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June Beer Releases

06-03-2015

June heralds in the start of summer  throughout the West Side Beer locations with returning and brand new beer releases. Sip on and celebrate summer! 

 

Perrin Brewing Co. VPA 

A returning limited specialty from Perrin Brewing Co. is now available for summer. Brewed in support of the Finish the Mission Veterans Relief Fund, Veteran's Pale Ale is a refreshing pale ale with a heady hop aroma, clean malt body and crisp finish. 5% ABV 40 IBUs. 

 

 

Arcadia Ales Cheap Date 

The newest year-round release from Arcadia Ales is set to last all day (or date). This session ale showcases a citrus hop aroma with a golden malt body and a crisp finish. 4.5% ABV 30 IBUs. Available in Grand Rapids and Lansing. 

 
 

Stone Brewing Co. Specialties 

 
Returning specialties from Stone Brewing Co. are slated to be released intermittently throughout June. First, is the returning seasonal specialty, Saison (6% ABV 45 IBUs) a farmhouse ale with a citric and herbal character. Ruin10 IPA (10.8% ABV 110 IBUs) will be back in all its hoppy glory, as well.Finally, Enjoy By 7/4 will drop in Grand Rapids and Lansing for a month's worth of enjoyment
 
 

Right Brain Brewery Strawberry Fields

 
A cream ale brewed with fresh strawberries, is back on tap.This limited seasonal specialty showcase a bready malt character with a smooth mouthfeel that combines with bright fruit flavor to create an overall flavor profile akin to strawberry shortcake. 5.5% ABV 
 
To find out about upcoming releases on a monthly basis be sure to sign up for our craft beer newsletter! 
 
 

7 Beer Experts to Grab a Beer With

04-07-2015

There is no doubt that we’ll be celebrating #NationalBeerDay in good beery fashion. What else are you supposed to do in order to pay homage to the official repeal of Prohibition than to return to the original social networking group and grab a beer with your friends? Although Ranker already reported on the top celebrities to grab a beer with, we think there is no better person to drink with than a beer expert. This list is in no way comprehensive but does serve to highlight some of the absurdly smart, hysterical and trailblazing folks who have helped shape the beer community into what it is today.

 

Jim Koch. Founder, Boston Beer Company

One of the OGs of the craft beer community, Jim Koch knows a thing or two (or a thousand) about the beer industry and can probably entertain you with stories all night. All while teaching you the secrets to not getting drunk.

 

 

Dale Kotechis. Founder, Oskar Blues Brewery

From brewing beer in bathtubs to becoming the 2012 Craft Brewer of the Year, Dale has successfully gone against many accepted methods to further push the boundaries of craft beer. While downing those 19.2 ounce cans of Dale’s you’ll gain new perspectives on craft beer trends and maybe learn how to trick out your bike.

 

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Brett Porter. Brewmaster, Goose Island Brewery

Brett is the man to talk to if you want to learn anything about barrel aged beer, considering Goose Island’s continual success with their program. Based off of his Reddit AMA he’s full of puns and up front information about beer.

 

Mitch Steele. Brewmaster, Stone Brewing Co.

I have a personal bias that Mitch Steele is one of the coolest people to drink with, which is why he is on this list.  Beyond personal bias, the guy knows his way around an IPA and his numerous years of experience have provided him with tales to entertain throughout a night of drinking.

 

 

 

Russ Springsteen. Founder, Right Brain Brewery.

Russ founded a brewery focused on intuitive, well-crafted “right brain” beers, which is how he is. Be prepared converse and analyze beer in a whole new light while laughing at his sly wit as you learn how and why he came up with ideas for beers brewed with pig heads and whole pies.

 

 

Kim Jordon. Co-Founder, New Belgium Brewing Co.

Want to learn how to start and run an internationally successful brewery? Sit down with Kim, who co-founded a brewery on the main prospect of being a force of good and made it into a successful business model for New Belgium Brewing Co.  

 

 

Mike Plesz. Founder, Rochester Mills Beer Co.

Thanks to Mike’s focus on impeccable quality, Rochester Mills Beer Co. has been a craft beer staple in Michigan. His enthusiasm for brewing is infectious to the point where a night of drinking with him will pass by in a flash of good beer and great conversation. If you’re lucky, like I was, he might even give you great tips for new ways to cook with beer.

 

 

 

 

New Craft Beer Releases for April

03-31-2015

April showers bring new beers to devour. From returning favorites, brand spankin' new brews to super limited series and widely available seasonals, your beer needs will be covered this month.

 

 

The first of the month will bring Tongue Tied Cherry Saison from Rochester Mills Beer Co. An unfiltered Belgian style ale, Tongue Tied Cherry Saison showcases the perfect blend of sweet and tart, thanks to Michigan-grown cherries. This summer seasonal will be available in draft only.

