Beer (& More) In Food

Beer: The Condiment With An Attitude!

Archive for August, 2007

Michael Jackson Dead

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 30, 2007

mjackson.gifFrom Julie Bradford at All About Beer:

We learned this morning that Michael Jackson died last night at his home in London. We’re feeling stunned, and know his many friends will, too.  We are both devestated and saddened since he was a friend, a mentor and one of our favorite writers.  We talked with his staff and his death appears to have been peaceful.  You may also know of the extent of his illness which he had begun discussing publicly in the past several months.  Ironically, we were just editing his most recent column for All About Beer, which, poignantly, concerned his having “cheated Mort Subite” this year.

     We are preparing a memorial for Michael on our website, to be echoed in the pages of the magazine that is in production.  In a few jackson200.jpghours we will publish his final column, along with his first column from 1984, on our website and open a memorial page where his friends can share their thoughts and stories.  We will capture some some of these memories in print.

     We’re sure we speak for all of you when we say our community has lost a good friend and champion.  He gave beer a language and taught so many of us to speak it.


And this via a whisk(e)y list:

This morning the sad news came across from the U.K. that the whisky world has
lost a man of unqualified greatness; the wonderful Michael Jackson.

So many people have followed their own whisky trails with the guidance of
Michael’s amazing Single Malt Guides over the years. His numerous articles in
Whisky Magazine and other publications have been everything from amusing to
educational and have given so many of us the true insider’s view we so

Michael was one of the gentlest and most generous souls imaginable and anyone
who has met him was touched by his kindness and patience. It is hard to imagine
how many times in his life he had to answer the same questions over and over
when approached by awed ‘fans’. Yet he always did so without missing a beat or
showing anything but the utmost interest in both his questioner and the topics

Please take a moment today and raise a glass to Michael. I thank him deeply for
all that he has given to so many. His knowledge and skill was unmatched and he
will be missed and loved for a very long time. This tireless man now rests and
we all benefit from his labours of love over the years.
I think a very, very well written tribute to Jackson comes from the pen of Lew Bryson…

Posted in Editorial | 1 Comment »

Nutritional Info For Rumple Minze

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 28, 2007

rumpleminze.jpg       Rumple Minze        Serving Size  1.5 ounces   10.00  carbs     165 calories   50.00 ABV%     0.10 Fat

Posted in Booze Nutritional Info, Liqueur Nutritional Info | Leave a Comment »

Nutritional Info For Charles Shaw Merlot (2 Buck Chuck)

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 27, 2007

Coming Soon!

Does My BUTT Look BIG In This BEER?


Charles Shaw

Merlot                       5 ounces              03.20 carbs      119 calories         13.20 ABV%

Posted in Wine And Carbohydrates, Wine Nutritional Info | Leave a Comment »

Caffeinated alcohol-craze stimulates industry attacks

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 27, 2007

sparksenergydrinks.jpgCriticisms of alcoholic energy drinks in the US, could also have effect Europe’s ready-to-drink (RTD) beverage market, a health expert has warned.

The threat of increased political pressure on beverage makers could lead to further regulatory sanctions for the alcohol industry, which has already had to adopt more stringent social responsibility initiatives.

Anders Ulstein, board member of European Public Health Alliance (EPHA), told that while criticism of RTD alcohol products is nothing new, the latest attacks could be yet another millstone around the industry’s neck.

Though accepting that US policy developments rarely has an influence on European legislation, Ulstein said the potential effects on policies of global bodies could be far more significant.


Posted in Beer & Food In The News, Neo-Prohibition | Leave a Comment »

Nutritional Info For Flying Fish Farmhouse Summer Ale

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 23, 2007



      Farmhouse Summer Ale     12 ounces     16.20 carbs       155 calories        4.60 abv

Posted in Beer And Calories, Beer And Carbohydrates, Beer Nutritional Info | Leave a Comment »

I Was A Beer Snob – Are You?

