Thursday, October 17, 2013

Beer Buddha Koozies?

This past weekend the family and I flew out to Orlando to surprise my brother for his baby shower. Whenever I head out that way my dad likes to stock the fridge with some awesome beers I can't get here in New Orleans and man did he!

Dad's Garage Beer Fridge

Some of the beers we had:

  • Sculpin IPA and Amber
  • Six Point- pretty much all of them
  • Terrapin
  • Founders
  • Breckenridge
  • and of course Yuengling

Not only did we have an amazing selection of beer at the parents house but the baby shower was held at a bar called The Woods  This place was awesome and had a great selection.

On Sunday the bro, wife and I went out shooting which was awesome.  Did some pistol target practice then skeet shooting.  What an amazing stress relief.  It also got me thinking!

When I started thinking about the fun weekend my mind went to koozies.  Not sure why but it did.  I think perhaps it was because we didn't use a whole lot of glassware but rather took it easy and drank great beer out of the bottles and cans.  I was thinking it would be cool to have a Beer Buddha koozie to be drinking these beers with.

Then like a sign from the beer drinking Gods I was contacted by in regards to their custom koozie lines.

I would love to see the Beer Buddha logo on some awesome koozies what do you think?


The Beer Buddha

PS And no we did not drink awesome craft beer while shooting guns.  That would be bad.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Chillin' with Greg Koch

So recently I received an email from Stone Brewing's Public Relations Specialist Sabrina LoPiccolo about meeting with owner Greg Koch at Avenue Pub before the Stone Tap Takeover this past Thursday night during Louisiana Craft Brewers Week.  I think I was expected to do a professional sit down interview but yeah, that's just not really me.  Just sitting down, drinking beer and chatting about beer was all I wanted to do.

I have to admit I got that opportunity.  What a great time.  I had the opportunity to try their The Tiger Cub saison and we just chatted about beer.  I did inquire about his thoughts on our lack of craft breweries in the state compared to other states.  His answer was a good one when he stated he isn't from here so doesn't know.  Honest answer.  He did throw in that San Diego alone has over 80 breweries compared to Louisiana's 7.  Ugh.

He stated he had an amazing meal at Cochon and enjoyed some beers at NOLA Brewing.

He also apparently LOVED Parish Brewing's Farmhouse IPA.  Here is a pick courtesy Avenue Pub:

Polly also mentioned that despite being really tired he set his alarm for 4:30am and came back to the Pub at 5am in order to greet the oil/gas workers and medical workers that work the night shifts. Classy move Greg, classy move!

Thanks for coming to New Orleans and I hope you enjoyed your time here Greg!


The Beer Buddha

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Follow Up Post To NOLA Brewing Getting Sued: The Toho Should Chill Out Edition

So if you read my last post about NOLA Brewing being sued by Godzilla creater Toho Co Ltd. you may be interested in these brands from other breweries.

Terrapin Hopzilla

Ithaca Brewing Cascazilla

Bert Grant's Hopzilla IPA

So is Toho just randomly picking on a small New Orleans brewery or is there more to come?  How could they just pick on NOLA Brewing and not these other breweries?  I'm no lawyer nor do I have all the facts in this case but it seems like Toho should just chill out and drink a Mechahopzilla.


The Beer Buddha

Monday, September 9, 2013

NOLA Brewing Being Sued Over Mechahopzilla

Just read here that NOLA Brewing is being sued by the Japanese company that owns the rights to Godzilla.   Toho Co Ltd is claiming that, "NOLA’s 'Mechahopzilla' beer violates Toho’s copyrights for the famed Japanese monster Godzilla's mechanized counterpart Mechagodzilla."

They also claim, "NOLA unlawfully attempted to take advantage of the popularity and public recognition achieved by Toho’s fictional characters for the purpose of attracting attention to itself and its beer brand"

So now does this mean we can finally sue every Japanese company for taking American ideas and improving on them?  And after that god awful Matthew Broderick Godzilla remake you would think Toho would be happy with Mechahopzilla bringing attention BACK to the Godzilla franchise.


The Beer Buddha

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Cajun Brews: A Trip To Bayou Teche Brewing

My wife and I were recently invited by the wonderful folks of Bayou Teche Brewing to attend an invite only dinner that takes place at the brewery on the 31st of every month(that has 31 days).  Bayou Teche is located in Arnaudville, Louisiana and brews their flagship brew LA-31 Biere Pale as well as some other amazing beers such as Boucanèe, Passionné, Saison D’Écrevisses and Cocodrie. The drive into Breaux Bridge where we stayed is a quick, scenic two hour trip from New Orleans.

