Beer more important than knife wound

From Monday, January 19, 2009 issue of the Edmonton Sun

A man who was stabbed at the York Hotel opted to return to the bar to finish his beer rather than seek medical attention.

Police responded to the downtown hotel located at 10401 96 St. just after 9 p.m. Saturday with reports that a man had been stabbed.

When they arrived, they found the victim at his table drinking beer.

“He’s got a minor poke to his chest, but he’s not giving us any details,” said Staff Sgt. Regan James. “You can imagine the level of his concern was not that high.”

No suspects had been located and cops said the victim was unco-operative with them.

Thanks to Hoperative #14 Jared Whalen for sharing this with us! Would love to know what beer he was drinking!

Is this heaven? No, it’s Mariemont, Ohio

It’s 515 miles from Dyersville, Iowa to Mariemont, Ohio.

Hang in with me for a second.  That’s going to make sense in a minute

Dyersville, Iowa is where the movie Field of Dreams was filmed.  In its three-hanky-consuming final scene, the long-dead father of main character Ray Kinsella asks his son,  “Is this heaven?” To which the son answers, “No, it’s Iowa.”

In cosmological, if not theological terms, 515 miles isn’t that much.  It would have been a different story and a different movie, but slide the setting 515 miles to the east -southeast and the only answer the Kevin Costner character would have been able to give is “Well, as a matter of fact, it is.”

You see, it turns out heaven has a very specific address.  It’s 6818 Wooster Pike in Mariemont.  Dilly Deli Wines & Gourmet. The bar is in the back.  The bartender’s name is Peanut.  That’s all you have to know.

Many of you already know about Dilly Deli, so you understand (and forgive) the enthusiasm of the newly initiated.  As for the rest of you, well, there’s always time for redemption.  Today, for example, Avery’s Ale to the Chief will be on tap all day today to celebrate the Presidential inaugural. Drop by.  Or drop by tomorrow when something else will inevitably move onto one of the seemingly endless taps (“seemingly endless” being code for “I forgot to count.” The website says 11). Strike up a conversation with Peanut if he’s working*. Mention the most obscure beer in passing.  Not only will he tell you something about the beer you didn’t know, he may run to the back and find you a bottle he’s been holding onto, as if waiting for someone worthy enough to have it. It’s no wonder it appears #12 on the “Best Beer Bars in America” in Beer Advocate magazine. The stock on the shelves is a wonder to behold.

Oh yeah, the food was great.

They sell wine, too.

But for beer lovers, it’s just heaven.

*If the space-time continuum hasn’t developed a rift, he’ll probably be working.

No They Can’t: Brewery Ommegang nixes ‘Obamagang’

I understand why it didn’t work out, and it’s probably for the best, but give Brewery Ommegang points for trying:

The Belgian-owned brewery located […] near Cooperstown has always had a solid cult following for its Belgian-style brews. But when it decided to put out a special beer called “Obamagang,” the government stepped in to say “No way.”

The single-batch brew was whipped up to coincide with next week’s presidential inauguration of Barack Obama. However, the feds at the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau said it is not permissible to use anyone’s name or likeness for commercial purposes without their permission.

Now they’re calling Inauguration Ale 2009.

It was worth a shot.

Mark Your Calendars: Bockfest is March 6-8, 2009

The finest sign of spring in Cincinnati is Bockfest (not taking anything away from Opening Day, but this is a beer blog). Sure, the weather is often more winter-like than spring-like, but it means spring is coming. And there’s beer.  And a goat.  And a Sausage Queen.  What’s not to love?

The Bockfest website ( has been updated with this year’s information:

Cincinnati is the home to the world’s oldest Bock festival, but many Cincinnatians are unaware of this tradition. If you are one of the unfortunate who have never attended a Bockfest (or who have but can’t really remember that weekend) here’s a quick primer. In the 1800s, Cincinnati was one of America’s most prolific brewing cities. Cincinnatians drank more beer per capita than any city in the country, and Over-the-Rhine was at one point home to more than 40 breweries. A tradition developed among the breweries to release all of their bock beer on the same day. Bock beer is a rich, complex, robust lager that marks the end of the Winter brewing season and the beginning of Spring.

Under 50 days to go.  I can’t wait.

