TrentonDevils

BEER

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My recent beer purchases and likes include: Victory Hop Ranch, Victory Dirt Wolf, Green Flash Palate Wrecker, DC Brau Corruption IPA, Flying Dog Double Dog IPA. Thats all I can remember off the top of my head. I liked them all but I will say the Palate Wrecker was very expensive at $14.99/4. Liked the beer but don't think it warrants the high price. Really liked the DC Brau. Wasn't expecting much from it but it's a really solid IPA. Dirt Wolf is an excellent beer and well priced at $8.99/4.

Was really hoping to try Lagunitas Sucks but the local store sold out of 5 cases in a matter of hours. Blah. Will keep looking for it. Has anyone here tried it?

Have a Founders Breakfast in the fridge as well that I'm looking forward to trying for the first time. Hear great things about this beer.

As far as Uinta goes I've tried their Oaked Jacked Pumpkin and I liked it. It's in my once a year pumpkin purchase plan. I used to live down the street from Great Divide and my favorites there were Hercules, Espresso Yeti and an occassional DPA. They have some solid beers.I also live near Twisted Pine but never got to try any of their stuff.

Well if you live anywhere near hazlet I have 5 cases of lagunitas sucks and all the espresso yeti you want lol

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That's a good couple days, though I'm not a fan of Jolly Pumpkin. It's a bit of a hike, even for Michigan people, but if any of you guys are ever in Traverse City, Right Brain and Terra Firma are 2 of my favorite breweries in the country. Neither has very wide distribution, but they're totally worth a trip. Doesn't hurt that Traverse City/Sleeping Bear Dunes are beautiful.

Yeah I didn't really know much of Jolly Pumpkin at the time but one of my buddies liked them and we needed to eat somewhere anyway so we made a stop there.  The beers we got there were alright.

 

My recent beer purchases and likes include: Victory Hop Ranch, Victory Dirt Wolf, Green Flash Palate Wrecker, DC Brau Corruption IPA, Flying Dog Double Dog IPA. Thats all I can remember off the top of my head.  I liked them all but I will say the Palate Wrecker was very expensive at $14.99/4.  Liked the beer but don't think it warrants the high price.  Really liked the DC Brau.  Wasn't expecting much from it but it's a really solid IPA.  Dirt Wolf is an excellent beer and well priced at $8.99/4.

 

Was really hoping to try Lagunitas Sucks but the local store sold out of 5 cases in a matter of hours. Blah.  Will keep looking for it. Has anyone here tried it?

 

Have a Founders Breakfast in the fridge as well that I'm looking forward to trying for the first time.  Hear great things about this beer.

 

As far as Uinta goes I've tried their Oaked Jacked Pumpkin and I liked it.  It's in my once a year pumpkin purchase plan.  I used to live down the street from Great Divide and my favorites there were Hercules, Espresso Yeti and an occassional DPA. They have some solid beers.I also live near Twisted Pine but never got to try any of their stuff.

I had Sucks last year and it was great.  I have been anxiously waiting for my store to get it, but if I were you I wouldn't go crazy trying to hunt it down if it's hard to find.  It is really good but there is no shortage of really good IPAs available.  Definitely worth a try if you find it though, but if not Brooklyn Blast is a very good substitute.

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I picked up a six-pack of Lagunitas Sucks today as well as a four-pack of canned Bronx Pale Ale and two four-packs of Founders Imperial Stout.

 

I don't think I've had the Sucks before so I am looking forward to it. I opened a can of Bronx Pale Ale tonight and thought it was OK but not as good as when I had it on tap at MSG at the last Devils-Rangers game. I can't wait to start drinking a few Founders Imperial Stouts -- I first tried it last year and thought it was just as good if not better than Ten FIDY and a few bucks cheaper to boot. I am already planning to go back and buy some more tomorrow before they run out lol.

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Split my growler of Eis Bock with a buddy yesterday. It was completely worth the hangover today. It's a bit sweet, anything with an ABV of 14.4 is gonna have some sweetness, but there's a pleasant malt flavor that really keeps the sweetness from becoming too prevalent. I really like the yeast and barley High Point uses, it gives their beers an excellent flavor. The Eis Bock is expensive to make, so it's rare as hell, but definitely worth making the trek next time they release it.

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According to a report I am reading in the NY Post, InBev (anheuser Busch) is buying Blue Point Brewing.

