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Wednesday, June 30th 2010

UPDATED - Interactive US Map of Craft Breweries Canning Beer

Interactive US Map of Breweries Canning Beer

To really show just how fast the canning of craft beers has taken off we have created an interactive map of the US featuring breweries by state currently canning their beers. The map is linked to the canned beer database and will automatically update when new breweries are added.

Mousing over a state will show a list of the breweries in that state - currently 33 states have craft beer in cans! Clicking on a state will take you to the database listing of all the beers available from the breweries there. At this time the database features 79 different craft brewers.

As always, if you know of a beer or a brewery we've missed please let us know via the Contact page. (Canada and the rest of the world are soon to come...)

You can see the map here.


Posted by Kelly



Monday, June 28th 2010

What makes it a can of CRAFT beer?


Canned "pseudo-Craft" Beers

The amount of choice a consumer has in today's beer market is borderline ridiculous. Just to stay alive in this fierce market every brewer must do what they can to sell their product. This means you've got microbreweries selling brews that would appeal to people who usually drink Bud, Miller or Coors and then you've got Bud, Miller and Coors selling products that might appeal to those that drink craft beers. With all of that going on there is bound to be a "gray" area that needs to be recognized and defined, especially when it comes to craft beer in cans. 


Canned Craft Beers

Here are three helpful hints on how you'll know if that beer you're drinking is really a craft beer or just some fancy packaging from a huge industrial brewer:

*A craft brewery is defined as one that produces LESS than 2 million barrels a year.

This means that all the breweries like Bud, Miller and Coors are out regardless of what they produce. This includes beers like Shock Top and all of the Blue Moon varieties as well as a whole slew of other wannabes. 

*Most craft breweries are independently owned.

This means no Leinenkugel's as they are owned by MillerCoors. Be sure to check the label or website to find out who really brews your beer. 

*A craft brewery should be selling an all-malt product, which means that the beer they are producing is not being made from rice and/or corn or other adjunct ingredients.

This means no to brewers like Yuengling who use corn as a major ingredient in all of their beers. Cheap ingredients make cheap beer and life is too short to drink cheap beer. 

 

Of course nothing is this cut and dry so you can only imagine how subjective these "guidelines" can be. For instance, many brewers do use adjunct sugars to raise the alcohol levels of bigger brews (Belgians love their candy sugar) and not all craft breweries are independently owned by the employees. I guess I should sum this all up and say...

 


Posted by Russ



Sunday, June 27th 2010

Burning Can Beer Festival Video

Oskar Blues hosted their first "Burning Can" festival this weekend in their hometown of Lyons, Colorado. In attendance were 350+ people enjoying 35 canned brews from 12 different breweries in Colorado. A pretty amazing turnout all around and I only wish I could have been there to take it all in! 

Below is a video that was posted by The Daily Camera in which they speak with Chad Melis, the Marketing Director for Oskar Blues. Cheers!


from The Daily Camera

 



Posted by Russ



Friday, June 25th 2010

Upslope India Pale Ale
(Upslope Brewing Company)

Upslope is the newest member of the Boulder brewing scene and the only brewery in town to can their regular releases. As they only can two of their beers and don't distribute too far from home I was happy to trade a few local brews for some of these. Cheers!

 

From the Upslope site:

 

"Our IPA will appeal to the beer enthusiast who desires a bold, deep and bitter ale.  With a coppery color indicative of a traditional IPA, Upslope India Pale Ale has a complex malty character and is more well-balanced than most IPA’s, but still offers that bitterness that IPA lovers seek."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - slightly murky brown in appearance (which does go away with a little time) with some reddish tints when held to the light. The head never really appeared, it was pretty thin and then it sort of slunk away.

 

Aroma - wow, very interesting aroma. I can't help but smell Tootsie rolls, caramel, dark wheat toast, some slight piney notes (sort of like chocolate covered pine needles) and a bit of lemon. I really like the way this beer smells, its original but very inviting.

 

Taste - I can definitely tell you that the aromas translate into the flavors. This has a definite Tootsie roll sort of taste to it that combines with some bitter hops and lots of malt backbone. This has a nice bite to it in the finish and leaves your mouth a little dry and knowing its been assaulted by hops. The tastes all come together nicely in this brew. Well done!

 

Overall - it was definitely hoppier than I had expected and presented a lot more flavor than maybe I was anticipating. This was a solid beer albeit not the IPA that many of us have become accustomed to. This is an IPA with a great malt backbone and a unique hop flavor. Its very well balanced and its the type of beer that after two of them you absolutely love it. I wish I had more...

 

Would I buy more of it? - if I could I would! Great stuff from a tiny little brewery in Boulder, Colorado. If you can find their stuff definitely pick some up and support these guys.

 

Note - Upslope Brewing was founded by Matt Cutter and Dany Pages. Pages had been brewing in Ushaia in Tierra del Fuego in the very southern tip of Argentina before moving north. They started the brewery during the "hop crisis" and to get around this issue they imported hops from Pages' native Argentina and they continue to brew with Patagonian cascade hops to this day. 



Hops Scale:
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Upslope India Pale Ale
Style: American India Pale Ale
Brewery: Upslope Brewing Company
City: 
Boulder, Colorado  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: ???
Hops: Patagonian Cascade
ABV: 7.2%
IBUs: ???
Date: June 25th, 2010

Posted by Russ


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Thursday, June 24th 2010

Q & A with Rick Fredland
(CEO/President of Silipints)


Silipints just may be canned craft beer's new best friend!


An enterprising company in Oregon has come up with a product that could be the solution to a dilemma many of us have been encountering for some time. What to do when you're out in the woods or at a music festival that doesn't allow glass and you want to pour that can of beer into something before enjoying it? If you've brought along a Silipint, a pint sized cup made from silicone, you should be all set!

 

I contacted the folks at Silipint to try and learn more about their product and Rick Fredland, the company's President and CEO, was gracious enough to answer all of my questions. Cheers Rick! All the best to you and your company in the future!

 

(CC) How was the idea of the Silipint born?


(RF) To begin answering your questions we have to go back several years to the birth of our other business for which we make innovative and safe dog products. I know....wait for the connection... Tazlab, was the first company to make a silicone dog bowl.  Dishwasher safe microwave safe, oven safe, non-porous, and not off gassing (no BPA). In an attempt to make a promotional item for one of our trade shows we stumbled across the idea of a silicone pint glass.  After realizing that no one was doing such a thing, likely because of the high cost of doing it, we decided to go for it.

 


(CC) What varieties of Silipint are there?


(RF) Silipints come in any color that one can imagine and sent us a Pantone for.  At this time they are 16oz but stay tuned for new options......

 


(CC) I saw you do custom printing on your Silipints. Are there any breweries selling logoed Silipints?


(RF) Silipint is only officially a couple months old. We are making promotional pints for events, brew trails, company promotional items etc. We are not at this time working with any large breweries (but are open to the introduction). -

 

 

(CC) Since you guys are in Bend, Oregon people must be loving Silipints since they can take them into the outdoors! How has the community embraced your product?


(RF) Yes, we love getting out and in Bend they have been well received. They have been given out to runners, campers, and pending for the local Ale Trail.  Basically they are great anytime you don’t want to take glass.....and you want to drink....not only beer I might add.

 


(CC) What are your thoughts on craft beer in cans? Do you think Silipints and canned craft beer could be the perfect match for beer lovers who are outdoors or somewhere they can't bring a glass?


(RF) Any Craft beer is great! The fact that adding to the life/shelf life of beer in a can makes it more desirable in certain situations over a growler and less fragile than a bottle.  That to me is a winning combination.  I love drinking out of a can....and I think that a matching Silipint could supplement any craft beer drinking experience on the go.

 

 

 

(CC) What is something that people may not know about Silipints?

