Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Website Wednesday -'s Megavote

You probably can't believe that I'm about to write about a government run website for something of value and worth. But don't worry, this isn't going to be some political rant (yet) about health care or the economy. This is me informing you about what I likely consider to be one of the most important information sources I can possibly tell you about. has a newsletter called MegaVote that is specifically about your Representatives & Senators and how they vote on every issue in Congress. You can become more actively involved with your government as you track how your elected official spends their time in Washington. Did they even vote? With this tool you can see if they did and how they chose to vote on that issue. Sign up for the newsletter today and enjoy knowing a little more about your Congress member when the mid-term elections come up around a year from now. 

(The rant . . . ) With MegaVote I've been watching my elected official for about five or so years now. I have noticed a trend with one of my Senators. Senator John Ensign (another Senator caught in an affair recently) consistingly votes NO on everything. It doesn't matter what the vote is on, he votes NO, that is if he is even there as he wasn't during the voting through of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Being disappointed in his decisions the entire time I've been a Nevadan, I cannot say enough bad things about Sen. Ensign. Funny enough he is the one that I've written the most about issues over the years seeing his vote needing the most assistance and guidance. I always got back a standard issue reply message from his office. (. . . rant officially over)

Without MegaVote I would never no how bad this man's decisions really have been and continue to be. So sign up for MegaVote and begin tracking your Representatives and Senators today. You'll thank me later if you find odd trends in your elected officials like I have. Sign up today.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tuesday Brewsday - Sierra Nevada

Sierra Nevada Brewing Company is the second largest craft brewery in the country. It was founded by Ken Grossman and Paul Casumi in 1979. They developed one of the cornerstones of the craft brewery movement along with Sam Koch's Samuel Adams. Their flagship beer, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale was first brewed in late 1980 and is considered by the Beer Judging Certification Program (BJCP) Guidelines to be the best commercially available example of American Pale Ale. According to  Sierra Nevada's website, "It has a deep amber color and an exceptionally full-bodied, complex character. Generous quantities of premium Cascade hops give the Pale Ale its fragrant bouquet and spicy flavor." If you've never tasted a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, I highly suggest you run down to your local liquor store and buy one. It is likely one of the few craft beers available in all 50 states.

However wonderful their pale ale may be, they brew many other styles excellently as well. In fact it was recently announced that they were teaming up with the hottest craft brewery at the moment, Dogfish Head of Milton, Delware. They will brew two beers in "Life & Limb" series, called 'Life & Limb' and 'Limb & Life'. The description of both beers from the press release is here:

Life & Limb is a 10% ABV strong beer that defies style characteristics—brewed with pure maple syrup from the Calagione family farm in Massachusetts and estate barley grown on the Grossman “farm” at the brewery in Chico. The beer is alive with yeast—a blend of both breweries’ house strains—bottle conditioned for added complexity and shelf life, and naturally carbonated with birch syrup fresh from Alaska; it is the first beer we know of ever to use birch syrup in the brew. If stored under good conditions, this rich, full-bodied beer should age well for years.  Life & Limb will be available in 24-oz. bottles and limited draft starting this November.

Limb & Life is a companion to the big beer—an acorn off the larger tree. It is a 5% ABV small beer—a low-gravity beer made using the residual sugar as “second runnings” from the first larger brew, fortified with American hops.  This is a session beer. Its big brother is a sipper. Limb & Life will be a limited draft-only product, a prelude to the bigger beer, available in select bars and restaurants this October. 

The two beers will be brewed at the Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., in Chico, CA and released through the Sierra Nevada distribution network.

Since 1998 Ken Grossman has been the sole head of Sierra Nevada and continues to one of the key persons in the world of craft beer. There have been rumors of their corporate buyout, but to this day they are independently owned and operated. So keep a look out at your local beer freezer for the Sierra Nevada family of beers including their all new beer with Dogfish Head Brewery.


