Brewers Association lists 5 new beer styles in just released 2014 guidelines

BA_logo-185Five new beer styles are contained in the Brewers Association’s (BA) newly revised beer style guidelines.

The guidelines, dated March 10, were announced publicly on April 22 in an Examiner.com blog by BA president Charlie Papazian on April 22, almost two weeks since the conclusion of the annual Craft Brewers Conference in Denver, Colorado. Last year, the guidelines were announced in a BA press release a month prior to annual brewers gathering. The BA is a trade group for America’s small and independent craft brewers

The new styles announced are: Belgian-Style Fruit Beer, Australian-Style Pale Ale (spun off from Australasian-Style Pale Ale), Asian-Style Pale Ale (spun off from Australasian-Style Pale Ale), Dutch-Style Kuit (Kuyt, Koyt), Historical Beer (previous part of Indigenous beer) and Wild Beer

In addition, there were substantial revisions to the guidelines for American-Style Fruit Beer and Herb and Spice Beer.

All of the latest guidelines were rewritten to follow a standard format of appearance, aroma, flavor, body, etc., Papazian wrote in his posting. “This format follows the sensory experience,” he explained. “Many style groups were reorganized within historical groups in an order of roughly increasing original gravity and alcohol content. Also, style origins were clarified

BA  guidelines are often changed and new styles get added to the list with almost regularity. But when the BA published its 2013 guidelines  early that year – prior to the annual Craft Brewers Conference – for the Polish beer style Grodzisz, or Grodziske or Grätzer, they set off a loud public debate over ingredients and origin that ultimately resulted in the BA revisiting the guidelines for that style and rewriting them.

Charlie Papazian

Charlie Papazian

Last year, amid the controversy, Papazian told me that the guidelines, which are used to judge beers at the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup, are constantly evolving and that in any give year only a couple of style definitions might be tweaked or as many as a dozen. “The trick is to stay relevant,” he said, explaining that the guidelines try to reflect the innovation that is taking place in the brewing community while preserving traditional styles. “That can be a balancing act. People like to tinker around.”

Papazian with assistance from BA director Paul Gatza and BA technical director Chris Swersey using comments from GABF and World Beer Cup judges, essentially, wrote the guidelines as he has since 1979.

The new style definitions can be found in pdf format at the BA’s web site.

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Coors, Oregon, California, Pennsylvania and Kansas brewers take top honors at largest-ever World Beer Cup awards

World Beer Cup awards awaiting presentation (Brewers Association photo)

World Beer Cup awards awaiting presentation (Brewers Association photo)

By Alan J. Wax

A small brewery in Oregon, a mid-sized California brewer and American beer giant Coors Brewing Co. each won top awards at the 2014 Brewers Association World Beer Cup awards, described by the group’s president as the “Olympics of beer competition.” Brewpubs in Pennsylvania and Kansas took home top honors in the brew pub category.

In all 284 awards were presented April 10 in Denver, where the bi-annual competition was conducted just prior to the annual Craft Brewers Conference. The awards were presented April 10 at the conclusion of Craft Brewers Conference.

The Boulder, Colo.-based Brewers Association (BA), the trade group representing America’s small and independent craft brewers, calls the World Beer Cup one of the world’s largest global commercial beer competitions. This year’ s competition drew 4,754 beers from over 1,403 breweries located in 58 countries – the largest number of entrants in the competition’s history.  “This was huge,” Chris Swerzey, competition director, said prior to announcing the awards.

Brewers from five continents earned awards from an international panel of judges at this 10th biennial competition, with brewers from 22 countries—ranging from Australia and Brazil to Taiwan and the United Kingdom—honored.

The judges awarded 281 out of 282 total possible awards, reflecting the chance for one gold, one silver and one bronze in each of 94 beer style categories.

This year’s event was particularly competitive, the BA said, noting that the proportion of winning breweries garnering one or more awards was 18 percent, compared to 27 percent in 2012. Only three breweries won more than one award; 26 took two awards and 226 won one award.

