As we outlined in our United States of Beer Project kickoff post, we are assembling the definitive list of breweries to represent each of the 50 states. Anyone can toss a name out and argue its relationship with a state, but we at The Ferm are only interested in cold, hard facts. Each representative has been selected after exhaustive research and extensive number crunching. As a refresher, below are the guidelines:
- The goal is to identify a single representative brewery from each state. Brewpubs are not specifically excluded, but to be a state representative, the brewpub must have significant distribution in the state.
- To be eligible as a state's representative, a brewery must brew beer in that state.
- If a brewery makes beer in more than one state, the brewery can only be named representative of one state.
- Only active breweries are eligible.
Just to be clear, I'm merely an emotionless arbiter in these selections. I first aggregate brewery data from several sources. An Excel formula then computes the score automatically. My own input came only from the scoring formula creation, which I calibrated using several states where I was particularly familiar with the breweries located within.
If you take exception to any of the selections or think I unfairly excluded a brewery (or brewpub), please hit me up in the comment section or on Twitter (@theferm) and I'll get you the score of the brewery in question.
We pride ourselves at The Ferm on hard work and harder drinking. Let's do this. Cheers!
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Current Shilcutt-Norris Map Divergence Factor: 0.32
Kona Brewing Co.
Alaskan Brewing Co.
Four Peaks Brewing Co.
Sante Fe Brewing Co.
(Sante Fe, NM)
Krebs Brewing Co.
Utah Brewers Cooperative
(Salt Lake City, UT)
Snake River Brewing Co.
Grand Teton Brewing Co.
Redhook Ale Brewery
Bayern Brewing, Inc
Firehouse Brewing Co.
Granite City Food & Brewery
Coors Brewing Co.
Empyrean Brewing Co.
Great Basin Brewing Co.
North End Tavern & Brewery
Free State Brewing Co.
August Schell Brewing
(New Ulm, MN)
Anchor Brewing Co.
(San Francisco, CA)
Miller Brewing Co.
Millstream Brewing Co.
Admission to Statehood: August 21, 1959
Largest City: Honolulu
Well Known For: Aloha, Eating Spam, Barack Obama, getting Lei'd, Aloha
Brewery Representative: Kona Brewing Company (Kona, Hawaii)
USBP Score: 158
Flagship Beer: Longboard Island Lager
Comments: The first state through The Ferm's United States of Beer Project scoring formula yielded some interesting results. The stuff I drink as a mainlander is sourced to a Craft Brewer's Alliance, Inc brewery and distributed by Anheuser-Busch. This means I avoid it unless beers with even less integrity are the only other choices. However, on the Big Island, this stuff remains a craft beer at heart and a good representative of The Aloha State.
Runner Up: Maui Brewing Company (139)
Admission to Statehood: January 3, 1959
Largest City: Anchorage
State Sport: Dog mushing (I don’t know if that is legal in Texas)
Well Known For: Sarah Palin, Russian America, dog sledding, gold, black gold
Brewery Representative: Alaskan Brewing Company (Juneau, Alaska)
USBP Score: 184
Flagship Beer: Alaskan Amber
Comments: While the flagship beer is an Amber like you can spy on Russia from your backyard (kinda), Alaskan Brewing Company is a proper representative for The Last Frontier. I’ve only had their product once in a bottle, but I've sampled it several other times during GABFs. For the uninitiated reader, the Alaskan Smoked Porter is somewhat of a rite of passage in order to call yourself a true beer nerd.
Runner Up: Midnight Sun Brewing Co (170)
Admission to Statehood: February 14, 1912
Largest City: Phoenix
State Neckware: The bolo tie
Well Known For: Deserts, Grand Canyon, Hot Coeds, LA wannabes, online college degrees
Brewery Representative: Four Peaks Brewing Company (Tempe, Arizona)
USBP Score: 156
Flagship Beer: Kilt Lifter
Comments: Four Peaks is part commercial brewery and part brewpub. While it didn't distance itself from its competition in the USBP scoring formula, Four Peaks did brought the AZ rep win home. I can't speak for the brewery (or any Arizona brewery's offerings) but that is why I have computers and formulas that tell me who is the best! However, is it just me or do you also wonder part of the kilt gets lifted when drinking their flagship Scottish-style ale. Here is a blurb from the website: "The only thing missing here is a man with a funny accent playing the bagpipes." (That's not racist, right?)
