AboutJustin Pennel – PorchDrinking.com
People heavily involved with craft beer have been saying for quite some time that lagers were going to make a comeback and see gains in popularity. If you were one of those people, you were spot on and I applaud you. Lagers have been killing it in 2019 and it shows no signs of slowing down. Arizona Wilderness Brewing Co. isn’t new to the lager game, but they’ve been ramping up their lagering efforts lately. One of their more recent releases was a light lager called Camp Light.
Today is officially the first day of summer! With summer comes a multitude of fun activities, most being in the great outdoors. One activity many craft beer enthusiasts are gearing up for is beer festival season. Get out there and have some delicious beers and remember to stay hydrated! This is What’re Drinking.
Spring is officially in full swing and summer is just right around the corner. It’s the perfect time of the year to get outside and do some exploring. Three things that go well together this time of the year are the great outdoors, hiking and (of course) beer. After reading this, grab some of your favorite beers, find some trails and get up into the mountains.
For those of you that have been around the craft beer scene for a while, think back several years ago and it’s easy to see that many styles have come and gone. Even some of the styles that have stood the test of time have evolved over the years. One style, in particular, comes to mind: Black IPAs. This style was highly popular for a few years, then quietly phased out of many breweries’ lineups. However, Black IPAs have started to make a comeback in popularity.
Everyone has a favorite brewery, or a few of them. If the stars ever align and those breweries get together and brew a collaboration beer, then that’s about as good as it gets for a beer lover. In this case, …
When the temperature is well over 100 degrees, there are two places most people want to be: the pool or in air conditioning. The Arizona Craft Brewer’s Guild wasn’t able to host a beer festival pool party, so they did the next best thing and will be hosting Arizona’s premier craft beer festival, Real Wild & Woody, on July 28, 2018 in the air conditioning at the Phoenix Convention Center. In addition to a varied selection of brews, they’re bringing the great outdoors inside with an outdoorsy, camping theme throughout and a bunch of interactive games for attendees to play.
There are a lot of amazing IPAs out there these days, but something you don’t hear about as often is an amazing triple IPA. Triple IPA is not an official style recognized by the Brewer’s Association, but generally speaking, it is a high ABV IPA (typically double digits). Some IPAs that are 10% ABV or higher can be very boozy and wouldn’t be something you’d consider “easy drinking.” However, Wren House Brewing Company in Phoenix has cracked the code.
These guys have brewed a hazy triple IPA that is very easy drinking (almost too easy) not just once — but four times. Those four tantalizing IPAs are what you’ll find in their Wally’s World IPA series: Good Boy Wally, Bad Boy Wally, Sad Boy Wally and Where’s Wally. The beers were named after one of the founder’s dogs, Wally. Each brew ranges from 10%-11.2% ABV and drinks like the ABV is half that amount. Grab a mixed four pack, sit back and enjoy the series — just maybe not all in one sitting.
Anyone that’s familiar with the craft beer scene knows that San Diego is one of the best places in the country to go for a beercation. The official number of breweries constantly fluctuates, but there are approximately more than 150 operational breweries in San Diego County. That number doesn’t count the numerous satellite taprooms that many breweries have around town.
One thing that’s great about the San Diego area is that with the seemingly endless amount of breweries there isn’t a bad place to start your brewery tours, regardless of where you’re staying. Many breweries you probably already know, such as Modern Times, Coronado, Karl Strauss, Stone Brewing, Pizza Port and, well, there are so many it’s hard to name them all. San Diego offers several, diverse beer experiences. For instance, North Park has smaller, cozier taprooms and Miramar has larger (and sometimes massive) production breweries. So, here is a quick guide to just a small number of the area’s numerous breweries — some you know, some that may be new to you. We hope it helps you when you visit San Diego.
I feel fortunate as a beer nerd to live in Southern Arizona, Tucson specifically. The beer scene here has started to gain some national attention, but still largely flies under the radar. Tucson is a legitimate beer destination with 20+ breweries, drive out a little bit further and there are additional breweries in Tombstone, Bisbee, and Sonoita. The desert is definitely not dry here, so sit back and crack open a few delicious local brews.
Now that the holidays have come and gone, I’m sure many of us can look back and reminisce about some amazing food and beers we had. One of the beers that was the highlight of my holiday beer drinking, was Holly Jolly (AKA Christmas in a glass) from Green Feet Brewing Company. Green Feet has been open since the spring of 2016, so 2017 was Green Feet’s second time around brewing Holly Jolly. They somehow managed to up the ante from the 2016 batch, which was the best pecan beer I had tried.
Personally, one of my favorite beer styles is sours, but not everyone feels the same way I do. I could go on for days about all the different reasons that I like sours, but that still wouldn’t change the opinion of someone that doesn’t like the style. I believe that sours are like IPAs for people that haven’t tried very much of the style. When someone first tries IPAs they tend to be overwhelmed by the hoppiness and intense bitterness, and the same concept applies with sours. Not all beer drinkers are used to the mouth-puckering sourness you get from some sours and that can turn people off. By creating the Sour Beer Project Series, Kannah Creek Brewing Company set out on a mission to help introduce people to sour beers.
Welcome to the Wild West. No town represents that way of life better than the town too tough to die—Tombstone, Arizona. Many people know this town as one big tourist attraction, where you feel like you’ve gone back in time into the heart of the Old West. Nevertheless, though it is a rustic and historic town, the city is also home to one of the state’s top breweries—Tombstone Brewing Company. Tombstone has only been open a little over a year, but they have won over the taste buds of craft beer drinkers around the state, and with beers such as Little Baby Wyatt, the brewery is also appealing to the locals who usually prefer macro-brews.
Regardless of the time of year, when you’re spending time in the desert, it is important to stay hydrated, thanks to the dry climate and low humidity. The same concept applies to drinking beers in the desert—you want a beer that is refreshing and easy-drinking, particularly in the summer months when the daily temperature can easily exceed 110°F. This is a six pack that speaks to the lighter side of the desert culture.
In this day and age you can just about find an IPA around every corner. IPAs have evolved over time, but there will always be hop heads willing to try a brewery’s latest, freshest IPA. Unfortunately, making a delicious IPA that stands out from the crowd and doing so on a consistent basis is a challenging task. Borderlands Brewing Company out of Tucson, Arizona has been a fixture of consistency in the state of Arizona and recently received national recognition for one of their IPAs. Draft Magazine was kind enough to blind taste test nearly 400 different IPAs and came out with a top 50 list. Borderlands Brewing made that list at number 48 with their Toole Avenue IPA. Riding their wave of success on their flagship IPA, they are just coming out with their first canned double IPA—Sitting In A Tin Can.
Pueblo Vida Brewing, based out of Tucson, Arizona, is quietly producing some of the highest quality IPAs in the state. Part of the intrigue and mystery surrounding this quick riser could be attributed to the fact that Pueblo Vida doesn’t currently distribute outside of Tucson, nor do they regularly can or bottle any of their beers. However, recently they’ve started releasing two special release cans each month, which have quickly grown a cult following locally and around the beer trading community. After you try one of their beers, it’s easy to see why they’re gaining popularity. One of their releases for May and arguably the best beer they’ve canned so far is Monswoon IPA.