Friday, May 4, 2018

WEEK 129----Drink as if going to WORK in a Beerfest

And so its happening Next Week, the much anticipated event of the year--Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen(#MBCC2018) .

Well, to most people, it's just a beer festivals---but for geeks like us who lives in craft-desert, the activities lined up for next week is a big big deal, it would be a week which would quench our thirst for awesome brew for a year's worth--the joke among some of us here is that a week or even few days in Copenhagen during MBCC week is way way better than drinking everyday here(and nope, drinking everyday is NOT what i need).
下个星期就是CRAFT BEER界年度盛事,哥本哈根啤酒庆典的到来,主办方在周中宣布了部份参与酿坊酒单,虽还不是全部100家,却已让啤迷朋友大呼“让人疯狂的清单”,然后说“真的需要研究下会场各酿坊位置图,看怎样才能有效率品尝想喝酒款,节省场内不同角落来回跑领酒喝时间”。
听起来像不像需要“完成任务”之类的比赛型电视真人秀感觉?
啤酒庆典,听起来就只是个让大家轻松把杯同欢共乐的“啤酒节”,不过,对很多啤迷来说,某些时候更像是去“工作”或类似“完成任务”那样,从最“基本准备”来说,人还没到哥本哈根,啤迷已经开始着手研究两天四场次好几百款酒有什么是自己觉得重点一定要喝的。话说回来,虽然可以什么都不研究场内走到哪随性喝,不过,面对那么多选择,有经验啤迷一般都会先把功课做了,
So, the big week is coming, but looking at what's coming from the day i set foot in Copenhagen come next week is quite hectic to say the least---there's not only various tap takeover/tasting events/bottle release/meet the brewer and such by bars/restaurants directly related to Mikkeller--but also many other bars that would have other activities during that same week. And that's only what's available to drink before the 2 days 4 sessions beerfest starts. Come Friday/Saturday of 11th & 12th---the "work load" is even more daunting--the first question is --where do you start or how do you pick what to drink/what not to drink from hundreds of beer/mead/hard cider from no less than 100 breweries inside Oksnehallen?
到啤酒节那两天,啤迷在场内面对的是几百种不同款啤酒/蜜酒选择,情况就像小孩子进到玩具店+糖果店,如何保持高度自制力是件很考人的事。与此同时,加上之前几天就已开始的“啤酒周”活动,啤迷最需要做好的是吃饱睡好,特别是“啤酒节”那两天,早上进场前和中场休息等4点那场时一定要先吃好,还好的是,对离不开麵饭类亚洲啤迷来说,会场不远处的中餐厅热乎乎饺子汤饭或日本拉面或泰国餐厅都有身心疗愈功能。
如果要问为什么啤迷花时间精力千里迢迢飞去一个“啤酒节”却搞到好像去“工作”那样?情况是这样的:-
Let's take for examples some of what's happening on Thursday 10th of May alone:-
from the Mikkeller official participating bars/venues :-
1)Tap takeover by Other Half & Finback & Kane at mikkeller bar
2)Arizona Wilderness Tap takeover at Warpigs
3)Jester King bottle release at Torvehallerne bottle shop
4)Hoof Hearted event at Mikropolis
5)Bokkereyder Tasting at Koelschip
6)Jester King taptakeover at Baghaven + bottle release of Baghaven
7) Scandinavia taptakeover at Mikkeller & Fiends.....

