Archive | Gift Ideas

Beer gift packs: Part II

More beer gift packs. (See Part I here.)

Samuel Adams Winter Classics. Two bottle each of Boston lager, Winter Lager, Old Fezziwig Ale, Cranberry Lambic, Holiday Porter and Coastal Wheat.

Corsendonk offers several different gift packages, featuring both its Christmas Ale and year-round beers. The Corsendonk Geschenkdoos Gift Pack includes 750 ml bottles of both Cosendonk Pater and Agnus plus two tulips glasses. Corsendock Degustation Gift Pack feature 330 ml bottles of Abbey Brown and Abby Pale Ale and a tulip glass. A Corsendonk Christmas Ale Gift Tin contains a 750 bottle of the Christmas Ale and a goblet.

New Glarus Gift Pack. The Wisconsin brewery includes 750 ml bottles of Wisconsin Belgian Red and Rasberry Tart along with two Champagne flutes.

Left hand Holiday Pack. The Colorado brewery includes 22-ounce bottles of Juju Ginter, Sawtooth Ale, Milk Stout and Oak Aged Imperial Stout.

Rogue Santa’s Private Reserve. A 22-ounce bottle of the beer along with a Santa’s Reserve glass in a wodden box.

Chimay Sampler Pack. One 330 ml bottle each of Chimay Red, Chimay White and Chimay Blue and a Chimay goblet.

Best of Belgium from Anheuser-Busch In Bev. Six-packs of Leffe Blonde, Hoegaarden and Stella Artois in the 10-bottle package.

Beer gift packs: Part I

Why don’t beer gift packs include a bottle opener?

You’ve got beer. You’ve got a glass. They are otherwise perfect.

More breweries seem to have come to the same conclusions because we’re certainly seeing more gift packs in more places — like at Cost Plus and the local grocery store.

They come in a variety of configurations. Some include beers only from one brewery, others multiple brands though usually from the same country. Not all, sadly, include glassware.

A few examples (with more to follow once we are embarrassed by who isn’t included):

Lindemans Gift Box. One bottle each of Lindemans Framboise and Pomme, a stemmed Lindemans glass.

Weihenstephan Gift Box. Bottles of Weihenstephaner Hefeweissebier, Kristall, Dunkel and Vitus (a pale weizenbock) plus a wheat beer glass.

Saranac 12 Beers of Winter. A variety pack with two bottles each of Saranac Belgian Ale, Big Moose Ale, Maple Porter, Winter Lager, Rye IPA and Black Lager. Sorry, no glass.

Full Sail Gift Box. Here’s a brewery that got it right. Two 22-ounce bottles (Wreck the Halls and Old Boardhead Barleywine), two pint glass, a Full Sail T-shirt, coasters, stickers and a keychain bottle opener.

Unibroue Gift Pack. Eight bottles, different Unibroue beers.

Samuel Smith Selection Box. Bottles of Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout, Nut Brown Ale and Pale Ale, a glass and coasters.

Alaskan Brewing cookbook a company affair

Alaskan Brewing Co., which has long featured recipes in his newsletters and on its web site, has released its first cookbook.

Cooking with Alaskan Beer is a compilation of 101 recipes created and perfected by the employees, family and friends of Alaskan Brewing.

For the last 20 years, the brewery has hosted a friendly competition known as the Brew Crew and Investor Cook-off. In the early years, the crew and investors decided to celebrate the coming winter season with a potluck and a challenge to create best recipe using an Alaskan beer. As the years passed, friendly rivalries developed and local chefs and food enthusiasts were brought in to judge the recipes.

One of the perennial cook-off judges, Stefani “Chef Stef” Marnon, leant her culinary expertise to narrow down and edit the several hundred crew recipes to 101. “We searched through and tested hundreds of creative and delicious recipes to create this collection,” she said. “Which means we have hundreds more to include in future editions.”

“Seeing our recipes in print was really exciting,” said Alaskan production assistant Tom West, whose family has several recipes included in Cooking with Alaskan Beer. “It will definitely add a more competitive edge to next year’s Cook-Off.”

Cooking with Alaskan Beer is available for purchase at the Alaskan brewery and Hearthside Books in Juneau, or at the brewery’s online Gear Store.

Here’s one of the recipes from the book:

Halibut Enchiladas
1 1/2 pounds halibut, 1 inch cubs
6 ounces Alaskan Amber
1/3 chopped onion
3-ounce can diced green chiles
16 ounces sour cream
shredded cheddar and mozzarella
flour tortillas
10-ounce can enchilada sauce
12-ounce can tomato soup
1/2 diced tomato
cilantro
your favorite hot sauce

Pour Alaskan Amber over raw halibut in a bowl and allow to soak for approximately 1 hour. In a saute pan, poach halibut in beer until halibut flakes apart – do not overcook. Drain beer and add onions, chiles and sour cream. Steam tortillas and fill with mixture, roll-up, put in pan. Mix enchilada sauce, tomato soup, diced tomato, cilantro and pour over tortillas then cover with cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Serve with hot sauce, salsa and sour cream.

Buy the blacksmith a beer

Tavern Puzzles are reproductions of a type of puzzle traditionally forged by blacksmiths to amuse their friends at country taverns and inns. Keeping with tradition, a museum-trained blacksmith from Long Island has reproduced some of these antique designs as well as his own original designs.