THE BREWSKI REPORT

October 22, 2012

Tommyknocker’s Pumpkin Harvest Ale Review 10.22.2012

Looks and tastes like molasses.

Looks and tastes like molasses.

TBR Reports on Tommyknocker’s Small Patch Pumpkin Harvest
File Date: 10.22.2012

File Name: The Toe Knows
The Beer: Pumpkin Harvest Ale
Type: Pumpkin Ale
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Tommyknocker Brewery & Pub
Web Site: tommyknocker.com
State/Country of Origin: CO, USA
Brewer Info: Colorado Mountain Town Craft Beer.

tbr-tk-pumpk-insertBrewer Brand Hype: A hearty brown ale brewed to celebrate the fall harvest season. Brewed with a hint of spice and a touch of molasses, Small Patch has a malty backbone rounded out by an addition of real pumpkin to the mash and brew kettle. Think outside the patch! Pumpkin Harvest Ale is available August through October.
Label: Colorado Mountain Tommyknocker Beer. Small Patch Pumpkin Harvest Ale. A festive seasonal ale with pumpkin and a touch of molasses and spice. Ale brewed with pumpkin, molasses and spices. Tommyknockers slipped into the mining camps of Idaho Springs in the 1800’s with the discovery of gold in our mountains and streams. These mischievous elves, though hardly ever seen, were often singing and working. They guided many fortunate miners from harm’s way and to the gold they sought.

The Brewski Review: I’m writhing in pain I’ll have you know. I broke a toe over the weekend and it’s a killer to get around. I’m sure the pain will eventually subside but it’s in full force now. It actually hurt less when it happened vs. this point in time - nearly two days later. How did it happen? My wife and I went to a school fundraiser for my daughter’s catholic elementary school (For anyone thinking about sending their child to a catholic school, keep in mind that the up-front tuition is only a fraction of the cost. You also need to consider the fundraisers, volunteer activities and donations which may add up to the full cost of the tuition itself.) I (er, excuse me, WE) had a few beers (the choice was somewhat less than optimal) but I wasn’t drunk. We came home, put the kids to bed and drifted off ourselves. Of course, in the middle of the night nature started to beckon. I walked to the bathroom and stepped on some evil, pointy, molded plastic toy that felt like someone was jambing bamboo sticks in the arch of my foot. Of course, this threw off my groggy stride and I kicked ANOTHER toy sitting off to the side. Ouch-i-mamma! Snap, crackle and pop. There goes the toe. It wasn’t too bad that night so I just naturally thought it was no big deal. Come morning, I changed my mind on the prognosis. Broken toe would have been my indian name. Anyway, I thought this beer would help me out. I was expecting a nice pumpkin beer but was surprised by this molasses concoction. It had a nice appearance, poured with no head and was tasty but wasn’t what I was expecting. Too much on the molasses. Light on the pumpkin pie flavor. Good nonetheless. It went down smooth and worth the time.

Drinkability: Definitely.
Appearance: Nice, dark molasses color.
The Buds: Big molasses flavor.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.75 out of 5 caps

October 14, 2012

Rivertown’s Pumpkin Ale Beer Review 10.14.2012

Rivertown's Pumpkin Ale Beer with Maximum Head

Rivertown's Pumpkin Ale Beer with Maximum Head

TBR Reports on Rivertown’s Pumpkin Ale
File Date: 10.14.2012

File Name: A Fall Barn Door Folly
The Beer: Pumpkin Ale
Type: Pumpkin Ale
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Rivertown Brewing Co.
Web Site: rivertownbrewery.com
State/Country of Origin: OH, USA
Brewer Info: Welcome to the Rivertown Brewing Company. We specialize in brewing traditional Handcrafted Lagers and Ales, using only the finest and freshest ingredients available. Be sure to visit us at the brewery in our all new Tap Room! (Wasn’t much info in the way of brewery origin.)

tbr-rt-pumpkin-insertBrewer Brand Hype: Our Pumpkin Ale is a spice infused ale, using dark sugars, real pumpkin, and fresh ground spices. This is how we do pumpkin pie! Best served at 55ºF in a wide pub glass.
Label: Rivertown Brewing Co. Ale brewed with pumpkin, molasses and cinnamon with spices added. Hand crafted in small batches.