and then there's also non mikkeller related bars having:-
1) Cantillon Blabaer limited Release plus tap takeover of Cantillon & Equilibrium --where pop up bar starts as early as 8am!!--at Himmeriget
2) Another new bar in town 1420 will also be having a Cantillon event.
3) A Verdant & Buxton tap takeover at Fermentoren...
There's probably more activities but these 10 events are some i have noticed and it's already too many to pick/try to attend.....
and then onto the 2 days 4 sessions beerfest on Friday & Saturday--looking at the beer list for Friday Morning yellow session alone is already very challenging-- if you are going for just 1 particular session and call it a fest then it's likely easier--but if you are like some of us who would go for ALL 4 sessions--then it will be much more tricky.
1)选择太多但时间和个人酒精抗力都有限
“啤酒节”分两天进行,每天早上10点到2点和下午4点到8点两个不同时段场次,每场4个小时任你自由选择想喝什么就喝什么,问题是,场地不小,人也多,一些“热门”“必喝”酒款也要排队才能领取,在时间有限,也考量个人酒精抗力情况下,怎样才能比较有效率选择场内100家酿坊超过200款各式类别风格啤酒/蜜酒中最想喝的就变成一个需要解决的问题,
打个简单比喻,如果说4小时内有200款可喝,意味着每小时要喝50款,即不到1分半钟就喝一款,这是要超人才能做到的事,综合过去参与经验来说,4小时内可以喝上30-40款不同类别啤酒/蜜酒是不错/合理额度(以参与全部四个场次的个人和啤迷朋友经验为准,当然会有喝上更多的人,但这并不是比谁喝得多的庆典)。

Let's look at some of the Big Stouts lined up for FRIDAY Morning( 10am-2pm) sessions alone, where do one starts and how do you manage efficiency issue by not wasting too much time running from different corners of the hall trying to pick up drinks?(granted some big ones will see people lining up), as well as managing alcohol tolerance issue( there's another session to go from 4-8pm).
Personally i have tried the pre-event preparations in one year--only to Not bothered following the "drinking plan" when inside hall--and one year i was really going totally unprepared and just pick as i walk and drink--but that Friday Morning beer list for this year kinda made me wanted to try and "cherry pick" a list of brew i would like to taste(as shown below one of few pages)--and i actually did went through the whole morning session brew--picked some --and guess what--that list of mine contains some 50+ breweries, some with 2 brew some with 1, meaning my list is having at least 100 beer/mead/hard cider which i'm either curious about or really wanted to have a sip-but that's not gonna happen as i know from previous experiences that i will not be able to sample a 100 brew--actually not even 50....( *there's another session to go in the afternoon --and no point drinking until you don't actually know what you are drinking coz your palate already damn fxxked or alcohol has taken over your mind and body).
2)独乐乐不如众乐乐
会场内,很多时候会看到一大班人坐一起,像是做研究/考试那样认真拿着本子/手机记录尝味心得(TASTING NOTE),他她们不是什么研究机构人员,就只是啤迷,是比一般啤迷更致力于参与评酒网站/手机程式评酒的一群,这群人会更像完成“工作报告”那样更致力于品尝更多款的目标。至于不是“研究员”的啤迷们,因为想要尝味/评估/记录的不同酒款实在很多。有些啤迷也会或三两人或更多人的分工合作,同时间去不同酿坊摊位领酒然后分享,不同酒款都喝些,即能喝少尝多,也节省个别跑来跑去领酒时间,快乐的工作着大概是这样解释吧
It's true going to a craft beer festivals the level of MBCC is something geeks looking forward to--i missed out last year so i know how it feels when friends were rejoicing/enjoying some awesome brews in CPH---but looking at it from another angle--it's true Copenhagen is the best beer heaven to be come next week--but with so many activities all going on almost at the same time during that particular week--it felt as if too many good things coming in all at once(how nice if say all those activities can be split into weekly events and happen this part of the world throughout the year :)--and half jokingly half seriously--the coming week in CPH would be like going to work for some of us geeks--you kinda need a plan or so to tackle that many activities/so much to drink...
2)独乐乐不如众乐乐
会场内,很多时候会看到一大班人坐一起,像是做研究/考试那样认真拿着本子/手机记录尝味心得(TASTING NOTE),他她们不是什么研究机构人员,就只是啤迷,是比一般啤迷更致力于参与评酒网站/手机程式评酒的一群,这群人会更像完成“工作报告”那样更致力于品尝更多款的目标。至于不是“研究员”的啤迷们,因为想要尝味/评估/记录的不同酒款实在很多。有些啤迷也会或三两人或更多人的分工合作,同时间去不同酿坊摊位领酒然后分享,不同酒款都喝些,即能喝少尝多,也节省个别跑来跑去领酒时间,快乐的工作着大概是这样解释吧
后记:如果你不了解什么是哥本哈根啤酒庆典(Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen简称MBCC),基本概念就像是一个两天四个场次的顶级美食飨宴那样的啤酒/蜜酒盛宴,受邀前来参与的酿坊都不会是泛泛之辈,从大师级别到火热新贵到蓄势待发实力新人都有。
It would be interesting to see if my so called "cherry picked" beer list would work inside hall come Friday Morning session--as for the weekdays leading up to the fest--- i guess having some rice/soup/Chinese/Thai food or perhaps Ramen and good enough sleep would be vital to being able to really enjoying what's coming.

