Monday, September 17, 2007

Erdinger Dunkel Weissbier

I have taken a few trips to the beer yard recently and on my most recent trip I picked up a case of Erdinger Dunkel Weissbier. I must admit I was looking for Weihenstephaner Dunkel, and this was my second choice. I also was tempted by the Brooklyn Brewery and Schneider and Son collaboration beer. Ultimately the $70 price tag and the fact that I had never tried it before dissuaded me.

This beer is one of my favorites. I have not yet done a side by side tasting with Weihenstephaner Dunkel and some of my other favorites, but I definitely would like to in the future. Drinkability is my number one concern and this one is at the top of my list. Wholesome and smooth this beer never disappoints. If you are looking for something different, look elsewhere. This is a good traditional dunkelweiss that I would definitely recommend.

Price: $53 for 24x500mL
Marked 03-2008
5.6% ABV

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Stella Artois and their New Website

So the good people of Stella Artois, sent me a free poster, some coasters, and an invitation to their new cinematic website. I was very pleased to receive this invitation and received my poster and coasters well before the September 15th pre-launch date. The poster is now hanging on my wall and I took a first look at the website today.

Unfortunately for me, not all of the completely flash websites played well with the Linux version of Flash 9, but the errors were limited mostly to the very simple games integrated into the website(sorry for technical details on a beer blog). The art and cinematography is superb, but the user interaction leaves something to be desired. The games are very simple, instruction free, and almost childish. That being said there is much to be seen and heard(all in French), and it will be well worth a visit on September 18th when it launches.

The most interesting part of this whole situation to me is the marketing technique Stella is employing. I think it will work quite well for everyone. Blogger are happy to receive trinkets and Stella will enjoy cheap advertising. Read this for more comments on the advertising campaign.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Online Beer Store: Liquid Solutions

If you live in Pennsylvania like me, or there simply are not any good beer stores close to you, you may want to look into an online store. One such store is Liquid Solutions, which has a good albeit expensive selection. The major price killer is the shipping, so it is best to order in large quantities. When I was writing this post shipping doubled the cost and there were over 650 beers in stock.

Liquid Solutions
275 Beavercreek Rd #C149
Oregon City, OR 97045

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Victory Uncle Teddys Bitter

My third and last beer from my second trip to the Victory Brewery. This one was very interesting. I had never had this type of beer before and I quite enjoyed this one. Poured an amber color with no effervescence. I was expecting something like the "bitter's" I had in Australia, but this was much better. I felt like I was drinking something from medieval times. I won't be getting this one again, but I enjoyed the experience.

$4.50 from Victory Brewery
3.9% ABV

Victory Kölsch

My first beer on my second trip to Victory Brewery. It seems we got a very good deal on the previous trip because they were limiting the $3 beers severely on this trip. I am kicking myself for not taking pictures again. This one was a disappointment. I am not a big fan of kolsch. It was still refreshing to drink it with the soft pretzel and spicy mustard that I ordered. I hurried through this one to get a Storm King.

$4.50 from Victory Brewery
5.1% ABV

Flying Dog In-Heat Wheat

Another from the foodery. This one was just weird. I don't even know how to describe it. The first sip was the best that I took and after that there was something a little bit off. The traditional taste was there but some sort of spice that was not agreeable. This is still drinkable, but I will probably not be getting it again.

5.1% ABV

Ayinger Brau-Weisse

I am nearing the end of my beers from the foodery. I had high expectations for this German hefe and they were definitely met.

The head died down some by the time I took this picture. This one tasted like orange smooth wheat. I am definitely going to get this one again. Reminded me of Maisel's Weisse, but better.

5.1% ABV
Buy Ayinger Brau-Weisse Online

Stoudt's Weizen

Another purchase from the foodery. This one was drinkable and interesting. Middle of the pack for american hefe's. I probably will not get this one again, but am looking forward to trying some other stuff from stoudt's.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Smuttynose Summer Weizen Ale

Another beer from the foodery. This "Weizen" is extremely hoppy and bitter to the point of completely eliminating the traditional wheat flavor.(if it was even there) I can not recommend this one.

