Category Archives: Double IPAs

Cheap Beer = Revolution

Queen Victoria with Pliny the Elder IPA

“Give my people plenty of beer, good beer and cheap beer, and you will have no revolution among them” – Queen Alexandrina Victoria

Yeah. Says the overfed, Alfred-Hitchcock-looking former queen of the United Kingdom, who just happens to have a frosty, fresh bottle of Pliny in front of her. You keep the cheap beer, Vicky, give us lowly folk the good beer, and we’ll try to avoid revolt. Deal? (I’m not making any promises though.)

UBN

Image (sans Pliny bottle) via kingsacademy.com

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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

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Markets for Stone Enjoy By 04.01.13 IPA

Stone Brewing Co. Enjoy By IPA Logo

UPDATE: Hours after I published this post, Stone officially announced Enjoy By 04.01.13 IPA. And BeerPulse.com’s report on the markets that will get the latest Enjoy By batch was mostly accurate, with the exception of one market. North Carolina will also be getting Enjoy By 04.01.13, and I added that market to the list below. (In bold.) Hit Stone’s website for the official details. Can’t wait to get me a couple of bottles of Enjoy By 04.01.13.

Yesterday, brew news site BeerPulse.com posted what it claims are the markets for the next version of Stone Brewing Co.’s Enjoy By IPA. I’m a bit hesitant to post this information here, because it hasn’t been confirmed by Stone—in fact, Stone hasn’t even announced the next Enjoy By IPA at all. And there was also a bit of confusion on my blog regarding the last version, Enjoy By IPA 02.15.13. But BeerPulse.com is generally reliable, so I’m listing the following alleged markets for Enjoy By 04.01.13 with the caveat that they are not official at this point. (Note: I love Enjoy By IPA. Read this to find out why.)

Here we go:

  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Georgia
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan (Detroit & Ann Arbor)
  • New York (NYC & burbs)
  • Northern California (Bay Area)
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Rhode Island
  • Southern California
  • South Carolina
  • Texas
  • Vermont

If the information turns out to be accurate, Stone is sending Enjoy By back to a number of markets that already got earlier releases of the beer, in some cases because those markets showed the most support on social media channels including Twitter and Facebook. Texas, Massachusetts and Missouri showed the most social support for Stone Enjoy By 12.21.12, and the brewer said at the time that it would be sending more Enjoy By to these areas, so it certainly stands to reason that Enjoy By 04.01.13 is headed to these markets—especially since Enjoy By 02.15.12 was not shipped to Texas, Massachusetts or Missouri.

BeerPulse.com says Stone should start shipping the beer in the coming week or two for late February availability, and if this holds true, Stone should announce the beer in the near future. I’ll confirm—or correct—the details here as soon as I can.

UBN

Via BeerPulse.com

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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

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Dogfish Head Releases Fancy New Spiegelau IPA Glass

Dogfish, Sierra Nevada SpiegelauIPA Glass

A couple of weeks ago, I told you about Dogfish Head Craft Brewery’s A Hop Eclipse Now promotion, as part of which it will release two new IPAs and a fancy new beer glass. Today the brewer took the wraps off the glass, which is made by German-glass manufacturer Spiegelau, and it’s calling the glass “a new standard for IPA glassware.”

Dogfish apparently worked along with Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. on the glass design.

“I’ve been a longtime believer in the importance of using quality glassware to enhance the enjoyment of quality craft beer,” says Dogfish Head Founder and President Sam Calagione. “The process of collaborating on the design of this hop-centric glass takes this concept to the next level.”

Dogfish, Sierra Nevada and Spiegelau IPA Glass

From Dogfish.com:

“Calagione, his wife, Mariah, and Sierra Nevada’s father-son team of Ken and Brian Grossman worked hand-in-hand with Spiegelau to bring this glass to life. Through a series of design and tasting sessions, the team created a glass with:

  •     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.”

The glasses are available now online for $9 each at Dogfish.com and at the brewer’s Delaware brewpub. I’m a huge fan of all three parties involved. I own a set of Spiegelau Beer Connoisseur glasses, and I love them.  And I already ordered a pair of these new glasses.  To be honest, they’re kind of awkward and ugly looking. But I’m a beer-glass nerd on top of being a regular beer nerd, and I these new glasses will be a nice addition to my glassware collection. Can’t wait to fill ’em up with some Rhizing Bines IPA.

