THE BREWSKI REPORT Tommy Brewski: My Beer. My Life.

June 5, 2010

TBR’s Miller Chill Beer Review 6.5.2010

tbr-miller-chill-bottleThe Brewski Report Reviews Miller Brewing’s Miller Chill
File Date: 6.5.2010

File Name: Chill: A Graduation to Mediocrity
The Beer: Miller Chill
Type: American Adjunct Lager
Serving: Bottle (clear)
Stats: 4.1% ABV
Brewer: Miller Brewing Company (MillerCoors/SAB Miller)
Web Site:
Country of Origin: WI, USA
Brewer Info: MillerCoors grew from the dreams of two German entrepreneurs who came to America in the mid-19th century. Miller Brewing Company began when a determined young brewer, Frederick J. Miller, brought his passion for beer to the United States. Miller settled in Milwaukee, where in 1855 he bought the Plank Road Brewery and made his first delicious beer, using yeast that he had carried with him all the way from Europe. Coors Brewing Company tapped its first barrel in 1873, when Adolph Coors opened The Golden Brewery in Colorado. Coors was born in Prussia and apprenticed at a brewery in his teens. With characteristic spirit, he stowed away on a ship to get to America and bring his brewing dream to life. Both companies had the good luck to be formed from the visions of remarkable businessmen who also happened to be remarkable human beings. Both had the good fortune to have family members carry on the work and legacy of founders. Both enterprises survived Prohibition and two world wars, when brewing materials were scarce and hundreds of other brewers failed to survive. Our founding companies built their success barrel by barrel. At MillerCoors, we now begin our own history. We have two wonderful traditions. And now, our talents, energies and ingenuity come together to form one promising company. 

chill-logoBrewer Brand Hype: Launched in 2007, Miller Chill is a refreshing light beer brewed with a hint of lime and a pinch of salt inspired by a classic Mexican recipe, the chelada. With Miller Chill, we are giving American beer drinkers a unique twist on refreshment that can be enjoyed with friends and family during many different occasions throughout the year. Miller Chill was so well received by consumers that it alone accounted for more volume than the next 14 biggest new beer brands of 2007 combined.
Label: 100 Calories. Light Beer with Natural Flavors.

The Brewski Review: High school graduation season is upon us.  Time for parties with free food and booze.  Well, not free in the complete sense of the word.  There is the seemingly mandatory obligation for a ‘cash’ donation to the party’s guest of honor.  I put up a weak effort in a conversation with my wife by saying that a gift wasn’t necessary. It probably wasn’t, but we gave a card with a few bills stuffed inside anyhow.  In the current social paradigm it seems like an obligatory requirement to give cash at about every social gathering we’re invited too.  Funny thing…I don’t recall getting cash gifts from relatives once I passed the age of five – my wonderful parents and grandparents aside. At the party we ate Italian sausage and pepper sandwiches, fried chicken, fruit and pasta salads and an assortment of veggies and dips all for a few bucks. And, of course, there was beer. When I first arrived at the party I noticed the cooler stocked with Miller Chill.  I’ve been wanting to taste this since I tried the Bud Lime a couple weeks back.  Unfortunately, it wasn’t as good as I thought it would be.  There was difinitely a citrus taste, but it was minimal. I could barely taste the lime.  To me, it was just another American Adjunct Lager in a clear bottle (I think the green Miller Chill bottles looked better). Bud Lime wins out on this taste comparison.  All in all, it was a pleasant afternoon. Although, not free, the food and drinks were about on par with taking the family out to dinner.

Drinkability: Not a fan. Needs more lime flavor.
Appearance: Straw colored in the bottle.
The Buds: Light and crisp. Minimal lime flavor.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.25 out of 5.

Everyone's Friend.

Everyone's Friend.

August 30, 2009

Hoegaarden White Beer Review 8.30.09

Hoegaarden's Witbier (White Beer) In All It's Cloudy Glory.

Hoegaarden's Witbier (White Beer) In All It's Cloudy Glory.

