Drunken Speculation

MR | First Edition, September 2014 – Cans, cans, cans

Greater_coat_of_arms_of_SwedenLast week on Drunken Speculation, ammo made another pie, this time with Brewcult’s Pepper Steak Porter, and I went long with Bulimba Gold Top.

On Saturday last week, we were featured in Beer is Your Friend’s new Meet the Beer Media series. It’s a bit of fun for those of us who make a habit of writing about beer and picks up where the Crafty Pint series left off. Meanwhile, ammo hit up Fremantle on Friday night – she’s working in Perth this week – and I went to the new James Squire Brewhouse at BCEC yesterday, so look out for a post on each our beer adventures later this week.

Beer of the Week was not from the James Squire range. Please. However, I did pick up a tasty morsel from Dan Murphys: La Trappe Quadrupel. Not especially mindblowing but sweet and punchy, concealing the 10% well. At $22 for a four pack, I think that’s a bargain for an authentic Trappist product.

To the Tweet of the Week!

After a winter of drinking imperial this and that, I’m really looking forward to a summer of drinking a metric shit ton of normal strength pale ale.

To the best from last week:

Crafty Pint – A New Modus Operandi

Fill your own cans, you might ask? DJ explains…

“Basically it’s a turn-of-the century food can seamer that, at Oskar Blues, we re-did to fit one litre aluminium cans. We fill off our taps, the can goes into the seamer on the bar, spins them around, puts a lid on them and there’s your ready-to-go packaging.

“We’re still testing it out to make sure it works but at Oskar Blues, where they have the proper testing equipment – whereas I’m just filling them, shaking the shit out of them and leaving them out for a week and seeing if they still taste good – they were saying they were getting almost two months out of them.

The Ladder – Cans and Bottles

Oh, and there’s the completely spurious “aesthetic” argument, which goes away as soon as a beer is poured into a glass, if not sooner.

What’s needed is a thorough audit of environmental and financial costs for each option. Of course this is incredibly difficult. Some people in other geographies have had a crack (this article in Slate magazine seems a reasonable attempt) and have generally come to the conclusion that: (1) draft beer is best, (2) bottles are next best for sales to customers who are geographically close and (3) cans are better than bottles if long haul freight is involved.

The Shout – Lion downplays White Rabbit closure reports

Lion has confirmed that the future of the White Rabbit Healesville Brewery is currently under review, but insists it is business as usual at the Victorian facility for the time being.

Industry sources suggested the White Rabbit Brewery, established by Little Creatures in 2009, was set to be jettisoned, with production of all the White Rabbit beers moving to the new Creatures brewery in Geelong.

But Lion spokeswoman Elise Gare told TheShout no such decision had been made.

While the new Geelong brewery probably has a whole pile of fancy equipment they don’t have at Healesville, this suggests more about cost saving to me than anything else. Not very craft. Not very cool for that matter.

Belgian Smaak – A visit to Bruges Beer Museum

Noticeable is that many of the exhibits about beer have below them a children’s exhibit which follows a separate storyline. The children’s journey around the museum follows the search for ‘the bear of Bruges’ who they must try to set free. It was written by the Belgian children’s writer, Peter Verhelst and illustrated with a drawing by Stedho. The children’s story can also be heard in ten languages through the iPad. “We were thinking about having a children’s section, but we really wanted this to be a family activity that parents and their kids could do together, so we developed the children’s storyline”, Lars explained.

Tempest in a Tankard – A Beer Worth Its Salt

Our beer takes its name from the river that flows through Goslar. In the Middle Ages, Goslar was known as much for its brewing prowess as it was for the rich deposits of silver ore and other mineral resources buried deep in the nearby mountains.

Brewers drew their water from this river that flowed through the center of town, giving rise to the latter-day speculation that the mineral-rich acquifiers in the vicinity of Goslar contributed a signature saline quality to the finished beer.

Beervana – The Budweiser Ironies

The fascinating part of the history is that the claims and counter-claims the two companies hurl at each other are generally founded in fact.  As it happens, Adolphus Busch did find inspiration for his beers from Budweis and did spirit away both the type of beer and the name.  But it’s also true that he brewed his beer before Budweiser Budvar even existed.

Drink Drank – The Splitting of Belgian Hairs

If a group of co-workers were to suggest “Italian” for lunch, and I were chime in“Southern or Northern Italian? Sicilian or Roman?” I would be met with a cacophony of shut-ups and fuck yous. Think of the looks you’d receive at the oil change place when filling in the make and model info on the obligatory form, if you wrote “Honda” and “Civic,  but also added a little note saying that “Although Honda Motor Company is headquartered in Japan, this particular Civic was made in Greensburg, Indiana, and not to be confused with one made in made in Turkey, Thailand or China.” You might need to prepare for a few obscene gestures, or at the very least, a few more charges tacked onto your bill.

BeerGraphs – Beer Analysis Paralysis

But I think of my mother in law, who hesitates to buy me beer because that aisle is so confusing there’s so much there and I don’t know what you like anyway. We all have that person in our lives. They may feel lost in the beer aisle. And I know they appear in my chats and on twitter, telling me they are overwhelmed and can I just tell them a beer or two to try.

Other highlights were:

Anything I missed?

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