Collaborator Doppelbock

Brewed by committee.
How many are too many
Cooks in the kitchen?

Written by Captain Hops.

References: I finally got to taste Collaborator Doppelbock, the open source beer from Flying Dog Brewery. It was a good bottle of beer… but it wasn’t spectacular. There was absolutely nothing offensive about it. In fact it seemed like a craft brewers attempt to offend no one. It was well made. It just wasn’t unique. It didn’t stand out. It wasn’t interesting. Nobody took any risks in terms of flavor and that is just weird for Flying Dog Ales.

Now I don’t know if that outcome was a result of brewing by committee or because the collaboration period simply wasn’t long enough to take the beer where it could eventually go. The whole process seemed awfully rushed to me and even somewhat orchestrated. Open Source Beer was and is an interesting idea, and if any risks were taken it was in the process not the results. I hope the project continues, I would love to taste Collaborator 2.0 and 3.0 and 4.0 and see if a committee can eventually create a spectacular beer.

Other Flying Dog News: By the way, Flying Dog Brewery is consolidating all beer production into the Maryland facility they bought in 2006. The Maryland facility is already responsible for 70% of the current Flying Dog production and also brews Wild Goose beers and a number of contract beers. This move is in response to the deteriorating economics of brewing and the economy in general. The Maryland brewery is simply newer and more efficient than their brewing facilities in Denver. All current brewery employees will be offered jobs and assistance relocating to Maryland. The headquarters will remain in Denver, Colorado.

For any Flying Dog employees considering the move, please know that Frederick, Maryland is a nice quaint historic town with easy interstate access to Baltimore, MD and Washington DC. You won’t have anything as towering as the Rocky Mountains, but you will have the Appalachians where you can go rafting, hiking and skiing in West Virginia, Western Maryland and Pennsylvania. Virginia and Shenandoah are right nearby as well. You’ll also be about 3-3.5 hours from the ocean. Good luck with the move. It’s a straight shot east on I-70. If you’re driving a truck you can do it in about 3 ten-hour days. Welcome to the East Coast.


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Thing of the Day: I’ve been told I have to read Cryptonomicon.


The Session: Winter Beers

Winter Storm “Category 5” Ale

the ice storm outside
mighty adversary to
the storm in my glass

Snow Goose

warm hoppy reward
for the temporary path
I dug through the snow

Santa’s Private Reserve

After breaking in
to Santa’s Private Reserve
I’m now jolly too

Written by Captain Hops.

the Session: Winter Beer

References: This post is part of The Session. The Session is a monthly group writing project for beer bloggers. This month’s theme is Winter Beers and is hosted by Barley Vine.

You gotta love winter time when brewers turn up the cheer and release their seasonal Winter Warmers. It’s like a little reward for beer lovers simply for living through Thanksgiving, Black Friday, the first frost, and a general increase in stress as the end of the year holidays approach.

Some brewers feature beers with spices, others offer beers with heftier malt and hop profiles, nearly all increase the alcohol content a smidge… or more. In any case it’s special and fun and the variety is astonishing.

In the haiku above, I’ve highlighted some local brewers from Maryland as well as the Rogue Brewery from Newport, Oregon. I think these three beers are outstanding examples of the Winter seasonal. I could go all Winter with these three beers alone, but I am very glad that I have an incredible assortment of other Winter Warmers to choose from as well.

Wishing you a warm and wonderful Winter filled with cheers!

Checkout the complete round up of The Session: Winter Beers.

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Thing of the Day: Wondrous Cold: An Antarctic Journey