26 February 2014

Horny Toad Brewing Monthly Open House - March 1

Horny Toad Brewing Company will start hosting an open house on the first Saturday of each month from 2-8 pm. The brewery is at 313 Edward Street, Rowena Texas.

Somebody work for me this Saturday. I'd like to go.

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25 February 2014

Real Ale Brewing Company Beer Dinner at Otto’s, Fredericksburg March 3

Otto’s welcomes Brad Farbstein, Owner of Real Ale Brewing Company, for what is sure to be a fun filled evening.  While many of you are already familiar with Real Ale’s Fireman’s 4, this beer dinner will feature several limited release, seasonal and library beers.  Due to the seasonality and limited availability of many of the evening’s beer pairings, this will be a beer dinner not to be missed!  Enjoy a reception and four courses.  6:30 pm. $85 per person (includes tax and car service) at 316 West Austin St. here in Paradise. Call 830-998-0190 for more information.


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24 February 2014

Beer Excise Tax Map

Earlier this month, the Tax Foundation released a map of state tax rates on wine. Here are the latest maps which look at state excise taxes on beer and spirits. Each map has an accompanying blog post that discusses some of the intricacies and peculiarities of how states treat each product.


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22 February 2014

True Vine Brewing Company Open in Tyler

Ron Dixon, Stephen Lee and Dan Griffith are the brains behind True Vine Brewing Company in Tyler. Dixon said he was inspired by the book The Search for God and Guinness: A Biography of the Beer that Changed the World. The officially opened on February 1.

Brewing out of a 90 barrel brewhouse, they just released Rose City Pale Ale, an American pale ale infused with rose hips, which gives the beer hints of grapefruit and cranberries. Further down the road is True Culture Coffee Porter, and Polycarp Imperial IPA.

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20 February 2014

Beer Will Cost More in Corner Stores

From the Department of of the Blindingly Obvious:

Ontario is contemplating allowing corner or convenience stores to sell alcohol. Currently beer can only be sold in liquor stores. So the liquor stores (who oppose the new law) published a study that showed that corner stores would charge more for the beer.

Hell, I could have told them that! You pay for the convenience of buying at a convenience store. Bread is a dollar higher than at a grocery store. Don't even think about buying pet food!


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18 February 2014

Town in City Brewing to Break Ground Soon

The brewing scene in Houston continues to grow.

Ronny Crocker, author of Beer in Houston, reports that Justin Engle will soon begin building his brewery, Town in City Brewing, at 1125 West Cavalcade, and could be open in July or August, Ninkasi and the government willing.

They will start with two beers an amber and a robust porter, followed by an APA and an IPA soon after.

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16 February 2014

Bluebonnet Brewing Company to Open in Round Rock

The Austin American-Statesman recently reported that Bluebonnet Brewing Company will open soon at 1700 Bryant Lane, Suite 107 in Round Rock..

David Hulama and his wife Clare, both employed at Dell full time, will be opening their brewery soon, with four staple beers:  American Amber Ale,a cream ale, a brown ale infused with local pecans, and an IPA. Their brewery will be open in the evenings and weekends while they hold down their day jobs.

David has two brewing degrees, one from UC Davis and the Institute of Brewing & Distilling from the United Kingdom. Clare is a tier 1 certified Cicerone, or beer sommolier.

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14 February 2014

February 7- A Historic Day in Texas

On February 7, 2014, Uncle Billy's Brew & Que became the first brew pub in Texas to sell a keg to a distributor. The inaugural keg was tapped at Little Woodrow's. In attendance were Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell and State Representative Eddie Rodriguez.


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12 February 2014

Deep Ellum Brewing to Host Fundraiser for Quokerwodger John Carona's Opponent

It's that time of year, craft beer lovers of Texas. It's time to decide which lobbyist's employee you want to vote for.

In the last legislative session, Quokerwodger John Carona introduced a draconian beer distribution bill that was opposed by everyone but the Wholesale Beer Distributors of Texas at the eleventh hour, screwing up two years of work on beer legislation. Turns out, one of Quokerwodger Carona's biggest contributors was Barry G. Andrews of Andrews Distributing in Dallas.

(A Quokerwodger is a wooden toy that moves when a string is pulled. It has come to mean a politician who is controlled by someone else.)

Politics create grudges, as I am sure you are aware. That's why John Reardon of Deep Ellum Brewing Co. is hosting a fundraiser for Quokerwodger Carona's primary opponent Don Huffines on February 19. "I'm choosing Don for the simple fact that it's time for a change. Twenty-three years is too long for any politician to be in office," he said in this story. He also pointed out that brew pubs, wineries and distilleries can sell their products at the end of a tour for off-site consumption. Only breweries are not allowed to do that.

So if your a craft beer lover in Dallas, go raise money for Don Huffines next Wednesday.

If you're not in Dallas, join Open the Taps, the grassroots consumer group that represents our interests in Austin. They will have the information you need to choose your candidate.

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10 February 2014

Beautiful Brew Day - Bugeater's Rye Cream Ale

Sunday was a balmy day in Paradise, eventually making it up to 80°. It was slightly cooler when I started though, almost 50°.

I was careful this time to make sure the manifold in the color was hooked up. So I stirred in the grains and water and mashed away.

An hour later, I learned that the manifold slipped apart. I was pulling liquid and grains out of the spigot. So I grabbed two strainers, one fine but without a handle (long story--never buy a cheap strainer), and my trusty old brewing strainer. I would strain a gallon of wort and pour it into the kettle. I did this over and over again, until I got close to my target volume.

