Gluten Free Beer

beerBy: Billy BeerSlugger

Well I’m not sure how this will effect me but I’m glad suffers of Celiacs disease, which causes inflamation in the small intestine and ultimately interferes with nutrient absorption, can get drunk again without worrying about chronic diarrhea, arthritis, bone loss and a host of other symptoms.

The Federal Alcohol Administration Act of 1935’s definition of beer, which was a beverage brewed from malted barley and other grains needed to be modified and Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, which regulates the labeling of beer, wine and spirits, handed off regulation of said cold, sudsy brews to the Food and Drug Administration.

I lost as to where the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms fits into this as it seems there’s a whole lot of regulation from a whole bunch of Bureaus and Administrations. I’m sure everything’s cool though, I mean it’s the FDA’s jursidiction now and they never get anything wrong.

I’ve worked in restaurants and have met many people with a Gluten allergy or Celiacs or whatever you want to call it but I always thought this was more food related than anything.  I wasn’t aware that it could effect what beer if any that they could drink.  Luckily there was wine and liquor for those persons to get drunk on previous to this Gluten free beer revolution but in some instances there’s just no replacing a beer.  Like after mowing the lawn, at a BBQ or doing any sort of man work that requires you to be active and sweaty for extended periods of time and usually includes trips to Home Depot.

Anyway, if you have a Gluten allergy, Congratulations!  Fear no more my friend, drink to your fill and be merry.

Fathers of American Beer – Joseph Schlitz

The man actually looks like Ulysses S. Grant
The man actually looks like Ulysses S. Grant

By: Billy BeerSlugger

There is a common theme among our Fathers of American Beer so far and Joseph Schlitz is not likely to stray from that theme too much. Schlitz was a native of Mainz, Germany and emigrated to the United States in 1850 settling in Milwaukee.  Schlitz was hired as a bookkeeper  by August Krug.  In 1856 he took over management of the brewery after Krug’s death and two years later married Krug’s widow, Anna Maria.  Eventually Schlitz changed the name of the company to Joseph Schlitz Brewing Co.

So in keeping with the traditions of the Founding Fathers of American Beer, Schlitz was born in Germany, emigrated to the U.S. and married into the family of an established brewer.

The company began to succeed after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, when Schlitz donated thousands of barrels of beer to that city, which had lost most of its breweries.  Many of Chicago’s breweries that had burned were never to reopen; Schlitz established a distribution point there and acquired a large portion of the Chicago market.

Schlitz died May 7, 1875, when on a return visit to Germany; his ship hit a rock near Land’s End, Cornwall, and sank though his body was never recovered.  After his wife died the company stayed in the hands of Krug’s heirs.

The Schlitz brewing company flourished for most of the 1900’s and in 1902 Schlitz surpassed the 1 million barrel mark and thus earning the title of World’s Largest Brewery taking it from fellow American brewery Pabst.  It would continually be one of America’s top breweries for the next 70 years until an alteration in production methods to meet demand while also cutting costs changed the taste of the beer.

A once proud bran was thereafter relegated to cheap beer status and eventually fell out of favor with the working class.  The company was sold in 1982 to Stroh’s after a brewery strike and continually falling sales left Schlitz in a financial mess.

The Beer That Made Milwaukee Famous” is now brewed in small quantities by Pabst Brewing Co. which effectively means that it is physically brewed by either Lion or Miller Brewing companies since Pabst does not actually brew any beer.

I particularly liked getting Schlitz-faced in my early years.  Always found the beer to be O.K. as far as value buys go and I’m glad to see it making somewhat of a resurgence.

Ithaca Beer Co: Apricot Wheat

brews_apricotBy: Billy BeerSlugger

I had this beer yesterday during brunch.  I’m not particularly fond of Wheat beers but this was a nice compliment to my Eggs Benedict at the lovely St. Stephen’s Green.

You can definitely taste the Apricot, it’s a very fruity tasting beer, not one I would grab a case of but a tasty beer when paired with the right food.

From the website:

Our easy drinking wheat beer is light in color and body … perfect for those looking for a lighter taste. The combination of wheat and barley give our Apricot Wheat a different malt character than any of our other ales. The hint of apricot gives this beer a fruity finish, making it a fun beer to drink.

Currently available in 12 ounce bottles and draft.

Original Gravity 12.P (1.048 SG)
Alcohol Content 4.9%
Malt 2-Row, White Wheat, Acidulated malt
Hops Cascade
Other Natural Apricot Flavor

Fathers of American Beer – Frederick Pabst

You know you're major when you have a portrait like this done.
You know you're major when you have a portrait like this done.

