Beer Review – Lazy Magnolia Brewing Company Southern Hops’pitality


One blustery winter evening in South Jersey, I was looking for a beverage to temper the cold and compliment my grilled chicken (yes, I was outside during a snowstorm grilling chicken, because when Benita wants the chicken grilled, you grill the chicken. And, then, you put the lotion in the basket or you get the hose!), so off to the beer fridge I went for a bit of liquid gold! I grabbed a bottle of Southern Hops’pitality from Lazy Magnolia Brewing Company which I believe was one of the many that I’d received via Benita’s generous beer-of-the-quarter gift. Sadly, I have been a little remise in hitting these beers in a timely fashion. Something I hope to rectify this year.

Lazy Magnolia Brewing Company, which was founded in 2003 in Kiln, MS, is the first brewer in Mississippi since the beginning of Prohibition. They produce 13 beers in their Porch Series, another 8 in their Back Porch Series and 2 more in their Debutante Series. They are known for their creative use of ingredients as evidenced by their award winning, Southern Pecan Nut Brown Ale which is the first beer in the world commercially made with whole roasted pecans. They also make a stout made with sweet potatoes, an ale made with oranges, and a malt beverage made with agave, honey, lemon and lime.

Before we get to the review, here’s what Lazy Magnolia has to say about their Southern Hops’pitality…

Southern Hops’pitality is Lazy Magnolia’s offering of delicious cheer to all of our fans. We pride ourselves on our porch-sippin’ and backyard grillin’ with our beloved kinfolk, and this traditional IPA offers the perfect libation to add to the Southern hospitality and charm that we hold so dear. Our session IPA has a bold citrus burst on the front end with hints of tropical fruits, such as grapefruit, orange, and mango in the finish. Lazy Magnolia’s brewers use a unique hop blend for an exciting dry-hopped aroma, and with a light straw color and crisp, smooth finish on the palate, this 6% ABV, 60 IBU IPA will help you extend some “Southern Hops’pitality” to your loved ones. From our porch to yours, Cheers Y’all!.

Now, let’s get on with the review…

  • Appearance: Amber with lots of fluffy foam.
  • ABV: 5.5%
  • Aroma: Hops with a lot of tangerine and grapefruit and a hint of wet bread.
  • Taste: Fizzy, crisp and refreshing with a bit of the hoppy bitterness that lingers in a long, pleasant finish.

The Verdict

When you cheesily work hops into the name of the beer, I fear that it might be a one-note, hop bomb. So, with a name like Southern Hops’pitality, I wasn’t expecting all that much. What I found was a nice, refreshing and not overly bitter IPA.

Beer Review – Kona Brewing Company Kanaha and Koko Brown Ales


This past Tuesday (March 20, 2018 to be more precise) may have been the first day of Spring, but if you happen to live in the Northeastern United States, you would have never known it. Philadelphia and South Jersey experienced temperatures ranging from 28 to 35 degrees on that day along with a wintery mix of rain, sleet, and snow. And if all that weren’t enough to make you question what day of the year it was, the Wednesday forecast called for the fourth Nor’easter of the month that threatened to shut everything down.

With an almost definite “snow day” looming for our offspring and a potential day off from work for us, we decided to brighten our mood (while we’re not opposed to taking a day off from work, we prefer when these days off are on OUR terms, not Mother Nature’s) by sampling the two beers from Kona Brewing Co that you see in the above photo. The hope was that by drinking these beers, which may or may not have been brewed on a tropical island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean (in addition to breweries on the Big Island, aka the island of Hawaii, and Oahu, Kona Brewing also brews beer in Portland, Oregon and Portsmouth, New Hampshire), things like a possible Nor’easter induced power outage, a backlog of work when we get back into the office, and hours of shoveleing snow would get pushed back into the dark recesses of our minds as we enjoyed these bottles of “Liquid Aloha”.