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 21, 2007

beer-snob-hdr.jpgMy parents once told me that I enjoyed my first beer when I was about three or four littlebobwithbeer.gifyears old. I would help myself (so the story goes) to my Dad’s fish-bowl-sized schooner, filled with beer from one of the local breweries that still operated in Chicago during the 1950s. I don’t remember any of this, unfortunately, but the tale’s become a family standard.

I do remember my second taste of beer, this one from the “Land of Sky Blue Water.” I was a mere lad of thirteen. This beer drinker’s rite of passage took place at the grammar school graduation party of a friend of mine, a hot day in June as I recall. All the parents were upstairs in the kitchen enjoying the cooling effects of a window-unit air conditioner and iced beer. Downstairs in the basement, a reserve cooler of beer was calling to my friend and me. I don’t remember if it was the cartoon enticements of the Hamm’s bear or untapped teenage curiosity but we went down to the basement where the cooler sat and each grabbed a blue, flat-topped steel can and opened them with a “church key.” I got past my second chug of cold beer but stopped when I thought I was going to puke. My buddy’s reaction wasn’t much different, turning green after having knocked off the entire can.

I was seventeen when the beer bug bit me again. This time I balanced the bitterness of a sixteen-ounce can of Bud with occasional nips from a half-pint of Cutty Sark and big gulps from a clear-glassed bottle of Richard’s Wild Irish Rose. I was on my way to becoming a beer drinker.

For the next five years or so, I developed a taste for Schlitz products, including seven-ounce “little Joe’s,” their sixteen-ounce “tall boy” cans and the much smaller-sized Schlitz malt liquor in cans. Of course, if you had put a cold (fill in the blank) in front of me, I probably would’ve chugged it down, too.

When I was twenty-three, I began a four-year stint in West Germany as a translator, courtesy of Uncle Sam. For a confirmed beer drinker, my European experience was like dying and going to heaven. I was stationed in Franconia, located in the upper portion of Bavaria. Franconia is more well-known for its production of white wines, bottled in the uniquely-shaped Bocksbeutel, but beer was everywhere. Bavarian Pilsner (“Ein Pils, bitte!”) soon became my beer. With a malty roundness, just a slight touch of sweetness, little hop bite or bouquet but a clean aroma of fresh yeast, this style of beer had a thickness you could almost chew on. Of course, I also went through my fair share of Rauchbier, Kölsch, Fest, Bock, the occasional Pilsener Urquell from neighboring Czechoslovakia and even the German-equivalent of low-carbohydrate beer, Diät-Pils.

On a layover on my way back to the U.S. for a vacation, I stopped at a small U-shaped bar in the duty-free section of the airport in Shannon, Ireland and made sure I had my first taste of Guinness draft on the old sod of Erin. Couldn’t help it. It must have been my mother’s McCarthy blood in me. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was on my way to becoming a beer snob.

When I got back to the States in 1978, I was in a quandary. I had gotten used to the thicker and/or richer qualities of European beers and found that I had become more selective in my choice of available beers. Most of the German imports I tried were old, oxidized or skunky. My old American-brewed favorite, Schlitz, now tasted terrible. It was years before I discovered that my taste for Schlitz hadn’t changed, the formula for their beer had. Old Style was making a huge impact in the Chicagoland area, especially after some deep discounts were offered by the La Crosse, Wisconsin brewery. I jumped on the Old Style bandwagon throughout the early eighties…hell, I sometimes drove it. If you lived in Chicago at the time, so did you. Going out for dinner or when I felt like treating myself or was just big-balling, I sometimes ordered Michelob on tap or the occasional Heineken or Beck’s…and then came my homebrew phase, mixed with the beginnings of the microbrew movement. Soon after this, I don’t recall exactly when, I became a 101% beer snob.

