Competition: Battle of the Knickerbockers

Reported by Ken Carman for

Vastly superior to my own, pictures without a date stamp are courtesy Steve Smyth.

We spent the week in the middle of nowhere: our future retirement home/camp in the Central Adirondacks. About a thousand miles from our present home base for over 30 years: Nashville, TN. When we left we could have gone south, or go about a hundred miles in the opposite direction and judge beer in downtown Albany, NY. Being beer folk, never guess what we did.

Yup. Judge beer.

The ugly guy with the blond hair and the black mustache is me.

This was not my first trip to The Pump Station, otherwise known as C. H. Evans Brewing. Stopped by about 10 or more years ago. Downtown Albany, NY: right off of 787. You can see it as you exit the Clinton Ave exit coming from the north. Big brick building. On your right.

Of course you will find some of the pictures a bit dark and fuzzy. My second decent digital and it’s a bit quirky. “Decent” because the first AOL bought cam would have made Starry Night seem photo like. No matter what pic I would attempt to take. Wherever that camera would… Gogh.
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Ancient African Cocktail: Beer and a Shot of Antibiotic

Nubia region today. Source: Wiki

Written by Wynne Parry, LiveScience Senior Writer

About 1,500 years before the modern world discovered the antibiotic tetracycline, North Africans were fermenting and consuming it, probably for most of their lives, according to a chemical analysis of the bones of people who lived along the Nile.

The ancient human remains were recovered near the Sudanese-Egyptian border, where species of tetracycline-producing bacteria inhabit the soil. This region, in Northeastern Africa, was once known as Nubia. Much of it is was flooded when the Nile River was dammed.

The practice of brewing beer was widespread in the region, including in Ancient Egypt to the north, and the researchers think the Nubians fermented Streptomyces or related species with their grain to brew a thick, sour beer spiked with tetracycline. And everyone, from about 2 years old and up, consumed it. [Gallery: Amazing Egyptian Discoveries]
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Brew Biz: Werts and All

Ken Carman is a BJCP judge; homebrewer since 1979, club member at Escambia Bay and Music City Homebrewers, who has been interviewing professional brewers all over the east coast for over 10 years.

Written by Ken Carman

Corsair Artisan (Micro Distillery)
1200 Clinton St.
Nashville, TN (Old Yazoo location)


400 East Main Street #110
Bowling Green, KY 42101

Why would a writer who loves beer, has written about beer for many years, judged beer and who has never cared for distilled products write about a distillery? Well, because this distillery has a very distinct beer flavor to their story. And because I, personally, have found a new respect for distilling: the process, the dedication and the creativeness that keeps pace with some of the more experimental micro brewers out there.

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Beer: “You can blame your Mother”

Perception of beer bitterness is both genetic and dependent on how hops are infused. Photo: Charlie Papazian

Written by Charlie Papazian

At Slow Food’s Salone del Gusto in Turin, Italy last month I participated in a “Bitterness and Beer Workshop.  It was an eye opening experience about the perception of bitterness and how it related to beer. The workshop was led by Mirco Marconi and Professor Paulo Gasparini (University of Trieste ).  Professor Gasparini distributed paper “taste strips” to all participants who were then asked to register their experience.
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Reviving Rheingold

Written by David Falchek for

A Connecticut beverage marketer has teamed up with the Lion Brewery in Wilkes-Barre to revive a beer brand, bringing Rheingold to the shelves for the first time in 35 years.

Drinks Americas hopes to give people a taste of the past by distributing Rheingold in the Eastern U.S., capitalizing on the coolness of retro products.

Rheingold has a special connection with its customers, said Drinks Americas President J. Patrick Kenny. The brand had dominated the New York metro market for decades, its popularity buoyed by an infectious jingle that began, “My beer is Rheingold, the dry beer.”
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Hippity Hops Farms—What’s Up Hop?

Written by Patrick Loch for

Thanks to passionate entrepreneurs like George and Leah Shetka and Paul Pavkovich of Hippity Hops Farms, LLC, Minnesota might be making some noise in the hop farming industry.

(Paul’s son Landon poses at Hippity Hops Farms, LLC, located in Forest Lake, Minnesota.)

The three got started when Paul suggested the idea. “I had four plants and thought, ‘why not go bigger?’” Turns out, it wasn’t terribly difficult to convince the Shetka’s that their front lawn would make a perfect hop-yard.

“We just went in circles mowing the grass there anyways,” said Leah.

In the fall of 2008, George and some other family members got to work situating rows of 20-foot poles strung together with rope. The following spring, 75 Cascade rhizomes went into the ground and began their frenzied climb. That first year, they harvested about 12 pounds of hops, all of which were handpicked.

“We want to emphasize we handpick everything,” said Paul. “That’s one thing we’re not going to stop doing.”
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Beer Profile: Estate Homegrown Ale (Organic)

Sierra Nevada
Chico, CA

Profiled by Ken Carman

Burnished gold. Tons of pillow/rocky head mix. A little chill haze but clear otherwise nice and clear. Cascade bitter and Cascade nose with some malt. The hops are fresh, though not that grass green you get from wet hops, though they claim “wet.” These hops were grown on the estate where Sierra Nevada resides. So is the barley. Everything for this beer came from the estate where Sierra Nevada is.

Hop profile: probably Cascade, Chinook and Citra.

Wax coated packaging.

Obviously this was an attempt to do a beer from scratch. I think it’s an excellent beer and well worth the cost. I recommend it. But “better” than other fresh/wet hop beers? No… and actually not as fresh or wet hop. Perhaps been in the store too long? Not stale, just not the snap one would expect. Sierra has done better, especially with the New Zealand

Roasting Your Own Coffee Begins with Green Beans and a Skillet

How to make your home brew even more “home brew”-ish? What about roasting your own beans? Coffee Stout or Witte anyone?- PGA

Picture of roasting beans, Doug Beghtel, The Oregonian

Written by Grant Butler for The Oregonian

Portland loves its DIY culture, with all its craft fairs, knitting classes and home-brewing get-togethers. Portland also loves coffee, with temples of java dotting the map like tattoos on the arms of baristas.

That these passions have come together seems inevitable. Instead of just heading to a nearby coffee shop for an artfully poured latte, more people are learning what it takes to make coffee at home that’s vastly superior to what people used to drink. And there’s a fast-growing trend of people roasting their own coffee beans.
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An Interview White Labs Yeast President Chris White

Written by Brad Smith for

This week it is a distinct pleasure to feature Chris White, the President of White Labs Inc – one of the world’s premiere providers of brewing yeast for both commercial and home brewers. White labs is a pioneer in providing commercial quality yeasts to home brewers.
1.  When and how did you get started in brewing beer?
I was in college at UC Davis in the late 80’s, and one of my roommates made a beer in our kitchen.  He left the beer sitting for months in the carboy, so finally another roommate mine, Pete (now a veterinarian), and I bottled and drank it.  We soon decided to try home brewing on our own.  Thanks Pete for helping me to start home brewing!
2.  You started White Labs in 1995 – what made you decide to start the business?
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