Thursday, October 29, 2009

Japanese Beer Tasting Event tomorrow !

The Jug Shop in San Francisco has pretty great beer tasting/events. It's usually not too crowded ever either and the price is always right -$15
They also have a fantastic beer selection with decent prices.

Tomorrow, Friday, they have their last Oktoberfest Beer Tasting:

Closing out the month of October will be our second tasting of Japanese craft beer. From the Baird brewery two beers, Kurofune Porter and Red Rose Amber Ale will be sampled along with six brews from Ise Kadoya including a Pale Ale, IPA, Tipple Hop, Brown, Stout, and brown rice ale. October 31st, 6:30 to 8:30p

Oktoberfest in The Jug Shop Beer Garden
All tastings 6:30 to 8:30p
$15 per person

Check out their website
Jug Shop

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Beer always makes me grateful..

Hey Everyone-
Check out my friend Becca's beer blog
Beer and Gratitude

She lists some great beer places in Tucson, AZ

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

1st Female Beer Tasting Nov 19th!

Come for our first female beer tasting! Try 12 different beers and learn how to taste beer , the different types out there, how to taste them and where to buy them in San Francisco. $25 lets you try several different types of beer to taste. We will go over the different types, what beer is made from, proper tasting techniques and places in San Francisco to go and buy/taste amazing beers....
Taste beers that are made with wine, beers that are made with spices, sour beers, chocolate beers, beers that are celebratory, beers that go well with dessert and more!

View my new meetup group: Women Who Like Beer


Beer + Cupcakes = A Winning Combination

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I attended my first meetup group last night- Iron Cupcake's 1 Year Oktoberfest Cupcake Challenge :Beer. I had never been to a meetup before, nor a cupcake challenge where anybody could enter. Iron Cupcake hosts a cupcake challenge every month where they pick one ingredient that each challenger has to use. This time it was beer, so it was right up my alley.

Although, we did arrive 15 minutes late, the place was packed to the gills with people eating beer flavored cupcakes on the floor, outside, and anywhere there was a spot to sit down. There were cupcakes with names like Allegash Smash, Black and Tan, Irish Car Bomb, Snakebite, Holy Trinity and Your Local Pub to name a few.... There were 21 entries, although my friend and I did not try them all as some were already we missed out on 4 out of the 21 entries. We also decided that eating 17 mini cupcakes might have us go into sugar shock, so we split each one and literally just had a taste of each for voting matters.

I was a bit disappointed in the beer selected for making the cupcakes. Granted most beers are easier to get than others- but we live in San Francisco, where you can get micro-brews at practically any bodega on the corner. The majority of the beer used was, as you could probably guess, Guinness. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing but when a recipe calls for a Stout, there are plenty to choose from. I think if some people did, it would have made their flavors stand out a bit as I felt that if I tried another Stout/chocolate flavored cupcake I was going to go into chocolate overload. However, there were a few entries that used beers other than Guinness, mostly Hefeweizen (with Blood Orange), Blue Moon(with Orange), Cream Stout (with Marsh mellow topping- yum!), Pale Ale for the Black and Tan with Chocolate Stout, and mad props to the Allegash Smash and for someone using a decent micro brew, (although the taste of the beer was lost with the sweetness of the coconut pecan icing). I was upset that there weren't any Root beer ones left, even though it's not exactly a beer cupcake, the flavors might have been fantastic.

The cupcakes were all over the board in terms of appearance, moistness and taste. Some were as soft as clouds, melted in your mouth, had winning flavor combinations and looked professional- While others were hard as bricks, way too sweet, dry, or just had flavors that overwhelmed your taste buds. My personal favorites were #12, the Irish Car Bomb were you could actually taste the alcohol and had a beautiful ganache middle (great surprise!), and #7, Chocolate Stout with Ganache and Fleur de Sel topping. I am actually not sure which entry won as we were so overloaded with cupcakes we left to go home to digest.

All in all, the experience was pretty amazing. It was just so much fun to try all of the entries and vote on them. Everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves as much as we did...and how could they not, after all we are talking about beer and cupcakes!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Dogfish Head's Punkin Ale Spices Up Fall


Pumpkin ales in general have never beckoned my name. Perhaps it was that keg that my sister got when I went to go visit her in college when I was still in high school. We got a keg of Pumpkin Ale, had a party, and was drinking pumpkin ale for the next 7 days straight. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Pumpkin ales are usually just too much to handle- too pumpkiny, too spicey, too undrinkable. But when I saw that Dogfish Head came out with one called, Punkin Ale, a full-bodied brown ale brewed with real pumpkin, brown sugar, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg and 7%, I decided to try this type of beer again.

The nose has a more sweet caramel nutty nose than pumpkin with a hint of spicy cinnamon. The color is a deep red sienna brown. The first sip revealed a spicy beer with a light pumpkin aftertaste- not too pumpkiny and not too overwhelmingly spicy. There is a lingering allspice taste on the tongue after you drink it a while with a hint of sweet syrupy maple. It is not a super sweet beer- it actually smells sweeter than it tastes. The flavors really seemed to open up and balance more after the beer cooled down a bit. It reminded me of a spicy unsweetened apple cider more than pumpkin beer.

