Yesterday might have been the end to American Craft Beer Week, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep drinking your favorite suds. On Saturday, June 15 from 2 to 8 p.m., BeerFeast is Flying Saucer on the Lake’s way of saying, “We love you. Here’s an event with 25 breweries and 50 different craft beers for you to choose from. And, yes, we are also providing you with six rare beers throughout the festival.”
Interested? Tickets to BeerFeast are $30 and you can buy them here. OR you can do the smart thing: save your money for the food trucks that’ll be there and try entering for our two free passes to Garland’s big event. I’ll email the winner of this giveaway on Friday (5/25) at noon.
Jump for the form.
It’s too dreary outside for me to type. Or maybe I’m just using that as an excuse. Either way, I’m going to let Tait Lifto from Deep Ellum Brewing Co. take it away. He’s more eloquent about beer than I ever will be.
“Announcing our 3rd annual Brew-B-Q and this year should be bigger than ever! The 1st Brew-B-Q we held in the parking lot at Life-In-Deep-Ellum as the brewhouse wasn’t quite open yet. Last year for our 2nd Brew-B-Q, we sold out at max capacity around 800 people. This year, we’ve expanded the brewery into the entire building and thus have more room to spread out but we’re still going to cap the tickets to prevent overcrowding.
There are two different tickets available this year:
General Admission – Brew-B-Q Commemorative Glass, beer, Pecan Lodge BBQ, live music including Vic Duncan Band, Grant Jones & The Pistol Grip Lassos, and local headliner Sugarfoote and Co., ‘live’ art by local artist Jason Ice, on-site screen printing of limited edition shirts by ArtLoveMagic co-founder Justin Nygren.
VIP Admission – Brew-B-Q Commemorative Glass, beer, Pecan Lodge BBQ, live music including Vic Duncan Band, Grant Jones & The Pistol Grip Lassos, and local headliner Sugarfoote and Co., ‘live’ art by local artist Jason Ice, on-site screen printing of limited edition shirts by ArtLoveMagic co-founder Justin Nygren, one-hour early admission, access to the air-conditioned VIP front tasting room, special tappings of limited DEBC brews in the front tasting room and early admission to Pecan Lodge BBQ.
Sunday May 26, 2013, 5pm-10pm (VIP allowed in at 4pm)
It’s Monday and you’re already wishing it was the weekend. Lucky for you, these next seven days are going to feel like the weekend. American Craft Beer Week (May 13-19), put on by the Brewers Association, is a celebration of small and independent craft brewers all over the nation. Hold on tight. There are a ton of beer events to geek out over. I’ll keep updating the list as emails flood my inbox. And when I get a second or two, I promise to make this post look more visually appealing. I know, I know. It’s fugly right now.
In my list of supplies to include in my wheel barrel of fun (after I win the lottery and move to Big Sur) are many things. Lots of beer, bacon, honey, cashmere jumpsuits, chocolate, and cheese, to name a few. Cheese and beer are probably the most important (aside from the framed picture of Jennifer Capriati and the ziplock bag of Rihanna’s hair that I collected (stole) from her tour bus bathroom). Cheese enlivens our wits and encourages our senses to be courageous. I decided I needed some education, though; and having been to some classes at Scardello, I thought it would be a wonderful place for a lesson in pairing beer and cheese. Lance Lynn, Scardello’s most aptly anointed beer master agreed to host me for an evening of beer and cheese pairing. Even though this is a slightly impromptu, organic collection of pairings, the purpose of this post is to showcase some exciting and accessible pairings that are available for you, your friends, and your enemies.
Lance is an interesting cat. His warm smile and effortless, hip style are surpassed only by his knowledge and love for what he does. And it’s very much a consistent attitude throughout the entire shop. Lance reads about beer and cheese, attends seminars, and discusses the two with erudite deftness. I allowed him to choose the cheeses, and we worked together to select the beers. First up is the crowd pleasing, American blonde ale from Southern Star Brewing Company called Bombshell Blonde. It’s a very clean, golden beer with a biscuity flavor profile that goes down easy. Instead of rambling on, I’ll just make a list from here on out.
(Disclaimer: Most of the subtleties that are pointed out with sophisticated vocabulary come from Lance. Fortunately, this allowed me to impart my beer sloppiness while he maintained his disarming, sophisticated demeanor. Lance is a pleasant man.)
Festival in Fort Worth: The biggest brews news surrounds this weekend’s Untapped Festival in Fort Worth. It’s a truly remarkable array of offerings from breweries around the world. They’ve brought out some seriously sexy guns for this shindig as well as some dope tunes. Is that the cool way to say it? Besides my totally hip vernacular, this festival is a monstrous celebration of amazing beer, music, art, and beer culture. Be safe, and never go thirsty.
