May 21, 2018

Beer Break

Beer Break Vol. 3, No. 2
Not your average six-pack

Sept. 26, 2002

We recently rolled out a new feature called the "Real Beer Six-Pack." The first edition includes six questions for Prince Luitpold von Bayern, the Crown Prince of Bavaria, who lives and brews beer in his own castle.


One thing we asked him: Which is cooler -- living in a castle or above a brewery? He answered:

"I think the combination is ideal. The castle can be quite cool at times and it is nice to be able to walk down and get a beer. In a winter we do a bock beer of 22 degrees gravity. It's sold only to pub to sell on draft, but I will go down to the cellar and get a beaker right out of the cask. That's where beer tastes best."

Warsteiner currently imports his Koenig Ludwig Weiss, and we had to ask if the highly praised Dunkel might follow. His answer was diplomatic, but it sounds like that might happen some day.

Future editions of the Six-Pack will include six questions for people in the brewing business, beer drinkers, celebrities, etc. But we won't stop there. If we can work out the logistics, after Day One of the Great American Beer Festival we'll post a list of six must-try beers for those planning to attend either of the following two days. Later, we might run a list of the top selling beers in the country or the six best sellers in certain beer bars.

We've got plenty of ideas, but we want yours as well. If you have a list you'd like to see filled out or a person you'd like to see us put six beer questions to, then write

Here come the hops

This is the time of year, as hops are harvested, that it is great to be living near a brewery with access to fresh picked hops.

For instance, last week BridgePort Brewing in Portland, Ore., debuted its Hop Harvest Ale. Head brewer Karl Ockert brought back 175 pounds of newly picked hops from the Willamette Valley and quickly used them in brewing a batch of beer that's now on tap at the brewpub.

Other breweries -- Sierra Nevada and Russian River come immediately to mind -- often do something similar. Of course, you have to live in California (although you might also look for the beers next week in Denver, either at GABF or Falling Rock) to drink those.

One version you might find in bottles away from the West Coast is Grant's Fresh Hop Ale from Yakima Brewing & Malting in Washington. The sixth annual vintage was released last week and some was shipped to the East Coast.

Tasting notes

Brewed by the Paulaner Brewery in Germany
Michael Jackson writes:
In the German market, most Oktoberfests have lost much of their malty character and amber color. The Germans, however, are still brewing interesting examples for export to the United States. This one has a pale amber color, a very dense head; a fresh, appetizing aroma; a soft, lightly creamy maltiness, and a delicately flowery hoppiness. On the light side for the traditional style, but very enjoyable.

Brewed by the Highland Brewing in North Carolina
Roger Protz writes:
Deep black-brown color, with a hint of ruby, topped by barley-white foam. Stunning aroma of coffee, licorice, molasses, bitter fruit and hops. Dark creamy, biscuity, roasted malt, chocolate and tangy hops cascade across the tongue. The finish starts creamy and malty but quickly takes on a bitter note from roasted grain and hops, finally becoming dry. Like the first coffee of the day, this sets you up and gets the blood pumping.

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