Runner Up: Nimbus Brewing Company (152)
Admission to Statehood: January 6, 1912
Capital: Santa Fe
Largest City: Albuquerque
State Cookie: Bizcochito
Well Known For: Improved Mexico, Hatch chilies, vaqueros, UFOs, that left turn in Albuquerque
Brewery Representative: Santa Fe Brewing Company (Santa Fe, New Mexico)
USBP Score: 167
Flagship Beer: Pale Ale (unfortunately not the "Chicken Killer Barley Wine")
Comments: Santa Fe is New Mexico's oldest microbrewery. Despite being an emotionless arbiter of in this beer project, one of the joys of the job is discovering new beers. It turns out, Santa Fe is available to me here in Texas. So obviously, mid-sentence, I made a quick roadie and picked up some. No joke... here's a picture.
Runner Up: Second Street Brewery (151) --brewpub
Admission to Statehood: November 16, 1907
Capital: Oklahoma City
Largest City: Oklahoma City
State Dance: Square Dance (Do Sa Do, y'all!)
Well Known For: Stealing land, sucking, hating homebrewers, carnies, fried bologna, dust
Brewery Representative: Choc Beer/Krebs Brewing Co (Krebs, Oklahoma)
USBP Score: 156
Established: 1995 (In it's current form; 1919 according to the legend)
Flagship Beer: 1919-Choc Beer
Comments: Despite the terrible name, Choc beer has a pretty cool back story. I encourage you to click link above and check it out. If you want the short version though, here you go: The Choctaw Indians homebrewed a beer and taught an Italian immigrant named Pete the recipe that he started brewing and selling, even through Prohibition, which eventually got him thrown in jail, but when he got out of the clink, he kept his restaurant and beer recipe, which at the time was occasionally homebrewed by locals because Oklahoma stuck with the whole Prohibition thing after FDR saved us from the national nightmare, and even into the 90s, the state wouldn't allow homebrewing or beer over 3.2% ABW as drawn up in 1933s Cullen-Harrison Act, which happens to be the strength that Choc Beer is brewed today, even though it is made in a more modern brewery and governed by slightly more modern alcohol laws.
I wonder if the Choctaw ever saw a dime of Choc Beer money or if this is just another story of American immigrants stealing from the natives. At least they have casinos.
Picked up by The #Oklahoma Daily (2/11/11), Twitter paper
Runner Up: Marshall Brewing Company (114)
Admission to Statehood: January 4, 1896
Capital: Salt Lake City
Largest City: Salt Lake City
State Dance: Square Dance (Same as the Okies, y'all)
Well Known For: Big Love, skiing, bees, Steve Young
Brewery Representative: Utah Brewers Cooperative (Salt Lake City, Utah)
USBP Score: 168
Established: 1986 (2000 in its current "cooperative" form; scoring based on 1986 founding)
Flagship Beer: Full Suspension Pale Ale
Comments: This brewing company with an unimaginative name cranks out beers with titillating names like Chasing Tail Golden Ale, St. Provo Girl Pilsner, and Polygamy Porter. Utah Brewers Cooperative was born from the merger between "friendly rivals" Wasatch (Schrif Brewing Company) and Squatters (Salt Lake Brewing Company). I credited the founding of this "brewery" as 1986, the founding of Schrif. This decision put UBC in the #1 slot for Utah. Utahans, did I get this one wrong?
Runner Up: Uinta Brewing Company (160)
Admission to Statehood: July 10, 1890
Largest City: Cheyenne
State Sport: Rodeo
Well Known For: Coal, Brokeback Mountain, Dick Cheney, Old Faithful, white people
Brewery Representative: Snake River Brewing Company & Brewpub (Jackson, Wyoming)
USBP Score: 165
Flagship Beer: Snake River Lager
Comments: Snake River is more than just the de facto brewery representative of the desolate but beautiful state of Wyoming. They may only crank out only 5,000 barrels a year and have almost no other competition, but Snake River still managed to grab the "Small Brewery of the Year" at the Great American Beer Festival in 2000 and 2001. Last time I checked, that's pretty good.
