Breweries

Dark Beers for Winter

Friday, January 22, 2016 | Anchor, Evolution, Fuller's, Keegan Ales, Lancaster Brewing, Old Dominion, Rogue, Troegs

portersandstoutsbanner

We still aren’t done with winter, folks. In fact, it seems like it’s just beginning. With our first real taste of the season, let’s take a moment to look at the best beer styles to warm the soul when the weather is frigid: stouts and porters. The strong, roasted flavors of these styles provide a rich escape from the realities of the cold outside, and notes of cocoa or coffee keep the mind on warm beverages.

Porters are first mentioned in the early eighteenth century as a style of well-hopped ale made from brown malt and strong in both flavor and alcohol. They derived their name from being popular with porters, which allowed breweries to make this style in a variety of strengths. Stouts actually began as a type of porter, referred to as ‘stout’ or ‘double stout’ porters, due to their higher ABV than standard porters. Even today, there is some debate on whether the two styles should be separated as they are, as the difference between them is largely their alcohol content.

Anchor Porter: A rich and well-balanced drink with a deep roasted malt flavor and touches of chocolate and dark fruit. 5.6% ABV

Dominion Oak Barrel Stout: Infused with vanilla bean and oak chips, this brew is smooth, with woody, chocolatey and caramel notes. 6% ABV

Ithaca Super Stout: A coffee oatmeal stout is full-bodied and packed with bittersweet chocolate and coffee flavors. 4.9% ABV

Lancaster Double Chocolate: Cocoa nibs and pure chocolate were infused into this slightly sweet milk stout. 6.7% ABV

Fullers London Porter: Fuller’s has been brewing ales since 1654, so it stands to reason that their classic porter is one of the best representations of the style. 5.4% ABV

Evolution Lucky 7: Smokey and chocolatey with toffee and dark fruit notes, this porter is top notch. 5.8% ABV

Troegs Java Head: Locally roasted espresso and Kenyan coffee beans make this oatmeal stout taste like another delicious brew we know. 7.5% ABV

Keegan Mother’s Milk: A silky milk stout with licorice hints above a coffee and chocolate base. 6% ABV

Rogue Chocolate Stout: This one is chocolate all the way down without being overly sweet. Top of its class. 5.8% ABV

Bold Rock IPA

Friday, January 22, 2016 | Bold Rock Cider

boldrockipabanner

That’s not Indian Pale Ale, but India Pressed Apple. This cider’s got a healthy dose of hops, creating a great finish on that refreshing, big apple taste. Dry-hopped to add citrus and floral notes, the tartness of apples and bitterness of the hops are well-balanced by a sweet flavor underneath, making this cider is very drinkable and certainly capable of being a session beverage for any given night. 4.7% ABV

Fat Head’s Coming to Town

Sunday, January 10, 2016 | Fat Head's

fatheadsbanner

Heads up, there’s another award-winning brewery coming to a retailer near you. Fat Head’s won five medals at the 2015 Great American Beer Festival, four of which were gold, and now you’ll get the chance to try their top-notch beer. Co-owner Glenn Benigni started in 1992 with a saloon in Pittsburgh, a haven for craft beer. Deciding he wanted to produce world-class craft beer, he teamed up with Brewmaster Matt Cole, and in 2009, moved the operation to Olmsted, OH to start a full-scale brewery with instantaneous success. Since then, they’ve opened new breweries in Middleburg Heights, OH and Portland, OR, expanding their production to allow thousands more to enjoy their brews.

The three main brews on draft are

Head Hunter IPA – This dry-hopped West Coast style IPA manages to combine all the major hoppy flavors: pine, citrus and floral, with a fruity pineapple note. 7.5% ABV

Bumble Berry – Brewed with fresh honey and blueberries, this ale’s backbone is cracker-y malt base. A bit of honey sweetness and the freshness of berries creates a unique flavor. 5.3% ABV

Sunshine Daydream – A session IPA with a refreshingly big fruity flavor. Citrus hoppiness is at the forefront, with a malty backbone to even everything out. 4.9% ABV

In addition, there are five limited release brands available: Shakedown Imperial Stout, Goggle Fogger Hefe Weizen, Battle Axe Baltic Porter, Head Trip Tripel and Trail Head Pale Ale. These will be available for a limited time during the introductory release, so try them while you can.

