Monday, October 27, 2014

Lagunitas Sucks

It doesn't, you know.

Lagunitas doesn't suck.

There is a story behind Lagunitas Sucks Brown Shugga’ Substitute. Lagunitas has a wildly popular Christmas seasonal called Brown Shugga'. It is a pretty big beer at about 10% abv. In 2011, Lagunitas was going through expansion construction at the brewery, and some brewing equipment was late arriving. As I remember the story, since Brown Shugga' was a such a big beer, it tied up the equipment more than Lagunitas could spare, so they were not able to get it out as a seasonal that year.

But, they had to get some seasonal out, and so they made Lagunitas Sucks to substitute for Brown Shugga'. The name is sort of an apology to fans of their regular seasonal. I don't think anyone actually thought that this was Lagunita's fault. The name was just a joke ... the beer company making fun of itself.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Still More @Untappd Badges 17.5 #GABF Edition

Well, just a few days ago I let you know that I was sick of typing Still More @Untappd Badges 17, so I stopped. I promised that I would follow up with a "special edition of the @Untappd Badges".

So here we go.

Usually, in the past I don't check into very many beers at GABF.  This year, I didn't at the festival either, but when I got home I checked into all the beers that I had written down during the festival (which was a lot).

Obviously, first and foremost, we have ... 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Eric's Red Brew Day

I brewed twice this weekend.

I already told you that I brewed a little batch of Gruntled Sour Weisse on Saturday.

On Sunday, I brewed a regular-sized batch of Eric's Red. I guess you could say that Eric's Red is one of my "flagship" beers. It actually started out as a Mr. Beer recipe later to be converted to my own all-grain formulation. I have been calling it an "Irish Red", although I'm not really convinced it is. This time, I added Citra hops, which certainly isn't very Irish. It is simply a beer that I enjoy.

It doesn't really matter what style it is. Is it simply Eric's Red.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Gruntled Sour Weisse

I'm doing a bit of a brewing experiment. I've decided to brew a Berliner Weisse. I'm going to sour this Berliner Weisse with lactic acid rather than adding souring bugs to the fermentation. I'm not sure how it will turn out, so I decided to brew a small batch.

If you would like to see my recipe, check out on the SheppyBrew website:

Yesterday, my son and I went to the zoo together, and it wasn't until we were on the way home that I decided that I would brew for sure. We stopped by my most local homebrew shop and picked up malts and yeast.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Still More @Untappd Badges 17

From time to time, I share the untappd badges that I've earned. I can't imagine why you would want to, but you can look at all the posts (including this one) by going to the "untappd" label on this blog.

At this point, I don't seem to be earning very many new badges. Instead I seem to be "leveling" up. For example, to earn "Lager Jack" (see below), I had to drink 5 different lagers. To get to level 2, I had to drink 5 more. Every 5 lagers, I get to "level up". Most of the badges end at 10 levels. Several I have pasted 10 long ago.

Anyhow ...

Here are some of the badges I've "earned" since Still More @Untappd Badges 16 .  Hard to believe that was so far back in August.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Falling Leaves Harvest (Autumn) Saison

 Well, I told you in Seasonal Saisons that I would be brewing my "Autumn" Saison. My "Winter" Saison was black. My "Summer" Saison was yellowish orange. The Autumn Saison is Amber colored, right in the middle of the previous two.

I decided to add pumpkin to this recipe, pretty much so that the "harvest" part of the name . Originally I was going to add several different types gourds and perhaps other types of things that are harvested in the fall, but I decided to simplify.

Before the end of the brew day, I wished I had simplified more by leaving out the pumpkin completely.

I did brew this last Sunday.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Seasonal Saisons

I don't know if you've noticed, but I've stumbled across a pretty cool (at least I think its cool) concept for a series of beers. Seasonal Saisons.

The Saison is a fun style of beer. Its guidelines are pretty wide, open to much interpretation and experimentation. For quite awhile, I avoided Saisons, but recently (in the past 12 months or so), I've really been digging them, and I will almost always try one when I see it on tap somewhere. I am not sure if my pallet has changed or if breweries are starting to nail this style, but I am starting to really love them.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Some Thoughts on #GABF Award Winners

If you've been following this blog, you know that I attended a couple of GABF sessions last weekend (see 2014 #GABF Members Session and Friday Night #GABF). It was an overwhelming spectacle, and awesomely fun.

