Ashley Rouston

The Friday Mash (Gone With the Wind Edition)

On this day in 1936, Gone with the Wind was published. Author Margaret Mitchell won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for the book. Three years later, it was adapted into an Academy Award–winning film starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh. Ludwig recommends that you celebrate with an Atlanta-brewed micro–420 Extra Pale Ale, for instance.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in South Africa, where campers at the OppiKoppi music festival will be able to order drone-delivered beer. The drones are currently hand-guided, but will eventually fly on a GPS grid.

Here’s yet another reason to visit southwest Florida: craft brewing. Two breweries and a brewpub recently opened, and two more breweries are planning to open.

Why do so many bars serve peanuts? Contrary to popular belief, it isn’t because the nuts make you thirstier. Rather, the salt in peanuts helps counter the bitterness in beer, making it easier to swallow.

Ashley Rouston, The Beer Wench, is once again accepting nominations for the 2013 Most Eligible Bachelors of Beer. Nominees must work in the craft-brewing industry and must not be married or engaged.

Higher zymurgical education is coming to Colorado State University. The will build a microbrewery, and will also offer a major in fermentation science and technology.

The Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant chain is teaming up with Redhook Ale Brewery to brew its own beer. And yes, it will pair will with BW3’s wings.

Finally, beer yeast can be engineered to produce artemisinic acid, the most effective anti-malaria treatment in existence. Until now, that ingredient was both expensive and hard to find.

The Friday Mash (Land of 10,000 Lakes Edition)

On this day in 1858, Minnesota was admitted to the Union as the 32nd state. Its name comes from a Native American word meaning “sky-tinted water.” Small wonder, then, that Hamm’s Brewery advertised its beer as “from the land of sky-blue waters”–a lyric taken from a century-old song written by Charles Wakefield Cadman.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Ocean City, New Jersey, which voted down BYOB beer and wine in restaurants. The town, which has been dry for more than a century, calls itself “America’s Greatest Family Resort.”

Japan’s Suntory Liquors is producing Rolling Hop beer to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the formation of The Rolling Stones. The hops used to make this 4% ABV brew are infused with citrus.

Yes, you can find craft beer in the Magic Kingdom. Since 1997, a brewery has operated at Disney’s Boardwalk Hotel. It’s owned by the Big River Brewing Company.

In case you missed it, here is the list of winners at the 2012 World Beer Cup. They were announced at the Craft Brewers Conference in San Diego.

Man’s best friend, indeed. Bes, a Labrador retriever, has been named Australia’s Most Talented Pet. Her talent? She can open the fridge, and fetch her owner a can of beer.

Ashley Rouston, The Beer Wench, introduces us to ten women in craft brewing who deserve to be celebrated.

Finally, in Debary, Florida, a bear has wandered the streets near the marina, chugging beers found on back porches and popping in at a local tiki bar. Maybe the bear wanted to be in a Hamm’s Beer commercial.

The Friday Mash (Festivus Edition)

It’s time for Festivus, a holiday celebrated with an aluminum “Festivus pole”, rituals like the “Airing of Grievances” and “Feats of Strength”, and calling easily explainable events “Festivus miracles.” While beverages aren’t obligatory, they come highly recommended.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Muskegon, Michigan, the self-proclaimed “beer tent capital of the world,” where 13 residents stripped to their swimsuits and waded into Lake Michigan to attract a brewery to their city.

Australian researchers have found that a one-degree (Celsius) increase in average monthly temperature translates into a 2.1 percent increase in beer consumption. That’s 10,000 extra cases.

Dogfish Head Artisan Ales is planning a $50 million expansion of its brewery in Milton, Delaware. Unfortunately, some locals voiced their objections to the traffic the brewery will create.

Last week, the Globe and Mail’s website ran a slideshow which features 12 Canadian craft brewers that are shaking up the country’s brewing industry.

Ashley Rouston, The Beer Wench, lists the craft beer community’s 20 most compelling personalities on Twitter. Drat! Ludwig isn’t one of them.

Injuries forced Yao Ming to end his pro basketball career, but the NBA continues its efforts to win fans in China with a partnership between the Miami Heat and Chinese beer company Tsingtao.

Finally, now that it’s Hanukkah, brewers are bringing out holiday beers for Jewish beer drinkers. Why not? Jews have brewed beer for thousands of years in Asia, Europe, and America.

A Virtual Tasting on Twitter

Whole Foods Market has teamed up with Ashley Rouston, The Beer Wench, to present a series of virtual beer tastings that will be broadcast live on Twitter. The first in the series will take place tomorrow, December 20, from 7:00 to 8:00 pm. The focus will be, naturally enough, on holiday beers. The lineup consists of New Belgium Snow Day, Deschutes Jubelale, Bison Brewing Gingerbread Ale, and Dogfish Head Chicory Stout.

The Tuesday Mash

Can’t wait for Friday? We can’t bring Friday to you any sooner, but we can bring you a bonus edition of The Mash!

We begin in Witney, England, where British Prime Minister David Cameron quaffed a couple of beers at the Charlbury Beer Festival and played the traditional pub game “Aunt Sally.” Ludwig wonders if the PM reads his blog.

