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The Beer Friends write, review, and discuss Craft Beer as fans instead of experts.  They share their unique voice and affinity for craft beer through multiple platforms and offer a range of media to join their craft beer conversation.

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Filtering by Tag: Brooklyn

BFF4 2013! NY/CA Round 1

Beerfriend Paul

We head into our fourth and final region in round 1.  This region highlights the region that The Beer Friends reside.  We have done a lot of New York breweries here due to the abundant availability here in NYC. We also thought they matched up with some of the great California brews that we have done. Voting will end on Friday, Round 2 to start early next week. Make sure you cast your vote in the East, Midwest, and West region. If you need some help deciding you can click on the links to each video for our “expert” opinion. If you’d like to tell us why one of these beers should win over the other you can tweet us @thebeerfriends, it won’t help that beer win any but we’ll enjoy it.

#1 vs #16

Lagunitas Censored Red Ale vs Fire Island Pumpkin Barrel Ale

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#2 vs #15

Brooklyn Black Ops vs Blue Point Hoptical Illusion

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#3 vs #14

Sixpoint Righteous vs Empire Strong Ale

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#4 vs #13

Sierra Nevada Southern Tier Harvest 2011 vs Brooklyn Sorachi Ace

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#5 vs #12

Lagunitas Sucks Holiday Ale vs Southern Tier Pumking

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#6 vs #11

Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye vs Brooklyn Pennant 55

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#7 vs #10

Bear Republic Red Rocket vs Sixpoint Autumnation 2011

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#8 vs #9

Stone Collaboration Saison vs Lagunitas Hop Stoopid

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Beer Review 130: Sixpoint Brownstone

Brad

Hello Beer Friends Nation! For those of "The Beer Friend Nation" that is in the areas affected by Hurricane Sandy, we wish you safety and health in the days ahead, hopefully our stupid little blog can provide a few laughs in the process.

Today we review a brewery affected by Sandy, Sixpoint Craft Ales.  We've review everything we could get our hands on from Sixpoint, whether from Growlers, Cans or Live Blogs - and today we expand the can reviews with Brownstone, a true Brooklyn beer.  Brownstone is a Brown Ale named for the famous Brownstone's that line many Brooklyn streets.  Sixpoint Craft Ale's website calls it their "fortress" which I can only assume (and believe I heard somewhere) that this is their first brew... and if it is they knew what they were doing from the beginning.

To help and donate to relief efforts of Hurricane Sandy please visit the Red Cross website.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRSElUP8uXc]

Sixpoint Reviews: Bengali Tiger Growler - Sweet Action - Bengali Tiger - The Crisp - Righteous - Diesel - Autumnation - Resin - Apollo

Beer Review 123: Sixpoint Apollo

Brad

Hello Beer Friends Nation! This weeks SPotW is part of the seasonal series from Sixpoint Craft Ales in Redhook, Brooklyn.  It's no secret that the Beer Friends love Sixpoint and love what they are doing with their cans.  The art, the size (tallboys) and the quality is a great look in to a craft brewery growing and improving their brand daily.  In honor of the recent Olympics - SPOILER ALERT:  This is a Bavarian style wheat beer with Belgian roots - guess who's gonna hate it? Sixpoint! Nanokegs! Sun God!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdSNp3xZowg]

Sixpoint Reviews: Bengali Tiger Growler - Bengali Tiger - Sweet Action - The Crisp - Righteous Ale - Diesel - Autumnation - Resin

Beer Review 106: Sixpoint Resin

Brad

Hello Beer Friend Nation! In the Beer Friends constant effort to drink everything Sixpoint produces - we occasionally video tape ourselves doing it.  This week we tried the very sought after Resin, a Double IPA that was just announced as a year round brew from Sixpoint.  Sixpoint has always been known for doing killer stuff on draft and last year they started selling their stuff in Nanokegs.  This turned back the clock for the Beer Friends  and every new can or design was like diving into a new pack of baseball cards.  Be sure to check out our other Sixpoint reviews below the video.  Sixpoint! Double/Imperial! #Nanokegs!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcmLU7C2aVQ]

Bengali Tiger from Draft - Bengali Tiger - Sweet Action - Righteous Ale - The Crisp - Autumnation - Diesel

