Thursday, September 29, 2011

Still Drinking Their Share and Selling the Rest

Looking at the way the Utah legislature has been operating as of late it seems their doing their best to keep Utah's beer lovers down. But as bad as some say it is, it has been far worse. For roughly 25 years there was absolutely no beer production in Utah. Then in 1986 That all changed when Greg Schirf opened the Wasatch Brewpub in Park City.

Ever since then Schirf and Wasatch have been doing their best to keep Utah's beer scene on the map. For instance - remember 2003? The Utah Legislature decided to add a $1.88 tax increase on every barrel of beer produced in Utah. In protest Schirf and his employees dressed as Ben Franklin/Patriots and hosted their own version of the Boston Tea Party at the Great Salt Lake, spraying 64 gallons of beer into the lake.

The stunt got national attention but did little to change the minds of lawmakers.

To celebrate their anniversary, Wasatch is throwing a huge Beer Bash on Saturday October 15th from 11am to 6pm at the City Park in Park City, Utah. There is no cost to attend the party. There will be a selection of seven Wasatch Beers, including a specially brewed batch of their inaugural beer, Wasatch Premium Ale. The cold beer will be a cash bar – 16 oz. draft beers are $3 and high alcohol Beers are $5 each. A commemorative pint glass will be available for $6 as well.

For more info on the Celebration click here

Also, we're leaving for Denver in a few hours to attend the Great American Beer Festival. We'll have all the info on how Utah's Breweries fare in the competition, including the Pro/Am.

Cheers!

Pictured above: Former Park City Mayor Hal Taylor and Greg Schirf tap the first Keg of Wasatch Brew

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

DABC Show: Utah Beer Fest

Today's Episode of the DABC Show Bill and Steve go to the 2nd City Weekly Utah Beer Festival. Was It great? Did it suck? Did they buy a belt buckle? Only your discerning eye can tell.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Rocket Across America: The Zion Curtain

A few weeks ago a couple of guys from New York were passing though Salt Lake looking for a good story. Reporter Justin Rocket Silverman and videographer Vivek Kemp of The Daily have been traveling on a cross-country expedition to find the best, the boldest, and the strangest our nation has to offer.

As luck would have it, Justin & Vivek got into town the day the Zion Curtain controversy was on the lips of of everyone in the state. He contacted me, hoping someone could help explain this local oddity that had been causing such a buzz.

Here's what they came up with. An outsiders eyes on what was likely the weirdest part of their cross country trip.



Cheers!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A Possible Beacon of Light

Today the Senate Business and Labor Confirmation Committee; you know them, they're the branch of the legislature that muddle our brilliantly freakish liquor laws.

Anyway, these "Mensas" are looking to appoint a new director to head up the DABC. Right now the department is being temporarily managed by Francine Giani who is currently the Executive Director of the Utah Department of Commerce.

Giani has been a steadfast consumer advocate as well as the Director of the Division of Consumer Protection from 1992 - December 2005.

Francine is due to go before the Senate Business and Labor Confirmation Committee this morning to convince them she's the one for the job. I believe she is.

I don't know Francine personally just professionally, I've interviewed and had conversations with her. She's bright, seems full of common sense and is not a Utah native (New York). Though she is LDS, she did grow up grounded in reality.

She could be the beacon in the darkness that we've been hoping for. If appointed, let's hope the Legislature doesn't completely crush her will and spirit. Good luck today, Francine.

Cheers!

photo: Salt Lake Trib

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Beer Pipeline

Admit it... you tolerate my B.S. because of that whole "beer pipeline" thing we have going on here. It's the promise of new beer that keeps you coming back. I am your bitch. Today I hope the bitch doesn't dissapoint.

First there's Epic's Pro-Am Scotch Ale (under Festdevious #5). This beer was brewed with local award winning homebrewer Mike Hahn. Mike's Scotch will be entered into the Great American Beer Festivals Pro/Am Competition.

Pours a nice burnt copper/orange color with a thick two fingered white head. The nose is of caramel, bread, citrus, pine, smoke and some whiskey notes. The taste starts smooth and malty with a nice toffee and nutty maltiness. Next come notes of smoke and whiskey. The finish has some lingering toffee. @ Epic, Bayou, Beerhive, Whever Epic beers are sold (soon).

