This Belgium-style witbier is brewed with coriander and orange peel for a deliciously spicy, citrus flavor. Along with the orangey flavor are notes of other fruits like banana and lemon, and a hint of herbal hoppiness adds to the overall spice. It’s light in body, making for a great late-summer beer. 4% ABV
It’s time for our roundup of notable Great American Beer Festival competition winners for 2014. If you aren’t familiar with the festival, it’s one of the largest beer fest in the states, started in 1982 by nuclear engineer Charlie Papazian in Boulder, CO, though now it takes place in Denver. It also hosts one of the most prolific beer competitions, with over 2000 brews entered annually, seeking to be named one of three brews that best exemplifies its style.
Victory Golden Monkey – Belgian-Style Tripel
Troegs Troegentaor – Bock
Widmer Bros. Hefeweizen – American-Style Wheat Beer With Yeast
Old Dominion Spiced Harvest – Pumpkin Beer
Uinta Cutthroat – Ordinary or Special Bitter
Be sure to raise a glass to these winners, and try any of the brews you haven’t gotten a chance to yet. And if you want a chance to try the gold-winning brews by Troegs and Victory, this is the perfect excuse to make the way to their breweries to try the beers right at the source. They’re both a great spot to grab a bite if you’re out holiday shopping, too.
Troegs Tasting Room & Snack Bar: Located in Hershey, Troeg’s tasting room offers visitors the chance to try their various brewed offerings while taking a self-guided tour through the brewing process. And just adjacent to the tasting room is the snack bar, where Troegs partners with different local farms, meat-providers and creameries to bring you delicious foods inspired by their beers.
Victory Brewpubs: Victory has two brewpub locations, one at the original brewery in Downtingtown, one in Kennet Square. Their menu includes regular pub fare with their own twist, sandwiches, soups, and daily menu additions that their chefs come up with. Not to mention, all their brews on tap.
Hopheads, we’ve got some great news for you! From now until the end of October, there will be a $5 rebate on cases of select IPAs and DIPAs purchased at your local Delaware, Bucks, Montgomery and Berks County Beer Distributors. Simply fill out and mail in this rebate form with the UPC from the case and a dated receipt, and you’ll receive $5 back on up to 2 cases per household. If you’re having trouble deciding which of these fantastically hoppy beers to get, take a look at the descriptions below to get a better feel for them.
Evolution Lot No 3 IPA – Fruity citrus and sharp pine notes sit heavily on a quiet but firm malt backbone in this vigorously hopped brew. 6.8% ABV
Uinta Hop Nosh IPA – Grapefruit is the flavor at the forefront of this IPA, with earthy hops and fruit inflections over a smooth, malty base. 7.3% ABV
Ithaca Flower Power IPA – The flavor starts with rich malts, which flow smoothly into herbal hops in this five-times-hopped ale. 7.5% ABV
Prism Felony IPA – At 100 IBUs with ten different hop varieties, this DIPA isn’t messing around. Hoppy fruit and pine notes dominate, balanced by maltiness. 10% ABV
Victory DirtWolf Double IPA – Robustly hopped, this ale holds floral nectar, herbal and pine flavors amongst the pleasant bitterness, with slight citrus traits intermixed. 8.7% ABV
Troegs Perpetual IPA – Peppery, piney and grassy. This bold IPA (that’s Imperial Pale Ale) serves up a healthy serving of hops with every sip. 7.5% ABV
Though the temperatures haven’t yet dipped, it’s already nearly a week into September and fall is just around the corner. So now’s the time to start thinking about what autumnal brews you’ll be enjoying this season. Given that this is the season that beer drinkers look forward to all year, it’s a lot to think about. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with a few beverages that you don’t want to miss.
Anchor BigLeaf Maple - This autumn red ale has a hint of maple syrup in it to add to its maltiness, and enough hops to balance its rich flavor. The taste will bring fall foliage to mind, especially changing maples.
Long Trail Imperial Pumpkin – The first in the Brush and Barrel series, this beer is brewed with pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger and cloves for a flavor profile that screams fall.
Shock Top Pumpkin Wheat – A traditional Belgian-style wheat ale that’s been brewed with ripe pumpkins, making it a perfect go-to this season for all sorts of fall fun; picking pumpkins, harvest parties and of course, Halloween and Thanksgiving.
Uinta Punk’n – Roasted pumpkin, honey, vanilla and a strong ale backbone combine to make this great brew. Add to this that it’s quite sessionable, and you’ll be looking for space for a handful of six packs in your fridge.
