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Wednesday Beer Log – Sweet Mixes

Hey Beer Lovers,

I had some recent experiences with mixing beer that I wanted to share with you, as I think you’ll enjoy them.

Even if just to poke fun at me for doing these! 😉

First up, the standard Black & Tan. The epic duo of Guinness and Harp’s, or Guinness and Smithwick’s, always pleases the palatte. These are staples in that they cut the heaviness of the stout with a light-or-medium ale that actually enhances both beer’s flavors (I think)!

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The trick to these beauties is to pour a half glass full of the lighter ale (either Smithy’s or Harp’s), then take a tablespoon upside down and pour the Guinness into the glass by way of the spoon!

Observe!

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Pour a Black & Tan!

So basically, you can do a Black & Tan with any combination of stout plus lighter beer (ale or lager styles). I really like them with Sam Adams Boston Lager or Bass or Red Oak Ales! Mmmm!

Next up, we have the Guinness Chocolate Shake. Recipe to come better, but basically you take ice cream, chocolate and Guinness and make a delicious shake. I first heard of this awesomeness at the Alamo Drafthouse in Austin, TX!

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Guinness. Shake. Yum.

Next up is the Young’s Double Chocolate Stout selection of tastiness. First up, the Young’s DCS alone is worth drinking. It. Is. Delicious.

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However, this is definitely a stout beer. So if you want the yumminess but not the heaviness, I recommemd one of these concoctions. Plus, they share really well at bars! 😉

Mix half & half with a hard cider, like Crispin Hard Cider. It makes it taste similar to a chocolate soda – a little zip and a lot of cool, refreshing apple to the classic chocolate taste.

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Now, if you want a little more zip, you could try a Pear Hard Cider and bring out some of that tartness for a more refreshing treat. Either way, they are delicious.

Finally, we have our chocolate-covered fruits. Recently, I was introduced to the womder that is Sam Smith’s Organic Strawberry Ale. Holy fruit buckets, batman, this tastes like a field of fresh-picked strawberries just waiting to be devoured. Hpwever when I tried this it was a little sweeter than I wantes. So I decided to tame it with the Double Chocolate Stout. Voilà – a chocolate covered strawberry to drink!

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Now, basically, any fruit flavored beer, Lambic, Cider or other, will go deliciously well with the Chocolate Stouts. I fully intend to try the Seadog Blueberry with it next, myself! Oh and the Sam Smith Banana Bread Beer as well. Can we say sinful-sans-calories?!?!? Okay, fine, beer has calories, but way less than these scrumptious flavors would if turned into food desserts!

Point. Set. Matc—DRINK!

So what combinations have you tried? Any suggestions for me? Anything to avoid? Hope you all enjoyed this, and enjoy these drinks sometime soon!

Craft You Later,
Beth

Charlotte Beer Babes July Beer School

Why Hello Beer Babes and Beer Lovers!

This past Saturday, July 14, the Charlotte Beer Babes, led by the beautiful & beer-loving organizer Tracie, went to our inaugural Beer Babes Beer School event at World of Beer Southend.

Our Fearless Beer Babe Leader

Held the 2nd Saturday of each month, this Beer Babes school wil be a tutorial for women into the lives of various types of beer, including a variety of tastings to help the lesson sink in better. As with all good teachers, Preston started us off with the basic “Ales and Lagers” class to get our base knowledge started.

I am not going to go over everything, because WOB SE does a beer class you can sign up for as a general public person, however I did want to hit some highlights to show what we learned and how educational and informative this class is for the beer inquisitor thinking about maybe joining our Beer Events each month!

Aspects of Beer:
– Sacchrification of starches into sugar, and then fermenting of said sugars, is what makes beer.
– Grain: provides color, body, sweetness, Alcohol By Volume (ABV)
– Hops – provides bitterness, flavor, aroma
– Yeast – provides fermentation, flavor, aroma
– Water – provides majority of the liquid that makes up beer
– Sanitation – most important part of the brewing process, this is key to good beer

Yeast fements in the fermenter at 40-55 degrees for Lagers.
Yeast ferments in the fermenter at 65-72 degrees for Ales.

Beer History:
– First beer was thought to come from Mesopotamia.
– For a long time it was viewed as the women’s job to make and brew beer.
– Beer was originally brewed using fruit or honey in place of hops, in addition to various spices and herbs
– Some beer was originally brewed with narcotic herbs for a period of time, in the BC time period
– Ebla, located in Ancient Sumer, was a city that brewed beer and was the site of the oldest ‘recipe’ found for beer brewing amongst the “Ebla Tablets”
– 1800 BC – Hymn to Ninkasi – In the ancient Sumerian language, a hymn was written that in effect was a recipe for beer making, in honor of the goddess of beer, Ninkasi
– Jump ahead to AD 1067, hops become ingrained regularly in beer in place of fruits and honey, etc
– 7th Century AD found Trappist Breweries
– 15th century AD, the German Reinheitsgebot came into effect, which were basically beer Purity Laws put forth by William IV, Duke of Bavaria. This helped establish standards and expectations for beer.
– 1612 saw the first brewery in the Colonies, the brewery of Block & Christiansen
– 1789 saw George Washington set forth a “Buy American” beer policy (note: not a law, just a suggested policy)
– 20th Century saw the industrial revolution come about, which took beer-making right along with it.

Breweries:
– 1873 saw around 4000 breweries in action
– 1910 saw 1500 breweries in action
– 1919 thru 1933 saw Prohibition put into force by Congress
– 1934 saw the amendment of Prohibition, and the appearance of 756 breweries to see to the beer needs of the USA
-1969 – Cans of beer outsell bottles for the first time ever, and Fritz Maytag started the microbrewery revival with his resurgence into the Anchor Brewing product line of beer in California
– 1981 – Great American Brew Festival started in Denver, CO, and continues through today
– 1995 saw 500 breweries in action
– 2001 saw 1468 breweries in action
– 2011 saw a jump to 1989 breweries in action
– Currently, the Craft & Micro Breweries provide for over 105,000 jobs in the USA!

