Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Bull on the Radio - Again

To introduce Craft Beer Week next week, I've been asked to be on Central Standard Thursday morning at 10. I will be the first guest and will be on from 10-10:30. So if you're really wanting to torture yourself, listen in and try to stay awake as I prattle on for 30 minutes about beer.

As part of the segment I will be choosing 5 beers that could serve as an introduction to craft beer for Bud, Miller and Coors drinkers. If you'd like to chime in on what beers you'd like to hear about or predict which beers I'm going to present, leave a comment. Since I haven't figured out the 5 beers yet (because they first booked me for next Thursday), your comment could influence the segment. Also, if you know of any events around town next week for craft beer week leave a comment.

The show is on taxpayer subsidized radio KCUR 89.3. I'll have the links to the podcast version of the show after they're posted.


  1. Only events I know of are the beer a night thing at Foundry and mini-dinners at Beer Kitchen. Apparently, Old Chicago is doing an event Monday at 6, which is featuring "multiple beer reps" and Tallgrass Velvet Rooster Belgian Triple.

    Try not to stroke it so hard this time when you talk about Lagunitas.

  2. Re: gateway beers
    Since hops are typically an acquired taste, I'd lean toward maltier fare. For something that's not too different from the mainstream, Boulevard Amber is a clean, easy drinking choice. For something different, maybe Left Hand Milk Stout. I say that because a lot of non-beer-geek types love that beer.

    Re: events

    Beer KC has a list of stuff happening at McCoy's/Foundry/Beer Kitchen. Haven't heard much else.

  3. I think Great Divide Wild Raspberry Ale is the ultimate in transition beers. Of course Boulevard Wheat, New Belgium Fat Tire, and +1 on Left Hand Milk Stout! For someone flirting with hops... Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, quality brew and not overboard.

  4. I agree with JJSKCK, can't be too aggressive of a flavor. I think Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is a great choice for people getting away for the BMC crowd.

    For something a little more malty, go with a bock or a marzen.


  5. Boulevard Wheat was one of my personal gateway craft beers, and being a local favorite, I assume you'll mention this one.

    Another that I started off with early on and that is still special to me for this reason is Sierra Nevada's Pale Ale. These days it's very easy to find, just hoppy enough to satisfy a craving without being overpowering, and in my opinion is still one of the better widely available American pale ales in our area. Boulevard's own Pale Ale might win out over SN Pale Ale with the local crowd, but there's just something nostalgic about those green labels that really works for me.

    A newer one that I wish had been around when I was going through my Bud/Miller/Coors phase is TallGrass Halcyon Unfiltered Wheat. This is probably one of the lightest and most refreshing beers I've had, and a 6-pack is no where near enough.

    This one won't make me any beer friends but before I started branching out too far in search of quality craft beer offerings, I quite enjoyed Blue Moon. There are obviously better witbiers out there, and supporting the evil Machine is not going to be a popular idea, but this was an excellent gateway brew for me that really piqued my curiosity on what beer could be. Without Blue Moon there's a very good chance I'd still be stuck on Miller Lite with no idea that anything better existed.

  6. Boulevard Wheat is the obvious hometown frontrunner here.

    Fat Tire is what really got me into real beer so I have to throw that in (so was Boulevard Tenpenny but that's obviously no longer around).

    New Belgium 1554 is a good malty choice, though some people get scared off by it's darkness it's not at all overpowering.

    It's a fall seasonal but Sam Adams Octoberfest is really popular for the transition types, though I prefer Bob's 47 a bit more.

    I've actually had a few BMC drinkers recently say they really enjoyed Tank 7 as well, the only thing that might scare them of would be the price though, as you get 4 beers for normally what you'd pay for 12.

  7. My personal gateway was a Sam Adams variety pack and in that variety pack was one of my favorite beers of all time, Cream Stout. Ever since I have tried every stout I could get my hands on. Not only was it a gateway to my craft beer addiction, it was a gateway to a much harder addiction. Nope not crack but homebrew. Outside of my personal experience I hear most wives of craft brew lovers like stouts of some sort, Left Hand milk stout has been mentioned. Tons of people drink Boulevard Wheat but don't seem to venture away from it once they try it. I like to call it the Johnson County Bud Light. The other big following of non-craft brew lovers is Boulevard Nutcracker Ale.

  8. I'm on board with most of what JB said. Boulevard Wheat, Fat Tire, Sam Adams (tho I'd go Boston Lager). I will also 2nd Blue Moon. I've talked to several coworkers who got their start into craft beer via Blue Moon. The Schlafly hefe might be a good recommendation as well. Or boulevard Zon.

    You might mention that for wine drinkers going out with their beer-swilling friends, they check out the Lips of Faith series, tank 7, or Chimay tripel.

  9. Nectar IPA as well as Epic Pale ale would be interesting forays into hoppy beers. These are a bit far on the hop spectrum but do a great job focusing on hop aroma/flavor over hop bitterness, which is more of an acquired taste for some. My gf, who doesn't dig beers like myrcenary or 2xIPA, loves both of these beers

  10. SNPA is a great choice, and fat tire is what got me started on craft. If you want to do a belgian wit hoegaarden would be my pick anyday over blue moon. Speaking of Belgian brews the price point is a little high but duvel and orval really sold me on craft when I was first turning 21.

  11. Fat Tire is indeed a worthy choice, in part because it's distinct from fizzy yellow stuff. I didn't mention Wheat or Boston Lager because neither did anything to get me more interested in craft beer when I first got started. To me, they were simply more flavorful versions of macro beer, whereas something like the Fat Tire or Free State Oatmeal Stout I had in college really opened up my world as to what beer could be.

  12. I started my foray into craft with Fat Tire. I love funky/hoppy/sour beers and still always enjoy coming back to a six pack of Fat Tire. Sometimes the great balance found in a perfect sessionable craft beats the need for a big challenging beer.