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Category: Our Journey

Our Journey

Merus Makes Super 2nd Wine Altus

Merus Makes Super 2nd Wine Altus

  I have enjoyed Merus Wines for some time, and have a number of their vintages in my wine cellar.  I have visited Merus, https://www.meruswines.com/, brought friends to the Napa tasting room, and have gotten to know their sales staff and employees.  Great folks; great wine.  Really good story. In fact, I remember reading about Merus in the New York Times magazine years ago.  It was an AMAZING piece about a “cult” wine being made in one’s garage that took off. Well, since then, I have added a number of vintages to my collection, Merus was sold, and is now […]

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Dec 18, 2016

Our Journey

Cigar City Jai Alai Offers Consistently Great IPA

Cigar City Jai Alai Offers Consistently Great IPA

 So, no beer, or I should say that no varietal of craft beer, has changed consumers’ taste in beer more so that a hoppy IPA .  That may be why some consultants in the beer industry, or the CRAFT beer industry, believe that IPAs account for 40% of craft beer sales. Here in Florida, we are blessed with some great craft breweries. Sure, we are still a relative “newcomer”, compared to North Carolina, California and Colorado. Agreed. But there is one hoppy IPA in Florida that consumers love .   Repeatedly.   Cigar City Brewing Company’s Jai Alai.  ttps://cigarcitybrewing.com/beer/jai-alai-ipa/ This […]

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Dec 18, 2016

Our Journey

What South Florida brewery can I bring my own food to?

What South Florida brewery can I bring my own food to?

Foodies are passionate about food and wine, and, yes, often, craft beer!  And we KNOW that craft beer lovers throughout South Florida LOVE their locally made, artisanal micro-brews. And, we should all agree, that often, when we drink great craft beer, or sip premium Napa wine, we want a bite to eat. So, why don’t more Florida breweries serve food on the premises? Well, many just don’t want to run a restaurant. ….Or handle food…. and spend the time, focus and money to get the brewery or tap room inspected by the health department because you have to, then, jump through […]

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Dec 17, 2016

Our Journey

Is Palm Beach’s warehouse district the perfect spot for a new craft brewery, tap room or beer garden?

Is Palm Beach’s warehouse district the perfect spot for a new craft brewery, tap room or beer garden?

  Where is a cool, convenient place to place a craft brewery in Palm Beach County? Is West Palm Beach’s Warehouse District the next craft brewery mecca? A funk zone for great beer and wine? Well, what if there were a place, a location, a neighborhood, which had the following characteristics or traits: Really close to I-95.  I mean, easy access on and off; and quickly. Close to the airport, PBI. Plenty of parking. Busy corner with high visibility. Outdoor space for a beer garden, outdoor games, fire pits, bands, live music and most anything else. Proximity (walking distance) to […]

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Dec 17, 2016

Our Journey

Great connections score great wines at West Palm Beach Brewery & Wine Vault

Great connections score great wines at West Palm Beach Brewery & Wine Vault

 We all know that the downtown West Palm Beach Brewery & Wine Vault folks LOVE craft beer.  And we have heard about plans for their Aspen-like indoor tap room, complete with cozy fireplace and 6 foot high mantle.  But more and more people seem to want to know more about the premium wine in the Wine Vault. JP has been going to Napa for years, and, over the years, has been lucky enough to build up relationships, and friendships, with a number of great people in the wine biz:  grape growers and farmers, wine makers, winery owners and managers, vineyard […]

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Dec 16, 2016

Our Journey

Embrace the craft beer stout! (don’t be afraid of it)

Embrace the craft beer stout!  (don’t be afraid of it)

 Who loves a big, dark, strong beer?  Dan G from the West Palm Brewery does! Dan and I would often joke about how he does not really LOVE IPA’s, but I do.   The truth is, Dan is learning to love IPA’s and hoppy craft beers.  But, he does love the stouts and the porters. So, do I! So, our tasting panel tried the Stone (great beer producer !!) American Stout.  Just great.  Another great Stout is Oskar Blues 10 Fiddy ( a 10.5% stout).  Just great stuff. Embrace the Stout!!!

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Dec 16, 2016

Our Journey

Who likes Porters from a great craft brewery?

Who likes Porters from a great craft brewery?

 On Clematis Street in downtown West Palm Beach, the restaurants do a good job of rotating beers.  After all, South Florida craft beer lovers enjoy variety, right? Better restaurants typically have a number of standard draft and bottle selections, but many rotate two or three drafts and add to their bottle offerings of craft beer. Places like Alchemist, Hullabaloo http://sub-culture.org/hullabaloo/and Grease http://www.greasewpb.com/ have great selection and variety.   And good food. So, the next time you are out in West Palm Beach, consider looking for a porter, which, admittedly, you don’t see on tap that often.  The draft selections seem to […]

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Dec 15, 2016

Our Journey

Sweet oak & bourbon barrels make great barleywine ale

Sweet oak & bourbon barrels make great barleywine ale

Wow.  I’m interrupting the West Palm Beach Brewery & Wine Vault’s tasting panel to blog about bourbon barrel aging. Everyone knows that a lot of craft breweries around the country, not just South Florida, age their beers, or some of their beers, in bourbon barrels. Bourbon barrels can create a “sting” or a whiskey sensation that is sharp, a bit harsh. But, try the Goose Island  Bourbon County Barleywine Ale.  It is delicious.  You get a lot of sweet oak ( I assume the barrels are oak.)  You will love this or hate it, and I’m betting that you really […]

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Dec 15, 2016

Our Journey

Do you like craft beer aged in rum barrels?

Do you like craft beer aged in rum barrels?

So, we all know that some blonde ales may be aged in chardonnay, or white wine barrels, right? And, you can get the “Scotch” or “bourbon” “burn” from, for example, a Russian Imperial Stout which is aged in bourbon barrels. But do craft beer lovers enjoy beer that has been aged in rum barrels? Well, check out Ipswich Ale’s Clown Shoes series of beers which are now available, limitedly, in Florida. http://www.ipswichalebrewery.com/ The Clown Shoes Hammer of the Beast has been described as an American strong ale which is an imperial stout and barleywine ale aged in rum barrels.  https://www.clownshoesbeer.com/ For those of […]

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Dec 14, 2016

Our Journey

Who likes oatmeal stouts?

Who likes oatmeal stouts?

 So, there is always a balance to enjoying a good stout or porter, right? If there’s too many “coffee” overtones, or too much “chocolate”, you may not like it, right?  I mean with too much “stuff”, the beer stops being….well…. a beer.  That’s one of the challenges of being a master brewer, right?  You have to keep a beer a beer and then tweak it to give the craft beer lover a new experience that won’t assault the integrity of the beer.   But when you get a good balance of, say, coffee flavor, malts, carbonation, the experience of a […]

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Dec 14, 2016

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