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Beer at Joe’s — Have a beer with Joe and Jasmine
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Telegraph Stock Porter

By Jasmine · May 9th, 2011 · Comments Off

Your favorite roustabout (which, by the way, is a word usually referring to circus personnel or an oil rig worker. I suspect Joe would do better with the former) discusses a tasty beer we had. Note our lovely kegerator making its small-screen debut, although we didn’t give it more than a walk-on role. Maybe next time it will get some action.

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And just what is a stock porter? Joe tells you in the video, but it’s worth repeating if you’re into historical beer factoids, like me. From the Telegraph website: The name “Stock Porter” was the moniker 19th century pub keepers gave to the more expensive Porter that had been aged in their beer cellars, as opposed to “Mild Porter”, which was a less complex, less expensive, and less characterful brew.

Not exactly a summer beer, but hey, this is San Francisco.

Comments OffTags: General

Eric’s Choice

By Jasmine · May 8th, 2011 · Comments Off

The Jug Shop is one of those places that we love, but try to love quietly. Eric Cripe, the in-house cicerone, puts on amazing tastings that we give huge props to…but we don’t want them to get crowded, now do we? Currently, they are almost always full, or at least very busy, but we only have to buy tickets ahead of time for super-special ones. So go ahead and go, Beer at Joe’s readers, but don’t tell your friends, and for goodness sakes don’t Yelp it.

One of my favorites was “Eric’s Choice”. Possibly my favorite tasting yet. He started with “1809″ a Berliner Weisse style beer recreated by Professor Fritz Briem with Weihenstephan & Doemens Brewery. Apparently Berliner Weisse was dubbed “the champagne of the north” by Napoleon Bonaparte and/or his troops in 1809–thus the name. It’s bottle-conditioned, unfiltered, and unpasteurized. The smell is fresh and yeasty, with plenty of carbonation. It tastes tart but not sour, fruity, like peaches and cream– the term “lactic acid” gets bandied about a lot in its online reviews. Delicious and drinkable. I actually came back for more at the end of the tasting.

Next up was Avec Les Bons Voeux from Brasserie Dupont. And with this blonde, top-fermented ale we jump up to 9.5% alcohol. Smell is almost non-existent, a bit of a light hay smell (maybe this is the “fine hop aromas”). It has a much denser mouthfeel than the crisp 1809 and hints of fruit and mushroom in the taste. Because it is re-fermented in the bottle, this could be a fine aging beer. In the tasting notes he hands out at the Jug Shop, Eric mentions both this and the first one as good beers to cellar. That’s part of the fun in becoming a true beer geek, after all. I bet it would become a lot more interesting after a few years.

Next were two Ballast Point beers (Yellow Tale Pale Ale and Sculpin IPA) and then Pliney, now a classic. Next was Mikkeller’s Chipotle Porter, a beer I found so heavy and spicy I couldn’t drink it. Disclaimer: I don’t do spicy, so this beer never had a chance with me. But Joe does, and even he wasn’t crazy about it.

Here my notes get hazy: Weihenstephaner Korbinian, which I remember as being super tasty; and Alesmith’s Wee Heavy, which I’ve had before and enjoyed. The tasting finished with Ballast Point’s Victory at Sea, an imperial porter brewed with coffee and vanilla. According to their press release, “Our friends at Cafe Calabria created a special blend of hand selected coffees from around the world and roasted them fresh the day the coffee was brewed for addition to the beer.   A 24 hour cold extraction process is employed to coax out only the finest flavors in the coffee, leaving behind many of the harsher, more bitter compounds.  The pure vanilla extract added post fermentation is a perfect complement to this roasty goodness of this brew.”

I have exactly one word written in the notes section under this beer: yum.

Once the tasting finished, we gathered the bottles we wanted to buy and brought them to the cash register (Jug Shop has Velvet Merkin in 6 packs! Yay!). While up there, we chatted Eric up about Tactical Nuclear Penguin from BrewDog. It turns out the Jug Shop just got a bunch of bottles in–Eric said it might have been their single most expensive beer purchase ever. We asked him what it tasted like. We asked to see the bottle. And once our beer was paid for he said, “Alright. Follow me.”

He opened a bottle for us.