 

(RF) Many people ask what makes Silipints “better” than traditional pints glasses.  My first comment to people is that it is still a glass, it just happens to be something that adds to the functionality of being very difficult to break, dishwasher safe, microwave safe, food grade, non-porous and  BPA free. Not to mention the lack of clean up from broken glasses, the injuries from broken glass (see England, pint glass injuries) and their travel-ability.

 

 

The Silipints new website should be up and running sometime in the next week so be sure to check it out! 


Posted by Russ



Wednesday, June 23rd 2010

Cisco Brewers
(Nantucket, Massachusetts)

Cisco Brewers released their ridiculously drinkable Whale's Tail Pale Ale in cans for the first time this year and right in time for the beach season here in New England. These bright blue cans are sure to get some attention and the beer inside is a very approachable, and sessionable, English-style pale ale. Grab some of these before they're all gone.  

 

Here is a little more information about this brewery and their canned offerings:

 

Brewery Name - Cisco Brewers

 

Location - Nantucket, Massachusetts, USA

 

Year Brewing Began - 1996

 

Annual Beer Output - @ 1,000 bbls

 

History - "Cisco Brewers was founded by Randy and Wendy Hudson. Randy and Wendy had the good fortune to meet up with Dean and Melissa Long who owned a winery on Nantucket. The Long’s needed helpers and Randy and Wendy needed a place to live, so they moved into the loft over the winery in May of 1992. 

 

When Randy and Wendy started selling beer, the entire operation-except the cold room, which was cooled by an air conditioner-was outdoors in the Lon’s back yard. Wendy always called the original setup a “nano-brewery” because althought they dreamed about it, they certainly were not yet a “micro.” Many people thought it looked like they were making moonshine and they were right! Cisco Brewers had the distinction of being America’s Only Outdoor Brewery."

 

Nowadays they have a more modern facility and a few more staff to help them out but it certainly was a rocky road to success. If you are ever in Nantucket be sure to visit Cisco and if you happen to be at Boston's Logan Airport you can stop in for a pint between flights at their brewpub in Terminal B.

 

Distribution - MA, NJ, CT, DC, DE, RI, MD and NY


Number of Beers Canned - 1

 

Whale's Tail Pale Ale - solid brew with a nice malty profile and slightly sweet, citrusy hop flavors.  This is "An amber English-style ale that has a nice balance between hops and malt. It's the most popular of our beers and the most versatile in terms of pairing with food or people."

 

 

Cisco Brewers Media Resources


  


Posted by Russ



Wednesday, June 23rd 2010

Harpoon Summer Beer
(Harpoon Brewery)

You have to hand it to Harpoon, putting their Summer Beer in cans this year was a smart move. I've heard nothing but good things from people at package stores (beer stores) when it comes to how fast these cans have been moving. Now, if only I had a nice Kolsch glass....

 

From the Harpoon site:

 

"Harpoon Summer Beer is a Kolsch style ale. Originating in the Rhineland city of Cologne (Koln), Kolsch ales have the characteristics that many people associate with lager beers. Kolsch is brewed with an ale yeast, but like other northern German light ales, it is straw gold in color and light bodied. The flavor is mild. The hopping levels provide a crisp, dry finish that make this beer particulary refreshing."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - light golden, straw colored almost with a decent sized light and airy white head. Looks a lot like a golden or blonde ale.

 

Aroma - slight hints of citrus and hops actually along with some grainy and straw notes. Very light aroma but pleasing nonetheless.

 

Taste - super smooth going down with a nice tangy citrusy aftertaste. Nice malty flavor for such a light-colored beer. I really like the slight bit of citrus that Harpoon's Summer Beer provides, its very refreshing. This medium to light-bodied ale would certainly be a great candidate for a day at the lake or beach. 

 

Overall - This beer was a bit of a surprise as I wasn't expecting it to be quite so good! Its not another hum-drum boring summer brew, this is a solid flavorful beer with some real character. Another beer that won't be left in the cooler at the end of the day/night.

 

Would I buy more of it? - yes, I definitely will be getting a 12-pack for this weekend's camping trip up in Vermont.

 

Availaility - April through August

 

Note - Kölsch waiters (Köbes) in traditional pubs are allowed, and indeed expected, to speak the local dialect and to use fairly rough, unrefined language, which might include crude jokes with the customers. In keeping with serving tradition, the Köbes in such pubs will also continue to exchange empty Kölsch glasses with new ones unprompted until customers leave their glass half full or place the beermat upon the glass to signal that they no longer wish to be served. - from Wikipedia



Can Scale:
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Harpoon Summer Beer
Style: Kolsch
Brewery: Harpoon Brewery
City: 
Boston, Massachusetts  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: ???
Hops: ???
ABV: 5.0%
IBUs: 28
Date: June 23rd, 2010

Posted by Russ


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Labels: Kolsch


Wednesday, June 23rd 2010

Harpoon Brewery
(Boston, Massachusetts)

After almost 25 years of brewing Harpoon has just this summer released two of their beers in cans. From what I've been hearing they've been flying off the shelves as New Englanders flock to their lake houses, out to the Cape and Islands or to the Maine coast and need easily portable good beer. Its great to hear that cans are becoming so widely accepted. Imagine what the response would have been if they had started off with cans instead of bottles back in the mid-80s. 

 

Here is a little more information about this brewery and their canned offerings:

 

Brewery Name - Harpoon Brewery

 

Location - Boston, Massachusetts, USA

 

Year Brewing Began - 1986

 

Annual Beer Output - @ 130,000 bbls (most in New England besides Anheuser-Busch)

 

History - The Harpoon Brewery was founded on the Boston waterfront in 1986 by three Harvard classmates. The brewery was the first company to obtain a permit to manufacture and sell alcohol in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in over 25 years. Harpoon started with the three founders and one employee (a brewer); today there are about 90 employees.

 

Distribution - MA, NH, VT, ME, RI, CT, NY, NJ, OH, IN, IL, MI, DE, MD, DC, PA, VA, WV, NC, SC, TN, KY, AL, GA, FL


Number of Beers Canned - 2

 

From left to right:

 

Harpoon Summer Beer - "Harpoon Summer Beer is a Kolsch style ale. Originating in the Rhineland city of Cologne (Koln), Kolsch ales have the characteristics that many people associate with lager beers. Kolsch is brewed with an ale yeast, but like other northern German light ales, it is straw gold in color and light bodied. The flavor is mild. The hopping levels provide a crisp, dry finish that make this beer particulary refreshing."

 

Harpoon IPA - "The high hopping of Harpoon IPA is not only noticeable in the nose but especially in the finish. The lingering bitter finish of this beer is not harsh or astringent, but crisp and pronounced. This is created, in part, by dry hopping – a technique that involves adding fresh hops to the conditioning beer to provide a fresh hop aroma. This beer is floral, medium bodied with an aggressive, clean hop finish."


 

Harpoon Brewery Media Resources


  


Posted by Russ



Tuesday, June 21st 2010

Harpoon IPA
(Harpoon Brewery)

When I lived in Boston a few years back and I was at the bar and couldn't find something new and exciting on tap I'd usually resort to getting Harpoon IPA. Pretty much ever bar in the city had it on tap and it was my back up beer. It was a bit of a surprise when I first heard they'd be putting it in cans but I guess it only makes sense, Harpoon IPA is the company's flagship brew and people love the stuff. Why not make it a little more travel friendly for all those outdoorsy folk here in New England? So here we are!

 

From the Harpoon site:

 

"The high hopping of Harpoon IPA is not only noticeable in the nose but especially in the finish. The lingering bitter finish of this beer is not harsh or astringent, but crisp and pronounced. This is created, in part, by dry hopping – a technique that involves adding fresh hops to the conditioning beer to provide a fresh hop aroma."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - big, bold golden color with some auburn shades and a nice inch of fluffy head which leaves some lacing streaking downward.

