A Tale of Two Bottles: Saint Arnold Pumpkinator 2013 Vs. 2014

Categories: Brew Blog

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Nicholas L. Hall
It was the best of beers, it was the blurst of beers? Stupid monkeys!
I have a habit of accidentally cellaring beer. I see something interesting, bring it home, and forget about it amid all the other interesting things I bring home. Sometimes, I just keep "waiting to drink it," looking for some nebulous "right time" that doesn't really exist.

Sometimes, it doesn't work out particularly well. I'm pretty sure, for example, that the bottle of Karbach El Hopadillo Negro I just found behind a stash of FUN Series bottles hasn't improved with age. Then again, I'm not even entirely sure how much age it has. Part and parcel with the notion of accidental cellaring is the fact that nothing is labeled. That's why I love dated releases, which at least allow me to determine exactly how long I've been ignoring a bottle.

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Saint Arnold Brewing Company Celebrates Oktoberfest

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Photos courtesy of Saint Arnold Brewing Company
Get your tickets to Saint Arnold Oktoberfest before they sell out.
Looking for another Oktoberfest celebration in Houston? Saint Arnold Brewing Company will host its annual Oktoberfest party at the brewery for two nights, Friday, October 10, and Saturday, October 11. Both nights are separate events, so you can choose the night you'd prefer to attend. But, don't hesitate making that decision; Saint Arnold's Oktoberfest celebrations always sell out and each night the brewery holds approximately 350 guests.

The Oktoberfest parties will be held from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Tickets to each night cost $45 per person (all guests must be 21 years or older) and include food, beer, a mug and entertainment from a live band. Lennie Ambrose, marketing and events director of Saint Arnold, says the feast includes an array of German specialties: weiner schnitzel, sauerkraut and sausages.

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7 Seasonal Brews to Kick Off the Fall Season in Houston

Categories: Brew Blog

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Photos by Molly Dunn
Try these seven fall brews to welcome the fall season.
You know fall is almost here when Starbucks starts selling Pumpkin Spice Lattes and Oktoberfest beers start popping up all over the place. Too bad it's still hot as ever outside. We're almost halfway through September and the grocery store beer aisles are already filled with a multitude of fall brews. So, which ones should you buy?

We scoured the beer aisle at the H-E-B on the corner of West Alabama and Dunlavy, and found seven seasonal brews you are sure to love. Plus, we've got the scoop on the next wave of seasonal beverages coming from these breweries.

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Mexican Golden Lager, Montejo, Debuts in Houston

Categories: Brew Blog

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Photo by Molly Dunn
Montejo is a light Mexican beer imported from Mexico by Anheuser-Busch.
Consider yourself lucky, Houston. We're one of 11 cities to receive Montejo, the first Mexican beer imported from Mexico. The golden lager is available at a variety of bars, restaurants and grocery stores in the Houston area, starting today, September 1.

Anheuser-Busch decided to launch the release of Montejo in the southwest region because of the heavy concentration of Hispanic consumers and because Mexican beers already account for approximately 60 percent of all imported beers into the United States.

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Five Burger and Local Craft Beer Pairings for Labor Day

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Photo by Carla Soriano
Which No Label brew did we choose to pair with a turkey burger?
Most of us will spend our Labor Day outside by the pool (weather permitting) and will likely use the grill to make our lunch or dinner. Barbecue ribs and steaks are great Labor Day meals, but so are burgers. And what goes best with burgers? Well, fries, of course, but the other major accompaniment is beer.

When pairing burgers with beer, it's more than just matching the type of meat to the brew; you also have to consider the other components. We're talking about the cheese, sauce, bread and condiments.

Local grocery stores have a wide assortment of local craft beers, so you don't have to visit a restaurant or bar in the city to sip on one of those fine selections. Check out these five burger and local craft beer pairings to enjoy this holiday.

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Tickets on Sale Now for July 20 Sassafras Beer Dinner to Benefit Oak Forest Animal Advocates

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Oak Forest has a stray animal problem, and neighborhood residents are rallying to do something about it.