We stayed at the Bayou Cabins Bed and Breakfast which sits right along the winding Bayou Teche. The Bed and Breakfast is made up of 13 cozy cabins and 1 main cabin.  Our cabin was cabin 13, the Cypress Hideaway, which is a one room cabin with kitchen, bathroom, queen size bed and beautiful, 100 year old cypress wood floors.

We arrived about noon and since the dinner didn't start until that evening the wife and I took a trip into town.  Breaux Bridge is a small town of about 8000 people in St. Martin Parish and is not only designated "The Crawfish Capital of the World" but is home to former NFL Quarterback Jake Delhomme.

We had a quick lunch of oversized, tasty burgers and hand cut fries from Angelle's Old Fashion Burgers and took to walking around town which was made up largely of antique shops and restaurants. There were however some other highlights which were the statue of Scholastique Picou Breaux, the female Acadian who founded the town, and Joie de Vivre Coffee and Cultural Cafe which displays local artwork and has Cajun jam sessions on Saturdays starting at 11am.

After our jaunt through town we headed back to our cabin to freshen up and head out to the brewery. The excursion to the brewery in Arnaudville is a short 20 minute drive from Breaux Bridge.  The brewery appears out of place nestled amongst the fields of sugarcane, soybeans and old oak trees.  We felt like we were going the wrong way when snaking along the back roads which were lined with quaint tin roof homes.

Just as we were ready to turn around thinking we were in fact lost the brewery appeared!  A large, red metal structure the brewery sits on a large tract of land across the street from a sugarcane field. We later found out from Brewmaster Karlos Knott that the brewery sits on land which has been in the family since the 1790s.

Inside the taproom we met some wonderful folks from around the community as well as the Knott brothers mother and father.  I had the opportunity to listen to Papa Knott discuss crawfish farming while sipping on the taproom exclusive Hopilousas which is the breweries Tripel IPA Cocodrie but with additional dry hopping of Styrian hops from Alscae, France as well as a longer cold conditioning period. The dinner was catered by Peppers Catering and was an amazing red beans and rice with corn muffins which paired perfectly with the Acadie which is a Bière de Garde.

Karlos took us on a tour of the brewery where we had the chance to see a variety of beers being aged in Jack Daniel barrels and also had the opportunity to sample Miel Sauvage from the bright tank.  This new brew is a honey ale that uses honey from local Bernard Apiaries and is inspired by the Bière de Miel of France and will be released this month.  The label is inspired by Napoleon's Three Bee Flag of Elba and the beer is aged in Jack Daniel barrels for 100 days to represent Napoleon's exile to Elba.

The brewery tour continued on into the back field where Bayou Teche has teamed with ULL Research Scientists Whitney Broussard to create an artificial wetland to rid of their waste water.  They pump the waste water into one of three ponds in the field and by utilizing cattails and cypress trees they are able clean up the water.  And one of those ponds is a crawfish pond!

The next morning we met up with Dorsey Knott and his wife Laurin for breakfast.  Dorsey is the sales manager for Bayou Teche.  Laurin, my wife, and I had the eggs, toast and boudin while Dorsey had the Cajun sampler which also had hogs head cheese and cracklins.  The food was absolutely amazing and supplied us with much needed nourishment for the next part of our adventure.

We then drove out to McGees Landing for an Atchafalaya Basin swamp tour.  The Basin is about 20 miles in width and 150 miles in length which makes it the largest existing wetland in the United States.   Not a place I would want to get lost at night.  Armed with an ice cold bucket full of LA-31 we took off into the bayou.   There really is nothing more serene than a boat on the bayou with an ice cold beer.  It creates a tranquility you can't find in the city.

Our tour guide was supplied well in both humor and knowledge and didn't bat an eye as an Asian Carp flew out of the water and committed suicide on the front of the boat.  The trip took about 2 hours and we were lucky enough to catch some baby alligators living along the bank with mama gator sitting close by.

After the tour we took a quick trip to Crawfish Town USA for some crawfish boulettes and some other fried goodies and then headed home to New Orleans.  An amazing trip all around and just two hours outside the hustle and bustle of New Orleans and an hour outside Baton Rouge.  Such an easy trip for an amazing experience.