Looking for something different in a summer beer? Andy Sparhawk of has some recommendations. His list covers a number of styles and all regions of the country.

Circle August 4 on your calendar. In the meantime, head straight to your favorite beer store to get ready for the inaugural International IPA Day.

Martin Luther, who was known to enjoy beer, certainly would approve of “Beer and Hymns” at a Massachusetts brew pub. It’s a chance for Lutherans to meet in an environment less formal than church.

Ashley Rouston, The Beer Wench, asked her readers an intriguing question: Would you drink beer if it didn’t contain alcohol? She got plenty of responses, yes, no, and in between.

Things are looking up for baseball fans in D.C. Not only are the Nationals playing .500 ball, but the National Restaurant Group plans to open a brewpub near Nationals Stadium next year.

Finally, why did lager conquer northern Germany? According to an anonymous Englishman who visited in 1859, it was became pre-lager beer was sehr schlecht. (Hat tip: “Barm” at I Might Have a Glass of Beer).

The Friday Mash (Mike Royko Edition)

Fourteen years ago today, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Mike Royko died of a brain aneurysm. Royko, who grew up in Chicago, began his career covering that city’s colorful politicians. He was also fond of the Cubs, 16-inch softball, and having a few beers at the Billy Goat Tavern.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Tacoma, Washington, where a bar has stopped holding goldfish races after the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals complained that drunken customers impaled swallowed the fish.

France’s Interior Ministry has banned riot police from drinking alcohol with their meal. Other government employees can still have beer, wine, or cider with their lunch.

In Fort Collins, Colorado, nine local brewers joined forces and created a beer to celebrate American Craft Beer with. The beer, which will debut May 16, will check in at about 6 percent ABV

John Miller of the Wall Street Journal wasn’t impressed with the non-alcoholic version of Hoegaarden, describing it as “akin to a watered-down lemon Fanta.” Ouch.

Don’t expect to find Taedonggang beer from Pyongyang, North Korea, on the tap list at your friendly local. Earlier this month, President Obama issued an executive order that further restricts the entry of North Korean goods into the United States.

Attention ladies! Ashley Rouston, the Beer Wench, has compiled a list (with photos) of the 20 most eligible bachelors of craft beer. Topping the list was Noah Regnery, the head brewer at Pizza Port Brewing Company.

Finally, if you’ve been invited to tomorrow’s royal wedding, don’t expect to find beer at the reception. The royal family has deemed it inappropriate for such a prestigious occasion. We can only imagine what Slats Grobnik, the character created by Mike Royko, would say about that.

The Friday Mash (STP Edition)

On this day in 1923, auto racing figure Andy Granatelli was born. Granatelli and his brothers modified engines for Indy cars, but Andy is best known for being the spokesman for STP oil and gasoline treatment products during the 1960s. The product’s logo was everywhere, and the “STP is the racer’s edge” jingle still reverberates inside the brains of millions of American males.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Cullman, Alabama, which since 1977 has hosted a beer-free Oktoberfest. That tradition is about to go by the boards: last November, voters lifted prohibition.

Time flies when you’re having fun. Alan McLeod at A Good Beer Blog is hosting Session #50, “How Do They Make Me Buy The Beer?” Comments are welcome, and Alan has a few thoughts to get you started.

John Holl, whose book Indiana Breweries is now in print, was featured on New York’s WNBC-TV, where he brought out a selection of high-alcohol beers. Well before noon.

Planning a beer trip to Seattle? Sam Kettering of Seattle Weekly has a neighborhood-by-neighborhood guide to help you navigate the city.

Ashley Rouston, “The Beer Wench,” wants to find out which breweries are tops in social media. And she’s asking for nominations.

Natalie Hill, a British photographer, posted a beautiful Cantillon slide show on

Finally, Trudeau Corporation has invented a bottle opener that catches the cap. The video is worth watching for the cheesy music alone.

The Friday Mash (Happy Birthday Edition)

A year ago today, Ludwig launched “Ludwig Roars,” the Beer Festival Calendar blog. So pour yourself a virtual beer (it’s on the birthday boy), and join Maryanne and Paul who’ll lead us in a rousing chorus of “Happy Birthday to Ludwig Roars.”

Thank you. And now…The Mash!

We begin with Don Russell, a/k/a Joe Sixpack, who calls the roll of beer-related saints.

Ilan Klages-Mundt of finished a two-week apprenticeship at Fuller’s Brewery. He also attended the London Brewer’s Alliance Beerfest.

For the first time since Prohibition, Guinness Foreign Extra Stout will be sold in the United States.

Josh Noel of the Chicago Tribune reviews the own-label beers on the shelves at your local Trader Joe’s.

Another collaborative beer is on the way. Called Bitch Please, it will be brewed jointly by Three Floyds Brewing Company and Scotland-based BrewDog. The beer will use seven different malts and an all-New Zealand hop mix.

Genetically engineered beer might be coming to a bar near you. Scientists have identified 20 barley proteins, 40 proteins from yeast, and two proteins from corn. Tweaking these proteins might improve beer’s flavor and aroma.

Finally, we couldn’t resist one more Great American Beer Festival story. Ashley Rouston, a/k/a The Beer Wench, handed out a slew of awards to those who showed up in Denver. Few of them appeared to be camera-shy.

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