On this day in 1875, the first-ever organized indoor game of ice hockey was played in Montreal. It featured two nine-member teams whose lineups included local college students. Instead of a ball, which was customary in outdoor games, the players used the ancestor of the modern hockey puck.
And now….The Mash!
We begin in Chicago, where White Sox fans are rooting for their team to draft Clemson first baseman Seth Beer. Their campaign includes hashtags with excruciatingly bad puns on Beer’s name.
Uinta Brewing Company is packaging its Golden Ale—a beer meant to be enjoyed outdoors—in cans bearing images of our national parks. Yosemite National Park will be the first to appear on a can.
Budapest’s Mad Scientist Brewery has a deal for you. Adopt a dog from a local animal sanctuary, and the brewery will send you home with a case of its beer—even if your new best friend doesn’t drink.
Asbury Park Brewery’s logo is inspired by the city’s famous Convention Hall. And fittingly for “Springsteen Country”, all of its owners have a connection to the music business.
A New York State lawmaker wants to allow municipalities to establish “recreation zones”, within which it would be legal to carry open containers of alcohol sold by bars and restaurants.
Cathay Pacific Airlines has added something new to its beer menu: Betsy, a beer brewed to be enjoyed at 35,000 feet, where passengers’ senses of taste and smell are diminished.
Finally, according to Amy Sherman of MLive.com, the funniest beer names from last weekend’s Michigan Brewers Guild’s Winter Beer Festival were “Gnome Wrecker”, “Complete Nutter Madness”, and “Only Fools Russian”.
On this day in 1981, MTV began broadcasting in America. Pay attention to this factoid, because it comes up often in pub trivia: MTV’s first video was “Video Killed the Radio Star” by The Buggles.
And now….The Mash!
We begin in Chicago, where Ian Hughes, a brewmaster at Goose Island Brewing Company, is trying to educate people about the importance of clean water, the main ingredient in Goose Island beers.
Canadian actor Seth Rogan got to fulfill his dream of drinking beer from the Stanley Cup. P.K. Subban, who plays for the Montreal Canadiens, earned an assist for pouring beer into the trophy.
The list of exotic ingredients in beer now includes seaweed. Marshall Wharf Brewing Company adds 66 pounds of Maine sugar kelp to 200 gallons of its Scotch ale to brew a batch of Sea Belt Ale.
In Indiana, a newly-passed law lifts the 67-year-old ban on beer at the State Fair, which opens today. Last call is at 8 pm, and fair-goers will be limited to three 12-ounce beers.
Tech companies in Boston are using craft beer to attract and retain talented employees. Journalist Dennis Keohane decided to investigate the tap selection at some of the area’s leading companies.
In San Francisco, a woman in the outfield seats got a rude surprise: a home run ball landed in her beer. Not only was she soaked with beer and out $8, but someone else wound up with the baseball.
Finally, the Michigan Brewers Guild has responded to heavy demand for tickets to the annual Winter Beer Festival by adding an evening session to next year’s event in Grand Rapids.
In 2005, Maryanne and Paul traveled throughout Michigan for their book, Michigan Breweries. At the time, there were 78 breweries in the state. The brewery count remained flat for several years, increased to the low 90s, in 2009-10, and then…
Scott Graham, the executive director of the Michigan Brewers Guild, had an unusual confession to make to Bridge magazine correspondent Rick Haglund: “I have no idea how many breweries are under construction. I used to know about everyone.” The Guild estimates that there are 140 craft breweries in Michigan, and a spokeswoman from the state’s Liquor Control Commission says that there 48 license applications are pending.
Bell’s Brewing, which opened for business years before Michigan issued microbrewer licenses, is seventh in production among U.S. craft breweries; and Founders Brewing Company, which had maxed out its capacity at 5,000 barrels at its original location in 2005, now ranks 30th.
Currently, Michigan ranks fifth in the nation in the number of breweries, and is the only state east of the Rockies in the top five.
On Saturday, tickets went on sale for the Michigan Brewers Guild’s Winter Beer Festival in Grand Rapids. The online allocation is already sold out, but a limited number of tickets are available at select breweries, bars, and stores.
The festival will take place February 23.
On this day in 1881, the most famous gunfight in Old West history took place at the O.K. Corral in Tombstone, Arizona. It was fought between outlaws Billy Clanton, Tom McLaury and his brother Frank; and lawmen Virgil Earp, his brothers Morgan and Wyatt, and temporary deputy Doc Holliday.
And now….The Mash!
We begin in Detroit, which hosts the Michigan Brewers Guild’s Fall Beer Festival this weekend. It’s a perfect time to read Bill Loomis’s story about the city’s hard-drinking past.
Not everyone associates “green beer” with St. Patrick’s Day. Roxanne Palmer of the International Business Times updates us about America’s most environmentally-friendly breweries.
This week’s fun fact: the barley genome is almost twice the size of that of human beings. But a new, high-resolution draft of the genome could someday pay off in the form of higher-quality beer.
Does that beer you’re drinking taste nasty? Jay Brooks, who judges beer when he’s not writing about it, explains what causes the ten most common off-tastes in beer.
Actor Will Ferrell, the star of Old Milwaukee beer commercials that ran in cities like Davenport, Iowa, has shot four new–and silly–Old Milwaukee ads that will run in Sweden.
Ohio’s Winking Lizard beer bars will stop serving Bud Light and Miller Light because it has grown tired of the big breweries’ price hikes. Yuengling Light will replace those brands.
Finally, Andy Crouch, who has attended the past 16 Great American Beer Festivals, is concerned that the festival is getting too big. He offers a ten-point plan to improve future events.
For some years, the southeast Michigan community of Ypsilanti has hosted the Michigan Brewers Guild’s Summer Festival. The festival has grown and thrived at city-owned Riverside Park, with last year’s event drawing 9,000 people and 50 Michigan-based breweries.
Ypsilanti’s city fathers have noticed the crowds. On Tuesday, Council approved a five-percent tax on tickets to events held at city parks, which adds up to $15,000 in tax revenue from the beer festival alone. Worse yet, the tax rises to ten percent starting in 2013.
Needless to say, the brewing community isn’t happy, and there’s even a possibility that the Guild will look for a new home for future Summer Festivals.