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/// HEARD IT THROUGH THE HOPVINE
 
OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2010 » BACK TO HOPVINE INDEX
 
HEARD IT THROUGH THE HOPVINE
Fried and True Dept.: The Texas Fried Frito Pie may have won the “Best Taste” in the Big Tex Choice Awards at the Texas State Fair, but fried beer got most of the attention. Yes, I said fried beer. FB was up against some crispy competition. Other contenders included fried club salad, fried frozen margarita, fried chocolate and fried lemonade. Nothing, it would seem, escapes the fryer’s basket. To make fried beer, you have to put the beer inside a pretzel-like pocket. Inventor Mark Zable is using Guinness currently but may switch to Shiner Bock or Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. Progress…

Some Belgian beers are sour on purpose. Then there’s the Stella Artois brewery in Leuven, Belgium, which had a production glitch where some 12,000 barrels of Stella, a golden lager, got contaminated after a run of Abbey of Leffe, resulting in a very uncharacteristically sour batch of Stella. The problem wasn’t detected until product had been sent to pubs all over Belgium. Over half of the sour lager was on a ship heading to the U.S. when the recall went out from Anheuser-Busch InBev, the brewer. The union representing some A-B InBev workers blamed the problem on job cuts and cost reductions implemented by the brewer. Hey, they have to pay for that $52 billion leveraged buyout of A-B somehow…

Terroir, meet Dirtoir. Those rogues at Rogue Ales in Newport, Ore., are always pushing someone’s envelope. Not a brewery to peacefully coexist alongside fancy French wine, the rogues at Rogue have come up with this Gallic giggle: Chatoe Rogue Dirtoir Black Lager. This beer is a “GYO Certified Second Growth Appellation.” Right. The brewery gets bragging rights via its 42-acre micro hop yard located in Oregon’s Wigrich Appellation. And the Rogue GYO (Grow Your Own, don’t GMO) barley farm is located in Oregon’s Tygh Valley Appellation. Rogue remains committed to saving the terroir of Oregon hops and barley, one acre at a time, thus making Rogue brewers known terroir-ists. Welcome to the no-fly list, you guys…

Talk about crashing the party. Just after closing time at Philly’s famed beer temple, Monk’s Café Belgian Beer Emporium, a SEPTA bus crashed into the front wall. Owner Tom Peters was in the back bar and quickly got the few remaining people out without further incident. The famed Belgian beer bar was closed for a few days, but repairs were made quickly. We’re sure that some commemorative beer will be brewed to remember the bus intruder. Das Bus from Bas at Urthel?…

What does a hop-happy brewery in Victoria, B.C., get itself for its ninth anniversary? How about a nine-megaton hop bomb that out-hops last year’s Phillips Crazy 8s Annu-ale! Hop-heads all hail 9 Donkeys of the Hopocalypse from Phillips Brewery. “9 Donkeys?” you say? Well, the number nine refers not only to the nine different hops used, but also to Phillips’s ninth year of brewing. The donkey part? Well, according to the brewery, “There sure are a few asses around the Phillips epicentre.”

For those who have had just about enough of über-alcoholic beers poured into stuffed dead animals (thanks, BrewDog), meet Internet beer grouch Bill C., who wrote recently: “I hope every one of you who fails to see the marketing ploy you bit hook, line, and sinker stops at every dead animal on the road and gives it a nice burial. I am currently brewing beer in a live moose. It’s easy. Just give him malt and wheat and yeast, and when he puffs up, tap him. Can I get a mass overreaction please?” You go, Bill… Cleveland fans have every right to be spiteful, but this may be downright masochistic. In the wake of LeBron James “taking his talents to South Beach,” Great Lakes Brewing Company has released a new India pale ale called “Quitness.” The beer has been specially crafted to leave a bitter taste in the mouths of those who consume it…

Maj. Gen. Fred Ascani, a WWII bomber pilot, Air Force test pilot, record-setting air racer and overseer of a highly publicized supersonic aircraft project of the 1960s, died March 28 at his home in Alexandria, Va. He was 92. When Gen. Ascani commanded an air wing in West Germany in the mid-1950s, famed test pilot Chuck Yeager was one of his squadron commanders and in his autobiography recalled that his boss was a strict disciplinarian even while allowing Friday afternoon drunken beer-guzzling contests among his pilots. “He came in one Friday, saw the guys staggering around the bar with their shirts unbuttoned and ties undone, and took me and the other squadron commanders aside and reamed us out: ‘I don’t care how drunk they get, but we’re gonna look military doing it. I want those ties and shirts buttoned even when they hit the deck.’” They don’t make ’em like that anymore…
 

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