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[Beer Review] Kros Strain’s Fairy Nectar–A Salacious Affair for Nebraska Hop Lovers

Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like we’re in a weird place as craft beer fans where IPAs are a dime a dozen. While not necessarily a bad thing, the style has taken on a life of its own and some breweries are getting a little heavy handed with their various iterations–suffice to say I’ve got a Mango S’mores IPA review in the backlog. All that being said, being a craft beer drinker in Nebraska has been increasingly more exciting over the last few years. Not only because the distribution has taken off (to the point of being overwhelming), but breweries are popping up everywhere.

One such brewery that I reviewed once not too long ago is Kros Strain Brewing Company. One of Omaha’s youngest currently operating breweries, they’ve already made quite the splash in the metro area with their three standard releases (available pretty much where you can buy beer in the area) and some experimental variations on two of their most popular beers. One of them is the Fairy Nectar IPA. Brewed with Mosaic and Citra hops (my favorites) the beer pours golden with a slight haze and settled with a thin creamy head that, thanks to the nucleated brewery glass (featuring an etched hop at the bottom) it sticks around no matter how long you leave it sitting around–which, spoiler alert, probably won’t be long. (more…)

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[Beer Review] Vanilla Bean Blonde by Infusion Brewing Company

I love vanilla. Call me crazy, but a nice bowl of vanilla ice cream puts me in my happy place. Maybe that’s why Infusion’s logo for their extremely popular local offering sits so well with me. I also don’t generally review draft beer, simply because I feel like a tool sitting around typing notes into my phone in the middle of a bar and holding a glass up to examine light and what not. So now that Infusion has decided to roll out their taproom staple to bottles I’m finally ready to sit down and ramble about it.

When Infusion first opened I took to social media to let all my friends and family know how much I loved it. As time has gone by that glowing recommendation had turned to nothing more than a displeased grunt. A few less than satisfactory trips and interactions with folks behind the bar soured me to the beer, regardless of the quality the beer may have had. So over time my indulgence of their beer resorted to other local bars or beerfests, but I often defaulted to the Vanilla Bean Blonde- cause like I said, vanilla is my weakness. (more…)

2016 Great Nebraska Beerfest Preview

img_0978One of Nebraska’s largest craft beer festivals returns and for the 3rd year in a row Werner Park plays host. Having attended the fest for the past four years, I have to say the ballpark is perfect for outdoor beer sampling and having a baseball field as the backdrop makes this particular beer and baseball fanatic very happy. The venue offers plenty of shade and a comfortable breeze often flows through the concourse.

This year’s festival sees the return of many local and regional favorites bringing their beer for fans to enjoy as well as a slew of new breweries. Recent events certainly cast a shadow for some as the Nebraska Liquor Control Commission stepped in and blocked homebrewers and non-licensed breweries in planning from participating and pouring their beer for thirsty patrons. Upcoming breweries like Marto, Code Beer Co, Jukes Ale Works, Get Lost, Kros Strain, and Vis Major are among the previously announced participants that will now be absent when the doors open at 12:30pm for the VIP session and 2pm for general admission ticket holders. (more…)

Beer Review: Toppling Goliath PsuedoSue

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Once upon a time a young man stared in wonder at the shelves of a liquor store. Shelves that contained an endless amount of beer for him to choose from. He often reached out and closed his fingers around the soft but somewhat sturdy cardboard that gave a little as it was lifted from its position. On the box the words ‘Bud Light’ gleamed like a beacon from heaven. The second the can was cracked open and the liquid touched his lips- he suddenly awoke from the nightmare of his own doing. That young man finally came to his senses and has now quite possibly tasted one of the most amazing beers he’s had since venturing into the craft beer universe.

It’s true that I’ve come a long way since the days of regularly buying and chugging the fizzy yellow water. At this point I’ve been able to try many of the beers I held high on my “Must Try” list and though Toppling Goliath only recently came into my life, I’ve crossed off another. Lots of hype surrounded PsuedoSue before I stumbled across it almost by accident. I traveled to Des Moines on a short road trip with my wife to sample some of the local flavors and the extensive menu at El Bait Shop offered a staggering amount of choices but the elusive Sue was not listed. I already knew that finding a bottle would be a fool’s endeavor but I asked the locals anyway. As it turns our asking was the best thing I could have done as my waitress overheard and informed me that she would go get me a glass- as Sue had just recently been tapped once again. (more…)