Posts ByJaclyn Menendez, Author at PorchDrinking.com
Some people call this magical time of year the holiday season. People who read this website probably know it more as Stout Season. But at Epic Brewing, it’s Baptist Season. And this year, they went big.
Epic Brewing, originating in Utah, is famous for being the state’s first brewery since prohibition to solely brew beer with a “high” alcohol content. Now, in Utah, that means something different than you’re probably thinking: Back in 2009 when Epic was founded, the Beehive State considered any beer above 4.0% ABV to be a “strong brew” and restricted those sales to state-run liquor stores (they’ve now increased that maximum up to 5.0%, those daredevils). But Epic Brewing didn’t just make strong beer by Utah standards; like most kids with strict parents, they rebelled and started making strong beer. Thus, in 2011, their Big Bad Baptist series was born: A Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout with coffee that was such a hit, the brewery turned it into an annual tradition and introduces new variants each year during Baptist Season.
Welcome back to Faces in Beer! In our new series, we take film photographs of brewers and develop the film in the beer they brewed.
In our first round, we featured Weldwerks Brewing Company, where we developed the brew team’s portraits in a variety of beer–including their famous Medianoche Stout. The results were beautiful, though we did hear from a few of you decrying our use of Medianoche for any purpose other than consumption. (We hear you–it hurt us too, but art is pain.) You can check those photos out here.
Welcome to Faces in Beer, one of PorchDrinking’s most ambitious projects ever.
Normally when a new writer joins our team, they go through a process where they cut their teeth on some easy first assignments–a beer showcase, or maybe an Ultimate 6er. Not Erik Stabile. Our newest writer pitched his onboarding project without hesitation: “I want to take film photographs of brewers and develop the film in the beer they brewed.”
Intrigued? So were we. Stabile explained he had been experimenting with developing photos in unconventional mediums and was ready to try craft brews. The pH of every beer is slightly different, and therefore each photo would theoretically reflect the unique makeup of that beer. It was going to be a temperamental process and potentially a giant failure, so naturally we were totally on board.
Introducing our new beer advice column, Dear Abbey. This is a chance for readers to send in questions about all things craft beer: brewery etiquette, bottle share protocol, style differences, you name it. No matter the topic, Abbey guarantees that she will always be right and will always be buzzed.
The progression of becoming a true craft beer snob is a subtle one but the path is marked by some key moments. You generally begin dabbling in IPAs, starting with a gateway local pale ale into becoming an expert on all things dank and/or hazy. Then you move onto Stouts—a bigger flavor profile, a bigger ABV and a bigger blow to your wallet. Most craft beer nerds will live in this Stout phase for a long time, perhaps expanding into Barley wines, maybe diverting over to Sours, but generally content to chase the whales and tip the scales between what is beer and what is actually just brownie batter. The mark of a true snob, though, is when you loop back around into the lightest and most overlooked styles that the industry has to offer: Pilsners.
By any measure, 1985 was a great year. Madonna’s “Like A Virgin” was blasting on every boombox, Back To The Future was blowing everyone’s minds in theaters, and yours truly was being born in the middle of Hurricane Gloria at a small hospital in Red Bank, New Jersey. Basically, the only cool thing that didn’t exist in 1985 was Hazy IPAs. New Belgium Brewing Company decided to pull a classic Marty McFly and rewrite history with their latest summer offering: Voodoo Ranger 1985 IPA.
Dialed in with WeldWerks | Neil Fisher on Flights, Fan Questions and the Worst Beer Weldwerks Ever MadeMay 6, 2020 | Jaclyn Menendez
Jake Goodman, the marketing and sales director at WeldWerks Brewing, was in the middle of answering a question about Juicy Bits when a loud thump thump thump reverberated through his Zoom audio. He paused and looked off-screen. “Hey, buddy, Daddy’s talking to his friends—can you please hold off on the drums until I’m done?” he asked his son. The camera cut back to a laughing Neil Fisher, the head brewer and co-founder of WeldWerks. A majestic pink dollhouse towered behind Neil; his children’s playroom had been repurposed into a makeshift interview corner. Welcome to “Dialed in with WeldWerks”.
Introducing our new beer advice column, Dear Abbey. This is a chance for you readers to send in your questions about all things craft beer: brewery etiquette, bottle share protocol, style differences, you name it.
No matter the topic, Abbey guarantees you that she will always be right and always be buzzed.
If you’re in need some beer advice, email Abbey at [email protected] and check back each month for new words of wisdom.
Idaho Springs may not be the central hub of craft beer in Colorado, but Westbound & Down Brewing Company is doing its best to change that. At 2019’s Great American Beer Festival, they took home three awards: silver medals in the Double India Pale Ale and Wood/Barrel-Aged Strong Beer categories, as well as Mid-size Brewing Company Brewer of the Year. Their Double India Pale Ale win was for their aptly named Westbound Double IPA, which was just recently added to their canning lineup. We tried this award-winning beer to see what exactly Westbound & Down Brewing did so well.
