One of my earliest craft beer memories is drinking Duck-Rabbit’s Milk Stout. For a fledgling crafty, it was a great way to break into the scene and has stuck with me to this day. Which is perfect, because today we’re taking it up a notch with one of Duck Rabbit’s latest concoctions: Oh, No Let’s Go! Cacao Milk Stout.
Most people’s experience with sake is at the Hibachi grill when the chef sprays it into your mouth from three feet away. You either nail it or you leave the restaurant with sake all over your shirt. That’s the extent of your knowledge of the Japanese rice fermented alcoholic beverage. The Void Sake Company in Lexington, KY is ready to change people’s perception of sake and that it’s more than just a fun part of your Hibachi dinner.
What does one expect to experience while drinking a Double NEIPA? Are you looking for that tangy juice that hits your buds from the initial sip? Are you expecting that soft, pillowy mouthfeel that wraps around your palate like it’s being tucked into bed at night? Or, are you pining for that smooth, full-bodied liquid that plunges those tropical, fruity notes deep into your receptors telling your brain this is incredible? Maybe you can get lucky and find a beer that delivers all of that, and then some.
Brandon Jones is no stranger to barrel-aging and storytelling, using both his words and beer as the medium. Jones is a brewer, beer blender and self-proclaimed “funk wrangler” at Yazoo Brewing, one of the godfathers of the Nashville’s craft beer scene. When Brandon isn’t wrangling funk, he’s sharing recipes on his blog, EmbracetheFunk.com, where he talks about spontaneous fermentation, wild yeast and bacteria—all of what give wild ales their unique and “sour” profiles. On Embrace the Funk, Brandon states his modest goal of making the world of sour beers a bit more approachable.
Memory is a powerful tool, and it shapes how we remember events, stories and people. It’s impressive how the brain forgets the day, yet can call back perfect details of a random afternoon with a loved one 20 years ago. The simplest images can cause these nostalgic moments that leave you thinking back on fond memories.
2020 was a bad year for the craft beverage industry. A global pandemic, civil unrest, an economic recession and inadequate government aid set the stage for declining sales and desperation. Nonetheless, breweries and cideries from across the nation found creative ways to survive and to adapt, and to recommit to supporting and sustaining the communities in which they exist.
With all the delicious clutter out there in the beer world, sometimes you just want a good, solid example of a classic style. For all of the Sours, Pastry Stouts, Hazies and Seltzers, there are still plenty of classics available. Falls City Brewing Co. brews a prime example of a classic Pale Ale with their English-Style Pale Ale.
The brewery currently has a total of five taprooms: two locations in Asheville, North Carolina; one in Wilmington, North Carolina; one in Durham, North Carolina; and one in Knoxville, Tennesee. Hi-Wire becomes the first brewery outside of the state of Kentucky to open a taproom in Kentucky.
Decipher Brewing joined an elite tier of breweries that make barrel-aged beers recently, following the release of Bourbon Barrel Aged Karabash, from their new “Babington Project.” This release comes in 14.2%… but we’ll get to that later.
The Babington Plot was a plot in 1856 to assassinate Queen Elizabeth I, using coded messages hidden in beer barrel bungs. (We’ll let you do some sleuthing to see how that plot turned out.) Decipher Brewing picked this name based off their own work in the military with ciphers and what better way to link the two than with a BBA stout?
Queen City Brewer’s Festival is a Charlotte beer-lover’s dream every February, but the global pandemic has forced them to get creative this year. For the 10th Anniversary of the fest this year, they’re celebrating in the format of a collective beer release: Court Shoes Only.
The latest and greatest New England IPA to hit my palate is Volume Integral, a hazy double IPA brewed with oats and wheat which creates a very plush mouthfeel. The oats and wheat play well with the hops used in this beer which are El Dorado, Azacca, Mosaic and Belma. All of these combined create a lot of fruit and melon flavors that are balanced very well. The hop star of the show has to be the Belma hops which tend to create an almost strawberry-like profile.