Runner Up: vacant (no worthy competitors)
Admission to Statehood: July 3, 1890
Largest City: Boise
State Dance: Square Dance (no kidding)
Well Known For: Potatoes, blue turf, Picabo Street, JC Penney
Brewery Representative: Grand Teton Brewing Co. (Victor, ID)
USBP Score: 173
Established: 1988 (est. in 2000 under the name Grand Teton Brewing Co; previously Otto Brothers' Brewing Co)
Flagship Beer: Bitch Creek ESB
Comments: For the USBP score, I've credited Grand Teton as being established in 1988, when they were actually Otto Brothers' Brewing Co in Wyoming. However, the brewery would have garnered a high enough score to represent Idaho using the date they moved to the state and rebranded themselves. For anyone that has had the pleasure of drinking their flagship Bitch Creek ESB (or the outstanding XX Bitch Creek Cellar Reserve), you will agree Grand Teton is a respectable addition to the 50 State representative list. Beer nerds and the environmentally conscious may also be interested in knowing that Otto Brothers' Brewing was the inventor of the beer growler. No joke.
Runner Up: Coeur d'Alene Brewing Company* (147)
* although not really eligible because it looks like they were kicked out of their home and looking to move/sell the business.
Admission to Statehood: November 11, 1889
Largest City: Seattle
State Dance: Square Dance (seriously)
Well Known For: George Washington, apples, coffee, throwing fish, rain, Micro$oft
Brewery Representative: Redhook Ale Brewery (Woodinville, WA)
USBP Score: 172
Flagship Beer: Redhook ESB
Comments: Redhook's story began with spicy Belgian ales brewed in an old Seattle transmission shop. A few decades later and a 35.6% ownership by A-B InBev later, Redhook now produces a wide range of UK/West Coast style beers in breweries located in Woodinville, WA and Portsmouth, NH. Redhook's breweries also produce Widmer Brother's Heewiezen, but that shouldn't be a reason to hate on either of the A-B InBev backed brands. Look at it this way, that partnership has allowed for some liquid goodness to be found in countless Bud dominated sports stadiums.
Runner Up: Pyramid Breweries (167)
Admission to Statehood: November 8, 1889
Largest City: Billings
State Dance: None
Well Known For: Grizzly bears, the first contact between humans and aliens (Vulcans)
Brewery Representative: Bayern Brewing, Inc (Missoula, Montana)
USBP Score: 164
Flagship Beer: Bayern Amber Lager
Comments: According to the Brewer's Association, Montana ranks #2 in the list of U.S. craft breweries per capita. The state boasts a brewery for every 36,000 people. When I threw all these through the USBP scoring formula, I was shocked that Big Sky Brewing didn't come out on top. Instead the state representative title goes to its Missoula neighbor and the oldest operating brewery in Montana: Bayern Brewing.
Bayern, which is what Germans call Bavaria, is 100% locally owned and operated. The beers are brewed according to Reinheitsgebot (German Beer Purity Law), use all German equipment, and brew only German-style recipes. Prost!
Runner Up: Big Sky Brewing Company (161)
Admission to Statehood: November 2, 1889
Largest City: Sioux Falls
State Motto: "Under God the people rule"
Well Known For: Mount Rushmore, agriculture, Deadwood, Wounded Knee, those pesky Citibank credit card application mailings, Adam Vinatieri
Brewery Representative: Firehouse Brewing Co (Rapid City, South Dakota)
USBP Score: 164
Flagship Beer: Wilderness Wheat
Comments: What I know most about South Dakota is that its capital is Pierre, thanks to Where in the USA is Carmen Sandiego on my childhood Apple IIGS (and Georgia is the "Goober State," haha!). For this project, my exhaustive research turned up only a handful of brewpubs for South Dakota. Only one of these stood out from the pack: Firehouse Brewing Co.