The Beer Buddha

Thursday, August 29, 2013

NOLA Brewing Taproom Grand Opening Sept 10, 2013

In 2009 when NOLA Brewing first opened selling beer from the brewery itself wasn't even an option.  Thanks to a change in law or as I hear it maybe a reinterpretation of an already existing law(welcome to Louisiana)  NOLA will now be able to sell beer on premise. 

I received this announcement from them this morning:


NOLA Brewing Announces Taproom Grand Opening New Orleans, LA (August 29, 2013)

- NOLA Brewing Co. (New Orleans, LA) will be opening a taproom on September 10, 2013 at 4 p.m. to sell beer directly to consumers. The taproom will have 16 beers on tap, comprised of eight beers from NOLA’s regular line-up and eight specialty beers that will rotate regularly. It will also have a food truck schedule and music on special occasions.

Beer will be available in pints or flights and growlers as well as six or four packs can be purchased to take home too.

Its doors will open at 2 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and 11 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The brewery will still host their $5 brewery tours every Friday where guests can keep their NOLA pint glass and drink beer for free until 3:30 p.m. ###

Love this and am really excited!  Congrats to NOLA Brewing and all the breweries in Louisiana!  It really is a good time for breweries here in the state.  Now if only New Orleans was more businessf friendly!  Hopefully we will see more opening!


The Beer Buddha

Sunday, August 18, 2013

5 Awesome Louisiana Game Day Brews

Found this one floating around on the internet.  Not sure who did the original.

Another football season is right around the corner and nothing goes better with football than beer.  If you're drinking wine or cocktails you're doing it wrong.

And just because Bud, Miller and Coors like to pay billions in advertising to capture your taste buds doesn't mean you have to drink it!

Drinking local Louisiana beers while cheering on your Saints just makes sense.  Hell, who knows, maybe it'll bring some good luck to the team this year.

According to the Beer Institute Louisiana ranks 11th in the country in per capita beer consumption. With only 7 Louisiana breweries in production we need to do everything we can to support them!

Below are my 5 picks of great Louisiana brews to drink while supporting the Who Dats.  I based my picks on drinkability, availability and price.  I also chose beers I felt would be accepted by those who mostly drink mass marketed brews and may be willing to branch out and drink local.

NOLA Brewing Hopitoulas

If you're looking for nice hoppy brew this one fits the bill.  Perfectly balanced but be careful because at 6.7% ABV it packs a punch.  Comes in convenient 16oz cans which is perfect for your tailgate!

Bayou Teche LA 31 Biere Pale

If you're tailgating at a Saints game most likely you're serving some amazing Louisiana cuisine like jambalaya, boudin or some ettoufee.  It's just how Louisianians tailgate.  This pale ale has a wonderful balance between hops and malts and there possibly isn't a better beer to go along with our cuisine than Bayou Teche's LA 31 Biere Pale.

Abita Amber

This classic Munich style lager is another beer that goes great with our Louisiana cuisine.  With a 4.5% ABV it's easy to drink a bunch and still be able to support your team without being the obnoxious drunk fan like the Falcons have!  It also comes in a can and I'm pretty sure this is the only Louisiana craft beer being sold at the Dome during the game.

Tin Roof Blonde

The Baton Rouge based Tin Roof Brewing produces the light, crisp Blonde ale which is a great game day brew that comes in a can!  I hear that this one is also a staple at LSU tailgates!

NOLA Brown Ale

NOLA's Brown Ale is a tasty malt bomb with a nice, low ABV which makes it the perfect sessionable brew to have while watching the Saints.  It's also a fantastic choice for tailgaiting as it comes in a can as well.

Remember, these are just my picks.  What local beers will you be drinking while watching the boys in black this season?  What are your favorite tailgate food and beer pairings?


The Beer Buddha

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Beer Review: Bayou Teche Cocodrie

Alright, so I've been drinking while writing this so I'm going to say something here that may be blasphemous to some. Not to the local Louisiana folks but maybe some New Yorkers.  I think Bayou Teche is the Brooklyn Brewery of Louisiana.  But Bayou Teche's beers may be better.

I compare the two because Brooklyn Brewery does a great job with the beer and food pairing thing.  A GREAT job.  Down here in Louisiana, Bayou Teche is doing the same thing but with mostly Cajun cuisine.  And man are they killing it.  In May, when they first released Cocodrie they threw a crawfish boil at Avenue Pub.  Really wish I could have made that one!