Taking Tours: The saison (hehe, that’s French for season, jokes!) for brewery tours is on, and the weather is still quite friendly. Deep Ellum Brewery offers tours on Thursday evenings from 6-8:30 with live music, and the Si Tapas food truck, The Spanish Lunch Box, was in attendance last Thursday with chorizo, serrano ham, manchego and many other delicious Spanish bites to partner with the beers. Four Corners Brewery also does tours on Thursdays, but I have yet to find a beer to rave about over there. They’re good, just not great. Peticolas, Lakewood, and Community all host tours on Saturdays. Tickets usually average $10 and get you a few full pours. Celebrate our local beer and tour your body down.
Beer+Food: There are also a few interesting beer dinners coming up this month and in early May. Deep Ellum Brewery is hosting its first pairing dinner with Park Tavern this Friday night. Tickets are $60. They are also releasing a new Barley Wine at the untapped festival called Numb Comfort. Somehow they’ve summed up my dream life in two words. Yes, please. Also, Brew Riot is coming in May, and I cannot wait.
Big Beer From Little D: The last bit of news comes down from Denton. Armadillo Ale Works is the new brewer on the block, and their first release is called the Quakertown Stout. With the help of the folks at Deep Ellum Brewery, they’ve been able to get their beer out and in our faces. I decided to run by one of my favorite beer bars, Strangeways, and try out this new stout just for you. I will keep this short: It is absolutely beautiful. Try this dark, brooding stout right away. You’ll find a warming dark roast with sensuous chocolate notes and, with more than 9% ABV, it’s remarkably easy to drink. I would actually say gulp, which is what I did. It’s a buttery, deep dancing beauty and should not be missed.1 Comment »
This Week, The Meddlesome Moth is hosting their 3rd annual April Ale week with a salute to “Wood Inspired Beers.” Their entire tap has been swapped out, and I feel confident in saying it’s one of the most impressive, dynamic and robust beer lists ever comprised in our age. So I might be a little flighty since last night I tried to rampage through the entire thing, but you must go see for yourself. The video above is from last night’s intimate gathering around the flannel wearing, hip haired, bad-mother-beaver named Todd Usry. He’s the brewmaster from Breckenridge Brewery, and he completely gave himself to everyone who attended with friendly conversation and stories about how his beers came to be. His favorite beer is the Vanilla Porter, but don’t tell him that. There are more events going on through the rest of the week, so head over to the Moth’s website for details and get your fine self up in there.
The story of Armadillo Ale Works begins with a happenstance meeting between Bobby Mullins, his ex-girlfriend’s dog, and an armadillo.
We’re sitting inside Deep Ellum Brewing Company in roundtable fashion, and a very reluctant Mullins is hesitant to answer my question, “Why Armadillo?” He’s trying to change the topic. For the past ten minutes, he and his partner, Yianni Arestis, have been telling me about their big dreams of opening the first craft brewery in Denton. It’s going to be called Armadillo Ale Works. In the last couple of years, Arestis and Mullins have been selling artisan sodas, and now they’re putting that on hold so they can focus all their efforts on beer.
Here’s where our beloved DEBC comes in. Enter John Reardon (owner) and Tait Lifto (brand and sales ninja) of Deep Ellum’s craft brewery. They’re two really cool, chill guys. One day, they’re hanging out at this event for brewers called Brews Cruise before the North Texas Beer Festival, and the next day, they’ve taken a liking to the Armadillo boys. “These guys are in it for the right reasons,” says Reardon. He can practically see their honest beer hearts poking through their shirts. The DEBC team decides to adopt the Armadillo men, and thus, a symbiotic friendlationship is born.
We all have that friend, the absurdly athletic, easy going good man who lets nothing shake his handsome feathers. He knows how to prepare duck a l’orange or a roast beef sandwich on rye. He smokes cigars but doesn’t inhale, and he knows who Arthur Rimbaud is. He also possesses a keen ability to construct objects from wood, hammer nails, and comfort a woman. Well, Plano has a new candidate to fill the shoes of said friend, and its name is Henry’s Tavern. Henry’s Tavern’s was born in Portland, Oregon; a place Dallas would be wise to consider tailoring its style towards… just, you know, a little.
Jump for some fun.
Maté Hartai (The Libertine), Sam Wynne (Flying Saucer/Meddlesome Moth), and Jeff Fryman (formerly of Union Bear and currently working on a new project with Matt Tobin and the folks at Goodfriend) are leaving for LA today. They hope to return as a Master Cicerones, the third and final level of certification of beer service. All three have already achieved the first two levels: Cicerone Certified Beer Server and Certified Cicerone. Today there are about 30 Certified Cicerones in the state. Currently, there are only four Master Cicerones in the country. Four. In the country.
Like the Master Sommelier program designed to provide high quality wine knowledge and service, the Cicerone Certification Program was created to change the image of beer from a twisting off a the top of a longneck to a experiencing the essence of a carefully crafted and sophisticated glass of beer served by experts.
