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Archive for June, 2011

I’ll go the extra step to try some awesome beer and when it comes to sour beer, I’ll do some pretty crazy things. Luckily, driving out to Edwardsville isn’t very crazy.  In fact, it was downright lovely.  It’s even better when you know you have some great sour beers waiting for you when you arrive.

For those of you that couldn’t make it out to Bigelo’s Bistro for the Sour Sunday event, here are a couple of photos for you:

itap.jpgWere you planning on having a nice relaxing week watching TV on the couch?  Well, too bad, because you’ve got plans now.  The International Tap House is having a very exciting week with events happening tonight, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday.  Here’s a rundown of each event:

Firestone Walker Parabola Tapping – Tuesday, June 21st – 7:00pm – (iTAP Soulard and iTAP Chesterfield)
It’s one of Firestone Walker’s rarest and most anticipated beers and we will tap that bad boy at 7pm on Tuesday. A small keg so about 40 pours at each locale so get there and get it!

iTAP Tornado Rally with Charleville Tornado Alley – Wednesday, June 22nd – 3:00pm – (iTAP Soulard and iTAP Chesterfield)
Drink beer and help people…starting June 22nd…we are renaming Charleville’s Amber Ale “Tornado Rally” as every pint poured of two kegs at each location ALL of the proceeds will go to Red Cross’ Tornado Relief fund.

Six Row Cask! – Friday, June 24th – 6:00pm – (iTAP Soulard)
You wanted them, we promised them, so we are delivering yet another cask…this one is from the fine folks at Six Row and it is a hoppy Porter Dry hopped with Willamette Hops…it will be tapped at 6pm so stop on in grab a pint and keep the cask program popping.

Sunday Funday – Sunday, June 26th – 12:00pm – (iTAP Soulard)
Our first “official” Sunday opening was June 19, but since that was Fathers Day we are going to save the major festivities for the June 26. Here is what’s going on…

  • Free Food
  • Live Music on the Patio (weather permitting, inside if the weather fails): The Local Gents at 2:30pm
  • Schlafly A-IPA Cask tapping at 3pm
  • Buy a Liter Mug…Keep the Liter Mug (authentic and collectible German mugs from Spaten)
  • Happy Hour Prices all day long

This week on the STL Hops Twitter

Stuff from around the web

  • Nice update about former Mattingly Brewer, Drew Huerter.
  • KC Brew Review pits Schlafly Raspberry Hefe vs. Great Divide Wild Raspberry.

Retail Beer Releases

  • deVine Wines & Spirits (6/14/2011)
    • CIDERS
    • Crispin Brut
    • Crispin Original
    • Crispin English Dry
    • Crispin Honey Crisp
    • Crispin Saint
    • Crispin Lansdowne
    • Fox Barrel Black Current
    • MEADS
    • Redstone Cinnamon Vannilla Bean
    • Redstone Juniper Berry
    • Redstone Black Raspberry
    • Redstone Traditional
    • Oliver Camelot
    • BEERS
    • Arcadia Witsun Summer Wheat
    • Avery Maharaja Batch #13
    • Bell’s Summer Oberon
    • Boulevard Imperial Stout 2011
    • Firestone Walker ABACUS 2011 6 btls
    • Firestone Walker Parabola
    • Firestone Walker Humbolt Hemp Ale
    • Firestone Walker Double Jack IPA
    • Founders Cerise
    • Founders Old Curmudgean Ale
    • Founders Centennial IPA
    • Founders Porter
    • Goose Island Summertime
    • Lakefront Fuel Cafe Coffee Stout
    • Lakefront Big Easy Imperial Maibock
    • Lagunitas Little Sumpin
    • Lagunitas Hairy Eyeball
    • Left Hand Stranger APA
    • Leinenkugel Summer Shandy
    • Mendocino’s Blonde Summer
    • Odell’s Myrcenary Double IPA
    • Odell’s American IPA
    • Odell’s Strong American Red Ale
    • Rogue 1st Growth Dirtoir Black Lager
    • Schlafly Hop Toddy Ale
    • Schlafly American IPA
    • Schlafly Helles Summer Lager
    • Shipyard Summer Ale
    • Sierra Nevada Summerfest
    • Ska Pinstripe Red Ale
    • Ska Mexican Logger Ale
    • Ska Decadent Imperial IPA
    • Stevens Point Nude Beach
    • Stone Arrogant Bastard
    • Stone Oaked Arrogant Bastard
    • Stone Cali-Belgique IPA
    • Stone IPA
    • Stone Runination IPA
    • Southern Tier Gemini Imperial IPA

