Beer. I had no idea what to write, but beer always gets me thinking, so I just wrote that: Beer. Just to launch me to somewhere, destination unknown. Who knows what could happen, I thought. Just write “Beer,” and then maybe I’ll dive into theories on Buddhist economics or the flaws in spacetime or my favorite episode of Home Improvement. The stuff I believe, somewhere, Beer would get me there. So, “Beer,” I wrote, to see what would flow. And this is what flowed. Babbling nonsense. But still, it was fun. Thanks Beer! Here are five of them to know about this week. If you have any beers to report, or ideas for a better intro, shoot me an email at [email protected].
Oregon brewers craft official beer of Zwickelmania, one of the great celebrations in craft beer
Zwickelmania is awesome. Named in honor of the zwickel, a screw valve that mounts on the outside of fermentation or conditioning tanks and allows brewers to sample the beer inside for quality assurance and control, Zwickelmania is an event hosted by the Oregon Brewers Guild. The is to offer a unique opportunity to taste beers where they were produced and interact with the brewers who created them. Plus, any reference to pro wrestling gets you into Five Beers to Know.
“The brewing industry is built on community, especially here in Oregon. What better way to build on that sense of community than to hold an event where we open our doors to beer lovers?” added Christina LaRue, co-executive director of the Oregon Brewers Guild. “Zwickelmania is an opportunity for them to get a peek behind the curtain, meet brewers, perhaps learn something new, and taste some great beers. It’s an all encompassing experience––something Oregon breweries excel at.”
This year, the 11th annual Zwickelmania will span two different weekends to accommodate an estimated 120 breweries that will participate around the state. Over 60 Portland Metro area breweries will kick off the event this Saturday. For the first time, 37 breweries from across the state have teamed up to craft a Zwickelmania beer. Collab West Coast IPA is a 500ml, limited-run bottled beer that will only be available for purchase at participating breweries starting on Zwickelmania. Proceeds from sales of the beer benefit the Oregon Brewers Guild, which supports breweries, suppliers, education and collaboration.
Bear Republic celebrates regional Sonoma County flavors, history
Inspired by Sonoma County, Calif.’s rich history, regional landmarks and bountiful agriculture, Bear Republic Brewing Co. developed Sonoma Tart, a fruited sour ale kissed with guava and passion fruit. The refreshing sour ale is named after Sonoma County and celebrates the regions wealth of agriculture through its sweet and tart finish.
“Compared to barrel aged beers, Sonoma Tart is much more drinkable and crushable. The tartness activates your taste buds, gets your palate flowing while fruit essence comes through without cloying sweetness,” said Bear Republic’s Master Brewer Peter Kruger. “Afterwards there’s a dry finish, for wine drinkers this beer is analogous to a sauvignon blanc.”
CEO/Brewmaster Richard G. Norgrove provided Sonoma Tart’s label art which features Sonoma County regional landmarks such as the Dry Creek General Store, Healdsburg bridge, Santa Rosa’s Round Barn (sadly burned down during the 2017 Tubbs Fire) and a water tower representative of the tank houses which dot the area. The font style of Sonoma Tart is an homage to a popular Sonoma Coast inn which for decades has welcomed thirsty travelers from the world at large.
AleSmith adds hazy IPA to year-round lineup
AleSmith Brewing Co. is introducing a new hazy IPA as part of their 2019 year-round offerings: Juice Stand. As the name suggests, Juice Stand will deliver intense notes of tangerine, blueberry, bubblegum, and tropical fruits within a full bodied, hazy brew. Today, Feb. 15 is its official launch and those who head to the brewery today may order a pour from an actual juice stand, along with the opportunity to take home a custom Juice Stand glass.
AleSmith’s Owner/CEO shared his excitement for the new release by saying, “AleSmith’s Juice Stand IPA gives you the same ability to experience an ultra-fresh, unfiltered IPA through the use of special brewing processes and ingredients designed to keep the hop presence at a maximum level.”
Karl Strauss, Drake’s celebrate 30 years with collab Hazy IPA
1989’s greatest creation had to be the Game Boy—but hey, the opening of a couple scrappy breweries could be a close second. Karl Strauss Brewing Co. and Drake’s Brewing Co. are joining forces to celebrate 30 years of pioneering the craft beer industry with Level 30 Complete, a collaboration (and joint anniversary) beer. Karl Strauss and Drake’s began the brewing quest at Level 1 (the difficulty setting? Hard mode.) After grinding for 29 years, we’ve come together to celebrate our 30th Anniversaries and bring you this 1up in beer form. Level 30 Complete is a Hazy IPA brewed with Simcoe, Cascade, Mosaic, and Amarillo hops. Citrus and sweet fruit aromas are backed by a juicy finish.
“Level 30 Complete is a delicious example of a Hazy IPA, and the name summarizes how proud we both are to have made it to this milestone,” said Matt Johnson, Brewmaster, Karl Strauss Brewing Co.
Heavy Seas’ Joose Cannon is the best named beer of the week
I know, another Hazy IPA this week. Sorry for the lack of variety, but I can’t help but be excited about Heavy Seas Beer‘s first release from its 15 bbl brewhouse in 2019, the awesomely named Joose Cannon. This Hazy Juicy IPA brewed with tangerine is a great twist on its flagship IPA, Loose Cannon. The beer is hazy from heavy use of oats and wheat. An alternate dry-hopping procedure, along with tangerine puree and massive doses of Citra and Simcoe hops, provide tropical and citrus aromas. The Joose Cannon label artwork was designed by local Baltimore artist, Owen Murphy, of One Drop Design Studio, who also designed Heavy Seas’ 23 Anniversary beer label this past December.
“After developing Citra Cannon, we decided we should take the ‘Juicy IPA’ concept to another level. Thus, Joose Cannon was born,” says Heavy Seas Brewmaster, Christopher Leonard. “I was blown away by the aroma and bright, fresh flavor of the tangerine puree, so incorporating it into Joose Cannon was a no-brainer. We’re having a lot of fun with the releases on the 15 bbl brewhouse so far and I am confident this one will make a lot of people very happy!”
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