Mark your calendars, set your alarms, and prepare to apologize to your liver: the WeldWerks Invitational is returning for its third year on June 20, 2020, and we have the early details.
Having only launched in 2018, the WeldWerks Invitational …
When it comes to holiday beers, New Belgium Brewing had the market cornered for years with Frambozen: a medium-bodied brown ale awash with fresh raspberries and a delightfully festive pinkish head. The seasonal release was eagerly anticipated every year, and when they discontinued this brew back in 2015, I mourned the loss deeply.
Luckily, though, fans of the tartly fruited brown ale have been treated to new iterations of the classic over the past few years. An imperial version with cocoa was delightfully similar to the original, with subtle hints of chocolate that deepened the overall flavor without adding too much sweetness. I suspect it was the success of that iteration that brings us to the current limited release: New Belgium Brewing Foeder Frambozen.
For the past 20 years, Michigan’s famous Founders Brewing has walked the delicate line of balancing immense popularity, while maintaining high-quality craft beer. But in the past few days, a former employee’s lawsuit which was first filed last year has resurfaced to shed light on a disturbing trend of pervasive racism throughout the company.
Is there any movie more quintessentially Halloween than the 1993 classic Hocus Pocus? I’ve been watching it annually since I was a kid, but it’s even better now, because now I can drink beer at the same time. So let’s cuddle up with our talking cat, light that Black Flame Candle, and get to it: here are six beers to pair with the bewitching characters from the spooky film Hocus Pocus.
Ah, Juicy Bits: The beer that launched a thousand hazy IPAs. WeldWerks Brewing Co.’s Juicy Bits may not have been the original New England IPA (the whole “New England” part should have given that away), but it’s consistently at the top of the list in terms of popularity and praise. Its tropical juicy hops character and creamy mouthfeel, along with its relatively wide distribution in Colorado, make it the perfect go-to for both hardcore and new-to-the-scene craft beer drinkers.
Because of the immense success of Juicy Bits, WeldWerks has had a lot of fun experimenting with that base, seeing how far they can push the limit on hops, flavor and ABV. This beer showcase highlights their most recent invention: Citra Extra Extra Juicy Bits.
Welcome to the second installment in our new series! Untappd Potential is our chance to defend a beer that has a middling rating on Untappd, break down the negative user reviews and convince you to let your taste buds be the judge. (If you want some background on our inspiration for this series or more information on the Untappd app, check out our first article.)
Today’s contender: Avery Brewing Company’s Bug Zapper.
The second anniversary of Purpose Brewing was really, really hot. I don’t mean in popularity, though that would also be true: it was packed from the minute the doors opened at 2pm and stayed bustling throughout the entire weekend. But it was also one of the hottest days of summer so far in the Coloradoan city of Fort Collins, where Peter and Frezi Bouckaert opened their doors two years ago to a thirsty public. Despite the blistering sun outside, crowds stalked the air-conditioned tables inside and huddled up under tents outside to enjoy their beer in some shade. “Yes, it’s a million degrees out. And yes, I’m drinking a stout,” laughed one patron as he wiped the sweat from his brow. “But come on, have you tried this one?”
A few years back, Funkwerks Tropic King was somewhat of an undercover gem in the brewery-rich city of Fort Collins, Colorado. The Imperial Saison was locally made, had amazing depth, and had a reputation for being affordable while still dangerously high in ABV. Recently, though, as Funkwerks expanded their distribution far beyond Fort Collins, and Tropic King can now be found in ten states, the locals lost some of their bragging rights—until now. Funkwerks is no stranger to experimentation, and their latest unique offering is Barrel-Aged Tropic King, which is a local-only release.
What can be accomplished in six years? Well, it takes six years to watch all the movies made since 2003, six years to get some seriously aged cheddar cheese, and, if you’re a true PorchDrinker, six years to graduate college. Wiley Roots Brewing didn’t need six years to become one of the most talked-about Colorado breweries in the scene today, but as they celebrated their sixth anniversary last weekend, head brewer and co-owner Kyle Carbaugh could tell you that those years have been filled with their share of change.
Welcome, readers! We’re kicking off a new series called Untappd Potential. The inspiration came to us when we realized how many beer lovers have fallen into the routine of checking Untappd to see a beer’s score before deciding to try it or not. (If you’ve been living under a rock, Untappd is a popular networking app for beer drinkers to check in and rate what they’re drinking. It aggregates scores on a scale of 1-5, and drinkers can rate in increments of .25.)
I’ll be honest, we were a little nervous about WeldWerks Invitational 2019. Last year’s inaugural festival came out of nowhere with its world-class breweries and ultra-rare pours, and quickly became one of the most talked-about and celebrated beer events of …