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Friday, April 28, 2017

New Beer Friday, A Winner is Born Edition (April 28)

Jake "The Judge" Brenner
Preamble by Steve Siciliano

Last Saturday a panel of BJCP judges chose an entry from a local homebrewer as the Best of Show in the Fourteenth Annual Siciliano’s Homebrew Competition, making this the second year in a row that a homebrewer from the Grand Rapids area gets to hoist the prestigious Siciliano’s Cup.

The BOS winner will be announced during the awards ceremony at the Siciliano’s Homebrew Party on Saturday, May 20 at Johnson Park. The grand prize also includes a $500.00 gift card from Siciliano’s Market and the opportunity to brew the award winning recipe on Trail Point Brewery’s seven-barrel system.

Out of the 143 entries submitted in this year’s competition, a total of 100 were awarded medals, with the breakdown as follows: 37 gold, 38 silver and 25 bronze.

All entries in the Siciliano’s Homebrew Competition are judged by industry professionals and/or trained judges according to the standards of style, not in comparison to each another, with the exception of Best in Show. Entries that receive scores falling within designated point totals are awarded bronze, silver or gold medals.

Just a reminder that tickets for the Homebrew Party are now on sale. Tickets are $45.00 and must be purchased in advance at Siciliano's Market or with a credit card over the phone by calling 616-453-9674.

