Utah Brewery Map

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Drinking Made Easy: Salt Lake City

Drinking Made Easy is a television show that airs on HdNet. It follows comedian Zane Lamprey and his friends, Steve McKenna and Marc Ryan as they travel across the country discovering local pubs, watering holes, breweries and distilleries that are unique to America's cities.

Tonight (2/2/11) Drinking Made Easy will be profiling good ol' SLC/PC. From what I understand Zane will be exploring the stigmas and myths of Utah's adult scene as well as visits to some of best watering holes in the area.

I personally don't receive HdNet and if your on Comcast you don't either. But if your a DIRECTV (Channel #306 and #1079) or a Dish Network (Channel #362) subscriber your in luck.

If your one of these lucky few, you have an assignment. Please watch the show and report back on how it was. I'm a big fan of Zane's and hope he represents us well.

This isn't the first time I've pimped Zane Lamprey. If you've been reading Utah Beer for a while you may have heard me mention Three Sheets. It's another show that is hosted by Lamprey and one that Mrs. Mikey and I personally love. Three Sheets is like Drinking Made Easy but on a global scale.

Three Sheets makes it's return to the telly next Tuesday (2/8/11) on Spike TV. Spike is available on most cable and satellite systems. Three Sheets is well worth your time. please check it out.



kent said...

TiVo is set. I'll report tomorrow.

Craig said...

Thanks for the heads up Mikey. I don't get Hdnet, hope I can see it online. I have the dvr set to record Three Sheets, looks like a good show. It airs on Tuesday nights on Dish.

Mikey said...

Yes, Tuesdays not Wednesday. Thanks for correcting me, Craig.

kent said...

Watched this last night and it was a fun show. They started out at Squatters and got a bit of a lesson on 3.2 beer. I'm not sure who was representing Squatters but it came off as confusing. He swapped 3.2 by weight with 4.0 by volume. Although it did succeed in amplifying the weirdness in some of our liquor laws.

Next they visited The bar in Sugarhouse, which is apparently the oldest bar in the city? Here they expanded on the tavern vs. club licenses a bit. The owner explained how the big brewers brewed lower point beer specifically for Utah. I didn't think this was actually true. I'll let another poster clarify that.

They visited Underground alcohol in Ogden. I'd never heard of it but it sounded interesting. Not much into the herbal spirits myself.

They went on to visit the Shooting Star saloon in Huntsville. The owner was definitely a cool lady or at least she came off that way. She explained that the whole Utah only beer thing was actually a myth and it centered around weight vs. volume measurement of alcohol. This was how I've understood it in the past.

They finished up in Park City, visiting Easy Street, and High West. I definitely need to try that Blue Curacao cocktail. High West gave an excellent discussion of whiskey terms. They also went into the differences between their vodka and their silver whiskey.

They wound it all up with a Jello eating contest. It was definitely a fun show.

Josh said...

The big brewers do in fact brew special batches for Utah and the other 4 3.2 states, it's a myth that they don't bother. I read an article once where an Anheuser Busch rep said it takes them 40 minutes to "change out the equipment" for the special batches. I also heard that Utah is the only state that ever actually pulls samples off shelves and tests it in a state lab for compliance.

I saw the show last night, and was quite disappointed by the ignorance of the people they interviewed, but part of the blame simply belongs with Utah's insanely complex laws.

Like Kent mentioned, the Squatters guy mixed up weight and volume, and he also said that until a couple years ago, brewers could only make up to 6% for bottles, which is when they could make IPA's, then they took the limit off entirely, which is when brewers started making other strong styles. I have no idea where he came up with that.

At the Bar In Sugarhouse, the lady told Zane that their bottles and cans couldn't be more than 3.2, because they only have a tavern license, but that just confused the hell out of Zane because the guy at Squatters told him bottles had no limit, and I don't think he grasped the license based distinction.

Finally, at the Huntsville bar, the lady there not only incorrectly stated that macro-beer's alcohol percentage is not actually different than in other states, but went on and on about how their bar was LEGALLY serving booze during prohibition, and other highly suspect statements.

Overall, I really just hope that nobody from out of state sees that episode, because even I was shaking my head about how ridiculous this state is and wondering how any of us can tolerate living here.

kent said...

Thanks for clearing up the special batch stuff Josh.

I completely forgot about the whole high grav bottled vs. normal bottled at the bar in Sugarhouse. That first part was very confusing.

I did like the Park City section. I thought they'd settled into a rhythm by then and didn't confuse the situation any more.

Mikey said...

I just watched it. I think it's very telling that three different people who are all in the hospitality industry all had different interpretations on the whole beer thing.

As Zane said, "it's all so confusing, the show is called Drinking Made Easy". I'm Sure the shows producers did the best they could to cut through all the inconsistencies but Josh is right, it just caused more confusion.

I guess we're used to it because we live here. But from an outsiders perspective, it is still quite the freak show.

jamesj11487 said...

I can't figure out if this show is more fun or interesting, but either way I LOVE IT. This has to be one of my favorite episodes due to the drinking laws. I am a DISH Network subscriber and employee and I record every episode of this show in HD. With more than 200 HD channels on DISH, they offer HDNET on the lowest HD package!

Anonymous said...


Check out Underground on Drinking Made easy

Special One said...

I'm moving to Utah in about a month for school and work and I am STILL confused about the liquor laws out there.

I saw this episode and was very much happy to see that there IS a drinking scene out there in SLC and PC. This episode also helped me have a wonderful time visiting some of the watering holes in SLC when I went to secure a place for our move. It helped me to distinguish places to visit and enjoy (Red Rock and Squatters are amazing!).

But coming from California, the laws are strange and can be utterly confusing, like having to purchase food when buying beer at a bar (am I getting this right?). And this episode only made the confusion more apparent. It is annoying to have to dance around the laws in the state just to have a beer and enjoy a good time.

Nonetheless, I definitely enjoyed the episode and saw a lively progressive (if I can use such a term) scene in the SLC. This encourages us non-Utahns as we make our way to your beautiful state. So I think the episode overall did give Utah a much better image than you natives might have suspected. It definitely painted a much more diverse spectrum than the average person would visualize when speaking of Utah.

Anyway, love this blog and have been reading it for some time as we prepare for our move. I also look forward to participating in the beer scene the minute I make my way there. So I definitely may get to know you all eventually. Have a good one.

Mikey said...

@ Special One. Glad to hear we have some new blood moving into the area. If your still confused about the technicalities of drinking locally I've tried to distill it down in a post, http://utahbeer.blogspot.com/2009/05/utah-liquor-laws.html

I hope this is clearer. Looking forward to sharing a pint!


Special One said...

Thanks, that does help clear up some of the questions I had. Glad to know that at Red Rock or Squatters we can order a beer without the need to always purchase food, although I usually purchase food when I have a pint -- I just like the freedom to choose :)

Well thanks for the welcome. Coming from Southern California I am looking forward to our new life in SLC. It should be great as long as there are Beer Advocates like you all. See you all soon!