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2 hours ago, DevsMan84 said:

I think that is half of the reason.  Obviously the craft brewery has to agree to the sale.  AB recently bought a brewery out in the Carolinas (brewery has Weed in the name).  The reasons for AB wanting it is obvious, but the brewery agreed to it mostly for trying to get better distribution (also getting paid which is nice).  I can't blame them for that.  I have heard talks about smaller craft breweries joining together to help distribute each other's beers, but haven't really heard much else about it and if it is successful.

Jim Koch is indeed a genius.  He also has the craft beer guild in the palm of his hand.  Oh, Jim needs to produce more beer but still wants to be classified as craft?  Well no problems on raising the barrel limit then for him.  A bit hypocritical but it is what it is.  Also interesting how he gives out money to help upstart breweries going, but would never dare allow them to touch his distribution system.

Finally I went up with a buddy of mine to a place called Hops in Morristown last night.  It's a small bar that specializes in craft beers.  I had a beer from Lone Eagle (out of Flemington, NJ) called Cranberry Saison.  It was alright except the fact that it wasn't a saison, but a gose.  That's another recent irritant for me.  Too many brewers cannot even classify the beers they are brewing correctly.  Lately I have been having way too many Pale Ale's that are really IPA's and Farmhouse-style beers that are really sours.

Yea everyone freaked out about that and pulled out of a big festival they were hosting. Can't blame people for taking the money, honestly. They were probably barely getting by a handful of years ago, and AB probably wrote them a check to retire on along with the opportunity to keep running their brewery. I definitely try to support independent breweries wherever I can, but I get it. Everyone does.

The thing about beer styles is there's so much ambiguity.  Styles are based on history, culture, and sometimes base ingredients that can be the backbone to very different tasting beers. A pale ale is really anything made with pale malts. They can have the highest ibu possible, and technically fall in. On the other hand, black ipas are not pale ales at all, and are closer to stouts and porters than anything. Pilsner malt is just another pale malt, and pilsners are just a very specific pale lager. And the difference between Dortmunder export and pilsner? Where they're brewed. Ferment piss and call it whatever you want.

Right now, I just want beers that are true to traditional styles. I want simple single or double hopped ipas, basic brown  and amber ales, pale ales, I'll even jump into the right lager or fruit beer that's no bullsh!t. I'm falling back on things like Torpedo, Genesee Cream (yea crucify me, it's $12 a 30 pack but it's crushable and delicious), a few of the beers my brewery makes (we do very basic craft for the most part), Dale's Pale, Red Fish.

Man get me a beer. It's never too early in this industry.

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1 hour ago, Jimmy Leeds said:

I'll give it a whirl. Thanks

nice man, let me know how you like it! 

i also have really started to like Flying Dog brewery (Snake Dog IPA & The Truth imperial IPA)

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I'm trying to watch this game 7 at a bar, and some scumbag has been lecturing his buddy about everything he thinks he knows about beer. sh!t drives me crazy.

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42 minutes ago, thecoffeecake said:

I'm trying to watch this game 7 at a bar, and some scumbag has been lecturing his buddy about everything he thinks he knows about beer. sh!t drives me crazy.

The WORST... I'm sure he's a great brewer himself too smh 

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So the beer review website, RateBeer, is being sold to ZX Ventures which is a venture capital team backed by InBev/AB.  Because of this, Dogfish Head's owners have asked RateBeer to remove all of it's listings from RB and many other craft brewers are following.

Quite frankly, I really don't use RateBeer.  I never found their reviews to be all that helpful and found many to be quite out of sync to what I experienced.  Of course there is always personal tastes, but I have always found BeerAdvocate to more reliable with their ratings.

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That is pretty crazy, I would request the same if I brewed.

I also don't rely on them either besides the description of the beer, the ratings always are IPA biased.

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Was down at Towson State U. a couple of weeks ago for a lacrosse tournament and brought home a lager and an IPA of Raven Beer.

Very nice local beer

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I'm just going to vent ....Lone Eagle just suc... needs work.  The dogfish head brewer they hired on just doesn't get it and I swear he doesn't clean out the lines. It's just sloppy. Or tastes it.   I keep trying them, and no one wants it to go away ....but dude!!!

And my boyfriend Devs84 hit on the head - dude never names the beer right   What gives even?   Dogfish head let him go for a reason    And yet I'll persist in going   Bluefish Baja tacos down the street... I'm obsessed with 

I would recommend anyone who likes beer makes the effort to find Conclave. I'm not telling you where it is Their Gravitational Waves is incredible. They stick to their guns and make what they make how they want to.  

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Does anyone else have a NJCB club card?  If so, how do you like it these days?

Reason why I am asking is that I am in my 4th or so year of having one and it seems like (at least to me) that he discounts are getting worse and worse as they add more and more places that accepts them.  When I first joined, they had about 310-ish places that accepted it.  Now it looks like the list is at about 650-ish.  However, the discounts have gone down where places that used to take 10-20% off the entire bill are switching to stuff like $1 off growler refill.  The savings used to be able to pay for the card by March/April for me, but now here I am in August for 2017 and I don't think I have saved anywhere near the $25 a year I pay for it.

