Thursday, September 26, 2013

a guide to texas craft beer styles

Peticolas A Lost Epic

With all of these prominent out-of-state breweries popping up in Texas, it made me think about all of the amazing beer we already have here and made in-state. 'Texas doesn't offer up certain styles though' you might say. Oh really? Well check out the list we have compiled below. On any given day, we Texans have almost every single beer style available to us. Some are seasonal, some are one-offs, but a lot are year-round and can be enjoyed at all times. This beer style list comes from the Beer Judge Certification Program (with a few additions) and we tried to include as many breweries as possible. If your beer isn't listed and you would like it listed within a certain category, please let us know and we can add it.

Lite American Lager - Pedernales Lobo Lite, Shiner Light
Standard American Lager - Shiner Blonde, Big Bend Tejas Lager
Premium American Lager - Hops & Grain Zoe, Pedernales Lobo, Twisted X Premium Lager
Dortmunder Export - Shiner Dortmunder Spring Ale

German Pilsner - Austin Beerworks Pearl Snap Pils, Real Ale Hans’ Pils (duh), Community Texas Pils, Lakewood Zomer Pils
Bohemian Pilsener - Live Oak Pilz
Classic American Pilsner - Deep Ellum Rye Pils(ner)

Vienna Lager - Lakewood Lager, Community Vienna Lager
Oktoberfest/Marzen - Rahr & Sons Oktoberfest, Live Oak Oaktoberfest, Real Ale Oktoberfest

Dark American Lager - Shiner Bock
Mucich Dunkel - Franconia Dunkel
Schwarzbier - Live Oak Schwarzbier, Austin Beerworks Black Thunder, Shiner Black

Maibock/Helles Bock - Rahr & Sons Bucking Bock
Traditional Bock - Revolver Bock
Doppelbock - Live Oak Liberator, Real Ale 16th Anniversary
Eisbock - Franconia Eisbock (made only once a year at this point)

Cream Ale - Infamous Hijack, Wimberley Brewing Co., Cedar Creek Lawn Ranger, Wicked Beaver Cream Ale, Panther Island Real Good
Blonde Ale - Southern Star Blonde, Circle Alibi, Real Ale Fireman’s #4, Deep Ellum Dallas Blonde
Kolsch - Saint Arnold Lawnmower, Peticolas Golden Opportunity, Real Ale Brewer's Cut #7, Rabbit Hole Mike Modano's 561
American Wheat or Rye - Circle Wryteous Rye IPA, Guadalupe Americano, Revolver Blood and Texas Ale Project Naked Truth

Circle Wryteous Rye Wheat IPA

Karbach Weisse Versa Wheat

Northern German Alt - Hops & Grain Alt
California Common - Real Ale Brewer's Cut California Common
Dusseldorf Alt - Rahr & Sons Gravel Road (might be considered Northern German Alt)

Standard Bitter - Check your local brewpubs
Special Bitter - Check your local brewpubs
ESB - Independence ESB, Real Ale Phoenixx (best when served as cask), Circle Envy, Community Public Ale, Oasis Homesick

Scottish 60-80 - Flix Brewhouse 10 Day Scottish Ale, Peticolas Great Scott!
Irish Red - Check your local brewpubs
Strong Scotch Ale - Texas Big Beer Renaissance Cowboy, Real Ale Highlander or Real Heavy, Guadalupe Scotch Ale

American Pale Ale - Uncle Billy's Axe Handle Pale, Hops & Grain Pale Dog, Community Pale Ale, Oasis Slow Ride (yeah, take that New Belgium!)
American Rye Pale Ale - Peticolas Rye't On
American Amber Ale - Thristy Planet Thirsty Goat, Branchline Evil Owl, No Label Ridgeback, Texas Ale Project Fire Ant Funeral
American Brown Ale - Firewheel A Better Brown, Rabbit Hole Rapture
American Red Ale - Four Corners Red's Roja, Martin House Imperial Texan, Real Ale Brewer's Cut Imperial Red, Peticolas Velvet Hammer, Four Corners Boss Lady

