30 April 2007

Beer taxes on the rise

The neo-puritans who believe that someone, somewhere is having fun and must be stopped, have largely won the cigarette battle. In the same way that we soon be sending any fiction writer who writes of a violent act to counseling, we have made cigarettes so expensive that only politicians, drug dealers and brain surgeons can afford them. Since the tobacco companies are dying, politicians need a new source of tax revenue. Since politicians are of pure moral character and don't drink or smoke or associate with those that do, they are beginning to think about raising beer taxes. Their not planning to raise taxes on their wines and champagnes, oh no! That would affect them. They are smart enough to be able to handle their alcohol. You and I, on the other hand, aren't smart enough to know that alocohol affects our judgment, so they intend to raise taxes to both treat alcoholics and reduce consumption. That's one magic tax, folks!

Here's a partial list of States considering raising beer taxes on the not wealthy (ie. stupid), with links to news stories: North Dakota, Rhode Island, Michigan, and Oregon (this magic tax will fund the state police, too).

Once they stop us from smoking and drinking, what will they tax next?

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posted by Jeff Holt at 06:30 0 comments links to this post

28 April 2007

Beer helps Your Asthma

According to about.com, Sapporo beer might helt your asthma if you also have nasal allergies. In a recent study 60% of those being studied sneeezed less, and about 55% reported a less runny nose because of the presence of hop flavonol glycosides, a natural anti-histamine.

Yet another good thing beer can do. Hooray Beer!


posted by Jeff Holt at 06:23 0 comments links to this post

26 April 2007

Hookarm's Kentucky Common 3.0

I ordered the ingredients on April 18 for the latest version of Kentucky Common. I thought I would add rye and flaked maize to the grain bill to give it a more authentic mix of grains. Kentucky common is, essentially, what whiskey before distillation.

Hookarm's Kentucky Common 3.0
2 pounds flaked maize
1 pound flaked rye
1 pound carapils dextrine malt
4 oz chocolate malt
3 pounds Dark DME
1/4 oz Wye Target 11%/60 min*
3/4 oz Willamette 5%/20 minutes
*The hops were left over from the Real Ale Brewhouse Brown Ale Clone recipe.
Mash the grains in 3 gallons water for 60 minutes at 155F. Sparge and add the extract. Dissolve well and boil.

I poured the grains into a steeping bag, and it looked like a parfait. I dropped it in the water and went about sanitizing my fermenter.

It's been awhile since I've used flaked maize, and I remembered something: It cakes when it gets wet. When I emptied the bag after an hour, the grains came out of the bag with no problem, the corn had become a thick disc that was hard on the outside, and completely dry on the inside!

My OG came in at 1.030, instead of the predicted 1.050. But it tasted good.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 15:24 0 comments links to this post

24 April 2007

Real Ale Brewhouse Brown Ale Clone

A couple of months ago, Brew Your Own Magazine ran a clone article on Real Ale Brewing's Brown Ale. When my Uncle Donn visits from Virginia, I have to have a case in the fridge for him. Since BYO doesn't have the recipe online, I will reprint it here:

Real Ale Brewing Company Brewhouse Brown Ale
3 pounds light liquid malt extract
2.25 pounds Light DME
1.25 pounds Crystal 60L
.63 pounds Vienna Malt
1/2 pound chocolate malt
3/4 oz Wye Target 11%AAU/60 min
1/4 oz Willamette 5%AAU/10 min
Wyeast 1098 British Ale
Steep crushed grains in 3 gallons of water at 155F for 30 minutes. Sparge, add extracts and boil.

I brewed it on Easter Sunday. I kegged it on the 15th. And it tasted nice! It will go into the fridge this Sunday, and I will probably wait until it gets cold before I dive into it.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 15:00 0 comments links to this post

22 April 2007

Wahl & Henius Ale - Conclusion

I was going to post a review and rating of my Wahl & Henius Ale. I really was.

But I drank it all.

I really didn't realize I was drinking it that fast. I thought I'd only had a couple of pints out of it. But the other day, while pouring a pint from the keg, the tap spat at me.

It was good, though.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 07:24 0 comments links to this post

20 April 2007

Peach Wheat

My cousin, Satan (as in "Get thee behind me...), once brewed an American Wheat beer. He added fresh peaches to the beer while it was in secondary fermentation, and made a pretty tasty little beer that was perfect for summer. I made it the next year, using a kit from St. Patrick's of Austin. As Spring finally comes to the Texas Hill Country, I thought I would make it again.

My first step was to order and American Wheat kit from Austin Homebrew Supply and a 2 ounce bottle of peach extract, which is added at kegging time. I placed the order On Wednesday morning, and the package will arrive today. I will brew it tomorrow!

