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Archive for March, 2009

My friend Josh Christie and his blog “Brews and Books” has inspired me to write a post about my personal “library.”

Growing up, I was definitely a book geek. On my 10th birthday, my parents gave me 50 books. I woke up to a trail of books from my bedroom door, down the stairs … and into the living room. I was ecstatic. (Especially since a good number of them were R.L. Stine’s Goosebump books.)

goosebumps

My love for reading has never stopped, although my habits of reading have changed quite drastically. Instead of burying my nose in a book, I now find my eyes glued to the computer screen. In order to write my blog, I must read. I do almost all of my research on the Internet and, from time to time, I get a small percentage of information from books.

I am obsessed with all things food and beverage. Food, beer and wine consume my life. So naturally, my current book collection almost entirely involves food & beverage.

My newest toy is  “What to Drink With What You Eat.” I wanted it so bad that I bought it for full retail price (which is odd for me because I usually try to buy my books used online).

what-to-drink

Product Description
The most comprehensive guide to matching food and drink ever compiled, by the James Beard Award winning author team of Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg, with practical advice from more than seventy of America’s leading pairing experts

In a great meal, what you drink is just as important as what you eat. This groundbreaking food and beverage pairing reference allows food lovers to learn to think like a sommelier, and to transform every meal – breakfast, lunch, and dinner – from ordinary to extraordinary.

The Wench’s Description
This book is ridiculously fun. As someone who knows food & beverage extremely intimately, it is  a great reference tool. But more than that, this book helps to confirm and support my own beliefs and decisions about pairings. I do not find myself using this book for suggestions, but more as a checks and balances for my own personal ideas. Sometimes I use this book to give my pairing suggestions. However, sometimes instead of creating a pairing menu based on the information in this book, I turn to the contents of this book to defend my decisions.

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Another book in my library is Michael Jackson’s “Great Beers of Belgium.” This book was given to me by one of my best friends, ironically another guy named Josh (having the name Josh might be a predisposition to drinking good beer.)

mj-great-beers-of-belgium1

Product Description
Many a beer sophisticate is surprised by the diversity, individuality and ubiquity of Belgian beer. Here, beer expert Michael Jackson enthusiastically discusses the history and inner workings of this quiet, quirky brewing behemoth of Belgium. He explains the origins of manstic brewing, the good fortune of spiders on Lambic breweries, the reasoning behind using orange peels, coriander seeds and stale hops in the brewing process. Thorough tasting notes are oncluded, providing a reference point for the reader’s own beer hunting. Fully revised with a brand new layout and 300 more photographs than previous editions, this book contains a list of addresses of the most important Belgian brewers, plus all the practical information on brewery visits, overnight accommodation and local restaurants and eateries.

The Wench’s Description
It is no secret that The Wench admires “The Beer Hunter” … aka Michael Jackson. In fact, I am rather obsessed with him. And I strive to be the female version of him. I understand, however, that his knowledge of beer is not something I can acquire overnight. Heck, it will take decades of studying beer, making beer, traveling the world … to gain even a quarter percentage of his knowledge. However, reading his books is a good starting point.

Plus, I love Belgian beers. And this book is the FOREMOST resource on Belgian beers. Hands down.

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The last book that I want to mention (I don’t want to bombard you with my entire collection of food, wine & beer books all at once!!!) … is “Brewing Up A Business”by Dogfish Head Founder, Sam Calgione.

brewing-up-a-business

Product Description
Entrepreneurial dreams do come true! Starting with nothing more than a home brewing kit, Sam Calagione founded Dogfish Head Craft Brewery and made it America’s fastest growing independent beer. This unconventional business story reveals how Calagione found success by dreaming big, working hard, and thinking differently-and how you can do it too.

The Wench’s Description
When I first started reading this book, I was in a huge crossroads in my life. I had left a job in the industry that I loved more than anything itself to pursue what I thought was a more prestigious career in business. Don’t get me wrong, it was a GREAT job with an AMAZING company and WONDERFUL people. But my love for all things food & beverage haunted me every day. I knew that I needed to do something different. But I needed the courage to move on.  Reading this book did not help me find my path in life or help me realize who I wanted to be or what I wanted to do and accomplish in my life. BUT it did inspire me to follow my passions. And so … I did.

