Ben on Beer Episode 11 – Hard Cider

In this first episode of 2013, we talk about hard cider and get distracted a lot.  It is a good “first show back,” and we drink Biere de Mars from New Belgium Brewing.  The cider talk stems Continue reading

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Hangar 24 Craft Brewery Adds Sacramento and Napa to Northern California Roster

REDLANDS, CALIF. – (Jan. 23, 2013) –Alongside the San Francisco Bay area distribution expansion, Hangar 24 Craft Brewery, one of the top 100 brewers in the U.S., is making its craft beer available in Sacramento and Napa county areas starting the first week of February.  The initial release will include Orange WheatAlt-Bier AleChocolate Porter and Double IPA along with its Seasonal offerings and Local Fields Series.

In its latest Local Fields Series release, Vinaceous, Hangar 24 includes inspiration from California’s famed wineries and vineyards by brewing the English old ale with freshly crushed Mourvedre (red) wine grapes, which also boasts flavors of rich malt, brown sugar, dark berries and a touch of oak.

“As a California based craft brewery, Northern California is extremely important as we expand our distribution,” said Hangar 24 Craft Brewery’s Founder and Master Brewer Ben Cook. “We are happy to be part of this area and we look forward to introducing Northern California’s rich palate to Hangar 24’s unique flavor offerings.”

The expansion into Northern California comes at the same time the craft brewer is adding availability to the San Francisco Bay Area, its largest distribution expansion to date. Hangar 24 also recently completed a physical expansion at its brewery that increased its annual production capacity and added a canning line, making it the first Southern California craft brewery to both can and bottle its beer.

Hangar 24 will be available throughout Sacramento, Napa, Solano, Sutter and parts of Yolo and Yuba counties. The craft brewer has plans to expand outside of California in the next few months.

For a full list of on and off-premise locations carrying Hangar 24 craft beer, please visit www.Hangar24Brewery.com/findbeer.htm. For a full list of California distributors please visit: http://hangar24brewery.com/cal_map.htm. For a complete list of Hangar 24’s craft beer styles and categories, please visit: www.Hangar24Brewery.com/currentofferings.htm or find Hangar 24 on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

About Hangar 24

Hangar 24 Craft Brewery began with a true passion for good beer, the absolute love of flying and the pure enjoyment of being around great friends. Owner and master Brewer Ben Cook and his buddies used to meet at Hangar 24 after an afternoon of flying to trade stories, talk aviation, play music and share a few cold ones that Ben just finished brewing at home. These days, the location where these fine beers are brewed has changed, but the quality time spent enjoying a delicious, handcrafted beer and conversation is the same as ever. Hangar 24 Craft Brewery employs more than 50 team members and its distribution is now spanned throughout Southern California with its addition of another company, Hangar 24 Craft Distribution. Its annual capacity now stands at approximately 40,000 and its Brewery and Distribution Center together employ nearly 100 people.

Batch 22 – Dave’s Caramel Apple Cider

Years ago when I met my friend Bill, he gave me a bottle of apple cider he’d made.  I popped the latch-top on the bottle a few days later and it hissed and popped like I’d just cracked open some champagne.  The cider was crisp and clear, and almost more like champagne than cider.  Still, I was impressed.  I had asked him how he made it and he explained the simple process.

I found a recipe a few months ago at HomeBrewTalk when I was beginning to think about making some cider at home, and the “caramel” in the name got me hooked.  My wife doesn’t like the taste of alcohol or hops, but loves Moscato wine because it’s sweet and has very little bitterness.  She might like a sweet caramel-flavored apple cider, so this is certainly worth a try!

The recipe, roughly, is 5 gallons of apple juice, 2 pounds of dextrose (corn sugar), and Nottingham ale yeast.  Dissolve the dextrose in water on the stove (medium heat) and cool it.  I ended up with about a half-gallon of sugar-water, so it reduced my apple juice quantity by that much.  Combine everything in the fermenter and pitch the yeast.

After fermentation (on bottling day) we’ll add some apple juice concentrate (five 12oz cans) to the volume plus some cinnamon dolce syrup.  We will bottle and wait for conditioning (carbonation) and enjoy!  All credit for this recipe goes to the creator.  I assume his name is Dave.