Victory Festbier – Smooth German malts and hints of earthy hops make for a lovely Oktoberfest with a thick mouthfeel and satisfying flavor. A shining example of the style.
Last week was the World Beer Cup in Boulder, CO, with judgements over 96 different styles on a global level, with only three top beers named in each category and often dozens of entries into each. Starting in 1996, hundreds of brewers have entered their creations every two years, with more breweries entering with each competition. However, only a few come out on top, named best in their styles. This competition is considered the most prestigious beer competition in the world, and is not to be taken lightly.
Here’s a list of some of the brews that won that are available in our area.
Widmer Hefeweizen – Won Gold in the American Style Wheat Beer with Yeast category.
Starr Hill Whiter Shade of Pale – Won Gold in the American Belgo Style Ale category.
Redhook Audible Ale – Won Gold in the Classic English Style Pale Ale category.
Dominion Candy Belgian Tripel – Won Gold in the Belgian Style Tripel category.
Franziskaner Hefe-Weissbier Dunkel – Won Silver in the German Style Dark Wheat Ale category.
Uinta Bristlecone Brown - Won Bronze in the English Style Mild category.
For more information on the World Beer Cup, visit their website.
So the Eagles didn’t make it to the Superbowl this year, but don’t go canceling your party yet. We’ve got some ideas for some Denver and Seattle inspired meals, as well as the perfect beers to go with them. So root for you favorite team–even if it’s not really your favorite–and try one of these delicious combos.
Washington is known for its huge, delicious sockeye salmon, and there are so many recipes to choose from. Although salmon is always tasty, here’s three serving suggestions.
Smoked Salmon – Victory Golden Monkey’s sweet and spicy flavor pairs well with the brown sugar and light but rich texture of sweet salmon.
Glazed Salmon – Susquehanna’s HopFive IPA has enough hops to counter balance the sticky-sweetness of the glaze, and is light enough for seafood.
Smoked Salmon Dip – Troeg’s Dreamweaver pairs well with all sorts of seafood, and it’s light enough to serve with snacks/appetizers.
Where Washington is famous for salmon, Colorado’s claim to fame is its buffalo, which can be cooked in a number of different, delicious ways. These three options really bring out the sweet, rich flavor of the meat.
Buffalo Burgers – The smokiness of these burgers matches that of Prism Brewing’s Insana Stout, brewed with chocolate and bacon. Mmm!
Buffalo Brisket – East Coast Beer Co. Winter Rental’s sweet dark fruit notes will play up the sweetness of the meat in this brisket.
Buffalo Chili – Evolution Lot #3 IPA goes great with this spicy chili, as the bitterness will complement the hot peppers, and the light body
And of course, if you aren’t particular to either team but are still hosting a party, you can always play up the joke that each team is from a state where marijuana use is now legal, and serve everyone their own Uinta Dubhe (pronounced doo-bee).
Everyone have a safe and pleasant game time!
Uinta’s Punk’n is a pumpkin ale with a bright amber hue and frothy head. The malts and hops are accented with a pumpkin flavor, spices and hints of vanilla and honey. With bright carbonation and a heavier body than expected from a 4% ABV beverage, this autumn drink goes great with roasted turkey and squash or pumpkin dishes. For a more daring serving option that’s sure to be a crowd-pleaser, try adding vanilla ice cream for a pumpkin ale float.
We all know that certain beers should be paired with certain foods. However, there’s another way food can be served with beer; as a garnish. There are a number of brews out there intended to be served with a slice of orange or lime, but what’s the purpose? And where did it all get started?
There is some debate over whether a slice of lemon in wheat beers was started in the 1960s in Germany, or whether it was an American invention. However, before the US really had any wheat beers of its own, it served these sorts of garnishes in German-themed bars along with Hefeweizens, suggesting it was a tradition started across the Atlantic. The whole idea was probably adopted as an imitation of cocktails, which were the drink of choice at bars at the time.
Since then, lemon, lime and orange slices have caught on as a popular addition to American wheat beers and cervezas. Most fans agree that the tartness of the fruit complements the yeasts used in the beers, and sometimes enhance the beer’s natural citrus flavor. Citrus isn’t the only garnish that has been used with beers, though.
