Season 3 – Episode 8: (A late, yet still valid) CBC 2013 recap.

Sun King Osiris, Devis's Backbone Eight Point IPA, New Albion Ale from Sam AdamsA bit of time has gone by since the Craft Brewers Conference in Washington DC…we know this because…well, beer!  This episode Ethan does a personal recap of his experience at the conference while we sip on a couple goodies he brought back along with a beer I’ve recently been digging.

Osiris Pale Ale from the wonderful Sun King Brewery in Indianapolis goes first with Eight Point IPA from Devil’s Backbone Brewing Co next…finishing up with New Albion Ale, a resurrection done by Sam Adams of  the original beer from the now defunct New Albion Brewing Company. Enjoy! Ride your bike!

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Season 3 – Episode 7: Southern Tier Beer w/ rep Dave G!

stbc_crest-logoLong time friend turned Southern Tier Brewing Company rep Dave Giczkowski (Geech) joins us on this episode to talk about Southern Tier beers, their recent expansion and a bit more.  We take a look at three of their beers including their 422 Pale Wheat Ale, the fantastic new LIVE bottle conditioned American Pale Ale and Un*Earthly, the big standby Double IPA.  Think of this episode as a snapshot into a rapidly expanding local company, who makes beer! Next time STBC is on the show, it’s sure to be a whole different story!

Cheers and thanks for listening!

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Season 3 – Episode 6: A couple beers w/ Paul Kohler from Flying Bison!

Hello friends, hello spring — well, maybe. Spring has not quite sprung yet here in Buffalo but we’re not letting that stop us from sharing some delicious springy beer from Flying Bison Brewing Company. Brewer / Cellarman Paul Kohler joins us with a couple growlers of Buffalo Kolsch 716, their draft only Helldiver Oatmeal Pale Ale and to give some insight to what he does and how he got there. This is the first in a series to feature all the hard working people down at 491 Ontario Street, the current home of FBBC. Have a listen and have a beer, hell..make it a Flying Bison (or three) Cheers!!

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Season 3 – Episode 5: Bock Bock

What’s so great about bock beer? Just about everything, Duh! The coming of spring, the historical background, the cute little goats on the labels and for $%@! sake the malt depth! When you’re tired of hearing the “This beer is 9,000 IBU’s and has 17lbs. of hops per barrel!” line..like I am lately, Bock is a wonderful place to go. I view beer like the cross section of a tree, roots and all. Hops are the leaves and malt, the roots. I like hanging out on the branches as much as the next guy but the ground and below is a much more comfortable place, especially in the late winter…you wouldn’t want to build a fire in a tree, unless you’re crazy.

This week we take a look at Yuengling Bock, Anchor Bock and Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock as our 3 choices to discuss.

Cheers and thanks for listening!

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Season 3 – Episode 4: Ratings, hype and Ballast Point.

Ballast Point Brewing CompanyThis week we take a look at three new beers (to W.N.Y.) from Ballast Point Brewing Company – their ultimately literal Pale Ale, Big Eye IPA and the highly revered Sculpin IPA. Nick joins us for a pre-beer section chat via Skype from Baton Rouge, Louisiana to discuss beer rating systems, hype, local pride and what it all means to us in the craft beer world we live in. Ethan and I get to the beer in the second half of the show starting with the Pale Ale (Kolsch) and do a side by side comparison of Big Eye and Sculpin. Enjoy the show and have fun in the snow.

Cheers!!

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Season 3 – Episode 3: Cortland Beer Co.

Cortland Brewing Co Firehouse Pale Ale, Red Dragon and Sunrise Coffee StoutHello, friends. Did you know that Cortland Beer rearranges to Redolent Crab? This really has nothing to do with this episode, I just thought it was funny. So..this week we take a look at three beers from the Cortland Beer Company in Cortland NY. We get owner Dan Cleary on the line via skype and talk with him about his Firehouse Pale Ale, Red Dragon Red Ale and Sunrise Coffee Stout. Cortland Beer is cranking out some delicious brews available in 22oz bombers which recently became available, exclusively at any Consumers WNY location. It’s always awesome to see another New York State brewery hit the shelves. Enjoy the show and be sure to pick up some new beer…Cheers!

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REVIEWS: Southern Living v1

For those unaware, I’m spending the bulk of the winter in Louisiana while my wife teaches down South. It’s win-win; I’m doing a ton of writing and hanging out with my 2 year old son while she provides a valuable service to the kids of Baton Rouge (And she gets to keep her job in Buffalo for school year 2013-14).