Not to be confused with The Firehouse Brewing Co (San Diego, CA), Firehouse Brewery and Restaurant (Red Oak, IA), or Firehouse Grill and Brewery (Sunnyvale, CA), South Dakota's Firehouse Brewing Co is located in a fully restored meat packing facility. Kidding! It is in Rapid City's original city firehouse, a nationally registered historical site that was carefully restored in 1991 to house the brewpub. It looks and sounds cool, so if I'm ever chasing Carmen through South Dakota again and get a chance to stop by, I've already got it mapped.
Runner Up: Crow Peak Brewing (108)
Admission to Statehood: November 2, 1889
Largest City: Fargo
State Dance: Square Dance (of course)
Well Known For: Ya know - Fargo, most churches per capita in the USA, grain production, cream of wheat, Roger Maris
Brewery Representative: Granite City Food & Brewery (Fargo, ND)
USBP Score: 132
Established: 2001 (in North Dakota)
Flagship Beer: Duke of Wellington India Pale Ale
Comments: Granite City gets the walkover victory for the state of North Dakota. The brewpub, headquartered in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, has the distinction of being the ONLY "brewery" in the state. Yes, "brewery."
The Granite City chain of brewpubs employs a technique they call Fermentus Interruptus, which is a Monty Python-ish way of saying they prepare their wort at a central brewing facility and then ship it to the individual restaurants to be fermented in tanks on site. I'm attempting speak with Mr. Smokeypants, who is the boss around here and also our resident lawyer, for an interpretation of The Ferm's USBP by-laws regarding Granite City's qualifications. When contacted for comment, Granite City's website told us that food accounts for about 80% of sales. So there is that.
Runner Up: vacant (no other breweries)
Admission to Statehood: August 1, 1876
Largest City: Denver
State Dance: Square Dance (yep)
Well Known For: Ski bums, the capital city's eponymous omelet, Rocky Mountains, South Park, medical marijuana.
Brewery Representative: Coors Brewing Company (Golden, Colorado)
USBP Score: 220
Flagship Beer: Coors Original
Comments: With over 100 breweries in the state, Colorado is undoubtedly one of the most influential states in American brewing. The state is a beercationist's dream. The City of Denver alone ranks first in the nation in beer production per capita and second in brewery count. If you include the handful of great breweries that are a short day trip away from Denver, you may never get out to the slopes.
I was apprehensive beginning the scoring process for Colorado breweries. If haters were going to hate, there is a good chance it would happen with Colorado, one of the few sacred states in US beer. However, the silver bullet for picking the state representative is the Silver Bullet itself: Coors. In fact, Colorado was one of the states I used to calibrate my USBP scoring model. Founded in 1873 by German immigrants Adolph Coors and Jacob Schueler, Coors started with a mere $20,000 investment. The brewery went on to survive Prohibition by converting to, among other things, a malted milk facility. Coors is also credited for the development of recyclable aluminum beverage containers. In 2005, Coors merged with Canadian brewer Molson to form Molson Coors, which maintains dual headquarters in Montreal and Denver. That is still pretty good, eh?
Now I'm going to go crack open an ice cold Banquet Beer, and you can leave your dissenting opinions down in the comment sections or on twitter.
Runner Up: Avery Brewing Company (178)
Admission to Statehood: March 1, 1867
Largest City: Omaha
State Dance: Square Dance (no doubt)
Well Known For: Omaha Steaks, corn cob hats, 311, Kool-Aid, beef jerky, Boys Don’t Cry, Malcolm X.
Brewery Representative: Empyrean Brewing Company (Lincoln, Nebraska)
USBP Score: 160
Flagship Beer: Third Stone Brown (?)
Comments: The first craft brewery to bottle its beers (1999) and first to have statewide distribution (2002) is the brewery rep for The Tree Planters' State. Its win, however, was razor thin. I'm talking Nixon/Kennedy close. Michael Phelps 100 butterfly in the Olympics close.
I don’t know much about Empyrean, but I do know they have a World Beer Cup Silver Medal under their belt for LunaSea ESB. That is pretty good. The most puzzling feature about Empyrean is that they DO NOT have a corn based malt liquor in their portfolio. This fact is inexcusable for The Cornhusker State in my opinion.