 

Aroma - sweetened lemon juice, oranges, some earthiness, freshly cut grass, dried hops and bread dough. 

 

Taste - definitely earthy, grassy, more subdued potency with the hops but a decent amount of sweet citrus flavor comes through. The caramel maltiness provides a very strong back to this, almost encroaching on the hops and taking the leading role. As far as flavor goes, this is a very clean tasting IPA without too much of a bite but just enough hop presence to remind you of what you're drinking.

 

Overall - Harpoon's IPA will remind the staunchest hopheads more of an English-style IPA than a bold, piney, grapefruit-ey American one. Regardless of that, this is a very solid and very easily enjoyed brew that will make hands leaving the icy depths of a cooler very happy. 

 

Would I buy more of it? - I am actually going to be picking up a couple 12-packs tomorrow to bring on a camping trip this weekend. Its affordable and will please the whole crew of people that are going. I might also pick up some of their Summer Beer as well.

 

Note - Harpoon IPA, the Brewery's most popular beer, started out as a summer seasonal beer in 1993. Customers quickly demanded that the beer become available at all times. In 1994, Harpoon IPA became a year-round beer.



Hops Scale:
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Can Scale:
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Harpoon IPA
Style: American India Pale Ale
Brewery: Harpoon Brewery
City: 
Boston, Massachusetts  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: 2-row pale and ?
Hops: Cascade and ?
ABV: 5.9%
IBUs: 42
Date: June 22nd, 2010

Posted by Russ


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Tuesday, June 21 2010

Q & A with Luke Livingston
(Baxter Brewing Company)

Just a few weeks ago Luke Livingston drove a shovel into the ground outside an old mill building in the town of Lewiston, Maine. With this almighty gesture, albeit a symbolic one, the future home of Baxter Brewing Company was officially made public and Maine's only canning craft brewery was one step closer to opening for business. Luke was kind enough to answer a few questions for us during a time in his life in which he is ridiculously busy and for that we are very thankful. Cheers Luke! I am looking forward to cracking open a can or two of your beer in just few months!


Baxter Brewing groundbreaking, Luke is in the middle

(CC) Tell us a little about yourself. Where did you grow up, go to college and what are your other beer-related hobbies?

(LL) I grew up in the town of Auburn, Maine (Lewiston’s twin-city) where I moved from Washington D.C. at the age of seven. After graduating from Edward Little H.S. in Auburn, I spent my freshman year of college at Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove, PA and the next three years at Clark University in Worcester, MA where I received my BA with a double-major in communications and film. My other beer-related hobbies, besides drinking as many different craft beers as I can get my hands (and my wallet) on, would be yes, some homebrewing (my brother bought me my first homebrew kit for my 21st birthday) and I actually launched and wrote BlogAboutBeer.com in August of 2007, which I’m in the process of selling right now. But that’s sort of how I fell backwards into the beer industry.


outside the future home of Baxter Brewing Company

(CC) What made you want to open your own brewery and why in Lewiston, Maine?

(LL) Why did I want to open a brewery? I think it’s every homebrewer and every craft beer fan’s dream to open their own brewery. The way it happened for me – I left my job in college admissions here in Maine last spring after my mother passed away and I had one of those “life’s too short” sort of moments. And through the blog, I started to learn about the canned craft beer movement gaining momentum in Colorado and California and realized the void of canned craft bee in Maine and was able to pounce on the niche. It’s taken a little more than a year of very careful planning, capital raising and hiring but now everything is coming together and we should be in production early this fall.

The reasons I chose to open the brewery in Lewiston are many: first, as a community, Lewiston-Auburn is within an hour’s drive of something like 60% of the state’s population, so it’s easily accessible; it feels good to be able to give back to the community I grew up in; I had a number of built-in business contacts in the area (our accountant was my Dad’s first employer when we moved to Maine, our attorney served on the city council with my father for years and remains one of his best friends; I’ve known our landlord since we moved to Maine and he served on many Boards of Directors with both of my parents, etc.); and probably most importantly, if we were to have located Baxter Brewing Co. in Portland (Maine’s largest city), for instance, we would be just another face in the crowd, where there are already half-a-dozen production breweries. But here in “L/A”, we’re the only ones – we’re a big fish in a small pond.

 

(CC) Baxter will initially be canning two of their beers. What are those beers and what other brews might we look forward to?

(LL) Our first two beers will be Stowaway IPA – a heavily-hopped, West Coast-style IPA, very unique to the state of Maine – and Pamola Xtra Pale Ale; a very easy-drinking “session” beer, with subtle hop presence and a complex but light malt character. It’ll be a great “lawn mower” beer, great for the backpack on a long hike.

We do have plans for plenty more in the future – year-round beers, seasonal releases and special one-off and keg-only recipes. We haven’t made any definite decisions on the future styles yet – we’re concentrating on getting the first two out the door ASAP – but I can tell you that we’re going to try and incorporate as many different Maine-grown ingredients as possible and the idea for Maine berries, maple syrup, Fresh Maine-grown hops, and even Allen’s Coffee Brandy has been thrown around. So stay tuned!


inside what will eventually be a beautiful brewery

(CC) If you could do a one-off limited release extra special beer what might it be?

(LL) Oh I can’t answer that – I don’t want to spoil the surprise!

 

(CC) Where will people be able to find Baxter's beers?

(LL) The plan is to distribute our beer throughout the State of Maine from our first release in October of this year through the end of 2010 and then begin to expand into the rest of New England – first Massachusetts and then New Hampshire and Vermont – early in 2011. After that, well the sky’s the limit. I hope. Our beer will be available both from a retail point of sale (all in cans) and on draught in bars and restaurants around the state. We’ll also have beer for sale at the brewery itself (along with plenty of other apparel and schwag) and are exploring the possibility of filling full kegs and 5L “party kegs” for sale at the brewery, too.

(CC) Tell us something we might not know about Baxter Brewing Company?

(LL) The “moose with wings” in our logo is actually the creature Pamola (also the namesake of our Xtra Pale Ale); an Abanaki legend of a creature who was the guard of Katahdin, the God of Thunder and the bringer of cold weather. According to legend, Pamola had the head of a moose, the body of a human and the wings and talons of an eagle.

 

Baxter Brewing Company Media Resources

  



Posted by Russ



Monday, June 21 2010

The Cans of Summer!

Summer is here! Today's the day that marks the beginning of that oh so glorious season of sunshine, warmth, campfires, sunburns, trips to the beach, baseball games, disc golf, (insert your favorite summer activity here) and plenty of nice cold beer. Below are 7 canned craft beers that are sure to make your summer even better!

From left to right:

Sunlight Cream Ale (Sun King Brewing Company) - this pint can is Sun King's "most approachable beer and is a great introduction to the world of Craft Beer. Cream ale is one of the earliest styles of American beer, but was virtually wiped out by American lager brewers. Our Cream Ale is an all malt beer. Only the finest quality barley, wheat and oats are used to give this beer it’s smooth malt profile which is delicately balanced with American hops and a cool fermentation to give this beer a crisp, clean finish."

Summer Honey Ale (Big Sky Brewing Company) - a very limited summer canned release. Summer Honey Ale from the folks in Missoula is "a full flavored, refreshing summer seasonal ale. Brewed with a unique, balanced blend of spices, Northwest Hops, and Montana honey. Summer Honey is brewed during the early days of spring and released around the first of May each year. Light colored, light bodied, and very drinkable, Summer Honey sacrifices nothing to create a flavorful beer that can be enjoyed during the height of the Summer."

Summer Beer (Harpoon Brewing Company) - offered in cans for the first time this summer. Harpoon Summer Beer is "a light-bodied, golden ale that is brewed in the Kolsch style. It originated centuries ago in the German city of Cologne. Clean, clear, and crisp - it makes an ideal summer beer."