See you guys in Copenhagen soon.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

WEEK 128---MORE than just a "BEER FESTIVAL"

Less than a month to go---by 5th May, the city of Copenhagen will see thousands of geeks descending from different corners of the world--all for one common reason--the Mikkeller Beer Week, which is kinda like the extended version of the 2 days beer festival--Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen or MBCC2018. 
下个月5号开始,哥本哈根将引来一批又一批从世界各地飞来积聚的啤迷们。
无他,大家都只冲着一件事情,毋庸置疑的Craft Beer界年度盛事,哥本哈根啤酒庆典(Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen简称MBCC2018)而去,除了11-12号两天四个场次的啤酒节,从5号开始到13号,这城市好多跟啤酒庆典关联的不同酒吧餐厅将出现各种占领啤酒泵品酒会美食啤酒配搭瓶子首卖会等或限量或小型活动等着啤迷参与。
到底是什么样的啤酒庆典每年能吸引那么多不同国家城市啤迷不远千里也要去?不如来看看除了11-12号两天啤酒庆典之外(已知大约一百家不同酿坊参与),今年啤酒周有什么活动阵容等着:-
For the uninitiated, while #MBCC2018 is happening on 11&12 May, the beer celebration is more than just a 2 days fest, in fact it has become a week long(or slightly longer) celebration, this year, from 5th to 13th of May--this city will become the best place to be around for awesome beers/mead/hard cider(plus some food too).
The beer week activities has been announced by the organizer, you can check details of what's coming here:-

Looking at the activities--there's tap takeover--there's smaller tasting session--there's food related pairing dinner--and new releases....there's so much going on--sometimes it could kinda felt like work/or trying to catch on certain schedules :)
Personally speaking, some of these activities would be high on the list of "things to do" during the week:-
 
