Misc News – Nov 30

The Indianapolis Star says Indiana microbrewers want to sell beer on Sundays. Lafayette's Ron Alting "said he would introduce a bill for the microbreweries in the upcoming legislative session and plans to hear it in the Senate Commerce and Public Policy Committee he chairs. He said he'd ask fellow lawmakers and lobbyists not to amend it to apply to any other issue -- especially Sunday sales at grocery and convenience stores."

New Albanian, Schlafly, and Ofallon are collaborating this week in St. Louis on an Oak Aged Dry Hopped Smoked Rye Pale Ale named C-1.

TrueBrewCover A Good Head, Rita T. Kohn, Book - Barnes & Noble. Need we say more except that it's actually named True Brew. Preorder of course. Publication date is said to be February 16th but don't bet the farm on that. IU Press's release date is actually July 1, 2010.

Chicago's Downtown Marriott has bee hives on the roof. On purpose. 200,000 bees. They have gathered 200 pounds of honey and Half Acre Brewery has turned it into Rooftop Honey Wheat.

Kid Rock American Badass Beer. "Crisp, refreshing and smooth as a traditional lager can be. Delivers a nice hit of carbonation at first and finishes with a slight citrus note. This is a highly approachable beer that delivers a bright lager flavor without even a hint of aftertaste. Cascade hops light up the aroma while balancing the brew. Brewed for maximum appeal and slamability. Midwestern malted barley and hard, red winter wheat from Michigan, transform water from the Saginaw Aquifer into a beer that's a true American lager and truly Badass." Slamability?

Save the earth. It's the only planet with beer.

Misc News – Nov 27

The new Crown Liquors at Delaware and Ohio in downtown Indy is open. You can also get Lafayette Brewing's Tippecanoe Common and Black Angus Oatmeal Stout at most Crowns now.

Broad Ripple Brewpub is celebrating the 2001st batch with 2001 – A Stout Odyssey. A galactic stout aged with oak. Pure black with a thin dark brown head. The wood comes thru along with a touch of sweet treacle.

We're not sure why, but BRBP charges $11 for growler refills. New orders (with the glass) are $12.

Upland news:

Charles Stanley (the only Upland employee taller than Matt Hill) tells us next year's Lambics will include all those done in 2008 (Cherry, Blueberry, Blackberry, Strawberry, Raspberry, Peach, and Kiwi) plus Persimmon.

Upland's solar installation gets ink in Solar Today. "we don't expect people to buy more of our beer because we employ green technologies in the brewing process."

Winter Warmer will come out in 22oz bottles in early December, a first for Upland. Future bombers include the Ard Ri, Infinite Wisdom Tripel  a new IPA – Double Dragonfly. Komodo Dragonfly Black IPA will be a January release.

Upland's Teddy Bear Kisses will be on tap at Shallos in Greenwood starting Dec 3 and at Indy's downtown BW3 later.

The Muncie Herald Bulletin has a review of last Sunday's All Beers Considered.

BrewDog's Tactical Nuclear Penguin "began life as a 10% imperial stout 18 months ago. It was then aged for 8 months in an Isle of Arran whisky cask and 8 months in an Islay cask, making it the brewer’s first double cask aged beer. The final stages involved storing the beer at 120 degrees for three weeks to get it to 32% abv." more info

Microcarbonation: "A process during which the beer is injected with CO2 through smaller, finer bubbles with a high level of precision and consistency. The injection of smaller CO2 bubbles makes it possible to preserve not only the taste of the hops but also the delicate flavours generated by the yeast during fermentation,” explained Karine Brunelle, brewer with Molson Coors." press release

Misc News – Nov 24

Now at both New Albanian locations: WeeFoot Stout. Dry session-style stout. Not to be confused with ThunderFoot or the 2010 ClovenFoot.

Rod looks at the pairings for the Rock Bottom Brewer's Dinner.

One word: 2009 Utopia. Two words: Left Hand Oak Aged Widdershins Barleywine. Look for them both next month.

Black Art Beer Announces Shelf Placement With Kroger. Including Indiana.

