Archive for the ‘Off the Beaten Beer Path’ Category

Make Your Own Pumpkin Keg

October 24, 2012 3 comments

Easy DIY Pumpkin keg pours whatever you put in it, like your favorite pumpkin beer. Or try root beer, butter beer (Harry Potter cookbook) or apple cider for the kiddies! (photo by

What better way to serve a pumpkin beer – and a host of other fall beers and beverages – than in your own homemade pumpkin keg.  No fancy brewing equipment or extreme sanitation methods required…I promise! came up with this great tutorial for creating your Halloween party masterpiece.

This idea is not limited to just pumpkins.  I can’t wait to try it next summer using a watermelon.  Fill with your favorite watermelon lager, summer beer or beverage.

Serve your favorite summer beer or beverage in a watermelon keg!                                    (photo courtesy of

Visit for the written instructions and for other great party ideas.

Happy Halloween!  

Cheers Beers

Phantom Brewer Takes “Battle of the Bubbles” by Storm

Ok, well maybe he’s not a phantom, but my hubster certainly came from out of no where and took this year’s Battle of the Bubbles homebrew competition by storm!   Battle of the Bubbles is a local competition started last year, and continued this year as part of Frederick Beer Week.

I’m bragging you say?  You bet I am!

88 beers were entered in 21 different categories.  The hubster entered four of his homebrews – a Belgian IPA, a Southern English Brown, a Hellesbock and a Winterbock (my personal favorite).

Results were as follows…

  • Belgian IPA – 2nd place all around, 1st place in its category,
  • Southern English Brown – 1st place in its category
  • Hellesbock –  3rd place in its category
  • Winterbock – 2nd place in its category.

All went to the final round, with his Belgian IPA taking 2nd place all around.

We thought he’d come home with a few medals of honor, but when he collected his winnings, the stash included four huge ribbons; gift cards from local restaurants, Northern Brewer and White Labs (yeast); beer stickers; t-shirt; a tap handle; and a VIP tour of Flying Dog Brewery in Frederick for up to 10 people (don’t think I won’t be blogging about that!).

Holy cow!  We were two giddy kids sitting in the car, laughing and dumbfounded by all the goodies he’d won.

Rumor has it, my hubster is “the one to watch out for” next year.  That’s the best prize of all!

Cheers beers everyone!  

Why Americans Celebrate St. Paddy


I was chatting last week with a British co-worker who recently moved to Philadelphia from England.  He was amused that St Patrick’s Day parades were being held an entire week before the actual holiday. “I’m surprised that people here get so excited about a religious Irish holiday,” he laughed.

I suppose Americans have zapped the religion right out of St. Paddy’s Day.  In fact, I wonder how many celebrators (especially the non-Irish ones) even know who St. Patrick was and what he signifies?  He is a saint after all — the patron saint of Ireland.  He was born British, kidnapped and enslaved in Ireland at 16.  He heard voices (like Joan of Arc) telling him to high tail it out of there, so he escaped, found religion, returned to Ireland and introduced Christianity to its people; and he used the three leaves of the shamrock to explain the trinity (father, son and holy ghost).  Somewhere in the mix he supposedly drove all the snakes out of Ireland – no idea where that part came from, but the Irish do enjoy their legends, and a saint should have some sort of super power, don’t you think?

It was the Irish Americans who gave the holiday its first parade…and so the party has spread around the world.  Leave it to Americans to turn a Roman Catholic holiday into a monster drink fest.  I confess, neither the hubster or I are Irish, but today we will wear green, drink green and eat Irish (corned beef and cabbage in the crockpot).  Why?  Because, it’s what we do on St. Patrick’s Day – no religion or irish descent required, and everyone is welcome.  So bottoms up, and Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Cheers Beers!

Beer and Cookies for Santa

December 24, 2011 4 comments

Wow, Christmas is almost here! Hard to believe. And if you’ve been tracking Santa’s trek around the world, you’ll know that by the time he gets here to the US, he’ll be needing a beer real bad.  So when the little kiddies set out their milk and cookies, don’t be afraid to add a little bribery on behalf of the big kids.  After all, Santa is a beer lover too!  Seriously, you don’t think he got that belly eating too much jelly, do ya?

So sleep tight my friends, and if the beer is really good, perhaps Santa will show his appreciation by leaving some quality holiday beverages under your beer tree on Christmas morning.

Hoppy holidays and best wishes for lots of wonderful new beer ventures in 2012!

Cheers beers!

Cease Fire and Drink a Beer

December 8, 2011 8 comments

I came across this Dear Abby post and felt the need to make a few edits…


Much better!  Such a simple and effective concept…like the “go in another room, shut the door and count to 10” trick when the kiddies drive you to the extreme.  A malty hoppy beverage that acts as a mild sedative is just the ticket – versus a sugary caffeinated candy bar that lasts maybe 30 seconds, isn’t nearly as satisfying, has just as many calories and will have you both climbing the walls and clawing each other (not in a good way) from the sugar high.

Imagine this…heated discussion begins to brew.  You both look at each other…hold the phone, grab two glasses, crack open a quality craft brewsky, split between glasses (make sure it’s even or that might start a whole different discussion), clink glasses, take a big swig, savor it, and what happens next?   Ok, we’ll keep it G-rated, but you get my point.  Let the clawing begin!
Cheers beers!

The Craft Beer Snowman from Flying Dog Brewery

November 28, 2011 2 comments

One of my all time favorite beer commercials never even made it to television.  The Flying Dog Brewery  (right here in Frederick, Maryland) received this promo commercial last year as part of an interview from director Tim Martin.  He got the job!

Happy Winter and Cheers beers!

Specialty Beer Brings Home the Blue

September 25, 2011 5 comments

After his first taste of competition at Frederick Beer Week this past spring, the Hubster decided to enter two of his brews into the Frederick County Fair.  Mind you, the Frederick County Fair sounds like small potatoes, but Frederick actually has a well established homebrew community, and our Frederick’s Original Ale Maker’s (FOAM)  homebrew club includes a large membership and some highly regarded beer judges and brewers.  So the entries for this event were numerous and competitive, ranging in all types and styles of beer.

I can attest that the Hubster makes some darn good brews, and for this round, he entered his fresh hopped IPA in the IPA category (the largest with 24 entries), and his pumpkin ale in the specialty beer category (second largest with 20 entries).  Results were posted late Sunday eve and we awoke to victory – a first place win in the specialty beer category with his pumpkin ale!   Very exciting!  And let me tell you, award winning beer tastes so much sweeter.


Cheers Beers!

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