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Lagunitas Brown Shugga’ is back

Lagunitas Sucks Holiday AleLagunitas Brown Shugga’ has returned for the holidays.

Makes not mistake, Santa liked last year’s “replacement” beer, Lagunitas Sucks Holiday Ale, but he does appreciate a little Brown Shugga’ along with a cookie beside the fireplace.

You’ll recall that last year the brewery explained it would not make Brown Shugga’ because of production demands, and literally call Lagunitas Sucks Holiday Ale a Brown Shugga’ replacement.

Here’s the full story from last year:

This sad holiday season we didn’t have the brewing capacity to make our favorite seasonal brew, the widely feared BrownShugga’ Ale. You see, we had a couple of good years (thank you very much) and so heading into this season while we are awaiting a January delivery of a new brewhouse we are jammin’ along brewing 80 barrels of IPA and PILS and such every 3 hours. A couple of months back we realized that since we can only brew a mere 60 barrels of Shugga every 5 hours, that we were seriously screwed. For every case of Shugga’ brewed, we’d short 3 cases of our daily brews. The new brewhouse will help insure that this kind of failure never happens again. It’s a mess that we can not brew our BrownShugga’ this year and we suck for not doing it. There is nothing cool about screwing up this badly and we know it. Maybe we can sue our sorry selves. There is no joy in our hearts this holiday and the best we can hope for is a quick and merciful end. F*@& us. This totally blows. Whatever. We freaking munch moldy donkey butt and we just want it all to be over ….

Welcome back, Shugga’.

‘Tis the season

Deschutes Jubelale Christas Display

The Deschutes Brewery posted this photo, taken in a Portland grocery store, on its Facebook page Nov. 2.

We had two thoughts: a) drink some Jubelale, and b) time to start working on our Christmas Wish List.

“Real Beer for the Holidays” is officially open for 2012 business.

Corsendonk Christmas Ale

First brewed and released in 1998, Corsendonk Christmas Ale is a rich, dark, joyous brew with which to celebrate the holiday season. Its aroma features chocolate malt and spices. On the palate it is predominantly malty, with smoky, spicy and citrusy notes, and a long, lingering finish that is lightly tart and malty.


Bottle conditioned for a fresh, lively taste, it will complement or contrast with virtually any holiday fare, from soup to nuts.

Original gravity: 1079; international bitterness units: 30; 6.7% abw; 8.5% abv; shelf life: up to three years at 55-60° F.

How to be a ‘good elf’

Some proper tips from UK brewer Daniel Thwaites, which created a beer called “Good Elf” for the holiday . . .

A press release in 2009 describes it: “mahogany coloured beer has big, rich overtones of nuttiness, balanced with a light fruit flavour and delicate hop aroma – a festive twist to the traditional toast between family and friends.”

Meanwhile the brewery’s tips for how to be a good elf (we left the British spelling intact):

1. The first step to being a good elf is to acquire the appropriate attire. Anyone can find these special garments during the Christmas season. You will know the perfect pieces when you see them. They will catch your eye and you will find yourself smiling as you look at them and feel good when you picture yourself wearing them.

2. The best elf costumes always have a few small bells sewn into the design. Bells should always be small and only leave just a slight sound as you perform your secret good elf deeds. Bells placed in just the right spots will make a sound but make it hard for people to detect exactly where the sound is coming from!

3. The very best of elves are full of mystery. They secretly perform good deeds and hardly ever get caught! They work in the full light of day and also under the cover of night. The more good things you can get away with in secret, the higher the rank you will earn among the other elves. If you are really good and lucky at not getting caught doing good deeds you could become a fully fledged Santa’s Helper!

4. Santa’s Helper elves are good at recruiting new elves and teaching them their tricks. They change the world for the better by increasing the actual volume of good deeds being preformed everywhere! They make it a Christmas ritual to add fun and magic to the lives of others and many of them carry the spirit in their heart throughout the entire year, performing good deeds every single day.

5. Santa’s Helper elves are very special and do great deeds. They are experienced in keeping secrets and excellent at covering their tracks. It really is the highest honour!

Daniel Thwaites has operated as a family-run brewery since 1807.

Shmaltz launches photo contest

Shmaltz menorah winnerShmaltz Brewing has launched the 2nd Annual “Build Your Own Beer Menorah” photo contest with the limited-edition release of the HE’BREW Holiday Gift Pack featuring eight prized Shmaltz creations (Chanukah candles and Beer Menorah instructions are included in each Gift Pack).

Shmatz invites entrants to send images to Winning photos will be posted on Shmaltz’s Facebook page following the final night of Chanukah 2011.

In honor of its 15th year of brewing, Shmaltz is releasing three Limited-Edition Extreme Offerings, including Genesis 15:15® (13.4% ABV), the HE’BREW Holiday Gift Pack featuring eight prized Shmaltz creations, and Jewbelation 15 (15 malts, 15 hops, 15% ABV). Shmaltz proprietor Jeremy Cowan’s debut small business memoir, Craft Beer Bar Mitzvah, is also now available at bookstores nationwide.