Sunday, January 9, 2011

The rumors of our demise...

The holidays are over. Finally. Will Beermingham return? Probably. We'd love to hear your suggestions on what Beermingham 2.0 should be. Business as usual or something completely different? You tell us what you'd like to see Beermingham become.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

What & Where we're drinking Monday night

We don't normally put much thought into what or where we're drinking beer. But this week, the Beermingham staff calendar has, in ink, a big red circle around Oct. 4. That's the day for the Terrapin Takeover at J. Clyde. Reps from the brewery, including Spike Buckowski, will be there with several beers you may never seen in Alabama again. Plus, J. Clyde says there will be lots of schwag to snag. We're hoping for T-shirts so we'll have something clean to wear next week.

Anyway, you don't want to miss this event. It should be both entertaining and tasty.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Where we were drinking tonight: Pale Eddie's Pour House

"Can I get a code for your wi-fi?" I asked the bartender at downtown Birmingham's newest bar, Pale Eddie's Pour House.

"Yeah, let me check on that," he said. As I awaited his return, I sipped my $9 Mason jar of Good People Snakehandler and mooched off Rogue Tavern's open wi-fi.

"It's not working yet," my bartender said. "Still trying to work out the bugs."

Not a problem, really, since I wasn't that interested in going online. I was more interested in what perks Pale Eddie's might have in store for patrons. A $9 beer should at least come with free wi-fi, and, eventually, it will.

Pale Eddie's Pour House welcomes guests with exposed brick, worn wood floors and inviting brown leather couches. The feel is more loft-like than bar.

A few minutes later I'm joined at the bar by a young man with a full glass of Guiness.

"Sorry about the wi-fi," he says. "We'll have it worked out soon."

Continue reading about Pale Eddie's Pour House after the break...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

What we're drinking tonight: The "We're Back" edition

Wow. An entire month with no posts. That just ain't right, is it? But the Beermingham staff has returned from its annual retreat refreshed and ready to drink some beer.

So what are we celebrating with? Great Divide Rumble IPA. We picked up enough for the entire Beermingham employee roster at HiPS because that's the kind of workplace Beermingham is. But what kind of beer is Rumble?

Thin. By that we mean the mouth feel is, well, just that. Thin. It has a good head and a hoppy aroma, but the light-golden color is indicative of its thin body.

Being oak-aged, Rumble is more than just an IPA. For the style, it's more malty and less bitter than expected. Some may like that, but around the Beermingham offices, the bitterer the betterer.

So, to sum up: Rumble is a thin-bodied, malty IPA with only 7% ABV. Worth $13 a half-gallon? Maybe, but an overwhelming majority of the staff is now wishing we'd gotten some Snakehandler instead.

Ratebeer gives Rumble a 96, Beer Advocate a B+.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Good things going on at Good People

Bruce Andrews works on re-creating the
Good People logo on the brewery's new home.
It's well known that Good People is producing good beer at their new facility. Perhaps not as well known are some things going on around their new home.

The most obvious is the new sign now gracing the front of the brewery. Musician and artist Bruce Andrews of Andrews Art has been hard at work during some of this year's hottest days re-creating the brewery's logo.  Looks great, Bruce! (Click through to the second part of the post to see the finished product.)

Jason Malone oversees the
beer garden construction. Click
through to the second half to see more
photos of the work.
Good People is also in the process of turning the gravel lot next to their building into something much more pleasant. Jason Malone tells us they are covering the barren rocks with dirt which will soon be covered in sod. It's a much-needed aesthetic improvement, but also a forward-looking renovation. If Alabama should ever change their beer laws, the sodded area will be the brewery's beer garden. Jason hopes he'll one day be able to serve Good People beer in this area and, with the planned stage, host parties.

We sure hope the Alabama Legislature sees fit to help some Good People out. Sipping a Snake in the Good People garden would be super sweet.

