There’s a much bigger world out there than I thought initially. Of course this is in reference to the beer world which I have new found love for. Granted, variety has always been out there, but for me is was pretty simple…. Heineken, Corona, and maybe the occasional St Ides 40oz. Never really thought much of beer other than getting hammered on the weekend. Logic, as long as it’s cold it’s good enough for me.
Until I met my good friend DSquared of course, and he opened up my taste buds to some rather interesting beers (not all good by the way) and my life has never been the same. Now I can’t walk down a liquor store, wine shop, brewery, pub without checking what I haven’t had yet. The urge to visit local and out of state breweries has been a part of my new agenda. As well as random beer runs, and hunting down sought after brews. This is unreal behavior coming from me. It’s like my old obsession of picking up a new pair of Jordan’s. What have I turned into?
So what’s the point…. I don’t know really. But It is pretty enjoyable to be able to distinguish some of the differences between the different hops, and styles of brewing, and even the locations they come from. Personally, I just want to be able to try some good beer, venture with some bad ones, review, and be able to share my experiences as of late. As mentioned, we’re amateurs with a love for beer. Just strolling through trying to find my place.
Just some things happening in the beer world….6 things specifically.
Rouge Ales is releasing a new member of their “Voodoo Doughnut” series of beers; This time it’s Voodoo Doughnut Grape Guerrilla. We’re kind of partial to the name ourselves. Having tried all the other beer in this series, I’m strangely looking forward to giving this one a taste. http://www.rogue.com/rogue_beer/voodoo-doughnut-grape-guerrilla/
If you spend any time on this page you are going to start hearing the name Magnify Brewing more and more. They are local to the Guerrilla Compound here in NJ and they are definitely a name to look out for. Bias aside, I truly think these guys are on to something, and they feel like they’re on the verge of blowing up….the good kind not the bad kind. If you are in NJ or traveling through, they are absolutely worth making a special stop. Just an update on their upcoming week. https://www.instagram.com/p/BM1fNReATjx/
One of the “big daddies” in the craft beer game is getting on board the canning train (canning line technically I guess). Dogfish Head is canning their 60 minute IPA and will follow with Flesh and Blood IPA and SeaQuench Ale early next year. http://www.dogfish.com/blog/can-we-can-it-%E2%80%A6-yes-we-can
Speaking of craft beer big dogs, Stone Brewing is completely changing the game. This is an old story but I wanted to make sure to post it in case anyone hadn’t heard……Stone is opening, what sounds like, a literal dream come true. Stone Hotel! http://us2.campaign-archive2.com/?u=5ec5334c4de0485ce1a0cb338&id=ab24209d7a&e=[UNIQID]
For our friends across the sea, big news out of Hungary as the Daily News Hungary reports HopTop Brewery won a bronze medal at the European Beer Star 2016 competiton for their Dry Stout. This marks the first time a Hungarian based brewery has won at the competition. Congrats guys and if anybody wants to send some HopTop to the States we are ready to receive. http://dailynewshungary.com/hungarian-success-european-beer-star-2016/
Lastly, technically another old story but one that I think is very cool to read about. The rise of the craft beer industry in other parts of the world. This article from The Guardian from the beginning of the year talks about the increasingly popular craft scene developing in Russia. Worth a read. It’s an exciting time for beer and beer lovers.https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/jan/17/russia-craft-beer-geeks-drinking-vodka
A couple of the Guerrillas and I took another quick trip up to Massachusetts to hit the big time breweries up there…more on that to come, stay tuned. First, as a Jersey guy I want to get a little NJ representation on here. Carton Brewing out of the Atlantic Highlands, NJ, is as good of a place to start as any; with a 95 score on Beer Advocate, 077XX is a strong way to kick it off. Continue reading 077XX
Full disclosure: Porters are not my favorite style of beer. I can certainly appreciate the rich history and varied
flavor profiles of a porter, but they’ve just never resonated with me. So, why a porter as my first review? It was simply the first thing I saw when I opened my fridge….that’s it. With that, we have the PBJ Crunch Porter from Philadelphia based Manayunk Brewing Company.
From the can, Manayunk describes the PBJ Crunch:
As a kid, there was nothing more satisfying than a delicious PBJ sandwich. This staple could be found in most lunchboxes across America. Mouthwatering, ripe strawberries and delicious nutty peanut butter play in perfect harmony with this bold and malty Porter. Just don’t pack this delicious beer for lunch. Or go ahead. We don’t care.
PBJ Crunch pours a very dark dark brown with maybe a hint of red when held up to light. Slightly less than one finger of tan head, which dissipated quickly. Definitely looks like a porter.
The smell is malty with strong peanut aroma. Almost more peanut shells. Smells a bit like you went to a baseball game, bought a bag of peanuts, and poured your beer into the bag. There’s a very slight hint of fruitiness too but you have to search for it.
The taste is pretty much how it smells. Strong peanut flavor with a slightly stronger hint of fruitiness. It took a couple sips before I noticed the fruit flavor. The can says strawberry flavor but it could just as easily be raspberry. Definite maltiness with a bready aftertaste. So that bag of beer and peanuts you have, imagine taking a swig out of it but you just finished eating one of those old strawberry candies first. That’s about what you’re dealing with.
As porters go, this one was pretty interesting. The peanut flavor and taste is strong but different than any of the various peanut butter beers out there. For me it’s a 6/10 but definitely worth checking out if you see it somewhere.
So, what is this? Good question without a good answer…yet. The ideas of what this site will be are still very fluid. I guess, at its simplest, this site will be a place for reviews of beer and some liquor. However, we all know there are thousands of other sites doing the exact same thing. I suppose something that will set us apart is we are very much amateurs at this point. In reality, the “about us” we wrote probably sums all this up best: Continue reading What Am I Looking At!?
“You’re going to drive 6-7 hours just to go to a brewery? Are you serious? What’s the point of that?”
I recently faced some version of that question from a couple of different people recently. The answer was almost always the same: “yeah we are, you just don’t understand. It’s not like going to a regular brewery.” Truthfully, the answer is far more deep than simply driving a bunch of hours to go visit a brewery. The breweries in question in this example were The Alchemist and Treehouse Brewing (both of which were probably worth a drive of twice the distance honestly). The trip was about far more than going to get some beers that I have wanted to try. Continue reading The Beer Life Isn’t For Everyone