What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: Erica Shea & Stephen Valand of Brooklyn Brew Shop

Erica_Stephen_051915This week on Beer Sessions Radio™, host Jimmy Carbone and producer Justin Kennedy are joined by Erica Shea and Stephen Valand, the owners and founders of Brooklyn Brew Shop . Six years ago, Brooklyn Brew Shop was a small operation working out of the Brooklyn Flea. With the idea that making beer (real beer from real ingredients) can be simple, tasty, and – most importantly – fun, they created stylish, easy-to-use beer making kits designed especially for stove-top brewing for space-strapped New Yorkers brewing. Today, Brooklyn Brew Shop is available across the country in addition to 26 different countries.
From Italy (a prison that brews beer) to Bamberg, Germany (Schlenkerla not only inspired Erica and Stephen to start brewing but also is the only Bamberg brewery still malting their own grains) to China and Taiwan, Brooklyn Brew Shop is everywhere! Listen in to hear about their world travels and the state of beer around the globe (and check out their homebrew recipe book for inspiration).
Locally, the couple was recently featured on Brewdog Brewing’s TV show hosted by brewers James Watt and Martin Dickie. Erica and Stephen were challenged to make a kit that would be marketed as the “Ultimate Big Apple Beer” and came up with a Belgian strong ale with apples (sauce in the mash, torched apples in the boil, apple-jack-soaked oak chips in the fermenter).
Collaboration is a relatively new venture for Brooklyn Brew Shop. Jimmy asks them the process of co-branding for clone brews: It wasn’t part of their original business plan; several brewers reached out (including Steve Hindy of Brooklyn Brewery) to scale down their favorite recipes for Erica and Stephen to market.
And here’s a scoop: Brooklyn Brew Shop will soon start offering 5-gallon kits!
Tune in to this fun and fascinating episode about the global homebrew movement here.

What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: Live, From Blind Tiger, It’s the Vermont Beer Show!

VTBeerThis week on (a not quite “live” episode of) Beer Sessions Radio™, host Jimmy Carbone is hanging out with Blind Tiger founder – and Vermont resident – Dave Brodrick (Worthy Burger). Also from Vermont: Prohibition Pig owner Chad Rich and Ian Campbell of Beanery Brewing. Also at the table is Blind Tiger’s chef, Tommy Harder.

Dave talks about how he was sold on opening a brewery in the Smuttynose facility when he decided that coffee beer would be a cool addition to the craft beer market. Ian became a partner after being a coffee guy dating back almost a decade at Blind Tiger. They are moving their beers into the NYC area.

Chad and Dave discuss the challenges and merits of making sessionable (i.e. low in alcohol) beers and the dynamic beer culture in Vermont (hops, hops and more hops, of course!). They admit there’s still room for a great Pilsner – very popular – in Vermont.

Chef Tommy (also a four-year vet of Blind Tiger) talks food with beer as an ingredient. The panel also discusses the challenges of managing a glut of great beer options.

This episode was actually the very first remote show we have produced, and we’re happy to air it for you here.


What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: Cinco de Mead!

BSR_050515_BFM2It’s an international panel on this week’s episode (listen here) of Beer Sessions Radio™! Host Jimmy Carbone is celebrating Cinco de Mayo with Mead, saison and a room full of great beer people, including Garth Cambray of Makana Meadery (South Africa), Jerome Rebetez of Switzerland’s Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes (BFM), Chresten Sorensen and Joe Watt of Bunker Brewing (Maine), Michael Opalenski and George Flickinger from B. United (CT), and Tony Fodor of Ale Street News (who originally hails from Britain and just returned from a beer tour in Belgium).

How does one go from having a stolen bike to making mead? Well, Garth talks about how he started his meadery from misadventure and finished it as his college thesis project! He talks about keeping organic “happy bees” in a green environment (long before it was fashionable).

The panel discusses the challenge of mixed fermentation and how to make mead “dryer.” Garth and Michael discuss the relationship between Makana Meader and B. United, which finishes his mead. (Garth notes, “Friends in mead are friends indeed!”)