2008-2012 Leap Year Aged Beer: Blog from The Gate, Brooklyn

Graham

It takes a community to build a house but only one man to live blog a fantastic beer event. Or does it? The guys at the Gate have kept six kegs in the deepest dankest part of their basement and tonight this one Beer Friend is drinking his share. Here's the lineup, each one keg aged four years:

J.W. Lees Manchester Star Samuel Adams Chocolate Bock Hitachi no Nest Celebration Ale Sprecher Bourbon Barrel Scotch Abbaye Des Rocs Grand Cru Allagash Curieux

Graham's First - Sprecher Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale

Let's recap an important conversation:

Me: How's the bourbon barrel scotch ale. Bartender: How is it? It's kinda f$ck%n awesome. Me: Then I kinda f#ck€n want some.

Small pour of epic deliciousness.  Five weeks of bourbon barrel aging already puts it over the top but keg age the brew for 5 years and it really opens up.  Your talking each delectable flavor of the brew: hints of vanilla, sugar, smoke and wood.

Over the top flavors of bourbon. Which I suppose includes all those aforementioned flavors. Did I mention that I love bourbon?

Graham's Second - Allagash 2008 Curieux

Another recap - the last beer was dark. Like the soul of a southern republican. It was bourbon aged with 6 different malts and two different hops. Bourbon/whiskey aged means nothing constant to anything however. The Allagash Curieux proves that. Aged 2 months in Jim Beam barrels at first sip one wouldnt know the difference - until you got real deep into it. The vanilla from the oak/whiskey barrels is dominant. Belgian flavors are reserved but present and the 9.5% ABV is non-existent.

Cloudy (as hell, which is most likely cloudy) and blonde-ish this beer defines what a bourbon aged Belgian should. Awesome.

All-in-all this is one of the most delicious beverages with this much flavor east of the Mississippi.

Graham's Third - Hitachino Nest  Celebration 2008

Apparently one of the rarest breweries on the planet after the tsunami - located right where that terrible wave hit.  This beer was brewed a bit before the disaster and and after four years of aging it was delicious.

This beer gives...er...has great head.  They serve a 10 oz. pour in a pint glass because the head is so active.  And it's not empty fizzy head either - it's packed with the aromatic flavors of the beer. Speaking of the beer's flavors...

This is a light colored, intriguingly spiced winter warmer.  If you were wondering what a Japanese winter warmer would taste like this is it...on four year aged steroids.  Very spicy but definitely verging on sweet at some points.  Flowing in between the orange/vanilla side and the coriander/nutmeg/cinnamon side.  All the while staying incredibly smooth.  One of the best brews of the night.

Thanks to the guys and gals at the Gate! You guys really know how to rock an imaginary type of day in the right type of way!

Beer Review 101: Empire Strong Ale

Brad

Hello Beer Friends Nation! Over the hump... 101.  Feels good.  Idle Hands in Alphabet City NYC does some great events - one happened a few weeks ago was one to remember.  Empire Brewing came in and swept 3/4 Beer Friends away (1/4 of the Beer Friends couldn't make it - otherwise they would've been batting a thousand).  Two staples you can find of Empire Brewing are their Cream Ale and the IPA, but we became resourceful and got our hands on a growler of Strong Ale.  The beer is delicious, the events are great and we'll buy you a pint if you spot us there!  Beer Events!  101! Drink Local!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAiB7JhtT-A]

Beer Review 100: Sixpoint Diesel

Brad

Hello Beer Friends Nation! "I'd like to thank my friends and family, those that supported me in low times, thank you Gigi, my little girls watching at home and most of all the academy, thank you!"  It needs a little work, but we had barely any time to work on it (or about 100 weeks...)  We made it.  100 reviews.  100 videos of a "bunch of boring dudes drinking beer on camera."  This week we return to one of our favorite breweries - Sixpoint from Redhook, Brooklyn.  The Beer Friends have always been huge fans of Sixpoint and it was like Christmas when we could get their stuff in cans.  We quickly ran out and reviewed our favorites, our new favorites, newer beers to Sixpoint, old standby's, and their first seasonal.  Now this Black IPA/Stout mix - Diesel comes along and confuses some people on it's exact style and admittingly the Beer Friends were confused as well - until we went to the source and sought out the truth.  Thanks to all the viewers out there who caught us for the first 100, and keep watching for the second 100!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-YeNlbtmzY]

