Orphan Beers

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by pjbear05, Feb 20, 2020.

  1. pjbear05

    pjbear05 Initiate (120) May 28, 2008 Florida

    C'mon, BA's, ya know ya got'em.
    That musty bomber hiding in the cobwebs way in the back of your storage area.
    That forlorn can, tipped over on its side, rolling around the back of your fridge.
    Repent, you heathens.
    I frequently have a can of Shiner bock hanging around from the Little Box of Bucks, I buy for Mrs. Bear.
    But last night I found a roller can of Sam '76. Boy, did I need that.
    'Fess up-and drink up!
    eppCOS, KRug, SABERG and 5 others like this.
  2. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (11,432) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    I'm not really fessin' up here, I like crap beers, or as I call them, junk beers. Unfortunately, given the huge number of really quality beers out there right now I like them less and less. So I don't have anything hidden, and I'm 99.9% sure that I've cleared out all of the old beers (aged/cellared) that I once had down there. I even took the fridge completely apart and cleaned all of the pieces so there's nothing in there except for some homemade kombucha that got a little too funky. Right now what I've got set aside as 'junk beers' is some Radeberger Radler (really for my wife), and some cheap German pils and hefeweizen that I can't even remember the name of ~ they're that good! I'll clear those out though as soon as the summer weather hits and someone has a BBQ.

    I've made a resolution though that I should point out, and I hope everyone will follow me on this...

    seeing as how our middle tier breweries are getting squeezed, and a lot of them are faltering, I've decided that rather than buying imports or cheap nationals (i.e. Gennessee Cream Ale) I'll only buy my old stand-bys from local mid-sized brewers. I'll cut down on my smaller but higher priced specialty breweries and that money can go towards keeping a mid-sized brewery alive. And that's not hard ~ I just bought four 32 oz. crowlers that cost me $50 altogether... I could have easily bought a case of good stuff from a medium sized place for that.
    #2 NeroFiddled, Feb 20, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2020
    dagimp, eppCOS, SABERG and 4 others like this.
  3. jimmyfishkin

    jimmyfishkin Aspirant (217) Nov 17, 2008 Wisconsin

    I've got 2 bottles of Zima in my fridge left over from not last summer, but the summer of 2018. Will I drink them? Probably. Will I enjoy them? Absolutely!
    eppCOS, JohnnyHopps, Vitacca and 6 others like this.
  4. HopsDubosc

    HopsDubosc Initiate (167) Apr 24, 2015 Vermont

    There's a Von Trapp Pils on my back porch that's been through about 6 freeze/thaw cycles over the course of the Winter. I'll need to be very desperate indeed before I crack that can.
    #4 HopsDubosc, Feb 20, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2020
  5. rgordon

    rgordon Meyvn (1,053) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    I found a White Claw Hard Seltzer Ruby Grapefruit on the trail early on a Saturday. Damn. It was completely intact, clean, and looks like it was just tossed. I hate the idea of these "things" but am curious to know just what they may be like. Dare I give it a taste or toss it myself? Yeeesh.
  6. mambossa

    mambossa Aspirant (213) Jun 30, 2015 Ohio

    There’s always a couple Whiteclaws hangin around back there, usually some abandoned Platform beers. At least there are some nights I’ll pick out one of those Whiteclaws. The Platform beers....not so much.
  7. beerwego

    beerwego Initiate (63) Dec 5, 2019

    Every year I buy a six of Sam Winter Lager. I really like that beer, but I NEVER finish the sixer. I must have a 8 or so rolling around the beer fridge, spanning at least 4 years.

    Lots of All Day IPAs, which my neighbors always bring...and always with like 6 months on them.
  8. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,493) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Jim, is Victory still 'on your radar screen'?

