Why not let me make gift giving that little bit easier for you. Below is a few gift for your beer fanatic loved one. I’ve chosen items I would love to receive myself this year.
- Monthly Subscription to The Beer Club It’s the gift that keeps on giving. A box of beers to drink away while discussing the aromas and tastes during a twitter hour on Tuesday nights hosted by us! You can purchase a monthly box that will be delivered right to their door. Why not surprise them by signing them up for three, six or even twelve months? They also have put together some pretty nifty looking hampers.
- Speaking of subscriptions, take a look at this incredible one the guys at Yellow Belly Beer have on offer. This includes some awesome exclusive beers and swag. Not to mention an invite to a brewday with them!!
- No Christmas is complete without something sweet right? Well look no further than Kate O’Ds. She makes the most amazing truffles. I can assure you they go down a treat. We’re particularly fond of her stout truffles!
- Why not treat the beer lady in your life to a fabulous piece of jewelry? Wayne purchased me a beautiful hop pendant from Feral Strumpet. It came packaged in a beautiful organza bag with dried lavender. This was a lovely early Christmas present.
- Have they ever been on a brewery tour? Many of our wonderful Irish breweries offer such an experience. They get a guided tour around the brewery itself. Then afterwards an opportunity to sample the beers. We’ve been on many tours like Mc Gargles and Brehon Brewhouse. Both have impressive tasting areas.
- One that has been on our list for quite sometime is a trip along the west coast. I’m not only talking about the States, but our very own Ireland. Plan a trip to include all the breweries with this handy guide Wild Atlantic Way Breweries
- Beer festivals are always fun. They are a great way to meet fellow beer buddies, talk to the brewers and of course try new beers. Tickets are now available for next years Alltech Craft Brews & Food event. This is held in the convention centre in Dublin and its great craic.
- You can also purchase a case of this stunning beer 57 The Headline from This is limited so be quick. Also why not visit them for some quality beers and grub!
Ever since I tried it at a recent beer event I’ve been obsessed by the humble radler. What is it you ask? A radler, is a low alcohol beverage made 50/50 of lager or pilsner and sparkling lemonade. After a quick google search i found it dates back to 1912 and originates from Germany. However, as the story goes it was created by an Inn Keeper in 1922, Franz Xaver Kugler, who realised he didn’t have enough beer to serve to his regulars who were cyclists. He mixed his remaining beer stock with fresh citrus lemonade and they loved it. Probably for the same reason I do, its thirst quenching ability.
This type of drink is more commonly known here in Ireland as a Shandy. Growing up I remember my Father drinking this. To this day my Father in law would be a fan of it. Our version would be half a pint of Heineken or Carlsberg mixed with 7up.
The beer event I mentioned was an introduction to an Austrian Brewery, Stiegl , that are being imported by O’ Haras. You can read more about that here thanks to SimonSaysBeer. I fell in love with their grapefruit radler. It was so full of flavour and so easy to drink at 2% abv. I’ve been hoping we’d see more of this by now.
More recently, on a shopping trip to Lidl I noticed they sell Perlenbacher in cans and bottles. We purchased a few to see what it would be like. We were pleasantly surprised. It was light and refreshing with a zingy lemon punch to it. My Sister happened to visit and I gave her some to try and she enjoyed it too. Since then I’ve been hunting down a grapefruit one. It wasn’t until Wayne mentioned it, that i made my own! He found this recipe and off I went.
I had all the ingredients already so I was set. The first step was to make the fresh grapefruit soda:
- Juice one whole grapefruit (room temperature) pour into a seal-able container and refrigerate.
- Cut up juiced rind into chunks, place in a large plastic mixing bowl, add sugar and cover tightly with clingfilm.
- Let this stand at room temperature stirring every 45 minutes until sugar is dissolved. I’d plenty of time so i did this over 4 hours. You can leave it up to 12 if you prefer. I didn’t start it early enough for that.
- Measure reserved grapefruit juice, and juice remaining grapefruits to get 300 ml
- Add to sugar mixture with lemon juice and mix well
- Strain through a fine mesh strainer or piece of muslin cloth into a glass container. this can be stored for up to a week.
I of course didn’t wait that long and used it immediately. It was a hot sunny Sunday after all and we were thirsty. So to make the radler:
- When ready to serve, add soda water to the fresh grapefruit syrup. Adjust to taste. I made mine quite tart.
- For each radler add your chosen beer to a glass and mix with the grapefruit soda. I served mine in a pint glass.
It was great fun experimenting with this recipe. I had two different styles to work with. The first was Cotton Ball Brewing Mayfield 5 lager. This working incredibly well. The lager is really refreshing and crisp and carried the grapefruit syrup really well. The oohs and the gasps from Wayne confirmed it was indeed a success. The second was a bottle of Stiegl wheat beer. This was still nice but lacked the refreshing thirst quenching character of the lager. Have a go yourself and see what you come up with.
So, another blog.
Another blog about beer.
Ah but this isn’t just any blog, it is my blog, and more so its about my experiences trying different beers.
My aim is to sample and rate beers, and to importantly enjoy the surge in craft beer, both domestic and international that is now available, and becoming more so it seems with each passing day.
We Irish have always been found of a drink from time to time.