Do you have a certain wife or special lady friend who enjoys party planning? Do you like beer? Then here is a link, courtesy of Mrs. Beagle, you should check out and share with said certain wife or special lady friend.
(You could opt not to share with your wife or lady friend, and try to pull this party off yourself. But, let’s be honest, if you’re a man, you’re probably not going to go to this level of detail when hosting a party. Just sayin’.)
Let’s see… Beer? Check. Pork? Check.
OK, you’ve got a good party on your hands.
Apparently, Choc’s Signature Gose, a little-known tart and salty German wheat beer, was not obscure enough. After releasing the rare Gose in 2011, the Krebs brewery is one-upping itself in 2012 with the release of its next beer: A Polish smoked wheat beer that has been commercially extinct for about 20 years. Choc’s Gratzer (GREAT-sir) will be available as part of the brewery’s Signature Series in late January, Choc announced today. The beer will be available in corked-and-caged 750 ml bottles, and on tap in a limited quantity.
Here’s a press release Choc released today:
Traditionally the style was brewed with 100 percent oak-smoked wheat malt and a Polish yeast. The unavailability of these ingredients have created major obstacles for any commercial brewer interested in bringing back Gratzer. Undeterred by these challenges we decided to recreate this style. After considering smoking wheat malt in Krebs, we were able to convince Weyermann, our malt supplier, to smoke the malt. Once the malt was secured our attention turned to sourcing yeast. We could have used a readily available yeast strain, but we wanted to recreate a historically accurate Gratzer. With that in mind, a member of our team traveled to Poland to secure the proper yeast.
The resulting combination of wheat and oak smoke is very unique. It is a beer that every serious enthusiast should experience when Signature Gratzer hits stores in Oklahoma and western Arkansas in late January. As always with the annual Signature releases, there is a limited quantity. Once the beer is gone there will be no more until next year!
The Thirsty Beagle was lucky enough to be in Krebs on Gratzer brew day, and I can tell you this is a beer that was a challenge to brew – the guys at Choc really poured their hearts into this one. If for no other reason, you should try this brew to celebrate the lengths Choc went to to brew it, and to pay respect to their desire to push the beer envelope in Oklahoma.
Ask any normal man to come up with a list of their top five things to eat and drink, and almost assuredly, beer and bacon would make the list. Now there is cause for great celebration, because today is International Bacon Day. On the heels of this year’s inaugural International IPA Day and International Stout Day, comes this great day of pork-inspired awesomeness. Of course, there’s only one thing that can make International Bacon Day even more fantastic: Beer. So here, courtesy of CraftBeer.com, is a list of beer and bacon pairings to help you celebrate. Some of these beers aren’t local to Oklahoma, but hopefully can inspire your own bacon-beer combo.
Tonight’s offering will be at McNellie’s Tulsa. It will feature a Centennial dry-hopped 1919. Choc’s aim is to show off the varying character of different hops by keeping the base element — the beer — constant while rotating through a series of single dry-hoppings.
The project will rotate between Oklahoma City and Tulsa, so fans in both cities will have a chance to try the beers. This is a venture I’m looking forward to, especially after trying a 1919 dry-hopped with cascade hops in May at the Oklahoma Craft Beer Festival. (It was my favorite beer of the night.)
As for tonight’s firkin, Centennial hops are described as offering over-the-top citrus flavor and aroma, with a relatively restrained floral nose. That should perk the 1919 right up, I’d think.
Choc President Zach Prichard describes the project as “a fun way for us to experiment with hops.”
He added that the project might lead to a more widespread distribution of beer outside of just the firkins. Is anyone else imagining a six pack of 1919 featuring six different dry-hopped versions, sort of in the spirit of Sam Adams’ Latitude 48 Deconstructed? Let’s keep the dream alive.
I found a link this morning to a story about beer brands that have fallen out of favor in the U.S. I can’t say I’m surprised by any of the inclusions, since I stopped — if I had even started in the first place — drinking beer like this a loooong time ago.
But the list does include some iconic brands, and I think illustrates that taste and flavor win out in the end.
You can fine the story, courtesy of the website 24/7 Wall St., at this link.
