In the craft beer world stories of people abandoning their chosen careers midlife to brew beer have become almost commonplace. In the case of Dave and Quynh Rathkamp, there leap of faith to start Save the World Brewing Co. trumps them all.
No-Li Brewhouse was started in 1993 by Mark Irvin under the name Northern Lights Brewing Co.Evidently, someone else had staked a claim to the use of the name Northern Lights forcing Mark to change the name to the shortened No-Li. Which I assume is supposed to be pronounced as “no-lie."
Coming up on its sixth year in the brewing business, Clown Shoes Beer has carved a seat firmly in the craft beer market producing some great bold, high ABV beers at price points lower than most of their competitors. The beers are contract brewed by Mercury Brewing Co. in Ipswich, Mass.
Barleywine.The word alone will make a beer nerd salivate and a macro beer drinker cringe. These big aggressive beers have a long history and a have become one of the more sought after styles of American craft beer. The term barleywine dates back as far as the 18th century when it was used by European brewers to attract wine drinkers to their brews.
Looking back over many of my past reviews, I realized that I often gush over the various reasons I love craft beer and the craft beer culture. The reasons have been well documented, but today it is time for me to vent on one of the things that truly bothers me about the always changing craft beer community. The never ending hunt for the newest, rarest and hardest to obtain beers often leads us away from what we truly love about craft beer in the first place. Delicious beer.
Eclipse, Eclipse, Eclipse. That's all anyone ever seems to say when FiftyFifty Brewing Company is mentioned. Sure its delicious, well awarded, damn expensive and some versions sell out before the beer is even in bottles. Variants abound trigger that deep seeded sense in our generation to collect them all. A kaleidoscope of colored wax topped bottles, sealing contents too precious for their own good, charm the eyes in a genius display of marketing.
Like many fans of craft beer when I hear the phrase "fifty fifty," only one thing comes to mind. Eclipse and the beautiful rainbow of variants released each year. Fifty Fifty Brewing Company in Truckee, Ca has become famous for its barrel aged stout that is released once a year. But guess what beer fans—Fifty Fifty actually makes other beers as well!
Ask any beer nerd what the best state in the country is for craft beer and you will usually get some combination of California, Oregon and some votes for Vermont. For the most part I agree with that but, there is one state that is not mentioned enough in my opinion and that is Colorado.
In one of my recent reviews I mentioned how Colorado does not get enough love in the “best beer state in America” discussions.
Well, for the second time this month I have another fine example of what Colorado has to offer the beer world. Old Ruffian is an American style barleywine from Great Divide in Denver Colo. Old Ruffian was first bottled and released back in 2004 where it quickly gained notoriety by winning a bronze medal at the Great American Beer Festival in 2005. It followed that up with gold in 2006 and a second bronze medal in 2009.