Good News. Penn Brewery will open again by Tom Pastorius, the founder.

Good News. Burton Brewing Museum saved. Still owned by Molson Coors who closed it last year. They will lease it to an amusement park company. Roger Protz approves.

Once De Molen Rasputin started to be imported by Shelton Bros North Coast objected. Now the 10.7% Dutch beer is called Disputin. "(This stout used to be called Rasputin, but the people who make Old Rasputin in California thought you were too dumb to tell the two products apart, and threatened to sue us for trademark infringement.)" more info

Interview with Graham Mackay SABMiller's head honcho. Interesting but not vital.

Lew Byson, beer's Louis Black speaks about Sunday Sales Laws and why they are still around.

Upbranding. I sure want to try Crisco® Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Rene Descartes is sitting in a bar. He's had a few pints over the course of the evening, and it's now last call. The bartender asks him if he wants one last drink. Descartes says, "I think not," and promptly vanishes.

Misc News – Nov 22


  • Alcatraz Bock – Rich as always. Now with Sapphire hops. Still with Melanoidin malt.
  • Sun King Tulip Wit – Creamy mild sweet wit. 5.3%. We bought a growler for Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Sun King XX Chocolate Stout – Brilliant. Big. Sublime. Wonderfully understated. Just enough chocolate to add a lot of interest. One of Dave's best ever. 8% but who can tell that it's hidden inside this viscous liquid. We bought a growler for after Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Sun King Dry Hopped Bitter Druid ESB – At the tasting room only. Overcharged with an experimental hop. Not our favorite, but then XX Chocolate Stout is.

Coming to The Ram – Double IPA. December 10th. An Adrian Ball brew.

Big Woods Brewery is offering a free pretzel to "anyone who comes in with a Mexican Pro Wrestler mask."

heavyseas-yuletide Heavy Seas Yule Tide certainly has an interesting label. Mr. Yuk would be proud.

Star Trek’s Engineering Deck Brewery. Seems the LA AB Brewery was used as the engines for the Enterprise. They'll never reach warp 10 that way.

See the history of Brewing Competitions and Exhibitions. From the program of the 1987 GABF.

The Breathalyser was invented by Dr. Robert F. Borkenstein of the Indiana State Police. Oh, and don't drink in Trinidad and Tobago. article

Misc News – Nov 20

All 3 Granite Citys (Ft. Wayne, Mishawaka, Indy) will be tapping Batch 1000 on Mon, Dec 7th. 5-8pm. Mug Club members are invited to a free buffet. The beer has Cascade and Summit hops but nothing more is on their web site.

Coming to Half Moon: Oatmeal Stout. Kokomonster.

Coming to Oaken Barrel: American Nut Brown Ale (released today). A bonus keg of Apple Buzz will be tapped on Dec 7 for their Harvest Festival.

It's a Friday so see Gina's Random Beer Roundup for more news.

Tastings1 Tastings, a new Wine Bar and Bistro has opened at Washington and Illinois in downtown Indianapolis. Attached to the Conrad Hotel. The high price area just past the Penn Station Subs from the Rock Bottom.

OK, back to the bistro. "100 wines by the taste, glass, or bottle." "Gourmet Food Pairings $5 to $14." "Many wines for under $10 per glass". The other side of the sign promotes Business Lunch at a Wine Bar.

It all begs the question "How high end could a beer bar go?" The Chop Houses are certainly nice. Sherlock's Home is defunct. Neither nearly as yuppieposh as this winetapas concept. Are there any truly elegant beer bars in the U.S.?

Pardon the quality of the picture taken through the window,
I obviously wasn't dressed well enough to go in.

mikkeller-brewdog-divine-rebel Mikkeller / Brew Dog collaboration. Devine Rebel. 12%. Aged in Speyside barrels.

The Independent says Drink half a dozen beers every day and have a healthier heart. It's based on Alcohol intake and the Risk of coronary heart disease in the Spanish EPIC cohort study.