Sample of the awesome presentation…

Beers Tasted for Ales & Lagers Class:
Stoudts Brewing Company‘s Pils – this traditional German Pilsner was incredibly dry, and a little hoppy. It was similar, to me, to a very dry champagne in some of the flavors. If you like drier beer, you’d like this one. I personally thought it was just okay. Some of the ladies really liked it though!
New Belgium Brewing Company‘s Shift Pale Lager- New Belgium has turned out another delicious beer, this time in honor of that end-of-shift gift they give their brew teams. Coming out of a can, this hoppy, fruity, citrusy, and honey-flavored beer is a delicious lager to work across the palate anytime.
Bell’s Brewery‘s Amber Ale – my favortie brewery from my hometown strikes a great Ale profile with this Amber. Toasty, incredibly caramelly, slightly citrusy and lightly hoppy flavors roll around on your tongue for a wondereful swirl of flavor.
LoneRider Brewing Company‘s Sweet Josie – this delicious rebel of a Brown Ale has the flavor of malted milk balls (malt AND chocolate) that complement the hoppy undertones very nicely. This is a great sipper beer, or with a yummy meal.
Stone Brewing Company‘s Stone Pale Ale – this British style pale ale differs from many in that it is more amber than most pales, and has a rich hoppy flavor that winds around with the maltedness in the flavor from start to finish quite nicely.

So that is the inaugural introduction to Ales and Lagers from WOB SouthEnd and the Charlotte Beer Babes – hope to see you for the August 11th Beer School on IPAs! Until then, let me know your thoughts on these brews, and what you think of the Beer Babe events if you’ve gone! I, quite clearly, love them!

Craft You Later,
Beth

The Love Of Beer

Hello Beer Loving Peoples,

I know this isn’t a “Wednesday Beer Log” post, and it IS a Monday, to boot, however I wanted to share with you a special event I attended this weekend.

Noda Brewing Company did a private screening/viewing (first in North Carolina) of The Love Of Beer – a documentary about women in the craft beer industry. It. Was. Awesome. Completely awesome!

First off, let me say that while this event was heralded by the Charlotte Beer Babes, and the movie is about women in craft beer, this movie is in NO means geared towards just women. This movie was aimed at anyone that likes craft beer, period. And it scored a bulls-eye. Or two. Yeah, let’s go with two. I like that much better, and it fits!

So the mostly-male crowd at Noda paid the $8 per person for the movie ticket. One of the few times I’m completely okay with spending more than $5 on a movie, for sure! 😉 Anyways, the screening costs literally are covered by this $8 so it is going directly back into the movie. Woohoo, go small business support and supporters, yay!

This movie starts off with a picture of hops. Already we the crowd are pleased. Who wouldn’t be, really? Hops are definitely the hoppening thing for craft beer lovers, so what better way to grab your audience by the taste buds and hold onto them? (Shush all you groaning people, you know you loved that corny joke, so stop shaking your head like you didn’t smile!)

See?!?! Yumminess to grab your attention and keep it. Right there. Boom.

Moving on, we have an introduction into the Pacific Northwest Brewery scene, and quite a few of the leading women of the breweries and business that make up so much of the Pacific NW Craft Beer Industry. This includes an introduction into the Pink Boots Society, a women-in-beer organization that targets more women to get into the beer industry via education, homebrewing, tasting and so on. This also includes a look into quite a few women brewers and craft beer workers’ daily lives at various breweries, like Tonya Cornett of Bend Brewing Co. And this finally includes a look into the life and business of Sarah Pederson, publican of Saraveza out of Portland, OR.

The movie touches on each of these women’s lives but also on the aspects of craft beer that don’t have a thing to do with gender: daily production, hop purchasing, brewers conferences, national beer awards, figuring out recipes for new brews, how to get your foot in the door at a brewery, and the list goes on and on and on… This is seriously such a great movie, and I cannot say enough good things about it. However, I don’t want to say too much about it, because I think it is just totally worth seeing on your own, and I’d like to not spoil it!

See the video clip preview of this movie here, courtesy of Vimeo!

There is an upcoming NC viewing taking place Tues 4/3 in Raleigh, NC, at Fullsteam Brewing.
There will also be an NC viewing taking place on Wed 4/4 in Kinston, NC, at Mother Earth Brewing.

If you see this movie, let us (myself, Charlotte Beer Babes, and The Love Of Beer makers) know what you think, as we’re all on WordPress! 😉

Until later, hope you have a hoppy week, from both beer and Easter!

Craft You Later,
Beth

Wednesday Beer Log – March 14.4

Hello A Final Time This Week Beer Lovers!

I am finally finishing the four-part beer log for this week, because I have so much to tell you about this past Saturday’s 4th Annual BEERTOPIA! A Festival Of Beer event that was put on by Baxter Village’s own Grapevine Wine Shop in Fort Mill, SC, and it really couldn’t all be in one entry!

The festival is an annual benefit for the Pints For Prostates organization, and this year additionally supported both York County Cancer Association, and the Charlotte Beer Girls’ choice organization, Project Halo.

Today I am going to outline all of the craft beers that I tried (or have tried) from the festival. We are finally to the end, woohoo! (Or Boo, if you prefer, which I’m okay with, haha).

And finally I remembered to take a picture of the beer tasting glass (plastic, fine, call me out why don’t you!) included with the tickets!

Grapevine's Beertopia 2012 Glass!

