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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Squatters Goes Wild!

Let's talk wild ales, shall we? If your not familar, these beers are introduced to "wild" yeast or bacteria, such as: Brettanomyces , Pediococcus or Lactobacillus.

This introduction may occur from oak barrels that have been previously inoculated, pitched into the beer, or gained from various "sour mash" techniques. Regardless of which and how, these little creatures often leave a funky calling card that can be quite strange, interesting, pleasing to many.

Often sourness in beer is viewed upon as a major flaw in a beer and is usually a sign of poor sterilization or unintended infection. But in some beers that are intentionally made this way they can be true art in a bottle. It's not easy to make a beer so bad it's brilliant.

We are very lucky here in Utah to have two such exquisitely done wild/sour beers made annually and we have Squatters' own Jenny Talley to thank. Jenny's obsession with wild bugs in beer has produced two world class, highly sought after beers. Squatters Fifth Element and Squatters 529.

Normally these two beers are released at different times of the year. 2011 will see them both hit Squatters and their bottleshop on June 1st.

Fifth Element Pours a cloudy apricot/straw color with a fizzy white head that reduced to a thin froth. The nose has a bit a of barnyard funkiness to it with hints of lemon. The tastes starts with light citrus notes then transitions into tart green apples, peach and white pepper. Next comes a dry oakiness that compliments the tartness well. The finish is a combination a champagne like dryness and bitter florals.

529 Poured a deeper amberish color with a small sized off white head. The nose is of of cherries, dust and some spiciness. The taste starts with notes of cherry tartness, caramel and brown sugar. Tobacco notes come next as well as lemon peel and sour grapes. The finish is tart, woody and dry.

Squatters has added a sticker on the Fifth Element bottles now so you know when it was released and they also changed the color scheme on the 529 label to indicate 2nd Vintage.

Don't be shy about trying these beers, they're a great local gateway to help get your funk-on.


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Lions, Tigers & Beers? Oh My!

Last summer the Hogle Zoo opened up it's gates for an adult only event that paired Great local craft beer, fine cuisine and exotic animals.

It was a big hit. It was so successful, that the Zoo is doing it again this year and they've added an extra evening as well.

Different from last year, Zoo Pub will offer theme nights that spotlight specific breweries. On Wednesday, August 10th Epic Brewing will be pouring Smoked and Oaked - Spiral Jetty IPA (Full Glass) - Red Ale - Brainless on Peaches - Galloway Porter - Capt'n Crompton's - Pfeifferhorn Lager and 825 State Stout.

Epic Brewmaster Kevin Crompton will be on hand to answer your beer relathttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifed questions and Zoo volunteers ahttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifnd keepers will also be around to answer your zoo related questions. Special appetizers, will be provided by the Zoo's head chef.

On Wednesday, August 24th Squatters Brewpub takes over the Zoo. Same as the previous event. Squatters' beer and their experts will be on hand to provide samples and answer questions. Beers for this event are yet to be determined.

Must be 21 or older, with ID, to attend both events. Tickets include food, a tasting of 8 beers, one full glass of beer, and Zoo admission. Must be 21 or older, with ID, to attend. Tickets must be purchased in advance online or by calling the Zoo's guest services at 801-584-1769.


Friday, May 20, 2011

There's No Beer in Heaven?

Tomorrow if all goes as divinely planned most of you will be sucked up into the sky to begin your new lives as wide-eyed, cloud-sitting harpists.

A few of us will not be going. I have it on good authority that there is no beer in heaven. As per the the prophetic lyrics of Ernst Neubach. Ernst wrote, "In heaven there is no beer. That's why we drink it here (Right Here!) When we're gone from here, all our friends will be drinking all our beer"!

Fuck that! I'm not going. Mrs. Mikey is sitting on stash of Russian River sours that need to be "biblicly molested" by one obstinate beer gnerd and apparently being raptured isn't good enough reason for "the Boss" to pop the goddamn corks!

Anyway... if your "head'n up to the spirit in the sky", I call first dibs on all abandon beer cellars. Tough shit, Dougie, Ed, Dal, Bonnie, Eric, Kent, Tiff, Geoff, Mike, Ricky, Craig, Jamie, Jared, Thy, Dave, Mark and all you other Rapture shitters. I called dibs first! Same damn rules as shotgun...

Once the "saved" are gone, I propose we have a Kegger at Senator Valentine's place. Trust me, he's not going anywhere, plus that poor mislead bastard is gunna need a beer. I don't know Where he lives, but he'll be the only one in Orem with booby glitter on his face. So look for that.

By the way, be sure and saves all the kegs. We'll need them for the coming Zombie Apocalypse. More info to come.

By the way, Mark has a few Cantillons at the Bayou.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Hop Syndrome

Before Epic Brewing had even set up shop they were promising that craft beer lovers would get some crazy - out of the box - extraordinary beers from their Exponential series.

And they've delivered. Their peach and cherry infused Belgian style triples come to mind. Now Epic is preparing to blow your minds with their next style bending beer.

The latest in the Exponential Series is a lager that has got caught up in the American hop craze. Hop Syndrome is a new lager that uses all Wyermann German Pilsner malt and true lager yeast. In the boil Calypso hops are used up front and at end of boil Crystal hops.

Calypso is a nice, Simcoe-esqe, high alpha hop and Crystal is an American derivation of Hallertuar (think Sierra Nevada). These hops provide a pleasant bitterness on the back of the tongue with some nice grass and citrus notes.

The beer will also be dry hopped with just a little Crystal and Calypso so that the nose shines more than in a standard lager.