A tour of World Class Beverages (Monarch)

It's 530,000 sq. ft. It has 1,300,000 cases of beer in it. It's the new World Class Beverages warehouse on Pendleton Pike in Lawrence, Indiana. OK, they share it with Monarch Beverages who handle Miller and Coors in Central Indiana.

Indiana law requires distributors to work from one single warehouse, so while some distributors are bigger, Monarch's is the largest beer warehouse in the country.

They invited some beer enthusiasts to tour the place and here's some pictures.



Miller and Coors pallets are brought in by the truckload.


This is a "depalletizer".
It separates the cases so the rest of the automated system can handle them.


A multi-story multi-million dollar system pulls cases all night for drivers to deliver the next day.


Most Craft Beer isn't completely hand-picked but many of the slower sellers are
kept in racks to be set out in order for merging with each store's and pub's order.


"Slow sellers" makes for some strange bedfellows. Lambic and flavored beverage side by side.



Misc News – Nov 19

Logo-NewAlbanian-LargeRoger Baylor tells us How I spent my Friday afternoon at the Statehouse. Click the pic to enlarge. Congratulations. Also ink about it in the News and Tribune.

Sun King gets ink at the Brewers Association web site.

Indy Tastes:

  • Alcatraz Cherry Stout – Brewed with Skip DuVall. 200 lobs of Cherry puree make it a field of dreams beer. If you think it, cherry will come. It's subtle. It doesn't push past the roast and smoke character. Worth having 2.
  • Rock Bottom Downtown Blitzen Ale – Winter White. Lots of honey malt with the wheat and candy sugar. Dark, murky tangerine. Easy drinking wit that finishes strong. Alcohol presence in background.
  • Rock Bottom Downtown Harvest Mild – A dark British Mild with a low 3.6% ABV. Plenty of taste. I nominate it to go onto the hand pull before it disappears. Made with Rod and Jess. There will be 5 gal of this at the Hoosier Beer Geek's Tailgate for Nothing this Saturday.
  • Rock Bottom Downtown Hefeweizen – Fine example. A bit thin but otherwise could be Schneiderweisse.
  • Rock Bottom Downtown Vanilla Oatmeal Stout – Cask Ale on the Handpull – Vanilla! Enought to remind you that vanilla is a bitter essence, not a sweet taste. (Hint - The ice cream tastes sweet, the vanilla is there for balance). The long finish gives an extra flash of vanilla that is extraordinary.
  • Rock Bottom North Blitzen Ale – A Belgian Abbey normal with a pleasant and distinct Belgian presence throughout. Cold, it is less than aggressive. Let it warm for the A+ experience.
  • Rock Bottom North Naked Oat Stout – Roasty and bitter. Thick. 6.2%. You know the rest.
  • Sun King El Gallo Negro – Black IPA with the balance of 80 IBU. Rye, oats. Dry. Full bitter throughout. (on tap at Deanos Vinos).


RamBarefootComing to Rock Bottom North: Wit (about 3 weeks), Saison, Tripel (January). Liz is going to do these three with the same strain of Belgian yeast.

Coming to Rock Bottom Downtown Dec 10. Old Curmudgeon. An Imperial Red with 85 IBU.

Coming to Ram tonight: Barefoot Winter Wit. A Belgian Wit that has orange peel in the mash and will have a chamomile finish. 1054OG.

Rock Bottom Downtown has introduced a beer menu. Until recently the chalkboard served to describe the beers in a very few words. The menus now have fuller descriptions of the standards and replace the bar runner strips that are always wet and yucky. The wait staff is trained to point out the seasonals' page and the handpull. Good for them. But we do hope the chalkboard will be kept up to date since it's where we always look first.

We hear the new Crown Liquors in downtown Indy may open next week. It's at Ohio and Delaware. 638-3720. Update your rolodexes since it will be Mike Sprinkle's new home.

three-floyds-lord-admiral-nelson Back in 2007, Three Floyds brewed Admiral Lord Nelson, an 6.5% American ESB with Floydish Northwest citric pine hoppiness. Well, it's back and they seem to plan a bomber release. With appropriate artwork.