Breweries Present (In Alphabetical Order):

Abita
Barley Wine, Triple Haze, Double Dog – I have had the Triple Haze before and I really liked it, however I didn’t actually see Abita in my travels that day, and so am now going to have to go find the Double Dog because it sounds DELISH!

Ace Premium Hard Ciders
Joker Dry Cider, Apple Honey Hard Cider – I have had the Joker before, and it’s good but a dry cider, but the Honey Cider is DEElicious. I love honey, so it’s a great blend of honey & apple with a kick of spice to make you realize it’s HARD cider, and not the kid’s drink we all remember and love.

Allagash
White, Dubbel, Fluxus 2011 – Like Abita, I totally missed this brewery. Although I do enjoy the White, as I’ve had that quite a few times! Booo on me!

Anchor
Steam, Porter, Old Foghorn Ale – Okay not only have I never heard of this brewery, but I didn’t even see them out there. Pssht oie vey. Old Foghorn being a barleywine, I probably wouldn’t have tried, but that Porter would’ve been delicious I’m sure. **sigh**

Avery
IPA, Ellie’s Brown Ale, The Maharajah – I like Avery, but I didn’t make it to them before they ran out, darnitall. Clearly I did not do this alphabetically, people, give me a break! I am definitely going to try the Ellie’s Brown though, because it sounds delicious. That is also the main one I wanted to try that they went out of by the time I got there. 😦

Bell’s Brewery
Oarsman Ale, Bell’s Lager, Kalamazoo Stout – Okay, disclaimer. I LOVE Bell’s. Bells & Sam Adams are my 2 favorite breweries, hands down. I am from Kalamazoo so that is a big part of it. AND the brews are freaking spectacular, so that makes it even better. The Oarsman is probably my least favorite Bell’s, as it’s a very traditional “light beer” taste. It isn’t bad, but not the best of theirs. The Bell’s Lager is just yummy for an every day beer, any day. I like it. So my first sip of the Kalamazoo Stout really rocked me, it was so delicious, and had a very good chocolate and coffee balance – not too strong, just hints. Yum!

Birdsong Brewing
Free Will Pale Ale, Lazy Bird Brown Ale, Higher Ground IPA – Another brewery I didn’t see so didn’t get to try. 😦

COAST Brewing Company
Scotch Ale, Blackbeerd Imperial Stout – I tried a sip of the Scotch Ale – it was delicious, not too scotchy, just the right amount of scotch flavor so you remember you’re drinking a beer!

Dogfish Head
Midas Touch, Palo Santo Marron, Namaste – This is my brother’s FAVORITE brewery. I will say, the Palo Santo Marron was one of my favorite beers from the entire Beertopia experience. It. Was. Delicious!!!! The guys loved (and I concurred it was delish) the Midas Touch, and the Namaste was agreed to be the least favorite though by no means was it a bad beer, it was good in its own right, just paled next to the Midas & Palo for us! YUM!

Duck Rabbit
Milk Stout, Brown, Cask Ale – I really like the Brown Ale by Duck Rabbit,

Four Friends Brewing
I77 IPA, Queen City Red, Gold Rush – We tried the I77 and Queen City Red, and I really, really enjoyed the Red. The I77 was good, but the Red just had so much flavor it was very much my style of beer – full of flavor.

Grand Teton Brewing Co
Bitch Creek ESP, Sweetgrass APA, 5 O’clock Shadow – We absolutely HAD to try this brewery due to the name of that ESP, haha. It was surprisingly delicious, hoppy, a little caramel-like undertone that isn’t overpowering in the least. The Sweetgrass was also sipped on, and it was a good, light APA style beer with a sharp citrus flavor that was a tad different from IPAs and made it uniquely scrumptious. Both were good, and I regret that we didn’t try the 5 O’Clock Shadow. Oh well, next year.

Great Divide
Wild Raspberry Ale, Espresso Oak Aged Yeti, Claymore Scotch Ale – I missed this brewery, but I had really wanted to try the Yeti. I am now going to have to try to find it somewhere – aww shucks!

Green Flash Brewing Co
West Coast IPA, Hop Head Red, Barleywine Style Ale – I missed this brewery as well, and had wanted to try the Hop Head Red, as I have never had a Red IPA before. Better luck next time. 😦

Harpoon
Celtic Ale, Leviathan – I have had the Celtic Ale and Leviathan before and enjoyed both. Celtic is a great red ale, with a malted flavor that is true Irish-Red flavor, and the Leviathan IPA is a very hoppy and clean citrus flavor. Both are good!

Highland Brewing
Little Hump Spring Ale, Gaelic Ale, Tasgall Ale – The Gaelic is of course an all-time classic ale. Great for a summer or winter eve, lots of flavor, and not too heavy or hearty. The Tasgall is a great Scotch Ale that just has such a rich and full-bodied flavor, it is unbelievable. I didn’t try the Little Hump, but as with all Highland brews, I’m sure it’s delicious as well.

Kind Beers
Pale Ale, Belgian Red – I somehow missed yet another brewery, but luckily it is a local Charlotte brewery so I can track it down here and try it out.

Lagunitas Brewing Company
A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, Maximus, Cappuccino Stout – yet another that I missed tasting because they were out by the time I made it over to them. I did at least get a visual, for all the good that did me. **sigh**

Left Hand Brewing Co
Sawtooth Ale, Week Sauce, Black Jack Porter – Again, a brewery sold out when I finally found them. Sad face here.

Lightning Brewery
American Amber, Black Lightning Porter, Electrostatic, Sauerstrom Ale, Thunderweizen Ale – I missed this one too, and REALLY wanted to try that Electrostatic, darnit! 😦

Mad River Brewing Company
Steelhead IPA, Steelhead Extra Stout, Steelhead Porter, Jamaica Sunset IPA – Another missed brewery that I didn’t even see. 😦

Magic Hat Brewing Company
#9, Circus Boy, Vinyl – The #9 is a classic beer that is light but good for summer nights with friends. I didn’t try the other two, however they had a demo beer that was tasty!

