Dribs and Drams

Route 2 Brews of Lowell’s Leg Spreader has been spotted from England by RogerB. “A classic style Extra Special Bitter with a higher than normal ABV that is sure to please!”

Look for Running Vines Winery in Chesterton. article

Eric Strader visits the new Goshen Brewing Co that opens Wednesday. article


Bowling Green, KY is looking square in the face of the White Squirrel Brewery and Taproom, Bliss Ave. Brewing Co. and the Blue Holler homebrew supplies store. article


Headlines:

Craft beer business booming in Wisconsin. They say it’s 11% of all beer sales ($19.6 billion) in the U.S. (and includes, of course, Sam Adams).

Lower-alcohol beers in session for IPA lovers

India: Beer is 'fun, social' drink, must be allowed to sell through retail stores: Brewers demand

Korea: Beer diversity accelerates evolution of drinkers’ flavor

Korea: Korea bubbles over with craft beer rush

England: Forget steak and ale pie - try beer and honey cake. With recipe.


Elsewhere. The U.S. Virgin Islands claims a "local" Virgin Islands Brewing Co. that distributes Blackbeard Ale (a passable Amber) and Foxy Lager, both made in Minnesota.

Elsewhile. In Puerto Rico===>>>

Some beers and stuff of Portugal, Gibraltar, and Malaga:

Ginja in Lisbon. This is a very sweet red cherry liquor that is not at all sticky and has none of the flavor of artificial candy found so often in cheap Kirschwasser.

Portugese beers: Sagres - Bold yellow. Medium carbonation. Strong, balanced generic lager presence. Obviously a mass-market beer. Gassier than American brands and more filling. Doesn't seem suited to hot summers.

Super Bock - "Sabor autentico". Also a rich lager though with some off flavors. Draft at a corner cafe. Maybe stale.

Gibraltar doesn’t have any real ale. But the city center has at least 2 dozen real British pubs such as the Ye Olde Rock (below). Good liver and bacon at that one. There is Tetleys, Double Diamond, Guinness, Green King IPA, Draught Bass, Caffertys Smooth, John Smith's Smooth, Stella, and Bud - all on tap. Also bottled GK Abbott and canned Scrumpy Jack. All (imperial) pints were about £1.40 (cheaper than in Britain by about 50 pence).

Malaga has a couple of Spanish lagers. Alhambra is brewed in Granada, just 100miles away. It's OK at best.

Cruzcampo. Now there's a good authentic pilsner. Brewed by Heineken in Seville. Odd to see an ingredients list including water, malt, cereals, antioxidant, and stabilizer (preservative).


And then there’s the oldest bar in Malaga. The Antigua Casa De Guardia is on the main street just a few blocks from the harbor. Inside there's a few bottles on the wall but the main sight is 21 casks of wine that form the bar back. Typically 16 have spiles and are "on tap".

The typical drink is a 3oz glass of one of the fortified wines straight from the cask. Prices go from €0.85 to 1.00. When get your drink the bartender writes your tab in chalk on the bar to keep a running tab. When you pay he wipes off the chalk with the heel of his hand.

We talked for a couple hours with a local who spoke no English and a couple of Brits who happened in. Tasted 6 different wines and had a wonderful afternoon.

About the wines. All are about 17% so are “a bit fortified”. All were quite sweet and sticky. The Sec and the Moscatel were most to our liking but everything was very similar to our uneducated palates. Names: Pajarete, Seco Trasanejo, Lagrima Trasanejo, Malaga Quina, Lagrima Anejo, Moscatel #1, Moscatel #2, Pedro Ximen, and more that we can't remember.

It was late afternoon and the place was mostly empty but the remains of a busy lunch crowd were still on the floor - prawn shells and cigarette butts tossed haphazardly in buckets under the bar. Make a note to get a franchise for this operation - preferably on Bourbon Street.


BeerMoreBeer Duck
Dimple Glasses1
Glasses3

GuinessBubbles

Dribs and Drabs

Congratulations to Chris Hoover for 47 ft. Blonde Ale which won at the UpCup Homebrew judging.

Speaking of homebrew recipes brewed in large scale, Broad Ripple Brewpub is serving a Vienna Lager, The Lost Stone, that won Best of Show at last summer’s State Fair Brewer’s Cup. Congratulations again to Evan Brill of Louisville.

