Category Archives: Beer Products

Dogfish, Sierra IPA Glass Looks a Hell of a Lot Like Riedel’s Red + White Wine Tumbler

Dogfish Sierra Spiegelau IPA Glass and Riedel Wine Tumbler

UPDATE: Dogfish commented on the similarities between its new IPA glass and Riedel’s Red + White wine glass on a related post on A Good Beer Blog. Here’s what it had to say:

“Hi, all. Wanted to share some background on the development of the new IPA glass.

“At the earliest design and tasting workshops, Sam and Mariah from Dogfish, Ken and Brian from Sierra, and Georg Riedel sampled from dozens and dozens of glasses from Spiegelau/Riedel’s huge library. (You wine lovers out there know that Spiegelau has been around for more than four centuries, so there were a lot to choose from.)

“Traits of various glasses that boosted the hop aromas and flavors of IPAs helped inform the direction of our glass, but the final design came from carefully refining eight original hand-blown glasses. This wasn’t plucked from a shelf.

“The Red and White glass did stand out in workshops — but for all the wrong reasons initially. Our whole panel chuckled at the odd-looking base. However, after much testing it became obvious the function of the rolling base outweighed its fashion. The friction and surface area of those ridges aerate beer on its way in and out of the glass. Each member of our panel, voting without knowledge of anyone else’s opinion, favored the base.

“In later workshops we learned that the upper bowl of the Red and White glass was not best-suited to IPAs, so several one-off molds were made featuring different bowl geometries and dimensions on the rippled base. We labored over the right bowl diameter and flare angle to best direct and contain aroma for the drinker and finally came to agree on an ideal design. At that point, Spiegelau literally broke the mold. They no longer make any glass with the rippled base other than the IPA glass.

“We all agreed that the IPA glass also had to hold a larger volume, too. At 19 ounces, it not only accommodates a 12-ounce pour at home, but also a 16-ounce bar pour with plenty of head. The bigger volume dictated a thicker base, which also houses laser-etched nucleation. The CO2 rising from Dogfish’s tiny shark and Sierra’s hop boosts the aromas of IPAs and helps sustain head.

“We took our 50 collective years in craft beer, heeded the experience of a premier glass manufacturer, and created what we feel is an exceptional glass to enjoy IPA. We don’t expect everyone to love it, but wanted you to know that it’s not ‘off the shelf.’

“Cheers to those inspired to give it a try!”

This is a solid response from Dogfish. It was open and honest about using the Red + White glass design as inspiration, and it explained the subtle differences between it and the IPA glass. Again, the brewer initially represented this glass as something entirely new and different, and it clearly is not. I wouldn’t necessarily expect Dogfish or Sierra to explain that they got the design from an existing wine glass in their promotional blog post but some background information on the design process, like the information they shared above, would have been helpful and could have been posted on their online stores.

As I wrote in my post, this glass really does enhance the IPA-drinking experience, if for no other reason than it’s a high-quality glass that makes drinking an IPA feel more special. I like mine a lot. So it’s a good thing for beer drinkers willing to spend $9, plus shipping, on experimental glassware, even if Dogfish, Sierra and Spiegelau were a bit misleading when they introduced it.

Last week Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and specialty glass-maker Spiegelau released a fancy new glass, which Dogfish called “a new standard for IPA glassware.”

Well, the glass may be a new standard for IPA glasses, but its design apparently isn’t original at all. In fact, it looks remarkably similar to Riedel’s O Wine Tumbler Red + White wine glass.

The only differences between the two that I can see are the capacities—the Spiegelau IPA glass holds 19 ounces, and the Riedel glass holds 17 ¼ ounces. And there’s a “laser-etched logo on the bottom of the bowl to sustain carbonation and head” on the Spiegelau glass that isn’t found on the Riedel version. The Riedel version also costs about twice as much as the Spiegelau glass, at least on Amazon.com. (Dogfish and Sierra are selling single glasses for $9 plus shipping; Amazon.com has a set of two Riedel wine tumblers for $39.99 plus shipping.) And, of course, the Riedel version doesn’t have a Dogfish or Sierra logo on its side.

It’s also worth noting that Riedel owns Spiegelau. In 2004, Spiegelau was purchased by Georg Riedel, the owner of Riedel Glass Works, and it is now part of the Riedel/Nachtmann/Spiegelau Group. So Riedel owns Spiegelau, and it’s feasible that they would share glass designs.

I really like the Dogfish/Sierra glass, because it’s made of high-quality glass, and it’s different than any other beer glass I have. But I admit, I feel kind of misled by Dogfish and Sierra, who seem to have positioned their IPA glass as an original design. They never really came right out and said that, but they certainly implied it.