We’re big fans of the Simply Orange people, and they make all sorts of good juices including apple juice.  There’s an unfiltered, pasteurized Simply Apple that finally went on sale this week, so I jumped at the chance and made a few trips to the store to overcome the quantity limits.

I got the dextrose dissolved, everything sanitized, and rehydrated the yeast:

I pitched this yeast just before the last bottle so I could flush the yeast from this dish and the funnel.  That way I didn’t have any unused or wasted yeast!

I put a bung and airlock on and set it in the corner of my bedroom.  Within two hours it was bubbling to beat the band, which was very encouraging.

I’ll update this post as the process continues and let everyone know how it goes!

Update (01/15/2013): It has slowed to about 1 bubble every two seconds, and I’m obviously going to give it more time.  It seems to have slowed so far due to the dying of the yeast (they’re getting pretty drunk by now) given their activity for the last 9 days or so.  I may have it in the bottle by next week, but who knows?  Everything still looks good and I’m looking forward to tasting this one!

Update (2/4/2013): I bottled this a week ago today.  Even with the additives, it still had a very dry mouthfeel and was quite tart (I always taste on bottling day).  I felt as if needed to check on it; I put a lot of sugar in when bottling – back-sweetening the cider that much could have had negative effects, the most worrisome of which is exploding bottles.  No such event has occurred, and I’m looking forward to the 2-week mark when we can have a taste.  If I can stand to wait that long we’ll have a first assessment on the show for February 22.2013-01-28 20.48.42

Hangar 24 to Touch Down in the Bay Area

The Top 100 Craft Brewery Kicks Off 2013 With One Of The Largest Distribution Expansions Starting In The San Francisco Bay Area

REDLANDS, CALIF. – (Jan. 3, 2013) – Hangar 24 Craft Brewery, one of the top 100 brewers in the U.S., is proud to announce it will launch its craft beer in the San Francisco Bay area starting Jan. 15, 2013.  The initial release will include Orange WheatAlt-Bier AleChocolate Porter and Double IPA along with its Seasonal offerings and Local Fields Series.

The Bay Area marks the Southern California craft brewery’s largest single distribution expansion with plans to roll out in additional markets throughout 2013. Alongside the distribution expansion, the craft brewery is making a larger splash by sponsoring the 2013 SF Beer Week.

“We pride ourselves in creating a craft beer that uses ingredients grown close to the brewery,” said Hangar 24 Craft Brewery’s Founder and Master Brewer Ben Cook. “The Bay Area is our single largest expansion to date and we look forward to serving this culinary rich market and social drinking scene.”

From Feb. 8-17, 2013, the Southern California craft brewery will also be participating in and sponsoring SF Beer Week, one of the biggest craft beer celebrations in San Francisco. The event draws beer lovers from around the country and Hangar 24 plans to participate in several events throughout the Bay Area including the opening gala and closing ceremony.

“We are thrilled to be a contributing member to SF Beer Week and beyond the amazing exposure we can’t wait to ‘cheers’ the Bay Area,” said Cook.

Hangar 24 will be available throughout the Bay Area, including Alameda, Contra Costa. San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Lake, Mendocino, Sonoma and Marin counties.

For a full list of on and off-premise locations carrying Hangar 24 craft beer, please visit www.Hangar24Brewery.com/findbeer.htm. For a full list of California distributors please visit: http://hangar24brewery.com/cal_map.htm. For a complete list of Hangar 24’s craft beer styles and categories, please visit: www.Hangar24Brewery.com/currentofferings.htm or find Hangar 24 on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

About Hangar 24

Hangar 24 Craft Brewery began with a true passion for good beer, the absolute love of flying and the pure enjoyment of being around great friends. Owner and master Brewer Ben Cook and his buddies used to meet at Hangar 24 after an afternoon of flying to trade stories, talk aviation, play music and share a few cold ones that Ben just finished brewing at home. These days, the location where these fine beers are brewed has changed, but the quality time spent enjoying a delicious, handcrafted beer and conversation is the same as ever. Hangar 24 Craft Brewery employs more than 50 team members and its distribution is now spanned throughout Southern California with its addition of another company, Hangar 24 Craft Distribution. Its annual capacity now stands at approximately 40,000 and its Brewery and Distribution Center together employ nearly 100 people.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Matt Kovacs                     mkovacs@blazepr.com             (310) 395-5050

Heather Spilsbury         hspilbury@blazepr.com           (310) 395-5050