Bell's Eccentric Ale, 2008, will be out this winter sometime. It's a “Malt Beverage brewed with Birch Syrup, Honey, Maple Syrup, Juniper Berry, and Elderflower.” No popcorn, or malted milk balls like in 2006.


Jean-Pierre Van Roy has retired from the Brasserie Cantillon Brouwerij but his son Jean is stepping into the same big footprints. (Jean's new Zwanze series of lambics put out a rhubarb lambic last year. This year he is using elderflowers.)

Here's a story about the FDA's caffeine letter and a list of breweries etc. who received it. Virtually all make stuff like Smirnoff Raw Tea Malt Beverage. Seems like this may not affect Coffee Stouts.

Got $5 and want to buy a piece of Pabst. BuyABeerCompany.com wants to crowdsource the $300M and you can get .00000166% for yourself.


Lesse, a 20% tip on a $5,000 bottle of wine is . . .  ====>>
And notice the time. 2:39pm. Some lunch.

Worthington White Shield is the longest-produced bottle-conditioned ale in Britain. Winner of many awards and owned by many companies through the years. Now owner Molson Coors is adding Worthington's Red Shield with Brambling Cross and Cascade hops. Next year we might even see production increased enough to cover most of the US.

This guy in Portland, OR, brews with "ham and cheese; Bac-O-Bits; peanut butter and chocolate; and Nutella. His CXI Pumpernickel Ale is the 11th anniversary Widmer/ Oregon Brew Crew Collaborator beer, and yes, pumpernickel bread is an ingredient."

Misc News – Nov 16

According to Btown Restaurants, Lennie's Pizza (incorporating Bloomington Brewing) is celebrating 20 years with a big give-away. They are donating "100% of all sales Mon-Wed, Nov 16-18, to Hoosier Hills Food Bank, Stone Belt and Wonderlab". Huzzah.

Coming up: (more at the calendar)

Saturday: Alpha Acid Test. Lafayette Brewing. 2-5pm. $20

Saturday: Hoosier Beer Geeks Tailgate for Nothing. email for more info or see their latest blog post.

Sunday: Indiana Public Radio's All Beers Considered. Cornerstone Center, Muncie. 2-5pm. $17. RSVP 800-646-1812. Brew lineup:

Nogne O Brewery Barlery Wine Batch 100
Weihenstephaner Hefe Weiss
Brewdog Punk IPA
Unibroue Trois Pistoles
Tilburg Dutch Brown Ale
Castelain Blonde Biere de Garde
Bells Christmas Ale
Founders Old Curmudgean Ale
Upland Winter Warmer
Two Brothers Brewing Moaten Flemish Red Ale

Historical stuff:

The 25 Best American Breweries of the Decade (2000-2009). Three Floyds is #8.

BroadwayHotelThe Oldest Bars In America. Including 3 in Indiana. The oldest of those being the Broadway Hotel and Tavern in Madison (1834).

The Smithsonian and the Brickskeller have a History According to Beer tasting.

It seems Ernest Shackleton left two cases of Charles Mackinlay Scotch behind in his retreat from near the South Pole in 1909. (They had finished off the other 23 cases). Next January it will be retrived. 100yrs. Frozen. Hmmm. See Whisky on (Antarctic) Ice.

Misc News – Nov 15

Tuesday. Tapping of Großer Kurfürst. Three Floyds. Noon. It's "our Munster Style Dunkel".5.8%.

Tuesday. Alcatraz. 6pm tapping. 300 lbs of cherry puree added to a milk stout. About 5%. Be there.

Tuesday also starts New Albanian's Bank Street Brewhouse Grand Opening Week with cigar night on the patio.

Big Woods Brewing's opening week has left them almost tapped out. Tough problem to have. They'll make more. Emily will see to it.

Blitzen is an Abbey Ale. It's a Winter White. It depends on whether you have Liz's Abbey Ale at the 86th St. Rock Bottom or Jerry's downtown Indy.

The Hoosier Beer Geeks look at all three GABF medal winners. With celebrity mentions of Michael Phelps, Snoop Dog, Francisco de Orellana, and Satan (bet ya didn't see that coming).