By the time I enrolled in the brewers “long course” at the Siebel Institute of Technology in 1991, I was a practicing beer snob. I remember sitting in the school’s Bierstube between classes and telling a microbiologist from Coors that I thought that a glass of Lake Michigan drinking water had more hop bittering units than a can of Coors Original. She smiled and graciously walked away from me. I soon found alliances at Siebel with a small group of brewers from U.S. microbreweries and brewpubs, but we radicals were in the minority. It didn’t matter to us that most of the students from the national breweries were microbiologists, engineers, research personnel or seasoned brewers for the last twenty years…we knew better.

My elitist beer attitude followed me wherever I went. I even looked down at friends and relatives who drank big-name American beers. At family gatherings, I’d drink water or soda pop rather than the can of “slop” my relatives offered me or brought my own beer and spent the whole night telling them about why my beer was so good and theirs so bad. Acting as a missionary for the new “beer revolution,” I won the souls of scores of converts but now look back at my fanaticism and wonder why a Miller Lite beer drinker didn’t take me out in the back of a South Side Chicago tavern one night and just shoot me? I was an obnoxious beer snob.

Do you see yourself in any of my past experiences? Then you’re probably a beer snob, too!

A year or so ago, I had a beer epiphany. I was trying to lose a little weight and bought a six-pack of Amstel Light to ease the rigors of my weight reduction regime. With its light body, the Dutch-brewed beer was an equitable match with many of the lower carbohydrate meals I was enjoying. This marriage of light food and drink got me to reflect on my past eating and drinking habits. A diet of pizza all the time or steak or spicy foods gets a little old after a while; on the other hand, so does a constant diet of tofu and bean sprouts.

What about beer, I reflected? Is it always necessary to order an IPA that’s heavily hopped, a Scotch Ale that’s thick and sweet, a rich pilsner with a head that won’t quit, a head-storming barleywine or a chocolate and coffee-flavored stout?

Our choice in foods is based on the concept of variety, sometimes heavy or light, sometimes rich or bland, sometimes sweet, sour or bitter. Variety, as they say, is the spice of life. Why not look at beer in the same way? Because of this revelation, I’ve recently been tasting a number of beers from the big-named American breweries, something I haven’t done for the last fifteen years or so. I find that I’m enjoying several of them again. Is it my maturing taste in beer, or, more importantly, is it my changing attitude towards these beers?

I’m sure my taste is changing…everybody’s does. Things that I wouldn’t eat years ago, I find I now enjoy. The same thing is happening with my taste in beer. But more importantly, my attitude towards these beers has changed. I’d like to believe it’s a sign of maturity but I also recognize this evolution of what I now drink as a sign of rebellion.

Rebellion against what? Beer snobbery, that’s what. I’ve become tired of the worn out, holier-than-thou arguments by a small, vocal minority of beer drinkers who insist that drinking from the Holy Grail of “craft-brewed” beer is the only choice in beer enjoyment. In the last fifteen years, I’ve heard all the beer snob arguments. Hell, I used to use them myself. Here are a few classic beer snob arguments that I once believed and practiced.

