Season 2, Episode 4 - This week, we’re on location at Monkish Brewing in Torrance, California with owner, president and brewer Henry Nguyen and Monkish “Evangelist,” Brian White.
The second stop on our South Bay/L.A. beer tour, Monkish Brewing Co. has quickly become a brewery in Southern California that has set themselves away from the pack, brewing nothing but Belgian-style inspired beers. We start the show with two beers that have a history with one another, Crux and Oblate. The latter beer was the first to be brewed at Monkish, even though Crux was technically supposed to be the first beer made, but the result was Oblate. They are similar beers but differ in malts and adjusts.
The next beer was a collaboration made with Sunset Beer Company, named Sunset Beer. In the early days of Monkish, Henry was brewing at night and delivering beer during the day. He established relationships with many of shops, and Sunset Beer Company was one of them. This “hipster” beer as Henry calls it, is a witbier made with wheat malt, orange zest, and Lotus seed, as well as Citra, Galaxy, and Mosaic hops. It’s fermented with their house yeast, White Labs WLP530 Abbey Ale Yeast, and bottle conditioned with Brett Trois and Brett Brux yeast. It’s dry, aromatic, hoppy, and absolutely delicious.
Next up is a beer that has made its way into Matt’s heart, Selah. This beer has only been made once, so far. It was inspired by Jolly Pumpkin‘s approach to beer, and was Monkish’s first beer made with brettanomyces. This is one of only two beers that Matt will drink that contain Sorachi Ace hops, and boy do the hops work well in this beer, giving it a big lemon nose. Henry wanted this beer to finish bone-dry, and used Wyeast 3711 French Saison Yeast, which is know to be a big, big attenuator, as well as Brett Trois and Brett Brux.
The final beer is Shaolin Fist. This beer is very unique in that it is made with Sichuan peppercorns. Henry was unsure this beer would sell, since during fermentation the brewery smelled like a Panda Express restaurant. This is a very savory beer and is quite complex. Nagel jokes about the beer paring well with carne asada tacos, but in reality, it really would pair well!
Henry goes in-depth on a lot of the technical stuff behind Monkish beers, and it’s really quite interesting to hear his point of view on beer. If you’re ever in Torrance, pay a visit to Monkish, and head on over to Smog City, which is less than a quarter mile away.
Big thanks to Henry and Brian for having us!
We’ve had a great response to our Patreon campaign thus far, and we’re totally stoked to have 18 (5 new Patrons this week!) Patrons supporting the show! We can’t thank them enough for the support and are humbled by their generosity. If you feel you’re getting any sort of value/entertainment/knowledge from 4B, please consider supporting the show on Patreon: http://patreon.com/fourbrewers
Season 2, Episode 3 - Four Brewers is on the road! Our first stop in this three episode series devoted to Los Angeles beer is Smog City Brewing Co., in Torrance, California.
This week, we’re trying our hand at remote shows, and exploring the LA beer scene. The first stop on the tour is at Smog City Brewing Co., located in Torrance, California. Jonathan Porter and Chris Walowski sat down with us three hours before the release of their bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout named Infinite Wishes, to talk about the brewery and share some tasty brews and interesting stories.
The first beer, which was served up at a bright and early nine o’clock in the morning, was their “hoppy amber” ale named Sabre-Toothed Squirrel. This beer is made with Falconer’s Flight hops, and could almost be described as “Arrogant Bastard light” in terms of the way the hops and amber malt qualities interact with each another. This sabre-toothed squirrel definitely has some bite… (See what I did there?)
Next up is Smog City’s outstanding imperial stout called The Nothing. This beer was originally brewed by Porter at his former brewing home, Tustin Brewing Company, as Double Chocolate Imperial Stout. Coming in at 10% ABV, it contains two types of TCHO cocoa nibs and two types of chocolate malt, and is meant to have a mouthfeel similar to that of a chocolate milk shake. It’s also made with malted oats, which of course, gives John a beer boner.