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According to a report I am reading in the NY Post, InBev (anheuser Busch) is buying Blue Point Brewing.

 

Yep saw this yesterday. Sad.  Honestly never went out of my way to buy Blue Point products but now will certainly go out of my way not to buy.

 

In other news I purchased a case of Nugget Nectar a couple days ago.  Love that stuff.

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According to a report I am reading in the NY Post, InBev (anheuser Busch) is buying Blue Point Brewing.

I hate seeing this, because I don't want the big 3 to force out the real craft brewers by outspending them, but a friend of mine took a tour of Goose Island, expected to be disappointed, but wants to get into the industry, so wasn't going to miss out, and was actually impressed by how well InBev treated the brewers, and the attitude they had toward the product. Not sure I'll buy Blue Point anymore; I'd rather spend my money on an independent business, but the quality should stay the same. 

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I hate seeing this, because I don't want the big 3 to force out the real craft brewers by outspending them, but a friend of mine took a tour of Goose Island, expected to be disappointed, but wants to get into the industry, so wasn't going to miss out, and was actually impressed by how well InBev treated the brewers, and the attitude they had toward the product. Not sure I'll buy Blue Point anymore; I'd rather spend my money on an independent business, but the quality should stay the same. 

To me the issue isn't about the product or how they treat the employees, it's how they treat the industry as a whole.  When they can't buy their competitors, they do whatever they can even if it's illegal to push them out of the marketplace, like giving free kegs to bars if they agree to stop selling a particular craft beer, etc.  They may own a few craft breweries, but their main focus is still to make craft beer hard to purchase, as is proven by their lobbying for complex distribution systems that make it more difficult for craft breweries to get their beers to consumers.  Check out Beer Wars on Hulu.

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To me the issue isn't about the product or how they treat the employees, it's how they treat the industry as a whole.  When they can't buy their competitors, they do whatever they can even if it's illegal to push them out of the marketplace, like giving free kegs to bars if they agree to stop selling a particular craft beer, etc.  They may own a few craft breweries, but their main focus is still to make craft beer hard to purchase, as is proven by their lobbying for complex distribution systems that make it more difficult for craft breweries to get their beers to consumers.  Check out Beer Wars on Hulu.

No question. Like I said, I don't plan to buy Blue Point anymore.

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I have no one great beer store here in North Jersey. I mostly go to small local shops for my specialty brews, or else I jump around between Total Wine and More, Bottle King and Whole Foods.

 

This weekend I have been enjoying Smuttynose Durty Mud Season Hoppy Brown Ale -- yum!

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I have no one great beer store here in North Jersey. I mostly go to small local shops for my specialty brews, or else I jump around between Total Wine and More, Bottle King and Whole Foods.

This weekend I have been enjoying Smuttynose Durty Mud Season Hoppy Brown Ale -- yum!

My salesman told me to bring that in because its good compared to their other seasonals, I havent tried it yet though. I was suprised I brought in summit frost line rye and it was out of this world. Ive never had anything from them before but ill definitely get more from them now on.

And I ask about the stores people go to because I see everyone getting pissed about AB buying out blue point, saying big business is trying to take over and kill the craft market. But the hypocrisy in that statement is unbelievable if people are buying their beers at a big chain store or supermarket thats trying to kill the mom and pop liquor store down the street.

Some people go to big stores because its their only choice because theres no other store nearby, which is fine. But when people whine about AB and millercoors trying to kill little guys and then go to wine academy or vingo thats the definition of condesending.

Edited by Bartholomew Hunt

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My salesman told me to bring that in because its good compared to their other seasonals, I havent tried it yet though. I was suprised I brought in summit frost line rye and it was out of this world. Ive never had anything from them before but ill definitely get more from them now on.

And I ask about the stores people go to because I see everyone getting pissed about AB buying out blue point, saying big business is trying to take over and kill the craft market. But the hypocrisy in that statement is unbelievable if people are buying their beers at a big chain store or supermarket thats trying to kill the mom and pop liquor store down the street.

Some people go to big stores because its their only choice because theres no other store nearby, which is fine. But when people whine about AB and millercoors trying to kill little guys and then go to wine academy or vingo thats the definition of condesending.

That is completely apples and oranges.  AB-InBev and MillerCoors do illegal things to eliminate competition like giving free kegs to bars that agree to stop selling whatever craft beers their rep feels is a threat, and they also lobby for federal and state laws to uphold a distribution system that is inefficient for every brewery except their own.  Unless there are liquor stores resorting to lobbying federal politicians and illegal tactics to compete with the smaller stores in their neighborhoods, it's not the same.