By: Billy BeerSlugger

Frederick Pabst was a German born brewer and founder of Pabst Brewing Company.  In 1848 he emigrated to the United States and settled in Chicago.  He spent a portion of his youth as a hotel waiter and then a cabin boy on a Lake Michigan Steamer.  Later he became Capitan of one of these vessels and meet another German, Philip Best, the owner of a small but profitable brewery.

Frederick Pabst took the same route as Adolphus Busch and married the daughter of a brewery owner.  In 1862 Pabst entered a partnership with fater-in-law Philip Best and began mastering the art of brewing.  Some time later he began focusing his attention on expanding the beer market.  Soon he was producing 100,000 barrels per year.

The Brewing Company eventually became publicly traded and it grew bigger and bigger with the increasing demand.  In 1889 Pabst plunked down $30,000 to procure prime shoreline in Wisconsin’s Whitefish Bay. He developed this land into Pabst Whitefish Bay Resort where, on any given Summer day, 10,000 people would come to ride the Ferris Wheel, rent rowboats, attend concerts, eat freshly caught fish including 5 kinds of whitefish and of course drink Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer.

While Fredrick Pabst passed away in 1904 the company continued to be a leading brewer and Pabst was the first to put beer in a can in 1934.  It required an actual can opener to open and had instructions on how to do so on the side of the can (we’ve come a long way).

In 1999 the production of Pabst beer was turned over to Miller Brewing Company.  They shuttered their last brewery in 2001 in Allentown PA, where they’re closing all the factories down.  After InBev’s purchase of Anheuser-Busch in 2008, Pabst laid claim to the title of  “Largest America Owned Brewer”.  Actually they don’t actually brew the beer (Miller and Lion doing the majority) but Pabst is an American not-for-profit based in California.

Pabst is historically associated with Milwaukee (which Alice Cooper tells me is Algonquian for “The Good Land”).

The “Blue Ribbon” refers to an 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, where the beer won a contest.

Making it Rain – The Pacman Jones Story

By: Billy BeerSlugger

You know I think Pacman Jones gets a bad rap. Arent you allowed to punch women in the face if you’re throwing money on them, AKA Making it Rain?

This video is astonishing to me.  Not only does it have Pacman, but rap stars Nelly and Jermaine Dupri.  Jermaine Dupri even gets on the DJ’s mic to tell the girls to keep dancing and not bend down to pick up the money that had just rained down on them. Boxer Zab Judah and Houston Texans WR Andre Johnson were there but not in the video.

What may be even more astonishing is how someone had a video camera inside a strip club and didn’t get kicked out immediately.  I know because I’ve tried this.

Overall it’s a glimpse into the lives of people that really Make it Rain instead of Make it Flurry.  I’ve seen a guy drop about $200 in $1 bills on a girl before but that’s nothing compared to the tens of thousands of dollars in the air that night in Las Vegas.

They say Pacman brought in a bag with about $100,000 with him into the strip club and then you wonder how some athletes go bankrupt after they’re done playing.  Then these athletes blame it on anyone but themselves: the league, the cars, the entourage and somehow we’re supposed to fell sorry for them.

Not that strippers don’t need the money, someone’s gotta put those girls through college right?  But what would possess someone to throw thousands of dollars at naked women, I could see a couple hundred or so and the novelty would wear off and it would just be wasting money after that.  Of course I don’t make millions of dollars so I might think differently if I played in the NFL or was a rap mogul.

The good thing is that the girls got paid and the bad thing is that later on that night a strip club employee was shot and paralyzed and this is why Pacman Jones got suspended from the NFL.  Not only that he continues to get into trouble as seen last season when he got into an altercation with a body guard who was appointed by the Cowboys to stop him from getting into trouble.

People are a product of their environment and from what I hear Pacman didn’t exactly have a great childhood but somewhere you have to start blaming things on yourself if shit keeps going bad.  And if he set people up to be murdered etc, the guy should be in jail.  This isn’t the Soprano’s, you can’t just go around killing people that you don’t like.

I’m sure he’ll get another shot at the NFL though, once he finds or pretends to find God and reforms himself.  What a great comeback story that would be.

Introducing Dom Richezza

Evel Knievel Limited Edition Nike's.
Evel Knievel Limited Edition Nike's.

New Jersey Correspondent: Dom Richezza

So I’m at the bar Saturday night in Old City, decked out in my favorite Ed Hardy t-shirt, my John Deere trucker hat (straight brim and tilted to the side), my gold chains, got my Sean John jean shorts on and of course my limited edition Evel Knievel Nike’s.

The broads at the bar are ok, nothing I can’t get for a price at the massage parlor and probably a lot more of a hassle. So I get a round of beers and start the reconnaissance mission to spot the cuties. I’m upstairs, I’m downstairs I check out the bathroom scene. I settle in on the first floor and see a group of baby girls and the one of them is kinda eying me up. She’ll look over, ill notice, then shell look away and giggle with her friends.

