Interview with Wayne Wambles

Wayne Wambles, the head brewer for Cigar City Brewing, is interviewed at Rattle n Hum in New York City:

(Don’t ask me why WordPress keeps FUBARing this post format.)


Great deal on Celebration Ale

Wow. Rollin’ Oats has 12 pk cases of Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale for $9.99 and 24 pack cases for $18.99! I guess they purchased a little too much this year and must get rid of it quick.

A great deal on a very nice beer.


Kegs and baby booster seats

Mini kegs and child booster seats – What do the two have in common? Well, nothing really. I just thought that this Bell’s Two Hearted Ale mini keg needed a booster seat in order to be more properly secured in its seat while on our ride home from the store (may be a good idea for an invention):

After disappearing from the market, it is great to see the return of the Two Hearted Ale 1.32 Gallon mini kegs.

I’m happy to report that the keg made it home safely and is currently being consumed. TGIF.


Smoked birds and brews

I just saw this on the Mouth of Tampa Bay blog:

Every Wednesday starting at 4:30, New World Brewery (1313 8th Ave., Ybor City, (813) 248-4969) bossman Steve Bird fires up the grill. $5 gets you a plate of his smoked “yardbird” (that’s chicken to the layman), baked beans and garlic bread. Then there’s the regular happy hour draft specials to go along with.

New World always has some great beer on Tap. I have not had the chicken, but I can’t think of a better combination: BBQ and beer. Gotta get over there one evening and sample the offering.


Cigar City Brewing

Just a quick note to let ya’ll know that I have added Tampa’s newest (and only) microbrewery to my beer guide. (I also have a lot of work and catching up to do for my guide, but that is somewhat besides the point.) I know, I know it has been a long time coming.

Anyhow, I have been closely following the CCB blog since before they began construction on their brewery. It was great to read all the trials and tribulations involved in opening a microbrewery in Tampa.

To Joey, Wayne and the Gang: You all must be absolutely thrilled that your dream has now become reality. Many congrats and best of luck. Ya’ll are truly brewing some world class beer.

And now, I shall rip some information about CCB directly from their website 🙂

Cigar City Brewing is a 6,600 sq ft., 15 bbl production brewery in the business of hand crafting ales for the Florida market. Cigar City Brewing offers kegs and bottles for wholesale distribution to retail accounts and at the brewery via our Tasting Room and gift shop.

Yes we re-fill growlers! Provided they are 32 ounces or less or 128 ounces or more. And yes we have new growlers to sell as well

Regular Tasting Room Hours are:

11 AM till 5PM Wed. thru Fri.

Cigar City Brewing is located at:

3924 West Spruce Street Suite A
Tampa, FL 33607

Why don’t you stop by and have a growler filled? Check out their website for more information.

Later on, I will report on some of the many beers that CCB is producing. Until then . . .


From Missouri – We come in peace (with Shock Top beer)

I saw this pretty cool Shock Top display this morning at a local Publix store:

Let’s zoom in a little closer on the tap custom built into the rear of the Volkswagen Beetle:

I wonder if beer really flows out of the back of that thing . . .


Victory Wild Devil Ale

Recently, the Tampa market has picked up the Victory Beer collection, which is great to see.

On shelves I have seen:

  • Hop Devil
  • Prima Pils
  • Golden Monkey
  • Hop Wallop
  • Victory Lager
  • The V-Twelve
  • Helios Ale
  • Wild Devi

Victory has a huge following are are pretty highly regarded for brewing great beer (according to many reviews online).However, tonight I picked up a 750 ml bottle of the Wild Devil. WD is a Belgian IPA brewed with “laboratory grown” Brettanomyces yeast. In the brewing business, Brettanomyces is generally viewed as a contaminant due to the funky “off flavor” it imparts into beer. However, some brewers use it successfully (some would argue this) to brew beer with.