Mendocino Brewing Compnay
White Hawk Select IPA, Red Tail Ale, Black Hawk Stout – Missed this one due to the fact they were out when I found them. 😦

New Blegium
Fat Tire, 1554, Cocoa Mole Ale – The Cocoa Mole was one of my favorite beers of the day. Spicy, chocolatey, with a nice finish full of flavor and pizzazz! YUM! And the Fat Tire and 1554 are always good choices as well! 🙂

NoDa Brewing Company
Ramble On Red, NoDaRyeZ’d, Midnight Madness, S’more Porter, Tri-Umphant – I. Love. Noda. I’ve tried all of these but the S’more Porter, which will be rectified next week, and I have yet to have a beer of theirs I don’t like. Yum. My. Deliciousness. Period. Plus they come out with new stuff all the time, which my creative heart loves, too! And the Coco Loco they have (and pairing cupcakes) is just sinfully good.

Ommegang Brewery
Abbey Ale, Belgian Pale Ale, Three Philosophers – Three Philosophers is honestly one of my all-time favorite beers. It is a splurge beer, a celebratory beer, a quadrupel ale that has such chocolate and malted cherry goodness I cannot stand it (okay yes I can, let’s be real – it’s chocolately beer, I can stand it TOTALLY!). And I totally got the guys all hooked on it Saturday, too, muahahaha! 😉

Oskar Blues
Dales Pale Ale, Mama’s Little Yellow Pils, Ten Fidy – I have had the Dales PA before, and it’s okay. Didn’t try the other two, as I got there after they ran out.

PALM Breweries
PALM Ale, Steenbrugge Tripel – PALM? Where the heck was this? I totally missed it on the program, not just in the event. Whoops! Sounds good, though… I do like my Belgian beers… Drat.

Redhook
Long Hammer, Pilsner, Nut Brown, Demo Ale – YUM. Their Demo was the best Demo I tried, and no it didn’t have a name, darnit. I’ve had their Pilsner and Nut Brown before and both are pretty darned tasty. But that Demo was magic, I must say.

RJ Rockers
Patriot Pale Ale, Black Perle Dark IPA – Dark IPA sounds intriguing, and I’d have loved to try it, but they were sold out completely when I found them. Boo.

Rodenbach
Classic Ale – Same guys as PALM Breweries, probably why I didn’t see them AT ALL… 😉

Rogue
American Amber, John John Dead Guy, Chatoe OREgasmic Ale – American Amber was the only one I tried, but it was delicious, with a good lightly malted coffee taste to it. Hoppy, but not too much so. Very yummy. I wish I’d tried the OREgasmic Ale but alas, will need to find it in stores or draft now instead!

Sam Adams
Boston Lager, Dark Depths, Cinder Bock, Griffin’s Bow – This and Bell’s are my ALL-TIME favorite breweries. Period. Cherry Wheat is the beer that made me start liking beer, many moons ago. I. Love. All. Sam Adams. Boston Lager is just delicious and yummy and classic; Dark Depths had some very dark depths and was my favorite of these new 3, Cinder Bock was good with a true full Boch flavor, and Griffin’s Bow was kind of disappointing for a SA beer – it was probably my least favorite SA beer ever tried. It was just a little off in the hops. That was a first for me, but the other 2 were scrumdilyicious!

Sierra Nevada
Kellerweis, Pale Ale, Torpedo – Like this brewery, and the Pale Ale is good, but the Kellerweis was surprisingly delicious – I was pleasantly surprised by that one, wasn’t expecting that hefe to be so good and smooth, so yay, go SN!

Southern Tier
Eurotrash Pilz, 2XIPA, Unearthly Imperial IPA – Missed these as they were out when I got there. Boo! 😦

Spaten
Lager, Optimator – The Spaten Lager is a classic hoppy German Lager. It was good, but I have to be in the mood for it I think. While I didn’t try the Optimator (out!) I think that would be more my style…

Stevens Point Brewery
Point Special Lager, Point Amber Classic, Russian Imperial Stout – They were out too, boo on that fact, boo! 😦

Stone Brewing Company
IPA, Arrogant Bastard, Vanilla Bean Smoked Porter – These beers were all good, the IPA was nicely hoppy but not overpowering, the AB is a great classic ale with lotsa attitude, and that Porter was smoking vanilla-ey awesomeness!!!

SweetWater Brewing Company
420 Extra Pale Ale, Blue, Happy Ending – If I am in the mood for a very flavor-friendly beer, I get the SweetWater Blue, cuz it is nicely blueberry flavored without feeling like cough syrup just made a new flavor. Yum. The 420 is a great hoppy EPA, and I have to say I didn’t try the Happy Ending and boo on me for that, right?!?

Terrapin Beer Co
Hopsecutioner, Moo-Hoo, Wake ‘N Bake – Wake ‘n Bake is one of the best coffee porters I’ve ever had, period. It truly does wake you up. They were out of the others when I got there, but the Moo-Hoo is supposed to be FABulous. Boo for no Moo-Hoo! 😦

Thirsty Dog Brewing Co
Labrodor Lager, Old Leghumper, Siberian Night, Raspberry Ale – Totally missed this one completely, darn those sound fun!

Thomas Creek
Class Five IPA, Dockside Pislner, Conduplico Monochus – Yet another that I missed until they were out of beer, though I have had the red ale and it was delicious… 😦

Victory Brewing Company
Golden Monkey, Storm King Stout, St Victorious Doppelbock – Again, missed completely even seeing this one. 😦

Westbrook Brewing Co
IPA, Vanilla Tree Dubbel, Mexican Cake – The Mexican Cake is supposedly one of the best they have at Beertopia each year, but they sold out in like 5 minutes (shhh! that is my story, darnit, work with me!) so I had to try the IPA, which was a very full-hop beer, and yummy!