Not to mention, Sam Caglione is one cool (and very good looking) dude. His approach to entrepreneurship is both refreshing and inspiring. I love his style of writing and the way he speaks to his readers. Regardless of your love for beer, this is a great read!

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This is a just a brief peek into my personal library. I hope that some of your will find these books as important and useful as I have and continue to every day.

For more on Brews and Books, check out Josh’s blog!

Cheers!

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It is no secret that my geekiness extends far beyond the realm of beer. And I think that most of the people reading this blog understand what I am talking about. (Craft beer enthusiasts tend to walk to the beat of a different drum.

I am definitely not a vanilla person. (Unless we are talking about putting vanilla bean ice cream into a pint of Rogue Chocolate Stout. That is an entirely different story.)

I love stories. I love finding interesting breweries and beers with cool stories about how they got their names. Heck, a good story gets my every time – regardless of whether or not the story is fact or fiction.

peter_pan

Today I visited a local homebrew store and came across an Italian beer that I had neither seen nor heard of before. And true to my nature, I just had to buy the beer. (I have boxes and boxes of random beers in my closet …)

I love old flicks and I love foreign films. Whereas I have certainly seen my fair share of old American movies, I am much less experienced in the foreign film arena. Which is one reason why Amarcord Birra Artigianale excites me.

amarcord

The founders of Amarcord gave it its name in honor of the legendary Italian film writer and director, Federico Fellini. Fellini was most known for his bizarre, abstract plots peppered with risque humor.  The term “paparazzi” comes from a character named Paparazzo in his film, Dolce vita, La (1960), who is a journalist photographing celebrities.

Fellini was definitely one odd cat. At one point in his life, he worked as a cirus clown … creepy.

federico-fellini_large

Fellini once said,     “A created thing is never invented and it is never true: it is always and ever itself.” Life inside his head must have been absolutely fantastic. “Realism is a bad word. In a sense everything is realistic. I see no line between the imaginary and the real.” Funny, I don’t see the line either. (The Wench lives in Never Never Land with Peter Pan and the Lost Boys.)

federico_fellini

Amarcord is Fellini’s infamous semi-biographical film. Told through a series of narratives from each of the main character’s perspectives, the film follows some of Fellini’s childhood experiences in the seaside village of Rimini, set against the peak of Fascism in Italy in the 1930s.

amarcord

In his review of Amarcord, critic Roger Ebert commented: “It’s also absolutely breathtaking filmmaking. Fellini has ranked for a long time among the five or six greatest directors in the world, and of them all, he’s the natural.” In 1974, Amarcord won an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film.

amarcord408

Amarcord not only inspired the name of the Italian Brewery, it also inspired the beers. The film’s most absurd and memorable characters decorate the labels of each Amarcord Birra Artisianale.

loghi

The Amarcord birra that I stumbled upon today is called La Tabachera. As far as I can tell, this beer was named after (and possibly inspired by) Amarcord’s buxom “Tobacconist” character. But I could be wrong.

 Its brewers describe this Double Brown Ale as a “designer beer created for real ale aficionados! It is characterized by the amber-colour of traditional ale and by the distinctive flavour obtained from the use of select premium malts.”

la-tabachera-amarcord-ambrata-doppio-malto

This beer has not exactly recieve raving reivews from craft beer lovers and critics – as I have discovered through a bit of research on the interwebs. Either way, I am going to give it a chance. If anything, the story beind the beer has biased me more towards liking it …

THE BEER WENCH’S TASTING NOTES: Amarcord Birra Artigianale’s LA TABACHERA

tabachera

Style: Double Brown Ale

Brewery: Amarcord Birra Artisianale

Region:Republic of San Marino, Italy

Pairings:Italian sausage (especially the ones with a bit of spice), Italian cheese (we ate it with a Crescenza – a soft-riped Italian cheese – which paried very nicely!), Italian “Antipasto” (anything salty)

Color: Very cloudy, light “butterscotch” brown.

Carbonation: Mild to moderate carbonation with a small off-white head that dissapates rather quickly. It leaves little to no lacing.

