Man Jailed After Bringing Beer to DWI Hearing

Note: proof those who drink non-craft beer can be REAL idiots- PGA

No writer credited. Written for

Keith Gruber, 49, allegedly brought an open can of beer to a court appearance for his DWI charge.

A New York man is being held in jail after showing up an hour and a half late for a court hearing on a felony DWI charge — he was also drunk and carrying an open can of Busch beer, authorities say.

Keith Gruber, 49, is in Sullivan County Jail without bail. He was allegedly carrying four more beer cans in a bag when he went through the courthouse security check on Monday.

The Middletown Times Herald-Record reported that Gruber, from Swan Lake, appeared before Sullivan County Judge Frank LaBuda, who asked him if he enjoyed his “liquid lunch.”
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Beer Profile: Lukcy Basartd

Profiled by Ken Carman

The first beer by Stone I had was obviously extract, and when something’s obviously extract that’s never good. But the Stone beer has improved over the years. I like Arrogant Bastard it’s a bit one dimensional for an over the top (at the time) IPA, but great… for that.

I have not been happy with many of the various alternate versions, Oak is OK, I like it. Double is a bastardization of the original. Just call it a barleywine, please. Once you pop the abv that high it tends to take away from the extreme hop focus.

Lukcy is redish, just a bit of haze to the clarity, but this bottle had been in the freezer. Probably a bit of chill haze. The 1/4 inch head faded fast, but second pour it held for a while. Plenty of carbonation in the mouthfeel. Carameliztion obvious with a bit of slick.
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60-minute, 90-minute, 120-minute IPA? Not in Rhode Island.

Written by Jennifer McDermott for

Dogfish Head fans in Rhode Island will have to cross the border to enjoy their favorite brews.

The brewery just announced that it is pulling out of Rhode Island, Tennessee, Indiana and Wisconsin, along with the U.K. and Canada, because the beer is in too high demand and the loyal “off-centered beer enthusiasts” are complaining that they cannot find Dogfish Head near them.
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Brooks on Beer: Irish beer

Written by Jay R. Brooks for the Bay Area News Group and

On St. Patrick’s Day, everyone claims to be Irish, at least for the day, and most people switch to Guinness, no matter what their favorite beer might be the other 364 days of the year. Irish-style stout is a great choice, whether brewed in Ireland, the United States or Canada, where Guinness is brewed for the U.S. market.

What most people don’t realize, though, is that Guinness has at least 11 recipes worldwide. In the United States, whether it’s draft, bottle or widget, Guinness can represent not just different packaging but different recipes, too.

The other Irish stouts you’re likely to encounter are Beamish or Murphy’s, both owned by Heineken. My money’s still on the little guy, an Irish craft brewer — Carlow Brewing — whose O’Hara’s Celtic Stout is the one to find (although it’s not an easy one to locate).

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Beer Profile: Coopers Best Extra Stout

Profiled by Ken Carman

I had my first Stout in 74, and it was Extra, Guinness, in Montreal. For St. Patty’s I thought I’d do a profile on Coopers Extra Stout. OK: not Ireland, but you have to remember Australia was colonized by rejects: “criminals,” from the Empire. I’m sure more than a few were Irish.

I had this a number of years ago. I wasn’t writing profiles at the time, or judging beer. But when I started homebrewing in 79 Coopers was one of the extract malts I used.

Just a little head that fades fast. In my wife’s glass there was more head and a bit more long lasting; about a half an inch of head. Obsidian, as expected. A little sour-ish nose with some roasted barley. The first is a Guinness brew method: add just a little soured beer. The second is “as per style.” Far too may American Stouts at smaller brewpubs and micros seem to miss this step that, more than anything, separates Stouts from Porters: the addition of roasted barley.

The mouthfeel is roasted barley, pale malt and maybe some darker malts with some light carbonation: just about right. Hops so background you might as well ignore them except for balance.

