20090828

World's oldest bartender retiring

From the Associated Press

WEST VIEW, Pa. — Only minutes after Prohibition died in 1933, Angelo Cammarata, 19, served a 10-cent bottle of Fort Pitt beer to a customer in his father's neighborhood grocery.

Ever since, except for a 30-month hitch during World War II, the son of Italian immigrants has been tending bar and serving drinks. Guinness World Records dubbed him the longest-serving bartender a decade ago, and he's earned induction into Jim Beam's Bartender Hall of Fame and numerous other honors.

Now 95, he's calling it quits.

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I was fired today ...


... reads the subject line on the e-mail this photo was attached to. The rest of the note explains, "I was in charge of ordering cups for the company picnic."

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A beer cocktail for m'lady?

From Digital City

Forget for a moment the stereotyped idea that drinking beer is primarily a male pastime. In reality, more women are drinking beer than ever before. And with pretty beer cocktails adorning drink menus across the nation, guzzling down a cold brew can hardly be called unladylike.

Classic beer cocktails include lager and lime, the snakebite (half beer and half cider) and the black velvet (half stout and half champagne). Now, with the increased popularity of 'booze brews,' bars and restaurants are getting even more creative. Bartenders are mixing up concoctions of beer and raspberry liqueur, wheat beer and Blue CuraƧao, and even beer and Kahlua.

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20090826

Delaware gets another brewery

The newest brewery in Delaware has opened, the sixth such operation in the state.

The brewery, located in Georgetown, Sussex County, is called 16 Mile. The name comes from a book called "16 Miles from Anywhere: A History of Georgetown, Delaware," by William J. Wade.

The brewhouse is located on what historically had been called Pettijohn's Field, where the original farmhouse still stands nearly 200 years after being built. Brewery owners Chad Campbell and Brett McCrea refurbished the structure and installed the fermenting tanks there.

16 Mile's containers have a logo that represents the Breakwater Lighthouse in Lewes, DE. The brews are about 5.5% alcohol by volume. They are sold individually in 22-ounce aluminum bottles.

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20090824

Harvesting hops in Upstate NY

From the Albany (NY) Times Union

... This is the season for harvesting hops, which can be turned into tasty beer. On Sunday, a group of about 25 volunteers gathered at Tom Riley's Johnsonville [NY] farm to strip about 100 pounds of Cascade variety hops from their vines. The bounty will soon become Brown Brewing Company's Harvest IPA.

The hops are not just a local link to a piece of New York's history that was long presumed dead. They're also what makes craft beers a niche market and allows companies like Brown's to expand in a recession, said Gregg Stacy, director of marketing and sales.

"These are flavors a lot of people haven't experienced," Stacy said as he ran a vine through green-stained fingers in search of more hops. "This is the way beer used to be made."

Upstate New York once was the center of America's production of hops, an essential ingredient in making beer. About a century ago, 80 million pounds came out of the region, said Duncan Hilchey, who helped develop the Northeast Hops Alliance, a group of farmers and brewers trying to build a hop resurgence in the state. Farmers recruited beer drinkers from places like New York City to come and help harvest the hops by making it a weekend celebration, with plenty of product sampling allowed and dances called, not surprisingly, "hops."

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20090823

Empire State Brewery Trails hit all four corners

New York State is known for its numerous wine trails, formal lineups of wineries and related tourist sites. But, what is lesser known are the four Empire State Brewery Trails.

Here, by individual trails, are the 48 member companies, ranging from breweries to brew pubs. You can check out an interactive online site for additional details.

NORTHERN BREWERY TRAIL


Adirondack Pub & Brewery
33 Canada Street
Lake George, NY 12845
518/668-0002

Brown's Brewing Company
417-419 River Street
Troy, NY 12180
518/273-2337

C.H. Evans/Albany Pump Station
19 Quackenbush Square
Albany, NY 12207
518/447-9000

Coopers Cave Ale Company
2 Sagamore Street
Glens Falls, NY 12801
518/792-0007

Davidson Brothers
184 Glen Street, Route 9
Glens Falls, NY 12801
518/743-9026

Great Adirondack Brewing Company
34 Main Street
Lake Placid, NY 12946
518/523-0233

Lake Placid Pub & Brewery
14 Mirror Lake Drive
Lake Placid, NY 12946
518/523-3813