In terms of me saying that their beer is better well, that's just strictly my opinion.  You can judge for yourself though.  I do however find it ironic that Bayou Teche is distributed in New York.  Yeah, New York.  New Yorkers want this beer pretty damn bad.  Why is that ironic? Because Bayou Teche is limited pretty much to the Gulf South.  And New York.  WTF?  Ironic. Seriously. Take note Alanis Morissette.

I recently received a sample from the brewery of their Cocodrie Tripel IPA.  No, it's not a TRIPLE IPA.  It's a TRIPEL.  Think Belgian Tripel mixed with IPA.  Kinda like Jean Claude Van Damme with hops.

Coors Van Damme?  WTF?

Here is a description from their website:

Cocodrie is Cajun French for alligator, and this Belgian style ale is stuffed with enough hops to stand up to a sauce-piquant prepared with one. We recklessly crammed IPA-worthy additions of hops (six separate hop additions, plus dry hopping) into an elegant and tastefully brewed Tripel – the spice and fruit flavors from the yeasts mix with the sumptuous hop flavors to create a rich, yet dangerously drinkable IPA. 
Our interpretation of the celebrated Tripel IPA style of beer is crafted with a generous amount of Pilsner malt which insures this ale clocks in at just over 8 percent ABV. Our brewmaster, Gar Hatcher selected strains of French and Belgian yeasts for their complementary fruit and spice flavors which meld with the multiple additions of elegant European hops. Cocodrie is then dry-hopped with French and Styrian hops which provides this beer its fruity, citrus, herbal and spicy hop aroma.

Not sure why (maybe because I am feeling a little tipsy) but this beer screams drink me while enjoying some amazing cheese and french bread.  So I did.  And it was great.  If it wasn't so damn hot outside I would have enjoyed this outside on the patio.  But this is Louisiana.  Way too hot for all that.  At least right now.  And, well, I don't have a patio anyway.

I enjoyed this beer a lot.  Bayou Teche is really just doing it right.  The Louisiana craft beer scene is blowing up and they are proving to be one of the leaders.  They are doing more than just brewing a great beer they are creating a great Louisiana beer culture.

Here is my review:

Brewery:  Bayou Teche Brewing

Beer:  Cocodrie

Style:  Belgian IPA

ABV:  8%

Louisiana Availability:  Summer seasonal.  May-September

Price:  Not sure.  Mine was a sample.

Appearance:  Pours a hazy, golden orange.  Huge off white head.  Great lacing.

Smell:  Right off I get a wonderful hint of ripe fruit, pepper and fresh baked french bread.

Taste:  Hints of stone fruit(apricot?), bready maltiness, piney hops.  Hint of pepper as well.  The 8% really doesn't show which can be bad news for some.

Mouthfeel:  Medium body and medium carbonation.

Overall:  Wow.  Amazing beer.  I could drink this one all day!  But then again I shouldn't at 8%.  Go grab some while you still can.

Score:  4.5 out of 5 Buddhas   photo 4.jpg


The Beer Buddha

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Beer Review: Stone R&R Coconut IPA

I love me some coconut.  Out of all the "nuts" it's my favorite.  Then again is it a nut?  What the hell is a coconut?  Oh, apparently it is a fibrous one-seeded drupe.  Did you ever think you'd actually learn something from this blog?  Me neither.

Anyway, I've been waiting for this bad boy to show up in the New Orleans market and got an email from Tim at Elio's saying that he had just gotten it in on Friday so I headed over after work.

R&R is another collaboration brew from Stone Brewing.  This one is a "celebration of the homebrewing spirit and an example of counter intuitive thoughts coalescing beautifully into something exceptional".  Um.....what?

Here is a description of the beer from Stone Brewing's website:

Originally dreamt up by homebrewers Robert Masterson and Ryan Reschan, who earned themselves the top prize in our 2013 American Homebrewers Association homebrewing contest, this innovative beer marks a refreshing sea change for IPA lovers everywhere. It was brewed with 280 pounds of coconut and an unusual blend of hop varieties, including a few from faraway lands or just brand spankin' new, and is guaranteed to taste like no IPA that's gone before. Prepare yourself for a tropical breeze of a brew that will lull you to a place of tranquil contentment for a little R&R.