Beer Buzz is online only now. Read Rita Kohn’s news at http://www.nuvo.net/indianapolis/beer-wine/Category?oid=1249107 and add it to your news reader. This week there’s a special about the Ram. And see anthropologist Jamie Gordon’s in-depth about Rita.

Newest Hoosier beers coming to the shelves:

Triton Brewing: Wit or Witout You
Mad Anthony Brewing: Summer Daze Wheat
Bloomington Brewing: Back Country Session IPA (which will support the Indiana Forest Alliance).
Evil Czech Brewery: Periodic Session IPA
Bare Hands Brewery: will can and will be available in June.

Ohio has a bill in the legislature that will raise beer’s allowable ABV from 12% to 21%. Heck. I remember 3.2% back in the 1960s.

New BJCP guidelines are out for home- and commercial brewers. Here’s a synopsis.

Headlines:

SABMiller acquires craft beer firm. Meantime of Greenwich, a brand available here.goat 2

Pay to Play Investigation of Craft Beer Industry Comes to a Head. Massachusetts.

Russia Sees 9% Slowdown in Beer Market

Four drunk goats taken to hospital after falling unconscious from drinking illicit liquor. Revenuers in India dumped out 11,500 bottles and the goats found the puddles.

William Shakespeare’s Father: Official Ale-Taster of Stratford-upon-Avon. That job was called a conner. Don’t ask why because we don’t know.

York beer challenge: Do you find fined fine or is unfined finer? A beer festival in York will see seven breweries with have both versions.

Fizzics promises to pour a perfect draft-beer head, straight from the bottle. $149. Not available yet – in crowdfunding status.

Japan would have a machine that pours the perfect beer (short Video). It’s a vending machine.

Beer Cocktail Bans and Other Stupid Booze Laws. Yep, bombers are illegal in Virginia. As was sangria.

Beer Glass Shape Alters How Fast We Drink Alcohol: Are You Drinking Too Much? At Medical Daily. If you’re shaped like a dimple mug . . .

Nitrogen-Infused Coffee That Tastes Like Beer is All The Rage

Belgian beer and coffee could help keep you slim

Huh, a Bone Luge to pour drinks into your mouth through a hopefully cleaned marrow holder. Hot in New Orleans.

Here’s a similarly bad idea for a brewfest: a mechanical bull. Oh, maybe not. The keg toss will do just as well.

American Craft Beer Week and beyond! Celebrate Craft Beer.

May 11-17 is American Craft Beer Week as declared by the Brewers Association, the group that represents craft beer breweries. Andy Sparhawk of the BA tells us Google searches during May the past few years show a spike for the words Craft Beer -- the largest month each year.

Here are just a few beers you might grab to celebrate:

Triton Brewery of Indianapolis will have special events daily: a tap takeover at HopCat (6280 N College) 6:30 PM with beer dinner on Monday, 5/11,TIX HERE $30, tap take-over at Brixx Wood Fire Pizza (8594 E 116 St. Fishers) on Tuesday, May 12, to include a pin of Grapefruit/Blood Orange Railsplitter IPA, Wednesday Wit or Wit-out You + Beer Hammock Shandy Tappings at the brewery (5764 Wheeler Rd), Thursday 5/14 Barn Phantom Sour Tapping at the brewery, Friday, 5/14, Railsplitter Five Alive tapping- IPA with orange, lemon, lime, and grapefruit notes at the Brewery and at Champps on Maryland in downtown Indy.
Triton celebrates with a Two Year Anniversary in Broad Ripple party on Saturday, May 16, starting at Noon at 915 Broad Ripple Avenue.

You might grab a 4-pack of Sun King Afternoon Delight, a bourbon barrel aged Maibock available now. We remember this beer as having nice vanilla flavor from the barrel on top of the sweetness of this light-colored strong beer

You could stop by any Upland Location for Infinite Wisdom Triple, a complex warming, slightly sweet beer with mild fruitiness that was just tapped May 8. (Also available in cans.)

A fast seller around Indiana is Tin Man Damascene apricot sour. We found this is flying off shelves of local liquor stores. This is a refreshing beer that is not puckering sour, yet delivers both the sweetness and tartness of apricot.

Stop by Flat12 on Dorman in Indianapolis on Wednesday, May 13 where the purchase of any pint gives $1 to the Indianapolis Parks Foundation.

Mad Anthony Brewery in Ft Wayne releases their Summer Daze American wheat with a release party on 5/13, 5-8PM.