Aroma: Burnt sugar, yeasty dough, slight hints of coffee. Malt is very present in the nose, there is a slight alcoholic essence, and the “aroma hops” are virtually undetectable. My friend Larry says “I get honey, predominently. With straw and clean earth – not like barnyrad, though. Clea nearth.”

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly light bodied. The beer is very thin … not heavy in the least.

Flavor:Flavors of sweet malt, brown sugar and caramel hit first, but then rapidly turn into a burnt carbon taste (just like burnt kettle corn – and I should know). This ale is extremely bitter. I am SHOCKED at how mild the alcohol tastes. There is little to no burn, considering this beer weighs in at a whopping 10% ABV.

“Mild traits of green pepper, not deep – very mild. And fermenting pumpkin.” -Larry

Finish: Very bitter. It’s almost as if the malt was burnt during the roasting process but still used to make the beer, which sounds silly – but is the best way to describe it. (Think about burnt popcorn. You might not burn the whole batch and, although you pick out the burnt kernels, there is still a lingering essence of burnt carbon.)

 Larry says “It is a nice, lingering bitterness.”

Comments: Despite its less than exciting reviews, The Wench finds Amarcord Birra Artigianale’s LA TABACHERA to be rather … well, pleasant. It really surprised me. I expected a very un-balanced, overly alcoholic and malty ale. What I actually found was a delightfully bitter, slightly malty … easily drinkable Italian beer. Maybe I was brainwashed by the romantic life story of Federico Fellini. Either way, The Wench says “SALUTE!”

“There is no end. There is no beginning. There is only the infinite passion of life.” -Federico Fellini

CHEERS!

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De Proefbrouwerij is the brainchild of the highly regarded Belgian professor and brewing engineer, Dirk Naudts and his wife.

logo_deproef-small

Prior to creating De Proefbrouwerij, Dirk was the Brewmaster at Roman Brewery. He also directed the brewing studies program at the prestigious St. Lieven University in Gent, Belgium.

dirk_naudts

Zoetzuur translates to sweet and sour, which could not be a more appropriate name for this ale.

Zoetzuur is fermented with a combination of the cultured yeast Saccharomyces and the “semi-wild” yeast Brettanomyces. Brettanomyces (aka “Brett”)  is the enemy of most winemakers as well as the classic type of “semi-wild” yeast used in Belgium.

zoet_frnt.ai

Zoetzuur was originally created exclusively for the Michael Jackson Rare Beer Club. SBS Imports is the current importer for Zoetzuur and several other beers from De Proef, including the Brewmaster’s Collection series and Brewmaster’s Collaboration series.  You can get further info at www.sbs-imports.com.

I’ve had the opportunity to drink Zoetzuur twice – once in November and once in early March. Unfortunately, both times were at the same wine bar and I have not been able to find it retail. Both times I shared this crazy sweet and sour ale with friends that were not familiar with Flemish sour ales. Everyone who tasted it agreed that it is a fantastic, unique and delicious beer.

And, without any further ado … allow me to present:

THE BEER WENCH’S TASTING NOTES: De Proefbrouwerij ZOETZUUR

zoetzuur

Style: Flemish Wild Ale

Brewery: De Proefbrouwerij

Region: Lochristi, Belgium

Official Specs:

Malt: 2-Row Munich, Pilsner, and Cara malt
IBU’s: 21
Hops: Tomahawk, East Kent Goldings
Flavoring: Sweet-and-Sour Black Cherry Juice (aka Kriek juice)
Yeast: Mixed Fermentation of Saccharomyces & Brettanomyces. Lactobacillus is naturally produced, fermenting the sugars in the juice.
Original Gravity: 1072 (18 Plato)
Alcohol Volume: 8.5% ABV

Pairings: Cheese, Poultry, Seafood

Color: Super cloudy with heavy sediment. Dark brown amber color with off-white head.

Carbonation: Moderate. Thick foamy head. Pretty decent lacing.

Aroma: Sour dough, sour fruits – apple & cherry, soy sauce, oak, orange peel … apple cider vinegar. There are also hints of a “barnyard funk.”

Mouthfeel: Light to moderate body.

