There were some major upsets in round 2 of the March Madness Beer Championships as there is only two #1 seeds, two #2 seeds, two #3 seeds and two #4 seeds remaining in the tournament. Much like the NCAA Basketball tournament, there are Cinderella teams and major upsets in every round. Click the link below to see the March Madness round 2 results and the sweet 16 matchups! Check back for the Sweet 16 results, Elite 8 matchups, the Final Four and the eventual Beer champions. Results will roll out and coincide with the NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament.
Round 2 March Madness Matchups: 32 Beers Advance in the Bracket
By Matt Goldstein, Tim Rodgers, Pat Smith, Don Corino & Mike Magowan
In our first annual March Madness Beer Championship, the first round results are in. 32 Beers have advanced to round 2 and 32 beers were sent home with their bags packing. All styles of Ales, Lagers, Crafts, IPA’s, Stouts, Belgians and Pilsners are banging it out one taste test at a time. The round 2 matchups pit some big dogs against each other in an all out March Madness Bracket beer battle royal. Click the link below to see if your favorite beer made it through to the next round! Stay tuned for round 2 results to see out Sweet 16.
Click the Link Below to Download Your 2011 March Madness Tournament Bracket Now…
By Team Goldmine
Introducing the inaugural Whiskey Goldmine March Madness Beer Tournament Bracket Championship! 64 of the world’s best beers have been chosen and will go head to head in our March Madness Bracket Style tournament. It’s win or go home in one of the greatest all style all flavor taste tests ever created. In order to advance, the beers will have to win multiple taste tests in each round, sometimes blind and double blind taste tests. From the first two rounds, to the Sweet Sixteen, the Elite Eight, the Final Four and to the Championship Game, the March Madness Tournament winner will be declared the 2011 Beer of Champion! Download your 2011 Tournament Bracket now!
Click the link below to view the bracket. (Don’t be afraid to zoom in.)
Shortening Beer Lines Everywhere: New Magnetic Beer System Pours Extremely Fast in Perfect Fashion
By Matt Goldstein
Check out this video clip of the osmosis style magnetic beer system which shoots beer into the cup from the bottom, and without any head. It can be considered the perfect pour and is taking over stadiums all around the world. The bottom line is that beer lines will be shorter, and you will get your beer faster than ever. For a while this will strictly be serving up macro beers like Budweiser and Miller Lite, but the craft movement will catch up with these unique contraptions sooner than you think. Check it out!
Hoppin Frog Barrel Aged Borris Oatmeal Imperial Stout the Show!
By Matt Goldstein & Kevin Hussey
The 2011 Beats, Brews & BBQ beer fest at the World Café Live in Philadelphia had over 35 brewers with more than 100 beers and tickets sold out months before the beer fest opened its doors. With more than 100 beers trying to stake their claim at the 2011 beerfest, our panel of tasters provides you with the top 10 craft beers that crushed the competition. Speaking of crushed, Hoppin Frogs Borris the Crusher stole the show!
Made from the 2008 Gold Medalist at the GABF, Borris the Crusher Oatmeal Imperial Stout, the barrel aged version is a masterpiece in cask matured stouts. Full bodied, robust, roasted and smoky, with notes of oak and vanilla, the Barrel Aged Borris is complex and full of character. 9.4% ABV, 60 IBU. Hoppin Frog Brewing. Akron, Ohio.
2. Weyerbacher Heresy Imperial Stout:
The Heresy is an old heathen oak aged imperial stout. Aged in bourbon oak barrels with a roasted flavor, the Heresy has notes of bourbon, oak, corn, vanilla, and coffee. 8.5% ABV, Weyerbacher Brewing. Easton, PA.
3. Founders Dirty Bastard Scotch Style Ale:
The Dirty Bastard Scotch Ale, also known as an old ale, is brewed with 7 different types of malts. Ruby Red in color, with strong notes of hops, hints of smoke and peat, the Founders Dirty Bastard Scotch Ale is a classic. 8.5% ABV, Founders Brewing Co. Michigan.
4. Victory Old Horizontal Barley Wine:
The Victory Barley Wine is rich in hops with a sweet flavor that balances very well. With imported 2 row hops malts and American whole flower hops, the Old Horizontal is perfectly balanced. 10.5% ABV. Victory Brewing Company, Downingtown, PA.