Tap Takeover
After what Hill farmstead did in 2016 with 29 beers on tap + no less than 14 different bottles on site at Warpigs brewpub---the bar has certainly been raised for a tap takeover during MBW.
This year there will be 2 different tap takeover--both highly anticipated breweries famous/infamous for their black magics on black color brews---on the 9th and 10th, BOTTLE LOGIC and then CYCLE will be showcasing what they've got during tap takeover of their own at Warpigs.
These two will draw in the geeks--so expects to Q-UP early.
占领啤酒泵活动(Tap Takeover)
字面上意思就是把一家酒吧占为己用,啤酒泵上的都是同一酿坊同一品牌的不同类别风格啤酒,可以是一次过上十多款,也可以把所有二三十个啤酒泵都占用。
可以在哥本哈根啤酒周做这样“霸道”活动的酿坊当然不会是等闲之辈,继近年一直被评酒网站票选为世界最佳酿坊的Hillfarmstead前年在Warpigs酿吧做了一次让啤迷疯狂的占领啤酒泵活动後(29款“鲜啤”+14款瓶子),今年会有CycleBottle Logic 这两家以不同风味黑啤为人关注的美国酿坊将在910号两天举办各自的占领活动。
Cycle酿坊,在2015年当啤酒庆典还在旧体育馆举行并还是简称为CBC时就已出现在芸芸众多参与酿坊中,当时的“单车”酿坊还没有近年那么备受追捧,也还没登上所谓的世界十强酿坊榜单,不过,过去两三年来,这家酿坊的一些黑啤作品是很多啤迷追逐的瓶子,同样的,另一家近年也受热捧的美国酿坊Bottle Logic算是新贵,因为一款黑啤Fundamental Observation (FO) 而大热,这两家的首次海外占领啤酒泵活动可以预见将引来大批啤迷排队捧场。
Tasting Session
If you love sweet & sours---then these two sessions on different days will be perfect.
First up on the 9th is Superstition meadery having a session at Baghaven--**if you are not familiar with mead--the most important thing to remember is that mead is NOT ONLY ABOUT SWEETNESS--it's a lot more complex and tasty than one can imagine it to be.
If you are a sucker for sour beer--particularly Lambic then you won't want to miss out on the session by Bokkereyder at Koelschip on the 10th.
品酒会(Tasting Event)
这是比较小型活动,可以是因为当天可供品尝细味的酒比较小量有限,也可以是酿酒师想在比较小活动空间中跟啤迷有近距离互动/导饮。
今年啤酒周活动中就有一酸一甜(当然不是单一调调那种)品酒会等着,说的是比利时天然发酵果酸啤酒新贵Bokkereyder作坊和顶级美国蜜酒作坊Superstition,这两家也会在910号两天不同时间段举办各自活动,可以一次过品味多款或限量或庆典特酿完全不同风味表现顶级佳酿是啤迷非常乐见之事。
*if you're a fan---Jester King is also doing their rounds at both Baghaven and Koelschip on the 9th & 10th.
Food & Pairing activities
As shown in the link above, there will be many restaurants related to the Mikkeller brand doing their rounds of various food related activities--but the most interesting one has got to be Chef Dan Bark of Upstairs@Mikkeller Bangkok popping up at Hyggestund doing a 2 evenings dinner--fresh from winning a 1 star Michelin in Bangkok--it will be interesting to see if Chef Dan serve his entire Bangkok menu or would do a twist on certain dishes/create MBW new dishes...
**for the uninitiated---the Bangkok menu is a 10 course dinner( with 2 desserts)--pairing is only with craft beer/mead or hard cider--NO WINE is served.
美食啤酒搭配(Food & Pairing)
哥本哈根啤酒庆典一直以来都跟食物搭上关系,两天啤酒节场内一直有精挑细选合作摊位提供食物,这些年来米记品牌也伸向餐饮业拓展,除了原有丹麦开边三文治餐厅,跟美国酿坊Three Floyds合作的酿吧其实也是美式烤肉店,然后还有拉面店,墨西哥玉米饼店,美式早餐店等等。
这次啤酒周,米记旗下所有餐厅都有不同活动,其中最让人瞩目的是将近期得到米其林一星的曼谷米吧楼上餐厅主厨Dan Bark特地请过来做只有89号两天的美食啤酒配搭晚餐,不免让人好奇这次身在客场厨房的Chef Dan是会将曼谷菜单照搬过去还是说就地取材做些更改或提供新菜色?


Of course there are many other activities not mentioned here--you can check the link above and take your pick. As for those who are familiar with Copenhagen craft beer scene--then perhaps it's even more "challenging" for the week as there's also other non-MBW related bars to visit.
对住在亚洲啤迷朋友来说,当然不是每个人都认同或有时间精力为了一个啤酒周飞那么远去哥本哈根,也或许会有人问说即将在今年九月首次在亚洲亮相的啤酒庆典会不会有哥本哈根版本的啤酒“天堂”周,虽说目前主办单位还没公布东京版本详情,看起来东京版本很可能只有两天啤酒节重点活动。无论如何,要是没去哥本哈根体验原版,九月东京版仍将是亚洲前所未见高水平啤酒庆典,是了解什么叫Craft Beer文化的好时机,值得去。
To say that week in particular is the best time to visit Copenhagen for varieties of awesome brew is no exaggeration whatsoever--though the city itself is not lacking in selections of awesome craft beer/mead/hard cider on any other days--this time of the year--the MBW in May will be like beer heaven on earth--if you are willing to fly in from far and wide.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

WEEK 127--Let's go TOKYO this SEPTEMBER


And so it's here, the one beer fest i been wishing to one day somehow making it to ASIA is coming to Tokyo this September.

