Four Unexpectedly Delicious Food And Beer Pairings You Must Try!

I have recently stumbled upon a few interesting and actually very tasty beer and food combinations, that I did not expect to play so well together.

1) Bud Light Lime and Cherry Pop Tarts -

This may not seem like a huge surprise but it honestly caught me off guard. One morning while attending the Redneck Yacht Club Mud Park in Punta Gorda, Florida, as I crawled out of bed (in this case a lawn chair I was sleeping on), I was given a Cherry Pop Tart. Since I was really hungover from the night before, I needed a good breakfast beer. So, I grabbed the first beer I could get my hands on, a Bud Light Lime (which is an appropriate breakfast/pre-drinking all day beer). Quite simply, the combination of Bud Light Lime and Cherry Pop Tart caught me off guard. The Cherry Pop Tart and the Bud Light Lime blended together wonderfully, creating a pleasant cherry limeade type flavor balanced by the Pop Tart crust.

2) Southern Tier 2xIPA and malt balls from The Fresh Market.

While enjoying one of my favorite beers, the Southern Tier 2xIPA, and watching the Kansas City Chiefs play a few months ago, I popped a couple of malt balls in my mouth and took a big swig of my beer. I have not been the same since, this was an awesome combination. Somehow, the bitter, piney, grape-fruity goodness from the 2xIPA combined with the chocolaty, maltiness from the candy to create a unique almost cherry like flavor. You will just have to test it out for yourself, all I can tell you is we did not have any malt balls left after that discovery!

3) Dogfish Head Festina Peche and red velvet cake

There is not much of a story here, I love Berliner Weisse (especially the Festina Peche) and I love red velvet cake. So, one day I ate some red velvet cake while drinking a Festina Peche. While I did not expect them to pair so nicely, I am forever glad they did. The sour fruitiness from the Festina Peche cut into the rich red velvet cake and blended in to provide a fruity, creamy cheesy, chocolaty sensation.

4) George’s Salsa and The Bruery Windowsill

George’s is a magical little restaurant in Springfield Missouri, they are cheap open very late and serve up the best damn salsa on the planet. This salsa is almost beyond words, it is very hot, yet sweet and just plain delicious. On my last trip up to Springfield, I packed 4 bottles of Georg’es Salsa in my checked bag. While hanging out at Old Soul Brewing Company and eating the delicious salsa, a buddy opened up a Windowsill from The Bruery. The spicy, sweet heat of the salsa plus the sour, raspberry notes of the Windowsill provided a heavenly gastronomic experience.

Great News For Craft Beer In Fort Myers!

Yes, this really is likely to be the worst beer blog ever (at least I was accurate with the name right?) as it has been embarrassingly long since I last posted. Unfortunately, my job as an on-premise account manager for a beer distributor in the Fort Myers area is very demanding but it pays the bills a little more effectively than blogging. I just wanted to let everyone know I am still around and still very much involved in the beer world.

Speaking of which, Fort Myers will soon find itself on the craft beer map as a lot of great things are happening in the Southwest Florida beer world. Here a just a few examples.  Fort Myers Brewing Company , in the Gateway region of Fort Myers, is still going strong with a lineup of tasty brews and a different food truck outside nearly every day! Point Ybel Brewing Company will celebrate their grand opening this Saturday December 14th. I have not yet tried anything from Point Ybel Brewing Company, but I have heard they make some excellent beer. House of Brewz just opened up a few weeks ago in the Gulf Coast Town Center and will soon include Bury Me Brewing alongside 150 taps and excellent food! Fat Point Brewing in Punta Gorda will be in operation soon. Naples Beach Brewery is alive and well and it is an outright tragedy that I have not yet found the time to pay them a visit. Big Storm Brewery in Tampa makes its Fort Myers debut on Friday at World of Beer. Another brewery to look out for in the near future is Old Soul Brewing Company, I know these guys pretty well and they make some excellent beer. I believe that the biggest beer nerds and the novice enthusiast will be surprised by the unique styles Old Soul Brewing Company will roll out with. You will hear of Old Soul Brewing Company soon!

Zombicon, Mmmhops, Beer In Space, KCCO Black Lager,

I have returned to the blogging world! I am sorry for my embarrassing lack of postings, I truly am. It is simply difficult as an on-premise account manager in a very dynamic and exciting area. I love the job, industry and my company, but it is a great deal of work. I know I have said this before, but I do plan on being a much more active webmaster from here on out. Regardless, here are some interesting things I have discovered recently, some of them are old news, still enjoy!

