We are officially approaching the dog days of August, but it seems like we've been there for a couple of weeks already. The rest of the world characterizes the "dog days" as those times in August where the days stretch on for endless hours and are filled with heat and humidity that requires 24/7 air conditioning. Well, after experiencing 2+ weeks of these oppressively hot/humid days and it only now has become the month of August, we are a bit tired of the weather. We're going to need some help getting through whatever August has to throw at us. And we have the solution: Craft beer.
Actually there's more than that in this week's post. In fact, if you keep reading there is a surprise that will make you very, very
hoppy, uh, I mean, happy that you did.
Tuesday, August 2nd - Smuttynose Tap Takeover @ Rattle n' Hum, Manhattan:
No Smutty, No Beer. Know Smutty, Know Beer. They don't need to say a word more, it's literally as simple as that. New Hampshire's premier brewery will be hitting up Rattle n' Hum and owning their tap's this Tuesday night. They have an impressive list and will be adding a few secret surprises just to keep you intrigued. Check it out: 2010 S’Muttonator Doppelbock, 2010 Baltic Porter, 2010 Wheat Wine, 2011 Barleywine, 2011 Imperial Stout, 2011 Hommunculus, 2011 SSB#13 Noonan, Big A IPA, “Finestkind” IPA, Old Brown Dog, Robust Porter, Star Island Single and Shoal’s Pale Ale.
Rattle n' Hum is located at East 14 33rd Street between Madison and 5th Avenues, Midtown, Manhattan.
Wednesday, August 3 - Captain Lawrence Night @ The Double Windsor, Brooklyn:
One of our favorite New York State breweries will be making an much welcomed appearance in Brooklyn this Wednesday at the Double Windsor in Park Slope. Captain Lawrence (of the Beer Friends Final Four Fame!) will be bringing a slew of their favorite brews - St. Vincents Dubbel, Ginger Man Ale, Xtra Gold, Liquid Gold, Freshchester Pale Ale, Captain’s Reserve Imperial IPA and Kaptain’s Kolsch - for you to imbibe with pleasure.
And imbibe them in a pleasure-filled manner you shall.
The Double Windsor is located at 210 Prospect Park West between 15th and 16th Streets, Park Slope, Brooklyn.
Now we have a real surprise for you. It might seem like we're ending the events week prematurely, but it's only because Thursday is a big day. A really big, hoppy day. Welcome to...
Thursday, August 4 - International IPA Day!
Traditional IPA Class @ Jimmy's No. 43, Manhattan
Thought you knew everything about the world's favorite beer style? Think again. Time to get schooled at Jimmy's No. 43 this Thursday night. For a nominal fee ($25) you can participate in an incredibly informative, just over an hour long classes, taught by a couple of NYC beer legends - the esteemed professors of the New York City Degustation Advisory Team: Chris Cuzme of Wandering Star Brewing Co. and President of the New York City Homebrewers Guild and Mary Izett of National Beer Judge and blogger at mylifeoncraft.com. They won't only show you the ropes, they'll make you climb them all the way up to the brewery ceiling. The topic? India Pale Ales.
Right now you might be thinking - "wait, this sounds awesome, but 25 smackaroones and all I get is a lecture?." C'mon, this isn't college where a bunch of hack's overcharge you so they can have a pedestal to share their "worldly" opinions - the $25 gets you a whole bunch of IPA to drink as well.
So if you're like me and went to your classes a bit tipsy then it shouldn't be too far off from your college experience either.
Jimmy's No. 43 is located at 43 East 7th Street (downstairs), between 2nd and 3rd Avenues, East Village, Manhattan.
International IPA Day Event @ The Iron Monkey, New Jersey:
Don't worry Jersey - you get IPA's too! The Iron Monkey, one of Jersey City's finest craft beer bars, will be pouring the finest regional, national and international IPA's for all of Jersey's denizens to enjoy (it's might be a bit of a far drive from Atlantic City, but we recommend it none-the-less). There isn't an official list out yet, but as the big day approaches, the ladies and gents over at the Iron Monkey suggest checking in at the Iron Monkey Facebook page and the @theironmonkey Twitter feed for all those hop-head updates.
IPA-Day "Hop Wars" @ Cafe D'Alsace AND Rattle n' Hum, Manhattan:
Here at the Beer Friends we enjoy a bit of theatrics as much as the next guys. And this is the best, despite being the last. Possibly one of my favorite events of the year (in it's first annual inception) the IPA-Day "Hop Wars" will prove to be an epic battle between old school European styled IPA's and new school American style IPA's.
It is a hot-topic in all genres of creativity - pay homage to the old, the original or embrace the new and trail-blazing. This is the exact canyon that lies between European and American IPA's. European, although at the time they were created considered revolutionary flavor, are usually a bit more subdued, but more easily drinkable and tolerable in their flavor profile. On the contrary American IPA's (and craft beer in general) prides itself on pushing every boundary possible, including the list of boundaries to be pushed (oak-aging a dry-hopped beer brewed with vanilla, oranges and then refermenting it a few times and only serving it on cask seems like something that only arrogant American idealism could come up with).
I could say that this event looked to provide the world with a winner. An absolute champion. But I think it really will prove to highlight the immense care, craft, culture and creativity that goes in to beer brewing no matter what side of any of the ponds you brew on. Head up to Cafe D'Alsace, an Alsatian (French/German border) restaurant that also pride itself on it's international craft beer selection will be featuring Old World IPA's. We're talking German, Austrian and the original English style IPA's.
Rattle n' Hum will be featuring a boatload of American style IPA's. How many is a boatload? Twenty-five plus.
Cafe D'Alsace - Meantime IPA, Thornbridge Jaipur, Nogne-O IPA, Evil Twin Cat Piss and Mikkeller Willamette Single Hop
Rattle n' Hum - Barrier Ruthless Rye, Undarum, Dunegrass, Oil City & Medula, Smuttynose Big A, Two Brothers Hop Juice and Stone Ruination
Just to name a few for either place.
Cafe D'Alsace is located at 1695 2nd Avenue at the Southwest Corner of 88th Street, Upper East Side, Manhattan.
Rattle n' Hum is located at 14 East 33rd Street between Madison and 5th Avenue, Midtown, Manhattan.