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/// HEARD IT THROUGH THE HOPVINE
 
AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 1994 » BACK TO HOPVINE INDEX
 
HEARD IT THROUGH THE HOPVINE
Our dedicated reporter, Mark Garetz, tenaciously dogged the PR types at Anheuser-Busch to get the story on their Elk Mountain Amber Ale. After finally getting someone who knew the story and would talk to the press, Mark learned that the beer would be "draught only," according to the spokesPRson. His next call was to Cal Glass in Oakland, CA, to get some brown long-necks for brewing. "Sorry," they replied, "A-B in Fairfield just bought all they could get to bottle their new Amber Ale." Hmmm...

Having a brewpub in mid-town Manhattan may have its drawbacks, but owner Kirby Shyer has been the darling of the media types of late from stories in Gourmet, Bon Appetite, Brandweek and Smart Money magazines to TV exposure on the Food Network and F/X cable channel. Look for a spread in the August '94 Penthouse! ("Honest, honey, I bought it for a beer story.") The angle? Let's see... they both sell jugs...

Our old CompuServe Beer Forum buddy Hubey Plummer forwards a note about an odd new export: dehydrated beer! And, it's from the Czech Republic, home of Pilsner Urquell! The report (in Time magazine, July 4) says that when you add water to this beer powder and wait ten days, you get a cool refreshment that "looks like beer, tastes like beer and has a head too... It is beer, and a good one at that." Welcome, ex-commies, to the wonderful world of free enterprise and marketing...

THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING BRAIN!!! The Associated Press reports on a study by a Sydney University professor that showed brain shrinkage in alcoholics who drank as few as eight beers a day. Autopsy studies were carried out on the brains of people who had a history of consuming up to 30 drinks a day. I guess we've always known that excessive alcoholic consumption kills brain cells... but only the weak ones!... Meanwhilst - The Russian Gov'ment has seen fit to release the inmates of the prison camps for alcoholics (many of whom celebrated their release with shots of vodka!). At one time there were 213 camps holding 143,000 alcoholics. Foreigners with Shrinking Brain Syndrome: perhaps we could send them to New York as cab drivers? Just a thought...

THIS JUST IN: 2,000 people participated in the annual Nude Chili Cookoff held at the Treehouse Fun Ranch in Devore, CA (San Bernardino County). Hey, why not do a combined event with the Nude Brewers of Gainesville, Florida!? Sort of a nekked brew 'n toot...

Ya Gotta Have Hart Dept: The brewers at Hart Brewing (makers of Pyramid Ales) scored a major media coup with their Espresso Stout. "Caffeine taste and a beer-bottle budget," said Lourdes Lee Valeriano in The Wall Street Journal. And Jay Leno on the Tonight Show observed, "Oh good, a coffee beer! Now you can stay up all night going to the bathroom." And speaking of slick marketing, kudos to Big Basin Bistro in Saratoga, CA, for their Red, White and Blue feature around the 4th of July: Red ales, White wines and oysters, and the Blues.

The U.S. Congress designated "American Beer Week" in 1993. You can help celebrate October 23 through 29 by buying a great American beer and going to the Great American Beer Festival in Denver. "American Beer Week" could be in response to "American Weak Beer," which has been promoted by Budmillercoors for years...

Herb Caen, who writes a column in the San Francisco Chronicle that looks suspiciously like this one (and has done it waay longer), noted a Moosehead Beer ad for a local store that claimed, "Susannah Oland began brewing (Moosehead) in Nova Scotia in 1865 and 'Susannah's ancestors remain active in the company today!'" "Her ancestors??" said Herb, "Gimmee another slug of that stuff." Would Susannah be among the first of the modern "brewsters?"

When the comet hit the planet Jupiter, the place to be was Jupiter!... Jupiter pub on Shattuck in Berkeley, that is. A local radio station did a promotion there with classic Mercury Comet cars out front and "Comet Gary" and "Jupiter J. Paul" pizza being served, with proceeds going to the Make A Wish Foundation. Extra marks all around for a good cause. And me? No Comet!

Hey! Is This On The Level Dept: Studies have shown that the higher the altitude, the worse the hangover. Also, high-altitude drinkers typically get drunk more quickly than sea-level drinkers. Lessee, if you pounded a few on Mt. Whitney and drove down to Death Valley... Check out the condom dispensor at SF's Gordon Biersch. Two slots for condoms and one for Tylenol. If you're date says, "Not tonight - I have a headache," you pull out the Tylenol! This, my friends, is progress!!!

 

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