Tuesday, February 22, 2011

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 48 - Pliny the Younger!

http://americanbeertv.net/ - Today for a special tasting, we go on location to Hollingshead deli in Orange, CA for their special release of Pliny the Younger!
The beer was scheduled to tap it at 10am, we got there at 8:30, and there was already a pretty good size line. We finally got in at around 11 and shortly after I got my beer in hand, the first of two kegs were gone. I'm sure there were a few people towards the end of the line that didn't get to try the excellence of Pliny the Younger.

I want to take this time to give some props to Kenny and the rest of the crew at Hollingshead Deli. They put on a great event and really did their best to cater to the crowd. Everyone was really cool and I think that comes out due to a shared love of craft beer. I would have loved to gone down the line and talked to everyone there, however, I had to save my space in line!

Pliny the Younger doesn't need much of an introduction, but I'll do it anyway. 11% triple IPA. Really well balanced, Good malt flavors and fantastic hop flavors. Really awesome beer, you need to try this one!

Sorry about the weird bars on the tasting segment, we turned the camera on it's side to focus the shot. Hopefully I was able to capture the experience at being at a Pliny the Younger release party!


Friday, February 18, 2011

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 47 - Ballast Point Big Eye IPA

http://americanbeertv.net/ - This IPA from Ballast Point in San Diego, CA is different in its use of light floral, citrusy, grassy hops, and not so infused with the dank, earthy, really pungent bitterness that seems so previlant in west coast IPAs. Now I know a lot of hopheads love that dank stuff, but I think it's pretty refreshing to find a hoppy beer that doesn't clobber you over the head with hops. Big Eye IPA definitely has hop flavor, but here it's a lot of lighter flavor. I think this makes Big Eye IPA an immensely drinkable IPA, and at 7.0%, that could be dangerous. I really loved this one on tap, as it was less malty and carmelly than it was out of the bottle. On tap it tasted really fresh. I would recommend having this one on tap if you can find it, but if not still give the bottle a try!


Thursday, February 17, 2011

New Camera! Part 2 Flip and Playsport camera reviews.

So after the flip died on me after 5 days and 2 uses, I didn't want to risk getting another one. I went with the Kodak Playsport, which was the same price ($129) has higher video quality (shoots in 1080p HD vs the flip's720) and uses a removable memory card so I can select how much video I want to shoot at one time. Also, the Playsport shoots in uncompressed .mov format, while the Flip automatically compresses your video down to .MP4, reducing your quality before you get your video out of the camera. Thats why it can do two hours of HD video on 2 gigs, while the playsport uses an 8 gig memory card to get an hour and a half of HD video.

The playsport wasn't my first choice, I originally was looking at the kodak Zi8, which is about $179, but has a audio in jack so I could use an external mic. However, Best Buy was out of that model, and I didn't have the cash for the increased cost and a new mic.

The Playsport is supposed to be waterproof, which I don't really care about, but I guess I could just drop it in a glass of beer and shoot really Beer Video! :-) Beer goggles FTW!

The last two solo tastings were shot with the kodak, and I think it's a great increase in image quality.

Another camera to avoid would be the RCA small wonder. We picked up one of those and the image quality was horrible. What do you expect for a $50 video cam?

So in summary, Flip bad, Playsport good!
Back to the beer!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 45 - Lagunitas Czech Style Pilsner

http://americanbeertv.net/ - This very light american craft beer is a lager from Laguinitas up in Petaluma, CA. Laguintas doesn't list the ABV, but beer advocate has it at 6.2 percent, which is really strong for a pilsner.

The overwhelming flavor profile in this beer for me is biscuit and bready malts. I'm not picking up that lager quality that is so often found, in fact this beer made me wonder if pilsner was a style like wit beers, that could be german ales, but no, this indeed a cold fermented lager.

Definitely one to czech out if you can find it near you!


American Beer TV: - Beer Tasting 44 - Noble Brewing Alpha Red

http://americanbeertv.net/ - YAY! I got a new camera able to broadcast in really good quality. Hope you can tell the difference from the previous solo tastings. Anyway! Back to the beer! Todays beer is Alpha Red from Noble Aleworks in Anaheim California. Sorry I said Fullerton in the video. I love red ales for their balance. This one is a bit on the hoppy side, but not too much. This is a great hoppy red ale. If you can find it definitely pick up a bottle and support the local beer brewers out there!

Friday, February 11, 2011

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 43 - Jolly Pumpkin Bam Noir

http://americanbeertv.net/ - Bam Noire is a jolly pumpkin autumn seasonal ale released in September. It's a light drinking dark farmhouse ale with lots of flavor and complexity. We had a lot of fun with this one. Bam Noire goes down really smooth.