“Brewers from around the globe participate in the World Beer Cup to win recognition for their creativity and brewing skills,” said BA president Charlie Papazian. “For a brewer, a World Beer Cup gold award allows them to say that their winning beer represents the best of that beer style in the world.”

A panel of 219 judges from 31 countries working in teams conducted blind tasting evaluations of the beers to determine the awards. They included professional brewers and brewing industry experts; 76 percent were from outside the United States.

The category with the most entries was American-Style India Pale Ale, with 223 entries followed by American-Style Pale Ale, with 121 entries and Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer, with 111 entries.

The competition also presented Champion Brewery and Champion Brewmaster awards in each of five brewery categories based on the awards won by each brewery.

The 2014 five Champion Brewery/Brewmaster award winners were:

Small Brewing Company Category: Pelican Brewery of Pacific City, Ore; Darron Welch and Steve Panos

Mid-Size Brewing Company Category: Coronado Brewing Co. of Coranado Calif., near San Diego; Coronado Brewing Co. team.

Large Brewing Company Category: Coors Brewing, Golden, Colo.; Dr. David Ryder.

Small Brewpub Category: Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant, Media, Pa.; Iron Hill Brewery team.

Large Brewpub Category: Blind Tiger Brewery & Restaurant, Topeka, Kan.; John Dean.

The complete list of winners can be downloaded at the competition’s home page.

 

 

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Brewers Association, wary of decline in quality, urges homebrewers-turned-pro to boost quality control

Audience at the 2014 Craft Brewers Conference in Denver

Audience at the 2014 Craft Brewers Conference in Denver
(Brewers Association photo)

By Alan J. Wax

The Brewers Association (BA) says its concerned about declining quality of craft beer.

Paul Gatza, director of the Brewers Association

Paul Gatza

Speaking on April 9 in Denver at the annual Craft Brewers Conference, BA director Paul Gatza said that while the number of breweries, beer production, revenues and exports have climbed, quality has fallen. The Boulder, Colo.-based BA sponsors the conference, which this year attracted about 9,000 attendees.

“It’s a big issue,” Gatza told a media teleconference from the gathering. “We hate to see this segment being brought down with people having bad experiences in their glass when they’re trying craft beer. They’re maybe less likely to try something new in the future if they are having a bad experience from the last brewery they tried.”

Earlier, speaking to the brewers, he told about  visiting a beer fest and sampling a number of poor quality offerings, Gatza told new craft brewers: “Don’t f*ck it up.”   

Gatza said some new professional brewers, among them former home brewers, are not putting out beer quality that reflects well on the whole industry.”

BA_logo-185“A lot of people start in this industry as homebrewers who are told by their friends that they’re making good beer and you should go pro,” Gatza said. “A lot of them do and they try to do it on a shoestring. Try to do it on a small level and get bigger. They get their licenses. They make their first commercial beer and their friends say this is so great. But in truth what people who really know about beer are finding [is] that a lot of these newer brewers are not putting out quality that reflects well on the whole craft community. There are some off flavors at times.

He urged the newcomers need to step back and spend more time on the science of beer making and urged them to use outside labs to measure bacteria counts and other benchmarks.

Not all the blame, he said, falls on the brewers and noted that some fault belongs to retailers who fail to clean their draft lines or don’t clean their glassware property.

Bart Watson

Bart Watson

Brewers Association economist Bart Watson, meanwhile told the conference that the industry’s growth streak continues. The stats are available in an online Power Point presentation.

Craft brewing volume grew 18 percent, to 15.6 million barrels in 2013, up by 2.3 million, even as the overall U.S. beer market declined 2 percent.

Craft beer’s market share, meanwhile, grew to 7.8 percent last year and is predicted to grow further. In dollars, craft beer garnered a 14.3 percent share, $14.3 billion out of a total $100 billion in sales.

The U.S. had 2,768 breweries at the end of 2013, with 1,744 in the planning stages. By the end of last month, the number of operating breweries had grown to 2,866. Of those, 99 percent are craft breweries.

Robert Pease

Robert Pease

BA Chief Operating Officer Robert Pease said U.S. craft brewers exported 282,526 barrels last year, up 49 percent from 2012. The top foreign markets were Canada, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Australia and Japan.

