30 May 2014

Beer Geeks Kickstarter

Beer Geeks is a nationally syndicated Emmy nominated show celebrating the world of craft beer. The host is Micheal Furgeson, the Director of Brewery Operations of the BJ's Brewhouse chain. And by nationally syndicated, I mean airing at 1 am in my market. So this show has completely slipped under my radar.

They have finished the first season, and want to move on to the second season. But times are tough. They are raising money to produce an episode for the second season on Kickstarter. So head on over and give them some money. If for no other reason than to piss off ABInBev.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 15:12 0 comments links to this post

28 May 2014

If I owned a Brewery: Part 7 - Kid Friendly

There are a lot of people who like to argue that kids shouldn't ever see anyone consume alcohol of any kind. I am not one of those people. I believe  if children are exposed to responsible drinking, it might help curb binge drinking.

Jester King Brewery in Austin is a kid friendly brewery, shown here.

I also believe that if the whole family enjoys the facility, you'll make more money. In the days before radio, every town had a beer garden where families would go to listen to music, eat, play, and dance. The Pressler beer garden in Austin even had alligator wrestling.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 08:00 0 comments links to this post

26 May 2014

Oops! Missed this!

It completely escaped my attention that I didn't blog last week. Had I blogged, I would have brought up this story.

Four Corners Brewing Company is brewing a beer exclusively for Pecan Lodge, a BBQ place that opened in Dallas on the 23rd. Called Boss Lady Rustic Red, it is an amber ale, dry hopped with a "very special hop" that goes well with barbecue.

Okay. Sounds good. I just have one question: I thought this was illegal.

A couple of years ago, Walgreens introduced a private label beer exclusive to their chain, and a lot of people were up in arms about it.

Essentially, Pecan Lodge, Walgreens, Trader Joe's, and H-E-B are now "tied houses". A tied house is a retailer that is buys at least some of its beer from a particular brewery. In these cases, sells a beer that is available only at their locations. Tied houses are illegal in Texas, because it is a violation of the three tier system. Not only that, private labels of any kind amount to price collusion between the manufacturer and the retailer. Often, private labels, be they beer, cigarettes, canned vegetables, are often loss leaders, used to get people in the store.

Walgreens (and H-E-B also does with their Frio Light) gets away with it by selling allowing the beer to be sold to a couple other locations outside the chain. In the article I just linked to, the author says she can buy the H-E-B private label at a convenience store she shops at. Four corners will sell Boss Lady at their brewery, so that's their loophole. I haven't been to a Trader Joe's in Texas, so I don't know if they sell their private label beers here, or what other outlet carries it.

I guess this is just another case of "Money Talks. . ."

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posted by Jeff Holt at 08:00 0 comments links to this post

24 May 2014

1900 American Wheat

After doing some research for my Malt and Hops speech, I thought I would try an Pre-Prohibition recipe. I checked Wahl & Henius' American Handy Book of the Brewing, Malting, and Auxiliary Trades. I found a "recipe" for an American wheat (70% pale malt and 30% wheat or grits, I went with wheat), but with little information on the hops used. I found an article by George Fix that said brewers then probably used Saaz or Hallertauer Mittelfruh.  I decided to use Hallertau, not the same, I know, but it's what I could get. I decided on two hop additions, and I increased the hopping rate (see the notes at the bottom of the post).

I'll be brewing this next weekend.

1900 American Weissbier
American Wheat or Rye Beer

 


Type: All Grain Date: 6/1/2014
Batch Size: 6.00 gal Brewer: Jeff Holt
Boil Size: 7.97 gal Asst Brewer:
Boil Time: 60 min Equipment: Jeff's Equipment
Taste Rating(out of 50): 35.0 Brewhouse Efficiency: 60.00
Taste Notes:
 
Ingredients
Amount Item Type % or IBU
9.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 70.59 %
3.75 lb White Wheat Malt (2.4 SRM) Grain 29.41 %
2.00 oz Saaz [4.00 %] (30 min) Hops 19.0 IBU
1.00 oz Saaz [4.00 %] (10 min) Hops 4.5 IBU
1 Pkgs American Wheat Ale (Wyeast Labs #1010) Yeast-Ale
 