Runner Up: Upstream Brewing Company (159)
Admission to Statehood: October 31, 1864
Capital: Carson City
Largest City: Las Vegas
State Dance: Pole Dance (actually I'm not sure on this one, because what happens in Vegas...)
Well Known For: Desert, slot machines, What happens, Bugsy, Hoover Dam, Nuclear testing.
Brewery Representative: Great Basin Brewing Company (Sparks, Nevada)
USBP Score: 163
Flagship Beer: Ichthyosaur India Pale Ale
Comments: Great Basin is a brew pub with a couple locations, but they do have eight GABF metals and three World Beer Cup metals to prove they are legit. Great Basin Brewing is also the state's oldest brewpub. In fact the company's founder, Tom Young, helped make brewing legal in the state in the early 90s. I wonder how that fight at the capital went?
Prostitution? Totally natural.
Gambling? You bet!
Brewing? Uhhhhh, we do have our communities to consider. Next.
No wait marriage licenses? Forever, baby.
Runner Up: Ruby Mountain Brewing Company (152)
Admission to Statehood: June 20, 1863
Largest City: Charleston
State Dance: (Sadly) none.
Well Known For: Being West of real Virginia, coal, the Appalachian State song, Mountains, Golden Delicious apples
Brewery Representative: North End Tavern And Brewery (Parkersburg, West Virginia)
USBP Score: 141
Flagship Beer: Roedy's Red
Comments: The Mountain State may not be the home to a budding craft beer scene, but in my experience, you can leave your car unlocked while you head in to North End Tavern for a burger and beers. That's pretty good. (How aboot that, Canada?) What West Virginia lacks in brewery selection, they possess in friendliness. I would tell you more about North End Tavern and how it was established in 1899 and became a brewpub in 1997 and how it's logo may actually be MS clipart, but all I can really think about is this... so enjoy.
No doubt about it, we're here to shout it, West Virginia state representative is NET Brewery. A pick that is no doubt solid as a rock. I hope you are proud as a peacock about this selection. Hot.
Runner Up: Mountaineer Brewing Company (103)
Admission to Statehood: January 29, 1861
Largest City: Wichita
State Song: "Home on the Range"
Well Known For: Prairies, The Wizard of Oz, Superman's adoptive parents, Dwight Eisenhower, Dennis the Menace
Brewery Representative: Free State Brewing Company (Lawrence, Kansas)
USBP Score: 175
Flagship Beer: Ad Astra Ale
Comments: On February 19, 1881, Kansas became the first U.S. state to adopt a Constitutional amendment prohibiting all alcoholic beverages. Nice one Kansas.
According to a rather comprehensive look at Kansas brewing history posted on Free State's website, prohibition effectively eneded a Kansas industry that boasted over ninety brewing facilities. Prohibition was repealed February 20, 1933 (cheers FDR!) and Kansas (reluctantly?) permitted the sale of beer over four years later. However, Like a several other states, Kansas never really got around to making brewing legal again... until a century later!
Kansas lawmakers passed a law in 1987 allowing brewpubs and microbrewies (producing less than five thousand gallons per year) to operate in the state. Free to brew at last, Free State Brewing Company became the first legal brewery in Kansas in over one hundred years in 1989.
Maybe one of you can answer a little question for me by either email, Twitter, or blog post comment. Despite what it may seem from the first paragraph (most of which I ripped from a couple of sources), I'm no historian. However, to me "Free State" refers to Civil War era states that were anti-slavery. This seems like a strange name to choose for a brewery. Is it just me? I combed through their website and couldn't find any explanation of the name. What I did find was an Emancipation Pale Ale in their beer archive section. It is just about the only beer in the list that does not provide an explanation of the name.
Nevertheless Free State, you are a welcome member of our list of state beer representatives. We don't discriminate here either.
Runner Up: Blind Tiger Brewery (153)
Admission to Statehood: February 14, 1859
Largest City: Portland
State Beverage: Milk
State Dance: Square Dance
Well Known For: Being that place you always died trying to get to in your Elementary computer lab, Nike, James Beard, Smart Growth, dungeness crabs, hippies.