 

The oddly tasty, super limited annual release from Right Brain Brewery will be available for a heartbeat during April. Brewed with Mangalista pig skulls and bones, this robust porter combines the salty, umami taste of roasted ham and bacon with rich notes of chocolate malts.. 6.6% ABV 28 IBUs

 

 

Introducing itself to the Mitten State for the first time is the spring/summer seasonal from Deschutes Brewery, Twilight Summer Ale. Twilight is is a refreshing, golden-hued blonde ale with hints of lightly browned toast, floral and citrus hops with a crisp and clean finish. 5% ABV 35 IBUs

 

There are only 20 days left to get your hands on Enjoy By IPA 4.20.15 from Stone Brewing Co. Brewed with 12 hop varieties, this double IPA is dank with a hint of peachyness coming through on the tail end of a soothing malt bill. This limited release is available in Grand Rapids and Lansing. 9.4% ABV 88 IBUs

 

Available in Barry County only will be a limited release from Goose Island Brewing Co. Ten Hills Pale Ale from Goose Island Brewing Co. utilizes hops locally sourced from the first ten hills of Elk Mountain Farm in Idaho, with whom Goose Island collaborates with to source hops. Herbal and citrus hops are featured in this classically crafted pale ale. 6.2% ABV 52 IBUs

Beers To Hibernate With

02-06-2015

In a refusal to be overly dramatic, the weather outside isn't the result of an apocalypse of snow (we’ll save that for the zombies) but it sure is cold and snowy. To keep things cozy throughout the next six weeks of winter (thanks groundhog) here is an array of beers to warm your innards with.

 

 

Blake’s El Chavo

Everyone likes to escape to the tropics when winter comes along. For those who can’t afford the plane ticket, pick up some El Chavo so at least your tongue can be swept along with sweet apple and mango flavors, followed by a slow heat from fresh habanero peppers.

 

Right Brain Firestarter Porter

Layers of rich chocolate and roasted malt are accented by a slowly building heat in your throat as you sip on Firestarter. The slow heat combined with the robust flavor make it seem like you have a fireplace your mouth and throat. A really pleasant, tasty one.

 

Stone Old Guardian

A big beer is sometimes needed for to keep at bay the winter chills. Stone Brewing Co. Old Guardian does just that. This barley wine combines a huge malty backbone with a hefty addition of hops, resulting in a rich, slightly sweet and caramel-hued ale, all finishing on a note of dryness.

 

Smuttynose Old Brown Dog Ale

Roasty and toasty, this American-style brown ale is robust and bound to bring out the nostalgia that winter nights can conjure.  Just like man’s trusty best friend, this classic craft beer is always at hand and sure to please.

 

 

Stella Artois

A classic option for showering your dear ones with love, Stella Artois is a classic option for a night of celebration. Crisp and clean and showcasing a frothy white head, Stella Artois is a bright light in the dim of winter blues.

 

Perrin Big Konas

The fourth installment in the Killing Craft Series from Perrin Brewing Co., Big Konas is as decadent a treat. And there’s no better time to treat yo self than when the winds are blowing up a snow storm. Big Konas is brewed with cacao nibs from Ecuador and Ghana, along with Pacari Piura Nube chocolate bars and Indonesian civet coffee. The combination of these high quality ingredients result in a big ale full of complex dark chocolate and coffee aroma and flavor.

 

Enjoy By 07.04.14

06-03-2014

What’s more American than a ridiculously bold and bitter double IPA? Probably nothing. Which is why the next release in the Enjoy By Series from Stone Brewing Co. is meant to be enjoyed by or on America’s birthday. With Mitch Steele,  brewmaster at Stone Brewing Co., in town for the National Homebrewers’ Conference from June 11 to June 14 there is no better time to enjoy this limited release in celebration of craft beer, bold IPAs, and the birth of a nation.

 

 

Bottled just this past Friday, Enjoy By 07.04.14 has a 35-day life span. Designed to be enjoyed ASAP and brewed not to last, this IPA maintains a fresh, hoppy character as it cruises to your gullet. With 88 IBUs and an ABV of 9.4% this ale maintains a balance of overwhelmingly hoppy flavor. Brewed with eleven different hop varieties (Calypso, Super Galena, Simcoe, Delta, Target Amarillo, Motueka, Citra, Cascade, New Zealand Nelson Sauvin and Australian Galaxy) Enjoy By is characterized by layers of bitter complexity. The aroma showcases tropical fruit and light peach while the flavor profile balances complementing hop bitterness.

 

Tacos and Beer Pairing

05-05-2014

 

Cinco de Mayo is upon us, which means its time to celebrate Taco Tuesday a day early and get down on some taco and beer pairings.  