After I get another beer I get tired of sitting on the fence waiting for something to happen so I just go over there. Start talking up the one broad that was giving me the eyes but I wasn’t really sure if she was feeling it. My mind was a little cloudy at this point anyway from the Jager and the blunt we smoked on the ride over the bridge.

Tried to get the whole group of girls in a little parle but that didn’t seem like it was working either. At this point I’m like fuck it, I start talking to the original girl off to the side and ask her what was up. I’m telling her I came over to talk to her because she was giving me the eyes and she denies it.  Like I didn’t see her give me the “I wanna fuck you eyes from across the bar” and then start laughing.

Finally, I’m like whatever honey, you wanna play hard to get, I’m too good for you anyway and started to walk away. Then this broad starts spouting off about my outfit and Ed hardy sucks and trucker hats went out 3 years ago, my shoes are ridiculous and my friends look like they should be on Growing Up Gotti with the haircuts. So I go right back at her telling her my shoes cost more than her whole skank outfit, that the trucker hat let my head breathe  in the heat and that i’d rather have this Ed Hardy shirt than a blow job from her. Bitch was dumbfounded, didn’t know what to say, kinda walked away in a huff and a puff with her hoity toity ass.  I know she still wanted me.

I mean seriously, my shoes are limited edition and the design on the Ed Hardy shirt I love so much I’m getting it tattooed on my torso sometime after the rims on my Cutlas are paid off.

So of course this girl completely took me off my game and subsequent attempts to entertain some baby girls failed. She got me all flustered.  So I grab my boys and we head back to the car.

Were walking somewhere on Delaware Ave to the parking lot and see some douche bag and this all right looking Betty he had beside him. Right then B starts hollerin’ at this broad and the douche bag really don’t like it. Starts getting in B’s face and then Jimmy just sucker punches the dude and he’s down in a HEAP!

So you got the douchebag laid out on the street, his bitch is crying her eyes out telling me to stop kicking him and Jimmy is bitching and complaining that he thinks he just broke his hand, which later we found out that he did.

Meanwhile, were on the Ben Franklin bridge and B gets pulled over for speeding or some shit. Motherfucker gets arrested for dui, cop finds the blunt roach in the ash tray and Jimmy almost got caught with a perk 30 but swallowed it as soon as the cop told B to get out of the car.

Man I aint had a night this fun since everyone took Ecstasy in Danny Avelos backyard and we ended up getting chased by the cops naked down the streets of Maple Shade after we broke into the swim club to go skinny dipping.

B won’t be driving for awhile though. I got him my lawyers number who handled my aggravated assault case. And Jimmy got a cast and were gonna get Sal to draw some Ed Hardy shit on there. Gonna look tight.

That’s all from Jersey, ill check back with you fag ass Philly guys after the next adventure.



Fathers of American Beer: Adolphus Busch

adolphus_busch2By: Billy BeerSlugger

Adolphus Busch was a German born co-founder of Anheuser-Busch along with his father-in-law, Eberhard Anheuser.  He was the second youngest of 22 children and the family worked in winery’s and brewing supply.  He immigrated to the United States in 1857 with three of his brothers and settled in St. Louis.

In 1861 he married 17 year old Lilly Eberhard Anheuser and had 13 children. Busch served in the United States Army during the American Civil War for 14 months.  It was at this time that he learned his father had passed away and that he had been left a portion of the estate.

He used the money to start a wholesale brewing supply store.  Four year later he bought a share in his father-in-laws brewery (Bavarian Brewery) and the resulting company was called, Anheuser and Company.  In 1880 Eberhard Anheuser passed away and the name was changed to the Anheuser Busch Company.

The Anheuser Brewery was a rapid success. In 1891 he bought the trademark and name Budweiser from Carl Conrad and thus the most famous American beer was born.

Busch was intent on making his products a national brand.  Probably the most notable and ambitious endeavor was the creation of a network of rail-side ice houses which allowed the brewing industry’s first fleet of refrigerated rail cars to deliver beers to remote locations.  After Busch found a method to pasteurize the beer to keep it fresh the beer could now be shipped all over the country.  It was these two advances that made Anheuser-Busch become the successful, nationally recognized brands of beer that you find in the beer store today.

On November 18th 2008, the merging of InBev and Anheuser-Busch closed, creating Anheuser-Busch InBev which may or may not have made Adolphus roll over in his grave.

Some of you may be wondering why a German born brewer is one of the Fathers of American beer.  Well a majority if not all of the men on this list come from German descent.  If there’s two things Germans are good at it’s brewing beer and killing Jews (ohhh, that’s a bad joke).

