Jim’s back from Ireland and we begin to take on some of the beers he sampled over there, starting with Guinness.
A press release from MillerCoors today is announcing that they are recalling one of their products. MillerCoors has recalled a batch of Coors Light in the Southeastern United States after taste tests at the company’s Georgia brewery found the beer to be subpar. Yeah, go ahead, make your jokes here about Coors Light not really having any taste anyway. MillerCoors began pulling the beer from its distribution system and from retailers. “We sampled it and realized it wasn’t up to standards,” said Pete Marino, a spokesman for MillerCoors. He didn’t immediately know how much beer was recalled, or if the recall had been completed. But the batch involved only Coors Light brewed at the firm’s Albany, Ga., brewery.
St. James Gate Brewery, Dublin
- Before we go into Guinness, let me tell you a little bit about the experience that was the St. James Gate Brewery.
- While the old brewery building is no longer actually used as a production brewery, Diageo Guinness’s parent company, has done a fantastic job turning it into a self guided museum.
- One of the first things that you see when you walk in is the famous 9,000 year lease that Arthur Guinness signed in 1759 for 45 lbs per year. The lease is situated at the base of what is supposed to be a giant pint glass of Guiness, and by giant I mean 5 or 6 stories high.
- The museum takes you through the production of Guinness, and beer in general in a rather detailed and interactive experience.
- Once you get through the production levels, there are several exhibits that show you about Guinness advertising over the years and even a place where you can pour your own. Because pouring Guinness correctly is half of a good Guinness.
- At the top of the tour, and top of the building, is the Gravity Bar, where your ticket can be redeemed for one free pint of Guinness.
- Now, I am a little fuzzy on the vital stats of Guinness overseas, so I will say that is weighs in at 5.0% abv which may be a little lower than the US version.
- This beer in Ireland I thought was actually much better than Guinness in the US, and I enjoy a good Guinness in the US. It seemed to be a little bit more full bodied, almost a little bit thicker than its US cousin. It also had a slightly more bitter flavor from what I would guess is the increase in roasted malt.
- One thing that may be influence the taste is the water. Yes, brewers all run their water through filtration systems, but you can’t always get everything out.
- As our cab drive said while we were there, “You could wash your car with the stuff in America, the Guiness in Ireland is much better” and I kind of half to agree.
Next week we will be keeping with the Ireland theme and talking about Kilkenny Irish Cream Ale, yet another beer that I had a chance to have in Ireland.
Another bit of “filler” this week, but tastey, tastey filler. This week we look PENNdemonium.
Another in a long line of stupid beer related crimes tonight’s. Authorities are investigating a chainsaw attack. Leflore County Sheriff Bruce Curnutt says a group of men walked to a house in Monroe and said their car was out of gas. The residents drove them to their car but say they noticed a pack of beer was missing from the good Samaritan’s vehicle. A fight broke out and the officials say a man with the group that ran out of gas grabbed a chainsaw and cut another man’s arm.
- Penn Brewery was founded in 1986 by Tom and Marybeth Pastorius, however they had to contract out their brewing at first because of a PA law that stated that you weren’t allowed to be a microbrewery or brew-pub.
- Tom Pastorius, with technical and financial assistance from the Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation, began restoring the former Eberhardt and Ober Brewery located at 800 Vinial Street in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. Three of the original E & O brewery buildings remain, the stock house (c. 1880-84), and office building standing on a side cut into the rock of Troy Hill. Pastorius hired German Brew-master Alex Deml, who oversaw construction of the 20,000 barrel-a-year capacity brewing facility, which included custom built and authentic German imported micro-brewery equipment.
- The brewery and restaurant was scheduled to go out of business as of Feb 2009, but at the last minute a 5 year lease was signed, so I guess they are still there.
- Tonight’s beer, Penndemonium is a maibock beer, a springtime beer that appears to be a lighter bock beer but is pretty strong with the alcohol content. This one weighs in at 10% abv.
- This beer poured a lighter color than other maibocks, but the lack of head is in keeping with the style.
- This beer is unfiltered which means some yeasty goodness in the bottom of you’re glass
- Taste is a bit thin, almost light lager like, which is not good for this style.
- A bit malty but hardly any hops which is wrong for this style. Generally Maibocks are hopper than other bocks.
- The beer hides the alcohol taste very well, but that’s about the only thing it does well
Next week we are going to go back to Ireland for beer, but with a little twist. Jim is actually going to Ireland and is going to taste some beers that are actually in Ireland.
Another departure for YNB, this week we look at a Brew Pub Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh. Jim and I are both traveling a lot so we are doing things a bit differently this week.
Well, this past weekend, for those of you who didn’t know, was the second race of the triple crown, the Preakness. This years attendance at the Preakness, which was won by a filly Rachel Alexandra, was down dramatically due to a ban on outside beer. The reason for the ban was because, shocklingly, drunk people can be rowdy and they decided that was enough of that. Just another reason to drink in moderation, just don’t give people a reason to take the beer away.
- There are three Hofbrauhauses in the United States, one in Pittsburgh, one in Las Vegas, and one in Cincinnatti.
- Hofbrauhaus was founded in Germany and the first brewery was created in 1591.
- In 1828 a restaurant was added, so that the patrons could have both beer and food in one place.
- The Pittsburgh location is modeled after the old world style of the German locations, with four distinct areas. There is a open hall inside that is made up of benchs and a polka band, a quiet dinning room, an outdoor veranda, and an outdoor beer garden. The design includes lots of exposed wood beams and general German looks.
