July 4th is right around the corner. You know what that means? It's grilling season! If you love craft beer and you're a backyard pit-master, we have a secret: you can turn your gas or charcoal grill into a smoker, using beer.
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Last month, I found myself having the privilege to help judge the final round of the Samuel Adams LongShot American Homebrew Contest. In its sixteenth year, the competition gives homebrewers the opportunity to have their beer bottled and nationally distributed in the Samuel Adams LongShot Variety Six-Pack released each spring.
If I'm going to park on a couch all night and watch two teams I was raised to hate, the beer selection had better be up to the task. So in the spirit of sport, we've pitted the Super Bowl cities in a brawl of the brews to see who would come out on top if the best beer town took home the trophy.
This year's winter variety pack from Sam Adams includes the standards—Holiday Porter, Old Fezziwig, Winter Lager, and Chocolate Bock, plus a new coffee stout made with Sumatran coffee beans. It's certainly not the richest, roastiest stout you'll find, but it's pleasantly mouthfilling and offers a a nice coffee-and-cocoa flavor.
Serious Eats sat down with Samuel Adams' founder and brewer Jim Koch to talkabout their new collaboration beer, their place in the craft brewing scene, and much more.
The concept of chocolate beer isn't new, but Sapporo's latest product, Chocolate Brewery, sounds darn tasty. It's made with Royce chocolates, a Japanese confectioner that looks good, but I can't read a thing on the website. Fortunately, I can read what's posted on japansugoi.com, which says the beer is only available from Sapporo until the 23rd of January. Boo on them. Luckily, there are lovely alternatives to Chocolate Brewery like Brooklyn Brewery's Black Chocolate Stout, which tastes like liquefied 70 percent cacao, carbonated into a heavenly treat. Another good brew is Sam Adams' Chocolate Bock, one of their extreme beers made with Scharffen Berger chocolate and has a rich body and smooth taste. Any other chocolate beers to note?...