @ Lion Brewery Part # 2

17 November 2008

Here's a quick peek or two at the Lion Brewery tasting room. They've redone this room recently after a steam pipe leak flooded the old room. It's a great room with all sorts of Lion. Gibbos, Stegmaier and other Lion beer memorabilia on the walls and some great old signs. Here's a peek behind the bar at some of the signs and another view of an old sign found at the brewery and cleaned up for the tasting room. Yes those with a keen eye will note our famous local beer author Lew Bryson in the blurry foreground.


MBAA @ Lion Brewery Part # 1

16 November 2008

I attended the MBAA Philadelphia District meeting this past Friday @ Lion Brewery. For those that don't know, the MBAA is the Master Brewers Association of the Americas. The Philadelphia district includes The Boston Beer Company, Butternut Beer & Ale, Dogfish Head, Iron Hill, Stoudts, Lion Brewery, Triumph, Troegs, Victory, Yards, Yuengling and several others. Their homepage can be found HERE. This meeting included a fantastic (and very detailed) tour of the Lion Brewing and bottling facility, dinner, the MBAA business meeting, a technical presentation on Hop production by HopUnion, a filtration presentation on a new filtration pad by Becopad and did I mention beer? Lion Brewery was pouring all sorts of good beers, including Steg Oktoberfest, Steg Holiday Warmer, Lionshead, Southampton IPA and Lion rootbeer, and Dogfish Head brought up a new bottle of their spirits called Jin (yes that's how they spell it). This is a very interesting group of brewing professionals and more importantly a great bunch of guys to taste and talk beer with. As an admitted beer geek, it was a ton of fun to meet brew masters and brewery staff from many of my favorite local breweries.

Friday's meeting featured a new BECOPAD filtration system. It was an interesting presentation from a technical standpoint but more fascinating from a beer-reality perspective. As somewhat of an outsider to the business of brewing, it was a fascinating reality check-point. We all envision brewing as fun and games and sitting around drinking beer. Not at all. As Andy said, "brewing is a LOT of hard work." There IS a real business here, with real problems, real costs and a lot of real work. Next time your tipping up your pint, take a few seconds to think about how hard it is to create any beer, let alone a great beer. Cheers to the brewers and brewing staff. I've gained a lot of appreciation for your craft over the years, but I certainly have a new appreciation for the hard work that brewing is.

I promised a hop report (provided by David Edgar of HopUnion), and from my outsider's perspective it sounds as though the prices are coming back to middle ground. Not the crazy high prices people were paying last year, but not the crazy low prices of the past. Apparently the flavoring hops pull in a much lower profit margin, and as such are struggling to maintain guaranteed growing space. There are more and more high alpha hops being planted, some for demand but most for higher profit. It sounds like hops have started to regain growing space, however I was surprised to find that more than half of the US hop production leaves the US for foreign breweries. As a consumer I'm excited to see that there is more creativity in hop varieties and that Simcoe is gaining more space to grow and the new Citra hop I mentioned here months ago is now gaining ground. Stay tuned hop-heads as the breweries may be able to afford to build hoppier brews again....and as the prices hopefully stabilize.

This photo shows Andy Tveekrem, District President and Dogfish-Head Brewer conducting the business meeting with Brett Kintzer (Head Brewer @ Stoudts) in the background. I'll continue to add additional posts this week with more details and some posts with photos of the Lion Brewing facility...and I'll end with a Special Surprise photo that I know you will all be excited to see.


MBAA @ Lion Brewery

15 November 2008

I'll be following up with quite a few posts and pictures, but I just wanted to put out a teaser. I attended the MBAA (Master Brewer's Association of the Americas) Philadelphia Region meeting last night. It was a great event and a wonderful opportunity to meet the master brewers and brewing staff from many of the regions finest breweries. Cheers and thanks guys for an interesting and entertaining night.

Stay tuned for more details, photos and an update on the future of the hop crops from Hopunion...


