Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmakwanzika!!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Beer Buddha's 2012 Worst of Louisiana Beer List

I've been watching everyone come out with their "best of" lists lately.  All of them are great and captured the 2012 Louisiana beer scene well.  But nobody was willing to come out with their worst list.  I am.  Here ya go.  And if any of you take this too seriously you really should stop reading my blog.

1)  Worst Released Beer in Louisiana 2012:  Curious Traveler Summer Shandy

Sorry guys at Curious Traveler or Sam Adams or whatever you are.  I really disliked this one.  I like the idea of a shandy but tasting Pine Sol is just too much.  I feel a shandy is a beverage to be mixed on the spot not something you can bottle.  Just my thoughts.

2)   Worst Beer Let Down in Louisiana 2012:  NOLA Brewing/Stone Collaboration Pour Me Somethin' Mistah

Alright I will probably get some shit for this one and that's okay.  I was really let down by this beer.  Didn't like it.  Not sure why but I just didn't.  Perhaps being so mentally psyched for this brew screwed me on the taste.  It's very possible.  I tried it numerous times and me and this beer just didn't get along.  I still love me some NOLA Brewing.  Just not this beer.

3)  Worst Beer Release in Louisiana 2012:  Westvleteren 12

A lot of you didn't hear what I heard regarding this release.  If you had you would agree.  This beer release was the biggest clusterfuck since the Saints got rid of all their draft picks for Ricky Williams.  NO ONE but the abbey was allowed to profit from the sale of these beers.  The distributor, the store, no one.  Well except the assholes that sold their beers on ebay and the one local douchebag on Craigslist. They made more money than anyone.  And the whole point of the abbey maintaining SO much control was to make sure this kind of crap didn't happen.  Great job monks! You failed.

4)  Worst Louisiana City To Open a Brewery:  New Orleans

It's been 3 years since NOLA Brewing opened and we STILL only have one brewery in city limits. Hell, we have one opening in Chalmette.  Fucking Chalmette people!!???  WTF?  One opened in Lafayette.  One is opening in the Houma area.  We MAY have another one opening in New Orleans but not sure how far they have gotten with permits and shit.  We don't even have a brewpub opening that I know of.  Yes, yes, I know we have Gordon Biersch and Crescent City.  Our city laws suck and need to be changed.  No one in the city limits is encouraged to open a brewery with our crappy laws and that's bullshit.  And yes, our state laws suck too.  I think those are being worked on though.  We shall see.

5)  Worst Beer Distributor in Louisiana 2012:  ?

Yeah, I'm not going here.  I'm not that stupid.   Let me just give a shout out to Southern Eagle and Crescent Crown for doing a great job acquiring new beers and helping create more craft beer love in Louisiana.

6)  Worst Louisiana Brewery 2012:  Dixie Brewing

I'm giving this to Dixie in the hopes that the owners will realize the opportunity they have.  Bring it home.  Have one of our extremely talented people here in the state reformulate the recipe and sell the balls out of this beer.  Who the hell wouldn't want 16oz Dixie tall boys for a crawfish boil?  Get with it Bruno's!  My 6 year old daughter could do a better job with this local brand than ya'll.  Look at the success of Pabst and even Narragansett.  Sell it to someone who cares.  PLEASE!

7)  Worst Beer Bar in New Orleans 2012:  Cooter Browns

Dude.  Seriously  Stop going here for a great craft beer experience.  If you are looking for 17 big screen TVs to watch your Saints while you eat mediocre bar food and drink your Abita Amber okay cool.  Any place that is too lazy to update their beer list since the late 90s doesn't deserve your business.  Either that or they are illegally selling Breckenridge and they REALLY stocked up on some Dixie White Moose and Rikenjacks.   And dear Draft Magazine:  STOP putting this place on your damn lists.

That's it.  I only have 7.  Honestly we had so much awesome shit happen in the Louisiana craft beer arena coming up with this list was hard.  Yes, most of it is me just being stupid.  Some of it is me being serious though.  The Dixie thing for sure.  It's crazy to watch the owners just allow a brand that DOES have so much potential to just die a slow death.  The beer much like the old building is just a shell waiting to die.  Or to rebuilt.

Hope you enjoyed me having a little fun at the expense of others though.  Kirk Coco I still love you guys!


The Beer Buddha

Monday, December 10, 2012

The Gambit Bar Guide: In Forms We Trust, All Others Pay Cash

So tonight I got into a good Twitter discussion with some local NOLA Twits? Twats? Tweeters?   The discussion revolved around comments regarding The Gambit's 2012 Bar Guide.  The comments(one being mine) all complaining about certain bars being "left off" the list.  Obviously a list like this is going to get some complaints.  But it shouldn't.  It's not a "Best of" list.  It's a guide.  A guide that tells people "where to get their drink on, organized by neighborhood." It alludes to the idea that this was researched and written by staff members.  9 of them in fact.

Some notable bars left off the list are:  Avenue Pub, Crown & Anchor, 45 Tchoup, W.I.N.O., Loa, Sazerac Bar, Cure and Belocq.  So how were these bars not on the list?