This beer is calling for you to grab it for a picnic on a cool Sunday afternoon with a loved one- it wants to be enjoyed outside. Granted I wouldn't go out and buy a keg of it, but a few glasses had me lingering for the holidays to arrive. Perhaps it is my love of Fall that made this beer warm my senses or the fact that someone actually balanced a pumpkin beer for me to actually enjoy to drink.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dogfish Head's Golden Elixir leaves a touching feeling

My husband and I usually have the same reaction the majority of the time when it comes to beer that we enjoy. This is not the case when it comes to Dogfish Head's Midas Touch Golden Elixir. It's a Herbed/Spice Beer, 9% ABV, and is made with barley, white muscat grapes, honey and saffron. The recipe dates back to a residue found in a jar during the funeral feast of King Midas. It is rather expensive for a beer, clocking in at $10 for a 4 pack of 12oz, which definitely adds to my husband's dislike of this beer.

I, on the other hand, became more found of it the longer I drank it. I found it to be fantastic for those who prefer wine, or who are just new to trying beer. I wouldn't classify it as a beer but more of a beer-mead blend. Personally, I am not too found of mead myself, as it is just too sweet for my taste, being made with honey. However, I found this golden elixir to be just what it claims to be- an elixir. It would be the perfect celebratory drink in place of champagne.

My first glance, the color, a golden effervescent amber seemed to be almost glowing in the light. The smell was very pretty, floral with a light honey, sweet grape juice and a tinge of alcohol.

My first sip, was a bit disappointing, the taste seemed a bit light to match the amazing aroma of this beer as well as the alcohol content of 9%. However, with each sip, the flavors grew and the sweetness of the honey and white muscat grapes came out sweeter and sweeter while the saffron perfectly balanced it before it became too sweet. It became much more alive and enjoyable as I drank it.

I think this beer gets a bad rap because people are thinking of it as a beer and not looking at it for what it actually is-an elixir that feels more like a wine than a beer. It feels like the anticipation of a first kiss that is so gentle and sweet but leaves you wanting more. Or that first chill of fall in the air. It feels like a perfect harvest drink.

Personally, I think women would enjoy this beer for its refined taste and celebratory qualities. This beer would pair perfectly with goat cheese and I am just dying to try some with it. This would even work as a dessert beer paired with something light and sweet or nutty. This would be perfect to share with your girlfriends.
Granted at $10 a 4 pack, it shouldn't be your every day run of the mill drinking beer. This beer is meant to be enjoyed and savored.
Perhaps women do have more of a refined palate...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Deal of the week

Whole Foods
$6.99 6 pack of Ruedrich's Red Seal Ale from North Coast regularly $8.99
American Amber/Red Ale 5.5%
Get it until Oct 27th...

Cheese & Beer Pairing Class this Monday

Date From October 26, 2009 7:00 PM
Until October 26, 2009 9:00 PM

18 Reasons
593 Guerrero at 18th
San Francisco, CA 94110

Price $45.00



In this class Bi-Rite Cheese Expert Anthea Stolz and City Beer's Craig Wathen will guide you through the mysteries of pairing beer and cheese. Attendees with get to sample artisan cheeses and hand-selected beers as they learn the best way to marry this beloved bite and beverage.


Following in the footsteps of six great Strong Beer Months, we're teaming up with our friends at the 21st Amendment once again to debut the BRU/SFO Project this November. It's an exploration of Belgian-style and Belgian-influenced beers, six from each brewery, including both old favorites and brand new beers. Pick up your boarding pass and take a trip to Belgium via Magnolia and the 21st Amendment. The first three beers at each brewery hit the taps on Monday, 11/2 and then both breweries will release a new beer every Monday for the rest of the month. Try all 12 and get a commemorative glass.

Here's the line-up:
11/2: Deep Ellum Dubbel
Tweezer Tripel
11/9: Gordo Brew Libre! Ou Mourir
11/16: Destiny Unblonde Monk's Blood
11/23: Paint it Black Baby Horse

11/2: Via
St. Martin's Abbey
Noir de Blanc
11/9: Brew Libre! Ou Mourir
11/16:Monk's Blood
11/23: Baby Horse

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Let's start with the basics...

Taste! Taste! Taste!
It's all about tasting, which goes beyond taste buds.
Tasting actually involves 3 of our senses:
Sight, Smell and Taste.
This applies to all beers(as with wine). You can do this with everything from Budweiser to Dogfish Head...and learn pretty quickly what you like and don't like.

There is also bare ware to use with beer besides the classic pint glass.
Usually, you want a glass that lets you smell your beer- the better it is for you to get a good nose and actually smell the beer as you are drinking it.
However, there are particular glasses made for different types of beer.
You can read more about these glasses here on wikipedia:

I find that just using a Tulip glass is the easiest and gives you the right aroma/head for tastings.

Now just go to your local beer store and just buy a bunch of different types of beer and set them up for a tasting with your friends. What do you smell? What do you taste? It's always fun to buy a mass produced beer like Budweiser and compare to the other beers (you will notice a large lack of flavor).

Beer, of all things, should not be intimidating. You aren't going to do anything wrong and you will find that people love to talk about beer (especially men) and help you out.
This will give you your first lesson in tasting beer.

*Right now, I am drinking a good go to classic- Red Seal Ale by North Coast Brewery in Mendocino California. This is a beautiful copper red pale ale, a little hoppy, a hint of spiciness and a nice light floral aroma. A good classic drinking ale (with actual flavor!)
This is usually a staple in our home. It's not that uncommon and it's reasonably priced around $9 for a 6 pack.

"Give me a woman who truly loves beer and I will conquer the world"- Kaiser Wilhelm