There is no way to pack so much excitement into a single beer purchase as with a brewery sampler pack. Featuring four to six different beers, usually spanning the entire spectrum from light to dark, a 12-pack of beer and a handful of friends can quickly become your very own beer-tasting party.
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Usually, there is nothing more annoying than public broadcasting stations trying to raise money. Instead of Car Talk kicking off your Saturday morning, you have the pledge drive.
For the most part, when you want an imported beer, you have to go with what's popular. German and Belgian beers are everywhere, but other countries might not be so easy to find on the shelves of your local liquor store. Compounding the problem, many “imports” are actually brewed in North America or the US: Japan's Kirin is brewed in LA, Sapporo is brewed in Canada, Foster's is brewed in Canada, etc. Besides the big names (Heineken, Amstel, Carlsberg, etc), you might have trouble. Unless that country is Poland.
Go ahead and buy the oysters and strawberries at a grocery store, but when it comes to buying the booze, go to a real wine shop. You will find better selection and lower prices. Gracey Castine, of Dorn’s Liquors, had plenty of advice to offer on the subject this Valentine’s Day.
Beer: “Noble Pils”
Last summer, you never would have heard me telling you to drink local, because you couldn’t. Thankfully, that all started to change in April, when Swamp Head Brewery brewed its first batch of beer. Founder Luke Kemper returned home from his undergraduate work in beer-soaked Boulder, Colo., and saw Gainesville to be lacking. In his own words, “I realized how great it would be to have a local beer in Gainesville.” Last Friday, I had the chance to sit down with Kemper and Swamp Head master brewer Craig Birkmaier to sample the beer and talk shop, and let me assure you, it is great to have a local beer in Gainesville.
Beer: “Old Rasputin”
I'm sure there are many of you who just can't take my word for the best and worst light beers out there. Good! If there was one message I would try and get across to anyone who drinks beer, it's that only you can decide what beer you like.
As featured in the Avenue this week, here are the bonus features for the ultimate light beer showdown. In the next few days I'll post some video reviews of the best and worst beers as well as additional information about the tasting process and anything else I can think of.
While you were out having a good time Friday night, we blindly sampled a list of light beer so you wouldn’t have to. Two dozen beers later, we are weary but wiser. What should you drink? What shouldn’t you drink? What helps you stay slim? What if you don’t like beer at all? We have everything you need to know to get started.
Like many micro breweries, Sierra Nevada releases four seasonal beers every year. Its offering for the winter is Celebration Ale, a perfect pairing with the chilly weather.
This month, instead of giving you valuable insight on only one beer every week, I'll be giving you insight on entire lines of beer via craft brewery sampler packs. American craft breweries are all the rage right now, so jump on the bandwagon with me and get drinking!
Style: Oktoberfest (Marzen)
With Halloween here, beer drinkers across Gainesville will undoubtedly turn to pumpkin ales to satisfy their holiday sensibilities. But which of the many should you buy for yourself and your costumed associates? In an ideal world, all of them! Without an endless budget, however, you will have to make some choices.
Film: Tampopo (1985)
Beer: Orange Blossom Pilsner