Summer Solstice Cerveza Crema (Anderson Valley Brewing Company) - the first of a trio of canned brews Anderson Valley now offers. Summer Solstice "is a silky, creamy dream. It’s malty, very mildly hopped, and lightly sweet, with a delicate hint of spice for that oh-so-drinkable, extra velvety flavor. A cool beer for the heat, whatever your latitude!"

Bikini Blonde Lager (Maui Brewing Company) - a very flavorful and full-bodied lager from the island of endless summer. "This blonde lager is what sailors really swam to shore for; it’s light, with very little bitterness and a slight malt finish."

In the sky:

Sunshine Wheat (New Belgium Brewing Company) - New Belgium's Sunshine Wheat is "is a great beer for trouncing thirst.  Yet, it has a depth of character that inspires a quiet moment’s reflection. Sunshine Wheat swirls in the mouth with ripples of coriander and orange peel tartness, settling nicely into a tranquil sea of apple and honey tones.  A filtered wheat beer, Sunshine offers a crisp, refreshing alternative to heavier-bodied heffe-weizens."

Nude Beach Summer Wheat (Stevens Point Brewing Company) - another newly canned summer arrival. "Nude Beach is the perfect summer pleasure.  Available only during the warm months of summer, this lively and unfiltered wheat ale is well balanced using “au naturel” raw and red wheat, then delicately finished with Yakima hops.  With a refreshing light flavor, Point Nude Beach is perfect while enjoying summer activities or just hanging out with friends.  Clothing optional."

CHEERS TO SUMMER!

 

 


Posted by Russ



Saturday, June 19th 2010

Sun King Brewing Company
(Indianapolis, Indiana)

Sun King Brewing Company is just over a year old and has had great success in their native Indiana. They are the first production brewery in Indianapolis since 1948 and the only one in the state that cans their beers. Those tall boy cans you see above are selling like...well, like tall boy cans of great beer and things are looking good for Sun King! 

 

Here is a little more information about this brewery and their canned offerings:

 

Brewery Name - Sun King Brewing Company

 

Location - Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Year Brewing Began - 2009

Annual Beer Output - @ ? bbls

 

History - There is a great write up about the relatively short (yet long) history of Sun King on their site. Definitely check it out!

 

Distribution - Indiana

Number of Beers Canned - 2

From left to right:

 

Osiris Pale Ale - "Osiris Pale Ale is an assertive American Pale and is not meant for the timid. Crafted by our Brewers for our Brewers, Osiris blends three choice varieties of American hops to create a spicy, citrus hop punch that is sure to satisfy any hop head. Every batch of Osiris is dry-hopped towards the end of fermentation for maximum hop flavor, aroma and character."

 

Sunlight Cream Ale - "Sunlight Cream Ale is our most approachable beer and is a great introduction to the world of Craft Beer. Cream ale is one of the earliest styles of American beer, but was virtually wiped out by American lager brewers. Our Cream Ale is an all malt beer. Only the finest quality barley, wheat and oats are used to give this beer it’s smooth malt profile which is delicately balanced with American hops and a cool fermentation to give this beer a crisp, clean finish."

 

Sun King Brewing Company Media Resources


  


Posted by Russ



Friday, June 18th 2010

Scape Goat Pale Ale
(Big Sky Brewing Company)

Big Sky released their Scape Goat Pale Ale in cans for the first time about a month ago. These guys have now released four of their beers in cans and I'd imagine that since Scape Goat was a limited release that all of those cans are now spoken for. Hopefully for those of you in Big Sky country you'll see more canned Scape Goat soon! Cheers!

 

From the Big Sky site:

 

"Scape Goat is our award-winning Pale Ale. It is a very smooth brew, refreshing and well-balanced. Scape Goat took home the Gold Medal from the North American Brewers' Association competitions as the best English-style pale ale brewed west of the Mississippi, but only because it is the best."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - dark golden amber/copper color with a solid inch of white foam sitting on top and some nice lacing as well. Clean and clear. Sometimes the condensation on the outside of a glass of beer just makes your mouth water!

 

Aroma - slightly citrusy, orange peel, caramel, dark bread, biscuity and some hints of earthy hops. Very inviting! 

 

Taste - tangy sweet and citrusy. This is definitely on par for an English-style pale ale with the malt leading the way and the hops a little more subdued. Plenty of caramel malt flavor and some of that citrusy orange-peel bitterness coming in at the end. Its got a rather dry finish that really leads you right into another sip. It goes down almost too easy which is always a great sign! 

 

Overall - Absolutely delicious and the type of beer that I'd love to have a cooler of when hosting a barbecue or sitting around an early evening campfire. Something about this style of beer being canned just seems to work really well. I'd say Scape Goat made the transition from bottles to cans pretty much flawlessly and the flavor is probably even fresher from the can.

 

Excellent brew from the good folks at Big Sky. If you are lucky enough to spot any of these left on the shelves be sure to snatch them up because if they aren't already gone they will be soon. 

 

Would I buy more of it? - totally, this is a great brew to sit around a campfire with or bring with you tubing or kayaking. No complaints...at all.

 

Note - Scape Goat cans were limited to just a few markets as well as sold directly from the brewery. I'd be interested to know how the canned version tasted compared to the bottled version and just how quickly all the cans were bought up!

 


Can Scale:
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Scape Goat Pale Ale
Style: American Pale Ale
Brewery: Big Sky Brewing Company
City: 
Missoula, Montana  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: Pale and Crystal malts
Hops: East Kent Goldings and Crystal hops
ABV: 4.7%
IBUs: ???
Date: June 18th, 2010

Posted by Russ


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Labels: Pale Ales


Friday, June 18th 2010

Anderson Valley Brewing Company
(Boonville, California)

Anderson Valley Brewing Company has been putting its award-winning beers in bottles for almost 25 years yet its only been the last year or so that they've started offering some of those beers in cans. It all started with their Summer Solstivce Cerveza Crema last summer and this year they've followed up with their Poleeko Gold Pale Ale and Boont Amber Ale. Hopefully we can look forward to seeing even more of their beers in cans. Also, if you ever make it to Boonville, California be sure to bring your Boontling dictionary and your disc golf discs as Anderson Valley has an 18-hole disc golf course which you can play for $5 and once finished you get a $5 coupon good for anything (including beer) in their gift shop. Oh yeah, you can also buy their beer to drink while playing. How awesome is that! 

 

 

 

 

Here is a little more information about this brewery and their canned offerings:

 

Brewery Name - Anderson Valley Brewing Company

 

Location - Boonville, California, USA

 

Year Brewing Began - 1987

 

Annual Beer Output - @25,000 bbls

 

History - "Founded in the town of Boonville in 1987, Anderson Valley Brewing Co. was one of the pioneers of the American craft brewing movement. Solar powered since 2001 and brewing with the pure waters of the Anderson Valley (in Mendocino County)". The brewery also has a small hop farm, tasting room and of course the kick-ass disc golf course. Earlier this year Anderson Valley was sold to HMB holdings (a company with after 22 years of private family ownership. They brewed 700 barrels of beer their first year in operation and now produce over 35 times that amount.

 

Distribution - 39 states and counting. If you want to know where to find Anderson Valley beers near you go HERE

Number of Beers Canned - 3

From left to right:

 

Poleeko G old Pale Ale - "When the phrase “California Style Ale” is used, Poleeko Gold Pale Ale is the one that comes to mind. The golden color and generous use of Pacific Northwest hops establish a distinct style, separate from any domestic or European beers. Our honey-gold pale ale is crisp and clear, with an unusual lightness and dryness for such a full-flavored ale. The arousing abundance of hops adds both a floral bouquet and a lively, citrusy finish. It is excellent alone, or with full-flavored meals and spicy dishes."


Boont Amber Ale - "Boont Amber Ale is a medium bodied pale ale with a beautiful copper color, a robust head, and the rich flavor of caramel malt. This very smooth and exceptionally drinkable beer is excellent with steaks, chicken, pasta, and other flavorful meals."

