Thursday, April 17, 2014

Beer of the Week: Mikkeller Spontannoble

Filed Under: Adult Beverages , Blog , Features , Videos

We’ve got an interesting beer this week, all the way from Denmark. Mikkeller makes a ton of different beers – they never make the same one twice – and this week Roper is loving a lambic. But take note: it’s a seasonal, and it won’t be around all year long. Get one at The Hopleaf or your local fine beer establishment.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Beer of the Week: TV Party Rye IPA

Chicago’s Revolution Brewing just keeps cranking out the unique beer. With a massive brewpub, a strong lineup of seasonal beers as well as specialty ales, this week’s pick is no exception. It’s a rye IPA with 7.6 ABV, which has a roasty, toasty character, thanks to the rye, as well as Amarillo and Fuggle hops. If you can’t make it to their brewpub in Logan Square, or to The Hopleaf, you should be able to find it in better liquor stores throughout the region. Cheers.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Pastoral Celebrates Artisanal Food at French Market

Filed Under: Adult Beverages , Blog , Festival
Visitors can sample cheeses from all over the country, like these from Cellars at Jasper Hill in Vermont

Visitors can sample cheeses from all over the country, like these from cellars at Jasper Hill in Vermont.

For those interested in knowing exactly where their food comes from, Pastoral’s fourth annual Artisan Producer Festival this Saturday, April 12, offers some excellent perspective. The event will be hosted at the Chicago French Market (131 N. Clinton St), and will feature over 100 culinary artisans from around the globe, including more than 20 local vendors from the Market itself.


Visitors can expect to sample small foods, beer and spirits while talking to award-winning artisanal producers like Dutch Girl Creamery in Nebraska, Napa Valley’s Forlorn Hope Winery or Chicago businesses like Little Goat Bread or Saigon Sisters. Scheduled events, including cooking demonstrations and discussions on charcuterie and “the art of pairing craft beer with cheese,” will also be occurring throughout the day.


The Festival runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is free to the public.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Beer of the Week: Allagash Fluxus

This week, The Hopleaf‘s Michael Roper is looking to Portland, Maine, where Allagash is brewing up something special for its anniversary. Called “Fluxus,” this ale is brewed with a blend of coffee and chocolate malts with blood orange pulp and zest.. The resulting beer is dark brown in color with chocolate and roasted notes throughout the flavor and aroma. It’s a seasonal, however (at 6.4% ABV), so it won’t be around forever. Cheers.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Beer of the Week: Ruthless Rye

This week’s BotW hails from Chico, California, home of Sierra Nevada. The brewery’s Ruthless Rye is taking advantage of a recent trend in beer – that is, the tendency of brewmasters to use more rye in their recipes. Perhaps it’s a nod to the rye spirits we’re seeing from places like Templeton or Old Overholt. It’s an aggressive IPA, great for cooler months, which means it won’t be here long, so either head to The Hopleaf to get some, or seek it out in your finer liquor stores. Cheers.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Beer of the Week: Black Walnut Dunkel

Filed Under: Adult Beverages , Blog , Features , Videos

If you love walnuts, this week’s beer is for you. It’s from Perennial Brewery in St. Louis, and The Hopleaf’s Michael Roper really loves how dark and intense it is. Beer with dessert? Why not. It’s barely 7% abv, and with all of those rich, intense walnuts to draw upon, it has a sweet intensity that might turn out to be a great pairing throughout the meal. This chocolate brown German Dunkelweizen is aged on Missouri‐grown black walnuts. “Big aromas of banana sit on top of this malty wheat beer, and it finishes with a nice black walnut nuance on the palate,” says the description on the brewery’s website. Cheers.