Flavor: Fermented apple cider. Sour cherries. Very tangy. Hints of oak and sweet malt. Slight vinegar taste - which is not necessarily a bad thing.  

Finish: Relatively high ABV is undetectable. Finish is short, yet super smooth and crisp!

Comments: The Wench says “I absolutely love it. This beer is uber tasty…  super drinkable and very dangerous! Zoetzuur is one saucy ale!”

I would definitely recommend this beer to anyone and everyone – even if sours are not your thing, it is definitely worth a try.

Cheers!

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This post is dedicated to my Ma, for reasons you shall discover later on…

I am sick and tired of hearing people bitch and complain about calories, carbs and fat.

Okay, I understand that these things exist. However, there are more important things in life to obsess over …

When it comes to health, beer has a bad rap.

beerbelly3

“Belly Belly” … “Beer Gut” … Beer makes people fat, right?

NO!

Allow me to present an arguement in regards the caloric content of beer. Please note that there is no “scientific evidence behind my assertions. All of my observations are …  well, just that. Observations. And my conclusions are neither “credible” nor “official.”

However, I am not exactly uneducated … so there may be truth to what I have to say.

If you know nothing about nutrition, know this: not all calories are created equal.

good-calories-bad-calories

Some calories are readily transferred into energy, while some are stored as fat.

The 100 calories in a glass of coke are NOT digested and processed the same as the 100 calories in a plate of vegetables.

Once upon a time, monks in Belgium started brewing “bread water” [aka Trappist ales] as a way to sustain themselves throughout fasting. To this day, Trappist beers are produced with only the best and highest quality ingredients. Said monks were able to sustain themselves on this “bread water” for several days at a time. Why? Because the beer that the monks brewed was full of readily digestible matter. AKA … it was actually nutritious.

trappist

Truth be told my mother inspired this blog.

 beer-wench-mom1

She responded to my post: “Please Put Down The Budweiser.” In her comment, my mother said: ” So here’s your newest task, Wench. Find me a less caloric, tasty, crafted beer.”

DEAR MOM: YOU SHOULD KNOW BETTER! And I say this with love.

My mother is a brilliant woman: She’s a vegetarian (her choice, NOT mine), a liberal, a feminist, an environmentalist … and the list continues for miles. But the point is: my mother is UBER healthy and ridiculously conscientious.

(No offense, Ma … well then again, you are a New Yorker born and raised … so you, more than anyone, should be able to handle the truth)

michelobultramedlogo

So why the hell is my intelligent mother drinking crap like Michelob Ultra Light? (Aka … this beer sucks, has virtually no nutritional benefits WHATSOEVER and tastes like watered down piss)

Because she is a CHICK. And like most chicks, she fears gaining weight. And most people equate drinking beer with being fat.

NO ONE WANTS THE “BEER BELLY”. Trust me, even those who have it don’t want it.

 homer20beer

Try this experiment: Ask people who have these “Beer Bellies” and “Beer Guts” … what beer do you drink the most? And your response will be something like “Bud, Coors, Corona, Miller and so on and so forth.”

Hmmm COINCIDENTALLY, people who brew and drink craft beers are less likely to have these things that people call “beer bellies” or “beer guts.”

Evidence? Well , I drink beer and seem to be relatively healthy and of a “decent” size.

My friend and renowned beer writer, Stephen Beaumont, is virtually stick thin.

Another chick beer blogger, The Beer Babe, is anything but fat and absolutely STUNNING.

1WineDude drinks almost as much beer as he does wine … and he is as fit as a fiddle (and cute as a button).

And then, of course, there is the founder of Dogfish Head Brewery. Sam Caglione is definitely a hottie (… ummm I mean an extremely attractive gentleman whom I respect emmensely).

sam_calagione

Bottom line: the higher quality shit you put in your body (whether it be food or booze) … the more likely your body will transfer the calories to energy as opposed to FAT. Stephen Beaumont wrote an excellent article entitled “Beer Makes You Fat, or NOT” that, very eloquently, argues this very same issue. “I’ve said it before and no doubt I’ll say it again: Beer is as dignified and sophisticated a beverage as any other, and in and of itself, does not make you fat or lazy or stupid or boorish. And stereotypes suck.” - Stephen Beaumont’s A World Of Beer

When it comes to the caloric content of brews, one must ALWAYS consider ABV – aka Alcohol By Volume.  Most people need to drink 2 or 3 “so called lite beers”to reach the same ABV of the “heavier beers.”

