Monthly newsletter of the Edmonton Beer Geeks Anonymous. 
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EBGA - July 2012 Newsletter

Hello again,

Admittedly this newsletter is somewhat late, and by somewhat late, I mean a couple of weeks.  Sorry about that.  Life, the Universe, and Everything excuse being utilized here, and as Douglas Adams once said:  "I love deadlines.  I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by". 

Anyhow, I'm done geeking out in that respect.  With the summer passing with a similar swiftness, I thought I'd take the opportunity of this months' newsletter to cover a few different topics. 

First off, we've had a huge influx of new beer geeks and other interested parties.  This is great!  It seems like you lot are just poping out of the woodwork.  For those of you who haven't received this newsletter previously, it's the primary means for the EBGA to get details to you, and to give you, the reader, the first crack at attending our special events.  Those who regulary attend our events can tell you that sometimes it pays off to come down for a pint.  You never know what we're planning...

Moving on, I really must express my most sincere thanks to everyone who attended and made the #EBGACaskDay possible and an outstanding sucess!  No one deserves more thanks than Craig of Wunderbar.  Craig's sleepless nights scouring the listings on Connect's website and steadfast dedication to bringing in only quality and independantly owned craft beer has made Wunderbar a beer geeks' oasis.  Craig is also the one who first started letting us use Wunderbar without charge and in great faith that I knew what I doing in the beginning.  So, thank you, Craig. 

And on to the breweries that without hesitation agreed to join us, and bring beer, to the #EBGACaskDay:  Amber's, Alley Kat, Jasper, Phillips, Wild Rose, and Yukon.  There are some great stories about how the beer from these breweries were brought to us (see below).  Without these breweries crafting their products and being so supportive of the community I'm not sure the EBGA would be relavent.  Hopefully we made a good enough impression they'll come back to visit us again ;)

A few special individuals need to be mentioned here as well, for they played a big part in providing guidence and much needed help over this past year:  Allison, Darren, Jeff, Yukon Dave, Levi, Jim, and Chris.  Thanks for putting up with my absent mindedness and rantings. 

And, last, but certainly not going without appreciation, is all of you beer geeks.  Damn and blast, you lot certainly are dilligent.  Cheers! 

Upcoming Events...
Roight, with the summer months upon us it's usually difficult to find a common time when everyone is available, what with vacations, festivals, and any number of other things to do.  But we're going to try and organize a few gatherings.  The only thing on the docket set in stone right now is an informal meet in late July. 

So, 31 July 2012, 7pm at Wunderbar will be a summer-time EBGA hangout session.  No guest, just some time to catch up with everyone. 

See you there. 

The Not-So-Tall Tale of the Yukon Cask...

Durring the early planning stages for the #EBGACaskDay the Yukon Brewing Company was one of the breweries approached to particpate in the celebration.  Yukon had recently begun to offer cask ale every Friday at their tasting room in Whitehorse.  And, to no surprise, they were selling out very quickly and with loads of positive feedback.  But, there were some very important questions that needed answering - Can a firkin of cask ale travel that far?  What will the travel do to the beer?  And probably most importantly, what will Connect Logistics/AGLC have to say about a cask ale?  So, after a bit of deliberation, Yukon was on board with the concept of a cask ale festival here in Edmonton. 

As the months past during the lead-up to the #EBGACaskDay the troubles with the AGLC started to develop.  They had never seen, or even heard of a cask conditioned ale before; and as such they began to ask a lot of questions.  This is all fine and good, just so long as they don't say no.  This is where frantic emails were exchanged, a few phone calls and then, ok.  The AGLC would allow the cask through their distribution system - Connect Logistics.  *whew!*

Ok, we're going to fast forward to about two weeks before the #EBGACaskDay.  The brewery was on-board, the beer was conditioning nicely inside the firkin, Connect was aware of what to expect and the AGLC wasn't making any more noise....what possibly could go wrong?....right? 

Well, at this point in time, good ol' mother nature decided that she hadn't had her say yet.  The cask was all set to depart when not just one, but two washouts in the highway from Whitehorse put a rather large hold on things.  The conditions were such that Whitehorse wasn't getting the supplies they needed either - there was talk of truck drivers giving away food from the back of the trailers before it spoiled.  So, in the grand scheme of things, if we didn't get our cask from Yukon, we'd be sad, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. 

Thankfully the roads were reopened just in time for the cask to make it to the Connect Logistics warehouse.....when....

The cask for the #EBGACaskDay was sent to Connect along with a regular shipment of beer from Yukon.  Ok, perfect, refrigerated truck, no problem.   Then, Connect goes and looses the firkin for a few hours.  *Edit:  At this time I was getting text messages from Yukon Dave and slightly freaking out...a bit. *  Those few hours would not normally have been a problem, save for this particular time.  If you lot don't know, orders from Connect have to be submitted by 2:30pm two days before delivery.  The #EBGACaskDay was on a Saturday, which means that the order had to be in by 2:30pm on the Thursday before, but it had to show up as received and in-stock before that could be done.  Connect lost track of the cask at about 11am that Thursday morning.....Oi. 

The cask was eventually found, ordered, delivered, picked up, brought to Wunderbar, and immensly enjoyed by all who were there.  Massive thanks to Bob and Dave of Yukon, and Jim from Sherbrooke for getting everthing sorted and for all their help in making the #EBGACaskDay a sucess!

Beer Events in YEG

18 July 2012:  Continental Treat Beer Dinner - Hitachino
Continuing with their series of beer pairing dinners, this time they're featuring beers from the Kiuchi brewery which produces the Hitachino line-up.  SOLD OUT. 
19 July 2012:  Sugarbowl Cask Night
Alley Kat's latest in the Big Bottle Series called Work of Tart, which is a sour raspberry ale, will be tapped at 5pm.
31 July 2012:  EBGA July - Informal Hangout
No guest due to the busy summer schedule, just some time to catch up with everyone. 

Beer News / In The News

Westvleteren 12
As many of you already know, we here in Alberta are about to have made availalbe to us (probably a once-in-a-lifetime occurance, unless you live in Belgium) the chance to purchase the ever-coveted Westvleteren 12.  This beer achieves the highes score possible (100/100) on both and   It's being pre-sold currently at both Keg'n'Cork or at Sherbrooke.....if there is any left!  Thanks to a couple radio spots as of late there was a huge run on the pre-sales.  The arrival date has been set 20 July.  Pick-up at Sherbrooke especially will be busy, so budget time accordingly. 

Sherbrooke's 1000th Beer
In late May, a local reporter, and avid EBGA-er, Laurie Callsen wrote an artical for the Metro Edmonton about Sherbrooke's up-coming 1000th beer available.  This has been long in the making and is being commemorated by a special one-off beer by Alley Kat called The B1G KAHUNA.  The commemorative beer has "crystal malt base... soured by fermenting with lactobacillus...followed by the addition of sweet cherries and then fermentation with our ale yeast."  As with all Sherbrooke contract brews, it has a one-of-a-kind label done by a local artist.  This particular label is referenceing the cartoon character Obelix from the pairing Asterix & Obelix, orginally a French comic book (I talk more about the art as I haven't had the beer yet....going to pick some up later today). 

A pint of the cask ale, Monks Stout from Yukon Brewing.  
The swag in each ticket packet for the 2012 #EBGACaskDay. 
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