Like many Americans, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. And like most serious beer lovers, I’ve spent some time thinking about what styles go best with the Turkey Day feast.
I’m something of a traditionalist when it comes to holiday food and drink. On Thanksgiving, I think the house should be filled with the aroma of herb-roasted turkey.
To go with the bird and fixings, I like French-style biere de garde, Belgian-style saison or dubbel, or German-style dunkel or amber lager. Each style is distinctive on its own but versatile enough to pair with the crazy quilt of dishes on the Thanksgiving table.
Best of all, you can find fresh American craft beer takes on all of those styles, now. Look for the likes of Lost Abbey Avant Garde Ale, Ommegang Hennepin, Boulevard Nommo and Brooklyn Lager, and do some mixing and matching to find your favorite pairings.
Because the holidays coincide with colder weather and the release of stronger, darker seasonal styles, it
The three things in life that puzzle me the most: 1. Why do we park in driveways? 2. Why do we drive on parkways, and 3. Why would anyone want to start a winery in Georgia?
I’ll leave the first two questions for the philosophers and consider the third here. You might think it’s impossible to make quality wine in Georgia. You’d be wrong, especially if you examine the arc of terrain stretching from Chatsworth in the west down to
A couple of recent news stories started me thinking about something I often note but rarely consider a determining factor when choosing a beer: alcohol content.
A story by Devin Leonard in Bloomberg Businessweek, “The Plot to Destroy America’s Beer,” details the profit-making strategies of AB InBev “the dominant beer company in the U.S.” — including reducing the alcohol in its Budweiser and Stella Artois brands in England.
An item published on FoxNews.com, “Scottish brewer unveils the world’s strongest beer,” hyped Brewmeister’s Armageddon, “with an alcohol by volume (ABV) of a whopping 65 percent.”
In 2004, Georgia lawmakers passed a bill that increased the maximum alcohol content in beer from 6 percent to 14 percent. That means that while there are many more beers with an ABV equivalent to most wines in the Atlanta market now, so-called “extreme beers,” like Armageddon, aren’t likely to be sold here anytime soon.
We all know what happens when guys hit middle age: We buy a Porsche, invest heavily in Rogaine and rupture a disk doing something that was foolish when we did it the first time 25 years earlier. But what happens to a winery at middle age?
If you’re Cakebread Cellars, which celebrates its 40th birthday next year, you dive into new projects with the gusto of a wide-eyed, newbie winemaker (only this time you have firm financial backing, a well-regarded brand and decades of experience to avoid the winemaking equivalent of a ruptured disk).
“Bruce and I said we didn’t want to stick to just these three wines for the rest of our lives,” said Dennis Cakebread, son
In the intro to his new book, “IPA: Brewing Techniques, Recipes, and the Evolution of India Pale Ale” (Brewers Publications, $24.95), Mitch Steele writes, “India pale ale (IPA) has been my favorite beer style since I first tried one back in the 1980s.”
Steele is the brewmaster at San Diego’s Stone Brewing, a company known for delighting serious hop heads with big, bold, bitter ales like Stone Ruination IPA.
In “IPA” he explores the history of India pale ale from its birth in 1700s England, and it’s near extinction during World War II and Prohibition, to its American renaissance as one of craft beer’s most popular styles.
During a recent phone call, Steele talked about some of the things he learned during three years of IPA research.
Q. Why is IPA your favorite style?
A. For me it’s all about the hop flavor. IPA is all about hops. Hops are what’s driving American craft brewing. The hop varieties from the United States have a very
I believe it was Frank Sinatra who once sang: “Tannins are a many-splendored thing.” Of course, this was re-titled replacing “tannins” with “love” to suit more popular tastes. But from my view, tannins give love a run for its money in the splendor department.
Joel Kostka, professor of microbial ecology at Georgia Tech, describes the wonders of tannins like this: “Tannins are thought to be mostly polyphenolic compounds that can form large macromolecules….In the northern wetlands or peatlands that I study, tannin-like compounds have been observed in peats. These tannins are believed to be responsible for the almost
In its third year, Atlanta Beer Week promises to be bigger, more organized and better funded.
The metro-wide event Oct. 20-27, is designed to showcase local breweries, beer bars, restaurants and craft beer stores, plus craft beers and breweries from around the U.S. and the world.
Reid Ramsay of Taco Mac, Molly Gunn of the Porter Beer Bar and Wes Anderson of Savannah Distributing Co. are the core of the Atlanta Beer Week committee this year. The trio has been working to entice more sponsors and rally more participants while advocating for the vitality of the Atlanta beer scene.
“Atlanta is a massively growing and attractive beer market,” said Ramsay, “By the end of 2012, more than 15 breweries from across the U.S. will have launched in Atlanta for the first time, which is more than any other market in the U.S. this year. Sweetwater and Terrapin are
There are few terms in the Grand Lexicon of Wine Geeks that perplexes regular wine-loving people more than the word: minerality. It is word I avoid in most discussions, just to avoid the difficult task of defining it. The closest suggestion my spell-check can come up with for minerality is “immorality.” (I’ll let readers make the connection between these two words.)
Let me testify that minerality exists in wine, but, unfortunately, in the same way that the Higgs-Boson particle exists—it’s a concept that’s hard to get your mind around. Once you know it’s there, however, it changes things forever.
“So are there rocks in my
Fall is a favorite time for beer drinkers.
Traditionally, it means the arrival of richer, stronger, spicy seasonal beers, Oktoberfest celebrations at restaurants, brew pubs and beer bars, and all sorts of beer festivals.
Though not all are seasonal offerings, suddenly there are a bunch of beers newly arrived in Atlanta that have become welcome additions to the fall festivities.
A long time coming, Kansas City’s Boulevard Brewing debuted several of its beers here a few weeks ago, including the wonderfully hoppy and balanced Double-Wide IPA and the luscious saison Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale.
I love drinking saisons this time of year. The bright but robust Belgian-style ale seems to go with almost every kind of food. I’m especially fond of pairing it with pork sausages, roast chicken, and spicy Thai and Vietnamese dishes. And it’s an elegant and versatile star at the Thanksgiving table.
True to style, Tank 7 is pale and effervescent, aromatic and complex, with a citrusy, peppery
Can I share a little secret with you? Hold your newspaper/tablet/laptop a little closer to your ear. Ready?
I’ve about had it with those wimpy, floral rosés, pinot grigios, vinho verdes and all those other wines of summer. Can’t we talk about a wine or two with a little backbone?
Sure, when the trees were budding six months ago, those light-bodied, crisp wines seemed like the perfect tonic for warmer days ahead. Now that I’m contemplating raking those leaves that are starting to hit the deck, let’s not wait any longer for wines full of ample girth and substance.
We could discuss spicy syrahs from the northern Rhône, bold Alexander Valley cabernet sauvignons or the wonderful 2009 Bordeauxs, but I want to go