Per usual, we’ll be hosting our Friday night weekly tasting this evening. We’ve got four wines & four beers that cover a wide spectrum of tastes. Head over to our tasting page for the specifics!
We also brought in a few new products this week. On the wine side we brought in a new Pinot Noir from Dreaming Tree that’s a very easy drinking choice, and with springtime holidays and events coming up, this wine is a crowd pleaser and very easy to pair with food. Learn more about this California Pinot Noir here.
Additionally, we brought in a new rosé from Barnard Griffin that is made from 100% Sangiovese grapes, which gives this wine a very vibrant color and a more intense fruit flavor than you find in some milder rosés. This wine hails from the Columbia Valley AVA of Washington State. Learn more here.
In Beer News….
We brought in and sold out Rhinegeist’s Hustle, but we should be getting more of that in next week!
We’ve also got a few four-packs of MadTree’s Galaxy High left, but those have been moving pretty quickly.
Boulder Beer Company’s Emergent White IPA is also now available in six-packs.
Last but not least, we’ve got Eliza5beth from Prairie Artisan Ales available. This farmhouse style ale is a truly well crafted brew that received 99 points on Ratebeer and an “outstanding” from BeerAdvocate so cop a bottle before it’s gone!
Cincinnati.com recently posted an article (c/o Shauna Steigerwald & Ben Goldschmidt) following a 90+ question survey of 625 beer drinking participants. Here are some of their results:
“No surprise: Cincinnatians love their local IPAs. The two most popular beers by far were Rhinegeist’s Truth IPA and MadTree’s: PsycHOPathy IPA. Truth just barely won out, earning 1,011 points over PsycHOPathy’s 1,005. (For comparison, the third most popular beer with survey respondents, MadTree’s Happy Amber, scored 770 points, well below the top two.)
MadTree had the most beers in the top 10, taking five of those spots. The 10 overall highest-ranked beers by survey participants were:
- Rhinegeist: Truth IPA
- MadTree: PsycHOPathy IPA
- MadTree: Happy Amber
- Rhinegeist: Cougar (Golden Ale)
- MadTree: Gnarly Brown
- Mt. Carmel: Amber Ale
- MadTree: Lift (Kölsch)
- MadTree: Galaxy High Imperial IPA
- Moerlein: O.T.R. Pale Ale
- Hofbrauhaus: Dunkel
It’s important to note that Rhinegeist may not be as represented on this list simply because they only have three mainstay beers, whereas MadTree has seven. Rhinegeist’s third beer — Uncle — didn’t score as high because many hadn’t tried it. (Thought it’s a core draft beer for the brewery, it isn’t available in cans.)
Actually, many breweries’ beers got a large number of “never had it” responses, therefore netting those beers a lower score. It makes sense: Not all local beer is as ubiquitous as Rhinegeist or MadTree; many breweries produce smaller batches and don’t offer packaged products. So we thought it also made sense to break out the highest-ranked beers from each brewery. They’re listed here in order of points scored. If you’re looking to try beer from each of the local breweries, you might want to start with this list.
- Rhinegeist: Truth IPA
- MadTree: PsycHOPathy IPA
- Mt. Carmel: Amber Ale
- Moerlein: O.T.R. Pale Ale
- Hofbrauhaus: Hofbrau Dunkel
- Blank Slate*: Fork in the Road (India amber ale)
- Listermann/Triple Digit: Chickow! (Hazelnut Double Brown)
- Rivertown: Roebling Porter
- Fifty West: Coast to Coast IPA
- Ei8ght Ball: Prodigal (American pale ale)
- Great Crescent: Coconut Porter
- Cellar Dweller: Copperhead (American pale ale)
- Bad Tom: Bad Tom Smith (Brown ale)
- Old Firehouse: Probie Porter
- Geo. Wiedemann: Wiedemann’s Special Lager (Bohemian-style pilsner)
- Tap & Screw: Dr. Kool IPA
- Dogberry Brewing: Wildfire IPA
*Blank Slate is particularly noteworthy, because although the brewery’s beers had a large number of “never had it” rankings – it’s a smaller brewery and doesn’t currently offer bottles or cans – survey participants who had tried its beers overwhelmingly rated them as “tasty” or “get me four growlers full now!.” Few respondents said the brewery’s beer “wasn’t that great.”
All in all, we think Cincinnatians are pretty lucky to have so many great local beers. And the survey was all in good fun. After all, local craft breweries don’t view themselves as competitors in the true sense of the word; they’re apt to help one another out or work together on collaboration brews. (We once heard someone call their dynamic “coopetition,” which we loved.) The common belief among local brewers is that if you try one craft beer and like it, you’ll be more likely to try other breweries’ offerings — so they all win…
…People were asked to rate each mainstay beer — meaning the beers available at local breweries year-round — from each local brewery on a five-point scale, ranging from “never had it” to “get me four growlers full now.” Then, we gave each rating a weight; so if you chose “get me four growlers full now,” that beer got three points. If you chose “never had it,” that’s a zero, but if you chose “wasn’t that great,” that’s a one-point penalty. The other options were worth one and two points, respectively. We added those up — twice for accuracy — and that’s how we determined each beer’s score.
