other day a woman in Norway experienced something that is
generally limited to over-the-top Budweiser commercials. She turned on the tap
to wash her dishes and beer came out. She did what any sane citizen would do
and tried the beer. Apparently it was lacking in carbonation and mouthfeel.
out that two floors down there is a pub. They accidentally hooked up the new
keg to the water pipes and not the beer tap. Why do these sort of 'accidents'
never happen to me? I can just imagine the poor guy in the pub drinking water.
He was probably a little less thrilled about the whole thing.
KnuckleTonight we stopped in for pizza at Bostons. I asked what they had on
tap, I was about to choose a local micro, but the waitress said they had Bare
Knuckle. In typical style she said 'it's a very dark beer'. To me this
generally indicates that it's something worth drinking. But then again I have
had non beer types state this before only to get bud by a different name. The
name rang a bell but I did not recall who brewed it.
honest I think a lot of peoples opinions of this brew are tainted before they
even try it because they know it's an A-B product. Myself I think I had a
pretty open mind. To begin with it looked an awful lot like Guinness but the
head was finer and thicker, if that is even possible. It had very little aroma,
again a lot like Guinness. It had a slight roasted malt taste, a little more
roasty than Guinness has. It has very good head retention. Aside from the
slightly more roasted malt flavor it was pretty much Guinness as far as I am
concerned. To be fair I guess I should try them side by side sometime. It
didn't take me too many sips to conclude this might be an A-B product, why you
ask? Well for all the evil that A-B has done to the taste buds of Americans
they do have a lot of science and money behind them. It takes a lot of science
and money to turn out a brew of this quality. It's not your average micro brew.
Any Dry Irish Stout I have had from a micro was a lot hoppier than this. This
is obviously an attempt by A-B to replicate and compete with Guinness.
must admit that I am an Imperial Stout and Porter type. Dry Irish Stouts are
not my favorite. But I respect them, I respect Guinness, Murphy's, and Beamish
too. I think they are all in their own right good ales. I find it hard to
believe that Murphy's makes a better brew than A-B. If you want to argue the
point on Guinness or Beamish fine, but if you ask me it's a close one. So I
encourage you to be open minded on this one. Granted on a blind taste test I am
sure you could define it, but if you're honest I don't think you can totally
disregard it as some flavor lacking waste of keg space as many have.
excited to find out that this month's selection of the beer club I belong to
was Anchor Liberty Ale. I am a huge Anchor Brewing fan. It is my opinion that
it is the best domestic brewery. My favorite beer is Anchor Porter, I also
enjoy their Steam Beer. It had been a while since I'd drank a Liberty Ale.
recall the following post that I submitted shortly after visiting the brewery.
let the humble advertising mislead you, Anchor is the best domestic brewery.
They do not use unitanks for their brewing. Instead they use open fermentation.
But first let me back up a little with my story. I spoke with Mark Carpenter
who arranged for Phil Rogers to give us a tour. Mr. Rogers is in charge of
training and overseeing the regular tour guides during tour season. Due to my
poor navigating skills Jeremy and I arrived about an hour late. Mr. Rogers
needed to head out to another appointment in ten minutes. He however was
extremely kind to us and gave us over an hour of his valuable time.
us a brew or two while we waited. I was able to experience Anchor Porter on tap
at the Anchor Tap Room! What an awesome experience. Then he took us out onto
the brewfloor while they were brewing. One of their top brewers opened the
brewpot for us, allowed to stick our heads into the Mash Tun and the Lauter
Tun. Then after leaving the copper kettle brewroom we proceeded into the
cleanroom. In the cleanroom there were thousands of gallons of beer in open fermentation
right before our eyes. Stainless tanks not more than a few inches deep held
fermenting Anchor Steambeer. Then we proceeded to the hop storage area. There
Mr. Phil Rodgers allowed us to see, feel and smell the differences between
various hop varieties. From there we went to other fermentation areas, the
basement with the conditioning tanks, and then the bottling line.
we were able to visit and share a pint with a half dozen brewery employees most
of whom were brewers. I was able to ask technical questions about the beer and
they graciously provided satisfying answers.
leaving out so much of the story. I could probably write a book about the
experience and still not be giving the full picture of why of Anchor Brewing is
the best brewery in the U.S.
their process reminded me of how I brew my own beer. They use natural
conditioning to carbonate their beer. They then keep it under pressure while
they process and bottle the beer. Their method of homogenization is superior in
that is it very quick and not done in the bottle therefore preserving the true
character of the brew.
ever find yourself in San Francisco be sure to visit Anchor Brewing! "
Ale was first introduced on April 18th, 1975 to commemorate the bicentennial of
the famous ride by Paul Revere. If it had been five months later it could also
have marked 6,000 years of mans existence on earth. But that is another
to Anchor's site "Before it became a permanent year-round product, variations
of our Liberty Ale formula enjoyed brief tenures as Our Special Ale."
Ale's appearance is golden honey, with a lacy fine head that quickly
dissipates. Its hop bouquet like its taste was amazing. It's very clear that
this brew is dry hopped with very fresh whole hops. Extremely crisp and
refreshing the Cascade hops pretty much jump out at you. This is just one of
Anchor's amazing brews. I highly recommend it. A nice one to try at home if you