Shipyard Brewing Co. Smashed Pumpkin Ale

I usually take a look through the beer section whenever I find myself in a grocery store these days.  Even if I’m stocked up, I like to see what’s out there, especially if it’s not my usual grocery store.  While trooping the line a couple of days ago, I spotted a little something that sounded just right for a late October refreshment: Shipyard Brewing Company’s Smashed Pumpkin Ale.

Picture - Shipyard's Smashed Pumpkin Ale

Shipyard’s Smashed Pumpkin Ale

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Vandal Kolsch Home Brew

Photo Vandal Kolsch all grain home brew

Vandal Kolsch all grain home brew

My all-grain Kolsch home brew beer was intended to be a light summer beer with a bit of character.  Now, summer beer doesn’t mean no flavor.  Summer beer means lighter-bodied, fruity, crisp, and not too bitter.  That’s just what I got with this batch, and I even managed to get a decent gravity yield from my all-grain mash after a little studying up on water chemistry. Read the rest of this entry »

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Doctor’s Orders English Ale

Doctor's Orders Ale

Doctor’s Orders Ale

Actually, I don’t know if this was intended to be an English-style ale, but that’s what it makes me think of.  My wife gave one of her co-workers a six-pack of my Vandal Kolsch (stay tuned for a blog post on the Kolsch).  He sent back a homebrew six-pack that she said was a pale ale.  After tasting it, I don’t think of it as a pale ale.  To me it seems very English, but I am not sure if I would compare it to a bitter, a brown ale, or a mild ale.  I guess I am not enough of a beer expert to say.  But I know enough to say that it’s tasty.   Read the rest of this entry »

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Crusader Pale Ale – All Grain Home Brew

A glass of Crusader Ale

A glass of Crusader Ale

This home brewing recipe ties in with the English beer kick I was on last year.  I took a really basic pale ale style and added some English Crisp’s roasted malt to see if it would add a little of that caramel confection feel I like so much in an English bitter beer.  It didn’t work out like that, but it was tasty and educational nonetheless. Read the rest of this entry »

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All Grain Summer Buzz Home Brew

Hops and Honey make my beer yummy!

Hops and Honey make my beer yummy!

A few months back, I hit an unexpected problem with my day job.  I suddenly had a lot of unscheduled time, but for a variety of reasons, I didn’t get much blogging done.  Thing is, I still had the motivation to do the brewing, even if I wasn’t writing about it.  We all soldier on the best we can, right?  So now, I have a backlog of home brew batches to write about.  Today its time to talk about Summer Buzz Honey Blonde Ale.  I’ve done this before as a malt extract brew, but I tried the idea recently as an all-grain home brew.   With 1980′s heavy metal and album-oriented rock in the background, the brew session went something like this. Read the rest of this entry »

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Apple Crisp Ale Homebrew

Apple Crisp Ale in the PrimaryI fired up a batch of home brewed beer back in November, throwing in a little apple and a little maple syrup.  I haven’t written a blog post about it yet, though I have mentioned it briefly in previous posts.  I hit a little snag with my day job, and I haven’t posted in weeks; but I just drank the next to last bottle, so I guess it’s time to write something down for posterity about Apple Crisp Ale. Read the rest of this entry »

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Three Quick Reviews of Central California Beers

Tioga Sequoia CapOver the Christmas season, I had a chance to cruise by the grocery store in the Fresno area of California and pick up some beer that isn’t available in my home town.  The best part was, Save Mart stores have a selection of beers that they let you mix and match to put together your own variety six-pack.  I was after some goodies from the Tioga-Sequoia Brewing Company in Fresno, so I grabbed two of the Half-Dome Wheat Beer, two of the Tamarack Amber Lager, and one General Sherman India Pale Ale.  I also grabbed one Red Nectar beer from Nectar Ales in Paso Robles.

I’ve already reviewed the wheat beer, but its tasty, so I had to have more.  Now, a few notes on the other three. Read the rest of this entry »

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