After that, it was smooth sailing.

Here's the recipe.

Rye Cream Ale 4
Cream Ale


Type: All Grain Date: 2/9/2014
Batch Size: 6.00 gal Brewer: Jeff Holt
Boil Size: 6.87 gal Asst Brewer:
Boil Time: 60 min Equipment: My Equipment
Taste Rating(out of 50): 35.0 Brewhouse Efficiency: 60.00
Taste Notes:
Amount Item Type % or IBU
4.50 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 40.91 %
4.50 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (2.0 SRM) Grain 40.91 %
0.80 lb Corn, Flaked (1.3 SRM) Grain 7.27 %
0.80 lb Rye, Flaked (2.0 SRM) Grain 7.27 %
0.40 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 3.64 %
1.50 oz Saaz [4.00 %] (60 min) Hops 19.7 IBU
1.00 oz Saaz [4.00 %] (0 min) Hops -
0.50 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Primary 3.0 days) Misc
1 Pkgs Cream Ale Blend (White Labs #WLP080) Yeast-Ale
Beer Profile
Est Original Gravity: 1.040 SG Measured Original Gravity: 1.049 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.010 SG Measured Final Gravity: 1.005 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 3.97 % Actual Alcohol by Vol: 5.73 %
Bitterness: 19.7 IBU Calories: 213 cal/pint
Est Color: 3.6 SRM Color:
Mash Profile
Mash Name: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge Total Grain Weight: 11.00 lb
Sparge Water: 4.75 gal Grain Temperature: 72.0 F
Sparge Temperature: 168.0 F TunTemperature: 72.0 F
Adjust Temp for Equipment: FALSE Mash PH: 5.4 PH
Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Step Time Name Description Step Temp
60 min Mash In Add 13.75 qt of water at 165.9 F 154.0 F
Mash Notes: Simple single infusion mash for use with most modern well modified grains (about 95% of the time).
Carbonation and Storage
Carbonation Type: Kegged (Forced CO2) Volumes of CO2: 2.4
Pressure/Weight: 21.6 PSI Carbonation Used: -
Keg/Bottling Temperature: 60.0 F Age for: 28.0 days
Storage Temperature: 52.0 F  
Created with BeerSmith


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06 February 2014

Tomb of Ancient Egypt's Brewer to the Gods is Found

Peter Shadbolt needs some education in beer marketing. He writes, "Imagine a warm brew of lager so heady you had to plunge a straw through the thick surface scum to get to the fermented liquor below."

Actually, he's describing beer brewed in ancient Egypt.

Jiro Kondo of Waseda University and his team discovered the tomb of ancient beer-maker Khonso Em Heb (also the the royal storehouses during the pharaonic Ramesside period 1500-1700 years ago).

Professor Poo Mun Chou, a leading Egyptologist at Hong Kong's Chinese University said, "Alcohol in ancient Egypt was very important -- not just in terms of daily consumption but also as an offering to deities. Beer, in particular was very important. Beer during the New Kingdom period was probably one-fifth or even one-tenth the price of wine making it a very popular drink for people of all social strata."

Professor Poo (stop giggling) went on to add that we might not recognize it as beer, with it's frothy head of grain and yeast, but it would be bubbly.


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04 February 2014

CIA to Add Brew Pub and Brewing Program

The Culinary Institute of America will soon open a brew pub on their Hyde Park campus' student union, in association with Brooklyn Brewery. The pub, scheduled to open in 2015, will beer a part of their craft beer curriculum. The school will offer brewing courses, and, presumably, cooking with beer courses.

This suggests that the craft brewing trend isn't just a passing fad, and with new brewers and chefs coming along, will continue to grow.


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02 February 2014

Texas A&M Sends C&D Letter to a Brewery

The Texas Aggies have an almost century old tradition of calling the school "The 12th Man". Back in 1922, A&M basketball player E. King Gill (who had played on the football team earlier in his college career), was called from the press box where he was helping reporters identify players to suit up and help out if needed. The game against Centre College was grueling, and Coach Dana Bible thought he might need a little help.

Turns out, Gill never played a down. He later said, "I wish I could say that I went in and ran for the winning touchdown, but I did not. I simply stood by in case my team needed me."

Taking that statement to heart, the entire student body of Texas A&M became the 12th Man, standing during the entire game to show their support of the team.

The Seattle Seahawks was founded in 1976. Seattle fans were called the 12th Man in 1984 when their cheering was recognized as the loudest in the league, 137.6 decibels. The eardrum ruptures at 150 decibels. The Seahawks fly a flag with the number 12 at the stadium on game day. They have alse retired the number 12 in honor of their fans.

In 2006, Texas A&M sued the Seahawks over the 12th Man. A&M owns the trademark. Eventually, the Seahawks agreed to pay a licensing fee to use the term 12th Man.

Unfortunately, that agreement didn't extend to Foggy Noggin Brewing in Bothell, Washington. They brewed a beer called 12th Man Skittles IPA. As soon as A&M found out about it, they sent a Cease and Desist letter. (No word if the Wrigley company, who makes Skittles, sent one.)

Foggy Noggin has renamed the beer Cease and Desist IPA, which is a one off beer made for the Super Bowl tonight. The keg is small and will serve about 55 people.

Meanwhile, Hillard's Beer continues to sell it's 12th Can beer.

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