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The Thief

Our blog was created to help make the world of wine and beer easier to understand and fun to navigate.  There are a million things to know in this industry, we just want to help you understand the latest news and trends from around the globe.  So sit back with your favorite sip and let's go on an adventure.

 

Bryan Brammer
 
March 27, 2020 | Bryan Brammer

Beer Me

While it's super important to support (y)our local breweries, why not alternate with a delicious brew from Ohio or Connecticut? Or even further afield - Belgium or Sweden.

Check out the lineup of beer we have available for in-store shopping (6 feet apart, people!), curbside pickup, FREE local delivery and $10 flat rate shipping. 

Click any beer name to shop! Use code MIX6 to get 25% off a mixed 6-pack!

 

BREWERY

BEER NAME

DESCRIPTION

 

 

 

Abomination

Bro Beer

Session Hazy IPA – juicy and tropical, brewed with flaked wheat and oats

 

 

 

Abomination & Drugges Bryggeri (Sweden)

Apelsiner Nektariner Vanilj och Spöken IPA

Hazy IPA – loaded with vanilla and citrus flavors with limited distribution; we are lucky to have it!

 

 

 

Against the Grain

Rico Sauvin

Double IPA – brewed with NZ Nelson Sauvin hops which give it a strong fruity flavor described as resembling white wine; Rate Beer gave it a 95

 

 

 

Against the Grain

Retitled Pils

Pilsner – classic, session-able lager

 

 

 

American Solera

Pals

Pale Ale – double dry hopped with Citra Cryo and Ekuanot hops

 

 

 

Barrel Mountain

No Bad Days IPA

IPA – citrus, pine and tropical notes with moderate bitterness and light malt base

 

 

 

Blackberry Farm

Classic Saison

Belgian Saison – farmhouse ale, refreshing with complex flavors; Rate beer gave it a 97!

 

 

 

Blackberry Farm

Fenceline

Belgian Saison – hazy farmhouse ale with a creamy mouthfeel; brewed with Huell Melon hops

 

 

 

Blackberry Farm

Boundary Tree

Belgian Saison - hop-forward farmhouse ale brewed with Hallertau Blanc and Citra hops

 

 

 

Brouwerij Verhaeghe

Duchesse Chocolate Cherry

Flanders Red Ale –sour base with 20kg of cherries per 100L, matured in oak casks; Rate Beer score of 97

 

 

 

Evil Twin

Oh My God He’s a Bozo

Imperial Stout- aged in bourbon and maple syrup barrels

 

 

 

Evil Twin

90 Days Dry Aged Stout

Milk Stout – brewed with dry aged malt; 90 points from Rate Beer

 

 

 

Evil Twin

Bikini Beer

Session IPA – 2.7% ABV, “Put on your best bikini and enjoy this very, very drinkable beer in the sun, at this summer’s festivals, or even better use it to slowly seduce your nagging friends with an anxiety for craft beer”

 

 

 

Evil Twin

Excuse Me, Do You Speak French Toast?

Imperial Stout – 13% ABV with soft hints of cinnamon, chocolate & maple

 

 

 

Evil Twin & Two Roads

Geyser Gose

Gose - with ingredients sourced from Iceland including Icelandic moss, rye, herbs, sea kelp, skyr and birch smoked sea salt

 

 

 

Fat Orange Cat

Write Drunk, Edit Sober

Hazy IPA – brewed with Citra, Mosaic and El Dorado hops

 

 

 

Fat Orange Cat

Sweet Jane Blueberry

Hazy IPA – milkshake-style brewed with fresh Connecticut blueberries

 

 

 

Fat Orange Cat

Severe Tire Damage

Hazy IPA – brewed with Simcoe, Citra and Mosaic

 

 

 

Fat Orange Cat

Remember What the Dormouse Said

Hazy IPA – brewed with Eureka and Citra hops

 

 

 

Fat Orange Cat & Decadent

Baker’s Dozen

Imperial Stout – cinnamon, chocolate fudge & ancho chili peppers (no heat, just flavor)

 

 

 

Gueuzerie Tilquin

Tilquin Oude Gueuze à l'Ancienne

 

Gueuze – cult favorite, highly sought-after; spontaneous fermentation beer, produced from the blending of 1, 2 and 3 years old lambics; unfiltered and unpasteurized, and refermented in the bottle for at least 6 months

 

 

 

Hoof Hearted

Rosé Gosé

Gose – hot pink, tart berry flavor with hibiscus, Rate Beer score of 93

 

 

 

Hoof Hearted

$60 Nachos

Double Hazy IPA – brewed with Citra, Simcoe and El Dorado Hops; scored 93 on Rate Beer

 

 

 

Omnipollo

Nebuchadnezzar

Double IPA – award winning Swedish beer; 99 points from Rate Beer!