  • I blindly used to follow the beer snob’s credo of not drinking imported beer, only craft-brewed beer. Imported beer was supposedly stored in crates for the long travel across the Atlantic, subjected to all kinds of temperature changes and bottled in those dreaded green bottles. Delivery to the shelves of local stores was slow and tedious. As a result, the beer was “off” in flavor. True, I will agree, ten or fifteen years ago. Well, fellow beer drinkers, I’ve got news for you. The import market is now the fastest growing market in the American beer trade. Pick up a copy of the trade magazine Modern Brewery Age and count the new beers from all around the world that are currently being offered to the beer drinkers of America. These beers arrive on our shores in the most efficient manner and are distributed and maintained by people who understand the beer market. A distributor, like the respected firm of Merchant du Vin, got to where it is today by providing good quality imported beer at reasonable prices, not old and skunky beers. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for some of the craft-brewed beers I’ve purchased in the last few years. I’ve been burned so often by foul-tasting or spoiled small-batched beers that are going for $7.99 and up, that I now limit myself to just a handful of local brews. I purchased these small-batched beers on the recommendations of fellow beer snobs. No more. Brewers, big or small, have no business selling beers from California in Chicago, for example, if they can’t maintain them on retail shelves or work with a local distributor to do so.
  • Remember a few years back when we beer snobs weren’t supposed to like Jim Koch and his Boston Beer Company? The most vocal beer snobs pointed out that his beers were contract-brewed. So what? His beers are some of the freshest, best tasting and affordable beers on the market today. Although still a beer snob at the time when this argument was a snob credo, I never felt comfortable expounding on this theme. To make matters worse, went this argument one bizarre step further, Koch was actually dating his beer! One brewer from a small concern once told me that this dating of beer placed an undue burden on his operation because he couldn’t assure that his distributor was properly maintaining his undated beer on retail shelves. Apparently it was easier for him to sleep calmly at night and keep on taking my money for his old spoiled beer rather than to try to find another more pro-active distributor.
  • One of the things that adversely affected the old Post-Prohibition brewing industry in Chicago was a lack of brand loyalty. It’s still a problem, even for today’s more respected small brewers. As a beer snob, I was always moving on to the next “hot” beer on the market. Right now, Belgian beers are in. “Extreme” beers are running a close second. I asked myself sometime ago, “What am I really looking for in a beer?” I mean, after quaffing 200 different brands of pale ale, what was I looking for in a pale ale? The brewer can tinker with the grain bill, maybe adjust the hopping rate, but what I, as the consumer, wind up with is, well…a pale ale! John Hall, owner of Goose Island Beer Company in Chicago, points out that the very successful Goose Island introduces different seasonal brews periodically in order to offer variety to their customers, otherwise there’s a fear that they might move on to a different brewery’s products. Hall’s right to think this way. Beer snobs have no brand loyalty. Beer snobbery can be exhibited in a number of subversive ways. A sales representative for another Chicagoland brewery once lamented to me the fickleness of his always tentative customer base. Going through the pages of a local beer club web site, he found a lengthy review of a highly-hopped pale ale in his brewery’s product line, labeling it an “…inaccurate representation of a true IPA.” “You know,” he observed, “we cater to these guys…help sponsor some of their events and stuff, and then one of their ‘beer experts’ (read snob) posts a totally wrong review of our product. It’s not an IPA and we’ve never said it is. It’s a pale ale. The problem now is, somebody will probably believe this guy.” Beer snobs are always “experts.”  
  • One of my favorite beer snob arguments is the “Anheuser-Busch is the Devil” theory, although any big-named American brewer probably fits this setting. According to this scenario, every craft-beer drinker is supposed to avoid A-B products because of their alleged predatory business practices, especially as they relate to small brewers trying to establish a niche in the retail market place. The beer industry is probably the most highly-regulated industry in the United States. If these charges are ever proven true, I’m sure the Justice Department will take the appropriate measures. Beer snobs, however, don’t like to mention the generosity of A-B with its scholarship programs, emphasis on minority hiring or their moderate drinking programs.
  • High prices mean high quality. What hooey! Now I understand that a price of $7.99 and up per six-pack adds wanted valuation to a product and that deep discounts affect the perception by the public of the quality of the product. I recognize the concept, but let me ask you this. Would you rather purchase a six-pack of beer brewed by an established, centuries-old English or German brewery, for example, for $5.99 or more, a brewery that has the wisdom and experience of highly-trained brew masters, support staff and a proud history, or would you rather plop down your hard-earned money on the latest beer to hit the market, this one from a brewery located 1500 miles away? To make matters worse, the “brewery” consist of $35,000 worth of used dairy equipment and is maintained by a “brewmaster” whose only brewing experience is that he’s won three national home brew medals (“All gold!”) and spent a week at a beer school?
  • Expanding on this argument a bit further…wouldn’t you like to be able to spend a mere $4.99 or maybe $5.99 on a six-pack of good quality, clean-tasting and attractively packaged beer? It doesn’t have to make your toes curl…just satisfy.

