OT: Beer! 2018

New Year, New Beer thread

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To the homebrewers out there: I'm looking to brew this weekend, but my past experience is strictly limited to me drinking with my buddies while they brew.

I'm thinking about making a dry-hopped pilsner: has anyone tried that? If so, got a recipe you can share? Recipes for that are tough to find online, but maybe for good reason. If not, anyone got any favorite recipes of any variety you can share?

I'm certainly no expert as I've only been brewing for five months or so but in my experience and opinion dry hopping makes almost everything better. Just don't over do it and pick a hop you like the aroma of. I just made a dry hopped porter that was awesome so im a sure a pils would be great

Here lies It's a Stroman Jersey I Swear, surpassed in life by no one because he intercepted it.

I tend to think so too, at least with professionally brewed stuff anyway.

I'm a huge Mosaic fan, but I've been told that would be pretty overpowering/bad for a pilsner. Might try it anyway

Yeah it may be a bit much but hey, no one got anywhere by not taking risks

Here lies It's a Stroman Jersey I Swear, surpassed in life by no one because he intercepted it.

If you're looking for some tropical notes in a pilsner, I'd recommend using a hop like Mandarina Bavaria. It's known for sweet citrusy notes and isn't as intense as Mosaic is. Mosaic is a fantastic hop, don't get me wrong. I use it in my farmhouse pale ale and it's great. But, pilsners are so much more subtle than what Mosaic is usually used for.

I'd recommend dry hopping for the last week or so of fermentation (do it in secondary if you do that) at about 1.5 oz per 5 gallons. You can do some light late boil additions (an ounce at 10 minutes or so) to improve flavor component or even a steep addition after the wort has chilled to below 180 F. Most of the hop oils volatilize above the temperature. This way the beer should have more of the essential flavor oils in it. But, since it's a pilsner the hops are going to fade during the lagering process.

Is this an all-grain beer or extract?

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Awesome, thanks for the tips!

I haven't picked one yet, but I've been looking for all-grain recipes primarily.

Cool! You really only need pilsner malt then. If you can swing it try a decoction mash schedule. It's very time consuming since you have to literally boil portions of the mash, but it makes the malt perception of German/Czech beers more authentic.
And as always when using pilsner malt, make sure your boil time is at least 90 minutes to drive off all of the dimethyl sulfide (DMS)!

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Its very easy to overpower a pilsner with hop.
Dry hopping a pilsner is not a bad idea, it can add some good stuff but, I'd dry hop with a noble hop, one of the Hollertau or Saaz probably best.

If you want to make a ager IPA, that's something different but a nice crisp pilsner is a wonderful thing.

Or Motueka if the OP just wants to try something different.

a nice crisp pilsner is a wonderful thing

This is why I wanted to give it a shot, but yeah I'm nowhere near ready to try it yet. The Veil (lofty goals, I know) dry hops their Child Support pilsner with a different hop each time they release it, and that's what planted the idea in my mind.

brewing with any homebrew supervision or first time?

you have time and temp control to allow the pils to lager?

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

Well, I'll be brewing with my buddy who has brewed probably 10-15 times

He also has an unfinished basement I assume would stay at a decent temp for it(maybe?), how long does the lagering take?

Lagering takes at least 3 weeks and you need the temperature to be a consistent 50-55F.
After fermentation at this temperature you also really need to leave the beer at 65F for a few days as well. This is called a diacetyl rest which allows the yeast to work off a yeast byproduct that tastes like popcorn butter. Typically the diacetyl rest is started when the beer is a couple points above terminal gravity.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Oh damn, I'll have to talk to my friend and see if he thinks that's something we can do. If not, I'll prob just make a Mosaic IPA to get my feet wet.

honestly, i would start simple, definitely an ale. maybe a mosaic pale ale or lighter ipa, 5-6% range.

get your feet wet a few times first before lagering.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

Yeah, I think that's gonna be the way I go. The pointers from you and ashore are much appreciated. Maybe eventually I'll try a pilsner, but I don't want to get in over my head on my first batch and then be disappointed. I'll be going to OG to pick up all the ingredients of whatever I make, so I'll definitely consult with the fine folks there as well.

they will be able to help tons. they give seminars ... i say go there get a beer and listen in.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

OG is excellent (Tony makes some amazing beer at FG).

You should also check out the James River Homebrewers club! They meet at Mekong the second Wednesday of each month. If you're interested I can put you in contact with my parents - they're on the board of the club. My e-mail is my TKP username at vt dot edu

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Thanks man! I've heard about that club, and my friend went a time or two, I believe, but I've never looked into it myself.

A pilsner or lager are a lot harder than a ale due to needing specific equipment to keep the fermentation chamber at a specific temperature. Also, flaws in lagers are harder to hide than a flaw with a ale since most ales you can just add hops to hide off flavors. I would start with a pale ale/IPA in the 5-6% range. I would also recommend that if you/your brewing friend do not have all grain experience to start with DME. Typically you need equipment that can hold double to amount of finished product you anticipate having ex 5 gal finished beer needs a brew kettle of 10 gal/mash tun of 10 gal with all grain. Hope that your brew day is a success! Cheers!

1-0 every week

Cheers! Thank you! My buddy's brewed using all-grain each time I have been over to "help," so I think he can provide to requisite experience to get me going even though I've never done it personally

Completed my brew just after the ND game Saturday night. I found a recipe for a "Two-Hearted Clone" (edit: Which, after looking at the description of THA on Bell's website, I think I've been lied to...Oh well) but had to make a few adjustments due to what OG had available/my budget. I appreciated having a Buzzketball victory to watch during the 20 minutes of whirlpooling at the end. I'm not a fan of the color it turned out to be, but it tasted pretty good just before I threw the yeast in, so keeping my fingers crossed! Excited to see how it turns out after a couple weeks and a couple rounds of dry hopping.

Did the recipe call for hops that aren't Centennial?

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Haha yeah it sure did, I didn't think I needed to cross check and I had never really looked at the hop profile on two-hearted

Got to try my IPA for the first time tonight. I had pretty low expectations, but damn I'm impressed. It smelled strong af when I dry hopped it, but came out pretty smooth. I guess if you throw as many hops in something as I did with this one, it can cover up some flaws pretty well haha.

Went to Creature Comforts in Athens last Saturday. Enjoyed every beer I tried which IIRC was the Athena Berliner Weisse, Koko Buni, Get Comfortable IPA, Tropicalia IPA, and the Reclaimed Rye. I liked the Get Comfortable IPA and Tropicalia a lot more than I expected, I am extremely hit or miss on IPA's. They are not my usual go to, and sometimes I strongly dislike them.

I've more or less been on a Tripel craze lately and just had a Unibroue La Fin du Monde brewed proudly by our neighbors to the north. Really good if you like Tripels.

"What kind of person would throw away a perfectly good dog?"

La fin Du Monde is really good. I'm a fan of Unibroue in general, though.

My wife and I went by Flying Dog and Rockwell Brewing up in Frederick, MD this past weekend and had a good time. Flying Dog is always one of my favorites, but I had never had Rockwell and I'm a fan now. No idea if they distribute at all, but if you're around the Frederick area, you'll have to stop by. It's right down the street from Attaboy Brewing, which is also pretty top notch.