 

 

 

St. Bernardus

Abt 12

Belgian Quad- widely regarded as one of the best beers in the world; original 1946 recipe, Rate Beer score of 100!

 

 

 

St. Bernardus

Abt 12 Barrel Aged Sour

Belgian Quad- aged for 3 years to let the beer go sour, then blended with fresh beer

 

 

 

Stickmen

Socks & Sandals

Hazy IPA – peach and tropical flavors; double dry-hopped with Citra, Summit, Mosaic & Rakau hops

 

 

 

Stickmen

Festive Berries

Fruit Sour - kettle soured; brewed with orange peel and Meridian hops; fermented with cranberry and dry hopped with juniper

 

 

 

 

Stickmen

Madame Molly

Irish Red Ale – clean, balanced, traditional Irish Red

 

 

 

Stiegl

Grapefruit Radler

Fruit Beer/Radler – uses real grapefruit and is very refreshing

 

 

 

Stiegl

Himbeere (Raspberry) Radler

Fruit Beer/Radler – light and fresh, made with fresh raspberry juice

 

 

 

Stillwater Artisanal

Insetto

Sour/Wild Ale – dry-hopped sour ale with plum

 

 

 

Stillwater Artisanal

Cellar Door

Belgian Saison – balanced and intricate with a dry finish; Rate Beer gave it a 94

 

 

 

Stillwater Artisanal

Extra Dry

Belgian Saison – Annie’s favorite saison; brewed with rice designed to mimic the subtle flavors of sake

 

 

 

Stillwater Artisanal

Gose Gone Wild

Gose – dry-hopped sour wheat ale fermented with Brettanomyces; 99 from Rate Beer!

 

 

 

Stillwater Artisanal

Stateside Saison

Belgian Saison – old world tradition meets new world innovation in this classic farmhouse ale

 

 

 

Stillwater Artisanal

General Gose

Gose - Sour amber wheat ale brewed with orange peel powder, thai chili powder, sea salt and msg seasoning

 

 

 

Stillwater Artisanal & Casita Cerveceria

On Fleek

Imperial Stout – brewed with dark sugars and molasses; Rate Beer score of 98

 

Time Posted: Mar 27, 2020 at 12:04 PM
Bryan Brammer
 
April 1, 2019 | Bryan Brammer

Faith and Beer - A Monk's Tale - A World of Beer

If you are a beer lover, and I am guessing that you are based on the fact that you are reading this blog post, you would be remiss not to understand the history of faith and beer. For over 1,500 years, monks around the world have used their faith and dedicated their lives to the perfection of the beer-making process. So, the next time you run into a monk (never thought I could say that), thank them for helping make craft beer what it is today.

As you study monks and brewing, you will quickly figure out that there are hundreds of monasteries around Europe that all have an incredible history and create amazing beer. However, we need to keep some focus so we will look at the most famous in Germany and the Trappists. To understand their history, we will start the story in the 6th Century and learn about Saint Benedict of Nursia and his writings that roughly translate as The Rule. These writings essentially built the first template for monastic life and imparted the wisdom of the spiritual and the administrative. At the core was the golden rule of Ora et Labora – pray and work. Each monk dedicated themselves to eight hours of prayer, eight hours of sleep, and eight hours of manual work, sacred reading, or works of charity. Augmenting this rule, was another rule that monks and the monastery must exist without outside money and through the work of the monks’ own hands through the production of goods and services built a framework for faith to perfect beer and other goods such as cheese and honey. 

Now that we know where the faith and precision of the monks come from, let’s look at the history of the German monks who are among the oldest continuous brewers in the world. Today, Weltenburg Abby and Weihenstephan Abbey both claim to be the oldest continuous operating breweries in the world starting somewhere around 1040. Records aside, this has given these monks almost 1,000 years of brewing history to create some of the most revered beers not only in Germany but in the world. Each Abbey, as with most breweries in Germany, follows very strict purity rules set out in law in 1516. These principals allow for only the use of malted barley, hops, water, and yeast (wheat was added after an uprising years later). The rules make German beer narrow in variety but utterly perfect in execution.