Then why not consider a beer from an American, big-named brewer. I have.

Now, please, don’t get me wrong. I’m not shilling for the big boys of the beer industry. They don’t need my help. I still prefer cleanly-made, all-malt beer products. On occasion, however, depending on what I’m eating, or simply because the mood strikes me, I now sometimes purchase an A-B, Miller or Coors product. (Remember the “lawn-mower beer” theory?) This past summer, I could sometimes be seen with a cold bottle of Michelob, Coors Original or Miller Lite beer. I even enjoyed the occasional light-bodied Corona, forcing a wedge of lime into each of the clear bottles. Stupid, I know, but part of the experience. Just as often, however, you might have found me sitting on my patio with a richer and heavier beer from Three Floyds, Goose Island or the Boston Beer Company in my hand.

By the way, for those drinkers of Coors Light, MGD or even Busch, if you see me at a party, don’t avoid me anymore. Please come on over and talk to me. I’m not going to bore you any longer with stories about why the beer I’m drinking is better than yours.

I’ve changed. I’m no longer a beer snob. How about you?

Posted in Editorial | 1 Comment »

The Worst Thing You Can Find in Your Beer is (Almost) Invisible

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 19, 2007

bonvivant.jpgYour typical beer drinker is a trusting one. Hand him a beer—any beer. It might not be his favorite brand, but if he’s like most of us, if it’s a beer—and it’s cold (and better yet, someone else is buying), it’s down the hatch without a second thought. Next time you twist a cap or pop a can, however, consider what might really be in that brew. (WARNING: If you’re eating or drinking anything while reading any further, swallow hard, take a deep breath and then put your food—including chili—or drink down).

An article in the Oregonian newspaper awhile back reported on the possible consequences when you hand a warm beer to your drinking buddy.

David C. Shippentower, a 46-year old member of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Oregon, pleaded guilty in federal court to unintentionally killing his drinking buddy, Leonard D. Strong after a day of quality partying. It seems that Strong, a practical joker for sure, handed a can of beer filled with urine to Shippentower. The two of them had already knocked-off a dozen or so 24-ounce cans of suds when Strong decided to pull the old “switcheroo.” Obviously a latent beer connoisseur, Mr. Shippentower eventually realized what he was drinking and punched out his drinking buddy who later died of head injuries.

I’ve been unable to clarify whether Shippentower knew he had been punk’d on the first sip of urine or whether he had to get down to the “bad bottoms” of the can before he realized what he was really drinking. Haven’t we all been there?

A mouthful of urine is one thing—-what this poor beer drinker below knocked back on a cold winter night will probably have me staring into every bottle of beer I drink for the rest of my life.

On December 14, 1953, the Illinois Appellate Court made a ruling on the Heimsoth versus Falstaff Brewing Corporation case, a civil lawsuit that certainly made beer drinkers in Illinois take a second look in their beers before going “bottoms up!” This is one of those case studies that never come up at the De Paul College of Law.

Some background testimony on this important event in legal history that began in early 1953 in a small neighborhood tavern in East St. Louis, Illinois is certainly warranted before the reader passes judgment. What follows is a segment from the court’s ruling, based on eyewitness accounts of this beer drinking travesty:

The bartender said he took the cap off the bottle and when he took the cap off it was a live bottle of beer, made a popping noise, and foamed. Another witness confirmed the fact that the beer had foam on it and was a live bottle of beer. The bartender testified that no one tampered with the bottle during the six hours he was on duty, from 4:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on April 2, 1951.

