Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Gifts: Stocking Stuffers!

Yesterday we brought you some ideas for some great books to get for your favorite beer geek.  Today we're moving to something a bit smaller, but possibly even more important... Stocking Stuffers! 

Whatever holiday you celebrate, you are probably in need of some small gifts for coworkers, distant relatives and and your favorite brew masters...ahem...ahem...  So we've collected a few ideas to inspire your shopping for stocking stuffers and knickknacks this holiday season.

Beer Soap! You want your beer loving friend to be clean, right? Why not get them some beer soap! One spot to find it is here:

Bottle stoppers! Beer geeks are always itching to crack open the newest 22oz or 750ml bottle that they got at the store, but they don't always have someone to share it with. These bottle stoppers fit in any bottle and can let someone spread their drinking over a couple of nights.

Awesome bottle openers! Everyone has that old plastic bottle opener that they picked up free at a bar or from the floor at a college frat party, but the true beer geek needs a special, unique, bottle opener. We recently spotted these interesting ones, but there are tons more on the web, just start googling!

ETSY!! If you haven't visited etsy before, head over there today. It's an entire community of handmade products for sale and if you simply type in the word "beer" in their search bar, you'll find hundreds of amazing products from towels to earings to coasters.

A fridge magnet bottle opener! Everyone keeps their beer in the fridge, right? And how many times have you had to scour your kitchen for an opener? A few companies are making openers like this one that stick on your fridge and easily open bottles. Very handy tool!

Gift Cards! Duh. But you often forget that you can get a gift card from major liqour store chains and even some smaller shops like The Bruery Provisions! Stop on by our store for a gift card in any denomination!

Beer notebook! Want to become a true beer connoisseur? You'll never get there if you don't keep track of tasting notes and details about beers that you've tried. Your true beer geek friends will love a cool notebook to scribble their drunken ramblings after their 10th taste of the night.

Upcycled beer products! Wallets made from beer boxes, earrings made from bottlecaps, glasses made from bottles. Tons of pieces of beer culture are being used on a secondary market to create cool products. Search around and you're bound to find something cool like these wallets!

BEER! What fits better in a stocking or puts a bigger smile on your friend's face than a bottle of high quality craft beer! Look for something new and interesting that they might not have yet, like The Bruery's Smoking Wood which is hitting shelves at The Bruery Provisions the week leading up to Christmas!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Gifts: Beer Books!

The holidays are upon us and we know how hard it can be to think of the perfect gift for your friends and family.  We'll be posting some ideas for beer lovers' gifts this week to help you get through the holiday season!

Today we're featuring some great books about beer and all the encompasses it.  We've got some of these books available at The Bruery Provisions and others are available through Amazon or other book stores. 

If you are looking for something a bit more special, this Thursday, 12/8, we'll have Joshua Bernstein, author of Brewed Awakening, in for a book signing!  Plus, we'll have a special 'Brewed Awakening' flight featuring some rare beers that people usually have to wait in line for!

For the novice beer geek! This brand new book is perfect for your friend who is trying to track down all the 'must have' beers. Loads of craft examples of different styles and hard to find treasures. 

For the novice beer chick (or dude). Written by "The Beer Chicks", The Naked Pint is a great book for the beer novice looking to learn the basics of beer styles and history be they a chick or a dude.

For the novice know-it-all. Tasting Beer is one of the unofficial textbooks for the Cicerone certification and is an easy read full of information from history to styles to how beer is made. One of the most comprehensive beer books out there without being too complex.

For the novice beer traveler. This new book is a great look at the different breweries across this great country of ours. A fantastic read for your friend who likes to visit breweries while cross the USA.

For the foodie! Garrett Oliver of Brooklyn Brewery penned this lengthy book that gives an extremely comprehensive look at how to pair beer with food and food with beer.

For the beginning home brewer! Cooked up by a craft beer couple who has spent years brewing out of their compact San Francisco apartment, this is a great start for someone who is just getting into homebrewing and needs some inpiration.

For the novice homebrewer! This book is one of the standards for learning to homebrew. Concepts on recipe formulation and everything involved in the process.

For the crazy homebrewer! Radical Brewing is just that. Does your friend need some inspiration to become the next head brewer for The Bruery? This book will lead them on the path to craziness.

