Geijer Spirits Begins Nationwide Distribution of California Fernet

fernet_bottleGeijer Spirits (San Francisco, California) has officially announced that it has entered into an agreement with Vision Wine & Spirits, LLC to begin the nationwide distribution of California Fernet.

Crafted by Martin Geijer, Founder of Geijer Spirits, to “bring you new and exciting products at the intersection between Scandinavia and California,” the handmade California Fernet features “21 roots, herbs and spices that create a complex, but dry and grassy finish.”  To ensure this liqueur reaches optimum levels of drinkability, this offering “rests in large tanks until it reaches bottling mellowness.”  California Fernet is “made with 50% less sugar than the category leader” and comes in at 40% ABV.

“We are thrilled to begin our collaboration with Vision Wine & Spirits. With the reach and expertise of the Vision team, we look forward to introducing our award-winning California Fernet, soon to be followed by California Falernum, to a national audience.”

 

– Martin Geijer, Founder of Geijer Spirits

With Vision Wine & Spirits, LLC handling all distribution responsibilities, California Fernet will initially launch in California, Arizona, Missouri, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and Connecticut.  Nationwide availability is expected to steadily roll out over the coming months.  You can expect to find California Fernet available in 750ml bottles.  Prost!

Vital Information for California Fernet from Geijer Spirits

Release – Year-Round; nationwide launch begins September 2019
Style – Fernet
ABV – 40%
PROOF – 80
Fun Fact – “Geijer Spirits is a San Francisco based beverage company producing hand-crafted spirits under the ‘California’ brand that blends Scandinavian tradition with California flavors. Martin Geijer founded Geijer Spirits and started creating award-winning spirits and liqueurs using his family’s historic recipes. He immigrated from Sweden in 1994 and pursued his MBA in California, where he fell in love with the fusion of flavors and the lifestyle of the Golden State. His story started with a passion for his great grandmother’s Glögg recipe, which laid the foundation for the delicious California Fernet.”
Availability – 750ml bottles
Distribution – Initially launching in California, Arizona, Missouri, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine & Connecticut. Nationwide availability to follow

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Big Storm Brewing Co. Expands Distribution to New Jersey & North Carolina

BigStormLogoBig Storm Brewing Co. (Clearwater, Florida) has officially announced that it will expand distribution into the states of New Jersey and North Carolina this month.

After announcing last month that it was extending its reach to Ohio, Big Storm Brewing Co. is now entering September with twice as much distribution news.  The brewery has officially signed with Shore Point Distributing Company, Inc in New Jersey and Carolina Eagle Distributing in North Carolina to bring its lineup of Florida-inspired brews to those states.

Big Storm will enter the New Jersey and North Carolina markets with the following offerings (descriptions sourced directly from the brewery’s website):

  • Wavemaker Amber Ale – Big Storm’s very first brew was this amber ale. It presents a wave of flavor with two row Canadian barley coupled with Munich and chocolate malts. Wavemaker® Amber Ale is malt centric and highly drinkable year-round with minimal hop bitterness.  ABV – 4.9%  IBUs – 28
  • Tropic Pressure Florida Ale – A highly drinkable Florida ale steeped with hibiscus flowers for just the right amount of natural sweetness and a hint of cinnamon. Brewed with pale wheat and honey malt, Tropic Pressure pours the color of skin that has been kissed by the warm Florida sunshine.  ABV – 4.4%  IBUs – 17
  • BroMosa Tangerine IPA – We brewed the ultimate beverage for the bro (or sis) that isn’t into sweet bubbles served in pretentious, highfalutin glassware. BroMosa is a dry-hopped juicy IPA with a name that makes it socially acceptable to drink in the morning or any time of day. Expect a strong punch of tangerine flavor followed by a dry and hoppy finish that even the self-proclaimed “IPA-hater” enjoys.  ABV – 7%
  • Palm Bender Gulf Coast IPA – This Gulf Coast IPA pours a beautiful golden orange and is brewed using 100% barley. The flavor is dominated by Cascade hops with an assertive up front hop presence and floral, pine, and citrus flavors. A pleasant, lingering hoppiness in the finish entices another sip.  ABV – 7%  IBUs – 70
  • Arcus Southern Pale Ale – A bronze medalist at the 2017 Best Florida Beer competition, Arcus rolls in with an intense citrusy hop aroma. Arcus is brewed with two-row Canadian barley and Mosaic hops. The addition of wildflower honey from Pasco County lends a balancing sweetness for a clean finish.  ABV – 6.2%  IBUs – 56

Big Storm’s Seasonal offerings will also be available in these areas during their respective months of availability.  Seasonal offerings include Oats In Hose Oatmeal Stout, Key Lime Shandy, Oktoberfest Lager, and Dunder and Blixem Spiced Ale.

“With such great support from our local communities in Florida, we’ve had immense growth at Big Storm,” said Big Storm co-owner L.J. Govoni. “We’re excited to share some of Big Storm’s top award-winning beers with consumers in both the Garden and Tar Heel States.”

 

“Geographic boundaries come second to working with distributor partners who share our vision of the Big Storm brand, commitment to customer service and a love for the product. We feel both Shore Point and Carolina Eagle check all those boxes.” Govoni said.

The offerings listed above will launch in New Jersey and North Carolina during the month of September.  You can expect to find these beers available in 4-packs of 16 oz. cans and on draft at select craft beer-focused establishments located throughout New Jersey and North Carolina.  Prost!

Bottles of ‘Welcome, My Friends’ Imperial Stout Set to Drop at Creature Comforts Brewing Co.

CCBC_WelcomeMyFriendsStillWeb-Creature Comforts Brewing Co. (Athens, Georgia) has officially announced that it will hold a Limited Bottle Release for Welcome, My Friends, an Imperial Stout made with almonds, coffee, vanilla and lactose, in its Tasting Room on Saturday, September 14.

Crafted to be a truly decadent treat, Welcome, My Friends is an Imperial Stout with lactose that “features rich layers from roasted almonds and Ugandan vanilla beans on top of the base nutty and chocolate notes from the coffee.”  To ensure that they used the perfect coffee to complement this beer’s delectable sensory profile, Creature Comforts reached out to their friends at 1000 Faces Coffee to source select Brazilian Agua Limpa coffee.  Welcome, My Friends weighs in at a sizable 11.2% ABV.

Welcome, My Friends will release alongside The Tree That Owns Itself (click here for more information) in the Tasting Room at Creature Comforts Brewing Co. (271 W. Hancock Ave. | Athens, Georgia) on September 14. This Limited Release offering will be packaged in 750ml bottles and available as long as supplies last. Welcome, My Friends is a Tasting Room exclusive release and is not expected to see distribution. Prost!

Vital Information for Welcome, My Friends from Creature Comforts Brewing Co.

Release – Limited/Specialty; September 14, 2019
Style – Imperial Stout
ABV – 11.2%
Added Ingredients – Lactose, almonds, Ugandan vanilla beans, & Brazilian Agua Limpa coffee 
Availability – 750ml bottles
Distribution – None. Tasting Room only

Catawba Brewing Co. Doubles Down on Pumpkin Beers in 2019

CVB-EDon16ozLabelonCanSHADOWCatawba Brewing Co. (Asheville, North Carolina) has officially announced that it is shaking things up this fall by releasing two Pumpkin Ales – the brewery’s long-standing King Don’s Pumpkin Ale and the brand-new Emperor Don’s Imperial Pumpkin Ale – in early September 2019.

Named after “one of the original North Carolina brewers who created one of the first commercially available pumpkin beers,” King Don’s is a Pumpkin Ale brewed with “five separate barley varieties, fresh pumpkin, and an assortment of spices (cinnamon, ginger, allspice, clove, nutmeg) to create its complex flavor profile.”  Coming in at just 5.5% ABV, King Don’s Pumpkin Ale is a “wonderfully smooth, orange-hued beer that sports a luscious, creamy foam head.”

Developed this year to take King Don’s “crown to the next level,” Emperor Don’s is an Imperial Pumpkin Ale that is just a “bigger, bolder, and more regal” variant of Catawba’s original Pumpkin Ale.  Rocking a bigger throne and ABV (7.8%), Emperor Don’s Imperial Pumpkin Ale is “everything you love about the King and more. After all, it’s good to be King, but it’s better to be Emperor.”

This year’s batches of King Don’s Pumpkin Ale and Emperor Don’s Imperial Pumpkin Ale both debuted at all Catawba Brewing Co. locations on September 6 and distribution is scheduled to follow shortly after the on-site release.  King Don’s Pumpkin Ale is available in 6-packs of 12 oz. cans and on draft while Emperor Don’s Imperial Pumpkin Ale is available in 4-packs of 16 oz. cans and on draft.  You can expect to find both of these Limited Release brews at craft beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, North Carolina and throughout the rest of the brewery’s five state distribution footprint. Prost!

 

Hi-Wire Brewing Bids Farewell to Summer with Limited Release of Pink Drink

HiWire_PinkDrink_High_Res-402x1030 (1)Hi-Wire Brewing (Asheville, North Carolina) has officially announced that Pink Drink will return for its annual Limited Release on Friday, September 6.

Created to be the ideal “end of summer treat,” Pink Drink is a kettle-soured Wheat Ale that possesses the “the perfect balance of raspberry fruit sweetness & fresh candied-lemon aroma from lemongrass.”  Clocking in at an “ultra-crushable” 4.2% ABV, Pink Drink is “simple, refreshing, & pink. Enough said.”

The 2019 batch of Pink Drink will debut at all Hi-Wire Brewing taproom locations on September 6 and distribution is scheduled to follow shortly after the on-site release.  You can expect to find this Specialty Release available in 4-packs of 16 oz. cans and on draft at select craft beer-friendly retailers, bars and restaurants located within Hi-Wire Brewing’s distribution footprint in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Ohio and Kentucky.  Prost!

Vital Information for Pink Drink from Hi-Wire Brewing

Release – Limited/Specialty; early September 2019
Style – Kettle Sour Wheat Ale
ABV – 4.2%
IBUs – 5
Added Ingredients – Lemongrass & raspberries
Availability – 4-packs of 16 oz. cans & draft
Distribution – North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Ohio & Kentucky

 

Creature Comforts Brewing Co. Set to Release The Tree That Owns Itself Barleywine

CCBC_TreeThatOwnsItselfStillWeb-9383Creature Comforts Brewing Co. (Athens, Georgia) has officially announced that it will hold a Limited Bottle Release for The Tree That Owns Itself, a Bourbon Barrel-aged Barleywine, in its Tasting Room on Saturday, September 14.

Inspired by the “admired landmark” of the same name in Athens, Georgia (more information available below), The Tree That Owns Itself is an English-style Barleywine that was created with the use of “a traditional English barley base, all English ingredients, a long boil, and extended maturation in select, small-batch bourbon barrels for over 26 months.”  Coming in at a sip-worthy 12.5% ABV, The Tree That Owns Itself promises an experience filled with “fruity, rich, decadent complexity.”

The Tree That Owns Itself will release alongside Welcome, My Friends (click here for more information) in the Tasting Room at Creature Comforts Brewing Co. (271 W. Hancock Ave. | Athens, Georgia) on September 14.  This Limited Release offering will be packaged in 750ml bottles and available as long as supplies last. The Tree That Owns Itself is a Tasting Room exclusive release and is not expected to see distribution. Prost!

Vital Information for The Tree That Owns Itself from Creature Comforts Brewing Co.

Release – Limited/Wood Cellar Series; September 14, 2019
Style – English-style Barleywine
ABV – 12.5%
Treatment – Aged in “select, small-batch bourbon barrels for over 26 months”
Fun Fact – “‘The Tree That Owns Itself’ is an admired landmark in Athens, GA. The story behind the landmark is that the tree’s owner, desiring to protect it, deeded ownership of the tree and surrounding land to itself. In honor of this local legend, Creature Comforts brewed this barleywine.”
Availability – 750ml bottles
Distribution – None. Tasting Room only

Tasting Notes: Night Creep Black DIPA from Iron Fist Brewing Company

NightCreepPourFor this edition of Tasting Notes, we turn ourselves over to the dark side of IPAs thanks to the influence of Night Creep DIPA from Iron Fist Brewing Company (Vista, California).

Developed to serve as a stark contrast from the three IPAs already in Iron Fist’s Core lineup as well as in the always IPA-saturated beer scene in the San Diego area, Night Creep is a “dark and different” Black Double India Pale Ale that utilizes an “unusual” yeast strain that “[brings] a distinctive flavor to a DIPA.”  To round off the recipe, the brewing team at Iron Fist used “choice kiln roasted malt [to impart] not only blackness but a mild toast undertone” while a “blend of earthy dank hops and overtones of citrus, floral and pine hops” provide balance. Night Creep comes in at a sneaky 8.5% ABV and 70 IBUs.

Night Creep was released at the start of August as the seventh offering to come out of Iron Fist’s 2019 Small Batch Experiments Series.  This Limited Release offering is available as long as supplies last in limited-edition 12 oz. cans and on draft at Iron Fist Brewing Company’s Vista and Barrio Logan taprooms.

With all that background information now out of the way, what do you say we shed a little more light on Night Creep with some Tasting Notes?

Tasting Notes for Night Creep Black DIPA from Iron Fist Brewing Company

Appearance:  Night Creep pours a near black, incredibly dark brown in color and wears just over a finger of light tan foam. When held to direct light, the cola-like brown pushes through a bit more but the darkness maintains its grip for the most part. The beer is completely opaque, providing no hint at the level of carbonation within.  Head retention is good, falling slowly to a chunky ring that is not at all shy about its ability to coat the glass with wide bands of lace.

Aroma:  The aromatics open with a tempting presence of toasted grain and high-quality dark chocolate.  The hops then cozy up to this malt presence, enveloping it with notes of resinous pine, grapefruit, tangerine, and a mix of soft floral and herbal tones.  All of this occurs without any one note overwhelming the other. There is nothing but soft, cautious harmony here and it is glorious.

Taste: An herbaceous, dank hop presence flawlessly executes a quick strike on the palate, but it is quickly tamed by toasty, roasty malt notes, a touch of bittersweet dark chocolate and a wisp of earthiness/wood.  A delicate floral quality, a pinch of grapefruit zest, and just the right amount of pine then join forces to leave memories of old-school Double IPAs behind in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full in body with a medium carbonation, this Black DIPA has plenty of weight to it but still finishes incredibly clean.  The balance here is sneaky good, allowing hop notes to shine brightly but without too much bitterness or countering sweetness.  The 8.5% ABV is a total non-factor, allowing the experience to remain smooth and easy drinking. The aftertaste is just a touch of pine and grapefruit.

Final Thoughts:  In our experience, Black IPAs tend to read a lot like hoppy Porters.  Sure, there is a hint of that here, but Night Creep finds a way to slip away and stand apart from the other beers that share this style designation.  The hop notes are beautifully pronounced and seem to sit above its toasty, dark malts . . . but then you take a moment to think about the previous sip and realize that the bitterness is not at all aggressive yet there are also not any exaggerated levels of malty sweetness.  The balance allows the beer to subtly move beyond the questioning of “is this a Double IPA or is it a Porter?” by cooling declaring “this is what a Black IPA should be.”

Beyond that, Night Creep just might be one of the cleanest beers we have ever had.  We cannot figure out if it is due to the chosen yeast, the brewery’s approach to the hop additions, the malt bill or just a combination of all three, but each note has its time to shine and then just gracefully fades from the palate in time for the next sip.  Nothing is muddled, overwhelming or confounding.  Every note is just allowed to be distinct, clear and clean.

After reviewing everything mentioned in the previous two paragraphs, we are incredibly confident in declaring that Night Creep is easily the best Black IPA/DIPA we have had, and it should be considered a benchmark beer for the style.  It is that damn good, and you need to check it out while you still have the chance.  Prost!

 

ETA Transcontinental IPA Takes Flight as Wild Leap Brew Co.’s Newest Year-Round

WildLeapLogo2Wild Leap Brew Co. (LaGrange, Georgia) has officially announced that it will launch ETA Transcontinental IPA as its newest Year-Round offering during the second week of September 2019.

Here to provide hopheads with a true first-class IPA experience, ETA is an American India Pale Ale brewed with “a new hop blend” and “more oats than any other Wild Leap beer, providing a soft and fluffy mouthfeel.” Coming in at an easy drinking 7.5% ABV, the “very smooth, yet juicy” ETA Transcontinental IPA “features a vibrant flavor profile of grapefruit, pineapple, and pine.”

“As we continue to explore new hop combinations and flavor profiles, we wanted to brew an IPA that was medium-balanced and could be enjoyed by a range of craft beer lovers,” explains Chris Elliott, Wild Leap Head Brewer. “ETA is a dryer IPA than any we have ever brewed and will fall behind both the Alpha Abstraction series and Chance IPA in sweetness.”

ETA Transcontinental IPA is scheduled to debut during the second week of September 2019.  You can expect to find this new Year-Round offering available in 6-packs of 12 oz. cans and on draft at craft beer-focused establishments located within Wild Leap’s distribution footprint in Georgia. Prost!

Vital Information for ETA Transcontinental IPA from Wild Leap Brew Co.