 

Summer Solstive Cerveza Crema - "This copper colored ale is smooth, malty, and lightly sweet, with a delicate hint of spice for that oh-so-drinkable, extra velvety flavor. The character is lighter in body than its cousin, our wildly popular Winter Solstice Seasonal Ale . This is a silky, creamy dream, perfect as a warm weather beer. But why call it Cerveza Crema? Two reasons: One, this beer has become a favorite among many of our Hispanic friends, so it’s named in their honor. Two, it sounds cool, and cool is what you want when its hot. Serve at 40 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit for the most optimal flavor and enjoyment. ¡Salud!"

 

Anderson Valley Brewing Company Media Resources


  


Posted by Russ



Thursday, June 17th 2010

Summer Honey Ale
(Big Sky Brewing Company)

Big Sky's Summer Honey Ale had a very limited, Missoula-only, canned release. I really want to thank the good people at Big Sky for sending me a couple cans of this and their Scape Goat Pale Ale. I never would have had the chance to try either of these two canned brews if it wasn't for your generosity, so cheers! 

 

From the Big Sky site:

 

"When the days get longer and the air gets warmer, we get outside quite a bit. And we build a big thirst. Summer Honey helps us shake off the winter and slakes our thirst for a refreshing brew. Summer Honey is a full-flavored summer seasonal ale. Brewed with a unique, balanced blend of spices, Northwest Hops, and Montana honey. Summer Honey is brewed during the early days of spring and released around the first of May each year. Light colored, light bodied, and very drinkable, Summer Honey sacrifices nothing to create a flavorful beer that can be enjoyed during the height of the Summer."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - big, bright and sunny! This beer pours very golden in color, almost shiny with a relatively small head. Clean and clear in appearance and ready to be consumed.

 

Aroma - grainy and sweet. What smells like corn and wheat as well as hay is combined with a tangy cereal aroma. It reminds me of Honeycomb cereal a bit in the smell.  

 

Taste - malty sweet, definitely a honey profile, very smooth and quite flavorful for such a light colored brew. Lots of cereal/grain flavors as well as that touch of honey sweetness that provides a tanginess to this beer that maybe sets it aside from others in this style category. Light on the tongue with a nice sweet finish. 

 

Overall - Like many Blonde Ales the real plus to this style is its simplicity and ease of consumption. This is the type of brew that if its in the cooler and its a warm day than you can expect them to go quickly. Plenty of flavor but oh so drinkable. 

 

Would I buy more of it? - maybe if I lived within a few blocks of Big Sky and could go back in time.

 

Availability - May (summer seasonal release)

 

Note - Big Sky released their first video "brewsletter" earlier this month. Definitely check it out as they talk a lot about their new state of the art can filler and the recent release of both their Summer Honey Ale and Scape Goat Pale Ale in cans. 

 

 

 


Can Scale:
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Summer Honey Ale
Style: Blonde Ale
Brewery: Big Sky Brewing Company
City: 
Missoula, Montana  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: ???
Hops: ???
ABV: 4.7%
IBUs: ???
Date: June 17th, 2010

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Labels: Blonde Ales


Thursday, June 17th 2010

Upslope Brewing Company
(Boulder, Colorado)

Upslope Brewing Company is the new kid on the block in beer-centric Boulder. They are also the only ones canning their regular releases. In a place like Boulder where the populous is very "eco-conscious", as well as active and outdoorsy,  Upslope has found a niche as well as success. 

Here is a little more information about this brewery and their canned offerings:

Brewery Name - Upslope Brewing Company

Location - Boulder, Colorado, USA

Year Brewing Began - 2008

Annual Beer Output - @2000 bbls

History - Upslope was founded by Matt Cutter in 2007. In early 2008 he met his eventual head brewer Dany Pages. Pages had moved to Colorado from his native Argentina where he had founded the Beagle Brewery in the far, far southern Patagonian town of Ushaia. Cutter leased some space for the brewery that spring and the two began finalizing recipes for what would become their Upslope Pale Ale and Upslope IPA. By Thanksgiving all systems were go and Upslope was brewing, canning and selling their beers. They continue to brew with imported Patagonian cascade hops which were more readily available during the infamous, and short-lived, American "hop crisis" of '07-'08. If you ever find yourself in Boulder you can visit the brewery, get a tour and try some Upslope brews in their taproom. Upslope will celebrate it's 2nd Anniversary this November. Cheers!

Distribution -  CO

Number of Beers Canned - 2

From left to right:

Upslope Pale Ale - "This clear, crisp, dry pale ale is our signature beer. It’s refreshing characteristics, and signature dry finish, blends smooth malt flavors with a unique spicy hop bitterness.  This will be the “go to” beer on any camping trip, fishing excursion or music festival."

Upslope India Pale Ale - "Our IPA will appeal to the beer enthusiast who desires a bold, deep and bitter ale.  With a coppery color indicative of a traditional IPA, Upslope India Pale Ale has a complex malty character and is more well-balanced than most IPA’s, but still offers that bitterness that IPA lovers seek.

Upslope Brewing Company Media Resources

    



Posted by Russ



Thursday, June 17th 2010

Liquid Amber Ale
(Prescott Brewing Company)

The one and only Prescott Brewing Liquid Amber Ale. This is the only brew canned by Prescott and it is available in the greater Phoenix area for around $8.49 a six-pack. Its also sold at a lot of golf courses which is yet another reason to love craft beer in cans!

 

From the Prescott site:

 

"A medium-bodied ale, with a rich, malty flavor. Brewed with added caramel malt for a rich, amber color. Cascade & Tettenang hops round out the profile of this flavorful brew.."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - dark golden in color with about a half inch of head adoring the pour. Some red and yellow hues come out in the light and I'd have to say this looks like a pretty delicious beer. 

 

Aroma - brown bread with honey, molasses, caramel treats and bran muffins. This is a malt lovers dream. 

 

Taste - the first thing this beer reminds me of is raisin bran cereal. It has a lot of that bran malty flavor along with some raisin sweetness. If you love malty brews than I think you'll be happy with this one. There is a lot of caramel taste to this as well as dark bread and butter and the overall taste of a brewery. It may sound strange but all of that comes together to form one nice, yet very malty, beer. 

 

Overall - if you love caramel flavors and big maltiness then this brew is sure to satisfy. There is a lot of sweet malty flavors and aromas associated with this amber ale so if you're a malt head you'll love it. Personally I liked it for all those reasons and found it very smooth and tasty. 

 

Would I buy more of it? - I might actually as this would be a good brew to have while sitting around the campfire or in the backyard around the fire pit. 

 

Note - Prescott Brewing is celebrating 16 years of beer loving fun this year so if you happen to be in the Phoenix area be sure to stop in for a pint or two!


Can Scale:
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Liquid Amber Ale
Style: American Amber/Red Ale
Brewery: Prescott Brewing Company
City: 
Prescott, Arizona  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: ???
Hops: Cascade & Tettenang
ABV: ???
IBUs: ???
Date: June 17th, 2010

Posted by Russ


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Thursday, June 17th 2010

Upslope Pale Ale
(Upslope Brewing Company)

Upslope is the newest member of the Boulder brewing scene and the only brewery in town to can their regular releases. As they only can two of their beers and don't distribute too far from home I was happy to trade a few local brews for some of these. Cheers!

 

From the Upslope site:

 

"This clear, crisp, dry pale ale is our signature beer. It’s refreshing characteristics, and signature dry finish, blends smooth malt flavors with a unique spicy hop bitterness. This will be the “go to” beer on any camping trip, fishing excursion or music festival."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - pale golden in color, sort of straw like and slightly opaque. A thin wispy white head crowns this beer with some lacing inside the glass. 

 

Aroma -  caramel sweetness with just the eenciest hint of hops. Some buttered toast smells come through along with faint aromas of black pepper and freshly cut grass.