The plaintiff testified that he drank about half a bottle of beer and as he was drinking it he felt a slime go over his throat and he immediately had to vomit. After he had vomited and come back to the table he asked a friend who was sitting with him, who also testified, what was in the bottle, and both he and the friend, and the bartender, and other witnesses, looked at the bottle and saw that it contained a foreign substance which was a substance often referred to as a “rubber prophylactic contraceptive latex.” The plaintiff, another witness, and three doctors, testified that plaintiff became ill and suffered nausea, sustained a fixation neurosis, and had considerable loss in his business as a result of having consumed the bottle of beer with the latex prophylactic in it.

Posted in Beer History | Leave a Comment »

Officials OK tax hike for sugary alcohol drinks

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 15, 2007


The decision, which affects ‘alcopops’ such as Mike’s Hard Lemonade, is a victory for a group opposed to underage drinking.

SACRAMENTO — A group of California teenagers working to curb underage drinking scored a victory Tuesday when state officials voted to impose a steep new tax on sweet alcohol drinks, such as Smirnoff Ice, Seagram’s Coolers, Bacardi Silver and Mike’s Hard Lemonade.

The state Board of Equalization decided to treat flavored malt beverages as distilled spirits rather than as beer, a move that will boost the tax on a six-pack of the drinks by nearly $2.


Posted in Beer & Food In The News, Neo-Prohibition | Leave a Comment »

Food Recipes of the Repeal Era and Beyond, Part III

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 9, 2007

guntherbook.jpgBeer in the Homefront Kitchen


As G.I.s fought and drank their share of allocated beer rations during WW II, beer also served limited duty in homefront kitchens. While the National Brewing Company of Baltimore, Maryland, chose to seemingly ignore the war with a compilation of regional recipes for oysters, crabs, ham, pigs’ feet, sausage and chops, all to be enjoyed with National Premium Beer, the neighboring Gunther Brewing Company of Baltimore published a wartime booklet titled Designed For Wartime Living. This publication served as a combination cookbook and canning guide for the homegrown bounty of neighborhood Liberty Gardens. The booklet also offered conservation hints for the household, as well as game and quiz novelties. Pictured throughout the book were women portrayed as factory workers, military personnel, nurses, and housewives. Women were leaving their kitchens and entering the wartime workforce as Rosie the Riveter and other positions that had traditionally gone to men.

While the recipes in the Gunther booklet displayed the obvious cooking practices of wartime rationing (Stuffed Bologna, Macaroni With Left-Over Meat), there were the occasional bits of fancy, including some “man-filler” food recipes that called for beer for “When Your Man Comes Home.” Interestingly, food recipes using malt syrup are absent from the booklet, and light or dark corn syrup is recommended in lieu of rationed sugar. The lack of malt syrup usage in the WW II-era kitchen strengthens Gussie Busch’s old argument that the malt syrup industry’s plethora of food recipes was truly a cover for the syrup’s real use in home kitchens…homebrewing.


Here are a few food recipes from the Gunther recipe booklet that encouraged the use of beer in WW II kitchens:


1 1/2 pounds of veal escallops
3 tablespoons margarine
3 tablespoons grated cheese
3/4 cup Gunther’s Beer
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon cream


METHOD: Dip escallops in seasoned flour and brown in melted margarine. Remove to service platter and keep warm. In a double boiler melt the cheese in the beer. Mix eggs with cream and add to hot beer slowly, stirring over low heat and continue cooking, stirring steadily, until thickened to sauce consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour over escallops and brown lightly under broiler. This should serve 4 or 5 people.


The wartime Gunther recipe booklet wasn’t the brewery’s first attempt to tie their beers with food. An earlier, sixty-four-page effort, complete with an extensive cross index for easy recipe selection, began with an introductory endorsement by “The Gunther Hostess,” who set the stage for “…colorful Old Time recipes which have come down from Colonial times, using beer as an ingredient…” With a mention of “B.D., meaning ‘before the depression,’” the booklet emphasized shortcuts for home efficiency, economy, and downright frugality, including a section on “What To Do With Left-Overs.”

What better way to use up kitchen leftovers than with a homemade pot pie, followed up with an interesting beer cake?

