What Is the Solera Brewing Method?

Imagine barrels of beer, stacked as far as the eye can see, row upon row of wooden casks tenderly nurturing their contents as they age over years. It’s a lovely image, isn’t it? Now imagine that–every once in a while–your friendly neighborhood brewer cracks open the eldest barrels of their generation, drains portions of their liquid bounties, and then tops them off with beer from the adolescents of the bunch. The drained beer is bottled. The elder barrels get a shot of youthful vigor in the arm. The adolescent barrels get a top off from the older barrels. The brewer’s thirsty patrons top off their glasses. The circle of barrel-aging beer life continues. Everybody’s happy.

Via www.hopculture.com

Orange You Glad for More Juicy IPAs? — A Look at 2018’s Hop Report

In news that won’t surprise any hop enthusiasts, 2018 was a big year for the modern IPA

In an industry where the lupulin love continues to move toward all things juicy, fruity, and tropical, the continued ascension of Citra—now one of the country’s most beloved and harvested hop varieties—reflects broader changes in how hops find their way from the field to the glass. In its latest year-end report, the USDA shared a variety of figures that shed light on recent shifts in hop trends and production (and obliquely revealed how breweries are looking to keep beer drinkers excited).

Via www.goodbeerhunting.com

KC brewer can’t get beer canned amid shutdown, so he’ll give it away to federal workers

Craft breweries across the country cannot sell their new IPAs or lagers in cans or bottles because an obscure agency within the Treasury Department, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, is shuttered. That’s the entity that has to sign off on product labeling, making sure it includes the necessary details about alcohol content and health warnings and no unsubstantiated claims.

Via: KansasCity.com

How a 19th-Century Temperance Advocate Accidentally Created Modern Tourism

In gin-soaked 19th-century Britain, the temperance movement emerged to counteract the myriad social problems stemming from alcohol abuse. Temperance advocates and activists felt an organized effort to limit consumption was the best solution.
Among them was Thomas Cook, a former Baptist preacher and cabinet maker. In 1841, when Cook was 32 years old, he was walking to a local temperance meeting when an idea struck him: Why not use the country’s rapidly expanding rail network to help spread the movement’s views on social reform?
And just like that, Cook inadvertently laid the foundations for modern-day tourism.

Via vinepair.com

The Best Stocking Stuffers for Craft Beer Fans

Fun socks! Candy! Chapstick! Boxers! (Briefs?) All of life’s simplest pleasures reside in those stockings hung by the chimney with care. Corkscrews, bottle openers, and maybe a book or two are all safe bets for a stocking stuffer. But, we wanted to get a little creative with these ones. Here are our favorite stocking stuffers […]

Via www.hopculture.com

Falconer Foundation announces ABG Scholarship winner

Press Release:
BARRY CHAN SECURES DISTINGUISHED AMERICAN BREWERS GUILD SCHOLARSHIP
From an outstanding group of talented applicants, Barry Chan of Lucky Envelope Brewing (Seattle, WA) has been named recipient of the 2019 American Brewers Guild scholarship. Barry will be attending ABG’s Intensive Brewing Science & Engineering course that runs from January to June 2019. The Intensive Brewing Science & Engineering course is a 22-week distance education program with a final week of residential instruction in Middlebury, VT. The course covers all the fundamentals of beer production and quality assurance with a special emphasis on practical issues.
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Last Second Beer Lover’s Holiday Gift Guide

This isn’t your traditional gift guide for beer lovers filled with things like crazy expensive growlers that look way better than they work, IPA scented beard wax, or a bluetooth enabled cooler. No, not at all, these are things that beer lovers will really love and really use. So, better late than never, here’s our super awesome last second holiday gift guide for the beer lovers on your list.

Give the gift of beer!

What a novel idea, giving beer to a beer lover! But, be warned, beer lovers are a picky bunch. There are a few beers that anyone would love to get, but there’s also a better idea, let them choose their own beer.

Tavour Gift Card [$25-$1000]
I’m a big fan of Tavour over traditional beer clubs. Tavour doesn’t just send a box of random beers out every month but lets the subscriber pick which beers they want or pick no beer at all. They offer multiple new beers released just about every day that can be added to the subscriber’s box. This means the beer lover only pays for and gets what they really want. Once a month has gone by, the selections are boxed up and packed very well then sent off for a flat shipping rate. A great gift if you aren’t really sure what the beer lover on your list is craving.

