Beerman for Dec. 13, 2012

Rogue beer and Voodoo doughnuts

For Weekly SurgeDecember 11, 2012 

I had to steel-up my stomach to look at the bottle of Rogue Voodoo Doughnut Bacon Maple Ale.

I had to steel-up my stomach again to read the ingredients.

But apparently, Oregon is the place for crazy inventiveness.

Rogue Ales of Newport, Ore., has produced two brews in honor of Voodoo Doughnuts, which has two locations in Portland and one location in Eugene.

This is only relevant to the Grand Strand because Better Brands, a local beer distributer, got a small shipment of Rogue Voodoo Doughnut Bacon Maple Ale.

Last Saturday (Dec. 8), I bought a 750-milliliter bottle of the ale for $11.99 at Piggly Wiggly at The Market Common.

Voodoo Doughnuts is known for its wild recipes. As it would happen, the company makes a Bacon Maple Bar, described on its Web site as “raised yeast doughnut with maple frosting and bacon on top!” All the descriptions have exclamation points!

The Bacon Maple Ale’s bottle is Pepto-Bismol pink – or, perhaps more accurately, doughnut-frosting pink.

Among the ale’s labeled 13 ingredients are “applewood-smoked bacon” and “pure maple flavoring,” along with seven varieties of malts, three of which had “smoked” in their names.

If you can get past the weird ingredients and the bottle color (that reminds me of acute stomach illnesses), I think you might like it. Bacon Maple Ale is both smoky and sweet. I could taste the subtlest hint of bacon. I could not taste anything like a doughnut, and that’s OK.

Rogue’s other Voodoo Doughnut flavor – as far as I can tell, not available on the Grand Strand – is the Chocolate, Peanut Butter, and Banana Ale.

If you’re curious about the Bacon Maple Ale, look for it soon, because Better Brands only received about eight cases in late November.

Leine’s Big Eddy

You’ve probably seen six-pack beers from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Co. in the local grocery stores. Leinenkugel is a craft brewery in Chippewa Falls, Wis. Now a local Leinenkugel distributer, Yahnis Co., is one of the few chosen to carry the company’s Big Eddy series, according to Scott Green, on-premises sales manager for Yahnis. The series is named after a spring that provides water for the brewery.

So far, the Big Eddy series has four beers: The Wee Heavy Scotch Ale, the Imperial IPA, the Baltic Porter, and the Russian Imperial Stout.

I bought a four-pack of the 2012 Russian Imperial Stout at Green’s Discount Beverage, 2850 North Kings Highway in Myrtle Beach, for $8.99.

This stout is made with 11 malts and three hops. A stout, for the craft-beer newcomer, is a dark beer, but don’t associate the color with bitterness. It’s almost sweet. The unique flavor earned Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout a place on the Five Faves list of Best Holiday Beers on WRAL.com, the Web site for the Raleigh, N.C., CBS affiliate.

It’s also boozy – 9.5 percent.

Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout will only be available through December, so find it while supplies last.

The Crafty Rooster in Conway, Tilted Kilt in Myrtle Beach, Handley’s Pub in Carolina Forest, Good Time Charley’s in Myrtle Beach, and the growler station at Piggly Wiggly at The Market Common were slated for kegs, Green said.

Deliveries of bottles were scheduled for Bumstead’s Pub in Myrtle Beach, Buffalo Wild Wings in Carolina Forest, Coastal Ale House in Conway, Mellow Mushroom in Myrtle Beach, and Wild Wing Café in North Myrtle Beach.

Lagunitas, regularly

Mike Shank of Better Brands, a local beer distributer, said his company now has regular access to beers from Lagunitas Brewing Co. in Petaluma, Calif.

The four Lagunitas brews that have recently entered the Grand Strand are Brown Shugga’, A Little Sumpin Wild, Hop Stoopid IPA, and the brewery’s regular IPA. These beers have consistently earned high marks from craft beer critics, so Lagunitas’ regular presence on the Grand Strand is great news.

Contact Colin Burch at beerpour@yahoo.com and visit his blog at http://maltyhops.blogspot.com.

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