GABF report

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Welcome to the Great American Beer Festival.

It’s the world’s single-largest drinking event this side of Munich’s Oktoberfest: 457 breweries, 1,813 beers and more than 30,000 extremely serious, all-business, nose-to-the-grindstone conventioneers.

We’re talking three days of extensive, self-sacrificing research, if you know what I mean.

And for what?

For most of us, it’s to hone our beer-consumption skills.

But for … Read the rest

Suds for you buds: How to entertain with beer

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When the boss asked me to write about the secret of entertaining with beer, I asked her, Who do I look like – Martha Stewart? Grab a bag of pretzels and pop open a cold one!

Beer cuisine is, as it should be, simple. It is Everyman’s beverage. Unlike wine, it does not require a snooty sommelier to tell you … Read the rest

Still welcome at Kensington club

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A full-size shuffleboard, a basement bowling alley, card tables, art-deco etched-glass mirrors and an odor of cigar-burnished woodwork give the United Republican Club of the 25th Ward the look and feel of a tavern from yesteryear. So it’s no surprise that the reg’lars at the Kensington club turned up a 20-year-old can of Ortlieb’s.

“For a long time, it was … Read the rest

Hold the ball for a kicker? It’s a snap

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How easy is it to catch a football and place it on the ground so the kicker can boot it for a game-winning field goal?

Tommy Hutton notwithstanding, pretty damn easy.

After Monday night’s devastating loss to the hated Dallas Cowboys, the Daily News wanted to see how tough it is to take a center snap and hold the ball … Read the rest

Kegology 101: Overdo it and you flunk

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It’s back-to-school time at local colleges, and I don’t mind admitting I get kind of sentimental remembering those halcyon days at ol’ Kegger U. Cutting 8 a.m. classes, pulling all-nighters, forging fake IDs – they’re all happy memories of my higher education.

For those who missed Dean Wormer’s speech at freshman orientation, I remind the Animal House boys out there … Read the rest

What’s ale-ing baseball? There’s no beer man!

I remember the Ballantine scoreboard in right-center at Connie Mack Stadium.

I remember Ballantine Blasts by Wes Covington and Johnny Callison.

And I remember vendors with heavy cases of bottles, climbing through the steep left field bleachers yelling, “Hey getcha cold beer!”

Yo, beer man! Over here!

Ballantine and Wes and Johnny are gone from Philly. So too, sadly, is … Read the rest

It beats salt water, but not by much

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The Jersey shore, birthplace of some of America’s most important cultural institutions (notably the Miss America bikini scholarship pageant and the death-defying Steel Pier Diving Horse) is also home to one of America’s noblest beer-drinking innovations.

I refer, of course, to the old seven-beers-for-a-buck deal at Somers Point’s Anchorage Tavern. This buzz-inducing bargain – surpassed only by the complimentary drinks … Read the rest

Cannabis seeds ensure new brew’s no rehash

Dude, take a hit of some strange brew.

It’s hemp beer, man. Made with the same seeds used to grow marijuana, it’s nonetheless legal and available in sixpacks (not blunts) at your corner deli. The brew, called Hempen Ale, is a brown ale from Maryland’s Frederick Brewing, the maker of Blue Ridge beers.

And, no, it won’t get you high. … Read the rest

Budweiser’s too big to be Busch-league

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You know that nightmare where you’re back in school, sitting in geometry class for the final exam and you’re in a sweaty panic because, geez, you skipped every class that semester?

Well it came true last week for Joe Sixpack, and I’m still shaking with fear.

Somehow, I found myself nervously sharpening my No. 2 pencil at Budweiser Beer School, … Read the rest

A sweet wheat treat will defeat the heat

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Attention. The following is an Official Joe Sixpack Heat Advisory:


With temperatures approaching the 100-degree mark, sizzled citizens risk severe health problems unless they drink ample liquids. Heat exhaustion, heat stroke and the dreaded dry mouth are potentially severe consequences should you ignore this advisory.

If you are reading this from the comfort of a barstool, stay put. … Read the rest