Restaurant and Bar Beer List Updates

  • Bigelo’s Bistro (6/15/11)
    • Bell’s Two Hearted
    • Rodenbach Grand Cru
    • Duchess de bourgogne
    • Six Row DIPA
    • Goose Island Fleur
    • New Belgium Le Terrior
    • Wild Onion Hop Slayer
    • Boulevard Two Jokers Double Wit
    • Cathedral Square Hail Mary IPA
    • Schlafly American IPA
    • Blue Moon
    • Boulevard Wheat
  • Blue Agave(6/15/11) Belleville, IL
    • DRAFT
      • New Holland Dragon’s Milk, Oak Barrel Aged Ale
      • Founders Double Trouble Double IPA
      • Left Hand Milk Stout
      • Fruli
      • Goose Island Pepe Nero
      • New Belgium Fat Tire Ale
      • New Belgium Ranger IPA
      • Sierra Nevada Pale Ale
      • Woodchuck Amber Cider
      • Woodchuck Pear Cider
      • Woodchuck Granny Smith Cider
      • Woodchuck Summer Cider
      • Guinness
      • Harp
      • Shock Top Raspberry
      • Goose Island 312 Wheat Ale
      • Cathedral Square Iglesia Agave Ale
      • Magic Hat #9
      • Rogue Chocolate Stout
      • Hoegaarden Belgian White
      • Blue Moon
      • Boulevard Wheat
      • Schlafly American IPA
      • Heineken
      • Spaten Optimator
      • Killians
      • Strongbow Cider
      • Shiner Bock
      • Stag
      • Pabst Blue Ribbon
    • BOTTLES (Some, but not all)
      • Unibroue Terrible, 750ml
      • Ayinger Celebrator
      • Rogue John John Hazelnut, 22 oz
      • Sam Smith Organic Strawberry Ale, 20 oz
      • Coney Island Blockhead, 22 oz
      • Lindemans Frambois
      • Lindemans Faro
      • Orval Trappist Ale
      • Traquair Jacobite
      • Arcadia IPA
      • Arcadia Cereal Killer, Barleywine
      • Arcadia Hopmouth IPA
      • Victory Golden Monkey
      • Victory Storm King Imperial Stout
      • Bell’s Cherry Stout
      • Bell’s Two-Hearted Ale
      • Bell’s Hopslam
      • Skull Splitter
      • Big Sky Cowboy Coffee Porter
      • Founders Curmudgeon Old Ale
      • Founders Harvest Ale, IPA
      • New Belgium Trippel
      • New Belgium Abbey
      • Shiner Ruby Redbird
      • Shiner Black
      • Shiner 102 Double Wheat
      • Anchor Brewing Co., Anchor Steam
      • Anchor Brewing Co., Liberty Ale
      • Anchor Brewing Co., Anchor Bock
      • Schlafly Oatmeal Stout
      • Schlafly Pale Ale
      • Schlafly ESB
      • Schlafly APA
  • Cicero’s (6/14/11)
    • Stone IPA
    • O’fallon 5 Day IPA
    • Stone Arrogant Bastard
    • Southern Tier Raspberry Wheat
    • Bell’s Oberon
    • Moose Drool
    • Arcadia Whitsun
    • Urban Chestnut Wingnut
    • Bass Ale
    • Hoegaarden
    • Wittekkerke
    • Blue Moon
    • Bud Light
    • Boulevard Pilsner
    • Boulevard Unfiltered Wheat
    • Urban Chestnut StlIpa
