Thursday, February 08, 2018

Coming soon: "Pints & Union to open in New Albany, will be inspired by classic European pubs."

For more than a year, I've been working with my friend Joe Phillips on a pub project at 114 E. Market in downtown New Albany called Pints & Union.

On Wednesday this week, the cat slipped from the bag in the form of a fine write-up by Kevin Gibson at Insider Louisville.

Paraphrasing Robert Frost, we have promises to keep -- and miles to go before we sleep. The first link leads to Gibson's story, with a few thoughts of my own; the second offers some information about how we refer to drinking establishments; and the third provides an overview of my thought process in devising a revolutionary throwback old school progressive beer program.

As there is further information to report, I'll copy here from NA Confidential.


THE BEER BEAT: "Pints & Union to open in New Albany, will be inspired by classic European pubs."

First and foremost, Pints & Union marks a return to the ethos that originally compelled me to go into the beer business. For this opportunity, all thanks to Joe Phillips -- and serendipitously, Taco Steve (Powell) ...

Pints & Union to open in New Albany, will be inspired by classic European pubs, by Kevin Gibson (Insider Louisville)

Leave your cellphone in your pocket, and if you want to watch the local college hoops game with some cheap wings, well, you’ll be going somewhere else.

Pints & Union, which owner Joe Phillips hopes will open sometime in April at 114 E. Market St. in New Albany, will be inspired by European-style (or “Anglo-Irish”) pubs, built for conversing over a pint — or five. Even the name reflects typical pub names in Europe and the United Kingdom.

“We’re going to resurrect the spirit of what a real pub is,” Phillips told Insider.


SHANE'S EXCELLENT NEW WORDS: On taverns, pubs, Gastst├Ątten and Bung -- with a Mencken chaser.

It's an understatement to say we have lots and lots of work to do, but it's good to have plans, goals and timetables. Until the grand opening, we might spend hours parsing the similarities and differences of pubs, taverns, bars, cafes and the like, as with this chat at Trip Advisor about three German-language descriptors: Gasthof / Gasthaus / Gastst├Ątte ...


ON THE AVENUES: Golden oldie classic comfort beers at an old school pub? Sounds like Pints & Union to me.

I’ve had enough of venues with 20 beers on tap, the inevitable majority of them IPAs, with the remainder Imperial-this, barrel-aged-that, most of universally high gravity. I’m driven to utter distraction when returning to the same venue two weeks later, only to find that 18 of them have changed, with a whole new crop of “what do you have that’s new,” which might actually mean something if there was an outside chance that the best of the new beers would reappear in less than a year ...


Friday, February 02, 2018

Headlines from January 2018 on THE BEER BEAT.

This blog has gone on hiatus, primarily because these days my thoughts about beer are being posted alongside my utterances about everything else, over yonder at NA Confidential. You'll find them there in reverse chronological order via the helpful all-purpose tag, The Beer Beat.

However, each month I'll collect the links right here. Following are January's (2018) ruminations, with the oldest listed first. Some of these posts are more topical than others. On occasion, there'll be references to beer in posts using "The Beer Beat" as a label, though not a title. I hope this isn't overly confusing.

Thanks for reading, if belatedly.


THE BEER BEAT: "The Drinking Bout in the Cathedral Porch," or why it's time to make the Feast of Fools great again on New Year's Day.

Make no mistake: "Lux Optata Claruit," from the section called "Mass Of The Asses, Drunkards And Gamblers," is drinking music equal to "Gimme a Pigfoot" or "All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight."

One need only observe an expanded context.


THE BEER BEAT: On inauthenticity, disinformation, RateBeer and those disembodied breweries of the Trojan Zombie Afterlife.

If Trump were to consider deporting counter-revolutionary swine like these, I might consider voting for him.

ZX Ventures is a global incubator, operator, and venture capital team backed by Anheuser-Busch InBev. We are a small army of futurists, dreamers, doers, designers, engineers, scientists, marketers, brewers, builders, and data geeks.


THE BEER BEAT: We always cook with beer. Sometimes, we even add it to the food.

Which brings me back to your meal and beers tonight.

