Traditional Derby Pies are made with pecans, chocolate chips, and Kentucky Bourbon. They are also only made in Kentucky by Kern's Kitchen in honor of the Kentucky Derby. The recipe is so closely guarded that only a select few members of the Kern family know it in addition to one employee who makes the pies at the restaurant today.
Our take on the Derby Pie subs in beer (of course) for bourbon and walnuts for pecans. The addition of Chocolate Maple Porter gives these adorable (and delicious) mini pies a fantastic maple sweetness. The recipe can also be used for a regular sized pie, we think four pies are better than one.
Since opening in 2005, Foothills Brewing has been hard at work making some of the most exciting beers available in the Southeast. But it wasn't until 2010 that the brewery began any real bottling program and started selling their brews around the country (before that, a very limited release of their Sexual Chocolate Imperial Stout was produced every February, but that usually sold out within hours). By 2012, Foothills Brewing was available across their homestate of North Carolina, and although the company continues to grow, brewmaster and co-owner Jamie Bartholomaus has been adamant about maintaining a focus on premium quality beer.
For this tasting, we were lucky enough to snag four of the brewery's nine year-round brews (they also have eight seasonal beers, including their Sexual Chocolate Imperial Stout): Torch Pilsner, Hoppyum IPA, People's Porter, and Seeing Double IPA. Each exhibited interesting flavors and gave us a good taste of what Foothills Brewing is all about.
Opening weekend at Smorgasburg feels a little bit like camp. We get to see people we haven't seen since last summer and get to meet some fresh faces. Smorgasburg is opening for the season and we'll be selling Beer Making Kits and Mixes on Saturdays at the Williamsburg Waterfront and Sundays in DUMBO at the Tobacco Warehouse. We will also be selling some Mixes that are exclusive to Smorgasburg, so stop by for your chance to pick up Single Hop IPA: Chinook Beer Making Mixes and more.
As craft breweries continue to grow around the country, more and more great beer is becoming available in every nook and cranny of the nation. This weekend, why not take some time to check out some of these festivals around the country and support the breweries in smaller towns all over America?
This graham cracker crust is so incredibly easy to make and tastes absolutely delicious. Made with a healthy amount of butter, brown sugar, and spent grain, this crust is sweet and hearty at the same time. Once you make this crust, you'll be dreaming about all of the amazing pies you'll be able to create with it. We think it would be especially yummy with a cheesecake or key lime filling.
Located in the Belgian town of Wevelgem, the Brewery De Ranke was founded in 1994 by longtime beer enthusiast and home beer maker Nino Bacelle. Though he started brewing in the mid-'80s, Bacelle took his time to develop his recipes until he felt they were ready to be tasted by the world and eventually started Brewery Nino Bacelle. It wasn't until a couple of years later that Bacelle joined forces with acclaimed Belgian beer enthusiast and Belgian beer association H.O.P. founding member Guido Devos to form Brewery De Ranke.
De Ranke produces a strong collection of interesting beers year round. All of their ales are unfiltered, unpastuerized, and fermented at hotter than normal temperatures (between 65° and 68° Fahrenheit) bringing out richer tastes and aromas. For this tasting, we sampled their Saison and Noir.
With tax season finally coming to a close, by now you've gotten everything squared away with the IRS and are just waiting for your tax return in the form of—hopefully—a big, fat check. Now that you've paid your dues to Uncle Sam, take some money and splurge on yourself with a case of your favorite beer or, if you're really feeling flush with cash, check out this list of some of the world's most expensive beers.
From the more well known Sam Adams Utopias to the ultra rare Vielle Bon Secours, only available at one London restaurant, the beers on this list range from the readily available to nearly impossible to find. If you can get your hands on some brews on this list, you will not be disappointed. So go ahead and treat yourself - you've earned it.
