Archives for

Uncategorized

archives

A Preview of Goose Island’s 2018 Bourbon County Brand Stout Lineup

The Hop Review got an early preview of this years line-up of Goose Island’s Bourbon County Stout lineup. Black Friday lines will be waiting around the block for beers like Bourbon County Brand Wheatwine, Bourbon County Brand Bramble Rye Stout, and Bourbon County Brand Midnight Orange Stout.

2018 Goose Island Bourbon County Stout Line

Hit the jump for the full list with descriptions from Goose Island.
(more…)

archives

Founders Brewing sells 30% share to Spanish brewery

Founders Brewing Co. in Michigan, one of the fastest growing breweries in the country, has announced a partnership with Mahou San Miguel. The Spanish brewery will take a 30 percent stake in Founders.

A press release stated that the partnership “will help Founders grow through Mahou’s international distribution network to access the emerging craft beer community around the world. Founders and Mahou are focused on long-term strategic growth, with a commitment to brand longevity and product quality. ‘Founders will remain Founders,’ with continuity in their recipes, processes, facility and staff.”

“We knew that taking on a partner was the necessary, responsible thing to do for the future of Founders because it would open up new doors for growth as well as ensure our legacy for years to come,” CEO Mike Stevens said in the press release. “We spent a long time determining who would be the best partner to help us grow Founders while staying true to our beers and our culture. Mahou shares our family values and a commitment to their communities; they also believe in the importance of long-term partnerships. We are honored to be working with a brewer that commands so much respect.”

Javier López del Hierro, president of Mahou San Miguel, added, “Our investment in Founders is a great source of learning, innovation and transformation for Mahou San Miguel to get directly involved in the U.S. craft market.”

archives

Déjà vu: Craft beers sales up 13%

Craft Beer Sales

Just to be clear, the date on this story is July 29, 2013. The upward march of craft beer (per the Brewers Association definition) sales has been so relentless that some days you feel a little like Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day.”

Sales increased 13% in volume in the first half of the year, and 15% in dollars, according the information released today by the BA.

During the first half of 2013, craft breweries sold approximately 7.3 million barrels of beer, up from 6.4 million barrels over the first half of 2012. Overall, beer sales were down 2% through the first six months of the year.

“Demand for beer produced by small and independent brewers has never been higher, as evidenced by increased production and the hundreds of new breweries joining the playing field each year,” said Paul Gatza, director of the Brewers Association. “Beer drinkers nationwide are responding positively to high-quality, full-flavored, diverse offerings from American craft brewing companies that continue to innovate and push the envelope.”

American Brewery Count

The BA also reported there are 2,538 breweries operating in the U.S. as of June 30, 2013, an increase of 446 breweries since June 2012. The BA lists an additional 1,605 breweries in planning at the year’s midpoint, compared to 1,252 a year ago.

archives

UK brewer will make Samuel Adams beers

British brewery Shepherd Neame will brew Samuel Adams Boston Lager for the UK market.

Brewers Guardian reports that a draft version of the beer could be available to Britain’s on-trade as early as mid-April. Boston Beer and Shepherd Neame have a long-standing commercial relationship, as Shepherd Neame has acted as Boston Beer’s importer for more than a decade.

Jim Koch, Boston Beer’s founder and chairman, told Brewers’ Guardian, “The volume has grown steadily in the UK and Europe. There was a point where we thought that it would make sense to brew it in Kent.”

The breweries have spent almost a year working on the project. Of course, when Koch started Boston Beer most of its beer in the United State was brewed under contract, unlike now.

The Samuel Adams recipe will be recreated exactly at Shepherd Neame, the oldest operating brewery in England. The yeast strain is Boston Beer’s own; the hop varieties Hallertau Mittelfrueh and Tettnang Tettnanger will continue to be purchased from Bavarian growers and pelletized by Boston Beer’s proprietary process before being shipped to England.

Shepherd Neame has made some minor modifications to allow it to follow the Samuel Adams brewing process. “There are some unusual steps in it, like a decoction mash, like kraüsening, like dry hopping,” Koch told Brewers’ Guardian. “We have to bring those things along with the beer or else it’s not Boston Lager.”

archives

Anheuser-Busch acquires Goose Island

Anheuser-Busch has acquired Chicago-based Goose Island Beer Co.

Press releases from Anheuser-Busch and Goose Island include the details:

* Goose Island’s legal name is Fulton Street Brewery. Anheuser-Busch reached an agreement to purchase the majority (58%) equity stake in FSB for $22.5 million. Craft Brewers Alliance (CBA), an independent, publicly traded brewer based in Portland, Ore., that operates Widmer Brothers, Redhook and Kona breweries, owns the remaining 42% of FSB and reached an agreement in principle to sell its stake to Anheuser-Busch for $16.3 million in cash. Anheuser‑Busch holds a minority stake (32.25%) in CBA.