For the homebrew (or professional brewing) expert. Is your friend an incredible homebrewer? They'd probably enjoy this guide on yeast :)

Another one for the homebrew expert. While some of the other books teach you the fundamentals of brewing a beer, this one gets down to the nitty gritty. We still sift through it on occasion ourselves.

And last but not least... for the expert brewer who loves sour and funky ales! Another guide on yeast, but this one focussing on the funky stuff. One of the hardest forms of brewing to perfect, this book at least gives a brewer a leg up on nature.

For the entrepreneur! Schmaltz brewing has been around for 13 years and Jeremy Cowan shares his stories of the beer world between the He'Brew and Coney Island brands which have both been influential on the retail shelf.

Another for the entrepreneur! Inspire your favorite homebrewer to go pro with this book by Sam C of Dogfish Head Brewery (whom we recently collaborated with on a beer!)

Monday, November 21, 2011


Sorry for being absent from the blog for a bit.  We won't let that happen again!

We've been busy as always here at The Bruery for the past few weeks trying to settle into our new barrel aging facility and plan for 2012.

For those who didn't already hear, we managed to sell out all 1,000 spots for our 2012 Reserve Society by the end of the first day it was up for general sale.  To help you understand how surprised and excited we were about this, last year we only sold 700 memberships and didn't sell out until the week between Christmas and the New Year.  We didn't expect to sell out all 1,000 memberships and certainly didn't expect the memberships to sell as fast as they did.

We need to of course send a huge THANK YOU to all of those who nabbed up those precious spots as quickly as they did.  It is a really special thing for us to have so many fanatical craft beer lovers as friends and customers.  It's cliché, but we'd be dead in the water without you and you can be sure that the money we raised through the RS sale will be put towards incredible new beers!

On another note....with Thanksgiving coming in just a couple of days and with Movember in full effect, we thought it would be fun to have people paste some mustaches to their favorite beers, or just the bottles they plan on drinking with the Thanksgiving feast to add a little more festive to the festivities.  Movember, for those who don't know, has become a national movement in which men don't shave their upper lip for the month of November in support of prostate cancer awareness.  Help the cause by putting some mustaches on your Thanksgiving table!

Here is just one mustache that you can use for your bottles, but simply google 'mustache' and you can find plenty more.

Once you've printed out and pasted the 'staches, don't forget to take some photos and post them up on our Facebook page at!  We'd love to see the creative mustache bottle displays that you come up with!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Faster, Bigger, Better, Bolder (Gradually, Quietly, Steadily)

Today we are very excited to be releasing the beer that we collaborated on with Sam Caligione and Dogfish Head!  Read here for the original post on just what we got up to or just read below for the real story.

Monday, October 10, 2011

LA Beer Week

We're distributed in quite a few cities that run great beer weeks throughout the year and we've always been jealous that we didn't have anything of the same level in our back yard.  While LA isn't our homebase, it's a pretty close neighbor and we're very excited for the 2nd annual LA Beer Week.  Last year there were some really fun events and a lot of restaurants and bars ran some great promotions, but this year seems to be miles ahead of what we saw in the past.  There are more events than a single beer geek could possibly attend within the two weeks of LA Beer Week (ya, two weeks, someone must have been drinking when they came up with that concept).   

We've got a number of events planned both in LA and OC for LA Beer Week as do many of our favorite craft breweries both from SoCal and around the country.  Browse through the events calendar on their webpage and find some events in your neighborhood, there are bound to be a few that catch your interest.  

Can't wait to see some of our fans out and about as we circle the LA/OC area these coming weeks!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

New Brew Thursday - Oude Tart

Check out this episode of New Brew Thursday filmed at our brewery and featuring Tyler King and several vintages of Oude Tart!

Sept 29 : Oude Tart : The Bruery on location with Tyler King from New Brew Thursday on Vimeo.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Great American Beer Festival

We just got back from an incredible few days in Denver, CO where the Brewer's Association was holding their 30th annual Great American Beer Festival.

For those who have never been, GABF is truly a remarkable time and we highly recommend you get there at some point in the future.  Held annually in the convention center in downtown Denver, the hall is filled with thousands of people trying beers from hundreds and hundreds of breweries from all around the United States.  It's an incredible time for us to showcase our beer to people from all over the country who don't typically get to see our beers and even if they do, they never get to see any of the more rare Oude Tart and Black Tuesday.  