Click on the photos for much larger versions.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

What we're drinking tonight: Mountain Standard Reserve

This may well be one the most complex beers we've ever tasted. Odell Brewing Co. unfairly categorizes Mountain Standard Reserve as a brown ale. The taste of this beer has nothing in common with New Castle or Lazy Magnolia's Pecan. The brewer describes it as "... more than a limited edition offering. It's an enigma in liquid form."

In fact, it has more in common with Bertie Botts Beans than beer. That's the candy in "Harry Potter" that, with each bite, offers a different flavor. Mountain Standard, though, has flavors like hops, caramel, chocolate, nuts, and grapefruit. And none of those at once. With each sip, we got something different. On top of that, as the beer got warmer, the taste changed again.

Another characteristic it shares with mythical candy? You can't buy it in Alabama. A GFOTB imported our bomber of Mountain Standard Reserve from Omaha.

Friday, August 6, 2010

HiPS ends rewards card, intros draft six pack

Just weeks after introducing their rewards card for draft buyers, HiPS is ending program. Jimmy tells us the program was quite popular with customers, not so popular with ABC. Alabama law doesn't allow businesses to offer discounts on alcoholic products unless the discount is available to everyone.

A rewards program open to everyone sort of straddles the legality line. While everyone is permitted to participate, it discriminates against those who don't buy enough beer to qualify.

A good (ie expensive) lawyer might successfully argue in support of HiPS' card, but the owners are choosing to play it safe.

But they have started a new promotion. Buy six quarts of anything they have on tap for $35. A great deal when you consider you can get a gallon and a half of Hopsickle for $35 when it normally would cost $44. Or take advantage of the opportunity and try six different brews with a couple of good friends.

Whichever you choose, choose soon before ABC realizes someone's having fun.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Beer news in brief: More draft to go, rewards and thanks

Here are a few things we think you'll find interesting.

1. Western Supermarket on Highland Ave. has joined the draft to go club. They're a little late to the game, but they're wasting no time catching up to the other guys. Not only do they have two Good People offerings, but they already have custom-printed glass growlers available for $4. That means their growlers are cheaper but so is their beer. HiPS charges $10.99 for a half gallon of GP Brown, Dee's charges $9.99. Western is asking $8.49 for theirs. Do we have a price war on our hands? We'll see. We've added a tab at the top of the page for their list of beers. It's incomplete for now, but will be updated soon.

2. While HiPS doesn't have the cheapest draft, they're trying to attract your business another way. Last week they started their rewards program. Buy eight half gallons of draft, and your ninth one is half price. Be sure to ask for your card at the checkout.

3. And finally, the Beermingham editorial staff offers a big ole firkin of Thank You IPA to all our readers. On July 10th, Beermingham turned one year old. We've had a lot of good beer and a lot of good times. With your support we hope to have lots more of both. So drink up, there's more where that came from.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

What we're drinking tonight: SNAKE HANDLER!

If we had a poet on staff, this would be written in flowing verse. Sadly, it just wasn't in the budget. But we're betting you don't care much about poetry anyway. Especially when the legendary Snake Handler is back in town. We picked up some at Dee's for the daily office party (no, we're not hiring)and the jug is quickly going empty. It was kegged just two days ago, so you know it's nice and hoppy fresh.

HiPS says they will have a keg tapped sometime this week, but if you can't wait, hit Dee's!

Good People has taps, Snake handled

We knew GP was working on new tap handles, and now they're ready to show em off. They should start showing up in bars statewide soon.

And while we were visiting the brewery a few minutes ago, we were told Snakehandler was kegged and sent out yesterday.

In the tanks is a big batch of Hippie IPA. Well, as Jason Malone said, "The beer formerly known as Hippie." it seems someone else thought of that name before GP. So from now on, Hippie will be known as Hitchhiker. Look for that in bars soon, too.

UPDATE: Jason says Dee's has already tapped a keg of Snake. Get it while it's still there!