Unrelated, but we also booked a B&B in St. Michael, MD for our anniversary in April - I know RaR isn't too far away, but are there any breweries right around St. Michael that we should check out? We've been to most of the Salisbury/OC breweries.

Assuming you have been to Burley Oak?

I believe Eastern Shore Brewery is right on the Main St.

Not you're talking my neck of the woods!!!!!
Yes, Eastern Shore is right there in St Michaels. Decent place, but don't go in with high hopes. It will not be another Rockewell experience.

RAR is in Cambridge, and prob a 30-35 minute ride. And WELL worth it. If you happen to be coming at the same time as a release (follow them on insta) be sure to get tickets the week before. Otherwise you will need to be in line at 8am. The tickets are easy peasy. Buy a week in advance and pick up anytime the release weekend, Saturday or Sunday. Yes, I'm a fanboy, but every IPA they have put out later has been spectacular. Think Nectar and Knife level stuff. Their first triple released last week was close to We Ded Mon from Veil. And their sour game is improving with each new batch, if that's your jam. But if it isn't a release weekend, come on over for a few pints or a flight. Great beer all across the board. And some great restaurants in Cambridge as well.

Burley is going to be another 1:15 or so from RAR. So nearly 2 hours from St Michaels. If you wanna, go ahead. I'm not one to budget others time spent. Personally, on release days, I go to RAR. That's me. But also go to Burley Oak during the week because I live closer to it.

And next time in Fredneck, check out Attaboy and Olde Mother. And Cushwa in Williamsport if you are going up 81. Cushwa is killing it right now.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

I was hoping you'd chime in! (I couldn't remember exactly who it was that lived out there, but knew someone did.. haha)

Ive been to Burley Oak several times, so I think we will pass that one up this time around. I did a lot of work in OC/Salisbury last year during the off season, and what else is there to do alone on a business trip at the beach in the off season besides go to breweries? Went to Burley Oak, Evolution, Tall Tales (possibly the only brewery i've been to that I couldn't find a single thing I liked. Pizza was amazing though), OC Brewing, and 16 Mile.

I'd really like to try out RAR, so i'll have to talk the wife into that. I'll look into the release weekends and see if anything is going on then! I believe the B&B we are staying at is right down the street from Eastern Shore, so I'll have to stop by there too.

We've been to Attaboy a few times since it's only like 20 minutes from our place and it's one of my favorite local spots along with Waredaca which opened a few years ago in my hometown (Damascus). Haven't been to Olde Mother, but I've heard good things.

Haven't gotten to Waredaca but know a few peeps that swear by it. And Hysteria.

Next time at the beach, check out Dewey Beer Co., right on Rt 1. They have jumped into things full bore, and just announce last night that they will be canning. They semi-confirmed it, but their Swishy Pants IPA may be one of the top NEIPA's I've ever had. Period. Cool crew in there and good food as well.

If it is a release weekend, I'll prob see you there. If its the weekend after, and you want some, I could pick up the week before then deliver/meet you for a brew possibly. (vtnerf on insta and buryhokie on twitter.)

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Cushwa is going to be on the 4VPISU and wife itinerary for this Sunday - have heard great things about them.

You might luck out with the Peace Among Worlds. Maybe. There's a lot going on in MD Saturday so not sure how many will trek that far west.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

If anyone lives in/visits North Carolina, or more specifically Winston Salem, look out for Wiseman Brewing. If you're in Winston you have to go, if you're in other cities then some restaurants will serve some of their beer. Still small (only a year old) but they're packed every night and the beer is amazing mostly because the brewmaster is a PhD in Chemistry who decided to open up a brewery after years in industry and homebrewing. The dude makes some seriously awesome/funky stuff and they rotate all the time which shows off his creativity.

I haven't heard of Wiseman but the last time I was in Winston I went to Fiddlin' Fish for the first time and thought it was good. Will have to try Wiseman next time.

11 bonnets on the ball!

Wiseman is about 100 yards away from Fiddlin' Fish. It's a cool area with the distillery and the chocolate factory being right there too. Fiddlin' Fish is good but a little more basic in my opinion with their selection. Wiseman has more stuff you don't see as often like saisons, sours, berliner weisses etc... Both are really popular though and growing with a third brewery on its way for that area.

I have to agree Wiseman is little better then Fiddlin-Fish based on my few visits, but both are fun places to hang out for bit, and that whole area has really taken off as a great place to spend several hours. Live music on weekends, several nice casual places to eat, up to 4 breweries within a mile (Foothills and Small Batch {Hoots is a bit far to walk from Foothills- but has some good beer too}), but most places have extensive local taps, and enough of the young WF crowd to make it hop pretty late. Fiddlin-Fish has had a few experimental beers that were both very unusual and good, but limited stuff on tap last Sunday. I've heard one of the partners from Wiseman is from up the valley in Virginia, but not sure if that is the brewer? What other brewery is coming?

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

I'm just seeing this for some reason as the thread comes back up, but I don't know all the brewers. I know one has definitely lived in NC for 20 some years because I went to high school with his son. Another one has also been in NC for a while, but idk where he was before that. There could be another brewer from VA though. The new one is going to be Incendiary Brewing. They should be moving in this fall downtown near the old RJR facility. It's a nice new building that only has a mexican restaurant(Alma Mexicana) there at the moment, but is supposed to be adding Incendiary and a pizza place soon.

NC2VT - Sorry, couldn't resist :)

Just got back from the Wiseman 1 year anniversary celebration. Had the first Brett I liked ( apricot) and an awesome BB breakfast stout. The smoked Weiss sour was also good. Not as big a fan of the imperial brown or the cream ale, but the NE DIPA and the moscato barrel aged pale were solid. Wife prefered the blond. I must get getting too old though, because I thought the music, while very good, was too loud.

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

the brewmaster is a PhD in Chemistry who decided to open up a brewery after years in industry and homebrewing. The dude makes some seriously awesome/funky stuff

Is any of it a crystalline blue color?

They use chili powder

Recruit Prosim

I've got a homebrewing question:
I've been tweaking my New England IPA recipe recently and trying to hone in on the right yeast. I've used Wyeast 1318 London Ale III and RVA's Manchester Ale yeast so far. I LOVE the RVA yeast, but it isn't at my brew shop (I used it while brewing on my parents' system in Richmond). 1318 was fine, but just doesn't quite nail the mouthfeel and hop biotransformations the same way. Does anyone have a specific dry yeast or Wyeast strain that has worked for them?

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

I use 1968 for almost everything. I don't do IPA's, so I can't vouch for it doing anything there. I do build very healthy starters. I've had it stall out on me before (at 1.031).

Thanks, I'll have to look into that one! The reason 1318 and Manchester Ale are so well recognized for NE IPAs is because of how they interact with the hops and the fruit character the yeast gives off. It looks like 1968 gives off some similar fruity esters.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

It is supposedly the Fuller's strain. If you can get your hands on some of their products, that should give you an idea of the esters. The stuff is highly flocculant, btw.

With starters I've had no problem getting things down below 1.010. (sometimes I like to keep things around 1.017. I like a little sweetness).

