#midwest Archives – PorchDrinking.com
Despite taprooms continuing to stay closed in light of COVID-19, there’s no shortage of local beer releases, especially as we approach the summer months. Although May hardly counts as a “summer month” here in Chicago, we’re staying optimistic for warmer days. Courtesy of Copenhagen is a recent pick-up that will bring you to that feeling of enjoying a sunny summer day.
There’s a lot to love about Northbound Smokehouse and Brewpub. Their wings are voted one of the best in the Twin Cities, their fried chicken sandwich is Food Network famous and their patio is one of the best places to bring your four-legged friend in Minnesota’s treasured patio months.
The fabric of our world is changing by the hour. As the structure around us shifts, one can sometimes feel helpless seeing friends, family and businesses that they love face significant uncertainty. While self-isolating and staying inside, one of the largest roles that many of us can help fill is supporting local business.
As Michiganders acclimate to sheltering in place, it’s important we find the right beer to hibernate with. Something dark, something sweet, something boozy. Something to lend a reprieve from the newsfeed. Lo and behold, City Built Brewing Company’s 5 Hour Stout, a pastry stout brewed with obscene amounts of coconut and vanilla. It’s thick enough to put a bear to sleep so it should do the trick for those intent on napping away the next few weeks.
Probably one of the smallest venues for a beer festival out there, the intimacy of Thalia Hall creates part of the charm of Uppers and Downers, one of the top festivals showcasing the versatility of coffee. Moving to a Sunday for the first time since the inaugural event, the day change didn’t impact the crowd size as once again beer and coffee lovers alike packed the Pilsen music venue for two sessions of coffee beers, cocktails, and more.
Great Lakes Brewing Company (GLBC) recently announced their lineup for 2020. Some of the highlights from their announcement includes canning Dortmunder Gold Lager, Great Lakes IPA, and Mexican Lager with Lime, as well as two new Legendary Series offerings and a Limited Release bottle series.
From what I can gather, HOMES doesn’t give a rat’s ass about pleasing the masses. Visit their ultra-mod taproom in Ann Arbor—golden-age hip-hop bumping, precious little bao for the eating—and you’ll notice a distinct lack of styles to try. No ambers, no browns, no stouts, no wheats. Their draft list features almost exclusively fruited sours, such as their Sherbet Series, hazy IPAs and maybe a stray sour IPA for good measure.
Coffee is a vitally important part of my life. Those long cold Chicago nights staying up late with an infant calls for coffee by the pot full, and if my body wasn’t dependent on caffeine before, it sure is now. I’ve always been a big fan of coffee stouts, and Uppers and Downers is one of my favorite Chicago beer festivals during the winter months. As breweries are experimenting more with how coffee and different beer styles and mesh, quite a few different and unique offerings are becoming more readily available, such as Kentucky Coffee Barrel Cream Ale, and it’s a goldmine for both coffee and beer lovers.
As another year comes to a close, we’d like to look back at the past 12 months on some of our favorite beers we had that came out of Midwest breweries.
With the number of breweries increasing, it becomes harder and harder to narrow down a list, but we have a handful of Midwest writers who contributed their favorite beers of 2019.
Craft beer’s shift into alternative beverages has been one of the biggest trends of 2019. The most notable addition to many brewing portfolios has been spiked seltzer, which appeals to a new subset of drinkers, expanding the brewery’s revenue stream in the process. Craft breweries rolling out new spiked seltzer lines doesn’t generate the same type of headlines it did earlier this year, but mead spritzer? That’s a different story entirely. With many brewers zigging into seltzer, St. Louis-based Schlafly Beer has decided to zag, unveiling Boomerang Mead Spritzer, a new-age beverage that amplifies Schafly’s desire to differentiate themselves from the brewing competition. To learn more about what inspired Schlafly to delve into mead spritzer, we asked Schlafly Lead Brewer Jared Williamson.
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.
It’s baaaaaack. At the beginning of the month, Fair State Brewing Cooperative reintroduced its highly regarded seasonal collaboration with San Diego’s Modern Times Beer – Spirit Foul, a double dry-hopped hazy IPA for the ages.
Contract brewing out of Octopi Brewing in Waunakee, WI, Humble Forager will use some of FBC’s favorite recipes to create a series of rotating pastry stouts, hazy DIPAs and fruited sour ales. The beers will be distributed to bars and liquor stores in Wisconsin, Minnesota and select locations in the Southeast in early 2020.
The four weeks of mid-September to mid-October represent the greatest weather of the year in Minnesota. It’s often around 68 degrees and sometimes sunny. Everyone is donned in flannel (my personal outfit of choice). Orange-, red- and yellow-leafed maples line the streets as Oktoberfest celebrations begin. Everyone it seems is in a jovial mood.
That’s because this time of year depicts what is often the beginning of the end of favorable weather in the state. After this beautiful window, the temperature plummets, and we often see our first snowfall.
As the weather cools off, you may be left dreaming of those warm summer days when you’re lounging out and soaking up the sun. Although we’re not in the worst of the winter just yet, Prairie Artisan Ales‘ Paradise will keep you reminiscent of those summer days, despite being a Stout.
If you’re as much of a beer person as I am, you know that as soon as your friend mentions they’re going out of town, you’re asking them to bring you back some beer! That’s exactly what happened when I heard of an impending Ohio trip. I absolutely had to get my hands on some MadTree beer, and I was so pleased! You’re going to have to read below to learn more about El Dorado High.
“It’s there and then it’s not.”
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). An alarming public health crisis, the death-by-suicide rate for Americans has grown 30 percent in the last two decades. In 2017 alone, more than 47,000 Americans died by suicide. The tragedy of the suicide epidemic in the last 20 years seems to have touched all of our lives at some point. Three years ago, it touched the family of Minneapolis’ Fulton Beer.
Bombasota. The Land of 10,000 rakes. These represent a couple of examples to describe what’s taking place on the baseball field this season in Minnesota.
The nicknames are warranted. The Minnesota Twins are mashing the baseball this season, hitting home runs at a historic pace. At the beginning of the month, the Twins set a new MLB record hitting their 269th home run of the season. Yes, they broke the record with a full month of games to go.
And they’re not slowing down. The Twins keep slugging with currently 289 home runs as I’m typing. But that’s not all. While building on their record-setting season, the Twins broke another MLB milestone. They became the first team in league history with five players to hit at least 30 long balls in a season.
It’s safe to say it’s been a slugfest in Minnesota this summer.
Off Color Brewing has built its vibrant niche in the brewing community by doing things differently. Known for experimentation in its wide array of curious beers – and sake – the Chicago brewing destination is also familiar with experiments in packaging. Last year, Off Color brought the small-format 250ml bottle format to Chicago. Now, it’s joining a variety of its Chicago colleagues by announcing that its beer will soon be available in 16oz cans. Here are the details on Off Color’s recent packaging announcement, along with what Chicago beer drinkers should expect.