November 29, 2012

Where In The Phoenix Beer World?

Do you know where in the beer world this photo was taken? How does it relate to Arizona beer?
The concept is simple. We post a picture that is relevant to the Phoenix area beer scene and you try and identify it. Sometimes there will be a larger story involved, but often there will not. So, for glory and a tip of the glass next time we see you. Please, no social media cheating!

In this instance, tell us precisely where this picture was taken.

November 20, 2012

Honey, I Had an Affair Last Week

No, not that kind of an affair. I had a date with one of Arizona's, perhaps the country's, most anticipated beer events of the year, the Beer for Brains Foundation's RAREaffair. Going to this choice charity soiree was a no-brainer.

Because two brains are better than one
This year's Affair boldly went where no beer has gone before — the Arizona Science Center. A Light Rail-friendly location, ideal for those who imbibed a bit much, the AZSC was a superb venue choice. The first few floors were wide open and featured interactive exhibits, live music, airbrush artist painting (see pic at right), sweet and savory noshes from more than a dozen restaurants and, of course, a plethora of palate-pleasing brews, spirits and wines. And since this is a beer-focused blog, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention some of the standout brews.

  • BJ's Whiskey Barrel-Aged Tatonka Stout (my fave of the night — awesome, Mr. Osborne)
  • Oskar Blues Barrel-Aged G'Night
  • Bell's Roundhouse Rye IPA
  • Ska On the Sly Again
  • Lost Abbey Framboise de Amorosa
  • Crispin Bird on a Wire
  • College Street Chocolate Stout
  • Four Peaks Barrel-Aged Sirius Black
  • Deschutes 2011 Abyss
  • Left Hand Ambidexterous Ale II

Head brainiac, Louis Dolgoff
But let us not forget the real reason why this event even happens in the first place — to unite as one and help battle brain cancer. We stand with "Dogfish" Louis Dolgoff, head brainiac at the Beer for Brains Foundation, as he works tirelessly to rid the world of the disease that took his wife, Laurie. Lou's vast knowledge of fine ales, food and promotional events is the perfect platform for various fundraising events throughout the Valley. If you haven't been to one, you might want to get your brain checked.

Wanna get involved? Visit the Beer for Brains Foundation online to learn about upcoming events, shop merchandise, donate money, volunteer your time and more. And don't forget to give a big thumbs up to the BFBF's Facebook page.

I'd like to leave you with a quote from our fearless leader, Mr. Rob Fullmer, who sums it up perfectly: "We're lucky to have (the RAREaffair). We're unlucky that it even exists at all." Word, Rob.

November 2, 2012

The Session #69 | The Perfect Beer World

The Session #69 brings us meta-questions on the Perfect Beer World. It appears to be a topic that the Session regulars are finding difficult to work with.

The Perfect Beer World? We are probably in it.

It's true that there are problems. Beer is still struggling for acceptance and there are regulatory concerns. Carlos Brito does not have your beer drinking interests at heart. James Bond drinks Heineken. We can't define craft beer because some of it sucks. We can't agree on the Shaker "pint".

We live in a world where there are more and more and more beer choices, perhaps more choices than at anytime in history and yet we can't stop complaining about it.
I'm guilty of it. Our mission here:
A local Phoenix Metro beer culture celebration and admonition.
I would say, I spend 60% of my blog time on the admonition and 40% of it on the celebration. The Perfect Beer World exists where the good ideas; the good beers; the good breweries still need plenty of hard work to get things done. We want that struggle. We need that struggle.

Consider that in a perfect beer world there would be no beer spoiling agents. But then we would probably have not needed hops or alcohol. We would not have wild ales or perfectly oxidized old ales. I want my hops and alcohol. I want flaws. I want inconsistencies.

Anything is possible in the beer world that we live in right now. Anything worth having.