Author Archives: Tim Rozmus

This Week In Beer: The News You Can Booze on October 9

weekend at burnsies

bubble boy

No Virginia, There Is No Craft Beer Bubble: In the wake of the news of America passing the 4,000 breweries mark a couple weeks ago, more commentators than ever before are asking whether this breakneck growth can possibly be sustained. The simple answer here looks to be yes, with just a hint of an eye-roll from the small breweries and farm brewers of the nation. More breweries means more chances to drink great beer from sea to shining sea, be it from a neighborhood brewery or one of the larger craft shops around…perhaps, say, from Brooklyn.

Oysters Oysters Everywhere: New York drinkers should be on the lookout for more from Oyster Bay Brewing Company, located in Oyster Bay, Long Island. The small-town outfit is relocating to another space within Oyster Bay, adding 5,000 square feet and switching up to a 15-barrel brewhouse. We toast their expansion, and eagerly look forward to hearing and drinking more from the North Shore.

AB pilot brewmaster

Meanwhile, Deep Within Anheuser-Busch: The folks at CNN Money sat down with Rob Naylor, brewmaster of the research pilot brewery tucked away in Anheuser-Busch’s hallowed halls. It’s a remarkable look inside what is arguably one of the toughest R&D jobs in the market today: creating beers that will appeal to everyone and anyone within AB’s target demographic, especially in the face of ever-evolving offerings from craft breweries. Naylor clearly takes his work seriously but still enjoys the magical side of brewing, and we can only hope AB takes some of his ideas to heart.

The Alter Egos of Tim Ferris: Tim Ferris is the man behind both Defiant Whisky and Defiant Marine, which has earned him liquid fame in two wildly different mediums. Defiant Marine is a commercial salvage operation that earned particular accolades for pumping out the flooded N and M tunnels after Hurricane Sandy struck New York City. Defiant Whisky produces some of the first uniquely American single-malt whisky, pioneering aging on oak spirals instead of barrels to flavor and mature their liquor. No matter which Defiant you seek, Tim Ferris is a particularly interesting man to learn about.

Trust Your Elders on Hot Toddies: It turns out that hot toddies really are good for shortening the duration and severity of the common cold and similar illnesses. The whiskey and other ingredients are cited as a decongestant, mild anti-inflammatory, and overall mood booster. While this health tip, like so many others, falls victim to requiring moderation, no one is going to question you if you have a second (or third) mug. You’re sick, after all.

A Dime Bag of Dank Yeast: Researchers at the Technical University of Dortmund in Germany recently announced that our favorite microscopic life forms can be genetically engineered to produce THC and cannabidiol. THC (the psychoactive component of marijuana) and CBD (the powerful anti-inflammatory agent from the same plant) have been prescribed as medicine for years, but this breakthrough could greatly streamline and cheapen production. No word on how this would impact recreational users, but we think it might be a good time to invest in blacklight poster companies.

Watson Analyzes This: Oktoberfest



IBM’s Watson computer system, which you may remember from the decidedly one-sided man vs. machine Jeopardy! series when it was first unveiled, is now trying its hand as a psychoanalyst. Personality Insights takes sample text and returns a “spectrum of cognitive and social characteristics. With Watson Analyzes This, we see what Watson has to say about our beers from their Beers Page description, then run our own, human-powered analysis of its work.


On the Couch: Brooklyn Oktoberfest
Origin: Brooklyn-German
Toast of Choice: Prost!

Watson Says:
You are shrewd, somewhat insensitive, and rational.

You are unstructured; you do not make room for organization in your daily life. You are calm under pressure: you handle unexpected events calmly and effectively. And you are calm-seeking.

You consider achieving success to guide a large part of what you do: you seek out opportunities to improve yourself and demonstrate that you are a capable person.

oktoberfest laugh

Doctor Rozmus says:
At first glance, this analysis seemed unnecessarily harsh. Calling such a welcoming beer “insensitive” seemed, well, insensitive. Oktoberfest is the sort of beer that you can give to people who claim they don’t like beer, only to have them gleefully return for another. It’s at home in anything from bottles to big old-fashioned steins. How could this beer possibly be insensitive?