The argument from The Gambit's side is that if a bar is not on the list it's because they didn't fill out the "form".  This form is sent out to all bars and is also on The Gambit's website.  If you don't fill out the form you don't make the list.  The form isn't too long and asks all sorts of questions like Type of Bar, Days of Service, Happy Hours, Specialty Nights/Events, etc.  I am curious here:  Does the form come with a self addressed stamped envelope?

Me being the beer nerd that I am my argument is form or no form you can't leave off what is arguably one of the BEST beer bars in the city.  It just seems kind of lazy to just send out forms and wait for them to be filled out and returned or for bars to take the time to do it online.   Maybe it's just me.

Now don't get me wrong I enjoy reading The Gambit and have had some of my beer stuff printed in it(probably no more after this though huh?) but seriously I have issues here.  In my opinion you can't put out a guide of places to drink in the city and leave off great bars because they didn't fill out a form and send it back.   If you continue leaving kick ass bars off the list you have to expect complaints.  The Gambit readers don't know about the forms.  In the opening to the guide it doesn't say, "This list is only those bars who had the time to fill out our form.  All others?  Too bad so sad."  If it did we would have nothing to complain about.  Except the retardedness of bars having to fill out forms to be in your guide.

Now to be fair this is basically free advertising for a bar IF they get the form in.  Tons of people read The Gambit and free advertising is free advertising right?  What do you think?  I'd love to get your opinion.


The Beer Buddha

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

40 Arpent Brewing Update

Photo courtesy mybeerbuzz.blogspot.com

This week 40 Arpent Brewing picked up their 10bbl brew house equipment from East End Brewing in Pittsburgh.  One step closer to seeing another brewery selling beer in Louisiana.  They will be located in Arabi, LA practically ON the river.   Nice looking location!


The Beer Buddha

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Westvleteren XII: Yet Another Update

So I found out a little more information on the Westy release. According to this site the following are Louisiana locations that are authorized to sell Westvleteren XII:

Whole Foods, Baton Rouge
Aquistapace’s Grocery, Covington
Whole Foods (Veterans), Metairie
Stein’s Deli, New Orleans
Whole Foods (Arabella Station), New Orleans

It appears our Gulf Coast friends in Mississippi will not be getting any and Alabama will be getting them at:

Hop City, Birmingham
The Nook, Huntsville

Shelton Brothers is saying that no matter where the beer is sold it should retail at $84.99 as this is the wish of the monks.  I haven't heard anything from our local retailers so I am going to assume this is the price that we will see.

As for breaking up the packs we won't talk about that because no one is supposed to be doing that.  I'll be honest, in my opinion this whole situation just seems amateur at best.  1) To force retailers to sell at a certain price seems illegal to me.  2)  To tell a retailer how they can sell a product?  Who the hell does that?  From what I gather it appears that retailers will be taking a loss or at best breaking even on this beer.

Too bad no one has the balls to tell the monks to stuff it and keep their beer.   That would be hilarious!  Restore your abbey now!  BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!  Ain't like the retailers are gonna be making any money off of the release anyway!   Hell, in some states the locally owned, small independent stores are getting the shaft anyway due to some bullshit exclusivity contract with Total Wine.

Remember, December 12th is the release date.  Good luck getting you some!


The Beer Buddha

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Beer Review: Bayou Teche Brewing Joie a Tous

Let me start off this post with the declaration that I dislike coffee.  Not necessarily the taste of coffee.  That I like.  But hot liquids I don't enjoy.  Never have, never will.  I even put enough milk in my hot cocoa to make it warm.  And there is no way you will see me drinking an iced coffee.  Nothing screams I have been castrated like ordering an iced coffee or a soy latte.

Thankfully beer companies put out beer that use coffee or uses coffee malts.  I think I can honestly say I haven't had a coffee beer I didn't like.    Recently I received an email from Bayou Teche introducing their Joie a Tous which is their Biere Joy-Mello Dubbel juiced on coffee steroids and aged in Jack Daniels whiskey barrels.  Brewmaster Gar Hatcher went into mad scientist mode and hand selected the 9 "most complex and mature flavors and blended them together to create this brew.

After about a week of searching I found some at Steins Deli.  Only 200 cases were made so I need to go find more.  I know Steins still has some but once ya'll read this you're gonna go buy it all up.  I know you.

Here is my review:

Brewery:  Bayou Teche Brewing

Beer:  Joie a Tous

ABV:  Doesn't say

Louisiana Availability:  Yes.

Price Range:  $8-$9 for a 22oz bottle

Appearance:  Poured a dark ruby gold.  Wonderful frothy, off white head.  Clinging lace throughout short life of the beer.

Smell:  Strong coffee aromatics with hints of vanilla, toasted coconut and caramel.

Taste:  As in the nose nice hints of vanilla, toasted coconut and caramel but the coffee flavors are more pronounced.

Mouthfeel:    Full body, smooth flavor with medium carbonation.

Overall:  An amazing blend of the beer, the coffee and the whiskey barrel characteristics.  Bayou Teche has truly outdone themselves with this beer in my opinion.    Probably one of my favorite beers from these folks!