To have a beer fest of level this high coming to ASIA is something i been wishing for and spoken with some closest geeks friends ever since coming back from CBC few years ago, partly due to the fact that craft beer festivals in ASIA are either mostly commercial interest first, or drink all you can so you can fall flat on your face or simply monotonous(yes, there are a few guys in different parts of ASIA working on more crafty festivals aiming at spreading craft culture but nothing come close to MBCC/CBC level), so to have the organizers of one of the world's best craft fest taking it all the way to ASIA is really a big tick off the craft wish list.
终于来了。
备受啤迷推崇关注的哥本哈根啤酒庆典---Mikeller Beer Celebratiin Copenhagen  (简称MBCC)主办方上周正式宣布将会破天荒第一次出现亚洲版本。 
这个全亚洲第一次选择了东京,英文简称MBCT,最后一个字母指的就是Tokyo ,和今年511-12哥本哈根版本不同的是,东京选在户外举行,地点是新宿区明治神宫外苑一个棒球场,日期是923-24两天。
如果你没去过也没听说过MBCC或比较早期简称CBC的哥本哈根啤酒庆典,以下是一些基本概念:-

Scheduled for 23rd & 24th(a Monday but it's a public holiday in Japan) September, the first ever Asia version of the Copenhagen originated MBCC(Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen) or CBC(Copenhagen Beer Celebration) when it first started will be held at the rubber ball base ball ground at Meiji Jingu Gaien in Shinjuku area, and since Tokyo is the venue, the ASIA version is naturally being called MBCT.
You can watch the official announcement video here:-
If yo have not been to a CBC/MBCC or don't really know what it's all about, here's some basic ideas:-
1) Limited Supply--First come first serve
TWO days fest---FOUR sessions--no less than few hundreds varieties of beers/mead/hard ciders to choose from--but for any single session it's highly likely that a particular brew has only 1 keg--you want that brew you better go first in line or line up for it--but if that keg is finished--then sorry--there's no more---better luck next time. 
1)有限供应,先到先得,完了就没了
两天,四个不同时段,有好几百款不同品牌类别风格啤酒选择但是每个时段每款很可能只有一桶,要喝只能排队领酒,先到先得,一旦那桶啤酒分完就没了。
2) Your Taster Glass is your pass to get serve
There's NO cash/card transaction needed when it comes to drinking beers/mead/hard cider(except if you are buying food or other things)---to save everyone's time during the fest, tickets are sold ONLINE way in advance.(will come to that in the later part of this post)---your ticket is entitle for a taster glass at the door which is effectively your pass to get serve any and every beers/mead/hard cider out there that you fancy during the fest( provided you follow scenario 1 mentioned above)
2)凭票换杯,杯子就是领酒通行证
啤酒庆典以预购门票方式进行,场内喝酒只需排队伸手递杯子就可,喝酒不需另外给钱找钱浪费大家时间,你唯一需要做的只是每次喝新酒前自己找洗杯机冲冲杯子,再去领酒。
3) Small Pour/Drink Less Taste More
Yes, many would think beer festivals is the perfect setting to get slam/gulping down as many beers one can handle( or in fact cannot handle)---Well, that mentality does not suit a fest like MBCC/MBCT where firstly the taster glass will be a lot more smaller in size than your usual bar pint glasses, secondly the serving size is mostly only half filled or even lesser---this is a fest which encourages drinkers to savour the different flavours of varieties of brew, not gulping. So if you are new to the fest--do not complaint if your glass is only half filled or lesser--this is the norm--most geeks would understand--and you should too.
With few hundreds varieties of brew available, unless you are prepared/wanted to drink til you fall flat face down( really?)--the best way to enjoy and taste so many different styles/types of brew is to drink a lot lesser in volume while trying out as much varieties your alcohol tolerance level/stamina can take in.
3)小杯子小量喝
啤酒节等同大杯畅饮的旧思维在这里不适用,这是个鼓励小量啜饮细味品尝的啤酒节,如果手上小杯子每次只分到一半或更少,不要惊讶不要质问,这是这个啤酒庆典的文化,啤迷们都知道,你也应该知道。
庆典每天两个不同时段会有至少过百种不同品牌不同类别风格啤酒选择,除非是要拼命喝到趴下(需要吗?有意思?),短短几小时内如何好好品味不同啤酒是关键,少量多尝是自然动作,也因为很多款啤酒只有一桶,参与酿坊每次只给少量是正道。