Here's what Jolly pumpkin says about it on thier website:
Bam Noire- Dark Farmhouse Ale
Dark, smooth, delicious. Aromas of worn leather and cool autumn nights. Notes of sweet plum and toasted raisin, hints of coffee and cacao. Lingering tart and refreshing finish. Only available for a few short months. Not to be missed.

Seasonal released in September
4.3% Alc./Vol.
750ml bottles - 12 case

American Beer TV - Beer 101 - Founding Fathers of Craft Beer Part 2

http://americanbeertv.net/ - Continuing from our last video, we explore and taste the beers of the founding fathers of craft beer.

Fritz Maytag of Anchor Steam
Ken Grossman of Sierra Nevada,
Jim Koch of Boston Beer Co.
The Matt Family of Sarnac Brewing,
Greg Fish of Deschutes brewing
Jack Joyce and Bob Woodell of Rogue Brewing

From their tiny islands of real beer flavor awash in the sea of macrobrewery swill, these pioneers of beer crafted the mountains of revolution, changing the face of beer forever.

Take some time and re-experience the joy of discovering that moment when you found out that beer doesn't have to be just pale light lagers, and if you haven't had the pleasure of trying these beers, give them a shot. Although some may seem pedestrian daily drinkers now, they were the Double IPA's and Bourbon Barrel aged stouts of their day!


American Beer TV: Beer 101 - Founding Fathers of Craft Beer Part 1

http://americanbeertv.net/ - Today we discus the factor that lead to america's beer culture being dominated by fizzy yellow beer produced by megacorperations before the craft beer revolution began. Among them are, of course, Prohibition, the Dust bowl and the Great Depression, and World War 2. All three of these created an almost thirty year period of hardship for American brewers, killing of many of the smaller local brewers.

American Beer TV: Beer tasting 42 - Saint Somewhere Lecto Divina

http://americanbeertv.net/ Here's a really interesting wild belgian strong ale from St Somewhere Brewing in Tarpon Springs, FL. This 8.0% ale is surprisingly dry, with light crisp fruity notes and plenty of floral characteristics. Never had a Belgian beer quite like this one and we mean that in a really good way.


American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 41 - New Belgium Ranger IPA

http://americanbeertv.net/ Heres a daily drinker for all you hopheads out there. New Belgium brewing is a 6.7% ipa coming in at 70 IBU's!



American Beer TV: Beer News January 2011

http://americanbeertv.net/ Our first attempt at the beer news, we had a lot of fun with this one.

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 40 - Avery Brewing Brabant Ale

http://americanbeertv.net Bring on the Funk! Check out the description below from avery's website!
Beer Style: Barrel-Aged Wild Ale, not brewed to any known style
Malt Variety: Two-row barley, dehusked carafa, honey malt, carafa 3, chocolate malt
OG: 1.074 ABV: 8.7% IBUs: 25
Barrels: Red Zinfandel barrels from Norman Vineyards in Paso Robles, CA.
Color: Dark brown with ruby corners
Availability: One and done. 694 cases produced. Bottled February 10th, 2009. Grab it if you can find it!

Experimentation. Ales and lagers that defy styles or categories. This is what we are about: our driving force, our passion. To further facilitate this innovative spirit, we've developed our Barrel-Aged Series where anything, and we mean ANYTHING, goes! Brewed for those as adventurous as we are!

No. 1, Brabant, is a luscious dark ale fermented with two strains of wild yeast (Brettanomyces) then aged for 8 months in Zinfandel barrels. We hope you enjoy sifting through the vast layers of complexity in this mysterious ale.

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 38 - Caldera Brewing Ashland Amber

http://americanbeertv.net : This canned beer is a really basic, drinkable sessionable beer. It's really mellow, not a whole lot of aroma or flavor. If your looking for an easy to drink, basic craft beer, this is a good choice.

Flip's dead!

Ok, So last friday I bought a new white flip camera at best buy, and after one week it's dead. The darn thing won't turn on. It went off after recording a video Wednesday night and won't turn back on. A quick google search indicates that it's a pretty common problem.  Heading back to Best buy tomorrow to exchange it for something else. I'm thinking I will get a Kodak Zi8 or Playsport. Same price range but they support 1080 resolution instead of just 720 that the flip does.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 37 - Sierra Nevada Homegrown Estate Ale

http://americanbeertv.net:Todays offering is 100% american craft beer! Sierra Nevada's Estate Ale is made entirely from ingredients grown on their terroir in Chico, CA. Clocking in at 6.7%abv,this beer has a fresh, natural,and green flavor.