 

Would you mind telling us what your job is exactly?  It seems kind of suspicious that you always seem to vigorously defend Anheuser Busch and MillerCoors.  Even now when nobody has recently said anything bad about them, you make up your own criticism and try to make a counterpoint to it for some reason.  Also, while everyone has their own tastes, you seem to usually have negative things to say about craft beers that are widely regarded as top notch and you oppose popular websites about craft beer.  It seems like your purpose in this thread is to tell us we are all wrong, what is your deal?

Edited by devilsfan26

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That is completely apples and oranges. AB-InBev and MillerCoors do illegal things to eliminate competition like giving free kegs to bars that agree to stop selling whatever craft beers their rep feels is a threat, and they also lobby for federal and state laws to uphold a distribution system that is inefficient for every brewery except their own. Unless there are liquor stores resorting to lobbying federal politicians and illegal tactics to compete with the smaller stores in their neighborhoods, it's not the same.

Would you mind telling us what your job is exactly? It seems kind of suspicious that you always seem to vigorously defend Anheuser Busch and MillerCoors. Even now when nobody has recently said anything bad about them, you make up your own criticism and try to make a counterpoint to it for some reason. Also, while everyone has their own tastes, you seem to usually have negative things to say about craft beers that are widely regarded as top notch and you oppose popular websites about craft beer. It seems like your purpose in this thread is to tell us we are all wrong, what is your deal?

My deal is that post like the one you just posted is full of wrong information which youll stand by, saying its definitely true. AB gives out free kegs to who? Bars? Yeah no. All AB does is send kegs out to DISTRIBUTORS. Not to bars and stores. So as much as you want to argue and say youre right, youre not. The distributors can pay for a keg thats on tap to take it off, which you can consider free, but its not, theyre paying money for the keg. I've had a sam adams brewery rep come in and pay to take off yuengling. So is that craft brewery doing illegal things? Also when they do that, its usually coors trying to take off bud, or miller trying to take of bud light. Or blue moon trying to take off shocktop.

How was no one talking about them recently. People were just ripping AB for buying blue point what are you talking about? I manage a bar/liquor store. I deal with saleman and brewery reps 6 days a week. Now may I ask what you do that youre more knowledgeable on the subject than me?

What beers do i constantly rip on that everyone loves? And because I said, take beer advocate for what it is, now I hate it? The thing is im not biased when it comes to beer. If it tastes good ill say it. Youre a different story. If AB put your favorite craft into one of their bottles youd say it was awful and more "swill". Dude how many crafts have I said were great on this forum? A lot. Because I drink a lot of them. But lets not kid ourselves and act like every craft beer thats out is better than anything millercoors and ab puts out.

Edited by Bartholomew Hunt

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My salesman told me to bring that in because its good compared to their other seasonals, I havent tried it yet though. I was suprised I brought in summit frost line rye and it was out of this world. Ive never had anything from them before but ill definitely get more from them now on.

And I ask about the stores people go to because I see everyone getting pissed about AB buying out blue point, saying big business is trying to take over and kill the craft market. But the hypocrisy in that statement is unbelievable if people are buying their beers at a big chain store or supermarket thats trying to kill the mom and pop liquor store down the street.

Some people go to big stores because its their only choice because theres no other store nearby, which is fine. But when people whine about AB and millercoors trying to kill little guys and then go to wine academy or vingo thats the definition of condesending.

 

I live in a town with several liquor stores.  Out of about 5 or 6, they are all independently (or I believe to be since I have not found more of their locations around) except for 1 which is a Bottle King.  I have to say that out of all the liquor stores there, only 1 of them have a better craft beer selection than Bottle King.  Most of these smaller stores are just basically storehouses for the inBev and MillerCoors beers and maybe if you are lucky they have a shelf with some craft beers (usually their definition of craft are a couple of Sam Adams, maybe some Goose Island and sometimes even Blue Moon which I find funny).

 

Maybe it has to do with that they have high overhead and maybe they cannot devote shelf space with these craft brews that might sit there for a while, but I find a lot of mom and pop places pretty lacking with the craft beer selection.  Hell one of the best places to get craft beer is Joe Canal's and that's a small chain.

