2010. Relax, have a beer!

 

Wow!  So 2010 seemed to come in like a lion (I know that is usually saved for March and refers to weather, but it fit here.)  I just have to ask, has anyone else noticed an underlying feeling of irritation and tension in the world, at work, etc?  I know things could be better for some, and much, much better for others, but for those of us trucking along and doing fine lets start being thankful and, dare I say, happy about our circumstance?  Hey world, I would like to buy you a beer for the New Year!  Relax, and enjoy!  Let me know what you are happy about, or not happy about.  Probably can’t do much to help, but I can listen and you can post it!  Maybe you will feel better. 

Come on, get happy!

BM

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Village Brewing Co. (VBC) Log: Year One

Greetings from The Beer Men @ The VBC,
 

As we approach our first anniversary we look back to see some important observations and, well, learning moments.  Thought I would share some with you as well as what is on tap for the Anniversary brew.

First year lessons:

1)      Always approve your brewing schedule with your wife

2)     Do not go by the suggested usage amount on the back of the Cardamom package.  Unless, of course, you love cardamom in ways no one else should know about.

3)     People lie about how good your cardamom beer is because they think it will hurt your feelers if they tell you the truth

4)     Brewing is a great time when a bunch of people show up

5)     Brewing is expensive when a bunch of people show up and drink all your beer

6)     It is cool to have bottles of your own beer

7)     It is a pain in the ass to bottle your own beer

8)     It is awesome to have a keg of your beer!

9)     You always have to go to the bathroom right as the boil starts

10)  You sit around and wonder why you did not start this in collage

 So as we start the New Year out, (yes we have officially changed the calendar to VBC time, Monday will be the start of Year 2, so enjoy your new years eve!) we will be experimenting a bit with a brown.  We have the gear to do a 10 gallon batch which we will be splitting into two 5 gallon batches.  One will remain a brown, the other will get to be a spicy brown (kind of leaning towards naming it Mick’s Brown Sugar Ale because we like the Stones!).  We will see how they turn out, and if it works, well I will post the recipe here so you all can mess with it to make your own, or clone Mick (the world needs more Micks!).  This is as close to an original VBC recipe as we have made, so we could really screw it up!

Here is to a great first year!

Cheers!

The Beer Men

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The Village Brewing Company/Von Grote Oktoberfest!

Hello loyal followers of the VBC,
 
It’s been a while, we do apologize! 
 
The VBC is very “hoppy” to announce that Eric and Jess have graduated from the Advanced Brewing class at Learn to Brew.  With their new wealth of knowledge, they will be able to bring you better beer.  Donations for the purchase of the new equipment needed to modify our brewing system, can be sent directly to the Brewery. 
 
This is also a reminder that the Von Grote Oktoberfest will be on Saturday 10/3.  Only you who receive the newsletter know that the VBC will have “possibly” (2) kegs at the party – a Hefeweisen (German wheat beer) and a Marzen (German Amber Lager).  The distribution of this beer will be determined after a tasting by Quality Control, the Friday night prior.  We will also have a keg of Coop Ale Works Oktoberfest, a fellow OKC brewery.
 
So far, the VBC has completed (8) batches of beer, equaling 40 gallons, and will be harvesting our first crop of Chinook hops in the next few days.  We will be celebrating our 1 year anniversary on 10/25/09.  We can “barley” wait!  I believe we will be brewing on the Saturday of that weekend, so everyone is welcome to attend the celebration.
 
See you on 10/3.
 
Cheers,

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Mile High Fun With Dr.Tool & Co.

Come gather round children where ever you roam!  Man!  I am still amazed at how great the Mile High Music Festival was this year!  The Beer Man and Dr. Tool & Co. made what Dr. Tool called a Surgical strike on Saturday of the Denver festival (after all he is a Doctor) and we have no regrets!  The line-up was a bit of a mix of dark and light, Tool and Widespread Panic, Incubus and Ben Harper, The Black Keys and Rail Road Earth, you get the picture.  With a show like that we knew we were in for an interesting people watching day if nothing else!  Always interesting to see how the dark heavy crowd and the light hippie crowd mix together, and it turned out to be kind of like a black and tan (dark and light mixed perfectly together to make a great experience!  This is a beer blog so I had to get a beer ref in somehow) 

The day started off in OKC and a flight to Denver arriving at 9am.  Since none of us had bags we decided to hit the Boulder Beer Co Bar in the airport of course!  Four beers later we felt loose enough to make the trip to our hotel and drop our bags.  We started heading for the festival at about 11:30am.  We caught a cab to the show and it instantly got fun!  Here is how the conversation went:

Dr. Tool to Cabbie:  Hey!  How is it going?