Beer Profile
Est Original Gravity: 1.048 SG Measured Original Gravity: 1.010 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.011 SG Measured Final Gravity: 1.005 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 4.76 % Actual Alcohol by Vol: 0.65 %
Bitterness: 23.5 IBU Calories: 43 cal/pint
Est Color: 4.2 SRM Color:
Color
 
Mash Profile
Mash Name: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge Total Grain Weight: 12.75 lb
Sparge Water: 5.52 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 15.94 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: Corn Sugar Volumes of CO2: 2.4
Pressure/Weight: 4.5 oz Carbonation Used: -
Keg/Bottling Temperature: 60.0 F Age for: 28.0 days
Storage Temperature: 52.0 F  
 
Notes

American Weissbier
c. 1900
OG 9.29 Balling - 1.037 (later 10-12 B or 1.039 to 1.047)
FG 2.52 Balling - 1.010
2.85% alcohol

30% wheat (or grits)
70% pale malt

Step mash 122F, raise to 162 F.

Boil 30 minutes, 1/2 to 3/4 pounds hops per barrel

Fined like lager beer.
Created with BeerSmith

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posted by Jeff Holt at 12:44 0 comments links to this post

16 May 2014

My "Malz und Hopfen" Speech

On May 10, I made this speech at the Founders Day celebration. Since I hate to waste anything, here it is:

There were few breweries in Texas before the Revolution, and few afterwards.  Until Texas joined the Union in 1846, the Comanches and other tribes raided the colonies relentlessly.  After joining the Union, Texas brewers had the protection to actually invest in building breweries.  Combine that with German immigration, and you have all the ingredients for Texas’ first brewing boom.
The Germans arrived in Texas to build their towns. Once they'd finished, they looked at each other and asked “Okay, who brought the beer?”  Beer is hard to transport in the days before Pasteurization and bottle caps. Once exposed to air, it spoils. And so every little town has it's own brewery. If a brewer wasn't among the colony, they appointed one.
Captain Charles Nimitz was born in Bremen, Germany on November 9,1826. At age 14 he served in the German Merchant Marine. He arrived in South Carolina in early 1844.  His family operated a hotel near Fort Sumter at Charleston. In 1846, he found himself on a wagon train to Fredericksburg.
In 1852, Nimitz began running a hotel in Fredericksburg, though he didn’t own the property until 1855.  The original hotel was a four-room building with a fireplace in the center hall.  The hotel grew in a few years to over 30 rooms with an attached saloon.  By 1860, Charles was operating a brewery in the cellar below his saloon, and the census lists him as a brewer.  I believe that the brewery existed  a few years before the census, maybe as early at 1855.
The Nimitz Hotel was self-sufficient.  The garden behind the hotel produced most of the food for the table, even the wine they served.  It is even possible that the hotel even grew its own hops.
Meanwhile, across Main Street,  Dr. Assig, owned a house on the bank of Town Creek. In March 1857, he borrowed $850 from Frank van der Stucken to buy equipment for a wheat beer brewery. Van der Stucken was to receive one third of the profits of the brewery.  Assig's wheat beer had a reputation for its quality and purity.  Members of visiting singing societies who often visited Fredericksburg drank the beer as fast as it could it they could tap it.
In the 1860 census, Assig’s occupation is not listed. It lists Frederick Probst as a cooper, making barrels for Assig’s beer. (Probst had arrived in town a couple of months before Assig started his brewery.)
For some reason, the partnership ended shortly after the census. Probst bought property on Austin Street in 1861, and  built three cellars there.  Probst moved the brewery from Wasington Street.
The Union blockade of the Southern States made it difficult to get brewing supplies. Supply shortages after the Civil War began forced Nimitz to close the brewery and convert the cellar into a cistern.  The copper brew kettles remained in place until 1911, when Charles died, but have since disappeared.  Probst continued to make beer during the war but it was not as easy as before the war.
  After the Civil War, business improved, and before long the brewery was making Frederick a good living.  The Probsts built a two-story limestone house next door to the brewery in 1870, at 312 West Austin.
Henry and John Mauer opened a lager beer brewery in Fredericksburg in 1875, after brewing in Marlin, Texas.  In 1877, John Mauer was running the brewery. On the 1880 census only John and his family appear in a home on West Creek Street close to the Kuenemann Home.
Also on the 1880 census is Albert Glock, a 42 year old brewer living with the Pressler family. Albert was a Civil War veteran of Sipley's Brigade which took part in the ill-fated New Mexico campaign. He came to Fredericksburg after his family brewery in Victoria, Glock & Sahn, closed. It is unclear where he worked.
The Mauer brewery closed in 1884, it became an ice factory. It left the Probst brewery as the only brewery in town
Beer from from the breweries in San Antonio started arriving in in the late 1880s. No matter how good Probst’s weissbier was, competition  began to take its toll.
At about this time, there were fourteen saloons in Fredericksburg.  The Knopp saloon, in the Evers building on the Northeast corner of Main Street and Milam Street, fired the opening salvo in a beer war that went down in history.  While Probst beer was selling for ten cents a glass, John Knopp imported beer from San Antonio, and began selling it for a nickel a glass. In the face of the price difference, which was also happening all across the state, Probst couldn't compete. In 1895, Probst closed his brewery.
On January 16, 1919, Prohibition closed the remaining 13 breweries in Texas.  The larger breweries survived prohibition by turning to other products.  Pearl made ice cream, and ran a sign company.  In Galveston, the brewery made soda and near beer.  In Shiner, Spoetzel sold ice.
Prohibition lasted fifteen years in Texas.  Brewing equipment fell into disrepair. Many smaller brewers sold their tanks as scrap metal.  Only the large brewers could afford to upgrade their equipment.  The days of corporate brewing in Texas had arrived. And they would last a long time.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 11:31 0 comments links to this post

