I was happy to represent the Craft Brewjas, and while a packed house waited for the guest of honor, I had a chance to catch up with old and new Miami beer friends. I love meeting beer friends, especially the ones from Instagram. It's nice to have a real name to the IG name! I say this all the time, but it's so exciting to be a part of South Florida's craft beer movement. There has never been such a fulfilling time to be a beer nerd. We have so many options for great craft beer in South Florida!
OK, back to Greg Koch. As he tapped Enjoy By 12.13.13, he preached to his craft beer disciples about how Miami has made such progress in craft beer, and enlightened us with inspiration such as: "No longer will we put up with the fizzy yellow beer; can I get a hell ya?!" I will say no more. OK, a little more. He was amazingly approachable, extremely down to earth, and very hospitable. Coolest CEO ever. He signed my W00tstout, and his people were texting the shot to Wil Wheaton. He shared his Crime and Punishment bomber with anyone that held up their glass. And that my friends, is a testament to why I love Stone. Not only are their beers hardcore, bold, in your face and made with obvious quality and ingenuity, but their leader is a man of the people. The craft beer people.
While we're talking about Stone, I've recently tried the Suede Imperial Porter, a collaboration between 10 Barrel (OR), and Bluejacket (DC). It's brewed with Calendula flowers, jasmine and honey. I loved this one. It was like drinking some smmmooooth velvet. Suede was a great name. I don't know what Calendula flowers taste like, however, I did pick up on a lightly sweet floral-esque hint, so I'm guessing it was the flowers. I will be picking up another so I can age it. It will be awesome.
Most recently, I picked up a Belgian random bomber from my local Total Wine. Pauwel Kwak, a traditional Belgian special ale (8.4%). I enjoyed this. The color was a beautiful honey hue, and the mouth feel was crisp, full and classic. It's from Belgium. Chances are it will be fantastic. They've been doing this a lot longer than most of us. One day I will get there and taste first hand. Until then, I will keep hitting up the Belgian aisle. Cheers!