This Week in Beer: January 19 – 25, 2009

Tuesday, January 20, 2009 from 6:00pm-10:00pm – Stone Levitation & 11th Anniversary Keg Tapping at UC’s Catskeller
Beers on tap that night will include Stone Levitation Ale, Stone 11th Anniversary Ale,Stone Imperial Russian Stout and Stone Double Bastard. Stone Bottled includes Stone Cali-Belgique Belgian IPA, Stone/Jolly Pumpkin/Nogne-O Holiday Ale and Stone/Mikkeller/Alesmith Tripel

Wednesday, January 21st at 6:30pm – Winter Harvest Brewer’s Dinner at Rock Bottom
Appetizer: Hearth Roasted Cedar Planked Salmon with a Honey and Rosemary Glaze – Paired with Cincinnati American Light Lager
Salad: Whole Grain Harvest Salad with Spinach tossed in a Cherry Balsamic Dressing – Paired with White Tiger Hefeweitzen
Entrée: Bacon and Blue Cheese Crusted Filet Mignon served with Horseradish Whipped Potatoes and a Wild Mushroom and Green Bean Ragout – Paired with Brown Bear Brown Ale
Dessert: Carmel Pecan Bread Pudding with Homemade Carmel Sauce – Paired with Old Curmudgeon Scotch Ale
$35.00 a person – Call 513-621-1588 for reservations.
Alas, a previous commitment prevents us from making this one, but the ones we’ve attended in the past have been mighty tasty!

Thursday, January 22nd 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm: Rock Bottom Firkin Tapping
We’ve heard that this could be a rather special firkin tapping. More information on this on Thursday.

Friday, January 23rd 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm: Party Town: Beer Tasting
If you missed last week’s Rogue tasting, you really missed something!

Saturday, January 24, 2009 – Brewers of Indiana Guild Winterfest, Indianapolis
We aren’t going to be able to make it to this one either and it’s killing us! Any Hoperatives going to be able to check this premier event out and let us know what we missed?

Short Hops: Why I Love the Internet

While this web site may be my all time favorite time-waster here on the interwebtubes, I am in awe of the talent exhibited at Beer Haiku Daily.  Some examples:

January 17, 2009: Heroes
Sometimes I wonder
Can beer save the world? – Don’t know…
But it’s worth a shot.

January 16, 2008: Smiles
With the bar so loud
I know I’m among friends though
I can’t hear their words

He’s been at this a while:

October 28, 2006: Bar Entry Ritual
All eyes toward the bar
Is that a new tap handle?
Stretch our horizons

It’s this kind of passion that makes me none too worried about the worldwide downturn of beer sales:

Beer usually holds up better than other categories during tough economic times, said Benj Steinman, editor of trade publication Beer Marketer’s Insights, and that trend had been holding true during this recession for some segments of the industry. But the latest figures show the market is trending downward, perhaps accelerating as global economies continue to sputter, and relief seems uncertain.

Beer is “recession-resistant, not recession-proof,” Steinman said.

Parenthetically, I wonder if small and craft brewers are feeling the same pinch?  (Thanks for the tip, Jared.)

Oregon’s Rogue Brewery to be Featured at tonight’s “Friday Night Flights”

Big news about tonight’s 2nd “Friday Night Flights” at Party Town:

Hello. First we would like to thank you all for coming out last Friday. We truly appreciate your support and your enthusiasm for great beer. Now we would like to invite you all over again to try out some incredible beers from the Rogue Brewery of Oregon. Rogue opened its doors as a brewpub in october of 1988. They have gone on to become a world class brewery with an astounding number of truly unique beers, and a clear mission of making each beer a highly personal work of art. We are going to start at the top of the line with three from the XS line: Imperial India Pale Ale, Old Crustacean Barleywine Style Ale, and Imperial Red Ale. We will also open the very rare Ten Thousand Brew Ale. The beer was brewed two years ago and we have carefully aged it since then. This beer will be something incredible, I am not even joking. Please join us and Eugene Platinum on Friday, from 6pm to 7pm.

Party Town – Florence
Location: 6823 Burlington Pike, Florence, KY 41042 (Between Office Depot and Big Lots)
Phone: (859) 371-4466

Short Hops: Old Style going … er … old style

Old Style is one of my “it’s summer, it’s hot and I want a cheap beer” beers.  Don’t know why, just do.  An interesting article from the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal talks about where the brand is going:

Pabst Brewing Co., which owns the Old Style brand, said Wednesday it will soon be marketing Old Style as “authentically kraeusened.” That process more thoroughly ferments beer to give it additional flavor, along with a smoother finish, said Keith Hill, a Pabst brand manager.