“The word is out that the best beer in the world is being made by American craft brewers,” Pease said.

Gatza said the BA has what he called an “aspirational” goal for the craft brewing industry to hit 20 percent market share by the end of the decade. But it’s not a slam-dunk, he admitted.

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New York malt adds flavor to NYC’s Brewers Choice Beer Week event

After getting a little behind on writing this blog for various reasons, it’s time to catch up.  Here’s a piece on a terrific NYC Beer Week event.

Brewer’s Choice, the New York City beer and food event put on annually by beer and food impresario James Carbone, owner of Jimmy’s No. 43 in the East Village, was the only NYC Beer Week I was able to make this year. But I was glad I did.

Taking place for the first time in the Wyeth Hotel in Williamsburg, Brooklyn,

Carbone, working with another great New York City beer promoter, Dave Broderick, of The Blind Tiger Ale House, produced a tightly focused tasting on a chilly Feb. 26 evening.

The event featured some of the best beers I have sampled in months, a rare opportunity to meet face-to-face with the brewers and some pretty tasty eats from a collection of fine restaurants, including Reynard, Mile End Deli and Luke’s Lobster; and such artisanal food purveyors as Coach Farm Cheese and Blue Island Oyster Co.

Brewers Choice was among the 300 events and 150 venues participating in NYC Beer Week. Beer week is organized by the New York City Brewers Guild is a promotion group composed of 17 New York City-based brewers.

This year, Carbone sought to bring what he called “a very cool component” to his beer extravaganza. He sought out nearly 30 brewers, mostly from New York, but not all, who used regional grains to produce some of their brews. Also on hand were officials of Grow NYC, which among other things operates the Union Square Green Market, and Amanda Stanley, owner of Valley Malt, an artisanal maltster in Hadley, Mass., which supplies some 60 brewers and distillers. Valley Malt’s malts were used in many of the beers.

June Russell of Grow NYC at Brewers Choice event.

June Russell of Grow NYC at Brewers Choice event.

Brewers have been among the last of food and beverage producers to use local ingredients, June Russell, who has been facilitating the production of grains and processing in the region on behalf of Grow NYC, told me at the event. “They haven’t had the malting facilities.”

New York has three malt producers that I could identify: Farm House Malt in Newark Valley, NY Craft Brew Malt in Batavia and Flower City Malt Lab, of Rochester

New York State has encouraged the use of New York grown barley and hops through the establishment of a lower cost farm brewery license, which allows brewers to operate retail outlets for New York products, open restaurants, undertake increased tastings and sell related products. In order to receive a Farm Brewery license, the beer must be made primarily from locally grown farm products. Until the end of 2018, at least 20 percent of the hops and 20 percent of all other ingredients must be grown or produced in New York State.

To be sure, not every beer I savored was made with local ingredients—or locally brewed. Here are some of my favorites:

Newburgh Brewing’s  Magnanini Niagara Tripel, made with local Niagara grapes and Brettanomyces yeast, an interesting brew with what wine drinkers would call a tart foxy grape character with definite brett notes.

Swisher by Carton Brewing Co. of Atlantic Highlands, N.J. Named for Swisher Sweet, the mild, sweet-tasting cigar often used to smoke a certain medicinal week. The cigar taste is well replicated quite well in this unique, murky brown, tart brew.

Regular Coffee, also by Carton Brewing, appealed to me although I am not a fan of coffee beers. This one somehow was different. It’s a golden brew, creamy and with notes of coffee. Quite drinkable, despite 12% abv. Think diner coffee with two sugars and milk.

Jonge Kriek by Brooklyn Brewery. Cherries dominate this tasty oak aged brett tinged brew based on Local 2.

Wild Streak, also from Brooklyn Brewery. An extra brut beer with notes of fruit that give way to oak notes and light brett finish.

Greenmarket Wheat Ale, again by Brooklyn Brewery, was a gentle, easy drinking wit beer with tart notes and a soft finish.

Big Alice team at Brewers Choice

Big Alice team at Brewers Choice

0052-Special Honey Smoked Ale by Big Alice Brewing of Long Island City.  This was a big, rich, complex beer with subdued smoke character. Good for dessert.