Did the forecasted Nor’easter actually happen? It sure did! Did we enjoy these beers? Let’s find out…

Kona Kahana Blonde Ale

What they say…

The first Polynesian explorers ventured out across the South Pacific in double-hulled canoes driven by the wind. With their sails held taught against the blowing ocean breezes, they sped across the ocean and steered north, to Hawaii, bringing a courageous spirit and mastery of the trade winds to their new island home. Today, adventure flies just offshore at Kanaha Beach, on the north side of Maui. Among the best kite-boarding sites in the world, you will see colorful domed kits lifted high over the blue water and soar in view of the West Maui Mountains. Skilled kite-boarders hover lightly above the water as they glide fast behind their sails, mastering the wind for a thrilling ride and adventure all their own.

Our brewer’s were inspired by the trade winds to create this smooth, refreshing blonde ale with the adventures of summer in mind. After a day riding the winds over shimmering waters, Kanaha Blonde ale is a bright, sessionable beer that will ease you ashore without weighing you down. Real mango fruit adds a juicy, tropical flavor that is easy like the islands. This crisp Kona brew will take you up, up and away. 

What we say…

  • Appearance: Crystal clear with a golden yellow color. Not much in the way of foam or lacing, just a thin bead of white suds that clings to the inner walls of the glass.
  • ABV: 4.2%
  • Aroma
    • Limpd: Sweet and fruity (more peaches than mango) with just the slightest note of hops and a little bit of bread.
    • G-LO: They claim that they added tropical mango to this beer. Based upon all of the tropical aromas that I get, I am apt to believe them. There are definite citrus (tangerine and grapefruit) and tropical (most likely mango) notes coming through. Also get a hint of piney hops, some doughey yeast, and some biscuity malts.
  • Taste
    • Limpd: Lightly carbonated (almost a little flat). The aroma would suggest some heavy sweetness but this was far from syrupy. While I picked up the sweetness and a little of the fruity notes, there was a metallic (almost coppery) note that cut some of the crispness.
    • G-LO: The mouthfeel is a little thin with very soft carbonation. I get some of the tropical flavor, but they’re a bit watered down which makes sense given that the label says this beer has just 99 calaries per serving. There’s just a bit of hoppy bitterness overall, and the finish is relatively crisp and clean with not much lingering flavor.

The Verdict

Limpd: This would probably be a good change-of-pace beer for those hot summer nights. Unfortunately, I am drinking this when there are 10 inches of snow on the ground. I thought it was a little too soft and not quite bold enough for the weather at hand.

G-LO: While the nose on the Kahana Blonde Ale was very inviting, the actual taste left much to be desired. I understand that they were going for a warm weather session beer, but I’m generally not the “drinking beer all day” type, so I need more intensity since I prefer to drink less, but drink better.

Kona Koko Brown Ale

What they say…

Ages ago, early Hawaiians stood on boards cut from wiliwili trees and paddled them from village to village across the islands. Today, this ancient form of island transit is the best way to get out and experience Hawaii, especially when you’re in beautiful Maunalua Bay, paddling in the shadows of Koko Head and Koko Crater. Whether you’re on the islands or not, kick back with a Koko Brown—it’ll take you right to paradise! 

Koko Brown has a nutty, toffee flavor and a unique, roasted malt taste. Brewed with real toasted coconuts, this brew goes hand in hand with the beach, or wherever your happy place might be.

What we say…

  • Appearance: Auburn color with a healthy cloud of off white foam that lingers for quite awhile.
  • ABV: 5.5%
  • Aroma
    • Limpd: Cocoa nibs and coconut. There is a ton of coconut on the nose and it is hard to push beyond it to pick up other notes.
    • G-LO: Lightly roasted malts dominate the nose with definite toasted coconut notes coming through in the background. Hints of brown sugar and caramel as well.
  • Taste
    • Limpd: Thinner than the color and foam would suggest. There is a nice creamy quality but then the coconut kicks in and overpowers the flavors with a candied sweetness. The finish come rather quickly and is filled with the bitterness that comes from the cocoa I had picked up on the nose.
    • G-LO: Medium mouthfeel with smooth and somewhat creamy carbonation. Less roasty than I was expecting. This has a certain nuttiness coming through along with some caramel sweetness. Very mellow overall. Not much in the way of coconut coming through. There’s a little bitterness in the finish, though not at all overwhelming. Mostly just roasted nuttiness and lightly sweet caramel from start to finish.