* Goose Island sold approximately 127,000 barrels of beer (a barrel equals 31 gallons) in 2010. A-B will invest an additional $1.3 million in FSB as early as this summer.

* Goose Island founder and president John Hall will remain at chief executive.

* Greg Hall, his son, is stepping down as brewmaster but will work a minimum of three of four days a month for the brewery, advising on beers, branding and strategy. “I can’t really talk about what I’ll be doing for another month or so but it won’t be beer,” Hall said in an interview with TimeOut Chicago.

* Brett Porter will take over as brewmaster, beginning May 1. Before joining Goose Island as head brewer in May 2010, Porter worked from 2005 to 2010 as head brewer at Deschutes Brewery in Oregon.

“Demand for our beers has grown beyond our capacity to serve our wholesale partners, retailers, and beer lovers,” John Hall said for a press release. “This partnership between our extraordinary artisanal brewing team and one of the best brewers in the world in Anheuser-Busch will bring resources to brew more beer here in Chicago to reach more beer drinkers, while continuing our development of new beer styles. This agreement helps us achieve our goals with an ideal partner who helped fuel our growth, appreciates our products and supports their success.”

Anheuser-Busch has distributed Goose Island brands since 2006 as part of an agreement with Widmer Brothers Brewing that provides Goose Island access to the network of wholesalers that distribute A-B beers.

“These critically acclaimed beers are the hometown pride of Chicagoans,” said Dave Peacock, president of Anheuser-Busch. “We are very committed to expanding in the high‑end beer segment, and this deal expands our portfolio of brands with high-quality, regional beers. As we share ideas and bring our different strengths and experiences together, we can accelerate the growth of these brands.”

The two Goose Island brew pubs are not part of the deal, but will continue in operation.

archives

BA honors Talley, McDonald and Kopman

The Brewers Association honored two representatives of Missouri breweries and the first woman to receive its most coveted annual award reserved for brewers during the Craft Brewers Conference in San Francisco.

Jennifer Talley of Squatters Pub Brewery and Salt Lake Brewing Co. won the Russell Schehrer Award for Innovation in Brewing.

“Jennifer has won countless awards at the Great American Beer Festival and World Beer Cup against other beers that are of higher alcohol content in styles where alcohol is a key thread to carry the flavor of the beer,” said John Harris of Full Sail Brewing Co., another Schehrer award winner. “She has all of the character of previous winners of this award — a passion for beer, passion for our industry and passion for expanding her and her fellow brewers’ knowledge.”

The award was given in 1997 to honor Russell Schehrer’s contributions to the brewing industry. Schehrer died in 1996 at 38 years of age and was a founding partner and original head brewer at Colorado’s first brewpub, Wynkoop Brewing Co.

The Brewers Association Recognition Award went to John McDonald of Boulevard Brewing Co. McDonald founded the brewery in 1989 and began hand-delivering Boulevard beer to local restaurants in his own pick-up truck. McDonald’s brewery now employs over 90 people and has a capacity of approximately 600,000 barrels per year.

“John pioneered craft beer in a part of the country that did not have a lot of other active small brewers,” said Rich Doyle of Harpoon Brewery. “He was a missionary of sorts and has built a great brewery, brand and business. He is also a very good guy.”

The F.X. Matt Defense of the Industry Award went to Dan Kopman of St. Louis Brewery, which produces Schlafly Beer. Kopman has worked recently on to promoting legislation that would recalibrate federal excise taxes for small brewers.

“Dan deserves this award for his dedication and leadership on the excise tax bill,” remarked John Pinkerton of Moon River Brewing Co.

The F.X. Matt Award is given in honor of a champion of small brewers, F.X. Matt (1933-2001), president of the F.X. Matt Brewing Co. in Utica, New York from 1980-1989 and chairman from 1989-2001.

archives

Craft beer production up 11% in 2010

Craft Beer Sales Climb 11%

The Brewers Association today announced craft bewers produced 11% more beer in 2010 than 2009, and that retail dollar sales increased 12%, representing a growth of more than 1 million barrels (31 gallons per U.S. barrel).

“Beer lovers increased their appreciation for American craft brewers and their beers in 2010,” BA director Paul Gatza said for a press release. “Craft brewers’ stories resonate with Americans who are choosing small, independent companies making delicious beers in more than 100 different styles.”

The Association also reported a growth in the number of U.S. breweries, with 8% more breweries than the previous year. In 2010, there were 1,759 operating breweries. Craft brewers produced 9,951,956 barrels, up from an adjusted 8,934,446 barrels in 2009.

In 2010, craft brewers represented 4.9% of volume and 7.6% of retail dollars of the total U.S. beer category. The Brewers Association estimates the actual dollar sales figure from craft brewers in 2010 was $7.6 billion, up from $7 billion in 2009.

