Archive | May, 2010

In search of a bigger, maybe hoppier, high

Today’s Wall Street Journal explains the “current flavor boom.”

“The more you taste something, the more you need to taste it,” says Mitchell Davis, vice president of the James Beard Foundation, a New York-based non-profit that works to preserve American culinary heritage. “You always need something spicier, something more, a bigger high.”

What does this tell us about bigger, bolder, more intense, hoppier beers?

Go read the story about how “bold is replacing boring.” Connect the dots. I’d love to join the conversation but we’re boarding a plane. Tomorrow I’ll be visiting a hop yard.

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UK Minister of Pubs redundant?

Remember the plan for an ongoing Minister of Pubs in England? Big with CAMRA.

Seems like the role was short-lived. (Thanks to @pintsofview for noticing.)

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The return of Beer Culture, a good thing

Evan Rail writes about his plans for Beer Culture, which has been dark since last fall.

I hope to write more stories — to tell the tale of how something happened, in other words. How a beer got made, imported or drunk. To tell you who did it and why. And at the same time, I hope to add some light to the history of beer in central Europe: there is simply too much that hasn’t been written about the beer culture here, certainly not in English, and I have to imagine that you, as a reader, would be much more interested in reading those stories than in hearing my personal reactions. You can find personal reactions anywhere. But good stories? Those are hard to come by.

Focus. What a great idea. Perhaps I should try that.

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And the brewing gods are . . .

A press release for the third Philly Beer Week (PBW) indicates at least 865 events are planned for June 4 to 13. That’s pretty [insert your preferred obscenity ending in -in'] impressive.

The one that caught my eye: The Forum of the Gods, “a spirited afternoon of beer talk, beer drinking and big names in brewing, with all proceeds going to benefit PBW.”

And who might these gods be?

Jim Koch of Boston Beer; Phil Markowski of Southampton Publick House; Tom Kehoe of Yards Brewing and Wendy Yeungling of D.G. Yeungling & Son. The forum will be moderated by Don “Joe Sixpack” Russell, PBW executive director. Mortal or god? Not clear.

Tickets are $25 per person, which includes nectar from each of the four participating gods.

But back to all the other events. Bryan Kolesar has translated the crazy schedule of events into a spreadsheet you can download. Fine work by a mere mortal.

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If Yuppies still exist what do they drink?

As I walked out one evening, down Columbus Avenue,
The sushi bars were shuttered, the dark cantinas, too.
I stood there in the darkness, as an empty cab rolled by
When all at once I heard the sound of Yuppies in the sky.

I’ve seen them in commercials, sailing boats and playing ball,
Pouring beer for one another, crying, “Why not have it all?”.
Now I saw the ghostly progress, down Columbus Avenue,
I heard the cry for mercy, and it chilled me through and through.

- Tom Paxton

So I was listening to “Yuppies in the Sky” this morning (as sung by Mr. Paxton) and the question at the top occurred to me.

Perhaps a silly thought, but Yuppies were in their “prime” about the time we started talking about microbreweries. Plus Yuppies certainly were (or should I be typing are?) about badges. And, like it or not, beer that isn’t yellow in the glass still serves as a badge.

I’m pretty sure I saw Yuppies drinking non-yellow beer about the time the 1980s morphed into the ’90s, but I don’t seem to have any photos. Wonder what was in their glasses.

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