5. Six Points Sehr Crisp Pilsner
With all the IPA’s and Imperial Stouts at every beer fest, the Six Point Sehr Crisp Pilsner was a refreshing session beer and strongly lived up to the Pilsner style. According to Beer Advocate, the Sehr Crisp Pilsner is a cross between a German Pilsner and a Bohemian Pilsner and blended with German hops. 5.4% ABV. Six Point Brewing Company. Brooklyn, NY.
6. Bear Republic Hop Rod Rye:
The Hop Rod Rye has been a staple of Bear Republic for years and years, winning three separate gold medals in craft beer competitions. The Racer 5 and Rocket Red are already legendary Bear Republic Brews, but the Hop Rod Rye is just as good. The Hop Rod Rye is an IPA with a heavy rye malt base, but also a spicy kick and bitterness that add a beautiful complexity to the hops. 8.0% ABV, 80 IBUs. Bear Republic Brewing Co. Healdsburg, CA.
7. Yards Chocolate Love Stout:
The Yards Chocolate Love Stout is a sweet and sultry full bodied chocolate stout with a beautiful roasted malt flavor. The Chocolate Love is brewed with oysters in a kettle. Oysters? WTF! 5.5% ABV. Yards Brewing Company, Philadelphia, PA.
Some of our tasters at the beer fest thought the Dorris Destroyer might have been better than Barrel Aged Borris and for good reason. This Double Imperial Oatmeal Stout is similar to the Borris but a little more tangy. Dry hopped and wort hopped, Dorris the Destroyer will smack you right in your mouth. 10.5% ABV, 70 IBUs. Hoppin Frog Brewing Co. Akron, Ohio.
9. Left Hand Fade to Black Volume 2 Baltic Porter:
The Left Hand Fade to Black Volume 2 is a flat lout smoke monster. Made with 2-Row malts, Smoked Munich (smoked with Hackberry) malts, Malted Rye, Cara Aroma, Chocolate, Carafa, Special II, Carafa III and Magnum and Northern Brewer hops, the medium to full bodied porter stood out from all other porters at the beer fest.
10. Dogfish Head Red & White Belgian Style Wit Ale:
The Red & White Belgian Style Wit Ale is an easy drinking Belgian ale “brewed with coriander and orange peel and fermented with Pinot Noir juice.” WOW! Dogfish Head will try anything. The Red & White Ale is then aged in Oak tanks. An Oak tank? That’s first we’ve heard of that. It certainly sounds better than being aged in a metal vat, but can’t possibly provide the character of an oak barrel. Either way, the Red & White is a fabulous Belgian Wit. 10.0% ABV, 35 IBU. Dogfish Head Brewing. Rehobeth Beach, DE.
The Pittsburgh Steelers Fan, The Super Bowl & Iron City Beer
By Pat Smith
Pittsburghers aren’t short on pride. You’ll be reminded of this ad nauseam during Super Bowl week as journalists clamor for stories tying the football team to its city and the familiar caricature portrayed of its indigenous people. As a native, I live for this type of coverage; particularly any angle that insists I’m tougher and more blue collared than I let on. It doesn’t take too many forwards in your inbox touting, “You know you’re from Pittsburgh when….” to realize that embracing tradition is something we’re fiercely loyal about. It doesn’t matter if the particular tradition is worthy (pierogies, Primanti’s and fried fish slabs the size of a frisbee) or not so much (let’s just say that Pittsburghers have a blurry view regarding the parameters of what falls into Classic Rock). For too many outsiders, the composite sketch of a Pittsburgher has become all too predictable and short-sighted. Our character would find himself in where else, but a stadium lot. He’s not just bloated on the inside, compliments of hot sausage and cold beer, but he also suffers from the bloated ego of winning an unprecedented amount of Super Bowls. Fully robed in layers of Steeler gear (NFL licensed as well as the knock-off variety lining the sidewalks of the Strip District) the word “obnoxious” will undoubtedly be used to describe the ensemble. He has a Terrible Towel in one of his numb hands, and a can of Iron City in the other (he’s also slightly pot-bellied and more than slightly belligerent if you were to press for details, which your outsider will gladly offer up.)
