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International IPA Day

Did you know that today is the International IPA Day? I wasn’t aware of this until a few days ago, but I’m glad I have an excuse to drink some IPA. From the site “hosting” this event:

Greetings Craft Beer Drinkers! Welcome to International #IPADay — the world’s largest celebration of craft beer.

International #IPADay is a grassroots movement created to unite the voices of craft beer enthusiasts, bloggers, and brewers worldwide, using social media as the common arena for connecting the conversation together.

On Thursday August 4th, craft beer drinkers across the social sphere and across the globe will raise pints in a collective toast to one of craft beer’s most iconic styles: the India Pale Ale. This celebrated style represents the pinnacle of brewing innovation with its broad spectrum of diverse brands, subcategories, and regional flavor variations – making it the perfect style to galvanize the craft beer’s social voice.

To participate, share your photos, videos, blog posts, tasting notes, recipes, thoughts with the world on Twitter Facebook, YouTube, WordPress, RateBeer, Foursquare, Gowalla, Yelp, Untappd or any other social media platforms you may use. Use the hastag #IPADay in all of your posts and then see what others are saying by searching the hashtag on google, twitter or other social media resources.

 

What IPA will you be drinking today?

 

My Europe Trip

Later this week I will be traveling to Europe for a two week vacation. I have always wanted to travel to Europe and when it came time to decide between a house and a fun vacation, my wife and I decided that the housing market just wasn’t stable enough. We also don’t know how long we will be in our current area, and with that type of uncertainty, Europe was an easy decision.

Smalls, my wife, wants to travel everywhere and do everything. I’m much less adventurous when it comes to travel, but Europe has always been interluding to me. Now that I’m into craft beer, Europe becomes even more interesting. I’m really looking forward to relaxing with Smalls and traveling all over the place and trying the beverages of the different countries.

We will be traveling to five countries during our trip, but only actually be staying in three of them. We will be traveling to Belgium, German, Austria, Czech Republic, and the Netherlands. Austria and the Netherlands will be day trips for us. Does anyone have any tips or any beers in particular to try when I am over there? We will be in each country for 2-3 days so we aren’t going to get to travel deep into an area to explore something special. We will also be mostly sticking to the major cities of the countries that we are going to; Brussels, Munich, Prague, and Amsterdam.

I’m really excited about this trip. On a side note, I’ve written some posts ahead of time and scheduled them to come out during my time in Europe. If you leave a comment or try to contact me, chances are I’m not going to see it until early July. Please leave any suggestions for my trip, I appreciate it.

Beer moods

A post over at The Brew Club got me thinking about something I am going to call beer moods. In the post, Scott reviewed Sam Adams Latitude 48 IPA and shared some thoughts about his experiences with IPAs. He said,

The Dogfish Head 60 was among my first craft beers, and quite frankly, I wasn’t ready for it at all!  As a matter of fact, I found it so much of an assault on my senses, that I wrote off the whole IPA scene until just last year.  What a shame.

The reason this caught my eye is that I was in the same boat when I first starting drinking craft beer. From my interpretation, IPAs are the beers that “hook” a lot of craft beer drinkers. I wonder why so many craft beer drinkers start with an IPA instead of ramping up to them. Why start at the extremes? An IPA is a aggressive beer with an acquired taste. Sure some people can take to them right away, but for many, they take time to appreciate.

In my own experience, I had someone who loved craft beer and guided me to learn the different beer styles. I was quickly a fan of IPAs but I really didn’t appreciate the first several that I had. There are some styles of beer that I like and crave more than others.

This is where the beer moods idea comes in. I really love hoppy beers sometime. Right now, I’m on a hoppy beer kick. But there  are other times where I don’t want anything hoppy. I want a malt forward beer or something with some spices. I seem to randomly go through these changes and I don’t understand why. Last year around this time I was on a Belgian beer kick. The strange part is that the moods kick in quickly and seriously deter me from trying the previous beer mood style.

Am I the only one who goes though these beer moods? If you do, what mood are you in now and how does it affect your beer drinking?

American Craft Beer Week May 16-22

I almost forgot that today marks the beginning on American Craft Beer Week. If you don’t know about it you can read a bit here or here as well or you could just watch the video below.

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Are you doing anything special this week to celebrate?

A History of Oyster Stouts

While I was running March Brewness I also found a lot of great content for the site. I decided to let the tournament run its course and then post all of the content I found later. Harpoon Brewery (who’s Winter Ale I reviewed this year) put out a nice video on the history of Oyster Stouts. It’s a different kind of beer if you have ever had the chance to try one and I thought this video did a good job of telling the story of them.

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