Hell Gate Golden Ale by Long Island’s Blind Bat Brewery, An unfiltered, cloudy deep golden, richly flavored brew with a notes of cardamom, bubble gum, bananas and, of course, It was produced using Valley Malt barley grown by O’Mara’s Farm, Canastota, N.Y., and coriander grown in Centerport, Long Island at Seed Sower Farm.

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TAP Global Beer Collection, a new bar in Delray Beach, FL, offers local pours

TAP Global Beer Collection is in a Delray Beach, Fla. shopping center

TAP Global Beer Collection is in a Delray Beach, Fla. shopping center

South Florida’s burgeoning craft beer scene has gotten a smidge larger and a lot more interesting with the opening of a new craft beer bar in Delray West.

TAP Global Beer Collection, with 72 taps and 378 bottled brews, has been open since January in the new Delray Marketplace, a crowded, upscale shopping venue anchored by a 12-screen, 16-lane movie/bowling complex.

 

TAP Global Beer offers 72 taps and 300+ bottles in a lodge-like setting.

TAP Global Beer offers 72 taps and 300+ bottles in a lodge-like setting.

World of Beer, a franchised craft beer bar chain that has outlets 15 miles south in Coconut Creek and 26 miles north in West Palm Beach. Oh yes, big screen TVs abound. And there’s small private tasting room, too,

Unlike World of Beer, TAP serves food, albeit limited to tapas, largely bar favorites such as soft baked pretzels, chili, hummus, mac & cheese and more.

There’s a glossy beer menu, which includes a beer-style guide upfront. There’s also a single-page  paper menu listing special brews. Attractive servers, attired in black jeans and t-shirts, are knowledgeable about the brews and are ready to offer advice.

During a recent visit on a quiet weekday night when no events or music were being offered, I found a dozen local brews among the 72 on tap, including offerings from Miami Brewing in Homestead, Wynwood Brewing in Miami, Due South in Boynton Beach, Funky Buddha in Oakland Park and Florida Beer Co. in Melbourne. For a casual visitor to this area, a sampler makes it easy to taste many of the local brews. A sampler of six cost $15.

Sampler of local brews

Sampler of local brews

I was quite taken by the Funky Buddha French Oak Aged Hop Gun, a bright orange brew with a nose of honey, hazel nuts and spice and an unexpected soft finish. Its simpler sibling, Hop Gun, was less interesting.  Funky Buddha’s Polish Hammer, an imperial lager, was brilliant copper in color and a velvety malt body was accented by resiny hops, which lingered on the finish. Funky Buddha’s OP Porter offered up a caramel nose and was sweet and creamy on the palate—sort of a carbonated milk shake, if you will. Another porter, Pops, from Wynwood, was juicy, but far roastier with notes of roasted malt chocolate and licorice with a soft dry finish. Miami Vice IPA, despite its juicy malt character and resiny finish seems one-dimensional.

TAP is the work of co-founders Tony Trieu, owner of the Nashville-based Venetian Nail Spa chain and the Live Love Yogurt shops chain, and Paige Presnell, a Fort Lauderdale-based real estate developer and contractor, who is now a certified cicerone. (TAP, by the way, stands for Tony and Paige.)

TAP Global Beer Collection is at 14813 Lyons Rd., Delray Beach, FL 33446, just west of Florida’s Turnpike. It is open from 2 p.m. on weekdays and Noon on weekends. (561) 270-3839.

 

 

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Gallo Marks 50th Anniversary of its iconic blend, Hearty Burgundy

What was your first real wine?

For me, it was probably a bottle of Gallo Hearty Burgundy.

That’s after dismissing all the sweet kosher wines I drank on Jewish holidays and the fruity Yago Sangria and Boone’s Farm fruit wines that I chugged with college pals to soothe our throats after inhaling the smoke of a weed now considered medicinal. I remember it was at a dinner at a long-gone Italian restaurant in Port Jefferson, N.Y., not far from the Stony Brook University campus, where I spent my undergraduate days. My roommate was buying to celebrate the completion of a project. We thought we were pretty damn sophisticated ordering a bottle of Gallo Hearty Burgundy to wash down the pizza we ordered.