The Brewski Report’s Review on Hoegaarden, the Original Belgium White Beer.
File Date: 8.30.09

File Name:  It’s Intuitively Obvious That The Obvious Isn’t Always Intuitive.
The Beer: Hoegaarden Original White Ale
Type:  Witbier or White Beer
Serving:  Bottle, Dark Glass, Long Neck;  11.2 FL OZ Serving.
Stats:  4.90% ABV
Brewer: Brouwerij van Hoegaarden
Country of Origin: Belgium
Brewer Info:  Hoegaarden takes its name from the village of Hoegaarden, in Belgium’s Brabant Province, where the brewing of white beer can be traced back to 1445.  However, around 1955, the last local witbier brewery, Tomsin, closed its doors. Pierre Celis, a milkman, decided some ten years later to try to revive the style. He began the new brewery in his hay loft.  Celis used the traditional ingredients of water, yeast, wheat, hops, coriander and dried Curaçao orange peel known as Laraha. With demand for the product continuing to grow, Celis bought, in the 1980s, Hougardia, a local soft-drink factory that he rebuilt into a brewery.
After a fire in 1985, as is traditional in Belgium, several brewers offered their help. One of these was the largest brewer in the country, called Interbrew (after a merger with AmBev, renamed InBev). Interbrew lent money for the purchase of other buildings to rebuild the brewery. Over time, Celis felt very strongly that the company used the loan to pressure him to change the recipe to make the beer more “mass market”.  Celis decided instead to sell Interbrew the brewery in 1987.  After selling, Celis founded Celis Brewing Company in Austin, Texas, which was later acquired by Miller Brewing. Miller ultimately closed the brewery and sold the equipment and brand names to Michigan Brewing Company.

Hoegaarden's Signature Glass and Logo

Hoegaarden's Signature Glass and Logo

Brewer Brand Hype: Hoegaarden is brewed using natural ingredients – mineral spring water, unmalted wheat, barley malt, hops, yeast, coriander and Curaçao orange peel. Hoegaarden is unfiltered, giving the beer a soft body, cloudy white appearance and thick, frothy head. This beer is particularly refreshing in warmer months and always should be served in its signature hexagonal glass, which keeps the beer colder longer.
Label: A delicious and surprising refreshing taste, naturally cloudy and brewed using a unique recipe of wheat, malted barley and a subtle hint of coriander and orange peel.

The Brewski Review:  And so goes a true conversation at my day job’s morning production meeting between our Operations Manager and one of his direct reports, the HR Manager:

Ops Mgr: ‘The world is competitive.’
HR Mgr: ‘A well trained employee makes them more competitive.’
Ops Mgr: ‘Well, that’s intuitive.’
HR Mgr: (sarcastically) ‘Oh, and “The world is competitive” isn’t intuitive?’
Ops Mgr: (seriously) ‘I don’t believe it was to you.’

This is the world I live in – albeit a mere slice.  Yes, I too must report to the Operations Manager.  I’ll let you draw your own conclusions on this one.

Why I mention this rather useless conversation above is that the results of this beer review were in no way intuitive based upon the bottle as it was pulled off the retailers shelf.  I purchased it, along with a smattering of others, and stuck them in the back of the fridge.  I usually don’t have an agenda when I review beers.  I stick my hand in the back of the fridge and whatever I pull out is what I drink.  This time around I picked Hoegaarden’s Witbier (White Beer).  Little did I know how delicious and exceptional it was going to be.  Luckily, I read the back label before I finished pouring it into the glass.  I don’t know of many beers that have pouring instructions but this is one of them.  Step1: Use Hoegaarden’s hexagonal glass (which I didn’t), Step2: Pour 2/3 into glass, Step3: Swirl bottle, and finally, Step4: Pour rest to form head.  Do quite a bit of swirling since the sentiment at the bottom of the bottle took a while to dislodge.  The beer was oh so smooth and had a quite unique flavor.  As noted, it was cloudy.  Much more so after I swirled and poured the last remaining liquid into the glass.   

Drinkability:  Smooth.  Great tasting.
Appearance: Very pale golden yellow and cloudy in color.
The Buds:  Loved it.  Will definitely drink it again.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.75 out of 5

If there are any instructions a man must read it's on the label for Hoegaarden's White Beer.

If there are any instructions a man must read it's on the label for Hoegaarden's White Beer.

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