Last week on Drunken Speculation, I went on a bit about grokking.
On Saturday we went out to the new Bacchus Brewing cellar door in Capalaba. The place is looking good and, more importantly, the beer is tasting good. In other news, there’s another brewing brand in town: Black Hops Brewing (h/t @250beers). Oh and something seems to be something happening in Maleny (h/t @ChrisMc_Beer) on the Sunshine Coast. I can’t keep up.
Beer of the Week was ammo’s 500th! The Bacchus Brewing Obama IPA is a black IPA that I can’t describe because I’ve never had it before but everyone seems to love it (and then there’s this). I might have to get a growler of it soon.
To the Tweet(s) of the Week!
I don’t remember favourite-ing this so I assume I was either blackout drunk (unlikely) or ammo did it (marginally more likely). Anyway, Trev’s is the founder of Bendigo Brewing and always good for a one-liner.
To the best from last week and there was a great selection from round the globe, beginning with a run on checking yo’ privilege:
- Stouts and Stilettos – This Needs to be Addressed
- The Thirsty Wench – Queer Beers: On LGBT Representation in Craft Beer
- Guys Drinking Beer – Why Does Craft Beer Suddenly Seem to Have a Problem With Women?
- Phil Cook – Beer Baroness ‘Unite’ Pale Ale – at a Moa tap takeover
Normally, they’d each be given airtime but last week was unusually dense with interesting stories so a quick and very broad summary is required: straight white males dominate beer culture and are sometimes dicks about it to non-straight/non-white/non-male people (select as appropriate). I feel particularly bad about the first selection from Stouts and Stilettos because I would have been one of those guys at an earlier time in my life. Time passes, people point out things like the above and we learn to be (better) human beings. So we hope anyway.
Boak & Bailey – Failure to be Outraged
If you accept that, of the thousands in production, it’s legitimate to name a single beer The Best, then there’s no reason we can see to be angry that the award has gone to Timothy Taylor’s Boltmaker, aka Best Bitter.
Now, we get as bored as anyone of entering pubs and finding three ubiquitous and underwhelming bitters on offer, and we have to admit that we did hope something a bit sexier might win for once — the pale’n’hoppy Oakham Citra, universally loved in the Blogoshire, which came in second place, for example.
But, like it or not, bitter is part of the landscape of British beer — should it be banned from the competition because its character derives from something other than prominent aroma hopping?
Tyson’s Beer & Cheese Blog – Judging at the GBBF
Yes, thanks to the folk at Lettherebebeer, yours truly was invited to be a judge. Obviously they wanted to bring a touch of professionalism to the proceedings. So I duly turned up on the Tuesday to do my civic duty. Being the consummate professional, I had of course abstained from alcohol for weeks beforehand. Ok, I may have had a few in the Euston Tap the night before. Or several even. Well they did have a Czech beer tap takeover. Don’t worry about it, Tyson, I hear you say. Anyone would have done the same. Thanks, I appreciate that. I had, however, abstained from spicy foods and cleaned my teeth. So my palate was fresh even if my body was a little tired. I was to be judging on one of the semi-final panels and looking at the bigwigs and celebrities milling around, I realised I’d have to be at the top of my game. Luckily, of course, I always am.
Appellation Beer – Pabst IPA: Welcome to 2014
OK, officially, we’re talking about the return of Ballatine India Pale Ale. But Pabst owns the brand and here’s a key quote from Pabst brewmaster Greg Deuhs: “We are hoping that the current (Pabst Blue Ribbon) consumers will embrace the Ballantine IPA.” So I think there’s merit in the headline.
In any event, very good news, given that now perhaps more people will give this underappreciated India Pale Ale style a try.
The Daily Beast – Meet the Beer Bottle Dictator
Brewers and legal experts speak of him in hushed tones, with equal parts irritation and reverence.
“He’s the king of beer. His will is law,” said one lawyer who works with him regularly. The lawyer asked to remain anonymous, for fear of crossing the beer specialist. “There’s one dude in the government who gets to control a multibillion-dollar industry with almost no supervision.”
And he goes by the name “Battle.”
Pacific Standard – The truth we won’t admit that drinking is healthy
In fact, the evidence that abstinence from alcohol is a cause of heart disease and early death is irrefutable—yet this is almost unmentionable in the United States. Even as health bodies like the CDC and Dietary Guidelines for Americans(prepared by Health and Human Services) now recognize the decisive benefits from moderate drinking, each such announcement is met by an onslaught of opposition and criticism, and is always at risk of being reversed.
buzz and hum – Kereru Brewing – Auro
“That’s great to hear,” replied Chris, “you should get some while you can. Because this batch will be the last. Won’t be allowed to sell it soon. Or at least call it ‘gluten-free’.”… I checked out MPI’s Guidance for Alcoholic Beverage Claims and Statements, published 6 May 2014, and confirmed that from 18 January 2016:
“…nutrition content claims or health claims must not be made for food containing more than 1.15% Alcohol By Volume (ABV). The exception to this is a nutrition content claim about energy content or carbohydrate content.”
Meaning, from that date, no product labelled or described by the retailer / brewer with such claims can be sold in New Zealand.
National Business Review – Brewer seeking crowd-funding cancels shareholders dividends
Would-be shareholders in Renaissance can take a minimum of 250 shares for a $500 investment and if they buy 1,000 or more, they’ll receive a mixed dozen of special brews not available to the general public. Renaissance makes a range of seven regular brews and has a more experimental range under the “Enlightenment” label.
The company acknowledges in its disclosure that the shares will not be easily traded and that the issue price reflects this.
It’s like they took my critiques of the Brewdog equity scheme and actually responded to them. That’s how it should be done, with the transparency expected of listed companies.
Crafty Pint – Coopers Collaborates
Except this pale ale wasn’t the familiar green-labeled Coopers Pale and the batch wasn’t their usual 85,000 litres, but a mere 1200 litres. What’s more, instead of using just Pride of Ringwood, the rather old school hop used in Coopers Pale, it featured that variety plus Cascade (for bittering) as well as Galaxy and French variety Triskel for flavour and aroma. Perhaps most crucially of all, it was brewed with a unique crop of barley. And, last but not least, it was the first time in its 152 year history that the largest Australian-owned brewery has ever collaborated with another brewer.
Other highlights were:
- 250 Beers – Introducing brisbanebeer.com
- StringersBeer – Waste of Hops
- Off Licence News – “Have they had their tongues cut out?” Brewer hits back at report claiming Budvar, Heineken and Stella Artois taste the same
- Drinks Business – Beers based on Tolkein’s Hobbit launched (cue eye roll)
- AFR – Whiskey investment not a bad drop (if you have a spare $30k, cue another eye roll)
Anything I missed?