Dogfish Head Artisan Ales

The Friday Mash (Seven Years’ War Edition)

On this day in 1756, Prussia’s king Frederick the Great attacked Saxony, beginning the Seven Years’ War. The conflict, which took place on five continents and involved most of the world’s powers, is better known to English-speaking North Americans as the French and Indian War.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Germany, where the Mallersdorf Abbey’s Sister Doris has been a master brewer for nearly 40 years. She’s one of Bavaria’s few “ladies who lager”–and Europe’s last beer-brewing nun.

Beer historian Tom Acitelli credits a 2002 cut in the excise tax for the profusion of small breweries in Great Britain. He also credits a 1976 beer tax cut for America’s small-brewery boom.

NASCAR’s Jeff Gordon is a wine lover, but he also has a taste for good beer. Gordon recently showed up at Dogfish Head Artisan Ales, whose 61 Minute IPA really impressed him.

For years, Mexico’s brewing industry had been dominated by two large corporations, but change is slowly coming, thanks to the federal government’s efforts to curb monopolies in key industries.

Iowa officials are pondering what to do with the 150-year-old beer caves underneath I-380 in Cedar Rapids. The forgotten caves were exposed by this summer’s heavy rains.

Barrel-aged beer is becoming more popular, and brewers are looking beyond traditional bourbon barrels. Now they’re starting to age their beer in barrels once used for Scotch, rum, and wine.

Finally, the growth of microbreweries might give rise to a new breed of wholesalers. Yarmouth, Maine-based Vacationland Distributors specializes in craft breweries, especially those that have grown beyond the state’s maximum for self-distribution rights.

The Friday Mash (MSG Edition)

On this day in 1908, the Japanese food company Ajinomoto—“The Essence of Taste”–was founded. Ajinmoto’s founder, chemist Kikunae Ikeda, discovered that a key ingredient in kombu soup stock was monosodium glutamate, for which he was given the patent.

And now….The Mash!

We begin in Marshall, Michigan, where microbrewery owner Aaron Morse and his family have landed a reality-show gig. They’ll appear on The History Channel’s “Dark Horse Nation.”

Tin Man Brewing of Terre Haute has released Klingon Warnog. This officially-licensed beer follows the Prime Directive: “to unite both Star Trek and Craft Beer fans.”

Dogfish Head Artisan Ales is the most famous brewery in the Delmarva Peninsula, but it now has plenty of company, and that’s good news for local beer drinkers.

A new California law will allow students younger than 21 to sample alcohol as part of their beer and wine studies. Oregon and Washington have passed similar laws.

The Jurassic Park of beer? Probably not, but Jason Osborne of Paleo Quest and microbiologist Jasper Akerboom of the Lost Rhino Brewing Company are working with a 45-million-year-old yeast strain found in a fly entrapped in fossilized amber.

Philadelphians are upset at state legislators who want to close a loophole which allows pop-up beer gardens to operate without having to shell out six figures for a liquor license.

Finally, Bart Watson, the Brewers Association’s chief economist, says we’re not in a craft beer bubble. The nation’s 3,000 breweries is well below the saturation level; and besides, factors such as the variety and quality of local beer determine whether a market is saturated.

The Friday Mash (Sultan of Swat Edition)

A century ago today, George Herman “Babe” Ruth made his major-league debut. Starting on the mound for the Boston Red Sox, he defeated Cleveland, 4-3. By 1919, Ruth was moved to the outfield so he—and his potent bat—could be in the lineup every day. And the rest, as they say, is history.

And now….The Mash!

We begin in Lewes, Delaware, where Dogfish Head Artisan Ales has opened a beer-themed motel. The Dogfish Inn offers beer-infused soaps, logo glassware, and pickles for snacking.

Fans attending next Tuesday’s All-Star Game in Minneapolis can buy self-serve beer. New Draft-Serv machines will offer a choice not only of brands but also the number of ounces in a pour.

Moody Tongue Brewing, a brand-new micro in Chicago, offers a beer made with rare black truffles. A 22-ounce bottle of the 5-percent lager carries a hefty retail price of $120.

Fast Company magazine caught up with Jill Vaughn, head brewmaster at Anheuser-Busch’s Research Pilot Brewery. She’s experimented with offbeat ingredients ranging from pretzels to ghost peppers.

Entrepreneur Steve Young has developed beer’s answer to Keurig. His Synek draft system uses cartridges of concentrated beer which, when refrigerated, keep for 30 days.

Brewbound magazine caught up with Russian River Brewing Company’s owner Vinnie Cilurzo, who talked about Pliny the Elder, quality control, and possible future expansion of the brewery.

Finally, cue up the “final gravity” puns. Amateur rocketeers in Portland, Oregon, will launch a full keg of beer to an altitude of 20,000 feet. Their beer of choice? A pale ale from Portland’s Burnside Brewery.