New and Returning Beer

  • Blackrocks American Pils, $1.79/12oz - "The finest German malt, American hops and Lake Superior water collide to create our take on the world's most popular style. As crisp and refreshing as the Great Lakes, this beer is a nod to European tradition with a distinct American disobedience" (source).
  • Brewery Vivant Tree Bucket, $4.29/16oz - "Big, bold, and balanced. Lots of Citra hops in the kettle on brew day, along with Belgian candi sugar to add dimension. Lots of hop flavor without the bitterness that shreds your tastebuds" (source).
  • New Holland Incorrigible Reserve, $6.19/22oz - "Michigan blueberries & blackberries fuel a second flavorful fermentation of this beer after its residence of several months in our House of Funk sour cellar" (source).
  • Sam Adams Porch Rocker, $1.69/12oz - "This tart, refreshing brew is our take on the Bavarian Radler, named for cyclists who inspired it. Traditionally a mixture of beer and lemonade, our version combines a crisp golden Helles with a blend of real lemons to create a fresh-squeezed flavor, perfect for the long yet fleeting days of summer" (source).
  • Virtue The Mitten, $3.69/12oz - "This Michigan cider is a blend of last season's pressed apples, aged in Bourbon barrels for up to one year, then back sweetened with this year's fresh pressed apple juice. The Mitten has notes of vanilla, caramel, and charred oak" (source).
  • Shiner Ruby Red Bird, $1.69/12oz - "Shiner Ruby Redbird is brewed with genuine Texas Rio Red Grapefruit, the signature sweet citrus of the Rio Grande Valley, and ginger. This lager beer features grapefruit tartness and finishes with a ’lil kick of ginger. With Texas Ruby Red Grapefruit and Ginger, Shiner Ruby Redbird is a crisp and refreshing summer beer" (source).
  • Newaygo Brewing Death Rye, $9.99/22oz - "A heavily hopped Rye Ale with spice, fruit, and a lingering bitterness" (source).
  • Newaygo Brewing Himalayan Gose, $9.99/22oz - "German Sour Ale with corriander and pink salt. Quenching and tart" (source).
  • Newaygo Brewing Riverhouse, $9.99/22oz - "A mixed style Belgian/Norwegian Farmhouse Ale. Juniper boughs add a sweet and piney finish to an otherwise simple wheat saison" (source).
  • Right Brain Looping Owl, $12.89/22oz - "Amber ale aged in whiskey barrels. Sophisticated. Surprising. Tasty. Our Looping Owl is a medium bodied Amber Ale, brewed with Maris Otter Malt and Northern Brewer & Golding Hops, then aged in Grand Traverse Distillery Whiskey Barrels. A masterfully balanced and satisfying flavor with a slight ’whiskey kick’ and surprising hint of Oak. The owl may be the wisest bird in the forest, but even he needs to kick back and take a break every once in a while" (source).
  • Right Brain Blue Magic, $1.79/12oz - "Blue Magic Lavender Wheat Ale is a uniquely different & refreshing brew. Did we mention it’s magical too? It’s brewed with local honey from Honey Pot Priory & fresh local lavender from Light Of Day Organics. This is a straight forward wheat with dried lavender. This brew has a floral nose and a wheat finish" (source).
  • St. Ambroise IPA, $2.59/16oz - "McAuslan presents its New World take on the classic IPAs of the 19th-century England. In those days, the beers was brewed extra-strong and generously hopped to help it survive the long journey to India. Inspired by that history and today’s blod American IPAs, we’ve married Cascade and Chinook hops with a subtle blend of malts -anyone who appreciates strong ale will love it. Hop bitterness and malt smoothness: it’s a journey your taste buds will enjoy time and again" (source).
  • Victory Kirsch Gose, $2.59/12oz - "Excite your senses with a sharp, sweet burst of fresh cherries. Sublime and effervescent, this bold and bright session ale has an enticing cherry-fruit character" (source).
  • Southern Tier 2XUnfiltered, $1.99/12oz - "Not quite an imperial, but certainly not a standard India pale ale. Our double IPA is a hop lovers dream. Citrusy and clean with an incredible finish" (source).
  • North Coast Cherry Berliner Weisse, $6.49//22oz - "North Coast Tart Cherry Berliner Weisse is made with the juice of Michigan Montmorency cherries, whose addition softens the lactic finish of the beer and gives it a springtime blush" (source).
  • Weyerbacher Cinnsanity, $4.29/12oz (4 per) - "We’ve taken Insanity and aged it in whiskey barrels with cinnamon. The result? It’s CINNSANITY! The addition brings a complementary note of cinnamon to the already present notes of bourbon, cherry and vanilla. This smooth 13.3% ABV brew is warming and balanced with a subtle sweetness and hint of spiciness thanks to the addition of cinnamon" (source). 
  • Weyerbacher Riserva 2016, $22.69/750ml - "Riserva is an American Wild Ale fermented on red raspberries. Riserva is fermented with a blend of Saccharomyces yeast, Brettanomyces yeast and lactic acid bacteria that produce funky, sour and fruity flavors and aromas" (source).
  • Tallgrass Key Lime, $1.69/12oz - "First released in summer 2016 as an experimental draft-only release that was met with raving enthusiasm from fans, Key Lime Pie returns to the Tallgrass lineup as a summer seasonal in 6-packs of 12 oz cans. An American sour blonde ale brewed with lime peel, Key Lime Pie is true to its namesake, recalling the sweet, tart and refreshing dessert in beer form" (source).
  • Great Lakes Hop Madness Double IPA, $3.29/12oz - "Maniacally dry-hopped, with a frenzy of juicy aromas and formidable pine finish" (source).
  • Rogue Paradise Pucker, $7.39/22oz - "A Hawaiian inspired sour beer brewed with passion fruit, orange, and guava" (source).
  • Short's Ermagerdness, $1.99/12oz - "Ermagerdness is a light-bodied, golden-colored American India Pale Ale with zesty tangerine and pineapple aromatics.  A simplified malt bill, along with some signature American hops, allows for an awesome burst of tropical fruit flavors up front.  It then shifts toward an interesting herbal tasting bitterness, which builds and lingers on the back of the palate" (source).
  • Wolverine Vers L'Avant, $3.09/12oz - "Golden lager brewed with Michigan Bartlett pear juice and aged in chardonnay barrels" (source).
  • Ballast Point Unfiltered Sculpin, $2.59/12oz - "Our Unfiltered Sculpin IPA packs extra hops into every sip, enhancing the classic Sculpin notes of fresh apricot, peach, mango and lemon with a slight haze and less bitterness. Freshness is key to every beer, but especially true for this extra-hopped IPA—store cold and drink soon" (source).

Picture of the Week | The Judging

Somewhere in that long line of homebrew is the winner.


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