Posts ByJordan Palmer – PorchDrinking.com
One of the first things you’ll notice about this beer is the sleek jet black bottle. One of the first things you’ll wonder about is the name: Bonanza Theater. So, let’s cover that first. Wellspent Brewing Company, which opened on March 2, 2018, is located in a beautiful, century-old building that was home to a movie theater a hundred years ago. There is still some evidence of the old movie theater at this new brewery. As you walk in, you’ll still find the marquees, fully restored to their former glory.
“It opened in 1907 and was called the Bonanza Theatre,” said Kyle Kohlmorgen, owner of Wellspent Brewing.
The latest brew from St. Louis’ 4 Hands Brewing Company comes just in time for a palate switch up. After getting my fill of bourbon barrel stouts the past few weeks, I’m ready for the switch to big coffee stouts. In the case of St. Louis beer lovers, we have two biggies coming out, both with a common link: St. Louis’ own Sump Coffee Company. One of which being 4 Hands’ Single Origin.
Katy was the beer that introduced me to 2nd Shift Brewing Company, back in late 2013, when they were based in New Haven, Missouri. Their reputation proceeded them, as I had been looking to try their beers in St. Louis, but had no luck until I found Katy at a house beer tasting event for Pedal The Cause.
Schlafly is releasing a Barrel Aged Barleywine, the last “From The Ibex Cellar” series of 2018. The Schlafly Ibex Cellar series is one for which I’ve grown antiquated since my first visit to the Ibex Cellar in 2017, located beneath the historic Schlafly taproom in downtown St. Louis with friend and local brewing legend, Stephen Hale.
Beer fans routinely face a learning curve when presented with new beer styles, including variations on IPAs, such as New England, Milkshake and the latest trend—Brut IPA. So, to be better understand “Bruts,” Rob Abel, head brewer at Ferguson Brewing (St. Louis area) offers insight into the increasingly popular style of IPA.
The saddest day of my entire beer-loving life arrived last spring when I opened the door of my old college dorm room beer fridge, and out came my only remaining bottle of 4 Hands Brewing Absence Of Light ’17. In slow motion, the bottle teetered out of the fridge, falling to its death just six inches below. I moved as fast as possible, but I could not catch the neck from slamming into the concrete floor, causing the glass to shatter, ejecting the brown, frothy goodness directly into laundry drain. The scent of Peanut Butter Stout wafted into the air as I stared down at the brown liquid disappearing into the abyss. It was a sad day. Needless to say, I replaced that fridge. But, I was afraid I could never replace that beer — until now.
Ah, ’tis season of winter beers. As the days and nights turn colder in the northern parts of the nation, the bite in the air invites us to turn from the lighter beers of summer to the bigger, bolder and richer beers designed to be sipped by the fire, enjoyed with hearty menus or served at warmer temperatures.
The three most popular winter styles, outside the realm of barrel-aging, involve stouts, porters and brown ales. While most can adequately describe stouts, the differences between porters and brown ales are often misunderstood. To better understand the styles, I asked some breweries in the St. Louis region to provide clarity on the topic.
First, a piece of advice. Do not speed as you travel the picturesque country roads of southern Illinois. The first reason is, of course, the cops. The speed limits drop quickly from 55 to 35 as you near and enter the small farming towns along Highway 158. The second reason is the simple beauty of the drive. Country roads should be cherished and with the debut of Lieferbräu Brewery as a reward for heading in this direction, you’ll be driving with a smile the whole time.
Some call it a trend, some call it a craze. But for me, it’s the style that has added a new layer of fun to beer.
The style I speak of goes by many names. New England style IPAs, Hazy or Juicy beers, and now, I’m even starting to see “Juicy or Hazy Pale Ales” and even “Juicy or Hazy Imperials and Double India Pale Ales.” The more the merrier.
Urban Chestnut Brewing Company’s annual Oktoberfest St. Louis returns for its eighth year on Friday, September 28 through Sunday, September 30 at its Midtown Brewery & Biergarten. The festival will span three full days, but with a brand new theme “Biergarten to Big Top” and other new surprises.
New beer styles don’t come along every day, so when I first stumbled upon the new, increasingly popular Brut IPA, I wanted to know more. So, I reached out to Rob Abel, head brewer at Ferguson Brewing: “The Brut IPA is a new IPA, the rationale for that name is that much like Brut champagne is extremely dry, the IPA is extremely dry, having zero residual sugar left.”
Maybe it’s me, but it feels like there is so much new beer coming into St. Louis that I’m not sure where to begin. Just last week, we got word from our friends at Craft Republic that Off Color Brewing, based in Chicago, would now be released in St. Louis.
It’s August. Most of the country is still experiencing summertime heat. But, I’m writing tonight to talk about fall beer. Yep, fall beers. In this case, it’s Urban Chestnut‘s two-year-old Oktoberfest Lager with a funny name — Oachkatzlschwoaf.
This malty yet well-balanced Märzen may be tough to pronounce, but it’s easy to drink. Its full name is pronounced “oh-khut-zel-schvoaf,” which translates to “tail of a squirrel”… I hear it’s a just a little Bavarian humor. But, you can simply refer to it as “O-Katz,”
If you have never had a sip of anything from Schlafly’s Ibex Series, I highly recommend you start. Schlafly Beer first introduced this series of premium beers in 2017. Since then, the series has provided new, handcrafted beers from what is known as the Ibex Cellar.
In art, a collaboration between artists is where we, as consumers, are rewarded with a new and unique piece of original work. In the context of beer, a collaboration between brewers is where we, as beer drinkers, are rewarded with new and unique brews to drink.
Are you enjoying the cider renaissance?
It is real, but up until now, I pretty much ignored ciders as nothing more than a decent option for those who wanted beer, but couldn’t have one due to gluten or sugar issues. Boy, was I wrong! After seeing the opening of St. Louis’ first cidery, I’m ready to give this ancient beverage a chance.
Love. We all need love, right? I love a few things in life. Aside from my beautiful wife and the kids she claims are mine, my other great loves are biking and beer, or beer and biking. Now, in St. Louis it’s impossible to have one ‘favorite’ brewery, but I do have one favorite bike shop. I’ve been buying bikes from Mike Weiss and Big Shark for 20 years. They are MY bike shop. So, when I learned that my favorite bike shop was teaming up with one of my favorite breweries — Urban Chestnut, I may have teared up a bit. Really. A tear was shed.
It saddens me a bit that back in 1992 when I tried my first craft beer — a Schlafly Beer Pale Ale; I did not have the foresight to realize I was tipping back something special. I didn’t know that it would not only mean something to me 27 years later but inspire me to write about it.
As we finish up another year of beer, it’s time to look ahead to what we’ll be pouring, sipping and loving in 2018. I’ve reached out to a few of the Midwest’s best brewers to see what we can expect from them in the next Year of Beer.
As we finish up another year of beer, it’s time to look ahead to what we’ll be pouring, sipping and loving around the Midwest in 2018. I’ve reached out to a few of our town’s best brewers to see what we can expect from them in the next Year of Beer.
Up in Hannibal, MO, the team at Mark Twain Brewery is gearing up for some serious growth.