First and foremost, next Saturday, October 19th Downtown Fort Myers is hosting ZombiCon 2013! This is one of the largest zombie themed events in the world! Words can not really describe it. There will be street performers, 15 bands on 4 stages, zombie make-up stations and LOTS of beer! Best of all, the profits go to the non-profit organization Pushing Daizies

Oscar Blues Brewery is the first craft brewer to sponsor a Nascar car. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/craft-beer-drinkers-start-your-engines-2013-10-11

When the government is not operating, beer labels can not get approved, if beer labels are not approved, new beers can not be produced. Bummer. http://www.wjla.com/articles/2013/10/government-shutdown-affects-beer-production-95217.html

Beer in space? http://www.nbcnews.com/science/11-year-olds-beer-brewery-be-sent-space-station-8C11375439

This is pretty darn cool. Turn your beer bottle into a glass cup in five easy steps.

Way back in 2011 I wrote an article on the upcoming beer by Hanson Mmmhops… (I love how I did not even get the name right). It is evident  by the tone and the title of the article, I was not thrilled about the idea. The beer has been on the market (somewhere) since March. The years (all two of them), since writing my original post, have softened my heart on this subject and I would actually like to try this beer. When I see one, I will purchase a bottle or six and write up a fair review. In the meantime here is an article from The Daily Beast on Mmmhops, that fails to actually talk about the taste of the beer Hanson Got Me Drunk on Their New Beer, Mmmhops (Really) and a little (but not much) more detailed review from Omnivore Drinking Hanson’s beer, Mmmhops, with Hanson

Sold! Where do I find them!? Birthday Cake M&Ms Are Coming So You Can Have Your Cake And Eat Your Candy, Too

As a big fan of FARK.com I feel obligated to post a review of the Stone Farking Wheaton w00tStout from RateBeer Weekly http://us2.campaign-archive1.com/?u=927a170c4a7bc5ac2c11d7a5f&id=9f84bed994 considering it is a collaboration between Stone Brewing Company and an awesome website, I am sure it is delicious and can not wait to get my hands on a bottle, or three.

Speaking of online celebrity collaborations, I can not wait to sell/drink the KCCO Black Lager brought to you by The Chive, Resignation Brewery and Redhook!

Considering that I am a huge “hop head” and believe there are an abundance of sweet strong or lightly hopped session beers available, I do not see a problem with hops being the glamour ingredient and often focus of craft beer. Still, the hopcentric attitude of many craft brewers might alienate future enthusiasts, Against Hoppy Beer

While my article is horribly outdated by now, it is good to see some people have taken taken up the good fight Top 10 Baseball Stadiums for Craft Beer

Shock Top Raspberry Cupcakes, Beer Bellies, Beer Stocks, Grilled Cheese And More Beer News

I know it has been far too long since my last post and to anyone who actually reads my work, I am very sorry. Now that Fort Myers is painfully out of season, I should have more time to post. Again, I apologize and hope you all have wonderful Father’s Day, here are some news and interesting articles I have recently discovered.

I have not yet made these but they look delicious. And just to be “that guy” I feel the need to point out that the recommended raspberry beer (Shock Top Raspberry), is not a lager as the title suggests. Either way, I plan on attempting this recipe tonight and will report back on it soon (For real this time, I promise). http://www.justapinch.com/recipes/dessert/cake/raspberry-lager-red-velvet-cupcakes.html?p=1

Actually, I found two recipes for cupcakes utilizing Raspberry Shock Top…Oh so many alluring choices… http://www.justapinch.com/recipes/dessert/cake/raspberry-wheat-ale-cupcakes.html

Here are the top 25 craft breweries in the United States according to Complex Magazine. I can not say I agree with all the choices but am glad to see breweries like Blue Point and Nebraska Brewing Company make the discussion. http://www.complex.com/city-guide/2013/06/best-breweries-in-the-us/

Since everyone loves a good grilled cheese sandwich, here are 50 awesome options! http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/40-amazing-grilled-cheese-sandwich-recipes
Speaking of grilled cheese, The Beeroness (not associated with me other than an interest in beer and a sweet name) has provided an amazing brown butter grilled beer cheese sandwich recipe on here blog. http://thebeeroness.com/2012/08/23/brown-butter-grilled-beer-cheese-sandwich/

Two years later, the AB-Goose Island merger appears a success. http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/food/blogs/99bottles/

According to University of California Davis food science professor Charles Bamforth, the “beer belly” is a myth. Still, beer and alcohol itself is a calorie dense product. http://newsfeed.time.com/2013/06/13/beer-bellies-are-a-myth/?xid=rss-topstories

Budweiser (BUD), Sam Adams (SAM) and Craft Brew Alliance (BREW) are three beer stocks to buy according to the Motley Fool.
http://beta.fool.com/benpop318/2013/05/30/beers-to-buy-3-brewing-stocks-to-own/35336/

Here is another quick look at some of the more prominent beer stock options. http://investorplace.com/2011/03/beer-stock-to-buy-bud-sam-hook-deo-tap/

Speaking of investing in breweries, crowdfunding through the Craft Fund may be possible (legal) in 2014!