Pyramid Hefe Weizen

This is another beer of the dozen from the foodery. This is a pretty good Hefeweizen. There is nothing special about it but it has the classic taste, is not overcarbonated or hoppy like other American Hefeweizens, and is definitely drinkable. I would not mind trying this one again.

5.2% ABV
Brewer's description of the beer

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Coopers Best Extra Stout

Another beer from the foodery. My friend took one sip and passed this one off to me. I had recommended this to him when we went to the foodery because it was one of the better beers that I had in Australia. He obviously was not in the mood for a stout.

This one was heavy bitter chocolate coffee. Not a bad brew. Definitely a winter drink. I would definitely recommend this one, but probably won't have it again because of availability issues. Tasted much darker than I remembered from Australia.

6.3% ABV

Victory Braumeister Pils

This was my third and last beer at the Victory Brewery Restaurant. To be honest after the Storm King this one is a little bit hazy. One of my friends had ordered the Victory Prima Pils at the same time, and both were fairly good pilsners. While the Prima was a good traditional pils, the braumeister tasted a little smoother and less hoppy. Although this was good, it was my least favorite of the night and probably will not get a pils from victory again.

$3 from Victory Brewpub
5.5% ABV

Victory Storm King Imperial Stout

This was my second beer at the Victory Brewery Restaurant. The first sip was an experience. This beer tastes like very creamy heavy rich coffee. The alcohol content is hidden behind the bold tastes. I would have enjoyed this more if it was winter and I was not already full when I started drinking it. I enjoyed this one, but it was a struggle towards the end.

$3 from Victory Brewpub
9.1% ABV

Victory Mad King Weiss

This was my first beer at the Victory Brewery Restaurant. The first thing I noticed about this beer was that the head actually poured like an authentic German weiss. I apologize for the lack of picture on this and the next two Victory brews. The taste of this one was good, but different from a traditional weiss. It was full of cloves and oranges with only subtle hints of banana. I definitely will be having this one again. Of the American wheats that I have tried this one is one of the best. Penn Weizen is more true to the original taste, but lacks something that this beer has.

$3 from Victory Brewpub
6.2% ABV

Brewpub: Victory Brewery

This place is fantastic. I took my first trip there on Monday. They have a deal on Monday's where you get your first beer with a glass you get to keep for $5. Every beer after that is $3. The glass is nothing special, but for $2 I am happy. They also claim to have a deal where if you sing to songs you get a free beer, but I didn't hear anything that sounded like karaoke while I was there.

The brewpub has a long bar which was nearly full by 8pm on a Monday. They also have around 25 tables. Their food is also very reasonably priced. They had 16 beers on tap while I was there, and I tried 3 of them.

Check their website for a menu and a listing of what is on tap.

420 Acorn Lane
Downingtown, PA 19335
Phone: 610 873-0881
Fax: 610 873-0985

Beer Store: Ron's Schoolhouse

This is basically a restaurant that sells 2 refrigerators full of microbrews and imports. The good thing is that you can make your own six pack of beer here from the singles. They change their stocks all the time, but the prices are always expensive. The cheapest shelf is $2.50 a bottle. When you buy a create your own six pack you either get a free gift basket with 2 Ron's Schoolhouse glasses, or you recieve $0.75 off each bottle that you purchase.

check the website for brewery listing of what they possibly can carry

74 E Uwchlan Ave
Exton, PA 19341
Phone - 610-594-9900

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Samuel Adams Hefeweizen

This one was a disappointment even before I took the first sip. Taste is not like any weiss beer I have ever had. Was not terrible, but I am definitely not going to get this one again. Was overcarbonated and somewhat similar tasting to the Sierra Nevada Wheat. I picked this up from the foodery.

Victory Golden Monkey

Another selection from the foodery and from victory brewery. This Tripel Ale was very interesting.

It was poured far too cold, and the initial taste at the near freezing was not pleasant. After letting this one warm up a bit it was much better. The spices are overwhelming and mask the alcohol content fairly well. I definitely enjoyed this one, and probably will have this one again(in the winter).

