Category Archives: Beer

DIY Kegerator Build

DIY Kegerator Build: How To Easily Let the Beer Flow in the Comfort of Your Own Home

After homebrewing for roughly 4 years or so I have finally made the transition to kegging and this past weekend I hosted my first keg tapping ceremony with a kegerator that I recently built. You can easily buy one already assembled but doing this method I was able to get everything done for about $320 but with some discounts with loyalty programs and conveniently timed gift cards I was able to bring that cost down to around $270. Here’s how the progress went.
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Reinheitsgebot Turns 500: Here’s 6 Beers to Drink That Deliciously Violates the German Beer Purity Law!

beer lawThis week the Reinheitsgebot turns 500 years old. If you’ve ever been on ANY brewery tour, the Reinheistsgebot always comes up but most of us refer to it as the German Beer Purity Law. By this law, beer legally could be made only with 4 ingredients: Water, Barley and Hops (Yeast would be added later once it was understood). Back then, beer was actually safer to drink than water (maybe still is). In fact, way back around 1080 an Abbot by the name of Arnold of Soissons saved many would-be-plague victims by having them drink the beer he made instead of water (the water used for the beer would be boiled and the harmful pathogens would be killed) as a result many people that followed his instructions survived and he would later become Saint Arnold- patron saint of hop pickers and brewers (I also learned on a tour in Belgium that his statue is in every brewery in the country). Several years later in 1516, to make sure beer remained safe the Reinheitsgebot was adopted and any brewer that violated the purity law would be punished by being arrested and their beer confiscated and destroyed.

Today many of your favorite beers are made following this law. Pilsners, lagers, stouts, porters, bocks, ambers, IPAs, ect all use water, barley, hops and yeast. However, in this day and age innovation is the name of the game and you can only do so much with base grains and hop varieties. So this Saturday when this law becomes 500 years old, by all means have a glass of beer (most German beers strictly follow the Reinheitsgebot and are stellar) but also if you want to raise the devils horns and make Judas Priest proud and “Break the law” here’s a few to check out: (READ MORE)

GABF Hangover 2015: AKA How 6 Hours of Unlimited Beer Sampling Went For Me

doubleheaderSo this year, my wife and I began our Great American Beer Festival visit much earlier than expected and did a double-header thanks to a last minute message from one of my friends getting rid of a pair of tickets for the earlier member’s session. We were hesitant at first just because we anticipated doing a lot of much-needed cleaning errands prior to going to our evening session, but a simple push in the right direction got us to decide to do it. We rapidly made our way home to get dressed, make arrangements for our pup to be taken out and fed, and we quickly hopped the bus to go to the session, which was already an or so hour in progress. The tasters have changed since the last time I did a member’s session in 2013. Instead of the glass cylinder shooter style glasses, we were given mini tulip glasses, which made me very happy, as tulips are my favorite style of glassware. (READ MORE)

Craft On Tap: Autumn ’15 Picks

autumnSummer officially has passed and now Autumn is upon us. While it’ll be pretty warm (still in the 90s this weekend here), you may have noticed that Autumn has already began in the beer sections. Breweries tend to like to start things a month or two early, so there’s probably a chance that you’ve had your first Marzen/Oktoberfest or Pumpkin ale already.  Since Oktoberfest festivities and this weekend’s Great American Beer Festival has put me into beer nerd mood, I’m putting a few articles together for “Beer Week” and like I try to do every season, I’ll pick a fresh crop of seasonal beers and briefly describe them to make the ultimate seasonal 6-pack (although some come in bombers). As before, the rules remain the same for this column:

  1. The beers have been tasted (there’s so much beer, so little time/body limitations to try them all…plus it’d be bullshit to rattle off beers that haven’t been tried first). So in other words “duh!”
  2. The beers can be found in stores (there’s plenty of breweries that are “on-tap only” that I’m fiercely loyal to, but unless you live near us, this list won’t help you out much, plus it isn’t designed to provoke a “I have better places to drink than you” pissing contest), so these can hopefully be found in your local stores as well.
  3. The beer is distributed to Colorado. That’s where I’m located currently. This stipulation also obviously mirrors stipulation number 1. There’s plenty that I tried at the Great American Beer Festival and wish that came this way (I’m looking at you 3 Floyds, Sun King, Cigar City, Jester King, Heavy Seas and Brooklyn Brewery!!) Needless to say, I’m sure there are possibly some blasphemous omissions from the following lists, but there’s also a very good chance that it hasn’t been tried or made available out here. Plus you can sound off below in the comments!
  4. Finally to keep it fresh each time: No repeats. I’ve done this particular column for 2 years. It’ll get boring if I just keep repeating past picks. Past picks are always a very good choice, plus more choices aren’t bad either. Check out some of the previous entries in the Craft On Tap link at the top of this page (I’ll wait)!