I don’t remember how the wine tasted, or, to be honest, if I really liked it. I didn’t know Burgundy from Bordeaux until some years later when I entered the working world and Terry Robards had begun scribbling his weekly wine column for the New York Times.

But that college-era recollection came back recently upon seeing a press release from Gallo noting that 2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the introduction of Hearty Burgundy by pioneering American winemakers Ernest and Julio Gallo.GALLO FAMILY VINEYARDS HEARTY BURGUNDY WINE

Hearty Burgundy, we are told was the favorite wine of the winery’s late founders, Ernest and Julio Gallo. The brothers originally made it as an ode to the wines from their native Italy.  Of course, no wine from Italy would ever be called Burgundy, the region on France best known for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Nor has Hearty Burgundy ever been made from those noble grapes.

Although the exact varietal components of the wine vary from vintage to vintage, two grapes, Zinfandel for its brambleberry flavors and Petite Sirah for its depth and dark fruit flavors, have always been a part of this wine.

There’s a reason it endures. It’s better than most of us remember and, of course, there’s its consistency over the years and its price, $9-$10 for a 1.5 liter bottle. I tried some recently—after hunting it down and finding on the shelf nearest the ceiling in a local wine shop.   It’s a moderate bodied, deep purple hued wine. It’s advertised brambleberry aroma is evident in the nose and the berries shine through on the palate as well, along with hints of spice.  It’s better that some of the plonk I’ve tried masquerading as red varietal wine. You know the kind that’s served at catered affairs and pizza joints.

The Gallo folks boast that Hearty Burgundy not only introduced Americans to wine, but also for put American wines on the map during an era when spirits dominated consumption.

Indeed, in 1972, Hearty Burgundy graced the cover of a Time magazine issue featuring a story about the booming California wine industry. In the feature, wine critic Robert Balzer called the wine “… the best wine value in the country today” as it outscored more expensive California and French

“We are both proud and humbled by the longevity of Hearty Burgundy,” third generation family member and vice president of marketing Stephanie Gallo said in the press release. “I have so many fond memories of sharing this wine with my friends and family, especially my grandfather, Ernest – it was his favorite.”

Today, Gallo, of course, is more than cheap industrial wine.  It markets more than 70 labels across the price spectrum, including value varietals, and premium varietals from a cross section of California appellations.  It also markets wines under such brands as Frei Brothers, MacMurray Ranch, Edna Valley Vineyard, Mirassou, Louis Martini, William Hill Estates, and also imports such labels as Martin Codax (Spain), Ecco Domani and Davinci (both Italy) and Alamos (Argentina). It also produces gin and vodka under the New Amsterdam label.

This year, to celebrate Hearty Burgundy’s golden anniversary, Gallo has produced a limited edition bottle that pays homage to the original flavor profile that harkens back to the original blend.

Gallo says Hearty Burgundy pairs well with a variety of hearty foods, including chili, Italian fare, including red sauces, meatballs and hard cheeses like Parmesan and Romano. Though I did not try these pairings, I am fairly confident they’ll work

The anniversary bottling of Gallo Family Vineyards Hearty Burgundy becomes available this month with a suggested retail price of $9 for a 1.5 liter bottle.

Nostalgia comes cheap.

 

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Barrage Brewing, ending a 2-year haul, opens its doors in East Farmingdale

Owner-brewer Steve Pominksi inside the new Barrage brewery

Owner-brewer Steve Pominksi inside the new Barrage brewery

Stephen Pominski Jr. has been working on the railroad. Now, he’s also working in a brewery — his own.

Pominski, 52, who works full-time as a trackside tower operator for the Long Island Railroad, has just opened the doors to Long Island’s newest microbrewery, Barrage Brewing Co.,  in East Farmingdale.  He’s been making beer commercially since mid-December after two years of planning and construction.   He’s at the brewery between his LIRR job and time at home, often aided by his son, Adam, 25.