New York City Craft Beer Events for the Week of September 25, 2011

Graham

Every year, like clockwork, right around this time a question comes up:  What does one do the week after NYC Craft Beer Week?  It's a tough question.  Craft Beer Week was incredible, as always, with the Beer Friends hitting up at least one event every day.  What do we do now that there isn't quite the dozen or so beer events to choose from every day?  Well, we're going to help you answer that question.  There is life after NYC Craft Beer Week.  Here it is: Tuesday, September 27 - Fermented Craft Beer Crawl @ The East Village, Manhattan:

Here at the Beer Friends we are men of the masses.  So usually I try to stray away from advertising events that require entry fees or cover charges.  We dig the every man for himself, pay as you go lifestyle.  Unless however, something really cool that's a great deal pops up.  This is one of those times.

The Fermented Craft Beer group Urban Oyster would like you to take you on a tour of craft beer in the East Village.  The tickets are $60, but they include tours of several craft beer bars, a visit to a beer store, information on brewing beer, food and beer pairing and of course, the most important part - 10 brews and food to help you soak up the booze.  Take your girl out to dinner and you'll easy spend $60 on a couple drinks each and your food.  Why don't you treat yourself instead?

The Location comes along with the tickets which can be purchased online here at Urban Oyster's website.

Wednesday, September 28 - Craft Can and Grilled Cheese Night @ Nita Nita, Brooklyn:

When was the last time you had a really good cave aged Gruyere grilled cheese sandwich?  Along side three or four cans of delicious craft beer?  Don't worry if you can't answer, we have one for you:  This Wednesday.  Hit up Nita Nita for their craft beer can Wednesdays.  You can get that cave aged Gruyere grilled cheese alongside your choice of two canned craft beers for $15.   And you can have it in their heated garden.  Outdoor beer and grilled cheese?  A given.

Nita Nita is located at 146 Wythe Avenue on the corner of North 8th Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Thursday, September 29 - Ballast Point Draft Event @ Bierkraft, Brooklyn:

Bierkraft is skipping their IPA event this month only, which could potentially be disappointing.  However, they're replacing it with seven draft lines and two casks from Ballast Point Brewery out of San Diego (SoCal Craft Brewery Tour!).  Awesome.  Ballast Point never disappoints.  Bierkraft never disappoints.  You, will not be disappointed.  Check out what Ballast will be bringing:

Big Eye IPA Pale Ale Sculpin Calico Amber Reef Rye Fathom India Pale Lager Sour Wench

Casks: Sculpin Black Marlin Porter

Sound disappointing?  Didn't think so.

Bierkraft is located at 191 5th Avenue between Union and Berkeley Streets, Park Slope, Brooklyn.

Saturday, October 1 - Oktoberfest! @ The Bohemian Beer Hall & Beer Garden, Queens:

Happy October!  A special month for any beer enthusiast.  The turn of the seasons coupled with a turn of the beer flavors.  As the days get chillier and colder, the brews get darker and spicier.  The famous Bohemian Beer Hall & Beer Garden in Astoria is without a doubt the place in New York to kick off this favorite month of ours.  In recent years the Astoria Beer Garden, as it's commonly known, has embraced American craft beer more and more.  Head out there to taste what Germans and Americans think about Fall, Harvest, Pumpkin and Octoberfest brews.  The month kicks of Saturdays with promotional prices, pig roasts, live entertainment and FREE beer tastings.  And of course, there will be girls in lederhosen - the only thing more important than the craft beer.

The Bohemian Beer Hall & Beer Garden is located at 29-12 24th Avenue between 31st and 29th Streets, Astoria, Queens.