Las Vegas' Tenaya Creek brewery was founded by ex Utahn/Uinta Brewer Tim Etter. Since entering the market last March their beers have only been available at the Beerhive. Now the Bayou has them as well. Look for Hop Ride India Pale Ale, Calico Brown Ale & Tandem Double India Pale Ale (limited release).

Cheers!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Big Bad Baptist

Remember Jack Mormon Coffee Stout from Epic? It was a big hit with beer lovers, but not the DABC.

The DABC found the name offensive and wouldn't allow it to be sold in Utah's liquor stores. I guess they were worried about the massive influx of Mormon traffic that Utah's liquor stores are famous for.

Anyway, now we have the Big Bad Baptist. I guess we'll find out if the Baptist have a sense of humor with these sort of things.

Epic's BBB is reminiscent of Jack Mormon but has the added benefit of bourbon barrel aging.

The nose is of roasted coffee, chocolate as well as some cherries & vanilla. The Taste starts with espesso followed hints of vanilla & bourbon. Next comes some sweetness, almost molasses-like, but not cloying at all. Slightly woody in the finish. Alcohol is present but it's not in your face. Full-bodied and heavy. The coffee leaves nice lingering roasted notes on your palette. Carbonation is perfect and creamy.

Big Bad Baptist is available starting today at Epic and should be creeping into places where you'll find Epic's Exponential Series soon.

Cheers!

Friday, September 16, 2011

New Beer Friday 9/16/11: Hop Notch IPA

We're a little late today, but better late then never! There one beer today, it's local and a lot of people have been looking forward to it.

Hop Notch IPA is believe it or not, Uinta's first regular IPA. Sure, the Trader IPA has been around for years but it's 4.0% and Detour is a superb Double IPA but there has never been a "to style IPA" 'till now.

I know nothing about it. I assume it's an American Style and delicious. It's for sale right now at Uinta's Little Big Beer Store at the brewery, soon to be everywhere. If you get one before we do, give us a review dammit!

Cheers!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The DABC Show: Bohemian Brewery

Czech, this out! Bill and Steve head over to the Bohemian Brewery to learn why great beer and being Czech go hand in hand. They also discover the joy of pairing great beer and great food. Then they show you a great place to Belly Up and drink. Plus the lost interviews from Idaho Falls, a homebrewing tip from a pro and the science behind great 4% beer!



Cheers!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tanks A Lot!

In the last few years, many of Utah’s home-grown breweries have been venturing out into the continental U.S. and, in some cases, the world, exposing people to the award-winning suds we’ve always known and enjoyed.

As a local beer lover, you may or may not have an interest in this. "Can my favorite brewery meet the national demand without affecting my beer enjoyment"? Simply the answer is "yes"!

50% of the breweries in the state are or have undergone a major expansion and a good percentage of the the other half - have something in the planning stages.

With beer production it's all about the fermentation tanks. Apart from barrel aging the fermentors spend more time nurturing the beer than any other vessel in the brewery.

In recent months a serious amount of stainless steel has made it's way into the state at great expense to to the breweries. I thought I'd share some images of the new hardware that's cradling some of your favorite Beers.
Utah Brewers Cooperative's Gargantuan 200 barrel fermenter


Epic's 40 barrel fermenters


Shades of Pale's new whirlpool tank

And there's more coming. Moab's new and improved brewhouse with all new equipment will be up and running soon, Shades of Pale Brewing is already looking at expanding their operations and Zion Canyon Brewing is in the process of building a new brewpub in Springdale.

Some State Legislators may be trying to hold you back, but that's not stopping breweries from moving forward to meet the increasing demand.

And, there's a new poll!

Cheers!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Beers You're No Longer Drinking

If your readings this, odds are you mainly pursue craft beer brands. Would it surprise you to know that these smaller craft brands are slowly "putting the hurt" on the big boys, and their sales are falling.

There are eight beers that Americans are drinking less and less of. Some of them may surprise you.