The Verdict

Limpd: I let this one warm up for a very long time (over an hour) so that the chill wouldn’t suppress any flavor. Even after letting it rest for that long, there really wasn’t a lot of depth. It was pleasant enough but lacked some of the complexity that I was looking for after the appearance and the nose.

G-LO: While not one of the best brown ale that I’ve ever had, I’d still say that Koko Brown was pretty good. Thanks to its mellow, malty flavors, I can see this working well with a chocolate or nutty dessert, or with something savory like a lamb stew or Shepherd’s Pie. For the record, Koko Brown worked well with an Oreo Thins Coconut Creme cookie.


Many thanks to Adam Krell of Curich Weiss for sending use these VERY generous samples!

We Put the [S]Ass in Sassafras!


AK: Hello, Professor. It’s been a long time.

G-LO: Indeed it has, Doctor!

AK: Went out for burgers with the 17 year old daughter last night. Had a pretty boring soft drink to go with. I hate boring soft drinks.

G-LO: Define boring. 7-up? Seltzer? Grape Ne-HI? Orange Fanta?

AK: Root beer from a machine. Let’s say it was A&W. Doesn’t really matter. I have no idea what it was. Could have been Barq’s for all I know.

G-LO: I kinda like A&W, though it’s certainly not a craft root beer. Absolution makes a fine root beer! And on nitro! Soooooo pretty!

AK: Very! I like the craft root beers. Reason enough for me to visit a brewery! It’s an old art in this here country. Big in your part of the country.

G-LO: True! I believe Hire’s was the first commercially available root beer. Brewed for the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. That sounds about right! Right?

AK: You’re asking me? I barely know the five presidents on Mount Rushmore.

G-LO: Five? Presidents? I was thinking Larry, Moe, Curly, Curly Joe, and Shemp.

AK: Dr. Howard? Dr. Fein? Dr. Howard?

G-LO: YES! Dig this, Methuselah! Larry Fine (aka Louis Feinberg) was born in Philadelphia. Guess where he died?

AK: Niagara Falls?

G-LO: Nope. Slowly he turned when he reached Niagara Falls. Step by step. Inch by inch. Guess again, Bluebeard!

AK: Anaheim, Azusa, or Rancho Cucamonga?

G-LO: You’re getting very, very warm, Doc. You’re in the vicinity. I’ll just tell you before everyone gets bored and clicks through to another website. He died in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles.

AK: Woodland Hills! The Valley! Home of malls and porn. Larry is in heaven.

G-LO: There are worse places to die.

AK: True enough as we’ve proven with these ramblings. Wonder how the root beer is in heaven?

G-LO: Perfect pours. Rich. Creamy. Refreshing! And you can have it as a float with the BEST vanilla ice cream ever.

AK: Mmmmm… Mama, I’m coming home!

G-LO: You sound like you’re one of them there root beer aficionados.

AK: I do like trying new ones when they come to the shelves or at shady beef jerky stops on the highways and byways of this great country. Every try any of these “hard” root beers?

G-LO: I have, indeed!

AKTell me more… Tell me more…. Did you get very far?

G-LO: Take it easy, Rizzo! I don’t kiss and tell. Ok, so maybe I do. I may or may not have reviewed it. Personally, I like my root beer soft. That being said, the one I tried was pretty good and VERY easy drinking. In other words, it goes down like candy and will get you pretty shnockered if you have too much of it.

AK: Yowza! I hear we have a new root beer concoction in our midst.

G-LO: I’m not up on the latest news. Tell me more, Mr. Cronkite!

AK: Well, we have in front of us something called Root Out. These folks at Root Out think they are onto something. Root Beer flavored… Wait for it… Whisky!