Whether you like to drink beer made close to home, or want to try something from around the globe, there are plenty of festivals this weekend to satisfy any craving. Raleigh and Hong Kong's international festivals will bring together beer from around the world, while Boston and Johnson City's events will put more of a focus on locally brewed offerings. Either way, grab your buddies and a few beers at one of this weekend's great events.
While we drink a lot of Everyday IPA, we don't often cook with it. The bright zingy citrus notes that we love so much in the glass are broken down quickly by heat leaving just the bitterness.
That's why the idea of Everyday IPA hummus was so refreshing - with only a minimal amount of heat being generated pureeing those refreshing citrus notes would remain. The result is a fantastic smooth and creamy hummus with a touch of citrus hop bitterness and zing.
Located in the small town of Kamperland in the south-western Dutch island province of Zeeland, the Bierbrouwerij Grand-Café Emelisse, or the Emelisse Brewery and Pub, is one of the more exciting craft breweries in a country well-known for excellent beer. Helmed by brewmaster Kees Bubberman—who in 2011 was awarded the Zilveren Knuppel (or "Silver Bat") by the Dutch craft beer enthusiast society PINT for contributions to his nation's beer culture—Emelisse started in 2005 with a focus on handcrafting beers from traditional recipes, but has lately been doing more experimenting with speciality beers, including taking classic styles from around the world and putting their own unique twists on them.
One of the four "noble" hops (meaning a race of wildly occurring hops which are low in bitterness and high in aroma), Saaz hops are extremely popular in Bohemian style beer and are the main hop component of the Czech pilsner.
Known for their delicate, spicy aroma and low bittering effects, Saaz have been used for centuries in the Czech region, but have since also become very popular in everything from a classic Czech pilsner like Pilsner Urquell to a variety of American craft beers like the Sierra Nevada Summerfest and Redhook Brewery's Late Autumn Ale, and even the classic American Budweiser. We also love using it in our Bel-Gin Strong.
This weekend, as the weather continues to warm up and Spring really kicks into high gear, there are plenty of great beer festivals all around the country, and each with their own unique twist. From a barrel-aged beer festival on the West Coast, to a celebration of music and beer on the East Coat, to a Hobbit-inspired festival across the pond, this will be a great weekend of beer and fun.
Popovers are a little bit like magic. The ingredients for the batter are as simple as can be (flour, egg, milk). You can scrape everything together and into the oven in under 5 minutes. But the delightfully crisp shell and impossibly-airy, still-steaming insides make you wonder if it's really this easy (and it is), why aren't these coming out of your oven everyday?
The key to really tall popovers is definitely a proper popover pan. A muffin pan will deliver shorter (but totally tasty) versions. We add just a touch of spent grain to ours for a light nuttiness. And while we normally think of them for brunch, this recipe has popovers vying to be our go-to dinner roll.
Although sometimes you do have to fight for your right to party, luckily you don't have to fight for your right to enjoy the delicious artisan ales from New Zealand's Yeastie Boys Brewing Company.
Formed in 2008 by kiwi beer activists Stu McKinlay and Sam Possenniskie, the Yeastie Boys took off soon after with their double award winning Pot Kettle Black American-style porter. This beer, along with their Hud-a-wa' Strong amber ale and Rex Attitude peat-smoked golden ale make up their year-round selection, while a variety of seasonal bottled and draught beers come in and out of rotation depending on the season. And instead of matching their beer with food, the Yeastie Boys like to name their beers after music, films, places, or people.
For this tasting, we tried the year-round favorites Rex Attitude and Pot Kettle Black, as well as the Digital IPA, a late 2011 release which the brewers describe as an open-source beer—the exact recipe is publicly available on their blog.
We love a joke as much as the next person, but we've already seen enough fake proposals and pregnancies this morning on Facebook, so we are taking this year off from April Fools pranks. Admittedly, we are no strangers to making beers with unconventional and adventurous flavors (Lobster Saison, anyone?), but the beers on this list go beyond merely defying conventions.
Made with deadly hot ghost peppers or extremely rare civet coffee (more on this later), these beers might sound too outrageous to be true, but we assure you that each and every one of these beers really does (or will soon) exist. No fooling.
If you want to learn more about craft beers, this might be your weekend. While simply tasting new beers is always an easy (and fun!) way to soak up knowledge, several of the events this weekend include a roster of seminars that are sure to teach you a thing or two about your favorite craft beer. Plus, this weekend, the judging for Asia's best craft beer will take place in Tokyo as part of the region's larger annual craft beer festival, with events throughout the year.
So Erica wasn't a fantastic Girl Scout. In fact, she never made it out of Brownies (despite her best friend's mother being the troop leader). Perhaps if there was the promise of a beer-making-badge next to the the place-mat-making-badge she would have fared better.
But that didn't stop her from continuing to enjoy the best thing the Girl Scouts have ever done, cookies. Our 100% spent grain flour version has an even crispier cookie-base than the original. And is doused in melt-in-your mouth mint chocolate. Make them and earn your badge in deliciousness.
At the turn of the century, there were over three thousand small breweries sprinkled throughout Belgium. One hundred years later, that number dropped to only 117. One of those surviving breweries was the Biset brewery, located in the Belgian village of Pipaix-Lenze. Though it did not remain functional over those 100 years, it did remain mostly intact. In 1914, it nearly escaped ransacking by the Nazis. Occupying German military forces were looking to snatch up metal resources and tried to take the brewery's steam engine, but only ended up snagging the copper vat.
Years later in 1984, the brewery was purchased by married beer-loving duo Jean-Louis and Sittelle Dits who renamed it La Brasserie À Vapeur, or "the Steam Powered Brewery." We sampled four of their steam-powered beers, including one that was brewed in 1996.
Is there anything more deliciously wholesome than a box of Girl Scout Cookies? What about a deliciously wholesome box of Girl Scout cookies and the perfectly paired beer? Sounds even better, doesn't it? The Girl Scouts of the USA have been selling these cookies since 1917 to raise funds for their various troops, selling over 200 million boxes a year. So let's raise a glass while raising money for a great cause!
With cookie season gearing up, we've paired each of our favorite Girl Scout cookies with the perfect beer for an unbeatable snack. Whether you're a Thin Mints kind of person, or you think nothing beats the Samoas, we've got you covered. However, if you're still not convinced these are the best pairings, Cevercería de MateVeza, the San Francisco brewery and café, has been brewing their very own Girl Scout Cookie-inspired ales.
Spring has sprung! As the weather warms up (hopefully!) and you brace yourself for April showers in hopes of May flowers, there are plenty of exciting beer festivals around the country ... and the world. Whether you're looking for very traditional ales, new and exciting brews, or something a bit sportier, there's something for everybody this weekend.
Tiramisu with its espresso dunked ladyfingers was just asking for a coffee stout update. The obvious choice was our Coffee & Donut Stout (you can sub in your favorite craft coffee stout) but it would be equally delicious with the Chocolate Maple Porter or Bourbon Dubbel with bourbon laced cream.
We opted for the traditional raw egg approach for an impossibly light tiramisu that pretty much dissolves as soon as it hits your tongue. But if you are squemish or prefer a heavier whipped cream variety you can work the coffee stout into your go-to tiramisu recipe using the method below.
Known for their classic bière de garde (translating to, "beer for storage," a classic French country ale known for its toasted malt aromas and malt sweetness), Jenlain can trace its brewing roots back to the turn of the century. Originally based out of Felix Duyck's farm in 1922, people were coming to the Brasserie Duyck well before 1968 when they officially attached their most popular style, Ambrée, to the name of the village the brewery resided in, Jenlain.
Still a family business, Jenlain is now entering its fourth generation with Felix's grandson Robert currently running operations, continuing to take Jenlain's classic beers into the future. Ahead of its time, Jenlain was the first beer to be bottled in 750ml champagne bottles with a wired cork. The bottles we sampled, though, were regular ol' 11.2 oz ones with caps.
This Valentine's Day we decided to do something a little different. We traded in the heart-shaped box of candy for a night filled with beer. We invited couples and singles to attend a fun and informative Beer Making Class held in DUMBO. After class, everyone enjoyed a few cups of Chocolate Maple Porter, Chestnut Brown Ale and Smoked Wheat along with cheese pairings and sinfully delicious Chocolate Maple Porter Truffles. Enjoy the slideshow!
May the luck of the Irish be with you this weekend! There's certainly no shortage of ways to celebrate St. Patrick's Day on Sunday (and before), so skip the green beer and get in touch with your Irish roots at Boston's Beer Week or Austin's St. Patrick's Day Festival.
Brisket. Braised in beer. There is so much to love. And while the laundry list of ingredients may seem daunting, you can easily sub out or omit anything not already in your pantry (besides the beer of course). The result is a deliciously tender brisket that is impossible not to devour straight from the cutting board.
Our rules are simple. Rub your brisket generously the night before (salt, pepper, and something a wee bit spicy are a must for us). Use a delicious dark full-flavored beer (we like our Chocolate Maple Porter), whatever onions and root vegetables you have on hand and a little bit of heat in the braising liquid (chili flakes and a few extra cloves of garlic work if you don't have chili-garlic paste on hand). Get it in the oven, have a beer, and relax - it's going to be delicious.
Although it is sometimes said to have an American aroma, Bramling Cross was first harvested in England. This hop gets its name from being a cross between Bramling (which is a Golding hop clone), and a Canadian wild hop known as Manitoban. Bramling Cross is also very special in that it's the only hop of the male variety used in the United States. Female varieties are typically preferred because they don't have seeds, but the unique qualities of Bramling Cross have recently caused it to grow in popularity.
Good for bittering, but also famous for its aroma characteristics, Bramling Cross is best in dark brews like stouts and porters.
Beer, beer, beer. We've got plenty of it this weekend. Whether you are looking to plant yourself at a beer festival or be bussed to your favorite bars, we've got something for you. We've even got a Belgian beer bracket for all you hoop (or hop) heads out there.
Made with two ripe bananas and a healthy amount of Spent Grain Flour, our banana bread is hearty and delicious and couldn't be easier to make. The optional addition of pecans or walnuts makes for an extra nutty crunch or you could even throw a handful of chocolate chips into the batter for a bonus sweet treat.
We whiled away our first afternoon in Asheville on Wedge Brewing Company's outdoor patio, but torrential downpours on day two sent us scrambling for the welcome shelter of Highland Brewing Company's tasting room atop a hill outside of town. We were drenched, so Dirk—the irrepressibly affable brewery expert—led us on a tour of the facility until we had dried off enough to sit down for a flight of Highland's staples and seasonals.
Our Highland visit had actually started the night before when we stopped by Barley's Taproom, the downtown beer bar that loaned its basement to Oscar Wong's fledgling brewery in the early 90's. Since then, Highland has become one of the South's flagship craft breweries, and its iconic bagpiper graces store shelves from Florida to Virginia. New York, sadly, has so far eluded its reach, so once we were safely ensconced in the tasting room, we couldn't leave until we'd tried every style on offer.
The beer scene in Asheville, North Carolina is booming. It all started in 1994 when Highland Brewing Co. was the first brewery to open its doors in the city. Wedge Brewing and Green Man Brewery, among others, soon followed and all have been churning out fantastic beers for over 10 years. With Oskar Blues setting up shop in nearby Brevard, and Sierra Nevada and New Belgium moving in soon, Asheville is poised to become even more of a beer lover's destination in the future.
From the East Coast to the West Coast, there are tons of opportunities to drink some great beer this weekend. Sip on some suds at the Gilmore Car Museum in Michigan, get your fill of BBQ, beer and bourbon in Atlanta, and have some brews at the zoo in California.
There are certain recipes that lend themselves so well to beer that when you finally think to add it you can't imagine why you hadn't been cooking it that way forever. For us, risotto was one of those recipes. For this meal we paired our nutty Chestnut Brown Ale with shitake and crimini mushrooms, the result is a gloriously creamy risotto with a deep, rich flavor that belies its sub thirty minute cook time.
And while we're eager to repeat this recipe as is, we also look forward to the citrus zing our Grapefruit Honey Ale would bring to a seafood risotto or what Smoked Wheat would bring to a hearty kielbasa version. So we will be making this again and again, and if you try it, we think you will be too.
Art Larrance was no stranger to the Oregon craft beer scene when he established Cascade Brewing in 1998. He partnered with Brewmaster Ron Gansberg, who oversaw the design and installation of the brewhouse. Together, they took their over 40 years of combined brewing experience to create fantastic sour beers inspired by an abundance of local fruit. Each of their beers are then aged on wine barrels from the Northwestern Oregon region.
In this tasting we sampled Apricot and Kriek, made with local apricots and cherries, and further aged in the bottle since 2011.
NYC Craft Beer Week is upon us! There are hundreds of happenings all over the city throughout the week, so finding a bar to celebrate New York City's fantastic beer scene shouldn't be too difficult. The extensive list of events can be a little overwhelming, we've gone through and selected our top pick for each night.
If you can think of something better than a beer fest, chances are we can probably find a way to disprove you. So dive right into this weekend's picks for beer events across the nation. You'll have the opportunity to savor dark beers and play video games in Illinois, kick off NYC Beer Week in DUMBO, and imbibe in a 19th-century mansion in Philadelphia.
We melt down two types of chocolate (with a fair amount of butter) to give these brownies a rich, nearly fudge-like consistency. Then amp up the nuttiness of the spent grain flour with a handful of chopped walnuts (but you brownie purists can certainly omit the nuts).
The resulting brownie is delightfully decadent: a nutty crisp top gives way to a rich, creamy (and oh-so chocolatey) center. Think of it as your new brew day reward.
Even coming from New York City, we were amazed by how much was happening in such a small space at the Wedge Brewing Company. A micro-brewery amongst other artistic endeavors, the brewery is committed to making good beer with quality ingredients. Walking by studios and past gardens of eclectic sculptures, the motto, 'Beer is Art' came to life.
We tasted the seven brews that they had on tap, while enjoying the local wild life (pigeons just look different outside of the city) and counting train cars going by. If only every tasting could be on a porch with a light jacket, surrounded by creativity and community. Thanks for a great start to our Asheville tour, Wedge Brewing Company!
Beer events this weekend seem to fall into two categories: Strong beers and beer weeks (not to be confused with weak beers.) Omaha and Phoenix are both playing host to beer weeks filled with some fantastic events. Phoenix is staring its beer week off with a bang, serving up tons of high alcohol beers. You can also get your hands on more than a few beers that exceed 10% ABV in Tacoma on Saturday.
If regular ol' beer fests are more your speed, we'll see you in an old armory in either Rochester, NY or Morristown, NJ. Because drinking unlimited beer in a castle trumps pretty much anything else you are considering this weekend.
Nothing says Valentine's Day like chocolate. This year, skip the heart-shaped cardboard box and make your own chocolates, but show that you really care by making them with beer.
While this truffle recipe is wildly easy, it does take some time. If you are patient, they should rest in the fridge overnight, but if you can't wait (we couldn't), they should sit in the fridge for at least 3 hours to form their shape before serving. We make our truffles with Chocolate Maple Porter, enhancing the rich chocolate flavor. Any stout or porter will do the trick, but using a chocolate-y beer lends a rich creaminess that you'll be happy you had.