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Friday, February 3, 2017

New Beer Friday, Sandy Ridge Farms Edition (Feb 3)

Preamble by Steve Siciliano

We have exciting news for anyone looking to establish or expand a hop garden this spring. This year the folks at Sandy Ridge Farms in Zeeland, Michigan will be supplying us with established hop plants as opposed to the hop rhizomes we have offered in the past. According to the growers at Sandy Ridge, the advantages to purchasing an established hop plant versus a rhizome are three-fold:
  1. An established plant eliminates the risk of questionable viability as often found with rhizomes. It is typically recommended to plant more than one rhizome per pot/hole which increases costs.
  2. An established plant with a developed root system and mature top growth will produce larger yields in the first 2 years than a planted rhizome.
  3. Hop plants are susceptible to virus and disease out in the hop yard. A rhizome from an infected plant will produce another infected plant. Plants are obtained from the National Clean Plant Network at Washington State University where they are virus/viroid tested prior to being shipped. Sandy Ridge Farms has a strict protocol in place regarding clean plants and preventative pest-management. A healthy plant produces more hop cones.
We will be taking hop plant pre-orders now through the end of business on Thursday, March 16th. Those wishing to place orders may do so via email (, by phone (616-453-9674) or in person here at Siciliano's. When ordering by email please ensure that you indicate the desired quantity of the specified variety. Price per plant is $8.59 and payment will not be due until the time of pickup.

We anticipate that the hops plants will be available for pickup during the week of May 22nd. Those placing orders will be personally notified when the shipment arrives. Go here to see a full list of the hop plants being offered.

Cascade Hops (Photo courtesy Sandy Ridge)