Monday, September 28, 2009

Mad About Music Mondays - Playing For Change

Playing for Change is an inspirational musical project put together by film director Mark Johnson. The project originated four years ago on the Santa Monica 3rd Street Promenade as he recorded street musician Roger Ridley singing "Stand by Me". He then traveled the globe recording mostly street artists performing in their element. He reinforced these performances by a handful of more-polished acts (several choirs, and even U2's Bono.)
He not only put together an album of wonderful songs featuring artists from virtually every corner of the globe, but he documented most of this on film for the movie, "Peace Through Music." I saw a good portion of this film on PBS in September as he was promoting this entire project. I was deeply moved by the story of Roger Ridley who Mark Johnson says is the spirit behind this project.

Roger Ridley was a street musician that inspired Mark Johnson to pursue this project. Roger was so humble in his nature that while being filmed and recorded for an international music project he never revealed such to his wife. Shortly before the project's release Roger was sent a DVD of Stand By Me cut and edited with all of the musicians worldwide. Roger called Mark after being drawn to tears while watching it and he couldn't believe that Mark had actually put it all together.

Shortly after Roger passed away from a heart condition, his wife still not knowing about the performance or project at all. His wife while still mourning for her husband, went to the TV for some entertainment. Pressing a wrong button on the controller she had pressed play on the DVD player. Roger's copy of Stand by Me still in the DVD player started to play for his widowed wife. She was overemotional and immediately called Mark to thank him for Roger's involvement in such a worldly project. Now we all have the ability to enjoy Roger's performances for all time in the music of Playing for Change and the documentary about it's making Peace Through Music. Without further ado, here is the crown jewel of this project, Roger Ridley and other musicians from around the World playing Ben E. King's classic Stand By Me.


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Streaming Sundays - Terry Fator: Live in Las Vegas

The newest headliner on the Las Vegas Strip is the unbelievable ventriloquist Terry Fator. He was the winner of the second season of America's Got Talent in 2007. As a result he got the $1 million prize and was due to have a short stint in the Jubilee show at the Bally's Hotel in Las Vegas. Bally's pulled out of the deal at the last minute. He then scheduled two shows in October 2007 that sold-out almost immediately. He then had to add an addtional show in December to meet the overwhelming demand for his tickets.

The Las Vegas Hilton then resigned Terry to a five-month long, three shows a month headlining gig for the sum of $1.5 million. In March of 2008 Terry was a guest on the Oprah Winfrey show along with Simon Cowell. After his performance Simon Cowell referred to Terry as one of the, "two most talented people on the planet." As we all know that type of praise does not come easy from some like Simon Cowell.

In May 2008 Terry signed a $100 million, five-year deal to be the headliner at The Mirage casino/hotel in Las Vegas. Ever since he began his gig at The Mirage, Terry has received rave reviews as a performer on the Las Vegas Strip. He recently released a DVD featuring his many talents. I have that entire performance for you below. So sit back and get ready to laugh as you watch TERRY FATOR: LIVE IN LAS VEGAS:

Friday, September 25, 2009

Forgetful Fridays - Nevermind

This is still the same featured Friday article I have been writing but it finally has a cool name like the rest. Forgetful Fridays, as it now will be known, is a reference to me either not knowing the location of these CD's, or me not even knowing who I lent it out to and thus who to ask for it back. So Forgetful Fridays is still about those lost CD's and songs that you long for so dearly.

This week's song is from Nirvana's Nevermind. I know how this CD was removed from my possession but I have no clue who committed the crime. At a party at my house in high school (that I didn't throw or attend, mind you) I had my 101 Disc CD Player raided and the better contents of which taken forever. I could go on about that, "but that's a different story altogether," to quote Del Preston from Wayne's World 2. Alas, Nevermind was nevermore for me and I've never managed to go out and spend the several thousand it would take to replace all of those albums in CD form and now sit here longing to hear them in the full glory. I have recently downloaded the album but its just not the same. When you can pop in a CD, sit back, admire the album art, read the liner notes, and sing along with the lyrics inside. Albums are supposed to be experiences that you take in and not something that you download in an instant as you brush your teeth and comb your hair.

I'm all for the insurance that your track will play through without skipping back for songs but you lose in intimate relationship with the artist when you take that all away. I'm sure that purists will even insist that it was all lost when we went away from vinyl. I love the fact that more bands are re-releasing and re-mastering their works on vinyl as the technology grows in popularity again.