Brewery Representative: Rogue Ales (Newport, Oregon)
USBP Score: 187
Flagship Beer: Dead Guy Ale
Comments: We've been offline for a while due to a catastrophic hard drive failure. Most of the USBP scoring and selections had to be rebuilt. However, I found the transcript below in the hard drive wreckage.
[sitting in the Widmer Brothers tasting room]
Abigail: Hey guys! Isn't this Widmer Brothers Hefeweizen delicious?
Issac: No diggity!
Gideon: But aren’t the Widmer Brothers are corporate sellouts? Seriously, do you really believe that there were *really* two Widmer Brothers? I’m just saying.
Abigail: Uuuhhh. Hefe. Yyyummm!
Gideon: Listen up friends. Try taking a journey by
Abigail: Do we have enough money for such a journey?
Gideon: You bet. Sam is a banker. He's loaded. [checks Sam's wallet]. He's got like sixteen hundred dollars in there.
Abigail: And speaking of loaded, I’ve got a gun in my purse.
Samuel: Whoows drvving?
Gideon: Bobbi-Xtina! Close out, we are hitting the road!
Miles traveled: 0.5 miles
[Not one minute into the journey]
Samuel needs to stop and make water.
Gideon: Doggoneit Sam. We'll stop up here at Matt's General Store. Anybody need anything?
Gideon filled the car up with gas.
Bobbi-Xtina got a few packs of Blue Ox Jerky, Airheads, Pizza flavored Combos, and several Code Red Mountain Dews.
Samuel picked up a "Keep Portland Beered" shirt.
Abigail came from the woods carrying a rabbit and a squirrel carcass.
Some Hippie: What is the gas mileage of that Cruiser, man?
Samuel: Whthh that trribal titoo mean, man?
Some Hippie: That grass is inadequate, man.
The group gets in the wagon.
Miles traveled: .07 miles
[Before crossing Willamette River]
Bobbi-Xtina gets a stomach ache.
Miles traveled: 10 miles
The PT Cruiser hits something.
Gideon: Everyone OK?
Samuel: Thereth two of evvything.
Miles traveled: 20 miles
Abigail: What are the symptoms of cholera?
[from Bobbi-Xtina’s Droid phone]
The primary symptoms of cholera are profuse painless diarrhea and vomiting of clear fluid. These symptoms usually start suddenly, one to five days after ingestion of the bacteria. The diarrhea is frequently described as "rice water" in nature and may have a fishy odor. An untreated person with cholera may produce 10-20 liters of diarrhea a day with fatal results. For every symptomatic person there are 3 to 100 people who get the infection but remain asymptomatic.
Abigail may have cholera.
The group stops at the nearest rest station in Idiotville.
[Seriously, there is an Idiotville, OR.]
The group takes a 30 minute break.
Sensing that the Issac was opening up a big can of quit, Gideon insists everyone get back in the Cruiser and continue the journey. Abigail comes out of the woods after a bathroom break with a deer carcass.
The weather is warm, the group has plenty of food, and no one is dead yet.
Miles traveled: 60 miles
Gideon gets a speeding ticket.
Officer Louie: Be careful not to hit that Cruiser's pedal too hard! You can keep moving on your way, but set your cruise control at a fair pace. Do I smell alcohol? If you keep driving too fast you'll all end up spending a night in the drink tank.
Bobbi-Xtina: Oooh, look. A roadside gravestone!
Gideon: Don’t get out of the... ugh. Alright.
Gravestone: "Here lies andy. peperony and chease"
Gideon: What the? Seriously, get back in the Cruiser."
Miles traveled: 86 miles
Samuel: Oooo, llllook! Werrrr closse to Tillamahoo, Tillmooo, Tilllllaamahooo...
Gideon: Tillamook. They make the best cheddar. I want to make a bed out of that stuff and sleep on it.
Bobbi-Xtina buys 186 lbs of cheese, but can only carry 100lbs back to the car.
Creepy Scout in the Tillamook parking lot: The game is still plentiful along here, but gettin' harder to find. With so many overlanders, I don't expect it to last more'n a few years. Folks shoot the game for sport, take a small piece, and let the rest rot in the sun."
[The group rushes back to the Cruiser.]
Abigail: Where are my rabbits?
