Yearly Archives: 2013

A few of my favorite things, 2013

My favorite beer of 2013? You’re going to have a week till I make that announcement. In the meantime, there were lots of other notable newcomers throughout the year.

Best canned beer – Sly Fox Grisette. Named after the drab factory-class women of 17th-century France, this lemony wheat beer might be considered “saison light.” Thirst quenching with a bit of … Read the rest

A Festivus Miracle

ONE THOUSAND years from this Monday, people around the world will celebrate Festivus by airing their grievances, displaying feats of strength and praising the miracle of a towering pole made of beer cans.

That’s the way the rituals of mankind evolve, isn’t it? From a simple act – a child born in a manger – to the sacred.

It’s been … Read the rest

The ultimate beer drinker’s holiday gift guide

If you’re looking to stuff a stocking with something a little more special than a sixpack (not that there’s anything wrong with a sixpack, hint-hint), Joe Sixpack has just what you’re looking for – from bottle openers to worldwide travel.

For openers

There are a million different, very cool bottle openers out there, for beach sandals, dog collars, smart phones, … Read the rest

Win contest, go to Belgium, open a brewery

TWO YEARS ago this week, someone drew Vince Masciandaro’s name out of a hat, and maybe changed his life forever.

Funny thing, he wasn’t even there to see it happen.

It was Philly Beer Week’s annual Belgian collaboration raffle, a contest among beer lovers to accompany their favorite local brewer on an expenses-paid expedition to Belgium. The bar was packed … Read the rest

Black Friday means black beer

In the beer world, Black Friday is hardly a day for shopping. It’s a day for sipping, the darker the better.

And it doesn’t get any darker than Goose Island’s Bourbon County Brand Stout, the rich, barrel-aged stout whose annual release is the equivalent of a midnight door-opening at Toys R Us.

Long lines will be forming at select … Read the rest

Beer-hunting goes digital

TRIA TAPROOM, on Walnut Street just off Rittenhouse Square, opened this week with a newfangled web-based beer-auditing system that may finally solve that most niggling of First World Beer Geek problems:

Who’s pouring what?

Called Bevchek, it’s part of a POS (point of sale) system that monitors beer and wine sales and tracks inventory. Nearly every bar or restaurant you’ve … Read the rest

12 beers you can’t miss on the Craft Beer Express

BY MY count, 152 brands will be pouring during Saturday’s Craft Beer Express, a crosstown pub crawl that visits a dozen fine bars. Maybe that’s why bus tickets are just 10 bucks.

It may very well be impossible to drink ’em all.

So, with a nod to Philly Tap Finder, which compiled the day’s tap lists, here are 12 can’t-miss … Read the rest

Happy Thanksgivukkah with Shmaltz

LOOKS LIKE Jeremy Cowan and the rest of the team at Shmaltz Brewing are dipping into their own stash again.

America’s least orthodox Jewish brewery is marking the convergence next week of Hanukkah and Thanksgiving with a fairly weird image of an “intergalactic turducken mothership” and a monster edition of its annual holiday ale, this year called Jewbelation Reborn.… Read the rest

Ambassador Sixpack hosts Lithuania

YOU MIGHT remember the Daily News report a couple of months back about my diplomatic mission to Lithuania, where I spread the good word about American craft beer through the U.S. Embassy in Vilnius.

Well, there’s a second chapter in my efforts to spread peace through beer. I’m happy to report that Lithuania is coming to Philadelphia.

Specifically, it’s arriving … Read the rest

The best beer you haven’t tasted, yet

THERE’S a brewery in Malvern making superb beer that you can’t buy – not for all the money in the world.

The ales are fermented with unusual yeast strains, then meticulously aged for months in wooden barrels and often blended before bottling. Those few who’ve been lucky enough to get a sip say that they’re on par with some of … Read the rest