In the end, none of that really matters; the glass enhances the IPA experience, so it’s good for craft beer and craft beer drinkers. But something about how Dogfish and Sierra presented the new glass rubs me the wrong way.

UBN

A Good Beer Blog via BeerPulse.com

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Hands/Lips On with Dogfish’s New Spiegelau IPA Glass

Dogfish Head Spiegelau IPA Glass and 75 Minute IPA

Guess who just got a visit from Shippy Shipperton.

Last week I posted about Dogfish Head Craft Brewery’s fancy-schmancy new IPA glass from German glass-maker Spiegelau, and I promptly ordered one of the glasses. Today, my Spiegelau IPA glass arrived, and I’m currently using it to consume a frosty Dogfish 75 Minute IPA.

Along with Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.’s Ken and Brian Grossman, Dogfish founder Sam Calagione and his wife Mariah designed their IPA glass to have the following attributes:

  • Thin, round walls to maintain proper temperature longer.
  • A slender, bowed shape to amplify hop aromas.
  • Wave-like ridges to aerate beer on its way in and out of the glass.
  • A wide mouth, allowing drinkers to comfortably nose the beer.
  • A laser-etched logo on the bottom of the bowl to sustain carbonation and head.

Anybody who is familiar with Spiegelau glassware knows it is of exceptional quality, but it’s also extremely thin and delicate. The Dogfish IPA glass is no different, and I bet lots of clumsy and/or inebriated Dogfish drinkers will be breaking these badboys in the not-so-distant future. But if you’re careful with the glass, wash it promptly after use and store it somewhere safe, this fine piece of funky German glassware should serve you well in your adventures with hoppy brews.

Dogfish Head Spiegelau IPA Glass

The Dogfish Head Spiegelau IPA glass is kind of fucking weird looking. But so am I, so I’m okay with that. And I must admit this IPA tastes—and smells—pretty darn good right now. Pretty, pretty, pretty good.

Learn more about Dogfish Head’s nine-dollar, 19-ounce Spiegelau IPA glass on the brewer’s website. And you can buy a Sierra Nevada branded Spiegelau IPA glass for the same price on SierraNevadaGiftShop.com.

UBN

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Untappd Beer App Coming Soon to Windows Phone

Untappd Beer App Supporter on Android

I told you last month that Untappd, one of my favorite beer-related mobile applications and services, was coming soon for BlackBerry 10 devices, and today the developers officially announced the release of a native BlackBerry 10 app. (Untappd is also available for iOS and Android devices.)

I’ve been using the BlackBerry 10 Untappd app for about a week now, and it’s solid. The native BlackBerry Untappd app doesn’t support older versions of Research In Motion’s (RIM) BlackBerry OS , so those users have to access Untappd via a Web app. That means they don’t get the full set of features available to iOS and Android users. But new BlackBerry 10 users are in luck.

Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform doesn’t currently have a native Untapped app either, but Untappd also announced today that it’s working on a Windows Phone app, and it should be available in the first quarter of 2013.

If you’re not familiar with Untappd, I strongly suggest you check it out. Here’s why.

UBN

Tagged , , , , , ,

Carry Your Beer Like a Boss with a Badass Bottle Tote

Beer Bottle Tote Bag

My girl got me a bottle tote bag for Christmas this year. When I first unwrapped the gift, I wasn’t exactly thrilled, because it’s a kind of pussyish tan-green color, and I never really wanted one. But after using it for a few weeks, I’ve become a big fan, and now I never go to the liquor store without it.

Not only does the tote make it easy to carry a half dozen bomber bottles while shopping around my local beer store, it reduces the number of brown bags I take home every time I buy beer. Most of the beer stores I frequent individually wrap each bomber with a paper bag so they don’t clank around or they place each bottle inside one of those plastic bottle net thingees. They then put all of the bottles in another, larger brown-paper bag. That’s a lot of paper bags, and I buy a lot of beer. I recycle any paper bags I get, but the bottle tote largely eliminates the need for them, and it’s convenient to use.

My bottle tote bag has compartments for four bottles and a center space that can hold another couple of bottles or even a four pack of 12-ounce beer bottles. It is made of thick, durable canvas, and it costs $19.99 on HomeWetBar.com, plus shipping. I highly recommend it. You can also find other cheaper options online, including a cool, branded bottle tote from Russian River Brewing Co., one of my favorite breweries.

So go on and get yourself a badass bottle tote, whydontcha?

UBN

Tagged , , , , , ,

Dogfish Head ‘A Hop Eclipse Now:’ New IPAs, New Glass and New Randall the Enamel Animal

Dogfish Head A Hop Eclipse Now

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery today announced a new promotion it is calling “A Hop Eclipse Now”—a play on the title of the classic film “Apocalypse Now”—and it will be unveiling two new IPAs, a new beer glass and a “new” Randall the Enamel Animal fresh-hopping device during the next few months.

