On this day in 1883, the first regularly-scheduled Orient Express, a long-distance luxury train, left Paris for Vienna. The Orient Express’s route and rolling stock changed many times over its lifetime, but the train has become synonymous with luxury, intrigue, and a famous fictional murder.
And now…The Mash!
We begin in Pennsylvania, where Jonathan Cooper has developed “Thinking & Drinking,” a card game that encourages players to explore local breweries through conversation-starting questions.
Inventor Staton Lorenz has developed the “Growler Collar,” a plastic device that screws onto the top of growlers and lifts them off the counter to allow for proper air circulation and drying.
In the May 28 New York Times, Dr. Daniela Lamas describes how she and a medical student offered comfort to a terminally-ill cancer patient in the form of a cold bottle of Guinness.
The fantasy-league craze has extended to craft beer. Tyler Moss of Paste magazine describes his league, in which team owners submit beers from their roster for a competitive tasting.
In California, Lagunitas Brewing Company’s popularity has municipal officials struggling to handle traffic. Lagunitas will spend $30 million to up production and make its headquarters easier to visit.
Entourage star Adrian Grenier has launched his own brand of beer, the Churchkey Can Company. Why “Churchkey?” Customers have to use a traditional can opener to open the retro-design cans.
Finally, Soweto, in South Africa, is best known for apartheid and poverty. It’s also the home of uBuntu Kraal (”Togetherness Ranch”), South Africa’s only majority black-owned brewery, whose Soweto Gold is aimed at the emerging black middle class.
Eighty-five years ago today, Pluto was officially named. Upon its discovery, Pluto was recognized as the solar system’s ninth planet. However, in 2006 the International Astronomical Union’s formal definition of “planet,” resulted in Pluto’s demotion to dwarf-planet status.
And now….The Mash!
We begin in Wisconsin, where the fifth annual Madison Beer Week kicks off today. Co-founder Jeffrey Glazer talks about the growth of Beer Week and how beer culture has changed in Madison.
If you’re on the Paleo Diet, grain-based beer is off the menu. Scientists say it shouldn’t be. Our ancestors were creative enough to turn both grain and fruit into alcoholic beverages.
Nicolette Wenzell of the Palm Springs Historical Society takes us back to the 1950s, when the El Mirador Hotel hosted a weekly Bavarian Night. The event became so popular that local stores stocked lederhosen and felt hats.
Anti-alcohol groups are criticizing Ben & Jerry’s for getting into the beer business. The ice-cream maker is collaborating with New Belgium Brewing Company to make Salted Caramel Brownie Brown Ale, to be released this fall.
Paste magazine assembled a panel of experts to rank 39 American wheat beers. The overall winner was Allagash White.
Notable NBA draft bust Darko Milicic has embarked on a new career in the world of kickboxing. He’s also perfected the art of chugging a beer with no hands.
Finally, the owners of Scottish brewery Brewdog have big plans. They hope to expand their brewery, and add a distillery and a hotel to the operation. Also on the drawing board: opening 15 to 20 Brewdog bars across the U.K.
Twenty-five years ago today, the Hubble Space Telescope was launched into low Earth orbit. The telescope, which has had five in-space service calls by NASA astronauts, is still functioning and is expected to last another five years.
And now….The Mash!
We begin in the friendly confines of Wrigley Field, where Krista Dotzenrod caught a foul ball in her beer cup and, at the urging fans, chugged the beer. The hashtag for this is #ChugBall.
“Raising the Bar”, which began last year in New York, is a program in which scholars give lectures in pubs and other venues. Recently, Hong Kong became the first Asian city to stage this event.
Australian prime minister Tony Abbott sent a mixed message about binge drinking when he downed a 12-ounce schooner of beer seven seconds at a Sydney bar.
A bar in Maple Grove, Minnesota, must deal with the dreaded Beer Police. Its offense? Buying kegs of New Glarus Spotted Cow from a Wisconsin liquor store and bringing them across the state line.
The government of Indonesia, a Muslim-majority country, has outlawed the sale of beer at convenience stores. Small retailers account for around 60 percent of the country’s beer sales.
Tomorrow is Dark Lord Day, and host Three Floyds Brewery has something new for festival-goers: Dark Lord-infused hot sauce, made with ancho and guajillo chili peppers.
Finally, Brook Bristow, executive director of the South Carolina Brewers Guild, was presented with the F.X. Matt Defense of the Industry Award at last week’s Craft Brewers Conference. Working pro bono, Bristow’s law firm successfully lobbied for craft-friendly laws in the Palmetto State.
No, this isn’t an episode of Bizarre Foods. The Diet of Worms was an assembly that, on this day in 1521, put Martin Luther on trial for heresy. After the trial, a supporter offered Luther a silver tankard of Eimbeck beer, which he gratefully drank.
And now….The Mash!
We begin in Durham, North Carolina, whose minor-league stadium, the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, will soon have a brewery. Fans will be able to buy beer and watch the brewing process.
