Beer Bottle Tree Art 

Craft Beer Blast

December, 2015 

From Larry...

The shorter days of winter are here, and the winter beers are being released. These beers are usually darker and spicier than the fall brews. They include Porters, Stouts, Barleywines and Winter Warmers. These beers all go well with the holiday season. Maybe it's the malty character that satisfies the palate, evoking rich aromas and flavors of toasty caramel, the addition of roasty coffee-like notes in porters and stouts, and the complexity of spices and alcohol warmth in winter warmers. Whatever your beer, enjoy the cooler days to come and drink good beer at your holiday celebration

The style of the season is Christmas or Holiday ale. Holiday ales usually are spicy and malty. The style is wide open for interpretation. With all of the new breweries opening, there is a variety of these ales available.


The brewery of the season is Green Flash Brewing of San Diego and Virginia Beach. Green Flash is growing by leaps and bounds. Along with the east coast expansion, they are adding new brews almost monthly. I met owner Mike at a seminar on the business of beer. He has his brewery on a high quality growth plan. This has been calculated and refined over many years. Now that they are almost everywhere, it's time you had a Green Flash! 

The 10th annual Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival is coming up in January. I mention it here because the tickets for the Friday night event, Field of Beers, sell out quickly. More info below.

The annual Beerdrinker of the Year contest at Wynkoop Brewing in Denver is back on. Do you have what it takes? Contestants create a 2 minute video detailing their beer knowledge, and why they should be named the Beerdrinker of 2016. See the website for more details.       


May your holidays be beery and joyful and your 2016 everything you want it to be.






            Style of the Season
  Christmas or Holiday Ale

Christmas beers are usually malty and complex. There is no real guideline; they can be made with various spices or as a winter warmer. Hop bitterness is generally low, but hop character can be pronounced. Under-hopping allows the flavor of the spices to come through. The alcohol levels are higher and some don't use spices. The tradition of mixed spices dates back to before hops became the main 'spice' in beer. The winter warmers usually don't have spices. They rely on some interesting malt or hop combinations for their complexity. Anchor Christmas Ale has been made every year since 1975. Each year is different; read more on Anchor's website. Anchor started the Christmas ale tradition for US craft brewers; many breweries makes a special brew for the season.

Beer Life
Jupiter Fest Logo Art

The Field of Beers event takes place on the field at Roger Dean Stadium.

Jupiter Craft Brewers Festival / Field of Beers    
On January 29 and 30, South Florida's favorite beer event is happening in Jupiter. It offers many craft beers in a fun, relaxed setting. Both events have a limited number of tickets available. The Field of Beers is the Friday night before the festival. There are 15 stations; each features a beer paired with a special dish made for the event. The next day, the festival happens with many different craft brewers bringing a special brew or two for the festival. Tickets go on sale in mid December. More at

Green Flash Brewing Logo
Brewery of the Season
Green Flash Brewing 
In 2002, former pub owners Mike and Lisa Hinkley took their interest in craft beer to a new level. They started brewing and opened Green Flash Brewing Co. In 2004, they brought in Chuck Silva as brewmaster. The brewery started to get a loyal following and has grown to the point that Green Flash beers are available throughout the US. Green Flash is the latest west coast brewery to build a second brewery on the east coast. In April 2013 they announced the expansion to Virginia Beach, VA.  As with the other new breweries, Green Flash will have a positive impact on the area.. I met Mike earlier this year and have great respect for his business plans and products. When they were starting out he got, together with brewer Chuck to 'invent' the now flagship ale. Many different ideas were thrown around. They made over 50 batches and used the tasting room as a sounding board. Now, the aptly named 'West Coast IPA" practically defines the style. Green Flash brews cutting edge, premium beers with a modern twist on traditional styles. There are many IPA's out there but hop heads will still have Green Flash ales at the top of their holiday list. Unfortunately, the latest seasonal "Jolly Folly IPA" didn't make it to Florida. Well..there's always next year.
Recently, I was looking for a new craft brewery I had heard about and found several. This is how the craft beer world is now: breweries opening everywhere. I found three small newer breweries from Florida to NC. I only have seen these online so if visiting, call ahead.
Fla Keys Brewing Co.
This would have been great to have back in the days I visited the Keys with friends for a day of drinking and fun. It looks like a cool Keys place with a good selection and crowd of local followers.
Fifty Best Breweries

This is a listing of the best brewery from each state. It would be hard to choose one brewery; there are some interesting choices. See the list HERE.


© Larry Goeser
Miami, Florida