Fire it Up!

Wow! It’s been an awesome summer for The Brewdudes. We hope you all had a great time too! Ok, down to business… Jamie, Steve and I have taken quite the hiatus from brewing up our favorite Brewdudes beer. The three of us became so busy with weddings and cookouts, brewing was kinda put on the back burner, but we are ready to fire up the kettles and get back to it. I mean really, the brewery will never get off the ground by itself. We will need all of your support and by support all you really have to do is show up and taste our brews and let all of your friends know about us. So here’s the deal, next Wednesday we will be brewing once again! Awesome-O! So come on out and check us out, bring your friends and great stories. See ya’ll next week!

By the way, considering our long hiatus we will have a limited supply of beer. However, there may or may not be some lying around so show up early to taste what we’ve got, if any… We promise we will have plenty to go around once we get back into the grove so don’t let our lack of supply keep you from coming out. Just grab a six pack of your favorite craft beer and come join us to gain some insight on what all goes into that 12 oz. bottle of heaven you’ll be drinking!

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I can remember stuff now

– Chris

Apologies for the lack of posting lately. It took a bit longer than expected to recover from my bachelor party weekend in the NYC; my brain is starting to work again just now. How did I get in such a state? This, for starters:

Some of the boys on this man-trip of manliness at McSorley’s, the oldest continuously operating bar in the US. Their legendary “light or dark” ale is brewed by Pabst, and I have to admit, tastes pretty darn good after oh, i dunno, three rounds. It continues to taste good until you get all the way to 13 rounds, which I think is where we stopped. Really though, I’ve been to McSorley’s a few times before and I’ll say that they’ve got a very decent product for offer. From there:

Brooklyn Brewery. There was stuff in between, yes, but it’s more gin-related than beer-related. I think Jamie’s posted about his and Steve’s tour of Brooklyn Brewery before, so I won’t go into terrible detail, but it was pretty great to see it first hand. What was even greater is that you can walk out of the brewery with a freshly-purchased case of their beer! We couldn’t dream of that in Georgia…which reminds me to mention that maybe predictably, the law to end Georgia’s prohibition on Sunday sales has been held up, again, for another year.  Blah, for now.

On the tea in China

– Chris

Now this is good beer! Just…don’t order it at Taco Mac without looking at the menu first. Actually, don’t order anything “exotic” without looking at the menu, then asking the server, then asking the manager for price confirmation, because otherwise you may be surprised at what you see on your bill. Thus was my experience last night, but you’d find the specifics pretty boring.

Taco Mac, like many other establishments, is undergoing big price hikes to compensate for increased shipping and transportation costs from their suppliers. Some of those hikes are already on the menu, and some are definitely not. Either way, the extra cost is becoming especially apparent (as they are passed on to you, the patron/passport member) when ordering imported beer.

I don’t mean a Heineken or Scottish & Newcastle product–those possess the economies of scale and bargaining power that allow for minimal increases to the consumer–I’m talking about the more esoteric offerings from abroad, ones that find US distribution with “boutique” firms here, such as Merchant Du Vin, the importer of Samuel Smith and Lindeman’s beers. A Sam Smith beer now costs $7.50 for a 12oz bottle at Taco Mac, and a Lindeman’s Lambic is over $12. The Chimay I’ve got in my hand above? That’ll be $13.50, exclusive of tax and tip. That’s over a dollar an ounce!

Now, I very much enjoy all of these products, and yes it does cost more to ship things now, and I understand that Taco Mac and others are in business to make a profit. As such, a hefty markup over the pricing you see on store shelves is expected, but we’re looking at an almost 300% upcharge on beers like Sam Smith. Maybe we’ll see an increase in package stores to match what we’re seeing in restaurants, bringing that upcharge back down to a relatively “reasonable” 100-150%, but, um, I really don’t want to see that! This makes me think I’ll never complete the Passport club, out of budget constraints if not principal itself.

So, how do you, the aspiring beer cicerone, fight the power? That could be a tough call, but I’ve got an idea: support your local or regional microbrews first and foremost. They’re much cheaper than exotic imports, at least in restaurants, and offer an astoundingly diverse range of styles and flavors. And…we’re gonna be one of them, so we want you to give us a shot when we’re on Taco Mac’s menu. Until then, to really stick it to the Man, have I ever mentioned that we have free beer available, all the time?

These days

– Chris

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All’s been quiet on the western front since Saturday. This means one thing: it’s time to brew! And no, we’re not gonna skip out this week. Today we will be bottling all ten gallons of our Witbier/Wit Bier/Witbeer alongside doing some other things we were supposed to do last week, like, cleaning out the kegerator. Tomorrow we will go to the beer store. Actually, we’ll probably procrastinate by cleaning tomorrow and going to the beer store Saturday. Whatever, the important part is that Sunday we will brew us up ten gallons (is anyone still believing the last post?) of American Pale v1.5.

We’re starting to build a nice little stockpile of homebrew in the basement, possibly attributable to the absence of Eileen. After today’s bottling session, we’ll have close to fifty gallons ready to go! We can’t drink all of it, so YOU should come and help us. Oh, and speaking of Eileen, her computer crashed yesterday and is gonna be out of service for the short while, so it’s iffy whether or not we’ll see any reports from the Island any time soon…but, in case you feel ill-informed, there’s always this.