English Pale Ale - Peticolas Royal Scandal, Pinthouse Pizza Iron Genny (hybrid American/English)
Mild - Jester King Commericial Suicide, Brewpubs (Draught House, Barber Shop)
Southern English Brown - ??
Northern English Brown - Real Ale Brewhouse Brown

Brown Porter - Brewpubs
Robust Porter - Four Corners Block Party, Rogness OST Porter, (512) Whiskey Barrel Double Pecan Porter, Texas Big Beer Texas Crude
Baltic Porter - Hops & Grain Baltic Porter

Dry Stout - Pinthouse Pizza Bearded Seal
Sweet Stout - Lakewood Temptress, No Label Elda M Milk Stout
Oatmeal Stout - Independence Convict Hill, Armadillo Ale Works Quakertown Stout
Foreign Extra Stout - N/A
American Stout - (512) Cascabel Cream Stout, Revolver Mother's Little Fracker
Russian Imperial Stout - Austin Beerworks Sputnik, Real Ale 15th Anniversary, Southern Star Buried Hatchet Stout

English IPA - Pedernales Classic IPA, Revolver Mullet Cutter
American IPA - Take your pick, almost everyone has one
Imperial IPA - Again, many have IIPAs ((512), Austin Beerworks, Rogness, Karbach, etc...)
Black IPA/CDA - (512) Black IPA, Austin Beerworks Heavy Machinery
Belgian IPA - Lakewood Hop Trapp

Weizen/Weissbier - Live Oak Hefe, Pedernales, No Label Hefe, Circle Blur, Guadalupe El Hefe, Big Bend Hefe
Dunkelweizen - Shiner Dunkelweizen
Weizenbock - NXNW, Live Oak Primus
Roggenbier - Live Oak Roggenbier

Witbier - (512) Wit, Soon-To-Be Celis (the original), Deep Ellum Farmhouse Wit, Community Witbier, Adelbert's Naked Nun (also Barrel Aged version)
Belgian Pale Ale - Hops & Grain BPA, Saint Arnold Icon
Saison - South Austin Brewing Saison D'Austin, Karbach Barn Burner, Freetail, Jester King Mad Meg, Armadillo Ale Works Greenbelt
Biere de Garde - Rogness Beardy Guard, Adelbert's Scratchin' Hippo
Belgian Specialty Ale - Adelbert's Flying Monks or Black Rhino

Community Wit

Berliner Weisse - Jester King Bonnie the Rare, Austin Beerworks Einhorn, Namaste Austinerweisse
Flanders Red - Jester King RU-55
Flanders Brown - Jester King Ol' Oi
Lambics - Jester King soon to have authentic lambic style beer

Austin Beerworks Einhorn

Jester King Boxer's Revenge

Belgian Blond Ale - Adelbert's Rambler Ale
Belgian Dubbel - Adelbert's Dancin’ Monks
Belgian Tripel - (512) 3, Namaste Brewing, Real Ale Devil’s Backbone, Peticolas A Lost Epic, Community Tripel, Peticolas A Lost Epic
Belgian Golden Strong - South Austin Brewing Belgian Golden
Belgian Dark Strong - Ranger Creek La Bestia Aimable, Adelbert’s Flyin’ Monks

Old Ale - (512) 4, Independence Jasperilla, Southern Star Potentate
English Barleywine - Ranger Creek Small Batch #3
American Barleywine - Real Ale Sisyphus, Live Oak Treehugger, Deep Ellum Numb Comfort

Fruit Beer - Jester King Atrial Rubicite, Ranger Creek Strawberry Milk Stout, Twisted X Fuego (Jalapeno Pilsner. Scientifically jalapenos are fruit, but this might go under American Pilsner as well)

Traditional Ale (Sahti, Gose) - Jester King Gotlandsricka/Viking Metal, Real Ale Gose

Spice, Herb, Veggie Beer - Lakewood Punkel, Guadalupe Honey Ale, Rogness Yogi, Freetail Spirulina Wit, A lot of Freetail
Christmas/Winter - Almost all have a Holiday special beer (Rogness Holiday, Deep Ellum Darkest Hour, Community Regalement)

Rauchbier - Circle Smokin’ Beech, Cedar Creek Scruffy's Smoked Alt
Other Smoke - Thirsty Planet Franklin Smoked Porter, Live Oak Smoketoberfest, Deep Ellum Rocktoberfest
Wood Aged - So many now (Jester King, Hops & Grain, Real Ale, Pinthouse Pizza, Karbach, Lakewood, etc...)