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I live in a town with several liquor stores.  Out of about 5 or 6, they are all independently (or I believe to be since I have not found more of their locations around) except for 1 which is a Bottle King.  I have to say that out of all the liquor stores there, only 1 of them have a better craft beer selection than Bottle King.  Most of these smaller stores are just basically storehouses for the inBev and MillerCoors beers and maybe if you are lucky they have a shelf with some craft beers (usually their definition of craft are a couple of Sam Adams, maybe some Goose Island and sometimes even Blue Moon which I find funny).

 

Maybe it has to do with that they have high overhead and maybe they cannot devote shelf space with these craft brews that might sit there for a while, but I find a lot of mom and pop places pretty lacking with the craft beer selection.  Hell one of the best places to get craft beer is Joe Canal's and that's a small chain.

This. The mom and pop liquor stores seem willing to stock a ton of wine, but the big 3 for beer. There's 1 great mom and pop near me, but even they don't have as much as Bottle King, just a great staff, and a couple of hard to find beers from around the world. 

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I live in a town with several liquor stores. Out of about 5 or 6, they are all independently (or I believe to be since I have not found more of their locations around) except for 1 which is a Bottle King. I have to say that out of all the liquor stores there, only 1 of them have a better craft beer selection than Bottle King. Most of these smaller stores are just basically storehouses for the inBev and MillerCoors beers and maybe if you are lucky they have a shelf with some craft beers (usually their definition of craft are a couple of Sam Adams, maybe some Goose Island and sometimes even Blue Moon which I find funny).

Maybe it has to do with that they have high overhead and maybe they cannot devote shelf space with these craft brews that might sit there for a while, but I find a lot of mom and pop places pretty lacking with the craft beer selection. Hell one of the best places to get craft beer is Joe Canal's and that's a small chain.

Thats understandable, a good number of the mom and pops may be smaller and only be able to fit a couple crafts because they need to make money, and ab and miller coors always sells and they cant take up shelf space with something that may or may not do well. My store has 3 of the 10 doors commited just to crafts and then a 20 foot rack just for 22oz and 750ml crafts. If something doesnt sell I put it on sale and I bring in a new product, thats how more stores should be. People are suprised when they see the selection because a lot of smaller stores don't carry a wide variety. But if your local store doesnt carry something, just ask, odds are theyll bring it in.

Supporting the big chain liquor stores is the same as supporting the big chain everything else. Its not the businesses fault that theyre trying to kill the little stores, its the consumers who support them. Wine academys and best buys are to little liquor stores as walmarts and home depots are to mom and pop hardware and department stores.

Edited by Bartholomew Hunt

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My deal is that post like the one you just posted is full of wrong information which youll stand by, saying its definitely true. AB gives out free kegs to who? Bars? Yeah no. All AB does is send kegs out to DISTRIBUTORS. Not to bars and stores. So as much as you want to argue and say youre right, youre not. The distributors can pay for a keg thats on tap to take it off, which you can consider free, but its not, theyre paying money for the keg. I've had a sam adams brewery rep come in and pay to take off yuengling. So is that craft brewery doing illegal things? Also when they do that, its usually coors trying to take off bud, or miller trying to take of bud light. Or blue moon trying to take off shocktop.

How was no one talking about them recently. People were just ripping AB for buying blue point what are you talking about? I manage a bar/liquor store. I deal with saleman and brewery reps 6 days a week. Now may I ask what you do that youre more knowledgeable on the subject than me?

What beers do i constantly rip on that everyone loves? And because I said, take beer advocate for what it is, now I hate it? The thing is im not biased when it comes to beer. If it tastes good ill say it. Youre a different story. If AB put your favorite craft into one of their bottles youd say it was awful and more "swill". Dude how many crafts have I said were great on this forum? A lot. Because I drink a lot of them. But lets not kid ourselves and act like every craft beer thats out is better than anything millercoors and ab puts out.

Anheuser Busch owns distributors in some places.  The last post about Blue Point was 18 days ago, though maybe you just didn't check this thread since then.  I never said I am more knowledgeable than you, just that you always seem to post things with an agenda or slanted viewpoint.