G-LO: Boozy Root Beer?! Brilliant!

AK: That’s what they say too!

G-LO: What’s not to love?

AK: Sounds like it’s sort of like that chocolate-peanut butter thing.

G-LO: I love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups! Mashups are so fun.

AK: Those brainiacs at Reese’s did pretty well for themselves.

G-LO: Yep! They got me hooked.

AK: We should see if this boozy mashup will do the same.

G-LO: Have you any details about this intriguing elixir, Dr. Octopus? Did they make whisky out of the stuff they make root beer out of? Did they take whisky and add Art in the Age Root to the barrel?

AK: Info I got. Money, not so much. It’s Canadian Whisky from an unknown source and natural root beer flavor is added to it. I’m not sure what natural root beer flavor is. Is there a root beer flower grown in Kansas? Rootus Beeris Sepia?

G-LO: I don’t know, but I do know that we’re definitely not in Kansas anymore, Toto!

AK: Nope. That dog won’t hunt no more. Four year old Canadian Whisky. 70 proof. Hmmm. Thought Canadian whisky has to be 80 proof.

G-LO: I’m guessing they watered it down some. Actually, I thought all whisky had to be at least 80 proof.

AK: Odd indeed. Playing a little fast and loose with the definition? Should we take a whiff? Sure looks like whisky.

G-LO: Let’s do the Jimmy Durante and get our first-class shnozzes into the glass! Ahhhhhh-cha-cha…. It sure does look like whisky.

AK: Definitely get sassafras which is possibly the giggliest word in the English language.  They do add vanilla and sassafras to this, by the way.

G-LO: Did ya check out the gams on this dram? Totally getting that root beer vibe on the nose!

AK: Yep! Legs as long as the road from Saskatoon to Winnipeg.  No rest stops on the way so hit the potty before you leave.

G-LO: Sassafras. Vanilla.

AK: A cough drop but I can’t remember the brand. Remember those root beer barrel candies? I’m getting that.

G-LO: Yep! Like the kind in the Cracker Barrel Gift Shoppe! My boys love Root Beer and Root Beer Barrel Candy!

AK: I’m guessing you should keep the kids away from this stuff. I had a root beer flavored cough drop one time. Tasted horrible. But the smell was like this. Maybe burnt butterscotch?

G-LO: There’s a good bit of sweetness on the nose. Like powdered sugar.

AK: I need to make butterscotch pudding. Mental note!

G-LO: Love butterscotch pudding! And regarding the legs on this here hooch, I’m thinking Charlize Theron.

AK: She’s from South Africa. Which is Canada without the hockey. I have no idea what that means. Lots of sweetness. Kinda scared to taste it. The Root Out, not Charlize. Wait… Forget I said that! I’m sipping the Root Out but my head could explode!  My pancreas better stay in tact.

G-LO: Speaking of tact, you have none. I think you mean intact. I’m sure your pancreas will be fine. You’re a tough customer. I’m goin in! Chewing…

AK: Lots to chew. Really syrupy. Might be good on pancakes.

G-LO: Syrupy indeed! Kinda sweet yet bitey. That root beery spice tingles a wee bit. Very gently I might add.

AK: There is a bite! It’s kinda mediciney. Like cough syrup. Little salty too which is pretty weird. My sodium level does need some upping. Mediciney. Not Talisker or Laphroaig mediciney. CVS/Walgreens mediciney. The generic brand.

G-LO: Exactly! Robitussin mediciney. With a little bitterness in the aftertaste. Not awful by any stretch, just a little odd. Starts off sweet and kinda yummy, but then the whisky kicks in and finishes a little mediciney. Not getting the salt.

AK: Definitely has that Robitussin coating.

G-LO: Flavored whisky is definitely a thing, though usually not for me. At least not straight up. What do we think of it on its own?

AK: Not sure. I like the concept better than the product. I love root beer but the whole flavored whisky thing hasn’t taken me by storm.