What you’ll be experiencing tonight is something exceedingly rare in the current time, so oddly offbeat as to be a counter-revolutionary act. Your meal tonight and those drinks accompanying it are not being crowd-sourced. Ratings have not been consulted, polls have not been taken, and not a single selfie was harmed in the preparation of this feast.

Rather, the bill of fare was selected because in the experience and intuition of Chef Fill-in-the-Blank and Anonymous Brewing, it was felt these dishes and beers belong alongside each other.


THE BEER BEAT: How "Ambitious Brew" prefaced "I Know What Boyz Like" -- and "The Misogynist Within."

The (pre-Prohibition) brewers didn't know what hit them, primarily because they refused to pay attention until it was too late.

Ever since Leg Spreader first oozed to the surface three years ago (really -- it was January, 2015), much has been accomplished with respect to sexism in "craft" beer.

Quite a bit is left to be done, judging by another excellent piece by Bryan Roth, who is one of the most thoughtful beer writers around -- perhaps the Dave Zirin of good beer?


THE BEER BEAT meets "comfort beer." It's undervalued, but real -- for instance, like Fuller's London Pride. Did I mention undervalued?

1. What one word, or phrase, do you think should be used to describe beer that you’d like to drink?


As I was laying out this post, another paean to comfort beer popped up in my Twitter feed, leading to immediate pangs of hunger for an authentically rendered Cornish pasty (pastie, British pasty, oggie, oggy, teddy oggie, tiddy oggin or oggy oggin) washed down with one or more adeptly pulled PINTS OF BITTER, damn it.


THE BEER BEAT: V-Grits, False Idol Independent Brewers, their bricks 'n' mortar vegan brewery in development -- and the BSB Hangover Hoedown in 2015.

As has been widely reported recently, V-Grits is partnering with a brewery start-up to be known as False Idol Independent Brewers in a bricks 'n' mortar shared vegan brewery space at the former (and revered) Monkey Wrench at 1025 Barret Avenue ...

... I strongly suspect V-Grits and False Idol will do quite well with this concept, and perhaps a yearly commemorative Monkey Wrench Ale would be appropriate.


THE BEER BEAT: Chili cook-off at Donum Dei Brewery on the 28th, to benefit APRON.

Just when you thought "Bowl Season" was finished, we present the first chili cook-off to benefit Apron, Inc.


THE BEER BEAT: This smoked beer story is fine, thank you. Also: Eiderdown and Sunday sales.

Today's linked posting at Atlas Obscura strikes me as a perfectly reasonable introduction to the genre of smoky flavored beers, so naturally, I saw the article subsequently mentioned somewhere on Facebook, and found a heated debate among purists as to whether Garrett Oliver's description of a firebox was technically accurate, how such glaring errors as this fatally compromised his stewardship as editor of the Oxford Companion to Beer, and whether every "t" was crossed and "i" dotted -- and I was muttering obscenities to myself.

Give me a freaking break.

I thought: Have any of you ever stood behind a bar and tried to help a real person understand what smoked beer was all about, with the goal of encouraging the customer to try one, and maybe even enjoy it?


THE BEER BEAT: Have a look at this Pints&Union pub buildout progress report.

Later the building housed two bars, first Love's Cafe and then more recently, Good Times. It is in the process of being almost completely rebuilt from the ground up, with much of the original wood slated to be repurposed in the interior. When the work is finished, it will become Pints & Union, the forthcoming pub being sketched by Joe Phillips and yours truly.

Our shared vision takes the traditional Anglo-Irish pub as a starting point. It might be described as "progressively old school," although this phrase lamentably is being used by someone else.


THE BEER BEAT: "Dives and hives" in Nawbany, a new brewery coming to Floyds Knobs, and other tales of the drinking life.

Sara's pub crawl also took her to Jack's, Brooklyn and The Butcher and Hugh E. Bir Cafe. Taken as a whole, her wanderings testify to a rich diversity of drinking options in New Albany, and in spite of my own personal trials and travails, I have to admit I'm proud to have played my role in it -- and look forward to doing so again.

Speaking of start-ups, I too was surprised to see a brewery coming soon to Floyds Knobs (Our Lady of Perpetual Hops).