Without further adieu, here’s my picks for Autumn 2015: (READ MORE)

Beer Week: 9 Beer-Centric Shows, Documentaries and Movies for GABF, Oktoberfest…or Whenever

world's end 1September is really more or less “SeptemBEER” this year for me and probably those of you that read this. Over the next week, Oktoberfest will still be in full effect and this weekend will host the “beer superbowl” known as the Great American Beer Festival (aka the biggest ticketed beer festival in America). While the weekend is still days away, there’s plenty of time to kill. So I thought it’ll be fun to make it “Beer Week” here on PopCultureAsylum and have a few beer-worthy articles.  If you’re planning to hit an Oktoberfest event or if you’re lucky enough to be in my neck of the woods this weekend for GABF,  here’s a few documentaries, TV shows and movies to get into the beer spirit (beerit??). Fortunately a majority are available online for streaming through YouTube, Vimeo, Hulu or Netflix. Enjoy! (READ MORE)

Craft On Tap: Summer ’15 (Last Minute) Beer Picks

beach beerSummer is here….at least some of it is still happening. With cooler weather coming in a few weeks and pumpkin ales already filling the shelves (drinking some Pumpkick as I type this), you may be at the point of quickly arranging some end-of-summer BBQs and outings. While I meant to do this list 3 months ago, there’s still plenty of time to try my picks for this summer (plus , this year I remembered to do a summer article!!).

While this is my first time to remember to do a summer edition of this recurring article, the rules remain the same as with my prior entries:

  1. The beers have been tasted (there’s so much beer, so little time/body limitations to try them all…plus it’d be bullshit to rattle off beers that haven’t been tried first). So in other words “duh!”
  2. The beers can be found in stores (there’s plenty of breweries that are “on-tap only” that I’m fiercely loyal to, but unless you live near me, this list won’t help you out much, plus it isn’t designed to provoke a “I have better places to drink than you” pissing contest), so these can hopefully be found in your local stores as well.
  3. The beer is distributed to Colorado. That’s where I’m located currently. This stipulation also obviously mirrors stipulation number 1. There’s plenty that I tried at the Great American Beer Festival and wish that came this way (I’m looking at you 3 Floyds, Sun King, Cigar City, Jester King, Heavy Seas and Brooklyn Brewery!!) Needless to say, I’m sure there are possibly some blasphemous omissions from the following lists, but there’s also a very good chance that it hasn’t been tried or made available out here. Plus you can sound off below in the comments if I snub your favorite beer!
  4. No repeats. I’ve done this particular column for 2 years. It’ll get boring if I just keep repeating past picks. Past picks are always a very good choice, plus more choices isn’t bad either. Check out some of the previous entries in the Craft On Tap link at the top of this page (I’ll wait)!

Anyway here’s my top 6 (last minute) beers to enjoy this summer: (Read More) 

Craft on Tap: Spring ’15 Beer Picks

spring beerAs winter’s flailing corpse gives way to seedlings and sprouts, it’s time to rotate the dark winter warmers and imperial stouts from the fridge out for some lighter beers all the while keeping some of the slightly darker ales for those chilly spring nights.

With springtime, we start to see some of the nicer weather days, the parks look a bit greener, you can go hiking with your friends without secretly wondering which ones you’d be forced to eat if there’s an avalanche that strands you, the restaurant patio seating becomes more tempting and you can go on a nice bike ride from time to time. In addition you may get one or two days where you have to still bundle up and wipe snow from your car. Spring is a bit of a identity crisis period between winter and summer and when it comes to beer you will see a mix of the lighter summer-esque offerings while the dark stouts of winter still remains tempting.