 

Taste - definitely on the lighter side of hoppiness when it comes to American Pale Ales. Some nice peppery flavors combine with some citrus and plenty of caramel maltiness to bring about a very nice full-flavored beer. 

 

Overall - more than anything I'd have to say that Upslope's Pale Ale is rather neutral. It has no real defining flavors or aromas, it just sort of is. I don't know how else to describe it. Its a very non-offensive beer that I really think would go over well at a party full of randoms. Hell, its a great beer for a long afternoon of pitching horse shoes or shooting the shit and making some new friends and if that isn't enough it comes in a nice shiny package that is sure to intrigue anyone (including your cat). 

 

Would I buy more of it? - not sure just yet. I think I need to try the Upslope IPA before I make a call on that.

 

Note - Upslope Brewing was founded by Matt Cutter and Danny Pages. Pages had been brewing in Ushaia in Tierra del Fuego in the very southern tip of Argentina before moving north. They started the brewery during the "hop crisis" and to get around this issue they imported hops from Pages' native Argentina and they continue to brew with Patagonian cascade hops to this day. 



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Upslope Pale Ale
Style: American Pale Ale
Brewery: Upslope Brewing Company
City: 
Boulder, Colorado  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. bottle
Malts: Rahr malts
Hops: Patagonian Cascades
ABV: 5.8%
IBUs: ???
Date: June 17th, 2010

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Labels: Pale Ales


Thursday, June 17th 2010

True Blonde Ale
(Ska Brewing Company)

It's a hot and humid night so what better beer to relax with than a nice easy drinking blonde ale. If you put a couple of these on ice I think you've got the perfect accompaniment to summer.  

 

From the Ska Brewing site:

 

"A crisp Blonde Ale. Golden in color, medium in body—she’s brewed with the help and the honey of Durango ’s Honeyville bees."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - bright golden yellow, almost looks like a pilsner. A rather thin powdery head adorns this pour with some little bubbles streaming upwards adding a little excitement to the mix.

 

Aroma - a little grainy and corny along with a syrupy sweetness and some bread dough aromas. 

 

Taste - sweet and tangy. Lots of malty sweetness is joined by the flavors of creamed corn, honey, caramel, biscuits and some slight but noticeable citrus flavors. Its a very pleasant mix of flavors that leads to a very easily consumed can of beer. Blonde Ales are known for being non-offensive and this one certainly fits the mold. A little hop bitterness in the aftertaste is a nice way to finish this brew. 

 

Overall - solid Blonde with a nice malty body and some nice citrusy crispness that makes it a great summertime brew. As the style goes I'd say this is spot on and sure to please the masses. If you get the chance definitely give it a try and share some with your friends be they beer geeks or not. 

 

Would I buy more of it? - I hear they do a mixed pack of Ska cans and that would definitely be a worthy investment for any weekend of outdoor activities. This one would be the perfect beer to start with before going on to the others.

 

Note - Ska Brewing Company takes its name from the founders love of Ska music. Go figure. Bands like the Toasters play on theirs website so you can "skank" while learning more about the brewery. Ska currently cans four of their brews. Look for their ESB Special Ale, Modus Hoperandi IPA and Euphoria Pale Ale which are also in cans. Cheers!

 


Can Scale:
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True Blonde Ale
Style: Blonde Ale
Brewery: Ska Brewing Company
City: 
Durango, Colorado  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 12 oz. can
Malts: ???
Hops: ???
ABV: 5.3%
IBUs: 39
Date: June 17th, 2010

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Labels: Blonde Ales


Wednesday, June 16th 2010

21st Amendment announces Back in Black coming to cans this summer!

21st Amendment announced today that Back in Black, their previously draught only style-defying Black IPA, will indeed be hitting shelves this summer. Back in Black will join Hell or High Watermelon Wheat Beer and Brew Free! or Die IPA as the third year-round, canned offering from the California brewery. I can't wait to try the first canned Black IPA! 

 


From the 21st Amendment Facebook page 


Posted by Russ



Wednesday, June 16th 2010

Abrasive Ale
(Surly Brewing Company)

I am pretty excited about finally getting my hands on a few cans of Surly's newest hoppy creation. It was hard to have to put the cans in the fridge to cool down before I had the chance to crack one open but it was all worth the wait. 

 

From the Surly site:

 

"We brewed this beer originally at the end of 2008 as a farewell to growler sales. As usual, we underestimated the demand for the first Double IPA in Minnesota. We brewed the beer again in the spring and released it as a draft only beer."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour - dark golden in color with some super bright orange and reddish streaks shining through as I hold the glass up to the light. The head is super creamy and about a half inch in thickness. Wow, this looks fantastic. 

 

Aroma - as soon as I popped the can open I could smell the piney notes. Definitely a sign of good things to come. There are also a lot of tropical fruit aromas coming out of this as well. I find myself smacking my lips every time I go in for another whiff. Mango, pineapple, pine needles and nectarine. I'd like to dive right in, but metaphorically and literally. 

 

Taste - ahhh...the palate is drenched and the fun begins. Definitely a hoppy brew but yet its not one-sided and just a boat load of hop bitterness. This has character and balance and its definitely high octane. You can feel the weight of this brew in your mouth and all that sweetness backing up those 120 IBUs. Very smooth mouthfeel (see that bit about oats below) and a bit of back and forth between bitter and sweet in the aftertaste. Absolutely delicious!

 

Overall - impressive to say the least and certainly living up to the hype (as much as a beer can these days). Surly delivers a very solid, very hoppy yet super smooth brew that stands apart from Furious as its own breed of IPA. It has an incredible aroma and a tangy and bitter flavor profile that has a bite but should be tamed easily by any experienced hophead. Lots of amazing tropical fruit flavors come out in this brew and I must say its ridiculously manageable at just under 10%. I think you'll be very happy if one of these should end up in your hands.

 

Availability - April 

 

Would I buy more of it? - absolutely. I love it just like I loved Furious and pretty much everything else they brew. Give me a four-pack of these and I'd be a happy camper. 

 

Note - Abrasive Ale was originally called 16 Grit, a sandpaper gauge, which was a nod to the Abrasive factory (that was actually run by Surly's founder Omar's parents for 35 years) that Surly now calls home. Also, on their site Surly refers to this beer as a "Double Oat IPA", something I've never seen or heard of before. But maybe all those oats lend to this brew being so damn smooth.



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Abrasive Ale
Style: Double/Imperial India Pale Ale
Brewery: Surly Brewing Company
City: 
Brooklyn Center, Minnesota  
Country: 
United States  
Container: 16 oz. can
Malts: Pale Ale, Golden Promise and Oats
Hops: CTZ bittering extract, Amarillo and Columbus
ABV: 9.7%
IBUs: 120
Date: June 16th, 2010

Posted by Russ


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Tuesday, June 15th 2010

New DC Brewery to Can their Brews

The citizens of our nation's capital have long taken issue with their being taxed without representation. If that wasn't enough they've also suffered through a long drought of being unable to call a brewery their very own. Well, the time has finally come. DC residents can take solace in the fact that they will soon be able to go into a beer store and buy beer brewed within the borders of their fair city. Say hello to DC Brau Brewing Company. I would be remiss if I didn't mention the fact that they'll also be canning their brews! 

Although not quite into their new DC digs just yet, Brandon Skall and Jeff Hancock have finished fund raising and are planning on having their brews on the shelves by the first day of 2011. Between now and then they'll be pretty busy. The next 6 months will involve moving into their new location and all the things that come with getting a brewery off the ground. The good news is they have plenty of experience in the beer world.

Jeff brings to the table a long resume of brewing know-how. He has brewed at four different breweries, including Flying Dog in nearby Frederick, Maryland. Brandon brings to the table beverage industry management skills and will take care of the day-to-day operation side of things. The two may have a lot of work ahead of them but if their website says anything about their organization and planning skills I think we can all look forward to a successful brewing venture and some great beers.