Gideon: Drat! Someone stole half our stuff! And our spare tire. What is wrong with people?!
Abigail: I thought we left the crazies back in Portland?
Gideon: It's kind of hot.
Gideon may have cholera.
Miles traveled: 114 miles
The PT Cruiser gets a flat tire.
Gideon: What are the chances someone would steal our spare tire and then we’d get a flat tire?
Bobbi-Xtina: ...and that there would be an abandoned PT Cruiser right over there?
Abigail gets a spare tire, a gas can, and some buffalo chips from the abandoned Cruiser.
Abigail: What are buffalo chips?
Bobbi-Xtina finds some wild fruit.
Abigail: Want to see a dead bear?
Gideon: I seriously hope that is a metaphor.
Samuel: I'm thirsty.
Miles traveled: 115 miles
The group stops at The Pelican Pub and Brewery and gets a round of India Pelican Ale.
Bar Person: Be warned, stranger. Don't drink the water! Drink only beer. As *burp* strong as the beer is -- it's better than the cholera! We buried my mate last week. Could use some help with this harness, if you can space the time.
Gideon: Guys! Cruiser! Now!
Bobbi-Xtina finds some wild fruit.
Bobbi-Xtina gets typhoid.
[from Bobbi-Xtina’s Droid phone]
Typhoid fever is characterized by a slowly progressive fever as high as 104°F, profuse sweating and gastroenteritis. Less commonly, a rash of flat, rose-colored spots may appear.
Bobbi-Xtina: Check that, I just need to roll down a window and lay off this wild fruit.
Bobbi-Xtina may have dysentery.
Gideon: When is the last time anyone saw Issac?
[Issac drowned in the Willamette River, but the team never noticed]
Miles traveled: 140 miles
Gideon: We have to be getting close. Right guys?
Runner Up: Deschutes Brewery (183)
Admission to Statehood: May 11, 1858
Capital: Saint Paul
Largest City: Minneapolis
State Dance: "Square Dance" (yessssssss)
Well Known For: Little House on the Prairie, Land O’ Lakes butter, The artist formerly and currently known as Prince, The Golden Girls, gophers, groundhogs, ducks, geese, caribou, bison
Brewery Representative: August Schell Brewing Company (New Ulm, Minnesota)
USBP Score: 224
Flagship Beer: Original
Comments: Like our Colorado USBP Brewery representative Coors, August Schell Brewing Company was founded in the 1800s (before Prohibition). Like Coors, its flagship beer is named "Original." Unlike Coors, the brewery is still family-owned. In fact among family-owned breweries, Schell's (1860) is second in age only to Yuengling & Son (1829)
August Schell Brewing Company is the largest and oldest brewery in the state of Minnesota. Despite their respectable line of craft beers and seasonals, the Schells does not fit the Brewer’s Association’s definition of craft brewer (have an "all malt flagship beer" or have "at least 50% of its volume in either all malt beers or in beers which use adjuncts to enhance rather than lighten flavor").
With Minnesota's representative, we now have a pre-Prohibition, family owned brewery that makes both craft and traditional American lagers.
Runner Up: Summit Brewing Company (182)
Admission to Statehood: September 9, 1850
Largest City: Los Angeles
State Dance: "West Coast Swing" (AND Square Dance)
Well Known For: Gold, mountain ranges, wine, freeway traffic, poplocking, Ronald Reagan, and Dr. Dre.
Brewery Representative: Anchor Brewing Company (San Francisco, California)
USBP Score: 232
Flagship Beer: Anchor Steam
Comments: Anchor Steam was part of the foundation of my craft beer education. Prior to discovering it on my grocery shelf, I had probably been no more adventurous than Guinness and Shiner Bock.
Anchor Brewing has survived earthquakes, fires, Prohibition, and the post-Prohibition wasteland ruled by light lagers from megabreweries. In 1965, Frederick Louis Maytag III (“Fritz”) bought the struggling brewery for a few thousand dollars. During the process of cleaning up, making improvements, and learning the brewing process himself, Fritz created an original American beer style, the modern California Common Beer. Fritz’s beer was a version of the historic “steam beers,” which are beers brewed with lager yeasts at warm temperatures (normally lager yeast is fermented between 48-55F).