“Now, it’s for real,” said Pominski.  “But it’s still very daunting. It’s still intimidating.”

Barrage is marking the occasion of its opening with launch parties on Jan. 31 at Morrison’s Restaurant in Plainview and on Feb. 1 at Dave Schultzer’s Bellport Cold Soda and Beer.

In addition to these two outlets, Barrage’s beers will be available by the growler ($13 each) at the brewery – on Sundays only, and, eventually at a growing number of bars, among them The Good Life in Massapequa Park , the Black Sheep Ale House in Mineola, and Hoptron Brewtique in Patchogue, and beer distributors with growler taps around Long Island. He plans to self distribute and eventually get his beers into New York City. “Right now, we want to take care of our close area.

The Barrage brewery consists of a 1-bbl. gas-fired stainless steel brewing system. By doing step infusions, Pominski says he can brew twice a day. There also are 10 42-gallon conical fermenters, some of them housed inside two 8×8 walk-in cold rooms. Bags of malt from German, English and American maltsters are stacked on pallets and bins of specialty malts line a wall.

BarrageBrewingLogo smallFinanced with savings and investments by relatives and a successful $18,000 Kickstarter campaign, Pominski’s brewery has its roots in craft beer’s first go-round in the New York area, the early 1990’s. That’s when he discovered the flavorful beers available at Mr. Fadely’s Deli Pub in Patchogue, where he also got to know Blue Point Brewery co-founder Peter Cotter. A homebrewer for 15 years, Steve and his wife, Diana, in 2009 converted a small existing room in their home and their garage into a family room, equipped with a 16-foot bar with two taps for his homebrews. Friends raved about his beer and encouraged him to sell it Soon, the family room became a regular stop for friends and the bar in the garage became known as “The Barrage.” In June 2010, stirred by the opening of nano brewery Barrier in Oceanside, Pominski founded his brewery.

But forming a company and getting to the point where you could sell beer are a formidable challenge. After trying to open in Freeport, N.Y. – zoning issues prevented this from occurring— the search was on for a new location. Landlords didn’t want fumes or sewering was inadequate.  In March 2012, Pominski found his current location. But other obstacles got in the way. The installation of a gas line was delayed six months as National Grid focused on Hurricane Sandy repairs and then Suffolk County decided his sewer lines weren’t up to code and ordered him to dig them up and replace them at a cost of $17,000.

“It’s been anxiety ridden and overwhelming,” Pominski said,. “Now, it’s a relief. But,  he noted, adding that after giving away brews at festivals, now “people are paying for this beer and I have to make sure it’s worth it.”

Pominski is targeting novice craft beer drinkers as well as beer aficionados. His first offering, Fairytale Red Ale, an Irish-style red, “is right down the middle.” Also now on tap are Blackspot, a black rye IPA; Citralization, an all Citra hop American pale ale, and Mclaughlin’s Folly, an oatmeal stout brewed with raisins and vanilla. Other brews, mostly dark and in an Old English vein, will follow, Pominski said. “I really like dark beer.”

The new brewer says he hopes to produce about 300 to 400 barrels of beer during his first year, but admits, “I’ll have to brew a lot.”

You’ll find Barrage Brewing at 32 Allen Boulevard, Unit E. Located behind TJA Auto Collision, less than a block off Route 110. Pull into the driveway along the east side the body shop and count a half dozen or so garage doors. You’ll see Barrage’s name on the window.  Call before you go (516) 986-8066.

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Convention of American cider makers in Chicago Feb. 5-7 will draw 300

Cider Summit, a public tasting expo on Feb. 8 at Chicago’s Navy Pier, expected to draw up to 2,800 cider devotees.

Cider con logoWith hard cider’s popularity sweeping the nation, members of the year-old  United States Association of Cider Makers (USACM)  will gather in Chicago on Feb. 5-7 for CiderCon, the industry’s the annual meeting and conference. 

Educational workshops and a trade show will be held at the Westin on Michigan, with the focus on stewardship, the conference’s theme.

