|The Missing Count Chocula
|Beer From Rocks
|Strange Brewery: Garage Project is a
Wellington, New Zealand company pushes the
envelope with every batch of beer. In the past,
they’ve counted superheated volcanic rocks,
submarines, and hashish made from hops
among their brew-making toolkit.
The brewery’s Red Rocks Reserve has become
a bit of cult classic with beer aficionados for
reviving the ancient technique of flash-boiling
beer. The technique, known as “Stein Beer”,
requires volcanic rocks to be heated to over
900° F. Once it gets to temperature, the red
ale is run through the rocks, which causes the
brew to go “absolutely spastic,” and flash-
caramelizes the sugars in the wort.
Fortunately Wellington has an abundance of
blood-red rocks, which were spewed up in a
volcanic eruption hundreds of years ago. They
proved perfect for the job.
|For some people in Fort Collins, the annual arrival
of Count Chocula cereal is a highlight of the year.
So when shoppers in the Colorado town went
searching for the monster-themed marshmallow
delicacy, they were perturbed that they couldn't find
it at any of the local supermarkets. The culprit has
finally stepped forward: Black Bottle Brewery admitted
it scooped up the entire Chocula supply from to concoct
the next variety in its Cerealiously beer series.
Previous potent potables in the beer maker's series have
been created using Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Golden
Grahams, and Reese's Puffs. "We did it as a joke at first,
but the beer turned out well," the general manager of the
brewery, which also makes lagers, ales, and IPAs with
such quirky names as "Social Insecurity" and "Bugger
Off," tells the Coloradoan. Cerealiously Count.
However there is good news for chocoholic lovers in
the town- emergency supplies of Count Chocula have
been ordered. Until then we recommend Cheerios
with some chocolate stout poured on top.
The Return of Boilermakers
In the last year or so, the boilermaker, as the classic combo of a shot of
whiskey and a beer is often called, has elbowed its way into many upscale
bars where the bartenders know their aperitifs from their digestifs.
Like slinging Pabst and cranking up the music, the return of boilermakers is a
symptom of the cocktail world’s recent turn to a more relaxed focus.
Recently a menu filled with amaro- or mezcal-based drinks was a signal to
customers that a cocktail bar took its trade seriously but now things have
changed. Although some involved in this trend sill pair the usual cheap-
whiskey-and-cheaper-beer marriages, often involving either Old Grand-Dad
bourbon or Mellow Corn, a Kentucky whiskey, others have pushed the
envelope to the delight of customers. A popular and trendy combo today is
the Well-Travelled Shorty, which matches a slug of aquavit with Blanche de
Bruxelles, a Belgian ale. Another favorite is Tecate beer set up with a shot of
Mandarine Napoléon orange liqueur. So popular has the new boilermaker
become that top bars often feature a different shot and beer each week.
A big key to the growing popularity of boilermakers are bartenders who see it
as a handy way to showcase spirits and beers they personally enjoy. The big
question however is in what sequence should you drink the shot and the beer.
Some prefer to knock back the shot and then move on to the beer. Others
champion going back and forth, sipping on each in turn. The "modern
traditionalist" method is to drop the shot, glass and all, into the beer, then
proceeds to drink. One caveat - remember the trendy crowd embracing this
is the same one responsible for the rise of Pabst Blue Ribbon.
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