Cabbie to Dr. Tool:  Fine, thank you!

The Beer Man notices that there is a jazz pianist playing on the radio, thinks it sounds like Duke Ellington.

The Beer Man to Cabbie:  Is this Duke Ellington?

Cabbie to The Beer Man:  No, this is a 2000 Chevy

The Beer Man and Dr. Tool & Co. all try to hold in laughter…Unsuccessfully

So with that to start us off we walked the mile from the cab drop point to the entrance and looked for some good beer and food.  We found Budweiser and a hamburger.  The hamburger was good.  So after we accepted the fact that we would be drinking Bud all day we moved on to the shows! 

It was great music for those large well known bands but we were really impressed with the lesser known groups Rocco Deluca, Gomez, RailRoad Earth and Paolo Nutini.  So go out and find them, listen and enjoy!

We spent 14 hours of drinking beer and listening to great music (needless to say we were all a bit delirious in the cab ride back to the hotel), and lived to get up at 5am for a 7am flight back home!  We will be back next year, hope to see you and better beer there!

Shine on you crazy diamonds!

J

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Fly the COOP!

Well, we had a great opportunity to take a tour of the COOP Ale Works the other day and let me tell you, well done gentlemen!   Oklahoma City should welcome them with open arms and from the looks of it, it is!  Take a look at your favorite local establishment and you will probably notice a new pull to the line-up.  (If you need directions go to http://www.coopaleworks.com/beerfinder/ ) COOP offers a range of beers that will enable anyone to find a favorite, including Native Amber, Zeppelin Hef, Gran Sport Porter, Horny Toad, and the high octane DNR.  They also have a Marzen (Oktoberfest) coming out that we had the privilege of doing some quality control on in the QC Room.  So here is a quick overview of their brews.  Native Amber is a well balanced amber, which is tough to do.  Try adding a bunch of hops and a bunch of malt and then get it to balance out with 6.3% ABV, never mind, they already did it!  The Zepp is a Hefeweizen for both people (those that like wheats and those that do not, and it helps out that is 5.6% ABV).  The Horny Toad is a beer for those that think they only like a light beer, but please do not expect a Corona or any other Mexican beer, and please do not put a lime in it.  If you like a porter or a stout go with the Gran Sport, you will love it!  Now for the big guy, the DNR.  At 10% ABV this is one you could store for a year and let it age, or, if you are like me, you would drink it immediately!  This is a big Belgian style ale, complex, and drinkable.  I would recommend drinking it slow so you can get the full effect of the aromas that come out as it begins to warm.  Please enjoy as often as you like, as unlike most complex beers, this is one you can enjoy one after another, but remember, it is 10% ABV!

Well done COOP, Well done!

J

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Fathers Day Brew

We had a very special brewing opportunity in June.  This was our first fathers day as dads, so we decided to celebrate by having our fathers in for a special brewing day.  The beer we chose, well the lawn mower beer of course (Kolsch) in honor of the men that have been behind the mowers for years.  During the day we tapped our 5 gal of Hef that we just finished (by the way we ran out that night).  Of course we were excited about the beer, sharing the brewing process with our dads, and drinking beer, but the greatest part of the day was the time we spent together with our Pops, just sitting there drinking and talking.  Sometimes we forget the simple act of communicating by having a conversation with someone by means other than email, Facebook, and with more that 140 characters.    So the moral of this story, brew a Kolsch, oh, wait, no that is not it!  Go talk to your Dad!  That’s it! 

Thanks Dad!

J and E

PS- Since we are a little slow at the post, we have taped the Kolsch and it actually worked!  Yes we were kind of surprised for two reasons 1) It was our first attempted at a Lager so there were some questions and 2) The fact that we finished a keg while we brewed left us wondering if we had the right times, temps, additions etc.  But hell it looks like we are just that good, or lucky!

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