The exam, limited to 12 participants, takes place Tuesday and Wednesday and includes written, oral, and tasting components. Four industry experts conduct extensive interview sessions and candidates must pass a rigorous blind assessment of beer styles. In other words, these guys have to be walking beer encyclopedias.
Sam tells me the group has been studying together for months hunkering down and comparing similar styles as conducting blind tasting to determine the style and origin and brewing company. They also studied with Wim Bens of Lakewood Brewing and Michael Peticolas of Peticolas Brewing Company. Recently Peticolas won a gold medal at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver for his Royal Scandal, a classic English-style pale ale. He’s only been open for about six months. “We also did sensory training using an off-flavor kits provided by the Seibel Institute in Chicago,” Wynne said. “Basically we use eyedroppers to put chemicals in our beer that replicate the flavors and aromas caused by mistreatment, poor sanitation, and fermentation conditions that are less than ideal. We trained ourselves to recognize these in commercial beer and be able to identify the cause of flaw to ensure the people we serve only receive top quality product.”
Ladies and gentlemen, meet José Ralat-Maldonado. Jose is a new contributor to SideDish. He is known for his blog The Taco Trail , a subject he will touch on from time to time, but we’ve asked Jose to step off his taco trail. Today he has a new map in his hands with plenty of paths to cross. Welcome him.
Let’s not kid ourselves, thoughts have begun to lean toward weekend eating and drinking plans. Start early with Union Bear’s inaugural Family Dinner tonight. The West Village neighborhood pub’s new beer dinner series will take place the second Wednesday of each month and include three courses paired with suds and surprises. I asked for hints of said surprises when I stopped in for some pints this week but was met with tight lips. Surprises or not, the menu for this Family Dinner is a rich, palate-warming affair.
First up: A butternut squash-guajillo chile soup with a kick of roasted pepinos and cocoa powder. It will be matched with Ska Brewing’s Autumnal Mole Stout, one of four new seasonal stouts from the Colorado operation. I had the opportunity to sample the Mole Stout this week. Made with cocoa nibs, spices as well as ancho, guajillo, and Anaheim chiles, the dark beer does indeed evoke the substantial and widely recognized mole poblano, which is basically the chocolate and chile-based mother sauce of Mexico (because everyone’s mami made the best). It’s also refreshing. Think of it as the perfect sunny fall afternoon, one that ends resting on a pile of newly shed leaves.
Park Tavern opened in early August, but the sleek interior of this contemporary gastropub still smells like fresh wood. Last night we sent our photographer, Melisa Oporto, to the restaurant’s VIP Grand Opening event to see what this bar/restaurant/place-you-can-watch-sports-while-eating-bar-food is all about.
On a night when the Dallas weather gave us a reprieve from scorching heat hundreds of Dean Fearing fans descended on the outside courtyard of the Ritz Carlton hotel last night to celebrate the fifth anniversary of Fearing’s, Dean’s namesake restaurant. Has it really been five years? Guests dined on barbecue prepared by guest chef and world barbecue chef Chris Lilly from Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q in Decatur, AL. They also enjoyed beer from Deep Ellum Brewing Company. At the end of the evenint, Dean took up his guitar with friends for a gig that included hits from Bob Dylan and The Rolling Stones.
To catch more of the ongoing Fearing’s Fifth celebration action call Fearing’s to order tickets for Michael Chiarello (September 19), Hubert Keller (October 4) or Robert Del Grande (October 19). Continue reading "Fearing’s Turns Five and Parties with BBQ by Chris Lilly, Dean Fearing on Lead Guitar, and Beer by DEBC"
Lovers of BBQ, Dean Fearing, and TV personalities can hit the mother lode at Fearing’s Restaurant on August 19 for a lovely evening of all three. Barbecue extraordinaire Chris Lilly, the chef and partner at Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q, will be there to help design the menu. This dinner is just the first in a series of four; Fearing will also be hosting Michael Chiarello (9/17), Hubert Keller (10/4), and Robert Del Grande (10/19) as part of his fifth anniversary celebration.
Roll the press release and read the last paragraph especially carefully. I wish I had! This is certainly a sellout.
Jump for the love of bbq. Continue reading "Fearing’s Fifth Anniversary Celebration Features World BBQ Champion Chris Lilly"
Matt Shelley, the guy who tends to save my computer from utter destruction, is also a closet beer nerd. I have even paid him in beer before. Yesterday, he attended this year’s Brew Riot celebrating homebrewing in the Bishop Arts District between 7th and 9th street. Here’s what he has to say. It reads like a prose poem, so don’t judge him for the lack of rhyming.
Lots of homemade artisan beers.
Very crowded, but never without a beer.