New and Returning Beer

  • Rochester Mills Blueberry Pancake, $2.39/16oz - "This stout is brewed with lactose (milk sugar) to impart a fuller body and sweeter palate. Flavored with blueberry for the 3rd day of 12 Days of Milkshake Stout" (source).
  • O'Hara's Barrel Aged Leann Folláin, $16.69/750ml - "To craft this beer we fill casks which were previously used for Irish Whiskey with our full bodied and rich O’Hara’s Leann Folláin Extra Irish Stout.  The stout is aged in oak Irish Whiskey barrels where it picks up the flavours of whiskey and oak cask.  After aging we then bottle condition the beer to give a gentle carbonation, bringing out the best of both the stout and the whiskey" (source).
  • Tallgrass 8-Bit Pale Ale, $1.69/12oz - "Just like those classic video games we all grew up with, 8-Bit Pale Ale is spectacularly simple at first glance yet remarkably fun and complex when you get into it. Our Hop Rocket infuses the character of Australian grown Galaxy Hops into an American Pale Ale, giving a unique tropical, almost melon aroma in a classic American style" (source).
  • Dogfish Head Flesh and Blood Cans, $2.59/12oz - "What you have here is an honest to goodness India Pale Ale brewed with a bevy of real citrus, including orange peel, lemon flesh & blood orange juice" (source).
  • Avery Tangerine Quad, $13.79/22oz - "Patiently aged in the finest of Bourbon Barrels, this bold Belgian style Quadrupel layers notes of rick, dark fruit, vanilla and caramel with a burst of tangerine peel culminating in the vibrancy of this full-bodied creation" (source).
  • Short's S'more Stout, $2.39/12oz (2 per) - "S’more Stout is a complex stout brewed with graham cracker, milk chocolate, marshmallow, and smoked malt. The rich hearty sensations each take their turn, starting with the subtle graham aromas, and leading pleasantly into the sweet flavors of marshmallow cream and milk chocolate. All of these flavors are followed by a slight lingering flavor of smoke. A flaming marshmallow garnish is strongly encouraged" (source).
  • Short's Chocolate Wheat, $1.69/12oz (2 per) - "Chocolate Wheat is a Porter brewed with chocolate malt, wheat malt, and specialty grains. The combination creates a deep black, full-bodied beer that provides subtle hop flavors and rich malt tones. Chocolate Wheat has balanced flavors of roasted caramel, coffee, and chocolate, and ends with a smooth finish" (source).
  • Alesmith My Bloody Valentine, $7.59/22oz - "Don’t spend this Single Awareness Day alone – grab a beer! This red-blooded cousin of Evil Dead Red Ale, our Halloween Brew, is a beautiful crimson color. Notes of caramel, toast, and bittersweet chocolate balance an intense bouquet of floral hop aromas that we know you’ll fall in love with. The finish leaves a pleasant, full-bodied sweetness on the palate that won’t spread angry rumors about you to all your friends like that one time when I was…ohh…uhh…Happy Valentine’s Day" (source).
  • Victory 21st Birthday, $1.79/12oz - "We were so impressed with this year’s harvest in Yakima we decided to brew 2017’s anniversary brew with our favorite hops from the trip: Roy Farms Chinook, Roy Farms Centennial, and Black Star Ranch Mosaic" (source).
  • Great Lakes Chillwave, $3.29/12oz - "Inspired by the North Coast’s dedicated (and sometimes chilly) surf community, our Double IPA will melt the ice in your beard and never lose its balance" (source).
  • Lagunitas Undercover, $1.99/12oz - "Our malty and rich beer with a snappy hop finish truly defies style…Imperial Mild?...Uber ESB?... We do know for sure that it is Unforgiven and Unrepentant" (source).
  • Odd Side Paranoia, $2.49/12oz - "An Imperial IPA" (source).
  • Bell's Hopslam, $18.29/6pk (1 per) - "Starting with six different hop varietals added to the brew kettle & culminating with a massive dry-hop addition of Simcoe hops, Bell's Hopslam Ale possesses the most complex hopping schedule in the Bell's repertoire" (source).
  • Black Rocks Murray Project, $3.09/12oz - "Named after our mash tun (which has a giant Bill Murray headshot on it), the Murray Project is an explosion of bright, tropical aromas with a malt profile that would have goldilocks saying, 'Just Right'" (source).
  • Brewery Vivant Plein de Vie Space Queen in Peril, $9.99/500ml - Barrel aged Sour dry hopped with Amarillo.
  • Stone Megawheat Double IPA, $8.99/22oz (1 per) - "Kick back and crank it up as we’ve done all the brewing…the we being us and the special guest appearances of two heavy hitters in the indie craft beer industry: New Mexico’s Marble and Colorado’s Odell. Credited with 58 years of brewing chops, our trio built their wheat ale foundation on the classic “C” hops. Then, we rocked a pure hop triad of “M” hops to achieve a supercharged succession of orange, tangerine, lemon, lime, spice and dankness. The undulating riffs of Motueka, Mosaic and Mandarina Bavaria hops slash through the wheat haze with equal footing, never playing over one another. The cacophony of flavor is what fans would expect with a name like Megawheat. So join us as we forge ahead on a path that directly leads to the main stage…and then off the front of it, into the crowd! If you feel the urge to smash the bottle afterward, don’t. That’s what guitars are for" (source).
  • Stone Tangerine Express, $4.99/22oz (1 per) - "This ain’t no just-add-juice approach. This one is for adults. We use bountiful whole tangerine purée, which brings pithy, crisp bitterness to the citrus flavor. In addition to the complexities of the tangerine — the likes of which you can only get by using the whole fruit — we judiciously employ just a hint of whole pineapple for a backnote (you’d likely not even pick it out of the mix if we didn’t tell you it was there). We’re not looking for a sweet concoction to appease the “I want my beer to taste like fruit juice” crowd. This is Stone. We like our IPAs to taste like IPAs. Big, bold and not for kids" (source).
  • Goose Island Preseason Lager, $1.79/12oz - "This amber lager combines citrus, spicy and a herbal hop note with a balanced bready malt body and a bright bitter finish. The name “Preseason” refers to the time right after the New Year when many are ready for winter to be over and for Spring to arrive. This is the perfect beer to bundle up with and cheers to the outdoor activities waiting just around the corner" (source).
  • Deschutes Abyss, $17.19/22oz - "A deep, dark Imperial Stout, The Abyss has almost immeasurable depth and complexity. Hints of molasses, licorice and other alluring flavors make it something not just to quaff, but contemplate" (source).
  • Deschutes Scotch Barrel Aged Abyss, $26.89/22oz (1 per) - "The most multifaceted liquid truffle ever fashioned. Dark cherries brined in light peat smoke and popped into the heart of a prune. Then drizzled with toffee and flamed caramel, crusted with white and green peppers, and dipped in honey infused molasses. This beautiful construction is then delicately coated with rich dark chocolate and finished with a luxurious coating of milk chocolate and a dusting of cocoa powder and gold flakes. Served on a chard shard of oak with three sultanas and pieces of vanilla suffused marzipan" (source).
  • Deschutes Collage 2, $26.89/22oz (1 per) - "We’ve teamed up with Hair of the Dog Brewing Company to bring you another artistic collage of cask-aging alchemy. This encore collaboration delivers layers of vanilla, caramel and molasses with roasted accents and complex malt character. This second version magically blends The Abyss (100% aged in Pinot barrels) and The Stoic (100% aged in Pinot barrels) with Hair of the Dog’s Fred (aged in American oak and rye whiskey barrels) and Doggie Claws (100% aged in cognac barrels)" (source).
  • Deschutes Dissident, $17.19/22oz (1 per) - "The Dissident is an Oud Bruin, a distinctive Flanders-style sour brown ale, with a heavenly aroma and flavor. Our first wild yeast beer, we use Brettanomyces and local cherries to give The Dissident its characteristic sour taste. Our stiffest brewing challenge, it must be fermented in isolation from our other beers for a full 22 months, partly in pinot and cabernet barrels. The words coddled and “worth it” come to mind" (source).

Video of the Week | Founders Aged-Beer


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