The Friday Mash (Night at the Opera Edition)

Fifty years ago today, the Metropolitan Opera House opened at Lincoln Square in Manhattan. The opening-night performance was the world premiere of Antony and Cleopatra by Samuel Barber.

And now…The Mash!

We begin on ESPN College GameDay, where Sam Crowder held up a sign last Saturday asking Vemmo users to send him beer money. Within hours, more than 2,000 people contributed.

BBC correspondent Stephen Evans hopped a flight to make a beer run…all the way to Beijing. His Chinese friends had made a trip to the border to acquire “forbidden” Taedonggang beer, which is brewed in North Korea.

Here’s a solution to a problem you didn’t know you had. It’s a beer mug that won’t block your view of the TV when you’re drinking.

Pork roll aka Taylor ham, a New Jersey breakfast favorite, is now a beer ingredient. Flying Fish Brewing Company has released Exit 7 Pork Roll Porter as part of its “Exit Series”.

Tampa’s Cigar City Brewing has rolled out a beer honoring the stereotypical “Florida Man”. The label for this beer, a double IPA, depicts a man wrestling an alligator—and winning.

Beer is more expensive than ever at NFL stadiums, but there’s one consolation: you can now buy craft beer from breweries that Anheuser-Busch InBev and MillerCoors recently acquired.

Finally, Nebraska liquor regulators have banned homebrewers from beer festivals. Because homebrewers aren’t licensed, there’s no assurance that they meet health and sanitation standards.

Beer…By the Numbers

  • Approximate number of homebrewers in the U.S.: 1.2 million.
  • Proportion of homebrewers who took up the hobby since 2001: About 2/3.
  • Increase in the average price of American beer since 2003: 42 percent.
  • Increase in the average price of American mixed drinks since 2003: 51 percent.
  • Barrels of Modelo Especial shipped to the U.S. in 2014: 4.5 million.
  • Increase over 2009: 128.4 percent.
  • U.S hop production in 2015: 39,400 tons.
  • Increase over 2014: 11 percent.
  • Estimated value of the 2015 crop: $345.4 million.
  • Clydesdale horses owned by Anheuser-Busch: 175.
  • Cost of feeding a Clydesdale: $500 a month.
  • Beer’s share of South Korea’s alcoholic beverage market: 53.3 percent.
  • Soju’s (a hard liquor) share of South Korea’s alcoholic beverage market: 28.1 percent.
  • Freezing point of beer: 27 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Freezing point of ethanol: -170 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The Friday Mash (”Woooooooo. Pig. Sooie!” Edition)

    On this day in 1836, Arkansas was admitted to the Union as the 25th state. Famous Arkansans (the accent is on the second syllable) include country singer Johnny Cash, Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton, former president Bill Clinton, and Tusk, the live hog that serves as the mascot for the Arkansas Razorbacks football team.

    And now….The Mash!

    We begin in Portland, Maine, home of an economist’s dream. Brewers and distillers have clustered in a district called Brewer’s Row. Notable residents include D.L. Geary Brewing Company and Allagash Brewing Company.

    Erik Lars Myers, who blogs at Top Fermented, is also the frontman for Mystery Brewing Company. Myers explains how he raised $44,000 on Kickstarter.com to help launch his brewery, and explains how it was done.

    The Los Angeles Kings won their first NHL title in their 45-year existence. Part of the Kings’ celebration consisted of drinking a bottle of Budweiser, left over from their loss to Montreal in the 1993 final, out of the Stanley Cup.

    Kid Rock is scouring Michigan to find a new contract brewer for his American Badass Beer. Michigan Brewing Company, which made the beer, was foreclosed on by its bank and reportedly faces possible eviction.

    Have you ever tried beer ice cream? Victoria Johnson of TheAwl.com has a recipe that uses beer and just three other ingredients: sugar, egg yolks, and heavy cream.

    They’re not exactly moonshiners, but homebrewers in Mississippi are still breaking the law. Raise Your Pints, which successfully lobbied for a higher ABV cap in that state, is working to get the homebrew ban repealed.

    Finally, 88-year-old Ethel Goldschmidt, of Brooklyn, New York, has started her own beer company. Her flagship beer is Ethel’s Brew, a summertime beer inspired by her 1951 trip to Oktoberfest with her late husband, Burt.

    The Friday Mash (Know-Nothing Edition)

    One hundred and sixty years ago today, Millard Fillmore became the 13th president of the United States. He was the last member of the Whig Party to hold that office; and, after leaving the White House, he affiliated himself with the Know-Nothing Party.

    To make sure you don’t turn into a Know-Nothing, we present you with…The Mash!

    We begin with the World Cup, which will be decided on Sunday. Budweiser might be the official beer of the competition, but other big brewers are tapping the vast African market.

    You knew this was going to happen: Red White & Brewed, a reality TV show starring homebrewers. From what we can tell, the project is still in the fermentation stage, with RW&B’s producers negotiating with network and cable people.

    A delegation from Flying Dog Ales went on a field trip to Stillpoint Farm, a sustainable hop farm in Maryland. Some of those hops might end up in Flying Dog’s brew.

    A new trend in varietal beer? Houston’s St. Arnold Brewing Company announced it will brew a Moveable Yeast series, a quarterly release of its mainstay beers fermented with different yeasts.

    Meet yet another intrepid beer traveler. He’s Ilan Klages-Mundt, who’s going around the world to study beer-brewing–when he’s not playing the cello or riding his bicycle through faraway lands.

    Firing up the grill this weekend? The Oregonian’s John Foyston has you covered. He asked the experts what beers go best with barbecued food.

    Finally, Lew Bryson pokes fun at homebrewers with a Mad Libs-style press release from a competition.

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