Brew Like the President
....but not in Alabama
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- The owner of a
new, small beer, wine, and home brewing
supply shop reports that agents from the
Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control Board
raided his unopened store and took $7,000
worth of brewing supplies, boxes of brewing
kits, carboys, immersion chillers, and even
books about brewing.

Owner Kraig Torres said  "they've come into
my store with three armed men and threatened
to arrest my general manager on the grounds
that we have supplies in the store that can
be used to make beer."

Torres said he doesn't believe that it is illegal to
sell home brewing equipment, although it is
illegal to brew beer at home in Alabama.

A home brew bill passed the Alabama state
Senate one year and the House the next but
each just let it die in the other chamber.
Responding to popular demand from beer enthusiasts,
the White House has released the “secret” recipes for
two of President Obama’s home brews —
a honey ale and honey porter.

At that fast-thinking  homebrew entrepreneurs have been
scrambling to put together kits so beer lovers can create
the their own presidential beer at home, and supplies
have been flying off the shelf. Michael Dawson,
smanager of Northern Brewer Supply in St. Paul, Minn.,
says after the release of the recipes, his company
created two kits -- White House Honey Ale and Honey
Porter.  He is selling nearly 100 kits a day.

While ingredients for these homebrew kits won't include
honey and other ingredients grown in the White House
garden, they do include top-of-the-line specialty items
from Minnesota.Each kit includes all what’s needed:
specialty grains, a variety of hops, yeast, special priming
sugar, a pound of honey, and instructions to brew. The
process takes about six weeks and you can order the
White House brew kits for between $30 and $40.
Beer As Traveler's Checks -  Texas-born adventurer Justin Bratton traveled
from Shangdu in Inner Mongolia to Bangkok, following parts of the Spice Route
traversed by Marco Polo in the 13th century. The catch is that he carried no cash –
dozens of bottles of Heineken beer, which he then traded for rides, information and
other travel essentials. Accompanied by a film crew, he was also in regular contact
with the brewmeisters at Heineken, who made arrangements to top up his stash
whenever he was running low.

Walt Spins in Grave- For the first time in its 41-year history, the Disney's
Magic Kingdom will serve beer and wine daily to guests at a new restaurant in the
Orlando Park. The park is easing its long-held no-alcohol policy in response to
feedback from guests who said they wanted the option of beer and wine with their

Bud & Baseball -  For the last 30 years, the official beer of Major League
Baseball has been Budweiser. This week Anheuser-Busch InBev and the MLB
announced the partnership will remain in place through 2018. The deal gives
Budweiser the exclusive rights within the “malt beverage” category to use the
MLB marks and logos.

New Heinekens-  Heineken  is launching two new beers -- Amstel Wheat
and Tecate Michelada (michelada is a beer cocktail popular in Mexico that
combines beer with lime, salt, spices and hot sauce) -- in the USA. The Dutch
brewer hope to improve lackluster sales in the key U.S. market.The Netherlands
based Heineken, world's No. 3 largest brewery,  plans to rely less on Europe,
where beer drinking is expected to remain sluggish.

Brooklyn in Sweden

If you live in Colorado or California and enjoy the beers of
Brooklyn Brewery, you are out of luck. Despite its size as
the 13th largest craft brewer in the country, Brooklyn Brewery
does not distribute west of Minnesota.  However, if you live
in Stockholm, Sweden, it's a different story. Brooklyn
Brewery products are easy to find.

"Sales have really started to spike in Sweden," says
Ben Hudson, marketing director for Brooklyn Brewery.
"Now we're seeing a point where our beer is close to really
becoming mainstream [there]."So close to mainstream that
Sweden is now the second largest market for Brooklyn Brewery
outside of New York. Yes, you read that right.  

Fifteen percent of Brooklyn Brewery beer is exported overseas,
the largest percentage among craft brewers, according to Hudson.
In fact, of Brooklyn Brewery's top three market, two are overseas.
The United Kingdom ranks third, ahead of New Jersey and
Massachusetts, which  rank fourth and fifth.

Exporting overseas is easier for Brooklyn Brewery than most
other craft brewers because of its easy access to a shipping
port. "It's cheaper to ship kegs and bottles over the water in boats
and bulk tankers than it is to ship bottles on the roads across the
United States," Hudson added..

Send contributions for On Tap to
Edited by Jim Attacap