To be clear I do not blame NJCB at all for this.  I know these discounts are basically dictated by the businesses that are apart of it.  What sucks is that a lot of these places tend to accept or deny the discounts I am supposed to receive on a little more than a whim these days.  I complain to Mike and the NJCB people and while to their credit they are very responsive and apologetic, a lot of times their hands are tied and it is already after the fact.  I also see liquor stores that accept it now playing games to deny giving me a discount.  A store near me (who will go unnamed) play a game where for a 12-pack they list the price as a "sale price" that is the normal retail prices at other nearby liquor stores and post a ridiculous jacked-up "retail price" on the sign.  That way when I try to use the card on that item at the register they deny me saying it is already on the "sale price" and that the card only works on retail price.  What a load of BS.

In summary I am thinking this may be the last year I have the card.  It just doesn't pay for me anymore with my interest in craft beer starting to wane a bit and with stores/bars playing games to avoid giving the discounts.

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Update:  Right on cue I see that Mike from NJCB put out a post on the NJCB members FB group about 45 minutes ago that he kicked out a bunch of places due to non-compliance.  Very happy to hear this and again I do not blame the folks at NJCB for any of this.  This is squarely on the businesses that participate.

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On 18/07/2017 at 5:56 PM, Pepperkorn said:

I'm just going to vent ....Lone Eagle just suc... needs work.  The dogfish head brewer they hired on just doesn't get it and I swear he doesn't clean out the lines. It's just sloppy. Or tastes it.   I keep trying them, and no one wants it to go away ....but dude!!!

And my boyfriend Devs84 hit on the head - dude never names the beer right   What gives even?   Dogfish head let him go for a reason    And yet I'll persist in going   Bluefish Baja tacos down the street... I'm obsessed with 

I would recommend anyone who likes beer makes the effort to find Conclave. I'm not telling you where it is Their Gravitational Waves is incredible. They stick to their guns and make what they make how they want to.  

I just picked up a 4 pack of Lone Eagle New England Chowdah and I need to take it back to the brewery.  Tasted like straight up band aids.  Very disappointed.  I don't think I've had one of their beers that I would order more than once at a bar.  

Soon the whole "hyper local" draw is going to wear off.  The market is so incredibly saturated right now with micro operations that it just isn't worth investing time or money in the run of the mill, nothing special beers they churn out.

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9 hours ago, Crisis said:

I just picked up a 4 pack of Lone Eagle New England Chowdah and I need to take it back to the brewery.  Tasted like straight up band aids.  Very disappointed.  I don't think I've had one of their beers that I would order more than once at a bar.  

Soon the whole "hyper local" draw is going to wear off.  The market is so incredibly saturated right now with micro operations that it just isn't worth investing time or money in the run of the mill, nothing special beers they churn out.

I've had a few Lone Eagle brews in the past year.  Their standard ones are alright, the more "outside the box" type ones are very hit or miss.  The only NJ brewery to me that has more hits than misses when it comes to these weird beers is Carton.

I think it goes beyond the hyper local brews.  It is for the entire craft beer movement in general.  It is incredibly saturated and I think a lot of the brewers and beer folks are a little overly optimistic about how much the market can handle.  Within a 20 minute drive of my house, I can count at least 5 micro/nano breweries (with at least 2 more on the way) and 2 brewpubs that make their own beer (with 1 more currently on the drawing board).

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Been a while since I've chimed in here:

La Cumbre (Albuquerque, lol) - Slice of Hefen is one of the best Hefeweizen beers I have ever had. Solid flavor from the first pour to the last sip, has a head retention similar to that of Sam Adams nitro.

If you're ever in the middle of bumblefvck West Texas or Eastern New Mexico, avoid Roosevelt Brewery like the plague. The beer was solid three years ago, and it went to absolute sh!t when the owner/head brewer tried to go all organic and use wild yeast instead of normal strains. The result was sour as sh!t beer, consistently dirty lines and next to no carbonation in their beers.

If you're traveling abroad, Bomonti is a solid cheap Turkish beer that can be equated to a Miller or Coors heavy, but more malty than pilsner.

Edited by jagknife

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14 hours ago, jagknife said:

Been a while since I've chimed in here:

La Cumbre (Albuquerque, lol) - Slice of Hefen is one of the best Hefeweizen beers I have ever had. Solid flavor from the first pour to the last sip, has a head retention similar to that of Sam Adams nitro.

If you're ever in the middle of bumblefvck West Texas or Eastern New Mexico, avoid Roosevelt Brewery like the plague. The beer was solid three years ago, and it went to absolute sh!t when the owner/head brewer tried to go all organic and use wild yeast instead of normal strains. The result was sour as sh!t beer, consistently dirty lines and next to no carbonation in their beers.

If you're traveling abroad, Bomonti is a solid cheap Turkish beer that can be equated to a Miller or Coors heavy, but more malty than pilsner.

The latest craft beer trend or craze is heading in that direction (might already be there actually).  Wild yeast is big and there is a nano-brewery in NJ (Pennington I believe) that opened or is about to open that specializes in beer made with wild yeast.  I really have to be in the mood for them as like you said they all have a pretty sour taste to them and I am not a huge fan of the sours.

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If anyone is ever in the Vero Beach / Jupiter area of south florida, you're doing yourself a disservice if you don't stop in to Walking Tree Brewery and have a Sandy Feet. It is flat out the best beer I've ever had.

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