Bloomington Brewing Company has its first release in 16 oz. cans on May 14. BBC Back Country Session IPA with 8 hops but only mid-range hop bitterness at 46 ibu and only 4.7% alcohol should be a beer with melon, citrus, and spice AND every purchase helps support the Indiana Forest Alliance.

You might also want to stop by one of Indiana's newer and smaller breweries or brew pubs like Wabash Brewing at 5328 W. 79th Street, Indianapolis, where two scientists (literally) are brewing up great beer wabashbrewing.com ; or Function Brewing in Bloomington just 1/2 block from the square on 6th open just over a year now and always a fresh new batch to try www.functiongbrewing.com; or Red Yeti Brewing in Jeffersonville, IN, just blocks from the Ohio River www.redyetibrewing.com

LOOKING AHEAD:


May 29, New Belgium Brewing's Clips of Faith Beer & Film Tour makes its second stop of the season in Bloomington. The brewery's Joanna Laubscher tells us Bloomington is one of the best attended venues for the annual short-film and specialty beer festival. This year a special beer that tastes almost like the Milk Duds candy was brewed and only one keg of this dark, chocolate stout will be available at each stop. In addition, there will be nearly 16 other beers on tap including Coco Mole and the sour Transatlantique Kriek. The Clips of Faith festival starts at 7:30 pm with short films at dusk until 10PM at Bryan Park on Bloomington's south side.


On May 30 come to Clarksville, IN, to help raise money for children's hospitals at the 10th annual Fest of Ale, 320 N Sherwood Ave, Clarksville. Todd Antz, of sponsor Keg Liquors told us, "I had no idea what we'd be able to accomplish while having so much fun" as last year over $13,000 was raised to contribute to the WHAS Louisville-TV Crusade of Children campaign, which funds projects at Southern Indiana hospitals as well as those in Louisville. Over 250 breweries will have beer in the fields behind St. Anthony's Church, including Tin Man and Carson's of Evansville, and Flat12 which has their newer location in Jeffersonville. Fest runs 3-7PM with tickets available at www.kegliquors.com

Dribs and Drams

The production limits for Indiana breweries have been raised from 30,000 to 90,000 barrels. Horray! This will let Sun King, Three Floyds and Upland keep their tasting rooms and self-distribution for a couple of years before it will need to be raised again. The SupportIndianaBrewers.com petition got over 3,000 names which helped.

Here’s the pour list for this Saturday’s Indiana-Michigan Craft Beer Mayfest in Granger. 2-7pm. $55.

The Indy Star has a Sneak peek: 5 things to know about 12.05 Distillery – located in Fletcher Place neighborhood.

Also Dinner-and-a-movie plus a brewery opening in Carmel

NWI Times: Brewmasters and Winemakers Tell All: How Did I Get Into This Business? Spotlighting Butler Winery, Crown Brewing, Round Barn Winery, 18th Street Brewery, New Oberpalz Brewing, Tabor Hill Winery and 3 Floyds. Who’s the most photogenic? Not Steve Mazylewski. They chose a better picture that’s suitable as wallpaper.

The Sunday Sales is dead for the year. So is it in Minnesota: Opponents of Sunday booze ban fail again in House, but margin shrinking

Gosehn soap maker uses beer in the bars. Eric Strader’s article


Headlines: Oh really?

Bell's brewery brews a pumpkin peach beer in response to ad mocking craft beer by Eric Strader

Actor Wil Wheaton to unveil beer at Ottawa ComicCon - Brewed the "HefeWheaton" with the help of Ottawa's Clocktower Brew Pub - "I'm a fairly experienced homebrewer,"

Tecate vs Corona: Which beer company has the hottest ring girls in 2015?vbqGD51

Why Craft Beer Will Be Almost Unrecognizable by the Year 2020

How to Tell if You Are a Beer Geek or a Beer Snob

Video: teeth replaced with bottle opener implants

FRANCHISOR 101: Time for a Tall One? 3rd Circuit Affirms MillerCoors' Victory in Dispute – “Distributor frosted” – MC sent Batch 19, Third Shif and Redd’s Apple Ale to a different distributor than the one who handles Coors & Miller in PA

MillerCoors Sued For Selling Blue Moon As A Craft Beer

More beer means more jobs at Bell's Brewery – This one must have been easy to write.

BeerEquipmentBud Light Apologizes For Its Date Rape Label - “The perfect beer for removing ‘no’ from your vocabulary for the night.”