For me the idea of this beer evokes the beach.  Ocean, sand, suntan lotion and drinking an ice cold brew while chillin' in a beach chair.  Not sure it delivered on that one.  It was damn good though.  Here is my review:

Brewery:  Stone Brewing

Beer:  R&R Coconut IPA

Style:  IPA

ABV:  7.7%

Louisiana Availability:  Yes.  Retail: Elios and Steins.  Draft:   Not 100% sure where.  Avenue Pub did have it at one time.

Price:  $7.99

Appearance:  Nice orange, hazy pour.  Decent head which disappears quickly but lacing was great.

Smell:  Huge piney hop aroma with hint of tropical fruit (like mango) and citrus (orange).   Not getting the coconut.

Taste:  Nice tropical hoppiness upfront but I am not really getting coconut.  A little on the backend as well as a citrus tartness but for 280 pounds of coconut I want to taste some damn coconut.  I almost want to say the hops overpower any coconut that wants to come through.  That being said this is a damn fine IPA.

Mouthfeel:  Medium body with medium carbonation,

Overall:  I'm not getting a whole lot of coconut here.  I expected a lot more.  It's a coconut IPA not an IPA with a hint of coconut.  Perhaps the hops overpower MY tastebuds and you may get the coconut taste.  Everyone's taste is different!  This is still a great beer though!

Score:  4 out of 5 Buddhas  photo 4buddhas.jpg


The Beer Buddha

Monday, August 5, 2013

Fight Cystic Fibrosis By Drinking Beer(and wine) At The Grape & Grain Fundraiser

Hey Northshore peeps! Cystic Fibrosis sucks and the New Orleans chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is throwing a beer and wine event to help fund research and hopefully one day find a cure for CF.

You will have an opportunity to sample about 20 wines(if that's your thing) and some pretty awesome beers.  Here is a list of the beers at the event:

  • Chafunkta 
  • New Belgium 
  • SweetWater 
  • Covington Brewhouse 
  • Tin Roof 
  • Bayou Teche 
  • Main Grain 
  • Gnarly Barley 

It'll be held August 23rd at the Benedict’s Plantation and all proceeds are to benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.  Tickets are $50 for General admission and $100 for VIP.

They will also have some local food to nosh on and a DJ so you can get out there and cut a rug.

Make sure you check this event out!


The Beer Buddha

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Beer Review: 21st Amendment Hell or High Watermelon

A lot of the reviews on the internet tend to slam low ABV, "summery", or fruity brews while heaping tons of praise on uber hoppy or barrel aged monsters. It's almost as if they are afraid of liking sessionable or fruity beers.  It's kind of sad actually.

If you can't tell by all my recent Facebook posts railing against pumpkin beers being released in July I'm one of those beer drinkers who like to drink with the season.  In the summer I prefer light, crisp, clean beers.  In the winter I prefer boozier beers.  And pumpkin beers?  How about in the goddamn fall?  Just saying.  

Recently, a buddy of mine brought down a serious amount of beers from Richmond, VA and I noticed a 21st Amendment Hell or High Watermelon in the bunch.  I was excited as I had yet to try this one. Summer is the perfect time for this one!  I've had Tin Roof's Watermelon brew and I liked it a lot so I was really looking forward to this one.

Here is my review:

Brewery:  21st Amendment

Beer:  Hell or High Watermelon

Style:  Fruit beer

ABV:  4.9%

Louisiana Availability:  No

Price:  ?

Appearance:  Poured a hazy, straw color.  Foamy, white head which disappears quickly.

Smell:  A nice light bready aroma with hints of watermelon Jolly Rancher.  Can detect slight hint of rind as well.

Taste:  As in the nose, the breadiness comes across strongly but the watermelon Jolly Rancher is much more prominent and the rind flavor is HUGE.

Mouthfeel:  Crisp, clean beer.  Moderate carbonation.

Overall:  This beer is a great summer beer.  The sweetness of the watermelon is balanced well with the wheat and the rind bitterness.  Really wish we could get this one here in NOLA. The way it has been going lately with all the beers releasing in town it could be sooner rather than later!

Score:  4 out of 5 Buddhas   photo 4buddhas.jpg


The Beer Buddha

Friday, August 2, 2013

Sweet Ass Beer News From Abita!

Just got some cool news coming from Abita! Check it out!