It tasted like scotch–smokey, malty, biting alcohol. We cut it with some water the way you would with scotch and it became slightly more drinkable. It would definitely appeal to scotch drinkers even more than beer drinkers. It is possible that I had to take a nap an hour or two later just to make it through the rest of the night (even though the rest of the night was just a cab ride home). Not a beer to party with, but a lot of fun. Thanks Eric!

Comments OffTags: Beer I can't get my hands on · Tastings

City Beer Store 5th Anniversary Project

By Joe Ruvel · May 5th, 2011 · Comments Off

City Beer Store rocks – everyone know it.  They just keep amazing the already jaded SF beer public.  Their Bring Out All the Stops 5th Anniversary (can’t believe it has been that long) Party is this Saturday.  If you don’t have tickets – well, it’s sold out.  General admission is going to be a one in, one out kind of thing starting at 5pm. But with all the good beer inside, it will be a while in line for those waiting.

The beers they collaborated on with this project sound great. Here is a video of Craig and Beth working with The Bruery to make a fruit beer.

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This beer and the other four can be checked out here. I hope to share our thoughts on them soon.

Congrats guys! Can’t wait to see what you do in the next 5 years.

Comments OffTags: Around the Web · Beerventures

Foo Fighters and Oskar Blues

By Joe Ruvel · April 29th, 2011 · Comments Off

I get a bunch of press releases all the time.  I try and share with you, dear public, the good ones.  This one made me very happy all around.  I know, it isn’t much about beer, but still seems real cool.  Go Oskar Blues for being a part of this.

Image by Jonathan Dowdell



Performance coincidently marks restaurant’s 14th anniversary


LYONS, Colo. – The rock band Foo Fighters performed a private concert Monday afternoon, April 25, at the Oskar Blues Grill & Brew.  Oskar Blues Grill & Brew is located in a 65-year-old barn that is the original canning facility and birthplace of the craft-beer-in-a-can craze that Oskar Blues ignited when they put their hoppy flagship Dale’s Pale Ale in a can in 2002.

The town of Lyons, population of 1,900, known for its deep roots in Bluegrass music and Oskar Blues’ legendary Tuesday night bluegrass pick (http://www.dailycamera.com/music/ci_17510903), was plugged in with a smoking set from the rock ‘n roll veterans.  The intimate show was a stark contrast from the 2008 Foo Fighters two-night stand at London’s Wembley Stadium attended by 165,000 fans, setting the venue’s two-night attendance record.

Ken Feldman and Gayle Gordon, a Pinewood Springs couple, won a contest from Blackberry for a private concert with the Grammy-award-winning band, which performed a 45-minute set starting at 4:30 p.m.  Feldman said band members remarked that playing to such a small audience in an intimate venue was more fun than playing in front of arena crowds.  “They seemed to be just as excited as we were,” he said.  According to Oskar Blues talent buyer and sound engineer, Dave McIntyre, no one other than the winners and 48 of their friends were allowed at the concert.  A growing number interested locals assembled outside the barn as the sounds were heard throughout town.

The monumental event put a time stamp on the 14-year anniversary of Oskar Blues Grill & Brew that opened on April 25, 1997, and Rolling Stone Magazine called:  “The place to be on a Saturday night in Colorado”.

Dave Grohl, the band’s lead singer – former drummer for Nirvana and Them Crooked Vultures– along with the rest of the band, enjoyed a sampling of the Oskar Blues Brewery’s line-up of boundary-busting canned beers with fans after the show.

For Video and Images from the performance please visit:


Or http://bit.ly/ivjdH3

Comments OffTags: Around the Web · General

Chocolate Salon

By Jasmine · April 17th, 2011 · Comments Off

We had two different beer truffles at the chocolate salon today. First was from Socola Chocolatier in Oakland (an adorable pair of chocolatiers, if I do say so). They use Rogue’s Shakespeare Stout and we were actually first introduced to them at a Rogue beer and cheese pairing event that ended with their delicious truffle (the best part of the event, to be honest).

The second truffle was made with Linden Street’s black lager–we’re pretty sure the company making it was Vice (hey, just like beer festivals, they all start blurring together). They’re just down the block from Linden street, and can just walk on over, container in hand. 

Both were delicious–Socola in particular has a lot of other fun flavors like Siracha and Notorious H.O.G. (with bacon).

Every year I eat myself sick at the Chocolate Salon. This year was mitigated by the fact that there is now a Sunday farmer’s market at Fort Mason–a lunch break definitely helps!

Comments OffTags: General

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