Today at 6pm, Liberty Taproom kicks off a week of events to introduce the brewery to the area featuring the Fat Head’s crew. Each event will offer a few of the limited brews mentioned above on tap, with brands varying by location.

Here’s our list to help you find an event near you.

Sunday, January 10

Liberty Taproom – 6pm
237 Prospect St, Exeter, PA

Monday, January 11

Capone’s Restaurant – 8pm
224 W Germantown Pk, Norristown, PA

Tuesday, January 12

CJ’s Doghouse – 5pm
1555 Sumneytown Pk, Kulpsville, PA

The Barley Mow – 6pm
719 Penn Ave, West Reading, PA

Wednesday, January 13

The Butcher & The Bar Keep – 5pm
712 Main St, Harleysville, PA

Hulmeville Inn – 5pm
4 Trenton Rd, Hulmeville, PA

Doylestown Crawl 7-11pm
Station Tap House – 194 W Ashland St
Finney’s Pub – 15 S Main St
Chambers 19 – 19 N Main St
Penn Taproom – 80 W State St
Mesquito Grill – 128 W State St
Stephanie’s – 29 S Main St
Farm House – 280 N Main St

Thursday, January 14

Blue Dog – 5pm
4275 County Line Rd, Chalfont, PA

Union Jack’s – 5pm
2750 Limekiln Pk, Glenside, PA

Mari’s 6 Pac ‘n More – 3pm
835 Hiester’s Ln, Reading, PA

Ganley’s Pub & Deli – 6pm
500 Brownsville Rd, Sinking Springs, PA

Railroad St Bar & Grill – 7pm
36 Railroad St, Royersford, PA

Friday, January 15

Pinocchio’s Pizza – 5pm
131 E Baltimore Pk, Media, PA

Saturday, January 16

Teresa’s Bar – All Day
124 N Wayne Ave, Wayne, PA

January 21

Drake Tavern
304 Old York Rd, Jenkintown, PA

January 28

Public House
1073 Mill Creek Rd, Wycombe, PA


It’d be a shame to miss out on meeting Fat Head’s crew, but if for some reason you can’t make it, don’t worry: you can still enjoy limited drafts in one of these locations. The dates of availability vary, so be sure to call ahead and check.

320 Market Cafe
211 W State St, Media, PA
(484) 222-1467

Canal Street
535 Canal St, Reading, PA
(610) 376-4009

Double Edge Bar & Grille
4803 W Chelster Pk, Newtown Square, PA
(610) 356-7666

Harry’s Taproom
736 Dekalb Pk, Blue Bell, PA
(267) 625-5110

Jamison Pour House
2160 York Rd, Jamison, PA
(267) 483-5185

PJ’s Pourhouse
29 Airport Square, North Wales, PA
(609) 405-6530

Union Jack’s
546 Manatawny Rd, Boyertown, PA
(610) 689-0189

Whole Foods
510 W Germantown Pk, Plymouthmeeting, PA
(610) 832-0010

Victory Winter Cheers

Thursday, December 10, 2015 | Featured Beer, Victory

Victory-Winter-Cheers-banner

A perfect brew to brighten your dark winter evenings. Winter Cheers brings joy to the heart and taste buds with a flavor full of spicy clove, sweet banana and a touch of citrusy tartness. It’s medium-light mouthfeel is refreshing in a season of full-bodied beers, and a touch of hop character rounds out the flavor profile nicely. 6.7% ABV