Bottled on May 14, 20007
9.5% ABV

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier Dark

This is beer 4 from the foodery and the only beer that I had had before that I purchased. I knew this one was going to be good. I drank it immediately after the Ayinger Dunkel, to compare.

While the Ayinger was good, I enjoyed the Weihenstephaner much more. This dunkelweiss has been my favorite beer for about 2 months now after I tried it side by side with my previous favorite, Sneider Weisse.

The taste is of incredibly smooth earthy malty chocolate deliciousness. I would definitely recommend this to anyone.

5.3% Alcohol by Volume
Pint Bottle
Buy Weihenstephaner Dunkel Online

Ayinger Altbairisch Dunkel

This is the third beer from my first trip to the foodery. This one is a German dunkel, and I naturally had high expectations for it.

I definitely was not disappointed. This one tasted like smooth malty coffee. I definitely am going to drink this one again.

500mL bottle
5% ABV
I lost the receipt to the foodery so there won't be any pricing info for awhile.
Buy Ayinger Altbairisch Dunkel Online

Friday, July 13, 2007

Pennsylvania Brewing Company Penn Weizen

So I went to the beer yard with a friend and were looking for something good for under $30 a case. Unfortunately all the German wheats that I wanted were around $50 for a case. After asking about American wheats, the staff recommended Penn Weizen. They claimed that unlike many other American wheats, they got the carbonation right.

I was not disappointed. Penn Weizen is a solid wheat beer with no surprises and medium taste of smooth banana wheat. That being said, I would never mistake it for a Bavarian hefe. I would definitely recommend this as a solid cheaper wheat.

$29/case from the Beer Yard

Beer Store: Beer Yard

The Beer Yard is a great place to buy beer in the Philadelphia suburbs. The Pennsylvania beer law forces them to sell in cases. What makes this worse is that there may be 10 different types of beer stacked on top of the 1 type that you want. Their prices are very competitive and the staff was quite helpful. Located behind the starbucks in Wayne on Rt 30(Lancaster Ave). Their website is excellent and lists all of the beer they may or may not have in stock. The also have 3 taps at the register where the may offer you a tasting.

218 East Lancaster Ave · Wayne, PA 19087

Beer Store: The Foodery

So Pennsylvania has this beer law which says:
No distributor or importing distributor shall sell any malt or brewed beverages in quantities of less than a case or original containers containing one hundred twenty-eight ounces or more which may be sold separately: Provided, That no malt or brewed beverages sold or delivered shall be consumed upon the premises of the distributor or importing distributor, or in any place provided for such purpose by such distributor or importing distributor.
This is what makes The Foodery so unique in Pennsylvania. Somehow they manage to get around this law and are able to sell single beers. They have 2 locations in Philadelphia. The one on 10th and Pine Street has about 10 refrigerators full of singles. They had most of what I was looking for and a lot of new stuff that I wanted to try. The prices for the beer is listed in one big book. They claim that if you make your own six pack, you receive a 10% discount but I received no such discount on my visit.

The 10th and Pine location can make for a tough time parking, but it is only a few blocks away(7 minute walk) from the Market East train station. The other location is on 2nd and Poplar.

Check out the foodery's website

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Sierra Nevada Wheat Beer

Another bottle from the foodery. I did not have high expectations for this bottle and not even those expectations were met. This tastes more like a pale ale than a wheat beer. It is not bad, but the faint hint of banana and cloves is hidden behind a wall of hoppy carbonation. I can't recommend this one.

4.4% Alcohol
$2.15 from the foodery

Victory Hop Devil Ale

I made my first trip to the foodery in Philadelphia today to pick up some singles. I am not sure how they get around Pennsylvania's laws but their selection was excellent.

The first beer out of the dozen that I bought was Victory. I tried this one first because I expected to like it the least as it was an India Pale Ale. While my expectations may be true, this was the best IPA that I have had to date. This is not saying too much because I tend to shy away from IPAs.

The taste was surprisingly smooth, but the sharp aftertaste caused complaints from both me and my friends. The alcohol was very well hidden. Even if you don't like Pale Ale, I would definitely give this one a try.

Drink by October 25, 2007
6.7% Alcohol
$2.50 from the foodery