Friday, September 25, 2009

Sherwood Forest

Marlborough, MA

There are many stories about the characters that lived in Sherwood forest. Not only stories of how Robin Hood took from the rich and gave to the poor but also how the Sheriff of Nottingham was a devious man, out only for himself. Maid Marian, who did not love her? The Friar, what do we need to say about the Friar, a jovial man. Each character has their own personality and now their own beer. Enjoy our family of beers and let us know what you think. Thanks for supporting us

Sherwood Forest Archer's English Ale....$9.99 / 6pk
Robin Hood, is the famous Archer for our flagship beer—Archer’s Ale. An English Pale Ale with an exceptionally deep amber color. A full bodied beer that is a local favorite.

Sherwood Forest Sheriff's India Pale Ale...$9.99 / 6pk

The Sheriff of Nottingham, A devious fellow with a certain affinity for women and for Hops. Enjoy Sheriff’s IPA, golden in color with strong citrus flavors and aromas.

Sherwood Forest Maiden's Blueberry Ale....$9.99 / 6pk
Maiden’s Blueberry Ale, clearly named after the beauty herself—Maid Marian. It is a golden fruit ale that has the flavor and aroma of juicy, ripe blueberries. A light blueberry ale that is not too sweet and has a dry finish!

Sherwood Forest Friar's Belgian White Ale....$9.99 / 6pk
Friar’s Belgian White Ale! Everyone loved the jovial Friar Tuck. His Belgian Ale is a creamy brew flavored with orange peel and coriander for a pleasant citrus-spice sweetness.

Info from their website

Another special guest...

Open House Wine Tasting!

We are proud to have one of the greatest small importers of fine wine coming to our stores.
Dan Kravtiz of Hand Picked Selections
"Years ago I wrote in The Wine Advocate that Dan Kravitz was perhaps the top U.S. importer of wines priced under $10 a bottle. Even though the dollar bought a lot more then, Kravitz still has a knack for finding good wines at great prices." -- Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate

Dan's tastings are always very popular. Dan is one of the few importers whose sales increase when the economy gets worse. He is considered by most people including Robert Parker as the best importer for great values from around the world.

Open House format -- bring your friends

We will hold tastings at two of our stores....
Friday, October 16 -- 5pm-7pm at Provisions Gourmet Market
Featuring 2005 Pegau Chateauneuf du Pape ($75 / bottle) plus more

Saturday, October 17 -- 12pm-2 pm at TWCP Forsyth location.
Featuring 2006 Pegau Chateauneuf du Pape ($75 / bottle).

Plus many of his great values.
We will choose wines from this list....

Vinas de Vila
Alfredo Roca Malbec/Merlot
Alfredo Roca Sauvignon Blanc
Travis Chardonnay
Spada Toro
La Noble
Cuvee de Pena
Laurence Feraud Seguret
Terre du Mistral
Puydeval (great blend)
Bargemone Rose
Hunold Alsatian Wines
Ninet de Pena Viognier
Plume Bleue
Cabirau Grenache
Boniface Apremont many more choices.....
We will announce the list as we get closer. Please save the date and come on by to one of the two tastings and welcome Dan Kravitz back to St. Louis.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Another new release...

Order online now.

't Smisje Grande Reserva
(whisky barrel aged)...$5.99 / 11oz

The Grande Reserva is
't Smisje Kerst that is then aged in Whisky barrels
't Smisje Kerst is the winter ale of Brouwerij de Regenboon.
Malts: Barley, Wheat, Amber & Caramunich
Hops: Hallertauer & Goldings
Spices: Dark candi sugar, coriander, grain de paradise

New one from BFM -- limited release.

Brasserie Des Franches Montagnes
Biere Ambree Parfumee au Tarry Suchong...$7.49 / 11.2oz
Jura, Switzerland
"BATS" (Biere Ambree au Tarry Suchong) brewed with smoked tea leaves, and smoked malt from Bamberg. Uses Hallertauer Magnum for bitterness, Tettnanger Hallertauer for flavor.
Lapsong Tarry Suchong tea leaves from China.
25 IBUs,
6% ABV
Unpasteurized, unfiltered, bottle-conditioned flip-top 11.2oz bottles.

Available online now

New from Haandbryggeriet

Haandbryggeriet Odin's Tipple Dark Norse Ale...9.49 / pint

Rated 96 percentile on RateBeer

"Odin, the chief god of Norse mythology, was a forceful but complicated being of many moods - the symbol of battle, victory, and death, but also of wisdom, poetry, and prophecy.

With this hearty, complex ale, the 'Hand' brewers imagine Odin in later years, when his victories on the battlefield were but shadowy memories, his reflections tended toward loftier themes such as life's meaning, and his drink would have been a deep, dark, and contemplative one.

The beer was originally meant to be a Strong Ale, but the brewers decided to focus on making great beer without extreme alcohol. At approximately 11% ABV, Haandbryggeriet says Odin's Tipple has a great body without being "old engine oil" and it "is still very drinkable due to the wild yeast we use". The beer is made with a single strain of wild yeast and the brewers keep it simple. No added coffee or chocolate; the deep dark color and rich flavor come from lots and lots of chocolate malt." -- importer

Read about a few other beers from Haandbryggeriet

Available online now

Could this be that rare?

Hanssens Experimental Cassis Lambic.....$11.99 / 375ml
Hanssens Experimental Rasberry Lambic.....$11.99 / 375ml

I really cannot find much about these.

From what I read, it looks like only 15 cases were made and 10 cases were released (5 held back in reserve)?

Can that be true?

I guarantee they are rare, just not sure how rare.

Let me know if you find out more.

check out all the Hanssen beers online

Amazing new release -- first time in the U.S.