It's not an original problem; the entire city of Houston shares it. Our streets are home to about one million stray animals, and BARC has neither the money nor the manpower to handle these staggering numbers. Rescue organizations turn away calls and emails for help on a daily basis with the refrain, "No money, no fosters. We're full, and we're broke."

On Sunday, July 20, the Oak Forest neighborhood is taking action to raise awareness--and funds--for the newly-formed Oak Forest Animal Advocates organization in an effort to take control of the stray population in their own backyards. So much the better for us, that action is a three-course dinner with beer pairings for $40 a person at neighborhood bar Sassafras.

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The 5 Best Beer Flights in Houston

Categories: Booze, Brew Blog

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Photo courtesy MKT Bar.
Some flights provide variety, while others pair similar beers.
Decisions, decisions, decisions.

How to pick just one or two beers to drink during happy hour when there are so many to choose from?

Fortunately for those fickle souls among us, a number of bars and restaurants in town offer beer flights, so you can get more bang for your buck and more beer for your belly. If you can't decide which beer to taste on a night out, taste as many as possible with these various flights put together by beer aficionados so you don't have to do any thinking.

Of course, a few places offer build-your-own flights, which opens a door to endless possibilities (and hours of waffling back and forth). The indecisive should maybe stay away from those.

Drink up! Here's to Houston's hottest (and hoppiest) flights!

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Sundown at The Grove Returns With Craft Beer Flights & Delightful Bites

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Photo by Molly Dunn
From left to right: Elissa, Amber, Icon and Lawnmower.
How does drinking a flight of beer with specially paired food while watching the sun set at Discovery Green sound? Pretty nice, right? Well, every Wednesday night until September 17, you can spend your evening sipping on beer from a featured brewery while munching on bites of food crafted by the chefs at The Grove.

Sundown at The Grove kicked off Wednesday, July 9, at 5:30 p.m. with beer flights from Saint Arnold and small plates prepared by The Grove's team of sous chefs led by chef de cuisine Ryan Williams. It was a relaxing evening on the upstairs patio overlooking Discovery Green.

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The Best Houston Beers for Summer

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Photo courtesy D&T Drive Inn
Find most of these beers and more at D&T Drive Inn.
The sun is brutal and the air is thick and humid, and there's only one way to combat the Houston summer slump: Cold beer.

Fortunately, there are a number of breweries in our fair city, each of which has devised a special summer beer for the season. Some of them are released every year as soon as the days start getting longer. Others are small batch, limited edition brews intended to be as fleeting and lovely as a summer romance.

We tasted beers from each of Houston's six breweries and determined which libations are best to carry you through the summer and into fall. There are lots of hops, a little malt and more citrus than Carmen Miranda's headwear. Oh yeah, and there's also mint, hibiscus and Sour Patch Kids.

What can we say? Houston is full of creative brewers.

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Taste-Testing Summer Beer Cocktails at Yard House

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Photo by Molly Dunn
Yard House has combined the fruitiness of summer with beer to make six special beer cocktails.
Yard House is known for having more than 125 beers on tap, but this summer you should consider ordering one of the new beer cocktails. Each location features six new alcoholic drinks made from a beer on tap plus a slew of liqueurs and bitters.

The new beer cocktails include the Dreamsicle, an alcoholic rendition of the classic orange-cream Popsicle; the Framboise Fog, a mix of Mezcal, bitters and Framboise; the Hawaiian Five O, a surf-side fruity cocktail featuring cider, bitters, pineapple and coconut rum; the Jack & Ginger, a Bavarian Weiss drink mixed with Jack Daniels Honey, ginger citrus agave and orange bitters; The Silly European, a House Belgian Amber Ale Tripel stirred with gin, amaretto Disaronno plus bitters; and the West Coast Shandy, a light summer drink made with an IPA, grapefruit, X-rated fusion liqueur and citrus agave.

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