Okay, so that’s not a stretch by any means. Let’s clear one thing up though: if we’re drinking Iron City, it’s more for tradition and hometown pride than anything else. Think of it as a roundabout way of supporting Pittsburgh sports. After all, Iron City was the first brewery to feature local teams and players on the can. You’ve heard the expression “take one for the team” and those are my thoughts each time I have to dull the gag reflex and swig the bottom of a bottle. Yet I’ve gone as far to say that there is nothing finer than taking a long pull off an ice-cold Iron City while tailgating in December. At the same time, there is also nothing worse. When it comes down to preparing for a big game, the pride overrides the palate.
As accurate as the stereotype may seem to fit, drinking Iron City isn’t some sort of rite of passage for teens growing up in western PA. We subscribed, as most teenagers can relate, to the proverbial bang for the buck when we were lucky enough to get our hands on a case of beer. If something tasted like shit, why would we aim to drink twice as much of it to get the same intended effect? This led to a steady diet of Mickey’s, Icehouse, and Keystone. This is back when a request for Honey Brown labeled you a borderline beer snob. It would be tough to argue that Iron City products are a beer that you graduate to because even the grizzled booze-hounds around town would refer to the local swill as “Iron Shitty” and turn their nose up as they sipped from a can of Budweiser. Everything changed for me when I went away to college. There’s a direct correlation between my Iron consumption and when we would all return home for a visit. I haven’t lived back in western PA in 15 years, so I find myself completely soaked up in the culture that raised me upon these return trips. The beer is usually centered on a Steelers game and shared amongst the friends I grew up with, so how can I give an objective profile of this beer? I recall a moment of clarity or two where I expressed my disdain for the beer, usually following a piss-poor effort by the black-and-gold, and that was all we had left to drink for the day. When it comes down to it, you will not get what I get from this beer. Upon pouring, you will get a beer that is pale yellow in color with sparse suds retaining miniscule head. You will get very little evidence of hops and maybe a dash of malt character. You may or may not pick up on the subtle notes of the Monongahela River. A fellow Pittsburgher will get all the previous mentioned, but it’s slightly more tolerable when that taste symbolizes the official beverage for the City of Champions.
Iron City Beer: The History of a Workingman’s Lager
By Tim Rodgers
Unfortunately, the Pittsburgh Steelers will be making yet another appearance in the Super Bowl. That means, I have to hear the attention seeking Pittsburgh native transplant puff out their chests and remind me how their squad has won 6 Super Bowl’s to my zero. (Present company aka WhiskeyGoldmines own P. Smith excluded of course– wink**) Dude, I know…your hometown sucks because there are no jobs there; so you moved here. And I know, Terry Bradshaw, Franco Harris, Mean Joe Green, Jerome “The Bus” Bettis, and Big Ben are good. I get it, and frankly, I don’t care. Oh by the way, whatever happened to “Slash” Kordell Stewart?
What I am more interested in however, is how these ole’ steel worker types coped with the everyday grind of sweating it out in the mills. A little “Iron City” Lager helped take that edge off. It was founded by Edward Frauenheim, a young German immigrant in 1866. During that time, Pittsburgh was establishing itself as an industrial superpower. The mills were busy, there were jobs for all, and according to Iron City itself, “the beer flowed freely.”
Iron City or Pittsburgh Brewing Company was instrumental in producing what we are accustomed to today as the traditional light American lager. Whether you are a fan of light American Lagers or not, what’s indisputable is that it is enjoyed and preferred by hundreds of millions of people, for better or for worse. Furthermore, Iron City trail-blazed beer making in the United States by introducing the following:
The “snap top” can, 1962, the twist-off reseal-able bottle top in1963, draft beer packaged in cans, aluminum beer bottles in 2004, the original light beer Mark V in 1976, and was the first brewery to have its own Presidential Candidate, Dan Crawley of Churchill, PA.
Although the Pittsburgh Brewing Company survived prohibition, it couldn’t survive the marketing budgets and those “highly clever” commercials, some of which feature old footage of random NFL coaches’ press conferences edited with a bunch of dudes making stupid comments. All of which seem to be in a context that makes little to no sense. As a result of those commercials and other genius marketing campaigns, the PBC filed for bankruptcy in 2005.
However, it was later relaunched by popular demand through some type of merger/acquisition with Latrobe Brewery who is known for making Rolling Rock.