    • Delirium Tremens
    • Fitz’s Root Beer
    • Franziskaner
    • Goose Island Matilda
    • Beach Bum Blonde Ale
    • Grand Teton Sweetgrass APA
    • Boulder Hazed and Infused
    • Great Divide Hoss Rye Märzen
    • Guinness
    • La Chouffe
    • Beck’s
    • Left Hand Milk Stout
    • Lindeman’s Framboise
    • Cathedral Square Abbey Ale
    • Maredsous
    • Maudite
    • New Belgium Fat Tire
    • New Belgium Somersault
    • New Belguim Ranger IPA
    • New Castle
    • Rogue Yellow Snow
    • Rogue Orgasmic Ale
    • Nectar IPA
    • North Coast Old Rasputin
    • Pilsner Urquell
    • O’fallon Wheach
    • Reissdorf Kölsch
    • Founders Porter
    • Sam Adams Summer Ale
    • Same Adams Saison
    • Schlafly Hefeweizen
    • Schlafly Helles Lager
    • Schlafly Bavarian Weiss
    • Schlafly Pale Ale
    • Shiner Bock
    • Smithwick’s
    • Warsteiner Pilsner
    • Woodchuck Amber Cider
    • Young’s Double Chocolate Stout
  • Erato on Main (06/17/11)
    • Draft
      • Wittekerke Framboise, Raspberry Wit
      • Hacker-Pschorr, Hefeweizen
      • Guinness Stout
      • New Holland “Dragon’s Milk”, Oak Aged Stout
      • North Coast “Red Seal”
      • Pauwel Kwak, Belgium Strong Ale
      • Reissdorf Kolsch
      • Pyramid “Curve Ball” Blonde Ale
      • Goose Island “Fleur”, Belgian Pale Ale brewed w/habiscus
      • Breckenridge “Lucky U” IPA
      • Sand Creek Hard Lemonade
      • Fruli, Strawberry Belgian White
    • Bottles
      • Steenberge “Leute” Bokbier, Strong Ale, 750ml
      • Brasserie Silenrieux “Sara”, Buckwheat Ale, 750ml
      • Steenbrugge Tripel, 750ml
      • Delerium Tremens, 750ml
      • Birra del Borgo “Dodici 25″, 750ml
      • St. Somewhere “Saison Athene”, 750ml
      • St. Somewhere “Lectio Divina”, 750ml
      • Hanssens Artisanaal Oudbeitje, Lambic, 375ml
      • Lindeman’s Faro, Lambic, 355ml
      • Troubadour “Obscura”, Mild Stout
      • Tripel Karmeliet
      • Wittekerke, Belgian Wit
      • Popperings Hommel, IPA
      • Kapsreiter Landbier, Euro Pale Lager
      • Sloeber, Belgian Strong Pale
      • Sierra Nevada “Torpedo”, Extra IPA
      • Nils Oscar, IPA
      • Okocim “OK” Lager
      • Saku Porter
      • Original Sin Cider
      • Bavik Pilsner
      • Dark Horse Brewing Co. “Crooked Tree”, I.P.A.
      • Lion Stout
      • Brasserie Dieu du Ciel “Route des Epices”, Rye Ale w/Peppercorns
      • Green Flash “West Coast IPA”
      • Bear Republic “Racer 5″ IPA
      • Avery “Karma”
      • Ska “Special” ESB
      • Boddingtons Pub Ale
      • Young’s Double Chocolate Stout
      • New Holland “Full Circle” Kolsch Beer
      • Wild Onion “Paddy’s Pale Ale”
      • Lagunitas “WTF”
