ABV Chicago Craft Beer Podcast (general)

This one’s for all you Breeniacs out there. Listener Don Kasak hooked us up with a mixed bunch of St. Louis goodies, and ranking them does not prove to be easy. This show reinforces why St. Louis is one of the best beer cities in the nation once you look past the Budweiser building. There’s also a lengthy discussion of the trailer for the new film by provocative auteur and actual human Neil Breen (see it here) before we settle on some beers to pair with the movie. We also taste some hoppy beers that happily harken back to simpler times, and have some odd memories of the game Earthbound for the SNES. Welcome to the virtual metaverse. I’ll be right…..here.

Beers Reviewed

The Civil Life Brewing Co. - American Brown Ale

Perennial Artisan Ales - Prism: Mosaic (dry-hopped saison)

Shared - Oranges on Wheat (witbier)

Modern Brewery - Citrapolis (IPA)

Earthbound Brewing - Meteor IPA
Narrow Gauge Brewing - Meersalz - Apricot/Peach (gose)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_236_St_Louis_Six.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:12pm CDT

A little background noise for your next de-stemming party, this episode has us drinking American takes on the cherry-featuring “kriek” - with four of the five produced in the style of traditional lambic. There’s also a brief chat with Bill and Hagen from Dovetail about their recently-released (but long-planned) kriek beer and some very exciting news about future releases. Elsewhere on this Extra Luxury show, we share a little kriek history, try our hand at defining the style, marvel at the marvelous mouthfeels, and go full-on fanboy on one brewery in particular. Also, we try to solve a dwindling natural resource crisis, Ryan confesses to a 28 year-old crime, Craig wants a canned lambic, and we shame stupid Jeremy for his stupid SuperSoaker taking all the water from California. Damn it, Jeremy!

Beers Reviewed

Arclight Brewing Company - Soursmith Kriek

New Belgium Brewing - Transatlantique Kriek

pFriem Family Brewers - Oude Kriek

Dovetail Brewery - Kriek

Funk Factory/O’So Brewing - Door Kriek (2015)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_235_American_Kriek.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:39pm CDT

For the past three years, Bearded Iris has been bringing some exciting flavors to its home of Nashville, Tennessee, and thanks to listener Matt Milam, we get to indulge in some of their hazy and sweet offerings. We sample five beers on this show for our arbitrary review, and one beer is an “all-timer.” Also, Craig has some fresh ideas for the Fast & Furious franchise, Ryan waxes nostalgic about his Woodstock ‘94 necklace, and we hear from the Grumpy Gardener. And then Ryan explains Supreme to Craig, we dream of Teddy Grahams, and Craig relives some Krispy Kreme past. Guard your crepes.

Beers Reviewed

Homestyle (IPA)
Mood Ring (DIPA w/ blood orange, pineapple, and mango)
Moon Dust (Imperial milk stout w/ chocolate, graham cracker, vanilla, lactose and Moon Pies - collaboration with WeldWerks)
V. Latte (Imperial oatmeal stout w/ cocoa nibs, vanilla bean, lactose, and espresso coffee)
Fresh Baked (Imperial oatmeal stout w/ vanilla, lactose, and chocolate chip cookies)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_234_Bearded_Iris.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:51pm CDT

Like diamonds, we have many facets. And on this highly Instagrammable show, we explore rosé as a wine, as a cider, and as a beer. Will our complete inexperience in drinking rosé (or wine in general) skew the rankings towards our “home” style, beer? You will be surprised by the outcome on this one! We talk a lot about rosé - with only one angry rant - and whether or not we’re experiencing “pastry wine.” There’s also stuff about beer trends vs. wine trends, great bar TV, illegal Hi-C dipping, bad clowns with hard seltzer, and two wine-drunk hosts. Our words will evoke the great philosopher Sommelierates.

Drinks Reviewed

Union Wine Company - Underwood Rosé Wine

Swish Beverages - Babe Rosé with Bubbles

Virtue Cider - Rosé

2 Fools Cider - Rosé

Anderson Valley Brewing - Framboise Rose Gose

Forbidden Root - Sparkling Rosé Ale

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_233_Rose_Three_Ways.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:47pm CDT

Well this episode isn’t THE PITS! Get it?!? We sample six pretty different beers that prominently feature peaches to pick our favorites. We talk about the secrets to finding the best peaches, how the lambic brewers of the world can come together, and what makes something a “festival sour.” We also explore some new breakdancing names, call for the Peach Police, smack down a ludicrous conspiracy theory, and get caught in a bit of a Looper situation.

Beers Reviewed

Revolution Brewing - Freedom of Speach (Session sour)
pFriem Family Brewers - Peche (Lambic-inspired ale)
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project - Colorado Reserva Palisade Peach (Golden sour aged in oak)
Casey Brewing and Blending - The Mix: Bourbon Peach Bank (Saison aged in bourbon barrels)
Illuminated Brew Works - Gay Agenda (Double dry-hopped double IPA)
Triptych Brewing - Prairie Peach Picnic (Mixed culture ale)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_232_Just_Peachy.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:10pm CDT

We were shocked to learn that it’s been 8 months since our last hazy beer/New England-style IPA-focused show - can we learn to love them again? Well, the six beers on this show certainly make a strong case, as we drink newly canned hazy offerings from a variety of local brewers. We also add to our Wall of Fame with our latest celebrity run-in, Craig explains what the hell “throat hops” are, and Ryan predicts future IPA trends.