G-LO: I feel the same way. I’ve had a couple legit good ones, but most are pretty meh.  Crown Royal Vanilla is quite good. Especially with a slice of Wegman’s Ultimate Cheesecake!

Instagram Photo

AK: If you’re going to go the flavored route, I hope it’s with natural flavors, Mr. Dessert.

G-LO: I can see this being good on the rocks. The chill might take away that bitter aftertaste thing. Lemme get an ice cube!

AK: Great idea!  The pharmacist always says “keep the stuff in the fridge; it will taste better”.

G-LO: I’m full of ideas. Few are great. Many are illegal.

AK: Legal is a fine line waiting to be crossed.

G-LO: What the pharmacy really wants to say is keep a glass of whisky handy. It will taste better. But drugs and alcohol generally don’t mix. Though alcohol is TECHNICALLY a drug, soooooo….

AK: Bizarre about those Charlize legs on this thing! Ice cube has entered the Root Out zone here. Not Ice Cube. He’s unavailable.

G-LO: I was crazy about Charlize in general, but then Sean Penn happened. He ruins everything. Ice helps with the aftertaste by the way.

AK: OMG! I’m watching the ice cube diffuse, melt, transform in the Whisky! It’s bizarre!! Never seen that before.

G-LO: Is it like watching paint dry?

AK: Way better. It’s crazy! The Satellite Engineer is fascinated!

G-LO: That’s saying something! Lord knows, what she finds fascinating about you.

AK: The universe is full of mystery. The cube is actually moving on the surface. The Engineer says it has something to do with density. I know of dense rather well.

G-LO: Indeed. As do I. We’re simpatico. I love that word.

AK: It’s so simple. You can see the oils gathering on the surface. I assume those are oils. I hope those are oils!

G-LO: Video! We need video!

AK: I’m trying!

G-LO: There is no try.

AK: Only do-do! Here’s your video, Pal…

G-LO: Hey now! No do-do here here. Use the facility for that! Liking this much better chilled. Kinda soothing like an Amaro.  Would probably make a nice highball with club soda. Highball = Whisky Spritzer!  Are you thinking what I’m thinking?

AK: Charlize Theron should be our personal bartender?

G-LO: Yes! Wait… YES! No. I got desserts on the brain. I have a chemical imbalance.

AK: First step is admitting it. What’s your idea, Professor?

G-LO: We do loves us some ice cream.

AK: Sahara, Gobi, Ice Cream. And?

G-LO: And we’re positively smitten with ice cream and booze combinations!

AK: We are!

G-LO: Head over heels smitten. Triple Lindy Smitten!

AK: That’s pretty smitten! Go on…

G-LO: Abso-forkin-lutely! So what I was thinking was Haagen Dazs Vanilla Ice Cream topped with Root Out.

AK: I LOVE dessert science!

G-LO: Thanks! Long and tan and dark and lovely…..

AK: Get Charlize off the brain! Here‘s my two bit idea. Two of them actually. Bump up the booze on the Root Out with more Canadian Whisky. And separately, add root beer soda to some Canadian whisky. I just pulled out some Forty Creek Barrel Select for said experiments. Lab coat is at the cleaners so I’m going with the worn out t-shirt from the ‘90’s. John Hall at Forty Creek would kill me if he knew about this mad science.

G-LO: Bah! He got his buyout. You bought a bottle. All he cares about.  You’re a friggin’ witch doctor! We love that about you.

AK: Dr.Bombay! Dr.Bombay!

G-LO: Limpd is here!

AK: Always late! But always welcome. Not exactly the witch doctor I was thinking of, but he’ll do.

G-LO: That’s how he rolls! Or limps in his case. Shrunken heads and a flask. An old fashioned witch doctor who makes  house calls.

AK: I’d love to hear his thoughts on the Root Out.

Limpd: Very medicinal. Brings me back to my childhood. And the croop!

AK: *Cough* *Cough* Not the consumption, wee lad?

Limpd: Dad’s Root Beer going in. Formula 44D (watch it!) on the back end.

