The Kriek is On

The annual sipping of Kriek at Selin’s Grove Brewing Company is finally here!  Formerly known as Penn’s Kriek (named for Penn’s Creek which flows just blocks away!), this is a very intense Belgian style sour cherry beer that comes in at 8% ABV.

It is (this is their language…) packed with tart cherries for a HUGE mouth filling flavor; not a typical ‘flavored’ beer, rather the fruit is used in such a way to create a traditional albeit unique incredible beverage.

I look forward to having this every year, and as you can see, I’m not disappointed with the 2006 offering!

kriek.jpg    kriek2.jpg

Homebrewing: California-style IPA

Sunday night at Scott’s house was a brewing experience for me, D and Brett.  D gathered a recipe and the ingredients, Scott provided the location and materials, and Brett brought the turkey cooker.  Julie made us some great snacks, and we sipped offerings from the Bullfrog and Scott’s cellar during this beer-making adventure.

Nugget, Warrior and Yakima hops will flavor this California-style IPA (to be dry hopped on secondary fermentation.)

Photos forthcoming on the Flickr site; more information on the beer in the near future!

ipa1.jpg   ipa2.jpg  ipa3.jpg

Take this Test

Take this Test (Click photo to read TAKE THIS TEST)

How fitting that the guys at Craft Beer Radio did their latest show from the Anheuser-Busch 2006 Hop Harvest Tour on the VERY SAME DAY that I spotted this sign.  They say, “It was awesome to experience the harvesting of hops, and to see the scale of the operation. Of course there was beer during this event, and to our pleasant surprise we had some beers beers that would stand up to classic examples in their style.”  They don’t say they want this flavor “thereafter”!

You’ll Love this Frog in Your Throat

Special Gift!

(Above: D sporting his Bullfrog attire (tattoo not pictured) while proudly displaying a bottle of Bourbon Trippel.)

The post title was the tagline of the night!  On August 12, the Bullfrog Breweryin Williamsport, PA treated old friends to a party like no other!  By invitation only, D and I were part of a fabulous evening of food, drink and celebration. Steve, Bob and Harriet Koch (owners), invited former employees and Pub Club members to a reception at Jeremiah’s (the upper level banquet hall) for a terrific reception. 

For $10, we were treated to a wonderful spread of food and nice variety of Bullfrog craft brewed beers. We each received a take-home magnum bottle of Bourbon Trippel (more on that later!), and completely enjoyed a few hours catching up with old friends and making new ones.  [Note to Lycoming College friends: I especially enjoyed reconnecting with one of Bobert’s favorite professors, now one of D’s favorite Pub Club members – Dr. David Rife.  He is quite the Beer Traveler!]

In order for all visitors to join in the celebration, 10-year veteran chef Ron Micklow brought back the original menu, and pint prices were rolled back to 1996 levels.  A free show by Mike Swavely and the Chrome Magnatones had everyone dancing and enjoying themselves.

And now for the beers…  Brewmaster Terry Hawbaker paired up with original brewer Charley Schnable (now owner and brewer at Otto’sin State College) to create two terrific anniversary treats.  The first was for guests at the reception – sample glasses flowed from the bar, and hand-corked, caged and foiled magnums went home with everyone – and the second remains on tap for all to enjoy.  The descriptions are plagiarized from Bullfrog Brewery materials:

10th Anniversay Barrel-aged Bourbon Trippel: Trippel Trubbel, aged for a full year in a 12-year old Elijah Craig bourbon barrel – this hand bottled and bottle conditioned wicked elixir will age gracefully for years developing greater complexity.  A labour of love to our loyal Pub Club members!

10th Anniversary Red2: To celebrate the 10th anniversary, Terry and Charley collaborated on a double version of the original Ribbit Red. Massive amounts of malt are packed into the blood red color, giving this double Red its lusciously rich body and juicy palate.(7.2% abv)

Celebrating 10 Years of Beer

This weekend D and I will be attending the 10 year celebration for Bullfrog Brewery, which got me thinking about who else is celebrating this milestone.

Who else? I’m sure I could come up with a bigger list if I put some thought into it….

Top 50 Places to Have a Beer in America

I’ve actually known about this list since it came out, but I wasn’t blogging my beer trips back then. Since then (oh, probably only three weeks after the list came out), #37 closed it’s doors without warning to the public or the investors.

It’s interesting to see what the people on Beer Advocate have to say about KClinger’s Publik House (#37) – I would say everything is extremely accurate. It was absolutely amazing for quite some time, but bad business practice can’t be overcome. One review blames it on Rogue, but I’m not so sure of that. I’ve watched the owners deal badly with other situations, and I’m pretty certain this is a hole they dug themselves into.

I’m only a little bitter that we had both invested dollars and patron dollars tied up in the place, but the bright side is that both Pizza Port locations (Solana Beach and Carlsbad), as well as Grey Lodge Pub, Zeno’s, Victory and Town Hall technically move up on the list. Too bad they aren’t in my backyard!

I think I’ll head up to #13 now…

Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery (MN)

I was uploading photos to Flickr tonight, and searched photos with similar tags.  Someone else posted this one (http://www.flickr.com/photos/petdad/206176713/), which was a great memory for me. 

Last October I went there with D and two co-workers on our first night in Minneapolis. It was a funky little place with a great menu.  The beer was certainly worthwhile.  I think our favorite was the Masala Mama IPA, which is reviewed well at RateBeer.com.

We Missed the Beer Geek Roundtable

To our friends who thought they’d listen to D and I talk about beer with Jeff and Greg on Craft Beer Radio:

Sorry…  There was a misunderstanding about the date for the Beer Geek Roundtable, and we missed out.  There was also a misunderstanding on the capacity of Skype users, so we might have missed out anyway.  So I’ll just drink the beers and maybe get caught up on my blog postings tonight. 

My line-up (and none of it has seen the light of day yet, so it’s sure to be fresh!) was Sea Dog Apricot Wheat; Founder’s  Rubaeus; Lake Placid Ubu Ale; Southern Tier IPA and King’s Mocha Java Stout (from Pontiac, MI.)  Since they are all out and properly chilled, I might as well enjoy a few of them.

Maybe there will be a next time for CBR?  For those who have started listening (Scott, Brett…I’m talking to you!) – keep the faith!

NEWS: Appalachian Brewing (Camp Hill, PA)

Appalachian Brewing Company’s newest location – in Camp Hill, PA – was open today for lunch.  They don’t have a liquor license yet, so we won’t be trying out anything this week, but it won’t be long! 

I’m not a big fan of Appalachian.  The best beer they ever made was in 1997 (Heather Ale), and they will never make it again because it was (I quote) “Too Expensive”.  Grrrr…  But since they opened the Gettysburg location, they have been working on smaller batches of tastier beers.  Hopefully we’ll be getting some of those in Camp Hill soon!