The Friday Mash (Boomer Sooner Edition)

One hundred and twenty-five years ago today, at high noon, thousands of people took part in the Oklahoma Land Rush. Within hours, Oklahoma City and Guthrie had instant populations of 10,000.

And now…The Mash!

We begin in Tumwater, Washington, once the home of Olympia Brewing Company. Today, it’s the home of a cluster of legal marijuana growers and processors—including one of the state’s largest.

Peru’s Cerveza San Juan beer brand has replaced the roaring jaguar with barnyard animals on its cans. The reason? The brewery is calling attention to the big cat’s endangered status.

Officials have reinstated beer at the University of Missouri’s “Tiger Prowl”, where graduating seniors eat barbecue, get free merchandise, and get ready to say goodbye to their classmates.

Anheuser-Busch InBev has acquired its eighth craft brewery, Devil’s Backbone of Roseland, Virginia. Established in 2008, Devil’s Backbone has won multiple Great American Beer Festival medals.

The Vietnamese love beer, and craft brewers have begun to enter the market. One new craft is the Pasteur Street Brewing Company, whose founders include Vick’s Florida native John Reid.

Forbes magazine’s Tara Nurin explores “pay-to-play” in beer distribution. Even after a high-profile crackdown in Massachusetts, she says it’s “a common yet whispered business practice”.

Finally, Don Russell aka Joe Sixpack takes us back to the bad old days of Prohibition’s “needle beer”: speakeasy owners injected alcohol into near beer—which was still legal in the 1920s. One customer, who sampled the stuff, compared it to 44-D cough syrup.

The Friday Mash (Palmetto State Edition)

On this day in 1788, South Carolina ratified the Constitution, becoming the eighth state to join the Union. The Palmetto State is home to first-rate barbecue and has miles of beautiful beaches, both of which will be fine accompaniments to a beer this holiday weekend.

And now….The Mash!

We begin in Tulsa, where the pop group Hanson staged a free concert at the Hop Jam Beer and Music Festival. The beer list included Hanson’s own Mmmhops pale ale.

Dartmouth University inspired Animal House and claims to be the birthplace of beer pong. But school president Phil Hanlon thinks the partying has gotten out of hand, and vows to curb dangerous drinking on campus.

The folks at Kona Brewing Company thinks mainlanders work too hard. The brewery’s “Dear Mainlander” ads propose a new schedule: one “sad hour,” and 23 happy hours.

Jeff Baker argues that Vermont has its own distinctive style of IPA. It’s bright golden and hazy in appearance, soft in mouthfeel, dense with hop flavor and aroma, but only moderately bitter.

In Olympia, Washington, a new partnership wants to bring back brewing at the historic Tumwater complex. The complex was part of the Olympia brewery, which closed in 2003 after nearly a century of making beer.

Two entrepreneurs have opened a “brewnuts” shop in downtown Tremont, Ohio. For the uninitiated, brewnuts are “craft beer inspired donuts” that are popular with the late-night crowd.

Finally, New York City’s Irish pubs are becoming an endangered species. Bar owners can’t afford skyrocketing rent, and younger drinkers are looking for something more adventurous than Guinness, Jameson, and pub grub.

The Friday Mash (Molly Pitcher Edition)

On this day in 1778, Mary Hays McCauley, the wife of an American artilleryman, carried water to soldiers during the Battle of Monmouth. According to legend, she took her husband’s place at his gun after he was overcome by the heat. She became known as “Molly Pitcher.” Ludwig thinks that–you guessed it–a pitcher of beer would be an appropriate way to toast her.

And now….The Mash!

We begin in Tumwater, Washington, where beer might be brewed again at the Olympia brewery. MillerCoors, which shut the plant down ten years ago, has agreed to lift a restrictive covenant barring beer production at the historic plant.

Boulevard Brewing Company will rely on the wisdom of crowds to test new beers. It will invite consumers to go online and offer their opinion about previously-unreleased beers.

The church of beer? Fred Lee of Columbus, Ohio, thought of starting his own religion to get a tax exemption for his brewery. He later decided not to, but his brewery’s slogan is “Believe in Beer.”

Add Narragansett to the list of retro beers making a comeback. Believe it or not, ‘Gansett had a 65-percent market share in New England in the late 1960s before sales went into a tailspin.

Heineken is–pun intended–rolling out an “interactive beer bottle”. “Heineken Ignite” has a green plastic base and an LED that flashes along with music when you take a sip.

If you missed SAVOR, blogger John Karalis has this to say: “The food was prepared and presented with a five-star flair, but the beers stripped away whatever elite overtones may have existed.”

Finally, Jeff Alworth, who blogs at Beervana, puts in a good word for cider. The beverage has become so popular in his home state that there’s now an Oregon Cider Week, which ends this weekend.

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