Angry Orchard Cider House Collection - The Muse - A First Sampling

31 May 2014

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I was excited to get a chance to try an early sample of Angry Orchard’s new Cider House Collection year-round release called The Muse.  This new specialty cider is a new release from Angry Orchard so we chilled down the bottle and decided to sample it today.

First up I’ll admit my camera does no justice to the beautiful blue silkscreened label on this really nice cork and caged 750ml bottle.  This cider packaging looks great and it would make a wonderful gift for the upcoming summer party season. 

 


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The Muse uses a blend of culinary apples from the Alto Adige region of Italy as well as bittersweet apples from Normandy and Bretagne France.  It is then aged on French oak staves with specialty fermentation techniques to create a really unique cider.  The Muse pours light and very effervescent with aromas of fresh apples and a mouthfeel like a sweet champagne.  There are definitely notes of apple and oak in the taste followed by a spicy, cinnamon-like flavor and finishing with a sweet vanilla note that I suspect comes from the oak staves.  The mouthfeel is sparkly and effervescent and at 7.7% ABV, this big bottle is perfect for sharing with friends.

Be sure to try Angry orchard The Muse for yourself and you’ll see what I mean, and be sure to let me know what you think when you try it.  Thank you to everyone at Angry Orchard for allowing me to sample this cider early.  I think you have a real summer winner with The Muse.
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Bell’s Brewery - Mars DIPA & Uranus Black DIPA

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We brought you the beer Mercury in this new series of beers from Bell’s Brewery and today we get to see two more:  Mars & Uranus.  These beers are part of a seven part series of beers inspired by Gustav Holst’s musical composition, “The Planets.”  The series will follow the sequence of Holst’s piece from mars to Neptune.  Mars, The Bringer Of War is a Double IPA that will come in at 9.5% ABV and Uranus The Magician is a Black Double IPA that will come in at 10.5% ABV.  These are both 12oz bottles.
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Sierra Nevada New Bottles: Old Chico ESB, Vienna, Oktoberfest & Tumbler

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Today we get to see the new packaging for several new and existing beers:  Old Chico ESB (5.5% ABV), Vienna Vienna Style Lager (5.3% ABV), Oktoberfest (6.2% ABV) and Tumbler Autumn Brown Ale (5.5% ABV).  These are all 12oz bottles and they all carry both Chico, CA & Mills River, NC.
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Terrapin - Imperial Pumpkin Pie Porter

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Today you get your first look at a new brew coming from our pal Spike Buckowski at Terrapin.  This is Imperial Pumpkin Pie Porter, and this 2014 release will be packaged in 22oz bottles and come in at 9.2% ABV.
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Allagash - Fluxus 2014

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This morning we get to see the packaging for Allagash Fluxus 2014.  This ale brewed with spruce tips and honey changes every year and it is part of the Allagash Tribute Series of beers.  Fluxus 2014 will fund a pediatric burses scholarship at the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital in Portland, ME.  Look for Fluxus 2014 to be packaged in 750ml bottles and come in at 8.8% ABV.
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Smuttynose Big Beer Series - Tripel

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Today you get your first look at a new brew coming to the Big Beer Series from Smuttynose.  This is Tripel and it is a Belgian-style Ale that will be packaged in 22oz bottles.  Stay tuned for ABV and release details.
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Samuel Adams - Imperial Pilsner

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Here we have the bottle packaging for Samuel Adams Imperial Pilsner.  This single hop beer uses Hallertau Mittlefrueh Noble hops, it will be packaged in 12oz bottles and come in at 8.5% ABV.
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Coronado - Silver Strand Saison & 18th Anniversary Ale

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Today we get to see two new brews coming from Coronado Brewing.  Up first is Coronado Collection Silver Strand Saison.  This is the 4th release in the barrel-aged series and it is a Farmhouse ale brewed with coriander and aged in Cabernet barrels.  Silver Strand Saison will be packaged in 12.7oz bottles and come in at 5,1% ABV.  Up next we have Coronado Crown Series Anniversary, the 18th Annual Specialty Ale.  This beer celebrates Coronado’s 18th Anniversary as well as their big wins in GABF 2013.  This beer is a Double IPA that uses Citra, Mosaic, Nugget and Simcoe hops, it will be packaged in 22oz bottles and come in at 10% ABV.
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Terrapin / Green Flash Tangerine Dreamsicle Released

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From Terrapin:

Join us at the brewery (5/30) for the release of our newest collaboration: Tangerine Dreamsicle. This bicoastal beer a delight straight from our childhood but also made to satisfy thirst for deliciously hoppy beer. King of Pops will be selling an assortment of pops, and we'll be giving away beer posters for the first 50 people to arrive!