Changes to Harvest Lineup 2014

Lemon Wheat will be moving into the Harvest Lineup
Abita Strawberry will be available on draft
Satsuma will be discontinued

So that will give us:

Winter- Grapefruit IPA
Spring- Abita Strawberry
Summer- Lemon Wheat
Fall- Pecan

Seasonal Lineup Additions for 2014

Seersucker Summer Pilsner

Abita Select Line Up

Machiatto Espresso Milk Stout- November release
Hopgator- This will be a hopped up version of Andygator. They haven’t decided on the hops yet! Available January through February.
Imperator- This will be a Black IPA and will be available March through April.
Triple Haze- This one did really well for Abita last year and will be available May through July.
Legendary Gator- This one will be an 11% “triple helles dopplebock”. Think Andygator on steroids. Should be available August through September
Naughty Quaker- This will be an oatmeal stout and will be available October through December.

**All these dates for the Select Series are subject to change**

I have to admit I am really looking forward to the Seersucker Summer Pilsner. Louisiana really needs a good, solid lager to drink during the brutal heat. I also made sure(again)to let them know that we would love to see the Abita Selects in bottle form!

The Beer Buddha

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Beer Review: Stone Farking Wheaton w00tstout

Okay, so let me start off by saying I have no idea what is and no idea who Drew Curtis is.  I'm sure you are a cool guy Drew and I'm sorry I don't know you or your website.  I do however know who Wil Wheaton is.  He plays John Cusack's brother who searched for a dead body in Stand By Me and was also in the kick ass Sean Astin movie Toy Soldiers.  And of course, I know who Greg Koch is.  He's the quirky, bearded homeless guy that hangs out at Stone Brewing.  Just kidding. #beardjealousy

stoled from Greg Koch's Facebook page

But seriously though when the internet went nuts over the new collaboration brew Stone Farking Wheaton w00tstout I just didn't really get all the hubbub. The hubbub is that Stone Brewing collaborated with Wil Wheaton(apparently a home brewer in addition to being a geeks heartthrob)and Drew Curtis.  Nerds went ballistic.  I was just excited about another Stone beer.

All I know about Big Bang Theory is she is in it.

Wheaton would represent the wheat(of course) in the beer, Curtis the rye and pecans(he is from Kentucky) and Stone does the rest. I didn't watch Star Trek, never heard of w00tstock, don't watch Big Bang Theory and don't know  Am I not "geeky" enough to understand this beer?  I'm just a former jock who loves beer and if I watched Big Bang Theory it would be to watch Kaley Cuoco's fine ass only.  Yeah, I'm that guy.

Thankfully "geeky" doesn't matter in the beer world.  All that matters is the taste and this beer is seriously tasty!

Here is my review:

Brewery:  Stone Brewing

Beer:  Stone Farking Wheaton w00tstout

Style:  Imperial Stout

ABV:  13%

Louisiana Availability:  Yes.  RETAIL:  Steins Deli, Elio's Wine Warehouse and Martin Wine Cellar. DRAFT:  Avenue Pub, Bulldog(Uptown and Midcity), Ancora and DBA

Price:  $7.99

Appearance:  Pours coffee black.  Head was minimal as was lacing.

Smell:  I allowed this one to warm up a bit and I think the beer was better for it.  The aroma was more prevalent the closer to room temperature the beer got.  Nice hints of coffee, chocolate, vanilla and tobacco(yeah really!).

Taste:  As in the nose I tasted hints of coffee, chocolate and vanilla.  Also has a slight nutty flavor. Nice balance of bitter and sweet with a hint of spiciness from what I assume is the rye.

Mouthfeel:  Viscous with low carbonation.

Overall:  GREAT brew!  I think aging this bad boy would really help an awesome beer become better. Hell, as hot as it is outside right now waiting for it to be cold outside would be a good idea!  I struggle drinking stouts during summer anyway!  I will be grabbing another one to open up this winter for sure!  Grab some while it's still out!

Score:  4.5 out of 5 Buddhas  photo 4.jpg


The Beer Buddha

Thursday, July 25, 2013

More Sweetwater Coming To Louisiana Stuff: Official Stuff

Not that no one knows that Sweetwater is already coming but here is the official release announcement from them:


Atlanta craft brewery taps into New Orleans, North Shore/Covington and Baton Rouge markets starting August 19

 ATLANTA (July 2013) – Rolling in hot on the heels of their recent entrance into the state of Kentucky, SweetWater Brewery is brewin’ up another big launch for the locals of Louisiana this August. SweetWater recently underwent a $19 million expansion now putting to good use their newly renovated 250-bbl brewhouse, tank farm and expanded packaging hall. These rollouts are the first time the brewery has opened up distribution into new states since 2008 due to previous production capacity.