Widmer Brothers Brewing
Drifter Pale Ale, Hefeweizen, Drop Top Amber Ale – This Hefe is one of my favorite Hefe’s to date. YUM! Didn’t try the others cuz I was too happy with my Hefe. Nom nom nom.

Windy Hill Cidery
Ginger Gold, Strawberry Pippin, Gala Peach, Rusty Gold – I tried the Rusty Gold, I think, and it was a good hard cider with some unique fall-tasting flavors. Would definitely buy that one in the store, and would love to try the others!

Ayayayayaya – so much beer, so little time! It also didn’t help that I needed to stay sober, so I needed to pace myself so that I wasn’t drinking more than 1.5 beers per hour… I did it, but definitely wish I’d been able to try sips of some of these missed beers! Oh well, next year, for sure, I will plan this out MUCH more efficiently! 😉

So that is today’s (and the final!) edition – March 14.4 – of the Beer Log entries. I apologize it didn’t come out Friday as planned, but as you can see, it was a lot of links to find, a lot of notes to write, and a lot of eye-bleeding to avoid! Plus there was this thing called work on Friday that kept interrupting, and this thing called St Patrick’s Day on Saturday… Tsk tsk for both of them! 😉

Craft You Later,
Beth

Wednesday Beer Log – March 14.3

Hello Yet Again Beer Lovers!

I am still continuing a four-part beer log this week, because I have so much to tell you about this past Saturday’s 4th Annual BEERTOPIA! A Festival Of Beer event that was put on by Baxter Village’s own Grapevine Wine Shop in Fort Mill, SC.

The festival is an annual benefit for the Pints For Prostates organization, and this year additionally supported both York County Cancer Association, and the Charlotte Beer Girls’ choice organization, Project Halo.

Today I am going to outline all of the craft beers that were offered at the festival. Then Friday will be the non-homebrew beers that I tried and my taste thoughts (including for ones I’ve had before so didn’t try there)! :-) Be prepared, this is going to be an explosion of craft beer!

Beer Everywhere!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breweries Present (In Alphabetical Order):

Abita
Barley Wine, Triple Haze, Double Dog

Ace Premium Hard Ciders
Joker Dry Cider, Apple Honey Hard Cider

Allagash
White, Dubbel, Fluxus 2011

Anchor
Steam, Porter, Old Foghorn Ale

Avery
IPA, Ellie’s Brown Ale, The Maharajah

Bell’s Brewery
Oarsman Ale, Bell’s Lager, Kalamazoo Stout

Birdsong Brewing
Free Will Pale Ale, Lazy Bird Brown Ale, Higher Ground IPA

COAST Brewing Company
Scotch Ale, Blackbeerd Imperial Stout

Dogfish Head
Midas Touch, Palo Santo Marron, Namaste

Duck Rabbit
Milk Stout, Brown, Cask TBD

Four Friends Brewing
I77 IPA, Queen City Red, Gold Rush

Grand Teton Brewing Co
Bitch Creek ESP, Sweetgrass APA, 5 O’clock Shadow

Great Divide
Wild Raspberry Ale, Espresso Oak Aged Yeti, Claymore Scotch Ale

Green Flash Brewing Co
West Coast IPA, Hop Head Red, Barleywine Style Ale

Harpoon
Celtic Ale, Leviathan

Highland Brewing
Little Hump Spring Ale, Gaelic Ale,  Tasgall Ale

Kind Beers
Pale Ale, Belgian Red

Lagunitas Brewing Company
A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, Maximus, Cappuccino Stout

Left Hand Brewing Co
Sawtooth Ale, Week Sauce, Black Jack Porter

Lightning Brewery
American Amber, Black Lightning Porter, Electrostatic, Sauerstrom Ale, Thunderweizen Ale

Mad River Brewing Company
Steelhead DIPA, Steelhead Extra Stout, Steelhead Porter, Jamaica Sunset IPA

Magic Hat Brewing Company
#9, Circus Boy, Vinyl

Mendocino Brewing Compnay
White Hawk Select IPA, Red Tail Ale, Black Hawk Stout

New Blegium
Fat Tire, 1554. Cocoa Mole Ale, Demo Beer

NoDa Brewing Company
Ramble On Red, NoDaRyeZ’d, Midnight Madness, S’more Porter, Tri-Umphant

Ommegang Brewery
Abbey Ale, Belgian Pale Ale, Three Philosophers

Oskar Blues
Dales Pale Ale, Mama’s Little Yellow Pils, Ten Fidy

PALM Breweries
PALM Ale, Steenbrugge Tripel

Redhook
Long Hammer, Pilsner, Nut Brown, Demo Ale

RJ Rockers
Patriot Pale Ale, Black Perle Dark IPA

Rodenbach
Classic Ale

Rogue
American Amber, John John Dead Guy, Chatoe OREgasmic Ale

Sam Adams
Boston Lager, Dark Depths, Cinder Bock, Griffin’s Bow

Sierra Nevada
Kellerweis, Pale Ale, Torpedo

Southern Tier
Eurotrash Pilz, 2XIPA, Unearthly Imperial IPA

Spaten
Lager, Optimator

Stevens Point Brewery
Point Special Lager, Point Amber Classic, Russian Imperial Stout

Stone Brewing Company
IPA, Arrogant Bastard, Vanilla Bean Smoked Porter

SweetWater Brewing Company
420 Extra Pale Ale, Blue, Happy Ending

Terrapin Beer Co
Hopsecutioner, Moo-Hoo, Wake ‘N Bake

Thirsty Dog Brewing Co
Labrodor Lager, Old Leghumper, Siberian Night, Raspberry Ale

