Sunday, September 28, 2008

2008 ABR recap

Here's my 2008 Autumn Beer Review recap. I'm still recovering from it, more from the bad decision to head to the Oktoberfest at the Gasthof after ABR. Ah well. As I'm looking over the program, I'm realizing how many beers I missed that I had intended to try, mostly from the state's brew pubs.

Faves? Surly Two just keeps getting better with age. The Great Waters Rye was tasty, and the triple from St Somewhere blew me away. But by far the most exciting beers were the aged bottles Bell's whipped out at the end. Batch 6000, Batch 7000, one of the Eccentrics, Cherry Stout, Sparkling Ale, Expedition Stout, all aged. I neglected to write em down, so if anyone knows the vintages for these, let me know.

Minnesota Breweries

  • Schells Snowstorm 2008--Vom Famm
  • Barley Johns Belgian Enkle
  • Fitgers Cherry Oatmeal Stout
  • Great Waters Rye Pale Ale
  • Lake Superior Oktoberfest
  • Lift Bridge Farm Girl Saison
  • McCann's Keg Hopped Deep Seven
  • Town Hall Fresh Hop 2008
  • Town Hall Chocolate Oatmeal Stout
  • Rock Bottom Catcher in The Rye
  • Summit Wet Hopped EPA (cask)
  • Summit Black Treacle Porter (cask)
  • Surly Oak Aged Cranberry Saison
  • Surly Two

Out of State Breweries

  • Bell's Porter (cask)
  • Bell's Third Coast (cask)
  • Bell's Batch 6000 (old ale)
  • Bell's Batch 7000 (Imperial Stout)
  • Bell's Cherry Stout (2004?)
  • Bell's Expedition Stout (2007?)
  • Bell's Sparkling Ale (2006?)
  • Bell's Eccentric Ale (2005)
  • Boulder Cold Hop (cask)
  • Capital Autumnal Fire
  • Furthermore Oscura
  • Leinenkugel Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout
  • Moylan's Moylander DIPA
  • New Holland Ichabod
  • North Coast Le Merle Saison
  • Ommegang Hennepin
  • Peak Organic Maple Oat
  • Shmaltz Genesis Pale Ale
  • South Shore Applefest
  • St. Somewhere Lectio Divina
  • Southern Tier Heavyweizen
  • Two Brothers Oh Brother Triple

Great time and great folks as usual. I went alone, but couldn't walk 10 feet without seeing someone I knew. Love it!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Brewed in....Norway?!

This evening, I delved into my brewing roots, thanks to my dad picking up a beer from HanndBryggeriet in Norway that Alvey at Four Firkins recommended. Turns out, Norway has a rich brewing history, with each village, or farm, historically brewing their own beer using local ingrediants. The folks at HB have taken this one step further, like aging a porter in aquavit barrels, or tripples fermented with wild yeast. The one I tried was an IPA brewed with wild hops that grow near the brewery, so it has a unique almost wild flower taste. Wild!

I can't wait to explore this line more.

Convention Beer

Lucky me, I got to go to an RNC party last week. AgNite, the blowout held at the Minneapolis Depotsponsored by the likes of Land O Lakes, Kemps, the Minnesota Corn Growers Association, Hormel, Cargill, General Mills (and of course my favorite enviromental steward Monsanto), was one of the more memorable political events I've attended. Food was not surprisingly awesome, but seeing Styx completely own the event was the highlight by a mile. Admittedly, I've never even been a sideline fan, but man, they could still rock, long stringy hair and all.

Beer was sorta mixed. On one hand, I was very impressed that Summit and Grainbelt were offered next to MillerCoorsInbevAB products. But after my 2 drink tickets were gone, the $7/beer seemed a little, oh, INSANE?