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 36 - Kona Brewing's Pipeline Porter

http://americanbeertv.net/ Today we have a solid porter from Kona Brewing Co. in Maui Hawaii. Brewed with Kona coffee the coffee flavor really shines through. Unfortunately, not much else does. A good porter for coffee lovers!


American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 35 - Great Divide Hibernation Ale

http://americanbeertv.net/ : Great Divide has an awesome winter warmer in store for us. Hibernation ale is an 8.7% feast of malty goodness. Definitely give this one a try!


New camera!

Hey all. I'm sure that if you are looking at the page you notice that the video quality of the videos with both Kenny and I is clearly superior to the video quality of the videos of my solo tastings. That's because he had a nice HD Flip camera, and I was using my old digital picture camera's video feature. But no more! I've got my own flip now, and I can do solo beer reviews in HD glory, or at least close to it, as we scale down the quality a bit so we aren't loading 1.2 gig files all the time. This should help me get better video and pics up on the website, and inspire me to do some videos of my cooking processes! YAY!

We've been busy posting beer reviews on you tube as well. We have about 5 more beer tastings shot, and I've got almost a 12 pack of beers waiting to be reviewed in the fridge. Kenny's got like 3 cases in his fridge! We've got some great stuff coming, such as:

Lost Abbey Angel's Share in Bourbon Barrels,
Lost Abbey Angel's Share in Brandy Barrels,
All 4 of the sierra nevada 30th anniversary beers,
Ninkasi's Sleigher,
Great Divide Espresso Oak Aged Yeti,
Russian River Consecration

And much more!

Stay tuned to American Beer TV!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 34 - The Bruery Loakal Red

http://americanbeertv.net/ Loakal red by the Bruery is an Orange County exclusive with a nice hop note and full bodied crystal malts to back it up. This beer is highly recommended so beg, borrow or trade to get this beer.

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 33 - Firestone Walker Double Jack Double IPA

http://americanbeertv.net : Firestone Walkers Double Jack IPA clocks in at 9.5% ABV. Surprisingly this IPA accentuates the sweet maltiness of the alcohol, instead of the hops. There are definitely hops in abundance, but I was surprised by the amount of sweetness this IPA had.


American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 32 - Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA

http://americanbeertv.net : We've got another daily drinker review for you, Firestone Walkers Union Jack IPA. 7.5% ABV. This one is not aged in barrels, which is a little rare for Firestone. It's got a rather sweet taste, and not overwhelming on hops, but still with enough hops to let you know that it's an IPA. Overall a good american craft beer.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 32: Firestone Walker California Pale Ale

http://americanbeertv.net : Firestone Walker's California Pale ale makes for a great daily drinker at 4.8% Nice hop aroma and flavor, but nothing to strong. A nice solid example of American Craft Beer!


American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 31 - New Belgium Hoptober

http://americanbeertv.net : Hoptober by New Belgium Brewing Co. in Colorado is a very balanced light sessionable beer. 6.0 % very balanced between malt and hop flavors.

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 30 - Avery Brewing Ellie's Brown Ale

http://americanbeertv.net : Today we bring you a rich malty brown ale by Avery Brewing company out of Boulder Co. This is Ellie's Brown Ale. 5.5% ABV. Nice, easy drinking sessionable brown ale. Enjoy!

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 28: Firestone-Walker 14th Anniversary Ale

http://americanbeertv.net/ Firestone Walker Brewing Co out of Paso Robles Ca. has a different take on their Anniversary series. This beer is a blend of 6 different barrel aged beers, most of which are barley wines.
Here are the details of the beers that went into making this massive beer!
Blending details from the Press Release:

Double Double Barrel Ale (10.9% ABV) (31%)
* Aged 100% in retired Firestone Union Barrels
* Double Strength English Pale Ale
* OG= 24.0P FG=5.8P IBU=30 Color = 16
* A Double version of our flagship created by Ali Razi

Sticky Monkey (12% ABV) (29%)

* Aged in Bourbon and Brandy Barrels
* English Barley Wine
* OG = 24P FG = 4.5P IBU = 45 Color = 28
* Brewed with Mexican Turbinado (Brown) sugar

Parabola (13% ABV) (27%)

* Aged in Bourbon Barrels
* Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout
* OG=30P FG=7.5P IBU=80 Color=Black
* Hopped with Simcoe, Bravo, Styrian Golding and East Kent Golding

Velvet Merkin (6% ABV) (7%)

* 100% Aged in Bourbon barrels
* Traditional Oatmeal Stout
* OG= 15P FG=5.5 IBU=32.5 Color= Black
* 15% Oats, Hopped with 100% US grown Fuggles