2 tbsp chicken fat
1/2 lb. sausage, sliced
1 cup cooked meat, chopped
1 hard boiled egg, sliced
1 cup lima beans, cooked
1 bottle Gunther’s Dry Beer-y Beer
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
Boiling water
standard recipe for biscuit


METHOD: Melt fat slowly in sauce pan, fry sausage lightly and remove from pan. Add garlic and tomato, sauté. Mix seasonings and add with sausage, chopped meat, sliced egg and cooked vegetables. Cover with beer and boiling water. Simmer slowly 10 min. Grease a casserole, place meat and vegetables in alternate layers, cover with biscuit crust and bake in quick oven (400°) until well browned.


1 cup brown sugar
1 cup Gunther’s Dry Beer-y Beer
2 cups raisins
1 cup shortening
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp [baking] soda
1/4 cup hot water
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 cups sifted flour


METHOD: Wash and pick over raisins, cook with water to cover for three minutes; drain and cool. Cream sugar and shortening, add flour sifted with baking powder, and beer, alternately. Dissolve soda in hot water and add. Fold in spices and raisins. Pour into a well greased loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes at 350°. Test with straw. If it comes out clean and dry, your cake is done. If cake browns too rapidly, cover with brown paper.

Remove from pan and cool. Cover with Chocolate Butter Icing.

This earliest Gunther recipe booklet is also an uncomfortable reflection of a different era, including a number of pictures in the booklet of black porters smiling while serving groups of well-dressed white diners and party-goers. One picture in particular would have never made the Political Correctness guidelines of today, with its portrayal of a smiling, elderly, white-suited servant balancing a tray of Gunther bottled beer saying “Have a bottle of beer, Suh! De driest, beeriest beer in de land, Suh!” 


More at Beer in Food: An American History
by Bob Skilnik 

Posted in Beer History, Beer In Food, Cooking With Beer | Leave a Comment »

Barleywine Pork Ribs

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 6, 2007

redbbqpit.gifAdventures in Beer Tasting recently posted this interesting recipe for Barleywine Pork Ribs so I though I’d post it here too. In all honesty, I’d probably skip the barleywine in lieu of whiskey (why? Because I’d drink it before I threw it in as a basting misxture) that’s also added as a possible substitute for the bbq-ribs.jpgbarleywine. In any case, here it goes;

Dry rub: 2 tbsp black pepper, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, 1 tbsp celery salt, chili powder, and ½ cup brown sugar. Rub half of the dry rub thoroughly onto both sides of the ribs. Place ribs in a zip closure bag or covered container and let marinate overnight in your refrigerator. Reserve the remaining dry rub to use on the ribs prior to cooking.

Basting mixture: mix 1 cup of barleywine or ½ cup whiskey and ½ cup cider vinegar with ¼ cup of orange juice and 2tbsp of water. Reserve this mixture to apply half way through cooking and at the end.

Smoking instructions: Smoke your ribs using mesquite wood chips at 225 degrees farenheit for 4 hours.

Posted in Beer And Food Pairing, Beer In Food, Cooking With Beer | Leave a Comment »

Nutritional Info For Goldschlager

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 6, 2007


                   Goldschlager      1.5 ounces     164 calories     10.1 g carbs    43.5% abv    87 proof

Posted in Booze Nutritional Info | Leave a Comment »

Drink Beer To Increase Muscle Tone?

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 4, 2007

Post moved here

Does My BUTT Look BIG In This BEER?

— Bob Skilnik —

aka, The Low-Carb Bartender

Pick up a candy bar, a bag of potato chips, or even your kid’s favorite sugar-coated breakfast cereal and you can refer to a Nutrition Facts label that gives you the kind of nutritional information that you, the consumer, deserves to know.

But pick up a bottle of your favorite beer, and unless it’s a low-calorie or low-carbohydrate brew with a federally-required Nutrition Facts label emblazoned on it, you have no idea what, if any, nutritional components are in your favorite stout, porter, bock, wheat beer or even a simple American-style pilsner beer.

