Men and Beer

What is it about men and beer? My Friday Night Beer Club kept my beer explorations current, with different themes each time, a home brewer in the group, and a local microbrewery (Devils Canyon Brewery) seemingly always well represented (thanks Charles!). On this trip, as with other trips, I try to sample as local of brews as I can get. Throughout Nevada and Utah, there always seemed to be a beer from Uinta Brewing, based in Salt Lake City. Their IPA is both tasty and common, helping out a few meals for me. 

Our visit to Moab Brewery had us trying their Black Imperial IPA. Only distributed in a bottle 2012_0412_19-22-47
(because it is bottle conditioned), it was a very interesting complement to our meal, though the high alcohol content (8.4%) did leave some taste of alcohol in the mix, something that represents a love/hate relationship for me with high alcohol beers. It represents what many of the US brewmasters are trying – combinations that go beyond established beer styles. I love the creativity and look forward to tasting more experiments going forward. As for this experiment, given its 1 liter size, I'm glad we could walk back to our beds.

Speaking of creativity in beer, my Uncle Russ keeps up his run of interesting blends. In his walk-in fridge now, he has Beef Hearted Ale, Vienna Waltz Lager, 2012_0415_13-35-58Krispy Kream Ale, Rootin Tootin Werenbock, Kewl Kolsch, California Common Lager, Dr. Dunkleweizen, Little Bo Pils, Dry Fly Stout, and Wreak Havoc Ale. While I won't bore you with what all these styles are, I love the creativity he has in naming his concoctions. As with all beers, the styles are created from a combination of different malts, hops, and yeast, and he has a story as good as the name behind most of them. 

His friend Bruce is also a homebrewer, so I was in heaven last night talking about beer and brewing. Bruce's son is now a brewmaster at a local microbrewery, so let's just say I was in good beer company. Kymberlee also jumped in to understand more about this passion. She checked out Russ's brew room and now she knows just what I'll eventually want! He has a big burner for boiling the mash, a mill for the malted barley (or wheat), tubs for different styles of barley, a freezer full of hops, and all the 2012_0415_13-35-26 plumbing/carboys/filters to get a beer from raw ingredients to the bottle. And as I already mentioned, he has what many envy – a walk-in fridge for storage of the finished product.  I hope at some point I can put together the space (and time) to be as good as a brewer as my Uncle.


Categories: Family, Travel

3 replies »

  1. Wow, that’s an excellent response, thank you, and I completely inderstand. Initially the photo didn’t make sense to me, with all those delicious-looking home brews (I assume) next to the commercial beers. But now it makes total sense, with your added background info.
    I love that you have a couple of brews on the go. Would love to have a setup like yours some day.

  2. Thank you, it is admirable. I am the Uncle of which Paul speaks of. I’ve been a home brewer for over 18 1/2 years now and love it. My bride always knows where I’m at, in the basement playing with my beer. Some many styles, so little time. I made this walk in cooler following my friend Bruce’s example. I keep it at 48 degrees which is perfect for my ales and a great fermentation temperature for my lagers of which you see two on the floor. But the reason for this reply is to explain the commercial beers in the cooler. The Lites are my brides. She loves my beers, but I think grabbing a can is just easier for her. Besides, that leaves more for me. As for the PBR’s, that’s mine. A medal winner at the 2011 Great American Beer Festival here in Denver, it’s been my “lawn mower” beer for years. I save my brews for when I can sit down and relax with it. Pabst has gone back to their 1970’s recipe and I’ll take them over a Coors, Bud, or Miller anyday. Hope that takes care of that. May 7th is National Homebrew day and the AHA Big Brew is the 5th. Find a friend and make a beer with them. Could be fun.

  3. Admirable home brew setup there. What’s the story ith the PBR’s and Miller Lights?
    Coincidently I just bought my first home brew starter kit today. I guess I will start building my walk in fridge tomorrow.

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