      • Lake Front “New Grist”, Gluten-free Beer
      • Goose Island “Big John”, Imperial Stout w/Cacao Nibs
      • Sam Adam’s Pale Ale
      • Shiner Bock
      • Crown Valley Brewing “Big Bison Ale”, Belgian style Dubble
      • Kaliber, N/A
  • Iron Barley (06/18/2011)
    • Cathedral Square Belgian Abbey Ale
    • Grand Teton Sweetgrass APA
    • Left Hand Milk Stout on Nitrous
    • 6 Row Strong Porter
    • Boulevard Unfiltered Wheat
    • Stone Brewing Company Arrogant Bastard Ale
    • Urban Chestnut Zwickle Helles
    • Goose Island Honker’s Ale
    • Left Hand Polestar Pilsner
    • Warsteiner Dunkel
    • Boulevard Smokestack Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale (750 ml)
    • Boulevard Smokestack The Sixth Glass (750 ml)
    • Boulevard Smokestack Long Strange Tripel (750 ml)
    • Boulevard Double Wide IPA (750 ml)
    • Tucher Hefe Weiss (Bottle)
    • Bear Repiblic Hop Rod Rye (Bottle)
    • Weihenstephan Dark Hefe (Bottle)
    • Rogue Dead Guy Ale (Bottle)
    • Stone Ruination IPA(Bottle)
    • Left Hand JuJu Ginger Ale (Bottle)
    • Bell’s Two Hearted Ale (Bottle)
    • Bell’s Oberon(Bottle)
    • Great Divide Wild Raspberry Ale (Bottle)
    • Steven’s Point 2012 Black Ale (Bottle)
    • Brouwerij Huyghe Floris Apple (Bottle)
    • Guinness Draft (Bottle)
    • Avery White Rascal Witbier (Bottle)
    • Griesedieck Brothers Pilsner (Bottle)
    • Aecht Schlenkra Smoke Marzen (Bottle)
    • Fox Barrel Black Currant Cider (Bottle)
    • Redstone Meadery Nectar of the Hops
    • Redstone Meadery Sunshine Nectar
    • Redstone Meadery Black Raspberry
    • Guest Beers
    • Firestone Walker Nectar IPA (Bottle)
    • Rogue Somer Orange Honey Wheat (Bottle)
    • New Belgium Somersault Ale (Bottle)
  • The Wine Tap (06/14/11)
    • (223 e. Main Street, Belleville, IL)
    • ON TAP:
      • Victory “Hop Devil” IPA
      • Spaten Lager
      • Troubadour “Obscura” Stout
      • Piraat Belgian Strong Ale
      • Lost Coast “Great White” Witbier
      • Flossmoor Stammtisch Alt Beer
      • Blue Moon Belgian White
      • Guinness Stout
    • FEATURED BOTTLES:
      • Lost Coast “Great White” Witbier
      • Flying Dog “Raging Bitch” Imperial Pale Ale Belgian
      • Anchor Steam, Steam Ale
      • Bells Two Hearted, Imperial Pale Ale
      • Buffalo Bills “Orange Blossom” Cream Ale
      • Rogue “Dead Guy” Heller Bock
      • Lost Coast “Indica” India Pale Ale
      • Samuel Smith Organic Apple Cider
      • Unibroue Maudite Belgian Strong Dark Ale
      • Chimay, White, Red, Blue 750ml
    • NEW BOTTLES:
      • Duvel Belgian Strong Ale
      • Left Hand Brewing Milk Stout
      • Rogue Chipotle Ale (22oz)
      • Bear Republic “Racer 5″ IPA (22oz)