- The food is distinctly German, including various sausages and wursts, saukrauts, and schnitzels. I had a wurst platter that included three different types of wurst.
- Now, how about the beer. Well, they have four standards and one seasonal. The standards are all brewed on premise, while the seasonal may be brought in from Germany. The standards are a light lager, a standard lager, a Weizen, and a dunkel. The seasonals rotate by month.
- I had the dunkel beer, which is a dark lager and weighs in at 5.5% abv.
- The taste was distinctly maltly, with just a little bit of bitterness but a very easy drinker. And that is a good thing because the beers come in two sizes, half liter or liter. With those sizes, you really can’t have too heavy of a beer.
- Overall, I really enjoyed the experience. Not only was the beer and food excellent, but the atmosphere was fantastic as well. I strongly suggest going to one of them in the US if you are around one.
Next week we will be doing a beer that both Jake and Jim have tried, it is Penndimonium from Penn Brewing Company in Pittsburgh.
Another week with a non-standard show.
We didn’t get a show together this week before Jake heads off to Seattle, so you get to sit in on a little conversation about Duck-Rabbit Brewery.
Next week, a new show … I promise 🙂
We are taking a break after our listener supported series for a clip show.
These shows are rated “R” so be aware if you listen in the car with your kids or if you are related to Jim or I.
We’ll be back next week with a whole new show!
For our two year anniversary we take a look at our last in the listener supported series, Goose Island Bourbon County Stout
AB Inbev has stopped using the “Born On” date on labels on some of its beer brands. They stated that improvements in brewing and packaging reduces the amount of oxygen introduced into the beers and shelf life can be extended up to 180 days. Bud Ice, Michelob Porter, Honey Lager, and Pale Ale will all drop the date while some of the bigger ones such as Bud and Bud Light will keep them. It is interesting here because Bud made such a big deal of this for such a long time, and this change is probably only the first step.
Goose Island Bourbon County Stout
- These weeks beer comes from Chicago’s own Goose Island Brewing Company, which is another one of those companies that we have talked about quite a bit on the show, not only because they have a great distribution system, but because they tend to make solid beers.
- Founded in 1988 by John Hall, and has two brewpub locations in the city of Chicago and one production brewery as well.
- This is a family affair, with John Hall being the president, and his son Greg Hall the head brewmaster at Goose Island.
- Tonights beer, the Bourbon County Stout, weighs in at 13% abv, and is a stout that has been aged in oak bourbon barrels.
- According to the website, it was brewed in honor of the 1000th batch at the original Clybourn brewpub. They go on to describe it as a liquid as dark and dense as a black hole with thick foam the color of a bourbon barrel. The nose is an intense mix of charred oak, chocolate, vanilla, caramel and smoke. One sip has more flavor than your average case of beer. A great cigar beer.
- Pouring this beer I would tend to agree that it is just about as dark as a black hole. Pouring it in front of my girlfriend, she thought I was pouring motor oil from the bottle.
- The head didn’t really come through for me, there is come around the edges of the glass but thats it.
- The smell is sweet vanilla at first, which comes from the barrels, and some light chocolate and sweet bourbon aromas come through too. This is one of the more complex beers that I have smelled.
- The tastes is more of that same complexity. There is the sweet vanilla and bourbon, a little alcohol heat, some chocolate and burnt toffee on the aftertaste. This is a beer that is meant to be savored and explored as opposed to just tossed back like a cheap Coors like.
- Really this is an outstanding beer. However, it is not a cheap beer. The four back cost me around $24.
next week I think we are going to do a clip show, because well it has been a while since we have done a clip show and we need to kind of reset our minds and pallet’s. The next series however will begin in two weeks, and we aren’t really sure what that will be at this point, so tune in and find out.
Second to last Episode in our listener supported series. This week we go back to the well and look at Burning River Pale Ale.
Boston will be the middle of the craft brewing world for the next few days. Starting on April 21st and going until April 24th, the Brewer’s Association has it’s annual Craft Brewers Conference. This conference happens every year and just about everyone in the craft brewing world is there in attendance. The speaker list reads like a rock star list of brewers and beer industry insiders.
Great Lakes Burning River Pale Ale
- Tonight’s beer comes from the Great Lakes Brewing Company, located in Cleveland, Ohio. We have talked about Great Lakes a few times, because it is one of my favorite breweries, they make reliably good beer, and both Jake and I can get it.
- Great Lakes has been in operations 1988, established by the Conway brothers first as a brewpub, the first brewpub in the state of Ohio in fact.
- As a result of that last expansion, you should be able to get their beers in most of the Midwest, including Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Wisconsin. I also think that they are now in Virgina as well, but I could be wrong about that last one.
- Tonight’s beer, Burning River Pale Ale, weighs in at 6.0% abv, and has won a ton of awards including Gold Medals in the 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 1996, 1995, and 1994 World Beer Championships, and Silver Medals in 2002, 2001, at the there as well.
- The name comes from one of the most infamous events in the history of Cleveland, where in 1969 the Cuyahoga River caught on fire because it was one of the most polluted rivers in the world. In fact, it caught on fire several times.
- The pour of this one is a light amber, a bit darker then a regular budwieser, but is around the color we see here. The head was small, but it did stick around for most of the glass.
- The smell if mildly to medium hoppy, with some citrusyness there. A little bit of sweet malt aroma goes to balance it out.
- The taste is much the same. This is not an IPA, so the hops aren’t overly aggressive. They are there and are stronger than the malt but don’t overpower the beer.
Alright, one more week of you listener picks, and next week we will be looking at one from sweet home Chicago, Goose Island Bourbon County Stout.