Brewery gets community to grow hops for craft beer – Folks in Sacrament are asked to sell Helvetia Brewery hops. Will supply rhizomes and a ball of twine.

Opinion: Craft beer’s biggest enemy is itself, not Budweiser and Miller – “Smaller breweries ought to focus on fights they can win instead of battling against the big guys”

BYOB: It's Brew Your Own Beer at Some Colleges – Classes with kettles in CA.

Hoppy trails to you: Beer-centric touring in the Philly region and beyond

Even Utah Is Drowning In Great Beer

And from England:

Three in a row for CAMRA campaigners as new laws are enacted to help pubs

CAMRA announces the UK’s 200 best local pubs

From Orgasmic Cider, to Janet’s Jungle Juice and Dragon’s Breath: CAMRA names the UK’s best Ciders and Perries

 

BeerMoreBeer

Bath Ales company, which is planning the biggest expansion in its history and Roger Jones - Managing Director, Warmley, Bristol.

Photographer: Artur Lesniak
Date:18/10/2011
Copyright: Northcliffe Media

Toast Homebrewers or go learn about homebrewing! Saturday, May 2!

Each year the American Homebrewers Association (AHA) celebrates AHA Big Brew on the first Saturday in May. This year, throughout the day on May 2, brew clubs, breweries, and shops will host their local communities to brew on-site for a national, same-day homebrewing session. At noon CDT, Chicago Time, all homebrewers and beer lovers are encouraged to raise a glass of homebrew in a simultaneous toast that celebrates those who craft outstanding homemade beer, mead and cider for their friends and loved ones. Foam Blowers of Indiana ("FBI") will have a brewing demonstration, homebrew, and information at Great Fermentations,5127 E 65th Street, Indianapolis, IN from 9AM (maybe 10 - wink) to 4PM.

Sun King turns SIX
. Each year Sun King releases ever-popular Grapefruit Jungle on their anniversary. This year the date is June 27, with both local and headliner music -- DJ Helicon, Brandon Whyde & the Devil's Keep, with Little Hurricane.

8th Upcup Competition at Upland has a Blonde for a Winner

Last Saturday Upland Brewing Co. played host to the 8th Annual UpCup at their Profile Parkway production facility in Bloomington. This is a homebrew competition where entrants submit two bottles of beer and indicate which BJCP style category they would like to be judged against.

Judging started at 10am and a flight of 9 or so beers were assessed. After scoring and a bit of lively discussion, the judges would then select a beer to proceed to final round of beers. After a break in the action a second flight was judged in the early afternoon with the same procedures as the morning flight. After the results were collated, a final flight known as best in show was judged to determine the top entries.

The event also served as an American Homebrewers Association (AHA) rally with the festivities starting at 3pm. Current AHA members were invited to attend and were provided opportunities to take a VIP tour of the brewery and enter into a prize raffle.
Multiple vendors of brewing supplies were also present. The local homebrew club, The Bloomington Hop Jockeys, were on hand to pour experimental homebrew batches that all used Upland’s Wheat Ale wort. It was evident from the outcomes that the homebrewers really embraced the chance to be creative with the latter part of the brewing process.

The UpCup announcement came later in the afternoon with the results as follows:
• 1st place: Chris Hoover – 47 ft. Blonde – Blonde Ale
• 2nd place: Jason Behenna – Extravehicular Activity – Dry Stout
• 3rd place: Tony Valenza – American Warrior, American Pale Ale

Chris’s beer will be brewed on Upland’s commercial system and entered in the 2015 Pro-Am competition at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, Colorado. It will also be featured on tap at all Upland locations later this year.

I sampled a range of great beer during the day and it only reaffirmed in my mind what a flourishing homebrew community we have here in Indiana. I can also attest from personal experience how much joining a local homebrew club has helped improve my homebrew game. If you are an experienced brewer looking to hone your techniques or a beginner with more question than answers the AHA has an online directory to find a homebrew club near you. It’s one of the best ways you can prepare for competition next year.

-- By Ross Hughes, indianabeer.com blogger, homebrewer, aspiring Cicerone and all-around beer nerd. Ross enjoys a variety of beer styles and is always looking to train his palette with another tasty ale.

Paying a visit to the good Taxman - Death and Taxes Day 2015

Just 40 miles north of my residence in Bloomington is Taxman Brewing. Located in Bargersville, they’ve been on my radar for sometime— paying them a visit has been high on the to-do list but I had yet to make it happen. After seeing the event announcement go out on Twitter, I decided that one way to right the wrong would be to attend the inaugural Death and Taxes day.

