Smoking policy change at Rich O's.
The Rich O's rotating bottle list has five outstanding new beers: De Glazen Toren Canaster Winterscotch, Fantome Noel, Fantome Saison, Founders Breakfast Stout and Zinnebir X-mas.
NABC brewery news: A bit late, but brewing set to resume.Updated: Cask-conditioned English firkins coming this way.
Casual reading at the Potable Curmudgeon's beer blog.
Saturnalia MMV lineup described - begins December 16.
Current draft beer lineup.
Hours, events and esoterica.
I. FINAL ADVANCE WARNING: SMOKING POLICY CHANGE AT RICH O'S.
Effective on January 2, 2006, the front seating area at Rich O's (seven tables by the windows) will be added to the current non-smoking area. Smoking will continue to be allowed in the bar area and Red Room, and in the Sportstime Pizza dining area.
It's an issue that will be contentious for a long time to come, but when it comes to our decision to reconfigure the non-smoking area, rest assured that the rationale is purely market-driven. Numerous customers now request non-smoking seating beyond what is currently available, with the bottom-line-unfriendly result that the non-smoking area often if filled, while half the remaining room remains empty.
II. NEW, AND IN SOME CASES RARE, ROTATING BOTTLED SELECTIONS.
Here are five new bottled selections to usher in the holiday season. I promise to have them priced and stocked by 1:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 8, 2005, and then it's first-come, first served.
Remember to check the chalkboard in the front room at Rich O’s for bottled specials and seasonals. These are the bottled beers not carried on the everyday bottled list, and represent a wide variety of flavors and textures for your tasting enjoyment.
Fantome Noel - 750 ml – Darker, stronger, spicier and displaying the funky house yeast character of Fantome. Only a dozen bottles; act quickly.
Fantome Saison – 750 ml – Eclectic Ardennes elixir, with a spicy fruitiness and an unmistakably wild, yeasty elegance.
Founders Breakfast Stout – 12 oz – Brewed with oats, chocolate and coffee, and every bit as nutritious and filling as the name conveys.
Zinnebir X-mas – 750 ml – Little is known about this tiny brewery, and its X-mas ale is the first Zinnebir product we’ve ever had, here or in Belgium. If you try one, please take notes and share with the Publican (who’ll get around to his bottle in time).
Previously posted, and still available in limited quantities:
De Dolle Special Extra Export Stout - 11.2 oz - Preview a Saturnalia draft selection and reflect on Kris's typically eccentric take on a rare (export stout) beer style.
Jolly Pumpkin Luciernaga "The Fire Fly" - 750 ml - Try this on for size ... an oak-barrel aged, bottle-conditioned "pale ale brewed in the Grand Cru tradition" with coriander and Grains of Paradise. Subtle and incredible.
Jopen Koyt - 750 ml - Dutch "gruit" (spiced) ale from Haarlem, near Amsterdam, home of my good friend Boris and the outstanding Cafe Briljant, where I wish I could be drinking Jopen ales right now.
N'Ice Chouffe - 750 ml - From those creative "gnomes" in the Ardennes comes a longtime favorite seasonal winter warmer (10% abv). Dark and deep, but deceptively drinkable.
Panil Barriquee - 750 ml - Flemish style sour red ale brewed in Italy (this is not a misprint) and aged in cognac barrels. A bona fide classic, and probably the best "new" bottled beer at Rich O's in 2005.
Previous guests/seasonal/rotating, and still available:
BBC Hell for Certain
Breckinridge "Small Batch" 471 IPA
Founders Black Rye
Great Divide Hibernation Ale
Jolly Pumpkin Oro de Calabaza
Jolly Pumpkin La Roja Cassissona
Stone 05/05/05 Vertical Epic Stone 9th Anniversary Ale
III. NABC BREWERY NEWS: BREWERY SET TO RESUME.
A few last-minute details are left to resolve, but brewing should resume any day. When all is said and done, we'll probably be about three weeks late with the completion of the expansion project, and that's not bad considering our record in such matters.NABC will simplify its core portfolio during the remainder of 2005 as we work toward restoring a semblance of routine. We appreciate your patience as we work toward achieving our various goals, and promise much fun and experimentation in 2006, when we'll branch back out and resume production of the specialties.
One thing we'll definitely be brewing is a version of the recipe for Poor Richard's Ale as part of a Brewers Association promotion celebrating Benjamin Franklin's tercentenary on January 17, 2006. We're asking that local homebrewers participate, too. Read all about it:
IV. UPDATED CASK REPORT: DUO ON THE HORIZON.
The next wave of cask-conditioned ales will be English and Scottish, and some are expected to arrive between now and Christmas.
J.W.Lees Manchester Star (firkin) looks more like January, 2006.
The firkin of Harviestoun Old Engine Oil Special Reserve (Scotch barrel-aged) will be delayed until mid-January at the earliest.
For more information on cask-conditioned ale:
Horse Brass Pub (where our friend Biscuit works)
Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA)
Warm, Flat and Boring -- the Truth About Cask Ale, from www.RateBeer.com.
V. RECENT NEWS AND ARTICLES AT THE POTABLE CURMUDGEON’S BEER BLOG.
Here are five recent articles posted at http://potablecurmudgeon.blogspot.com/:
VI. SATURNALIA MMV BEGINS DECEMBER 16.
All except three of the listed Saturnalia selections are in stock or at the wholesalers, and my thoughts have started to turn toward selecting the starting lineup. At this time, I'm sticking to the projection of 15 starters (and one cask), but it may be possible to squueze another two or three into the mix.
For the latest news: Saturnalia MMV press release, with beer descriptions.
There will be Saturnalia shirts: Sand-colored, long-sleeved, bearing the image above, the listed drafts and the official slogan: "We're putting the Pagan back into Christmas ... one pint at a time."
The December 15 special issue of this newsletter will include all the Saturnalia information.
VII. DRAFT BEERS: OUR LIQUID, DAILY BREAD, ON TAP AT RICH O’S AND SPORTSTIME.
Our NABC beers.
Brewed in New Albany by NABC’s Jesse Williams, with assistance from Jared Williamson.
Community Dark ... Dark colored, but light tasting. Our interpretation of the classic English Mild.
Guests from near and far.
Sprecher Root Beer (non-alcoholic)
Upland Winter Warmer (Saturnalia preview)
In the bullpen:
De Dolle Oerbier (different batch -- new/old yeast)
Strubbe Doedel (West Flanders pale ale; French malt; Poperings hops; spices)
VIII. EVENTS, HOURS AND RELATED FACTS.
General business hours:
Sportstime Pizza opens at 11:00 a.m. Monday through Saturday. Rich O’s opens at 3:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and at 1:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. We are not open on Sunday except during special events. The same food and beer is available at all times in both rooms, so you may have lunch and a beer in the Sportstime Pizza dining area during those hours when Rich O’s isn’t open. The brewery is available for a look-see if one of us is around and we’re not busy.
Begins Friday, December 16.
Gravity Head 2006 (Vol. 8)
Note a date change: Gravity Head 2006 has been moved forward two weeks, and will begin on Friday, February 24. I have every reason to believe this will occur this year only, and in 2007, the festival will revert to the second weekend in March.
Readers who aren’t as familiar with our business should go to http://www.newalbanian.com/ and http://www.richos.com/ for more information.
NABC is a member of the Brewers Association and Brewers of Indiana Guild.
Questions or comments about editorial content should be directed to Roger A. Baylor: firstname.lastname@example.org.