14 May 2014

Bourbon Dinner at Fredericksburg Herb Farm - June 17

Tickets for this dinner went fast last year. If you like craft Bourbon and good food, you definitely want to get to Paradise on June 17.  The Fredericksburg Herb Farm, 405 Whitney Street, is partnering again with Garrison Brothers Distillery to bring you a tasty dinner served with straight bourbon nosing/tasting of multiple vintages. Also enjoy bourbon cocktails and a meet and greet with Dan Garrison before dinner. The dinner will start at 6 pm.  Price TBD. Call (830) 997-8615 for more information.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 11:02 0 comments links to this post

12 May 2014

Craft Beer Week at Pedernales Brewing Company and Fredericksburg Brewing Company - 5/12-17

Pedernales Brewing CompanyPedernales Brewing Company now has a Bier Garten for you to enjoy their six craft beers.   In celebration of American Craft Beer Week, the PBC Bier Garten will be open extended hours May 12-17; Monday through Thursday from 3-7, and Friday and Saturday from 1-7.

Fredericksburg Brewing Company: Meet the brewers and enjoy food and beer specials. Daily during normal business hours.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 11:57 0 comments links to this post

10 May 2014

April Beer Tour - Second Stop

Surprisingly close to our hotel.
Independent Ale Works was our second stop. It's in a nondescript industrial park a couple of miles west of I-35W on University Drive. It's a little hard to find, which explained why were the only folks there. We'd bumped into the owners, Stefen Windham and David Miller, at Denton's East Side Social Club. (It's a great neighborhood bar downtown, around the corner (sort of) from Rooster's Roadhouse.)

Stefan and David made us feel right at home. Their tasting room is a little more comfortable that Rabbit Hole Brewing Company's because of the big armchairs in the front room, and the large sofa and big screen TV in the room behind that.  It's the perfect place to sit and visit.

The two had only recently opened the tasting room, and mentioned that the craft beer lovers were just
beginning to find them.

I have to say that the Dark Intentions black ale is delicious! Smooth, with coffee notes and just enough hops to lighten all that malt!

We had a nice chat with the two and they showed us their brewery. It is all hand made equipment. It's a small brewery, but they have a lot of room to grow.

While we were the only ones there, they did get a call from someone trying to find them.  So hopefully, they had more visitors after we left.

I stay at the Best Western on the Interstate all the time. It's close to my cousin's house, and now I know it's close to Independent Ale Works, too!

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posted by Jeff Holt at 11:18 0 comments links to this post

08 May 2014

Saison du Permienne

All my plans for brewing this on April 28 went to Hell. I had to drive my parents to Austin to get their military IDs updated, and didn't get back in time to brew. So I brewed it on May 4.