Most people don’t really question why there are mixed nuts or pretzels at the bar, but they have significance. The salt on the nuts and pretzels can complement the flavor of a beer. Some bartenders go as far as hanging pretzels from the glass with certain beers. If you have a nut allergy—or don’t want to risk eating anything out of a bowl that countless others have stuck their hands into—you can add the salt directly to your beer or around the rim. This is an old tradition that has its roots in old wives’ tales of helping with cramps, and is not as common a way to garnish beer anymore. Still, there are flavored salts made especially for adding to your brew, and adding salt to beer can deflate the carbonation, which may be a plus to some drinkers looking to avoid a gassy stomach.
Salt and lime as a mix of garnishes is especially prevalent in states bordering Mexico. A michelada is a beer cocktail that uses salt, pepper, lime, hot sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. There are a number of takes on this simple recipe, using different beers, and non-traditional hot sauces like Sriracha. Chili peppers are another ingredient that is sometimes used for micheladas.
Chocolate is another beer garnish option, pairing especially well with stouts, barley wines, porters and some lambics. You can do this a number of ways, including powdering a glass with a coco mix, or making dark or milk chocolate ornaments.
There are a number of other less common garnishes, including green olives, which are usually paired with American or English pale ales, and cinnamon sugar rims, which go well with pumpkin ales. Fruit beers can also be paired with the fruit with which they are flavored, including berries, cherries and watermelon.
Some purists believe that adding any embellishment to a beer is just a way of covering up poor quality, though. They argue that the beer itself should be taste enough, and that adding anything to it only covers up the flavor, either to the detriment of a good brew, or the benefit of a beer with off or little flavors. Another complaint about some garnishes is that they deflate the head, and as with the case with salty choices, can affect the carbonation of the beer, which some believe should not be tampered with.
We say that garnishes are a matter of taste, and a fun way to experiment with a brew you already know and love. So, here’s a few suggested pairings that might make garnish doubters think twice.
Hoegaarden Original White Ale; garnish with slice of lemon hanging off the rim to accentuate the sweet, citrus flavor and offset the spicy clove.
Starr Hill Dark Starr Stout; rim glass with cocoa powder, or just pair with a small bar of dark chocolate.
Sierra Nevada Southern Hemisphere Harvest Fresh Ale; drop a couple of green olives into this IPA, and watch the bubbles gather around them, allowing them to float back to the top.
5 Rabbit 5 Lizard; lemon goes well with this latin-style witbier, and salt or hot sauce can also be a good choice of garnish.
Uinta Punk’n Harvest Pumpkin Ale; powder the rim of the glass with a cinnamon and sugar mix to add a little kick to this already delicious pumpkin ale.
Shock Top Raspberry Wheat; plopping a couple of raspberries into this popular Belgian-style wheat ale slightly strengthens the berry’s flavor… and you get a little treat in the bottom of your glass.
Uinta’s Cockeyed Cooper is a bourbon barrel-aged barleywine with a sweet taste and and dark reddish amber color. With fruity aromatic notes of dried cherries, raisins, and plum, this beer also has warmer flavors, including vanilla, caramel, roasted malt, and brown sugar. There is some alcohol flavor, as to be expected with barleywine, especially one aged in a bourbon barrel. The whiskey and barrel flavors really shine through in this brew, found in a corked bottle or on tap. Part of Uinta’s Crooked Line, this beer is great for those who like sweeter brews, especially barleywines or bourbon-aged beers.
New Year’s has come and gone and we’re nearly half way through January. And if you’re like most people, sticking to that New Year’s resolution of losing weight or drinking less is probably in high gear. So to help fulfill your taste bud’s cravings we organized a list of some tasty brews that have a lighter flavor profile (theoretically less calories and carbs) and are sessionable with a lower ABV than most.
- Long Trail Blackberry Wheat – A flavorful alternative to most light beers, popularity of this wheat ale has grown immensely since its 1996 creation. Available year-round, this beer is only 125 calories per 12oz bottle and has 6 grams of carbs. The touch of blackberry is just enough to satisfy your flavor-packed needs.
- Uinta Wyld Extra Pale Ale – A World Beer Championship silver-medalist, this all-organic 4% ABV ale has a super light body this beer is impressive due to its robust hops characteristics.
- Tetley’s English Ale – This UK import is a classic style English pale ale that is a mild 3.6% ABV offering. The beer has great flavor with characteristics of bready-malts and just a slight bitterness.
- Starr Hill Dark Starr Stout – If the lighter-colored beers aren’t your style, you may be interested in the Dark Starr Stout, a Dry Irish Stout at only 4.2% ABV. The beer has flavors of coffee and unsweetened chocolate and a light body, making it easy going for anytime.