虽然主办方还没公布太多详情,包括参与酿坊阵容(只说不少过40家美国欧洲亚洲酿坊),购票详情等,不过既然东京版本以哥本哈根庆典为依据,来看看哥本哈根版本什么玩法:-
Though there's not much details as yet pertaining to the line up for  participating breweries( though it's announced that there will be no less than 40), as well ticket pricing and so on, but since MBCT is the ASIA version of MBCC, let's take a look at what the Copenhagen version is all about:-
The Ticket
Into the 7th edition, the Copenhagen fest is still a 2 days event with 4 different sessions--morning 10am to around 2pm and then 3pm to about 7pm another session.
You can choose to go for only 1 single session of RED/BLUE/GREEN/YELLOW ticket(indicating different session) or you could buy the PINK ticket for all 4 sessions.(there's also a VIP ticket option if you so fancy)
All participating breweries/meadery/cider house will be there during the 4 sessions serving mostly different brew for different sessions. As mentioned earlier--beer money is already paid for with that ticket of yours, all you have to do is hold on to your taster glass, go in front of a serving booth, pick up your brew and enjoy, rinse it and go to the next booth---NO cash/card needed UNLESS you are buying coffee/food/t-shirt and/or any other items/services available.
As of now it is understood that TICKET WILL OPEN FOR SALE ONLINE by mid or later part of MAY 2018.(do check their FB/Insta for latest news)
Do take note that there's NO ticket at the door during event day for Copenhagen version.
门票概念
今年哥本哈根啤酒庆典已进入第七个年头,一样是分两天四个不同时段,早上到下午一场,下午到傍晚另一场,所有参与酿坊在每个不同时段都会提供不同款啤酒/蜜酒,啤迷可选择只买单一时段的红////单场票或全部四个时段都能参与的粉红通行票,票价已包含所去时段全场所有啤酒任喝,在场内除非是喝咖啡买食物或纪念品或瓶子或现场纹身,不然都不需要另外给钱。
据了解,东京版本入门票预计会在五月中/下旬开始接受网上预购。以哥本哈根经验来说,庆典当天不设现场购票,想去的啤迷记得留意MBCT官网最新消息。
What's the FUSS?
There will be no less than 60 breweries/meadery/cider house joining MBCC 2018 in Copenhagen this coming 11-12May, it's true number is not the most important but quality of those coming--and that's exactly the main reason why year after year this fest keep attracting beer geeks from far and wide to travels/fly in just for that particular week/few days---with breweries ranging from the grand masters to the hot and in-trend to the unassuming solid ones--these are the reasons why the fest keep people flying in year after year--in a way, it's also some sort of get-together/reunion date for old and new geeks friends from different places around the globe. 
有什么那么厉害
今年哥本哈根版本至今已宣布参与酿坊不少过60家,数量不是最重要,有什么级别酿坊前来才是重点,这才是每年能吸引世界各地啤迷飞往参与主因,无论是Craft世界里的大师级酿坊或火红新贵或低调高手,应邀的都会出席,这年度盛事也是散布世界不同角落新旧啤迷朋友见面共聚分享交流的机会,那么多同好同处一个空间不是每天都能有的事。
Why Go Tokyo?
Of course if you would choose to go Copenhagen for the whole beer week with 2 days fest in the mix that would be awesome, but if you are not then the first ASIA version in Tokyo should help.
Basing on what Copenhagen has demonstrated over the past 6 years, this fest in Tokyo will certainly be something ASIA has never before seen or experienced---yes, it's true that what happen in Copenhagen might not be 100% applicable here in Asia with differences in culture and so on--but what MBCC represent in terms of breweries line up/the way geeks are participating/the serve small drink less taste more culture would certainly help ASIA craft community/drinkers to move forward hopefully with better understanding and appreciation of craft culture.
and, If you happen to have friends who think beer festivals is just an excuse to get slam/face down--try ask him/her to come along, let them see for themselves first hand how different one of the best craft festivals can be.
为什么要去
以哥本哈根经验来说,这绝对会是亚洲前所未见啤酒庆典,无论是酿坊阵容,啤迷参与方式,鼓励浅尝细味啤酒节文化等对新朋友来说会是新体验,如果觉得啤酒节只是个让无聊人拼酒喝死的借口,那就更应该来看看这个当今世上数一数二,备受各地啤迷推崇啤酒庆典会是怎么一回事。

EXTENDED READ:-
mbcc 2016 beer week

small-matters-of-cbc-2015.