Sorry Victory, but Wild Devil tastes and smells like rotten cheese with a hint of 5 day old diaper genie pail.


Rally – Clearwater

I have blogged about the Rally gas station on Ulmerton Road in Clearwater before. They are located right around the corner from the Saint Petersburg/Clearwater International airport (PIE).I just thought I would mention that they now have over 100 beers in bottles. A fairly nice selection for a gas station. So, if you find yourself staying at one of the many hotels around there and are craving a craft beer, then you might be able to find your fix there.Adam

World of Beer (Bar) opening in Saint Petersburg

Guess what is coming to Saint Petersburg? Ohh wait, I already told you . . . Well, World of Beer is opening yet another location in St. Pete – right on 4th street. This is great news for craft beer fans on the right side of the Bay.

World of Beer already had multiple locations in Tampa (Westchase, Tampa Palms and Carrollwood), as well as a location in Melbourne and Sarasota. Their menu boats a line-up of 500 beers, many of which are on draft. The new location will also offer a limited food menu.

World of Beer
5226 4th Street North
St. Petersburg, FL 33703

Welcome to the neighborhood guys!


Saint Pete – New Tap House coming soon . . .

Driving though DTSP (downtown Saint Pete) today, I noticed a new restaurant getting ready to open:

400 Beach Seafood & Taphouse.
400 Beach Drive NE
St. Petersburg, FL

Their menu boasts 24 beers on tap and of course, many in bottle.

It’s a great concept if they are able to pull it off (great beer, excellent seafood and a prime location).

Being so close, I’m really looking forward to their opening


A few beers I brought home tonight

I stopped into my local craft beer store (Shep’s Deli), and picked up a few brewskis which I thought I would share with you.

1. The Boulder Brewing Co. “30th Anniversary Flashback Ale”

This is a really tasty brown ale brewed in the Indian style. Essentially, it is a brown ale that tastes like an IPA – or at least, a real hoppy brown ale. I dig this beer. This is a very balanced brew and it is quite enjoyable to drink.

An india brown ale. Citrusy with a prominent hop aroma, finishes clean, crisp and dry with dark roasted flavors from the biscuit and chocolate malts completmenting the bountiful cascases.

ABV: 6.88%

2. Weyerbacher Heresy

I had to pick up another one of these. The first bottle I drank was when I was getting over a cold and didn’t quite have my taste buds back yet. I look forward to re-sampling this Russian Imperial Stout which is aged in Kentucky bourbon oak barrels

ABV: 8.2%

3. Atlanta Brewing Company #’s Ale

I’m actually drinking one of these as I type. This beer has somewhat grown on me. It is a bit different from what I normally drink (obviously heavily hopped IPA’s, pale ale’s and stouts).

This beer is touted as a “World-Class Special Bitter” – brewed in the style of an English Bitter (and a fine one at that) – Quite easy to drink.

No information available on the brewers website, but the label sports a 2008 World Beer Cup Bronze award for best special bitter or best bitter category.

That’s about all for now. There are A LOT of (great) new beers popping up in and around this market and I have tasted a good number of them. Unfortunately, I have not had much time to bog about what I am currently drinking, but I expect that situation to change soon.


Florida Aquarium – Suds Fest 2009

Drink with the fish and sharks (and other marine life) at the Florida Aquarium tomorrow evening. “The perfect excuse to drink like a fish” their advertisement states.

I will actually be at the aquarium tomorrow in the morning, but will unfortunately miss this event which is scheduled to run from 7:00 to 11:00 PM

The Florida Aquarium’s SudsFest ’09 is really pouring it on with craft beer from breweries all over the world. Dive into fantastic beer and delicious food from local area restaurants all for the price of admission. There will be a sea of live entertainment throughout the Aquarium and plenty of opportunities to check out our dazzling exhibits and cool creatures. So have a great time, but don’t get too tanked.

Tickets (beer and food included – cash bar for liquor):
$50 per ticket, $45 for members,
$60 at the door

Age 21 and up only.