 
First, let's set the stage for this pairing. These tacos are all hypothetically topped with the basic toppings cilantro, onion and lime trio while each taco begins with on a double layer of warm corn tortilla. With those staples on each taco, the focus is on the featured meats flavor for creating a perfect beer pairing. 
 
Carnitas Tacos and New Belgium Fat Tire
 
Carnitas are pig parts braised then pan fried for a crispy, tender combination. New Belgium Fat Tire is an amber ale with a toasted malty sweetness that complements the carmelized meat. The malts are balanced out by a bitter hop edge, which stands up appropriately to the dish's spice while cutting through the fattiness.
 
Barbacoa Tacos and Stone Brewing Co. Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA
 
Barbacoa, form of barbecue meat that typically is shredded beef slow-cooked with magic to taste delicious has layers of dark, meaty, smoky and sweet flavors. These tacos demand a brew with the same level of complexity and intense flavor, which is where Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA from Stone Brewing Co. comes into play. The black ale's rich malty flavor is what first reaches the tongue and serves as an accessory to the smoked, rich meat. The bold Northwestern hops provide a whammy of bitterness that cleanly slices through the meat's richness and accentuates the bright lime citrus. 
 
Chicken Tacos and Blue Point Toasted Lager 
 
Toasted Lager from Blue Point Brewing Co.  matches the flavor strength of chicken tacos by providing a lightly toasted maltiness that blends nicely with the grilled chicken flavor while allowing the bright zest of lime to come to the forefront. The smooth lager finish creates a crisp refresher sip between bites that calms any residual spice left on the palate. 
 
Fish Tacos and Oskar Blues Mama's Little Yella Pils 
 
The light and delicate flavors found in fish tacos are enhanced by a light pilsner such as Oskar Blues Mama's Little Yella Pils. Brewed with pale and German malts for a mild base, which is then accented by Saaz hops, Mama's is a mild beer meant to be paired with light and citrusy fish tacos. 
 
 
 
 

RateBeer Best 2013

02-10-2014

Over the course of last week RateBeer came out with their annual best ratings. Our brands that we sell here in Grand Rapids (and in Barry County, as is the case with Goose Island) did quite well on the RateBeer  Best lists for 2013.  Although it's just a list, it is fun to see how tastes evolve, year to year and it is especially exciting to see some personal favorites on the list, as well. Below are the results.

 

 

The Top Brewers in the World

The Best Beers in the World

  • Goose Island Bourbon County Barleywine
  • Goose Island Carolus Cuvee Van de Keiser Blauw/Blue
  • Sam Adams Utopias
  • Stone Brewing Co. Enjoy By IPA
  • Stone Brewing Co. Russian Imperial Stout

The Best Beers by Style Category

  • Double IPA: Stone Brewing Co. Enjoy By IPA. 7th place
  • Stout: Goose Island Bourbon County Stout. 3rd place
  •             Goose Island Bourbon County Stout – Coffee. 9th place
  •             Goose Island Bourbon County Stout Proprietor’s 2013. 13th place
  • Strong: Goose Island Bourbon County Barleywine. 1st place
  •                 Samuel Adams Utopias. 4th place
  • Imperial Baltic Porter: Smuttynose Baltic Porter. 6th place

Top Releases of 2013

  • Goose Island Bourbon County Barleywine
  • Goose Island Bourbon County Stout Proprietor’s 2013

Breweries by Subregion

  • Illinois: Goose Island Brewing – Best Brewery. Goose Island Bourbon County Stout – Best Beer
  • Maryland: Flying Dog Gonzo Imperial Porter – Best Beer
  • New Hampshire: Smuttynose Brewing – Best Brewery. Smuttynose Baltic Porter – Best Beer

 

 

Enjoy By IPA 02.14.14

01-14-2014

Stone Enjoy by IPA 02.14.14

 

 

The long-awaited day is here!

 

Starting tomorrow Grand Rapids and Lansing Michigan will be privy to the newest installment in the Stone Brewing Co. Enjoy By IPA series.

 

Let’s all take a moment to bask in the hoppy happiness that comes with that knowledge.

 

Brewed specifically to be big, bold and bursting with hop flavor this IPA is guaranteed not to last. In fact. as I type this you have exactly 31 days, 9 hours, 25 minutes and 7 seconds to guzzle down the beer before it’s gone or at least gone bad. In the age of collecting, cellaring and coveting beers to savor at our leisure, why make and make a beer that is designed to go against those hobbies? Well, Stone Brewing Co. is doing something fantastic for the craft drinkers out there – it’s creating a tangible and purposeful teaching moment, one pint at a time with Enjoy By IPA. This is the next level for beer drinkers out there that highlights the importance of pure freshness in a brew.