The Brewski Review: It was a strange fall day….warm and humid with isolated rain showers. I was working out in the garage after the wife took the kids to her sister’s house. It’s hard to believe but I was sweating out there trying to hang a barn door track inside my garage for the tool room. The door is approx. 11 feet long and just a smidge over 7′. It was a bear to get it together by myself. To install the 22′ of barn door track, I pulled out a new laser level I purchased 3 years ago and never had the opportunity to use. (That’s a pretty slick tool once you get it set up.) Finally, I just had to call it quits. Time to go inside and pay bills. (First, I had to watch  the last couple episodes of Breaking Bad on my DVR. (Loved it!) Then, I pulled out a nice fall pumpkin beer. This go ’round was Rivertown’s Pumpkin Ale. It had a nice aroma at the pour and a nice full head. The taste was rather spicy with a hint of molasses. It was a nice flavor but it didn’t remind me of a pumpkin pie. Overall though, it was tasty and worthy of a nice fall afternoon fire outside.

Drinkability: Would drink it again.
Appearance: Nice amber color.
The Buds: Spicy flavors abound.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.0 out of 5 caps.

January 23, 2012

Wittekerke Witbier Review 1.23.2012

Belgium Wittekerke Witbier

Belgium's Wittekerke Witbier

TBR’s Take on Wittekerke Witbier
File Date: 1.23.2012

File Name: I want to drink so I must be sane.
The Beer: Wittekerke
Type: Witbier
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Brouweij Bavik
Web Site: www.bavik.be
State/Country of Origin: Belgium
Brewer Info: In August 1894 founded Adolphe De Brabandere farmer on the “Hof ter Coulter” an application to the municipality of Bavikhove to “one brewery building.” One of his children, Joseph De Brabandere, made the same year his first brew. The Brabandere Joseph died in 1929 age of 54. After a difficult period, his son Albert the reins of the brewery owned, so the company is under a steady momentum of growth. What the beer bars and 1950 only to individuals was sold, was started in 1950 with exports to beer retailers. It was also during this period that the Lager beer began to rise. Previously it was mainly brewed beer table, next to the barrels of beer that was delivered to the pubs. an old truck unloading bierHet sales network was expanded through the bars and beer merchants could Bavik and the Bon-Val products obtained in West and East Flanders and Hainaut.

tbr-bavik-insertBrewer Brand Hype: WITTEKERKE charms you with its own character, smooth taste and a unique delicious aroma. A very pleasant drink, light in alcohol with a crisp and refreshing flavor. WITTEKERKE is always served cold, but in taking your time to enjoy it, you will find more flowery and spring flavors towards the end of your glass. Although the hoppy bitterness is an underlying taste, it is never dominant. Perfect white head. WITTEKERKE is a fictitious name for a typical Flemish town, like we find hundreds of villages in Flanders with a name ending on KERKE (church) or KAPELLE (chapel). WITTE means white in English, thus the translation of the name is WHITE CHURCH. The Bavik brewery has since a long time brewed its own authentic WIT beer under the “Bavik Wit” label, but the brewery chose to change the name in cooperation with the producers of the Belgian sit-com “WITTEKERKE”, airing twice a week in prime-time on the Belgian TV channels. The actors drink WITTEKERKE during the show.
Label: Authentic Belgian Wheat Beer. Originally brewed and bottled in Belgium by Bavik brewery.

The Brewski Review: I’ve been having some terrible employee drama in my department. No one wants to get along anymore so I’m ready to fire them all. Just kidding. It’s too hard to find quality individuals these days regardless of the high unemployment numbers that seem to lay stagnant out there in the heavy morning dew the government showers down upon us each week.  The departmental drama….yes, it does truly exist. It’s enough to make a sane man drink heavily. Which leads me to my desire to come home for a nice cold beer. I was excited to pull this Witbier out of the fridge and garnish it with a slice or two of orange before pounding it. First off, I had serious problems getting the sediment swirled off the bottom of the bottle. I actually had to pour some beer back in to work some free. Needless to say, the effort proved only half successful. Could this be the reason for the uncharacteristic taste? Possible so. It wasn’t like any other Witbier I’ve tasted, or enjoyed for that fact. To tolorate the beer I had to drop about half an orange in the glass - drinking pulp with each swig. I’ve never had a unpleasant wheat beer from Belgium before so I’ll have to try this brand another time for an updated review. Until then, the rating IS what it IS.