Barrel-Aging

Thursday, December 10, 2015 | Goose Island, New Belgium, Tennent's, Uinta, Victory

barrelagedbanner

Beer was housed in wood for centuries, fermenting, aging, traveling and even being served straight from barrels. Barrels were simply the best method of containment not only for beer but also wine, liquor, vinegars and even dry goods. Although the true time and place of origin for barrels is hard to determine as all early artifacts rotted long ago, the general consensus is that they were first constructed by Celts or Gauls in northern Europe around 300 B.C., and spread over the world after they were conquered by the Roman Empire. Although wine is now traditionally the drink that comes to mind when thinking of barrels, it is likely that the first barrels were actually made to house beer as the Gauls and Celts did not make their own wine until much later. With wood being lighter, stronger and easier to handle than the clay pots being used before, the use of barrels expanded into wine and other goods by 100 A.D.

Wooden barrels remained the standard housing for wine, beer and later liquor up into the 20th century. Somewhere in there, it was realized that the wood and aging process imbued the beverage with particular flavor qualities. Additionally, what had previously been stored in the barrel also had an effect on taste. Generally, this was prevented by adding a layer of pitch to the inside of the barrel before storing beer, but winemakers were making full use of this by the 19th centrury.

Wood has its downsides, though; it’s hard to clean, porous, and hard to seal completely. Because of this, beer had to be consumed quickly, hopped heavy-handedly or cask-conditioned in order to prevent infection. With the advent of metal brewing equipment and storage, barrels were all but abandoned by brewers.

However, the qualities provided by barrels were not forgotten, and now breweries are taking advantage of the flavors of wood, as well as the wines and liquors stored before. Barrels in beer-making are gaining popularity for some of the same reasons they were abandoned. Fortunately, breweries nowadays have the luxury of being selective in which brews they decide to age, and the barrels they age in, allowing for combinations to be orchestrated and perfected.

Goose Island’s Bourbon County Stout may be the first modern craft beer that utilized the bourbon barrel-aging process that has taken the craft scene by storm. The bourbon gives this a unique sweetness and the oak a smokiness over chocolate caramel and vanilla notes.

A twist on a classic, O’Hara’s Barrel-Aged Leann Follain is allowed to sit for 90 days in Irish whiskey barrels, enhancing the chocolatey flavor of the stout with the addition of dry scotch.

Tennent’s Aged with Whisky Oak combines wood, caramel and vanilla flavors through the use of a single malt and toasted oak.

Uinta’s Jacked B Nimble is a part of their Crooked Line, a spicy imperial pumpkin ale that’s has a signature oak note and a touch of rye.

Victory White Monkey takes the beloved Golden Monkey and allows it to mature for three months in oaken barrels that once stored white wine, adding nuanced to an already delicious brew.

After eight months aging, Evolution Bourbon Migration puts the bourbon flavor at the front with notes of vanilla and char, balanced by chocolate, toffee and coffee underneath.

New Belgium La Folie is a sour brown ale that spends one to three years in a huge oak barrels called foeders, coming out with a sharply fruity flavor full of berries and apple.

Dessert Pairing

Friday, November 13, 2015 | Fuller's, Goose Island, Ithaca, Lancaster Brewing, Leffe, New Belgium, Old Dominion, Rogue, Victory

dessertbeer

There is often discussion here about how to pair your favorite beers with food, but typically that conversation steers towards entrees and other savory dishes. However, many beers can make an excellent accompaniment to sweeter desserts. As an introduction to this pairing style, we offer this list to consider. As with savory pairings, these duos can either mimic one another with similar flavor notes, or complement each other with different accents. For each beer, we offer an example for each.

Goose Island Sofie – Champagne-like in mouthfeel, with pepper and citrus flavors and a vanilla finish.
Imitation: Fresh Fruit Ambrosia Salad
Complement: Chocolate-Orange Scone.