More information about the event here.


Recipe of the month: Tandoori-Rubbed Beer Can Grilled Chicken

As a lover of beer, beer can chicken and Indian food and spice, I think I might have to try this recipe (via the Detroit free press).

Serves: 4 / Preparation time: 20 minutes Total time: 2 hours, 20 minutes

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
3 1/2- to 4-pound whole chicken
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 can (12 ounces) beer

In a small bowl, whisk together the cayenne pepper, coriander, cumin, ginger, paprika, salt and turmeric.

Place the chicken in a large glass baking dish, then rub it with the lemon juice. Rub the skin of the chicken with the spice mixture, then cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 6 hours.

Preheat the grill on high.

When ready to grill, turn off the middle burner and reduce the sides to medium-high (about 375 to 400 degrees).

Discard half of the beer. Place the half-filled can on a sturdy work surface. Holding the chicken right side up (wings and neck cavity on top) insert the beer can into the lower cavity.

Transfer the chicken and beer can to the grill. Stand the chicken over the center of the grill, positioning the legs to keep the bird standing upright. Grill, covered, over indirect heat, until an instant-read thermometer inserted at the thickest part of the thigh reads 165 degrees, about 1 hour. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board, cover with foil and let rest for 10 minutes before carving.

From and tested by the Associated Press. 237 calories, 6 grams fat (0 grams sat. fat), 2 grams carbohydrates, 41 grams protein, 730 mg sodium, 133 mg cholesterol, 1 gram fiber.

You dont have to use beer either. Any liquid will work. I have used and will recommend 2 parts mojo to 1 part water. There are also several beer can chicken stands which can help to keep the bird propped up a little better than just a 12 oz can.


Dunedin House of Beer

So, there is a new beer bar in Dunedin and it is dangerously close to my wife’s office

While I have not had the opportunity to stop in, their Twitter page boats “40 Taps, 200 beers, 1000 square feet“. A few of my co-workers have been on multiple occasions and have reported back nothing but good things.

I am certainly looking forward to visiting soon . . .


Dunedin House of Beer
927A Broadway
Dunedin, FL


Old . . . Old Rasputin

So, I was cleaning out the garage this weekend and in one of the boxes I found a bottle of “Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout” tucked away in a box that was also holding an emergency supply of water jugs (my wife is paranoid about hurricane season).

If I had to guess, I would say this bottle is 1 1/2 years old. Now, there is a popular misconception that heat will ruin a beer. Well really, this just is not true. It is generally light that will destroy beer. Ever wondered why most bottles are dark colored? Beer advocate has an OK write up about this here.

So, back to my hidden bottle of Old Rasputin. I’m drinking it now. And after 547 days or so of being in the garage in 80-90 + degree heat, it is still as good as any stout gets.


Florida Brewers Guild – Beerfest 2009

Yes indeed it is that time of year again. The Florida Brewers Guild is preparing for their annual beer fest. Always an enjoyable event.

When: Saturday March 7th, 2 – 6pm
Where: Centro Ybor, Tampa Florida


Get your tickets now before they sell out.

Best Accounting job in the World!

I was browsing a beer forum or site somewhere and ran across this position with Craft Brewers Alliance, Inc.

Staff Accountant, Portland , OR
Posted: 12/10/2008 5:17:13 PM
Job Description
Craft Brewers Alliance, Inc. representing high quality hand crafted beers with a portfolio from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company, Redhook Ale Brewery and Kona Brewing Co. has an immediate opening for a Staff Accountant based in Portland, OR. This position reports to the Assistant Controller and is responsible for various accounting activities including supporting the preparation of the monthly excise tax returns, monitoring and follow-up of past due accounts receivable, and supporting the activities of the Finance Department.

Nice list of clients: Redhook, Kona Brewing,  Goose Island Beer Company and Widmer Brothers. I knew I should have paid better attention in my college Accounting class.