While this is my first time to remember to do a spring edition, the rules remain the same as with my prior entries: (READ MORE)

GABF 2014 Hangover: Brad’s Re-cap of America’s Biggest Beer Festival

gabf logoAnother year, another GABF (Great American Beer Festival) in the books and another taster cup added to the collection (my 4th year in a row!).  Another tradition of mine when it comes to GABF is that after my mild hangover is subdued with sleep and a big breakfast, I like to go back and rate some of my favorite beers from the festival. This year was pretty cool because it so happened to work out with ticket buying that a lot of my friends had the same session. I enjoyed the member session quite a bit last year in its more intimate setting (and glass tasting glasses) but it was pretty fun to run into many friends, meeting up to plan attacks and then separating only to run into other people we knew for Saturday Night’s session.  My number 1 goal this year was to stretch across the entire floor as I felt like I hung out in the Great Lakes region far too much last year and was already swaying by the time I started hitting the breweries of the southwest. I also stuck to my carefully planned list for the most part and I felt that it gave me a better experience. In addition I wasn’t too worried about pouring out the “meh” beers or being worried if I separated from my crew.

gabfThis year I wasn’t really feeling the hops. I’ve made strides in adapting to drinking hoppy beers in recent years. Especially, if we were to time travel and meet 2009 Brad, whom just survived his first Colorado Winter, after living in the desert meets plains landscape of Abilene, Texas for his first 24 years of existence. 2009 Brad was in the shallow end of craft beer and was dogpaddling to the deep end…actually that’s a pretty spot-on analogy because I’m absolute rubbish with swimming. Six years later, I’m proud to say that I’ve embraced the hops and drink IPAs quite regularly…still a shit swimmer though. However this year I drank only a few IPAs and focused largely on Sours and Barrel Aged Beers at the festival. It also would seem that this was the focus for several brewers as well, so I had lots to choose from. (CLICK FOR FULL RECAP)

Craft On Tap: Autumn 2014’s “Ultimate Autumn Six-Pack”

fall beersWhether you like it or not, Autumn is here once again. While it may be a few more weeks before the leaves change colors and the air grows colder, if you visit your local beer store you’ll probably notice that the pumpkin beers are already starting to take up some prime real estate in the coolers and on a few tap walls as well. While I’m more of a fan of sunshine, flip-flops and nice biking weather, Autumn usually heralds the arrival of some of my favorite beers. In addition, being somewhat spoiled by living in Denver, One of America’s biggest beer cities, Autumn also brings the Great American Beer Festival (aka my personal “SuperBowl”). So it’s usually this time of year that my love for beer becomes somewhat annoying to my non-beer drinking friends as I gush about various breweries, beers, and tap takeovers leading up to the event.

I decided that since Autumn is once again upon us, that it’s time to do another Craft on Tap entry (apologies for not doing one for Spring/Summer, I was dealing with job things).  I didn’t really get any correspondents this time around but maybe I’ll have a few for my Winter installment. To make this entry interesting I’ve added a new rule to this series: Your picks cannot be repeated if they showed up on a previous year’s picks that you have made. This keeps it fresh and more challenging. Here’s last year’s picks.  So call this “Ultimate Autumn Six-Pack Vol. II” if you will. If you need a refresher here’s the other rules for this series:

  1. The beers have been tasted (there’s so much beer, so little time/body limitations to try them all…plus it’d be bullshit to rattle off beers that haven’t been tried first). So in other words “duh!”
  2. The beers can be found in stores (there’s plenty of breweries that are “on-tap only” that I’m fiercely loyal to, but unless you live near us, this list won’t help you out much, plus it isn’t designed to provoke a “I have better places to drink than you” pissing contest), so these can hopefully be found in your local stores as well.
  3. The beer is distributed to Colorado. That’s where I’m located currently. This stipulation also obviously mirrors stipulation number 1. There’s plenty that I tried at the Great American Beer Festival and wish that came this way (I’m looking at you 3 Floyds, Sun King, Cigar City, Jester King, Heavy Seas and Brooklyn Brewery!!) Needless to say, I’m sure there are possibly some blasphemous omissions from the following lists, but there’s also a very good chance that it hasn’t been tried or made available out here. Plus you can sound off below in the comments!

Without further adieu, here’s my picks for Autumn 2014 (FULL STORY)