UBN

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MA Isn’t Getting Stone Enjoy By 2.15.13 IPA After All—Neither is TX or MO

Stone Brewing Enjoy By IPA Twitter Conversation

Earlier this month, Stone Brewing Co. announced the markets in which the latest batch of its stellar Enjoy By IPA will be available. The company posted a confusing blog entry to introduce the beer and the markets, and it mentioned the little social media promotion it used when the last batch of Enjoy By was released.

I wrote a blog post listing the markets, and I reached out to Stone via Twitter for some clarification on whether or not the states that “won” the social media contest-deal would get the latest batch, Enjoy By 2.15.13, because I thought that was the point of the whole promotion. Stone sent me a direct messaging saying the winning states, Texas, Massachusetts and Missouri, would indeed be getting more Enjoy By. And since I asked specifically if these states would be getting the 2.15.13 batch, I thought Stone’s response meant that these three states would be on the Enjoy By 2.15.13 distribution list. I then updated my blog post with the new information

But apparently I was wrong. And I’m a bit pissed off. I’m not pissed that I won’t be able to get any Enjoy By 2.15.13 in my home state of Massachusetts. It’s just beer. (Okay, I’m a little pissed about that.) I’m pissed Stone told me that the beer would be coming to the three states I asked about. I reported that on my blog, which makes me look foolish for posting misinformation. I take this blog very seriously, even if it is just a silly beer blog. I value every reader, and I hate posting misinformation.

Looking at Stone’s Twitter response, I see that it could mean Massachusetts will get more Enjoy By IPA at a later date, and not the Enjoy By 2.15.13. But I asked Stone specifically about this batch. (See the Twitter conversation above.) And apparently it was never coming to my area—or Texas or Missouri.

Anyway, I apologize for the confusion. I’m a big fan of Stone, but I’m not pleased. If they didn’t make such damn good beer (read my review of Enjoy By 12.21.12 here) I might be inclined to boycott them…or at least talk shit on this blog and on social network.

UBN

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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

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Stone Announces Markets for Enjoy By 2.15.13 IPA

Stone Brewing Co. Enjoy By IPA 2.15.13
Update 2: Sooo, MA, TX and MO will NOT get Enjoy By 2.15.13 IPA. Read this post for more information. I’m sorry for the confusion.

Update 1: I just heard back from Stone, and MA, TX and MO will be getting Enjoy By 2.15.13 IPA. Thank God. (I live in Boston, and I need more Enjoy By.)

Stone Brewing Co., maker of the much-lauded—and hyped up—Enjoy By IPAs today announced the 10 markets in which its next Enjoy By IPA, 2.15.13, could be released. I say “could be” because the company’s blog post isn’t exactly clear on the subject. It states that the following markets are “in contention for Stone Enjoy By IPA 2.15.13.” But it also states that Texas, Massachusetts and Missouri showed the most social media engagement while the last version of the IPA, Enjoy By IPA 12.21.12, was still on shelves, so it’s unclear if these states will get the next batch of Enjoy By IPA or not. (Read my review of Stone Brewing Co. Enjoy By 12.21.12 IPA here.)

Anyway, here’s the list:

  • Arizona
  • Oregon
  • Idaho
  • New Mexico
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • Pittsburgh, PA
  • Sacramento/Lake Tahoe, CA
  • Washington, D.C.

I’ve reached out to Stone via Twitter for clarification, but who know if they’ll actually respond. Regardless, the next batch of Enjoy By IPA is scheduled to be bottled on Friday, January 11, and that’s good news anyway that you look at it. You can learn more about Stone’s Enjoy By IPA 2.15.13 on the company’s website.

UBN

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Maine Beer Co. ‘Dinner’ Double IPA

Maine Beer Co. Dinner Double IPA

I’m back like the Terminator, motherfuckers. My holiday vacation was great, but it’s time to return to The Grind.

First order of business: Maine Beer Co.‘s upcoming “Dinner” double IPA. I have no idea how I missed this, because I’m huge Maine Beer Co. fan. But the brewery is apparently working on a new double IPA to follow up on its world-class Lunch IPA. (Read my review of Maine Beer’s Lunch here and you’ll see just how much I love it.)

I heard about this from a friendly employee of Portland, Maine’s Bier Cellar craft beer shop last week during a trip to that fine city, and though I can’t really say he’s a trustworthy source—I simply don’t know the dude—Maine Beer’s recent Twitter activity seems to confirm Dinner double IPA’s existence. Maine Beer Co. is also based in Portland.

Way back on November 7, Maine Beer Company posted a tweet in response to some other users saying it was working on a new double IPA. And then a few days later, it posted another tweet mentioning a “Dinner double IPA.” No release details are available as far as I know, but it’s possible we’ll be seeing Dinner in the coming weeks or months.

And here’s a description of the “pilot batch” of the brew, from Maine Beer brewer Daniel Kleban’s Twitter feed:

“Think lunch x2 with citra and simcoe.”

The Bier Cellar dude also said he’d heard rumors of another new beer from Maine Beer Company, called “Nothing,” which he thought would be a barleywine-style brew. But, again, I can’t confirm that information.

Anyway, I can’t wait for Dinner. And I’m not even hungry.

UBN

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Details on Russian River’s Pliny the Younger 2013 Release

Russian River Pliny the Younger tap handle

Every year, on the first Friday of February, Sonoma County, California-based Russian River Brewing Co. releases its limited triple IPA, Pliny the Younger. So the fact that the 2013 Pliny the Younger will be released at Russian River’s brewpub on Friday, February 1 isn’t really news. But Russian River also shared some new release details on its Pliny the Younger 2013 in a new blog post.

If you’re not familiar with Pliny the Younger, you’re not paying close enough attention. Or you’re just not as big of a beer nerd as I am. Pliny the Younger is the “brother IPA” to Russian River’s stellar Pliny the Elder double IPA, which is one of my favorite IPAs, if not my single favorite IPA in the whole damn world. It’s fantastic. I admit, I’ve never had Pliny the Younger, because it’s made in very small quantities and only served at Russian River’s brewpub and at select local bars and establishments. But some day I will make a trip to wine country in February with the sole goal of securing a few pints of Pliny the Younger.

Now, those 2013 release details I mentioned, from Russian River:

“Pliny the Younger will be released at our brewpub in Downtown Santa Rosa on February 1st, 2013 (always the first Friday in February)!  Younger will be available on tap in 10 ounce glasses (no growlers or bottles) for 2 weeks, or 14 days.  We will allocate a certain amount each day until we run out for the day.  Last year we had very few days where we ran out at all!  The last day we will have it at the pub will be February 14th.  Last year the wait was up to 5 hours, and sometimes there was no wait at all.  It’s a bit unpredictable, however, except on weekends where you can definitely expect the longest wait.  We have learned that waiting in line can be fun and can even lead to new relationships, especially after several glasses of Younger!  So please use the buddy system while getting “Younger” at our pub (your friends will hopefully look out for you!).   As far as distribution is concerned, we usually start distributing a small amount of kegs to our accounts and distributors right after we release it at the pub.  We are planning to brew the same amount this year and release the same quantities for distribution, but who gets what is yet to be determined.  First batch of Younger will be brewed this Thursday at the pub!  I saw the man himself hand-selecting this year’s Younger hops just last week… artist or mad scientist?  Probably a lot of both :-)”

And a description of Pliny the Younger, from Russian River’s website:

“Pliny the Younger, the man, was Pliny the Elder’s nephew and adopted son. They lived nearly 2,000 years ago! Pliny the Elder is our Double IPA, so we felt it was fitting to name our Triple IPA after his son. It is almost a true Triple IPA with triple the amount of hops as a regular I.P.A. That said, it is extremely difficult, time and space consuming, and very expensive to make. And that is why we don’t make it more often! This beer is very full-bodied with tons of hop character in the nose and throughout. It is also deceptively well-balanced and smooth.”

UBN

Image via Brewniversal.com

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