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Rather than sit back on the success of the Biere de Garde, Schlafly has decided to expand their offerings in their Bottled Conditioned series with a Tripel and Grand Cru.  Regular customers of the Schlafly Tap Room will be familiar with both of these offerings, but may be impressed by the unique flavor and aroma contributions of bottle conditioning.  Both of these beers were being shipped to wholesalers this week and should be on store shelves this weekend.

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Schlafly’s Belgian Beer and Mussel Mania is not so much a “festival” as it is an excuse to get together and drink some beer.  I don’t really need an excuse to visit the Tap Room, but having one is always nice.  We didn’t arrive until about 8PM on Friday evening, so not surprisingly a lot of the neat-o beers were depleted.  But, never one to complain, I just enjoyed things like the Wit and the Tripel instead.

I did get to sample the cask Biere de Garde and I have to admit, I’m not a fan.  Part of the reason I enjoy Belgian beers so much is because of their spritzy effervescent nature and the cask just kills that.  It’s missing some of things that make a “Belgian” beer in my mind.  Interesting experiment, but not something I would want to see back.  What did you think of the festival?

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mussel.gifI wish I was the first person to point this out, but it is a pretty funny coincidence that the same week that a Belgian brewing conglomerate buys Anheuser-Busch is also host to a Belgian beer festival at the Schlafly Tap Room.  If you’ve never had some of Schlafly’s Belgian offerings, this weekend gives you the perfect opportunity to try them.  Brennan Green sent me over a list of some of the treats Schlafly has in store for this weekend:

  • Grand Cru: 9% abv and made with four different belgian yeast strains and left to age in tank for over four months
  • Witbier: brewed with locally grown Alhambra unmalted wheat (harvested on July 8th) as well as lots of coriander and orange peel
  • ’07 Tripel
  • Biere De Garde
  • Casks of Grand Cru and Biere de Garde

He also let me know that just for this festival they’ll be serving their new Barrel aged Grand Cru, They aged this beer for two and a half months in the bourbon barrels previously used for the Imperial Stout.  Oh, I hear there will be some mussels too.  This “festival” runs on Friday, July 18 and Saturday, July 19th from 5:00 p.m.-Midnight  both days.  There is no cost for the event, just show up and buy some mussels and beer!

I hope everyone had a wonderful and relaxing holiday. If you’re anything like me, your brain is completely fried and not ready to start a new work week after a lovely 4 day vacation. But here we are.

beer-293_1280×960.jpgSince we were having Thanksgiving at my parents house, I gave me an excuse (not that I need much of one) to visit Andrew at Bon Vivant on Wednesday evening. It’s always a treat to head over to Illinois and pick up beers you can’t find in St. Louis. In this case I picked up some Three Floyds Brian Boru and a single bottle of Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA. I wanted more 90 minute, but it seems like I can always find only a single bottle. Andrew also recommended to us a fantastic wine (I wish I could remember what it was.) My favorite part of the trip over was when Andrew rang up 2 22oz beers and a single 12oz beer for less than a single bottle of wine. While I’m in no way trying to stir up any beer vs wine cost debate, I’ll admit it brought a smile to my face.

As for the Turkey day, everything was perfect. The turkey was moist and flavorful, the sides were enjoyable and most importantly Mr. Oliver didn’t let me down. The Schlafly Biere de Garde paired wonderfully with the meal. Having a 750ml bottle also provided the opportunity to share the beer with the table. Any excuse for me to get people to try new beers is always welcome to me.

As for the rest of the weekend, I relaxed and hung out with my family. And while this is not at all beer related, do yourself a favor and find someone who owns Rock Band. After 6 straight hours of rocking, the only thing that stopped us was my failing voice. How does Thom Yorke hit those high notes every night?