  9. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,719) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    We used to have a day on WBAYDN dedicated to drinking all of those beers, and even providing a review if you like. Was lots of fun! But don't let that hold you back, I'm sure folks would still love to see that kind of thing every now and then. :wink:
  10. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,946) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Society Trader

    I still have three cans of Heady I never got around to harvesting Conan from oh... some years ago. When I cleaned out all the good food from the fridge (I know, I know) 6 mo.'s ago I found them way in the back. They are there now.
  11. RochefortChris

    RochefortChris Poo-Bah (1,531) Oct 2, 2012 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    Every year I buy a bunch of Hackar-Pschoor and Paulaner Oktoberfest and always get tired of drinking them which usually leaves a more than a few bottles sitting in my refrigerator for months on end. Every year I tell myself I'm not going to buy as much but I still do....
    eppCOS, Bitterbill and mikeinportc like this.
  12. mikeinportc

    mikeinportc Savant (936) Nov 4, 2015 New York

    I moved a few months ago. I had an unheated storage room that was good beer temperature from late Sept - early June, at least. I'd just have to pull low abv stuff if it was going double-digit negative F outside, as it would drop to 25F or so inside.

    Now I don't have that. It has to be either outside, or inside in the fridge. The cellar is OK , temp-wise, but there's a sump pump down there for a reason. :wink: Consequently, I gave away or drank most of the longtime residents. Still have a '15 The Abyss,some KBS,BA VaS, & BCS lurking in the back of the fridge.

    The 2 oldest that I drank before moving , Oak-Aged Noble Rot, & '15 Rum-Barrel-Aged Pumpking were wonderful.
    When I've run into things I don't really want to drink more of, I've tried cooking with them. Sometimes that works. Ex : Troeg's Master of Pumpkins. That had wayyyyyyyy too much clove in it for my liking, so used it when cooking with ham , & SE Asian-inspired concoctions. Eventually got through it all.
    Also, blending with other less-appealing beer can create something better than either.

    If not , I'll give it away, with a warning of why I didn't like it , & suggestion to kick the can farther down the road.
    Ex : Crooked Stave White Sage . It's not actually sage, but sagebrush (Artemisia sp.), & gave me a headache. Passed it on to a coworker, who had one & passed it on to her son.
    I try not to keep useless s#*+ around. ; )
    #12 mikeinportc, Feb 20, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2020
  13. Ranbot

    Ranbot Defender (634) Nov 27, 2006 Pennsylvania


    I don't buy more beer until my current beer is nearly or completely gone (excluding beers I am purposely cellaring). Any older stock is rotated to the front, just like a store. If I didn't want to drink it I wouldn't buy it in the first place.

    I wonder if people with orphan beers, also complain about beer prices. :rolling_eyes:

  14. dcotom

    dcotom Poo-Bah (2,398) Aug 4, 2014 Iowa
    Society Trader

    I have a four-year vertical of Bigfoot in my vegetable crisper as we speak. I'm still waiting on an opportune moment to address this. I also have (among my many other fridge turds) a Central Waters Headless Heron. I don't even know when HH was brewed last, and mine was old when I got it. I'll get to it eventually.
    SABERG, Peach63 and Bitterbill like this.
  15. scream

    scream Meyvn (1,139) Dec 6, 2014 Wisconsin

    Send that Headless Heron to @GreenBayBA - he likes it !
  16. bubseymour

    bubseymour Poo-Bah (2,935) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
    Society Trader

    My son graduated college and I helped him move out of his apt. He had 5 Bud Light Orange bottles in his mini-fridge that he said no one wanted (college kids). I said, bring them home, someone will drink them. They sat in my beer fridge for 2 months and I just unloaded them on my brother. He polished them off in 2 nights! I tried one and thought it tasted like cheap beer with Tang added. Nasty stuff. :-)
    algebeeric_topology likes this.
  17. BigStein88

    BigStein88 Disciple (306) Nov 5, 2007 New Hampshire

    As crazy as it may seem, I have super old beers in my fridge that I didn't actually buy! (and some that I did) Sometimes people bring beer to my house or send me stuff I don't like or just don't end up drinking. I also sometimes have people over and buy beer that I think they may like, even though I don't, and they don't drink it all. In addition, I have a yearly Christmas party with a keg or two that we don't finish and I put the leftovers into growlers and don't mange to give it all way or whatever. It's always shocking when other people don't do the exact same thing we do but it does happen. And, no, I don't complain about prices.
    Ranbot likes this.
  18. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,684) May 30, 2005 Michigan