Louisiana marks the eighth U.S. state to be included in brewery’s distribution footprint. SweetWater has partnered with Southern Eagle Distributing in New Orleans, Champagne Beverage Company in North Shore/Covington, and Mockler Beverage Company in Baton Rouge. Beers will begin flowing on draft taps starting the week of August 19.

“We’ve received a boatload letters requesting us to bring our brews to the Big Easy, and we’re finally ready to find our way further West…it’s finding our way back that may be the tough part,” said Dave Guender, vice president of sales with SweetWater Brewing Company. “We hear the redfish are biting and the hot weather’s got folks thirsty, so now is as good a time as ever to bring our brews to the fine folks in Louisiana!”

SweetWater is bringing their unpasteurized ales to the area starting with 420 Extra Pale Ale on draft at on-premise bars and restaurants, alongside six-packs and 12-pack variety bottles in off-premise grocery stores, package stores, and specialty bottle shops including:

  • 420 Extra Pale Ale - SweetWater’s 420 Extra Pale Ale is a West Coast style pale ale with big hops and a crisp finish. First brewed on April 20, 1997, this beer has developed quite the following in the Southeast. 420 is extremely well-balanced which makes it a perfect introduction to a new town…that’s why we say “drink ‘em if you got ‘em!”
  • SweetWater Blue - SweetWater Blue is a unique, lighter-bodied wheat ale enhanced with a hint of fresh blueberries. This brew’ll give folks a good whiff of a blueberry influence, with a subtle taste and an extra clean finish. This ain’t no fruit beer, but it is our breakfast beer, and perfect for hanging outside on a hot Louisiana day.
  • SweetWater IPA - This mammoth India Pale Ale (IPA) is dry-hopped to the gills delivering a kick-you-in-the-teeth hop chop. The brew is unfiltered and, like all of our beers, always unpasteurized to leave all the natural flavors intact. SweetWater IPA recently won first place in a blind tasting against 15 of the best IPA’s in the country held by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
  • SweetWater Tackle Box - The SweetWater Tackle Box variety pack is a hefty 12-pack collection featuring three of SweetWater’s favorite year round brews, along with a fourth style of a little something special in each box.

 A crew from SweetWater will taste their way around the area with sampling celebrations and sponsored events Aug. 21 in Baton Rouge and Aug. 22 in New Orleans. For the full schedule and participating locations, visit

 Online fans can wet their whistles too by following the Louisiana Facebook page for details on how to enter SweetWater’s “Catch a Trout Tap” contest rewarding the first locals to spot their tap handles with free SweetWater Schwag.

 To learn more about SweetWater Brewing Company and its full lineup, visit


SweetWater Brewing Company is an Atlanta‐based craft brewery following the motto “Don’t Float the Mainstream!” SweetWater’s brews are unpasteurized and designed to be consumed fresh so distribution is limited to the Southeast. The award‐winning lineup of year‐round brews includes SweetWater 420, IPA, Blue, LowRYEder and Georgia Brown. SweetWater also features a Catch and Release series of beers available on a limited basis throughout the year, and an experimental, one‐time‐only Dank Tank series. SweetWater Brewery, open for tours every Wednesday, Thursdayand Friday from 5:30‐7:30 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 2:30‐4:30 p.m., is located at 195 Ottley Dr. in Atlanta. For more information about SweetWater Brewing Company, please For more of a social relationship with SweetWater Brewing Company follow @sweetwaterbrew on Twitter and Instagram, and become a fan on Facebook:

Monday, July 22, 2013

Sweetwater Louisiana Release Date

Alright, as we all know Sweetwater Brewing is finally coming to Louisiana!  Here in New Orleans they signed with Southern Eagle Distributors and will be releasing August 19th.  I haven't heard where but one can only assume Avenue Pub.  As soon as I find out I'll let ya'll know.


The Beer Buddha

Thursday, July 18, 2013

NOLA Brewing Teams Up With New Belgium for Louisiana Craft Beer Week

NOLA Brewing will be teaming up with New Belgium Brewing on a collaboration brew for Louisiana Craft Beer Week which begins September 23rd.  The beer will be a Belgian single and will be made with Muscadine grapes.  The name of the brew is Swamp Grape Escape.  The release will kick off the week and is shceduled to be hosted at Avenue Pub.

Really looking forward to this one!  Sounds fun!