Nothing gives us a better feeling than having a line of people at our booth, super excited to try some of our beers and letting us know how much they enjoy them.  This year we had people at our booth for another reason as well, however.  People came by to take photos because we decided to decorate our booth with loads of images of cats as well as stuffed animal cats and cat toys.  There was no true reasoning behind our cat theme, we just thought it was hilarious.

GABF is not only a festival for tasting interesting beers, but it is the largest commercial beer competition in the world, this year having close to 600 breweries enter a total of 3,930 beers to the various categories.  And of all of those entries, we are very very proud to say we took home two silver medals and one gold medal!  Both Hottenroth and The Wanderer won silver and Papier, our very first anniversary beer and one of the very first batches of beer brewed at The Bruery took a gold medal. 

The fact that two of our sour ales and one of our biggest and most complex bourbon barrel aged strong ales took home awards just gives us that much more faith in our Quercus Maximus project.  As we continue to brew more of these intricate beers, hopefully we can win some more awards in the future!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Beer Crispy Treats

This month we've collected recipes for food made with or made to pair with our fall seasonal, Autumn Maple.  Today's comes from Nomnivorous!  Read below and check out their blog for some incredibly delicious food articles!

My brother wanted to stir the chickpeas. Oh, of course he did. But in the midst of the magical father-son moment, the chickpeas went a little crazy. The molten foam splattered, my brother’s arm being the first spot of attack. It was a bad burn, and my brother was no longer curious and happy. [This is my now chef brother. Whose arms are now covered in burns and cuts after a few years in the business. Who would've guessed?]

I still remember the scene. It was the evening, because my father was home and cooking for the market. There was a giant pot of chickpeas on the back eye, simmering from dry, crunchy pellets to creamy goodness that would turn into hummus the next day. Chickpeas are easy, yet temperamental to cook. For the best flavor, simmer; don’t let them boil or they will foam and spew like a rabid dog. My mischievous baby brother, young enough to sit on my father’s shoulders, wanted to see what was happening up there, on the stove he couldn’t yet see. My dad picked him up, put him on his shoulders, and let him carefully peer at the steaming pots on the stove. [If it was a normal night, two or three things were cooking, at the least.]

This is one of the first scenes in the kitchen that I remember. I wasn’t the one curiously trying to watch my father’s bubbling cauldrons. But I remember it well. My mother, already a concerned parent, tended towards the extremes in keeping us safe, and the chickpea incident heightened her safety alert. So while my friends might have memories of helping chop onions, or stir pots, my mother kept us away from the knife block and stove eyes for the most part.
But one of the dishes I do vividly remember playing assistant on were Rice Krispies Treats. Since the kids were usually the ones begging for dessert, those were the times my mother would recruit a helper. I would measure the everything out. In our largest pot, I would add the butter and marshmallows. Mom would turn the stove on low, and I would get to stir occasionally. Once the butter and marshmallows were just melted enough, Mom would move the pot to a cool eye, and I could add the cereal. Stir, stir, stir and then, get messy! Pour the cereal mixture into a pan and squish down. Now go wash your hands and let them cool for a few minutes, my mother would shoo me out of the kitchen.

It required two dishes, three ingredients, no oven to turn on and very little cooling time for kids to nag her about, so Rice Krispies treats were one of my mother’s favorite desserts to make. And they’re absolutely one of my favorite desserts to eat. The simple, gooey, glorious delight is hard to beat. But ever since I sunk my teeth into salted brown butter crispy treats over a year ago [made by Autumn for a BK Swappers event], I’ve yearned to update the treat. What follows definitely takes more than two bowls, but I consider it a heavenly marriage of nostalgia and adulthood.
I was presented with an opportunity to develop a recipe featuring The Bruery’s Autumn Maple beer and my sweet tooth took over. When I received the two bottles of this seasonal brew, I chilled them and then took a taste. The spices were present, but thankfully the beer does not taste like pumpkin pie spice (ahem, like many autumnal beers). This California craft brewery has a keeper of a beer – it is bold and rich, but not heavy like Guinness. In-your-face dark beers sometimes overwhelm me, but there is a smooth sweetness to Autumn Maple that makes it incredibly drinkable. The spicy base had my brain spinning with dessert ideas. I wanted to stretch the beer flavor into many components, highlighting the beer in different forms but also building the layers of beer flavors across one bite. That bite would be The Bruery beer crispy treat.