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posted by Jeff Holt at 14:39 0 comments links to this post

18 April 2007

Dominion Brewing no longer a Craft Brewer

After the recent sale of Dominion Brewing to Anheuser-Busch, Dominion Brewing has lost its status as a craft brewer. But they are still making craft beers! My favorite beer of all time is Dominion Brewing's Oak Barrel Stout, and according to the Washington Post, it hasn't changed. Thank goodness! Now if only we could get it in Texas. . .

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posted by Jeff Holt at 10:32 0 comments links to this post

16 April 2007

is it beer time?

You know those pop-up timers on turkeys? Coors Brewing Company is doing something like that for beer! This summer Coors Light will come in a Cold-Activated Bottle. The label’s white lettering and Rocky Mountain icon turn blue once the beer reaches optimal drinking temperature.

Or you could ask the MythBusters.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 10:07 1 comments links to this post

14 April 2007

We're in the wrong business! $22 for a pint of beer?

Rochefort 10, a Belgian beer, is selling for $22 a glass in Sydney, Australia. Well, it would if your poured it into a glass. The beer actually sells for about $17 a bottle at Heritage Belgian Beer Cafe.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 10:23 0 comments links to this post

12 April 2007

Brother Spud's Oatmeal Stout Review

The other day, my cousin Satan (as in "Get Thee Behind Me. . .") sent me three bottles of Brother Spud's Oatmeal Stout and a bottle of Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout. I sampled the commercial example first and gave it 18 points. Here is how I rated His attempt.

Brother Spud's Oatmeal Stout
Appearance (0-3): Black as ink. No light shines through, impossible to tell if there are highlights. Small brown head that dissipates quickly. 2 points.
Aroma/Bouquet (0-4): Malty sweetness with a hint of roasted malts. No hop aroma. 3 points.
Taste: Hop/Malt balance: Smooth malts on beginning, no hops detected. 3 points
Aftertaste (0-3): Sweet finish with roasted malts on the back of the tongue. Too sweet? 3 points
Mouthfeel (0-3): Light carbonation. Full mouthfeel, creamy and silky. Yum. 3 points
Overall Impression (0-3): I've said it before. I like stout. I like this stout. It's a bit too sweet and I would have liked a bigger head. But I would still drink it! 2 points
Total: 16 points

It's a damn fine beer, just a little sweet. Bravo, Cuz.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 08:10 0 comments links to this post

10 April 2007

How much do you love your favorite beer?

Not as much as John Jilg, obviously!


posted by Jeff Holt at 10:04 0 comments links to this post

08 April 2007

Wahl & Henius Ale and Papazian's Quarterbock into the Fridge

Two weeks ago, I put both Wahl & Henius Ale and Papazian's Quarterbock into the fridge for a little more aging. Reviews to come...

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posted by Jeff Holt at 10:27 0 comments links to this post

06 April 2007

American Brew - April 7 on A&E

As part of its "Here's To Beer" industry development campaign, Anheuser-Busch commissioned "American Brew," a film celebrating the rich history of American beer scheduled to air Saturday, April 7, at 10 p.m. EDT on A&E. ASpril 7 is the date Prohibition was repealed. We will see beer brewed in the colonial manner in a fireplace in Colonial Williamsburg; see it being home-brewed in the Bronx; and a craft brewer creating a Jasmine IPA in Seattle. Set your TiVos!

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posted by Jeff Holt at 10:15 0 comments links to this post

04 April 2007

Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout

My cousin seent me a couple of bottles of Brother Spud's Oatmeal Stout. To adequately judge his effort, he sent me a bottle of Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout.

Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout
Appearance (0-3): Dark black with ruby highlights. Tan, creamy head. 3 points
Aroma/Bouquet (0-40): Malty. Do I smell oatmeal or am I imagining it? No hop aroma. 3 points
Taste: Hop/Malt balance (0-4): Smooth and silky. A hint of hops, but roasted malts dominate. 3 points
Aftertaste (0-3): roasted malt finish, a little sweetness on the tongue. 3 points.
Mouthfeeel (0-3): Creamy and thick. 3 points.
Overall Impression (0-3): I like stout. This is a really good stout. Mild, smooth and creamy. 3 points.
Total: 18 points.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 15:51 0 comments links to this post

02 April 2007

Craft Beer sales continue to rise

According to a Boston Patriot Ledger article, craft beer sales have risen 30% versus mainstream beers 2% increase, driven by the American public's desire to enjoy premium items, like artisanal foods, gourmet popcorn and ice cream. Boston Beer company, maker of Samuel Adams, grew 17% last year, and Harpoon Brewery grew 14%. Even Coors Brewing Company's Blue Moon beer has grown 20%!

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posted by Jeff Holt at 17:14 1 comments links to this post