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Archive for August, 2010

The Patient Wine Lover

Lewis had his Clark; Stanley had his Livingston; But Dr. B is a lone wolf in the wine wilderness. It is hard to enjoy something like wine by yourself, but not for the reasons you might think. Lou encourages Dr. B to enjoy his wine. It really gets down to cost and waste.

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Beer Pick: Terrapin Hopzilla Double IPA

Terrapin Hopzilla Double IPA

Terrapin Beer Co, Athens, Ga.

$7.99/ 22-ounce bottle at metro beverage stores; also on draft at select metro beer bars.

terrapin-hopzilla

Profile: Most beer geeks go giddy over hops. Terrapin Side Project Volume 12, a monstrously hoppy double IPA, dubbed Hopzilla, is dialed-in to delight those geeks.

In brewing, bitterness is measured by the International Bittering Units (IBU) scale. At 110 IBU and 10.8 percent alcohol by volume, Hopzilla is intense and strong. But it’s easier to drink than you might expect. It’s made with 100 percent Maris Otter malt, adding a base of elegant sweetness to balance the bitterness, and dry-hopped with Citra hops, which impart pleasant tropical fruit aromas.

Pair with: Match Hopzilla with bold, hot and spicy foods. Dishes such as Guyanese pepper pot beef, Cajun jambalaya with andouille sausage, or New Mexico chiles rellenos would pair well.

— Bob Townsend is editor of Southern Brew News, a bimonthly publication distributed throughout …

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Frisk Prickly Riesling

Frisk Prickly?! Sounds more like a character from the skit comedy show Second City Television of the 1970s and ’80s.

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Beer Town: New book says there’s a beer for everyone

There’s a beer out there for everyone” is how Andy Crouch recently described the theme of his new book, “Great American Craft Beer: A Guide to the Nation’s Finest Beers and Breweries” (Running Press, $22.95).

craftbeer

“I’m hoping the book will help people realize that their ideas about beer and what beer tastes like should be broadened,” Crouch said. “It doesn’t require a whole lot of work or study. I just suggest people get out and drink with an open mind and an open mouth.”

Crouch lives and practices criminal law in Cambridge, Mass. But he’s been writing about beer for more than a decade for publications such as Ale Street News and Beer Advocate magazine, where he has a monthly column, and on his own BeerScribe.com website.

“Great American Craft Beer” packs a lot of information into some 300 pages, ranging from beer history to a beer and food recipe section. But the heart of the book is contained under the simple heading: “Style and Flavor of Beer.”

“Pick a flavor, any flavor, and …

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Wine Century Club

You see it’s not our fault or the fault of restaurants that we are chard/cab crazy. It’s easy these days to be an intrepid, bold wine lover; and there are plenty of helpful retailers out there who are happy to assist you in finding that next grape.

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Beer Pick: Sierra Nevada Tumbler Autumn Brown Ale

Sierra Nevada Tumbler Autumn Brown Ale

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Chico, Calif.

$8.99/six-pack at metro area beverage stores

sierra-nevada-tumbler
Profile: The newest addition to the Sierra Nevada portfolio of seasonal beers, Tumbler Autumn Brown Ale conjures falling leaves and cooler weather. But even as temperatures hover in the 90s, this malty brew offers a welcome contrast to the flood of IPAs and hopped-up hybrid beers around now.

Made with freshly roasted chocolate and smoked malts, Tumbler has a profusion of dark cocoa and coffee notes, balanced by mildly spicy and fruity aromas and flavors and some hop bitterness.

Pair with: Tumbler’s roasted malt flavors and smoky notes make it a natural for grilled, roasted or braised meats, especially steak or short ribs. But try it with spicy pork barbecue, smoked chicken wings or robust cheeses, such as aged cheddar, Stilton or Gorgonzola.

Bob Townsend is editor of Southern Brew News, a bimonthly beer paper distributed throughout the South: …

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Acrobat Pinot Noir

Gil Kulers

Gil Kulers

2009 Acrobat Pinot Noir, Oregon

2009 Acrobat Pinot Noir, Oregon

• Two Thumbs Way Up

• $18

• A fair amount of red berry and floral notes with just noticeable earthy/tobacco notes. Bright, tart flavors of raspberry, blueberry, red apple skin and a leather quality. Flavors round out nicely after opened for a couple hours.

I love and loathe Oregon pinot noirs.

I love them because, on par, they are delicious and tantalizing, filled with surprising nuances that change every vintage. Real wine buff stuff. I’m also proud that Oregon winemakers have maintained a well-earned reputation for quality above all else that is respected around the world and Oregon producers are quite content to make wines in relatively miniscule quantities.

I am loathe to recommend many Oregon pinot noirs because they are a study in frustration for regular wine drinkers. “Miniscule quantities” is economics lingo for high-priced and hard-to-find. In addition, the most ethereal wines from the Beaver State can only be found on …

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Beer Town: Brewpubs team up for Freaky Friday crawl

It’s been dubbed Freaky Friday and it takes place on Friday the 13th. But there’s nothing particularly weird about three independent metro brewery restaurants uniting for a movable feast of food and beer.

From 6 to 11 p.m. on Aug. 13, Five Seasons Westside, Max Lager’s downtown, and Twain’s in Decatur each will offer a special cask ale for $3 per glass, and there will be lots of chef’s specials to nibble on.

Adding to the conviviality and safety of the event, a bus is scheduled to shuttle passengers back and forth on a continuous loop between the brewpubs.

Moran, Fleetwood and Roberts, the Freaky Friday brewers

Moran, Fleetwood and Roberts, the Freaky Friday brewers

Five Seasons brewer Crawford Moran came up with the idea for the crawl, hoping to shine a little light on the Atlanta brewpub scene while having some fun.

“The challenges brewpubs face are because of the way the state laws are written,” Moran said. “We’re essentially restaurants and we have all the challenges restaurants have in this economic environment. It’s tough out …

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