Well enough of my hot air, lets get to the music. This week's track is "Something in the Way" by Nirvana off of the aforementioned Nevermind album. The track stuck out like a sore thumb on the album. The entire album were rocking downtrodden songs that the grunge genre became known for, however this song was soft, melodic, almost like a plea for someone to notice Kurt's immense ability as a real musician. By placing this song on the album the band showed their range and how they weren't just a bunch of screaming rockers. Nirvana never made a video for this song so I'm using footage from the iconic Unplugged: Live from New York concert.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Kurt Cobain and Nirvana . . .

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Guest Blogger Thursdays - Spencer G.

How to get TV, Internet and a Phone with Long Distance Calling for about $40 a month!!
Yeah it sounded too good to be true to me too, BUT IT'S NOT! Ask President Grant!

Most things you read about that seem too be good to be true leave the $$$ issue out 'till the very end, so I will get the money part out of the way first. Plain and simple- You have to get high speed internet, and this may cost you about 40 bucks a month. Oh, you already have it? Great!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Website Wednesday - CNET Reviews is one of the most valuable websites I use. Prior to me purchasing anything of value (over $100) I first check with CNet to see their editor's and their customer's opinions on electronic equipment. Whether I'm looking at a GPS system, a new laptop, or simply a webcam, CNet Review is where I go to get my information. Everyone tends to geek out on some of the gadgets I have around my house. Many people own comparable products but not ones that have comparable features. CNet is often where I find a better version than a model that I was currently looking at buying. Those extra features are what make most electronics today. Thanks to CNet Review, I always feel that I have the upper-hand when its time for me to upgrade something in my repetoire.

CNet Reviews offer comprehensive reviews that allow you to understand products prior to purchase. They highlight all the great features of a product as well as their drawbacks without you having to purchase it yourself and find it all out the hard way. I have used it for several recent purchases ranging from the aforementioned GPS receivers, higher end A/V receivers, camcorders, digital cameras, televisions, and even video games. I highly suggest before making your next big electronics purchase that you first check out how CNet rated it. Below is their online buying guide for camcorders. Check it out and more on their website.


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tuesday Brewsday - Deschutes Brewery

Located in Bend, Oregon, Deschutes Brewery is personally my second favorite brewery. When it comes to picking favorites, for me it is about consistency. Any brewery can produce a phenomenal ale or lager, however to produce a family of great beers is much more difficult to achieve. Like Stone Brewery, (my personal favorite) every Deschutes beer is a highly styled, well-crafted piece of art.

Founded in 1988 Deschutes has been brewing craft beer for more than 20 years. It was start by Gary Fish who named the brewery after the nearby Deschutes River in Bend, Oregon. They have since expanded to four brewhouses, with Brewmaster Larry Sidor monitoring all sites to insure consistency and a quality standard that Deshutes has been known to withhold.

They distribute to 14 western states; Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Montana, Idaho, California, Hawaii, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Wyoming, Utah, and parts of Texas. They have no intentions on expanding eastward, much like America's oldest brewery Yuengling having no desire to go westward. In both instances, they wish to simply resupply their markets with the great beer they're known for, rather than risk losing established customer bases for the concept of new ones abroad

One final interesting fact about their beers is that they are VEGAN BEERS! Yes I know I've never really heard this moniker attached to zymurgy but alas Deschutes makes animal-product free beer using Irish Moss to produce a clarifying agent, red algae. 


Monday, September 21, 2009

Mad About Music Mondays - Steve Martin

I know what you're probably thinking right now. Is that the famous actor Steve Martin releasing a record? The answer is YES! Steve Martin recently released a BANJO album. Again, you're not mishearing me, I did say banjo. Steve Martin has been playing the banjo for 40 years. Continuing as a hobby for sometime he has played with bluegrass superstar Earl Scruggs, earning a Grammy for his guest appearance on a remake "Foggy Bottom Breakdown" with Earl Scruggs.

His new album hit #1 on the Billboard US Bluegrass charts. He is an amazing performer as seen on his interview with Tavis Smiley. Below I have included a link to his interview with Tavis. I would have embedded the video as I usually do but PBS video does not allow embedding at this time. (AND I couldn't figure out how to rip the code as I often do as well.) Please click on the link below to see Tavis Smiley's interview with Comedian, Actor, and Musician Steve Martin in its entirety. 

