[Editorial Note: Let me apologize to readers for the lack of posts lately. I am currently the ONLY writer for our site, and have been under the weather the last several days. Back on track now, and raring to go!]
Mass. monks brewing beer like European brothers
SPENCER, Mass. (AP) — For more than a century, Catholic Cistercian monks known as Trappists have been brewing and selling what many beer lovers consider some of the best in the world. Eight monasteries — six in Belgium and one each in Holland and Austria — produce the only beer recognized by the International Trappist Association as authentic Trappist beer.
And starting Thursday, the 63 brothers of St. Joseph’s Abbey — about an hour’s drive west of Boston — will join them, selling the first Trappist beer brewed outside Europe.
Their ambitious venture was hardly met with enthusiasm by their exacting Trappist brothers in Europe.
After all, for nearly 60 years the monks in Spencer, Mass., had been selling jams and jellies to help support their community. Now they were interested in the real family business: beer.
The journey from jams to beer started almost five years ago when St. Joseph’s sent two monks on a fact-finding mission to the Belgian Beer Fest in Boston. Within hours, their European brothers were alarmed to learn of the inquiries.
‘‘The original skepticism was because we were outside of Europe… and Americans,’’ said Father Isaac Keeley, the bald, jovial former potter who has been at St. Joseph’s for 35 years and now directs the brewing. ‘‘And the fear we would go too big too fast.’’
Keeley and another monk from St. Joseph’s packed up and moved to Belgium in December 2010 to see how their European brothers brew — and to convince them that they could properly produce an American Trappist beer.
NFL flags West Flanders Brewing for attempt to brew ‘Broncos’ beer
A Boulder brewery’s attempt to name a beer specifically for the Denver Broncos’AFC Championship matchup on Sunday is over before it even had a chance to kick off the effort.
West Flanders Brewing announced that it will come up with a new moniker for its “Brett on the Broncos,” a blend of two Belgian-style ales that it described as an “AFC Championship Style Ale” and was set to tap this afternoon.
(“Brett” refers to the Brettanomyces yeast that the company uses in fermenting its Angry Monk Belgian-style golden ale.)
The reversal of course came after the legal department of the National Football Leaguesent the company a cease-and-desist letter Thursday saying it was “engaging in unauthorized promotional use of the NFL Marks (including inter alia [legalese for "among other things"] the AFC word mark and the Denver Broncos word mark and color combination) in connection with the promotion of your business,” brewery officials said.
Dogfish Head up 17 Percent in 2013
Dogfish Head finally eclipsed the 200,000 barrel mark in 2013, a milestone that only 11 other regional brewing companies had achieved the year prior.
Led by its “family of IPA offerings” — 60-minute, 75-Minute, 90-minute, 120-minute, Sixty-One, Indian Brown Ale, Aprihop, Burton Baton and Rhizing Bines — Dogfish Head production numbers soared to 202,000 barrels, up 17 percent over last year.
It’s not the 30-plus percent growth that some other craft breweries have enjoyed in recent years, but that’s just fine for Adam Lambert, the company’s vice president of sales, who said he prefers “slow and steady growth.”
“In this day and age, with the amount of craft breweries entering the space, distributor consolidations, new SKUs, big brewers playing in craft, I think 17 percent growth is pretty incredible,” he said. “We are marching to the beat of our own growth. We want slow, methodical, profitable growth for us and our wholesalers.”
Best Craft Beer of 2013 Poll
[Editorial Note: Slightly older news here, but you still have time to vote in their online poll!]
Happy New Year loyal readers of The Full Pint! We present to you, our annual flagship poll, Best Craft Beer of 2013. We spent the last month nominating beers that made their impactful debut in 2013, and want you to choose the very best. What determines if the beer is eligible for this poll is the following: the beer made it’s debut outside of the brewery tasting room, in bottle format or wide draft distribution. A quick check on ratebeer.com can give you a good gauge on when a beer was born, piloted, then introduced. Poll ends on January 30, 2014 at 5PM PDT.