Speaking of beers. DC Brau's main brew will be their Public Ale which is an American Pale Ale. According to their site:

"Public Ale™ is a delicious easy drinking pale ale made from a simple recipe of quality grain and top notch American hops. Tawny hues of caramel and amber are a trademark of the Public ale as well as a delicious spruce crispness resulting from a beautiful abundance of hops! This beer will be produced throughout the year and serves as the foundation of our product line."

They also plan to can The Citizen, a Belgian-style pale ale, and Corruption Ale™ which will be an IPA. Along with these canned releases they also plan to do a limited release series as well as a few seasonal offerings. 

 


DC Brau's can mock-ups from their site

I am sure the folks in the DC Metro area are already looking forward to these brews and what DC Brau will bring to the growing craft beer movement in their neck of the woods. Congrats to Jeff and Brandon on making their dream come true! Until their brews roll off the lines be sure to:

Check out their Website

Follow them on Twitter

"Like" them on Facebook



Posted by Russ



Saturday, June 12th 2010

Q & A with Jamie Gordon
(Cask Brewing Systems)

Ever had a can of Dale's Pale Ale? What about a Surly Bender or a Caldera IPA? Tell you what, name any craft beer you've ever had in a can and I bet you that Jamie Gordon, and the company he works for, have had something to do with it. 

Jamie is a Technical Sales Representative with Cask Brewing Systems, based in Calgary, Alberta. These are the guys that design, build and set-up the canning systems/lines that put all your favorite craft beers in those nice, neat little aluminum packages.

It wasn't that long ago that the idea of a small canning line would have been laughed at (quite loudly) but my how things have changed. Nowadays business is booming and Jamie is a super busy guy.

He is currently helping the folks at Milwaukee Brewing Company set up their new canning line, which they'll be using to put two of their brews into 16 oz. cans. He was nice enough to take some time to answer a few questions of mine. Thanks so much Jamie! I know you are very busy so I really appreciate it.

Here we go...

(CC) Briefly tell us a little bit about yourself and how long you've been with Cask Brewing Systems.

(JG) I’ve been with Cask Brewing Systems for over 25 years and got my start in the brewing business as a homebrewer and then a homebrew supply shop owner in Montreal which I opened in 1983.

 

(CC) How many US/Canadian craft breweries to date has Cask Brewing Systems supplied canning equipment to?

(JG) I’ve lost track of the total. (CraftCans - we'll say around 100 - or pretty much ALL of them!)


(CC) You told me before that an absolutely astounding 96% of all craft breweries canning their beer do so with Cask Brewing Systems equipment. That is an incredible percentage. To what do you guys attribute this? Who is your "competition"?

(JG) Basically nobody ever thought about building “micro” sized canning machines until we stumbled on the idea back in 2000. At the time we were building them to solve another problem: the horrendous packaging issues that our BOP (U-Brew) customers were suffering through. Their shelf life sucked and it was directly attributable to the fact that their customers were responsible for washing and reusing their bottles. So we though the best way to eliminate the problem was to use a single use disposable package. After we sold about 70 of those manual systems to BOP’s we started getting calls from small breweries and that’s when it hit us: maybe there was a market for this in the craft brewing industry.

Our only competition at the moment tends to come from the European or Chinese manufacturers of much larger systems. Nobody builds units as compact as ours and at a cost that suits the 500 bbl to 50,000 bbl breweries.

 

(CC) Who was your very first client and when was that? Whose been your most recent client(s)?

(JG) Our first customers were Canadian BOP’s (Brew on Premise) – our first craft brewery customer was Yukon Brewing way up in northern Canada. Our first U.S. customer was Oskar Blues' in Lyons (Colorado) – and we all know how well Dale did with that...


(CC) I seem to read a lot about the initial costs for brewers wanting to invest in canning equipment and that it can be a deterrent for small breweries. Is that true? Can we expect the costs to go down in the future?

(JG) Our manual systems are $15,000 – our automated lines start at $81,500. So even 500 bbl breweries can afford to get started with a table top manual unit.

 

(CC) What do you see as the most positive benefits of putting beer in cans over bottles?

(JG) Depends on your perspective: from the environmentalists point of view it’s the shipping weight of the finished product (almost half of what it is in glass bottles) and the infinite recyclability. From the brewer’s point of view it’s the protection of the flavour of his product until it arrives in the hand of his customer – total UV light protection, impermeability, low air, etc... from the customers point of view it’s just the convenience: I can take a good craft beer anywhere I go now without having to worry about breakage. 

 

(CC) As craft beer drinkers are becoming more widely accepting of good beer in cans where might this "trend" take us?

(JG) SO far we’ve only seen the 12 and 16 oz (and a few 500 ml European) can formats used by craft breweries. I think we are going to start to see other formats (8 oz for special high alcohol barrel aged products, 24 oz...) used over the next year...who knows...maybe even some newer formats altogether.

 

Cheers Jamie!

So, the next time you are enjoying a can of craft beer be sure to think of Jamie and the folks at Cask Brewing Systems. If it wasn't for them, and their risky step into uncharted territory, the canned beer revolution would likely not be taking place! 

For more information about Cask Brewing Systems you can go to CASK.COM


Posted by Russ



Monday, June 7th 2010

Get Surly! Surly Brewing Company iPhone Application


Image from Apple/Surly Brewing Co.

Have an iPhone? Need Surly beer? Live in an area where they distribute? If you answered yes to all three of those questions then you obviously need the Get Surly! iPhone app. Unfortunately if you don't live within a 50 mile radius of their distribution area this app will simply make you unhappy and sadly tell you "Surly is not in this area yet. Please check back as we expand." In fact that's all it does since it uses your current location to show which bars and stores sell Surly via a Google map.

But, if you do live in the current area of the United States which does sell Surly beer then you may actually find use for this rather simple app. For the rest of us we can make due with the current web version which will tell you exactly how far away you need to travel to find the closest place that does carry them. (Mainly in the Great Lakes region: Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois etc.)

Get Surly! is free and available on the US iTunes store here.


Posted by Kelly


Labels: iPhone Apps


Saturday, June 5th 2010

BREWSHOES reviewed!


the official "Beer Drinking Shoe" of CraftCans.Com


Not long ago I posted something about Brewshoes, a shoe-making partnership between Rogue Ales and Rogue Shoes. Since that post I've acquired a pair and feel it is my duty as a beer lover, and shoe wearer, to let everyone know what I think. Since the only format I know for reviewing a product is for beer I figure I might as well go with what I know...with a few small necessary changes.

 

 

From the Brewshoes site:

 

"Wind down from a long week in the Brewshoes(TM) by Rogue The Walter loafers. Canvas upper in a slip-on casual loafer style with a round, moc toe and fused seaming. Double elastic side gores create easy slip-on fit. Contrast stitching. Cushioning, removable insole, flexible topstitched midsole. Durable rubber traction beer bottle-patterned outsole."

 

Here we go...

 

Pour/Look - love the dark "mocha porter" color of the canvas as well as the highlighted orange stitching. I had a pair of Sanuks before and I have to say these look like they are made a lot better and will hold up a lot better. The insole reads "ye olde fermented footwear" and underneath, if you take it out, there is a printed outline of a beer bottle that reads "carpe beverage". Love it. I also can't forget the awesome rubber sole that will have you leaving little beer bottles wherever your feet may take you. I really can't say enough about how much I love the look of these shoes. All the little details are there and should please any beer lover. 

 

           

 

Aroma/Durability - that brand new shoe smell is kicking right now. A nice combo of clean rubber and canvas. The memory of my first pair of Converse All Stars comes flooding back! I plan on wearing these all summer (and probably until it snows) so its good to know that they also have a 3M coating that will prevent any beer that should escape from your glass from leaving a stain. Hopefully the aroma of these will be bearable a couple months from now! 