From the street, the draw of Elsewhere Brewing is evident and hard to ignore. The vibrant colors bounce off the white brick and the allure of the painted greenery pulls you to a table. Place is a powerful tool and weighs down heavily on experiences and memories. This sentiment is present in the look and feel throughout the brewery.
Located in the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains of northwestern North Carolina, Booneshine Brewing Co. calls the town of Boone its home. And, like many of the residents of Boone, they are explorers and adventurers, and their beers reflects that—both in name and ingredients.
Their Space Pegasus—a New England-style IPA—is also aptly named after exploring, as it will take you on an “intergalactic adventure”.
Since the holiday chaos and rush has slowed down, it’s a good time for some reflection. We wrapped up some of our favorite beers and the biggest beer stories across our regions to end 2020. One story that caused a greasy splash was the collaboration between Waffle House and Georgia’s own Oconee Brewing Company for an official beer.
Now, a few weeks later, we’re wiping down the table and diving into the bacon-infused Red Ale that is Bacon & Kegs.
It’s been a monumental three months for SweetWater Brewing, which closed out the year in November by announcing that it had been acquired by Aphria Inc.(APHA), a leading global cannabis company based in Leamington, Ontario, Canada.
Now the Atlanta-based brewery is primed for rapid expansion and today announced that they are ready to launch throughout Colorado beginning February 1, 2021.
What happens when someone tweets you a picture of Shannon’s Sweet Tea? Well, you end up getting your own beer, of course. That’s what happened to Shannon Grigsby, famously known as Shannon the Dude. Shannon the Dude is an on-air radio personality and producer for Kentucky’s top radio show Kentucky Sports Radio. He is also the Ohio Valley Wrestling World Heavyweight Radio Champion.
“Well I was in New York, I was in Manhattan and somebody randomly tweeted me,” Shannon said. “I guess it was a local tea, like a sweat tea that somebody had and it was Shannon’s [Sweat] Tea and they said I didn’t know you had your own tea and I retweeted something to the effect of I never wanted to have my own tea but I have always wanted to have my own beer.”
If you haven’t heard the Boys Are From Märzen podcast hosted by me, Kindsey Bernhard, is joining the PorchCast Podcast Network!
I started the Boys Are From Märzen podcast in July because, like many of you, I got very bored during the quarantine. And due to COVID-19, I had some more free time on my hands to start a podcast that highlighted some of the talented women who work in the craft beer industry in all shapes and forms. I just recorded my 20th episode (stay tuned) and I have interviewed brewery owners, brewers, social media influencers, journalists, educators, etc.
January is often a popular month for craft beer drinkers to take some time off from the “hobby.” It’s important to be able to do so and to drink in amounts where you’re comfortable. We recently offered 30 Reasons Why You Should Skip Dry January in 2021, but if you are taking the time completely off, you can still help your local breweries.
We’re back and well-rested, yet somehow exhausted, from all of the holiday hustle and bustle and time commitments. While 2020 is officially behind us — good riddance — 2021 isn’t exactly off to the best start it could be. In spite of weather and events on the national stage, the beer industry is still staying afloat despite pandemic shutdowns. That does not mean everyone, and that does not mean thriving. Dry January is popular for many “influencers” and eager resolution starters, but do what you can to continue supporting local. Buy shirts, hats and other merch or gift cards to use at a later date. Grab a beer or browse some online shops while checking out What We’re Drinking.
In all of the craziness that 2020 had to offer, it became easy to find solace and joy in small ways. Bars, restaurants and breweries closed while other small businesses struggled to stay afloat. All the negativity brought forth a few shining lights during the year, though. Georgia’s beer industry, while hit hard by COVID-19 implications, stayed busy – with several openings since March. It would be easy to praise every single beer released this year, but I get it: You’re here for the best beers and stories that came out of the Peach State this year, so let’s get to it. Feel free to let us know your thoughts on the 2020 Georgia Best in Beer Year-End Honors in a comment below!