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TrentonDevils
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That's true.  I mean SABMiller owns some of those world brands in name only, but they allow these older breweries to keep doing what they are doing which I respect.

 

Pilsner Urquell is an amazing pilsner.  That is my father's favorite beer and hard to argue with the original pilsner.

I still drink Goose Island sometimes, even though they're AB.

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As far as I know, Goose Island hasn't changed their recipes since the Anheuser-Busch takeover.  I don't buy their beers though because I don't want to give a dime to A-B, the biggest enemy of the craft beer industry, but the products are still the same quality to my knowledge.

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As far as I know, Goose Island hasn't changed their recipes since the Anheuser-Busch takeover.  I don't buy their beers though because I don't want to give a dime to A-B, the biggest enemy of the craft beer industry, but the products are still the same quality to my knowledge.

I get that, and if I have a choice, I go craft, but if I'm buying from a corner store and don't want to go to a party emptyhanded, Goose serves its purpose, and because it's AB, more places carry it than real craft beer.

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That's true.  I mean SABMiller owns some of those world brands in name only, but they allow these older breweries to keep doing what they are doing which I respect.

 

Pilsner Urquell is an amazing pilsner.  That is my father's favorite beer and hard to argue with the original pilsner.

It wouldn't be worth controlling older breweries, might as well keep them mildly independent. There was an article on the BBC website (I think) last month or so which showed how pubs are being controlled more and more by mass breweries nowadays, limiting drinkers to certain brands of beer. Real shame if you ask me. Is this the same in the States? Do you find the same beers in every single bar?

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Some bars suck with the beer selection  but it seems like some inroads have been made, at the very least many have the Sam Adams stuff. The poorer areas tend to be all bud/coors crap.

You can bet when you walk into a pub in the UK it's either going to be a John Smiths/Carling pub or a Tetleys/Carlsberg pub. Seems to be the only choices you get sometimes unfortunately unless you walk into a real ale pub.

Edited by iceowl14
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It wouldn't be worth controlling older breweries, might as well keep them mildly independent. There was an article on the BBC website (I think) last month or so which showed how pubs are being controlled more and more by mass breweries nowadays, limiting drinkers to certain brands of beer. Real shame if you ask me. Is this the same in the States? Do you find the same beers in every single bar?

Some breweries they took a more controlling stance with.  When Anheuser-Busch took over Rolling Rock they changed the recipe and turned the beer to crap.  I think they knew if they did that with Goose Island there would be backlash since Goose Island is probably more popular than Rolling Rock was at the time of that buyout.  We'll see what happens a few years down the road though if they think their recipes are too expensive for their liking.

 

You kind of have to go to the right bars if you're looking for good beer, a lot of places are just typical crap but recently some are bringing in a couple taps of some basic craft beer like Sam Adams or a pale ale here and there.  However, A-B and MillerCoors have been known to come out with their own versions of certain styles and then pushing them on bars to replace the craft beer with their imitation, offering discounts on kegs and stuff which is illegal.

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Some breweries they took a more controlling stance with.  When Anheuser-Busch took over Rolling Rock they changed the recipe and turned the beer to crap.  I think they knew if they did that with Goose Island there would be backlash since Goose Island is probably more popular than Rolling Rock was at the time of that buyout.  We'll see what happens a few years down the road though if they think their recipes are too expensive for their liking.

 

You kind of have to go to the right bars if you're looking for good beer, a lot of places are just typical crap but recently some are bringing in a couple taps of some basic craft beer like Sam Adams or a pale ale here and there.  However, A-B and MillerCoors have been known to come out with their own versions of certain styles and then pushing them on bars to replace the craft beer with their imitation, offering discounts on kegs and stuff which is illegal.

Anything for a bit more money. Hopefully the 'independent' breweries will be able to hold on in the years to come. I'm finding many of the larger beer companies (Carling, Fosters, Stella Artois) have started moving into the cider business now too. Slowly turning into 1984-George Orwell situation haha.

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Anything for a bit more money. Hopefully the 'independent' breweries will be able to hold on in the years to come. I'm finding many of the larger beer companies (Carling, Fosters, Stella Artois) have started moving into the cider business now too. Slowly turning into 1984-George Orwell situation haha.

Carling and Fosters are owned by MillerCoors and Stella is owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev.  A lot of these beers don't say who is actually producing them because they don't want you to know it's all coming from the same two groups of people.

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I had my beloved Alltech Bourbon Barrel Ale in Kentucky.  As good as I remembered... still can't get it in NJ.

I loved the Brooklyn Brewery whiskey stout. It cost a ton, but I got a bottle for my brother for Christmas, and he split it with me, so worth it. Not sure if they have any left (doubt it, it was a limited release), but if they do it again, it's worth picking up. I've had a bunch of whiskey beers, since they seem to be popping up everywhere lately, and that's still my favorite (though I haven't driven to Kentucky to try Alltech).

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I didn't try the BB Whisky Stout.  A good whisky beer is hard to come by for me -- either there is just too much twang without whisky flavor or there is NO whisky flavor whatsoever.  

 

I tend to like beer from sherry or port barrels -- except the Alltech.  It makes me a little nutty I like it so well.  I didn't try their Bourbon stout though -- duhrrr.  I can't drink enough to have chosen between the two when I had the chance. 