New Albanian's Saturnalia winter beer celebration starts on Fri. Dec 4th. here's an advance look. Hint:

Anchor Christmas
Atwater Voodoo Vator Bock
Bell’s Christmas, Java Stout, Rye Stout
Boulder Looking Glass Never Summer
Breckenridge 471 Mighty Brown, Christmas Ale
Clipper City Winter Storm
Dogfish Head Punkin
Founders Breakfast Stout 08
Great Divide Hibernation Ale
Left Hand Fade to Black , St. Vrain Tripel
NABC Naughty Claus, Bonfire of the Valkyries, Solidarity
New Belgium 2° Below
Ommegang Chocolate Indulgence Stout
Pyramid Snow Cap
Rogue Yellow Snow
Schlafly Christmas Ale
Shmaltz He’Brew Origin Pomegranate, Rejewvenator
Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale
Thirsty Dog 12 Dogs of Christmas
Three Floyds Alpha Klaus Porter
1809 Berliner Weisse
Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes La Mandragore
Birra del Borgo My Antonia
De Dolle Stille Nacht
Delirium Noel
Dubuisson Scaldis Noel
Dupont Avec Les Bon Voeux
Etienne Dupont Cidre Bouche Brut
Schlenkerla Oak Smoke
Weihenstephaner Korbinian

LowenbrauAs always, check Gina's Random Beer Roundup for news.

Black Art Beer from the Feldschlobchen Brewery in Kappalbachtal, Germany, seems to be heading for Indiana. Initially Black Art Gold and Black Art Dark.

Virtuoso Distillers in Mishawaka and their "18 Vodka" gets ink in the South Bend Tribune.

That bottle of Hindenburg Lowenbrau (right)? It sold for about $18,000.

The FDA is looking at caffeinated alcoholic drinks (malternatives, not beer at this point). None are approved now, even though there are plenty on the market. Jay Brooks has good commentary and discussion on the Brookston Beer Bulletin.

Misc News – Nov 11

UplandTapRoom2 Upland's Tasting room at 49th & College in Indianapolis is now open. Tastes and flights are available everyday. Growlers are available Mon – Sat. Pints are available on Sunday and Monday $3.75. Wed is $6 growler refills (normally $8).

Watch Kristin pour growlers on Caleb's special 3-octopus counter-fill system. Explosive.


New beers coming up from New Albanian include Bretted Phoenix Kentucky Komon; Single Malt/Single Hop APA series # 1 & 2 - Cascade & Nugget with 2-row barley; Le Douche Mental Imperial Belgian IPA – A collaboration with The Livery.

Three Floyds got a bronze medal at the Festival of Wood and Barrel Aged Beers for Blackheart English IPA aged on toasted oak.

Brugge Brasserie's new Hibernal Black has a big Abbey Ale aroma, big Imperial Belgian Black essence. and a dry, dry, dry finish. Brugge Black on steroids. Lots of dark D2 invert sugar gives it a 9% alcohol buzz. A+

BeeCreek-Label-CoffeeStout Bee Creek Brewery is expanding their line from one beer (Hoosier Honey Wheat) to two, adding Clay County Coffee Stout. It's made with Brazilian Santos Coffee from Jameson Coffee in Greencastle. 6%. It will be out soon – to find out where, check their web site.

Bee Creek has expanded their sales locations to include some in Plainfield and Indy as well as Brazil and Terre Haute.

Indiana University Southeast (New Albany) is offering a non-credit "Here's to Beer" course. Roger Baylor is teaching this 4-session course about the brewing process, styles, and all things beery. The course will be presented 6:30-8:30pm on 1) all the Wednesdays of February and 2) all the Wednesdays of April.

The Siebel Institute of Technology in Chicago is now offering a 3-day course titled "Start Your Own Brewery". Teacher is Ray Daniels. About $1,200. Dates: Nov 30-Dec 2. Apr 12-14, Nov 15-17.

Rogue's Most Arrogant Bar contest is on again. These contestants in Indiana are trying to sell the most Arrogant Bastard by Friday. So go help them out.