Lake Placid Craft Brewing Company
1472 Military Turnpike
Plattsburgh, NY 12901
518/563-3340

Olde Saratoga Brewing Company
131 Excelsior Avenue
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
518/581-0492

SOUTHERN BREWERY TRAIL



Black Forest Brew Haus
2015 New Highway
Farmingdale, Long Island, NY 11735
631/391-9500

Blue Point Brewing Co.
161 River Avenue
Patchogue, Long Island, NY 11772
631/475-6944

Brooklyn Brewery
79 North 11th Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211
718/486-7422

Captain Lawrence Brewing Company
99 Castleton Street
Pleasantville, NY 10570
914/741-2337

Chelsea Brewery
Chelsea Piers, Pier 59
New York, NY 10011
212/336-6440

Gilded Otter Brewing Company
3 Main Street
New Paltz, NY 12561
845/246-1700

Heartland Brewery
127 West 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036
646/366-0235

Heartland Brewery
35 Union Square West
New York, NY 10003
212/645-3400

Heartland Brewery
1285 6th Avenue @ 51st Street
New York, NY 10019
212/582-8244

Heartland Brewery
93 South Street @ Fulton Street
New York, NY 10038
646/572-2337

Heartland Brewery
350 5th Avenue @ 34th Street
New York, NY 10118
212/563-3433

Hyde Park Brewing Company
4076 Albany Post Road
Hyde Park, NY 12538
845/229-8277

John Harvard's Brew House
2093 Smith Haven Plaza
Lake Grove, Long Island, NY 11755
631/979-2739

Keegan Ales
20 St. James Street
Kingston, NY 12401
845/331-2739

Skytop Steakhouse and Brewery
30 Forest Hill Drive
Kingston, NY 12401
845/340-4277

Sixpoint Craft Ales
40 Van Dyke Street/234 North 12th Street, 1R
Brooklyn, NY 11231
917/687-1725

Southampton Publick House
40 Bowden Square
Southampton, Long Island, NY 11968
631/283-2800

CENTRAL BREWERY TRAIL



Brewery Ommegang
656 Route 33
Cooperstown, NY 13326
607/544-1808

Butternut's Beer & Ale
4021 Route 51
Garrattsville, NY 13342
607/263-5070

Cooperstown Brewing Company
P.O. Box 276/River Street
Cooperstown, NY 13807
607/286-9330

Empire Brewing Company
120 Walton Street
Syracuse, NY 13202
315/256-7608

Ithaca Beer Company
606 Elmira Road
Ithaca, NY 14850
607/273-0766

King Arthur's Steakhouse & Brewery
7 West Bridge Road
Oswego, NY 13126
315/343-6033

Market Street Brewing Company
63-65 W Market Street
Corning, NY 14830
607/936-2337

Matt Brewing Company
811 Edward Street
Utica, NY 13502
315/624-2401

Middle Ages Brewing Company
120 Wilkinson Street
Syracuse, NY 13204
315/476-4250

Rooster Fish Brewery
223-301 North Franklin Street
Watkins Glen, NY 14891
607/535-9797

Sackets Harbor Brewing Company
212 West Main Street
Sackets Harbor, NY 13685
315/646-2739

Syracuse Suds Factory
320 South Clinton Street
Syracuse, NY 13202
315/471-2253

Wagner Valley Brewing Company
9322 Route 414
Lodi, NY 14860
607/582-6450

WESTERN BREWERY TRAIL



Buffalo Brewpub
6861 Main Street
Buffalo, NY 14221
716/632-0552

Custom Brewcrafters Inc.
93 Paper Mill Street
Honeoye Falls, NY 14472
716/624-4386

Ellicottville Brewing Company
28A Monroe Street
Ellicottville, NY 14731
716/699-2537

Ellicottville Brewing Company
34 West Main Street
Fredonia, NY 14063
716/699-2537

Flying Bison Brewing Company
491 Ontario Street
Buffalo, NY 14207
716/873-1557

Mac's Village Brewhaus
4246 N. Buffalo Street
Orchard Park, NY 14127
716/667-2314

Pearl Street Grill & Brewery
76 Pearl Street
Buffalo, NY 14202
716/856-2337

Rohrbach Brewing Company
3859 Buffalo Road
Rochester, NY 14624
585/594-9800

Southern Tier Brewing Company
2051A Stoneman Circle
Lakewood, NY 14750
716/763-5479

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Illinois alcohol taxes set to soar

Consumers in Illinois will be hit with the largest alcohol tax increase in state history come September 1. Oh, and many suppliers also plan to rase the prices of their products as well.

