With the regularity of the leaves falling from trees every fall, beer enthusiasts drop everything for pumpkin ales. To celebrate the cornucopia of harvest, we’ll look at how to brew both a typical and an atypical example of the style.
Ten years ago, Vinnie Cilurzo and his wife, Natalie, brought aggressively hopped beer to the heart of California’s wine country. Since then, they’ve taken Russian River Brewing Company independent, won an unimaginable number of awards and launched a revolutionary line of barrel-aged sour Belgians.
Whether you’re a first-time brewer or a pro honing your chops, there’s always more to learn. Here’s how to go from the back of the bar to the head of the class, from a round-up of top brewing schools, to books for learning more about beer and some tips for becoming a better beer advocate.
The next beer you try, stop for a minute and taste it. Really. It might sound strange, but stop and taste it like it was the first time again. Savor the aroma before bringing the beer to your lips. Inhale the citrusy or dank hops of a West Coast IPA or the maltiness of a