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Allagash Belfius Bottled Today Coming Late Summer

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From Allagash:

What is this heading down the bottling line right now? Looks like our newest blend called "Belfius". We are super pumped about this blend of 3 year old Coolship and Saison! We hope to release this at the brewery late this summer.

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Stone Updates Their IPA Bottle Packaging

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Here’s a peek at the updated packaging for Stone brewing’s classic IPA.  This is the new 12oz bottle packaging and the beer remains at 6.9% ABV.
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Weyerbacher - Tango Aged In Dad’s Hat Barrels

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Here’s a new specialty keg coming from our pal Chris Wilson at Weyerbacher.  This is Tango Aged In Dad’s Hat Rye Whiskey Barrels, it is keg-only and likely a very limited release.
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Goose Island - Oktoberfest 2014

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Here we have the new 2014 packaging for Goose Island Oktoberfest.  This traditional Marzen uses Hallertau hops, it will be packaged in 12oz bottles and come in at 6.4% ABV and 17 IBU.
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BOM Brewery - Triporteur Belgian Oak

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Here’s a new brew coming from BOM Brewery called Triporteur Belgian Oak.  This beer is part of the Special Roast Series of experimental beers, it will be package din 25.4oz bottles and come in at 9.2% ABV.
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Southern Prohibition Brewing - Jack The Sipper, Devil’s Harvest & Suzy B 12oz Cans

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Today we get to see three new sexy cans coming from Southern Prohibition Brewing.  Jack The Sipper is an ESB that comes in at 5.3% ABV and 40 IBU, Devil’s Harvest is an American Pale Ale that will come in at 5.8% ABV and 60 IBU and Suzy B is a Dirty Blonde Ale (Blonde ale with Wheat) that will come in at 5% ABV and 20 IBU.  These are all 12oz cans.
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Chicago Beer Buddy Guy’s Legends Buddy Brew

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Here’s a new brew coming from Chicago Beer Co called Buddy Brew.  This Belgian Style Wheat is brewed with honey and spices and it is brewed for blues guitarist Buddy Guy’s Legends in Chicago.  This beer will be packaged in 12oz bottles and come in at 5.6% ABV.
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Stone Stochasticity Project - Quadro Triticale Coming 6/2

30 May 2014

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From Stone:

When we say "literally," we mean it. Quadrotriticale, futuristic hybrid grain of the 23rd century, is the star ingredient in the latest beer hatched in our Stochasticity lab...Okay, okay, so you sharp-eyed beer aficionados already noticed that the label says it's brewed with ordinary triticale rather than the quadro variety. You got us. But what you don't have is this amazing beer–yet. Beginning Monday, June 2nd, you'll be able to explore this strange, new quad for yourself. We recommend that you boldly go to the updated  Stochasticity Project site and get the scoop on our modern version of an age-old style.

By now, many are familiar with our newest brewing foray, the Stone Stochasticity Project. But even two brews in, you may not be familiar with the term “stochastic,” especially in the context of brewing. The definition of stochasticity is wordy and probably only truly makes sense if you’ve studied Probability Theory in depth (Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy doesn’t count—that’s Improbability Theory), but even our one-track minds picked up on the potential and complexity of this idea. In layman’s terms, stochastic is a non-deterministic, or random, state. So, why not just say that? For one, the scientific background would be lost, and random just doesn’t have the same ring as Stochasticity, nor all the connotation. Two, the Stone Stochasticity Project is much more than just brewing beer. It involves delving beyond what most people think about beyond beer’s four main ingredients. So where does that leave us in our ever-evolving quest for good craft beer? Right at the newest member of this series, Stone Stochasticity Project Quadrotriticale, a beer that holds up to the stochastic and technical nature of this venture.

There’s no traceable chain of logic leading from a grapefruit India pale ale (Stone Stochasticity Project Grapefruit Slam IPA) to a barrel-aged Belgian-style golden strong ale (Stone Stochasticity Project Varna Necropolis) to this, a Belgian-style quadruple brewed with a special grain called triticale, but this isn’t about logic…it’s stochastic. Some of you may remember us first experimenting with triticale during the latter stages of theStone Vertical Epic Ale series when developing the recipe for Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale. That beer turned out to be a strong golden ale infused with chamomile and wine grapes. Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale got us thinking of other ways to use triticale (which surprisingly, is not blue). So when the opportunity arose to create a beer that breaks away from the everyday, that specialty grain was top of mind.

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“It’s a pretty traditional quad recipe with some hints of spiciness and fruitiness. The fruitiness comes primarily from the yeast. It’s a different strain than we usually use in our Belgian beers,” explains Stone Brewmaster Mitch Steele. “We’re using dark candi sugar in this, and that’s what really provides that amber, deep color and some of the sweetness that you taste in the beer, but if there are any surprises, it’s the lack of real sweetness that you get off some quads.”

