50 from 50 – Update

I had a flurry of activity on the 2010 challenge in January leaving me tantalizingly close to my goal.

The only holdouts now are Alabama and North Dakota. Actually, hold out is the wrong word. There are reasons why I haven’t tasted from these places. Two to be precise. And they both start with the letter P.

Alabama – Prohibition. Yup, I lay it all on that doorstep. Once that law ended, the state took over and draconian rules were kept and/or expanded upon. If you think draconian is too strong a word then check out these restrictions at Free the Hops. Until my travel plans take me near Alabama, I will probably not be able to check this state off my list.

North Dakota – Population. There just isn’t enough to gain traction for a niche market. According to what I can find on the internet, there is 1 brewery. Granite City. And I can’t expect them to ship someone in a California a growler.

So that is where I stand. As always, if you or someone you know is willing to send me some beer from those two states. I would appreciate it. Reach out at beersearchparty@gmail.com.

50 from 50 – Kentucky

Thanks to a generous gift from the good people at the Lexington/Alltech Brewery in Kentucky, I was able to sample my first ever beer from that that fine state.
I tasted the Light (aka Kolsch), their flagship ale and their bourbon barrel aged ale. My favorite was the light but here is the review for the ale.

as always, click on the image to make it more readable.

…and follow this link to the full list of 43 beers Sean’s 43 of 50

Mogollon Wapiti Amber

The barrage of craft beer in cans continues. And that is good news. It means more economies of scale and more beers being shipped! And we can all agree that is a great thing.

Here is a Arizona beer that would look good on my 50 Beers from 50 States list….from Mogollon

“Wapiti Amber Ale. This is our flagship ale and is pronounced wop-eh-tee. The label for this beer is adorned with the majestic Wapiti (aka elk). Wapiti are abundant in northern Arizona. They are large and beautiful creatures, which is why we chose this animal to represent this beer. Wapiti Amber Ale is hand crafted with mountain pure water, two row malted barley, yeast and Yakima Valley hops. Our brewers use traditional methods to create this full-bodied amber ale with a distinct hoppy aroma. “

Needed! Beer from Kansas….

…and it could be the easily shipped cans from Tallgrass Brewing!

Here is the chain of events that led the brewery to can…
“The call was from a Tallgrass drinker in western Kansas. He had about 20 empty cases of IPA bottles and boxes stacked in his garage. I guess he really likes it. He wanted to return the boxes for us to reuse, but since he was so far away, picking them up was not an option. I asked him to recycle the glass and cardboard, but he did not have a local recycler. It would all have to go to the local landfill.”

That phone call inspired Gill to look into the viability of cans. Several months later, Gill is returning from a field trip across the country to Ball Corporation where his cans are being manufactured.

Tallgrass will soon can Tallgrass Ale, Oasis, Buffalo Sweat, Kold and IPA.

I do need to add more canned beers to my 50 from 50 challenge.

Crow Peak Brewing

We use the power of a beer map to focus on a South Dakota brewpub, Crow Peak!

LOOKOUT LAGER: This straw colored, medium-bodied lager is dominated by a dry maltiness. Hop bitterness is very low, however, a mild note of hops lingers on the tongue.

SPEARBEER: This is a light copper-colored English style Pale Ale with a malty character and just a hint of fruitiness balanced by medium hop bitterness. The ale finishes with a pleasant hop flavor and aroma.

11th HOUR IPA: Hop aroma and flavor dominate this IPA. However, the malt character of this deep amber colored ale nicely balances the hop component thus avoiding a harsh bitterness. A truly quaffable beverage!

BEAR BUTTE BROWN: This deep brown colored ale has a strong malt character with a hint of roasted barley. There is a slightly detectable hop bitterness, but no hop flavor or aroma.

PILE O’ DIRT PORTER: Named for the ridiculous 4 foot dirt pile we had to put our brewery on to get us out of the FEMA-designated 100 year floodplain (no-one can remember this part of Spearfish ever flooding). This robust porter is black in color, is medium-bodied and has a rich, roasted malt flavor ending with a pleasing hop flavor and mild hop bitterness.

I always get a brewery history lesson from the names, so I would sample the Pile ‘O’ Dirt first because of the floodplain reference.

9 Months left

Disclaimer – this is not an April Fool’s Joke.

The 50 Beers from 50 States challenge is now entering the fourth month. As you can see from the stats, the progress is good, around the half-way mark.

But due to a combination of the arcane and sometimes bizarre liquor laws in some states and the limited distribution scope of some breweries, I forsee some states falling into the cracks. This is where YOU come into the picture.

If you have access to a beer from a state that I have not crossed off my list and you are willing to ship (1) bottle or can to California then I will make a donation of $15.00 to a food bank in your area of the country. You will also earn my gratitude and a shout-out on the website.

If you have a question or want to make sure that I don’t have something in my ‘fridge already then e-mail me at beersearchparty@gmail.com.