    In 2018 I bought a 2015 6-pack at Bell's General Store of 2015 Third Coast Old Ale, which we all agree is really a Barleywine, but I had no intent to cellar it. So it went into my kitchen fridge instead of the basement cellar fridge. But I found that I need to be in a certain mood to drink a barleywine, so those 6 beers have been lounging in the back of the fridge while I slowly picked them off. (Last one tonight, and probably good timing since it tasted like it has gone past its prime aging experience.)
    Glider, SABERG, Peach63 and 2 others like this.
  19. AWA

    AWA Disciple (304) Jul 22, 2014 California

    I 100% forgot Zima existed. You go on with your bad self and enjoy them.
    jimmyfishkin likes this.
  20. AWA

    AWA Disciple (304) Jul 22, 2014 California

    So I literally scrub out my beer fridge twice a year so I never miss anything in there for too long. Now rolling around on my boat, god only knows what I have. And those bottles loose carbonation after a few rough trips out of the bay. Still going to drink them when I find them though.
  21. Beer_Stan

    Beer_Stan Initiate (155) Mar 15, 2014 California

    I'm not drinking right now but I have a 12oz Dragon's Milk Stout just standing there in the fridge menacingly.
    Peach63 and Bitterbill like this.
  22. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (7,151) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Society Trader

    I have a good orphan..from either @TongoRad or @zid

    Both know what I'm talking aboot.
    zid and TongoRad like this.
  23. PapaGoose03

    PapaGoose03 Poo-Bah (2,684) May 30, 2005 Michigan

    Oh I love a good mystery! :wink:
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  24. Giantspace

    Giantspace Crusader (798) Dec 22, 2011 Pennsylvania

    Still have 3-4 bottles of Wolavers Alta Gracia coffee porter on my back fireplace. They were in the bucket after a party, I put them up there and just never moved them. Been at least 8 years of weather on them. Labels are gone and one broke last summer, from the heat? Doubt they will ever be opened by me but they are there , rain , snow , heat and freezing cold.

    I have one last can of my favorite beer ever. It’s a bit squishy but not leaking. Guess it was a bad fill but pretty close to full by feel. I emailed the brewery to see if they will ever make the beer or if they had any sitting around for sale. Zero reply. Not a fan of the other beers they make. This is a Brett beer so not worried it will be bad just might be flat and since I don’t want to remember this Nectar of the God’s as a bad beer it sits taunting me every time I open the beer fridge. This beer is

    Fear of a Brett planet

    If you have any cans I’m interested.

    PapaGoose03 likes this.
  25. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,403) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    I have an old bottle of Victory Red Thunder, not a clue how old it is 10 years maybe?
    jglenn73 and Peach63 like this.
  26. Eefinn

    Eefinn Initiate (38) Oct 19, 2019 Vermont

    I still have two cans of Rock Art's 'A River Runs Gruit' from a four-pack I bought a few years ago. From their website it's "Brewed with Lavender, Rose-hips, Elderberry, and Chamomile." From my memory it's a mixture of perfume and soap. I opened the second one quite a while after the first, and I don't think the flavors had faded much, but that was probably 18 months ago. Maybe it's time to give it another shot.
  27. Pinz412

    Pinz412 Initiate (161) Nov 20, 2019 Pennsylvania

    I've got a can of Departed Soles' Trust Fun Baby that was a gift from Christmas 2018. I didn't really like the first one that I drank, and it just sat there. I keep hoping that someone will drink it when we're entertaining, but it just hasn't happened.

    I also have an entire case of Founders Breakfast Stout from 2015 that has gone through a move with me. I remember that there was a local distributor that had these cases on sale for a ridiculous price back then because they were sent an extra pallet by accident. Founders didn't want the beer back, so they discounted it. After drinking the first case I was pretty burnt out on it, and now I'm pretty sure it'd be awful. I just can't imagine pouring out an entire case of beer even if I know I'm not going to drink it. I've been considering offering it up to anyone local that might have an interest for whatever reason, or you know, for science.
    PapaGoose03 likes this.
  28. jimmyfishkin

    jimmyfishkin Aspirant (217) Nov 17, 2008 Wisconsin

    It holds a fondness in my heart as it was the first alcoholic beverage I drank in High School. Interested to see what it tastes like with 2 years age on it.
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  29. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Poo-Bah (2,012) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Society Trader

    I usually have a few Sam Adams lingering around from a pack or some Dales Pale Ale. I end up enjoying them in the pool when I do a round up of older items and toss everything into a cooler for a long weekend outside.
  30. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (11,432) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    Good question Jack. I haven't been thrilled with some of Victory's new beers, and I'm not really on-board for the direction they seem to be headed in but I still buy them, and I still appreciate their older beers.
    dagimp and JackHorzempa like this.
  31. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,493) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Me too.