Thomas Creek
Class Five IPA, Dockside Pislner, Conduplico Monochus

Victory Brewing Company
Golden Monkey, Storm King Stout, St Victorious Doppelbock

Westbrook Brewing Co
IPA, Vanilla Tree Dubbel, Mexican Cake

Widmer Brothers Brewing
Drifter Pale Ale, Hefeweizen, Drop Top Amber Ale

Windy Hill Cidery
Ginger Gold, Strawberry Pippin, Gala Peach, Rusty Gold

All of these breweries were setup across four tents, and there were some wonderful raffles and foods as well. The York County Cancer Association was selling pretzel necklaces (okay, taking donations in exchange for pretzels!), there was a BBQ, Fish Market, Bavarian Pretzel sellers, and Wingzza all selling food as well. New Belgium was doing a Fat Tire Bike raffle, as well as a raffle for a trip for 2 to Belgium for a Beer week in September. Yes, I entered both, and no I didn’t win the bike. They will draw the Trip raffle in July…so I will keep y’all posted on that one – woohoo! 😉

So that is today’s edition – March 14.3 – of the Beer Log entries. To be continued tomorrow for the final edition for the week!

Craft You Later,
Beth

Wednesday Beer Log – March 14.2

Hello Beer Lovers!

I am continuing a four-part beer log this week, because I have so much to tell you about this past Saturday’s 4th Annual BEERTOPIA! A Festival Of Beer event that was put on by Baxter Village’s own Grapevine Wine Shop in Fort Mill, SC.

The festival is an annual benefit for the Pints For Prostates organization, and this year additionally supported both York County Cancer Association, and the Charlotte Beer Girls’ choice organization, Project Halo.

Today I am going to outline all of the homebrew beers that I tasted and my thoughts – including comments from my buddy Jim who tried a few that I did not. Thursday and Friday will be the non-homebrew beers available and my taste thoughts on those. :-)

Home Brewers (Competition where everyone voted for their favorite):

– Rusty Agee –> Italian Pale Ale — This beer won 4th place! However none of us ended up actually trying it. Insert sad face here. 😦

– Baby Bear Brewing –> Persnickety Doodle —  I tried this beer and it was a bit hoppy but full of flavor, pretty good overall.

– Bou Baker –> Mocha Bear — I LOVED this beer. This beer won 2nd place! All of us agreed that this was a truly superb concoction. Coffee + Chocolate + Honey + Beer = GiveMeAMoment Deliciousness!

– Troy Bigelow –> Pecan Porter — I really liked this beer. A lot. You could taste the roasted-toasted pecans but not too overwhelmingly, while it had a nice heavy porter build to the beer. Delicious.

– Jason Bridges –> Razzilla — None of us tried this beer saadly, however I will say that standing next to it at one point – it smelled delicious and raspberry-y with some undernotes of vanilla. Yes, someone next to me was drinking it AND a heavy breather… 😉

– Josh Davis –> Mallard Reaction — Sadly none of us tried this one either. Boo us.

– Ben Dolphens –> Hopgasm — This beer placed 5th! Jim tried this so I can say that his opinion was this beer was hoppy but not overwhelmingly so, and it was more hoppy than the Hoppopotamus. He enjoyed it.

– Arnold Fry –> Breakfast Milk Stout — We all tried this one. I liked it, it was a good stout, a good breakfast coffee flavor to it, pretty creamy profile to it – but this was dwarfed by the Mocha Bear for the coffee porters for us all. But it was good, especially if you prefer your coffee chocolate-free, you’d like it a lot!

– Randy Griesman –> Kumahwannaleia — Sadly, again, none of us tried this one. 😦

– Matthew Harter –> The Professor’s Black IPA — Okay this was hands down all of our favorites, the one 4/5 of us voted for (the other girl voted for Mocha Bear). We all LOOOOOVED this beer. I don’t know how it didn’t place. Seriously, the Black IPA was hoppy but had under and over tones of nuts and honey and lots of yummy hops. Mmmm. Mmmm. Good.

– Just Two Dudes –>Wicked Rye — Jim is not sure which Rye he tried, however he thinks it was this one. He enjoyed it despite not being a fan of Rye beers, though!

– Legal Remedy Brewing –> Privileged Porter — This beer won 1st place!!! Which is awesome! Then you learn that none of us tried it. And that is so NOT awesome. Booo us yet again. 😦

– Shawn McBride –> Mocha-Chino Breakfast Stout — This was a good breakfast stout with a good undercurrent of chocolate. I will say the Mocha Bear was better overall, but this was definitely not a slouch beer by any means on its own!

– Moonshadow Brewery –> Crescent Blue — This beer placed 3rd! Yet again, a beer we didn’t try that placed –  clearly we were missing out big time!

– Candice Payne –> God Bless American Ale — This beer is actually by some acquaintances of mine, and I really enjoyed it. This was a slightly hoppy and citrusy ale that just tasted like a good go-to beer for after a long day. Or a short one. I really enjoyed it!

– Mark Payne –> Blood Ale (Last Year’s Winner) — Like the GBA Ale, this is by some acquaintances of mine, and I really enjoyed this one also. This was last year’s #1 pick of the homebrew competition, and I can see why. It had a very subtle orange note to it that just flavored the aroma, first sip, undercurrent flavors and the aftertaste all very deliciously. Really good ale here!

– Mike Schenk –> California Rye — Another beer we didn’t try (or so Jim thinks he didn’t try this one!)… Sad for us, yes indeed.

– Derek Sheffield –> Ruby’s Summer Wit — And another one bites the dust of missed beers by our collective group.

