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Archive for June, 2010

Doobie Red

“Charlie really didn’t know what to make of me at first,” Cohn said of his late friend and winemaking mentor. “You sure he’s not growing something else up there besides grapes,” Cohn recalls Wagner asking members of Sonoma’s insular farming community of the 1970s.

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Beer Pick: 21st Amendment Brew Free or Die IPA

21st Amendment Brew Free or Die IPA

21st Amendment Brewery, San Francisco, Calif.

$8.99/ six-pack cans; also available on draft at select beer bars.

Brew Free

Profile: The recent arrival of Brew Free or Die IPA from San Francisco’s 21st Amendment Brewery is exciting — not only because it’s a very tasty, hopped-up ale, but because it comes in a can. It’s brewed with two-row and Munich malts and Warrior, Columbus and Cascade hops, then dry-hopped with Amarillo, Ahtanum and Simcoe. The result is a bright, well-balanced beer, with a whole lot of citrus in the nose and palate, bracing bitterness and a smooth, dry finish. The can makes it easy to pack for picnics and cookouts and really easy to recycle.

Pair with: Match the bright hops in Brew Free with hot and spicy foods, including Asian, Cajun and Mexican dishes. Take a six-pack outdoors this weekend and celebrate Independence Day with barbecue, burgers and hot dogs.

Bob Townsend is editor of Southern Brew News, a …

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Hirsch Vineyards, Southbound Cuvée

At 14.4 percent alcohol, the wine is certainly bold enough to stand up to a smoky, charred slab of ribs, but can it be “the” wine for the many faces of Southern cuisine?

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Beer Town: What makes the ‘best’ place for beer?

A recent Best of the Big A online poll asked for readers’ opinions on the best beer selection at metro area bars.

Not surprisingly, Brick Store Pub in Decatur, a perennial top pick of beer geeks  around the world, was named most often. Even though it’s not in metro Atlanta, Trappeze Pub in Athens was mentioned by a surprising number of readers.

But how do you define “best”?
brick-front
If it’s quantity, there are many bars around Atlanta that can claim to have more taps and more beer. If it’s quality, happily there are now dozens of metro bars and restaurants that feature what critics consider the finest beers in the world.

Maybe what sets Brick Store and Trappeze apart is something different — like a serious approach to beer that borders on obsession.

That shows up in all the big and little things the owners and staff do every day. Besides procuring great and rare beers, and presenting them with knowledge and authority, they store them and pour them with care, and as often as …

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Beer Pick: Sierra Nevada Charlie, Fred & Ken’s Bock

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Chico, Calif.

$9.99/cork-finished 750ml bottle at metro beverage stores.

Charlie_Fred_Ken_Front_RJPG
Profile: This very special collaboration between pioneering homebrewers Charlie Papazian and Fred Eckhart and Sierra Nevada founder Ken Grossman is part of the Sierra 30th anniversary series. Dubbed an imperial helles bock, it’s a bold American take on a classic German-style lager that looks and drinks more like a traditional dopplebock. A hefty 8.3 percent alcohol by volume, it features a bittersweet balance of floral hops and toasty malts, with a lovely copper color and a creamy off-white head.

Pair with: The robust bittersweet flavors of Charlie, Fred & Ken’s Bock make a good match for the caramelized flavors of roasted or grilled meats. Pair it with peppery jerk chicken, spice-rubbed pork tenderloin or steak tacos. For dessert, try it with caramel flan.

Bob Townsend is editor of Southern Brew News, a bimonthly beer publication distributed throughout the Southeast.

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Drink Wine For The Health Of It

I believe the secret to wine’s health benefits has to do with its “mirth content.”

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Beer Town: Terrapin brewer a busy man

Terrapin Beer Co. founding partner and brewer Brian “Spike” Buckowski has been a very busy man.

During a recent visit to the Athens brewery, Buckowski had four new beers to taste, including two he created for charity and an amazing collaboration ale he flew to Belgium to brew.

In addition, Buckowski has been hard at work in his own brewhouse, keeping up with demand for Terrapin’s year-round beers, especially the newest, Hopsecutioner IPA.

The latest beer in the Terrapin Side Project series is in stores now. Called Boom Shakalager, it’s a crazy imperial lager that’s 9 percent alcohol by volume but surprisingly easy to drink. Made with German malts, hops and yeast, and dry-hopped with German Tettnanger, it has a winning citrus tang.

terrapin-boom-shakalager
June 19 marks the one-year anniversary of the fire that gutted the historic Georgia Theater in Athens. Soon after the blaze, Terrapin launched the Georgia Theater Sessions, a series of four limited-edition, 22-ounce beers, with sales going …

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Beer Geeks Descend on Decatur

Saturday is sure to be a big day for beer geeks to geek out In Decatur.

The colossal carnival of beer, the Beer Stash Beer & Breweriana Collectors Show takes place 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at Twain’s Billiards and Tap (211 East Trinity Place, Decatur, 404-373-0063, www.twains.net).

Twain's
This from the Brick Store’s Lee Dickson, one of the organizers of the show:

“Beer Stash is a group of beer enthusiasts who enjoy handcrafted beers and beer collectibles. We will be displaying the largest Micro brewery can collection in the southeast as well as many other vintage breweriana items. Buy/sell/trade all beer collectibles such as unopened beer bottles from around the world. Also tons of Glassware, coasters, bottle caps, beer cans, tap handles, shirts etc. Join us for a $2 Twain’s brew and watch the U.S. vs. England match.”

Also on Saturday, the Brick Store Pub continues its 13 day 13th anniversary celebration by tapping a rare keg of Mikkleller Drink in the Sun, while the World Cup shows …

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Graham Beck Brut Rose

These salmon-colored sparklers are some of the most food-friendly wines they go with everything from fried chicken to seared tuna to rich, slightly spicy black bean soup, which I enjoyed with the two sparklers in question.

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Perfect beers for summer sipping

Is there anything better than a cold beer on a warm summer day? How about sipping a really good beer on the patio or deck of a great pub?

Happily, that’s much easier nowadays, with many more places around metro Atlanta featuring impressive beer lists and inviting outdoor spaces.

At the Bookhouse Pub on Ponce De Leon Avenue in Poncey Highland, you’ll find 18 draft taps pouring plenty of American craft brews, along with Belgian and German imports, plus a good selection of bottled beers.

Hidden in back of the cozy, uber hip main bar area, a terraced patio covered with strings of Chinese lanterns offers a whimsical sort of secret beer garden.
On a recent evening, an ad hoc group gathered there to toast the unofficial start of the summer beer-drinking season.

Adam wheat

Hugh Acheson, chef/partner of the soon-to-open Empire State South restaurant in Midtown, sipped a keen Reisdorf kölsch. Adam Tolsma, the beer buyer for nearby Green’s Beverage Stores, tipped a tall glass of …

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