8. Budweiser
Sales loss (2006-2010): -30%
Brewer: Anheuser-Busch InBev
Barrels sold (2010): 18 million.

7. Milwaukee’s Best Light
Sales loss (2006-2010): -34%
Brewer: MillerCoors Brewing
Barrels sold (2010): 1.3 million.

6. Miller Genuine Draft
Sales loss (2006-2010): -51%
Brewer: MillerCoors Brewing
Barrels sold (2010): 1.8 million

5. Old Milwaukee
Sales loss (2006-2010): -52%
Brewer: MillerCoors Brewing
Barrels sold (2010): 525,000

4. Milwaukee’s Best
Sales loss (2006-2010): -53%
Brewer: MillerCoors Brewing
Barrels sold (2010): 925,000

3. Bud Select
Sales loss (2006-2010): -60%
Brewer: Anheuser-Busch InBev
Barrels sold (2010): 925,000

2. Michelob Light.
Sales loss (2006-2010): -64%
Brewer: Anheuser-Busch InBev
Barrels sold (2010): 525,000

1. Michelob
Sales loss (2006-2010): -72%
Brewer: Anheuser-Busch InBev
Barrels sold (2010): 175,000


Oddly enough, Michelob; the most palatable of the eight (in my opinion) is tanking fast. I don't know what the average price point is here, but I suspect it's a significant factor.

What do you attribute to this slide?

Cheers!

Source: 24/7 Wall St. used two databases to do its analysis. One is kept by SymphonyIRI Group, one of the largest consumer research firms in the U.S. The other is from specialist research firm, beer marketer’s INSIGHTS, Inc.

Friday, September 09, 2011

New Beer Friday 9/9/11

Today we have three new style bending beers that frankly defy categorization. And just in case you missed last nights post Uinta's Jacked Imperial Pumpkin should be on sale today at the brewery.

North Coast Grand Cru: Pours a rich golden color, with a large quickly dissipating head. The nose is of apple, pear, honey and vanilla. The tastes starts with pear, raisins and sweet caramel. Dark fruits come next with slight bourbon notes. The finish is boozy and phenolic. This is one sweet som' bitch and it's 12.9% abv is not something to take lightly. @ Beerhive.

Deschutes/Boulevard Collaboration No. 2 - White IPA: The nose is of lemon and grapefruit with notes of coriander, pepper and Belgian yeast. The taste starts with coriander and orange peel with hints of lemongrass. Next comes a malty spiness that transitions into a hoppy, bitter - west coast IPA finish. This is an anomaly. It's like a Saison and a Belgian IPA got drunk while listening to the Conan The Barbarian Soundtrack (Arnold) and had a kid. Yeah, I know!
@ Beerhive & Bayou.

Epic's Brainless on Cherries #5: This one is unique from the others because it was aged in red wine barrels instead of white wine. It's described as less sweet as the dryer red wine adds more tannin and tartness to round out the cherries and malty sweetness of the beer. Sound like the dryer #5 will be more complementary toward the fruit. Can't wait to try it. @ Epic

Crom!

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Jacked-Up!

This is a "Pre-New Beer Friday" announcement.

I have good news & bad news. The good news is That Oak Jacked Imperial Wood Aged Pumpkin Ale will be available for sale starting tomorrow! (9/9/11). The bad news is that the DABC has it's head up their collective asses (big surprise I know) and will only allow it to be sold at the brewery. Sorry to all you non-Wasatch Front beer lovers... the state has boned you once again.

If the availability issue changes we'll let you know as soon as it happens. As always call before heading over to the brewery.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Provo to Legalize Beer on Sunday?

In recent weeks Utah's beer community has been dealt a few blows when it comes to the the availability of beer. It's evil and should be hidden from view in places where it's siren song can entice children onto it's jagged rocks.

Provo, one of the most conservative and LDS places in Utah currently bans the sale of low point beers on Sunday. That may change. "This could be the end of Provo-bition," quipped Councilwoman Sherrie Hall Everett.

The Municipal Council agreed Tuesday to put an ordinance permitting Sunday beer sales on the agenda for the Sept. 20 council work session. The goal: Tap into the beer consumers who drive through Provo to Springville or other cities to get a six-pack on Sunday.

"To me, this is a no-brainer," Councilman Sterling Beck said. "We’re losing revenue by not legalizing it." James Olsen, president of the Utah Beer Wholesalers Association, hasn’t had a chance to discuss the ordinance with his members, but he said it could reduce drunken driving. He reasoned that if people drive farther to get beer, they may be tempted to drink it before they get home.

Who'd a thunk it, Provo? I'm sure Sen. Valentine is revving up the his overconsumption mobile to squash this craziness before it begins.

Cheers!

Source: Salt Lake Trib

Uinta 2.0

Last April Uinta Brewing Company decided that they were going with a new look. Gone was the iconic bottle cap that we had all grown up with and in it's place, a new - slicker design that took on a more of "outdoorsy" encompassing feel.

Back then we thought it was just the logo. Sure, we anticipated that it would be integrated into the same ol' labels, but I don't think any of us anticipated the scope of change we were in for.

Not only are we looking at new artwork, but and entirely new bottle as well - Uinta designed a custom, proprietary 12 ounce bottle as part of the redesign project. Referred to as the “compass bottle,” the new bottle shape is branded by a 360-degree compass embossed into the bottle’s shoulder. That's it up above. Click on it and check it out. I think it's pretty sharp.

Those aren't the only changes coming your way from Uinta. The Four+ brand is going away and all labels under that brand will now fall under the Uinta umbrella. Who knows, that Rype hoodie that you've been sport'n to all of those artsy-fartsy gallery openings may be a collectable some day.

Uinta’s “Organic Line” replaces the Four+ Series. The Organic Line includes three full-time brands: Baba Black Lager (New!), Wyld Extra Pale Ale; and Monkshine Belgian Blonde Ale. The line features four seasonal brands: Hazel Amber Wheat (new!); Punk’n Harvest Pumpkin Ale; Sum’r Summer Ale; and Hyve Honey Ale.

Uinta’s “Classic Line” will consist of eight full-time brews varying from 4.0 to 10.4% abv: Hop Notch IPA (New!); Cutthroat Pale Ale; Dubhe Imperial Black IPA; Anniversary Barley Wine; Golden Spike Hefeweizen; Hoodoo Kolsch; King’s Peak Porter; and Trader Session IPA. The seasonal brands include Bristlecone Brown Ale; Yard Sale Winter Lager; and Skipping Stone Summer Lager.

Uinta’s ‘Crooked Line’ preserves its tradition of engaging local artists to design the labels for untraditional beers packaged in 750ml cork finished bottles.

You may have noticed that there are three new beers coming. Hop Notch IPA (yea!), Baba Black Lager & Hazel Amber wheat. I have to admit that I'm a little bummed the Gelende name is going away and I'm gunna miss the Anniversary Barleywine labels. As long as the beer is the same, I'll get over it.

I give the guys at Uinta credit, this is no small undertaking. A re-branding of this magnitude ain't cheap. I think the new look will be a hit.

Here are the labels that'll be cluttering up your fridge in the coming weeks. Watcha think?

Click to enlarge


Cheers!

Monday, September 05, 2011

22 Years and Still Pouring

image
Twenty-two years ago today, Squatters poured their first beers for customers, and ever since tongues around the state have been much happier.

Later this afternoon/evening Squatters will be taping Crested Trail Pale Ale. An uber hoppy pale that makes grown men giggle like schoolgirls.

Get on it! this one doesn't last long.
Cheers!

Friday, September 02, 2011

New Beer Friday 9/2/11

Whew... man, what a crazy beer week. I don't know if you noticed, but you don't fuck with a Utahans beerfest. Christ, many of you brought your "A" games to the forum along with throwing stars, nunchakus and baseball bats when it came to the Utah Beerfest analysis.

You were also full of piss and vinegar when it came to Senator Valentine's pious bullshit on X96's Radio From Hell Show. After all the frustration & irritation of the past week, we're gunna make sure it ends right.

This weeks new beer selections are as yummy as they are different.

First off is Full Sail's Elevation IIPA: The nose is very floral and grassy with a mild sugary sweetness. The taste starts with citrusy grapefruit up front, floral and perfumey hops take over coming in behind the initial citrus hit. Smoothing sugary sweetness underneath the hops and into the finish. Not the best or the worst IIPA I've had but it's a limited edition, so it'll likely not be available again.

Next is Deschutes' Black Butte XXIII Porter: This is "the shit". Pours brown with hints of tinted ruby red on the sides. The nose is slightly vinous with notes of cocoa, vanilla and oak. The taste starts with intense cocoa, roasted malts, molasses and oak. The end is full of vanilla, cinnamon and bourbon. The finish is bitter and boozy. The flavors are spot on for the style. Everything is nicely balanced. A great beer that will just get better with age.

Both are in select liquor stores around the state.

Also, Uinta is still waiting on the state to approve their Jacked Imperial Pumpkin Ale. As soon as it gets the green light we'll let you know.

Cheers!