Need further proof? Let’s play the math game.

Coors Light= 104 cal/ 4.15% abv

Bud Light= 110 cal/4.2% abv

Miller Lite= 96 cal/ 4.2% abv

IN CONTRAST …

New Belgium Trippel Ale= 215 cal/ 7.8% abv

Dogfish Head Midas Touch= 309/ 9% abv

Dogfish Head 120 Min IPA= 450/ 18% abv

And with the few examples we have, let us play math …

In theory, one bottle of Dogfish Head 120 min IPA is equivalent to FOUR and a half bottles of any of the corporate light beers on the market.

One more time, I will CLARIFY this to all you calorie obsessed kids.

ONE WHOLE bottle of Dogfish Head 120 IPAalso known as one of the best damn beers on the planet … is equivalent, both in caloric and alcohol content, to FOURwhole bottles of ANY FREAKING Joe Schmoe lite beers on the market.

dogfish-head-120

It is like telling you that you can have one scoop of the most decadent ice cream made from the most amazing ingredients in the entire world … or 4 scoops of sugar-free, fat-free … wanna-be ice cream made of chemical ingredients.

ice-cream

Hello, what is the point of ice cream without cream?

FLAVOR … is the most important factor to all things consumable, including beer.

PLEASE DO NOT SUBJECT YOUR PALATE TO BEER THAT TASTES LIKE … hmmm bad stuff.

Instead, drink craft beer … and know that your calories are being converted into something other than FAT.

Yes, I have opinions. I am The Wench. Cheers.

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It is time to leave the dark side of corporate beer.

Listen, I understand [more than most] that the economy sucks.

money

Like most of the world, I cannot afford to squander my money. Heck, I don’t get a paycheck. My income is solely based on tips. I live week to week … if not day to day.

I find myself struggling to afford the luxuries I used to take for granted when the economy was stronger [and my income was more stable].

hobo-and-dog

Anyone who has ever visited my “man cave” can attest that The Wench lives a very “modest” lifestyle. True story: I do not have any furniture of my own. The only electronic devices I own are a laptop, iPhone, iPod and digital camera. I own ONE piece of REAL jewelry … my gold class ring from The Ohio State University. I don’t have a collection of designer handbags or shoes.

I do have designer eyeglasses, however. I rationalize having them because they are an essential part of my “brand.”

The Beer Wench

Obviously, I am not materialistic. Even if I had the money, I highly doubt that I would make superficial and superfluous purchases. It is not in my blood.

Although I have cut back tremendously on spending my hard-earned money, I have not stopped entirely. Most of my money is spent on the “finer things in life.”

Food. Wine. Beer. Travel.

Without these key components, my life would cease to exist.

food-and-wine

And even though I am on a tight budget, I ABSOLUTELY REFUSE to spend my money on cheap, mass-produced, super low quality beer. I work hard for my money. And I will not waste it on worthless products.

Why not?

  • I try not to support corporations that contribute to globalization and and world poverty.
  • To me, quality is more important than quantity.
  • I value my palate. And respect  my body. I will not subject my taste buds to bad beer.
  • I believe in supporting the “small guy.” I want my dollar to matter. Corporate breweries brew beer strictly for profit. Craft breweries brew beer in the name of love.

BOTTOM LINE: I am a beer brat. A beer geek. A beer connoisseur. And I hate corporate beer. I think it tastes like shit. It is uncreative, uninspiring … and flavorless. Period. End of story.

horse-piss-beer

Yes, I am strongly opinated on this issue. I refuse to drink corporate, regardless of how inexpensive it is. The value is NOT there. It is not worth it.

I also realize that this post may rub some people the wrong way, which is fine. My target audience is not the everyday Bud drinker.