It was then that I realized what Watson was leaning on here: Oktoberfest’s German lineage. The people of Germany are wonderful and welcoming, especially when it comes to throwing open their doors for their annual Oktoberfest. However, they are also renowned for their very direct, sometimes stern countenance. This also makes sense when you consider the “calm-seeking” mentioned by Watson. Taste the malts of Oktoberfest, or check out the lines on a Mercedes. It’s not quite calm, but it is very deliberate and unarguably correct.

My favorite concession within this analysis is calling the beer “unstructured.” Oktoberfest is a party of unparalleled size and fervor, so it makes perfect sense for Watson to pick up on the chaotic underpinnings of the beer. That doesn’t mean that Oktoberfest is dangerous or untrustworthy. It’s the sort of unstructured spontaneity that welcomes adventure into the average day and makes life that much more fun to live through. Prost, Watson, and Prost, Oktoberfest.

Check out Watson’s inner workings here:

This Week in Beer: The News You Can Booze on October 2



Yes Wine Can: Ever get tired of beer and switch to wine? Of course you don’t! Still, variety is the spice of life, so we think it’s important to do good by Bacchus and get a fair share of wine into your life on occasion. First We Feast has compiled a list of their five favorite wines in cans that are taking on the pretentious myth of cans indicating low quality, which we in the beer world fully support. Stock up and get sipping.

Taking the “Cl” Out of “Class”: The Chambong hit markets this week, letting you take all the sophistication of drinking champagne from a fluted glass and hurl it out the window with all your other good ideas. First We Feast added it to a roundup of similarly addled food and beverage ideas for your enjoyment. Any and all of these could potentially ruin a wedding, but the Chambong is the clear frontrunner in the category; make sure you get pictures.

The Beer Behind the Beerfest: This year’s Oktoberfest wrapped up last week, but plenty Oktoberfest-styled beers are still on shelves and taps across America. Take a closer look at this delightfully drinkable style, then get out there and load up on samplings. Your friends might get bored during your history lesson, but they’ll thank you for the beer.

The Last Word on GABF: Beer writer and Brooklynite Josh Bernstein took on a crowd of 60,000-plus pretzel-adorned beer fans to bring you an on-the-ground look at this year’s Great American Beer Fest. There’s plenty of heartening news from the fest, including New York State’s six medals, but Bernstein encourages us to look forward to a world of more balanced IPAs, an endless parade of new sours and goses, and even more craft breweries.


US Breweries Continue to Multiply: As of last Friday, there were 4,011 breweries in the United States, the highest level since the historic high of 4,131 in 1873. According to figures from the Brewers’ Association, this works out to a net addition of roughly 1.9 breweries a day, or about how many cups of coffee the average American adult consumes in the same time. This means it’s becoming easier every day to find excellent beer in all corners of the country, and that is good news for us all.

Vocabulary Test: With all the weird, wild and woolly beers and breweries hitting the scene these days, it’s worth checking in on your vocabulary from time to time. You might know what an IBU actually measures, but do you recall the names of the four Noble Hops? Brush up, then go forth and spread your arsenal throughout the world. Just remember the fine line between being a beer geek and a beer snob: don’t be a jerk about it.

This Week in Beer: The News You Can Booze on September 25


NYC Bar Birth Order: The Huffington Post released a video this week chronicling the struggle of several New York City bars to be officially declared the oldest in the city. What seems like a simple question quickly becomes muddied by incomplete records, conflicting historical accounts, and some straight-up trash talking. Ten minutes seems like a long time to watch at first, but it’s well worth settling in.

Yes, Oktoberfest is Spelled With A “K”: Everyone knows about Oktoberfest’s roots in German history, right? If your answer is a quavering “sure,” it might be time to bone up. has you covered with a primer for the history of the festival, the current expression of the beery tradition, and plenty of other trivia. Travel arrangements are entirely up to you.

Metallica Gets Their Own Beer, Could Do Better: Vanguards of metal Metallica announced a new, limited edition beer for two Canadian concerts last week featuring an admittedly pretty amazing label. Unfortunately, Metallica teamed up with Budweiser on the project, and not us. Not that we’re bitter or anything. We just want them to know we’re by the phone for next time.