As an interesting side note, Gatza said: “We also found that three percent of craft brewer barrels, by volume, are distributed in cans, confirming a growing trend.”

A more extensive analysis will be released on March 24 during the Craft Brewers Conference in San Francisco. The Association’s full 2010 industry analysis, which shows regional trends and sales by individual brewery, will be published in the May/June 2011 issue of The New Brewer.

archives

Brewing scholarship honors memory of Greg Noonan

The American Brewers Guild has created a scholarship to honor the memory of brewing pioneer Greg Noonan, who died last October of cancer.

The Greg Noonan New England Brewer’s Scholarship will be awarded for the Intensive Brewing Science and Engineering class beginning June 7. The scholarship is open to residents of New England, including the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. Applicants must meet the guild’s for admission into the program.

Noonan opened Vermont’s first brewpub in 1988 and two others after that but his influence was far wider. His 1986 book “Brewing Lager Beer: The Most Comprehensive Book for Home- and Microbreweries”
became a guidebook for those opening small breweries in the 1980s and ’90s. He Later wrote “Scotch Ale” in 1990 and “Seven Barrel Brewery Brewers’ Handbook: A Pragmatic Guide to Home Brewing” in 1996.

Here’s the information about how to apply.

archives

Beerdrinker of the Year finalists set

Wynkoop Brewing Company’s judging panel has picked its three finalists for the brewpub’s 2010 Beerdrinker of the Year award.

They will compete in the Beerdrinker of the Year finals on Feb. 27 at Wynkoop in Denver. The event is open to the public and admission is free. Two of the three were also finalists in 2007. They are:

Phil Farrell, a Cumming, Georgia commercial pilot, homebrewer, and beer judge. He has tasted beer in every country in Europe, 1000 of the world’s pubs and 400 brewpubs. He’s known to many in the beer community as the “Chicken Man” because he’s hauled his homebrew club’s mascot, a rubber chicken, around the world and photographed it with thousands of beer people.

His philosophy about beer: “Beer is first and foremost a social drink. It is the most flexible and universally affordable fine beverage there is. Every social gathering and every food item is enhanced with beer. Beer is the greatest gift ever given to the human race and meant to be shared with others.”

William Howell, a Sterling, Alaska, college administrator, retired Navy officer, homebrewer, and beer educator. In 2007 he created a new course for Kenai Peninsula College entitled The Art and History of Brewing, and has traveled extensively across Alaska and the West in pursuit of great beer.

His beer philosophy: “I have been a lover of craft beers since 1984 and a homebrewer since 1989. Since my retirement from active duty I’ve been really been able to “get serious” about beer. I decided it was time to start giving something back to the world of craft beer that had given me so much.”

Logan Perkins, a Denver, Colorado beer enthusiast who has tried nearly 5,000 beers in 45 states, 21 European countries and 5 Asian nations.

His philosophy of beer drinking: “Drinking beer is about enhancing the quality of life through flavors, feelings and friends. I love beer alone, but especially enjoy sharing it with others. I believe in handling, collecting and tasting beers with the same respect as a wine lover. I try to keep everything in moderation, including moderation itself.”

archives

New site for American Homebrewers Association

The American Homebrewers Association has launched a new website. Destinations within the site include:

AHA Forum – An online discussion group for all topics of homebrewing, and is open to all everyone, from the most accomplished brewer to the beginner. Within the first few days of the website launch, more than 6000 participants had registered and more than 3,500 posts were listed.

Homebrewopedia: a Recipe Wiki –The AHA Homebrewopedia is a wiki-based resource, allowing homebrewers from around the world to share their recipes and brewing knowledge.

Pimp my System – This gives homebrewers the opportunity to show off their elaborate and creative brewing systems on the homepage.

Brewer of the Week – Brewers can post a bio about themselves in the Homebrewers Bio area on the AHA forum, and several will be chosen each month to featured.

Club Profiles & Resources – These pages contain articles geared towards helping homebrew clubs with events and management as well as a section on homebrew Club Profiles.

archives

Samuel Adams releases barrel room series

Samuel Adams Barrel Room SeriesThe Boston Beer Co. is rolling out a new series of beers, the Samuel Adams Barrel Room Collection, that will be available in a limited number of markets but also at its Boston brewery — the first time the brewery has sold beer at its door.

The Barrel Room Collection includes New World Tripel (10% abv), American Kriek (Balaton cherries, 7%) and Stony Brook Red (9%), all aged in Eastern European oak barrels, originally used to age brandy in Italy and imparting subtle sweet, toasty notes.

“For years, we’ve been playing with barrels at the brewery, aging small batches of beer in our Barrel Room. Before now, these beers have only been available at beer festivals or to a few lucky visitors to our Boston Brewery,” founder Jim Koch said for a press release.