I'm not digging through this thread to find examples, but you have made multiple posts rejecting beers that most consider very good.  Everyone of course has their own opinion but usually your reaction isn't, "This wasn't for me," you usually just say that the beer isn't good, as if the majority of people have incorrect taste buds.  I never said anything about AB's craft beers being swill.  Most of what they produce is, but Goose Island still makes fantastic beers despite being owned by AB now.  I won't buy it but I won't deny that the quality is still there.  Didn't you say earlier in the thread that it's not worth spending the money on new craft beers because half the time it won't be as good as an AB or MillerCoors product anyway?  I'm not kidding anyone when I say that just about every craft beer I've had really is better than just about everything AB and MillerCoors produce.  Are there any great beers that they have actually come up with on their own rather than just buying the ownership of?  Blue Moon, Redd's, Batch 19???  Please.

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Thats understandable, a good number of the mom and pops may be smaller and only be able to fit a couple crafts because they need to make money, and ab and miller coors always sells and they cant take up shelf space with something that may or may not do well. My store has 3 of the 10 doors commited just to crafts and then a 20 foot rack just for 22oz and 750ml crafts. If something doesnt sell I put it on sale and I bring in a new product, thats how more stores should be. People are suprised when they see the selection because a lot of smaller stores don't carry a wide variety. But if your local store doesnt carry something, just ask, odds are theyll bring it in.

Supporting the big chain liquor stores is the same as supporting the big chain everything else. Its not the businesses fault that theyre trying to kill the little stores, its the consumers who support them. Wine academys and best buys are to little liquor stores as walmarts and home depots are to mom and pop hardware and department stores.

Going to a small liquor store to buy beer from a multinational corporation is not as supportive of small businesses as going to a small chain liquor store to buy beer from a small craft brewery.  Can you tell me what stores are lobbying federal and state governments for laws that squeeze out the smaller stores?

The small liquor stores around me sell very little craft beer, the staff knows very little about the craft beer they sell and next to nothing about beers that are coming out in the near future, and you can go in during the winter and still see summer beers sitting there at regular price.  The Joe Canal's I go to has an entire aisle of craft beers plus a growler station, and no matter who is working there is always somebody there that can answer any beer questions and they know a lot about beers that haven't come out yet.  They also run occasional events and specialty tappings at the growler station and they make sure their loyal craft beer customers get limited releases by calling and emailing them.  None of the smaller stores do any of that stuff.  Joe Canal's and some Buy Rites tend to be good craft beer destinations while most small hole in the wall stores tend to be AB and MillerCoors spots.

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Going to a small liquor store to buy beer from a multinational corporation is not as supportive of small businesses as going to a small chain liquor store to buy beer from a small craft brewery. Can you tell me what stores are lobbying federal and state governments for laws that squeeze out the smaller stores?

The small liquor stores around me sell very little craft beer, the staff knows very little about the craft beer they sell and next to nothing about beers that are coming out in the near future, and you can go in during the winter and still see summer beers sitting there at regular price. The Joe Canal's I go to has an entire aisle of craft beers plus a growler station, and no matter who is working there is always somebody there that can answer any beer questions and they know a lot about beers that haven't come out yet. They also run occasional events and specialty tappings at the growler station and they make sure their loyal craft beer customers get limited releases by calling and emailing them. None of the smaller stores do any of that stuff. Joe Canal's and some Buy Rites tend to be good craft beer destinations while most small hole in the wall stores tend to be AB and MillerCoors spots.

I understand all that, of course im bias when it comes to the mom and pops because I manage one and theres others nearby with great selections so it varies by where you live. Idk if its true by anyone else but the stores owned by indians or asians tend not to have as much selection as the stores owned by whites americans. But thats just what ive seen from my experience.

You say because big liquor stores arent lobbying for something that means theyre not trying to kill the little guys. Thats not true, they just try and kill the little guys by undercutting them with barely legal prices to get people in the store. I dont blame you for not caring about that. Dont go and say AB is trying to buy out its opponents and kill the craft beer market, it sounds silly. Theres thousands of breweries across the country and you would hope theyre not all brewing beer just for the money. That they actually care about the product theyre selling and its quality. Im curious where you heard AB sends beer directly in the state of NJ and not through a distributor. Its possible, but they would not give free kegs away at the risk of getting penalized by the ABC.

It sounds real douchey when I say youre not in the business so you dont know what youre talking about. You could know something I dont. But you shouldnt speak with such validity if youre not positive about what youre saying.

On a separate note I was drinking yards brawler last night. Ive never had anything from them, the brawler was actually pretty good. It tasted like a better yuengling. And im not a big yuengling fan either.