Lancaster Shoo-Fly Pie Porter – Sweet heavy molasses, vanilla and brown sugar.
Imitation: Pecan Pie
Complement: Crème Brûlée

Old Dominion Candi - Pear, apple, sugar and pepper, with a bit of tartness and finishing hop character.
Imitation: Pear Upside-Down Cake
Complement: Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

Fuller’s London Porter - Dark chocolate, coffee and smoky tobacco; a very strong flavor profile.
Imitation: Chocolate Torte
Complement: Raspberry Cheesecake

Leffe Blonde - Spicy banana, orange and vanilla make up this beer.
Imitation: Orange Banana Nut Bread
Complement: Dark Chocolate

Victory Storm King - Dark chocolate and espresso are cut with hop bitterness.
Imitation: Chocolate Espresso Pound Cake
Complement: Vanilla Fudge

New Belgium Snapshot - Lemony-tartness throughout, with a bready backbone.
Imitation: Lemon Shortbread
Complement: French Silk Pie

Rogue Chocolate Stout – Chocolate and hops combine for a darkly rich and bitter beer with a touch of nuttiness.
Imitation: Pecan Brownies
Complement: Cheesecake

Ithaca Country Pumpkin - All the pumpkin pie spices (clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice) and a touch of pumpkin itself.
Imitation: Pumpkin Roll
Complement: Vanilla Bean Pudding

New Belgium Accumulation

Friday, November 13, 2015 | Featured Beer, New Belgium

accumulationbanner

Step aside dark beers, this Belgian-style IPA is claiming winter for itself. Crisp piny-ness is reminiscent of evergreen trees in snow, follow by warmer citrus with lemon taking the lead. bready malt provides a base for the hop bouquet while allowing it to take center stage. A beer truly inspired by the flavors and scents of the holiday season. 6.2% ABV

No Shave November and Rogue Ales

Friday, November 13, 2015 | Events, Fall, Rogue

beardbeernoshavebanner

For a number of years now, people across the world have cast aside their shaving products during the month of November in an effort to raise cancer awareness and donate the saved money to cancer research programs. Rogue Ales has taken up the cause, with 21 rogues taking part in the non-shaving. Additionally, a portion of the proceeds from Beard Beer sales in the month of November will go to the cause, funding cancer research and awareness. Rogue is an official partner of No Shave November, and by drinking Beard Beer (a fruity wild ale made from beard yeast), you’re helping them in their mission.

Learn more about No Shave November at noshave.org, and join Rogue at the following events to support the program.

Tuesday, November 17
4:30 – 6:30, Chammps, Collegeville
7 – 10 PM, Railroad Street Bar and Grille, Royersford

Susquehanna’s Goldencold Takes Bronze at GABF

Friday, November 13, 2015 | Contest, Susquhanna

goldencoldlagerBRONZE

Out of the 55 beers entered in the Munich Helles category at the Great American Beer Festival, Susquehanna Brewings Goldencold Lager took third, beating out most the competition. Over 6,000 breweries vie for 276 medals, and with so many other breweries competing at this prestigious festival, the chances of taking home a medal are slim. On top of that, the Munich Helles category is one of the larger sections to compete in.

So what is this award-winning beer? It’s a German-inspired pale lager, using Endosperm mashing to create a delicate flavor and texture and Bavarian Hallertau Tradition and Hallertau Perle hops for a distinct character.

Spooky Good Beer

Friday, October 30, 2015 | Evolution, Long Trail, McKenzie's Hard Cider, New Belgium, Rogue, Victory

spookygoodbeer

Halloween is tomorrow, and we’re here to help with a few last minute party and costume ideas to make sure the night goes spookily–err, smoothly.

Beers to Try:

Magic Hat Night of the Living Dead Variety Pack – Today is Magic Hat’s 21st birthday, so you should give them a little love. This festive case includes #9 Not Quite Pale Ale, Magic Hat Ale (their first beer ever brewed), Wilhelm Scream and Miss Bliss.
Victory Storm King Stout – This blackest of black beer starts with a huge hop aroma and continues with a rich, deep chocolate malt flavor. And at 9.2% ABV, it’ll warm your night.
Evolution Jacques Au Lantern – Halloween wouldn’t be right without a pumpkin ale, and Evolution provides a perfect example of the style.
New Belgium Pumpkick – Another pumpkin ale, but with a kick of cranberry tartness to shake things up. Available locally for the first time, so be sure to give it a try.
Long Trail Limbo – Citrus and resiny pine hoppiness lies inside this IPA, and a beautiful red-black-white label features a skeleton just in theme with Halloween.
Rogue Dead Guy Ale – This notorious brew is always great for Halloween due to its drinkability, appropriate name and popularity.