The idea behind A Hop Eclipse Now is to celebrate the current popularity of IPAs and other hoppy beers in America right now, as well as spotlight Dogfish’s rich history of brewing hoppy ales.

The brewery hasn’t specified which new IPAs will be unveiled, though he did say one of them will be fruit infused, not unlike its Hellhound on My Ale IPA. That beer is expected to be released on March 1, and it could be called A Hop Eclipse Now. And a few months ago Dogfish announced that it is working on another collaboration brew with Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., an imperial IPA called Rhizing Bines, so that could be one of the new hoppy brews. Dogfish also didn’t unveil its new glass design yet, but the brewery’s founder Sam Calagione says the glass will be shown off in early February. And the following image, taken from the end of the A Hop Eclipse Now video clip below, gives us an idea of what the new Dogfish glass could look like.

Dogfish Head New Glass Design?

Calagione also says Dogfish will begin selling mini Randall the Enamel Animal fresh-hopping gadgets soon, and the Dogfish website says the $20 Randall Jr.s will begin shipping in February. Dogfish also listed the next-generation, full-size Randall, called Randall 3.0, for sale last month.

Finally, as part of the A Hop Eclipse Now celebration, Dogfish will host a number of related beer dinners across the United States starting on February 7 in Philadelphia and ending March 17 in Cambridge, Maryland. (I’m kind of pissed off that none of them are close to Boston, but I guess that’s my problem. Meh.)

Find more information on Dogfish’s A Hop Eclipse Now and the related new products and beer dinner’s on the brewer’s website or watch the above video.

UBN

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Relive Cantillon Zwanze Day 2012 with T-Shirts and Tulip Glasses

Cantillon Zwanze Day 2012 Tulip Glasses

Saturday, December 1 was this year’s Cantillon Zwanze Day, and I was fortunate enough to attend a Zwanze celebration in Cambridge, MA. (For information on Zwanze Day and a recap of the Zwanze Day event , read this post.)

Like many beer nerds, I collect beer glassware. And some of the more difficult glasses to obtain are Cantillon glasses. Sure, you can order some of them online from Belgium, but the shipping costs more than triple the price of an already expensive glass. So I’m always on the lookout for different ways to obtain Cantillon glassware.

Prior to the 2012 Zwanze Day celebrations, I’d read a number of recaps about Zwanze events in past years at which attendees could purchase Cantillon Zwanze glasses. So I was really looking forward to grabbing a few at Lord Hobo in Cambridge. But unfortunately, Lord Hobo didn’t have Zwanze glasses or any other Cantillon crap for sale. (I later read that the bar was supposed to get t-shirts and glasses, but they never showed up on time, but I’m not sure if that’s true or not.)

Cantillon Zwanze Day 2012 T-Shirt

So I had to take things into my own hands. After some online research, I found a liquor store in Chicago that’s selling both Cantillon Zwanze 2012 tees and tulip glasses. The glasses have the West Lakeview Liquors name on them, but that’s a small price to pay for a unique Cantillon glass. (West Lakeview hosted its own Zwanze celebration on December 1.) Now if you didn’t attend any of the events, or you’re just not particularly interested in Cantillon glassware, you might be wondering why you should care. But if you’re thinking that than fuck you, man, I didn’t tell you to read this post.

If you do care, you too can get yourself Cantillon Zwanze 2012 glasses and t-shirts from West Lakeview Liquors. The glasses cost $9.99 each, and I paid $21.99 for my shirt–$19.99 plust $2 for the XXL size. The glasses have the liquor store’s name on them, but I don’t mind. And the t-shirt is the definition of beer-nerd chic, with a small Cantillon logo on the front left breast and a list of all the 2012 Zwanze Day locations on the back. West Lakeview even still has a few Zwanze Day 2011 t-shirts, if you’d rather than vintage.

Visit the store’s website for more details on the glasses and tees. But you should act fast if you’re interested; the glasses in particular will be gone before long.

UBN

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

SaveOnBrew.com Helps You Find Deals on Already-Cheap, Terrible Beer

SaveOnBrew.com Beer Deals

This morning, I came across a new website called SaveOnBrew.com, which, as its name implies, is designed to help you save money on beer. Sounds good, right? The only problem: The site is useless right now, at least to me, because it only shows deals on shitty beer at completely random liquor stores and markets.

For example, I searched for deals on any and all beer within 20 miles of Boston, a major city, and SaveOnBrew.com found less than a dozen deals at only two liquor stores. Every single “deal” it found was for beer I wouldn’t drink if you paid me. (Natural Light, Genessee, Keystone Light, etc.) Not one deal on one craft beer. And the site also serves up ads for shitty beer like Coors Light.