Indian Giver

cryingindianBy: Billy BeerSlugger

Someone recently accused me of being an Indian Giver. It got me thinking about the etymology or whatever the origins of this terrible racial stereotype came from.

First I’m thinking we essentially ripped off the Indians for their land and they asked for it back.  Our Forefathers got the Indians drunk and either got them to straigt up sign over the land rights or sold them beads and whiskey for it.  I can just see British Colonists at the local watering hole laughing about the Indians asking for the land back after being swindled out of it.

In my extensive research consisting of Wikipedia and some other shit I made up, it seems that American Indians expected something of equal value in return when they gave you something.  Apparently if you didn’t offer anything they asked for the given item back.  Probably just a cultural misunderstanding between American Indians and British/American Colonists but I think the Indians are getting a really bad rap about this.  I mean even in our Imperialist, Manifest Destiny conquering of North America someone had to feel really bad about this.

It’s only until the last 15 years or so that we as a country have begun to try and pay the Indians back.  What did we do?  We gave them tax free Casino’s.  Hilarious.  Let’s give them a place to get drunk and lose their money.  Does no one else see the irony in this?

I’ve decided not to use the racial stereotype “Indian Giver” anymore and I’ll be visibly upset if you call me one even if I did give you that half bottle of Old Grandad thinking I’ll never drink it then asking for it back after the bar closed.  I may even shed a single tear like the Indian pictured above.

Fastest Way to Get Beer Cold

full-coolerBy: Billy BeerSlugger

It’s an age old question, “What’s the fastest way to get your beer cold?”. Everyone’s been there.  You buy a case of beer from the distributor and it wasn’t cold or you need to chill that case in the basement that you couldn’t fit into the fridge.

What do you do?

If I’m at home and do not have access to a cooler or mounds of ice, I’m putting a six pack in the freezer and as many beers as I can fit in the fridge.  After about 20-25 minutes the beers in the freezer will be cold and you take from the freezer and replacing from the fridge.  You will have to do this for a good hour before the remaining beers in the fridge have cooled sufficiently.  You will also have to watch out for beers in the freezer so that they don’t actually freeze and explode.

The best way, as explained by the show Mythbusters on The Discovery Channel:

In a cooler, combine salt, water and ice and just add beer for ice cold beer in about 5 minutes.  The salt melts the ice and lowers the freezing point to 27 degrees.  The water provides the surface area coverage to chill the beer optimally.

In contrast, using just ice and water to chill the beer would take about 15 minutes to get the 36 degrees achieved by the ice, salt, water mix in 5 minutes.

Of course you could use a fire extinguisher to cool the beer and it would be cold in about 3 minutes, but as I always say, “Safety First”.  You may need that fire extinguisher after you get drunk.  There’s nothing worse than accidentally starting a fire when you’re drunk and the fire extinguisher being empty from you chilling the beer with it.

So using conventional means, filling your cooler with salt, water and ice is the optimal way to cool your beer the fastest.

If you didn’t already know this, Now you know…. And Knowing is Half the Battle.

Drunk Food: Volcano Hamburger Helper

By: Billy BeerSlugger

It would be better if this picture wasn't fuzzy

I consider myself a sort of Renaissance man.  Not only can I make a crappy website, do drywall, install ceiling fans and other Man stuff, I can also Cook and do my own Laundry.

On a previous post I promised to give you the recipe for my Macaroni & Cheese, Ground Beef concoction.

So here’s what you need:

1) A box of Macaroni & Cheese. I use the White Cheddar kind.  You will also need the things necessary to make Macaroni & Cheese like Milk and Butter.

2) A pound of Ground Beef.

3) An Onion.

4) A Green Pepper.

5) An 8oz bag of Shredded Cheese of your choosing. I use a 3 cheese medley usually used in tacos.

6) Half a jar of Spaghetti Sauce (12oz).  Your choice but I like to use a Sweeter Sauce.

7) Hot Sauce.

This couldn’t be easier to make:

1) Slice up the Green Pepper and Onion

2) Combine Sliced Green Pepper and Onion with Ground Beef in a frying pan.

3) Cook the Macaroni & Cheese following the directions on the box.

4) Pre-Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

5) Combine Macaroni & Cheese with the Browned Ground Beef, Onions and Green Pepper in a baking dish.

6) Mix in the spaghetti sauce and hot sauce to taste.

7) Add the shredded cheese as desired. I use the whole bag because I eat to deal with my emotions.

8) Bake this bad bear for about 10 minutes.

It feeds 4 people for around $10.  Or if you’re me, you eat half of it and then cry the rest of the night.  It’s not exactly a food for people who are counting calories, but if you’re wasted it may be one of the best meals you’ve ever had.

Of course I do not recommend cooking while drunk.  You may fall asleep like F.X. Galvin and almost burn the house down.