Hundreds of different beers to taste: Stouts, Ambers, Wits, IPAs, ciders, Ales, Lagers, Pilsners, Doubles, tripels, Dunkels, California Commons, etc.
Dowdy Studio made t shirts just for the event at a sale price of $15. They ran out of larges, so I’ll have to live with just being medium.
$20 dollars gets you a small cup and unlimited tastings. A bit dangerous when coupled with the heat.
There was a great energy, as is usually the case with beer people. Best event I’ve been to for beer.
Jump for my IT guy’s photos.4 Comments »
I know, I know. You’ve been waiting on pins and needles for Part II of Beers With Friends. But consider this an extra, in which I give you a run down of the various American Craft Beer Week activities. It all starts on Monday. I’ll break it up by day, and then maybe tell you which ones my expert, Michael, and I are most interested in checking out. Armed with excellent tolerance (debatable, in reference to myself) and tastebuds (definitely, in reference to Michael), we will boldly go where several of you are probably also and already going. Check back for specifics from Strangeways, and as always, add more ideas in the comments.
This week I attended a media event at Centric, the new restaurant at The Marriott City Center in downtown Dallas. The Marriott wanted to draw attention to their $16m renovation of the hotel that includes a new concierge room on the 16th floor, a state-of-the-art 24-hour fitness center, room upgrades, lobby art, and a new name and menu for the restaurant. The executive chef is Yoni Heredia, a California Culinary Academy graduate who has been a chef positions at Hilton and Westin hotels around the country.
In honor of Dallas Beer Week, the ever-vigilant Teresa Gubbins over at Pegasus News posted a bang-up synopsis of Dallas’ growing growler scene. She covers all the basics, and frankly I couldn’t have said it better myself, so follow the link for her tips on where (and why) you should add growlers to your weekly routine. They’ve also put together a extremely user-friendly rundown of all of the Dallas Beer Week activities.1 Comment »
Dust off your vintage steins (oh, come on, you know you have them) and start warming up your arm for Dallas Beer Week (November 12-19), a veritable beer-nanza of dinners, hard-to-come-by craft beer tastings, and rare keg tappings. The ubiquity of Oskar Blues beers alone—at The Common Table, The Bottle Shop, and Kegs and Barrels—is enough to get us out the door.
Can’t-miss events are scheduled at restaurants and bars all over town from the kick-off party at Franconia Brewing in McKinney, to the Deep Ellum Beer Brunch at The Common Table, to the Left Hand Brewery Growler Day at The Bottle Shop, to the 200-year-old Firkin Tapping at Amsterdam Bar. Don’t miss the wrap up on Saturday when craft brewers from around the U.S. will converge at Fair Park’s Food & Fiber Pavilion for tastings and general merriment. Click here for the full schedule
There is also a notable list of unaffiliated events going on all over town. Here are a few worth noting:
Jump for a list of UNAFFILIATED EVENTS at The Media Grill and Meddlesome Moth… Continue reading "Dallas Craft Beer Week: Official & Unofficial Events Converge"
Wednesday September 21—Oktoberfest kickoff at The Old Monk. Keg tapping at 7.30 pm. Dennis from Franconia will bring a 200 year old wooden keg of his Oktoberfest which we will tap at 7:30. Keg tapper this year will be our very own Tim Rogers. The beer is served in ceramic steins with the Old Monk logo. A 24 oz stein full of beer is $15 and you keep the stein. Bratwurst and knockwurst are available.
Beer for a cause. Every year The Monk hosts a pumpkin carving event to raise money for charity. Guests pay $10 and get a scooped out pumpkin, carving tools and a pint compliments of Guinness (Guinness, Harp, Smithwicks, Half and Half, or Black and Tan ). The Monk matches the $10 (last year they wrote a check for $5,500 to North Texas Food Bank) Carving begins October 19 and runs through Halloween night.
Currently The Monk has cask conditioned Fireman’s #4. Get it before it runs out.
Six firkins of Green Flash West Coast IPA (7.3% ABV and 95 IBUs) are literally on a truck from San Diego right now. They should arrive any day to go on the beer engines at The Monk and The Idle. This beer will most certainly go quickly; it’s pretty highly regarded in craft beer circles.
Mon., Sept. 26: Beer Dinner with Ayinger Celebrator, Pinkus Organic Hefeweizen, Avery Kaiser Oktoberfest, Kapuzinger Schwarz-Weizen, and Breckenridge Vanilla Porter.
Tues, Sept. 27: Magic Hat Hat Hex “Ourtoberfest Glass Night”
Weds., Sept. 28: Summit Oktoberfest Glass Night
Thurs., Sept. 29: Avery Kaiser Oktoberfest Glass Night
Fri., Sept. 30: Spaten Munich Mug Night
jump for the rest of the listings… Continue reading "Brews News: More Oktoberfest (and Plain Old October) Beer News & Schtuff"