I arrived shortly after the midday gate opening, and started out the day with a Let’s Get Weird by Upland. A part of their Side Trail series, it’s a blend of Belgian golden ale and oatmeal milk stout aged on blackcurrants. From its description I wasn’t sure what to expect. What I was greeted by was an ale with chocolate notes heavily influenced by the milk stout but nicely followed by a dash of tartness from the fruit.

After that one warm up beer, it was time to get down to business. The event ticket included two samples of the Death and Taxes beer, and after priming my palette, I was ready to try it for myself. Death and Taxes is an 11% Imperial Stout fermented with Belgian yeast. There was also a barrel variant aged in bourbon whiskey barrels for 10 weeks available. I was able to pick out a few Belgians esters in the aroma from the base beer. The barrel version however, has that huge hit of bourbon on the nose, which is to be expected but it does temper some of the other nuances in the aroma. In terms of flavor, the base beer has some roast, dark fruits notes but it had a really enjoyable bittersweet chocolate finish. The finish was similar in the barrel version but the flavors were of course more influenced with bourbon and vanilla notes contributed by the barrel aging.

A pit stop in the restaurant for lunch, accompanied by a Frozen Assets (Taxman’s Cocoa Belgian Milk Stout), provided me an opportunity to check out the indoor space they have for their brewpub.

In the afternoon I focused on some breweries that, due to their smaller distribution area, I’ve had minimal opportunities to sample. First up, based in Carmel, Danny Boy Beer Works and their American pale ale Training Day. Plenty of those west coast, grapefruit, citrus hops present but kept nicely in balance by some malt so it’s not too bitter, making it something you could enjoy a few of in a session. The next sample was Indiana City’s Shadow Boxer. One of their year-round brews, it’s an oatmeal stout with wonderful coffee, chocolate notes and the smooth creamy mouthfeel. Definitely a beer I look forward to having a full serving of at my next opportunity.

Before heading out I checked out some of the other tents but most importantly picked up my one allocated bottle. Based upon my earlier tastings, I opted for the bourbon variant and I’m looking to cellaring this to see how time evolves the barrel notes.

This was my first trip to Taxman but it wont be the last— I’ve already convinced my wife that this needs to be our next date night locale and I look forward to taking in more of brewpub atmosphere.
Check out GregKitz's review of Taxman food and beer HERE

BY: Ross Hughes, blogger for indianabeer.com and a homebrewer, aspiring Cicerone and all-around beer nerd.

Dribs, Drams, and Sauerbraten

Munich-Beer-Dinner4The very busy Ron Smith of Indy has four opportunities for the true beer geek:

1) June 6, July 11, Aug 8: MBA (Master of Beer Appreciation) classes in Indy

2) July 17-26: A beer trip to Germany (and optionally Pilzen and Prague). Munich, Aying, Kloster Andechs, Neuschwanstein, Bamberg, Hallertau

To make you drool for the last 2 seats on the trip, here’s a 10-year old look at Munich’s beer scene. And Bamberg’s.

3) IUPUI course TCEM 328 “Introduction to Microbrewing).

4) October & November: BJCP Study Group. To get ready to take the Beer Judge Certification Program test and get invites to taste beers all over the midwest.

FlixBrewhouseLogoRita’s Beer Buzz says the FLIX Brewhouse in Carmel will open April 30. Their standard will include Lupulus IPA, 10 Day Scottish Ale, Flix Golden Ale, Satellite Red Ale (hoppy Belgian) and Umbra Chocolate Stout. Oh, and movies.

Cedar Creek Winery and Brew Co. in Martinsville plans a grand opening on May 23.

Beer gardens are opening for the summer.

Geoff Lesar says Smokestack Brew tavern in Mishawaka’s 100 Center (the old Kamm & Schellinger brewery) has beer and karaoke.


Eric Strader tells us Bells is brewing a pumpkin/peach ale to justify Bud’s Superbowl commercial. blog

From Florida comes a press release: Sarasota-Based JDub’s Brewing Company Announces Distribution in INDIANA. Via Cavalier. Limited amount. Up Top IPA, Poolside Ale (Kolsch). But then they ingenuously say “This is a confidential communication. If you are not the intended recipient, you must: (1) Notify the sender of the error; (2) Destroy this communication entirely, including deletion of all associated attachment files from all individual and network storage devices; and (3) Refrain from copying or disseminating this communication by any means.” Oops. Here and I’ve violated their terms. Sorry. Don’t read this.