Uinta has a smoked lager I brought in called Tinder that just came out. Im really anxious to try it. It doesnt even have enough ratings to recieve a score yet on BA and ratebeer.

Also ive had Maine Beer's Zoe and Mo, theyre quickly becoming one of my favorite breweries. Everything ive had from them has been great.

I also had Terrapins Pineapple Express, a smoked pineapple helles. It was meh. It tasted like it looks, hazy, murky, and semi sweet. Not worth the 6 or 7 bucks.

I had Humbolt 500 BC, just a average to below average ipa. Also not worth the 6 or 7 dollars.

Thats the problem with these limited beers. You have to take a chance with getting a case, you cant get samples because theyre limited, so you have to go by BA or ratebeer scores, and it turns out some are just okay at best and they sit on the shelf for months. That goes for rogue santas reserve, great divide espresso yeti, boulder killer penguin, dogfish kvasir. Thats a reason some small stores can take in some crafts because they dont really know whats going to sell aside from the obvious like nugget nectar and dogfish 120 and things like that.

Edited by Bartholomew Hunt

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I understand all that, of course im bias when it comes to the mom and pops because I manage one and theres others nearby with great selections so it varies by where you live. Idk if its true by anyone else but the stores owned by indians or asians tend not to have as much selection as the stores owned by whites americans. But thats just what ive seen from my experience.

You say because big liquor stores arent lobbying for something that means theyre not trying to kill the little guys. Thats not true, they just try and kill the little guys by undercutting them with barely legal prices to get people in the store. I dont blame you for not caring about that. Dont go and say AB is trying to buy out its opponents and kill the craft beer market, it sounds silly. Theres thousands of breweries across the country and you would hope theyre not all brewing beer just for the money. That they actually care about the product theyre selling and its quality. Im curious where you heard AB sends beer directly in the state of NJ and not through a distributor. Its possible, but they would not give free kegs away at the risk of getting penalized by the ABC.

It sounds real douchey when I say youre not in the business so you dont know what youre talking about. You could know something I dont. But you shouldnt speak with such validity if youre not positive about what youre saying.

On a separate note I was drinking yards brawler last night. Ive never had anything from them, the brawler was actually pretty good. It tasted like a better yuengling. And im not a big yuengling fan either.

Uinta has a smoked lager I brought in called Tinder that just came out. Im really anxious to try it. It doesnt even have enough ratings to recieve a score yet on BA and ratebeer.

Also ive had Maine Beer's Zoe and Mo, theyre quickly becoming one of my favorite breweries. Everything ive had from them has been great.

I also had Terrapins Pineapple Express, a smoked pineapple helles. It was meh. It tasted like it looks, hazy, murky, and semi sweet. Not worth the 6 or 7 bucks.

I had Humbolt 500 BC, just a average to below average ipa. Also not worth the 6 or 7 dollars.

Thats the problem with these limited beers. You have to take a chance with getting a case, you cant get samples because theyre limited, so you have to go by BA or ratebeer scores, and it turns out some are just okay at best and they sit on the shelf for months. That goes for rogue santas reserve, great divide espresso yeti, boulder killer penguin, dogfish kvasir. Thats a reason some small stores can take in some crafts because they dont really know whats going to sell aside from the obvious like nugget nectar and dogfish 120 and things like that.

Well of course the bigger stores are going to try to push the smaller ones out of business as I would expect the same to happen in any industry.  The difference is that AB and MillerCoors try to compete not by offering better value to the customers, but by making it harder for customers to get craft beer.  Rather than making better beer, their goal is to make it harder for people to get good beer that they don't own (Goose Island).  I don't know about AB self-distributing in NJ but it is a known fact that they do that.  You don't need to go through a distributor in New Jersey though, Kane drives their kegs and bottles straight to stores and bars.

I am positive about what I am saying.  Just because I don't work in the industry doesn't mean I don't know what's going on, especially in a big industry like this where it's not difficult to be in the know.

Back to the beers, have you had Lunch from Maine?  If you like IPAs, that's a good one.

I don't know what store you're at, but just because a beer sits on the shelves doesn't necessarily mean it's not that good.  Maybe your store just doesn't have as big of a craft beer following as a Joe Canal's or Buy Rite, etc.  Espresso Yeti and Killer Penguin in my experience have not been that common to come across.  I would think if you have the demand for craft beer and you have a good knowledge about craft beer, it shouldn't be that hard to know what will sell.

