City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Archive for October, 2011

Wolf Mountain Vineyards Blanc de Syrah

In another more recent fit of inspiration, Boegner thought it would be a good idea to make a white sparkling wine out of red syrah grapes. While he knows this plan is just plain crazy, this critic has given up challenging Boegner’s sanity. Dutifully, he tried the wine, called Blanc de Syrah. It was astoundingly good.

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Arnaldo-Caprai Grecante

Many of us wine lovers have gotten so wrapped up in our comfort zone that we box ourselves in to our own detriment.

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Beer Town: ‘Companion’ offers encyclopedic look at brewing

Some four years in the making, with more than 1,100 entries and over 900 pages, “The Oxford Companion to Beer” (Oxford University Press, $65) clearly was a huge undertaking. But its encyclopedic breadth doesn’t make it any less a pleasure to browse.

Oxford University Press

Oxford University Press

As its editor, Garrett Oliver, an author best known as the brewmaster at Brooklyn Brewery, points out, it can be great fun just to dip in at random and see where the book takes you.

“I find it oddly entertaining,” Oliver said. “It reminds me of when I used to go thumbing through encyclopedias as a kid. There’s a certain serendipity of suddenly seeing something on the opposite page that you want to read and then sort of bouncing around to the next thing. That came as welcome surprise.”

The book is arranged alphabetically, beginning with abbey beers (“beers produced in the styles made famous by Belgian Trappist monks”) and ending with zymurgy (“the chemistry and science of fermentation by yeast”). In between, …

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Beer Town: 30 Years of Great American Beer

Craft beer is getting bigger and better. That was the overarching message of the three-day 30th anniversary Great American Beer Festival in Denver.

One of the main messengers was no less than Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, who welcomed journalists to the city at a four-course beer luncheon that focused on the culinary creativity and small-business power of brewpubs.

Hickenlooper, a brewer and co-founder of Wynkoop Brewing, as well as the former mayor of Denver, echoed that refrain when he stood at the podium to accept a pair of bronze medals during the 2011 Great American Beer Festival awards ceremony — the culmination of an annual beer competition that’s been called both the Academy Awards and Super Bowl of craft brewing.

John Roberts with his GABF medal. Credit; Bob Townsend

John Roberts with his GABF medal. Credit; Bob Townsend

Two Atlanta brewers also made it up to the podium. Sweetwater “Big Kahuna” Freddy Bensch accepted a gold medal for Sch’Wheat American-style wheat and a bronze for Crank Tank rye ale. Max Lager’s …

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Beer Town: A whole bunch of beer this month

Like many beer lovers, I always look forward to autumn, a time marked by the arrival of richer and stronger brews, Oktoberfest celebrations, and a whole bunch of beer festivals. But with Atlanta Beer week moving to October, this season looks to be better than ever.

In September, Der Biergarten kicked-off an impressive Oktoberfest party, billed as “Munich on Marietta Street,” that will run through Oct. 30, with music, beer and brats every Saturday and Sunday and food and drink specials other times. An array of German beers on tap served up in steins and boots, a menu that features spit-roasted chicken and pork shank, and a rooftop beer garden make it a unique Atlanta Oktoberfest destination.

Decatur Beer Big Mike

Decatur Beer Fest 2010. Credit: Bob Townsend

In its second year, Atlanta Beer Week, Oct. 8-16, moves from the spring to the fall, with beer bars, beverage stores, brewpubs and breweries putting on dinners, special tastings and educational seminars for the metro-wide event.

Among the most …

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