But no longer. Whether you’re counting calories, carbs or even Weight Watchers® Points®, here’s the nutritional information for over 1,500 worldwide beers that you can enjoy in moderation!

Moderation, not deprivation

Posted in Beer & Food In The News, beer diet, Neo-Prohibition | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Food Recipes of the Repeal Era and Beyond, Part II

Posted by Bob Skilnik on August 1, 2007

fleishmanndinneradcolor1951.jpgBy 1940, the industry promotion of cooking with beer seemingly stalled again with the publication of The Wiedemann Book of Unusual Recipes from the George Wiedemann Brewing Company of Newport, Kentucky. An initial look inside the book proved it to be the old stock Mendelsohn cookbook of the pre-Prohibition era, seemingly devoid of any recipes using beer. As in Mendelsohn’s prior build-to-order cookbook format, the Wiedemann brewery name was substituted this time in the book’s title template, as was the practice with his dozen or so pre-Prohibition brewery customers. The book also included a number of full-page ads for Wiedemann’s Bohemian and Royal Amber beers.


But this time, a new, original preface indicated the addition in the book of “a unique feature incorporated in the present volume, beginning on page 229, of special recipes in which beer is an important and necessary ingredient.” The recipes were furnished by the United Brewers Industrial Foundation.


The U.B.I.F. had been funded by the United States Brewers Association after the U.S.B.A. conducted a survey of Americans’ attitudes toward beer and the brewing industry. The survey’s disheartening conclusions focused the ultimate goal of the U.B.I.F. on the paramount need to establish an extensive public relations campaign on beer’s benefits. As part of their national PR effort, the organization began to publish a series of informative booklets on beer and its positive aspects.


The inclusion in the Wiedemann cookbook of a mere twelve food recipes from the U.B.I.F., which utilized beer as an ingredient, was a culinary rebirth and marked the beginning of industry-supported, beer-infused recipes that carry on in today’s kitchens. A representative sampling from the Wiedemann cookbook follows:



AUTHOR’S NOTE: Notice the familiar call in this recipe for “stale warm beer”—more a simple recommendation here than a reflection of the all too common reality of bad beer in colonial households and its use nonetheless in the kitchen as detailed with food recipes appearing in previous chapters of this book. Beer’s use back then reflected the hard realities of frontier existence and the difficulties in brewing and keeping a fresh batch of homebrewed beer for family enjoyment. Following a recipe back then that called for stale beer was easy.


2 lbs. round steak, cut 2 inches thick

1 cup flour

1 bay leaf

2 teaspoons salt

Dash pepper

6 onions

1/4 cup fat

1 cup water

1 1/4 cups cooked rice

1 cup stale warm beer

2 cups cooked string beans

METHOD: Pound the meat thoroughly. Rub the flour and the seasonings into the meat well on both sides. Brown the sliced onions in the fat. Remove and brown the meat in the same pan. Cover the meat with the onions and the water. Bake in a slow oven for 2 hours. Cover with rice, pour beer all over. Cover and bake until meat is tender and flavor well developed. Serve on a platter with string beans.



AUTHOR’S NOTE: Possibly the first published of many beer-boil recipes for shrimp.

4 cups beer

3 shallots

2 onions (diced)

3 sprigs parsley

Bay leaf

Stalk of celery

2 lbs. raw shrimp



1 tablespoon flour

3 tablespoons butter

METHOD: Simmer the beer with the onions, shallots, bay leaf, parsley and celery, for about 15 minutes, covered; add peeled and cleaned shrimps to the broth and simmer for 10 more minutes, covered; season with salt and pepper. Remove the parsley, celery and bay leaf and bind the sauce with butter and flour, smoothed to a paste. Serves 5 or 6.

Food Recipes of the Repeal Era and Beyond, Part I Here

From Beer & Food: An American History by Bob Skilnik

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