  • Beer Seller, Castleton
  • Columbus Bar, Columbus
  • Constant Spring, Goshen
  • Fiddler's Hearth, South Bend
  • Fickle Peach, Muncie
  • Fox & Hound, Indianapolis
  • The Heorot, Muncie
  • The Mad Hatter, Muncie
  • Max's Place, Columbus
  • New Albanian Grant Line Public House, New Albany
  • Shallos, Greenwood
  • Yogis, Bloomington

When you hear about the Hindenburg bottle of Lowenbrau going to auction you'll go here for a good summary.

Speaking of disasters, here's a forklift driver destroying $150,000 of cognac and vodka – dominoes style.

Misc News – Nov 7

New Albanian's Bank Street Brewhouse has been named the Indiana Main Street Business of the Year by the Indiana Office of Community & Rural Affairs. Congratulations. Awards ceremony next Friday. Add your congratulations to Roger Baylor's blog. And yes, he does have a suit.

From Lafayette Brewing via HBG: Sat, Nov 21. 2-5pm. $20.

Can you pass the Alpha Acid Test? We brewed a 60 IBU ale with one hop addition at 60 minutes in the kettle. After fermentation and maturation, we're going to rack this beer into 10 kegs and firkins and dry hop each individual vessel with a different hop variety (technically, 1 control beer and 9 different hop varieties). In an open tasting format, we'll sample the resulting brews to discern the subtleties of each individual hop variety. Sort of an IPA Extravaganza utilizing some familiar and some not-so-familiar hop varieties. Also included in the price of admission: commemorative tasting glass, raffles of Lafayette Brewing Co. merchandise and munchies from our pizza kitchen. Don't miss this unique tasting experience! A limited number of tickets are on sale now.

Also via HBG comes a list of Winter Beers from Cavalier Distributing:

  • The Bruery 2 Turtle Doves--Brand new this year and limited
  • Clipper City Winter Storm
  • Founders Breakfast Stout
  • Great Divide Hibernation
  • Jolly Pumpkin Noel de Calabaza
  • Stegmaier Holiday Warmer--Brand new this year
  • Mendocino Winter Imperial IPA
  • HeBrew 13th Jewbilation--13 Hops, 13 Malts, 13% ABV
  • Shipyard Prelude Ale
  • Thirsty Dog 12 Dogs of Xmas
  • Affligem Noel
  • Blaugies La Moneuse Winter--Very Limited
  • De Rank Pere Noel--Very Limited
  • Scaldis Noel--Very Limited
  • Scaldis Noel Premium--Very Limited
  • Scaldis Prestige de Nuits--Extremely Limited--Prestige aged in Burgundy casks!
  • Dupont Les Bons Voeux--Extremely Limited
  • Serafijn Xmas Angel--Limited
  • Slaapmutske Xmas Nightcap--Limited
  • Struise Tsjeese--Limited
  • Mikkeller To/From--Very Limited
  • Mikkeller From/To--Very Limited
  • Mikkeller Santa's Little Helper '08--Extremely Limited
  • Olfabrikken Jule Ale--Limited
  • Olfabrikken Jule Kloster Ale--Limited
  • Mahr's Xmas Bock--Limited

MBA Ron Smith is offering 2 Europe Beer Trips this summer. July 16-25 – Belgium. July 29-Aug 7 – Germany. See the details at his BeerMBA web site.

Come see the world-famous Anheuser-Busch Clydesdales. They will be making an appearance on Wednesday, November 11, 2009, from 3:00pm to 6:00pm, at the Crown Liquors located at 2310 West Southport Road, Indianapolis. Bring your cameras and take pictures of these beautiful horses. This is a great opportunity to get unique family pictures to use on holiday cards.

Black Art Beer Announces Shelf Placement Authorization With Major Supermarket Chain Store. "Black Art Importers Inc. announced today that it has received UPC and price approval from a major food retailer to place their beer on the shelves of supermarkets in the Indianapolis-Central Area."

