Join us Friday, November 15th at 5pm at Binny’s Lincoln Park for the 2013 launch of Perennial’s sought after Abraxas to Chicago! If you didn’t already know, Perennial Abraxas is an Imperial Stout brewed with Ancho Chile, Cacao Nibs, Vanilla Bean and Cinnamon Sticks, and is delicious.
We’ll have some special beers open to sample and people from the brewery to chat with. Hope to see you there!
It’s that time of year again!
Join us at Binny’s Lincoln Park for Black Friday, November 29th. Doors open at 9am. We’ll release the 2013 batch of Goose Island’s Bourbon County Brand Stout, along with this year’s variants: Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout, Bourbon County Brand Barleywine, Backyard Rye Bourbon County Stout, & Proprietor’s Reserve.
[ ed: We have covered this issue before. But Vav's explanation is worded so well that we couldn't help but post it here on the Binny's Blog. It's a common question. ]
I just bought a case of Petrus Aged Pale Ale. I opened it up when I got home and noticed it was cold. I thought this was probably a mistake since most people buying in bulk would want it warm so they can cool it at their leisure. I called to see if I could exchange it, and the guy said I could but the beer would be fine. Basically it’s a myth about the warming/cooling of beer that leads to aged taste or skunkiness, and exposure to light matters. I was confused, having thought that was a factor.
The beer is absolutely fine for a number of reasons. Bear with me. There’s a lot of science coming up.
“Skunking” is a specific occurrence in beer, not a catch all for when beer goes bad.
Beer uses hops as its bitter component to balance the sweetness of malt. When hops are added to the beer during the boiling, they release Iso-Alpha Acids, which are the main components in hop oil. During the boil alpha acids isomerize, or transform into different molecules, which are very bitter. These, along with other hop oils, remain in the beer, contributing hop aroma. Some of the oils are quite volatile, and will break down when exposed to ultraviolet light. The reaction is quite fast: literally a matter of minutes and the isohumulone will break down into a chemical similar in makeup and aroma to the chemicals that come from a skunk’s anal scent glands. This is why beers from certain big European breweries smell skunky: green glass offers almost no protection from light. Clear bottles offer no protection. Brown bottles offer great but not perfect protection. A fun experiment is to grab a four pack of either Pilsner Urquell or Beck’s in cans. Pour a couple ounces into a clear glass, and put it on a sunny windowsill for two minutes. Then pour a few ounces into a second glass and smell the beer in both glasses. The difference will shock you.
Some beers like Corona and some Miller products use hop extracts that have been chemically altered to prevent skunking, even in clear bottles. So that’s where skunking comes from. In fact, we also call it Light Struck.
Still with me? Go grab a beer and then come back. There’s more…