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AboutDavid Nilsen – PorchDrinking.com

Posts By David Nilsen

Knead a Beer? This New Book Is Full of Great Beer Bread Recipes

March 26, 2020 |

Lori Rice is here to save us from lackluster beer bread.

In many beer bread recipes, the brew itself is an afterthought. The recipe will recommend adding “beer”—type unspecified—in place of water, and since most people will reach for a light lager in these moments, they might as well have just used water in the first place.

Rice’s new book Beer Bread: Brew-Infused Breads, Rolls, Biscuits, Muffins, and More (Countryman Press) tears down the tyranny of mediocre beer bread recipes and offers over 60 exciting alternatives in which beer plays a significant role in the finished flavor.

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Lady Justice Brewing Won’t Let a Virus Ruin Their Grand Opening

March 24, 2020 |

As breweries across the country close their doors to wait out the Coronavirus crisis, Lady Justice Brewing Company is planning a grand opening.

This Colorado brewery has lived a nomadic existence since its founding in 2015 and finally closed on a new permanent taproom in Aurora in February 2020, weeks before the virus changed American life. Founders Betsy Lay, Kate Power and Jen Cuesta planned to open their doors on April 18, but now the trio is exploring what it means to launch a taproom when no one is allowed to visit.

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Eudora Brewing | Le Cheval Magique

March 23, 2020 |

Amid the familiar IPAs, stouts, and lagers on the tap list at Eudora Brewing Company in Dayton, Ohio, sits an outlier, a Belgian charmer full of muscular grace. Le Cheval Magique is a Belgian Golden Strong Ale that balances expressive yeast character and formidable strength with deceptive drinkability. This “magic horse” is light on its hooves, but at 8.5% ABV, you’d best treat it with respect if you don’t want to get thrown from the saddle.

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Seedstock Brewery | Bohemian Dunkel

February 4, 2020 |

“Brewing is really in our blood,” says Ron Abbott, founder and brewer at Denver’s Seedstock Brewery. His brewery offers classic Czech-style lagers and periodically revives obscure historical styles rarely brewed on these shores, keeping his familial traditions alive.

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Land-Grant Brewing | Stargazer Black IPA

January 29, 2020 |

Land-Grant Brewing Company in Columbus, Ohio, has launched a new beer celebrating the career of astronaut and Columbus resident Dr. Katharine D. Sullivan. 

While Dr. Sullivan had been to the Land-Grant taproom before this partnership, she’s not normally a big beer drinker, says Land-Grant co-founder and Creative Director Walt Keys. He points out though that the accomplished astronaut is “always up for trying new things.”

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David Nilsen’s Best Beer of 2019: Ohio & Midwest

December 23, 2019 |

2019 was a fun year for me in the beer world. I attended the Great American Beer Festival for the first time, published a lot of articles and drank a lot of great beer.

Here are my thoughts on the best beer of 2019, and the many happenings that occurred this past year in the world of craft beer.

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Beer Buyer Profile | Sara Stathes of The Barrel House

December 12, 2019 |

Sara Stathes co-owns The Barrel House in Dayton, Ohio, with her husband, Gus. The Barrel House is a beer bar and bottle shop with 17 beer taps and shelves stocked with amazing bottles and cans, and it’s become something of a second living room for Dayton beer lovers. Sara is the beer buyer for The Barrel House, and folks like Sara who are in charge of buying packaged and draft beer have a unique perspective on what’s popular in the beer world at any given moment. I sat down with her recently to get her insight about craft beer in 2019.

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Little Fish Brewing Talks About Consent

December 9, 2019 | 1

Ohio’s Little Fish Brewing has partnered with a non-profit group supporting survivors of sexual assault to promote the importance of consent.

For the last two years, this brewery from the small college town of Athens has worked with Survivor Advocacy Outreach Program (SAOP) to release Consent, a barrel-aged sour ale brewed with tea. The beer was released on draft during Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) in April, and was released in bottles for the first time during the last week of November.

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Christmas Classics | Great Lakes Christmas Ale

December 9, 2019 |

The annual release of Great Lakes Brewing Co.‘s Christmas Ale is a big deal in Ohio, and that excitement extends all the way up to the man responsible for its creation.

“When I take a sip, it’s like I’m wearing a sweater,” says Pat Conway, co-founder of Great Lakes in Cleveland, Ohio.

His brewery first brewed Christmas Ale in 1992, but Conway is still like a kid on Christmas when asked about this celebrated holiday seasonal. The beer helped define the Christmas beer style for the early craft beer movement.

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PorchDrinking’s Thanksgiving Beer Pairings

November 19, 2019 |

Thanksgiving is nearly upon us. Or—as your aunt insists on calling it—Turkey Day. Of course, this day involves a lot more to eat than just a large bird and therein lies the challenge when it comes to Thanksgiving beer pairings. Which beers are flexible enough to work well with the cornucopia of flavors and textures we enjoy on this holiday?