Drinkability: I’ll try again.
Appearance: Very light golden color - too clear for witbier.
The Buds: Very unusual tasting - almost too bitter.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.25 out of 5.

Bavik is a small sponser of this off-road rally team (given the prominence of the company logo on the truck, they must not supply much more than a few six packs every now and then.)

Wittekerke is a small sponser of this off-road rally team (given the prominence of the company logo on the truck, they must not supply much more than a few six packs every now and then.)

Bavik also sponsors a balloon. Nice way to advertise.

Bavik also sponsors a balloon. Nice way to advertise.

December 18, 2011

Czech Republic’ Primator Premium Lager 12.18.2011

Czech Republic's Gift to the World.

Czech Republic's Gift to the World.

TBR Reviews Czech Republic’s Primator Premium Lager
File Date: 12.18.2011

File Name: Czech Castle Brewed Beer
The Beer: Primator Premium Lager
Type: Czech Pilsener
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Pivovar Náchod a.s.
Web Site: www.primator.cz/
State/Country of Origin: Czech Republic
Brewer Info: Náchod town has a brewery built in 1872, which sells a range of beers under the Primátor brand name. In February 2009, the town authorities agreed to sell the brewery to Liberec Investment Fund (LIF), the owners of Svijany and Rohozec breweries.

tbr-primator-insertBrewer Brand Hype: The flavour experience of Premium will always leave you wanting another sip. This is the same of many a Bohemian beer, the style for which the Czech Republic is world-reknowned. Primator Premium is the pride and joy of our brew master. After choosing only the best natural ingredients, the meticulous production process is rounded off by a lengthy maturation at the temperature of 1°C. It has a strong, balanced flavour, sparkling gold colour and long-lasting head. There is a classic, moreish bitterness on the palate. A versatile beer, suitable for drinking any time, in celebration or comtemplation. Whatever the moment, we know that you will enjoy our beer!
Label: Primator continues a 140 year tradition of brewing award winning Premium Lager using the time-honored brewing process and the best natural ingredients -  finest two-row malted barley, world famous Saaz hops, proprietary yeast, and pure mountain water. Rich golden color, perfectly balanced flavor, and long-lasting head make this “2008 European Beer Star Award” Gold Medal winner one of the best lagers in the world.

The Brewski Review: Very tasty brew and full of flavor. It has a nice balance: not too hoppy or malty. Just right. This would be a good warm weather beverage served frosty cold. I would almost venture to say that there was a hint of sweetness to it.

Drinkability: Certainly would drink again.
Appearance: Golden yellow w/ minimal head.
The Buds: Well balanced.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.25 out of 5.

September 10, 2011

Siren Amber Ale or Devil Girl Beer 9.10.2011

Siren Amber Ale for the devil in all of us.

Siren Amber Ale for the devil in all of us.

TBR Reviews North Peak’s Siren Amber Ale (or, Devil Girl Beer)
File Date: 9.10.2011

File Name: Sirens and Devil Girls Go Head To Head.
The Beer: Siren Amber Ale
Type: American Amber/Red Ale
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: North Peak Brewing Co.
Web Site: www.northpeakbeer.com/
State/Country of Origin: MI, USA
Brewer Info: Legends of the north woods all start with a simple story at a single point in time. Our yarn began when the entrepreneurial Carlson, Lobdell and Czaplicka families signed the deed to a deserted candy factory in downtown Traverse City, MI. Within its cavernous brick walls the North Peak Brewing Company was established in 1997, where brews and food of uncommon quality were the focus. As the days passed into years, their passion for brewing grew and led them down paths travelled by other like-minded individuals. The result of this rendezvous of North Peak Brewing Company’s Jon Carlson and Greg Lobdell, and Ron Jeffries of Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales was the spawning of Northern United Brewing Company in 2008. Headquartered in their secret forest hideaway on Old Mission Peninsula, these brewing elders recruited the final full-time member of their clandestine council in August 2009 — brewmaster Mike Hall (who had consulted on numerous other endeavors). Their mission was simple: take the well-respected name of North Peak and build upon it with craft beers of the finest, hand-made quality using ingredients borne of the northern Michigan landscape. This is why North Peak brews whenever possible with Michigan malted-grain, hops and water. Over the next three months, Mike and Ron collaborated on recipes that drew from their nearly 50 years of combined brewing experience. In late 2009, at their new, secluded state-of-the art brewing facility on Old Mission Peninsula, the first bottles of Siren Amber Ale, Diabolical IPA and Majestic American Wheat rolled off the bottling line.
 