Look for more collaborations. Sam Adams & Weihenstephan ("innovative" 10%). Boulevard & Orval (Strong Pilsner). And this from a press release:

The Boston Beer Co. is rolling out a new series of beers, the Samuel AdamsBarrel Room Collection, that will be available in a limited number of marketsbut also at its Boston brewery — the first time the brewery has sold beer atits door. The Barrel Room Collection includes New World Tripel (10% abv),American Kriek (Balaton cherries, 7%) and Stony Brook Red (9%), all aged inEastern European oak barrels, originally used to age brandy in Italy andimparting subtle sweet, toasty notes

White House Logs Reveal Neo-Prohibitionist Visits.

Here's more Bud Light than you'll ever need.

Finally, a musing. They say it takes three gallons of water to produce a gallon of beer. I contend the entire beer cycle takes way more. For one, there's the water it takes to clean the drinking glass. "What?" you say. Most beer is consumed straight from the can. True. OK, you win that one.

But the biggest consumer of water in the entire system is the flush. A gallon of beer equals 8 pints. Over 10 twelve-ounce beers. Unless you're camping in the woods or playing golf ya gotta flush. Probably 6 times per gallon. At 1 gallon per flush at an efficient urinal that's another 6 gallons of water per gallon of beer.

Just a musing.

Barley Island Opening Thursday

As Bob O. reported earlier today, Barley Island is set to open their Broad Ripple location on Thursday, November 5th. They'll be opening in the old Scholar's Inn location at the corner of Broad Ripple Avenue and College Avenue for lunch that day and I'm looking forward to getting there early!

Jeff Eaton, the owner of Barley Island, was kind enough to host some industry folk to a sneak preview Tuesday evening. As a fan of the Noblesville restaurant (which will continue operations both as a restaurant and a production brewery) I had pretty high hopes for the new place and it did not disappoint.

Barley Island Broad Ripple is a modern, clean, efficient and yet very atmospheric venue. It's a place that anyone can feel comfortable in, especially if you're there to enjoy the food and beer, both of which were terrific. There are plenty of televisions for game day enthusiasts, a roomy dining area that sports a very clever barrier between the family dining area (bring the kids) and the over 21 portion of the pub. Why clever? The top of the waist high barrier is lined with glass holders, so those who may be standing have a convenient spot to leave their drinks.

The long bar against the back wall boasts 24 taps, some of which will host Barley Island beers while others will pour guest beers from around Indiana. What a welcome addition to the bar scene in Indianapolis - a great bar that features Indiana beers so prominently!

We may be witnessing an acceleration of a fundamental change in the bar scene in Broad Ripple that Broad Ripple Brew Pub and Brugge Brasserie have already started. For many years a lot of the offerings in Broad Ripple centered on less expensive, mass produced products. While BR Brew Pub and Brugge offered high quality beers, they were the exception and not the rule. Yes, other pubs carried good beer but I don't think that beer was ever the main attraction (outside of BR Brew Pub and Brugge). Barley Island is making a point of presenting great beers with no apologies right on Broad Ripple Avenue and they're doing it in a fashion that will make their new location a destination for those who are coming in from outside of Broad Ripple.

Adding Barley Island to the weight that BR Brew Pub and Brugge already carry should go a long way to bringing the more discerning diner back to Broad Ripple while making another first class presentation of great beer.

Misc News – Nov 4

Logo-BarleyIsland2 Barley Island's Broad Ripple location is set to open tomorrow (Thursday) at 11am. 12 taps. Scotch eggs made with sage sausage and a great texture. Fridays will be come Firkin Fridays. The Hoosier Beer Geeks were there and have more info and pictures on their blog.

Saturday is Teach a Friend to Homebrew Day. Ron Smith of the FBI will be hosting a big brew at his house near Zionsville. Weather should be 60s and sunny. If you are interested homebrewing call him at 317-873-6976.

Brewing has re-started at Terre Haute and Brugge Tripel will reappear on store shelves any day now. White and Black will follow.

Mark you long-term calendar for Jan 30th. That's the Brewers of Indiana Guild's Winterfest at the State Fair grounds. World Class Beverages promises to repeat their Hopapalooza with the Malt Shop – lots of malty winter beers, many we normally don't see in Indiana.

