Thursday, April 30, 2009

Video Snippet - 4/30/09

Additional Kate Day Details...

Howdy all:

A couple of weeks ago I posted a countdown clock on the Portsmouth Brewery's Brewers Notes Page, marking time till next year's Kate Day: Monday, March 1. Since then, I've read a good deal of commentary on Beer Advocate and elsewhere, so I thought I'd take a few minutes and provide some additional details.

Here at the Brewery, thinking about last Kate Day, we concluded that the biggest matter we needed to address was the long line and hours-long wait that many people had to endure.

When we opened our doors at eleven-thirty that day, the restaurant immediately filled to capacity (about 300 people, give or take), and there was no turnover due to the fact that those who had gotten seats remained there till after Kate was tapped at 1:14. Of course, this meant that anyone who had not entered our doors in the first wave was forced to stand in line until seats in the restaurant began opening up, hours later.

How can we address this, we asked ourselves? The most obvious thing is to move the tapping time closer to when we open our doors, so people are not required to wait (inside or outside) for hours. That was an easy decision: we've set the tapping for 11:37 am, shortly after we "officially"open for business. People will be able to stop in, enjoy a Kate and a bite to eat, and get on with their days. Tables will turn over more rapidly, and there will be less of a wait outside. We hope.

Moreover, after, giving it further thought, we concluded that Kate Day consists of not one but two related activities: the celebration & socializing surrounding the actual tapping, and the purchase of bottles. Why did they have to take place simultaneously, we asked? Would things run smoother if we took care of bottle sales first thing in the morning, hours before the tapping? We think they will.

So, in short, here is how Kate Day will shape up next March 1.

1.) Bottle sales will commence at 9:00 AM and will be conducted on a first-come, first-served basis. We will start to issue calendar pages at seven in the morning, to reduce the amount of time people have to wait in line. Bottle sales will be conducted in our downstairs bar, but no drinks will be served there during this time. Once bottles are purchased, people will be asked to go outside so we can clear the room prior to tapping.

2.) The tapping itself will take place at 11:37 AM, in both our upstairs and downstairs bars. We'll open our doors a bit earlier than usual, eleven instead of eleven-thirty, to give everyone a chance to settle in.

We're confident that these changes will help make the next Kate Day more enjoyable for all. As always, we welcome your feedback.



By the way, regarding rumors of larger batches of Kate being brewed at Smuttynose ...

... no comment.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Spring time

Hey all,

Red Sox are beating up on the Yankees and it is getting warm out, must be spring time. So the XX bitter has been replaced with our Saison de Printemps. This is a spring time (printemps in French) Saison that has a little bit more of the spicy Belgian note than the fruity. Plus the addition of a little more wheat malt in the profile makes it a bit dryer as well. I hope you all enjoy this one.

Secondly the cask has changed over to the other ESB with Sovereign. The cask has a nice subtle earthiness that fades to a slight spiciness in the finish. I am liking this cask a little better then the last cask.

I wish I heard about this earlier and I would have let you know. But yesterday up at Novare Res they had a Cantillon and Brasserie de la Senne night. I met Jean and Yvan the head brewers of Cantillon and De la Senne respectively, plus they had 5 Cantillon's and 2 De la senne beers on tap. It is worth a call up to see if they are still there and get up there ASAP to give them a whirl. Totally worth the 45 min drive to Portland, in my opinion anyway :)


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Deep Ellum

hey all,

Just a heads up that tongiht at Deep Ellum Smuttynose is part of the east coast brewers night there. Deep Ellum is located at 477 Cambrige St, Allston MA. Should be a good time!


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

CBC in Beantown

Hey all,

The Craft Brewers Conference (CBC) starts today down in Boston. I am here manning the fort as Tod ventures down to see all there is to see. If you are looking for a good time down that-a-way may I suggest Redbones in Somerville. Tonight is Smuttynose night there and all 18 lines along with a pin and a firkin are going to be Smuttynose beers. I don’t know the exact line up but I am sure that they are going to be busting out some good beers for the brewers visiting from all over the country and world.

On the home front we did change over the Whipper Snapper to our ESB. Again this was a beer that we specially brewed for the CBC and is going to be displayed down there on draft and on cask at the Brewers Supply Group vender table. To get a taste of what they are trying there we also have changed out cask to the ESB dry hopped with Bodicea.

It’s a CBC party here at the Portsmouth Brewery.


Saturday, April 18, 2009

Just like Summer!

