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Tag Archives: Total Wine & More

Belgian National Holiday Feestdag to be celebrated with tastings and special events

The original flag from 1830

The original flag from 1830 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Often revolution is sparked by existing passions roused to a boiling point by a work of art, music, or theater. Such is the case with the Belgian Revolution of 1830 in which the Belgian people rose up against the Dutch to wrestle its independence from The Netherlands in part as the result of the opera La muette de Portici. The opera dramatizes the historical uprising of Masaniello against Spanish rule in Naples in 1647.

With the aid of French intellectuals and armed forces, as well as the Catholic clergy who were against the Protestant Dutch King William I, the Belgian people fought for full independence. Because the European powers of the time feared Belgian may become a republic or get annexed to France, a monarch was found to lead the country from the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in Germany. On July 21, 1831 the first Belgian king, Leopold of Saxe-Coburg was installed and the date became the Belgian National holiday known as Feestdag.

Since Belgium is known as one of the world’s greatest beer countries, it seems only fitting to celebrate their national holiday with beer-centric celebrations. Here in Jacksonville, there are several events taking place that you will not want to miss including a tasting, beer specials, and a special Bier Garden event at the Jacksonville Suns game.

The first event, takes place tomorrow night at Total Wine and More in the St. John’s Town Center with a tasting of Belgium’s top selling ale, Palm. Palm is a Belgian Pale Ale that was originally produced as competition to the pilsners and lagers that were becoming popular throughout Europe. It is described as neither heavy nor bitter with toasty malt aromas, slightly bitter orange flavors, and a tart, refreshing finish. The tasting at Total Wine will go from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

In addition to the tasting, all four European Street Cafes are celebrating with several specials. Look for beer specials on all week, a happy hour all day on Saturday, July 21 starting at 10:00 a.m. on Palm and Bright Lights White, a new Belgian-style Wit from Intuition Ale Works.

The new Belgian-style Wit from Intuition was fermented with the Celis yeast strain, the same strain used in Hoegaarden in Belgium. Ben and his crew also used a combination of Belgian Pilsner Malt, German Malted Wheat, and Munich Malt along with some flaked wheat and oats. To that grain bill, the wizards at Intuition added acidulated malt or what the Germans call Sauer Malt to give the beer a subtle tang. All the spice flavors percieved in the beer come from the yeast, as Ben says no spices were added.

Estreet is also celebrating with the popular Beer and baseball event at the Jacksonville Suns baseball game Saturday night. Every month baseball fans and beer-lovers alike can spend a night at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville in the European Street Café Bier Garden located in the left field area. For one low price fans can get admission to the game, all the beer you can drink and all the Estreet food, including Monster German Wieners, Estreet sandwiches and wraps, cole slaw and chips from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p. m. The price is just $20 and tickets are available at all European Street locations.

In addition, the guys out out at Engine 15 along with Carolyn Graham of Brown Distributing are planning to pull out a few surprises, Carolyn says, “It’ll be delicious, I promise.” Festivities begin at 2:00 p. m.

 

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Gnome Week Continues with Two Events Friday Night

Gnome week rolls on in Jacksonville with a couple of great events Friday night. As you may recall from the previous Gnome Week article, this week is a celebration of a village of Gnomes discovering a spring that produces magical waters in Belgium. Enterprising spirits that they are, the Gnomes decided to brew beer with the magical water and what resulted were particularly tasty brews. After centuries of keeping the beer and the recipe to themselves, the Gnomes decided to give the formula to the founders of Brassiere d’Achouffe (literally Brewery of Gnomes) in Belgium. Now, 6,666 years since the discovery of the spring and Gnome-style brewing began, we celebrate Gnome week by partaking of the beers and, in the case of at least one event, pairing them with great food.

The first event takes place at Total Wine and More at the St. John’s Town Center where you can taste several beers from Brassiere d’Achouffe. Stop by Friday, June, 8 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and enjoy samples of these enchanted brews with Marc Wisdom, Jacksonville Craft Beer Examiner, Springfield Brew Crew blogger, and I Know Jax’s The Beer Guy. Distributor representative Carolyn Graham will also be there to answer questions and hand out cookies (think elves here – what do you want there are no Gnome cookies).

The second event takes place both Friday and Saturday, June 8 and 9 at Pele’s Wood Fire. The Riverside eatery has dubbed the two-night event as “Gnome Gnights” and Chef Micah Windham has prepared a three course meal that is inspired by and paired with the Gnome’s brews. The menu for the event is:

First course

Bouquet Flower Salad, with La Chouffe Vinaigrette

Second course

Tomato and Rabbit Cappeletti Pasta with Garden Vegetable Ragu

Third course

Warm chocolate cake with La Chouffe Gelato

The special dinner is available for $30 and is sure to be a hit.

In addition to the special dinner, Pele’s is offering La Chouffe and Houblon Chouffe on tap.

 
 

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American Craft Beer Week, Day 4

American Craft Beer Week is half over, but that does not mean that the events are slowing down. There are still plenty of great things to do and beers to taste. Here are the events for today.

Total Wine & More, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Samuel Adams Portfolio Tasting

Total Wine in the St. John’s Town Center is a paradise to craft beer lovers. There you can wander aisle after aisle of craft beers and find something that is truly special. On Thursday you can also try some portfolio selections for Sam Adams that you might be hard pressed to find any other time.

Mellow Mushroom Southside, 4:30 – 6:30 pm
Sierra Nevada Tap Takeover

Another heavyweight of the craft beer world is taking over some of the almost 50 taps the Mushroom in Tinseltown. Expect to find some truly awesome brews like Bigfoot and Kellerweiss along with many others.

The Monkey’s Uncle Tavern, time TBD
Beer Dinner

Details are still being worked out for this event, but you can bet it will awesome. Get your tickets at the Uncle and prepare yourself!

 

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Top Rated IPA Landed in Jacksonville

The IPA rated number one in the United States has landed right here on the First Coast. Ballast Point Brewing, a San Diego brewing company with a fanatical base of followers has finally reached the east coast of Florida and is currently in stock at Total Wine at the St. John’s Town Center. Among the brews produced by Ballast is the number one IPA, as rated by beer super site Beer Advocate, Sculpin IPA. But, don’t take just Beer Advocate’s word for it, The Fifty Best, a website dedicated to ferreting out the fifty best of things such as wine, food, vacations, and beer, listed Sculpin as number one as well.

A beer this good probably will not stay on the shelves very long, so my advice is to head out there and grab it while you can.

Read more about it at:

Beer Junto

Jacksonville Times-Union – Amber Waves Beer Blog

 
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Posted by on December 12, 2011 in Beer, Craft Beer Brewery

 

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