Here at Last: The Seventh Annual July Good Beer Month!


Four five years the Mayor’s Office handed out an official proclamation that July is Good Beer Month. We’re continuing that tradition, now in its seventh year!

Another July Good Beer Month has arrived in New York City! While we take the month to celebrate our Good Beer Seal bars and plan the announcement of the 2015 inductees, we’re also adding new events and themes to this year’s festivities. The Good Beer Seal was co-founded in 2009 by Jimmy Carbone (Jimmy’s No. 43), Ray Deter (RIP – former owner of d.b.a. – also RIP), Ben & Mike Wiley (Bar Great Harry, Mission Dolores, The Owl Farm and Glorietta Baldy), Gary Gillis (Burp Castle/Standings), and Dave Brodrick (Blind Tiger). The Good Beer Seal exists to identify bars offering an intriguing selection of craft beer in a unique atmosphere created by owner/operators who exhibit a deep commitment not only to the promotion of craft beer but to their community as well. Every year we celebrate July Good Beer Month to highlight superior craft beer experiences in the city, bringing celebrities from both near and far to talk about and drink great beer. Among this year’s featured events:

Cookout NYC’s Running with the Beef™Saturday, July 11th, from 4-9 p.m. at Stuyvesant Cove Park. Join some of NYCs best chefs (including Robbie Richter, Anthony Sasso, others at 10+ grilling stations) cooking up Spanish-style dishes from locally-raised, grass-fed beef. Offerings range from traditional (Grilled Steak, Brisket, Beef Sausages) to unique (Harry Hawk’s Spanish Schnack Burgers from Schweid & Sons). You can celebrate July Good Beer Month along Manhattan’s scenic East River with live entertainment (DJ, Flamenco dancers), a great line-up of Spanish craft beer from Iberian United/Shelton Brothers, and American craft beer courtesy of Sixpoint.

The return of Craft Beer Jam at WNYC’s The Greene Space! The line-up includes (tickets are still available for some shows as of time of publication; or tune in to listen live!):

  • Wednesday, July 8th at 7 p.m. – Craft Beer Jam at WNYC’s The Greene Space: Five Borough Beer Battle (Tickets) – Host Jimmy Carbone welcomes Patrick Morse, head brewer from Staten Island’s Flagship Brewing Company; Paul Ramirez of Bronx Beer Hall; Lauren Grimm of Brooklyn’s Grimm Artisanal Ales; Greg Doroski of Brooklyn’s Threes Brewing; and Joshua M. Bernstein, author of The Complete Beer Course.
  • Wednesday, July 15th at 7 p.m. – Craft Beer Jam at WNYC’s The Greene Space: Daytime Drinking – All Cans (Tickets) – Host Jimmy Carbone is talking “session” beers good for day-long drinking with Heather McReynolds of Brooklyn’s Sixpoint Brewery; Atlanta-based beer and travel writer Ale Sharpton; Jennifer Maslanka of The Spring Lounge in downtown Manhattan; and Augie Carton of Carton Brewing.
  • Wednesday, July 22nd at 7 p.m. – Craft Beer Jam at WNYC’s The Greene Space: Dessert on Tap (Tickets) – Host Jimmy Carbone closes out Craft Beer Jam with dessert! That is, beers that make for a great apéritif or accompaniment to the evening’s final food course. Joining him are Basil Lee of Finback Brewery in Queens; Claire Paparazzo, sommelier of downtown Manhattan’s Dirty French; Ben Keene, managing editor of Beer Advocate; and Daniel Sklaar, owner of Fine and Raw chocolate.

And, of course, we’ll be bringing a great line-up to Beer Sessions Radio™ for July Good Beer Month, with a focus on NY State beers, brewers and the ingredients that go into the beers of our region (all shows air live on Heritage Radio Network at 5 p.m. on Tuesdays):

  • Tuesday, July 7th – Beer Sessions Radio™ discusses the NY State beer scene with special guests Ben Keene, Jeremy Cowan (Shmaltz He’brew) and Joe Carroll (GBS bar Spuyten Duyvil and Fette Sau)
  • Tuesday, July 14th – Beer Sessions Radio™ it’s the NYC Beer Show with the return of Atlanta’s beer spokesman Ale Sharpton, Greg Doroski (Threes Brewing) and Anne Becera (Anne Likes Beer)
  • Tuesday, July 21st – Beer Sessions Radio™ Homebrew Scene with American Homebrew Association “Best in Show” winners Peter Salmond and Oskar & Eric Norlander
  • Tuesday, July 28th – Beer Sessions Radio™ Annual Cask Show with Chef Jason Hicks, owner of The Shakespeare and Jones Wood Foundry; and Alex Hall of Cask Marque
  • Wednesday, July 29th – The 7th Annual Good Beer Seal Awards

And be sure to stay tuned for our official end of July (TBA)  Good Beer Seal Awards 2015 Announcement!