Delaware’s liquor store owners are worried about losing business if Pennsylvania loosens its restrictions on beer sales. As it is, the Keystone State offers a wider selection of beer.
Carlsberg Breweries, which is known for offbeat advertising campaigns, put up a giant beer-dispensing billboard in London’s Brick Lane. Stay tuned: the brewery is planning more promotions.
Despite heavy taxation and domination of the market by the Singha-Chang duopoly, craft beer is making inroads in Thailand. However, home brewing is still against the law.
Sexist marketing isn’t just an American phenomenon. A Japanese brewery has it marketing a beer called Precious to women. It contains two grams of collagen, a protein that makes skin look younger.
If your beer is boring, a company called Hop Theory is here to help with flavor-enhancing teabags. Their first product, Relativity, contains orange peel, coriander, and Cascade hops.
Finally, Tricia Gilbride of Mashable.com picks the best beers to drink in the shower. She prefers IPAs because “it makes sense to select a hoppy beer when you hop in the shower.”
On this day in 1897, San Diego State University was established. The 35,000 students at SDSU have an amazing selection of craft beer to choose from. At the end of 2014, the county had nearly 100 breweries and brewpubs.
And now…The Mash!
We begin in Houston, where the Texas Beer Refinery has opened for business. Its fermenting tanks and brew kettles have been made to look like refinery towers from a distance.
Goose Island Brewing Company’s 20-year-old brewery on Chicago’s Near West Side will start offering tours and tastings later this month. The tasting room will also offer growler fills.
Devil’s Backbone Brewing Company has brewed a beer to benefit James Madison’s Montpelier. Ambition Ale, “a beer with checks and balances,” will be available in central Virginia this summer.
Widmer Brothers Hefeweizen, Oregon’s largest-selling craft beer, is now co-branded with Major League Soccer’s Portland Timbers. Both the brewery and the team are Portland institutions.
Goldcrest 51 beer was popular in Memphis until the Tennessee Brewing Company closed its doors in 1955. Beer writer Kenn Flemmons plans to revive the beer this spring, using the original recipe.
A federal appeals court has ruled that Flying Dog Ales can sue Michigan for damages over its refusal to approve the label for Raging Bitch IPA. The state’s decision was overturned in court.
Finally, a new beer from Maine’s Allagash Brewing Company honors cherry farmer Nancy Bunting, who supplied it with thousands of pounds of cherries. Allagash has donated part of the proceeds from “Nancy” to a charity that helps farmworkers with health problems.
Seventy-five years ago today, Martin Kamen and Sam Ruben discovered carbon-14, a radioactive isotope. It’s the basis of the radio-carbon dating method that determines an object’s age. However, bartenders still have to use ID cards to determine the age of their customers.
And now…The Mash!
We begin in Barlioche, a Patagonian resort town that has become the craft beer capital of the Andes. It’s home to 15 breweries, which join forces for a beer festival in December.
Last weekend, more than 100 people played whiffle ball in the snow in a Milwaukee-area park. Leinenkugel Brewing Company hosted the tournament to promote its Summer Shandy.
Experts aren’t sure why this happens, but recipients spend more on beer when food stamps are distributed on the weekend—even though the stamps can’t be used to buy beer.
The Brew Kettle, a Cleveland-area brewery, is rolling out an ale for Cavaliers basketball fans. “All For One” session IPA will be available at the brewery and at Cavs’ home games.
Hellboy, the character created by comic-book artist Mike Mignola, turned 21, and Rogue Ales celebrated his big birthday by releasing Hand of Doom Red Ale. It sold out in a hurry.
This month’s “Session” asked beer bloggers the question “Festivals: Geek Gathering or Beer Dissemination?” Joan Villar-i-Martí, who blogs from Barcelona, has rounded up the best responses.
Finally, thousands of whiskey barrels have found their way to craft breweries. Now, Heavy Seas Brewing Company has returned the favor, sending its brewhouse tanks to a distillery.
On this day in 1872, the Metropolitan Museum of Art opened in Manhattan. With more than two million works in its permanent collection, “The Met”—not to be confused with baseball mascot “Mr. Met”—is one of the largest art museums in the world.
And now…The Mash!
We begin in Turkey, where security guards red-carded a fan for trying to smuggle beer into a soccer stadium. A whole case of bottles, in an outfit he’d designed for that purpose.
The latest trademark fight pits New Belgium Brewing Company and Oasis, Texas Brewing Company, both of which brew a beer called “Slow Ride”. New Belgium filed its mark ahead of Oasis, but Oasis’s beer hit the market first.
Vietnam’s robust drinking culture—there is no word for “hangover”—is raising concerns about health as citizens grow wealthier. A glass of beer costs just 30 U.S. cents.
Screenwriter and director Matthew Vaughn says that Guinness provided the inspiration for Kingsman: The Secret Service. Over pints, Vaughn and comic book maestro Mark Miller came up with the idea of an old-school spy movie.