– Greg Smith –> West Coast Hoppopotamus — Jim tried this and thought it was a good lightly hoppy beer.

– Bill Stayduhar –> Ryder Haus Hefe — Jim tried this one also and enjoyed it. I really wish I’d been able to find this one, because I looooove Hefes. Darnitall!

– Scott Watson –> Ivanna Chokolat — No one in our group tried this one, though I did hear good things about it from a lot of the ladies!

Basically, in summation, there wasn’t a bad homebrew to be tried, and there were clearly more homebrews offered than we knew what to do with. Next time, next year, we know that we need to divide and concur MUCH more efficiently and much earlier in the day! 😉

So that is today’s edition – March 14.2 – of the Beer Log entries. To be continued tomorrow…!

Craft You Later,
Beth 

Wednesday Beer Log – March 14.1

Hello Beer Lovers!

I am doing a four-part beer log this week, because I have so much to tell you about this past Saturday’s 4th Annual BEERTOPIA! A Festival Of Beer event that was put on by Baxter Village’s own Grapevine Wine Shop in Fort Mill, SC.

Two words: Beer. Festival.
Two more words: Flipping. Awesome.

So we had advance tickets, a group of 5 of us were going, and I had a plan in mind for sampling as much of the 170 beer offerings as possible while remaining sober. Yes, it was a challenge to contemplate, but I had faith in myself! I was the DD, also, so I had a reason to set that challenge…! When Drew & I got there we saw this wonderful (yet incredibly fast-moving) line in front of us:

Line at 2:15pm for Beertopia: wrapped around 2 blocks!

Once we got up to where we could actually see Grapevine, we see that the York County Sheriff’s Department is responsible for checking everyone’s IDs. BRILLIANT! I mean really – if you get a fake past the cops, they can’t exactly get mad at the business for serving underage – the cops are the ones that let them through! I was also incredibly amused by this because normally people drinking heavily get nervous around cops, but the presence of police was very ‘felt’ at the event, and no one really seemed out of sorts because of it. It rocked on many levels. See?

York Co. Sheriff's ID Check!

So the festival was actually for a reason aside from drinking lots of beer. It is an annual benefit for the Pints For Prostates organization, and this year additionally supported both York County Cancer Association, and the Charlotte Beer Girls’ choice organization, Project Halo.

So what about the beer?!? We got free plastic (and awesome) mini pint glasses for tasting our beers of choice. There were 170 beers represented across 50 craft breweries and 21 homebrewers at the festival. Choices, choices, choices! So today I am going to outline all of the homebrew beers that were available, and then tomorrow I am going to go through the ones that I tasted and my thoughts. Thursday and Friday will be the non-homebrew beers available, and tasted/thoughts. 🙂

Keep in mind there were HUGE crowds (and only 3.5 hours of time) so writing down much was kind of out of the question. Enter the wonder of short-hand-notes, woohoo!

Home Brewers (Competition where everyone voted for their favorite):

– Rusty Agee –> Italian Pale Ale
– Baby Bear Brewing –> Persnickety Doodle
– Bou Baker –> Mocha Bear
– Troy Bigelow –> Pecan Porter
– Jason Bridges –> Razzilla
– Josh Davis –> Mallard Reaction
– Ben Dolphens –> Hopgasm
– Arnold Fry –> Breakfast Milk Stout
– Randy Griesman –> Kumahwannaleia
– Matthew Harter –> The Professor’s Black IPA
– Just Two Dudes –>Wicked Rye
– Legal Remedy Brewing –> Privileged Porter
– Shawn McBride –> Mocha-Chino Breakfast Stout
– Moonshadow Brewery –> Crescent Blue
– Candice Payne –> God Bless American Ale
– Mark Payne –> Blood Ale (Last Year’s Winner)
– Mike Schenk –> California Rye
– Derek Sheffield –> Ruby’s Summer Wit
– Greg Smith –> West Coast Hoppopotamus
– Bill Stayduhar –> Ryder Haus Hefe
– Scott Watson –> Ivanna Chokolat

So that is today’s edition – March 14.1 – of the Beer Log entries.

Craft You Later,
Beth

Wednesday Beer Log – Feb 22

Hello My Fellow Beer Fans!

I have been slack this last week as I’ve been out of town, so apologies on the delay. However last night, Wednesday Feb 22, I went with the Charlotte Beer Babes to the Noda Brewery for a Beer Tour and tasting. Okay, fine, I chose to do a tasting, whereas everyone else chose to drink full beers to their taste! 😉

So first up a bit about the brewery. Noda Brewery is located on Davidson St, just west of the Noda area. This brewery specializes in the large-selection, small-production craft beers. Their head brewer regaled us with tales of how the Coco Loco beer came to be, and their attempts to get their first beers out the door. The owners are a ‘mom and pop’ pair, Todd & Suzie, and their 3 ‘doorbell’ dogs, who wanted to get into craft brewing, and the entire staff is friendly, knowledgeable and fun.

Next up, the brewery tour. Our guide is head brewer Chad, who took us through the entire beer-brewing process from start to finish. Here are a few pictures:

Chad starting the tour of Noda Brewery

Beer Babes on the tour of Noda Brewery

Where the Wort Happens!

Hot Water Filtering

Fermenting Beer

Chad explaining the 'cute little pot' to the Babes

Tracie & Charlotte Beer Babes enjoying the Noda Brewery Tour

Okay, now onto the beer. I did a beer flight sampler of 4 of the beers available this week at Noda Brewery: 10 Blocks South, Coco Loco, Midnight Madness and Ramble on Red.

Noda Beer Flight


Isn’t that beer flight just pretty? I love the flight holder – nice piece of sturdy wood to provide protection for your beers as you travel back to your seat from the bar!