Fritz Maytag -- also a viticulturist (York Creek Vineyards), Director of the Brewers Association, and Chairman of the Board of the Maytag Dairy Farms (Maytag Blue Cheese) -- is considered by most to be the father of modern microbreweries. The state of California is rich with worthy candidates for state brewery representative. I believe the USBP formula got it right here. While Fritz recently sold Anchor, the brewery still stands as not only an inspiration for many California brewing entrepreneurs, but also a landmark to brewers and beer drinkers across America.
Runner Up: Sierra Nevada Brewing Company (202)
Admission to Statehood: May 29, 1848
Largest City: Milwaukee
State Dance: POLKA!
Well Known For: Dairy, cheese, those cheese wedge hats, cheese curds, Oscar Mayer, Happy Days, and beer drinking
USBP Score: 221
Flagship Beer: Miller Lite
Comments: NEWSFLASH: Miller Brewing Company is the The Ferm's USBP State Representative for Wisconsin! Shocked? Awed? Shockawed? Here is the deal, Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company actually scored higher using my formula, but after creating the requisite graphics and preparing this write-up, I noticed that Leinenkugel's was purchased by Miller Brewing Company in 1988. While Leinies are a somewhat respectable macrobrew, common sense suggests to award Wisconsin to Miller -- who finished 3rd in USBP scoring on its own.
"Sorry, Leinenkugel, but [Miller is] arguably Wisconsin's biggest invention to date." - Shilcutt
What more should I offer on Miller? You probably know Miller Brewing Company is owned by the UK based SABMiller. However, did you know Miller had been owned by Philip Morris, had been seen an attempt of purchase from PepsiCo, and that the so-called Plank-Road Brewery was real and actually where Frederick Miller founded the brewery in 1855? If I told you that the original brewery included man made caves where Miller's beer was stored before the advent of commercially viable mechanical refrigeration, would that be something you would be interested in?
I know, these days it is all about the marketing. Miller and Wisconsin. Riding in to the USBP Capitol on the Common Sense ticket:
Runner Up: Stevens Point Brewery (220)
Admission to Statehood: December 28, 1846
Population: ~3.1M (30/50)
Capital: Des Moines
Largest City: Des Moines
State Dance:Iowa does not have a state dance! Squares.
Well Known For: Corn, John Wayne, The Bridges of Madison County, Field of Dreams, and being the only state name that starts with two vowels
Brewery Representative: Millstream Brewing Company (Amana, Iowa)
USBP Score: 174
Flagship Beer: Schild Brau
Comments: One of the joys of assembling brewery representatives for each of the fifty states is running across award winning beers of which I have no familiarity. Millstream is one of these breweries. Founded in 1985 by locals, this brewery is now owned by three employees who purchased it in 2001. Cool. Millstream’s most decorated beer and one of the brewery’s original offerings, Schild Brau, consistently medals at the Great American Beer Festival and the North American Brewers Association competitions. That's pretty good. In 2010, Schild Brau Amber earned a gold medal at the World Beer Cup in the Vienna-Style Lager category. That is really good. But does anyone know if Schild Brau translates to “Shield Beer”?
If learning a brewery’s story is one of the joys of this USBP, then it is filling the blank space underneath the USBP score that puts this series in the doldrums. To counteract, let’s talk about something brilliant -- like beer can chicken! The first rule of beer can chicken is to get a roaster with a stainless steel canister. This type of roaster will allow for unbounded options to shove up that bird’s hole. Next you'll need to choose a beer to go up there. A Vienna Lager -- like say -- a Schild Brau would be a solid selection. A word to the wise, as a general rule I would stay away from hoppy beers. When cooked, that bitterness becomes even more concentrated and intense. Save IPAs for drinking while you cook. Now that you've taken care of the basics of beer can chicken, you'll need some direction on how to prep and cook the bird. I recommend checking out Billy Broas’ blog (billybrew.com) for a great post on beer can chicken. There you'll find basic directions and an adaptation of a recipe from Guy Fieri.... And you can drive that bus to Flavor Town, baby!
Runner Up: Court Avenue Brewing Co (154)