To be fair, SaveOnBrew.com is new, and it will naturally take some time to build a database of participating stores—right now, it looks like somebody from a liquor store or somebody familiar with that store actually needs to list every deal. As for the lack of any decent beer, SaveOnBrew.com says “we just post the deals. We don’t decide what goes on sale, or what appears in an ad. We’re like the United Nations of Beer, all are welcome, with malice toward none. All SaveOnBrew does is show the lowest ADVERTISED price.”

Saving money on beer is great, but right now SaveOnBrew.com is not at all effective in helping me do so.

UBN

Tagged , , , , ,

The Earrings Only a Hop Head Could Love

Hop Earrings from Summit Brewing Co.

If you have a fashion-conscious hop head in your life, or are one yourself, these handmade hop earrings from Summit Brewing Co. in St. Paul, Minnesota, could make for a great holiday gift. They could also draw some strange stares because they’re slightly weird looking. And they might appear to be ganja nuggets to folks who aren’t familiar with hops and who’ve been hitting the bong. But I think they’re pretty cool, and they cost just $14.95 plus shipping. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

Hop earring from Summit Brewing Co.

UBN

Tagged , , , , ,

Dogfish Head Randall the Enamel Animal 3.0 Now Available for $288

Dogfish Head Randall the Enamel Animal 3.0

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery recently listed the latest version of its Randall the Enamel Animal fresh-hopping contraption for sale on its website, and it costs $288, not including shipping.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Randall, it’s a gadget that you fill with fresh hops or other ingredients and then connect to a beer tap, so the beverage can be blasted through the Randall chambers and flavored with the fresh materials.

Dogfish Founder Sam Calagione invented the original Randall in the early 2000s when he was asked to lead a handful of East Coast brewers in an east vs. west IPA competition, dubbed the Lupulin slam. (Lupulin is the oil in hops.)

From Calagione’s book, “Brewing Up a Business:”

“The beer comes out the other side of Randall soaked in hop flavors and aromas not previously available in beers hopped only at the brewery and not at the point where they are served. The “Enamel” in the name comes from the gritty feeling of hop resins on your teeth—when hopping is done right and to the extreme, the first sip almost feels like  the outer layer of enamel is being dissolved from your teeth. To the hop-head this is actually a very pleasant sensation.”

Indeed. I’ve never had a “Randallized” beer, but it’s on my beer bucket list. Randall isn’t really designed for in-home use—unless you own a kegerator—but every beer bar could step up its game by purchasing its very own Dogfish Randall.

Here are a few more details about the 3.0 version, from Dogfish Head:

“Randall 3.0 has two chambers: the first chamber (at the inlet) is the infusing chamber (this chamber is filled with hops, spices, etc.); The second chamber (at the outlet) is the de-foaming chamber. Foam generated by the interaction of beer and hops settles out in the second chamber allowing you to dispense the perfect pint.The second chamber also has an outer tube for holding ice. This keeps the beer cold and carbonated between pours.Randall 3.0 also features an adjustable dispensing faucet. This faucet is needed to balance the draught dispensing system back-pressure, minimizing foaming. This is particularly useful on long-draw (high-pressure) draught systems or when dispensing beers made with significant quantities of wheat in the recipe.”

Visit Dogfish.com to purchase your Randall or to find more information.

UBN

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Single Best Holiday Gift for the Beer Nerd in Your Life

Beer Nerd Christmas Tree Ornament

I hate holiday gift guides. A lot. They suck. Or most of them do at least. I don’t care whether they’re focused on gadgets, clothing, media or beer, most of them consist of a bunch of cliché crap thrown together by lazy writers, often in the form of “slide shows” to maximize page-view traffic.

Here’s the only gift suggestion you need for your special beer nerd: Buy beer. Good beer. Beer they probably wouldn’t buy on their own, because it’s too expensive or because they’d have to order it from a far off land, like Belgium. And buy them the appropriate beer glass to drink it from. That’s it.

Is your beer nerd an IPA-crazed hop head? Buy him/her one of the beers on this list, and a glass from the brewer—not a shaker pint if at all possible. If your beer geek loves sour brews, buy one of the beers on this list and wrap it up all purty like, along with a fancy schmancy glass. Do a little research, find the best beer store or liquor store that sells beer in your area, and buy a bottle of something special. Or do a search for Belgian/German/whatever beer online. Etc. Etc.

I admit, this post was written in jest…sort of. But I’m also dead serious. I’m a class-A beer nerd, and the best (beer-related) present I could get from my significant other would be a bottle of Cantillon, any Cantillon, and a Cantillon glass. (I’d really love a new Mercedes, but we all know that ain’t fucking happening, sooooo….)

Forget those silly bottle openers and tshirts and shit. Good, special beer is the best gift a beer nerd can receive this holiday season.

UBN

Tagged , , , , , , ,