Terrapin Wake ‘N’ Bake Coffee Oatmeal Imperial Stout

So, I picked up a Terrapin Wake and Bake Stout yesterday with the hopes that this particular brew didn’t taste like the used coffee ground coming out of my coffee pot the next morning.

As the Terrapin website summarizes:

This is a full bodied imperial stout with flavorful coffee taste and aroma. Black as night, this coffee stout is thick, rich and full of flavor. It includes a special blend of coffee created by Terrapin and Jittery Joe’s Coffee.

Well, my hopes were quickly diminished that very night. This beer just does not appeal to me. In fact, I found it disgusting. I had a similar experience with Bell’s Java Stout. Am I crazy? Am I the only one that feels like they are drinking a pint full of used, burnt coffee grounds? A 97 percentile rating on Rate Beer. An A- (excellent) rating on Beer Advocate.

I’ve almost decided that these beers are just not my style. But not until I try the Redhook Double Black Stout bomber that I picked up today.


Mr. Beer, Charity and Festival

I was just reading over the, that they are looking for volunteers for a beer tasting or a beer contest to help raise money for the Momentum Festival.

The Momentum Festival benefits charities such as Dream Factory and United Cerebral Palsy of Tampa Bay/Achieve Tampa Bay .


Adam’s Tampa Bay beer guide

Hey all. I am getting ready to do a major overhaul to my “Ultimate Tampa Bay Beer Guide” page.

If you can think of anything that should be added such as beer stores, bars, breweries etc, please feel free to to post a comment or shoot me an e-mail.

Adam’s Beer Blog on Twitter

In an effort to stay more active on my blog, I have signed up for Twitter.

Please feel free to follow me there.

Discovery Channel – How Stuff Works – Beer!

While reading my news feed today, I was alerted to an upcoming episode of How Stuff Works on the Discovery Channel. Of course, this episode will be about beer making!

Via the Beer Examiner:

The one hour beer episode will run on “How Stuff Works.”  Flavor, diversity, history, culture, hops, malt, water, yeast, big brew, little brew and homebrew will all be touched upon.

Also likely featured will be Dogfish Head Brewing Company’s owner Sam Calagione and his “insightful” perspectives about “how stuff works” for the small brewer.

You can view air times here. Be sure to set your TiVo or DVR.


Happy holidays!

Seasons greeting! I hope everyone out there is doing well and drinking lots of good beer.

Yes, this blog has been quiet as I have been quite busy with other thing leaving me with zero time to write. I hope to change that soon.


WaZoo beer tasting this weekend

Yes, it is that time of year again. Your opportunity is here to sample over 200 beers at one of the nation’s largest beer tastings (and become one with nature at the same time).

Tickets to the event are not cheap, but perhaps it will help cut down on the number of people which, in turn, makes the lines shorter. And after all, all the proceeds from the event benefit the animals at Lowry Park Zoo – one of the best zoos in the country. Once again, I will not be there this year. Not because it is too expensive but my wife and I cannot get a baby sitter for the night.

You can find much more information about the event here.


Surf and Turf Market – Palm Harbor

Over the weekend, a close friend of mine introduced me to Harr’s Surf & Turf Market in Palm Harbor Florida. Not only do they have a great selection of meats, prepared food/dinners, wine and cheese, but they also have an impressive selection of imports and domestic micro-brews.

Check ’em out!

Harr’s Surf & Turf
3235 Tampa Rd
Palm Harbor, FL 34684
(727) 785-8873
Click for map

Got Beer? White Sox fans are looking

My wife snapped this picture the other day of a Chicago White Sox fans with a jersey on that reads “GOT BEER?”.


Funny. And just a quick side note: I am a Rays fan (previously known as the Devil Rays) and she, is a die-hard White Sox fan.


