In this edition of Publicanista!:
Poor Richard's "Old Lightning Rod" Ale to debut on Tuesday, January 17.
NABC Elector, Community Dark and Hoptimus are back on tap, with more to follow.
Now that we have beer, here are general guidelines governing who may buy it.
Bistro New Albany hoping to open for business by the end of January.
Purely random reading at the Potable Curmudgeon's beer blog.
Current draft beer lineup.
REVISED: Rich O's rotating bottle list selections include new Belgians, bombers.
Cask-conditioned English firkins still reportedly coming this way, some sweet day.
Hours, calendar of events and esoterica.
Poor Richard's Ale, which we're subtitling "Old Lightning Rod," is ready for tapping on Tuesday, January 17, 2006, as part of the nationwide Brewers Association promotion celebrating Benjamin Franklin's tercentenary.
Thanks to the local press for its coverage:
"Old Lightning Rod" Ale returns (in LEO).
II. NABC BREWERY NEWS: ELECTOR, COMMUNITY DARK AND HOPTIMUS NOW BACK ON TAP.
NABC's brew crew is brewing, finishing the installation of servng tanks and their draft lines, and preparing for demand at the soon-to-open Bistro New Albany. However , there's always time for a sample.
The brewing schedule is being structured to comply with our public declaration that NABC will simplify its core portfolio during the first part of 2006. This is being done primarily to simplify yeast management while establishing a new routine. The Belgian styles, including Tunnel Vision, will return later in the year. Bourbondaddy? We're not sure when the next batch will be. Stay tuned.
Check out Tony Beard's artwork: Three new NABC beer "labels," and more on the way.
Thanks to Jim Bell for his photographic prowess.
III. NABC'S EXPORT BEER PRIORITIES EXPLAINED.
Now's as good a time as any to review the NABC "export" guidelines.
Although NABC has doubled its brewing capacity, the brewery remains small, and the business plan hasn't changed, in that our goal always is to sell as much draft beer by the pint as possible at Rich O's and Sportstime, where quality control is greatest and the profit margin highest.
That said, the Bistro New Albany will be the exclusive downtown New Albany on-premise vendor of NABC beers (we hope four taps minimum, and perhaps five as matters progress).
In Jeffersonville, we'll be resuming supplies to the Comeback Inn, but nowhere else. There are no current plans for a Clarksville sales outlet.
Our Kentucky licensing has been renewed, but only so that we can participate in the 2006 Brew at the Zoo and occasionally offer a guest tap at the BBC Tap Room in downtown Louisville if our friends there so desire. Thanks to Scott at BBC for his help in making this possible.
After the preceding export commitments (and festival needs) are filled, and if there's any beer left over, we may (or may not) let it go as dock sales, i.e., for your home draft unit.
I'm not intending to strike a Draconian note; just be aware that there are priorities, and the final decision is mine.
IV. UPDATE: BISTRO NEW ALBANY PLANS JANUARY 23 OPENING.
As we went to press last week, a last-minute flash was appended:
Greg and Dave are knee deep in the hoopla, and they're trying to be ready for a January 23 opening, but this is extremely tentative. Stay tuned.
V. RECENT NEWS AND ARTICLES AT THE POTABLE CURMUDGEON’S BEER BLOG.
Here are recent articles posted at http://potablecurmudgeon.blogspot.com/:
Guests from near and far.
Note: Our wholesaler has not had Sierra Nevada in stock since before Christmas, which accounts for its absence. Owing to the state of Indiana's laws, I cannot buy elsewhere. Yes, the company that has exclusive rights to sell SN has not had the product for three weeks. That's the beer biz, and what I have to go through all the time.
De Dolle Oerbier (different batch -- new/old yeast)
Rogue Mogul Ale (John's Locker Stock series)
Sprecher Root Beer (non-alcoholic)
In the Bullpen:
Coming Soon (?):
VII. NEW, AND IN SOME CASES RARE, ROTATING BOTTLED SELECTIONS.
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.
Bink Winterkoningske (Winter King) - 11.2 oz - Dark, malty, and spiced with juniper berries and lavender, this 8.3% winter warmer from the tiny Kerkom brewery is the Belgian equivalent of Anchor's great Christmas Ale, though a tad sweeter.
Ecaussinnes Ultra - 11.2 oz - Fruity and very drinkable amber ale of 7% abv, and reputedly spiced, which might account for a light finishing bitterness that doesn’t taste like hops.
Ecaussinnes Ultrabrune - 11.2 oz - A large (10% abv) and malty brown ale with an intriguing trace of Scotch caramelized malt flavor, a fine and full mouth feel, and a noteworthy impression overall.
Goliath Tripel - 750 ml - Rare all-malt Belgian Tripel, brewed in Wallonia in a converted 14th-century castle, and named for the "giant" that leads the Parade of the Giants each year in nearby Ath.
Arcadia Hopmouth Double IPA - 22 oz - Big Maris Otter malt backdrop, nicely balanced fresh hop character with sufficient bitterness.
Breckinridge 471 Small Batch Double Hopped IPA - 22 oz - Fine entry level Double IPA, with a drier, grassy hop bite.
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. Also, don't forget Jolly Pumpkin Oro de Calabaza and Jolly Pumpkin La Roja. These almost certainly will be added to the everyday beer list this spring.
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.
Fantome Saison – 750 ml – Eclectic Ardennes elixir, with a spicy fruitiness and an unmistakably wild, yeasty elegance.
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).
Previous guests/seasonal/rotating, and still available:Stone 05/05/05 Vertical Epic
VIII. UPDATED CASK REPORT: DUO STILL SOMEWHERE OUT ON THAT HORIZON.
With apologies to Joe Walsh, confirmation finally has been received that the next wave of English and Scottish cask-conditioned ales are traveling in this direction.
Notice how I add a week or two to this projection with each issue of Publicanista?
J.W.Lees Manchester Star (firkin) looks more like late January, 2006.
The firkin of Harviestoun Old Engine Oil Special Reserve (Scotch barrel-aged) will be delayed until mid-January at the earliest. It might be held for use during Gravity Head 2006, depending on the final arrival date.
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 http://www.ratebeer.com/.
IX. 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.
Rich O's: The front dining rooms at Rich O's are designated as non-smoking areas. The bar area and Red Room are open for smoking (cigarettes, cigars, pipes). We strongly discourage clove cigarettes, which are divisive even among smokers.
Sportstime: Smoking is permitted in the entirety of Sportstime Pizza.
Sunday, February 5
As in recent years, Sportstime Pizza will be open for Super Bowl.
Friday, February 24
Gravity Head 2006 (Vol. 8)
Note a date change: Gravity Head 2006 has been moved forward two weeks owing to unusual circumstances. The region’s foremost celebration of big, bold, gravity brewing may or may not revert to the second weekend in March in 2007.
Saturday, April 29
Keg Liquors beer festival (information coming).
Saturday, May 13 (tentative)
Fifth Annual FOSSILS Breweriana Sale
There’ll be a new look to this growing event, with dealers vending beer collectibles of every sort imaginable all day on Saturday instead of Sunday, and doing so in the new Prost special events room (entrance through Rich O’s Public House).
Friday & Saturday, May 19 & 20
Ohio River Valley Folk Festival in Madison, Indiana
No solid information yet, but when out friend Steve Thomas is in charge of the libations, it can’t be anything but good.
Saturday, August 12
Great Taste of the Midwest in Madison, Wisconsin.
It’s one the top three beer fests in the nation, a perennial box-office sell-out, and certainly the big event with the most relevance to NABC. Web site information is dated, but will be revised later in 2006.
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.