Hmm okay. This may not be the right strain. Highly flocculant and attenuative isn't exactly what I'm looking for here. Since I'm making a hazy New England IPA with 20% flaked oats, I'm looking for that sweeter finish and full mouthfeel. My terminal gravity is normally around 1.016-1.018 for these beers. Thank you though! I'll have to check this one out for future stouts, porters, and more classic English ales.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

How did you end up un-stalling it? I have a chocolate mint stout sitting at ~1.028 for a week now after steadily dropping from an OG of ~1.052. Expected FG should be another 10 pts down (1.015-1.018ish). Beer has been between 65 and 68 degrees the entire time. Steeped some 100% mint teabags the last 5min of boil, could that affect the yeast?

Was thinking of just 1) shaking the F out of the fermenter to see if that wakes anything up 2) pitching another dose of Safale S-04 3) pitching a dose of Wyeast 1098 instead

Shaking can help sometimes to rouse the yeast and maybe even get a little more oxygen in there. If that fails, it's pretty standard to pitch more yeast to finish it off. What type of stout is it?

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

It's a nice dark oatmeal stout base, with cocoa and mint

I didn't...
I tried swirling to rouse.
I tried warming the room a couple degrees. .
I pitched some US-05.
No drop in gravity, at all.

I actually don't totally blame the yeast. I brewed the batch with a guy who doesn't monitor his mash temps. I think the strike water went in way too hot (and stayed hot) and I ended up with a lot of sugars that couldn't be fermented. It was a very tasty beer, in the end. Some coffee and dark chocolate notes from the chocolate malt I use were complimented nicely by the extra sweetness.

But, once 1968 floccs, it's over. Other yeasts might do a bit better with the rousing or warming up.

Try Conan. Its the original yeast the style was derived from.
Also, there's a Vermont Yeast one of the big guys carry, pretty close to that one.

Conan originally comes from The Alchemist, right? I would love to try the strains like Omega Yeast's DIPA/Conan or Imperial's Barbarian, but they aren't at my brew shop and neither is White Lab's Vermont Ale yeast. I'm always a little tentative to order yeast online. My shop only carries Wyeast strains and some dry yeasts.
I may end up settling with Safale S-04 or pitching Wyeast London Ale III again.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

They're not really allowed to say about the origin but that's the prevailing theory.

There have been some really good New England style IPAs coming out of Triple Crossing lately. Falcon Smash is their staple but my favorites are Intestellar Burst, Valhalla, and Battle Creek. If you are near Richmond or just passing through I would highly recommend checking them out.

It's Time to go to Work

My favorite brewery in VA. Falcon Smash was my gateway IPA. On top of killer IPA's (I'll add Clever Girl and Nectar & Knife to your list), they have a great wild ale program going and their Waxing Poetic Berliner Weisse is as good as it gets for a fruit beer for me.

The Poor Icarus DIPA they put out about 3 weeks ago is straight up pineapple creamsicle juice in a can. Still on draft at both locations

poor icarus drinks a lot better now than initial release, but Illuminati might be the best dipa they have made ... up there with battle creek and interstellar burst.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

Diffrent strokes, I guess. I liked Illuminati, but I was a bigger fan of Poor Icarus since release day.

However, now that you've mentioned it, I'm just hoping Battle Creek makes another appearance sometime soon. For my money, that or N & K is the best beer in Richmond

Second the N&K. That was a fantastic brew.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Did you get to try Wherever I May Roam? I think it may have been their best, but didn't seem to get a lot of buzz.

i did and right up there too. i think they make the best ipa and dipas in rva, i like veil's gose to their berliners. stouts, it's veil and not paricularly close. early results look promising for both in the sour/barrel game, but i'd guess just based on pedigree matt is going to lap everyone in the commonwealth there as well.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

So this is only tangentially related to what you said but here goes. You mentioned sours and I need your help. I like beer and I generally like sour things, especially patch kids but that's probably irrelevant.

Are there some good sours you recommend to try as sort of a gateway into the genre? I'm always interested in expanding my drink palate but so far most sours I've had have just taste like off beer. I'm in PA so keep in mind my choices may be a bit limited (I unfortunately do not have access to the glory of Virginia craft) but any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Here lies It's a Stroman Jersey I Swear, surpassed in life by no one because he intercepted it.

Get some actual aged sours. Stay away from quick sours (kettle sours or sour mash) like Berliner Weiss. A lot of those are very one-note. (Usually straight lactic acid which = vomit at times.).

Rodenbach and rodenbach grand cru are fantastic gateway sours. In general, I'd start with a Flanders red or an oud Bruin. You could always go for a framboise if you want something fruitier.

the heavily fruited ones are well liked by many, but my gateway was Duchesse De Bourgogne, "the duchess" ... but each batch is a lil different. some can be vinegary, but it's sweet, earthy, sour .. delicious.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

Got a busy beer schedule ahead of me for the next few weeks. Brewing a Pliny the Elder clone tomorrow, planning on submitting this for the National Homebrew Competition, then another IPA next week for a club discussion. We're all brewing an IPA using the same grains and yeast, we choose our own hop bill, just to see how different the beers will be, just based on hops....then I've got ingredients for a third IPA that I'll be doing in 2 weeks time.

Did I mention I like IPAs?

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Two of the three done and fermenting. Will be dry-hopping the Pliny the Elder Clone today or tomorrow. Next one up as soon as I free up fermenter space

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

I get such a long time between getting to try new beers and these threads that this will probably be my one post. In the last couple months, people visiting have brought to town/I have gone somewhere with a craft brew selection of:

Russian River Temptation: this was a wild ride of taste, aged in Chardonnay barrels pretty good, only a one glass beer for me.

4 Noses Bout Damn Time: Good solid IPA

4 Noses Bareback Blonde

4 Noses Pump Action: a pumpkin beer I'll actually drink

Thunderhead Tiny Tim: Delicious put you on your ass 11-12% winter ale.

Blacktooth Saddle Bronc and Blacktooth Bomber Mountain are both solid.
-I'd stay away from Hot Streak IPA, tasted watered down and not that good)

The bar I frequent got Bush Light on tap so I've got that going for me.

I just released a beer that's a Scottish Ale aged in Bourbon barrels out of Bowman in Fredericksburg.
Sold 2 1/2 barrel kegs in 2 days.

Quite good.

You're at Chaos Mountain, right? I gotta venture out there next time I make a trip to Roanoke

Yeah. That's the place.

Got a long brew day going right now.

My buddy gave me a pico brew for Christmas. Had anyone brewed with one before? I have no idea what to expect

That team sure did suck last night. They just plain sucked! I've seen teams suck before, but they were the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked.

I've heard they don't always boil like you'd want. I see a lot of posts online about people using hot rod heatsticks or other heatsticks to give them a boost.

This may sound wonky, but turned out spectacular! Vanilla beans and waffle cones. Not quite a milkshake, but getting there.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Damn I love milkshake IPAs.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

So far my quest to try new & local beers has lead me to favor this:

& this

#FUENTEenFUEGO
Waho's suck
Uva swallows

Heading up to Asheville for a weekend on 2/17. Will likely hit several breweries, and always looking to try something I have not had. Last time we hit 8 different breweries but only had a few tastes from each, so missed a lot. Anybody have a can't miss beer or two to plan the extended crawl around, or that I should get a pint myself instead of getting one to share into tasting glasses with the group?