Sam Caglione makes a really strong arguement about market share in his book “Brewing Up A Business.” He was criticized for his off-centered style of beer making and told that he would never be able to compete with any of the big dogs. Sam’s response? He was not interested in stealing market share from the corporate breweries. As with my blog, Dogfish Head is not focused on appealing to corporate beer drinkers.

dogfish-head

(The Beer Wench: An Off-centered Blog for Off-centered People) Sorry Dogfish Head, I just couldn’t resist.

Although I am not targeting my blog towards corporate beer drinkers, I am not opposed to “recruiting” people from the dark side. In my opinion, the biggest barrier to people drinking craft beers is lack of information and education about the industry. In this economy, people cannot afford to gamble on the unknown. They are afraid to take risks. Lack of confidence in choice usually results in the failure to make a choice (also known as choice paralyzation).

How does one break through the barrier of choice paralyzation? Through education! And the ultimate source of information is peers … and the ultimate tool for exchanging information with peers is Social Media.

Enter The Wench. I may not be a beer afficianado, but I am passionate about it. There is no monetary incentive for me to tell people to drink craft beer. And I will be the first person to admit when I do not like a certain beer – even if it’s made by one of my favorite breweries. TRUST is extremely important to me. I promise to always be honest with my readers, regardless of the repercussions.

11510beer-will-change-the-world-posters

My palate is not the end all be all. I can say with utmost confidence that a good number of people will not enjoy the styles of beer that I love the most.  WHICH IS FINE, because I am not going to make people like the beers that I like. HOWEVER, I will do my best to help people find a [craft] beer that they will like.

I love playing beer Yenta.

Let The Wench help you find your perfect beer.

Please put down the Budweiser. Cheers!

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In this post I am going to attempt to recap the Dogfish Head Twitter Taste Live event from Saturday March 7th 2009. Now mind you, I did use the word attempt.

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Yesterday I made a last minute decision to purchase a webcam and setup a live ustream feed for the event. Having neither used ustream nor a webcam prior to last night, I think that things went fairly well. Obviously, I could have been more organized … but that is something to work on for the future.

The DFH Twitter Taste Live started out as all TTL events seem to start – early. Several tweeters joined the TTL feed earlier in the day – posting updates about the beer and wine they were drinking at the time. Even the “official” Dogfish Head Tweeter (@dogfishbeer) started the night out a bit early with Dogfish Head Aprihops. After addmitting his lack of patience, Dogfish Head brewer zymoid popped open a DFH 60 min IPA prior to the event. Naturally, my day began early as well. I started off with some Tom Eddy New Zealand (aka TENZ) Sauvignon Blanc during lunch. I then moved onto Radford Dale Freedom Pinot Noir just prior to the DFH TTL.

The three Dogfish Head beers that were “officially” tasted for this event were: Red & White, Fort, and Palo Santo Marron. Instead of posting my personal tasting notes as usual, I have decided to post the tasting notes of the tweeters from the DFH TTL event. However, I will try to follow the format that I usually use in my beer reviews. This should be interesting … and fun.

 dfh-ttl

All the picutres of the beers are compliments of @kallardnyc. Thanks! For other really great picutres from the night, check out @lemasney’s FLICKER PAGE.

I appologize in advnace to those of you who are unfamiliar with Twitter and do not understand the way in which I am presenting my tasting notes. Hopefully you can get the jist! Cheers!

Red & White

red-white1

 

Brewery: Dogfish Head

Style: zymoid: @beertweeter Calif pinot noir grape juice is used. Yeast is Belgian wit type.

zymoid: @panache We like to play with wood, and originally started with pinot noir barrels from CA. Thought a suped up wit beer would be fun.

Color: angelostzelepis: Nice copper color, a lot of sediment

stfler22: the sediments in the red & white give the brew a unique texture and balance beautiful color!!

Carbonation: lemasney: carbonation is not visually evident, but very evident in the palate. Like an ocean. The body is a summer sunset, with rain in the morn.

Aroma: zymoid: I’ve got the 09 R&W. Some bubble gum esters in the nose, tannins/oakiness and all kinds of fun. A party in the mouth.

beercommdood: fruity and tart smelling, nice solid finger of creamy head, picking up the wine notes in the nose

Mouthfeel: bsimi: Very creamy texture… nice beer !

Flavor:  beercommdood: Very sweet and malty, high fruity taste with wine coming through strong.

