March 25, 2016
ONE NIGHT in 1987, Jeffrey Rosenblum opened a bottle of Whitbread Ale and poured himself a glass. He took a sip and glanced down at the bottle. Something caught his eye. Something unspoken, something visceral. Something. He rose from his living room couch and placed the empty on the mantel. That's where it all began. With a single bottle of imported English ale, Rosenblum launched a collection that would spread from the mantel, across shelves, into cabinets and every nook in his home in Northeast Philadelphia, more than 4,000 bottles strong.
March 25, 2016
As with most things, supply is the No. 1 factor in determining the value of a particular collectible. You may think that can of kitschy Billy Beer you've had since the Carter administration is your winning lottery ticket, but there were an estimated 2 billion of them made. It's worth about a nickel, assuming you can find someone who wants it. The most valuable beer bottles - usually worth no more than $100 - are antiques dating to the 19th century, before bottles were mass-produced by machine.
March 11, 2016
Makes 6 servings 1/4 cup flour Fine sea salt Freshly ground black pepper 21/2 pounds chuck or other stew beef, cut into 2-inch cubes, patted dry 3 tablespoons flavorless oil, such as canola, or more as needed 6 slices thick-cut bacon, cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 4 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced 4 cloves garlic (green germ removed), finely chopped One 12-ounce bottle Belgian, abbey, or brown ale or beer, such as Chimay 11/2 cups no-salt-added beef broth 21/2 tablespoons brown sugar (light or dark)
February 28, 2016
No ingredient is off-limits for the infinitely creative world of craft brewing, with add-ins ranging from seasonal fruits (often wonderful) to peanut butter (always questionable). But it actually makes sense to find a wild ale turned crimson with beet juice at Crime & Punishment Brewing Co., the tiny brew cafe with a Russian theme in Brewerytown whose inventive beers are as fresh as they are on point with literary flair. For "Disturbing the Beets," brewers Michael Wambolt and Mike Paul kettle-soured a pilsner malt, then let it ferment a month with 100 pounds of juiced beets, plus the wild yeast known as Brettanomyces.
February 26, 2016
One of the simple yet overlooked joys of beer is that it comes in a bottle or a can, ready to drink. Grab an opener or just yank the pull-tab, and you're good to go. No assembly required. Which is why the arrival of any new, high-tech beer-dispensing gadget gives me pause. Put me in the if-it-ain't-broke-don't-fix-it league. That seems to be the case with the "revolutionary" Fizzics portable draft beer system, a Mr. Coffee-like contraption that sucks beer out of a bottle and pours it into a glass.
February 14, 2016
Now you see PUNGE. Now you don't. That's because this amazingly fresh double IPA was one of the latest issues in the weekly spontaneous can series from Tired Hands' Fermentaria. And it was gone in a blink. Owner and brewchief Jean Broillet IV has always stoked long lines for special releases at the original Tired Hands Brew Cafe. At his larger Fermentaria in Ardmore, the arrival of an in-house canning line has given Broillet the flexibility to can two special hop-centric beers at will each week and announce their sale with just a day's notice via social media (@tiredhandsbeer)
February 5, 2016
No doubt you've caught the Shock Top commercial with comedian T.J. Miller. The spot, a fast-paced insult swap between the star of the HBO sitcom Silicon Valley and a wiseguy talking tap handle named Wedgehead, has been floating around the Internet for the last week in advance of its TV debut Sunday during the Super Bowl . What you haven't seen is the original version - the one featuring Joe Sixpack. Or maybe that was a bad dream. In any case, it went like this: Wedgehead: Yo, beer boy, over here.
February 5, 2016 |
When Wawa Inc. won preliminary approval from Concord Township in August to begin selling six-packs of beer in one Delaware County store, beer lovers among the Wawa fanatics around the region rejoiced. Then they waited. Months passed and no beer came. They waited some more. While the wait isn't quite over, Wawa said Wednesday that it had moved an important step closer to stocking brews on its shelves. For months, the convenience-store chain has been at odds with the Concord Board of Supervisors over nearly two dozen restrictions imposed by the township as conditions to sell beer at the store on Naamans Creek Road in Chadds Ford.
February 4, 2016
The line formed before dawn. The revelers wore Hawaiian shirts and top hats. They had come from near and far this mild winter's morning to the Grey Lodge Pub in Northeast Philly, driven by a shared devotion to a weather-prognosticating marmot. And to drinking really strong beer for breakfast. And to maybe even doing the limbo. Welcome to Philly's arguably most spirited - and possibly only - Groundhog Day celebration. For 14 years, the Grey Lodge has hosted a Groundhog Day bash defined by great company, flowing beer, and lots of activities that, well, do not find their roots in the 130-year-old tradition.
January 29, 2016
There was a time in this city when everyone knew the name - and not just those who drank his family's famous beer. He raced in the Indianapolis 500, got into fistfights with cops, flew a Wright brothers biplane, and joined Pancho Villa's rebellion in Mexico. He was a rogue, a draft dodger and a fugitive. And 50 years ago yesterday, he died a madman. Grover Cleveland Bergdoll, heir to one of the city's greatest beer empires, never worked in a brewery. But the so-called Playboy of the Eastern Seaboard was surely the most notorious character in Philadelphia's long, sudsy beer history.