New York City Craft Beer Events for the Week of September 4, 2011

Graham

This has been a busy summer for the Beer Friends.  We've been through an earthquake, two regional brewery tours (Southern California, Boston/Massachusetts), three of us relocated within the boroughs and finally, to top it all off, a hurricane-the first to hit New York in like 300 years (give or take a few decades).  And none of it could stop us.  This tumultuous summer has come to a close, we'll miss the sun and relaxation - but we're already gearing up for the fantastic craft beer season that autumn brings us.  Let's start off the fall correctly. Tuesday, September 6 - Tuesday Night Tastings: Farmhouse Ales @ Bierkraft, Brooklyn:

I know this week's intro was intriguing, invigorating and inspiring.  Now disregard it.  Just for tonight.  Farmhouse is not quite the style of brew you'd expect to start the fall with, but it's not exactly the worst style to spend an evening imbibing.  Bierkraft will turn it's craft-beery eyes towards the brews that characterize France and Belgian farms during springtime this evening and you should  expect some unique interpretations of the style as it has become a favorite of craft brewers in America for experimenting purposes.  You can find them spicy, herbal, grassy, Belgian-y, candyish and hoppy.  And you can find all types of farmhouse stylings tonight at Bierkraft.  Dr. Carl Burger will be on hand to walk you through the tasting and as always the whole shebang is free.

Bierkraft is located at 191 5th Avenue, between Union and Berkeley Streets, Park Slope, Brooklyn.

Thursday, September 8 - Smuttynose Promo to Benefit Sanctuary @ The Half Pint, Manhattan:

Drinking for a good cause is a good idea.  Drinking great beer for a good cause is a great idea.  Smuttynose and The Half Pint are throwing a charity bash to benefit the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary.  Smuttynose will be bringing the Farmhouse Saison, Pumpkin, Robust Porter and Star Island Single and The Half Pint will be generously donating 25% of the nights tab to Sanctuary.  They'll also be serving smashingly good food from Blossom du Jour - from which 100% of the proceeds will be donated.  Another way in which drinking great beer helps us feel awesome.

The Half Pint is located at 76 West 3rd Street, on the corner of Thompson Street, Greenwich Village, Manhattan.

Thursday, September 8 - The Bronx Brewery Pale Ale (Re)Release @ The Bronx Ale House, The Bronx:

Reflection is a good thing.  Awhile ago (you can find it all the way back when) the Bronx Brewery released their first brew, the Bronx Pale Ale at the Bronx Ale House.  Apparently they've spent the past 6 months refining their recipe and are releasing it yet again.  This time only tastier.  A deep amber pale ale brewed with 5 malts , dry hopped with Cascade and Centennial hops and left unpasteurized for a filling body.  Head over to the Bronx Ale House, in Riverdale, this Thursday to sample this recreation.

The Bronx Ale House is located at 216 West 238th Street, Riverdale, The Bronx.

Saturday, September 10 - I Love New York Beer Weekend @ Mug's Ale House, Brooklyn:

It's no secret that the Beer Friends love New York.  That's why this event is one of our yearly favorites.  Mug's will be pouring 24 lines of brew straight from New York's finest breweries.  We're talking Empire, Ommegang, Captain Lawrence, Kelso, Sixpoint, Brooklyn, Ithaca, Keegan...the list goes on and on and never gets old.  It starts Saturday and goes on all weekend, but the good stuff will run out fast so get there early.

Mug's Ale House is located at 125 Bedford Avenue, Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Saturday, September 10 - GRAB Specialty Foods Saturday Tastings - Pretty Things Beer and Ale Project @ GRAB Specialty Foods, Brooklyn:

The friendly staff over at GRAB Specialty Foods are bringing another great brewery into their store this Saturday for your tasting pleasure - Pretty Things Beer and Ale Project!  Pretty Things, a self-proclaimed gypsy, small batch, artisinal brewery, with no real home but a real knack for brewery delicious beer, will be bringing some of their finest to GRAB Specialty Foods.  You can expect their flagship - Jack D'or - but look for some other rare and delicious offerings including Baby Tree and St. Boltoph's.  Because they only brew when the funds and spaces are available to do so they have a limited selection, but it also means that there is a tremendous amount of care that goes into each one of their quality batches.  As always, the knowledgeable staff at GRAB will walk you through any brew questions that pop into your head.

GRAB Specialty Foods is located at 438 7th Avenue between 14th and 15th Streets, Park Slope, Brooklyn.

New York City Craft Beer Events for the Week of August 1, 2011

Graham

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.

Short list:

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.