Yes, I’m obsessed with making marshmallows, I will admit it to the world. They’re just so simple, but the flavors of the beer play very nicely here. The beer caramel sauce, inspired by bourbon caramel, has similar dark, spicy flavors. There is a malty, “beery-ness” to both components, but their sweetness helps balance it out. The nutty browned butter, crunchy puffed rice, and hearty dose of salt rounds out the dessert, and the dark chocolate is purely gilding the lily on my part.

Beer Crispy Treats
Each part of the final dessert can stand alone, and that is why I love this recipe. The beer marshmallows and caramel are both delicious by themselves, and the salted brown butter crispy treats are not to be missed.
For the Salted Beer Caramel Sauce
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup The Bruery Autumn Maple beer
  1. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, water and corn syrup on medium heat. Bring to a low boil. Gently swirl the mixture in (do not stir), and allow it to boil until it is a deep amber color, 10 minutes.
  2. Remove from the heat and carefully whisk in the cream and the butter. Return to low heat and stir until mixture is smooth. Stir in salt and beer. Return to a low boil for five minutes. Remove from heat and cool before using.
For the Beer Marshmallows
  • 2 envelopes (4 tablespoons) unflavored gelatin
  • ½ cup cold, flat The Bruery Autumn Maple beer, divided
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract
  1. In bowl of a standing mixer or a large bowl sprinkle gelatin over ¼ cup beer, and let stand to soften.
  2. In a large, heavy saucepan cook granulated sugar, corn syrup, second 1/4 cup of cold beer, and salt over low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until sugar is dissolved. Increase heat to moderate and boil mixture until a candy or digital thermometer registers 240°F, about 12 minutes. The beer will cause the mixture to foam, but resist stirring unless absolutely necessary. (I stirred about 3 times during the cooking, to help reduce foam.)
  3. Remove pan from heat and pour sugar mixture over gelatin mixture, stirring until gelatin is dissolved. With standing or a hand-held electric mixer beat mixture on high speed until pale tan, thick and nearly tripled in volume, about six minutes if using standing mixer or about 10 minutes if using hand-held mixer. Keep the fluff in your large bowl for crispy treat making,
  4. If making beer marshmallows, transfer to a greased 9” square pan. Let set up for 2-3 hours, cut and dust with powdered sugar.
For the Beer Crispy Treats
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 8 cups Rice Krispies cereal (or any puffed rice cereal)
  • 1 batch beer marshmallow fluff
  1. Grease a 9 x 13” pan with cooking spray or butter.
  2. In a large, pale-bottomed pot, melt butter over medium heat. You want to brown the butter, for a nutty, rich flavor. The butter will foam, then turn clear gold, then finally begin to brown. Stir often, scraping up the browned bits and keeping your eyes on the pan. Once the butter starts to brown, remove from the heat. The butter has a tendency to burn quickly.
  3. Pour the butter into the bowl of beer marshmallow fluff and stir to combine. At first, the butter and marshmallow doesn’t seem to want to combine. But the marshmallows will melt a little, and after a few stirs the mixture will finally come together. Add the cereal and stir quickly to combine.
  4. Pour the mixture into your prepared pan and spread gently with a spatula. To press into place, I recommend using a square of parchment paper that has been greased. Use it greased side down to smooth and press the cereal into the pan.
  5. Let cool for 30 minutes, to come to room temperature and harden. Using a serrated knife, cut into small squares.
To assemble the Beer Crispy Treats:
  • 10 ounces dark chocolate [bark, chips, or bar]
  1. If needed, chop your chocolate into ¼” squares. Put all chocolate in a heatproof (metal or glass) bowl. Set the bowl over a small pan of simmering water - so that the bowl rests on the rim of the pan. Make sure the simmering water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. This double boiler set up will melt the chocolate.
  2. Stir the chocolate to help melt. Once mostly melted, take the pan and bowl off the stove. The residual heat will fully melt the chocolate. Dip the top of one treat into the melted chocolate. Place the crispy treat, chocolate side up, on a baking sheet and repeat with the rest of the crispy treat squares.
  3. Once all treats are dipped in chocolate, refrigerate the treats for 20 minutes or until the chocolate has hardened. Place treats on a platter and drizzle with cooled caramel sauce. Enjoy!

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