Archive | Beer

Breckenridge Christmas Ale

Breckenridge Christmas AlePackaging Breckenridge Brewery’s Christmas Ale into liter gift bottles is an annual tradition at the brewery. The time has come again, as the employees gather to hand label a limited supply of the bottles for availability starting this week at the Denver brewery’s tasting room and at select liquor stores throughout Colorado. Each of the brewery’s “elves” is noted on the back of the label, and proof of their personal touch can be found in the occasional, and refreshingly human, imperfection in the label placement.

In 1993, Breckenridge Brewery first introduced Christmas Ale and has been brewing the same recipe for the holiday season since. Its spicy characteristics of this ale come from the Chinook and Mt. Hood hops. 7.4% alcohol by volume.

Newcastle Winter IPA

Newcastle Winter IPANewcastle Brown Ale’s Winter IPA is the newest offering in the brewery’s Limited Edition series.

“Newcastle Brown Ale has a rich history of carefully crafted and highly drinkable beers, and our partnership with the Caledonian Brewery for the Limited Edition series continues this tradition,” said Charles van Es, brand director Newcastle Brown Ale. “From the authentic recipe to the small batch brewing in open copper kettles, everything about our Winter IPA is a salute to original British IPAs. It’s our way of helping make the long winter months a little more palatable.”

Winter IPA is restrained compared to most India Pale Ales brewed in the United States, laying spicy, herbal Super Styrian and Styrian Goldings hops on top of a solid malt base. Aromas and flavors including caramel, toffee and fruit mingle pleasantly.

The beer includes 5.2 alcohol by volume and has 28 bitterness units.

$10 off Rare Beer Club order

The Rare Beer Club must have impressed Fast Company magazine, because it featured the club in its December/January issue, stating:

“Offering beer as a token of holiday goodwill can be tricky. It’s gauche to put a six-pack under the tree, and nothing says ‘I forgot’ like a brown bag with a ribbon around its neck.”

Each month, members receive two different 750 ml selections, many of which are corked and caged, and Gift Memberships available from 2-12 months to fit any budget. And the club is offering Real Beer readers $10 off an order of any term.

New Belgium glass sales benefit nonprofits

New Belgium Brewing is giving back during the gift-giving season by offering beer globe glasses that benefit nonprofit organizations. Each winterized two-pack gift box is available for $8.99, with $1 from each purchase going to one of four participating beneficiaries. Visitors to can select “The Glass That Gives” to purchase glassware and designate which organization they would like to support.

New for 2011, New Belgium will roll out smaller 12/14 oz. glasses (12 ounces to the line, 14 ounces to the top) in addition to the classic 16/18 oz. globes (16 ounces to the line, 18 ounces to the top). Many bars will also feature the glasses with a new rack specifically designed for the New Belgium globes.

The nonprofits benefitting from “The Glass That Gives” program include:

* Water Keeper Alliance (, whose mission is to provide a way for communities to stand up for their right to clean water and for the wise and equitable use of water resources, both locally and globally.
* People for Bikes (, whose mission is to make bicycling safer, more convenient, and appealing to everyone.
* Organic Farming Research Foundation (, whose mission is to foster the improvement and widespread adoption of organic farming systems.
* Save the Colorado Foundation (, which is focused on supporting environmental organizations working to protect and restore the endangered Colorado River.

New Belgium also has two holiday beers on the shelves — Snow Day and Frambozen.

Lompoc brews 10 beers for holidays

How’s this for taking holiday beers seriously? The brewers at Lompoc Brewing in Portland, Oregon, have been created 10 different ones. The Lompoc Holiday Beer Extravaganza will feature nine of these on Nov. 29 at the Lompoc Sidebar. The tenth, a Chanukah beer, will be released at its own party at Sidebar on Dec. 14.

The 2011 Lompoc holiday seasonals include Blitzen Spiced Golden Ale, Cherry Christmas Sour Blend, Brewdolph Belgian Style Red, Holiday Cheer Robust Vanilla Porter, Jolly Bock German Style Bock, C-sons Greetings Imperial IPA, Bourbon Barrel Aged C-sons Greetings, Old Tavern Rat Barley Wine, Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Tavern Rat and 8 Malty Nights Chocolate Rye.

All beers except 8 Malty Nights will be on draft at Sidebar on November 29; most of the beers will also be available at the other Lompoc pubs: New Old Lompoc, Hedge House, Oaks Bottom and Fifth Quadrant. Two of the beers, C-sons Greetings and Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Tavern Rat, are also available in 22 ounce bottles.