Today, Iron City still lives on…
Iron City and the Steel Curtain helped that Blue Collar Pennsylvanian cope with the harsh realities of hard honest work, tough times, and making ends meet. The combination of the two brought happiness to a whole region of folks. What is better than that! Just don’t mix your Iron City Beer with quarterbacks from Ohio and your daughter in the bathroom…. and you should be alright!!!
By Pat Smith, Jeremy Thomson, Tim Rodgers, Paul Reiter & Matt Goldstein
Most people think to describe Macro brews as only Miller, Coors and Budweiser, but there are some large scale macro breweries out there brewing damn good beer, not just the American macro swill we’re all used to. The Whiskey Goldmine has compiled a list of beers and major breweries that simply make a phenomenal beverage and are sold on a massive scale. You’d be surprised at how many beers Sierra Nevada actually sells. We were surprised too.
1. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale:
5.6% ABV, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Chico, CA. The Sierra Nevada Company is the 5th largest brewery in the United States and by 2005; Sierra Nevada was in excess of $100 million in sales. The Pale Ale is the clear #1 here; it’s not even worth arguing. The Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is simply a perfect beer.
2. Newcastle Brown Ale:
4.7% ABV, Scottish & Newcastle UK. Newcastle Brown Ale is the #1 selling bottled beer in the UK and one of the best selling beers in Europe.
3. Sam Adams Boston Lager.
4.75% ABV. Boston Beer Company, Boston, MA. The Boston Beer Company is one of the largest breweries in the United States and for good reason. These guys just make great beer. Perhaps Sam Adams is being a little overshadowed by the recent craft beer fanaticism, but these guys have been doing great craft beer on a large scale for 25 years. Six weeks after its release in 1985, the Boston Lager was awarded the “Best Beer in America.”
4. Bitburger Premium Pilsner.
4.8% ABV, Bitburger Brewery, Germany. Bitburger is the #2 selling beer in Germany and one of the best cases of beer you can buy for under $20.00.
5. Yuengling Lager.
4.7% ABV, Yuengling Brewery, Pottsville, PA United States. The Yuengling Brewery is the 4th largest brewery in the United States and the Lager is a classic staple beer on the East Coast. Yuengling Lager Light might also be the best light beer in the world; without a doubt it’s Top 5.
6. Pilsner Urquell.
4.4% ABV. Plensky Prazdroj, Czech Republic. Perhaps the most famous Pilsner in the world, Pilsner Urquell is the #2 selling beer in the Czech Republic.
7. Warsteiner Premium Pilsner.
4.8% ABV. Warsteiner Brewery, Germany. Warsteiner is the #3 selling beer in Germany but has a huge market overseas. This is a great Pilsner. It also has one of the coolest labels in all of beer. You know you like it. Don’t kid yourself.
8. Stella Artois.
5.5% ABV. Stella Artois Brewing, Belgium. Stella Artois is the best selling Belgian beer outside of Belgium. Stella is a solid beer but tends to skunk easily.
9. Amstel Light.
3.5% ABV. Amstel Brewery, Amsterdam, Netherlands. Amstel Light is one of the best light beers in the world and the #1 imported light beer in the United States.
10. Dos Equis Lager.
4.5% ABV, Cervecería Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma, Monterey Mexico. We never thought we would put Dos Equis above Corona but last week, we tried a Dos Equis and a Corona with what might have been the greatest fajita ever, and the Dos Equis emerged as the ideal beer with Mexican cuisine. The Dos Equis is slightly thicker and slightly sweeter than Corona and it doesn’t need a god damn lemon. Dos Equis is the #3 selling beer in Mexico.
11. Corona Extra.
4.6% ABV. Grupo Modello, Mexico City, Mexico. I can already feel the craft beer geeks cringing as their reading this but who cares? Corona is a refreshing beer and perfect or the summertime. Corona is also the #1 selling imported beer in America.
12. Guinness Stout.
6.0%. Guinness Brewery, Dublin, Ireland. Guinness is the #2 beer in Ireland and Irelands #1 beer export. Guinness sells 2 billion pints a year. Guinness is the #1 selling stout in the world. If you like Guinness, try the Victory Donnybrook. They’re very similar but the Donnybrook has a bit more flavor and a bit more bite.
13. Heineken Lager.
5.0% ABV. Heineken Brewery, Netherlands. Heineken is the #2 selling imported beer in America and the 7th best selling beer in the world. It does skunk too easy though, but is still very refreshing.
