Oh My – The Choices are Overwhelming!

I was needing a new blog that I just started following and I pulled some category winners from his posting…

84 categories of beer styles, 85 if you count the ProAm category, at this year’s Great American Beer Festival. I need to block some time in my schedule next year to fit this festival in in. What would it cost to sample all of the gold through bronze winners in each category???? That is 255 beers…a little more than enough to get my platter hung on the wall at the Flying Saucer. At say $ 4.00 per beer, that may be a little high, that works out to about $ 1,020 not counting shipping, travel hotels, meals and aspirin! I wonder if I can contact “beerjobber.com” ( http://www.beerjobber.com/ )and set up a weekly delivery to work my way through the 85 categories…that would save on the travel costs…. Hey Hun – what do you think? http://www.greatamericanbeerfestival.com/

I have highlighted a few categories that caught my eye. I am in the research phase of some new homebrew attempts. The “Session Beer” category has caught my eye for my next homebrew. A little lighter and around 4% ABV vs a lot of my brews that are 5+% to nearly 10% for my Imperial Stout. One of my favorite California breweries seems to have done well – Firestone Walker in Paso Robles…Next visit home I may need to get a room at the Courtyard Marriott there and sample, sample, sample!

Category 1: American-Style Wheat Beer, 29 Entries
Gold: Wagon Box Wheat, Black Tooth Brewing Co., Sheridan, WY
Silver: Shredders Wheat, Barley Brown’s Brew Pub, Baker City, OR
Bronze: American Wheat, Gella’s Diner and Lb. Brewing Co., Hays, KS

Category 12: Session Beer, 67 Entries
Gold: Twerp, Pizza Port Carlsbad, Carlsbad, CA
Silver: Dock Street/Thiriez Table Saison, Dock Street Brewery, Philadelphia, PA
Bronze: Bitter American, 21st Amendment Brewery, San Francisco, CA

Category 15: Fresh Hop Ale, 34 Entries
Gold: Estate Homegrown Ale, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Chico, CA
Silver: HopTime Harvest Ale, Russian River Brewing Co., Santa Rosa, CA
Bronze: Colorado IPA Nouveau, Tommyknocker Brewery, Idaho Springs, CO

Category 21: Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beer, , 51 Entries
Gold: Jerry Maker, BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery – Chandler, Chandler, AZ
Silver: Bourbon Barrel Aged Night Sail, Island Brewing Co., Carpinteria, CA
Bronze: Local Species, Blue Mountain Barrel House, Arrington, VA

Category 25: Aged Beer, 24 Entries
Gold: 2010 Old Trainwreck Barleywine, Silver Moon Brewing, Bend, OR
Silver: 2004 Triple Exultation, Eel River Brewing Co., Fortuna, CA
Bronze: Lovely Cherry Baltic Porter, Bend Brewing Co., Bend, OR

Category 44: Golden or Blonde Ale, 67 Entries
Gold: Steelhead Extra Pale Ale, Mad River Brewing Co., Blue Lake, CA
Silver: Firemans #4, Real Ale Brewing Co., Blanco, TX -one of my wife’s favorites
Bronze: TAPS Cream Ale, TAPS Fish House & Brewery, Brea, CA

Category 52: American-Style India Pale Ale, 203 Entries
Gold: IPA, Tap It Brewing Co., San Luis Obispo, CA
Silver: Pallet Jack IPA, Barley Brown’s Brew Pub, Baker City, OR
Bronze: Duet, Alpine Beer Co., Alpine, CA

Category 53: Imperial India Pale Ale, 128 Entries
Gold: 2 X 4, Thai Me Up Brewery, Jackson, WY
Silver: Café Racer 15, Bear Republic Brewing Co. – Healdsburg, Healdsburg, CA
Bronze: Double Jack, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Paso Robles, CA – one of my favorites!