Monday, March 19, 2018

WEEK 126---Drink Craft Chat Beer

Someone asked recently "what's so interesting about craft beer?"--while the answer could be different for everyone, mine was faily simple --" choices--it's about the varieties of beer styles choices".

The vast varieties/choices available also meaning some geeks( if not all geeks) would somehow have a tasting group/buddies of their own since that's the best way to share the load/drink lesser quantity but taste more. No exception here in KL for myself and the tasting group guys---though unlike some geeks who prefer/like to do vertical tasting of the same breweries same style but of different bottling dates/years/variants--we are very much the group preferring to do different styles/varieties in a single sharing session for the pure pleasure of varying taste profile/twist and turn different brewing ideas could bring.
有新朋友问,Craft Beer的吸引力是什么?或许不同人会有不同答案,个人的答案很简单,选择,很多不同风格类别啤酒选择
对啤迷来说,这些不同选择可以是相同风格酒款但不同酿坊作品,更可以是完全不同类别风格不同酿坊作品,因为喝Craft乐趣在于尝试在不同啤酒中寻找细味不同风味呈现,在这过程中,有时候只喝本身所在城市酒吧或瓶子店买得到啤酒已不能满足味蕾尝鲜探索需求,所以不少啤迷都会有自己的品酒会伙伴或乐于参与一些其他啤迷邀请的品酒会。
品酒会其实就像美食分享会那样,方式很简单,啤迷朋友各自拿对等数量/风评的瓶子大家每一款少量分着喝,以品尝啤酒味道为主,有的啤迷喜欢同一风格同一酿坊啤酒不同年份瓶子排列喝,也有喜欢不同风格跳着喝的,比如说<顽啤主张>和几位本地啤迷朋友就喜欢每次品酒会上一定要有不同类别风格选择,喝起来有很显著味蕾起伏转折感觉。
以下是随意挑选的近几个月在本地品酒会分享过的一些不同类别风格瓶子:-
Here's some randomly selected bottles of different styles beer/hard cider shared during the past few months here in KL:-
Baladin Xyauyu Barley Wine
For the uninitiated--though there's that "wine" word--this is 100% a beer--generally a higher alcohol content/more intense/sweeter beer.
This one is quite nice after the beer warm up--the dark fruits/caramel coming out is obvious/delicious--in a small way it felt like sipping a beer that's a little similar to something in between a very light pot wine/red wine.
虽然酒款名称英文字眼中有Wine ,这绝对是不折不扣的啤酒,一般来说是酒体比较浓郁,口感比较倾向甜味的高酒精度啤酒类别。
这支来自意大利酿坊的作品喝起来有明显的黑色果实,焦糖味道,有点像是喝着介于餐后甜酒/葡萄酒之间的醇香啤酒,,层次相当丰富,完全不像一般酿坊同类型作品那样喝起来只有甜味和麦芽味那样单调,适合慢慢小口喝体验从开瓶时比较冷到回温过程中酒体口感变化。

B.Nektar Zombie Killer
Most people know what a BEER is--some would know what a cider is--but not that many would know what's a hard cider (much more than just fermented apple juice)--or say a session or heavier mead( fermented with honey but much much more than just honey sweet).
This hard cider is a really nice one suitable either as opening/mid way through or end of session drink during a tasting/sharing session--it's refreshing/layered/never dull--very drinkable--the honey and cherries added certainly turned this apple cider into something whole lot more interesting/tasty.
一般来说,大家知道什么是BEER,也有些人知道什么是Cider(苹果酒),不过说到Hard Cider(不止苹果那么简单) Mead(蜜糖发酵多变化多口味蜜酒) 就不是那么多人知道是什么。
这是款高水准的Hard Cider,,加入蜜糖和樱桃果汁将苹果酒华丽转变为层次分明的清爽易喝轻度水果蜜酒,在品酒会中,这支可以是开场,中场或终场都适合喝的一支。