 

Footfeel/Comfort - thrusting my foot into these is like putting my hands into a well worn pair of leather gloves. They are super comfortable and lightweight and just wrap around my foot perfectly. I was told to go up a half size as they run small and I am glad I did. I am usually a 10 and these 10.5s feel just right. Walking around all day in these has been a nice break for my feet and I am happy to report that they are ready to repeat the event tomorrow and all next week while I am on vacation up in Maine and probably every day after that for quite some time. 

 

 

Overall - I love everything about these shoes. They seriously speak volumes for my love of beer and comfort and the attention to beer-y detail is hilarious and right up my alley. Time to kick back and relax, put up my Brewshoes and have a pint! 

 

Would I buy more of them? - absolutely, I love these and want a pair of the leather ones, aka "The Dude", as well. They are comfortable yet feel like a nice durable pair of slip-ons. Plenty of beer is going to be drank in these let me tell you.

 

 

 

Note - Brewshoes "The Walter" retail for about $55 online. They also make "The Dude", a leather version, that sell for about $70.


Also, be on the lookout for a few new styles later this fall. I was told that they'll be releasing "The Dude IBU" which has "a tumbled full grain leather upper" and will retail for $75 as well as "The Dude – Canvas Quarter" which will have "a leather forefoot and canvas quarter panel" and will retail for $65.  


You can find Brewshoes online at The Territory AheadSahalie and Shoes.com as well as a few other online retailers. They are are also available at DSW and Off-Broadway retail locations and several small shoe stores.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

all pics by craftcans.com  


Posted by Russ


Labels:


Saturday, June 5th 2010

Bohemian Brewery and Apa Sherpa put first (canned) craft beer on Everest

 

Salt Lake City, UT - May 22, 2010 8:14am - Apa Sherpa breaks his own world’s record by summiting Mount Everest for the 20th time at 8:34 a.m. Saturday taking the first craft brewed beer with him. Bohemian Brewery's Viennese Lager and Czech Pilsener were there with Apa on the entire journey to the summit of Mt. Everest. Apa’s goal in climbing this year was to help efforts to increase educational opportunities in the Khumbu Region, which includes the areas around Mount Everest and Bohemian Brewery was there to support Apa in his goal. This is the first time a craft beer has been taken to the summit of Mt. Everest. This is the first time a craft beer in a can has been taken to the summit of Mt. Everest.

 

In a statement Apa prepared in anticipation of reaching the summit, he said, “I am thankful to have been able to climb Mount Everest for the 20th time. I climbed this year to raise awareness about the Apa Sherpa foundation, which is dedicated to increasing educational opportunities for people in the Himalayan Region. I also climbed to bring attention to the damage done to the Himalayas because of global climate change.”

 

About Bohemian Brewery

 

Bohemian Brewery is a craft brewery based in the Salt Lake Valley in the community of Midvale with a production of 2000BBL a year.

 

Bohemian Brewery
94 East Fort Union Blvd

Salt Lake City, UT 84047

www.bohemianbrewery.com

(801) 566-5474

 

Bohemian Brewery offers it's european style lagers for sale at finer restaurants, bars and grocery stores throughout the state of Utah on draft and in a recyclable eco-friendly can.

 

About Apa Sherpa and the Apa Sherpa Foundation

 

The Apa Sherpa Foundation was recently organized as a nonprofit organization to help Apa extend the educational opportunities that his children have to his fellow Sherpa in the Khumbu. For more information, go to Apa Sherpa Foundation


Posted by Russ



Thursday, June 3rd 2010

Caldera Brewing Company
(Ashland, Oregon)

This relatively small brewery in southern Oregon was the first brewery in the state to can their beers. If you love canned IPAs, or IPAs in general, you've probably heard of Caldera IPA. It's one of the better hoppy brews out there. Well, their other two canned offerings aren't bad either. If you get the chance to pick any of them up don't pass it up! If you happen to make it to Ashland you can also grab a few pints and some food at their brewpub, The Caldera Tap House.

Here is a little more information about Caldera and their canned offerings:

Brewery Name - Caldera Brewing Company

Location - Ashland, Oregon, USA

Year Brewing Began - 1997

Annual Beer Output - @2,600 bbls (2009)

History - Caldera Brewing "was incorporated March 12, 1996. The first brew was July 4, 1997 and the first keg sold was August 28, 1997. Caldera self-distributed its products for the first six years. In November 2003, Caldera partnered up with Gold River Distributing in Southern Oregon and Mt. Hood Beverage Company in the Eugene and Portland markets to expand its business.

For the first eight years, Caldera was draught only until June 2005 when the Pale Ale was put into cans. Caldera is the first microbrewery in the State of Oregon to brew and can its own beer."

Distribution - CA, ID, MO, OK, OR, TN, VA

Number of Beers Canned - 3

From left to right:

Caldera Pale Ale - "A West-Coast style pale ale balancing plenty of hops with a malty backbone." - This is a very drinkable brew and I mean that in every way possible. Its simple yet flavorful, hoppy and extremely well-balanced.

Caldera IPA - "An American-style India Pale Ale brewed with plenty of body and an assertive hop profile." - Fresh hop flavors are well preserved in the can and the overall drinkability is excellent.

Ashland Amber Ale - "A crisp well balanced refreshing amber. Simplicity is the key to this recipe." - I could definitely enjoy this in multiple amounts. I love the flavor that this imparts and the great balance that it has with the PNW hops used.

Caldera Brewing Company Media Resources


  

 


Posted by Russ



Wednesday, June 2nd 2010

Ska Brewing Company
(Durango, Colorado)

Ska Brewing was the second brewery in Colorado to put their beers in cans. You know who the first was. They first put their ESB Special Ale in cans back in 2003. Today, these guys have some of the most recognizable cans on the market and they're filled with great beer to boot. Ska continues to grow, they've recently put in a new canning line which they bought from the folks at Oskar Blues, and expand their distribution so if you aren't seeing their beer on your local shelves now, you might be soon.

Here is a little more information about Ska and their canned offerings:

Brewery Name - Ska Brewing Company

Location - Durango, Colorado, USA

Year Brewing Began - 1995

Annual Beer Output - @12,000 bbls (2009)

History - From what I can gather Ska Brewing came about when two guys that weren't old enough to buy beer, but drank a lot of it, and listened to a lot of ska music decided it was up to them to brew better beer and conquer the world. So they did and still do. 

Distribution - AZ, CO, IL, NC and NM for now.

Number of Beers Canned - 4

From left to right:

Modus Hoperandi IPA - It's old man bitter. A mix of citrus and pine that will remind you of the time you went on a vision quest with your Native American cousin and woke up in a pine-grove full of grapefruit trees. Modus Hoperandi, an IPA sitting at 6.8% ABV and 65 IBUs.

ESB Special Ale - This English Special Bitter is our “Special Ale.” Special because it is one of only a handful of canned microbrews in the nation. Special be cause the Galena hops and pale ale malts create a crisp first sip, a hoppy tongue, and a malty sweet finish. Though “bitter” is part of the name, “better” would be a more accurate term. Fresh and lively, this canned beer suits the needs of any outdoor enthusiast. Like it says on the can: Fish, Luau, Golf, Raft, Toboggan. Ska can!

True Blonde Ale - A crisp Blonde Ale. Golden in color, medium in body—she’s brewed with the help and the honey of Durango ’s Honeyville bees.

Euphoria Pale Ale - This (winter) seasonal beer is brewed in the Do It Yourself (DIY) spirit along with our friends from Bayfield at the Venture Snowboard Factory. An India Pale Ale, the Euphoria is crafted with piles and piles of Golding hops to provide a unique spicy finish. Great for after hitting the slopes.

Ska Brewing Company Media Resources


  



Posted by Russ