Category 81: Imperial Stout, 58 Entries
Gold: Anastasia Russian Imperial Stout, Weasel Boy Brewing Co., Zanesville, OH
Silver: Imperial Stout, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Chico, CA
Bronze: Russian Imperial Stout, Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant – Media, Media, PA

2012 Great American Beer Festival Pro-Am Competition
Gold: More Fun Blonde, New Belgium Brewing Co., Fort Collins, CO
Brewmaster: New Belgium Brewing Company, AHA Member: Jay Shambo
Silver: Pointon’s Proper – An English Mild RAM Restaurant and Brewery – Wheeling, Wheeling, IL
Brewmaster: Lanny Fetzer, AHA Member: Scott Pointon
Bronze: Classic American Pilsner, Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery, Minneapolis, MN
Brewmaster: Mike Hoops, AHA Member: Kyle Sisco

The new blog that I am following, check it out at……..



Drink local and if unavailable drink craft beers!



Mississippi Beer – I Survived the Ozarks

My Missouri Ozark adventures are behind me and we are now in the recovering town of Biloxi Mississippi! I say recovering, because the devastating evidence of Hurricane Katrina is everywhere. Along the coastal road much of Biloxi and Gulfport was wiped clean of homes and businesses due to the power of the storm surge. While riding along the beachfront you can see massive parking lots grown up in weeds void of any associated structures. Bare foundations and empty lots extending 3 or 4 city blocks inland. The devastation was significantly greater than the New Orleans damage. The New Orleans flooding was tragic, but the town, commercial buildings, historic homes, hotels, restaurants were not shoved 4 blocks or more inland and piled up as a massive dump sites.

My wife and I drove the beach front road in February of 2008, two and half years after the hurricane.  There were still massive piles of debris that were once beautiful beachfront homes, businesses – lives of the people smashed to pieces. What really struck me was how little attention the news media gave to the area hardest hit by Hurricane Katrina. The people here seem to have a resilient spirit and they just rolled their sleeves up and took care of business. I’m sure there was federal disaster funding but they took care of business. Spend some time and follow the link to the aftermath photos.

Biloxi, Mississippi Hurricane Katrina Aftermath Photos, Pictures, Images

For those of you that want a detailed understanding of the impact of Katrina’s storm surge – at the beach the water would have been 30 feet above with waves taking that up much higher because of the 100 mph winds. The link below is a detailed 16 piece blog with photos, maps( I like maps) and graphs detailing the event – storm surge went miles inland in many places.

Katrina’s Surge, Table of Contents | Weather Underground

So, in the spirit of my continuing adventures I hoist a “Lazy Magnolia Southern Pecan Nut Brown Ale” to all y’all along the Mississippi Gulf Coast. To my beer drinking friends – man oh man – absolutely a fine tasting beer! It is also low on the ABV scale…about 4.3% which means you can enjoy several while maintaining the proper “southern decorum”. I am an IPA lover and they mak a “Southern Hops-pitality” beer that I must locate before leaving. Even if I don’t I run across it, a beer jobber that will ship fresh beer to your house from a multitude of craft brewers….. I had that idea in my head once – I wonder how they were able to read my mind and steal my business idea…. What is my recourse!!!! Maybe I will send them some of my business and maybe y’all can help them out…Sounds like fun! Check them out!

Beerjobber.com – Online Beer Store | Buy Beer Online | Craft Beer Shopping and Delivery

Two nights in the Biloxi/Gulfport area and then the migration back to Kingwood TX begins. I checked the gravity on my home brew  IPA that is fermenting before we left on the trip July 23rd and it was still too high. I stirred it up and would have liked to check again in 3 or 4 days but will have to let it sit on the yeast until I return.

We went to the Hard Rock Casino in Biloxi and my wife tripled her money playing video poker… we had her cash out and take the $30.00 winnings back to the trailer! Big time gamblers we are!!!! Not quite enough to get a case/flat of Lazy Magnolia shipped to the house using the Beer Jobbers site above but it would help….Hey Kath – we’ll order something that you will like!

Lazy Magnolia – Very nice beers!