James: Hi. Welcome to another special episode of the Better Beer Authority. I’m James Knott and we are coming to you from the Columbus Convention Center at the Columbus Beerfest. This is the second of four special episodes we’re shooting here from the Beerfest. How’s this one different? Instead of reviewing beers, we’re going around and finding our recommendations. So, these are the beers that these guys are most excited about. Let’s go to it. Scott, what beer have you found that you are excited about.
Scott Blickhan: It’s interesting. I didn’t really see myself as one that would like milk stouts, but Left Hand Milk Stout – great beer. Try it. It’s kind of got a toasted chocolaty… it really is kind of like a chocolate liqueur, chocolate milk. It has a great flavor. It’s not overwhelming by any means. A regular stout I can drink like 3 or 4, this one you can continue through the night drinking hand over fist. It’s a great beer.
James: What do you think of the beerfest? Are you having a fun time here?
Scott: I’m having a great time. It’s giving me a chance to… Obviously we’ve tried a lot of beer as a group. I mean they’ve got over 150 beers here and Left Handed Milk Stout isn’t one that I normally would’ve sought out – I guess maybe my aversion to the word “Milk” in a beer – It’s obvious that I haven’t had it many times. I keep calling it Left Handed when it’s Left Hand Milk Stout. But it’s great. It’s an opportunity to try a lot of different beers that you normally wouldn’t have the opportunity to try.
James: Ok. Joby, give us your recommendation.
Joby Johnston: James, this time around I went with Gordon Biersch Maibock.
James: Ok. What do you like about it?
Joby: Well, this beer is really refreshing. I just drink it. It’s well-balanced. There’s nothing overpowering about it. It’s just a well-balanced smooth beer. I found it interesting. I was talking to the brewer, the local brewmaster here in Columbus, Ohio, Chris Altmont, and he was telling me that the bottled beer and the brewery in the restaurants at Gordon Biersch is actually different. The Maibock here comes out from April to May, so it’s about to go off the menu, but every different Gordon Biersch Brewery has there own leeway, if you will, to play with their certain types of beer to make it a little different at every restaurant.
James: I heard that tonight too and I thought it was something pretty unique that at Gordon Biersch they actually give their restaurants a little leeway to step outside the corporate branding. So that’s pretty neat. Adam, What do you think? What are you recommending?
Adam Harms: I’m going with Rope Swing Summer Pilsner. It’s from the Red Hook Brewing Company. They have two locations in Washington and New Hampshire. It’s a really great beer. It’s a summer beer. It’s very refreshing, but it has a little bit of a smoky flavor that goes along with it.
James: Really? I don’t usually associate Smokiness with summer.
Adam: I know. But it would go really well with a cookout or something like that. It’s clean and refreshing. It’s very crisp. It doesn’t have any aftertaste and it does have a hint of smokiness to it. It’s not sweet like you would think for a normal summer pilsner.
James: I don’t usually give my recommendations, but I was so happy with Rivertown Dunkle Lager, that I have to say you’ve got to try this beer. It’s made in Cincinnati. We talked to the brewer and he’s a really cool guy. …and Rivertown Dunkle… That’s it for this episode from the Columbus Beerfest at the Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio. How many Columbus’s can you have? I’m James Knott and this is your Better Beer Authority.