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

Nice, I'm heading to Asheville that weekend as well!

If you see a group of 4-5 couples in their 50's, I'll be the one that answers to "Lets Go" when yelled across the room. (My wife will be the one that looks embarrassed.)

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

Haha, I'll keep my eyes peeled and the vocal chords ready

Ran into a solo Hokie at the Village area Catawba brewing who saw my hat and stopped to discuss the GT beatdown. Also exchanged high fives with a rowdy group of Hokies waiting outside for a table at the Lobster Trap, but if you were in that group someone led with Go Hokies! (which perfectly acceptable). Not sure if you were in the group or not. Asheville is just a great beer town. The gas station by the airport (just outside Sierra Nevada) had 12 local beers on tap to get one for the runway, or fill a growler.

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

Either way you won't be wrong.
I enjoy flights. Allows you to take sips of the big stuff (stouts and high abv's that have ad-ins) at the beginning and end to see how it changes in taste with the temp going up. Then, you can hit the IPA's in the middle without palate wrecking yourself. If you just get a pint of IPA at each stop, sometimes you become tongue numb by the end.

Enjoy it. Jelly of both of you guys!
Definitely hit Burial...

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

I'm about an hour and twenty from Asheville. You must hit up:...

Burial Brewery
Wicked Weed (my favorite). Make sure you go downstairs to the basement bar. There's cornhole boards and live music playing sometimes.
Highland Brewery (my second fav)
Greenman (Their new GreenMansion facility is unreal)
Wicked Weed Funkatorium

Also, on your way to Asheville, you have to stop at the Sierra Nevada Brewery in Mills River, NC. It's about 15 mins east of A'ville. You will be blown away by the facility. The food is great, too!

I second Sierra Nevada (and all the others mentioned, really). Impressive doesn't even begin to describe that place.

Aside from Burial which is our go to, we enjoy Bhramari and Hi Wire. If you travel down to Hendersonville, Sanctuary Brewing Company is a must.

For barbecue, DO NOT MISS OUT ON Buxton Hall. So worth it. And you can grab a beer at Catawba next door whie you wait. Get everything - app, main, and dessert. 12 Bones is our other go-to but usually for lunch.

Burial
Hi Wire
Green Man

prior to the AB-Inbev deal, I would have said Wicked Weed, but I no longer get their beers.

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

prior to the AB-Inbev deal, I would have said Wicked Weed, but I no longer get their beers.

That was a sad day. I drank the last bottle of beer I had from them and used the dregs for a lambic inspired beer. That's the only way they will be in my life ever again.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

I still use my WW IPA glass that I bought at the Funkatorium after a tour, pre-sellout, that is as close as I will get to them. Shame, I loved their range of sours, and had some great IPAs as well

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Just went to Asheville last weekend and was VERY pleasantly surprised with my first visit to Twin Leaf, right across from Asheville Pizza and on south slope near the Funkatorium. They had a winter spice ale, 9%, and a few high gravity Belgians that were over the top amazing.

I just sit on my couch and b*tch. - HokieChemE2016

I'm more of a Belgium guy, but I can do certainly "hoppy" beer if it doesn't bite too much.

Last night we had one of my favorites in downtown Harrisonburg. Bells brews a single batch of this each year and its awesome!

Is it football season yet?

I work about 20 minutes north of Kalamazoo. Having Bells and Founders being so close is truly spoiling.

Recruit Prosim

Damn, is it HopSlam season already? I get so caught up in the RVA beer bubble that I sometimes forget there are great beers that actually hit distro.

One of our local places here in the Outer Banks is having a Hop Slam release party tonight

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Had one last night, actually wasn't as good as I remember it usually being. Thought it had more honey flavor in years past, but I still can't complain too much.

I just sit on my couch and b*tch. - HokieChemE2016

I'm heading to Nashville/Franklin TN for work tomorrow, with some free time in the evenings. Anybody have advice on the brewery scene there?

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

Haven't been, but check out Corsair. I've heard the beer is good but definitely check out their smoked malt whiskeys, too

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Thanks. Closer to where I am working than where I am staying (friends from Luray area live in Franklin), but looks interesting from web site. I'll let you know if I make it by.

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

Yazoo was my favorite when I lived there. It's located in the Gulch, but if you were to go you could hit Yazoo, TN Brew Works, and Jackalope in one stop as they're all very close.

If you're a sour guy, Yazoo has an Embrace the Funk series and the Citraluxe is one of my top sours.

I lived on Music Row so unfortunately I didn't get to many breweries out towards Franklin. If you're into Belgian Style ales, Black Abbey is between the city and Franklin.

GIVE IT TO ME ROSCOE!

Second vote for Yazoo. They make my favorite hefeweizen in the world. If you go, be sure to try Sue as well.

Not sure if you will see this, but Bearded Iris and Southern Grist are a must for Nashville breweries.

Finally got a chance to stop by and enjoy Big Lick Brewing Company's new digs in downtown Roanoke. Talk about an upgrade! I recommend it, check it out if you're in the area.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Chaos Mountain Brewing is set to expand.
Got approval for 50 more Kroger affiliates in Virginia for 3 core beers and a rotating seasonal.

It's getting busy.
More news coming as my boss decides we can make public.

Franklin County Brewery set to expand.

I feel like, given Elon Musk's shenanigans today, Triple Crossing should rename all future batches of DDH Falcon Smash to Falcon Heavy

disagree, i don't want those beers getting delayed (also, there is a Double Falcon Smash that would be better suited)

Good call. Honestly, I really wouldn't be surprised if they do something like this. Will keep my eyes peeled for the releases in a few weeks

Last night was so warm, so I decided to go away from my winter norm of a stouts, porters, or tripels, so I bought a 4-pack of Duvel Belgian Golden Ale. I've always seen it in the store, but never bought it. My gosh was it good. May be my new favorite spring season go-to.

"What kind of person would throw away a perfectly good dog?"

Got a last minute heads up that I'm headed to Indianapolis for the weekend for work. Anybody have any must do's/must drink for the area?

GIVE IT TO ME ROSCOE!

The brewery isn't in Indianapolis, but if you see anything by 3 Floyds Brewing on tap get it. Their pale ales, IPAs, and stouts are almost exclusively excellent. Zombie Dust is their flagship, it's a very easy drinking pale ale with awesome citrus flavor and aroma from Citra hops.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

For the spring game I made a Belgian Pale/Saison using Belle Saison yeast with some American hops. Should be an easy drinking 4% beer with the feel of something closer to 6%. I used a ratio of 2:1:1 of El Dorado, Azacca, and BRU-1 hops the last 10 min of the boil and a 10 min aroma steep/whirlpool. When it's done fermenting, the dry hops will likely have the same ratio.
Feel free to drop by my tailgate for a pour! We'll be parked across from West AJ in the Cassell lot with a canopy in the grass. I'd love to hear your feedback on the 14th!

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Wished them the best, but it always seemed like an odd choice of location.
Hopefully someone can move in and keep beer churning out of there.

(Made another stop at the Ballast Point facility in Daleville Saturday night. That place is just amazing. And beautiful property, especially with it snowing.)

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Actually the bank foreclosed on the entire corporation.
The entire company has already been sold with the exception of the VA Beach facility, which is at auction as a separate entity.