Party Ideas:

Costume and Pumpkin-Carving Contest Prizes: If you’re having a larger party, it’s always nice to have a few activities planned; either a costume contest or a jack-o-lantern carving contest (or both) are fun ideas to keep people engaged. And if you’re going to have a contest, you’re also going to need prizes. It’s best to separate these contests into kids and adults categories, to check for skill as well as so you can cater the prizes to the age range. For the kids, a bag of dried apples, spooky stickers, maple candies, a coloring book and a ribbon would make a nice prize basket. For the adults, make your own variety six-pack with the seasonal favorites we listed above.

Ghostly Beer Giveaway: Create cheesecloth ghosts of appropriate height and opacity, and once dry, set the ghosts over several bottles or cans of different types of beer. Make sure the cloth hides the label well enough that the beer cannot be deciphered. When guests arrive, have them choose a ghost-beer combo. They can drink the beer at the party and take the ghost home as a souvenir. For smaller parties, this works particularly well with larger bottles, like Victory’s V-Twelve. For larger parties, a 12 oz bottle variety pack can be used, like Magic Hat’s Night of the Living Dead.

Cider Cocktails – Instead of serving just straight cider, try your hand at making cider cocktails. This recipe has the benefit of being blood-red, but there are a number of delicious hard cider cocktail recipes out there, and you can use your favorite cider (we suggest McKenzie’s, Bold Rock or Johnny Appleseed) in the mix.

Costume Ideas:

Dead Guy – The namesake of one of Rogue’s top ales actually makes a pretty simple costume. Most costume stores will carry a skeleton suit of some sort. They will also probably have some sort of helmet/hat that is similar to the one on the label–gold or bronze is the color you’re looking for, particularly one that is tall. You can easily add length to a helmet by getting one that sits on top of, not around, your head. If you have trouble finding a suitable helmet, use the dome template on this page, and try making the bottom wider to lengthen the helmet. While you’re at the costume store, pick up some black and white face paint, and follow this guide to make your face into a skull. Carry a plastic beer mug around and voila. Bonus points for anyone with a barrel to sit on while they hand out candy.

Hop Flower – If you’ve got a little time, and a knack for a bit of sewing, a hop flower is a pretty straight-forward. First, you need a green beanie, shirt/dress and pants/leggings/tights. Second, you need a couple yards of light green material, and lastly a single sheet of green felt. The petals are roughly diamond in shape, with rounded sides, a pointy bottom tip and a flat top. Here is a basic outline. Measurements should be roughly 5 inches wide at the widest point, and 7 inches long. A little variance is okay, and petals near the top of the costume should be slightly smaller. How many you need will vary. To keep track, you can start pinning the petals onto your shirt or dress in rows as you cut then out. The petals in each row will touch, but not overlap too much. Rows should be roughly 3 inches apart, overlapping some with the lower row underneath the upper. Be sure to stagger the petals, like so. Cover the entire shirt or dress, and allow some petals to hang past the hem. It might be easiest to start from the bottom, and sew each row as you work your way up. For the hat, make a few small petals, sew then in a ring around about the middle of the beanie, and then sew on a green felt stem.

Beer Knight – A fun, cheap and relatively easy costume is waiting right next to your recycling; use your favorite old beer case boxes to create armor for yourself, including helmet, shield and breastplate. With a little ingenuity and a lot of clear packing tape, you can make a costume that will have people pointing you out at every party.

Newsletter Signup

Stay Connected