I could not agree more with the following article. In Defense of Drunks.

The 10 States where people drink the most beer. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/05/states-beer-per-capita-consumption_n_3551085.html?ir=Business

Cinco De Mayo Downtown Fort Myers

I should have posted this over a week ago but have been so busy preparing for the event that I simply have not had the time. As you may or may not know, today is Cinco De Mayo, a celebration of the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla. While not a significant holiday for your average American, it is a great excuse to party! This year is not only no exception but the downtown Fort Myers block party will be the biggest one yet! With three stages booked with excellent bands and Negra Modelo pouring at numerous locations this event is worth your time. The event lasts from 4pm-9pm, so everyone has plenty of time to recover for work on Monday morning.

cinco

Cicadas, False Memories, Major League Baseball And Other Beer News

I find it hard to believe the word delicious is accurate here, but who am I do judge? Here are some cicada recipes.
http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/cicada-cooking-pizza-tacos-jello-article-1.1314334

The newest idea to curb drinking involves planting negative but false memories of an experience with alcohol.
http://healthland.time.com/2013/04/12/false-memories-can-change-drinking/

The Yankees have renamed their “Craft Beer Destination” bar after criticism because most of its “craft beers” were in fact MillerCoors products and a cider. The bar has been renamed the “Beer Mixology Destination”.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/04/14/177212938/beer-bust-yankees-rename-craft-beer-stand-at-stadium?ft=1&f=1001

Here is a list of the ten highest beer prices in Major League Baseball.
http://www.thestreet.com/story/11892342/1/10-highest-beer-prices-in-major-league-baseball.html?cm_ven=RSSFeed

Speaking of baseball, I wrote an article on craft (I should probably add the word “crafty” given the recent debate) beer selections in the MLB last year. I plan on updating this article in the near future.

Here is a recipe for a beer milkshake.
http://www.esquire.com/blogs/food-for-men/charleston-baseball-recipes

With breweries such as Founders Brewing Co, Bell’s Brewery Inc, Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales, Arcadia Ales, New Holland Brewing Company and many more, I have long considered Michigan one of the top craft beer producing states in the country. That reputation does not appear to be waning as seventeen new breweries opened up in Michigan in 2012!
http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130413/LIFESTYLE05/304130331/1001/rss21

Here are three pretty tasty looking recipes using beer.
http://gizmodo.com/5991940/3-beer+based-recipes-for-the-boozy-chef

The Boston Beer Company brewed 2,727,000 barrels of beer in 2012. Luckily for them, the Brewers Association raised the limit of production to less than 6,000,000 barrels of beer.
http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/food/blogs/99bottles/2013/04/boston_beer_maker_of_samuel_ad.html?rss_id=Most+Popular

I imagine starting a brewery in North Korea is a difficult task.
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/13/business/global/beer-venture-fails-in-north-korea-despite-eager-market.html?src=busln&_r=0h

The ten coolest brewery tours in the United States?
http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2013/04/09/americas-10-best-brewery-visits/

Here is a question and answer session with Pat McGauley, vice president of innovation/new products at Anheuser-Busch.
http://www.stltoday.com/business/local/663e4376-911a-5216-a21c-9956fcfd08d6.html

The Grupo Modelo-Anheuser-Busch deal looks to have cleared the main obstacle in the Department of Justice’s Antitrust case.
http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2013/04/05/20-billion-beer-deal-reaches-agreement-to-clear-antitrust-hurdle/

Long Overdue Beer News

Greetings, March is a pretty rough month for beer sellers in Southwest Florida. Do not get me wrong, it is a great month down here, just time for things like blogging are difficult to come by. Here is beer news people as busy as I am may have missed.