In Hokie news, Beau Warren, Center from 2007-2010 youngest of the 3 Warren's to come through VT Football, is now a brewer at Aslin Beer Company in Herndon, VA

Speaking of Aslin, I've heard they're looking to move their production brewery from Herndon to Alexandria once they get their Herndon taproom up and running.

Had a conference in Manchester, NH last week. Decided there is no way I'm going to New England and not being a beer tourist!!!

We ended up in Poughkeepsie Friday night. Checked the weather for Sunday and ruled golf out, so altered the approach into Burlington. Saturday went up NY past Albany and across to Killington to hit Foley. Out of the way, but Saturday was gorgeous, the snow was melting so the creeks were running, and we didn't have a set time we had to be anywhere. If you haven't been to Foley, it's worth picking up on the shelves for sure. Left there and meandered thru the National Forest to Prohibition Pig. Had stuff from RAR to drop to them, and the vibe was perfect. Very chill, great food, solid beers. Walked across the street and picked up Frost, Lawson's, and Upper Pass beers. Then headed to Stowe for Alchemist. Amazing location. Turn back around, wave at the Ben and Jerry's (it was raining and had a beer or two in us so didn't want it fighting with ice cream...) and hit Burlington Beer Co. Then south to Shelburne and Fiddlehead.

Sunday, on the way out stopped at McGillicuddy's for some Susan and Edward from Hill Farmstead. And then hit Tree House on the way back Wednesday afternoon. Fresh Haze and Green! Very chill trip and a good experience at each one.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Damn, I'm jealous! What did you get at Tree House? I've been trying to get my hands on some Julius for a while now.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

Green, Haze, Alter Ego, Bright (mosaic), In Perpetuity, and Catharsis. Maxed out allotment, and buddy's in-laws bought what we didn't want. Given I had just been all over VT, only ended up with about 30 beers from Tree House. Which I'm cool with.

We were putting the TH in the back of the SUV, warm, not in the coolers.) (There were 3 coolers in there already.) One guy walks by "Why wouldn't you put that in the cooler?" Guy with him "There's something good in that cooler, that's why!" Yup, a case of Focal and a case of Heady.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Man, I was wondering how you got all of those TH brews on your Untappd Checkins - Nice haul and a damn nice trip!

The CRV was draggin tail...

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

That's a fine haul! I think I need to plan a NE beer trip.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

After 3 years of entering the National Homebrew Competition, I've finally had a beer move on to the finals! Got 3rd place in my judging location for an American IPA. Going to rebrew the recipe this week and get some fresh ones ready to ship off to the National Homebrew Convention in Portland

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Good luck dude, does she have a name?

Recruit Prosim

I typically only name the ones that I send off to competitions, cause they require a name...when I do name them, I typically use song titles that fit, or slightly tweak the song title to fit the beer...I once brewed a saison I called Maggie's Farm(house) Ale.

This one I called Drink Up and Go Home, after the Jerry Garcia and David Grisman tune

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Congrats!!!!!!!
Best of luck my man.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Having judged at these qualifying competitions before, congratulations! Because of how big it is, especially the IPA category, moving on is the equivalent of winning an award in most competitions. Sounds like you've got an excellent recipe and process. Good luck in the finals!

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Well, my American IPA did not place in the top 3 in the final round. Should be getting my scoresheets back within the next couple days

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Seeing this post pop back up reminded me I should share this - I visited to Nashville during the Craft Brewers Conference a week ago. I did not attend CBC itself (I'm just a homebrewer and I don't have a spare $1k laying around).
I will also echo 4VPISU's comments about Southern Grist and Bearded Iris. Their beers are incredible. Bearded Iris makes some fantastic hazy IPAs and Southern Grist's hazy IPAs and kettle sours were also amazing. In addition, the events held in parallel to CBC were a lot of fun. Beer bars and restaurants were hosting tap takeovers, there were fun outdoor events, and Southern Grist hosted a kickoff party/concert with beers from Aslin, RAR, and a couple of others. They were also releasing collaboration beers all week. I only got my hands on their RAR collaboration, Hair of the Wizard, among the collaborations. But it is a fantastic juice bomb.
If you're a beer lover and are ever near a city hosting CBC, definitely check out the vents happening. There will be amazing beer all over the city.
Oh and here are the beers I brought back home and would strongly recommend:
Southern Grist Process Control, hazy IPA
Southern Grist Hawaiian Thanksgiving, pineapple & cranberry gose
Southern Grist Key Lime Pie Gose, tastes almost exactly like key lime pie (including a graham cracker crust)
Bearded Iris Attention Please, hazy DIPA dry hopped with Vic Secret and Mosaic
Wiseacre Gotta Get Up to Get Down, coffee milk stout
Southern Grist/RAR Hair of the Wizard (linked above)

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Should have let me know you were there, I was there as well. But busy.

Sadly, I was not thinking much about TKP leading up to or during the event. I was there 4/28 through 5/2. I am sure you had much more going on, and specifically at the conference itself. Hope you enjoyed a productive conference!

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Consulting on construction going on down there? There was a lot of construction.

I went as a beer tourist and attended the public events in parallel to CBC. I just wasn't willing to foot the bill to attend the conference itself.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Starting this subthread up: Post your Untappd User Name

Figured fellow TKP'ers would be good as friends on the app as well.

vtnerf

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

ashore13
I don't use it that often (it detracts from the "social" part of my drinking), but maybe I'll start to a little more frequently?

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Brockman_148

bryantinge

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

Swanny26

Damn, AB-InBev is well represented.

For anyone going, Basic City is putting out some decent hops.

Yup Basic City knows what they are doing. And they've had somebody from the brewing staff at the festivals lately.

That's pretty cool they get someone with their hands in the pot to represent them.

Have fun Egbert - next time we're down that way, we'll be sure to stop by Chaos for a couple pints.

I will see you there!

Danny Coale Caught That Ball!!!

If I didn't have a gig this weekend, I'd be there.

There's no beer at my gig.

I am disappointed.

Finally spent some time exploring Columbia found probably the only two places I need to go.

Bourbon-as the name suggests they have an incredible bourbon list everything from $3-$300 pours something like 8 front and back pages. Phenomenal creole food.

Flying Saucer- Unlimited beer taps. If I hadn't had so many bourbons I'd remember what beers I actually had there.

Late to seeing this but Flying Saucer is the best. The one we always go to has $3 pint nights on Monday's. Every draft beer is $3 bucks. It almost feels wrong drinking 10% abv beers for that cheap.

Little Bobby Tables told me my signature was false

Bourbon is the shit. Spent the night in Columbia when I was going house hunting in VA Beach, and the desk girl at the hotel recommended it. Promptly blew 200 bucks on the Pappy flight. Girlfriend and I do weekends in Columbia a lot because it's about halfway between us, and we make a point to go to Bourbon every trip. I've eaten my way through the entire food menu (both dinner and brunch), and have knocked out a decent portion of the drink list. Excited to go back on Friday.

Flying Saucer is awesome when you wanna try a bunch of different stuff. They've got a saucer club where as you drink different beers, you get a saucer on the wall for different amounts. The one in Houston has a 5,000 beer saucer on the wall.

Should also check out River Rat Brewing. Great hangout spot, and their beer is great.