Love It or Leave It: The Great American Beer Festival is in full swing right now, and we’re sure lines on the festival floor are making it easy to discern who’s done their homework on the highest rated breweries in the country. But how do brewers themselves feel about the continual reviews of their life’s work? Hear from brewers across the spectrum, then consider the axiom of “if you don’t have anything nice to say, awkwardly change the subject.”

Cocktails By Bike: The folks behind St. Germain are offering a decadent opportunity to try their elderflower liqueur this weekend: bring a bartender directly into your home. For the oddly reasonable price of $33, a bicycle-riding mixologist will show up at your apartment, throw together a carafe of their signature St. Germain and Prosecco cocktail, and leave. The cocktail is admittedly very good, but you might want to think about doing some cleaning before inviting your new best friend into your weekend den.

Welcome to the Neighborhood, Everybody: Brew York recently published a roundup of new breweries and breweries in planning in New York City, and it looks like we’ve got some big things in the works. We’ve always been of the opinion that NYC is a great place to be brewing, and we’re happy to see so many folks joining us. Get excited for the opening parties, happy hours, and much more excellent local beer.

Garrett Oliver’s London Ghost Trip

Marilynn K. Yee_The New York Times

Stefano Giovannini 1

Brooklyn Brewmaster Garrett Oliver is heading to London in October, and he’s bringing beer with him. A lot of beer, if we’re going to be honest. It’s been a while since Garrett’s gotten a chance to visit, so he’s bringing a swath of rare and experimental Ghost Bottles from his personal stash to really make it an occasion.

Garrett will be gamboling about the city for a few days, but we can guarantee you can find him at a few events with special beers ready to pour. Come meet the man behind our beer and taste what he’s excited about. We promise you haven’t seen anything like these beers before, and there’s every chance you may not see them again.


Ghost Service: Mother Kelly’s Sunday, October 4 at 6 PM: Get an extremely rare look inside the latest from our Barrel Room with Garrett as your guide. These beers have used everything from obscure barrels, to wild yeast strains, to experimental aging techniques in order to create truly incredible experiences. Be quick though- these beers won’t last long.

Deconstructed Intensified Coffee Porter Tasting: Climpson’s Arch, Monday, October 5 at 7 PM- Garrett will guide you through a tasting of the components of our latest Brooklyn Quarterly Experiment release. Sample cold brew coffee made with beans from Finca El Manzano in El Salvador and roasted by Climpson and Sons, bourbon whiskey, a rare keg of the base double porter, and of course, Intensified itself. Tickets: £10.

Brooklyn Brewery Beer Banquet: Wahleeah, Tuesday, October 6 at 7 PM- From The Brewmaster’s Table to his James Beard Award, Garrett has been a longtime advocate of beer and food coming together. Join him at the table for a six-course beer dinner that pushes the boundaries of pairing. Believe us when we say this might be the only chance to ever try these pairings, so don’t miss out. Tickets: £25

The Defender Guards Hell’s Kitchen


defender 2

We’ve received multiple reports of the Defender popping up in Hell’s Kitchen, and we can officially confirm that Defender IPA is coming to several bars and restaurants in the area to stand guard alongside one of beer’s oldest allies: good food. There’s no word from the Defender himself on a possible guest appearance in the Netflix hit Daredevil, but he refers to the namesake hero as a “neighbor and friend.”

From now until October 11, stop by the locations below and grab their special burger for $15 or get it with a Defender IPA for $20.95 and keep the glass it comes in (while supplies last.) You can also snag a glass by ordering the draft with one of the special items at Kiabacca. And as always, remember to Defend Beer wherever you go.

The House of Brews
302 West 51st Street, New York, NY 10019 and
The Big Kahuna Burger: 8oz beef burger topped with pork carnitas, grilled pineapple, pepper jack cheese and chipotle lime aioli. You may find yourself in a Big Kahuna Big Food Coma after this.

The New York Beer Company
321 West 44th Street, New York, NY 10036
The Daredevil Burger: Chipotle bison burger topped with red wine caramelized onions, baby arugula, and melted bleu cheese. You know Matt Murdock has style.

The Jolly Monk Bar & Grill
701 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10019
The Carnage Burger: 8oz beef burger topped with crispy bacon, shredded beef, chorizo, red chili sauce, smoked gouda cheese and red cabbage slaw. Buckle up.