tbr-siren-insertBrewer Brand Hype: Its call is intoxicating. An aroma that beckons you to pull up a stool and linger over it’s toasted malt character. Next, a deep kiss of liquid lust that will caress you tongue, thanks to an array of toasty Pale, Crystal (30 and 75) wheat, Carapils and roasted barley malts balanced by the subtle bite of Willamette and Fuggle hops. It’s a brew that will seduce your heart, mind and palette.
Label: Brewed Up North. Traverse City, Michigan, USA

The Brewski Review: Pleasantly suprised by the mild taste. Most of the amber ales that I’ve tried have been higher on the bitterness scale. This is more subdued and for me that means it more appealing to my taste buds. So, it’s well balanced between the malt and hops. Good for those that don’t care for the bitter aftertaste of some brews. On the marketing side, I have to add that I like the label: simple and eye catching with the red and white. The name stems from Greek mythology, the Sirens (Greek singular: Seiren; Greek plural: Seirenes) were three dangerous bird-women, portrayed as seductresses who lured nearby sailors with their enchanting music and voices to shipwreck on the rocky coast of their island. But, for me, the little logo represents more of a little devil girl. Perhaps the beverage should have been named Devil Girl. And, they should have hooked up with the artist COOP (at coopstuff.com) who draws some mighty awsome designs - many of which involve devil girls. If I was still in my single dude-man bachelor days, my house would be decorated in Coop designs. I’m not paid to plug his work, but if you like simple retro looking graphics about girls, cars, robots, etc., check out his Coopstuff website. 

Drinkability: Most definitely.
Appearance: Deep amber color.
The Buds: Refreshingly mild.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.0 caps out of 5.

One of Coop's Devil Girl poster designs.

One of Coop's Devil Girl poster designs.

July 4, 2011

EKU Pils and the Obama Dinner Party Lottery 7.4.11

Kulmbacher Brauerei EKU Pils

Kulmbacher Brauerei EKU Pils

The Brewski Report Reviews Kulmbacher’s EKU Pils
File Date: 7.4.2011

File Name: Obama’s Dinner Lottery
The Beer: EKU Pils
Type: German Pilsener
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Kulmbacher Brauerei
Web Site: www.kulmbacher.de/de/klbag/
State/Country of Origin: Kulmbach, Germany
Brewer Info: The name Kulmbach has always had a good reputation for beer connoisseurs, and no wonder: Even in antiquity, the inhabitants are dedicated to the art of brewing, as demonstrated by the discovery of a 3,000 year old Bieramphore, which is now seen as the oldest evidence of beer brewing in Germany. Since time immemorial the Darrhauben determine the malt, the brewer’s house and the restaurant’s heart, shapes the life of the people of beer in the region. 1846 joined the “prauenden citizens’ Johann Wolfgang Reichel, Johann Conrad Scheiding and Johann Martin Hübner, together with a Brauer community. This was the birth of the Kulmbach Reichelbräu. By exporting the legendary Kulmbach beer to central, eastern, and northern Germany began the rise of Reichelbräu. This was also the loss of sales territories in Central and East Germany was not slowed down after 1949. After the turn succeeded the tradition of brewing and brewing Sternquell pride in Saxony and the bathroom to take Brambacher mineral sources. 2003 the company took over the brewery Scherdel, courtyard. In 1996, the formerly independent breweries Reichelbräu, Sandlerbräu, and EKU priory under the umbrella of the Kulmbach Brewery were combined. Today we are the premium brand of Kulmbach , the traditional brand EKU , the specialty brand priory and the white beer brand Capuchin continue as separate brands with separate formulations . This beer variety Kulmbach justified reputation as the secret capital of beer.