5987498764Headline: What Does 170-Year-Old Champagne Taste Like?

Headline: Pappy Van Winkle theft may be tied to syndicate. Nine indicted for stealing 65 cases of Family Reserve. Yep, “Pappygate”.

Headline: Teabags turn crap beer into craft beer Their first is Cascade, orange peel and coriander. A kickstarter scheme.

Or another way: Phillips Hop Drop liqueur adds more hops to your beerweb site

Headline: Carling rises as Coors looks to shake beer industry up – In the UK.

It isn’t beer but how often can you watch a really big celebrity singing a Monty Python song? This time it’s Stephen Hawking and the Galaxy Song. A wonderful 3 minutes.

Bloomington Craft Beer Fest 2015: great beer, great day; list of Spring Summer Fests included

Neither weather, beer, nor people could have been better for the Bloomington Craft Beer Fest 2015. Sunny, nearly 70 degree weather made this historic venue one of the best places in Indiana to meet brewers, sample craft beer, and generally enjoy the day. The beer samples were too numerous to count! However, one brewery, Function Brewing of Bloomington had TWENTY SEVEN different beers on tap with the most popular being a sour cherry milk stout followed by a ginger lemon golden ale.

Here are some of the ones our crew was able to try:


Ross says: This year I decided to volunteer at the festival and worked as a part of the brewer services team. I met a lot of great people, and because the festival was so busy my time to sample was limited. Whether you volunteer or attend, it’s a worthwhile experience and I would highly recommend it. Because I was tight on time, I made sure to visit the cask tent. Unsurprisingly, there were some tasty and creative offerings. Here’s my rundown of a few I really enjoyed:

Black Acre’s Mandarina Pale Ale with Fresh Blood Orange Zest and Citra. Right off the bat I was hit by a wave of juicy, citrus aromas. It tasted much like it smelled (and that’s a good thing.) The lower bitterness made this a real easy drinking beer and complimented the warmer afternoon weather perfectly.

Bloomington Brewing’s 10-Speed infused with Blueberries. Whether it’s bottled or on draft, BBC’s seasonal release is one of my favorites, and I could not pass on an opportunity try it from a cask. The fruit character paired nicely with the Mosaic hops to create a flavorful and refreshing wheat ale. The gentle carbonation typical of cask ales worked perfectly with this beer and I really enjoyed its smooth mouthfeel.

Upland’s Vinyl Tap Rye Pale Ale, Dry Hopped with Simcoe and Amarillo. This beer is not available year-round so I always try to seek it out. I was pretty excited my first opportunity to drink it this year was from a cask. A nicely balanced pale ale with some subtle spiciness from the rye and the dry hopping really upped the ante on those citrusy notes in the aroma.

Gary Cooper, our guest blogger, says: I’ve been drinking craft beers for the past 6 years when I discovered all beers were not created equal. I have been all-grain home brewing for the past 3 years and a favorite gift I received, is a set of Spiegelau beer glasses from my wife. Here are a few of beers I really enjoyed at the 5th annual Bloomington beer fest.

Bier Brewery, Indianapolis, Kolsch-A very good, refreshing beer that was not too bitter; had a nice dryness.

Brugge Brasserie, Indianapolis, Tripel de Ripple This is my go-to for Indiana “Tripels.” This spicy beer had a great mouth feel and a fruity-sweet taste, without being boozy.

Function Brewing, Bloomington, Cayenne Pepper Stout This stout had all the flavor of Cayenne peppers without the heat.

Noble Order Brewing company, Richmond, Blood Orange Mead This was really flavorful, the orange came through nicely, and it had just the right amount of sweetness.

Taxman Brewing Co., Bargersville, Belgian Cherry Dubbel Nice and malty, had a hint of cherry with a clean finish.

Three Floyds Brewing Co., Munster, Berliner Weisse Very true to style and not hopped out. I went back for seconds.

Wabash Brewing, Indianapolis, Bacon Face Brown-I'm not usually a brown fan, but this is on my list of top Indiana browns. It is an easy drinker with a hint of honey.

Zwanzigz Brewing, Columbus, Imperial Stout-This stout was packed with lots of roasty flavors that nailed it at not being too sweet or too bitter.

Greg Kitz adds: I love this festival as it is a beautiful, well-organized venue. We could only wish there was a way to sample from all 55 breweries on site; yet my notes tend to trail off as I talk and sample. Here are just a few highlights.