For some details we kept out for brevity’s sake, check out the whole article here.
Join us Friday (03.13.15) for our weekly wine & beer tasting @ 320 W. Fourth Street in downtown Cincinnati!
Friday, March 13
We’ve got a wonderful line up this week of four wines
Lagaria Pinot Grigio | 2013
MJ Janeil Terret Sauvignon | 2013
Underwood Pinot Noir | 2013
Milbrandt Brothers’ Blend | 2011
This week we’re pouring four beers from four different breweries. Offerings include a white beer, a throwback IPA, a rye barrel IPA, and an IPA.
- Two Brothers | Monarch
- Oskar Blues | Pinner
- Alltech | KY Rye Barrel IPA
- Revolution | Galaxy Hero
Come on in and kick off spring with us!
Taste 4 wines for $5, 4 beers for $5, or do both for $10! Light hors d’oeuvres will also be provided. No reservations necessary. See you Friday night!
Join us Friday for our weekly wine & beer tasting! $5/4 wines & $5/4 beers. 530-730pm. Light hors d’oeuvres will also be provided. Cheers!
We’ve got four California wines that will be poured by Chris Hoffman from DFV Wines:
Belle Ambiance Pinot Grigio | 2013
Belle Ambiance Pinot Noir | 2012
HandCraft Petite Sirah | 2012
Brazin Old Vine Zinfandel | 2012
This week we’re featuring four brews from Bluegrass Brewing Co. whose beers are new to the store and will be poured by their own Mackenzie Davis. We’ve got a lager, a nut brown ale, a pale ale, and a bourbon barrel stout. Cheers!
With Bockfest just around the corner, we dug up the history of the event as purported by those throwing it, and thought we’d share it on our website to get everyone excited!
In the 1800s, Cincinnati was one of America’s most prolific brewing cities. Cincinnatians drank more beer per capita than any city in the country (2 1/2 times the national average), and Over-the-Rhine was the epicenter of beer production and consumption. By 1890, the neighborhood was home to roughly 300 saloons and had over a dozen-and-a-half breweries within or adjacent to its boundaries.
Bock Beer is traditionally brewed for special occasions. It is complex, hardy, traditionally has a higher nutritional content than most beer and typically has a higher alcohol content. It has a particular link to spring because German monks drank it as a substitute for food during Lenten fasts. The style was popular in pre-Prohibition Cincinnati and the numerous breweries all made a seasonal version around Lent. This history gives rise to the modern Bockfest.
Bockfest™ was created by the Hudepohl-Schoenling Brewing Company to celebrate the brewery’s introduction of Christian Moerlein Bock. Prior to Prohibition (1919 in Ohio), Christian Moerlein was the largest brewery in the state and one of the five largest in the nation. Despite its size, the brewery did not re-emerge after Prohibition, but the Hudepohl Brewing Company, originally founded in 1885, did return. Hudepohl was a local favorite for decades. Most Cincinnatians know that, but surprisingly few understand the company’s role in helping give America better beer. In 1981, Hudepohl recognized an untapped market in craft beer. The company became one of the first two craft beer producers in America (Anchor Steam in California was the first.) The craft beer line was produced under the resurrected name Christian Moerlein to pay homage to Cincinnati brewing history. The beer was sold with the tag line, “quite simply a better beer” and became the first American beer to pass “Reinheitsgebot,” Germany’s stringent beer purity law. In 1992, the Moerlein line of craft beers was expanded to include a bock. The company decided to turn the launch of the beer into an entire festival celebrating Cincinnati ‘s brewing heritage, including a parade. The parade started at Arnold’s Bar & Grill because Arnold’s is both the city’s oldest saloon as well as being the first place to serve the twentieth-century Christian Moerlein beer.
With the work and dedication of Hudepohl-Schoenling, bar owners, Over-the-Rhine residents, and non-profit organizations like Merchants of Main Street, the tradition of Bockfest™ was carried on through subsequent years. During the festival’s history, Hudepohl fell on hard times and Bockfest™ was kept alive largely due to the once-beloved (but now defunct) Barrel House Brewery. When Barrel House left Over-the-Rhine in 2005, the future of Bockfest™ was placed in question, but a small number of people refused to let that happen. The festival was maintained and, through a great deal of hard work by a number of OTR proponents, has grown significantly in the years since 2006. Brought from the brink of death, it now draws attendees from both near and far.