The beers will be available in Denver, Massachusetts, Maine and New Hampshire for a suggested retail price of $9.99 per 750ml bottle.

archives

Amazon may partner with wine.com for online sales

Amazon is ready to start selling wine in the US, the Financial Times reports.

According to Decanter, a UK-based wine publication, Amazon will work in partnership with wine.com.

It wouldn’t be simple, as the Motley Fool explains:

Pimping vino via cyberspace is a thorny issue. Moving libations over state lines is a regulatory challenge. That may explain why Amazon pulled the plug on its 1999 minority stake in WineShopper.com – which now simply redirects to privately held Wine.com – even before the dot-com bubble popped.

There is no mention in any reports about beer.

archives

Court rules for regulators, against Costco

A federal appeals court in San Francisco has upheld key parts of a Washington states system for regulating beer and wine sales, overturning an earlier ruling that favored Costco Wholesale Corp.’s effort to upend decades-old beer and wine distribution laws.

The appeals court handed a victory to Washington state alcohol regulators, upholding key parts of the law, including a ban on volume discounts and a rule keeping retailers from taking delivery of beer and wine at a central warehouse. The lower court had struck down eight of the nine legal provisions that Costco contested.

The appeals panel agreed with Costco on one matter: Beer and wine prices should not have to be posted publicly and remain in place for 30 days, as the state now requires.

Costco’s 2006 triumph grabbed national attention because it suggested that major changes might be in store for the three-tier system of regulating alcohol sales put in place after the repeal of Prohibition.

Costco is deciding whether to appeal the ruling. “We are pleased that the central part of the anticompetitive restraints provisions was struck down,” said David Burman, a Seattle-based lawyer handling the case for Costco, referring to the “post and hold” provisions. “It will be good for Costco members and other consumers.”

A spokesman for the Washington State Liquor Control Board couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. The ruling is “a very significant victory for the state of Washington,” said Phil Wayt, executive director of the Washington Beer and Wine Wholesalers Association.

archives

A-B considers controversial ads

Adweek reports that Anheuser-Busch is considering running advertisements that tout beer over liquor as an alcoholic beverage of choice.

The notion of promoting beer as a drink of moderation is hardly new. Following World War II, the Brewers Foundation commissioned popular magazine artists to produce a series of 115 paintings using the theme “Home life in America” and showing folks socializing at home with beers at hand.

These portraits appeared as advertising in all the popular publications, noting “perhaps no beverages are more ‘at home’ on more occasions” than American beer. Each included the tagline, “Beer belongs … enjoy it.”

However, the A-B messages would be controversial because “they play up the regret factor of a one-night stand following an evening of consuming too many shots and cocktails.”

In the spot from the woman’s perspective, she wakes up in “Darrellville”—the bedroom of a hairy-chested man in a robe who invites her to “come here and nibble me.”

Both spots conclude with screen text: “Minimize the surprise. Stick with beer.”

Bob Lachky (vp of global industry) acknowledged that the message is risky and has the potential to offend anti-alcohol activists and stir a hornet’s nest within the liquor industry.

The effort should not be viewed as a unilateral attack on the liquor industry. It would be a part of A-B’s two-year-old “Here’s to beer” initiative.

Adweek reports that A-B has not yet decided if it will release the ads.

archives

Rogue Astoria goes topless

Rogue Astoria

Posted by Banjo Bandolas

We don’t have hurricanes over here on the left coast, but that doesn’t mean the wind doesn’t blow a bit every now and then. Rogue Ales Public House, Astoria, located where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean, got a first hand look at the power of the Pacific when winds hit 126 miles per hour on Dec. 3.

Housed in the historic pier 39 Bumble Bee Tuna plant building, Rogue Ales Public House Astoria lost its roof to the storm which also closed Interstate 5 in Washington, caused widespread flooding and mudslides, and killed at least 7 people in the Northwest. No injuries were sustained by their staff, thank god, and in true Rogue fashion, their people had generators humming and debris cleared so the residents of Astoria could come in share their storm stories and commiserate over a pint of fresh beer 48 hours after the storm ended.

Sure, patrons had to sit under umbrellas instead of a roof, and rubber boots were recommended since there were a couple inches of water on the floor, but by god they were OPEN and ready to serve our public!

Limited hours are currently being maintained with a skeleton crew, displaced Rogue employees have been offered temporary positions in Rogue locations outside the damage zones to minimize the financial impact on their families while they wait for FEMA’s arrival.

Considering how hard Vernonia, Oregon, Centralia, Washington, and some other communities were hit that might take a little while. Whenever FEMA does arrive, they’ll be there, ready with a beer, to welcome their help, roll up their sleeves and get down to the business of getting Astoria back up and running.

The Olympic Club of the Mcmenamin’s chain in hard hit city Centralia, Wa., weathered the storm and came out unscathed.