Bike to the brewery in style

New Glarus Brewing bicycle jerseyIf you want to go for a bicycle ride with “Mirror Pond Ale” emblazoned across your front there’s a shirt for that.

Or “Lone Star” or “Arrogant Bastard” or … well, you get the idea. Plenty of breweries now sell colorfully decorate cycling shirts, some featuring the name of the brewery most prominently, others a particular beer. If you can’t find one in a brewery’s gift shop you might visit its oneline store. In addition, there are stores that carry a variety of shirts.

The New Glarus Spotted Cow shirt pictured here is available in the brewery’s online gift shop.

Essential brewing books: new and old

Sadly, those who were hoping to find Randy Mosher’s new book, “Mastering Home Brew: The Complete Guide to Brewing Delicious Beer,” under the tree next month will have to wait — the release has been delayed until spring. Mosher showed off some of the pages earlier this year at the National Homebrew Conference and it is clear it will belong on any list of essential homebrewing books.

Here are some others, starting with the newest release in Brewers Publications “Brewers Elements Series”:

- “Water: A Comprehensive Guide for Brewers”

- “Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation”

- “For The Love of Hops: The Practical Guide to Aroma, Bitterness and the Culture of Hops”

- How to Brew: Everything You Need To Know To Brew Beer Right The First Time

- “Designing Great Beers: The Ultimate Guide to Brewing Classic Beer Styles”

- “The Complete Joy of Homebrewing Third Edition”

- “Radical Brewing: Recipes, Tales and World-Altering Meditations in a Glass”

Magnetic bottle opener

Looking for a simple, easy-to-use, maybe historic bottle opener? We can waste hours trying to pick from all those available at eBay.

But if you have a friend who is constantly stumbling over bottle caps that somehow end up on the floor, or one who might accuse you of doing your holiday shopping at garage sales then here’s a fancier choice.

DropCatch is a wall-mounted bottle opener with a magnet inside, so those caps never hit the floor. It comes in different sizes (the larger one is said to hold 52 caps) and with a choice of hardwoods.

The United States of Beer

United States of BeerYou might recall that a few years ago we recommended the 33 Bottles of Beer tasting book as a stocking stuffer. Since then, publisher Dave Selden added “33 books” for a variety of other products you taste and smell — such as chocolate, wine and cheese.

His newest creation is a large (39 inches by 25 inches – here it is full size) map that makes a fine gift for a beer lover with plenty of wall space. Selden explains, “Both posters (one for $30, a limited edition version for $50) are based on my 33 Beers format, with a flavor wheel and 5-star rating area, plus room for beer name, brewery, and the date you tried it. There wasn’t room for much in the way of notes, but I think the point of this poster is more about the journey than a particular destination.”


AHA gift memberships

A recent survey conducted by the Brewers Association found that American homebrewers make about 62 million gallons of beer each year.

Obviously, the hobby is on the rise. Fewer than one in 25 homebrewers belong to the American Homebrewers Association, but that number is also on the rise and gift memberships are easy to purchase.

Benefits include:

- Zymurgy magazine & eZymurgy
- Discounts at some breweries and brewpubs
- Access to all of
- AHA Member Deals
- the AHA Forum
- AHA Rallies
- Competition, Event & Book Discounts