Friday, March 30, 2012

The Inaugural Front Porch Fest

Saturday, March 31, Back Forty Beer Co. will be hosting the inaugural "Front Porch Fest" at their brewery. Want to more about the "Front Porch Fest":
Join us for a day of festivities highlighting the talent and history that thrives in today’s Alabama. With locally sourced dishes presented by the rising stars in our flourishing Alabama culinary scene, fresh hand crafted beer brewed on site, as well as regional produce and farm fresh products from sustainable local farms, businesses, and craftsmen, The Front Porch Fest is a celebration of all things local and unique to our great state.
Ticket are available onsite or you can order online.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Alabama Beer Tasting

Looking for something to get you through hump day? Then head over to the Wine Rack for a beer tasting from 5-7pm this Wednesday March 28 . The beer tasting will feature beers from Alabama breweries. It's a great way to have some beer from your favorite local breweries and maybe try some you haven't had before.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Blue Pants Expansion

If you have been following Blue Pants Brewery over the past few months than you probably know that they have been working hard on getting their new location setup. Today they gave a sneak preview of their flagship beer, Knickerbocker Red, made on their brand new brewing system. We also got a tour of their brand new facility and were able to snap some pics:
The brand new brewhouse
Mash tun, boil kettle, with control panel
Mash tun and control panel
Boil kettle and chiller
Fermentor #1
Brite tank
Glycol chiller

Blue Pants is trying to get your feedback as they roll out their beers again. If you see one of their coasters at your favorite establishment flip it over and feel free to give them your feedback.

New coasters

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Heavy Seas Beer Dinner

This coming Monday, March 12th, James Steakhouse will be having a multi-course beer dinner featuring Heavy Seas Beer. Staring at 6pm the dinner will include:

This should be an excellent meal paired with some great beer. If you have never eaten at James Steakhouse I recommend trying them out as they usually have multiple Alabama craft breweries on tap.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Drunken Dog Treats

I was recently introduced to a new local company with an interesting idea: creating dog treats from local breweries spent grains. Drunken Dog Treats creates special treats for man's best friend using some of the ingredients from our favorite local beers. I had the opportunity to chat with Nikki "The Human" of Drunken Dog Treats (be sure to checkout the promocode she mentions at the end):

HsvBeer: What was your inspiration for making dog treats from local brewery ingredients?
Drunken Dog Treats: This is one of those crazy ideas born over the holidays. About a year ago, my neighbor brought me a box of dog treats made with spent grain from Straight to Ale. My dog loved them, so I began looking into making them myself. My boyfriend, Mark, is involved with a home brew club in Auburn, and he started bringing me a few bags of grain to experiment with. We were making a batch of treats together in December, and he said, "You know, you really should think about selling these things." From there, the name was born, along with the names of many of the treats.

HsvBeer: Do you find that dogs prefer one brewery over another?
Drunken Dog Treats: If they do, I certainly can't tell. The Drunken Dog (my rescue dog, Tiger) parks it next to the oven when I'm baking treats, regardless of what type of grain I use. Pretty sure he's thinking, "OMG OMG TREATS OMG NOM NOM NOM."

The humans, though, often have a preference. I had one friend who waited until I had Straight to Ale's Monkeynaut grain in stock; another was hoping I would get my hands on Yellowhammer's Belgian White. I've found that local folks love giving the treats as gifts; it's something they can say is distinctly local.

HsvBeer: How long have you been making these treats?
Drunken Dog Treats: I've been making homemade dog treats for about three months now. I've always enjoyed baking, and it gives me an outlet for that hobby that doesn't make my friends (and myself) fat.

HsvBeer: How has it been working with the local breweries?
Drunken Dog Treats: The brewers are fantastic. Dan Perry (Straight to Ale), Keith Yeager (Yellowhammer) and Todd Seaton (Old Black Bear) have all been quick to respond and happy to provide grain. I've also emailed with Michael Spratley of Blue Pants, and I hope to work with him once his new brewery gets into full swing. You can tell all these guys love what they do, and they love sharing their craft. I wasn't sure how the local brewers would feel about their brand being associated with dog treats, but they've been great sports about it. The least I can do for them is throw some free advertising their way. Buy local, folks!

HsvBeer: How long do the dog treats last?
Drunken Dog Treats: The treats are baked for 45 minutes and then thoroughly oven-dried, so in theory, they should last the better part of a year if stored in an airtight container. That first batch of spent-grain treats I received lasted 9 months! They shouldn't go bad, but excess moisture could cause mold over time. Just for freshness' sake, I recommend that you feed them to your dog within a two months ... If they last that long in the first place.

HsvBeer: What is your most popular treat?
Drunken Dog Treats: Right now, it's the Bama Bites -- elephant-shaped treats packaged with crimson and houndstooth ribbon. (Sorry, Auburn fans.) I've sold an equal number of Straight to Ale and Yellowhammer Bama Bites, and I recently started offering them in Old Black Bear's grain. For my fellow Plainsmen, I have tiger paw treats packaged with orange and blue ribbon (Tiger Treats).

I've found that the People Food treats (shaped like -- you guessed it -- people) are popular with my sadistic customers, i.e., most of my friends. For customers with toy or small breeds, I have three smaller treats: Bad Habit (small high heels), Best in Show (tiny stars) and Bone-A Fide Bites (the little brother of the Bone-A Fide Treats).

HsvBeer: Have any other upcoming plans you would like to share? 
Drunken Dog Treats: I've been talking to a few local retailers, and I hope to have my treats available at veterinary offices, pet stores, and maybe even a bar within the next month or two. New locations will be listed at and on the Drunken Dog Treats Facebook page when available. In the meantime, anyone can order from my online store. Just use the promo code LOCAL if you would like to bypass shipping costs and pick up your treats.

Nikki has provided all of the readers of with a special promo code to save on your order:
Drunken Dog Treats: Use the promo code HSVBEER when you checkout to save 20% on your order. If you're charged for shipping, don't fret -- it will be promptly refunded to your PayPal account.

Rallye the official dog treat taster of