tbr-eku-label1Brewer Brand Hype: When the very first clear, golden lager was brewed in the Bohemian town of Pilsen in 1842, beer drinkers the world over were immediately enchanted. The Germans quickly proved to be the most passionate devotees of the new style. Towns across the land began brewing their own “Pilsner” beers, and the name of the style was soon shortened to the friendlier “Pils.” The German touch was to make the beer a bit lighter in body - better for everyday drinking - and to add an extra dose of hops for a refreshingly bitter zing.
Label: The classic German ‘Pils’ with flawless balance. Light and refreshing, rich and deeply satisfying - perfect for everyday drinking. Brewed according to the German Beer Purity Law of 1516 and bottled by Kulmbacher Brauerei 95326, Bavaria, Germany.

The Brewski Review: Large head at the pour but dissapated quickly. Surprisingly hoppy for a lighter pilsener beer. Light and crisp. Good for a hot summer 89 degree day like today. You know, the other day I read a snippit of Obama’s Re-election campaign team to best their goal for $60M before June 30th. In an effort to drum up more low dollar contributions Obama himself sent out an mass e-mail appeal that stated: “I wanted to say thank you before the midnight deadline passes. And I’m looking forward to thanking four of you in person over dinner sometime soon. If you haven’t thrown your name in the hat yet, make a donation of $5 or more before midnight tonight — you’ll be automatically entered for a chance to be one of our guests.” Does this offend you as much as it does me? So what….Obama’s holding a lottery? For $5 you get a chance to win a meal with the President of the USA? It’s completely disgusting to think that we’re cheapening the value of the office for the country’s highest elected official, not to mention that it’s against the law to use the White House as a lever or means to solicit campaign contributions. Of course, I’m sure Obama’s crafty enough to work his way around this little loophole.

Drinkability: Sure. I’d double down.
Appearance: Clear, golden yellow.
The Buds: Hoppy tasting for a lighter ‘pils’.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.25 caps out of 5.’

Rule 1 when eating with the President: Don't stand between the president and the food. Rule 2: Keep your fingers and hands close to your person. Rule 3: Don't tell Michele what he eats.

Rule 1 when eating with the President: Don't stand between the president and the food. Rule 2: Keep your fingers and hands close to your person. Rule 3: Don't tell Michele what he eats.

June 12, 2011

Singha Premium Lager Beer Review 6.12.2011

Singha Premium Lager with the Lion.

Singha Premium Lager with the Lion.

The Brewski Report Reviews Singha Premium Lager Beer
File Date: 6.12.2011

File Name: Triassic Park-ish weather may be here to stay.
The Beer: Singha Lager Beer
Type: Euro Pale Lager
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Boon Rawd Brewery Ltd. (Singha Corp. Ltd.)
Web Site: www.singhabeer.com (site takes a while to load)
State/Country of Origin: Bangkok, Thailand
Brewer Info:   Phraya BhiromBhakdi was an aristocrat with an acute business vision. He was already successful in the ferry business, transporting passengers across the Chao Praya River. But, in the 1920s, bridges were being built around the capital, as private cars and public transportation were fast becoming the norm for commuters between Bangkok and Thonburi. Phraya BhiromBhakdi then thought to look for a new business venture. As Thai people were increasingly enjoying imported beers at the time, he found that beers were also being produced in a few Asian countries with similar climate to Thailand. Having received a report that water in parts of Bangkok was perfect for beer brewing, he visited many leading breweries in Europe to learn about the production process. Soon after, the request to brew the first Thai beer was granted; machineries imported;the new and exciting venture soon became the talk-of-the-town. Thus, began the story of the first beer to be brewed in Thailand, which began in 1933, when the founder was 60 years old. With Boonrawd Brewery being the first Thai brewery, the process leading up to the building of the brewery created much interest in Thailand at the time. Many visits to the brewery were made by members of the Royal Family, politicians, and foreign envoys, as well as other important individuals to see the new in-thing at the time. With Singha Corporation’s continual expansions, processes and technologies continually updated, Singha’s breweries are one of the most technological advanced in teh world. Please enjoy the photos from history to the present for which we will update periodically.

tbr-singha-logo1Brewer Brand Hype: The golden liquid is produced using the finest quality barley, malt and hops, imported from around the world, together with the pure artisan water, with a special balance that is unique only to our areas, distinguishing the taste from other beers. Distinghished brewmasters from Thailand and Germany ensure the quality of the product and the balance in taste.
Label: The Original Thai Beer Since 1933.