Texas has a large selection of brewpubs and they usually offer up many different styles. Also craft beer bars like Craft Pride in Austin or LUCK in Dallas are easy ways to not only support local, but to expand your palate and try different styles. Most breweries also offer tours/tasting rooms on the weekends which is another great way to try their beer fresh and get to know your brewers. Check 'em out, and drink up! And remember, support your local brewers. Cheers!

Friday, September 20, 2013

brooklyn beer dinner with garret oliver at central market brewniversity

'Craft beer isn't a trend or a fad. We are actually a part of a revolution, a trip back to normality.' 

This is just one of the many quotes from Garret Oliver that truly sunk into my brain and had me thinking about the very essence of craft beer and what it means to me personally.

Last night, thanks to Central Market, I had the pleasure of partaking in a cooking class/beer pairing led by none other than Garret Oliver. As the presenter noted, Oliver may be the most well renowned expert on the subject of not only beer, but also beer and food, a fairly new venture in the culinary map of America. So to say I was excited would be an understatement.

Beer and food has always been intertwined in the webs of many cultures, especially Belgium. Belgium takes their beer and food very seriously, and rightfully so. America has put this on the back burner it seems. A combination of both beer and food becoming industrialized and people being brain washed that wine is the ultimate and more elegant choice is perhaps why this has happened. However, because of people like Oliver, beer is regaining its proper place on the table. 

The meal started off simple with a goat cheese and apple omelette paired with the Sorachi Ace. The crowd was served overcooked egg souffles in a ramekin while Oliver made a delicious looking omelette for the demonstration. While being overcooked, the flavors were still great. I loved the tanginess of the goat cheese and the crisp sweetness of the apple together, while the apple brought a little textural contrast as well. The Sorachi Ace really paired great with that goat cheese, almost fortifying that tanginess and bringing some brightness to the dish.

Next up was my favorite pairing of the night, Indian spiced crab cakes paired with the East India Pale Ale (see what he did there?). Oliver created fantastic crab cakes spiced with curry and jalapeno. The malt backbone of their IPA linked so well with the sweetness and caramelization of the crab while the hops intensified the spiciness and even brought out some fruitiness. This is definitely something I will make at home. Wonderful!

The next dish was another winner in terms of flavor, while the pairing fell a bit flat for me. Local 2, a beer similar to a Belgian dubbel, was paired with linguini carbonara. For me, the beer was just too big for this creamy dish. I did enjoy the beer with the crispy pancetta, marrying the caramelized sugar profiles of both the beer and pancetta. I would have loved to have tried the Local 1 with this dish, as a little spritziness would have cut through that creaminess.

Local 1, my favorite among the Brooklyn beers, was next on the list being paired with boneless quail stuffed with goat cheese, golden raisins and pine nuts. The aspect to Local 1 that I love so much is the fact that it is so diverse. As Oliver stated, it can be '...background music, something you can just drink and enjoy.' Or you can '...put on the headphones and really listen to the music.' This beer, in my mind, could pair with leather boots and it would be a great pairing. 

'I give you full permission to put ice cream in my beer.' Yes, you heard the man, you can put ice cream in his beer. And truly, vanilla ice cream and Black Chocolate Stout floats will change your life. Try adding ice cream to wine...I dare you. This is going to be a go-to dessert for me in the future.

I didn't want the night to end. Overall, two and a half hours of watching Oliver cook some of his favorite food that he cooks at home made me feel like I was at one of his famous dinner parties. Which, by the way Oliver, I'm still waiting for my invitation. It's okay, it must have gotten lost in the mail. I'll blame USPS.