639 10th Ave, New York, NY 10036
Red pie: Kiabacca red sauce, gorgonzola, fig and pancetta.
White pie: Mozzarella, prosciutto de Parma, arugula, Pecorino Romano, extra virgin olive oil.
Calzone: Fennel sausage, Italian rapini, side of Kiabacca red sauce. Like Nona used to make, if she ran a beer bar.

This Week in Beer: The News You Can Booze on September 18


We Might As Well Discuss This: Regardless of how informed you are on beer, it was impossible to escape news of the impending acquisition offer from AB InBev to purchase SABMiller. Stocks in both companies soared even as craft beer advocates warned of the horrific stranglehold such a beer juggernaut would exert over the world beer market. Beer author Tom Acitelli, on the other hand, points out some important truths to keep in mind. To borrow from Kendrick Lamar, be mad, but not stressed.

Greg Koch Takes The Stairs: In other beer business news, Stone co-founder and craft agitator Greg Koch announced this week that he would be “moving upstairs” at Stone to become chairman. The company will hire a new CEO to pilot the company as they continue to grow worldwide, especially with their Berlin brewing project. We wish Greg the best of luck and hope Stone finds a new, thoroughly badass CEO to fill his shoes soon.

Space Oddity: A vial of Ardbeg that was sent to the International Space Station in October 2011 was returned and sampled this month, revealing quite a few changes in the liquid. The time in space apparently revealed many new smoky characteristics in the whisky, including “rubbery, fishy, and oily aromas.” Here’s hoping it tastes better than it sounds.

Accio Beer: A Harry Potter-themed bar has opened in Toronto, to the delight of fans all over the world. The Lockhart, named for the Milli Vanilli of Defense Against the Dark Arts, offers a wide variety of potions and elixirs inspired by the books and movies. A brunch menu and regular trivia nights will be added soon, as well as a butterbeer offering as soon as the owners find a name that isn’t copywrited. Accio Lawyers!

Getting An A At GABF: The Great American Beer Festival kicks off in Denver next Thursday, so it’s time to start preparing your mind and body for the high-altitude celebration of beer. Drink Nation assembled a list of ten tips, but we’d like to add in the above sentiment from Mr. Bowie: Drink water. Then more water. Finally, just a touch more water. Thank us later, and remember to stop by and say hello at our booth.

While You’re In Town: While you’re GABF-ing in Denver (or anytime you’re there), be sure to stop by TRVE Brewing Company. This was a big week for the metal-inspired brewery, with an engrossing write-up by Good Beer Hunting and the release of their first 12oz bottles of Grey Watcher. They’re a must-visit for our GABF trip, and you know we wouldn’t lead you astray.

We leave you this week by wishing you a very happy National Cheeseburger Day. Check out First We Feast’s panel-selected list of the country’s best cheeseburgers, crank up an appropriate soundtrack and dig in.

#PhillyMash Tickets Now On Sale!


01.05 Mash Education-047


The Mash Tour is heading to Philadelphia from October 17 to 24, marking our third year in our neighboring city. Philly tends to pull in lots of Brooklyn Brewery visitors during the year to check out their thriving beer scene, and you can bet we’ll be out in droves for this week of dinners, parties, shows, feasts and more. Check out the events below, then get your tickets together and meet us there.

Brooklyn Brewery and Timberland Present: Man Man and Prince Rama: We’re kicking the Mash off with a free show at The TLA. Just let us know you’re coming and we’ll bring the beer. Free RSVP here.

DIY Dinner Party with Chef Andrew Gerson: Chef Andrew Gerson instructs you on preparing a four-course dinner party guaranteed to amaze your family and friends. Then, sit down with your cooking comrades and dig in to the meal you’ve worked to create. Tickets: $30

Found Footage Festival: Take part in a “Salute to Weirdos,” featuring clips pulled from the largest collection of VHS tapes and bargain bin gold in the United States. It’s weird, wild, and absolutely hilarious. Tickets: $12



State of Craft Beer: Brooklyn Brewery co-founder and chairman Steve Hindy picks the brains of leaders from Dogfish Head Brewery, Brewers of Pennsylvania, St. Benjamin Brewing Company, and All About Beer Magazine. Tickets: $6

Secret Supper with Dinner Lab: We can’t tell you where this dinner party will be held until the day before, but we guarantee that the location is incredible and the menu is glorious. Tickets on sale soon.

