Sunday, June 6, 2021

I found the Best Brewery in America, in Pompano, FL

I've been there twice, and have not posted about it because this place and these dude require a proper introduction; so let's call this a preface. The brewer is a Rock star virtuoso, like the guy from Smashing Pumpkins. 

So, if you can relate to Lambics, and Sour Belgians and naturally, wild fermented experiments and you're within 400 miles of Pompano, then get in your car and go. It's happened twice, and I can confirm, like some new scientific finding after massive data crunching, it's hands down, the best beer I've ever had.

It's called:

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Unicorn Swap Disruptor Porter, Cider, Catawaba Beer, Hard Cider Wine Beverage (Not a Lambic)

We called this our "Unicorn Swap Disruptor" #Homebrew a study in Porter, Cider, Catawaba beverage that we made comes in; in that order.  And it's not a Lambic either-- no wild yeast. EC 1118, often used for White wines or wine with funky alts adjuncts like this crazy as F beer cider, wine that is very very as drinkable as any Craft beer out there.

And we brewed the whole 7 gallons for about 1/40th of an Ethereum coin (trading at $3,900 US fiat as of today).

You make 7 gallons of this with your best girl, or boy, or pug and you've got the chance to not only bond over it, but also to get bombed for weeks thereafter. 

We used some for an IPA variation, and some straight, unadorned with hops or adjuncts. with an alkaline mouth feel, but a really very shockingly good beverage, here, man. Color and froth is loverly, as you can see from my phone pix. ferments out. I got this from a winery. I try to avoid chemical herbicides and such, hormone disruption is not my favorite disruption, as my wise guy remarks suggest at the top of the column, so Organics... but you never know.

Here, to the Left is a version I did after dry hopping it with my cheesy favorites-- Chinook, Centennial and other misc hops I had laying about, which ended up very much like New Belgium VooDoo Hop Ranger Imperial IPA, in case you're looking for the path to that door.   You can see the White,thin head that came from adding hops in the bottled IPA version.   This one was very thin because was added even more sugars to raise the ethanol level (so it would last a longer time without getting stale.. bottle aging a bit).  That did not work for this bottle because we saw no reason to wait for the next pandemic before YOLOing it down, right? 

You can probably get very close using a Porter boil, and mixing cider and a good quality fresh grape juice (no sulfites to kill the yeast). I know Costco's apple juice (Kirkland?)

This current batch under review that we've come together to sample in a pairing that with some fermented cabbage and beat Kraut here today is no IPA by contrast. It was never so dramatic with bitters and hops. You can see the different color of the head here compared to the IPA version that we bottled with corks.

I added very little hops here, and mostly pie flavors (clove and cinnamon). And so-- the flavor was clean, mild, smooth, and more cider-wine on the spectrum-- in fact, not unlike Kombucha G- damn it-- which is a big find for me. It smelled wonderful, like a cab driver's Ocean Breeze Air freshener wrapped in angle's underwear.

But this ended up like Kombucha with legs, or horns or lets call it prowess. No dank diesel notes, but so dry and alkaline that is seems to evaporate from the tongue, like your high school girlfriend/boyfriend, when their parents walked into the laundry room with you. Nearly sweet, but wait-- hell no-- the sugars are gone baby gone. Sorry, Magner fans. You can add fruit juice on pouring for a sweeter beverage, but not before, because it's all going to Ethanol in this show. And I'll be DAMNED if it weren writing home about... home being here, of course..

Fresh and light and nice, without diesel odors or flavors that some other American vitis Labrusca grapes impart from their Lambrusca heritage. Lambrusca...  Lambrusca is like that pipe hitting great great great great great ancestor Pirate who robbed ships and traded slaves and plundered sugar cane after getting kicked out of the British Navy (laid off, not fired for cause), and who saved Europe and advanced capitalism by resisting monopolies, but who nobody really wants to discuss at length. Or that hit man brother of one your Mafia grandpa who paid for everyone's emergencies with ill gotten gains.  Strong ingredient so approach with caution. This one is great-- Catawaba-- and others too probably won't give you that kind of trouble. Concord grape juice I will not vouch.  It's find in Welch's jams, but it's powerful stuff when fermented, and not for it's ethanol but for it's very Diesel flavors.  You might like that flavor, but be warned.

If you're going to brew something radical, these ingredients are a good path to the rally. You can find Catawaba grape juice for shipping direct in Ohio vineyards and Buffalo, NY. Cider too. No need to limit yourself to Porter malts either.

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Single Sourced Colombian Coffee, at the Truck Stop...


I kid you not-- just when I needed a good long laugh on a long drive from Cleveland to NY, I walked right into this at the Pilot, when I stopped to drain and replenish.  

"Single Sourced" Colombian coffee... so important to over the road truck drivers and other long hawlers (the highway type).  No beans from the Dominican Republic mixed in here, to destroy the integrity of the terroir coming out of this spigot. 

No way. 

Such a relief... comic relief. 

Petrus Aged Ale-- Absurdly Good.


I ran across this in my beer dungeon yesterday, and it turned out to be a good antidote for processing family tragedy.  It was a reliable name, and it was as good as it gets-- perhaps the best sour brewers on the planet with apologies to nobody. 

You'll find them online here:

Doc's Hopped Cider and Salmon

Not sure if I've said enough about Doc's Cider over in the black soils of Warwick on Little York Road, but I ran across photo of a fish we paired up with Doc's Hopped Cider last fall, after going to the Orchard for hilarious, fun apple picking. This pairing was a grand slam-- I can tell you about it, and show you, but you need to git some with some version of this Honey Lemon roasted salmon recipe and taste it.  I don't know how it was made-- the cook is not talking.

Doc's Hopped Cider is my favorite cider by it's own self-- pure genius, the kind that makes home brewers and cider makers say "I wish I thought of that" (even if they did, making small batches in the garage years before Doc went big with it) but stand this Doc's Hopped Cider along side "fishy" fish like yonder salmon and you'll get a perfect couple.  The cider has a that thin white wine-ish profile to start, albeit obviously apple based, as all ciders that are not those big, cloying sweet commercial production ciders... (on tap in woody bars, imported from UK, but shall remain un-named, and undrank).  But then the dry hopping that makes a plain old cider about 340% more interesting and all the food superlatives that we all apparently never tire of hearing and saying... which is in and of itself, amaaaaaaazing.

I mean-- look, it's taken a dip since it's 2013 peak, but it's still hovering, and buzzing from mouths from LA to Johannesburg.. Perth, Singapore-- Fk it, add Hong Kong, see,

I thought "Amazing" jumped the shark a long time ago, but now Landscapers use it when they are closing sales... to cut your grass (true story), which closed the deal-- I cut it myself.  What am I, 101?  And you know what-- my grass looked AMAAAAAAZINGK!

Nevertheless, if you know what's good for you, don't wait for another COVID19 Apple Picking Season this fall, you should get out of town for some fresh air this spring, maybe drive up to Warwick, NY for Doc's Cider orchard, with 31,043 other people on the weekends, or during the week with just 332.  They have those graduates or students from Culinary Institute of America cooking pizza and making salads and things that pair well with the product. Sometimes there's live music, but you'll want to call ahead for all that.  

Here's the way: