August 23, 2015

Victory Festbier, A Classic Märzen

Putting all the ridiculous "seasonal creep" arguments aside (it's just beer for the love of Sam!), I'm always excited when the pumpkin beers and Märzen hit the taps. I wouldn't care personally if they were both year round, but it is sort of fun to have to wait on them I guess. A new Märzen for me this year will be from a brewery that we just landed in the state this year, Victory Brewing. Check out more on their version, called Festbier, then go find you some.

From Victory:

"Some people say that a lager is nothing to throw a party over. Ever hear of something called Oktoberfest? 

We think some people have never tried our Festbier. Märzenbier (March beer) was the last reliably brewed style of beer in the time before refrigeration, so casks of this malty amber lager would sit in underground caves until September when brewing could start back up again. Now, what is a brewer to do when there’s so much beer to be brewed, but no cellar space to store it? Well, clearly, we need to clear out the cellar! Thus, Oktoberfest was born: a fantastic excuse to drink all that delicious stored Märzen. For our Festbier, we don’t think you need to have a terribly good excuse to throw a party, but throwing a party does make for a pretty good excuse to celebrate with a well-made lager! Celebrate #YourVictory…celebrate Festbier!"

August 20, 2015

Festival Season Is Upon Us!

It seems a bit cooler outside so I thought maybe it's a good time to bring up one of the best things about this time of the year, beer festivals! Along with Oktoberfest and pumpkin beers, fall beer festivals just go perfectly with the season of football and playoff baseball to me. We've got a few on deck to keep up with so here's a handy list I'm trying to put together. I can keep updating this so send me additions. I know there's some stuff in Northwest Arkansas I can't remember at the moment.

Sept 12th: Oktoberfest in the Ozarks (Springfield, MO)
Sept 19th: Little Rocktoberfest (Little Rock)
Oct 3rd: Downtown Rogers Oktoberfest (Rogers, AR)
Oct 3rd: McNellies Harvest Beer Festival (Tulsa, OK)
Oct 3rd: 2nd Annual Oktoberfest Memphis
Oct 10th: Arktoberfest (Arkadelphia)
Oct 17th: Cooper-Young Beerfest (Memphis, TN)
Oct 17th: Fest of Ale (Fort Smith, AR)
Oct 23rd: Arkansas Times Craft Beer Festival (North Little Rock)
Oct 24h : Oktoberfest (Texarkana)
Nov 21st: Ozark Beerfest 2015 (Springfield)

(last updated 9/9)

And here are some handy tips for you newbs... Top Tips on Surviving Craft Beer Festivals via The Craft Beer Channel:

"Ironic given Jonny nearly kills himself every festival, but here are his top tips on getting the most from those hallowed halls filled with beer. Filmed at the London Craft Beer Festival 2015."

August 18, 2015

Summit Unchained 19: Make It So

Here comes another beer in Summit Brewing's Unchained Series, which has already provided us with some recent favorites like Herkulean Woods and Hop Silo. This one is an ESB infused with Earl Grey tea, much like our local friend Mr. Josiah Moody at Moody Brews brewed with Apple Blossom Brewing Co. last year, the delicious Earl Grey ESB. I'm curious to see how this one stacks up.

Check out more info:

"Brewer Nick Hempfer introduces his first Unchained Series beer, the nineteenth in the series, called Make It So. Inspired by Nick's love for science fiction, Make It So is an ESB style ale infused with Earl Grey tea."

August 16, 2015

Arkansas Untappd Update

I haven't checked the Arkansas brewery totals on Untappd for a bit so I thought hey what the heck. Let's see what's going on with our awesome brewery scene in the natural state.

To refresh you, these are just the total check-ins for the brewery, followed by their "monthly" check-ins. So let's get to it!

New adds this month: Bubba Brews (Bonnerdale), Brick Oven (Harrison), Black Apple Crossing (cidery in Springdale), Columbus House and Leap of Faith. No Rebel Kettle yet as I'm waiting on them to open the doors (hopefully this Fall!). You say "well Leap of Faith hasn't opened their doors!" and I say yes, but they're selling at Stone's Throw Brewing taproom often.

Diamond Bear - 16,782 (435)
Core Brewery - 15,855 (729)
Ozark Brew Co. - 7,639 (629) 
Fossil Cove - 6,976 (308)
Saddlebock - 6,416 (275)
Apple Blossom - 5,712 (236)
Lost Forty Brewing - 5,145 (579)
Stone's Throw Brewing - 3,647 (194)
Vinos Brew Pub - 2,147 (38)
West Mountain - 1,758 (76)
Bike Rack Brewing - 1,394 (186)
Moody Brews - 1,330 (43)
Blue Canoe Brewing Co - 1,057 (106)
Superior Bathhouse - 1,008 (101)
Columbus House - 554 (73)
Damgoode Brews - 528 (58)
Bentonville Brewing Co - 405 (133)
Foster's Pint & Plate - 227 (47)
Black Apple Crossing - 110 (67)
Flyway Brewing - 89 (2)
Gravity Brew Works - 89 (12)
Brick Oven - 34 (5)
Bubba Brew's - 22 (11)
Leap Of Faith - 17 (0)

And there you go! Diamond Bear still leads the total but Core, Ozark and Lost Forty are the top 3 monthly totals again.

Other notes:

* I personally got to add to Bentonville Brewing, Black Apple Crossing, Fossil Cover and Bike Rack Brewing with a quick visit to the northwest corner last weekend. Fun places, solid liquids. Trying to get down to Bubba Brews any time now.

* It's still sort of amazing to me that Lost Forty is only in Pulaski county with those totals.

* If you wonder where you can get Brick Oven's brews, Old Chicago in NLR has their Dirty Sally blonde on tap.

Don't like the results? My tip to you my friend is sign-up for Untappd, like all of the craft beer drinkers in America pretty much are, and cast your votes with some $$. I always enjoy checking in an Arkansas beer, makes me sort of proud.