If Germany has the history, the Trappists have the notoriety when it comes to monks making beer. The name Trappist comes from the Cistercian monastery in La Trappe, France (not where the beer La Trappe is made). In 1664, these particular monks thought that too many of their fellow monks were becoming too liberal. They introduced new, more rigorous rules, to live by and the Trappist movement was born. To carry out the financing of their strict monasteries and to expand their practices, breweries began to appear around the middle ages in Europe. Today these original Trappist breweries are world renowned for the focus on constantly perfecting the brewing process and keeping exact records. 

In 1997, eight of the original Trappist abbeys came together to protect the Trappist name and the highest quality that comes from their strict production process. They created the International Trappist Association and the private logo that is assigned to any goods (cheese, honey, beer, wine, etc.) that are produced with respect to the precise production criteria. These criteria include: The product must be produced inside the walls of a Trappist monastery either by the monks themselves or with supervision, the goods are produced as secondary importance that places primary value on the monastic way of life, and finally the goods are not intended to be a profit-making venture. 

Time Posted: Apr 1, 2019 at 10:00 AM
Bryan Brammer
 
November 17, 2018 | Bryan Brammer

Thinking about Thanksgiving

It’s that time of year again: the day when we get to see old friends, family, and stuff ourselves until we cannot move.  That’s right, Thanksgiving - the sweet and delectable Turkey Day.  I personally love this day, getting to share two completely different feasts with my and my wife’s families.  It has always been one of my favorite meals to prepare and to share as we sit around and talk about all we have to be thankful for that year.  This uniquely American holiday’s history has given us a fairly good idea of what to eat (or not…I’m looking at you, Neil), but the question becomes: what should we drink?

Let’s start by saying, there is no “right” or “wrong” paring when it comes to sharing a wine or beer with your family and friends.  There is, however, a nice selection of wines that might just make the perfect pairing to send your taste buds to the moon.  So, where do we start?

I have always heard the fun “rule” for pairing wine and food is “if it grows together, it goes together.”  The idea being that wines and food from the same regional cuisine have evolved together and usually play nice when served at the dinner table.  This idea is great in concept and relatively easy to apply to most dishes, but all of the flavors of Thanksgiving make it a bit more of a complicated process.  That being said, I’m here to share a few of my favorite wines and beers that pair delightfully with Thanksgiving and that we currently have in stock at The Thief.

If it’s a red wine that you’re after, you can rely on a relatively new wine to myself but an old standby to the Gamay Gal, Emily Riley!  Beaujolais wines produced from the gamay grape in the far southern reaches of Burgundy are a near perfect match for all of your Turkey Day fixings.  Lighter in body and softer on the palate than something like a Cabernet or Merlot, Beaujolais is a plush wine, with notes of cherries, and red berries that carry acidity.  This makes it a wine that can cut through the fatty, light flavors of Thanksgiving.  If you want to try my personal favorite, ask for Marcel Lapierre’s Raisins Gaulois Vin de France 2017 - $21.

For whites, a fuller-bodied wine will stand up nicely to the rich dishes on your dining room table. That, to me, means a nice Chardonnay or Viognier-based wine with some acidity to cut through the multitude of flavors.  One of my personal favorites for holiday meals is Les Heritiers des Comte Lafon Macon-Villages 2017 - $32.  This particular wine is from a biodynamic estate and has a Chablis-esque nerve with bread crust, lemon and apple flavors that can cut through the fattiest gravies.

Finally, if you are not a wine fan and looking for a beer that pairs with the foods of the season, look no further than a recent festival held in Germany - Oktoberfest!  The traditional Oktoberfest lager from Germany is often a bit maltier and has a heavier body than a more traditional light pilsner or lager.  But this hint of more roasty and malty flavors augments nearly every dish that might make it to the Thanksgiving Day dinner table.  My personal favorite is the Ayinger Oktoberfest - $5.  It is probably partly the nostalgia of visiting the brewery during a freak hailstorm last summer that makes me love this brewery, but this is a critics’ choice beer and one that will bring a smile to even the most discerning palate.  

In the end, Thanksgiving is about celebrating our blessings, so whatever beverage ends up on your table, raise your glass and toast to the things that make you most thankful!

Time Posted: Nov 17, 2018 at 3:00 PM

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