Many guides to pairing with Thanksgiving dinner suggest course-by-course pairings with one beer matched with one particular dish. No one actually eats like that though. We pile our plates with as much food as we can fit and then dive in. Rather than match beers with dishes, I’ve outlined a beer pairing list that divides the day into stages and offers suggestions for each phase.

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Market Garden Brewery | Prosperity Wheat

November 4, 2019 |

Market Garden Brewery in the historic Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio, has made a name for itself on the success of an unlikely flagship beer for a modern craft brewery. Prosperity Wheat is a Bavarian-style Hefeweizen, and it won the gold medal for the style at the Great American Beer Festival last month.

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Grisette | The Grey Lady of Belgian Beer

October 24, 2019 | 1

The name “grisette” has popped up on brewery taplists more and more in recent years, but the style is still poorly understood by many. What is this curious little beer, where did it come from, and why is it growing in popularity? Turns out none of those questions have easy answers.

The popular origin stories for many historical beer styles are often festooned with fanciful narrative elements of dubious veracity. Ask any dudebro at a bar about how IPA was created and be prepared for a tall tale involving colonialism and sea commerce. The true story is often a little more complicated if it can be uncovered at all, and grisette’s backstory is no exception.

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Event Recap | Ohio Craft Beer’s Ale-O-Ween Offers Spooky Treats

October 23, 2019 |

Ohio Craft Beer’s Ale-O-Ween beer festival moved to a new location this year, but the spooky fun of this 4th annual event stayed true to its calling. Ale-O-Ween moved to the Dayton Convention Center this year after a couple years at The Steam Plant event center, and Ohio Craft Beer is hoping the event continues to grow into the larger space.

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Event Preview | A Comprehensive Guide to Ohio’s Ale-O-Ween

October 15, 2019 |

Leaves are falling, Ohio evenings are getting crisp and jack o’ lanterns are smiling from porches across the Buckeye state. It’s time for the Ohio Craft Brewers Association’s Ale-O-Ween in downtown Dayton!

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2019 Denver Rare Beer Tasting Brings Out the Elite During GABF Week

October 11, 2019 |

Utopias on Cherries. Coconut Brandy Medianoche. Millerzzzzz. 5 Candles.

If you’d thrown a dart at the pour list for Denver Rare Beer Tasting 11 at the McNichols Civic Center in downtown Denver last Friday afternoon, any beer name you hit … Read More

2019 Great American Beer Festival | Brink Brewing’s Incredible Success

October 10, 2019 |

Brink Brewing in the College Hill neighborhood of northern Cincinnati just opened in 2017, but they already have seven medals and awards from the Great American Beer Festival. In fact, they’ve never failed to medal in the three GABFs since their founding. Last week they brought home gold medals for their Hold the Reins English Mild and Moozie Milk Stout, as well as top honors for Very Small Brewing Company of the Year, which is awarded to a brewery producing fewer than 1,000 barrels of beer annually.

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2019 Great American Beer Festival | Obscure & Historical Beer Styles

October 8, 2019 |

Pastry stouts, hazy IPAs and rare sours tend to command most of the buzz at the Great American Beer Festival; the lines at brewery booths pouring those beers last week in Denver certainly attested to that. However, I chose a different tasting route for my festival experience. As I wandered the festival floor, I didn’t so much choose “the road less traveled” as much as an overgrown path forgotten by time: I wanted to taste as many obscure, historical beer styles as I could.

GABF offers a wonderful educational opportunity for anyone who wants to taste styles largely lost to history. Want to know what a gruit tastes like? Want to compare multiple export stouts or Dortmunder lagers beside each other? You’ll never have a better chance to do it than at GABF.
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GABF State Spotlight | The Best Ohio Beers

September 24, 2019 |

I’m just going to cut to the chase: We make some really good beers in Ohio, and if you’re going to the Great American Beer Festival in Denver on October 3-5, you’ll get to taste quite a few of them. To help you plan your tasting tour, here are some of my favorite Ohio beers that will be poured at GABF.

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Dayton Breweries Come Through Strong for Community

August 12, 2019 |

On the night of May 27, a powerful line of storms ripped across Indiana and Ohio. Numerous tornadoes caused considerable damage. The Miami Valley region of southwest Ohio, centered around the city of Dayton, was hit especially hard. Multiple tornadoes left parts of the city and surrounding communities in shambles. Lives were disrupted and families were displaced.

In the wake of the storms, countless area businesses and individuals came together to help those affected by the disaster. Dayton’s breweries were no exception.

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Oktoberfest Lagers | Märzen, Festbier & Autumnal Confusion

August 6, 2019 |

It’s the beginning of August, and by the inexorable laws of seasonal creep, that means it’s officially Oktoberfest season in taprooms and bottle shops across the country. Most folks assume the word “Oktoberfest” on a beer label or tap list refers to a particular style, but it’s actually a little more complicated than that. Let’s talk about how we got here, and then get into the details of what’s what with Oktoberfest lagers.

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