I really enjoy this beer. I should probably make it more often.

Saison du Permienne
Saison

 

Type: All Grain Date: 5/4/2014
Batch Size: 6.00 gal Brewer: Jeff Holt
Boil Size: 8.38 gal Asst Brewer:
Boil Time: 90 min Equipment: Jeff's Equipment
Taste Rating(out of 50): 35.0 Brewhouse Efficiency: 60.00
Taste Notes:
Ingredients
Amount Item Type % or IBU
8.50 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Bel (2.0 SRM) Grain 71.43 %
1.00 lb Wheat Malt, Bel (2.0 SRM) Grain 8.40 %
2.00 oz Saaz [3.30 %] (90 min) Hops 21.3 IBU
1.00 oz Saaz [3.30 %] (10 min) Hops 3.6 IBU
0.60 gm Powdered Ginger (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
4.60 gm Coriander Seed (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
4.60 gm grapefruit peel (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
2.40 lb Corn Sugar (Dextrose) (0.0 SRM) Sugar 20.17 %
1 Pkgs AHS Classic Saison Yeast Blend (White Labs #WLP560) [Starter 500 ml] Yeast-Ale
Beer Profile
Est Original Gravity: 1.053 SG Measured Original Gravity: 1.010 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.014 SG Measured Final Gravity: 1.005 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 5.11 % Actual Alcohol by Vol: 0.65 %
Bitterness: 24.9 IBU Calories: 43 cal/pint
Est Color: 3.3 SRM Color:
Color
Mash Profile
Mash Name: Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge Total Grain Weight: 9.50 lb
Sparge Water: 6.55 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, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Step Time Name Description Step Temp
75 min Mash In Add 11.88 qt of water at 161.4 F 150.0 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 (Corn Sugar) Volumes of CO2: 2.4
Pressure/Weight: 2.3 oz Carbonation Used: -
Keg/Bottling Temperature: 60.0 F Age for: 28.0 days
Storage Temperature: 52.0 F
Notes
Created with BeerSmith


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06 May 2014

April Brewery Tour

Over the last weekend in April, my brother and I went up to Denton to visit Satan and his siblings. On Saturday we visited a couple of Texas' newest breweries: Rabbit Hole Brewing Company, and Independent Ale Works.

Rabbit Hole Brewing is in Justin, Texas, not far from Denton. It is in an industrial area. It is housed in a metal building with a sizeable lot with lots of room for parking. On tap was the 561 Kolsch (I thought it was fantastic), Rapture Fusion Brown Ale (Very good), and 10/6 English IPA (Wonderful).

It was a beautiful day to sit on the porch and catch up with family, and hear all the new stories they had to tell. And all the old ones we like to repeat.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 10:54 0 comments links to this post

04 May 2014

My New Brewing Kilt

Thanks to my BNArmy friends, Rhino and Bub, I bought a new kilt.

Bub has been singing the praises of the 5.11 Tactical Duty Kilt, but the kilt was a one-off, and was sold out.  Dammit!

The other day, Rhino posted a picture of his new 5.11 kilt on Facebook.

It was breakfast. I whipped out my iPhone. As soon as you could say "Why the fuck do you need another kilt?" I had ordered another black kilt.  I wanted the charcoal kilt, but it was not available in my size. I didn't want the woodlands camouflage pattern, I thought I might like the desert camo pattern, but it wasn't in my size.  Who cares? Black is beautiful. And it only cost $70.

I love my Utilikilt, but at $250, this is a bargain! I still want a Workman's kilt, but until I feel comfortable spending that much, this one will work fine.

Let me know what kilt you like in the comments.  And where can I get a cool belt?

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posted by Jeff Holt at 08:00 0 comments links to this post

02 May 2014

Beer Prevents Hypertension

A study by the Association of the Spanish Society of Hypertension-Spanish League to Fight Arterial Hypertension and the Beer and Health Information Center (whew!), has discovered that beer in moderation, in addition with the Mediterranean diet, can help prevent hypertension. For women that's 1-2 beers a day. For men that's 2-3 beers a day.

Turns out, the low sodium and high potassium of beer is healthy, and can help increase good cholesterol, especially in women.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 10:47 0 comments links to this post