The Brewski Review: Not sure how to judge the taste of the ‘Artisan Water’ but overall a pleasant tasting beer. Not a favorite but definitely a drink-worthy brewski. Overall taste was mild with a slight hoppy flavor. I’ve had other euro pale lagers that satisfied my taste buds better, but this would work on one of these hot summer days. It’s been surprisingly hot this year so far and it doesn’t appear to be letting up. Are we working our way back to the weather similar to that during the Triassic period (206 to 250 million years ago)? The Earth proceeds through different cycles and the temperature will change accordingly. The Triassic period was definitely warmer and had a bonus - had cool dinosaurs roaming around. That’s one time period I’ll be visiting once someone invents a time machine.  I’ll just have to make a quick visit to the future to pick up a Ray-Gun at 7-11 before packing my bags.

Drinkability: Not if given a choice.
Appearance: Pale golden color with max head
The Buds: Slight hoppy taste.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

A more exotic and upscale print ad with the Singha Lion Girl (that's beer girl in America).

A more exotic and upscale print ad with the Singha Lion Girl (that's beer girl in America).

Gotta hand it to Singha - they love the beer girls. Like me, I think they do wonders to enhance the brand.

Gotta hand it to Singha - they love the beer girls. Like me, I think they do wonders to enhance the brand.

Another Singha beer girl. This one is wearing a sash so we may be looking at Ms. Singha. Looks more European than Asian though.

Another Singha beer girl. This one is wearing a sash so we may be looking at Ms. Singha. Looks more European than Asian though.

September 12, 2010

James Boag’s Premium Lager Beer Review 9.12.10

The Tasmanian Devil.

The Tasmanian Devil.

The Brewski Report Reviews J. Boag & Son’s Premium Lager
File Date: 9.12.10

File Name: Grumpy Gus Dives Deep Within
The Beer: James Boag’s Premium Lager
Type: Euro Pale Ale
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: J. Boag & Sons Brewing
Web Site: www.boags.com.au
Country of Origin: Australia
Brewer Info: Our history begins in 1881 with the establishment of the Esk Brewery in the remote colonial settlement of Launceston. It was in this brewery that James Boag I and his son James Boag II commenced a tradition of brewing the highest quality beers - and, while they retained the Esk brewery name for some years, ‘Boag’s Brewery’ became a frequent reference. Tasmania’s cool climate and island remoteness offered an abundance of superior quality ingredients for brewing. James Boag quickly realized that these premium ingredients underpinned the brewing of incomparably better beers. After assuming the ownership of Esk brewery in 1883, James Boag and his son were able to combine their appreciation of the finest natural ingredients with the superior equipment of their new brewery to quickly establish their reputation for brewing beers that were far from ordinary. Today, we still insist on using the finest hops, barley, and pure water to produce extraordinary beers. Every bottle reflects the purity and isolation of our island, and James Boag’s commitment to the perfection of the brewer’s craft.

Brewer Brand Hype: James Boag’s Premium Lager is an internationally recognised, multi-award winning premium beer with a rich Tasmanian heritage. Acclaimed both at home and overseas, James Boag’s Premium was honoured with the 2007 Crystal Prestige Award for winning 10 consecutive gold medals at le Monde Selection in Brussels. This success is the result of combining the finest ingredients, world class brewing skills and the distinctive black and white imagery featured in our TV, cinema and print advertising inspired by our photographer Helmut Newton. James Boag’s Premium’s sophisticated style is a perfect match for the smooth, subtle and perfectly balanced characteristics of this world-class lager.

The Helmut Newton Marketing Campaign? Good? Are You Inspired To Buy The Beer Based On this?

'Who is James Boag?' The Helmut Newton Marketing Campaign. Think it's good? Are You Inspired To Buy The Beer Based On this?

Label: In 1853 James Boag commenced his brewing tradition on the banks of the Esk River in Launceston, Tasmania. We use Tasmania’s finest ingredients combined with extended lagering to create a crisp, pale lager rich in flavour.

