Monday, April 20, 2009

A Flying Dog Twitter

TasteLive!There was an internet beer tasting on Saturday evening. Folk around the web participated, via Twitter, from 8 -9pm US Eastern Time, tasting beers from Flying Dog Brewery.

The co-host and sponsoring website was Taste Live!

Participants signed up with Taste Live! or went to the search page and followed along by entering the hashmark #ttl. (In fact, when the TasteLive! feed proved to be sluggish, many participants did just that.)

Tasted were 4 beers from Flying Dog's Canis Major series:

  • Kerberos Tripel at 7.8% alcohol by volume (abv)
  • Gonzo Imperial Porter at 7.5% abv
  • Horn Dog Barley Wine Style Ale at 10.2 abv
  • Double Dog Double Pale Ale at 11.5% abv
tasting room at Flying Dog
Flying Dog (Twitter handle was, of course @FlyingDog) began the tasting with good advice for the evening and whenever tasting beers with intensified flavors, especially higher alcohol or darker beers:
Please let your beers warm up a bit. The flavors will be much more intense if they are "slightly chilled.

Sipping, rather than drinking full bottles seemd to be prudent, as the pace was fast and the beers strong. And there were only 60 minutes in which to taste, post, and respond.

As the hour progressed lips did get looser and typos hilarious-er. Some Twitter-ers apparently drank all 4 full bottles (even if they were only 7 oz). One Twitter-er assured us:
Deceptively strong yes, but 8.5% is still session beer territory for me ;)
[Did he have more alcohol-dehydrogenase enzyme in his system than the rest of us?]

The short bites (bytes?) format that is Twitter forced brief comments. Many descriptions, posted without time for contemplation, seemed to be concise first impressions, although I could easily imagine someone preparing notes beforehand in order to impress.
Explain, please... Are you in MD or CO??
one Twitterer asked.

Jim Caruso (Twitter handle= @jcperro), General Partner for the Flying Dog, Tweeted back:
All the beer is brewed in Frederick, MD. 58 of 69 people are based in Frederick. But we also have an office in Denver, CO.

And this from Director of Brewing Operations Matt Brophy (Tweeting @BrophyBrewer):
We also have some barrels of brett [brettanomyces yeast- a funky wild yeast, often found in belgian beers] Gonzo [Imperial Porter] hiding in the brewery. You'll probably have to visit the brewery to try it.

Like always with matters beer, sometimes there was just plain misinformation, as when one participant told us:
Any beer brewed @ > 8% ABV &, technically, getting all of its characteristics from malts & yeast, w/ hops taking a back seat.
He was later silent on that point when the last and strongest beer of the tasting —Double Dog Double Pale Ale (11.5% abv)— was all about the hops.

Alcohol laws were discussed.
About the Horn Dog, @kallardnyc asked Flying Dog:
You say "Barley wine style." How does it differ from a true Barley Wine?

To which I Tweeted:
"Barleywine style" is a federally legally mandated term. Can't have "wine' on a label with beer. Might sow fear and angst.

At which point @beercommdood harrumphed.
Federally legally mandated terms can blow me. It's a barleywine. ;)
Food pairings were suggested for the beers, and even music. I probably was the statistical off sample.
Music and beer: Flying Dog's Gonzo Porter with Mahler's 2nd Symphony. Or maybe Muddy Water's Mannish Boy.
The most creative food pairing suggestion of the evening:
Gonzo Imperial Porter and scooter pies.
[It certainly would beat out a RC Cola and a Moon Pie.]
The tasting was co-hosted by TasteLive! But back in January, I had participated in another Twitter-wide tasting, of Trappist ales.

A group called Twitter Taste Live had hosted that event. Its website is now a minimal members-only sign-in page. And, since that January event, its tastings seem to have been exclusively limited to wine:
TTL is a new tasting format that brings the famous wine personalities of the world to the consumer via the social networking tool Twitter.This network is by invitation only.
TasteLive!'s website is more informative and less restricted, and it hosts both beer and wine tastings. But note that both TasteLive! and Twitter Taste Live share an identical hashmark: #ttl.

By the hour's end, alcohol did induce a typo.
I posted:
Thank you to all the rabid dogs at Flying Dog Brewery for avery enjoyable tasting: the commentary ... and the beer!

To which @Krukewitt responded: Freudian slip? You thanked them for an "avery" enjoyable tasting. What will Adam think?

Don't drink and type!

Twittering and Drinking

1 comment:

  1. Tom, thanks for the summary! I somehow missed this event and came back to the Twittersphere with a gaggle of @flyingdog tweets awaiting, but there's no way I would have pieced the event back together chronologically.



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