Traditionally, Bockfest Hall was a different vacant building every year. This succeeded in bringing attention to Over-the-Rhine properties that subsequently housed important contributions to OTR (Jefferson Hall and the Know Theater as two examples), but there were a number of problems associated with this strategy. First, the buildings were often in need of significant work just to open them for a weekend. Secondly, they were often too small to serve their intended purpose. And most importantly, owners did not like to commit to renting a space for a weekend event more than a few weeks before it occurred – leaving the important location of the hall unknown even to event organizers until a matter of days before the festival. Fortunately, this changed in 2010. The festival now has a permanent location for its Bockfest Hall in the Event Hall adjacent to the new home of the Christian Moerlein Brewing Company.
If y’all are as excited as we are to participate in this tradition, now you’ll have all the back story that you need!
Wine & Beer Tasting
Friday, February 20
$5/4 wines $5/4 beer
We’ve got a wonderful line up this week of four wines from the renowned winery Gérard Bertrand located in the Languedoc region of France. Each wine will be poured by Dennis from Cutting Edge Wines.
Crémant Rosé | 2012
Chardonnay | 2012
Pinot Noir | 2013
Cabernet Sauvignon | 2011
As we continue to drink our way through Cincinnati Beer Week this week’s tasting gives us a range of styles & breweries across the country. We’ve got a local brown ale, a session IPA, an American strong ale, & an IPA. Cheers!
MadTree | Gnarly Brown
New Belgium | Slow Ride
Lagunitas | Brown Shugga
Brew Kettle | White Rajah IPA
Come on in out of the cold and get warmed up with us!
Tonight we’ve got our weekly Friday tasting from 530-730pm. It’s $5/4 wines & $5/4 beers and we’ll have some light hors d’oeuvres as well. On the wine side Craig Cracchiolo from Wine Trends will be pouring 4 wines from Charles Smith Wines out in Washington. On the beer side we’ll have Cat pouring the following four beers. Check it out & hope to see you tonight!
- BlackTart—Collaboration Brew (Canned by MadTree)—Cincinnati, OH
BlackTart Stout is a collaborative effort among fifteen Cincinnati, Ohio breweries as part of the celebration during Cincinnati Beer Week. An amalgamation of breweries. A dichotomous combination of flavors. Tart and refreshing yet full bodies and malty. It’s not black magic, it’s BlackTart. Brewed with cinnamon, lactose, and blackberries.
- Milk Stout Nitro—Left Hand Brewing Co.—Longmont, CA
Pouring hard out of the bottle, Milk Stout Nitro cascades beautifully, building a tight, thick head like hard whipped cream. The aroma is of brown sugar and vanilla cream, with hints of roasted coffee. The pillowy head coats your upper lip and its creaminess entices your pallet. Initial roasty, mocha flavors rise up, with slight hop & roast bitterness in the finish. The rest is pure bliss of milk chocolate fullness.
ABV – 6%
IBU – 25
- A Little Crazy—Revolution Brewing Co.—Chicago, IL
A citrusy and refreshing Belgian-style pale ale hopped with Cascade, Citra, and whole Crystal hops for massive aromas and flavors! Fermented with Belgian Wit yeast for an extra dose of
complexity, this seasonal brew is very drinkable and extremely aromatic.
ABV – 6.8%
IBU – 35
- Sunshine Daydream—Fat Head’s Brewery –Middleburg, OH
The newest beer from one of our favorite Ohio breweries is a hoppy, refreshing session drinker. This bright golden colored brew offers aromas of tropical fruit and pine, along with a juicy citrusy blast on your palate. Finishes with a lingering dry bitterness.
See you tonight!
While Cincinnati Beer Week isn’t until the week of February 13-22, the collaboration brew Black Tart is out and being consumed around the city as we speak!
Canned by MadTree, but collaborated on by 15 breweries in the Cincinnati area, Black Tart is an American stout brewed with cinnamon, lactose and blackberries. It’s got a lot of interesting flavors going on and weighs in at 8.0% ABV and 18 IBUs.
We have a feeling this brew is gonna go quickly so be sure to stop in and grab a four-pack today! Later this week we’ll also be getting special Cincinnati Beer Week glasses that we will be selling in the store, so keep an eye on our social media accounts!
For more info on #cbw2015 events a well as other participating venues, check out their website here.
Join us tomorrow for our weekly wine & beer tasting! $5/4 wines & $5/4 beers. 530-730pm. Light hors d’oeuvres will also be provided. Cheers!
We’ve got four lovely wines that will be poured by Carl Best from Martin & Co. Wines:
Illuminate Chardonnay | 2013
Talamonti Rosé | 2013
Siglo Rioja Crianza | 2011
Juan Benegas Malbec | 2011
This week we’re going all canned beer for the tasting. You’ll see several tri-state favorites in this line up!
MadTree | Thundersnow
Oskar Blues | Mama’s Little Yella Pils
Jackie O’s | Hop Ryot
West 6th | IPA
We’re excited to kick off the new year by bringing in some new wines & beers. We’ll be doing our first tasting of 2015 this Friday from 530pm-730pm so be sure to check back in with us to see what we’ll be featuring. The lineup should be solidified tomorrow, and we can’t wait to get back into the swing of things with y’all. Cheers!