Good Foot (13% ABV) (3%)

* Aged in Bourbon Barrels
* American Barley Wine
* OG = 23P FG = 5.5P IBU = 80 Color = 26
* Brewed with copious amounts of American grown hops

Black Xantus (11% ABV) (3%)

* Aged in Bourbon Barrels
* Coffee Infused Imperial Stout
* OG= 27P FG = 6.8P IBU = 55 Color Black
* Rich Stout made with Mexican Coffee roasted locally by Joebella Coffee Company


American Beer TV: Beer News - 2010 Beer in review

http://americanbeertv.net/ Taking a look at American craft beer in 2010. Kenny and Bill discus the top breweries, beers and events of the year.


American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 27: Firestone-Walker 13th Anniversary Ale

http://americanbeertv.net/ This is a blend of 6 barrel aged beers, 12% abv and super yummy.

Heres a detail of the beers that were blended into the 13th anniversary ale!

39% of final blend:

Parabola (13% ABV) -- aged in bourbon barrels
-Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout (brewed 04-30-09 and 09-17-09)
OG = 28P FG = 7.5P IBU = 80 Color = Black
Hopped with Simcoe, Bravo, Styrian Golding and East Kent Golding

24% of final blend:

Bravo (11% ABV) -- 2 barrel varieties- bourbon (50%), brandy (50%)
-Imperial Brown Ale (brewed 2-10-09
OG = 22P FG = 4.8P IBU = 35 Color = 32
Hopped 100% with U.S. grown Fuggles

15% of final blend:

Velvet Merkin (6% ABV) -- aged in bourbon barrels
-Traditional Oatmeal Stout (brewed 10-02-08)
OG = 15P FG = 5.5P IBU = 32.5 Color = Black / 15% Oat
Hopped with 100% U.S. grown Fuggles

6% of final blend:

Opal (11% ABV) -- aged in rye barrels
-Wheat Wine (brewed 2-25-08)
OG = 22.4P FG = 6.2P IBU = 45 Color = 17
Brewed with torrified and malted wheat, lightly hopped with Saaz

6% of final blend:

Rufus (11% ABV) -- aged in rye barrels
-Continental Imperial Amber Ale (brewed 8-17-07)
OG = 22.5P FG = 4.5P IBU = 40 Color = 15
Brewed with Belgian dark candi syrup, hopped with Styrian Goldings and Saaz

6% of final blend:

Double Double Barrel Ale (10.9% ABV) -- aged 100% in retired FW union barrels
-Double English Pale Ale (brewed 12-03-08)
OG = 24.0P FG = 5.8P IBU = 30 Color = 16
A double version of our flagship created by Cellar Master, Ali Razi

4% of final blend:

Saucerful of Secrets (9% ABV) -- aged in bourbon barrels
-Belgian Strong Ale (brewed 10-30-07)
OG = 23.4P FG = 6.1P IBU = 25 Color = 39
Brewed with Belgian dark candi sugar and everything else but the kitchen sink

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 26: The Bruery Three French Hens

http://americanbeertv.net The Bruery 3 French Hens is a winter seasonal 75% Belgian-Style Dark Ale,25% Ale Aged in French Oak 10% abv


American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 25: Goose Island Matilda

http://americanbeertv.net/ Beer tasting Goose Island Matilda a Belgian style pale ale 7% abv. This was an amazing beer very complex which lead to a great discussion about the beer. Goose Island is a micro brewery in Chicago Il.

American Beer TV: Beer Tasting 24: Goose Island Pere Jaques

http://www.americanbeertv.net - Beer Tasting - Pere Jaques - Today on American Beer TV, Kenny and Bill are trying Pere Jaque from Goose Island Brewing company in Chicago. This belgian dubbel style ale has tremendous flavor and is a perfect compliment to robust hearty meals. Definetly get your hands on this one if you can!

American Beer TV: Beer 101 Part 8 - Defining Trappist Ales

http://www.americanbeertv.net - Beer 101 The question is asked what are the differences between an Abbey Ale and a Trappist Ale? Bill breaks it down and gives us a little history behind Trappist Ales.