In need of brewery recommendations!!

I'm taking a road trip from Raleigh, NC to Hagerstown, MD this weekend. I'm planning on stopping by a few breweries to pick up cans/crowlers. On my list so far: The Veil, Triple Crossing, and Cushwa. Does anybody have recommendations along the I95/I270 corridor?

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

Stick with those three and you will be extremely extremely happy.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

you will be extremely extremely happy.

...and extremely hoppy.

Right off 95 in Lorton is Forge Brew Works (https://www.forgebrewworks.com/) and Fairwinds Brewery (https://fairwindsbrewing.com/?test=1). The owner/brewer of Forge is a Hokie and a good dude and their brews are solid. After you go there take 95/495 North and get off at Telegraph and head over to Port City Brewery (https://www.portcitybrewing.com/) and get some of the their Metro Red (if they still have any). Since you are heading out to Hagerstown you can also swing through Frederick, MD and swing by Flying Dog as well.

"We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior" Stephen M.R. Covey

“When life knocks you down plan to land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up, if you fall flat on your face it can kill your spirit” David Wilson

+1 on Port City

Hot take: Port City beer is average at best... I'd put it on the same level as Old Ox, Lost Rhino, Fairwinds, Honor, and all of the typical grocery store local beers.

Agreed. I feel like those breweries (admittedly haven't been to Rhino or Honor) are more about the experience than the beer. It's safe, easy to drink beer with the tap room being better than the beer. I really enjoyed Forge but I haven't been there in years

more about the experience than the beer

This. I feel, especially for Northern VA - if you have a decent piece of land, with a view and/or a decent amount of space, people will show up in droves regardless of the quality of the beer. Look at Port City, 2 Silos, Fairwinds, Lost Rhino, Old Ox, Quattro Goombas, Dirt Farm, and Vanish (all in Northern VA) the places are absolutely PACKED on the weekends, and their beers are terrible to below-average at best.

Basically the winery experience with beer instead.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Add to your list Mustang Sally's in Centerville, Heritage in Manassas, and Tin Cannon in Gainesville. I've been to all three and can't remember a beer that impressed me, but their tap rooms were pretty nice.

I was really impressed with the BadWolf Brewing Company (their smaller, micro brew spot across from Heritage Brewing) in Manassas. Huge samplers and some really unique stuff. And the time I spent drinking some of Adroit Theory's stuff out of Purcellville struck a chord with me. Not all of them are home runs, but they definitely churn out some interesting brews.

Oh yes, Mustang Sally is terrible and Heritage too. I haven't been to Tin Cannon, but their beers sound like the other breweries we've listed.

Adroit is putting out some decent brews right now - they got away from their high gravity only stouts and quads and have been doing some great IPA's, Gose, and Adjuncty Stouts.

Tell that to the variety of breweries in northern VA that have failed.

Hotter take - they don't brew the trendy styles you favor, so you don't really know much about them.

Chem PhD '16

Port City is very traditional with their brew methods - several of their styles are paying homage to their European roots and feature traditional ingredients. To each their own on beer preference - but that's the cool thing about beer and what I appreciate most, is that there is a style for everyone.

I do enjoy trendy styles but generally speaking, the styles that I favor vary greatly; anywhere from the very primitive methods of a Pen Druid or the similar likes of Cantillion, Jester King or Allagash brewing with brettanomyces, to traditional IPAs like Pliney the Elder or Lawsons's Finest Liquids, or Maine Beer Company, or the big robust stouts of Oskar Blues, Founders, Bottle Logic, or Cycle. My go to everyday beer is a Dale's Pale Ale or Sierra Nevada Pale; pioneers in the craft beer industry. I don't always favor the trendy styles, but do enjoy them.

At the end of the day, Port City makes a lot of average at best beers in the grand scheme of things.

I strongly disagree that 'average' is a term suitable for GABF medaling beers. Especially since a couple of their beers have medaled more than once. In the grand scheme, Port City is quite a bit above average across the board. Some of their beers are home runs, some are just good examples of the style.

Small Brewery/Brewer of the Year @ 2015 GABF

Porter - Robust Porter - Silver @ 2015 GABF
Optimal Wit - Wit bier - Bronze @ 2015 GABF, Gold @ 2013 GABF
Monumental IPA - English IPA - Silver @ 2015 GABF, Bronze @ 2012 GABF
Oktoberfest - Vienna-style lager - Silver @ 2013 GABF
Colossal One - Belgian imperial stout - Bronze @ 2013 GABF
Colossal Two - smoked porter - Bronze @ 2013 GABF
Colossal V - English Old Ale - Silver @ 2016 GABF

I understand they have won medals for the styles they brew - they like to brag about that a lot going so far to have a page dedicated to all of their accolades on their website, similar to Devil's Backbone. However, GABF medals are not always gospel; there is an overwhelming majority of breweries that do not send entries to GABF (some of the styles mentioned have less than 100 entries, which is a small population of the craft beer industry as a whole).

That's true - some breweries are too cool to send entries to judged competitions. I don't blame them... when you are riding the hype train, constantly sell out your production and your brand is based on rarity and word of mouth... why risk your reputation by being judged by impartial, 3rd party experts? That doesn't mean medals from large, prestigious judged competitions are meaningless.

Port City generally brews great examples of the styles they choose to brew. Just because you don't like the style doesn't mean it's 'average at best'. They have some misses, just like almost every brewery in the world, but they've also spent some time tweaking and adjusting recipes over the years, so if you haven't had any of their beer recently you might be surprised by what they taste like these days.

Based on your preferences listed above, you might enjoy their Porter, Integral IPA, Metro Red and Long Black Veil. The Essential Pale ale may not be bitter enough for you but the founders of Beer Advocate seem to like it better than Dale's Pale Ale.

Well yeah, that and there's generally a fee that starts at $250 for the first entry. And if your beer doesn't fit perfectly in the style guidelines, you'll score very badly and it's a pain in the neck to get the beer to the judging, if you don't drop it off there, it'll be mishandled and not temperature controlled, etc, etc, etc.

You may have an outstanding beer, but if it's not within the style guidelines, don't waste your money.

some breweries are too cool to send entries to judged competitions. I don't blame them...

Thank you.
Prost!

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

how much is an entry in the Virginia Craft Brewer's Cup?

I can't comment on entry cost, but I have judged for this competition before. I think the Cup is very hit and miss (just ignore me if I'm derailing the conversation). First of all, the entries are judged to specific guidelines developed by the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP). I've noticed a lot of entrants don't understand or read the guidelines and the judges themselves can be pretty inconsistent (why enter an oatmeal stout in the Irish stout category? Or don't rate a beer well just because you liked it - it may not be the corred ). There is also a shortage of BJCP certified judges so at some point they start taking almost anyone they can get. Like I mentioned, some judges don't do a great job of interpreting the guidelines. Plenty of us are still working on overcoming the deficiencies with their palate (it's something all judges are supposed to be working on, but it can be difficult to calibrate).

