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/// HEARD IT THROUGH THE HOPVINE
 
JUNE/JULY 2011 » BACK TO HOPVINE INDEX
 
HEARD IT THROUGH THE HOPVINE
Don’t crush that can. Check eBay first! WhatSellsBest.com, a website tracking rare items selling on eBay, reports that a rare collectible beer can has fetched $17,000 on eBay. The “ABC Old English Type Ale” beer can was produced by the ABC Brewing Corporation. EBeerCans.com indicates that the beer can is considered to be scarce because the brewery briefly operated under the exact name “ABC Brewing Corporation” from 1934 to 1936, with only a small number of “Ale” cans produced (relative to “Beer” cans) during that time. According to James Massey, publisher of WhatSellsBest.com, “Vintage beer cans have been a hot category on eBay for quite a while. But it’s often the small details that can make a big difference in what collectors are willing to pay.”

The lovable Don Russell
, the Philadelphia journalist who’s nom de beer is Joe Sixpack, has discovered what he calls the “first practical use of Twitter.” Finally! Don reports that at least two major league baseball parks now feature Twittering beer vendors. Tweet them and they’ll bring you a beer. “No more waiting for the beer man to wander down your aisle!” Don exclaims. “No more standing in line for half an inning!” Don says the practice seems to have originated at Seattle’s Safeco Field (Microsoft!) but has now spread east to Philadelphia’s Citizens Bank Park. How tweet is that!…

Inspired by Denver’s new role
as America’s mile-high medical marijuana capital, Wynkoop Brewing has created a new beer, Metacool Maltuwanna. This brand-new creation is a tea-colored, malty imperial amber ale enhanced with hemp seeds and kilos of U.S. hops. The result is a heady wonder of the highest order with rich malt and hop charms and a dank, aromatic nose. Released on April 20 (4:20!), it has become a big hit at Wynkoop in Denver. Ask one of the smiling servers (in the new “Caregiver” shirt) for a glass of it. It’s approximately 7.8% abv. And sing along with Bob Marley: “I drink two beers before I drink two beers… and then I drink two more”…

The Cincinnati-based Kroger Company plans to launch private-label premium beer soon. Kroger beers have catchy names, like Port Republic, Buck Range, Game Day and Big Flats 1901. The beers are made in established breweries and come in light, ice and lager. Port Republic will be available in light and lager, retailing for $21.99 for a 30-pack of cans, according to the Winery Exchange, a Novato, Calif., corporate brand company that supplies beer, wine and spirits. A 24-ounce single-serve can will sell for $1.49. Port Republic will join Kroger’s expanding list of store-brand beers, including Caguama, a Latin beer; Hollande 1620, a Dutch beer; and Tap Room 21, a “craft beer” that comes in amber ale, pale ale, wheat and lager. Port Republic? Do Tomme and Ricardo know about this?!

Great Basin Brewing Company in Reno and Sparks, Nev., sponsored the Royal Snoot Salute when William and Kate banned beer from their wedding. Prince William and Kate Middleton denied their wedding guests the pleasure of beer at the royal wedding reception! The prospect of guests downing pints was deemed unsuitable for such a prestigious occasion. From the London press: “Let’s face it. It isn’t really an appropriate drink to be serving in the Queen’s presence at such an occasion.” Oh, really? The gang at Great Basin did something about it. At the appointed hour, they gave the Royal Snoot Salute facing east and hoisted pints for Kate and William to show ’em that even with all that oozing refinement and pageantry, “We have BETTER TASTE!” These folks put the “Great” in Great Basin!…

And this from Stone Brewing Company:
“Portable shots seem to be a category designed for nothing but despair and the desperate — those whose pockets are lined with neither money nor good taste. No longer! Stone Brewing Company is proud to announce the release of BastardSHOTZ Gel Pakz, perfect for the Bastard on-the-go who wants to upgrade to first class. BastardSHOTZ Gel Pakz ooze all the flavor and alcohol of a 22-ounce serving of Arrogant Bastard Ale, reduced to a classy, airport-friendly three-ounce pocket pouch. Designed for connoisseurs with an abundance of taste and a dearth of time, BastardSHOTZ bring sorely needed panache to the pouch-based booze business.

“BastardSHOTZ were born in a stroke of molecular gastronomical genius inside the kitchen of our world-renowned restaurant. Inspired by experiments with sous-vide cooking and our brewery’s centrifuge, Executive Chef Alex Carballo worked with our brewing team on this formerly top-secret project, resulting in a collaborative breakthrough between brewer and chef.

“The process pioneered by the chef/brewer team involves ultrasound, a centrifuge and liquid nitrogen, but details remain classified. What’s not at all a secret is that the thick brown gel of BastardSHOTZ, when spread liberally over wild acorn–fed jamón ibérico de bellota, is an outstanding pairing beverage gel. This rare and premium Spanish ham practically begs for the rich, viscous mouthfeel and the classic Arrogant Bastard intense hop and malt overtones.

“To help those Bastards with discerning palates boast to the world at large, we have a parallel release of the BastardSHOTZ iPhone and Android app. The iBastard WebSHOTZ app automatically updates 33 social media platforms with geolocated consumption data, ensuring that you’ll never drink BastardSHOTZ without alerting the world. This level of synergy among packaging, technology and consumer is an exhilarating experience that, until now, has never been achieved in the industry.

“Look for this game-changing product nationwide (Texas excluded) at checkout counters this April when we roll out this exciting new product. For more information, please view the exclusive BastardSHOTZ video, ‘I am a Pouch Brewer.’ BastardSHOTZ are intended to be consumed responsibly by adults of legal drinking age, numbskull.”… Oh, yeah, and it was released on April 1.
 

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