Stop Calling Your Beer ‘Hoppy’

Hoppy has practically become as ubiquitous a word as ‘beer’ in the craft world and I can. not. stand it anymore!

    “Wow, this beer is sooo hoppy.”

           “Ew, I can’t stand hoppy beers.”

  “What?! I LOVE hoppy beers!”

Sound familiar?

Sixpoint 'Beer is Culture' Glass

Before you get all in a huff, pointing out the zillion places I use the word hoppy in my blog posts, let me give you my reasoning. Continue reading Stop Calling Your Beer ‘Hoppy’

Porter vs. Stout: Really, what is the difference?

‘What exactly is the difference between stout and porter?’ someone  recently asked me. As I opened my mouth to explain, I realized that the answer is not as cut and dry as you might think.

While there are many varieties of so-called ‘dark beer’ such as schwarzbier, Scotch ale, dark American lager etc., the broad categories of stout and porter are probably the most well known. Actually, their histories are so intertwined that honestly I still get confused – what came first? The porter or the stout?

I was chatting recently with my friend Scott at Blank Slate Brewing Company about the differences and asked him how he approaches this topic with people. He responded that first, he likes to take a step back. He explains that as you go up the style chain, beers generally increase in flavor, body, and intensity (though there are some exceptions). If you think about the differences between a blonde ale and pale ale, or amber and brown ale this premise fits the bill. Porter and stout are a similar story, but with a lot more overlap.

DSC_0022Let’s take a look at what the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) style guidelines, the industry standard, say: Continue reading Porter vs. Stout: Really, what is the difference?

Seared Scallops w/ ‘Drunken’ Tomato Spaghetti

So far this morning I have eaten a quarter of a watermelon and a whole fresh tomato. Random, but so delicious. As you can tell, we have been eating quite well this summer – noshing away on farm fresh veggies and eggs from our CSA with the Eaton Farm.

But my favorite concoction so far has been this insanely delicious and easy seared scallop spaghetti with a fresh and spicy white wine tomato sauce.

Because just look at these tomatoes. . .

Fresh, beautiful summer tomatoes

Oh hello lovahhhs. Continue reading Seared Scallops w/ ‘Drunken’ Tomato Spaghetti

Slaapdronken, a Chamomile Tripel

Hubs and I have had so little time to brew lately it is embarrassing. We’ve been traveling, juggling crazy schedules, and I’ve been running around helping with private beer tastings, teaching my Beer Ed class and cooking up a storm, of course.

Some serious 'cold-break' when brewing Slaapdronken
Some serious ‘cold-break’ when cooling down Slaapdronken wort

In addition to all that great life stuff, I have been focusing my energies on a very exciting career move. Like many beer-bloggers, as of last week I had a ‘grown-up,’ 9a-5p desk job that wasn’t fulfilling my creative side. But, it paid the bills, and  I remained hopeful that some day I would transition this beer-loving hobby of mine into a full time gig. I didn’t realize quite how soon an opportunity would present itself, but it did, and I snatched it up.

I’m extremely excited to share that as of today, Monday July 7th I am a sales representative for Cavalier Distributing!

Not only does Cavalier distribute beers from some of the my absolute favorite breweries (Dogfish Head, Stone, MadTree, Breckenridge, Revolution, Dieu de Ciel, Two Brothers, Jolly Pumpkin . . . just to name a few), what convinced me to work for them is the people. Everyone I’ve interacted with there is stellar and I have no doubt that I will be happy there. At what other job is jeans and a polo considered business casual? I am too lucky.

The blog will continue, don’t worry, and I’ll still support ALL of my favorite breweries, near and far, no matter who distributes them. Continue reading Slaapdronken, a Chamomile Tripel

A daytrip to Rockmill Brewery

I love to support local breweries as much as possible, so I was thrilled to finally visit Rockmill Brewery this weekend.

I first discovered Rockmill at an unlikely place: our local grocery store. The lovely corked and caged bottles stood out amongst the standard six-packs. After further inspection, I discovered that the beers were all Belgian style and brewed just two hours North. Nothing left to do but snatch one up and give it a try.

Spending the day at Rockmill
Spending the day at Rockmill

That first beer I tried was their Witbier – a crisp and spicy Belgian beaut. I was immediately hooked, and excited to try more. Over the past year I’ve tried the Saison, Tripel and cask-aged Tripel, all which were quite good. I knew we’d need to make a trip to the brewery ASAP. Continue reading A daytrip to Rockmill Brewery

the brewing and culinary adventures of a Certified Cicerone®