The popularity of IPA and other craft beer has forced Iowa lawmakers to revisit the definition of “beer”. Beverages with 5 to 8 percent ABV currently exist in a legal twilight zone.
An Austin, Texas, company has developed a product called Kube, which combines a high-quality portable sound system and a beverage cooler. It’s designed to be used at parties and outdoor events.
Finally, Empire Brewing Company is collaborating with China’s Jingwei Fu Tea Company to brew Two Dragons beer. It starts out mellow and woody, and finishes with a sweet tea-like taste. Empire hopes to export it to China.
On this day in 1914, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers was formed. This performance-rights organization takes in close to $1 billion in licensing fees, most of which it distributes to artists as royalties.
And now (cue the music)…The Mash!
We begin in the Verizon Center in Washington, where the Brooklyn Nets’ Mason Plumlee committed the ultimate party foul. He crashed into a courtside vendor, sending $200 worth of beer flying.
Researchers have found that if you’re seen holding a glass of beer, you will be perceived as less intelligent. It’s called “the imbibing idiot bias”: we closely associate drinking and dumb behavior.
The Louisville Courier-Journal asked local brewers how they name their beers. Just as they brew their beers differently, they follow different processes for naming them.
One beer trend that’s taking off this year is grocery store growlers. For example, several Kroger locations in Virginia are offering 32- and 64-ouncers with a choice of eight different taps.
China’s anti-corruption campaign has been a drag on the brewing indsutry. Government officials are refusing invitations to go drinking out of fear of being accused of taking bribes.
Drinking beer out of cans might endanger your health. Cans are lined with epoxy that contains bisphenol-A, a chemical that’s been linked to a number of serious ailments.
Finally, Scottish brewery Innis & Gunn has released a Fifty Shades of Grey-inspired beer. It’s fortified with ginseng to boost the sex drive, ginkgo biloba to get the blood pumping, and a mild nerve stimulant called damiana.
Two hundred years ago today, the state of New Jersey awarded the first-ever railroad franchise to Colonel John Stevens III, the inventor who constructed America’s first steam locomotive.
And the bar car is open!
Fore! We begin at the 16th hole of the Phoenix Open, where rowdy spectators celebrated Francesco Molinari’s hole-in-one by showering him with beer and other flying objects.
A Minnesota brewery found out that it can’t sell “Rated R” beer. Not because of violence or sex, but because the Motion Picture Association of America trademarked the phrase. Molson’s XXX is, presumably, still in the clear.
MillerCoors has installed 10,000 solar panels at its Irwindale, California, brewery. The new system will generate enough electricity to brew seven million cases of beer each year.
Blank Slate Brewing Company joined forces with Oskar Blues Brewery to brew “Cincy 3-Way Porter.” The beer contains cumin, coriander, allspice and cinnamon, which are found in Cincinnati-style chili.
Researchers in China have discovered that xanthohumol, a substance found in hops, contains anti-oxidants that may delay or even prevent the onset of dementia and other forms of cognitive decline.
Ontario’s government plans some changes to its relationship with The Beer Store, the province’s quasi-monopoly. However, those changes won’t bring beer into convenience stores.
Finally, Yeti Coolers has invented a super-luxury koozie. The Colster, which retails for $30, wraps a beer in a stainless steel, double-walled, vacuum-insulated enclosure; and its “No Sweat” design prevents condensation from forming.
On this day in 1649, King Charles I of England was beheaded for high treason. His execution ushered in the Interregnum, during which Oliver Cromwell and later his son, Richard, ruled the country.
And now….The Mash!
We begin in Colorado, where Oskar Blues has given its session ale a marijuana-themed name: Pinner, which is slang for a joint with low THC content. Above the Pinner logo is the question: “Can I be blunt?”
Carlsberg Group is developing the world’s first fully biodegradable bottle for its beverages. The “Green Fiber Bottle” will be made from wood fiber or paper pulp, and will be lighter than a glass bottle.
Yahoo Food profiles Chris Loring, whose Massachusetts-based Notch Brewing specializes in session beers. Loring reminds us that these beers have existed in America for 100 years.
An unidentified man in Brooklyn has trained his girlfriend’s pet rabbit, Wallace, to bring him a beer. The animal puts its paws on the beer cart, pushing it forward.
A trip to a The Alchemist brewery not only netted MSNBC TV personality Rachel Maddow some Heady Topper IPA, but also revealed how New England’s economy is booming.
Baseball Hall of Famer Wade Boggs’s most impressive statistic might not be his 3,010 career hits. Legend has it that Boggs put away 64 beers while on a cross-country trip during his playing days.
Finally, don’t scoff at the idea of beer brewed with sewer water. Washington County, Oregon’s Clean Water Services claims that its purification system makes sewer water even cleaner than tap water. One homebrewer uses the water, and calls his beer “sewage brewage.”