Chresten and Joe are in town brewing “Boogie Board Stunts” kolsch with The Other Half. They’re putting a unique spin on this traditional beer with creative hopping.

Jerome is making more sessionable beers, including a saison that he calls his “house bitch,” because it can be paired with any food. The panel tastes the farmhouse ale that is a bit more “wild” than a typical saison (it’s more traditional, harkening back to the 18th century).

And Jimmy is raising his glass to a former colleague, Josh Ozersky, who passed suddenly in Chicago this week. Raise a glass with us and hear about the rich history of  beer and mead.

What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: Two Roads Brewing Co.

BPhilMarkowskieer Sessions Radio™ host Jimmy Carbone is taking the show on the road for this Friday’s bonus episode from February 2015. Joining Jimmy is Phil Markowski, owner and brewmaster, owner of the largest brewery in Connecticut, Two Roads Brewing Co., along with team members Emily Sauter and John Kleinchester. Co-founded with Brad Hittle and Clem Pellani in 2011, Phil took over a vacant 100-year-old factory in Stratford, launching a full-scale brewery with a huge tasting room.

Phil discusses the making of some of his beers and how his book Farmhouse Ales impacted his beer making and the larger saison-making resurgence among brewers. There are probably 10 times more saisons being made in the U.S. than in the beer’s native Belgium. (Two Roads’ saison is Workers Comp)

Rep John Kleinchester breaks down his day and how he gets Two Roads to the NYC masses; Emily talks about the tasting room and operations at the brewery. And Jimmy does his best to encourage everyone to head on up (via MetroNorth or I95) and enjoy these beers fresh off the tap!

Listen to the full episode here.



What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: The New York City Hot Sauce Expo

NYCHotSauce2015instagramThings are heating up on this week’s episode of Beer Sessions Radio™ (listen here) as host Jimmy Carbone welcomes Anne Becerra of Anne Likes Beer. Chief on their minds is how a beer component works into a larger festival scene. Jimmy is a co-producer of the 3rd Annual NYC Hot Sauce Expo (coming to Brooklyn this weekend Saturday-Sunday, April 25-26). Also in the studio are Graham and Lindsay Connolly of World Famous Hot Sauce, who talks about their origins in making hot sauce.

Anne is back from Portland (OR) where she was attending the annual Craft Brewers Conference, talking about the very different scene in the Pacific Northwest. She’s a fan of the Lagunitas Pils, which will be served at the Expo.

Hops intensify hot sauce, so Graham is recommending using beer as a palate cleanser (rather than to cool down). Anne also recommends a wit or a saison to balance fiery foods. And later in the show, Karen Magee of Lagunitas phones in to talk about the brewery’s sponsorship of the Expo.

Be sure to listen in as the panel chats about food and beer festival culture, the interesting ways hot sauce and beer can pair and what’s in store for the NYC Hot Sauce Expo!

What You Missed On Beer Sessions Radio™: Lagers & Baseball with Eric Asimov

baseballandbeerIt’s a very special (and rare) live Friday broadcast as NY Times food and wine critic Eric Asimov is in the studio with host Jimmy Carbone discussing two of their favorite spring things: lager beers and baseball! They are joined by Patrick Morse, head brewer of Flagship Brewing on Staten Island, Travis Kauffman from Folksbier Brauerei and Justin Philips from Beer Table.

Eric reminisces on his early days at the Times writing about beer in the 1980s, back when “no one was writing about beer.” He recently wrote a piece reviewing lagers at baseball stadiums, which prompted Jimmy to invite him in for this special bonus episode of Beer Sessions Radio™. He admits that there are plenty of great ales that also go great at the ballgame, including low alcohol sour beers.

Patrick talks about his beers being served at the minor league Yankees on Staten Island (as opposed to the generic mass-produced beer offerings at Yankee Stadium). The panel is on a quest to get the Bronx bombers to step up and get with a better beer program!

How is tasting wine different from tasting beer? How do flavors factor into a better beer experience? What brews do our beer pros bring to tempt Eric’s palate?

Find out here on this week’s episode.