Mrs. beerbuzz makes ME jealous

I'm not a person prone to jealousy, and even after hearing details of the trip to Germany and the various beers she found....nope still not jealous...but then came THIS...see the photos!!!

I guess I'll have to drown my jealous sorrows in an Andechser Dopplebock. Stay Tuned....Mrs. Beerbuzz has promised to contribute a few posts about her trip.


Mrs. beerbuzz returns from the Motherland

I thought I'd put out a little jealousy-maker for everyone. Check out the stow-aways that snuck into Mrs. beerbuzz's luggage in Berlin.....

Wow and less than 3 Euros a bottle too!

This is in the comments but I wanted to be sure everyone gets to check it out. Interesting info from bavarian barbarian... This is Mike from Bavarian Barbarian Brewing Company in Williamsport. My yeast supplier just sent me a weizen yeast from Andechs. I'm using it to brew Square Feet Wheat Dunkelweizen today. Funny little coincidence to see the Andechs bottles on MyBeerBuzz this morning. Hope they taste awesome!


Troeg's Scratch # 15

14 November 2008

UPDATE: As of 11/15 Scratch # 15 is sold out!

Shhh.....quietly go tell your friends...

It's OUT!

Scratch #15 - Double Espresso Oatmeal Stout
Now Available on Tap and Bottles
O.G.: 16 Plato
A.B.V.: 6%
I.B.U.’s: 45
Malt: Pils, Dark Crystal, Chocolate, Roast
Yeast: House Ale Yeast
Juju: Oats, Espresso Beans
Hops: Galena, Kent Goldings

From Troegs:

Scratch #15-2008 is our first collaborative beer in the Scratch series. We teamed up with St. Thomas Roasters of Linglestown to create a Double Espresso Oatmeal Stout.The double in the name refers to the espresso (not the alcohol). Scratch #15’s espresso blend is a medium city-type roast featuring beans from three continents. St. Thomas Roasters roasted and ground the beans; we used them in our hopback. At the end of the boil the hot wort passed through the espresso beans to give a lush coffee espresso nose and hints of coffee flavor.Chocolate, roasted and caramel malt flavors stand out, while the addition of oats gives Scratch #15 a full, round mouth feel. Galena and Ken Goldings hops are added to balance the overall flavor and not drive up the bitterness. The head retention diminishes quickly because of the oils from the espresso beans.


Chip the Beer Guy Rock 107 - Michelob Pale Ale

Today's show was a Thanksgiving extravaganza. OK so it really wasn't any of that, and I'll admit I just wanted to say Thanksgiving extravaganza....see I said it again...that's twice! The show today was a cross between Iron Chef and the Butterball Turkey Hotline. We had tips on how to cook your turkey upside down and a riveting report on how Bobby Flay lost in "Battle Beer." All very funny and all leading up to what I thought would be a traditional Thanksgiving or Holiday beverage of the day. Nope...today's Grotto beer of the day was another Michelob brew. Today we tasted Michelob Pale Ale. Now I'm not sure if it was coincidence from last week's Michelob Dunkel choice or if Chip just found a good price on a Michelob craft collection mixed case, but we seem to have developed a flat tire on the Michelob highway. Certainly a likable beer and a drinkable Pale Ale, and one that everyone seemed to like. As a lover of Centennial hops and dry-hopped beers, this is a good beer, but certainly not anything I'd call an outstanding Pale Ale or a Holiday brew. In any case my Grotto-conspiracy-theory trend continues. Good news is that the show was as funny as ever, bad news is that there are at least 5 other Michelob beers in Chip's mixed case. So shall we place any bets on next week's Michelob beer of the week? I'll be guessing Porter...please post your guesses (Amber-Bock, Honey-Lager, Marzen, or Irish Red). the conspiracy continues....


Split Rock Beer Festival

12 November 2008

It's that time of year....snow on the pumpkins, crisp fall air, turkeys on the table...and the Split Rock Great American Beer Festival. Split Rock hosts two beer festivals a year, and this in my opinion is by far the best. Lots of great breweries serving lots of great brew. If you're looking for an exciting crowded, out-of-control frat party,and huge lines...Go Saturday. If you really want to taste the beers and enjoy the fun, Go Sunday. With that said be sure to tell all your friends to GO Saturday, since we don't want Sunday to go down the crapper like Saturday did a few years ago.