Quiet lately

My apologies for the lack of blogging. I’ve been quite busy with my day job and traveling a bit. Try to write a few blurbs soon.


Victory Storm King Stout

This is really a follow up to my previous post about my trip to Charleston.

I forgot to mention that when we went to the Piggly Wiggly, I noticed that they carried Victory Brewing Co. beers. I was excited because I still have not had their HopDevil IPA (Victory does not distribute to my area). Unfortunately, the only beer they had was the Storm King Stout (well not that unfortunate).

Storm King Stout is a Russian Imperial Stout with the alcohol content ringing in at 9.10% ABV.

With a huge, Pacific Northwest hop aroma & character upfront, Storm King subsides into massive, roast malt complexity. More flavor than mere words can adequately describe. Rich and substantial, it will warm your heart.

I picked up a sixer of this to take back to Florida. Not a bad brew but it does not top my favorite stout of all time: Old Rasputin from the North Coast Brewing Company.


Charleston beer happenings

A few weeks ago, my family made the trip up to Charleston, SC to see my newly born nephew! Yes, I am officially an uncle now. While most of the time was spent visiting family, this didn’t mean that we were not going to be drinking some good beer in the process.

One of the first things we do when we get into town is to hit-up the local supermarkets to see what wonderful offerings they have. Harris Teeter usually has a nice selection of beer so we headed over there. We ended up grabbing two different six packs of IPA the first being Magic Hat Brewing Company Hi.P.A. Not a bad American IPA but nothing out of the world special. Certainly drinkable. The other sixer we picked up was the Mad Hatter IPA from the New Holland Brewing Company. I think I would choose this beer as my favorite of the two as it had a nicer hop bouquet to it probably from the dry hopping process. For some reason, we passed on Lakefront Brewery IPA which has an excellent rating on BeerAdvocate. Ohh well, there is always next time.

With our time mostly devoted to spending time with family, there wasn’t much time to visit any local breweries or brew pubs in the area (not that there are many). We did, however, get the chance to head downtown Saturday night to grab a bite to eat and drink some pints at Charleston Beer Works. I found what I was looking for! COAST brewing Co. beer on tap! Their HopArt IPA was great. A nicely balanced hoppy brew that was oh so easy to drink. It tasted extra fresh too.

Walking a fine line of sweet malt and assertive hop character. A hop presence so enticing it truly is a work of art. (7.7% abv). Brewed year-round.

Also on tap from COAST was their 32/50 Kolsch and I believe their Red Legs Scotch Ale.

After leaving CBW, we headed down King St. a few blocks and wandered into the old standby Mellow Mushroom who always has a ton of beers on tap and in the bottle. To my surprise, there was such a thing as a Double Dead Guy Ale from Rogue. As it turns out, this is a new offering from Rogue so we had to try a few pints. My impressions: The taste is very much similar to the Dead Guy Ale only the beer is much stronger (of course). Not bad and I have to admit that Dead Guy isn’t one of my most favorite beers and I didn’t really get much out of this brew either (other than a buzz). You can read some reviews over at Beer Advocate here.

And I almost forgot. My brother in-law and I had made a trip to the Piggly Wiggly AKA “The Pig” to pick up some things needed for a party. To my surprise, they had a very large imported and microbrew selection. They even sold 64 ounce growlers right in the store. This, of course, is something that you will not see here in Florida. Go figure, the liqueur store right next door must close early on Sundays (something like 3:00) but they are allowed to remain open late here in Florida but cannot open before 11:00 a.m. The reasonings behind it boggle my mind.



Great deal on Hopslam

With a rating of 100 on and outstanding reviews over at Beer Advocate, Bells Hopslam is certainly a nectar of the God’s.

Now, I can’t give away all my secrets (and I doubt my secret will be affected too much by this post), but Rollin’ Oats in Saint Petersburg has 6 packs of Hopslam for only $14.99! That is about 3-4 bucks less than you will find anywhere else.

Just and FYI