Sierra Nevada 30th Anniversary: Fritz & Ken’s Ale

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Sierra Nevada Brewery Website
Sierra Nevada Brewery on Twitter

I was only five years old when Fritz Maytag purchased the floundering Anchor Brewery in San Francisco and began the American craft brewing movement. At that age, I would toddle up to my dad with an empty Dixie cup and ask for a sip of what he was drinking at the end of a long day of work. Burgie, Hamms, and the now re-popular Pabst Blue Ribbon were doled out in quarter-ounce pours.

Stone Ruination Ale

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Stone Brewery Website
Stone Brewery on Twitter

Anyone remember those silly commercials from Keystone Beer a decade or so ago? The one with the toothless man sucking his lips in to create the most wonderful rictus grin anyone’s ever seen? He was, apparently, representative of what “bitter beer face” looked like. Everyone in the commercial would scream and run around like Armageddon was here.

CHOC Beer Co. Basement Batch Pale Ale

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CHOC Brewery Company Website
CHOC Brewery Company on Twitter

A few decades ago, when Sierra Nevada Brewing founder, Ken Grossman, decided to incorporate the little-used Cascade hops into his pale ale he accidentally launched a truly American style of beer. Nowadays, seems you can’t swing the proverbial dead cat without knocking over a six-pack or two of American Pale Ale that doesn’t have Cascade as its primary hop ingredient. Being a beer dork, I find myself asking:

Gordon Biersch Sommerbrau

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Gordon Biersch Brewery Website
Gordon Biersch Brewery on Twitter

I seem to have gotten myself into a bit of a German beer mindset after last week’s review. And why not? The weather’s getting warmer and German beers are perfect for one’s thirst when the temperature climbs. Simple ingredients and a bottom-fermentation process designed to deliver a clean-textured citrus-and-herb-flavored lager/pilsner feels much more refreshing than, say, a stout or barleywine.

Kostritzer Schwartzbier

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Kostritzer Brewery Website

Memorial Day was Monday and I, like so many others, reflected on the ways those in the armed services have affected our lives. I currently have only two family members in the military: my little sister’s and my oldest niece’s husbands, both Marines. My closest blood relative to have served was my late grandfather, Herb Dohms.