Brewery and Brewpub Beer List Updates

  • Schlafly Taproom (06/17/11)
    • Grand Cru
    • Belgian Singel
    • Altbier
    • Biere De Garde
    • Dubbel
    • 80/-
    • Cream Ale
    • Dortmunder
    • American IPA
    • Schwarzbier
    • Kolsch
    • Summer Lager
    • Hefeweizen
    • Pale Ale
    • Dry-Hopped APA
    • Oatmeal Stout
    • Cask-American IPA
    • Cask-Oat Stout
  • Square One Brewery and Distillery (06/14/11)
    • Light Squared
    • Spicy Blonde
    • Oh Honey, Orange Blossom Wheat
    • Bavarian Weizen
    • Maibock
    • Park Avenue Pale Ale
    • Summer Saison
    • Single Malt Scotch Ale
    • IPA
    • Honey Oatmeal Stout
    • New World Strong Ale (Double Blackened IPA)
    • Oatmeal Stout
    • Cask: Summer Saison
    • Coming Soon: Double Red, Irish Stout
  • Trailhead Brewing Company (06/14/11)
    • Year Round House Beers:
      • Trailblazer Blond Ale
      • Riverboat Raspberry Fruit Ale
      • Trailhead Red American Amber Ale
      • Missouri Brown Ale
      • Old Courthouse Stout
    • Seasonal Selection: Maibock
    • Coming Soon: Southern German Pilsner and Honey Wheat

Here’s a list of upcoming beer events:

Today, from 4PM to 6:30PM the Wine and Cheese Place in Clayton will hold its weekly Friday beer tasting. Here’s some of the beers they’ll be sampling: Sierra Nevada Beer Camp Double IPA, Sierra Nevada Beer Camp Juniper Black Ale, Sierra Nevada Beer Camp California Common, Sierra Nevada Beer Camp Weizenbock, Boulevard Saison Brett, and Bat Creek Heartland Wheat. Additional information can be found at their blog.

Cory from deVine Wines and Spirts, located at 2961 Dougherty Ferry Rd, holds a beer tasting every Wednesday evening from 5PM to 8PM. Each Wednesday will offer up a few new beers for you to taste. Swing on by and check it out.

Next Wednesday, from 5PM to 7PM, Karen with Goose Island will be on hand at the Wine and Cheese Place in Creve Coeur and will be sampling Goose Island Big John along with many more Goose Island beers.

Next Thursday, from 5PM to 7PM, Laura from Boulevard will be on hand at the Wine and Cheese Place in Creve Coeur and will be sampling Boulevard Smokestack Saison Brett and Two Jokers Double Wit. For more information about both of these events check out the Wine and Cheese Place blog.

Once again, if you’re a retail shop, bar, restaurant, brewery or distributor and want me to list your tasting, make sure to email me at mike@stlhops.com.

If you made it all the way to the end of Tuesday’s post about internet software, you may have noticed a little nugget about Nebraska Brewing Company:

For instance, if you followed the Wine and Cheese Place (@TWCPBeer) or STL Hops (@stlhops) on Twitter today, you would have seen that Firestone Walker Parabola and Nebraska Brewing Company Black Betty have made it into the St. Louis market.

Now, while it’s not likely (but not impossible) you’re going to find any Black Betty out in the St. Louis market, we will begin seeing a bunch of Nebraska beers on draught starting tomorrow.  Beginning at 1PM tomorrow, both locations of the International Tap House will start serving four Nebraska beers:

Hop God
A beautiful golden crossbreed of a Belgian Tripel and a West Coast IPA. A remarkable explosion on the palate with spiciness, tropical fruit, and a firm citrus bitterness that will leave you begging for more!
9.0% A.B.V. 101 IBU

Infinite Wit
A light-bodied Belgian wheat beer brewed with Organic Orange Peel and Organic Coriander. Light and refreshingly crisp with a mild fruity/citrus character.
4.5% A.B.V. 9 IBU

Cardinal Pale Ale
Our Pale Ale is deep golden in color and characterized by a floral/citrus-like aroma, with medium maltiness and low bitterness.
5.75% A.B.V. 29 IBU

India Pale Ale
Our India Pale Ale has a pronounced hop bitterness and wonderful hop aroma. The taste immediately gives away the high hop characteristics with malt aspects playing second fiddle to this fantastic example of the style.
6.5% A.B.V. 65 IBU

And for those very lucky customers that can get there in time, iTap will be offering up a few of the last bottles of Black Betty. So, if you can make it out there when they open, don’t miss out on that. Also, if you can’t make it out to iTap, I hear Six Row will be putting a Nebraska beer on tap as well.