 

This Enjoy By IPA is made to be drank by February 14, 2014, which is a great way to celebrate Valentine’s Day in my opinion. It is a double IPA with a whopping hit of citrus and floral hops. Clocking in with 9.4% ABV and 88 IBUs it is a very dry and bitter brew that conveys a dank hoppiness in the head, with malts that on first sip smooth the way for a hop overload. It finishes dry and bitter, with a slight hint of alcohol warmth in the throat.

 

Find it. Drink it. Enjoy it. 02.14.14.

 

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Most Arrogant Bar Challenge 2013

11-21-2013

Most Arrogant Bar Challenge

 

 

 

Bastards and arrogance abound as the annual Stone Brewing Co. Most Arrogant Bar Challenge is finally here. The contest lets drinkers put their taste buds to work, with each participating bar seeing who can sell the most liquid arrogance and reign as the “Most Arrogant Bar.” There are several bars within the Grand Rapids and Lansing areas that have taken up the challenge to be “Most Arrogant Bar” so make sure to search them out for a chance to support them in their quest for the title.

 

After a week of sipping on liquid arrogance I am already aware of the side effects. These side effects include feeling really good about myself, attempting impossible feats (such as somersaulting), wearing different patterned clothing (now everything looks fabulous on me) and challenging strangers to thumb wrestling contests. In short, my confidence is through the roof and has reached the point of arrogance.

 

Although some of the side effects listed above could be considered dangerous  (too many thumb wrestling matches can lead to severe thumb strains), these risks are well worth it considering the reward for your mouth. Beers that are included in the liquid arrogance list include Arrogant Bastard, OAKED Arrogant Bastard, Lukcy Bastartd and Double Bastard. Try one or all, vote with your taste buds in getting your favorite bar the title of “Most Arrogant Bar” and discover if you are truly worthy to go for Stone Brewing Co.’s bastards.  

The 6 Best Beers for Halloween

halloween, holiday, craft beer

The 6 Best Beers for Halloween

 

Halloween, the one day where you can be whatever you want to be. Hopefully, no matter your costume selection, you will choose to imbibe a beer to wash down all that candy. Here are a few beers to get ghoulish with tonight.

 

 

Angry Orchard Cinnful Apple

Although Angry Orchard is a cider, it gets to be included because the name and the drink are that good. Delightfully tart and sweet with a bit of heat from the cinnamon, this cider provides excuse enough to make tonight as cinnful as possible.

 

Blue Point Old Howling Bastard

The perfect beer accessory for those who want to dress up like an angry, old bald man, this barley-wine strong ale (10% ABV) will keep you warm and toasty throughout marathon trick or treating.

 

 

Flying Dog Gonzo Imperial Porter

The skeletons out and about tonight will adore this porter’s label while the rest of us enjoy this bold and black beer brewed in honor of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson.

 

Petoskey Brewing Horny Monk

Petoskey Brewing provides a red, malty and complex Belgian-style ale for all the booze-loving monks and friars that will be out, rather oddly celebrating All Hollows’ Eve.

 

 

 

Right Brain Blue Magic

Eerily floral, this ale brewed with locally-sourced lavender, is no witch’s brew but it will definitely make your mouth taste like magic.

 

 

Stone Brewing  Ruination IPA

Tonight delight in the ruin, doom and gloom as the skies darken while sipping devilishly bitter IPA.

10 Things as Soft as Suede

10-29-2013

10 Things as Soft as Suede




Suede, the fabric, is pretty great. Suede, the beer, is awesome. Part of the reason this brew is so awesome is that the flavor balance and mouthfeel are both as smooth as the soft fabric. Which made me think, what else is super awesome and soft like suede? These are the top ten soft like suede things, personally. What would be on your list? 

 

1. Puppies when they cuddle up next to you

 

2. Deep conditioned and brushed hair (or beard).

 

3. My sheets when I accidentally throw in twelve fabric softener sheets instead of one.

 

4. Those fuzzy socks that make it look like you have furry feet.

 

5. Flower petals. Although, if you rub then on your face you may end up with pollen up your nose and an allergic reaction.

 

6. Frozen yogurt looks and is very soft.

 

7. The snuggie blanket you pretend you don’t own but secretly covet all winter long.

 

8. Chapstick with shea butter or something in it.

 

9. Peanut butter.

 

10. Suede Imperial Porter from Stone Brewing Co. 

9.6% ABV 

Avocado honey, jasmine and calendula flowers infuse this imperial porter with a deep, complex flavor that is as smooth as suede.  Intense floral flavor highlights the dark cocoa and coffee notes, an unusual and tasty combination in an imperial porter.

 


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