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Streaming Sundays - Beer Wars

This week on Streaming Sundays we really do have a special treat in store for you. Our feature this week is: BEER WARS. The documentary focuses in on the fight of small craft breweries to corner just a small percentage of a multi-billion dollar industry dominated by three major breweries. Bud, Coors, and Miller are practically all that most Americans know about that oft-drank elixir. Now, as never done before, these small breweries are NOT taking this fight lying down. Here is the movie synopsis:

"In America, size matters. The bigger you are, the more power you have, especially in the business world. Director Anat Baron takes you on a no holds barred exploration of the U.S. beer industry that ultimately reveals the truth behind the label of your favorite beer. Told from an insider’s perspective, the film goes behind the scenes of the daily battles and all out wars that dominate one of America’s favorite industries. 

Beer Wars begins as the corporate behemoths are being challenged by small, independent brewers who are shunning the status quo and creating innovative new beers. The story is told through 2 of these entrepreneurs – Sam and Rhonda – battling the might and tactics of Corporate America. We witness their struggle to achieve their American Dream in an industry dominated by powerful corporations unwilling to cede an inch. This contemporary David and Goliath story is ultimately about keeping your integrity (and your family’s home) in the face of temptation.  

Beer Wars is a revealing and entertaining journey that provides unexpected and surprising turns and promises to change the world’s opinion on those infamous 99 bottles of beer on the wall."

Check out their fight in BEER WARS:


Friday, September 18, 2009

Songs From Albums I Don't Have Anymore - Saturday Morning Cartoons Greatest Hits

Okay that has to be one of the World's longest blog titles. But yes this is yet another installment of that teary-eyed concept of 'Songs from Albums I Don't Have Anymore', this time we're looking at Saturday Morning Cartoons' Greatest Hits. This week we are looking at a late 90's album featuring several notable bands. The Ramones, Tripping Daisy, Sponge, the Violent Femmes, and more. The song I'm featuring today is the theme from the 70's cartoon Hong Kong Phooey. I have included both Sublime's version of the song and the original theme so you can hear the similarities and differences. Please enjoy the theme of Hong Kong Phooey as played by 90's chart-topping artists Sublime. (Check out the guest appearance from Drew Barrymore!)


Guest Blogger Thursday- Szwejbbie's Blower Beatdown

Ever wonder how any yard work can be accomplished when you see people taking a glorified hair dryer to their yard debris? Everyday to and from work I see numerous landscapers and occasionally homeowners working hard, or hardly working, blowing leaves and soil into a whirling dust devil. How can this be accomplishing anything in the way of picking up landscape debris? While I've never actually used one, I do know that any equipment requiring personal protective gear may have a more viable alternative available (aka broom). Many city's across the country have pondered this exact question at their city council's determining that this obtrusive piece of equipment was better left on store shelves. There have been 100 cities that have banned the use of leaf blowers, while Hawaii, Arizona & New Jersey have all considered bans at the state level as well.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Website Wednesdays -

In this week's Website Wednesday we suggest you visit - My brother-in-law first told me about this site about three or four years ago. Ever since I have been going to the site daily, as well as visiting their 'sister websites' wine.woot, shirt.woot, sellout.woot, and most recently to the family of sites, kids.woot.

Now I'm sure you're wondering what the hell is Woot and why should I go to the site. Woot is a daily deal website featuring only one product each day. That product is usually listed at an unbelievable price. Each night at midnight Central Time (Woot is based in Texas) Woot posts a new product for purchase. Some items, like their famous Screaming Monkeys and Random Crap grab bags, sellout in minutes if not after a couple hours. Other products never sellout and thus you have a 24-hour period to purchase that item. Once an item is soldout or has moved on you've likely missed your only opportunity to capitalize on that incredible price.

They can have such ridiculous prices because they buy in huge bulk quantities, they focus all of their efforts into a single product everyday. One of my favorite features of their site is that EVERY PRODUCT on Woot has only $5 shipping. So if you buy a 3x5 picture frame it costs you $5 shipping, and if you buy a washer-dryer set (I've seen them sell it!) only $5 shipping.