Score:  4.5 out of 5 buddhas Photobucket


The Beer Buddha

Beer Christmas Gifts 2012: Support Local Edition

This year with all the talk of "fiscal cliffs", death of the Twinky and employees striking because they work at Wally World and only make like $2 an hour I wanted to make this years Beer Christmas Gifts post easy and locally focused.

Shopping local is extremely important.  A larger share of a locally owned businesses revenue goes back to the community.  And most local businesses are small businesses which are owned by someone who lives locally not some fat cat CEO in New York City making billions who doesn't actually do work.

This post will focus only on the local Louisiana beer industry but even if you're not lucky enough to live here you can still support your own towns beer industry.

Here is my list of great local Christmas buys for your beer geek:

1)  Local beer gift basket-  A couple stores in town will put together a gift basket for you.  Martin Wine Cellar is BIG on the gift baskets this time of year.  Go to the store and pick out some local beers and have the store gift wrap them for you.  It's a great gift!

2)  Buy schwag from your favorite local brewery-  Most breweries have a website or store where you can buy t-shirts, hats and other awesome stuff.  I know that NOLA Brewing has both.

3)  A gift certificate to your beer geeks favorite beer store-  This one is easy.  I would recommend about $25 or more.  This price will allow them to put together a nice array of brews.

4)  Buy a bar tab- Not sure how easy this one is but I'm sure a local bar can pull this off.  Supporting your local beer bar is a great way to shop and support local.

5)  Buy a homebrew kit-  Most towns have a local homebrew store.  Ours is Brewstock.  A homebrew kit is the next step for your beer geek.  I promise you it is.

6)  Support your favorite beer blogger-  Us beer bloggers don't get paid to do this.  We do it for the love of beer.  And probably the hope we can actually turn this into a full time gig.  Some of us even sell t-shirts online.  Shameless I know.

Let's keep it local and beery this year!


The Beer Buddha

My Weak Ass Failed Attempt At 31 Days of Pumpkin Beers: The Results

Okay, so I let everyone down in my attempt to drink 31 pumpkin beers in 31 days.  Without getting all bitchy and excusey let's just say a lot of crazy shit went down in October (my boss dying being one) and it didn't happen.  I did however get an opportunity to drink a decent amount of pumpkin beers that I would never have been able to drink without the help of my friends!  I'm not going to name everyone but you know who you are.

Here is the list of beers that I drank in order of which ones I enjoyed the best.  Remember though, this is MY list.  It's what I liked the best.  Just cause a beer is last on this list doesn't mean it shouldn't be first on your list.  Okay, yeah it does.  The beer that's last on this list should NOT be your favorite pumpkin beer.  There are always better ones out there.  Get out there and explore!!

1) Shlafly Pumpkin Ale
2) Southern Tier Pumking
3) Wasatch Pumpkin Ale
4) St Arnold Pumpkinator
5) Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale
6) Dogfish Head Punkin
7) Brooklyn Post Road
8) Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin
9) Oak Jacked Imperial Pumpkin
10) Shipyard Smashed Pumpkin
11) Jolly Pumpkin la parcela no. 1 pumpkin ale
12) Sam Adams Fat Jack
13) Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale
14) Shipyard Pumpkinhead
15) Blue Moon Harvest Pumpkin

 Well, there is my list. Yell and scream! Curse me out because your favorite isn't first or maybe it isn't even on this list. Yeah, there are only 15. Hell, we only get like 7 of these in this state! I got a homebrew from a friend that ranked in the top 5 on this list but didn't put it on here since you can't buy it. Thanks Chris!  I think if I can continue on this homebrewing kick I'm currently on I may try my hand at some pumpkin beer next year.


The Beer Buddha

Saturday, December 1, 2012

I Gots Me Some Parish Grand Reserve and Bayou Teche Joie A Tous Down At Da Steins Deli

Picked both of these beers up at Steins yesterday and today.  He seemed to have a decent amount of the Joie A Tous but is almost out of the Parish Grand Reserve.  Apparently Andrew Godley put some Mexican Brown in this beer and everyone and their Grandmother is buying some.  Baton Rouge apparently had riots over this stuff.  Just what I heard.   Rumor has it that Elio's has some Grand Reserve.  Yes, that Elio's.  Yes, the Elio's you went and bought beer at when you were under 21 when you were at Tulane in the mid 90s.  Okay.  No I didn't.  I would NEVER buy beer underage and no fine establishment in this city would EVER sell to minors.   Apparently they have a nice beer selection now.  I should go check it out.  

Anyway below are the prices at Steins.  I do not know how much they are elsewhere in the city.

Bayou Teche Joie a Tous Price:  $8.79

Parish Grand Reserve Price:  $14.99

Go get you some before it's too late!


The Beer Buddha

PS I saw some monks in Dan Steins beer storage area with machine guns guarding the Westies.  I asked them if I could buy just one and they told me, "GO TO HELL!  WE WILL BRING DOWN THE WRATH OF HIS HOLINESS JESUS CHRIST IF ANYONE ATTEMPTS TO SELL JUST ONE BOTTLE!   FULL PACKS ONLY!  Peace be with you."  So just saying.