Magnum of Anchor Our Special Ale
This beer is brewed to a slightly different recipe every year and has been for 44 years. But in recent years it’s been an interesting and slightly spiced brown ale that just happens to go great with turkey. Anchor’s Our Special Ale is my go to beer to bring along to holiday parties. If you want to make an extra special splash, bring along the magnum — a huge 1.5 liter bottle is sure to impress and it won’t break the bank.

Anchor Our Special Ale is available just about everywhere, but not all liquor stores carry it. Use this Anchor Beer Finder to find where you can get it near you.

Give the gift of Beer Knowledge!

Once a beer lover passes into the world of true beer geekdom, they start searching for more and more information about beer. Giving books is a great way to give them that information. Brewers Publications produce some of the very best books on beer. They also offer an eGift Card if you aren’t sure what to get.

Cicerone study materials are a great way to get more information as well. Especially if that beer lover want to be the go to resource for beer knowledge. The downside is that they will never look at a bartender pouring a beer without wanting to point our three things they did wrong.

Best yet, for that last minute gift, head to your local brewery or brewpub and pick up something there — a t-shirt, bottle opener, or even beer to go. Local is always better.

Happy Holidays from everyone at Real Beer!

Why Companies That Have No Business Making Beer Are Suddenly Selling Their Own Brews

The wave started with Blockbuster, back in September. The almost-defunct video store’s swan song had nothing to do with movies, but rather beer: The last standing location collaborated with its Bend, OR, neighbor 10 Barrel Brewing on a black ale appropriately named The Last Blockbuster. Less than two weeks later, Dunkin’ Donuts released a coffee porter with fellow Massachusetts favorite, Harpoon Brewery. It was IHOP’s turn next: The chain followed up the great IHOb debacle with IHOPS, a pumpkin pancake stout made with Keegan Ales. Then, in late October, Planters and Noon Whistle Brewing unveiled their IPA-Nut IPA. Four beers, in two short months, from four companies that all have one thing in common: They do not make beer. So, why the sudden rush to release these craft brew collaborations?

Via Delish

Detroit Breweries Collaborate to Create Faygo Inspired Beers

For the past four years, Detroit area breweries have teamed up in October to collaborate on innovative beers in honor of the Michigan Brewers Guild’s Fall Beer Festival. However, this year’s theme took experimentation to the next level. Seven breweries decided to pay homage to the cornerstone of Michigan pop (not soda), Faygo, the beloved pop brand of Michiganders and Juggalos alike.

Via www.porchdrinking.com

More than 1,200 breweries to make Resilience IPA with Sierra Nevada

…To date, more than 1,200 breweries are participating, including craft brewers all over Northern California, major national producers like Founders, Stone, Dogfish Head, Firestone-Walker and New Belgium. Internationally, brewers like BrewDog and Garage Project are also getting in on helping out.

Via www.sfgate.com

Artists Using Beer to Create Fine Art

These artists are taking beer art to a whole new level. They are using the beer itself to paint with, the cans, tabs, bottle and caps — you name it — to make their creations ranging from realistic to abstract, each bringing their own flavor to the artistic process. And just like the craft beer industry, it’s not just local, its global. These artists are from a wide range of places and found common ground in this unexpected material inspiration.

Lucien Shapiro
Titled: Maculosos Scurra Larva | Artist Lucien Shapiro uses undocumented bottle caps gathered from various bars. (Lucien Shapiro)

Via craftbeer.com

Brut IPA: How Ancient Techniques Are Driving the World’s Trendiest Beers

Unless you’ve been living under a beer-repellant rock, you’ve likely heard the word “brut” thrown around the beer world lately. This is mostly due to the recently emerged, rapidly spreading brut IPA category.

But “brut” is not new to brews. Brewers have been experimenting with the sparkling-wine-inspired method for at least a decade. Called bière brut, or bière de Champagne, bottle-conditioned, effervescent beers are are produced in, or inspired by, the méthode Champenoise (Champagne method). The ancient technique is also known as the méthode traditionelle or méthode originale.

via Vinepair