The Brewski Review: Grumpy Gus woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. In the middle of the night I awoke and wondered where my life was compared to where I wanted it to be. The trigger was a comment my wife made a few days ago about seeing a former female friend of mine in a grocery store parking lot. There was neither an exchange of words or glances but the tell stuck with me. This woman and her husband both have MBA’s, have great jobs that they love and, of course, the money and ’stuff’ to go along with it. They seems to have it all. As you can imagine this type of thinking is corrosive. The grass is always greener right? Some of you know what I’m talking about. My point is that everyone’s expectation of life should always be more - and I’m not strickly talking monitary rewards. How about purpose? Peace of mind? A well balanced life? An improved body, mind and spirit? You should always strive to be the best. Some days it’s difficult but I try. I hope you do to. And, to improve your taste buds, try picking up a six of this beer - James Boag’s Premium Lager. I was surprised how this beer tasted. Well, I guess I shouldn’t say surprised because I really didn’t have any preconcieved notion as to how it should taste. Maybe I should say…I was pleased with the taste of this beer. There was some nice malt taste and a little hoppy but very well balanced. Very smooth and mild.

Drinkability: Most definitely.
Appearance: Pale golden color.
The Buds: Smoooooooth.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.0out of 5 caps

July 27, 2010

Australia’s Foster’s Lager Beer Review 7.27.10

Straight from the Keg - not the oil can.

Straight from the Keg - not the oil can.

The Brewski Report Reviews Foster’s Lager
File Date: 7.27.2010

File Name: Down Under Beer Ads Are Tops
The Beer: Foster’s Lager
Type: American Adjunct Lager
Serving: Draft
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Foster’s Group Limited
Web Site: www.fostersbeer.com
Country of Origin: Australia
Brewer Info: William and Ralph Foster created Foster’s in 1887. They were so dedicated to delivering Foster’s the way it should be enjoyed, they even sold it with ice to keep Australia’s warm environment at bay. More than 120 years later, the bold, refreshing taste of Foster’s is available in more than 150 countries, making it the largest-selling Australian beer brand in the world. Foster’s 25.4 oz. cans arrived in the U.S. in 1972. They resembled motor oil cans so, naturally, Americans nicknamed them “Foster’s Oil Cans.” And the name’s stuck ever since. Truth is, we quite like it. Almost as much as we like what’s inside. Pride of Ringwood hops are only grown by Hop Products of Australia in Bushy Park, Tasmania and Oven River, Victoria and by Ellerslie Hop Estates in Myaree. And unlike other beers, they’re added at the end of the brewing process to preserve their freshness. These hops and an exclusive Foster’s yeast are what give Foster’s its bold, refreshing taste. The “secret” yeast doesn’t produce sulfer harshness that other beers can exhibit, which means that Foster’s taste is never skunky and always Australian.

fosters-labelBrewer Brand Hype: It’s bright, golden color sits beneath a creamy foam head. A moderate aroma with a full malty character. Foster’s Lager is a 5% alcohol by volume lager with a bright, golden color that delivers a refreshing beer-drinking experience with a crisp, clean hop finish.
Label: The kegs were in the cooler. The bartender wouldn’t let me in.

The Brewski Review: The great thing about Foster’s Lager is their sense of humor. Face it, the beer is just another American Adjunct Lager and is nothing super special. So, how do you make it special? Clever marketing. Great ads with a sense of humor and a company that isn’t too proud or stuffy. I can recall some of the television ads from years ago (i.e. ‘Long Distance Relationship’ - where a man and woman sit at opposite ends of a bar). Different than anything else that was out there in my opinion. Check out the print ad below and you’ll see what I mean. As far as the beer goes, it’s a session beer. Drink it in large quantities. It’s cold, crisp and suitable for a warm summer day. There is a slight hoppy finish to it as noted above. Someday, when I win the lottery, I’ll visit Autralia and drink a Foster’s down under. Maybe it’ll bring on a whole new meaning drinking it as a domestic beer vs. an import.

Drinkability: Most likely wouldn’t drink again.
Appearance: Pale straw gold color.
The Buds: Typical tasting adjunct lager.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.5 out of 5 caps.

Well, you wouldn't want a warm beer, would you?

Well, you wouldn't want a warm beer, would you?