Most judges are also assigned categories at random. I know people who can't pick up diacetyl (popcorn butter) at all. If they are judging a style that isn't supposed to have the butter flavor or aroma, like a German Pils, then you immediately have one judge who can't give a accurate rating for an entire flight. You can also have the opposite problem. What if someone is really sensitive to Dimethyl sulfide (DMS, creamed corn/cabbage smell) or sulfur? Then beers entered in style categories that allow for low levels may be downgraded unfairly. These sorts of problems are supposed to be weeded out by having at least 2 judges per flight, but I'm always a little skeptical. Maybe both judges have the same holes or someone achieved a higher certification out of dumb luck.

I understand this is the best way to run these sorts of competitions, but there are so many issues with it that I have my doubts about reliability.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

I have to agree with everything made in this statement.
Let me point out that a Mexican lager won, in 2 separate style categories. Mexican lager does not belong in the pale European lagers category and also in the International lagers category.

I sent in 3 entries. Each entry should have 3 judges. We had a total of 4 judge sheets across 3 categories. 2 of the beers had 1 judge and 1 of the beers had 2 judges and one of those was a novice.

One BJCP judge hit me hard on appearance because it was aged on bourbon barrels and so did not meet color guidelines for the base style. Something it did not have to reach because it should not have been judged by the base style. It was in the wood aged category.

This is a problem I find in many competitions. It is why I stopped entering competitions in 1996.
Hit because barrel aged beers had astringency ( from the wood so, appropriate). Judge didn't know what flavor bourbon added to beer, etc

That feedback is just appalling. It clearly shows that the judges were not even reading the style guidelines. The wood aged section clearly says the appearance allows for a darker color than the base style. And the other comments show a clear lack of knowledge.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

When I entered the Dominion Cup, I had two judges. One was a BJCP certified person, the other was a trainee. Both gave descriptions, which I agreed with, for the most part. One wanted a bit more bitterness, which wouldn't fit the beer at all. I don't know if they scored independent of one another, but one was a 46 and the other was a 45. So, they were very close, and very consistent on their comments. They seemed to be the right people for that category. So, I have to say I was happy in that instance.
I've not had any other BJCP judged competitions, so I can't say there.

I could just be a competition to competition thing on number of judges. Two should be a minimum, though.

It is supposed to be 3 as a minimum.

It really depends on the judges you get. Some are really good while others...have their struggles. A good judge knows where they struggle and will compensate or at least let the other judge know what sorts of aromas/flavors they have trouble with. If you get a Grand Master level judge or National level you're probably in pretty good shape for feedback and scores. They are normally good at coaching up the less experienced judges. The issues have a tendency to arise more when the judges for your entry are less experienced. Getting a Certified judge and a Recognized judge will probably be a mixed bag.

Judges are supposed to agree within 2-3 points on their scores and your final score is an average of the two. This is normally not a problem - my main concern with judges is when they give wildly different feedback on the same beer. I've admittedly done this myself, I am not innocent here. The main point of the scoresheets in homebrew competitions is to provide feedback and suggestions on how to improve the beer. So the judges should be picking up similar characteristics. If one gets green apple and astringency from a beer submitted as an Irish Red while the other perceives light acidity and harsh bitterness then the brewer will receive wildly different suggestions on how to improve. That information is completely useless for beginning brewers - do they need to worry about pulling the beer off the yeast early (green apple), over sparging or sparging too hot (astringency), contamination (acidity), or over hopping? Is it all of them? So after spending the money to submit to this competition this brewer basically gets nothing back from it besides being told "your beer has flaws."

When it comes to the quantity of judges, homebrew competitions are normally about 2 judges per flight. I am not sure what VA Craft Brewers Cup promises, but I know it normally ends up being only 2. There just are not enough judges who will volunteer their entire day to taste beer. Despite the fact that it sounds easy - you're just drinking beer all day right? - it's actually rather tiring to be that detailed and precise when judging 20-30 beers. I judged 3 flights in a day once and I fell asleep in the car on the way back and it was not because of the alcohol. I get e-mail blasts about twice a week asking for judges from as far away as Indiana, Kentucky, or Pittsburgh. I'm only a recognized judge right now and they'll take me anywhere because it's difficult to get enough judges.

Oh and congratulations! It sounds like you made a fantastic beer. 45+ scores are very rare.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

IIRC you got 2for $275. Then an additional fee for each one after that.

you can haz em. haz em all.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

You can add The Answer and Final Gravity to your Richmond list. If you end up trying to avoid DC traffic, Aslin is out in Herndon and Dirt Farm is worth a visit for the view more than beer.

Agree with the Dirt Farm statement - view is amazing; beer is absolutely atrocious.

Nothing I had was bad, but I stuck with darker ales. I think their red was my favorite. The view is definitely why you go though.

Red Dragon in Fredericksburg is amazing. Their TIPAs are on par with Veil, and their sours are very Answer-like. Beer Control can validate.

Edit: TC and Veil are automatic nods. Pointing out that I fully endorse Cushwa - their brews are very very good. They're starting to can some of their beers, check their FB page on if they have cans available around the time you head up there.

I don't know if this is a new practice for them or not, but Cushwa will can any beer they have on tap into a 32oz crowler right when you order it (see my picture below).

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

Nice! Yea, I forgot to mention that they do Crowlers to go. Hope you enjoyed them!

Looks like a solid haul for you - great weekend!

i haven't had enough of red dragon ipas to speak on that, but they have very good sours.

honestly, veil ipas haven't been as good and wildly inconsistent since january.

tcb makes the best, most consistent new england style ipas in the state. i would rather drink benchtop and commonwealth down here in the 757 than chase veil ipas ... at this moment at least.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

Veil Beers suffered from a ton of inconsistency and varying quality for a few months right after they got the new system set up, but they're back up to peak form these days. That said, I still think Triple Crossing makes better beer more consistently. Also a neighborhood store recently started stocking Commonwealth and holy shit...some of the best in that style i've ever had. I drink Veil plenty cause it's nearby, but if you have Commonwealth readily available there's really no reason to seek out any other Hazy Ipas.

Hot take: The Veil isn't even a top 3 IPA brewer in Richmond. I'd give top 3 to Triple Crossing, Final Gravity, and The Answer.
And I completely agree with you both about Commonwealth, they make some insane hazy IPAs.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

I'm usually the one taking the contrarian opinion and downplaying the Veil (especially to out of towners), so I'd say this take is lukewarm at most. I don't know if I quite agree (I still think they're second), but I certainly can't argue with you, both Final Gravity and The Answer are fantastic. Final Gravity has got to be one of the most slept on breweries in the state, I've never met anyone outside of Richmond that's heard of them, but they do incredible stuff.

I completely agree with this statement.

I do think Veil makes some incredibly tasty TIPAs, they're tough to beat, but the others also do not brew a ton of TIPAs- but for IPAs/DIPAs: I give the nod to Answer, TC, and FG for sure!

cat boy figures in the mix at veil, since he is doing the majority of ipa brewing there now.

commonwealth's smaller batches are brewery only, at least in the 757. if you can get those in rva, then good on ya.

try some of benchtops norwegian yeast ipa series, led by gong water. really cool stuff.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

Pretty sure I 've only had Papi Chulo and Big Papi so far. Local store just got in Iconoclast, Aurora, and 2UP2DOWN though, those worth shelling out for?

I feel like I've had Benchtop before, but I can't remember, will be keeping an eye out.