Basket Case Brewing, Jasper, the Oaked Revolution is their English Pale Ale aged with oak chips; I got vanilla from the oak with interesting American & English hop notes. This stands out as this is a restaurant with a small nano-brewery still producing interesting, fun beer.

Bloomington Brewing, had not only the Hoppy 10-speed with mosaic hops but running through a randall that had too many ingredients to note; all I can say is this created a very pleasant explosion in the mouth of hops and fruit.

Black Acre, Indianapolis, IPA w mandarin oranges was one that several beer lovers we know recommended and it did not disappoint. We know Black Acre produces solid, popular beer and the balance in this beer was really nice.

Chapman's, Ft. Wayne, Kolsch style - this crisp clean ale with a very slight bite at the end would be one I would go back for.

Function, Bloomington, must mention the sour cherry milk stout as a delicious combination of the lactic sourness, the roastiness of the stout, and overlay of cherry.

Grand Junction, Westfield, is another newer brewery (1 year) that offered a very clean hefeweizen with nice lemon flavor

Two Deep, Indianapolis, served their popular Maibock -- just right for the weather

Salt Creek, Bedford/Bloomington had the Out-of-Order Double IPA that reminded me of "Sierra pale on steroids" delivering a lot of traditional American hop flavor

Taxman, Bargersville, poured a beer that went down smoothly but was 10% plus, a heavy beer (originally their TaxHoliday) with charred jalapenos, habaneros & red chile peppers.

Wabash Brewing, Indianapolis, I repeat the Bacon Face Brown not only because it is a very good brown but the beer is named in memory of a favorite bulldog who had the name "Bacon Face." You just gotta love that story and the beer.

Zwanzigz, Columbus, I always look for Mike and this year in addition to regular offerings including ghost chili pepper stout, there were 2 most unusual beers. A bacon beer was a golden ales base with 5 pounds of bacon steeped in the keg (just like dry hopped, but with bacon); Mike also took his Russian Imperial Stout base and before our eyes added drops of pepper infusion from the Carolyna Reaper pepper currently rated as the world's hottest pepper. With just the right amount I got a nice flavor and a nice but tolerable burn on top of that wonderful RIS base.

Of course, there were many more that would deserve mention if we could just get to all breweries. There are many opportunities to try more beers at some upcoming festivals.

A short list of some upcoming SPRING/SUMMER Indiana Beer Festivals are:

May 9: Indiana Michigan Craft Beer Mayfest, Granger, IN INFO CLICK HERE

May 16: Crown Beer Fest, Crown Point, IN INFO CLICK HERE

May 16: Midwest Sour + Wild + Funk Fest, Indianapolis, IN INFO CLICK HERE

May 30: Fest of Ale by Keg Liquors, Clarksville, IN (Charity for Louisville/Southern In Crusade for Children) INFO CLICK HERE

May 30: American On Tap, Indianapolis, CLICK HERE FOR INFO

July 18: Indiana Microbrews Festival - The BIG Grand-daddy of Indiana Beer Fests!, Military Park (new venue), Indianapolis, CLICK HERE FOR INFO

July 25: GNAWBrew, Gnaw Bone, near Nashville, IN, CLICK HERE FOR INFO

August 1: Brew Haven, New Haven, IN, CLICK HERE FOR INFO

August 8: Pints in the Park, Highland, IN, CLICK HERE FOR INFO

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Contributing to this piece were: Gary Cooper, Ross Hughes, and Greg Kitzmiller

Dribs and Drams

OmarOmar Castrellon is at the Lost Forty Brewery in Little Rock. He got lots of wins at the Arkansas Beer Tournament last week included Best Craft Brew for Bare Bones Pilsner. Also Two times for Love Honey Bock,  article Congratulations. “this is a brewery to watch, not just in Arkansas but beyond.” Good on ya.

Indiana On Tap articles:

Redemption Alewerks - Beer Specials And New Hours!

Noble Order Brewing Co. Ale Now Available In Cans

Favorites From Bloomington Craft Beer Festival

Evansville Brewers Continue To Surprise With Small Batch Beer

Here’s a Chicago Beer map. You can also find an Indy map there.