The Friday Mash (Penny Wise Edition)

February 15, 1971, was Decimal Day in Britain. From that day forward, the pound sterling was worth 100 pence; and shillings, half-crowns, florins and other charming coinage passed into British history.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Australia, where that country’s governing body for cricket is combating the dreaded beer snake created by fans stacking thousands of cups through the grandstand.

John Schreiber of Manhattan Beach, California, has come up with beer pairings for Girl Scout cookies. For example, Thin Mints call for an old ale, like North Coast Brewing Old Stock Ale.

Jay Brooks has posted a new Periodic Table of Beer Styles at his Brookston Beer Bulletin. Credit for the table goes to a Reddit user named “Delirium Tremens.”

Something old, something new. The Epiphany One Puck will recharge your phone with a cold beer. The devices uses a Stirling engine, which turns heat disparities into energy. scoured the country for the city with the cheapest beer. It’s Carlsbad, New Mexico, where a six-pack of Heineken costs $7.25. Most expensive? New York City, where the same sixer carries a $12.63 price tag.

Why has Sam Adams Alpine Spring been on the shelves for weeks? Jim Koch, Boston Beer Company’s CEO, explains that “in New England, we tend to look forward to next season.”

Finally, Bavarian glassmaker Spiegelau, with help from Sierra Nevada and Dogfish Head, have developed a glass designed for drinking IPA. Its ridges at the bottom bring out flavor by creating more foam.

The Friday Mash (Town and Gown Edition)

Think today’s college towns are crazy? On this day in 1355, a dispute over the quality of ale in an Oxford, England, tavern touched off the St. Scholastica’s Day Riot, an armed clash between University of Oxford students and townspeople that resulted in more than 90 deaths.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, where a hockey and beer exhibition has opened at Confederation Centre of the Arts. This weekend, all of PEI is celebrating “Hockey Day in Canada.”

Alan Newman, the founder of Magic Hat Brewing Company, told a local paper that he’s not amused by beer geeks who focus too much on how big a brewery is and who owns it.

The Belgian Post Office has issued a series of stamps honoring the country’s six Trappist breweries. The stamps feature bottles, caps, and glasses filled with these famous beers.

The Brewers Association has released its 2012 Beer Style Guildelines. New to the list this year is Indigenous Beer, which takes in the likes of Finnish-style sahti, South American chicha, and African sorghum-based beers.

Dogfish Head Artisan Ales didn’t run any ads during this year’s Super Bowl, but it got some unexpected–and enviable–publicity during the big game: Academy Award-winning actress Charlize Theron showed up at a party with a case of 60 Minute IPA., which calls itself “an unbiased guide to fine living,” is out with its list of the world’s 50 best beers. Let the debate begin.

Finally (and you knew we’d find a college-related story), researchers at University College Cork in Ireland have developed a taste-retaining low-alcohol beer. Ludwig wants to know whether it’s less filling as well.

Beer…By the Numbers

  • World-wide beer consumption in 2010: 189.7 billion liters.
  • Change from 2009: up 2.4 percent.
  • Years since consumption showed a decline: 25.
  • Number of breweries in Colorado: 120.
  • Colorado’s rank in number of breweries: 4th.
  • Colorado’s rank in beer production: 1st in the nation.
  • Coors Light’s ranking in U.S. market share: 2nd.
  • Years since a non-Anheuser-Busch beer was ranked 1st or 2nd: 19.
  • Number of “light” beers ranked in the top five: 4.
  • Empty cans on a four-man float in the Darwin (Australia) Beer Can Regatta: about 2,500.
  • Deposit on each can: 10 cents.
  • Amount of beer in a “Darwin Stubby”: 2.25 liters.
  • Amount in a standard growler: about 1.9 liters.
  • Dogfish Head Artisan Ales’ production last year: 145,000 barrels.
  • 60 Minute IPA’s share of that production: 48 percent.
  • Dogfish Head CEO Bites Back at Critics

    Fair warning to those who post on online beer forums. The target of your snarky comment could be following the discussion–and might jump into the fray. Earlier this week, on, “HawksBeerFan” started a discussion of overrated breweries with a swipe at Dogfish Head Artisan Ales, arguing that the brewery’s big beers “aren’t anything special and some are downright bad.” Several other posters agreed that Dogfish Head belonged on the most-overrated list.

    It didn’t take long for Dogfish Head’s CEO, Sam Calagione, to fire back with the following defense of all the allegedly overrated breweries: “[S]o many folks that post here still spend their time knocking down breweries that dare to grow. It’s like that old joke: ‘Nobody eats at that restaurant anymore, it’s too crowded. Except the ‘restaurants’ that people shit on here aren’t exactly juggernauts.” Calagione went on to say, “This thread is hilarious. Seriously, Bells, Founders, FFF, Surly, RR, DFH, Bruery, Avery, Cigar City, Mikkeller are all overrated?…Hopefully soon we will have every craft brewery in the US on the list.”

    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.

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