The American Beer Industry’s economic impact is $246.6 billion dollars and the industry provides two million American Jobs. This study came from the Beer Institute (BI) and the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA).
http://news.yahoo.com/beer-serves-america-literally-140000639.html;_ylt=A2KJ2UbFA09RyUgAlX7QtDMD

Soon Floridians may be able to enjoy the long-awaited 64oz beer growlers!
http://news.yahoo.com/bill-allowing-64-ounce-beer-170258829.html;_ylt=A2KJ2UbFA09RyUgAqn7QtDMD

SABMiller is now producing a cheap beer made with cassava called Eagle in Ghana. This project hopes to curb consumption of “rather toxic home-brews” common in Africa. Cassava has a very short usefulness after harvest, why not turn it into beer?!
http://za.news.yahoo.com/sabmiller-cassava-beer-set-boost-agriculture-ghana-191426032–finance.html

Lakeland Florida is about to be home to the first Brew Hub in Florida. Brew Hub is a business started by ex-Anheuser-Busch executives that provides craft brewers with the space, equipment and expertise to make their recipes come to realization.
http://fox2now.com/2013/03/19/first-anheuser-busch-brew-hub-to-open-in-florida/

Anheuser-Busch has achieved its 3 year environmental goals concerning water, energy, carbon emissions and recycling. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/innovation-sustainable-practices-lead-to-stronger-returns-research-report-on-anheuser-busch-coors-femsa-diageo-and-beam-2013-03-11

In February, NPR commissioned an independent study on the alcohol content of some of Budweiser’s primary beers. White Labs (a very well-respected and large producer of brewing yeast) found the alcohol content in Budweiser, Bud Light Lime and Michelob Ultra to be spot on or well withing the legal requirements.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2013/02/28/173076501/budweiser-may-seem-watery-but-it-tests-at-full-strength-lab-says

I do not think this to be very likely as exponential growth for 37 years is not an easy thing to sustain, however craft beer output could surpass Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors by 2050 if the trend continues.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/19/craft-beer-output-trends_n_2903596.html?ir=Small+Business

Here are a few interesting (not surprising) trends the beer search engine SaveOnBrew has recently cataloged. http://news.yahoo.com/saveonbrew-identifies-intriguing-trends-among-craft-beer-drinkers-120031741.html;_ylt=A2KJ2UbFA09RyUgAtn7QtDMD

I love the craft beer world, there is a unique and refreshing spirit of community, respect, innovation and fun that I just do not see in any other business. Sadly, it is still business and I fear that as the craft segment grows, so will the intensity of the competition. With an intensified competition, I think many people will see business practices and attitudes commonly associated with big business trickle down. I hope I am wrong, but the following article proves I am certainly not the only one thinking about it. http://business.time.com/2013/03/22/as-craft-beer-gets-bigger-will-it-become-more-like-big-beer-or-perhaps-wine/

The following link is off topic but I found it to be interesting just the same about “hip” neighborhoods and their overall benefit to cities.
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/03/20/richard-florida-concedes-the-limits-of-the-creative-class.html

Chicago Chef Rick Bayless is teaming up with Crown Imports to help make a beer.
title="http://www.bizjournals.com/chicago/news/2013/03/04/rick-bayless-to-create-craft-beer-for.html" target="_blank">http://www.bizjournals.com/chicago/news/2013/03/04/rick-bayless-to-create-craft-beer-for.html

I found this on Beer Advocate’s forums last night and thought it was interesting (Posted by pheurton)
The top 10 beers on Beer Advocate in the Spring of 2003

“In order, 1-10 (Spring 2003):
Storm King Stout
Westvleteren Abt 12 (yellow Cap)
Celebrator Doppelbock
Two Hearted Ale
Stone Imperial Stout
Shakespeare Stout
Samuel Smith’s Imperial Stout
HopDevil Ale
Trappistes Rochefort 10
Double Bastard Ale”
http://beeradvocate.com/community/threads/beeradvocate-top-10-beers-10-years-ago.77632/

I would be happy with any of these. The discussion on the changes over that ten years is worth reading ass well.

Fort Myers Brewing Company

Lee County’s first microbrewery will open on Saturday March 2nd, 2013! The Fort Myers Brewing Company is located at 12811 Commerce Lake Drive in Gateway and its grand opening party is from 12 to 6 this Saturday. I do not know a great deal more other than the fact that I will be there on Saturday! Below is the flyer I found on their Facebook page.

Looks like fun! Im in!

Looks like fun! Im in!

Fort Myers Brewing Company

http://www.news-press.com/article/20130227/ENT07/130227022/Fort-Myers-Brewing-Company-hosts-grand-opening-March-2

Happenings In The Beer World

As usual, the is a lot going on in the dynamic beer world. Here are a few things I found interesting.