“Cider is quickly setting itself apart from the rest of the beverage industry,” Mike Beck, owner of Uncle John’s Cider Mill in Michigan, and current USACM president, said in a press release. “With this increased visibility, comes a greater sense of responsibility. We chose stewardship as our theme in order to focus on how to grow our industry together in the best way possible.”

Beck added in a telephone interview: “We’re all in this together. There’s plenty of room in the market for everyone. We’re all in an open, sharing environment.”

This year’s CiderCon is sold out and is expected to draw 300 attendees from the most recognized U.S. cider brands as well as small craft cider makers and orchardists.  Beck said attendance is up substantially from last year, when USCAM was established. USCAM now has 149 members.

From 2007 to 2012, hard cider revenues more than tripled in the U.S., from $178 million to $601 million, according to the market research firm IBIS World.

In addition to business sessions, the conference will feature workshops focused on production, marketing, research and apple growing and sensory tasting seminars featuring cider and cheese pairings, apple brandy, and ice cider.

A day prior to CiderCon some attendees will explore cider houses Vander Mill and Virtue Cider on a bus tour to Michigan.

Separately, on Feb. 8, Cider Summit, a public tasting expo, will take place at Navy Pier, with sessions from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Alan M. Shapiro, president of SBS Imports, of Seattle and the Seattle Beer Collective, organized cider Summit. Shapiro, who imports Aspall ciders, said this event, too has grown substantially in terms of vendors and attendees. He expects to Cider Summit to sell out at 2,800 tickets. The first Cider Summit was held in Seattle in 2010; Portland was added in 2012, Chicago in 2013 and in April, a Cider Summit will take place in Berkley, Calif,

The Chicago Cider Summit will feature more than 100 ciders from 36 producers throughout the U.S., England, Scotland, France, Spain, and even New Zealand.

“It’s 1988 in the craft beer world for cider right now,” said Shapiro.

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Culinary Institute of America plans training brewery in Hudson Valley

Rendering of proposed Brooklyn Brewery at the CIA's student center

Rendering of proposed Brooklyn Brewery at the CIA’s student center

The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), with a grant from the Brooklyn Brewery, is planning to develop a small brewery – the first training brewery on the East Coast – on the college’s Hyde Park, NY campus, near Poughkeepsie.

CIA officials anticipate The Brooklyn Brewery at the CIA, as the facility is to be called, will open in the summer of 2015.

Operations at the brewery will be integrated into the curriculum of the college’s degree programs. Juniors and seniors pursuing a concentration in Advanced Wine, Beverage, and Hospitality will staff the brewery and learn about fermentation and brewing techniques as well as the business aspects of running a small food and beverage operation.

The CIA, a not-for-profit college best known for its chef-training programs, is responsible for obtaining the requisite federal and state brewers licenses, but will get support from Brooklyn Brewery, CIA spokesman Jeff Levine said.

Brooklyn’s grant, about $250,000, will be used to equip the seven-barrel brewing facility, which will be located in the college’s new student union and dining facility, currently under construction. Housed within a glass-walled environment meant to evoke an old Brooklyn warehouse, the brewery initially will offer its own lager and pilsner, along with seasonal brews, on tap at the brewery and at the four CIA restaurants on campus.

Garrett Oliver

Garrett Oliver

Brooklyn Brewery brewmaster Garrett Oliver or a member of his team will visit the Hyde Park campus on a regular basis as guest lecturers and will assist CIA faculty in developing curriculum and recipes.

The CIA has long been involved in craft beer. Associate Dean Ken Turow co-founded and is advisor to the CIA’s Ale & Lager Educational Society. Turow also co-created a regional showcase of beer and food products and professional brewing competition the Hudson Valley Beer & Food Festival.

Moreover, the CIA has hosted series of beer dinners, one annually, beginning in 1995, featured the late British beer writer Michael Jackson. The beer dinners continue, though they have been fewer in recent years.

waldy_malouf

Waldy Malouf

“This partnership is forward thinking both in terms of culinary education and college dining,” said former New York City top chef Waldy Malouf, now senior director of special projects for the CIA. “In addition to being a craft brewery for campus visitors and students 21 and older, it will serve as a research and development classroom to create and test new beer flavors.”