A full list of events can be found (chronologically) here. Need more tips on bars to visit during July Good Beer Month? Check out Eater’s recommendations here. Drinking at home, the beach or your local BBQ picnic? Edible Magazine has assembled a list of their favorite local beers for July Good Beer Month here.

What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: There Gose The Summer! The Nation’s Best Homebrewers, Lagunitas and Sour Beers

BrewersChoiceThis week on Beer Sessions Radio™, host Jimmy Carbone is celebrating July Good Beer Month with cohort and summer co-host  Ben Keene and talking about the very recent resurgence of an ancient German brew, Gose (our friend and New York Times beverage writer Eric Asimov chose it as his beer of the summer!).

This episode (listen here) is all about the sour! The panel includes this year’s Best in Show National Homebrew Competition winners – Peter Salmond, Oskar Norlander and Erik Norlander – whose Lambic beat out 7,600 beers that were entered in the 2015 competition. The grown of homebrewing in America is astounding. In 1979 there were 34 contestants in NHC competion. Now all beer categories, including sours, see hundreds of different styles in each category.

What’s the difference between a Lambic, a Berliner Weisse, a Gose and other beers that fall under the “sour” rubric? What goes into making an award-winning sour beer (hint, four years of seasoning a Zinfandel oak barrel and eight years of honing a recipe).

Also in the studio are Mary Bauer head brewer at the new Lagunitas facility in Chicago (food science and chemistry major) and Mark Sljukic (Lagunitas national sales rep), a facility with traditional American style hoppy beers that also is creating sour beer offerings. Mary discusses the challenges of flavor matching beers in Chicago with their Petaluma parent. Mary explains how their trained tasters test Lagunitas beers. Mark discusses the many small town breweries he’s come across in his travels and the impressive beer pedigree that is developing in the southeast (Birmingham!).

Finally, the panel chooses their favorite sours for the summer:

  • Mary – Singlecut’s Kim Hibiscus Sour Lagrrr!
  • Mark – Cuvee De Castleton from Captain Lawrence, also the sours from Peekskill
  • Peter – Anything from Oregon’s Cascade
  • Erik – Tilquin Gose
  • Oskar – Lindeman’s Cuvee Rene
  • Ben – Wicked Weed Serenity
  • Jimmy – Freigeist Rhubarb Gose

Enjoy summer with sour beers!



7th Annual Good Beer Seal Awards to Take Place July 29th at Jimmy’s No. 43

GoodBeerSealBeer Sessions Radio™, The Good Beer Seal and Jimmy’s No. 43 are delighted to announce the Seventh Annual Good Beer Seal Awards taking place at Jimmy’s No. 43 (43 East 7th Street in the East Village) on July 29th at 7 p.m. This year’s inductees will join 58 of their peers from the five boroughs of NYC, plus select bars in northeastern New Jersey and on Long Island. The Good Beer Seal Awards are the culmination of July Good Beer Month, which features specialty events across the city with a focus on craft beer, the brewers who make them, and the local establishments that sell craft beer.

The night will showcase the new bars receiving the Good Beer Seal, along with special craft beers on tap and bites from the new Tito King’s Kitchen at Jimmy’s No. 43. In addition to representatives of existing Good Beer Seal Bars, beer bloggers, writers and food-related media throughout the city will be available to mix, mingle and discuss this year’s entries.

The Good Beer Seal was co-founded in 2009 by Jimmy Carbone (Jimmy’s No. 43), Ray Deter (RIP – former owner of d.b.a.), Ben & Mike Wiley (Bar Great Harry), Gary Gillis (Burp Castle/Standings), and Dave Brodrick (Blind Tiger). The Good Beer Seal exists to identify bars offering an intriguing selection of craft beer in a unique atmosphere created by owner/operators who exhibit a deep commitment not only to the promotion of craft beer but to their community as well.

What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: Feeding the Fire and the Brooklyn Beer Scene

KelSoOpeningBeer and BBQ – what could be better? This week on Beer Sessions Radio, host Jimmy Carbone is talking two of our favorite July things: July Good Beer Month and barbeque! He’s joined by his “Summer Sidekick” Ben Keene, editor of Beer Advocate, who is hanging out in the studio this summer. Together they’re talking with Kelly Taylor of KelSo Beer and Joe Carroll, the man behind Fette Sau BBQ, St. Anselm, Spuyten Duyvil and author of the new book Feeding the Fire.

Kelly and Joe are talking about their collaborations and which beers go best with summer barbecued meats. Ben explains some of the nuances of pairing beer with food (complementary v. contrasting flavors); he likes to look for surprising or unexpected experiences in food pairings in their Table Mates column of the magazine (he recently paired Jimmy’s No. 43 Adobo Chicken Wings with two different sour beers and Other Half IPA for three very distinct flavors). Joe chimes in that “beer and food go together extremely well and it almost doesn’t matter the food or the beer… you almost never find yourself in a situation with beer and food that you have a clash in flavors.” However, he does try to do low-alcohol beers with a hoppy bite and crispness that pairs well with barbeque; rich or high-ABV beers do tend to get in the way of the richness of grilled meats.

