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Innis & Gunn and Stone’s Stochasticity Project Announce New Beers

Beer

Innis & Gunn Oak Bottled Beer

Two new beers have conveniently been announced today. One comes from Scotland’s Innis & Gunn, and the other from Stone Brewing Co.’s Stochasticity Project.

Innis & Gunn, the Scotland brewery known for oak aging all of its beer, has announced a beer that is oak aged via the very bottle it is packaged in. Its flagship beer, Original, will be bottle in sold oak bottles.

“It was quite incredible,” said CEO Dougal Sharp. “In that moment, I knew exactly what I needed to do – it was a calling. We’re exploring new frontiers here, going where no other brewer has gone before: putting our best-selling beer in solid oak bottles and letting it mature on shelf! To be honest, anyone these days can release a beer matured in oak barrels, so this is really ground-breaking stuff.”

Back on California’s West Coast, Stone Brewing’s innovative Stochasticity Project was brewing up something unique with their Cr(He)am Ale. Beer is regularly brewed with carbon dioxide and nitrogen and looking to push the limits, the team at Stone turned towards helium.

Stone Quality Assurance Supervisor Rick Blankemeier first came up with the idea for a helium-infused beer after playing around with nitro beers and thought, “What would happen if helium was added to a beer?” The idea was presented to Stone Brewmaster Mitch Steele, who at first assumed it couldn’t be done. After a brief science lesson from Rick, Mitch decided it was worth a try and the beer would be perfect for the Stone Stochasticity Project.

“I think Mitch thought I had been drinking too much of the beer when I went to him with my idea of a helium ale,” said Blankemeier. “I’m really pleased with this beer. The hop aroma punches you in the nose and there is a slight tingle in the back of the throat that is unique to this brew. The ale provides the drinker with a distinctive sensory experience.”

“This beer is tasty and very strange, but in a good way,” explains Steele. “I’ve never experienced the tingly feeling in the back of my throat that the helium addition provides. I think our fans are really going to like this, and we look forward to brewing other unique beers for the Stochasticity Project.”

Name: Stone Stochasticity Project Cr(He)am Ale with Helium
URL: http://www.stochasticity.com/beers/crheam
Stats: 4.1% ABV, 75 IBUs
Availability: Limited 16-ounce cans, beginning April 1
Hops Bill: Willamette and Fuggles, dry-hopped with Helga
Special addition: Helium
Distribution: AK, AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, and WA



Brewers Association Lists Top 50 Breweries of 2013

Beer

Brewers Association Top 50 Brewries 2013

The Brewers Association released today their yearly list showing the top 50 U.S. craft brewing companies, as well as the top 50 overall U.S. brewing companies. Not surprising, Boston Beer Company, Sierra Nevada, and New Belgium round out the top 3 for craft breweries and Anheuser-Busch Inc., MillerCoors, and Pabst Brewing Co. top the overall list.

Of the top 50 overall brewing companies, 38 were small and independent craft brewing companies.

Newcomers to the craft brewing list were Brooklyn’s Sixpoint Brewery, Gordon Biersch Brewing Co., and 21st Amendment Brewery.

To see the full list, click here



Lost Abbey to Release Tequila-Barreled Beer

Beer

Agave Maria ale_single

Beer has be aged in just about every kind of barrel imaginable and San Marcos, CA’s The Lost Abbey has just announced their newest beer that will be aged in Tequila barrels. The beer, which was “inspired by the reverence the Jimadors in the Agave fields of Jalisco Mexico have for a local icon with divine associations,” will be a strong ale brewed with agave nectar and aged in both Anejo and Reposado barrels for a minimum of 10 months. This will be the first Tequila aged beer from The Lost Abbey released to full distribution.

According to the brewery, “Agave Maria has hints of black pepper, sweet sugar, oatmeal, and oak with an earthy, bitter smoked chocolate on the finish. The base beer, a new Agave strong ale, was created specifically to pair with the spiciness of the Tequila, adding a sweet honey-like quality to the beer.”

The new artwork for Agave Maria was created by The Lost Abbey’s resident artist, Sean Dominguez and depicts the Agave Maria mural, blessing Agave piñas as they pass through her outstretched arms, while candles illuminate her image, never being allowed to extinguish.

Agave Maria will be available throughout the Lost Abbey distribution network beginning in April in limited draft and 375 ml cork-finished bottles with an ABV of 13.5%. Expected to be an annual release, look for Agave Maria to be released every spring.



Hungry Mutineer: Oysters with Optimal Wit Mignonette and Port City Brewing Company

BeerFood

Optimal Wit Mignonette

Optimal Wit from Port City Brewing Company, is a refreshing beer with balanced flavors of coriander, orange, and grains of paradise. This beer pairs so well with a nice sloppy oyster, that it only seemed natural to use it in the preparation instead of simply relegating it to the side. Now, white wine or sparkling is generally the go-to for a mignonette sauce, but I think the kitchen gods will forgive me this delectable transgression.