Beers Reviewed

Alarmist Brewing - Le Jus (New England-style IPA)

Horse Thief Hollow Brewing - Spoonful (Hazy IPA)

Saint Errant Brewing - Takers & Leavers (DDH IPA)

Noon Whistle - Gummypocalypse (Northeast DIPA)
Hubbard’s Cave - Fresh IIPA V4 (Imperial IPA w/ Mosaic and Simcoe)

Cruz Blanca Brewery - Freetown (DDH DIPA)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_231_Still_Hazy.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:16pm CDT

Our love of saisons runs deep - far deeper than our technical knowledge of them - but nevertheless, we get excited when we see new saisons filling up our local beer stores. We taste five recently released saisons that are all pretty different takes on the style, while figuring out which ones we’ll add to our must-buy list. There are two pieces of important information about Christopher Cross, a story about a mysterious object on a fishing pole, the semantics of band-aid licking, some real flower eaters, and a proposal on napkin taxes. So, you know, the usual. (Also, we are putting it here in writing that we are trademarking the term Farmhouse IPA™ without doing any actual research if it already exists, but you know, just in case.)

Beers Reviewed

Perennial Artisan Ales - Saison de Lis (saison w/ chamomile flowers)
Middle Brow Beer Co. - Neko (rye ginger saison)
New Belgium Brewing - Belgian Reserve Sour Saison
Solemn Oath Brewery - Larry Powder the Magical Boy (dry-hopped saison)
Hop Butcher for the World - Weirdsmobile (Nelson Sauvin & Vic Secret-hopped saison)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_230_SaisOn_The_Shelf.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:58am CDT

Lagers still represent the most consumed style of beer in the U.S. and it’s not even close. But consumers demand more than the watered-down adjunct-laden fare peddled by the biggest brewers and have pushed slightly less-big brewers to make some tastier options. We blind taste eight lagers - four from “macro” brands, and four from “non-macro” brands* - and try to guess what we’re drinking while ranking our preferences. It’s another one filled with blind surprises and one very unhappy host, but we’ll also take you to Dark Walgreens, toss a few barbs at the band Korn, and introduce you to The Ham Gambler. You can hang your hat on that.

Beers Tasted Blindly (in order of appearance on the show)

Hamm’s Premium Lager
Firestone Walker Lager
Ballast Point Longfin Lager
Pabst Blue Ribbon
Coors Banquet Beer
Founders Solid Gold Premium Lager
Spiteful Lager
Old Style

*Founders is 30% owned by leading Spanish beer brand Mahou-San Miguel; Ballast Point is 100% owned by Fortune 500 company Constellation Brands; Firestone Walker is owned by the Duvel-Moortgat brewery; Spiteful is owned by some nice guys named Brad and Jason

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_229_Lager_Me_Blindly.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:05pm CDT

It’s like an hour-long cheat day, for on this episode, we indulge in everything sweet and sugary to enrobe ourselves in stouts just in time for the summer. We review five stouts that all feature a bevy of big flavors and adjuncts to create boozy, liquid desserts. There’s also talk about this year’s Riot Fest lineup, a game about candy bar ingredients that Craig is terrible at, and some timely Sega Genesis game reviews. Our diet starts tomorrow.

Beers Reviewed

Lil’ Beaver Brewery - Happy For Pecans (Milk Stout w/ pecans)

Saint Errant Brewing - Cauallier (Imperial Stout w/ chocolate and roasted peanuts)

Hubbard’s Cave - French Toast (Imperial Stout w/ cinnamon, maple syrup, vanilla, and lactose)

Mikerphone Brewing - Smooth Whopperator (Double Milk Stout w/ chocolate malted milk)

Hop Butcher for the World - The Dog House (Chocolate cake shake stout w/ vanilla and lactose)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_228_Candy_and_Cakes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:34am CDT

As an amalgamation of two styles seen as so disparate in their processes, it’s easy to call Sour IPAs a gimmick - a style that cannot nor should not exist - or simply, liquid clickbait. We put our own skepticism to the test with five of our favorite local breweries and their spin on the tart, juicy, and (supposedly) hoppy trend. We learn about the different methods brewers use to create these mashups, all while we’re desperately seeking the IPAness. Hear our Saisonathon night experiences, a fear of disembodied mouths, a call for Gravy IPAs, a plug for Ryan’s old websites, and the reason why we oh so desperately could use some more mugwumps right now. #liqbait

Beers Reviewed

Forbidden Root - Assembly Required V2 (Sour IPA w/ key lime and vanilla)

Marz Community Brewing - tart’n’tangy (Wild NE IPA w/ lactose)

Maplewood Brewing - Fizzle Drizzle (Sour IPA w/ raspberry)

Illuminated Brew Works - Mugwump Brunch (Sour DIPA w/ orange juice)

Corridor Brewery & Provisions/Forbidden Root - New Wave Dance Craze (Sour IPA w/ almond, cherry, cinnamon, and lactose)

Direct download: ABV_Chicago_227_Chi_Sour_IPAs.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:38am CDT