I was at the meadmaking class at Xtreme Brewing last weekend along with a dozen or more mead makers and would-be mead makers. Jon Talkington, who expects to open Brimming Horn Meadery in Lewes in the coming weeks, discussed the history and finer points of making honey mead. We broadcast the entire thing on the Beer with Strangers YouTube page. The audio isn’t what I had hoped to make it, but it truly is a fascinating conversation.
Trend on trend story?
I wrote a very similar (if shorter) column to this this week. First: Drink what you like and be happy. But second, a we discussed in last week’s blog and podcast, how hoppy (or fruity or sour) does every beer need to be? My column was more an appeal to remember to drink the occasional beer flavored beer. I don’t think our tastes are changing so much as we are driven, rather than paralyzed, by our choices.
No matter how many stouts, porters, or lagers are on store shelves, for better or worse, the success of the craft beer industry is directly tied to the success of IPA (India pale ale). The wildly popular style has exploded over the last few years and is defined by the use of hops, more hops, and even more hops.
Here’s my version
Beer has had a fantastic voyage since the beginning of civilization. It has gone from being flavored with whatever fermentables came to hand to a very strict ingredient list and back. These are broad strokes but the larger point is one (OK, I) begins to worry at the state of the less sexy beers.
Co-op versus contract versus partner brewing
I’ve spoken with Vinnie from Fin City about this a couple of times. Fin City doesn’t have a brewery, but it does have a brewer (Vinnie) who drives to Baltimore to make the beer that then is bottled (or soon canned) and distributed all around the region. There are some brewers who look sideways at this process. Possibly because there are people who make beer without a brewery or a brewer, but I don’t have a ton of patience for even that level of snobbery.
The evolution that’s fueling the revolution. It’s safe to say the term “contract brewing” no longer scares off a true craft beer lover. There was a time when Big Beer used this term to cast doubt on breweries getting help to brew their products, but we’ve reached a time where people care more about what’s in their…
Beer In (and out of) Bruges
This is one of those stories we’ve been following for awhile, but I came across this video that makes it a little clearer and also fun.
Old old timey brewing
Over the last few weeks we talked about how brewing has been improved by people getting control over the process. This includes mead making, cider and wine. By all accounts the worst way to brew is by hoping for the best. People do it, though…
Within the gables of a crumbling gray row house facing a cobblestone lane in the shadow of Brussels’s Tour du Midi, a bit of magic is unfolding. As a venerable brewer shuts the front doors to his family-owned brasserie three floors below, a gentle breeze wafts through open windows and louvred vents.
Brining with Beer
The process of brining draws salt into the fibers of the meat, fetching the other flavors in the brine as well. The result is piquant, incredibly tender, meat. In this recipe, we’re brining with IPA and savory and sweet ingredients, which makes for a rich, well-rounded flavor.
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