Category Archives: Craft Beer

Pubcast 221 – A Little Irish, A Little Illinois

We always know that the pub is a place where friends drop in for a chat and a pint, and in this episode we have a couple of friends drop by to sample some brews with us. Mark is away traveling out West, so I’ve brought in assistant brewer from Church Street Brewing, Chuck Fort to help me try a few Irish brews, and a few Illinois brews.
As we recorded this at John’s Tavern in Winfield, owner John K. joins us later, and then my physiotherapist Matt drops by after a hard day of therapy.

This show tries the latest Guinness variety pack, a left-over from St. Patrick’s Day when we couldn’t record due to Phil getting the flu.

And then back home to Illinois, we try 3 new brews from our local breweries and we figure out if they are worth spending your hard earned dollars on.

Guinness Brewmaster Collection Variety Pack:
Golden Ale, ABV 4.5%
Rye Pale Ale, ABV 5.0%
Milk Stout, ABV 5.0%

Illinois Brews:
Brickstone Brewery, Bourbonnais
Galaxy Down Under, IPA, ABV 6.5%

Werk Force Brewing, Plainfield
Axis: As Bold As Beer, American Brown Ale, ABV 5.9%

Cademon Brewing, Genoa
Second Wind, Oatmeal Stout with Toasted Coconut Flakes, ABV 7.4%

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Pubcast 220 – 3 Girls from Missouri

This episode welcomes the original Cellarmaster and the ‘Yankee’ in Brit and Yankee, Lingo, back to the pub, and he’s lucky to be here when we have some special brews to taste and compare.  2nd Shift is a brewery out of St. Louis, MO., who our good friend Kevin from The Wine & Cheese Place in Ballwin, MO. introduced us to. We pop the tops of these 3 girls, and get Lingo acquainted with a new style.

Steve Crider is the brewmaster there, and produced a wonderful barrel-aged saison with brett, called Katy which is delicate brew that tastes like a wine.  He has also used the same recipe but with 2 bretts, and christened the result Grace.  Our final menage a trois of BA saisons is Annabelle, using a ‘funky’ brett and aging 8 months.

We compare these three ladies of Missouri and arbitrarily rate them to our preference.  No matter, they are all outstanding examples of this style, and we long for them to wend their way over the border into Illinois.  As you see from the pictures below, the cork in Grace was tough to remove!

So that Lingo ends up with a heavier style as he likes, we’ve managed to obtain a bottle of the original Abraxas from Perennial Artisan Ales, which none of us has actually had the pleasure of trying.  We break open the bottle and find out that all they say is true about this great Imperial Stout that regularly makes the top Stout lists that frequent the internet.

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Pubcast 219 – Back in the Pub with Heroes!

​After a month’s break, the Landlord is back and fully bionic!
The professional recommendation was no alcohol for 4 weeks post-surgery, so tonight will be the first brew since January 23.  We have two honored guests in the pub completing our panel of tasters; the always entertaining John Bitterman who is always willing to beg, borrow, and steal to enlarge his Illinois breweriana collection. And a man who always keeps us supplied with new brews, and can be considered a craft brew aficionado, but from sensible consumer perspective, my pal Tom Ryan.

It’s a packed show including real Finnish Sahti, a blind review of Revolution’s League of Heroes limited 12-pack releases, a quick visit out to Cademon Brewery in Genoa, where brewer Andrew Nordman has risen like a phoenix thanks to a successful crowd-funding effort, and a bonus beer review from Blue Blood Brewing in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Mark’s lovely wife Tina returned from a trip home bearing a bottle of Strong Sahti from Finlandia Brewery in ​Sastamala, Finland. Clocking in at a whopping 10% this ‘rough and ready’ traditional beer has been brewed for over a thousand years in one from or another, and gallons of the stuff has been drunk over the years, and now it’s our turn to sample it.

Then we head out to Cademon Brewing, in Genoa IL, for a chat with brewer / owner Andrew Nordman, and hear how he managed a successful crowd-funding campaign to get the brewery re-opened after having to close up on the day of their second anniversary. They’re back now and we hear about his new approach to beer.

Then the panel gets to blind-taste the new variety pack from Revolution Brewing called League of Heroes. This pack focuses on their ‘Hero’ IPA series and showcases the latest offering in this series. It’s a great way to get to know what hop style you prefer, and we test our tasters to provide their opinions and pick their favorite. Nobody is wrong, and it’s all a matter of personal preference.

Finally, and just because it’s been a while since we got together, we end up trying a ‘bonus’ beer. This is from Lincoln, Nebraska’s Blue Blood Brewing, and one of their barrel-aged Outlaw series. This is a ​wine barrel fermented wild ale, bottle conditioned with Brettanomyces, clocking in at 6.5%.

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Pubcast 218 – Archive Interview-Oskar Blues, 2010

While sifting through our archives after moving our website hosting, we came across this archive brewery interview, recorded in 2010 at the Oskar Blues Brewery in Longmont, CO. They were young and upcoming at that time, and their production facility and tap room showed that the future was very bright for this now well-established brewery. Next edition we’ll be back in the pub with more news and reviews from the craft beer world. Cheers!

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