Headline: Hall of foam brewer goes on the market. Meaning: The Kalmanovitz Charitable Foundation left over from the Heilman days, needs to sell PBR since the IRS said charities can't own for-profit companies. Brands Ballantine, Colt 45, Lone Star, Old Milwaukee, Olympia, Piels, Schaefer, Schlitz, Schmidt, and Stroh's go with the deal. A bargain at about $300 million. Plus $5 shipping and handling. Don't expect a brewery though, the beers are made by Molson.

Misc News – Nov 3

Big Woods Brewing in Nashville (Indiana) will officially open on Tues, Nov 10. They will have a pre-opening party on the 9th.

0906-NewBarleyIslandBarley Island's Beastie Barrel Stout gets ink at the Good Beer Blog. Oh, and their Barley Island Restaurant & Brewhouse in Broad Ripple at 62nd & College will open this Thursday, the 5th, at 11am.

The Evansville Courier & Press talks about an evening with Excise checking on ID checking.

Jay Brooks finds the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in the White House. article

Maine puts squeeze on low-alcohol British lemonade. Fentimans Victorian Lemonade has 0.5% ABV so it's booze by Maine's standards. "Maine is, of course, where our puritanical forefathers went because Britain was not strict enough, and it has been said that Puritans are people who are always worried that someone, somewhere, might be having fun." – Fentimans

Behind Pum-Kwan, the Brewers Cup, and Best of Show

OB-PumpkinDay 3 years ago Jim Dunbar, a regular customer at Oaken Barrel suggested to Mark Havens (right) and Andrew Costner (left) that they make a pumpkin beer. After some research and experimentation they did just that last year.
The recipe includes caramel malt for richness, Victory malt for a taste of bready crust, and some pumpkin pie filling. It went down a treat in 2008 and they saved a bit back, as always, for special occasions.

Fast forward to June, 2009. Mark and Andrew are sorting through all those saved samples to prepare for the Indiana State Fair Brewers Cup. The Pumpkin is now even better than 8 months before. Send 3 bottles in to the competition.
In July, the Herb, Spice, and Vegetable category is judged by, among others, Gordon Strong – not just of the most respected BJCP Judges in the country but also the President of the Beer Judge Certification Program. The panel gives Oaken Barrel's Pumpkin the win, one of two gold medals for OB (the other was for their Altbier).

All in all, Oaken Barrel won 2 gold, 2 silver, and 2 bronze medals. Upland, meanwhile, won 4 golds, a silver, and 2 bronzes. There's a points system for Brewery of the Year and Upland is ahead, 16 to 12 as I recall. The last award announced is the Best of Show, worth 6 points. (cue drumroll)
OB-BrewersCup We've been told Gordon Strong led the charge, championing what he called "Like liquid pumpkin pie" to the Best of Show victory. The extra points lifted Mark and Andrew into the Brewery of the Year prize.

Now, the 2009, renamed Pum-Kwan for Kwan Casey, owner of Oaken Barrel, is ready and serving at the brewpub in Greenwood.

First, it's a beer. Many squash suds completely mask the malt. Pum-Kwan has the nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger necessary to make you want to pick up a fork and some Kool-whip, but it's an attractive beer and a beer that, unless you just don't like the spices, you can drink more than one.
For more info about Pum-Kwan, see this week's  Beer buzz.
This win gave Oaken Barrel it's fourth Champion Brewer award (including 2005, 2006, and 2008) and their 2nd 4th Best in Show (the others for 2006 Uberweizen, 2001 Meridian Street Lager, and 2000 Gnaw Bone Pale Ale). (thanks Fred)

Coming up:
  • Snake Venom – Oak Aged Snake Pit Porter
  • Razz Porter
  • Schwarz
  • A series of Oatmeal Stouts including a Java Stout will coffee from The Bean Cup.
  • This season's Epiphany is in the fementers now with a 1081 OG.
The Brewing Monk in the trio up top? That's John Treeter, the new Assistant Brewer at the Barrel. You're in the best brewery in the state.