The Dates are 11/22 & 11/23, Tickets are $26-Sat & $23-Sun in advance (more the day of the event but so far no one is willing to commit to how much more....so...surprise!)

Breweries to include (so far):

Abita BreweryAbita Spring, LA
Allagash BreweryPortland, ME
Barley Creek Brewing Co. Tannersville, PA
Bethlehem Brew Works Bethlehem, PA
Boulder Brewing Co.Boulder, CO
Bavarian BarbarianWilliamsport, PA
Cape Ann Brewing Co.Glouster, MA
Cricket HillFairfield, NJ
Dogfish Head Craft BreweryMilton, DE
Erie Brewing Co.Erie, PA
Flying Dog AlesFrederick, Md
Harpoon Brewing Co.Boston, MA
Hometown BeveragesOceanport, NJ
J.J. Bitting Brewing Co.Woodbridge, NJ
JW Dundee's Ales & Lagers Rochester, NY
Lancaster Malt Brewing Co.Lancaster, PA
The Lion BreweryWilkes Barre, PA
Mendicino Brewing Co.Saratoga Springs, NY
MercuryIpswich, MA
Pennsylvania Brewing Co. Pittsburgh, PA
Reaper Ale Lake Elsinore, CA
Rogue Newport, OR
Sierra NevadaChico, CA
Straub Brewery St Mary's, PA
Stone Brewing Co.San Marcos, CA
Tröegs Brewing Co.Harrisburg, PA
Victory Brewing Co.Downingtown, PA
Woodchuck CiderOley, PA
Weyerbacher Brewing Co.Easton, PA
Yuengling BreweryPottsville, PA

This is always a good time so don't miss out. There are at least TWO bus trips that I'm aware of running on Sunday. Carl is running a Sunday bus Trip (Click HERE for details),and Kevin from the NEPA Beer Split club is also running a Sunday trip. If you're interested, I can pass your info on to Kevin. Seating is limited so don't delay. See you there!!


Plaza Beverage has their Holiday Beers in stock

11 November 2008

I stopped up again today to visit Charlie and refill my basement-beer-supply. Charlie has a full compliment of holiday beers in stock and he tells me he plans to price them aggressively & early. I saw great beers such as Troegs Mad Elf, Harpoon Winter Warmer, Anderson Valley Winter Solstice, Delirium Noel, St. Bernardus Christmas Ale....and many others. They won't last long, so don't miss out on any of these beers by waiting too long. Translation (I plan to buy many of them).


Iron Hill Announces Triple Bock with 3D Label

From Iron Hill:

IRON HILL BREWERY & RESTAURANTANNOUNCES HOLIDAY RELEASE OF TRIPLE BOCK BOTTLES WITH 3-D LABEL PHOENIXVILLE, PA – On November 28, the region’s most celebrated beer and food destination, Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant, will release their Triple Bock, a heady, high-alcohol winter brew that is a perfect way to warm up as the weather starts to get cooler. Brewed for a special, limited holiday release of just 1,300 bottles, Triple Bock is the newest addition to Iron Hill’s Reserve Bottle Beer line, large bottles designed to drink in the restaurant, take home or for a gift for the beer lover. Triple Bock will be available for sale at all seven Iron Hill locations.“Triple Bock is a strong, dark lager, a more potent version of a classic German Doppelbock,” says Phoenixville Head Brewer Tim Stumpf, who created and brewed the recipe. “We’ve crafted ours with a smooth, roasted flavor that balances its higher alcohol content and makes it easy to enjoy.”Triple Bock will be sold in 375 mL bottles, at 13.2 % alcohol. Bottles will retail for $12, or $25 with a limited edition Triple Bock t-shirt. Both the beer and the t-shirt will be sold with complimentary 3-D glasses, making them a fanciful and innovative holiday gift for beer lovers. Triple Bock’s eye-catching 3-D label was designed by gifted local graphic artist Jeff Schaller of PinkCow Studio. Schaller also created the signature wall murals at several Iron Hill locations. The label features a long-horned ram, the traditional symbol for Bock style beers, and is meant to be viewed through 3-D glasses that make the ram’s horns appear to leap off the bottle.“This is a special beer, and it deserved a special label,” says Iron Hill Director of Brewing Operations Mark Edelson. “Jeff has created some amazing art for us over the years, and we’re thrilled to include his spectacular design on our newest bottled beer.”Triple Bock joins other bottled reserve beers available for the holidays, including Abbey Dubbel, Barleywine, Belgian Tripel, The Cannibal, Russian Imperial Stout, Old Ale 2005 and 2007, Fe 10 Anniversary Ale, Quadrupel, Oak-Aged Quadrupel, Wee Heavy, Rauchbier and Saison. In addition, the Old Ale 2008 will be released in December.Since 1996, Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant has consistently been recognized for its outstanding beers and cuisine, accruing over 100 “Best of” awards from regional magazines. Their hand-crafted beers have also won acclaim and in total, they have received 39 medals from the three most prestigious beer events, the Great American Beer Festival, World Beer Cup and Real Ale Festival. Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant has seven locations: Wilmington, DE; Newark, DE; West Chester, PA; Lancaster, PA; Media, PA; Phoenixville, PA and North Wales, PA. An eighth location is planned for Maple Shade, NJ in early 2009. For more information about Triple Bock or Iron Hill, or to make a reservation at any of their locations, please visit their website at http://www.ironhillbrewery.com/


Old Forge Brewing Company - Update

10 November 2008

It's been a while since I've heard from Damien Malfara @ Old Forge Brewing Company. I posted up some details on July 21, which Lew posted again a week or so ago. Damien has been filling in the website so I thought I'd post an update of sorts. Looks like Damien has the tanks in place as of 10/22 and things are starting to line up for a Dec 2008 opening --there's was even an employment open house last Saturday 11/8 so the pieces are starting to come together. Click HERE for the latest info and a video of the tanks being moved in.


Dugan's Adds 3rd Craft Beer Handle

08 November 2008

We've all come to know and love Dugan's, and not just for the food and beverage. Then came the news that Charlie was adding two craft beer handles, in addition to his great selection of Rogue. Then came the new and exciting craft beer bottles....and now great news. Charlie will soon be adding a Third Craft Beer Handle. He's waiting for one of his regulars to kick, but stay tuned here and on the Dugan's page for further details. I'll give you two clues....First....it's going to be larger than a sixtel, and Second...see if you can guess what the first beer will be??


Zeno's Cask Weekend

07 November 2008

Zeno's Cask Weekend - Gravity Rules !

hey cask fans,
November 28 & 29.
Time to firkin up...

East End Bourbon Barrel Black Strap
Weyerbacher Double Simcoe
Yard's ESA (first batch)
Sly Fox - tba
Otto's Best Bitter
Voodoo Wynonna's Brown
Jolly Pumpkin Noel
Troeg's Hopback Amber
Jolly Pumpkin Maraciabo
Otto's Mount Nittany Pale Ale
Otto's Red MoOtto's - tba - can ya guess?
Zeno's RyeLancaster - tba
Weyerbacher Winter
Bell's Two Hearted
Bell's - tba - a stout
Victory StormKing
Victory 132Troeg's Scratch #15 Double Espresso Oatmeal Stout

more possible.

starts friday around 5pm and continues all day saturdayBa gathering about 3pm saturday with complimentary snacks and appetizerspay as you go $3, $4, $5, $6 pints - (Jolly Pumpkin goblets)

bargain hotel (walking) is the Imperial 400full service hotel (walking) is the Day's Inn (Mad Mex - good beers as well)hope to see you there,Dave


Chip the Beer Guy Rock 107 - Michelob Dunkel Weisse

So just let me get it out of the way up front, VERY funny show guys. I've been getting worried that the time slot seems to be getting smaller, and the relaxed atmosphere I always enjoyed seemed to have a hurried feel to it. Today's show was funny, especially the Banana-nose comments, and November being the correct answer worth 1 point...so thanks guys.