Belgian Beers are rich in not only flavor, but also history and tradition as well. There are many different categories of Belgian style beers. The Beer Judge Certification Panel, who qualifies beer judges and oversees most of the beer competitions in the U.S. lists 15 distinct styles of Belgian beer. Here they are.
Witbier – a light colored ale normally made with spices like orange peel and coriander
Belgian Pale Ale – an amber to copper colored ale brewed with Belgian yeast strains without spices
Saison – a light colored seasonal (Saison means season) ale based on a historical tradition
Biere De Garde –means “beer for keeping”. Three styles exist, blond, amber and brown.
Belgian Specialty Ale – A catch all category for varieties of the above that set it apart.
Flanders Red – reddish colored ale that usually has sour notes
Flanders Brown – brown ale, rather malty but normally sour as well
Straight Lambic – sour ale created by using wild yeast, usually light in color
Gueuze – light colored ale with sour notes, similar to a Saison but with that wild yeast sourness
Fruit Lambic – a lambic style ale brewed with fruit. Raspberry, apple and cherry are common
Belgian Blond Ale – Very light sweet ale, also can be considered a “Single” Belgian ale
Belgian Dubbel – brewed with twice as much malt as Belgian Blond, can be darker with higher ABV
Belgian Tripel – brewed with three times as much malt as Belgian Blond, normally dark with high ABV
Belgian Golden strong ale – Light colored ale brewed with a high ABV.
Belgian Dark Strong Ale – Dark, strong and hearty. Can be called “Quads”
Any Belgian you find in stores or on tap at your favorite establishment should fall into one of these catagories. The Belgian blonde, Dubbel, tripels, witbiers and saisons are probably the most common forms you will encounter, while the sour ales and lambics are pretty rare. I highly recommend trying to find beer of each category just to experience the width and breadth of Belgian beer.
Go drink some craft beer!

American Beer TV: Stone Vertical Epic 10-10-10

http://www.americanbeertv.net - Beer Tasting - Stone Brewing Co. Vertical Epic Ale is the 8th beer in the series of Belgian inspired ales. 10-10-10 is a Belgian Golden Ale brewed with Sauvignon Blanc, Muscat, and Gew├╝rztraminer grapes. Once again Stone Brewing Company is taking craft beer to the next level. Everyone is aging their beer in wine and spirit barrels why not brew with the wine and see what effect you get. I personally liked this beer, it wasn’t the best beer I have ever had but it was unlike anything I have ever had. The base of this beer is a Belgian style Golden Ale brewed with pale malt and triticale malt which has a flavor profile in-between wheat and rye. The addition of grapes ads a nice twist to the simple ingredients used to brew this beer. Stone was smart about how the fermented this beer, they added the wine juice half way through the primary fermentation so that the wine flavors wouldn’t over power the beer. This process allows the beer to develop first. I doubt that this will be the last time we see a beer like this on the market.

American Beer TV: Beer 101 Part 6 - Aroma

http://www.americanbeertv.net - Beer 101 Part 6 Aroma -Conversation over Hennepin Saison about smelling your beer and truly enjoying the flavor and aroma. Kenny and Bill discus why you should take your time to appreciate craft beer and what it has to offer.

American Beer TV: Ommegang Hennepin Saison

http://www.americanbeertv.net - Beer Tasting - Ommegang Brewery Hennepin Saison Farmhouse Ale from Cooperstown New York. Kenny and Bill taste this wonderful example of a farmhouse Saison. Light and sweet, this beer masks its 7.7% ABV very well. A great introduction to craft beer.

American Beer TV: The Bruery Black Tuesday!

http://www.americanbeertv.net - Beer Tasting - Black Tuesday is a 19.5% Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels for a year and released on October 29th to mark the day of the great stock market crash in 1929. One of the first beers ever brewed by the Bruery in Placentia, Ca. had to age for a year before anyone could get a taste of this truly amazing beer.
My buddy Bill sent me a message stating that he had a bottle of Black Tuesday and thought it would be a good idea to shoot a video about it. I nearly crapped my pants and replied yes instantly. I had heard about the beer and knew it was super hard to get but didn't know too much about the style of beer. I quickly started to search around the net for some info and found some interesting tasting notes along with praise of how rare the beer was. Some said it was the most soughed after beer in America so I began to prep myself for how it was going to taste.
Everyone seemed to give it a high rating and commented on the vanilla profile and the rich malt. But reading about it could not prepare me for what I was about to taste. From the second the bottle was opened you could smell the bourbon but once I got the beer to my nose it went away and the overpowering aroma of the malt took over. Tasting the beer changed everything again it was like this exotic chocolate elixir. Flavors of dark chocolate, burnt toffee, and warming alcohol came through strong with subtle flavors of vanilla and dried fruits. Because this beer was so full of alcohol and complex flavors it continued to change as we drank and the beer warmed up.
I have to say that this was a great beer experience and I am grateful for Bill bringing the beer over.
If you want to read about The Bruery visit http://www.thebruery.com/index2.html

If you want to read about the crash visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wall_Str...

If you want to see more amazing beer videos visit http://americanbeertv.net

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