AK: Whoa! Formula 44D!

G-LO: Can I get a 44 Double D?

AK: Formula 44D is high octane. Illegal in some states, pending in others. Rocket fuel in Kazakhstan.

G-LO: Can your sciencey wife confirm that last bit? FYI, Root Out is killer in Vanilla Ice cream!

AK: She says “No comment.” Root Out fortified with Forty Creek is yummy. Lots of vanilla and the medicine notes go away. The sherry influence helps a lot.

G-LO: Excellent! We’re the Beaker and Bunsen Honeydew of Booze!

AK: But MUCH better looking! This combo would be good on ice cream too. Hints of root beer instead of wallops of it.

G-LO: Thanks. You’re cute too, Doc!

AK: The root beer and sherry is interesting. Almost gets a little bitter. Or oaky.

G-LO: Bitter Root!

AK: Yes! Time for Experimente Numero Dos: Forty Creek with a bit of Henry Weinhard’s Root Beer. Wow! Carmel and vanilla sweetness, still rich Forty Creek.

G-LO: Sounds delicious!

AK: What was that Forty Creek sample you gave me long ago? I tried it on pancakes.

G-LO: Hmmm. Confederation Oak? The one from Whisky Lassie?

AK: I think so. I kind of recall this flavor. So yummy for breakfast!

G-LO: That was a few years back.

AK: What? Your memory isn’t perfect?

G-LO: Hi! My name is Dory. What’s yours?

AK: 42 Wallaby Way. I really love Henry’s even with it’s artificial flavors. Never experimented with it aside from seeing how many bottles I could drink in a setting.

G-LO: Sydney! Limpd wants to know if you speak whale.

AK: Only Welsh after a few Pendryns.

G-LO: Ha! You’re like Tom Jones! It’s not unusual, but you sure are!

AK: Pussycat, pussycat…

G-LO: Meow meow meow.

AK: Tell me about that ice cream experiment.

G-LO: It was delicious! Though I may have watered it down a bit too much. Got really subtle hints of root beer. Really nice.

AK: Curious how the ice cream reacted with Root Out but I bet you ate right through that science project.

G-LO: Indeed I did! I may have licked the bowl too.

AK: Licking up science like Einstein.

G-LO: He had awesome hair. I hear he was smart too.

AK: Made a fortune in physics. Liked root beer too.

G-LO: And lived 40 minutes away from me!

AK: And did you ever invite him over for a soda pop or whisky? Noooooo. What kind of neighbor are you?

G-LO: He was an Ivy Leaguer. You know how they roll. Plus, I’m not of the Tribe. And Limpd has never been a Cleveland Indians fan. Whatever that means.

AK: You both are members of the Hekawi Tribe.

G-LO: Watch your back, Corporal Agarn!

AK: I’ve got three Glencairns full of nothing great. Should we wrap this up and do some real drinking?

G-LO: Indeed we should! Final thoughts?

AK: Root Out is an interesting add to the growing flavored whisky market. Maybe good for cocktails. But the syrupy medicine texture was a bit much for me. But fun to experiment with.

Limpd: I vote for using it as a rinse for cocktails. But I’m not as creative as you two dorks.

G-LO: I thought it was ok on its own. Better with ice. Even better with vanilla ice cream!

AK: Interesting idea. I could see that. Definitely a good bump for desserts. I could see it added into a reduction for a topping to something.

G-LO: Pancakes! Maybe a BBQ sauce? Victory Brewing makes short ribs with a Root Beer based BBQ sauce.

AK: Sounds yummy! Has to be added to something that doesn’t already have a high sugar content.

G-LO: Totally!

AK: I could see it used in a bbq as a browning agent. Baste a brisket with it.

G-LO: You mean that brisket you didn’t save for me when I flew out last time? Bastard.

AK: Same one

G-LO: I say again. Bastard.

AK: That’s me!

G-LO: Have we moved on to the Celebrity Roast portion of the evening?

AK: Where’s Dean Martin?