Finish: darknova306: @beertweeter The alcohol isn’t noticeable at first, but I’m getting a nice warmth after the swallow. Works well with the wine flavor.

kingfarmwine: the pinot noir barrels really enhances the complexity

Pairings: beertweeter: http://twitpic.com/1x5q5 – so earlier I decided to pick up some Chatham Littlneck clams and steam them in Red&White

beertweeter: this works nice with dank cheese http://twitpic.com/1x4l5 as well – Raw Blue Cave Aged

Interesting Facts: dogfishbeer: @zymoid And Sam’s fave wine is Pinot Noir.

zymoid: Tooting the horn alittle here: R&W won gold medal in last years GABF.

Comments:beertweeter: the Red & White is one of the top 3 I’ve had from Dogfish…huge bonus for creativity!

zymoid: @AngelosTzelepis R&W is great in a wine goblet. Lets it warm up and releases the aromatics nicely

 

Fort

fort

Brewery: Dogfish Head (lemasney: Dogfish head is brewing beers that make you rethink the very state of beer as an idea. They ask you to set aside your beer definition.)

Style: zymoid: @panache We brew a strong ale base and then add a BUNCH of raspberry into secondary ferment.

zymoid:@beerphilosopher Some sugar is used in the kettle, but the fruit really carries the load.

zymoid:@beercommdood Not many hops in this, mostly malt and fruit doing the work.

Color: boothbay: For it’s powerful raspberry taste and aroma…it’s color seems lighter/tricky.

Carbonation: beercommdood: Fort is very fizzy. The head was very crisp and popping like Rice Krispies. ;) Head now completely gone, no lacing.

Aroma: beercommdood: Getting some caramel on the nose with the berries. Anyone else?

darknova306: Lots of raspberry in the nose, with a little bit of caramel malt. Smells like a little tartness is there, too.

Flavor: lemasney: taste is deep, layered with flavors: raisin, cherry, plum, raspberry, citrus, bitterness, burns on the way down. So nice.

lemasney: definitely brandy, wheat, raspberry, and honey. Delicious. Agitation brings a strong aroma of whiskey, oak, and leaf mold.

Finish: kallardnyc: Fort is warm in the chest like a Port or Madeira.

Pairings: dogfishbeer: I’d drink this with a sliver of great dark chocolate.

Comments: beertweeter: this is like Raspberry Rock Candy…insane!

beerphilosopher : Friends don’t let friends drink Fort and Tweet

panache: Well the Fort was great. Don’t know if I would have bought it before today, but now I definitely will! Nice work @zymoid !

Palo Santo

palo-santo-marron

Brewery: Dogfish Head (dogfishbeer: You HAVE to come to the brewery and see the massive tank made from Palo Santo Wood. it’s way cool.)

Style: zymoid: @rgrace99 Gotta say, the wood is the key, yeast is 2nd ary for this beer.

zymoid: White@BrewDad Yes, it almost comes off as a fruit beer– cherries esp. it is all from the Palo wood. Amazing tree.

zymoid: @beertweeter We source yeast from both Whitelabs and Wyeast.

 

Color: hopwild: - PSM – pours like used motor oil – more like a black ale than a brown!

erikboles: as we say on @BeerTapTV “Dark as a struck match”

Carbonation: hopwild: - PSM – pours like used motor oil

Aroma: semperfifi: Partner says “Cherry wood flavor…”

beertweeter: Burnt Campfire Wet Wood Next morning with a malt sandwich?

beercommdood: Palo Santo nose: molasses, vanilla, peat, and burnt sugar cookies

Mouthfeel: brewdad: 12% it does not come off this strong in the flavor. The wood must have mellowed the flavor.

Flavor: angelostzelepis: Coffee, caramel, vanilla working for me today. I love this beer.

Finish: erikboles: there is a very very subtle taste of how fired ceramics smell on the back-end of the PSM

Pairings: zymoid: Y’all, save some of your chocolate for the PSM. It’s a great pairing.

zymoid: Palo Santo is a great mixer too. Try 50/50 with our Punkin ale.

Interesting Fact: kallardnyc: After the 1906 San Fran earthquake, wire insulators were made from Palo Santo wood because the was a shortage of materials.

