Saturday, October 25, 2014

New IPA from Vermont - Long Trail Brewing

New beer!! Limbo IPA from Long Trail Brewing in Bridgewater Corners, VT. Hazy color, light tan, lingering head, great hops aroma (lots of New Zealand and Australian hops used) and hops flavors. Heavy on the citrus, dry, as I like, lingering beautifully bitter finish. 7.6% abv. 80 IBUs. 
Well worth the trip to Vermont (which I didn't have to do, thanks to John McAlpine who shared his bounty).

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Greenville Craft Beer Festival Arriving Soon!

Saw this sign yesterday at Fluor Baseball Field, site of the Greenville Craft Beer Festival, and realized that it won't be long til it's here!

Thinking back to last year and how much fun it was, and the number of new beers I got a chance to try:

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Yoga at the Brewer - Holy City Brewing Style

Another South Carolina brewery joins the yoga-at-the-brewery trend:

Oktoberfests Winding Down

The season is about over so I thought I'd do a recap of my Oktoberfests so far this year. Principally two, Quest Brewing and Brewery85, both of Greenville. Tried to make it to Asheville, NC, just up the road, where there was a bunch of celebrating and oom-pa-paing going on, but alas.....

Here's some snaps I took during my two outings, first at Quest, last weekend, and then Brewery85, which just happened today:

Brewery85 has a hop arbor growing!

Cheers, prost and wait til next year!!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Monday, October 13, 2014

Fall For Greenville Defies Rain

Friday and Saturday were perfect weather days for the Festival, Sunday, not so much.

Saturday was the big day for me, the duo, Shovels and Rope were playing at 7:30, so getting to the big street party (which is what it really is) early gave us the chance to try some new beers, taste one or two of the food offerings from some of G'ville's best restaurants and to hear some new bands.

Some sights (no sounds) I managed to grab a few photos of...

Show time! Shovels and Rope take the stage for an hour and a half concert!!

Taken with my iPhone so the pic quality suffers a bit.

Two musicians can produce a lot of sound, it turns out.

Cheers and see ya next year!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Winston-Salem Adventures in Doughnuts, Tobacco and Craft Beer

So, how do all those subjects relate to W-S? That's one of the reasons for our visit, to discover what makes the town so interesting.

We knew about Foothills Brewing already, having enjoyed Hoppyum and Jade IPAs in the past. The largest brewery in W-S with distribution into SC, GA and other states has a well-earned reputation.

We made Foothills our very first stop in W-S, for lunch and a sampler flight. And, as timing worked out, a conversation with one of the brewers.

Had 3 IPAs in our tasting flight and the Oktoberfest, which was malty and tasty.

Josh Parrish, mgr, happy to pour samplers for us.

Jade IPA and September IPA were added to the array after I took the photo.

Bright interior, large space and good food to go with the good beer. Winner.

David Gonzalez, brewer, keeps the 15 bbl system very active to meet demand.
David told me that even with two production facilities (another one is across town, no pub there) they are looking to expand further. A annual 45K bbl capability is what they are aiming for. Today, they are practically brewing at capacity. Good news for us Jade lovers!

Two new breweries we that our research turned up meant a full day of sampling new brews (all for research, of course). One of the newest is Hoots Roller Bar and Brewery (named after the steel-shaping building it occupies) out in West End, near Reynolda Road.

We liked the Gashopper IPA, a balanced, dry and not too bitter example of the style.
Beyond the wall there is the 10 bbl brewery, enough for kegs, not bottles.

One of the biggest and most pleasant surprises was the Small Batch Brewery which is located downtown, by the convention center. A true 1bbl system, this small producer offered up one of my new favorite IPAs, their Lemonhead. With lemon zest added, plus a selection of citrusy hops, some from Australia, this was easily the most refreshing IPA I've ever drunk. Kay loved it immediately too.  

A 1 Barrel system. Mash tun and boilers.
Limonhead IPA is a special beer in my opinion.

Well, that mostly summarizes our beer-tasting adventure over a three day period. But what, you ask, about the tobacco and doughnuts?

Winston-Salem (names familiar?) was and is the home of R J Reynolds Tobacco Co. and the early Reynolds family home is now a museum, garden and village, all open to the public. Worth visiting for the grandeur of the estate as well as good lunch offerings in the Village.

And doughnuts, well Winston-Salem is the birthplace of Krispy Kreme! 'Nuff said.

I should also mention that the town is a haven for foodies too. We were able to have breakfast at Mary's Goumet Diner and a lunch at the Village Tavern. I can recommend them both without hesitation. Before leaving town, we made a quick stop at Camino Bakery for crusty loves of bread and several breakfast goodies to enjoy when we got home.

All in all, a very rewarding time, further exploring the towns and beer makers of North Carolina. We will be back.


Saturday, October 4, 2014

GABF 2014 Now in History Books - Winners Here

FYI, the complete list of winners:

Cheers and congrats to all. Looking forward to tasting as many of them as I can in the next year.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Winston-Salem Breweries, All Three of Them

Just back from a whirlbrew trip to W-S, NC, where 3 new breweries were added to my life list. Still editing photos and will write the details tomorrow or this weekend, but here are some early pix: