Tag Archives: Sierra Nevada

Beer Bread Showdown

22 Nov

In a joint effort with Foodonia we have put together a beer bread test group, if you will.  We baked four loaves of bread all using the same recipe just adding a different beer to see how the results varied.

Beers Used:

the lineup

Budweiser was used because most recipes online call for Coors, or Bud light and a close friend requesting using straight-up Bud.  I chose #9 for it’s bit of Belgian yeast funk and spices.  The porter was used because I wanted to use a  beer with good, pronounced darker malts.  Lastly, Ommegang’s Hennepin was chosen for it’s white pepper notes and farmhouse qualities.

For a review of the bread baking process and recipe used make sure to check out Foodonia’s post.

The results were not exactly how I guessed things would have turned out.  The porter I had predicted to have tasted the best, however, almost none of the flavors stuck to the bread.  For the most part, it only imparted it’s color to the bread.  The Budweiser was deemed the worst of the breads.  The #9 and the Hennepin both came out giving off good flavors.  I preferred the Hennepin, though others backed the #9, and for good reason.

They boast a remarkably clean oven

The breads came out looking stupid.  I don’t really know how else to say it but they didn’t really get too much of a crust.  This is purely an aesthetic problem because the breads all tasted fine.  They were best after sitting for some time and for whatever reason when the bread is toasted the beer flavors become more pronounced. *shrugs*

If we were to do this again (and we may very well refine the recipe and the beers and give it another go) then I would consider using the following beers:

Young’s Double Chocolate Stout, Samuel Adam’s Winter Lager, Southern Tier’s Pumking, and Brown’s Harvest IPA.




19 Nov

It seems that instances of automotive crisis in my life are often paired with great beer moments (see September’s post Near Disaster Turned Milestone.)  The other night my car was towed (If I was blocking your driveway  I am truly sorry and I was unaware that I was doing so) and hence the following morning I had an ordeal when trying to get to work.  Those of you fortunate enough to have never had this happen should know that it is a pretty costly offense and certainly put a damper on my day.

On my way home that evening I stopped to buy some porter to cook dinner with at Oliver’s on Colvin and ran into a day-changer:

Estate Ale hits Albany, NY, and more importantly: my refrigerator.

Finally, Sierra Nevada’s Estate Ale has made it’s way to Upstate NY.  If you are unfamiliar with the premise of this brew, let me fill you in: it is probably the most environmentally friendly beer on the market.  Every ingredient in this beer is grown at Sierra Nevada’s brewery, they have also invested in solar power, fuel cells, recycling of materials and spent grains, etc.  For more info check out their website: Sierra Nevada’s Environmental Stewardship.

The beer is a little more cash than your average larger bottle of beer, but well worth it.  It is a wet-hopped ale: hops are added before they have been dried, resulting in hop flavor without as much bitterness.  This beer was a must-have for me and it certainly turned my day around, I recommend it to anyone curious to find a very ‘green,’ tasty beverage.

16th Annual Mount Snow Brewers Festival

6 Sep

they had beer

This event took place September 4th and 5th at Mt. Snow in VT (1.5 hour drive from Albany.)  It featured 31 breweries, 80 varieties of beer and over 200 kegs.  Breweries included: Long Trail, Magic Hat, Otter Creek, Wolaver’s Organic, Harpoon, Olde Burnside, Berkshire Brewing Co., Stone Brewing Co., Allagash, Saranac, North Coast, Stoudts, Rock Art, Woodchuck Ciders, Dogfish Head, Sam Adams, Brooklyn Brewing Co., Rouge Brewing, Smuttynose, Sierra Nevada, Northshire Brewing Company, Peak Organic, FArnum Hill Ciders, McNeil’s Brewery, Trapp Family Lodge Brewing Co., Flying Dog Brewing Co., Ommegang Brewing Co., Original Sin Ciders and Eurobrew.

they had people...

My initial attempt to reach the festival on Saturday resulted in a flat tire and a day spent with tow trucks and waiting rooms of garages.  On Sunday I re-gathered my courage and set out for some brews.

Entry into the event cost $25 per person, came with a pint glass and two tokens which could be redeemed for 8 oz. beer samples.  With an additional 5 tokens added to my pocket after entry I was on my way to sample some beer, finally.

I started my tasting light: Alagash’s white.  Despite a drunk, stumbling loud mouth swearing up and down to have their Tripel (which I am sure is also delicious) I chose their white ale and was not disappointed.  Round two went darker as I found Sierra Nevada’s booth.  I left there with a glass full of Tumbler and a brochure on brewing sustainability.

The rest of my beer intake went as one would expect: rather rapidly.  Notable mentions and kudos to the Olde Burnside Brewery for their TenFidy Wit and their Dirty Penny, pre-mixed black and tan.  Having grown up on the banks of the Battenkill River I could not resist the Northshire Brewery’s Battenkill Ale, which did not disappoint, nor did their Equinox Pilsner.  Our last surprise came out of Peak Organic’s Espresso Amber Ale.

Overall this festival packed in the beer and the breweries.  However, the food for the most part was lacking.  In future years I thought that it may be a good idea to try and include local food vendors as well as local breweries.  I realize this means less of an income from the Mt. Snow food, but surely something could be worked out.

I look forward to this event again next summer, as well as their winter brew fest which is sure to be interesting.