Order online now

BACK IN STOCK at Forsyth!
(sorry, this one flew off the shelf fast last time)

Danish brewing legend Christian Skovdal Andersen was the co-founder and artistic force behind ├ślfabrikken. Olfabrikken "The Beer Factory" was named as a joke since it is the complete opposite--it actually had extremely tiny production at that time and was built in the corner of a barn. Olfabrikken has only been around since 2004, but it produces the current #1 porter (in stock now) in the world on RateBeer. Christian and his partner struggled with finances and sold 50% of the company in 2007 and Christian's partner left. In January of 2008 Christian sold his 50% of Olfabrikken and started a new brewery called Beer Here and the beer world is taken notice of his exciting beers. Beer Here is already climbing up the charts and this is first time available in the U.S. I am sure the beers will continue to climb the RateBeer charts as the U.S. gets a chance to taste them and rate them.

"Do not waste your thirst" -- Beer Here's slogan

Great labels!

Beer Here Dark Hops...$7.49 / 500ml
Hoppy Black Ale
ABV = 8.5%
American Strong Ale - 97 percentile Ratebeer

Ingredients: water, barley, rye, sugar, hops, yeast.

"Dark Hops is a very black beer at 8.5% with one foot firmly planted in stout world and another in India Pale Ale universe.Despite the name, there is nothing covert in this beer is brewed in the finest British Maris Otter malt, roasted barley and juicy Zeus and Saaz hops." Christian Anderson

Beer Here Morke...$7.49 / 500ml
Pumpernickel Porter
ABV = 7.5%
Ingredients: water, barley, rye, spices, sugar, hops, yeast.
- The idea behind "Dark" has emerged from my desire to create a beer that has the same qualities as the dark, savory and sweet pumpernickel rye. It is brewed with a particular malted rye, dark sugar and fennel seed and only mild hops.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Two great winemakers....

Want a chance to talk to two of the greatest winemakers in California?

Stay tuned --

Margo van Staaveren

"2006 marked Margo Van Staaveren’s 27th harvest at Chateau St. Jean. During the course of her 25+ year tenure with the winery, Margo has played a pivotal role in every facet of the winemaking process. As winemaker, she makes the final decisions involving blend and style to produce consistently high quality wines in the super premium and luxury category.

Margo is a firm believer that great wines are grown - a conviction she shares with the Chateau founders who led the way for Chateau St. Jean to become a pioneer of vineyard designated wines in the early 1970s. To achieve Chateau St. Jean vineyard designation, the superior quality of the vineyards must be proven year after year and the grapes must consistently exhibit exceptional varietal character.

The art of blending is the cornerstone of Margo’s winemaking philosophy. To her, one of the greatest accomplishments is to create a wine style or signature blend that carries from vintage to vintage while still capturing the uniqueness of that particular growing year.

One of the things she enjoys most about her job is putting together the final blend for the Reserve wines. “Since no two vintages are alike, it gives us the opportunity to carefully search for the vineyard lots that offer the biggest fruit expression and the ability to age in order to create a wine that truly captures the best of the vintage,” says Margo. The Reserve wines represent the most concentrated, distinctive and balanced wines made at Chateau St. Jean.

Margo Van Staaveren graduated from the University of California at Davis in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science in Fermentation Science. Shortly after graduation, she joined Chateau St. Jean as a Laboratory Technician in 1980. By 1989, she had worked her way to being named Assistant Winemaker and later named Associate Winemaker. Margo was named Winemaker and Director of Operations for Chateau St. Jean in August of 2003, continuing a rich legacy of winemaking as the fourth winemaker in the winery’s history." -- Chateau St. Jean

Laurie Hook, Winemaker, Beringer Vineyards

"Growing up in Sacramento , California , Laurie Hook never dreamed of becoming a winemaker. “I didn't even know the job existed,” she explains. “But then I found out that my family had owned a French Chateau (Chateau Olivier) before the revolution and it piqued my interest. Also, I loved history, science and agriculture, and the idea of doing something that connected you to the earth. And when I started tasting and reading about wine in college, I realized that winemaking brings all three disciplines together.”

Laurie transferred to the winemaking program at the University of California at Davis , training ground for noted winemakers in California and around the world. After graduation in 1984, she traveled to Australia to work in a small Melbourne-area winery for six months. “I did everything from pruning the vines, driving a tractor and harvesting the grapes to making and bottling the wine and even selling it. I got a real hands-on education as well as great travel. And I had the irreplaceable experience of looking up while pruning one day and seeing a kangaroo in the vineyard.” A harvest at a Sonoma County winery followed.

In 1986, Laurie came to Beringer as an enologist, a job that allowed her to solidify the scientific side of her training. In 1997, she was named Assistant Winemaker to Winemaster Ed Sbragia, and in 2000 was promoted to Winemaker for Beringer Vineyards.

“You can't make wine only through science,” says Laurie. “ California winemakers learned that in the 1970s and early 1980s, when a highly scientific approach resulted in very clean wines but not necessarily very interesting ones. Of course you need to understand the process by which wines are made, but now we've learned to trust our intuition as well. And I've learned from Ed that making great wines—wines that are unique—means taking risks.”

While Ed developed the styles for most of Beringer's wines over his 25-plus years at the winery, they continue to evolve as a result of the teamwork between the two winemakers. “When you've worked next to someone for almost 20 years, there's a trust that builds and our wines benefit from that,” explains Laurie.

Laurie is a member of the American Society of Viticulture and Enology, the Trellis Alliance, and the Napa Valley Wine Technical Group. Outside of the winery, Laurie has a myriad of interests and hobbies revolving around travel, gardening, the study of history, collecting antique and regional cookbooks and funny quotes about wine. She's also a passionate animal lover." -- Beringer Winery