But, man, is that a lot of beer!

The competition winners were announced pretty early on Saturday, and you can look at the list at GABF Winners.

For what it is worth, California won the most medals at 46. Colorado won the second most at 39. Those two states together won almost a third of the total medals. Half the medals were won by top 5 states (California: 46, Colorado: 39, Oregan: 22, Texas: 16, Pennsyvania: 12).

Friday, October 10, 2014

2014 Q3 SheppyBrew Stats

Here it is already 10 days into the 4th quarter and SheppyBrew Brewery still has not posted its 3rd quarter brewing stats. Lame!

But, I am doing it now, so all is well. If you are ever interested in looking through all these reports, you can see all the quarterly updates (including the one you are reading right now) by following this link: .

Quarters 1 and 2 were light brewing quarters. The 3rd quarter was not. I brewed 7 batches in the first half of the year and 6 in the 3rd quarter alone.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

2014 #GABF Members Session

Yesterday, of course, was the Members'-Only session of the Great American Beer Festival (GABF). Of course, the SheppyBrew Beer Model and I attended. It was, of course, a great time.

The members-only session is my favorite. It is one of the great benefits of being an AHA member. In fact, I know people who became AHA members just so they could buy tickets to this session of the GABF.

We got in line pretty early, but even still, we were about 3/4 of the way around the Convention Center. The line went really quick once the doors opened, though. We were in the festival before 15 after.

Big crowd on the way in.

They let the line spread out sooner before the doors this year. I thought this was going to cause a nightmare mess, but it turned out very well. 

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Friday Night #GABF

The Beer Model and I attended the Great American Beer Festival last night.

Great Festival as always.

You probably remember from yesterday, that we went in with a "plan".

We got there late because of having to drop off the kids and taking a new light-rail route with which we were a bit unfamiliar. The nice thing about getting there late is that the line is practically gone. I didn't really feel like we missed all that much either.

I didn't start off with E16 Russian River Brewing Company, but I did come around to it eventually to check Supplication off my my Best Beers in America List. I got lucky on the line and it only took me 4 minutes to get to the front. I have a feeling that the line would have been longer at the beginning of the night, so for this beer, it was a blessing in disguise to get to the festival late. I do think that Supplication was the best sour that I had all night. And I had several.

Friday, October 03, 2014

2014 #GABF Friday Night Plan

I always go into the Great American Beer Fest with a game plan. I think the main reason is that 600 different breweries in one place is sort of intimidating. Having a plan helps me stay focused and I think it enhances my beer fest enjoyment.

This year, my wife has taken the time to do a "plan" so part of my plan is to go where she wants to go. I guess that is fair considering most years I get to dictate where we go during the fest.

Unfortunately, her plan involves Pumpkin Beers. Berry Beers. Cream Beers. And Peanut Butter Beers.

Can you imagine having to drink several different Pumpkin beers in one night? Yeesh!

So, here is my plan ...

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Getting ready for the 2014 #GABF

It should come as no surprise to you that I am attending this year's Great American Beer Fest. I am, in fact, fortunate enough to have tickets for both myself and my wife to attend Friday Night and Saturday Afternoon (the members-only session).

I don't really have a plan this year. Maybe one will formulate before Friday.

The beers at the festival were released just a couple hours ago. I have not spent a whole lot of time looking at it, but I did check the beers left on my (Zymurgy's) Best Beer in America list. Of the beers that I still need to try on the list, only Russian River Supplication will be served at the festival.

Generally speaking, I tend to stay away from long lines at GABF, and usually Russian River has one of the longest lines. I am trying to decide if it is worth the effort to check off one beer if I have to wait in this long line.

I guess we will have to wait and see what I decide.

Still left on "my" list:

#5. The Alchemist Heady Topper ... Brewery will not be at GABF
#6. Lagunitas Sucks ... Have a bottle at home
#28 Russian River Pliney Younger ... not on the beer list
#30 Russian River Supplication ... The only beer on this list at GABF ... E16
#39 (Tie). Russian River Consecration ... Have a bottle at home
#39 (Tie) Troegs Nugget Nector ... Brewery at U25, but this beer is not on the list
#49 (Tie). Founder's Backwoods Bastard ... Brewery will not be at GABF