Their sister sites can run a little bit differently. For example wine.woot is not a daily site, they update their site weekly. Each week they unveil a new wine deal, usually two or more bottles from the same winery. Shirt.woot is a daily website and all of their tees are only $10 and that includes shipping. You can get it overnight shipped to you for an additional $5. Kids.woot is the newest member to the clan and operates just like and Sellout.woot.

From time to time Woot will feature a WOOT-OFF in which they quickly move through the remaining product in the warehouse. These quantity numbers are usually much smaller than normal woot days and they can cycle through twenty products in a given WOOT-OFF day. You know if they're having a WOOT-OFF if there are siren-like lights on the website.

Check out,,, and today.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Tuesday Brewsday - Tis the Season . . .

No, not for mistletoe and holly, but beer steins and Marzen!

ITS OKTOBERFEST PEOPLE! I know most of you think that Oktoberfest actually falls in October but it falls mostly in the month of September. This year's festival occurs from September 19th until October 4th. (Those in Vegas, there's a cask-keg tapping with Siegfried & Roy at Hofbrauhaus on the 19th.)

So with Oktoberfest comes the brewery companies Oktoberfest beer. Sam Adams has . . . oddly enough Oktoberfest, Gordon Biersch has their year-round Marzen, Flying Dog features Dogtoberfest, and even New Orlean's own Abita beer has Fall Fest.

So as you drink either corporate brands or wonderful craft brew, please make sure that it is appropriate with the celebrations worldwide. Tis the season to celebrate wonderful brew of a crafted nature the world 'round. On top of that, every year craft brew moves into a bigger segment of the market and hopefully edge out Big Beer on yet another SMALL PERCENTAGE of the market.

Maybe someday soon people won't call us "fanboys" and will acknowledge the fact that we are conisseiurs of a finely crafted beverage and not some cheaply produced corporate behemoth that relies on adjuncts, extracts and mass marketing. Nothing can ever top the real thing, especially when it tastes as good as a great Marzen.

(Please make sure to thank your local store for carrying craft brew and ask them to carry a brand you like and they don't have. You have the power to change your world, just try and use it.) - Inspired from a Stone Brewery update of a similar nature.


Monday, September 14, 2009

Mad About Music Mondays - Paolo Nutini

First out of the gates is a Scottish artist who has been around for some time. But like most musicians, he'd paid his dues on the road and is starting to make a name for himself. Recently featured on the Tonight Show, where I first noticed him, Paolo Nutini has amazing soul, range (both vocally and stylistically), and a timbre similar to Joe Cocker or Caleb Followill lead singer of Kings of Leon.

After listening to his entire Sunny Side Up album on MySpace Music I was moved to hear more on his previous These Streets album. I enjoyed the samples I heard so much that I requested it from my library so I can listen to it on a proper stereo. Click on the above link to his MySpace Music page for either album or watch his performance from The Tonight Show w/ Conan O'Brien below.


Daily Updates ARE BACK!

That's right ladies and gentlemen,

I'm going to be putting forth a larger effort towards my blog in hopes of posting almost daily for your enjoyment, excitement and benefit. I have set aside specific topics that we'll be touching on everyday day of the week (except some Thursdays and most Saturdays.) Here are the sections we hope to be unveiling this week and following up with on subsequent weeks:

MAD ABOUT MUSIC MONDAYS - In this weekly section we'll post a 'new' song for you to hear. It may be from a new artist, an artist you've never heard of or just a song from a popular artist you never knew they performed. Or, if I'm fresh out of cool music to share I may post a new music countdown for you to agree with, completely discount or just try to amend it yourself to your own liking. I hope you enjoy this Monday update.

TUESDAY BREWSDAY - Here we'll feature a different beer from a top-flight craft brewery. More likely than not the beer will carry with it some international beer festival awards, medals and top accolades. Check us out every Tuesday for you to pick up your Brewsday knowledge.