 

I love a scotch ale that captures scotch flavor - but I dont think they're aged in scotch barrels, are they?  It's just the process that makes them as they are?  I'm not in the know, so correct me if I'm wrong!!  When a Scotch Ale DOES taste Scotchy - I LOVE that!

 

A whisky stout is for sure more forgiving than trying a whisky ale I bet!

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According to BeerAdvocate's definition, a beer doesn't need to be aged in scotch barrels to be a scotch ale.
 

Scotch Ales are strong ales, also known as "Wee Heavy." In the 19th century Scotland, they'd also be known as 160/-, a nomenclature based on the now obsolete shilling currency.

Scotch Ales traditionally go through a long boil in the kettle for a caramelization of the wort. This produces a deep copper to brown in colored brew. Compared to Scottish Ales, they'll be sweeter and fuller-bodied, and of course higher in alcohol, with a much more pronounced malty caramel and roasted malt flavor. A low tea-like bitterness can be found in many examples. Best served in a "thistle" glass.

 

 

http://beeradvocate.com/beer/style/77

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A whisky stout is for sure more forgiving than trying a whisky ale I bet!

A bit, maybe, though I mostly like it because they did a good job balancing beer and whiskey flavors. I've had a couple that were just boring, and a ton more that overwhelmed with whiskey flavor. Don't get me wrong, I love whiskey flavor, but if I want just whiskey flavor, I'll drink a whiskey. It just seems like a lot of the whiskey beers out there are like some of the crappy IPAs that throw in a ton of hops to make up for lack of real flavor -- the brewers rely on the novelty to mask a lack of craft. Don't get me wrong, neither one is BAD, but I appreciate a good IPA or whiskey beer a lot more, especially in comparison.

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EXACTLY!  It doesn't really taste like Whisky - it doesn't really taste like anything - aside from, as you so aptly put it, masking. That's what I meant about the stouts - they kind of seem like they're saying "yeah yeah -- it's stout it's supposed to be bitter and have big flavor" -- but the mouth feel is all wrong! 

 

Awe... now I really want to try the Brooklyn!  I bet I'd really like it too.

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To Bartholemew Hunt (though interesting to others):

 

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2013/08/11/why-beer-makers-should-worry/2636327/

 

Reasons 1 and 2 are particularly relevant.

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He can't read offtopic anymore.

Gotcha. Thanks. I'm gonna leave the post up, because it's an interesting read for anyone with an interest in the craft beer vs. big 3 debate.

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For those interested in craft beer that is not quite up to snuff, there is Founders Friday at the Tap Room at the Somerset Hills Hotel in Warren Twp, NJ on 8/30/13.

 

From the site:

 

"Friday, August 30 is Founders Friday at The Tap Room. Ryan from Founders will be at the party along with Devil Dancer, Rubaeus,Imperial Stout, Reds Rye and the elusive and very limited in draft, Doom according to Kevin from The Tap Room."

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Funny you mention Kane, DM. I actually came in here to post about Kane. I may be heading over there tomorrow to pick up a few things for my dad for his birthday.  He's a fellow craft beer enthusiast. My question is do they sell 750ml of their beers?  If so is Overhead one thats frequently available in that format?

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The only beers they bottle are occasional one-offs.  Currently there are none available, but they always do growler fills on Friday nights and Saturday afternoons.  I'm pretty sure Overhead and Head High are always on tap there, so if your dad enjoys Overhead you can't get him a bottle but you can get him a fresh growler.  Only thing is they don't fill 32oz growlers, they only do 64's.  If you don't have a growler, you can buy one of those there as well.

EDIT:  Since you're buying it as a gift, it may be worth mentioning that they also sell t-shirts, hats, and pint glasses.

Edited by devilsfan26
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Visited Ommegang yesterday, which I highly recommend -- the area's great, and they have a really good Belgian cafe on the premises (got the frittes, which are awesome, and chocolate foundue. They mixed three philosophers into the chocolate). Did the tasting, obviously. Here are my opinions:

 

Double White -- limited release. White beers are never my favorite, but this one was interesting. They used bitter orange peels rather than sweet, which gave it a little more kick.

BPA -- Solid compromise beer (more hops than a Belgian, less than an American style pale ale). Nice citrus flavor. 

Rare vos -- one of my two favorites. Flavorful, due to the spices they added. Goes well with a lot of foods as well.

Hennepin -- Probably the best saison I've had. Saison's aren't my favorite in general, but I really enjoyed this one. Not particularly sour, which I liked.

Abbey ale -- World class, by far my favorite. Perfectly balances spices. If you like the simple, straightforward German beers, definitely not for you, but if you enjoy the mingling of spices and beer in Belgians, you'll love this one. I bought a couple bottles, 1 to share with my brother, 1 to save for 5 years, because they say this one ages really well -- my tour guide had tried one they aged 15 years, and loved it, though a couple people agreed 5 was really the best time.

Three philosophers -- another excellent beer. I preferred the rare vos (which was the dubbel, this was the quadruppel); this one was a little sweeter. Not in a bad way, but I liked the beer kick in the rare vos more.

 

I also picked up a bottle of their limited release chocolate stout to try.

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