Release – Year-Round; launching September 2019
Style – American India Pale Ale
ABV – 7.5%
IBUs – 40
Fun Fact – On the label artwork: “Following in the footsteps of its predecessors, ETA IPA features fun, vibrant can artwork. The blue and green design was created with a 70’s transcontinental vibe, which transports us back to a time when traveling was an extravagant activity worthy of an extravagant beverage.”
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. cans & draft
Distribution – Georgia
Beer Finder – http://www.wildleap.com/beer-finder/

Wild Leap ETA IPA - 02

Heavy Seas Beer Releases Great’er Pumpkin & Pumpkin Latte Variant

GreaterPumpkin12ozBottle2019Heavy Seas Beer (Baltimore, Maryland) has officially announced that it will begin the Limited Release of its long-standing Great’er Pumpkin and the new, draft-only Great’er Pumpkin Latte variant during the first week of September 2019.

Returning to once again serve as the fall release in Heavy Seas Beer’s Uncharted Waters Series, Great’er Pumpkin is an Imperial Pumpkin Ale that offers “aromas of cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and clove . . . while British crystal malt, brown sugar, and pumpkin add a sense of weight and body.”  Time spent resting in Bourbon barrels then rounds off the flavor profile of Great’er Pumpkin (10% ABV) by adding “notes of oak, vanilla, and bourbon.”

Designed to give the PSL (Pumpkin Spice Latte) crowd something to get excited about in 2019, Great’er Pumpkin Latte takes the Great’er Pumpkin base beer and ages it in Bourbon barrels with “locally roasted coffee and vanilla beans.”  Lactose completes the PSL experience by adding “a creamy, steamed milk-like flavor to this complex and decadent brew.”

Both versions of Great’er Pumpkin are scheduled to roll out during the first week of September and will stick around as long as supplies last.  The original Great’er Pumpkin will be available in 4-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at craft beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, Maryland and throughout the rest of Heavy Seas’ distribution footprint.  Great’er Pumpkin Latte is a draft-only release that will only see distribution in select markets.  Prost!

Vital Information for Great’er Pumpkin from Heavy Seas Beer

Release – Limited/Uncharted Waters Series; September 2019
Style – Pumpkin Ale
ABV – 10%
IBUs – 37

Malts – 2-Row, Wheat & Crystal Malt
Hops – Mt. Hood
Suggested Pairings – “Pairs well with crisp autumn weather, crunchy fallen leaves, and the knowledge that your kids will be asleep soon so you can raid their Halloween candy bags.”
Recommended Glassware – Snifter
Availability – 4-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder – http://www.hsbeer.com/beerfinder

Iron Fist Brewing Introduces Feed Your Head DIPL as Latest Small Batch Release

Feed_Your_Head_Press_Can_01Iron Fist Brewing Company (Vista, California) has officially announced that Feed Your Head Double IPL will drop in September as the brewery’s eighth Small Batch Experiments release in 2019.

Developed with the intention of “creating a refreshing lager, brewed in the style of a classic West Coast IPA,” Feed Your Head is a Double India Pale Lager brewed with a traditional German Pilsner yeast and IPA-level additions of Galaxy and Motueka hops. This beautiful marriage of styles results in a “refreshingly clean lager . . . with an aroma of lemon flower, a touch of earth and spice, followed by tropical citrus” notes.  Coming in at 8% ABV, the crisp yet warming Feed Your Head is meant to be “a perfect toast to the end of summer.”

“We brew Pilsners (e.g. Summer City) year round and are very familiar with our house lager yeast. We take great care of our yeast culture so it’s ready to go to work when we hand it a big beer to finish. Experimenting with fermentation temp and time allows us to dial in the flavor profile and match our hops and yeast.”

 

– Tom Garcia, Brewmaster at Iron Fist Brewing Company

Feed Your Head DIPL will hit Iron Fist Brewing Company’s Vista and Barrio Logan taprooms in September 2019.  This Limited Release offering will be available in limited-edition 12 oz. cans and on draft. Like all Small Batch Experiments, Feed Your Head is a taproom exclusive that will not see distribution. Prost!

Vital Information for Feed Your Head DIPL from Iron Fist Brewing Company

Release – Limited/Small Batch Experiments Series; September 2019
Style – India Pale Lager
ABV – 8%
IBUs – 70
Featured Hops – Galaxy & Motueka
Yeast – German Pilsner
Availability – 12 oz. cans & draft
Distribution – None. Available exclusively in Iron Fist’s Vista and Barrio Logan taprooms