WEBSITE WEDNESDAY - Make sure to check with us every Wednesday for you find out about a wonderful website for you. Some of them will be informative, some may aid your effort to kill time, others maybe so useful that you'll add them to your favorites.

GUEST BLOGGER THURDAY - Yeah, I know. There's no catchy name for today. Oh well. Here I'll feature friends and colleagues and allow them free-reign into whatever topic they wish to address. Beer? Sports? Video Games? Movies? Who knows, check back to see our first guests.

SONGS FROM ALBUMS I DON'T HAVE AROUND ANYMORE FRIDAY - It's a very sad concept, and something that inevitably we all suffer from. We once had this badass album, and it got a lot of wear in our CD player, phonograph, or ghetto Walkman. We misplaced it at some point and now we reminisce about good times past and how those songs used to be a magic experience, when they were still around. So I'll hunt down some tracks from that album on YouTube and elsewhere and allow us to sit back and kick on our 'remember when' shoes.

OPEN SATURDAY - I am not planning any overwhelming plans for Saturdays. More likely than not I will take a day off from posting unless some issue, story, article, or video is twisting my arm to post on Saturday.

STREAMING SUNDAY - Make absolutely sure that you check back on Sundays. I will be either embedding or posting a link to an online streaming movie that is either still in theaters (very often right after opening weekend) or a New Release on DVD. These links are not likely to be active very long so I highly suggest watching them as soon as they are available.

I hope that you enjoy the new weekly topics I wish to touch on. Please come back daily to check out what new feature I have unveiled. Also feel free to provide feedback on how to improve this blog as well providing you with more content that interests you.

Stay tuned and enjoy.


Streaming Sundays - Road Trip: Beer Pong

This is another new section in the blog where every Sunday (I know, it's Monday) we'll embed a movie that is either still in the theaters or new to DVD on this blog. I have no affiliation with the sites hosting these movies nor am I the source of the links. I am merely the presenter of wonderful streaming movies that help you save some cash and enjoy a day cleaning the house while watching these films. The link may not be active for that much longer so please enjoy it soon! You can have the DIVX player automatically download the file so you can view it at a later date or show others. Enjoy.


Friday, September 11, 2009

Songs From Albums I Wish I Still Had Around

This is a (hopefully) weekly column of a song or two from an album that I once owned and loved but since have misplaced and long for dearly. As we grow old we each grow attached to certain artists, songs and albums. They help define us as kids, teens, and later on adults. As we listen to the lyrics more closely all these years later they either mean vastly MORE or considerly LESS than what we had perceived. Hopefully this outlet will allow both you and I release some of the fond memories we have of our free-spirited youth. I regularly recall very specific moments, persons, or places when I hear songs as I moved often as a child changing scenery, friends, and surroundings as quick as the top Billboard hits would change over. Please sit back and enjoy "Song from Albums I Wish I Still Had Around."

This week's entry comes from the album Loud Rocks! The hip-hop/rap studio Loud Records released a collaboration album with many of the hard rock and nu-metal bands that were coming out in the late 90's. The 1999 release had match-ups like Ozzy Osbourne and the Wu-Tang Clan, Sevendust and Xzibit, Sugar Ray and the Alcoholiks, along with Incubus and Big Pun. The track I chose to select is another collaboration from the Wu-Tang Clan. This time they've paired up with the Armenian band System of a Down. Please enjoy this rendition of "Shame'. **Added bonus** beneath it I have included Wu-Tang's original version of the track.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

All Beer Is Yellow . . .

. . . I know, I know it isn't. However, in a recent Facebook thread I was told such, TWICE! Now this is not a candid reply to such, merely a developed explanation on how this simply is not the case.

Now not only can this be refuted in an instant but it begs to ask the question, "Why would someone think this is so?" The answer to that is probably the massive marketing campaigns that BIG BEER produces. These campaigns dominant marketing all over television, radio, and the internet, telling you that their beer "Tastes Great" and is "Less Filling," enticing you to tell another "I Love You Man" to snag a beer, or that their beer is "As Cold as the Rockies."

As famous beer critic and writer, Micheal Jackson 'The Beer Hunter' put it, "Now someone farts and they put a TM after it. Even Miller Lite says 'A Fine Pilsner Beer' on the label. It is a crime."

