Tag Archives: beer

What The Heck Is GOSE (and how is it pronounced)?

Gose: It’s the hottest beer style to hit our store in ages. Liam Maloney, Bottles’ beer buyer par excellence, explains why:

Everything old is new again. We’ve seen this cliché played out time & again in our shop, as people ‘rediscover’ Chablis or Merlot, to give a couple of examples.

Yet, as clichéd as it may be, the sentiment rings truer than ever for a beer style that has taken our store by storm: Gose.

Gose (Germans say “GOHZ-uh”. “GOHZ” is what we hear in these parts) is a very unusual, ancient style which originated in the north of Germany, in Leipzig. It’s an unfiltered wheat beer, which makes it cloudy & refreshing, very much like a Bavarian Hefeweizen. Where it differs is in the unusual additions of coriander, lactic acid, and sea salt.

When made correctly, a Gose has a fruity/salty/tart balance that is unlike anything else in the beer world. Tart but not mouth-puckering, fruity but not cloying or sweet, and salty like well-seasoned food. The components are all there, but they are in balance, and your tongue has fun trying to pick out what flavor is coming next.

Why is it becoming so popular?

We think it’s a response to the IPA craze. IPAs are great beers, full of piney, resinous hop flavors, but one can only have so many before palate fatigue sets in. Brewers have responded by creating ‘session IPAs’ with a lighter ABV and muted hop presence, but they often taste like a watered down IPA, and are not as satisfying. Gose, however, at an average ABV of around 4%, offers flavor and nuance without the heaviness and hoppy punch of an IPA.

Like any tart beverage, this beer is made for food, and pairs especially well with summertime fare like fish, grilled sausages & pork chops, potato salad, and barbecue. Much like wine (which is an acid, and Gose features lactic acid in the mix), a Gose will also pair well with cheese. Everything from a fresh, young Chevre to a knobby, rustic aged cheddar will work, and a blue cheese will highlight the salty qualities. Intensely refreshing, a Gose is also a welcome lawnmower beer on a hot July Saturday.

Now, there’s been a lot of talk lately about sour beers, and while Gose falls under that general distinction, it isn’t nearly as punishing as many of the wild fermented, funky, sour beers out there. Do not confuse this style with a ‘Gueuze’! Beer nerds the country over love to pluck out the not-so-subtle notes of horse blanket, cat pee, and musty basement in their Belgian Gueuze, and while there’s certainly a place for that (even Zamfir has his fans), it’s not what most people are looking for in a beer.

What we’re talking about is a delicate beer with subtle flavors of wheat, salt, coriander, & acid. Imagine those same flavors in a perfectly baked sourdough loaf and you’ll have the general idea.

Here are some of our favorite Gose beers for the summer season. We hope you’re intrigued to find out more and give them a try next time you fire up the grill or lawnmower.

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Sierra Nevada Otra Vez – Bucking tradition, Otra Vez is sweetened with prickly pear cactus & ‘tartened’ with grapefruit. The fruitiest of the new Gose beers, it’s the perfect ‘gateway Gose’ as an introduction to the style.

Uinta Ready, Set, Gose! – Mildy tart, this Gose is made in a more traditional method than the Otra Vez, and has more tart flavors with less fruitiness.

Sixpoint Jammer – Our favorite entry isn’t afraid of the salt. A healthy dose of Jacobsen’s Sea Salt brings balance to this funky can. You’ll go through a six pack before you know it!

Gosebrauerei Bayrischer Bahnhof Leipziger Gose – For a treat, go straight to the source. Re-vamped and re-opened in 1999, this brewery specializes in the Leipzig treat. We have it imported fresh as often as possible.

Cheers!
-Liam

 

Black Hog Brewing Co.

blackhog_cansWe’re rolling out the welcome mat for cans of Black Hog Brewing’s terrific beer.

Made just down a ways in Connecticut (Oxford, to be exact), the popular craft brewery with the super hot label art is the creation of three beer-loving pals: Tyler Jones, whose brewing chops were honed at Mercury Brewing, Smuttynose and Portsmouth Brewery (NH), and brothers Jason and Tom Sobocinski (the latter a PC alum!), owners of the fantastic New Haven-based cheese shop & bistro Caseus, the award-winning bar Ordinary, and Smoke Box BBQ.

We love their Granola Brown Ale, which is brewed with a mix of oatmeal, grains, hops and roasted malts. The guys say they were inspired to make this beer on the hikes they take before beginning one of their legendary pig roasts (which they do often, hence the brewery’s name). While hiking and munching on crunchy granola they decided to incorporate the oat flavors into their beer. It’s smooth and malty, and finishes with – you guessed it – notes of chocolate and raisin.

Their Easy Rye’ Da is an “easy drinkin’” low ABV rye India Pale Ale. They cut back the ABV on this session style rye so that, according to their (really awesome) website, “you can cruise on it all day long, take it easy, have a few and remember what it’s all about.” It’s hoppy, with sweet and spicy citrus notes.

And check out the super hot Ginga’ Ninja, a red India Pale Ale brewed with 6 lbs of fresh ginger in every batch, and named after Tyler’s fiery-haired wife. It’s all ginger up front, and finishes with a lasting hop flavor.

In addition to images of their vibrant design-forward cans, the Black Hog Brewing website is chock full of strong pairing suggestions. And, not surprisingly given Tom and Jason’s background, lots of terrific cheese pairings are offered.

Black Hog Brewing Co.’s cans are on sale for the month of March at Bottles. Come give them a try!

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Drink Your Chocolate

Skip the chewable chocolate this Valentine’s Day and give your sweetie the sippable sort. We’re crushing on a few bottles made with real chocolate and genuine skill, those that are good enough to be enjoyed year-round.

Meletti Cioccolato
Thick, dark, creamy, this Italian liqueur is pure pourable decadence. It’s made in Italy with milk and Dutch chocolate, sugar and alcohol, and is intensely rich and smooth with a balanced sweetness. We’re crazy for the Cioccolato any way it’s served: cold & neat (think adult pudding pop), warmed, over ice cream, or as a mixer in any number of cocktails.
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Young’s Double Chocolate Stout
This full-flavored dark beer made with chocolate malt and real chocolate is luxurious without being overtly sweet. It’s certainly a satisfying treat on its own, but for something special, consider combining it in a frosty mug with vanilla ice cream and bourbon for the ultimate grown-up float.
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Nickle Creek Decadence
A Rhody original, from Foster! This beautiful bottle, reminiscent of Port, has warm flavors of cherry and plum that make way for a dark, bittersweet chocolate finish. It’s a delicious way to end a romantic dinner.
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Cheers and Happy Valentine’s Day!

Super Bowl Party Pairings

So your team hasn’t made it to the big game. So what. We can think of at least one reason why this could be a good thing: You now have more time to pay attention to the food on the table and the drink on the bar than the action on the field. And sure, yes, ok, your standard suds will be just fine with traditional game day fare. But put in a touch of extra effort, people – it’ll make game day that much more delicious.

Here are the brews we’ll be drinking when watching the two teams vie for their big fancy rings.

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Smokey Sausages with Doppelbocks. The German beer’s big, strong and dark maltiness is a natural fit with the smoky meaty flavor of cocktail sausages & pigs in a blanket. We’re reaching for the  Weihenstephan Korbinian Doppelbock for its figgy, nutty roastiness.

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Bowls of Chili with Big IPAs. A classic marriage of a hot-spicy chili with the hop-spicy IPA. We’re going for the sticky, hoppy, bold Lord Hobo Boom Sauce IPA.

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Buffalo Wings & Blue Cheese Sauce with German Pilsners. The crisp, floral and refreshing German pils will balance out the wings’ addictive cheesy, spicy goodness. And the classic Bitburger Pilsner fits the bill for us every time.

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Potato Chips & Onion Dip with Saisons. Nothing’s easier than ripping open a bag of chips and dipping them into a can of good old creamy, herbal onion dip. Nothing, that is, except cracking opening a bottle of a saison, whose herbal and spicy notes will balance that creamy dip. Allagash Saison, anyone?

Enjoy the game and may the best team win!

The Bottles’ 2015 Gift Guide

We scoured the wide world of beverages to select the perfect gifts for wine, beer and cocktail enthusiasts this year. They’re the bottles that are in-demand, on-trend, highly-acclaimed, and flat-out awesome.

Here’s what to give (and get) this holiday season:

gift1Four Roses Private Label Bourbon: Bottles’ Barrel #3 

Available only at Bottles: our private barrel (hand-selected by us!) of this highly sought-after bourbon: extremely rich & uncut – ideal for the hard-to-shop-for bourbon lover. Limited quantities availability. 

$59.99

 

gift2True Born Gin “The Belgian Wheat Act” – Sons of Liberty 

First released earlier this year, this genever-style gin distilled from beer brewed with traditional gin botanicals is for beer and gin lovers alike. Locavores, will love it, too – it’s made in RI.

$34.99

 

gift3Fifty-Fifty Eclipse Imperial Stout 

Delicious esoterica for the beer geek: award-winning Imperial Stout (various flavors) aged in oak bourbon barrels. The color of the wax enclosure indicates which bourbon casks were used.

$29.99 (22oz)

 

gift42010 Barolo 

The gift for serious collectors: 2010 is widely regarded as the most outstanding vintage for Barolo in the past several decades. Choose from our selection of acclaimed producers of this iconic wine.

$45 and up

 

gift5Creme de Noyaux Liqueur – Tempus Fugit Spirits 

Hand-crafted, all-natural almond & hazelnut creme liqueur for the serious at-home bartender and after-dinner drink aficionado. It’s what we want this year. Limited quantities available.

$39.99

 

gift6Sotol Por Siempre 

Wildly popular with the country’s most talented mixologists, this regional mezcal is made with wild-harvested sotol rather than the standard agave. A must-have for the tequila / cocktail enthusiast.

$44.99

 

chartreuse_giftGreen Chartreuse V.E.P 

The limited-edition, V.E.P bottling of this classic, secret-recipe liqueur is given special treatment with long aging in oak barrels. Each bottle is hand numbered and encased in a collectable wooden box. A truly special gift.

$164.99 

 

etna_giftMt. Etna (Sicilian) Wine 

They’re what sommeliers across the country are buzzing about: wines from this volcanic region are the most interesting being produced in Italy today. An outstanding gift for all wine enthusiasts. 

$15 – $65

 

gift_yellow_wine1999 Chateau d’Yquem Sauternes 

One of the world’s most iconic wines is at the top of the bucket-list for many an oenophile. The pricing on the critically-acclaimed 1999 vintage makes this a splurge-worthy gift-of-a-lifetime. Don’t miss out.

$249.99 (375ml)

 

nips_giftBottles’ Mystery Box of Nips 

Five tiny bottles of booze all in one mystery box – who knows what they’ll get? One of our most popular gifts year after year. Makes a fun stocking stuffer or contribution to the Yankee Swap.

$14.99

 

AND, for true one-stop-shopping, ask a team member about our various, festive wrapping & gift card options.

Happy Holidays, and Cheers!

Party Math: A Guide to Buying – and Serving – Booze

The good news is the party’s a raging success and your guests are having the time of their lives. The bad news is the party’s a raging success and you’re about to run out of booze. Here’s how to never let that happen again.

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Now that you have that down, ensure your party’s a smash by following these 8 Tips for Entertaining from team Bottles:

1. Don’t forget mixers & garnishes. Figure 1 liter of soda water/tonic/juice for every 3 guests; plan on 1 lemon/lime/orange for every 3 guests as well.

2. Have on hand at least 1 lb. of ice per person for storage & drink-making purposes. Which means your ice trays aren’t enough. Just go buy ice already, and put it in a cooler on the back porch. Trust us.

3. White wine is to be served chilled, not ice cold. Take your whites out of the fridge 10 minutes before serving. Most red wine is to be served a touch cooler than room temp. So don’t store it in direct sunlight, or, gasp, near the oven.

4. Worried about temperature fluctuations when buying cold beer? Fear not. Too much light and extreme heat (think noon heat in an un-airconditioned-car in August) are what will damage your brews. Subtle temperature changes are fine.

5. Always serve food alongside alcoholic beverages.

6. Place pitchers of water near the bar – and keep them filled.

7. Have a designated driver – or your Uber account – queued up for over-indulgers.

8. Reduce party stress by ordering your bottles in advance either in-store or via phone, and Bottles will deliver to your door day of!

Cheers!

 

 

New Cigars for Spring! Smoking Monk by Drew Estate

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Warmer weather means cigar season is here!

The most recent addition to our humidor is the Smoking Monk series from the cigar firm of Drew Estate.  Among their familiar labels is the Acid line (we have the Acid Blondie in stock).

The Smoking Monk series has five blends all intended to match with specific beer styles.  All five are rolled only in a generous 6 x 54 shape.  This is a lengthy smoke for perhaps relaxing on the 19th hole or while playing a round of golf.

The Hefeweizen blend is on the mild side and an easy smoke.  I smoked all five blends and prefer the fuller style of the remaing four: they are Imperial Stout, American IPA, Porter, and Triple Belgian.  The Smoking Monk is well constructed and contains high quality tobaccos.  Any of these blends smoke well with a fine beer or ale, or simply by itself.

Enjoy one during the Masters Tournament this weekend!

Cheers,
Don

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The Ultimate Drink List for Your Super Bowl Party!

Looking for fun drink ideas for your Super Bowl party? Something that excites beyond the standard cheap beer? The pros at Bottles have created a game-day-ready drink menu that includes Washington state wines, New England craft beers, and crowd-sized cocktail recipes featuring craft spirits by New England distillers. We’ve even created a handy printable list for these items. Download, print it out, and stop by Bottles for everything you’ll need.

——> Download & Print the Drink List <——-

New England Cocktails spirits Looking for Super Bowl cocktail recipes?  Here’s our list featuring local New England spirits that can be made the morning of game day. Large-batch cocktails allow your guests to focus on what really matters — football, with no empty drink glasses! Nervous about ratios? We’ve done the math for you. You’ll need a large pitcher, punch bowl or swing top bottle to display your mixology handiwork, and don’t forget the ice. Give the bottle a quick shake as you serve these spirited Yankee cocktails over ice. Stop by Bottles for these stellar local spirits, grab your favorite pitcher and get pouring!

Rhody Russian:

Ingredients 1 bottle Loyal 9 Vodka 1/2 bottle of Dave’s Coffee Syrup 15 Dashes of Angostura Bitters 2 Liters Club Soda

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher or punch bowl. If making this ahead of time, add the club soda just before serving. Serve in glasses full of ice. Makes 15 cocktails Sons of Liberty Spirits Company is located not too far from Providence in South Kingstown, Rhode Island. They handcraft delicious, American Single Malt Whiskies and a line of premium craft vodkas. Drink local! Dave’s Coffee Syrup is also handcrafted in Rhode Island — coffee beans are hand-roasted in small batches, cold-brewed and simmered with natural cane sugar. An awesome addition to cocktails!

Issac’s Punch:

Ingredients (makes 15 cocktails) 3/4 Bottle of Bully Boy White Rum 1/2 Gallon of Apple Cider 7 1/2 oz Simple Syrup 7 1/2 oz Fresh Lime Juice

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher or punch bowl and serve in a glass over ice. Bully Boy is a Boston distillery that makes hand-produced, small batch spirits with loads of New England character. Learn more about Bully Boy Distillers >

Boston Cocktail:

Ingredients 3/4 a bottle of Greylock Gin by Berkshire Mountain Distillers 3/4 a bottle of Apricot Brandy 7 1/2 oz fresh lime juice 12 Dashes of grenadine

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher or punch bowl and serve in a glass over ice. Makes 15 cocktails. Berkshire Mountain Distillers (BMD) are the creators of Greylock Gin, which is the star of this cocktail recipe. Established in 2007, all BMD spirits are handcrafted in small batches in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.

Washington Wines wines For those Seahawks fans lurking in New England, we had to choose some wines for Washington. Here’s a selection of our yummiest Washington state wines in the shop!

Kung Fu Girl Riesling – Insanely refreshing and yummy!  Not your momma’s too-sweet Riesling — this one’s bone dry! Drink by itself or with something spicy like Buffalo Chicken Wings.

Vino Pinot Grigio – Wanna know a secret?  This wine is better than your Super Bowl guests deserve.  While they’re watching Katy Perry during halftime, sneak a glass in the kitchen.

Eve Chardonnay – A lighter style Chardonnay — polished with pretty pear, apple and cream flavors. Great with 7 layer dip!

Velvet Devil Merlot – Wickedly rich and smooth — perfect with your ribs or sausages.

Columbia Crest H3 Cabernet Sauvignon –  Dark and spicy with plum, currant and chocolate flavors. Scored 92 points from Wine Spectator! It may be the best thing from Washington (including the Seahawks).

Milbrandt Cabernet Sauvignon – Dark, velvety and complex with layers of dark fruit and dried savory herbs. A staff favorite! Pair with nachos and Seahawk Chowdah.

New England Craft Beers beers Go Pats! Some of our favorite craft beers for Super Bowl 2015, all made in New England! We’ve chosen a range of styles to please any crowd.

Cambridge Brewing Remain in Light – Made in Boston! A light, snappy, crisp pilsner.

Cape Ann Fisherman’s Navigator – A toasty, malty, warming brew from Massachusetts! Cape Ann’s winter seasonal doppel-bock.

Otter Creek Citra Mantra – From Vermont, and a hoppy, citrusy, and super refreshing Indian Pils Lager.

Newport Storm Wham! Bam! Van Damme – Powerful! Boozy! Malty!

P.S. Not sure how much beer or wine to get? Use our party math guide! 

Enjoy your parties!

Cheers!

The Bottles Team

The Bottles Instagram Beer #Regram Giveaway!

UPDATE:
We’re so excited about this week’s @gansettbeer / @Revivalbrewing H.P Lovecraft Honey Ale release that we decided to add it to our #bfwbeergiveawayInstagram regram contest! Simply follow us, like the picture, regram, and @ mention @bottlesfinewine and ##bfwbeergiveaway to join the contest and a chance to win a 6pack of Honey Ale, or any of the 3 previous beers! Ends Sunday 1/25 at 11:59PM! 3 winners, 4 choices!

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The Iris Cantillion beer from our last giveaway was so popular we decided to feature ALL beer, 3 awesome and delicious beers that is, for our second Instagram giveaway!  So take a chance and join in on the regraming! Choose from our sweet selection of: Jester King Brewery: Mad Meg Provision Ale, De Glazen Toren: Saison d’Erpe-Mere Lentebier, and Prairie Artisan Ales: Prairie Ale Saison!

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How to enter:

1. First, follow @bottlesfinewine on Instagram.
2. Like and regram the Giveaway Prize Photo.
3. In your regram, you must @-mention @bottlesfinewine and #-hashtag #bfwbeergiveaway!
That’s it!

The Bottles Instagram Beer Giveaway ends at 10:59PM (Eastern Time) on Sunday, January 25rd. Three winners will be announced on Monday, January 26th, and winners will also be contacted privately through Instagram direct with details on how to claim their prize!

Giveaway Rules:

-Must be 21+ years of age to enter contest
-We cannot ship to Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Utah or Vermont. We do not ship outside of the United States.

– Enjoy responsibly!

1-megJester King Brewery Mad Meg

A Provision Ale unique to Texas Hill Country, where naturally occurring wild yeasts impart a sense of place. Unfiltered, unpasteurized, and 100% naturally conditioned beer. Named after “Mad Meg”, a peasant woman from Flemish folklore who leads an army of women to pillage hell. Also known as “Dull Gret”, she’s famously depicted in Pieter Brueghel the Elder’s 1562 painting​ by the same name.

1-glazenDe Glazen Toren Saison d’Erpe-Mere Lentebier

An unfiltered Begian dry-hopped saison. It’s springtime in a glass! Also, it’s delicious dry, sparkling, and very, very floral.

1-prariePrairie Artisan Ales Prairie Ale

A beautiful golden toned saison with a generous addition of Saaz hops, which adds a spicy, floral flavor and aroma. Brewed with a mix of three different yeasts, including ‘brettanomyces bruxellensis’, a yeast known for its pineapple and mango flavors.

  Good luck! 1-grouptopsCheers!  The Bottles Team

For official rules click here–