G-LO: He’s dead.

AK: Where’s Rickles?

G-LO: Dead. Rich Little?

AKe: Not dead. But all the celebrities that he impersonates are. Go figure.

G-LO: So he can do the voiceover for the dead celebrity holograms?

AK: He can do Prince, Tupac, Biggie. Oh, wait…

G-LO: LOL! I think we’re done here.


Many thanks to Van Huynh-Leap of D & S Beverages for sending us this very generous sample!

Get Ready for Brewer’s Plate 2018!


Below is some muy importante information about one of our favorite Philly Food and Craft Beer events of the year, The Brewer’s Plate. This time around, they’ve moved the event to a Friday night which makes those of us that work Monday through Friday / 9 to 5 jobs VERY happy! Here are the details…

On Friday, March 30, 2018 from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m., Fair Food will host the 14th Annual Brewer’s Plate, Philadelphia’s pioneer party of local food and drink, at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. Brewer’s Plate brings together the most celebrated local breweries, distilleries, chefs, and food artisans all at one stunning location. Don’t miss your opportunity to snag VIP or General Admission tickets to the definitive food and beverage festival of the Mid-Atlantic region.

This is the first time Brewer’s Plate will be held on a Friday, making room for more libations, food, and entertainment than ever before. Brewer’s Plate is also excited to welcome this year’s newcomers Bud & Marilyn’s, Dim Sum House, Pistola’s Del Sur, and SouthGate, along with Second District Brewing, La Cabra Brewing, and Locust Lane Craft Brewing. Among the returning favorites include Revolution Taco, Hungry Pigeon, Weckerly’s Ice Cream, Dogfish Head, Philadelphia Distilling, Manatawny Still Works, and Troegs Brewing .

Not only is Brewer’s Plate a fantastic culinary experience, but the proceeds will benefit Fair Food and their mission to bring locally grown food to the marketplace and to promoting a humane, sustainable agriculture system for the Greater Philadelphia region.

“The Brewer’s Plate, benefiting Fair Food, showcases some of the finest local food and beverages in the region through top restaurants, breweries, and distilleries. It’s a celebration of the industry’s commitment to local sourcing, expressed in one incredible night of eating, drinking, and meaningful connections ,” said Emily Whitted, Development Coordinator for Fair Food

This event is for anyone who enjoys exploring new food and drink trends, or just looking to sample the best of Philadelphia’s kitchens and bars all in one night. Brewer’s Plate is also an amazing opportunity for any passionate industry employee looking to build relationships with the talented craftsmen and women who work tirelessly to produce the best possible products in the Tri-State area.

Ticket Information**:

  • VIP $99, entrance time 6:30 p.m.
  • GA $77, entrance time 7:30 p.m.

As a VIP ticket holder for 2018, you will have a full hour prior to General Admission with access to all 90+ participants and exclusive VIP-only beers, plus a special edition Brewer’s Plate VIP glass . For more information about the Brewer’s Plate visit: and on Instagram: @thebrewersplate .

** Must be 21 years of age or older to attend event with valid ID. All tickets for The Brewer’s Plate are non-refundable .


FAIR FOOD: Fair Food has been uniting local farmers with businesses and consumers for over 15 years, promoting the importance of family farms and creating a year-round marketplace for fresh, local food products in the Greater Philadelphia region at their Reading Terminal Market Farmstand (51 N. 12th Street, (215) 386-5211 ext. 120, open 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday – Saturday and 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sundays). Fair Food builds connections in the wholesale food marketplace in order to help local farmers and producers bring their product to the marketplace. This benefits the farmer, the land, and the consumer in increasing access to fresh, healthy, local food. Fair Food’s suite of programs support the mission to promote sustainable agriculture and access to fresh, healthy food by building markets for local growers and producers. For more information, visit ; become a fan on Facebook ; and follow on Twitter ( @FairFoodStand ) and Instagram ( @FairFoodFarmstand ).