New Glarus Serendipity
This is one fruit beer not commonly available in Asia--if you are curious about how fruits would taste in a beer form--go find some of their fruits based beers--they are really good at this game.
Had this not too long ago and still remember the first thing that came striking the nose was this very obvious raw apricot kernel like smell--and that's a smell/taste i'm not fond of personally speaking--took a while to get used to but apart from that the beer is tasting fine--NOTE---the beer did not use any apricot kernel/almond--only apples/cranberries & cherries were added--to call it a lovely light sweet sour/tart fruits punch in a beer is quite an understatement.
用蔬菜水果酿造美味啤酒是好些酿坊的拿手好戏,这家来自美国中西部威斯康辛州的酿坊就是佼佼者,基本所有来自这家的受关注不同风味啤酒都是以水果为主要味道表现题材。与之前喝过另一支让大家惊艳不已强调类似浓郁草莓酱水果啤酒不同,这支加入了苹果小红莓和樱桃酿造,好玩的是,开瓶倒入杯中传来的是类似杏仁的青涩味,如果你并不喜欢杏仁特有的味道这可能需要一点时间让味觉适应,这之外,酒本身喝起来是带果酸的但不是过度那种,是舒适的,属于可饮性高的水果啤酒。

Three Floyd's Dark Lord
for those who know--this is one beer needing no introduction--for the uninitiated--it's one of the few Big stouts around with a dedicated annual event day where people would need to buy tickets in advance to go in --much like going to a rock concert.
OK--this maybe deemed a "has been" beer by some--some even jokingly calling it a "diabetic" beer--whatever it is--this has been our group's Xmas beer for the past 3 years--be it drinking it as it is--or last year's Triple Vanilla Ice-Cream Float or the year before last's french press with roasted coconut version--this is still a stout worth it's salt no matter how many other big stout/bigger stouts has since emerged.  
美国黑啤中指标性的一款,是每年各方啤迷前去芝加哥出席类似摇滚演唱会那样售票入场首卖会的盛名黑啤。
虽然随着时间流逝和其他酿坊名作出现让一些啤迷觉得黑魔王不再那么炙手可热,也有些啤迷觉得味偏甜而戏称这是糖尿病黑啤,这依然是我们每年圣诞节聚餐时会喝的黑啤,无论是从一开始的老老实实原味喝,或者说前年的倒一半加入现烤椰子压榨增添香味,又或是去年底的加入香草冰淇淋黑啤版本,个人觉得这是喜欢浓郁黑啤喝酒人需要试一试的一款。

Upright Flora Rustica
Saison can be something a little confusing at times--it would seems everyone has got their own interpretation of what a saison might taste like--including brewers who would have own vision/version of how a certain saison might become.
Personally--i prefer a saison to be:-
1/ low abv--likely  3-6%
2/ not just easy drinking but with some layering/body
3/ balance/nothing decidedly sour or bitter or too fizzy( just saying)
This one from Upright is quite nice--the intention was clear to see--the use of flower&yarrow gave it a certain plants influenced aroma blending nicely with the malt/yeast/hops used.
SAISON最基本认知是,这是以前农场工作人员在过冬时候用农场蔬果酿造准备夏天季节解渴喝的低酒精轻松易喝啤酒。
到了Craft世界中,虽然不同酿坊对什么是农场风格啤酒有各自的诠释,也有一些喝起来四不像的版本出现,不过,酿得好的农场风格啤酒基本少不了三大要数,其一低酒精度,基本不超过4-5% 其二清爽易喝中带一定程度层次感,其三酒体味道体现高均衡度,不会有过酸或过苦现象。
这支美国酿坊作品单从酒名可看出酿酒师想强调花草影响本意,加入金盏花和西洋蓍草酿造,是喝起来清爽又能感受到花草结合啤酒花麦芽的均衡酿品。