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Just got back from taking a group of my students to France, Germany, and Switzerland. Couldn't drink on the trip (torture in Munich), but picked up a couple bottles to bring home. So far, I've drank Eichof lager (nothing special, but we drove past the brewery in Lucerne, and I wanted to try it), Kostritzer Schwarzbier, and Augustinerbrau helles. The Kostritzer was fine. I didn't think it was special, but I may just not be a huge fan of Schwarzbier, since most people say it's the best example of the style. The Augustinerbrau was one of the best beers I've ever had. It managed to be complex, but completely refreshing and drinkable. If had a little bit of a malt background, not something I'm used to with a helles. They don't distribute much in the States, but apparently they sell some of their doppelbock, which I'd highly recommend buying.

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Just finished the last of my bottles from Germany. I really need to go back...

 

My favorite was the Hacker-Pschorr Animator doppelbock. It exemplified what became my favorite thing about German beer: the complexity. It was somewhat sweet, like most high ABV, malty beers. I like that, in case my past post haven't made that obvious. But there was more to this beer. It had another malt flavor, one that was almost bready, like pumpernickel.The multiple flavors really complemented each other well, and made it one of the best beers I've had. 

 

The other beer I got was the Warsteiner Konig Ludwig Dunkel Weiss. It was also really good. The first taste was a clean wheat beer, but then the dunkel part came in. The malt flavor was strong, it transitioned from pure wheat, to dark bread, to a little bit of a caramel undertone. Also, like a lot of the beers I got, you really noticed different flavors as the temperature changed. 

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Glad to see this thread is still rolling along.  Not to jump in the in Bev conversation, but I don't care where a pint comes from, so long as it's good.  I think Bud bought out Goose Island and I still like a good sampling of their stuff.  When the quality dips due to mass production, I'll mourn, but for now, I'm not tasting a difference.  The big three cater to the masses and that's fine.  Life is such now-a-days where if you want something different, the different stuff is out there.  Like anything cool, you just need to look for it, which everyone here does!

 

As for Beer Wars, I screened it last night for a review and it was decent at best.  Good docs have to present both sides and this one came off as a Michael Moore style smear campaign.  The bits about the lobbying was pretty interesting and I never knew about the three tier distribution system, but overall it was entirely too "beverage socialist".  It also doesn't help that it's four years old and craft beer has exploded since then.  The small guys have taken the time to grow naturally through word of mouth and good business sense and don't need the "big system" to turn a profit.  Plus, the lady who narrated the film was obnoxious as all hell.  Plus, she founded Mikes Hard Lemonade, which is a beer in the loosest possible sense of the world.

 

As for beer, I've been on a great trying kick lately.  Note, I now live in Austin, Texas which has an unbelievable craft beer culture.  My favorite spot only sells Texas craft beer...yeah, Texas only and they have 40 plus taps.  Even if you're the crappiest, frat boy bar on Dirty Sixth, you better have at least Goose Island, Fat Tire or something borderline crafty to stay afloat.

 

Atwater Brewery - Decedent Dark Chocolate

 

Not a fan at all.  I love instense chocolate in my brew, but this tasted like a cold cup of hot cooca with measly malt and hops.  Very blah.

 

Jester King - Commercial Suicide Oaked Farmhouse Mild

 

I've been getting more and more into sour farmhouses and this one is intense.  Jester King is nothing but distinctive and I think the mild in the description is supposed to be a "ha ha, fooled you" type of gag.  An Austin original and hard to get outside the state.

 

Great Divide - Orabelle

 

I love when a Belgian Blonde has good flavor and this one doesn't disappoint.  Sweet maltiness with some wheat characteristics make it a nice, refreshing pour.

 

Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale

 

I know this has been around for a hot minute, but this was my first go 'round with it.  I'm very hit or miss on Dogfish Head, but you have to respect their passion for brewing interesting stuff.  Loved this one as it had just the right combination of IPA hops with brown nuttiness.  Need to grab a sixer of this next time I see it.

 

Uinta Dubhe Imperial Black IPA

 

I've been crazy into Black IPA's and the craft world agrees, as it looks like the "next big thing".  This one is lovely with just the right amount of hops and chocolate to balance out an undertone of malt.  Really strong.

 

Also, if anybody does Untappd, friend me up!  njskaguy33 is the user name, Bill Tucker is the proper name.

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