ROLLING BARREL EVENTS: Rolling Barrel Events is a full service event planning and management firm that helps individuals and organizations create memorable experiences that focus on local beer, wine, and food. For more information, visit

Two Moscow Mules for Mrs. G-LO


Awhile back, our friends at The Baddish Group asked if we’d be interested in trying two Vodka expressions from their latest client, Nemiroff Vodka. As I’m sure I’ve mentioned in previous posts, since I’m not much of a Vodka drinker, I was a bit hesitant to accept the samples at first, but then I remembered that I most definitely enjoy the occasional Moscow Mule, so I decided to accept their kind offer.

As you can see from the photo up above, I received samples of Nemiroff Premium Vodka (unflavored) and Nemiroff Honey Pepper Vodka. My plan, try them on their own to see how they smell and taste, then try them in the aforementioned Moscow Mule.

For the cocktail portion of the post, I begged and pleaded to My Better Half for some assistance, i.e. a second opinion as to which Vodka makes a better Moscow Mule. It took a little convincing, but she eventually gave in (kinda like the night that I proposed to her) and agreed to help me out.

Now that we have the backstory out of the way, let’s get on with the reviews. First up, the Vodkas on their own…

Nemiroff Premium Vodka

  • Appearance: Crystal clear.
  • Aroma: Rubbing alcohol at first, then lemon oil, white pepper, and a hint of anise.
  • Taste: Lightly oily mouthfeel. Mild pepperiness. Very crisp and clean with a mild heat from start to finish. Some lemon zest and anise flavor in the aftertaste.
  • ABV: 40%

The Verdict

As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, I’m not much of a straight Vodka drinker, so I’m not sure how it compares to other brands. That being said, this stuff was pretty nice and easy drinking, with way more flavor than I was expecting. This would work well over ice with some citrus and sparkling water, which would make for a lovely summer refresher.

Nemiroff Honey Pepper Vodka

  • Appearance: Pale honey color which makes perfect sense to me.
  • Aroma: Much less of that rubbing alcohol scent. Again, lightly peppery. Less lemony with definite honey notes coming through.
  • Taste: The mouthfeel is less oily than the Premium expression. It more of a lightly syrupy mouthfeel this time around. Less spicy with definite honey flavors coming through. The finish gets more peppery with lingering mild honey sweetness.
  • ABV: 40%

The Verdict

Much more interesting than I was expecting and quite enjoyable on its own thanks to that honey goodness. The cocktailing possibilities for this are endless!


For the cocktail portion of this review, I used the following Moscow Mule recipe:

  • .5 ounce of fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1.5 ounces of Nemiroff Premium Vodka or Nemiroff Honey Pepper Vodka
  • Crushed ice
  • 3.5 ounces of Fever Tree Ginger Beer
  • Wedge of lime

Method: Pour lime juice and Vodka into a Collins glass. Add crushed ice to fill 2/3 of the glass. Using a bar spoon, stir the lime juice and Vodka as you add the Ginger Beer. Garnish with the wedge of lime.

In addition to being a spicy, refreshing and delicious drink, the Moscow Mule is ridiculously easy to make (provided that you have all of the ingredients on hand). Here’s what Mrs. G-LO thought of them…

Moscow Mule – The Nemiroff Honey Pepper Vodka Variation

Mrs. G-LO says, “Kickier. Sweeter. Lingers a little longer on the tongue and in the back of the throat. Brings out the punch of the Ginger Beer. We need to add this to our Summer Cocktail Menu!”

Moscow Mule – The Classic

Mrs. G-LO says, “Quite good but much less kick than the Honey Pepper Vodka version. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll definitely drink this again, but the Honey Pepper version is just a bit better thanks to that Honey Pepper goodness!”


As far as what I thought of how these Vodkas performed in the Moscow Mule, I’m in complete agreement with Mrs. G-LO. While both versions were very tasty and refreshing, the Honey Pepper Vodka version added something special to this cocktail which kicked it up a notch or two.


Many thanks to The Baddish Group for sending along these very generous samples!