Greetings beer lovers.WHOA! What was Friday? Early perfect summer day....? YES!! I was able to sneak away to Sunday River for one of those amazing sunny spring ski days. I wish I was at the brewery to brew the first Weizen of the warm weather varieties..... NOT!! But actually, T$ had things in control. I, on the other hand was totally out of control because it was such an amazing day! Beautiful clear bluebird sky, Mt Washington majestically peering on the horizon and some of the sickest corn snow I've been on in years! I am having a wee bit of trouble getting down the stairs as my quads are like jello but I am in the brewery today to get some stuff done before next weeks' Craft Brewers Conference in Boston.
So. like T$ said we've put on our ESB which was brewed with Crisp floor malted Maris Otter malt (Sweet!) and two colored malts from Chile: a Black malt and a Crystal 52 as well as two hop varieties not yet available here in the U.S.: Boadicea and Sovereign. Both hops are aroma varieties heavily influenced by a spicy-earthy characteristic. The hop is quite understated in our ESB where as the malt predominates the aroma. With some time the hops show themselves as a beautiful soft earthiness and a slight bite. I am waiting to try the cask version where the soft, under carbonated and WARMER temps. should prove to highlight the hops. Then be on the lookout for both the Weizen Bock and the Saison. We'll keep everyone in the loop for these two. Lastly, I wanted to let all know that we've decided to release Kate the Great not until next March. The official date will be March 1st at 1:37ish 2010! Holy crap! 2010!!! I remember when 2000 was a big deal. Well, have a great weekend and I be getting back to you soon. Cheers! Todm

Friday, April 17, 2009

Feels like Summer!!!

Hey all,

It’s hot out side and we are brewing our first batch of Hefe for the year. It must be almost summer time. A few changes tap wise have happened or are about to happen.

First off the Milk stout on tap kicked just as the XX bitter Cask. So now the Cask is Milk Stout that we infused with Kahlua Oak but the Stout on tap is Black Cat. Both of them are tasting great.
Secondly the Wipper Snapper is on its last legs. We have only a few gallons left in the serving tank, so I am guessing today or tonight it will be gone. It will be replaced with our ESB. This is a beer that we made specially for the Craft brewers conference that is in Boston next week. We use some very nice floor malted Pale malt as well as being able to use the new hops varieties of Sovereign and Bodicea. we are actually the first ones to use these hops in North America. I'm excited to give the very traditional British style ESB a whirl.

I remember someone asking about the Bravo Pale ale a little while back too. The malt profile its self is a very basic American pale ale base. Though we use another new to us variety of hops called Bravo. They hops them selves smell like a spicier version of Palisade, so I am excited for this beer as well. But it isn’t going to be on for a while so don’t hold your breath for this. I'll let you know when you should be lining up out side :)


Friday, April 10, 2009

The Kate Day Video: thanks for the memories!

Our friends Brian and Nancy at Atlantic Media Productions recently sent us the video they shot on Kate Day last February. Here is it, in case you hadn't seen it on our website.

What do you think - does Tod have a future in acting or should he keep his day job?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Wheat Wine time!

Hey all,

The Wheat Wine went on yesterday and it is delicious. Toffee sweetness hits you at first with a nice fruit, almost cherry flavor to follow. The finish is relatively clean for 11 % abv, but has a nice warming sensation after the swallow so you know what you got yourself into.

Oh ya its back and better then ever!


Saturday, April 4, 2009

Post Script

One more thing. I just had a sample of the XX Bitter at the servers meeting this morning and it is really coming into its self. The yeast has almost settled out completely and the hops are showing them selves right along side of the spicy Belgian character that is coming through in full strength now. I know it isn't as much hops as De Ranke XX, but we were not trying to clone peoples beers here :) If you have had this beer in the past it is worth a second look at it this weekend. Let me know what you think.


Celebrate good times... Come on!

Hello all,

The Sierra Bigfoot as left the building. But we have one keg of Serria Nevada Celebration that we pulled out for you guys. This '08 Vintage of the Celebration has mellowed so nicely during the 5 months of cold aging this beer. The hop character is till there but it is much spicier than I remember it being, and of course much mellower then the Bigfoot that it replaced. This one keg is a Celebration for the return of the Portsmouth Brewery's Wheat Wine that is to follow this beer. I'm excited to have a glass after work of the celebration, and for the wheat wine in the future.

Secondly the Murphy's Law Red has been replace with the return of our Imperial/Baltic Porter. This Porter is just as good as it was when it was on a week or so ago. So smooth with a nice chocolate finish. Yummm.