14. Becks German Pilsner.
5.0% ABV. Becks Brewery, Bremen, Germany. Becks sells over 720 million liters a year. That’s not peanuts.
15. Red Stripe Jamaican Lager.
4.7% ABV, Desnoes & Geddes Brewing, Kingston Jamaica. Red Stripe is a very refreshing beer, especially when you’re watching the sunset in Montego Bay or dining on a cliff in Negril. However, after 8 days and nights at a Jamaican all inclusive with nothing other than Red Stripe, it gets a little tired. Red Stripe has over $8 billion in sales annually.
16. Carlsberg Pilsner.
5.0% ABV. Carlsberg, Denmark. Carlsberg dominates the Denmark beer market with 95% of total beer sales. That’s ridiculous.
Source: The Daily Bugle, the New York Times, the Guardian, Beerinfo.com, Faq.org & Beeradvocate.com
The Aventinus German Wheat Doppelbock is made by the award winning “wheat beer specialists” of the Schneider brewing. The Aventinus is the oldest wheat doppelbock of Bavaria, sold with the original recipe dating back to since 1907. This doppelbock, or double bock is dark brown in color, with reserved carbonation. The flavor is slightly sweet, smooth, dry and bitter with tastes of yeasts and essence of malts. It’s the perfect beer for the fall season.
Aventinus Wheat Doppelbock 8.2% ABV, original gravity: 18.5%, Germany
From the Scheider Weisse web site:
Enjoying Schneider Weisse: Wheat beer is a very sensual type of beer, as it has special qualities of its own. Among the fixed rituals are pouring it and clinking glasses. Both differ very much from other types of beer.
Pouring: Rinse a clean original 0.5 l wheat beer glass with cold water, hold it at a slight angle and pour the well-refrigerated Schneider Weisse in the glass. Important: the neck of the bottle mustn’t be “washed”. To get the full yeasty taste you leave a swallow of beer (in Bavarian: “Noagerl”) in the bottle, roll the bottle between your hands before pouring out this last bit.
Clinking glasses You clink glasses with their lower part: the foot. There are some reasons for doing so. The glasses are stable enough; it has been a tradition in Bavaria, and it sounds well. In addition, the carbon dioxide “gathers new speed” by the clinking. You did it. Now you can move the glass to your lips and enjoy the beer; slowly and thoroughly. Cheers!
Thank the lord they finally started serving craft beer at Sixers games because the Philadelphia 76’ers are almost unwatchable. The Donnybrook was a life savor and one of the best stouts we’ve had in a while. This craft beer isn’t trying to do too much. It’s just simply a Guinness with a little more flavor and bite. That’s it! Pure genius. If it’s one thing that Guinness lacks its definitely flavor and bite. Wait, that was two things. The Victory Donnybrook has strong notes of coffee with light notes of malt and is made with imported German 2 Row malts and roasted barley. 3.7% ABV
Victory Storm King Imperial Stout:
The pour is a thick loud slow sludge. The scent is a light imperial stout. The taste is bitter, heavy malts with notes of coffee. The sip has a mellow bite with a good finish and the aftertaste lingers. The malt is a slightly sweet on the finish with good dry hops. The Storm King is made with American Whole Flower Hops & Imported 2 Row Malts. 9.1% ABV
Boulder Brewing Mojo IPA:
The Mojo is pale in color and has a strong scent of flowery hops and bitter floral flavor. It’s a hop heavy but refreshing ale, perfect with a burger. The heavy floral flavor and subtle malls get sweet with a hint of citrus towards the finish and then sweeter as the beer flattens a bit. The Boulder Brewing Mojo IPA is made with Pale, Caramel and Wheat Malts with Amarillo and Centennial Hops. The Mojo is a classic IPA. 6.8% ABV
Stoudt’s Gold Lager:
Stoudt Gold is a Munich style Helle session beer. The Gold Lager has a scent of fruit with a dry bite and notes of fruit in the flavor. It’s a very light bodied, refreshing drinkable beer as a session beer should be. The Stoudt’s Gold Lager won five medals at the Great American Beer Festival and another medal at the world cup. This lager is made with Perle, Hallertau and Saaz hops with Two Row, Munich and Vienna mats. 4.7% ABV