Bob's BeerStuff
Specialty Beer for the Beer-Curious Wino

 


This Page will be dedicated to Specialty Beer.

As one not versed on the topic, I hope to get contributions from outside sources, like the good folks at our Winery of the Month selection, Clipper City Brewery; my friend, co-worker and Beer expert whom I will call Beer Boy or Beer Boy John, and anyone else with good solid beer information.  In the brief time I have researched this, I have come to find out the there is a beer expert all the beer trade magazines hold in high regard, and we will include his link in this inaugural entry to lend weight and power to the information contain from this day forward.  His name is Michael Jackson and looks nothing like the other Michael Jackson, nor does he like little boys. 

I have far less knowledge of starting this page then starting my wino entries four years ago, as I had spent time in Kevin Zraly’s class and read volumes on the wine world.  But looking back, my early entries kind sucked so this will probably suck too for a while until I get my beer legs under me.  This page will be updated monthly at this point unless we can get help, or until Wino John feels he would like to offer input. 

I thought about defining this page with Micro Brews only, but as I read, it seems that some of what I thought were micro brews, are micro in marketing only and I’m sure knowledgeable beer enthusiast will correct me on the beers I highlight.  To them I say, hey go start your own page, this is Wino Bob’s look into what he considers Specialty Beers.  Some may not even be special, but it won’t be Budweiser, Miller or Schlitz I will highlight on this page.  The other difficulty I am having is finding the terms to use to describe the beer so that too will develop in time.  All skyscrapers start with the first truckload of cement, consider this cement. 

As I have mentioned in the past, Ballentine Beer flowed in my family’s bloodstream, as my maternal grandmother was a tavern owner in Newark one block from the plant.  Allegiances also run towards Anheuser-Busch and Pabst as they both had bottling facilities that relatives of mine worked in. During high school (yes drinking age in NJ was 18 and many of us turned 18 our senior year) we mostly drank Bud and Miller.  College was Olympia and Coors (I went to school in Arizona for a bit) but finished drinking Gennie Cream Ale and Miller Light at the pub on campus at Rutgers.  Unlike Wino John who was downing the remains of high end wine left on the tables at the high society members only, businessmen’s club he worked, I attended Thursday dollar Bud nights in New Brunswick. 

Fast forward to several years ago when, on occasion we would be at a meeting in California and the crowd wanted to visit the Goat Head Tavern in Newport- which once held the Guinness book record for most beer on tap.  Then Beer Boy John joined the crew and his love and knowledge for specialty beer had us searching out places in many different cities for beers he read up on and hadn’t tried.  So I partially dedicate this page to him, hoping it will obligate him to write so great stuff in the near future.

Now that some of the background is out of the way, and seeing how my Uber Pils from Clipper City has not yet arrived, I would like to make a simple entry today.  The reason I wanted to start this is that July is American Beer Month.  This July is the 5th Anniversary of the month long celebration to learn and seek out great American Brews started by the Association of Brewers in 1999.  Each week (just so you don’t jump on me already-they are starting it on June 21st) will feature a different style of beer including Wheat, Indian Pale Ale (IPA) Pilsner, American Pale Ale, Brown Ale and American Amber Ale.   To learn more about the events throughout the country you can visit www.AmericanBeerMonth.com for those in Penn, Beer Boy John will be attending the Harrisburg Brewer’s Fest next Saturday June 19th, which will feature 30 local breweries.  On Sunday June 27th at Waterloo Village in Stanhope, NJ our 8th Annual NJ Beer Festival which will feature 16 NJ breweries/ brewpubs.  To learn more about the specialty beer companies of NJ you can visit www.njbeer.org.

As with everything else, I start close to home so I will end this babbling with a simple list of the Breweries and Brewpubs in NJ.

  • Original Basil T’s Brew Pub- Red Bank

  • Basil T’s Brew Pub- Toms River

  • Climax Brewing Co.- Roselle Park

  • Cricket Hill Brewing Co.- Fairfield (close to Bacchus)

  • Flying Fish Brew Co.- Cherry Hill

  • Gaslight Brewery & Rest. - South Orange

  • Harvest Moon Brewery/Café- New Brunswick

  • Heavyweight Brewing Co.- Ocean Twps.

  • High Point Wheat Brewing Co.- Butler

  • J.J. Bittings- Woodbridge

  • Krogh’s Rest. & Brewpub- Sparta

  • Pizzeria Uno/ Chicago Grill & Brewery- Metuchen

  • River Horse Brewery- Lambertville

  • The Ship Inn- Milford

  • Trap Rock Brewery- Berkeley Heights

  • Triumph Brewing Co.- Princeton

  • Tun Tavern- Atlantic City

Support American Beer Month, go pick up you Beer Passport at the Garden State Brewers Festival, and write in with your favorite beers, as the past NJ Governor, now 9/11 commissioner once said, “New Jersey and Beer… Perfect Together.  OK I took that from Kevin Trayner’s article on the NJ Brewers Festival, but I am giving him the credit so the lawsuit is not necessary at this time.

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