Bell’s Brewery plans to add a waste-water system, canning line and fermentation cellar in 2013. They also plan to invest $52 million, during the next six years, in the brewery.
http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2013/02/bells_brewery_to_remain_fierce.html

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA’s attempt at purchasing the 50% of Grupo Modelo it does not already own is being contested by the United States Government. Concerns over rising prices are the primary reason for this lawsuit.
http://news.yahoo.com/u-challenges-anheuser-buschs-purchase-grupo-modelo-155135641–sector.html;_ylt=A2KJ2PbNshZRZRoAZLrQtDMD

Constellation Brands and Crown Imports have asked to be included as defendants in the U.S. Government’s lawsuit against Anheuser-Busch InBev SA.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/02/08/us-constellation-crown-idUSBRE9170XL20130208

Speaking of lawsuits, the city of Philadelphia is suing Yuengling for an alleged $6.6 million in back taxes. Details are sparse, but my guess is those ugly glasses have something to do with this mysterious lawsuit…
http://www.wgal.com/news/susquehanna-valley/state/Yuengling-sued-for-millions-in-back-taxes/-/9758860/18434096/-/tgsonc/-/index.html

The Alaskan Brewing Company has plans to use spent grain to power is brewery.
http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/sideshow/alaska-brewery-powered-beer-234715254.html

When I moved to Florida from Missouri in July, I had to give up a 3,000 plus beer bottle collection that included many rare and beautiful bottles. While that was sad, several local homebrewers found good uses for many of them. While I loved my collection (eventhough 99.9% of them were stored in a closet by the time I moved), these cans are worth a bit more than mine.
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/10/nyregion/the-value-of-an-empty-beer-can.html

I have talked a little on aging beers before here. The following is another good but short article on the subject.
http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2013-02/beersci-decade-old-beer-gross-right

Here is another long article on the great debate about big brewers vs craft brewers. I only have two comments, first the title is misleading, as the highly sought after beer Bells Hopslam is not even mentioned. Secondly, I do not see Samuel Adams as small by any imagination, they changed the definition of craft beer by becoming too large and are still playing the small guy card. I do not want to take anything away from their history, attitude and the quality of their products, I just do not see them as the little guy anymore. The area of Florida in which I live has a Samuel Adams representative roaming around, there are numerous commercials and the brand is distributed by one of the largest distributors in the country. Conversely, the Anheuser-Busch house in Fort Myers only distributes to two counties.
http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2013/02/08/hopslam-how-big-beer-is-trying-to-stop-a-craft-beer-revolution

Here is good blog article on Valentine’s Day beer.
http://blog.chron.com/beertx/2013/02/beer-list-valentines-day-brews-can-be-sweet-or-sexy/

Yeast is my favorite microorganism!
http://www.science20.com/science_20/beer_science_if_yeast_aint_happy_aint_nobody_happy-103203

Superbowl Sippers And Beer News

I hope this fine Superbowl Sunday finds you well. Whether you care in the game or not, this is a great excuse to eat a large amount of delicious food and imbibe (safely of course) some great beer! I do not have too much as far as suggestions go but if you want to drink a beer from Baltimore you should try something from Stillwater Artisanal Ales. I have had a few of their Saisons including the Stateside Saison, Cellar Door and the Autumnal, all were amazing. The beers I have tried are some of the most common examples of Stillwater’s fantastic beers. Stillwater is also famous for some of its barrel aged beers. All around it is an excellent Superbowl sipper. If you want to drink a Baltimore brew but are looking for more sessionable craft options, check out Heavy Seas Beer.

If you are interested in drinking San Francisco beers an obvious choice is Anchor Brewing Company. Anchor Brewing Company is one of the oldest and most famous American Craft Breweries. Particularly famous for their mild, easy drinking, slightly fruity, California Common, “Anchor Steam”. San Francisco is also home to the very patriotically themed 21st Amendement Brewery and Bison Brewing Company. Located fairly close to San Francisco are Russian River Brewing Company, Lagunitas Brewing Company and many other excellent drinking options.

Anheuser-Busch InBev has also decided to take advantage of the Superbowl’s marketing potential. The Budweiser Black Crown has been around for about a week and will be making its big début during the Superbowl. The Budweiser Black Crown is now available at many bars/grocery stores and convenience stores. In the spirit of full disclosure, I admit that I do sell this product. With that said, it is a good beer! It is a bigger, darker and more complex version of Budweiser. If any of you readers are familiar with the Budweiser Project 12, the Black Crown should remind you of batch #91406. If you have not tried it, you should, it is inexpensive, easy to drink and tasty!