Aerial View of the Noda Beer Flight


Now onto the beer reviews. From Left-to-Right in the picture, in order below:
1) 10 Blocks South: Xtra Pale Ale, 15 SRM (beer color), 56 IBU (bitterness scale), and 5.5% ABV (alcohol by volume). I found this a nice, light, somewhat hoppy, slightly citrusy beer. Really good balance of flavors of hops and citrus.
2) Coco Loco: Chocolate Coconut Porter, 32 SRm, 43 IBU, 6.3% ABV. I found this a really nice, chocolately porter that had a nice undertone of toasted coconut, and balanced nicely with the chocolate flavors.
3) Midnight Madness: Cascadian Dark Ale, 39 SRM, 71 IBU, 6.75% ABV. I found this a very thick ale, with a light hint of toasted-coffee flavor in the aftertaste, and to quote Tracie, had a “toasty, roasty flavor” to it! 😉
4) Ramble On Red: American Amber Ale, 15 SRM, 28 IBU, 5.2% ABV. I had a hard to identifying the exact flavors, as this was the last beer I tried and I didn’t have a water (I am special like that) to cleanse my palate. However I definitely liked the caramel flavoring on this light amber ale, and it had a good afertaste to it. I guess I need to go back and try this one again, huh?!? 😉

To finish out, here is a wonderful invention a local baker has created for the Noda Brewing Customers: A cupcake made with Coco Loco!!!

Local Baker makes Coco Loco Cupcakes!!!

Enjoy this, let me know what you think of these beers, or Noda in general, and hope to ‘see’ you all next time!

Upcoming events for Charlotte Beer Babes at Dilworth Billiards on Feb 29 at 6:30pm put on by Tryon Distributing (craft beer tasting); and at Whisky Warehouse on March 7 at 7pm put on by Big Boss Brewery (a Beer Tasting Dinner). Hope to see you Beer Babes & friends out there!

Craft You Later,
Beth

Wednesday Beer Log – Feb 8

Why hello again my friends and fellows! I know I’ve been a little bit slack lately on posting, however I promise to start doing better! I have at least decided to do a Wednesday Beer Log each week, and 1 cooking and 1 baking thing each week as well. So woohoo, I have a plan, yay, lalalalala, and happy doo da day! Now, to get started on the good stuff: the last week in adult beverages, mostly, of course, beer!

This past Sunday was a kinda big day for American Football. You may have heard of it? Super Bowl Sunday…? No, oh well too bad. Yes, you say? Then you were similarly situated in front of a television anxiously awaiting the assumedly-and-hopefully-uber-creative ads that people have spent literally millions of dollars making for this ONE opportunity to hit millions of people at once. And, oh yeah, there was a sport game on, these two teams called the Giants and the Patriots. You may have heard of them. They’re both kinda good at football…. 🙂 And totally non-beer related, this was my favorite Superbowl commercial by far!

So because of this great football game, a few of us were able to get together at a ‘new’ restaurant (only I had  been there before) in Charlotte’s Southend, the British pub Big Ben. They had Crispin Cider on special, and they also had Young’s Double Chocolate Stout in a bottle. So in true current-Beth-beer-of-choice fashion, I asked them to mix my two beers of choice up like a Black & Tan, and voilà – deliciousness in a glass! Take a look at these yummy choices – mmmm!

As a note – I have found that Crispin cider (très yummy!) works MUCH better than Woodchuck for doing this mix. Also, the Double Chocolate Stout is absolutely delicious on its own, and most Stouts work pretty well mixed with the Ciders. This drink, overall, tastes like a really sweetly chocolatey kick in the pants. It is deeeelicious. Truly. A very few of my guy friends that I have had (okay, fine, I totally whined and browbeat them until they gave in graciously and took the token sip I was offering) try this have likened it to a Now Or Later candy flavor. Every other guy that has tried it, and EVERY lady, has absolutely loved the flavor of this concoction.

Crispin Hard Cider

Youngs Double Chocolate Stout

Next up: my brother is a HUUUGE and I mean huge Dogfish Head Brewery fan. He especially, like most people, is a fan of the 60, 90 and 120 minute IPAs. So like a good sister, I treated him to a 6-pack of the 60 minute IPA this week. And like a good brother, he shared with me on Monday while we were catching up on DVR’ed episodes of Flashpoint(yes, I love that show, and yes, you should totally check it out!). 🙂 Yay for good siblings! So the beer, it’s a great IPA, very light and very hoppy, but not too overpowering on the hops. A good light citrus kick at the end of the sip.

Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA

Next up, on Tuesday, a friend & I tried Troegs BreweryDream Weaver Wheat Beer. I really enjoyed it – a citrusy wheat beer, light enough that it went great with Cheese Pizza, but heavy enough that I didn’t feel like I was drinking a completely bland beer. It added a very nice spice in there as well, which was a perfect balance with the pizza. Highly recommend this beer if you like lighter wheat beers. Similar flavor palate to a Hefeweizen, if that helps!

Dream Weaver

Finally, our non-beer adult drink for this ‘episode’… Today I spent 5 hours  helping one of my good friends get her house packed into a moving truck for her almost-cross-country move. Because my brother is completely awesome, he went with me and was our ‘muscle’ for the event. So after we finished up, I took my brother to TGI Fridays for a hearty dinner. Since my friend is a HUGE fan of Jack Daniels, I decided to have a JackBerry Smash in her honor, even if she wasn’t there to share in the wonderfulness with me. I thought of her with it, so that counts, right?!?! This drink is basically Jack Daniels, Berry Vodka, splash of Sprite and smashed blackberries. Yum!!!

JackBerry Smash

So that is today’s episode of the beer log, hope you guys enjoyed, and hope you let me know if you like any of these drinks and if you have any recommendations for me to try.

Craft You Later,
Beth

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