Taste: more Stout than Extra. A bit of souring. But I expected more dark malt/roasted malt intensity and more alcohol. Not a ton. Just more.

I admit I am comparing this to Guinness ES and Guinness bottled (not ES). But I think that’s fair. They have come to define the style.

Good Stout, just needs “better…” and especially more “Extra” and more “special.”

How to Build a Better Irish Beer

Note: this article also covers difference in Guinness in Ireland and abroad, as well as more information about how the widget works- PGA

Written by John Roach for

A customer drinks a pint of Guinness, in the Gravity bar at the Guinness storehouse, Dublin, in this file photo.

On St. Patrick’s Day, many a pensive imbiber will shake their empty can of Guinness stout and hear the rattle of the widget that gave their beer a foamy head. That idle pleasure could come to an end. Now, a patch of cellulose fibers is all that’s needed to get the magical foam, according to new research.

The makers of Guinness started adding the widget to cans of Guinness Draught in the 1980s. The plastic device sits in the top of the can and when the can is opened, the widget spews nitrogen and beer. This helps give the canned stout the same foamy head and creamy mouth feel as a pint poured in a pub.

Researchers at the University of Limerick previously showed that when champagne and other carbonated drinks are poured in a glass, bubbles form as the liquid hits fibers of cellulose — essentially dirt — on the surface of the glass.

“The cellulose fibers will either have been shed from the cloth used to wipe the glass dry or will have fallen out of the air,” William Lee, a lecturer in mathematics and statistics, who led the research, writes in a Q&A about the findings.

Applied to stout
The team, however, thought this mechanism didn’t apply to stout because when a canned stout without a widget is poured in a glass, bubbles didn’t form. This was thought to be due to the fact that nitrogen is added to stouts to reduce the acidity brought on by carbon dioxide.

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Irish Beer History

Written and Researched by Ron Pattinson

The Irish brewing industry

Unless you’ve spent the last 50 years in a sealed concrete bunker, you’ll be aware of Guinness’s dominance of the Irish brewing scene. Their last Dublin rival (Findlaters) closed in 1949 and by the mid-1960’s they had rounded up the last few stray ale breweries.

The only challenge to total control was in Cork, where the tied house system of Murphy’s and Beamish & Crawford kept Guinness at bay, at least for a while.

Under pressure from their own landlords (who wanted to sell Guinness), the Cork brewers gave up their tied houses in the 1970’s. They soon ran into trouble and were snapped up by foreign globalists, eager to own an “Irish stout” brand. Their stouts are now often easier to find abroad than in their native country.

The micro revolution

Ireland is one of the last of the traditional brewing nations of Europe to undergo a microbrewery boom. The stranglehold of Guinness on the licensed trade has surely played a role in suppressing new brewery startups. In 2005 progressive beer duty was due to be introduced. It should proivide a boost to the fledgling micro industry.

There was a brief flirtation with Dublin-brewed real ale in the early 1980’s (Dempsey’s and Harty’s), but neither lasted very long. It wasn’t until the 1990’s with the Biddy Early brewpub that anyone dared try again. A steady trickle of new brewpubs and micros has continued since, though they are still of minor significance in terms of volume (45,000 hl to Guinness’s 5.2 million hl). The lack of a sliding scale of duty is seen as a major obstacle to new breweries entering the market.

The story in Northern Ireland has been much the same, where Bass and Guinness have long enjoyed a duopoly. Hilden, Ireland’s oldest microbrewery (founded 1981) has survived rather than prospered. The long absence of cask-conditioned beer and the lack of proper cellars in many bars has not helped their cause. Whitewater joined them in 1996. A couple of other micros and a brewpub came and quickly disappeared again in the 1980’s. All the new brewereies have produced cask-conditioned beer on a regular basis.