On a personal note, I had a chance to try both the Cardinal Pale Ale and the IPA on Tuesday and they were fantastic. Big, fresh hop notes in both beer. This is a very welcome addition to the St. Louis market and beer lovers everywhere should rejoice.

Let’s face it, cask beer is the ultimate in “old school.”  In the days before fancy draught systems and ornate tap handles, beer was poured either via gravity or by a hand pump.  It was the beer was served for literally hundreds of years.

For a long time St. Louis was starved for cask beer.  But then something magical happened and we started seeing more and more cask beer come into the area.  This is not something to take for granted, it’s a very cool thing to see.

If you’re hankering for some delicious craft beer, here’s a few places to find it this week:

The Handlebar will be tapping a cask of Six Row Porter this Thursday, June 16th beginning at 6PM.  This is the first cask of Porter that Six Row has served outside of their brewery.  This porter was dry-hopped with Goldings that should give it a spicier aroma and flavor.

If hops are what you’re looking for then a trip out to Edwardsville may be in order. This Saturday, June 18th, starting at Noon, Bigelo’s Bistro will be tapping a cask of the always popular Schlafly AIPA. There is always a large contingent of STL Hops folks that attend these special cask tappings at Bigelo’s, so you’ll be in good company.


I’ve also been told that we’ll be seeing a few casks coming out of 2nd Shift Brewing in the next couple of months. The boys at 2nd Shift are always coming up with something interesting, so it’ll be cool to see what casks we’ll see from them.

So break out your boombox and your Reebok Pumps and kick it old school with some cask beer.

While the internet has completely transformed the way craft beer lovers have discovered beer, there are still pockets of cool stuff that everyone may not know about.  I present to you a few tools that will only help you on your quest for finding the best craft beer possible.

Fresh Beer Only

Hop heads know, sometimes having the freshest beer possible is the only way to drink craft beer.  Unfortunately, not every brewery puts an easy to read date on every bottle.  The website Fresh Beer Only details not only date code information for over 400 American breweries, but also breweries from around the globe.

Keep this bookmark in your smart phone for instant access when you’re buying that six-pack.

US Beer Distribution Spreadsheet

Do a lot of traveling? How about a lot of trading? Wouldn’t you like an easy resource to see what beers are available where? Well, now you have it with the US Beer Distribution Spreadsheet. This user editable spreadsheet allows you to see which beers are distributed across the United States. Very handy if you’re trying to trade some beer with a friend in another state.

Twitter

If you’re still living with the idea of Twitter being a haven for the attention-seekers looking to blather on about the minute details of their lives, well, you’re not entirely wrong. But, it can also be a fantastic tool to learn about beer news, information, and some fantastic discussion as well.

For instance, if you followed the Wine and Cheese Place (@TWCPBeer) or STL Hops (@stlhops) on Twitter today, you would have seen that Firestone Walker Parabola and Nebraska Brewing Company Black Betty have made it into the St. Louis market.

Hell, you don’t even have to tweet anything.  Just follow a bunch of very specific beer accounts and get some great info. It’s also worth noting that every brewery that’s worth anything has a Twitter account now. Here are a couple of other great accounts as well:

Not to be excluded are the original beer sources, BeerAdvocate and Rate Beer.  They always provide plenty of great reviews and a plethora of discussion.  Do you have a site you really like?  Make sure to add it to the comments below.