“You’re not left with as much of that full feeling after drinking two or three Old Styles,” Hill said.

For nearly a century, Old Style was the No. 1 brand for La Crosse-based G. Heileman Brewing Co., which advertised the beer as “fully kraeusened” and made with pure artesian well water from “God’s country,” meaning western Wisconsin.

Heileman was purchased in 1996 by Detroit-based Stroh Brewery Co., which went out of business in 1999 and sold most of its brands to Pabst.

Based in suburban Chicago, Pabst today is a marketing company that owns dozens of old-line beer brands but hires other companies to brew them. Now, the formula for Old Style will include kraeusening, a process that Stroh dropped.

A Pabst statement said Old Style’s return to its roots will appeal to 20-somethings who would rather drink “a high-quality, local beer” than a beer “from one of the big brewers.”

I’m intrigued by the description of Pabst as a “… marketing company that owns dozens of old-line beer brands.”  While I’d not characterize Christian Moerlein as a marketing company (not that’s there’s anything wrong with being a marketing company), the parallel of buying up older brand names is interesting.  Or am I drawing a parallel where there isn’t one?

(A lifted mug to Beer Dorks for the pointer to the article)

Our First Guest Post – Review of Christian Moerlein Christkindl Winter Warmer

[Hoperative #14 Jared Whalen has submitted our first guest post and it’s a review! It’s also perfect timing since we just had a request for some Winter Warmer reviews. Thanks Jared!]

Let me preference this review by stating that I usually have a general aversion to beers that fall into the “Winter Warmer” category. The category itself brings to mind some of the bad experiences I’ve had with blasts of nutmeg, cinnamon, pine and a few bad experiences with pumpkin beer whilst in college, all things that I prefer for the most part to keep in my pies and potpourri.

Color: Very clear Medium Copper Brown
Head: Thick almost frothy, dissipates fairly quickly leaving some nice lacing.
Mouth Feel: Has a good bit of carbonation. It stings the tongue briefly but is very crisp.
Aroma: Sweet bread aroma with maybe a hint of citrus fruit.

Taste: The flavor is very malty and a distinct caramel stands out in this beer but there is a nuttiness that you might find in brown ale. There is a faint hint of chocolate probably from small amount of chocolate malt. The spice flavors that you expect from a winter warmer are there but they aren’t. It seems like the flavors aren’t actually from the spices them self but rather from some very spicy earthy hops. It’s a very malty beer but the hops cut it nicely while leaving the malt to dominate.

Rating: A-

Summary: A great winter warmer whose flavor makes you think about the flavors of the holiday season with out having to consume something that is more closely related to pie in a bottle than to an enjoyable beer. The weather outside is frightful but this beer would be quite delightful next to a warm fire.

Friday Night Flights at Party Town in Florence

It’s hard to believe that in the short time we’ve been at this beer blog and informational web site business, there are already some big changes in the local beer scene. For many months now, Party Town has been having beer tastings on Saturday afternoons from 3:00 to 5:00 pm when they also have one of their wine tastings (they also have a wine tasting on Friday afternoons from 5:00 to 6:00 pm).

Party Town

This past week, however, they switched things up. No more Saturday beer tastings. Instead, they will have a special beer tasting each Friday evening from 6:00 to 7:00 pm. This set of tastings are called “Friday Night Flights” and that describes them well. For a small $1 charge, you get to taste a flight of beers (often from the same brewery) and usually some of the tasty munchies that Party Town also has available. The inaugural Friday Night Flight featured beer from the Great Divide Brewing Company of Denver, Colorado. Here’s what we got to try (as best I can tell from my notes):

Samurai Rice Ale
Wild Raspberry Ale
Denver Pale Ale
Saint Bridget’s Porter
Hades Belgian-Style Strong Golden
Titan IPA
Hercules Double IPA

Of these seven, we liked the Titan IPA best. It had a bolder taste than even the Hercules Double IPA. The Denver Pale Ale was a bit disappointing.

All in all, it was a very nice start to these new tastings. We highly recommend checking out “Friday Night Flights” some time soon!