“We have great respect for The Culinary Institute of America, its leaders, and its illustrious alumni,” Brooklyn Brewery co-founder and chairman Steve Hindy said in a statement. He noted that Brooklyn Brewery has worked with the college for more than two decades on beer and food promotions, and special dinners.

Steve Hindy

Steve Hindy

The University of California-Davis offered the first collegiate brewing course in the U.S. Sine 1958, it has has offered a unique specialization in brewing science as part of its undergraduate degree program in fermentation science. The campus has a 1.5-barrel pilot brewery, which was upgraded in 2006.

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Thieves steal 16,000 bottles of BrewDog prototype beers from UK retailer

BrewDog's Prototype series

BrewDog’s Prototype series

British police are investigating the late night theft of 16,000 bottles of rare beers produced by the iconoclastic Scottish brewer BrewDog.

The beers, worth an estimated £40,000 ($71,000), were stolen from the Essex, England, warehouse of beer retailer Ales by Mail on Dec. 30. Ales By Mail distributes the beers on behalf of the Scottish brewer.

According to published reports a gang of 15 raiders carried out the theft, which was caught by a surveillance camera.

In the wake of the theft, Ales By Mail has made a public plea that retailers, bars and pubs not purchase any of the stolen brews on the black market.

The stolen beer has a retail value of around £40,000, and includes BrewDog beers listed on the brewer’s website as prototypes.

logo-largeThe BrewDog brands stolen include prototype beers Interstellar, Hobo Top and Brixton Porter, along with recent launch Moshi Moshi.  The beers were to have gone on sale this week.

“They are niche craft beers and can only be ordered through the BrewDog website,” Paul Kruzycki, founder and managing director of Ales By Mail, said in a statement.

CCTV camera footage shows a gang of between 10 and 15 thieves, who broke into the warehouse between midnight and 2 a.m. and loaded the beer into a van.

The Prototype series beers, the brewer says, is a chance for its customers “to help us decide what to brew in 2014. “ They are priced on BrewDog’s web site at £6 ($10) per 33ml bottle.

BrewDog describes Hobo Pop as amped-up American wheat beer, produced using extra pale, cara, crystal malts along with wheat and rye. Amarillo and Centennial hops were used. The beer has an OG of 1.0142 and 50 IBUs. Hobo “has bags of vibrant citrusy energy and a complexity you wouldn’t expect in a 4.2% beer,” BrewDog says. “If this hobo had a knapsack, it would be stuffed full of Amarillo, one of our favorite hops.”

Interstellar is a red rye IPA produced using extra pale, crystal and dark crystal malts and rye with Magnum, Willamette and Amarillo hops. The 6.5% abv brew has 65 IBUs and an OG of 1.059. BrewDog says Intersteller has “a complexity on a par with the maintenance manual for the Millenium Falcon. Fuelled by Willamette, this massive beer shares the hop profile of a beer we brewed whilst floating down a river in North West USA… This is an autumnal IPA that will have your palate sent to the spice mines of Kessel, and smashed into who knows what.”

Brixton Porter is a session porter produced using extra pale, dark crystal and black malts, roasted barley and Victoria’s Secret, Bramling Cross and Challenger hops. A 5% abv beer, t has 50 IBUs and an OG of 1.048. “Originally intended as a beer to mark the opening of our Brixton bar, this porter made it further than our ill-fated potential London venue did,” BrewDog says. “With an aroma you’d expect to find in a foreign extra or a stout, this deceptive brown porter will taunt your nose with chocolate, deep rich roasted coffee, and the menacing, smoky salty hit of burning pirate ships.”

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Moshi Moshi 15

Moshi Moshi 15 is a 5.2% abv Pale Ale that sells for £2.59 ($4.25) for 33ml bottle. The beer is the brewery’s 15th birthday salute to Moshi Moshi Records, a small London-based label. A rich biscuity malt base takes the bassline, with the odd caramel pop and slap. Heavy hop riffs play on top; resinous resonance from the rhythm guitar, and the bitter notes we love so much on lead.”

A reward is being offered for information leading to the recovery of the beer and arrest of the thieves.

 

 

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