As if the temporary time away from the barely double-digit temps wasn’t cool enough, I get the glory of Southern beer. There’s simply a wealth of brews that don’t make their way up North (at least yet). Here are a couple I picked up at Whole Foods this evening:

1) Southern Star Brewing Company’s Buried Hatchet

Full disclosure: I bought this beer because of the impeccable art work coupled with a killer review below the price tag (nice job, Whole Foods). Don’t believe me? Peep this can, y’all.

The thing about Buried Hatchet is it will bury you. At 8.2% ABV, it’s got legs and it knows how to use them. I worried that I kept the brew too cold to appreciate the flavors at play, but the cocoa leapt out of the glass and only became more stand-out as the room warmed it. It’s deep, dark and complex without making you work too hard. You’ve got a good chance to pick up a note of cinnamon/brown sugar but the sweetness doesn’t kick you. Maybe toffee is a better call, but I’m not picky on description. There’s coffee all over the place and the alcohol is present but not overly-boozy. If you can find this beer, drink it.

2) Abita’s S.O.S. (Save Our Shores)

So you want to sell me a beer? Put it in a 22 (check), make it easy drinking but higher ABV (check, 7.0), throw in some splendid art and give me a cause (check, 75 cents per bottle given to help the Gulf Shores affected by the BP Oil Disaster). Abita’s S.O.S. does not disappoint in any way.

This German-styled pilsner is almost over-the-top in its flavor, with citrus (mostly grapefruit) giving you the biggest impression. Plenty of white with a deceptive white head; I thought I had poured poorly only to find out others who’ve tried the brew found the same thing at play. Again, the flavor is lights-out. There’s a grapefruit juice-meets-beer factor that makes this sessionable despite the ABV. I haven’t been a massive Abita fan — hit or miss, really — but this one is certainly a hit. Here’s to this with late night pancakes.

Email: nick@fcbuffalo.org

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Special review: Harpoon’s Jalapeño Cream Ale

My brother Salvatore III is a budding home brewer — along with my Pops, Salvatore II — and has been anticipating his tour of Harpoon Brewery since, well, likely before he even began his two-year stint at Johnson & Wales culinary university in Providence, R.I.

The great news is that that tour didn’t happen until he was well-past 21 into the golden age of 22, visiting my sister in Beantown this weekend. At some point before, during or after the tour, Sam tasted their Jalapeño Cream Ale. Being a class act, my younger brother brought a growler home for us to taste. Thank God for his thoughtfulness.

What if a jalapeno had the flavor but not the sting? What if beer tasted not like beer, but instead an Auntie Anne’s jalapeño and sour cream pretzel? What if the world refused to end until it had successfully combined nachos, popcorn and Genny Cream Ale?

You’d have Harpoon’s Jalapeño Cream Ale. This, friends, is near-perfect. I know it’s a goofy experiment — and sadly they told Sam that once JCA was gone, it’s gone — but it is truly an enjoyable drinking experience. I love spicy food and I love the taste of jalapeños. While you only taste the flavor of the pepper, the memory of the sting dances through your brain alongside a buttery beauty provided by the beverage.

In other words, this beer really hit the spot. My brother doubted its true session-ability but the only thing that stopped me from unloading on glass after glass was the knowledge that I needed to drive home. Great stuff; It’s a bummer Harpoon won’t make just one full-time novelty beer. Think about it, folks!

Email: nick@fcbuffalo.org

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Season 3 – Episode 2: CBT on a hot Tin Roof

Tin Roof Brewing CoWhile on a recent trip to Louisiana, Nick stopped in to see the gents at Tin Roof Brewing Co. in Baton Rouge. Long time friends and co-founders William McGehee and Charles Caldwell were kind enough to take a bit of time out of their day and hang with Nick for an interview and some sampling. In studio we take a look at their Voodoo Bengal Pale Ale and Perfect Tin Amber Ale…in cans!! Take a listen and if you’re down their way, be sure to stop in and say hello.

Cheers!!

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Season 3 – Episode 1: We’re back! We’re alive! We are with beer!

Gents, Ladies, it’s been awhile. A lot has happened since our last show..and we mean A LOT! We are back to kick off our third season with 4 beers, 2 from Quebec and 2 from the states. The lineup: Mons Abbey Witte (Amos, QC), Mons Abbey Dubbel (Amos, QC), Slumbrew Flagraiser IPA (Somerville, MA) and Bar Harbor Brewing’s Cadillac Mountain Stout (Bar Harbor, ME). We’re excited to be back and doing what we love…talking about beer! We’ll be posting audio only podcasts for a short while and coming quite soon…on to bigger things…you’ll just have to listen to the show to find out what those things are! Hope all is well in your world…

Cheers! – The Craft Beer Talk guys

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