Comments: thebeerwench: Dudes Palo Santo wood is a fucking bitch. Do you know how hard it is to cut down, let alone make a huge ass fermenting tank with?

 

RANDOM WENCHNESS

Somehow I missed this tweet from later in the tasting - zymoid: @TheBeerWench So who are you?

My bragging rights - dogfishbeer: @TheBeerWench That’s why we love you!

 Great comment – beertweeter: @dogfishbeer @zymoid @thebeerwench the best! great peeps, great brews! I’m sticking around

Another great comment – hopwild: thanks @dogfishbeer and @zymoid for joining us! thx @thebeerwench for hosting!

And lastly - dogfishbeer:@TheBeerWench – Thanks so much for hosting the tasting tonight, that was great fun! – YOU ARE VERY WELCOME. Thank you Dogfish Head for making the best fucking off-centered ales for the crazy off-centered people like myself! Cheers!

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Oh yes … yet another blog post on the amazing powers of Twitter.

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Go ahead, roll your eyes.

I recognize that most people in the world are oblivious to Twitter. And a very small percentage of those that are aware of its existence actually have a Twitter account … and most of those people probably do not use it.

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I can safely bet that at least half of the people reading this post have never even heard of Twitter.

On the flip side, the other half of you probably linked to this post from Twitter … further demonstrating the power of Twitter.

A few months ago, I wrote a post about my obsession with Twitter. The following in an excerpt from that post:

Twitter allows people to interact with other like-minded individuals that have similar interests and levels of intelligence. Twitter also allows for an instantaneous exchange of information with others.

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Twitter has connected me with people all over the world who share my passion for beer, wine & food. On Twitter I follow beer bloggers, beer connoisseurs, homebrewers, craft breweries, wine bloggers, winemakers, wine marketers, food bloggers, chefs, foodies, winos, hopheads … and many individuals who work in the hospitality and restaurant industry. We all exchange information via Twitter: tasting notes, beer reviews, wine reviews, restaurant reviews, beer news, wine news, bacon news …

As a result of Twitter, I have made some amazing connections and and friendships. Twitter has provided me with many experiences and opportunities that I would not have had otherwise. This may sound strange to non-Twitter users, but it is the truth.

Twitter’s amazing rate of popularity and growth has led to the development of topic specific platforms outside of Twitter that work in conjunction with it. One such “spawn of Twitter” is TWITTER TASTE LIVE.

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ABOUT TWITTER TASTE LIVE:Twitter Taste LIVE is a ground breaking tasting format that utilizes the popular social networking tool Twitter to connect passionate consumers with people that share their passion! TTL began as a series of online wine tastings bringing the worlds top winemakers, importers and bloggers directly to consumers all over the world. As an open platform driven by the users, we quickly found demand for other topics including Craft Beer, Cigars, Spirits, and varied Culinary topics.

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Originally, TLL was centered around wine tasting. Eventually, beer was added to the roster. The first TTL beer tasting was “An Introduction to Trappist Ales.” It was held this past January and was tremendously successful.

Being both a beer geek and Twitter addict, it was only natural that the brilliant creator of Twitter Taste Live approach The Beer Wench regarding future beer topics and assistance with running TTL beer tastings.

Needless to say, my ideas are endless. However, I was able to narrow it down to two beer themes in which I am extremely interested: beers with exotic ingredients and lambics (specifically gueuzes).

The first of hopefully many Twitter Taste LIVE Beer events co-hosted by @TheBeerWench is scheduled for SATURDAY MARCH 7th 2009. The theme is “Exotic Ingredients in Beer Featuring Dogfish Headhead.” The tasting will begin promptly at 8PM EST.

 Dogfish Head beers to be tasted:

Fort – world’s strongest fruit beer with wild raspberries.
Red & White- made with pinot noir grapes.
Palo Santo Marron – An unfiltered, unfettered, unprecedented brown ale aged in handmade wooden brewing vessels

 For obvious reasons, I am totally stoked about this event. I’m looking forward to tasting some amazing beers from one of my all-time favorite craft breweries with my fellow beer loving tweeters!

Cheers!

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