Three Headed Beast: Three chefs put their spin on preparing a unique whole animal and serving it up with sides, Brooklyn beer and live music. Proceeds from the feast go towards The Food Trust to help share the bounty. Tickets: $35



We’ll also be hanging around at several non-ticketed events throughout the week. Find us there:

Eat, Drink and Learn with Chef Andrew Gerson at Whole Foods Plymouth Meeting: Chef Andrew Gerson dishes out samples and advice for you to pair beer, cheese, and Cholula-honey hot sauce.

Seasons & Seasonals: A Beer for Every Look: Check out Timberland’s new collections as we show off some seasonal favorites: Brooklyn Lager, Sorachi Ace, Post Road Pumpkin Ale, and the new Brooklyn Insulated Lager.

Funk Feast at Heritage: Some of our most off-the-wall beers meet up with a fermentation-focused menu and a killer soundtrack at Heritage.

From the Cellars at Upstairs at Good Dog Bar and Restaurant: A full-blown tap attack featuring hard-to-find favorites and new beers from the deepest corners of our cellar.

Mash Files: Chicago 2015



While he’s on the road or in the kitchen, Chef Andrew Gerson is always investigating the cultural and culinary landscapes of the cities around him. The Mash Files are snapshots of each city on our Mash Tour in Chef Andrew’s own words. Read about Chef Andrew’s tour of one of New England’s leading oyster producers while visiting Boston, then check our Mash site for when he’ll be in your neighborhood.

The Mash Tour is about celebrating community, and the community we have developed in Chicago is nothing short of amazing. Hanging with Daniel Espinoza, the chef de cuisine of Dinner Lab and one of my best friends, was my favorite part of the Chicago tour. Our official focus was collaborating on a menu for our Secret Supper with Dinner Lab, but the highlight of my week was making tamales with Danny’s mother. I had a chance to meet Señora Espinoza in her home in Humboldt Park and spend an afternoon hearing stories from her childhood growing up in Mexico and the rise of her family’s tamale empire just north of Mexico City.

sra espinoza

As we folded fresh masa into banana leaves, she explained how at age eight her mother used to wake her up at three in the morning to roll tamales until sunrise, when they would be steamed and loaded into bicycle baskets to be hawked on the street by her uncles and cousins. What started out as a way for Danny’s grandmother to afford school supplies for her children grew into a full fledged business selling the authentic Michoacan tamales. Danny’s mother was such an integral part of the tamale business that her mother was enraged when she decided at twenty three to marry her husband and embark on a new life in America.


Danny was born in Chicago, but his passion for food derives from celebrating and reinterpreting his mother and grandmother’s cuisine and infusing the rich influence of Mexican cooking. Each year Danny returns to Mexico to hang with family and, most importantly, cook with his grandmother.

Danny pinata copy

Danny squares off against a piñata at a family birthday party.

Although Danny is known for his Mexican inspiration, he also folds in themes from the New American food movement sweeping Chicago and the diverse latino community of Humboldt Park alike. When I asked his mother about how Mexican cuisine had been reinterpreted in her own cooking, she was quick to tell me that it has become intermingled with Puerto Rican lechon asado, Peruvian ceviche, Dominican plátanos, and a myriad of other cultural influences creating a melting pot of flavors that span the reaches of Latin America with some Chicago classics intermingled.

danny with plate

When we sat down to feast on these plump steamed orbs I couldn’t help but make parallels to the airiness of my grandmother’s matzo balls, but the adobo chili and pork infused sauce that drenched these tamales was certainly outside of my jewish grandmother’s wheel house. I gorged myself between bites drenched in this smoky pork sauce, and others covered in a green tomatillo salsa dotted with sour cream and then ate some more.


One of Danny’s tamales.

We joked and cried over Danny’s baby pictures and stories of the struggles and successes of a first generation Mexican experience in the rough neighborhood of Humboldt Park. I left full, emotionally drained, inspired, and excited to see Danny’s take on his mother’s classic tamales of Michoacan. It’s true that Danny might use more creativity than his mother and grandmother, and his tamales were amazing. But when it comes to tamales, that boy has nothing on his momma.