Sunday, April 26, 2009

Beer Is Exploding In GA! No, It Really Is Exploding.

April is winding down, and May is looking pretty stacked right now. First of all, a recap of last week:
  • The cask at Metropolis turned out to be aged with white wine and oak, not red wine. Either way, I really liked it, and it was definitely a new experience for everyone. The combo of oak and wheat tasted like coconut kind of.
  • Guinness 250 was released on Friday to all Atlanta stores on Friday. It is a non-nitro stout made to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the signing of the lease on the brewery. If your local Taco Mac is out currently, don't freak out. We brought in a limited amount to get this beer launched over the weekend, and trucks are coming out all week to resupply us.
  • The stores each received 1 case (12 bottles) of Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale. This is a black IPA (huh?) that is getting rave reviews. If you can't get one before they are gone, you have 1 option: be at Duluth on the 13th of May. We have 1 keg of it for our beer dinner there, and once that course of the beer dinner is through, we will release that to everyone in the bar. The same is true of a cask of Stone Smoked Porter with chipotles in the cask. Expect those both to be available to you after 8 pm-ish if you are not attending the dinner (it is sold out).
Here are some things to look for in the next couple of days and weeks:
  • Monday, May 4th be in Roswell for Ellard's Cellareds! Our Ellard Village store is breaking out kegs of He'Brew Jewbelation 12, Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout, Allagash Black and North Coast Old Stock from 2008. They are also breaking out some 12 oz. bottles of Stone Russian Imperial Stout from '08 as well. These beers were all purchased in early to mid-last year, and should be tasty. These are also some rare credits for Passport Club members. Once these beers are gone, good luck finding them again. Incidentally, I just had an '07 bottle of Old Stock, and it was awesome. I will be at the store on the 4th, so come join me for some high-gravity cellared beer. It doesn't get much better than that really.
  • Look for Asheville, NC's French Broad Brewing Co.'s beers across Taco Mac land. The brewery just started shipping 2 draft beers up here, with more to follow. These people are really cool, and they make some really good beer. Their Wee Heavy-er and Rye Hopper are available now. The brewery is named for a river, so if "broad" means something to you other than "substantially wide", grow up.
  • On Monday, May 11th, you will be able to find New Belgium's beers in Atlanta. Their Fat Tire, Mothership Wit and 1554 Black Lager will be available in 22oz. bottles only for a month or so before draft arrives. Don't yell at me! That's the way they roll-out.
  • Before you get too excited about New Belgium, you need to get pumped up for Terrapin 30 Strong! It releases to all GA stores on Friday, May 8th. This is the beer that caused such a stir at the Terrapin party 4/11. There is 20% less of this beer than Ron Burgundy, so it will be gone in a hurry. Please be careful. This beer can compromise your better judgement, and that does not hold up in court.
  • Also expect to see the two new Widmer beers, Drop Top Amber Ale and Drifter Pale Ale showing up around town. They are getting off the ground this week.
  • Ft. Collins Brewing Co. has 4 kegs of a double bock (9+%), aged for a year, then put into Stranahan's Whiskey barrels for 2 months. For more on Stranahan's Whiskey (and its connection to Dale's Pale Ale) use the internet. Or, just ask me about it when I see you. If you like bourbon, or American whiskey in general, Stranahan's is top-notch stuff. This beer should be killer. You can find it soon at: Old Milton, Newnan, Metropolis and East-West. It is called Ft. Collins Barrel-Licked Bock. Call the store for more details as to when they are getting tapped.
  • Perimeter is getting into the cellared mood with a keg of 2008 Duck Rabbit Barley Wine, and Suwanee is in on the action with a Victory Storm King for 2008.
  • Speaking of Victory, look for Victory Wild Devil. It is their Hop Devil IPA with a wild, Belgian yeast. Some stores will have The Hop Devil on draft, as well as on beer engine and the Wild Devil. You can taste the differences between keg, cask and Brettanomyces influences.
  • It looks like our firkin for Metropolis this week exploded at the warehouse. There may be another one, so once I contact the bomb squad, maybe we will have a different one. Not sure right now. I will be in Birmingham, AL Wednesday night for a concert anyway. Try to get out to Ellard next Monday 5/4. That is the hot ticket right now.
Thanks folks. I hope everyone had a great and restful weekend, and is ready to drink some beer this week. New stuff is coming into Atlanta relentlessly right now. When will it plateau? That is up to you, the consumers, to support the brands you want to keep. New stuff is great, but don't forget about the old favorites out there. Without you, they might have to pack up and go back home. One day we will all be wondering what happened to old such-and-such beer that we loved, when the reason is right there our mirrors. Also, some of these folks believed in Atlanta (and you) before it was a slam-dunk business decision. That has to mean something, right?

From My September Trip-Sierra Brewhouse

From My September Trip-Sierra Brewhouse
This is the top floor of the brewhouse, with buckets of fresh hops about to go into the kettles.