Hello and woot! I just got word that we have been accepted to do a funding project with Kickstarter! This is a form of crowd sourcing micro loans that will enable us to get very small (as low as $5 a person) loans that go toward reaching a goal (in our case $30,000) to help us buy bigger equipment, get to talk to a lawyer and get things squared away with the government. If you are following us here or via RSS and would like to help I’ll be posting links very soon when our project gets officially announced (within 3 weeks). I’ve contacted Brock Williams at Boxcar Films, a local video production house, to help us make our promo video for the Kickstarter site. In the meantime, please friend us on Facebook: Hellbender Brewing Company Facebook page.
Cheers to all and to all a good night!
So I was in St. Charles yesterday for the U.S. Foods (our main food supplier at Flat Branch) food show. It was a showcase of their upcoming products and such. Chef and I stayed at the Ameristar Casino. and did a bit of gambling. He didn’t do so well. I, however, managed to make $130 USD on some safe bets. I turned that into a bunch of beer at Friar Tuck’s (google maps link) in O’Fallon. I finally got to taste New Belgium’s Imperial Berliner Weisse, a beer that I had hyped up in my mind after tasting the Bruery’s Hottenroth earlier this year. It didn’t quite live up to the billing that it had received in my head, though it did pair well with turkey burgers and Claussen pickles. The real catch (so far, anyway) has been the Classic Gueuze from Cantillon. For those unfamiliar with gueuze (wikipedia link), it is a blend of 1, 2 and 3 year old lambics (aged sour beers- they taste better than they sound, trust me). Cantillon can do no wrong in my book, and this beer is even better than I remember it from earlier in the year. Behold:
I got home late last night and went to grab a pint of our Ale w/Wheat (real name still being decided). I almost stepped on this little guy. He must have snuck in the night before when we had some late night friends over. Miss K. picked him up and released him back to the wild. Drink on, little frog friend!
It’s hard to remember when the beer tastes this good. From left to right: Russian River Sanctification, Midnight Sun Melt Down DIPA, Widmer Brother’s Prickly Pear Braggot (thanks Mike B.!), Mikkeller Frelser Triplebock, Sierra Nevada’s 30th Charlie, Fred and Ken’s Imperial Helles Bock and Nebraska Brewing Melange a Trois. I kept notes this time but they are very difficult to read.
Our good friend Sanford Speake, co-owner of the always amazing Sycamore Restaurant was kind enough to obtain all five varieties of Mikkeller Yeast Series beers. The basic build on the grist bill is (I believe) the same one that he used on his Single Hop Series. It is an 8% ABV beer that definitely suits the US Ale yeast the best (as far as style goes). The Pilsner was missing a lot of the DMS that comes from the pilsner malt, the Weizen yeast was allowed to really show off its banana and clove esters, and the Belgian seemed restrained, allowing only certain fruity phenols to come through. The one that stole the show, however, was the Brettanomyces (pronounced “breh-TAN-uh-MY-sees”). I’m not sure which of the majorly available strains were used, though it did have hints of pineapple that are associated with the Claussenii strain. It totally beat the hops and malt into submission. I’ll be looking to track this one down in bottle form to age for a bit.
Here’s a few photos from the July meeting of our beer appreciation group, The Columbia Beer Enthusiasts. Our president, Jamie Smith, did some massive trading and purchasing to get 22 bottles from across the country that we don’t have normal access to here in Columbia. I’ll post review notes of the few that I kept notes on in a later post. At the end of the gallery are some shots of the cellar of Dr. Fabulous, our kind host for the afternoon. We stuck around and had a few more with the good Dr. and Zeff80. Those are in the very last pic. Enjoy!
Here’s some photos of events we’ve attended over the past year.