Infinite Wishes is the next beer on deck. It’s the bourbon barrel-aged version of The Nothing, and is in the neighborhood of 12% ABV. It was aged in bourbon barrels for precisely 364 days, and it is truly spectacular. It’s quite smooth and hides its alcohol quite well. The barrel character really shines and isn’t too overwhelming or woody. Fans of Smog City were lined up outside of the brewery when we finished recording this episode at 10:00 am, and it sold out in a matter of hours. Here’s to hoping the’ll make this beer again next year…
We wrap up the show with a nice, palate cleansing Smog City saison named Saison Contraire. This beer was fermented with Smog City’s house brettanomyces yeast, and then refermanted with two other types of brett yeast. It’s then dry-hoppped and packaged with another dose of brettanomyces to condition the beer in the bottle. That’s a lot of brett, yo. Needless to say, it’s pretty friggin’ great.
Smog City Brewing Co. have been at their current location since 2013, but were brewing beers at Tustin Brewing Company under the name Smog City since 2011. They’ve come a long way in the last four years, and we can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store for them. Big, big thanks to the staff at Smog City for having us, and hosting our debut on-location show!
Side note: About halfway through the episode, there is a faint, consistent white noise that can be heard in the background. That was the sound of their CO2 tank being refilled by an outside vendor. Hey, we were in a brewery. It happens.
We’ve had a great response to our Patreon campaign thus far, and we’re totally stoked to have 13 Patrons supporting the show! We can’t thank them enough for the support and are humbled by their generosity. If you feel you’re getting any sort of value/entertainment/knowledge from 4B, please consider supporting the show on Patreon: http://patreon.com/fourbrewers
Season 2, Episode 2 - This week, we’re altering our palates and sacrificing some great beers in the process, all in the name of fun!
This week, we’re altering our palates, be it for good or bad, to experience what’s like to taste different styles of beer after eating “Miracle Berries”. Miracle Berries are known for their ability to basically make things that are bitter taste sweet, and things that are sour to tastes even sweeter than if it were bitter. They come from West Africa, and Jason and Greggot some as part of Cards Against Humanity’s “12 Days of Holiday Bullshit” promotion.
Without giving too much away in the blog post, the results were quite interesting. Johnwas not a fan of this little experiment going into it, simply because he thought it was a waste of time and (great) beer. But we all know that John can be a bit of a party-pooper at times…
We try a variety of different beers from sour, to bitter, to big and rich. Here’s a list of the beers that we’re tasted with the Miracle Berries:
Being that this was the third show of session 11’s recording session, the usual “third show syndrome” antics kick in, and fun is had by all…except John, of course.
We’ve had a great response to our Patreon campaign thus far, and we’re totally stoked to have 12 Patrons supporting the show! We can’t thank them enough for the support and are humbled by their generosity. If you feel you’re getting any sort of value/entertainment/knowledge from 4B, please consider supporting the show on Patreon: http://patreon.com/fourbrewers
Season 2, Episode 1 - Happy New Year! This week, we’re kicking off Season 2 of the podcast with a whopper of a show, mostly dedicated to homebrew, and Daniel Cady joins us for another go-around.
We kick off the show with another Saison collaboration brew from John and Matt named Raincross Saison. Everyone enjoys it, more or less, but there isn’t much enthusiasm, and we do our best to completely pick it apart. John talks about his plan to condition it with the East Coast Yeast ECY34 brettanomyces blend, so we’ll surely revisit it in the future.
Next up, we have a tasty stovetop home brewed roggenbier named Rye Oh My! from Señor Nagel. Brewed as a quick, kitchen-sink beer for his holiday guests, everyone on the show enjoyed its easy drinking and bready yeast complexities. Greg also brought along a hoppy (reddish) IPA homebrew named Burning Ugly Christmas Sweaters that was…a bit…off…um… Finally from Greg, we revisit his Rye Saison that he fermented with the White Labs American Farmhouse Blend. We all enjoy it, but agree the brett needs more development time.
Finally, we finish off with an epic Going In Blind session. The beers for this long, awesome session were all supplied by good friends of Greg’s, Kristina and Steve Allison (Kristina is also a Patreon 4B patron–thanks!) We have some killer beers, and some not so killer beers, but good, sloppy times are had by all.
We’ve had a great response to our Patreon campaign thus far, and we’re totally stoked to have NINE Patrons supporting the show! We can’t thank them enough for the support and are humbled by their generosity. If you feel you’re getting any sort of value/entertainment/knowledge from 4B, please consider supporting the show on Patreon: http://patreon.com/fourbrewers