The Beer Buddha

Monday, July 15, 2013

Pumpkin Beers in July

Dear Breweries,

So recently I have seen a couple pictures floating around on Facebook that to me are a bit disturbing. These pictures are of pumpkin beers in July.

Now don't get me wrong I love me some pumpkin beers.  They are without a doubt one of my favorite seasonal beers.  Please note the key word there though- seasonal.  So, what's the definition of seasonal? According to Merriam-Webster:  of, relating to, or varying in occurrence according to the season.

Let me let you in on a secret:  July is not the proper season for pumpkin beers.  Just like March is not the proper season for summer beers. Just like September is not the proper season for Christmas beers.

Please stop with all this retardedness.  You're becoming just as bad as Walmart putting up Christmas decorations in September.

I'm sorry but I like my seasonal beers in the season they are meant for.  I can't in very good conscience drink these beers and fully enjoy them when it's 98 degrees outside.  Granted it's about 98 degrees outside in October here in Louisiana but that's not the point.

I for one will not support this behavior and all you other beer drinkers who care shouldn't support it either.  We can complain about it but the only way to stop it is not buy the beers in July.  September is an appropriate time for the release of fall beers and I will not buy them until then.  I guess this means that when I drink your beers they won't be at their freshest but YOU, the brewer, decided to release them too early.  That's on you.

Happy Holidays!

The Beer Buddha

You see how retarded that sounded?  Same thing as releasing pumpkin beers in July.  STOP IT!

Friday, July 12, 2013

New Orleans Brew News!!

Got some nice beer news today!

Brasserie Cantillon busted out there annual Zwanze Day list for 2013 and Avenue Pub will once again be host on September 14th!   I think I may actually be able to go for once!!

Avenue Pub is in some damn good company with bars like Church Key out of  D.C. and Monk's Cafe in Philly.  So great to see a New Orleans beer bar on this list.  Actually, you know what, lemme take that back.  ALL these other bars are in great company- The Avenue Pub!!  Take note anyone who comes up with a Best Beer Bar in NOLA list!  If AP ain't on it you screwed up.  Click here for Avenue Pub's Zwanze Day FB page.

In other news Abita Brewing hit me with a double whammy today.  First, they will be releasing Andygator in 6 packs. The anticipated release date is "sometime in early October."  I don't know if they are doing away with the 22 oz version.  I doubt it but I'm not sure.

And for you hop fans Abita will be adding a new Harvest beer to the lineup. It will be a grapefruit IPA called Grapefruit Harvest IPA. This brew will be releasing in December and it uses local grapefruits grown in Plaquemines Parish.  Looking forward to this one!


The Beer Buddha

UPDATE:  Here is the label!

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Thank You, Abita!

Yesterday I had the wonderful opportunity to take a trip with some friends to the Northshore for a brewery tour of Abita Brewery.  This trip was set up by Vice President of Sales Leo Basile and conducted by Abita owner David Blossman.  Let me just say we had an amazing trip!

I walked away from the tour with a new found respect for the brewery. Everyone that works at the brewery puts a lot of love and passion into the beer they are making and selling.  When your owner is as passionate about the beer making process as David Blossman is it's bound to trickle down to all employees.

Now let me be honest there is no denying that we were "beer'd and dined" by Abita.  They sent a limo bus(that was stocked with beer!) to pick us up and we had an amazing lunch at the Abita Brewpub after the tour.  And of course not everyone get's the tour we got.  But this should in no way take away from the fact that Abita as a company loves what they do and they do it well.

A lot of us local Louisiana beer nerds like to criticize Abita for making "mediocre" beer.  What we should remember though is what we may think is "mediocre" is not to the guy that wants to stop drinking Budweiser and wants to start supporting his local brewery.  Abita has been initiating craft beer drinkers since 1986.  There is no question of Abita's importance in the growing Louisiana beer scene.  They are currently distributed in 44 states and are ranked the 14th largest craft brewery in the country.  We should proud of this.

Now, I'm not saying that when Abita makes a beer that we aren't happy with we shouldn't express our opinions.  Just like we do with our favorite football team we will always express our opinion when we think they could have done a better job.  Drew Brees throws interceptions.  The Saints lose.  LSU loses  Tulane always loses.  But Louisiana always supports their home teams and Abita is definitely one of them.

Thanks again to Leo Basile, David Blossman and the rest of the Abita staff that showed us such an amazing time!  And just for The Ale Runner I'm gonna go drink my Abita Lemon Wheat now!


The Beer Buddha