The late Michael Jackson, "The Beer Hunter"

The Big Beer I refer to would be the three largest breweries on American soil, Anheuser-Busch (brewers of Budweiser), Miller, & Coors. I unfortunately have to say on American soil because they no longer are majority-owned by Americans. Miller Brewing is owned by SAB Miller, a British company based in London and listed on the London Stock Exchange. In 2005 the Coors Company merged with Canadian owned Molson and is now MillerCoors, a joint venture created in 2007 between British-owned SAB Miller and the now Half-Canadian, Half-American MolsonCoors, to be one third American owned. Last to join the foreign market is Anheuser-Busch. They were purchased in August of 2008 by the Belgian owned InBev to the sum of $52 billion. This makes InBev the largest brewer by volume with all of the Anheuser-Busch brands (Bud, Michelob, Busch, Rolling Rock) joining notable brands like Bass, Beck's, Stella Artois.

So that leaves the meager Boston Beer Company as America's Largest American-owned brewery. When I mentioned this fact to my Facebook friend they rifled back with, "You know, Sam Adams is a 'BIG' corporate company." While they may be publicly traded company, they are no doubt a craft brewery and not Big Beer. Here is how the Boston Beer Company describe themselves:
The Boston Beer Company is America's leading brewer of handcrafted, full-flavored beers. Founder and Brewer, Jim Koch, brews Samuel Adams® beers using the time-honored, traditional four-vessel brewing process, and the world's finest all-natural ingredients. With 18 distinctive, award-winning styles of beer, Samuel Adams offers discerning beer drinkers a variety of brews. The brewery has won more awards in international beer-tasting competitions in the last five years than any other brewery in the world. Samuel Adams is an independent brewery and has half of a percent of the domestic beer market. The Company's flagship brand, Samuel Adams Boston Lager®, is brewed using the same recipe and processes that Jim Koch's great-great grandfather used in the mid 1800s. The result is a beer renowned by drinkers for its full flavor, balance, complexity, and consistent quality.

With that I'll continue to refute the statement of "All Beer is Yellow." The following styles in the there nature are anything but yellow; stouts, porters, ambers, brown ales, dark largers, bocks, lambics, and irish red ales. For the majority of their styles you need not read their BJCP Style Description but simply read their name. Some lambic's colors are so vibrant they are more akin to pure juices than beer or even wine.

As you can see from the BJCP Color Chart, each style varies in color greatly. While most lagers and pilsner styles are meant to be clear with a golden yellow hue, most porters and stouts are meant to be dark and slightly opaque. These are attributes to their style and are not necessarily for better or worse. I sampled a wonderful pilsner by Green Flash Brewery in San Diego called, in fact, Fizzy Yellow Beer - a Bohemian Pilsner. It was full-bodied, had Belgian yeast notes, as well as a nice finish.

So in closing, I state that there is good beer that is yellow. I do not think, however, that the yellow beers that are worth drinking would be classified as 'fizzy' and 'yellow'. On the other hand, most beers brewed in corporate mega-factories in Golden, CO, St. Louis, MO, and Milwaukee, WI are more than likely LESSER THAN to say the least.

If these are your beers of choice fine, that's okay. No one is saying we should ban such products from the market. Be that as it may, you cannot argue that a box wine is better than an aged wine, nor can you argue that a cheaply produced beer made with rice and corn can rival that of a true craftsman and artist. Paint-by-numbers isn't Picasso, so let's not pretend such with our evening libations. Okay?

I Am A Craft Brewer from I Am A Craft Brewer on Vimeo.

"I Am A Craft Brewer" is a collaborative video representing the camaraderie, character and integrity of the American Craft Brewing movement. Created by Greg Koch, CEO of the Stone Brewing Co. and Chris & Jared of Redtail Media...and more than 35 amazing craft brewers from all over the country. The video was shown to a packed audience of 1700 craft brewers and industry members at the 2009 Craft Brewers Conference as an introduction to Greg's Keynote Speech entitled "Be Remarkable: Collaboration Ethics Camaraderie Passion."

A program is in development to include even more of America's amazing craft brewers. Please stay tuned!


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