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Hop-loving on the road

Thu, 12/05/2013 - 2:13pm

I'm in San Diego, a hop-loving city if there ever was one, for the Brewbound conference.  Last night Dogfish co-hosted the welcome session at the Museum of Man with our pals at Hopunion.

Above you see me sniffing on a brewers cut of hops with Don and Scott Bryant of Hop Union. We set up two Randall The Enamel Animals and ran the same keg of 90 Minute IPA through each of them. One Randall was loaded with an experimental hop variety that smelled like a Christmas tree fell on your head and knocked you out while you were clipping mint leaves from your herb garden. The hop variety in the second Randall smelled like you accidentally plowed over a lime tree while mowing your lawn. Both were fantastic and so different. The Randall device allows beer lovers to experience for themselves just how different hop varieties can be from each other.

Hop Union also supports Dogfish on our AHopEclipse Now! beer dinner series. The series is over 25 beer dinners across the country (next series starts in February/March) where we pair each course with a different Dogfish IPA (from wood-aged Burton Baton to grape-infused Sixty-one, from 60 Minute to 120 Minute IPA, and more). At least one of those is served through a hop-packed Randall. But, I digress …

The Museum of Man is currently mounting a really cool 'history of beer' exhibit featuring an epic collection of brewing and drinking vessels from around the world and thousands of years ago. Dogfish is a major sponsor of this exhibit and our series of Ancient Ales is included within it. Dr. Rex, who curated the exhibit, gave us Brewbound attendees a behind-the-scenes tour focusing on his most cherished artifacts, including a 1,000-year-old golden chicha chalice. It's beautiful, but it gave me flashbacks to a few painful days of corn chewing and spitting when we brewed a chicha in Delaware a few years back.  

Tonight I hit my old pal Tom Nickel's craft beer mecca O'Briens to host a happy hour where we will feature hard-to-find Dogfish beers and some of our beer-centric foods. Come on by!

Sam Calagione is the founder and president of Dogfish Head.