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In keeping with the technical nature of the Stone Stochasticity Project, triticale has its roots firmly planted in science. Triticale is a hybrid of wheat and rye (if you knew the scientific names—triticum and secale cereal—you might have been able to figure that out) developed in the early 19th century. It was created in a lab, and grown in Scotland and Sweden, in an effort to manufacture grain that resisted disease like rye does, yet retain the productivity of wheat. We’re not sure if its originators had brewing in mind, but if it’s a grain, then you can bet a brewer will throw it in the mash for curiosity’s sake. Turns out, the triticale doesn’t lend as much spice as rye does, nor does it come across as grainy as pure wheat. Instead, it hovers in the middle for an interesting diversion from the chewy quads most people are used to.

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We’ve never been in the business of being predictable or mainstream, and the Stone Stochasticity Project is another way to venture away from our tendencies and experiment. It’s also a fun way for us to get creative, learn about different ingredients and try new things. So, what’s next? Who knows! It’s stochastic, after all, so there’s no way to say, but whatever our next beer in this seemingly erratic series is, it’ll be as diverse as its predecessors and, depending on the success of our brewery experimentation, may find its way beyond our lab and into the brewhouse for a repeat performance. Stay tuned!

14-0305 Stone Quadro Triticale V2

Stats & Tasting Notes by Brewmaster Mitch Steele

  • ABV: 9.3%
  • IBUs: 40
  • Availability: Limited 22-ounce bottles and draft, beginning June 2
  • Hop Bill: Magnum
  • Distribution:AK, AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, and WA
  • Appearance:Pours deep chestnut with a light tan creamy head.
  • Aroma:Tropical fruit, banana and brown sugar, as well as some light pepper and clove flavors from Ardennes yeast.
  • Taste:Fruity, molasses, brown sugar and banana flavors. There is some spiciness from both the yeast and triticale grain.
  • Palate:Full and very smooth with a touch of sweetness.
  • Overall:The Star Trek geek in me inspired this beer. The classic episode, “The Trouble with Tribbles,” referenced a type of grain called quadrotriticale (pronounced “quádro-trítĭ-kay-lee”). As described in the episode, this was a high-yield, four-lobed grain hybrid of wheat and rye with a bluish color. The flaked triticale we used is a cross between rye and wheat and makes up about 10% of the grain bill in this Belgian-style quadrupel.

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3 Floyds & Firestone Walker to Release Collaboration Ol’ Leghorn Barleywine This Weekend

imageFrom Firestone Walker Brewing & 3 Floyds:

Here comes Ol’ Leghorn, a swaggering rooster of a beer made by Nick Floyd of 3 Floyds Brewing Co. and Matt Brynildson of Firestone Walker Brewing Company, old friends of nearly 20 years who both cut their brewing teeth in the mid 1990s Chicago craft beer scene.

Ol’ Leghorn was initially brewed by Floyd and Brynildson during last year’s Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Fest. In a shout-out to Firestone Walker’s and Nick Floyd’s mutual English heritage, this blonde barleywine was brewed with traditional English ale malting varieties—Golden Promise and Optic base malts—with no specialty malt added. 

The beer was then racked to a combination of retired bourbon barrels and new American oak wine barrels for aging at Firestone Walker Brewing Company.  In fearless 3 Floyds fashion, another batch of dry-hopped Ol’ Leghorn was recently brewed for blending into the aged beer, to add a fresh, hoppy layer to the more intense spirits barrel and oaky character of the initial batch.

The result is a staggeringly hoppy blonde barleywine that will first be unveiled at the 2014 Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Fest in Paso Robles on Saturday, May 31. Additionally, 22-ounce bottles will be available for purchase (six bottle limit per customer) at Firestone Walker’s Brewery Store on Sunday, June 1 starting at 10 a.m., with very limited market release later in the month. Ol’ Leghorn is meant to be consumed fresh in its youth, and vigilantly cold stored in the meantime.

The name Ol’ Leghorn is a nod to Old Foghorn, the original iconic American barleywine made by Anchor Brewing, by way of Foghorn Leghorn, the wisecracking Looney Toons rooster.
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UPDATE 10 Sep 2014:  The label above was just approved and the beer will now come in at 14% ABV instead of the original 10.5% ABV.

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Southern Tier Releases 215 Special Ale - Session Belgian Style IPA for Philly Beer Week

From So

uthern Tier:

In celebration of all that is Philly Beer Week, we present 215 Session Belgian Style IPA. 4.4%! Cheers!

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