THIS JUST ADDED: I've had so many e-Mail asking about it I have to top of fthe post. YES I heard Chip not know if Mad Elf is out or not. Yes Apparently "Chip the Beer Guy" is NOT reading "My The Beer Buzz" or he'd know not only when it came out, but where he can find it.

Today we confronted beer-snobbery. Beer snobbery has always made me laugh. For some reason I expect it in the wine tasting world, but never in the beer world. I picture the swirling wine glasses, pinky-fingers held high, 3-piece suits and Kentucky-derby hats...but with beer, lets face it...our reputation is more pigs-in-the-mud swilling down aluminum cans of Bud. So how did it happen? How did we create beer-snobs...and is it a good thing? Now I don't mean "is being a beer snob a good thing?", but what I do mean is, "does this say something?" Has beer finally achieved a level of craftsmanship to the point that it is worthy of snobbery. OK so that sounds funny, but think about it. Over the last 10-15 years beer has changed. Beer has undergone a revolution and suddenly it's upscale....suddenly we're competing with wine and winning, suddenly there are good enough beers that us pigs-in-the-mud can pooh-pooh bad beers. This is good, right?

For me this is where the good ends. I agree with Chip and the boys that beer drinking is about the people, and all about enjoying a good beverage with good people. When snobbery takes away from that and makes someone feel out of place or makes someone not enjoy their beverage, then it's time to call a beer-snob-foul. Sure we can talk about the finer points of beer, but it's about the people you share it with and the beer you enjoy...not who's drinking the better beer. Opinions??

Today's beer of the day ($2.50 @ Grotto WB) is Michelob Dunkel Weisse. I've actually had this beer and I can say I (and several friends) actually like it. Please turn off the snobbery and try this brew if you get a chance.

My final point of the day is about the show. As I mentioned above I've been a little worried that the show was changing, and here's my concern. I totally and completely appreciate Grotto's role in sponsoring the show AND bringing good beers to the community. The problem for me lies in the fact that the "beer of the week" now HAS to be a beer Grotto can not only get, but also a beer Grotto can sell for $2.50. Forgive my economic prowess and poor math skills, but it seems to me that this not only dictates the beer choices but severly limits them as well. This is nothing against Grotto or the guys, but I hope you can both find a way to balance what is good for the show, good for the sponsors, and also good for the listeners.
Cheers Guys....great show!


Weyerbacher Releases Quad Early!

05 November 2008

From Weyerbacher:

Weyerbacher Quad: Now released Nov/Dec in time for Holidays! (10/30/08)That's right, our fantastic abbey style quadruppel will no longer come out in February, but will be available in all markets through November and December. QUAD is perfect for those holiday occaisions or gifts. Watch for it soon, we begin shipping the first week in November and continue throughout the month. This will be a permanent schedule change. We'll have a complete listing of 2009's new seasonal schedule posted here in a few more weeks. Next years schedule includes 3 new beers! Check back often for details.


Mr Z's in Dallas has Beer

03 November 2008

Or as the locals may say, "Weis got beers!"

Yes it's true and I offer crappy cell phone photographic proof. Notice the large red sign on the exterior and the coolers full of beer. I didn't spend a ton of time checking it all out (pesky groceries)...but I did see Victory, Widmer, and quite a few other good beers. I promise I'll return for a full report sometime, but for now the photo will have to suffice.


Bavarian Barbarian Press Release - New Beers

02 November 2008

Be sure to check out the Press Release on the Bavarian Barbarian page for some new beers Mike will be brewing this fall and winter. Very exciting stuff, and also exciting to hear we may see the Steel Drivin Stout in our area soon.


WILK Friday BeerBuzz

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