It reminds me of the situation a Canadian distillery official told me about during a visit to his operation a few years ago when the subject of high prices of adult beverages in his country came up.

"Why don't you find many Canadian alcoholics?" he asked. "Because no one makes enough money to be one."

In Illinois, the excise tax on alcohol is paid to the state by the manufacturer or distributor. According to the state's Department of Revenue, consumers can expect to see the tax on a six-pack of beer go up by 25% (from 10.4 cents to 13 cents), the tax on a bottle of wine go up 86% (from 13 cents to 28 cents), and the tax on a fifth of distilled spirits 90% (from 90 cents to $1.71).

That all is based on current prices. Once supplier price hikes are figured in, consumers probably will be paying about $3 more for a 1.75-liter bottle of spirits and $1 or more extra for a bottle of wine.

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20090806

They still exist???

A 136-year-old organization, gathered in Wichita, KS, this week for its annual convention, has found something current to complain about.

It's the Women's Christian Temperance Union, the same all-female organization that helped push through Prohibition back in 1919.

Their complaint? President Barack Obama’s suds summit with the Harvard prof and the local cop involved in a recent dustup that immediately became a cause celebre for people who love to play the race card -- from either side.

Bunny Galladora (honest), WCTU media director, said the meeting sent the wrong message because “alcohol and conflicts are not a good combination.”

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20090805

Philly ale house turns 150

From the Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA, PA — If he were alive today, William "Pa" McGillin probably wouldn't recognize the nachos and watermelon martinis being served at his namesake pub. Yet he'd no doubt be heartened to see that its core commitment to beer and camaraderie has remained largely unchanged since he opened it 150 years ago.

McGillin's Olde Ale House began celebrating its sesquicentennial this week, cementing its status as the oldest continuously operated tavern in Philadelphia and one of the oldest in the nation.

Established in 1860, just prior to the Civil War and before City Hall was built, McGillin's sits tucked away in a small alley at the heart of downtown. Even some residents need a map to find it.

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20090802

MillerCoors tests 'Home Draft' kit

MillerCoors has begun testing a "Home Draft" kit it claims will keep draft beer fresh in your refrigerator for a month.

The $20, 1½-gallon boxes of Miller Lite and Coors Light fit upright in a recyclable container. The cost is about 15% higher than an 18-pack of the same beer, according to the company.

MillerCoors, a U.S. joint venture of SABMiller and Molson Coors Brewing Co., is seeing Miller Lite, one of its major brands, in a prolonged sales slump. Its Coors Light, however, is gaining sales.

The product, which is recyclable, is aimed at the 30% of beer drinkers who say they prefer draft beer to the bottled or canned variety, said Andy England, chief marketing officer at MillerCoors. "We're really trying to meet that occasion when you just got back from work and want to reward yourself," rather than "the party occasion," he said.

Home Draft is similar to DraughtKeg, the 5-liter Heineken product that has been sold in the U.S. since 2005. However, the DraughtKeg is designed to be used at one time.

MillerCoors is sensitive to speculation on why it launched the new product. According to a note I received from Julian Green, the company's director of media relations, " ... Home Draft is not a response to Miller Lite softness. This innovative product was a result of nearly three years of planning and development by the innovation team at the former Coors Brewing Company. We only decided after the merger to roll-out this innovation for both Coors Light and Miller Lite."

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Vermont beer czar living the dream

From the Rutland (VT) Herald

Kurt Staudter (right) can wax poetic about the color, the smell and the taste of beer. He knows the politics and history behind beer. But most of all, he just plain loves Vermont beer.

Staudter, 51, has his dream job: He is executive director of the Vermont Brewers Association, the group that represents Vermont's thriving craft breweries and brew pubs.

These days the Springfield resident is leading a push by brewers that mirrors the localvore (or locavore) movement, which urges people to eat food grown locally. Staudter said beer is the perfect Vermont product that will only get more perfectly Vermont in the coming years, as farmers explore the feasibility of growing hops and barley here and local breweries roll out higher-alcohol varieties in response to a change in state law.

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