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JUNE/JULY 1996 » BACK TO HOPVINE INDEX
 
HEARD IT THROUGH THE HOPVINE
Eli Gershkovitch's SteamWorks in Vancouver, B.C., was the place to be a few weeks ago if you're a fan of the X-Files. Cast and crew selected to have their "wrap party" at the SteamWorks Brewery, the Gastown section's preeminent watering hole. Can we expect to see some strange happenings at a brewpub on an episode next year?... I hope Eli was able to attend the function at his place, since I saw him in Boston and again in New York hanging with Kirby Shyer at Zip City. He also flies his own plane and is an attorney. There is no truth to the rumor that he wanted to call his place "So Sue Me Brewing Company"...

Speaking of New York, if a sign asserts something to be the " Best" or "Greatest" in NYC there is a great likelihood that it is not -- with the possible exception of Donahue's Pub on 2nd Avenue in Mid-Town. They have a huge sign across the front of the building proclaiming "We Have the Coldest Draft Beer in N.Y.C." Well now, I'll be sure to make a note. (No wonder you won't find THEM in Ale Street News!)...

When the Moon-Shines Over the Mountain Dept.: Get ready for Mississippi Mud Black and Tan! It will be marketed in a 32-ounce, moonshine-like, two-toned jug with a handle to give it that "backwoods" image we all strive for. It will be produced by Ferolito, Valtaggio & Sons in Lake Success, NY, better known for their successful line of "Arizona" teas. The new brew will come from the Stroh Brewery in Detroit (where it will be brewed by the light of the moon?). Should be just the thing for your next Beverly Hillbillies party...

If you were wondering about the sincerity of gambling casinos doing brewpubs, consider the Eldorado Hotel & Casino in Reno. Their Brew Brothers brewpub has been open for less than a year but is now providing ALL the draught beer served in that facility! That, friends, is a lot of beer. Brewmaster Darren Whitcher is delighted with the exposure he gets in the casino, although the increased demand for his beer keeps him pretty busy. Put twenty bucks on the Red Ale!... Darren's old place, Black Diamond Brewing Co. in Walnut Creek, CA, is continuing to develop new brews under the direction of Brewmaster Shawn Burns, formerly Darren's assistant. Be sure to check out his current offerings!

In ancient Rome it was thought that if drinkers ate parsley they would never get drunk. It took generations to figure out that by the time they discovered they were wrong about parsley, they didn't care! Ancient science!!!

Old Traditions Die Hard Dept.: The story has it that during an examination at England's famed Cambridge University, a precocious student popped up and asked the proctor to bring him Cakes and Ale. "Beg your pardon? " said the proctor. "I request that you bring me Cakes and Ale," insisted the young student. "Sorry, no!" was the response. The student then produced a copy of the 400-year-old Laws of Cambridge, written in Latin (and still nominally in effect), with a section that read, "Gentlemen sitting examinations may request and require Cakes and Ale. " A cola and a hamburger were judged the modern equivalent, and the student slurped away victorious in front of his other classmates. Five weeks later the student was fined five pounds for not wearing a sword to the examination.

The Japanese have a beer for everything. If you're a salesman away from the boss and just want to enjoy a moment to yourself, try Kirin's new Jiyuu-jikan or "Free Time/Fun Time" beer, described as a mild-tasting brew geared toward the enjoyment of life. Some of us think that Sierra Nevada Celebration is a "Free Time/Fun Time" beer...

The dialogue on CompuServe's beer forum turned to the upcoming Olympics. Naturally, the locals who are beer lovers (like Steve Tuttle) are trying to put a beer spin on the event wit h their own beer tasting. Someone jumped in with a suggestion for a flag that would have five interconnecting rings of beer on a tablecloth. Verry Olympic, fellas...

Just when I thought the availability of craft beer was getting better in airports, things start to slide. The only "craft" draught available at JFK's Concourse B in New York was McSorley's. Denver 's gigantic DIA is sliding a bit, losing placements of locals like Odell's in favor of more mainstream fare. A huge sign greeted me as I entered the United concourse, which said, "Welcome back to Earth – Now go to the Moon ... Blue Moon Brewing Company, Denver, CO." Well, golly, that-there beer is contract-brewed by Coors in, are you ready, New York! (Same as McSorley's.) This type of advertising is not only misleading but downright fraudulent. Harrumph, harrumph...

Bay Area blues fans may want to check out KCSM FM 91 radio's "Crazy 'bout the Blues" show Friday, June 21, from nine to midnight. Guest DJ will be Celebrator publisher (and Rolling Boil Blues Band member) Tom Dalldorf.

 

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