Optimal Wit Mignonette
24 freshly caught oysters, cleaned and shucked
1 tsp. whole coriander, toasted
1 tsp. orange zest
2 tsp. flat leaf parsley
1 TBS. onion, minced
1/3 c. malt vinegar
1/4 c. Port City Brewing Optimal Wit (or your favorite Belgian-style Wit)
Grains of Paradise Finishing Salt, to garnish (recipe below)

Combine the coriander, zest, parsley, onion, vinegar, and Optimal Wit together in a bowl and use to top the oysters. Sprinkle with the Grains of Paradise Finishing Salt and serve immediately. Drink with an Optimal Wit of course!

Click here to properly learn how to shuck oysters.

Grains of Paradise Finishing Salt
1/4 c. sea salt (use something nice and sticky like Le Saunier De Camargue)
2 TBS. grains of paradise, ground
1/2 tsp. freshly cracked pepper

Combine the ingredients in a small dish and use to finish the Oysters with Optimal Wit Mignonette.

Have you ever cooked with Optimal Wit before? If so, tell me what you made in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @hungrymutineer.



Marc Mondavi Turns Wine Into Water while Supporting charity: water for World Water Day on March 22, 2014

Beverage NewsWine

thedivingrodmutineer

With the recent water crisis in California, Marc Mondavi has been a wanted winemaker and water dowser. Marc has been water witching (or dowsing – the ability to locate water far beneath the ground using his divining rods) for over 40 years. It wasn’t until the last few weeks that his talents have really come into the limelight. His water witching has enabled him to plant amazing vineyards throughout California and help farmers across California keep their thirsty crops well hydrated.

Marc’s newest wine endeavor, The Divining Rod wines, have recently partnered with charity to continue his support of water for World Water Day. Launching this week, Marc is asking all mutineers to support the struggles many face daily to find clean and drinkable water. This campaign will be ongoing in hopes of supporting charity: water, a non-profit organization that brings clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations.

We at Mutineer have been a longtime supporter of all things water related, with our founder’s past trip with Splash (formerly A Child’s Right) to Nepal and our campaign for clean water crusaders, this is a natural and exciting new program we are thrilled to promote.

Donate today and help spread the word of clean water.

The Divining Rod makes two wines, an Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and a Santa Lucia Highlands Chardonnay. To purchase wines, click here.



James Beard Foundation Announces 2014 Restaurant and Chef Finalists

Beverage News

James Beard Award

Finalists for the 2014 James Beard Foundation awards were announced today. Below are the selections pertinent to the world of beverage.

Congrats to all those still in the running, as well as all who have been nominated.

Outstanding Bar Program
Bar Agricole, San Francisco
The Bar at the NoMad Hotel, NYC
Clyde Common, Portland, OR
Maison Premiere, Brooklyn
The Violet Hour, Chicago

Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional
Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE
Ron Cooper, Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal, Ranchos de Taos, NM
Garrett Oliver, Brooklyn Brewery, Brooklyn
Harlen Wheatley, Buffalo Trace Distillery, Frankfort, KY
David Wondrich, spirits educator, Brooklyn

Beverage Book
The Cocktail Lab: Unraveling the Mysteries of Flavor and Aroma in Drink, with Recipes, Tony Conigliaro
The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World’s Great Drinks, Amy Stewart
The New California Wine: A Guide to the Producers and Wines Behind a Revolution in Taste, Jon Bonné

Outstanding Wine Program
A16, San Francisco
Bar Boulud, NYC
The Barn at Blackberry Farm, Walland, TN
FIG, Charleston, SC
The Little Nell, Aspen, CO



Hungry Mutineer: Chocolate Whiskey Afternoon Cake with Tullamore Dew

FoodSpirits

Irish Whiskey Cake

Booze and chocolate have been longtime friends. I remember when I was a kid, sneaking those little bottle shaped chocolates filled with liqueur into my pocket when my parents weren’t looking. As I grew older, the combinations became more refined with grappa filled bars from Swiss chocolatiers and truffles with champagne. But, for all of those liqueurs and libations, my favorite combination has to be whiskey and chocolate. They were made for one another.

There is something about the melding of rich cocoa and the heat of the whiskey that makes it particularly satisfying. I like to use whiskey a lot when I bake and for this particular cake, I chose Tullamore Dew Original. The complimentary flavors of vanilla and marzipan that it gets from the time it spends cooling its heels in bourbon and sherry casks are quite conducive to baking. See the full post »



Hungry Mutineer: Porter Cured Corned Beef with Port City Brewing Co.

BeerFood

Hungry Mutineer: Porter Cured Corned Beef with Port City Brewing Co.

Don’t stop, don’t think, just stop what you are doing and go to the store right now. Monday is St. Patrick’s Day and you need to set your beef to cure for your corned beef dinner.

In investigating corned beef brining recipes I found a lot of stellar recipes, one classic offering from Michael Ruhlman, and a more beer-minded offering from Sean Paxton aka The Home Brew Chef. I studied what these wise men had to say on the subject and then drew a few conclusions of my own. The idea was to use mainly classic spices, but add a twist that would work really well with the porter brine. See the full post »



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