The first production batch is being dry hopped this week and will be ready for bottles in about two more weeks. I'm really geeked to try this one.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

2011 Snowbird Brewfest

If you thought that we were done with beer festival info, then my guess is you've been spending more time under your bed than Osama Bin Laden's porn collection.

The 2011 Snowbird Brewfest will feature a dozen of Utah finest local breweries including Bohemian, Desert Edge, Red Rocks Brewing, Uinta, Hoppers, Ruby River, Moab, Wasatch, Squatters, Roosters, Four +, Park City, Shades of Pale and Epic Brewing.

The breweries will be pouring two to three different beers, plus food music and other vendor's will be on hand. $1 per 3 ounce sample (prices vary for beer above 4.0%)

Saturday, June 18 and Sunday, June 19, 2011 is the date for one of the most picturesque beerfests around. This as usual takes place on Father's Day weekend. So prove to the old man that you still love him. He did raise you for Christ's sake... and even if he didn't, at the very least - let him know you appreciate the fact that he still let's you pretend that your that Ninja drifter wannabe you still obsess over and crash in his basement. More info to come.


Monday, May 16, 2011

The Mountain Brewers' Beer Festival is Getting Close

Tickets are now on sale for this year's Mountain Brewers Festival. You can pick them up at Bohemian Brewery, Rooster's Brewing & Uinta Brewing. Tickets are a very reasonable $20 or $25 the day of. This will get you access to unlimited 4 oz. pours from 35 breweries (as of today).

This is mostly a festival for western breweries, but look for offering from as far away as Vermont, Germany and Belgium.

So, who's going? Check in at the Polling section on the right side of the page. By the way, you can bring the rug rats.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

New Beers from Mikkeller

Thanks for hanging in there y'all. This is the the slowest it's been here at Utah Beer for a couple of years. There's Just not a lot of local beer news happening right now.

I could throw a lot of national and international stuff your way, but let's face it. If it doesn't affect you, should I waist your time with it?

What I have for today does affect you if you live around the Wasatch Front. Two hard to get beers made their way to the Bayou, they sound fantastic.

"Better late than never", I say that a lot and it's true. We often get seasonal beers a little late for the Holiday they're meant to coincide with. This first beer is was meant for Easter, it will also work for the odd Wednesday in May.

Mikkeller Funky (e)★ [fung’ke e’st r] (Funky Easter). This is a wild fermented Belgian ale similar to Mikkeller's beer "It's Alive".

Compared to the It's Alive, the Funky e*star is higher in alcohol and fuller in body. If you are a fan of the wild ales then this one should be right up your back door. The Bayou only received 72 bottles, enough said.

I've had Mikkeller's Beer Geek Breakfast and Beer Geek Brunch and they are both exquisite, so I have high hopes for Rauch Geek Breakfast (also known as Mikkeller Beer Geek Bacon). This beer is brewed using the same recipe as their Beer Geek Breakfast Stout but with all the base malt replaced with smoked malt (Rauch).

The flavor is dominated by smoke, as a well as some coffee and chocolate. Many people shy away from smoked beers. This super full bodied beer is likely not for the timid.

Only 4 pallets of this beer came into the US so we are quite lucky that Mark got his nerdy little beer paws the minuscule 5 cases he got.


Thursday, May 05, 2011

Un Gotero Panty de una Cerveza!

Happy Cinco de Mayo! If you plan on celebrating or not, Squatters' newest edition in their Small Batch Series is available today. Pequeño Imperial is a Super Sized (in more ways than one) somewhat tradition Mexican style lager.

I haven't tried it yet, but sources close to the brewpub call this one "a real panty dropper". My innocent mind doesn't know what such a thing could mean. But me thinks I'm gunna like it!

Out of the Bottle Shop for $5 and at the table for $9.95. with an ABV of 6.5%.


Tuesday, May 03, 2011

2011 City Weekly Utah Beer Festival

Utah's beer lovers got a "wee bit of the shaft" during this years legislative session when Senator John Valentine saw fit to change poorly written beer laws to comply with his anti-normal, soul-saving views.

The change I refer to was the short lived, one price gets unlimited 3 oz samples admission in beer festivals. The first and last time it was tried was during the inaugural 2010 City weekly Utah Beer festival.

Just because the one ticket system is gone, doesn't mean there can't be a beer fest. There have been beer fest going on in Utah since the early/mid 90's. We're just going to have to go back to the old token system.

Anyway, The City weekly is going to try the beer fest again this year. Last year, they got a lot of flack for "lack of planning". I think those comments were slightly harsh. Considering they'd never tried putting on a beer fest before. I'm confident that the CW kids learned what did and didn't work and are implementing those changes.

The date is Saturday, Aug. 27, 2011 and will likely take place again at Washington Square (the Salt Lake City & County Building). At this years fest look for 3 oz samples of over 40 of Utah's award winning brews, including full strength brew varieties. As the event gets closer, we'll update all info.

What changes would you like like to see implemented for this year's fest?


Monday, May 02, 2011

Altus Altbier

If you've ever spent much time at the Bohemian Brewery, you know that their focus is on four lagers done very well.

It's always a treat when Bohemian comes out with a new beer. They don't come around as often as most, and when they do their quite different than many in the market.

One of those "different" beers is available today, and I'm happy to say it's one of my favorite styles with a twist.

Altus is an Altbier. Alts are different in the sence that it's an Ale, that's also Lagered after fermentation. This leads to a cleaner, crisper beer than is the norm for some other top-fermented beers such as Pale Ales.

Altus is available right now at the Bohemian Brewery in Midvale.