Headline: Kentucky Investigators Say There’s New Evidence In Case Of Stolen Bourbon Barrels article

nb_benjerrybottleBen & Jerrys & New Belgium Salted Caramel Brownie Brown Ale. And not even THAT kind of brownies. article

Headline: Beauty-Enhancing Beer. And not using goggles. video

15 Things You Should Know About Saké

The Most Iconic Bar in Every State (and DC). Of course the Slippery Noodle is Indiana’s and Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop in New Orleans, proving these aren’t necessarily beer bars.

Another notice of impending nutritional squares on beer: EU moves closer to counting calories in alcoholic drinks article

An archaeological dig has discovered that Canada's parliament buildings were built on top of a dump full of wine bottles, beer bottles, champagne bottles, tumblers and glasses. That sounds about right if you include the opium and the Worcestershire Sauce. article

Headline: Spotted Cow beer sold illegally at bar in Maple Grove, Minn. Nope, you can supposedly only buy it in Wisc. article

Portland, OR is doing something weird, giving? waste water to homebrewers. You figure it out. article Want the adulterated story? OK. This headline is Brewing company makes beer out of human urine but we promised not to say anything nice about Bud Light. article

And just a song seen along the way. Stephen Hawking Sings Monty Python

Lastly, today’s pictures.

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Brugge Turns Ten

Brugge Brasserie, the Broad Ripple restaurant and brew pub with Belgian style beers, Frites, and Mussels, turns ten years old with a 'birthday' party on Wednesday, April 22. The celebration includes $10 mussels, one of the signature food items at Brugge, and ten special beers. Back in 2005 there were very few brewery/restaurants open in Indianapolis. Ted Miller had a concept. Bring the essence of Belgium, at least the beer, to Broad Ripple in Indianapolis. Ted had been living in Taiwan, wanted to bring Belgian Beer to the Indianapolis area and was talking with potential partners about food for a new beer bar and brewery. After eliminating most typical bar foods it came to them to try Belgian style food as well. They were unsure if the Indy community would embrace mussels. Boy has Indianapolis shown a desire for frites, moules (mussels in French) and more. Fast forward ten years to Wednesday and celebrate with the $10 mussels and special beers.

Among the beers will be Tres Mauvaise Chaton - the very bad kitty, a lactic gose-style beer, aged in a cognac barrel delivering 10% alcohol. In fact three of the special beers on tap will be variants of Bad Kitty and Very Bad Kitty: Super Kitty Fantastico - barrel aged sour, Super Kitty Fantastico Kriek, the same with cherries, and the Tres Mauvaise (loosely Bad Kitten in French). The "Kitty" beers are an interesting story. Originally brewing a Belgian White, something created a sourness in the beer. Ted shared with us that he rather liked the flavor and sampled this odd 'mistake' beer among beer judges. The experts suggested the flavor of a style called Leipziger Gose (pronounced Go... Suh, like stop/go and uh with the S). The Gose is a rather rare beer brewed with salted water, lactic for sourness, and coriander as well as hops. Ted recreated the beer using a similar base to the white and added the right other ingredients and technique. The Bad Kitty was born! The Very Bad Kitty is an Imperial version with more alcohol. We are greatly anticipating the Three new varieties coming this week!

Ed & Ted's Bourbon Barrel Stout is another beer with a story. This tradition started with Brugge Black going into a barrel originally purchased for bottlings of bourbon at Indy's own Sahm's restaurants. As things change the parties at Sahm's changed but this time Ted worked with Ed and Ed of Sahm's to use a 1792 brand (owned by award winning Buffalo Trace Distilling/Sazerac) barrel to fill with a stout. Ted's concept is that beer should taste like beer and then the bourbon, and he shares that this batch is right on the edge between a light bourbon flavor and pleasing those who want a shot in their beer. Yum!

Also available will be Mysterio - white wine barrel aged sour; Madeline La Framboise - Flanders style brown with raspberry, Brugge Black Belgian style ale, Brugge Pooka boysenberry sour, Brugge White or Belgian style wit, and the top-selling Tripel de Ripple! That makes 10 beers for the 10th anniversary.

Brugge has slowly transformed through growing years and the need to produce beer in larger quantities. Not all of the beer can be or is brewed on site allowing for local experimentation on the in-house smaller system and the consistency of a larger facility literally down College Avenue but downtown on North Street where a future restaurant will join the family, now under construction during our visit this week.

Festivities, with tent and a lot of outdoor seating, will start at 5PM, Wednesday, April 22 at the Brugge Brasserie, 1011 East Westfield Blvd. in Broad Ripple Village of Indianapolis.