Preamble by Steve Siciliano
This past Monday I had the pleasure of meeting Gary Fish, the founder and president of Deschutes Brewery in Bend, Oregon. Deschutes is planning on distributing to the west Michigan area this fall and Gary and his marketing team were in Grand Rapids for a few days interviewing local wholesalers. While they were in Beer City USA they also took the time to visit a few craft beer bars and retail stores.
While I had heard about Deschutes I have never had the opportunity to try their beers and I must admit that until this week I knew very little about the brewery. I was surprised to learn that Gary started Deschutes in 1988 and that it is currently the fifth largest craft brewery in the United States. Deschutes’ Mirror Pond Pale Ale was awarded a gold medal at the 2010 Great American Beer Festival and its Red Chair Northwest Pale Ale was named “World’s Best Beer” at the 2012 World Beer Awards. That’s pretty impressive!
The brewery’s line up of beers should be on our shelves by the end of October.
In other news, the dates for the annual Siciliano’s Customer Appreciation Sale have been set. This year’s sale will begin on Monday, September 8, and will run through Sunday, September 14. Complete details will be published in future editions of The Buzz.
Have a great weekend everyone!
New and Returning Beer
- Lagunitas Imperial Red, $4.79/22oz - "This Special Ale is, in reality, a reconstructed exhumation of the very first ale that we ever brewed way, way back, in 1993. Brewed with a big head, a muscular malty thorax, a silky texture & all strung together with a hoppy sweet nerve sack... yum" (source).
- Lagunitas Day Time, $1.99/22oz - "Sometimes you want a beer, then you realize how much crap you need to do before you call it a day. This is it. Nicely dosed with Big, Round Hop Flavors and a Toasty Malt Foundation to satisfy your every need. But it still lets you stay in the game to do what needs to be done" (source).
- Great Lakes Oktoberfest, $1.69/12oz - "Cleveland’s celebration of Oktoberfest dates to the mid 1800’s when German immigrants gathered at outdoor beer gardens like Haltnorth’s and Kindvater’s St. Clair Gardens. Our amber lager with rich malt flavor and noble hops honors Cleveland’s diverse cultural heritage" (source).
- Southern Tier Pumking, $7.89/22oz - "Pumking is an ode to Púca, a creature of Celtic folklore, who is both feared and respected by those who believe in it. Púca is said to waylay travelers throughout the night, tossing them on its back, and providing them the ride of their lives, from which they return forever changed. Brewed in the spirit of All Hallows Eve, a time of the year when spirits can make contact with the physical world and when magic is most potent. Pour Pumking into a goblet and allow it’s alluring spirit to overflow. As spicy aromas present themselves, let it’s deep copper color entrance you as your journey into this mystical brew has just begun. As the first drops touch your tongue a magical spell will bewitch your taste buds making it difficult to escape the Pumking" (source).
- Southern Tier Warlock, $9.29/22oz - "Imperial stout brewed with pumpkins Warlock is brewed to enchant your palate on its own and also to counterpoint our Imperial Ale, Pumking. Make your own black magic by carefully pouring this Imperial Stout into a goblet" (source).
- Firemans Brew Brunette Dark, $1.79/12oz - "A traditionally styled Doublebock with rich structure, bold flavors and silky smooth finish. Handcrafted with a heavy dose of toasted chocolate malts to create a refined microbrew of uncompromised quality" (source).
- Firemans Brew Blonde Beer, $1.79/12oz - "This smooth golden beer is made with real Saaz hops for a truly fine Pilsner style lager. Fireman’s Brew Blonde is a crisp, refreshing choice to end your day with. At 5.0% alcohol, this is the lightest of our beers" (source).
- Firemans Brew Redhead Ale, $1.79/12oz - "A smooth, rich red ale without the bite (5.5% alcohol). This 3-time gold medal winner is a combination of 5 different styles of malts, and several different Yakima Valley hops. The use of ""crystal malt"" in the brewing process imparts a rich caramel flavor. This combination creates a flavor packed red ale like you’ve never had before" (source).
- The Traveler Jack-o-traveler, $1.69/12oz - "Representing the darker side of Shandy, Jack-O-Traveler is an alluring beer illuminated by the tastes of fall. He strikes the perfect balance between bright refreshment and seasonal spice. Jack is brewed with fresh pumpkin, for a delicious, dark hued, Shandy-inspired beer" (source).
- Dogfish Head Theobroma, $14.39/22oz - "This beer is based on chemical analysis of pottery fragments found in Honduras which revealed the earliest known alcoholic chocolate drink used by early civilization to toast special occasions. the discovery of this beverage pushed back the earliest use of cocoa for human consumption more than 500 years to 1200 BC. As per the analysis, Dogfish head’s Theobroma (food of the gods) is brewed with Aztec cocoa powder and cocoa nibs, honey, chilies, and annatto (fragrant tree seeds)" (source).
- Dogfish Head Birra Etrusca, $14.39/22oz - "This beer is based on a beverage that may have been enjoyed by the Etruscans of Ancient Italy around 800 BC. For this one Sam traveled to Italy with Dr. Pat McGovern where they met up with Teo and Leo (Sam’s buddies from Baladin Brewery and Birra Del Borgo respectively) and researched ingredients from various Etruscan dig sites. The result of their research is a strong ale containing an Italian heirloom grain called Cappelli Senatore, along with pomegranate juice, raisins, and hazelnut flour, together with 3 types of honey: chestnut, wildflower, and clover. The brew was then spiced with several hop flowers, Gentian root and tree resin (think Myrrh) in the kettle. To simulate fermentation in a bronze vessel (which possibly would have been what the Etruscans used), we actually tied a bronze plate inside our modern stainless fermenter which was suspended in the wort as it fermented. The aroma is dominated by pomegranate and spice from the yeast. The flavor is an intriguing interplay between the tangy pomegranate fruit and nuttiness from the hazelnut flower. One can definitely envision sipping this unique brew while relaxing on the Mediterranean coast. Versions of this brew will also be made at Baladin and Birra Del Borgo with the same ingredients but varying processes" (source).
- Dogfish Head Rosabi, $10.19/22oz - "The vivid rose hue of this imperial Pale Ale comes from a combination of Munich and Caramel malts and a touch of red rice from Louisiana, birthplace of musician and collaborator Julianna Barwick. Julianna, who builds ecstatic choirs by looping and layering her voice, helped choose the ingredients for Rosabi and visited coastal Delaware to brew a test batch. Citrusy Simcoe and Centennial feed Julianna’s love of hops, and the star of the show is her go-to ingredient: wasabi. What’s hoppy? … Wasabi. The Japanese root adds bittering and herbal notes similar to hops, with its subtle heat creeping in after the kick of carbonation" (source).
- Dogfish Head Hellhound, $14.39/22oz - "2011 marks the 100th birthday of Mississippi Delta bluesman Robert Johnson who, according to legend, sold his soul down at the crossroads in a midnight bargain and changed music forever. Working again with our friends at Sony Legacy (yup, the same folks we did our Miles Davis-inspired Bitches Brew with), Dogfish Head pays tribute to this blues legend by gettin the hellhounds off his trail and into this finely-crafted ale. Hellhound is a super-hoppy ale that hits 100 IBUs in the brewhouse, 10.0 ABV, 10.0 SRM in color, and dry-hopped with 100% centennial hops at a rate of 100 kilos per 100 barrel brew-length. Can you tell we at Dogfish are stoked for this mighty musical centennial? To accentuate and magnify the citrusy notes of the centennial hops (and as a shout out to Robert Johnsons mentor Blind Lemon Jefferson) we add dried lemon peel and flesh to the whirlpool" (source).
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