Choc Beer Co. announced today that the brewery will release five new beers in 2012. The first one will be unveiled as early as this week via the brewery’s newsletter. If you want to sign up for the newsletter, and get the scoop on the new beers, you can do so at the link right here.
Any guesses what Choc will turn out? They have so many varieties in production right now, it’s hard to think of what they haven’t done. Perhaps a non-seasonal stout? A porter? A hefe?
Hopefully we’ll find out soon enough.
COOP Native Amber — the winner of the 2011 Beer Championship Series — was mentioned in an online article recently at Draftmag.com. You can find the article at this link.
In related news, I recently wanted to have some Native Amber at Redpin (was there for a company Christmas party) but they were out that night. Looking to keep it local, I went with COOP Gran Sport Porter, and I was pleasantly surprised.
Not because I didn’t think GSP would be any good — I’ve always been a fan. It’s just that it had been many, many months since I’d had GSP (maybe even years?), and I’d forgotten what a solid porter it is.
But it is indeed solid, and ended up being my beer of choice that night. Which was a much better choice then the PBR someone else (not naming any names, *cough* Chris *cough*) at the party kept ordering.
-St. Bernardus Christmas Ale
-Ridgeway Lump of Coal
-Great Divide Hibernation
-Sam Adams Winter Lager
-Choc Winter Stout
-Marshall Big Jamoke
-COOP Territorial Reserve Oak Aged Imperial Stout (Jack Daniels barrels)
Here’s what making news in the beer world:
-An interesting-sounding firkin is on tap at McNellie’s OKC tonight for Firkin Friday: a vanilla raspberry hefeweizen from Battered Boar.
-Mustang Brewing Co. has announced a tentative launch date of Feb. 1 for its new Session 33 line.
-Marshall Brewing Co. is holding a holiday merchandise sale until 5 p.m. today and from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday at its Tulsa brewery, 618 S Wheeling Ave. Perfect for the beer lover in your family!
-Earlier this month, Redbud Brewing unveiled a new logo.
-How’d you like a steaming hot cup of… beer? It’s not as crazy as it sounds.
-One man’s list of eight favorite Christmas beers.
-The craft brewery industry in this country if blowin’ up! Don’t believe me? Check this link.
Take it away, Tim:
Working in a brewery requires utilization of one’s senses. Visually, we inspect fill levels, grain bills, and beer color. Audibly, we listen for properly running pumps and other equipment. We taste product continually from grain to glass to ensure that it is correctly developing. For many, however, the most enjoyable sensations are the multitude of aromas that waft throughout the brewery.
Olfactory stimulation, arguably, has the most profound effect on the body and mind. Scientists have established a strong link between aromas and memory. Obviously, not everyone’s associations will be the same.
A brewery has many enjoyable, distinct, and important aromas. The stinging aroma of CO2 tells us that the beer is happily fermenting or that all remaining O2 has been purged from the conditioning tanks. The soft metallic scent of Iodophor ensures that equipment is clean. When the entire brewery has a grainy, dusty, chalkiness in the air, I know we just received a new shipment of grain. It’s not too hard to miss 800 bags of malt waiting for the mill.
We all have our favorite aromas for different reasons. Brewmaster Eric Marshall’s favorite smell occurs at the end of the brew when the man-way door to the whirlpool is opened. He says it reminds him of when he was brewing at Victory Brewing Company. At the end of the day of a long brew day at Victory, when the wort was in the whirlpool, brewers were allowed a beer from the taproom.
My favorite smell at Marshall Brewing Company is when we begin the mash for our McNellie’s Pub Ale. The caramel, bread-like sweetness of the grain mixed with the steam of the hot water fill my nose and lungs with delight. It reminds me of the homemade bread that my mom makes.
Another aroma worth highlighting is a freshly opened bag of Glacier hops. There is a certain candy-like quality to it. It smells like a fruity, resinous, magical lollipop.
The next time you are enjoying a beer a homebrewer or craft brewer passionately crafted for you, I urge you to honor their labor by sticking your nose down into the glass. Take a couple of whiffs and let your thoughts linger on the ingredients carefully selected to excite your senses. Cheers!