Aurora, iconoclast and if you get guavita or bizango ... hell yes, all worth getting. 2up is p good, but Id rather have veil fruited kettle sours.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

I happened to be in VA Beach this weekend and stopped by Commonwealth on my way out to pick up some beer. Already tried the Gutavita, and it was fantastic. I wish they had a larger selection of cans when I went but I think I got a decent haul. Next time I'm down there I'm going to have to spend an afternoon there.

I would just stay in Raleigh and drink/eat at Brewery Bhavana the entire weekend. Visited a couple weeks ago and went there Friday for dinner. Went back Sunday on the way out to get a growler and ended up eating there again. One of the best meals I've ever had in my life, and the beer is not far behind.

Thanks everyone for the recommendations! I ended up hitting Triple Crossing, The Veil, Hardywood Park, Lickinghole Creek, and Cushwa.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

That looks like a nice haul, great can art gets me every time.

Same here! Richmond breweries have incredible can design game.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

Danny Coale Caught That Ball!!!

I've been to Munich several times and enjoy Augustiner Brau, but never been during Oktoberfest. Anyone here ever been to Oktoberfest, is it worth it?

I went in 2010 and had a great time. Some things to think about before booking though. It really helps to have table reservations, but you usually need a party of 8-10 people to reserve and I don't know if they are still available. If you can't make reservations (I couldn't because we only had 3 people), they encourage you to get there really early to try and scoop up the open seats. We had the best luck with the Bräurosl tent. It's run by Hacker-Pschorr. They didn't require us to be seated to be served. Also it's worth pointing out but probably goes without saying, be prepared to drink alot. Once you find a spot/table, you might not find another one that night.

Yeah, the table reservations have always been what's held me back. I would have 3-4 people at most.

Yup, been twice.
1. Its great. Bring lots of cash
2. Hacker Schorr has a nice tent
3. Try the Marzen
4. Eat a LOT
5. If you have a big group, get there at tent opening. If you have a small group....get there not too long after tent opening. Eat some white sausage and apple dumplings for breakfast.

Just returned after taking 4 students to TUM-Weihenstephan for a month. Studied German Brewing Techniques, technology etc. involved theory and practical Application (we brewed several wheat beers.) Won't be able to post many pictures due to student and privacy guidelines. This will be an annual exchange with TUM, we are hosting their students in August, I need to work on that programming!

Had lots of fantastic drinkable beers, and learned/saw a lot. too much to post about but here are the highlights:

  • Cultural Excursions such as Kloster Weltenburg (Oldest Monastic Operating Brewery 1050AD
  • Yeast Micro Evaluation Theory and Practical
  • Malting (with a visit to Weyermann in Bamburg)
  • hops with a visit to Hallertau and HVG processors and research brewery
  • QA/QC Evaluations for Brewing Process, Including complete DIN 8777 Brewhouse Evaluation
  • Hopefully the students enjoyed it as much as I did!

Username checks out

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

Moving to DC in less than a month and definitely looking to try out a few breweries. I've been able to pick out a few from these threads but looking for a few more if you all got suggestions. What are your "can't miss" breweries and what's your favorite "hidden gem?"

Here lies It's a Stroman Jersey I Swear, surpassed in life by no one because he intercepted it.

A few that are pretty good that I haven't noticed in the thread already:

Crooked Run in Leesburg

Bald Top Brewing in Madison

Far Gohn Brewing in Culpepper which is also right around the corner from Beer Hound Brewery

More generally, Loudoun County has tons of breweries (LoCo Ale Trail). Pretty easy to make a day hopping around them.

Danny Coale Caught That Ball!!!

I wish DC had more good breweries within the city. Sometimes it is just a pain to go to Loudoun and make it back.

Edit: Moved to reply above where it was intended to go.

Danny Coale Caught That Ball!!!

So this past weekend my neighborhood Lowes Foods randomly puts Founder's KBS on draft. I go there to fill up a growler, and the guy says that it's a 2017 keg that he's been aging in his dairy fridge for over a year. My coworker also brought me back Zombie Dust from his trip to Kentucky over the weekend, so it's been a pretty good week for me.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

Uhhh, which Lowe's foods?

It's long gone my friend. They almost immediately sold out after they listed it on Untappd.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

You're in Raleigh, I'm in Mooresville, but I thought I'd ask just in case.

It was at the Lowes Food on Strickland Road in North Raleigh.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

it would age better at a slightly warmer temp, than 40 degrees, but it's always a nice find. this spring i ran across a CBS at Harris Teeter owned beverage center in Charlotte. starting that way at 3pm made for a long Friday night.

eric

"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

Anybody here had Casita Cervecerita beer? Former Duck Rabbit head brewer is there now and does a bunch of colabs with east coast breweries and I gotta say they might be my new favorite non-local brewery.

Go Getta IPA, Shoegaze Pale Ale, Kingdom of the Clouds DIPA and Optical Obstacles IPA are my favorites so far.

I just sit on my couch and b*tch. - HokieChemE2016

I've had TTYL (New England/Double IPA collaboration with Trophy Brewing) and it was fantastic. The head brewer also worked at Hill Farmstead for a while, so he definitely knows his shit.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

I think they are a nomad brewery, correct? I think they're down in North Carolina though - Didn't they do the Southward Stout that was amazing?

From what I can tell from articles and the cans, they are in Vermont but almost everything is a collab and often with a NC or VA brewery

I just sit on my couch and b*tch. - HokieChemE2016

I tried to land a couple of their beers in trade, but was unsuccessful, I've heard amazing things about them though. Seems as if Duck-Rabbit is allowing them to brew there since Ryan worked there?

Just saw on their site that is a new thing. Pretty awesome. Glad they've been specializing in something other than the Duck Rabbit-style dark beers.

I just sit on my couch and b*tch. - HokieChemE2016

I can totally trade you some if you want. I've been seeing a ton of their brews in bottle shops around Raleigh.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

My current favorite is Aviator Mad Beach Wheat. Biggest problem is that I've only been able to find it at one place that I will not be mentioning here for any Hokies living in the Triangle for fear that doing so may potentially interrupt my ability to acquire it. However, if you do see it and you like wheat beer, I highly recommend it!

Someone on here hack the tech 247 star rankings?
Lol

Fugazy

woulda thought Bru would have the highest rating.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Yep, Bru is definitely not a drain pour.

This is awesome, but shouldn't be be a stout or a Black IPA or something...darker.

"We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior" Stephen M.R. Covey

“When life knocks you down plan to land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up, if you fall flat on your face it can kill your spirit” David Wilson

Yeah, fell like they completely missed the target with the style.

Unless there is some specific reason for the Pils. Sorta like when Dogfish did the Pearl Jam beer. Figured it would be a black IPA...the whole Seattle PNW grunge thing. But the PJ guys enjoyed red wine, so that was the theme/styling of the beer. Odd, but whatevs.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Upside - as a Pilsner there's a chance it could actually be a good all day tailgating choice.

Run to Win. Pass To Score
Josh Jackson on Ricky Walker - ““He is the captain of this team, He’s the leader. He’s the bell cow, the Pail Holder.“

Now I've got to keep my eye out for this, Stone labels always throw me off cause they all look the same.

I can dig this, as I really dig Stone and their owners' outlook on the independent brewer vs. conglomerate battle. But I'm still a Ballast Point fanboy.