Ireland now has more breweries than at any time since the early 1920’s. This is how the 20 active breweries (16 in the Irish Republic, 4 in Northern Ireland) can be classified:

Irish beer styles

Ireland is famous for one style of beer: stout. Originating in 18th century London, porter became immensely popular in Ireland around 1800. Eventually Dublin ousted London as porter capital and by 1900 Irish brewers were exporting huge quantities to England. The extent of this trade can be deduced from the statistics for UK beer imports: with the independence of the Irish Republic these increased from around 50,000 barrels (82,000 hl) a year to 1,500,000 barrels (2,455,000 hl).

Guinness pioneered mixed-gas dispense (carbon dioxide and nitrogen) in the early 1960’s. Today it’s widely used for serving both draught stout and ale. The older system of serving draught stout involved two barrels behind the bar. Each glass was first filled about two-thirds with old, relatively flat beer from the lower cask (“low stout”). It was topped up with lively, young beer from a smaller cask on a high shelf (“high stout”).

Modern stout is a mere shadow of its pre-WW I self. The classic porter strength – from the early 18th century up until 1900 – was around 1056º. Stout was a minimum of 1060º.

If you want to get an idea of old-fashioned Irish stout, try Guinness Foreign Extra Stout. It’s the closest approximation you’ll find today. You’ll notice that in 1840 Guinness Extra Stout was stronger than the current FES.

The picture to the left can be bought as a poster from

This text provided is only a small “fair use” excerpt from Ron’s site. His site has a lot of production figures, stats on the breweries and more history, more on current trends. Highly recommended. If you want to read more, please click…




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

Topic: Getting My Irish Up So I Can Drink My Irish Down

I was kind of upset. I wanted to like beer. Everyone wanted me to like it. I tried to like it. Then I found out there was beer that I liked, just most bars in my part of the country: maybe most of the country, wouldn’t carry it. I got my Irish up, I guess you might say, and I sought out only places that carried what I liked. I finally found what I wanted, and by “getting my Irish up,” I started by drinking my Irish down.

The year was 1974. I just found out I might like beer. All that time as a teen seeking what was forbidden was wasted on what, to my taste, was crap: Schlitz, Rheingold, Budweiser, Pabst, Miller, Ballantine… the last was a bit unique: an ale. But that was Cream Ale: an attempt to make ale more lager like. Anyone who has read enough to know my tastes must realize I was in beer Hell, and didn’t even know it. Slowly I was introduced to a few Bocks and Heinekin. I only liked the dark. Surprised?

A lot of hops in beer? Good luck back then. I swear most brewers threw in a leaf or two per batch only to say they added hops. Ironically the version of Billy Beer F.X. Matt brewed started my turn to the hop-side of brewing. I’ve heard the other versions of Billy Beer were pretty much hopless. This version was just hoppy enough to make me realize I might like extra hoppy beers too.

But since this is being published on St. P Day, let’s stick with the kind of beer that’s more Irish in nature and doesn’t look about the same coming out as it does going in. And let’s go back to the early 70s again. I know, not my fav decade either…

My wife, then my girlfriend, visited me where I was going to college. We drove north to Montreal with her sister and her sister’s fiance. I swear, I’m a magnet when it comes to exotic experiences, especially beer-related. There was this upstairs pub called Finegans. Or was it “Finnegans?” I went on the web and found what looks like the very same place. I have since been told it’s not the same pub and I can’t find my long ago haunt anywhere on the web.

Sniff. Sniff. This brief edit to Brew Biz was added on St. Pat’s. Guess I’ll have to go have a cry in my Murphy’s, my Guinness, my Beamish, my Old 38, my Black Fly, my… wait, I’m not sad anymore. Time to get up on the table and dance with the leprechauns!

Back to 1974…

I walked up to the bar and asked if they had any dark beer. The bartender looked at me as if I had just asked for a Scwimesquat. “I don’t know what that is but I have Stout,” with an Irish brogue.

I bought one: it was Guinness Extra. I think at first taste I cringed. I finished and ordered another. By the third I was, not quite literally, dancing on the tables with the Irishmen. The leprechauns came later, after I spent years putting gold in their pots at the end of an ever flowing beer-based rainbow.
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