May 12, 2010

Spaten-Franziskaner-Brau’s Hefe-Weisse Beer Review 5.12.2010

Those Darn Franciscians Can Brew a Mean Beer

Where The Franciscans Frequent Visitors To The Brewery Across The Street?

The Brewski Report Reviews Franziskaner’s Hefe-Weisse Beer
File Date: 5.12.10

File Name: Polish Guy Drinks German Beer In An Italian Bistro
The Beer: Franziskaner Hefe-Weisse
Type: Hefeweizen
Serving: Draft
Stats: 5.0% ABV
Brewer: Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu GmbH
Web Site: www.franziskaner.com
Country of Origin: Germany
Brewer Info: Franziskaner’s roots can be traced back to 1363. It was in this year that the brewer Seidel Vaterstetter is first mentioned as the owner of the ‘brewery next to the Franciscans’ in the Munich Residenzstrasse. The name ‘Franziskaner’ derives from the Franciscan monastery diagonally across the street. In 1861 Joseph Sedlmayr, owner of the Leist Brewery (probably founded in the 15th century) and son of Spaten’s Gabriel Sedlmayr the Elder, buys out August Deiglmayr, with whom he has been co-running the Residenzstrasse brewery since 1858. By 1872 ‘Ur-Märzen’, the amber-colored Oktoberfest beer from Franziskaner-Leist, is served for the first time at the Schottenhamel Tent on the Oktoberfest fairgrounds. Brewed from a Viennese recipe, this golden-yellow beer is stronger than the summer beer. In 1922 The Franziskaner-Leist Brewery and the Spaten Brewery, likewise owned by the Sedlmayr family, unite to form a single joint stock company, the ‘Gabriel und Joseph Sedlmayr Spaten-Franziskaner-Leistbräu AG’, in order to combat the economic problems of the crisis-ridden postwar years and to capitalize on synergies. The Munich artist Ludwig Hohlwein designs the company’s distinctive trademark in 1935, which is still used today. The Franciscan Friar continues to stand for the unsurpassed quality of Franziskaner’s premium weiss beer. 
 
tbr-franz_weiss-insertBrewer Brand Hype:
All of Franziskaner’s weiss beer products - Hefe-Weisse Hell and Hefe-Weisse Dunkel - are top-fermentation beers noted for their agreeable carbonation levels and zesty wheat flavour. The consistently high quality of our products makes Franziskaner weiss beers a refreshing taste sensation of a special sort. All Franziskaner weiss beers are brewed in strict adherence to the Bavarian Purity Law of 1516. Franziskaner Hefe-Weisse Hell is noted for it’s agreeable level of carbination and it’s natural cloudiness. It is brewed from Wheat Malt, barley malt, hops, top fermenting yeast and water according to a time-honoured Bavarian recipe.

What is the Purity Law?
 In 1516 Duke Wilhelm IV of Bavaria issued the Purity Law, the oldest foodstuff regulation still in effect today. It states that beer can only be brewed from malt, hops and water.

Label: Draft beer served at the table.

The Brewski Review: I’m on a streak this week: one brew each day of my travels.  After work today I went to dinner at a swanky Italian bistro with only a few tables and what appeared to be a heavy, geriatric following. As I was starting to wonder about my co-workers choice of dining, some younger patrons ambled in the front door.  This put me more at ease. Once I settled into my cushy booth seat I ordered a German Franziskaner Hefe-Weisse to start off the meal. Although the wine list was extensive, the beer list was rather short.  Aside from mostly institutional beers (as I like to call the large mass produced American brands) were a couple beers from Italy and two from Germany.  Hefe-Weisse it was. The waitress served the beer with a lemon on the rim of the pint glass. I don’t think this is how a real German would drink it I thought to myself - more of an American addition.  So I ditched the lemon wedge and still enjoyed every last drop.  I would love to say that it supurbly complimented the grilled chicken covered with a blue cheese sauce, the gnocchi (Italian name for a variety of thick, soft noodles or dumplings) and asparagas, but the beer was gone long before the food arrived.  I’m sure I was thirsty but I think the excellent taste had a little to do with it.  Drink up road warriors.     

Drinkability: Will definitely drink this brand again.
Appearance: Cloudy, light golden color.  Minimal head.
The Buds: Creamy and mild.  Yummy.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.25 caps out of 5.

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