In Feeding the Fire, Joe gives readers his top 20 lessons and more than 75 recipes to make incredible fire-cooked foods at home, proving that you don’t need to have fancy equipment or long-held regional traditions to make succulent barbecue and grilled meats. It took Joe four years to write the book (“quite an undertaking”). He framed the book loosely on the key strengths of each of his three establishments (spirits from St. Anselm, beer from Spuyten Duyvil and, of course, meat/grilling from Fette Sau).

Kelly is also getting ready to launch his taproom at the brewery in Fort Greene Brooklyn, where he’ll be offering six taps in a section of the brewery “barreled” off from the production area. He’s comparing his more sessionable beers with the Tripel (tripell?) they are drinking in the studio. A couple of listeners from Sweden are in the studio on an American craft beer tour. They’ve brought in an American-style double India Pale Ale infused with mangoes!

Grab a beer and listen to the full episode here.

What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: From Bushwick to New Zealand

BSR_062315This week on Beer Sessions Radio™, host Jimmy Carbone is going “down under” in both Brooklyn and the globe (En-Zed, as the natives of New Zealand like to call it). Joining him is a cavalcade of beer stars in the studio: Jake Cirelli of From the Ground Brewery, Steve “Ben” Middlemiss of Ben Middlemiss Brewing, Lauren and Joe Grimm of Grimm Artisanal Ales, beer writer Josh Bernstein, Ben Keene of Beer Advocate and Joel Shelton of Shelton Brothers Imports.

The farm brewery license has allowed for more local grains, and From the Ground opened up at Migliorelli Farms (you can get their beer at the Union Square Greenmarket on Friday and Saturday); in a moment of “synchronicity” (our word of the day!), a malt house opened up the road, allowing for Jake to incorporate local malt as well as the hops from the farm.

Learn how Ben got his nickname while brewing beer at the age of 14 (they start early in New Zealand!) and became a part of the Shelton Brothers line-up. (For those who need a throwback Tuesday, there’s a connection to Hanson! “Mmm hops!”) Ben reminisces about his youth during the strict years of pubs closing at 6 p.m., watching the intense imbibing that would happen while workers tried to drink as much beer as they could in the hour after work before the pub closed. Despite his youthful indiscretions (he began with explosives before turning his attention to wine-making; his impatience in waiting for fermentation led him to beer making), he has all his digits and a successful gypsy brewery today.

The Grimm team talks about their upcoming 2nd anniversary celebration and their reception at Roberta’s (their Super Going is one of the most popular beers currently on tap at Roberta’s, where we record the show). They’ve become a bit of a “cult” brand, also winning at the Great American Beer Festival (their Imperial Stout Double Negative won a silver medal). This year they’re probably going to send in a dry-hop sour brew. They discuss the submission of beers at what is arguably the worst time of year (August) to ship beer and how it affects what beer is submitted. They also reveal some of the secrets of their gypsy brewing success (their double IPAs are being brewed at Flagship on Staten Island; they brew their sours in Virginia).

Ben and Josh discuss the challenges of judging beer in these large festivals, especially as the number of breweries grows exponentially in the United States. They also summarize the most popular brewing styles currently being made and trends in the industry, along with a discussion of the challenges faced by gypsy brewers both here and abroad.

You can listen to this week’s full episode here.


What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: The Bushwick Beer Show

TheSamplerThis week on Beer Sessions Radio™, we’re honoring our home base: Bushwick Brooklyn! Aside from our studio inside of Roberta’s, Bushwick is home to many special places including Good Beer Seal Bar Pine Box Rock Shop (owners Jeff and Heather Rush are in the studio), Arrogant Swine (owner Tyson Ho regales us of life as a pitmaster in industrial Bushwick), and Hops and Hocks‘ Blake Jordan and Rachel Chitwood.

There’s a definite change in the neighborhood as more businesses come in and real estate prices go up, but the Bushwick beer scene has a rich history, which beer writer Chris O’Leary (Brew York New York) reflects on later in the show. Hops & Hocks has built its business on a made-in-Brooklyn and growler shop, and they’re sampling food and beer and discussing session IPAs. “There’s a time and place for every beer,” notes Chris.

Also from Bushwick is another Good Beer Seal bar, The Sampler. Raphael Martinez also reflects on how much his street in the neighborhood has grown in terms of new restaurants.

Chris notes that for a long time, the only place to get good beer was The Bodega but now you can walk from “deep” Bushwick towards East Williamsburg for a “wealth of beer options.”

Listen in to the full episode here.