    If the original Prima Pils was still available I would be willing to purchase that beer.

    NeroFiddled and jesskidden like this.
  32. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (11,432) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    So let me ask you then Jack, how upset would you be if Victory went belly up? There was a time when I'd rather have seen Victory survive over Stoudt's or Yards but thinks have changed.
  33. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,493) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Jim, I have been hearing rumors (from a trusted source) that Victory will be brewing some 'traditional' beers in the near future (only available at the brewery/taprooms?). If this change occurs I would be upset if Victory went belly up. I suppose I will learn more things over the next few months.

    As you are well aware the 'issue' with Victory is they sold out to Artisanal Brewing Ventures (ABV) a number of years ago and consequently Victory is a different company today. The ABV 'overlords' want to see some ROI for their purchase and they are chasing 'trends' to maintain & boost sales (e.g., souring beers, hazing up beers, etc.). Unfortunately brands who are deemed to not be increasing sellers are being eliminated from distribution (e.g., Storm King, etc.) and they decided to mess with the recipes of other brands (e.g., Prima Pils to make the beer more 'drinkable' so people will buy more of this brand).

    In contrast both Sly Fox and Yards have not sold out and are still owned/managed by the same ownership: Giannopoulos family for Sly Fox and Tom Kehoe for Yards. But even Sly Fox and Yards are businesses and they need to make changes to be responsive to the market. Last year I chatted with Tom Kehoe at the Yards Real Ale Festival and I lamented the fact that Yards ESA is not as available today (e.g., it is no longer packaged) as it was in the past. I asked Tom if ESA will ever make a 'come back'. He smiled at me and said something like "you never know...". Yeah, I do not expect ESA to make a 'come back' since this beer is not hazy, does not contain crazy flavorings, does not contain lactose, does not...

    SABERG likes this.
  34. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,403) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    How could you possibly change the formula on Prima and make it more drinkable? It was already there, when you lose financial control your at the whim of the majority investors they make stupid decisions based off short term goals. Didn’t like Dirt Wolf either.
  35. Peach63

    Peach63 Devotee (415) Jul 17, 2019 New York

    No! 3 dashes of habanero sauce. :fire::stuck_out_tongue:
    dcotom likes this.
  36. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (1,989) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    But that's not what happened according to this @JackHorzempa post's copy/paste (source?*) story, which says:
    Of course, after reading this I thought, "Well, gee, maybe he should have asked me (or any other of the many Prima Pils fans) first..."

    * Source seems to be https://thetakeout.com/how-often-do-breweries-change-a-beer-recipe-1833330451 in which he's also quoted as saying “But you can’t keep doing the same thing if it’s not working.”

    "Hey! It was still working for me (when I could find it fresh).":grin:
    #36 jesskidden, Feb 21, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2020
    nc41 likes this.
  37. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (11,432) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    I see everything going full circle and it's only been a few decades since craft beer in the U.S. came around. Craft brewers are now making a lot of Pilsners, which many decried early on. A lot of these Pilsners aren't nearly as hoppy as Prima Pils was. Now we're at the stage of the game where they're going to start dumbing down their beers to appeal to the masses. If they're dumbing down Prima Pilss, what will become of those other Pilsners that aren't even close? ... ... ... I remember something that my mother told me in the 70's. She said "Basically all beer tastes the same, it's just a different label", and in 1970's America she was mostly right. I hope we're not headed back there; we fought so hard to get out of that.
    nc41 and seakayak like this.
  38. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (11,432) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

  39. NeroFiddled

    NeroFiddled Poo-Bah (11,432) Jul 8, 2002 Pennsylvania
    Society Trader

    What you're seeing and hearing and tasting isn't real.
  40. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (1,989) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    (And that's who I blame for changes in and/or discontinuations of my favorite beers...it's the only logical explanation.)
    eppCOS likes this.