Ep. 41-& Caz & Connor & Idle Hands Thing 1 Farmhouse Ale

Hey everyone and welcome to another episode of People & Pints! Friend of the show Caz joins the podcast for his 4th time and our friend Connor comes on for his 1st appearance. We chat about delicious beer, wombats, and business, man. Connor is also a big fan of the craft beer scene in Boston and has shown love for Night Shift, one of my favorite breweries. Listen in for lots of laughs and some tasty, tasty beer.

Connor and I chatted a bit about the growing scene around Boston and he compared it with his local scene in Colorado. We considered some of the cultural and financial reasons for other folks our age to try or not try craft beer.

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We then dove into a mixed culture Farmhouse Ale, Thing 1, from Idle Hands. Idle Hands is a fantastic brewery and can sometimes get lost in the shuffle in Boston shifting beer scene. The three of us definitely enjoyed this take on a farmhouse ale and the flavors coming through were really nice. We attempted to describe the beer in a word: Connor chose “fruity-funky,” Caz chose “Lake George,” and I chose “breezy.” I then asked what genre of music Thing 1 would be. Caz opted for Country/Rock and maybe pinpointing it as The Eagles, Connor and I agreed it would be a Funk/Pop outfit with Connor specifying Capital Cities. Lastly, we tried to determine this beer’s spirit animal. Caz picked a wombat, Connor thought it would be some sort of bird–maybe a hummingbird or “random birds”–, and I chose a mongoose, for no particular reason.

We finished with the beer for a bit and checked in with how we were feeling with the new year as second-semester seniors. We’ve all been trying to settle in and take advantage of our last little bit of time at Boston College.

Ultimately we all enjoyed the beer a lot and I’m glad we had the opportunity to share it and chat for a bit! Highly recommend seeking out Idle Hands for yourself.

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Ep. 21-& Caz & Bone Up Key Lime White Ale

Hi everyone and welcome to this week’s episode of People & Pints & Podcasts. This past weekend I traveled up to the Boston area to visit some wonderful friends! On Friday, July 16th, I spent time with my excellent friend Jess (whom I will try to convince to eventually come on the show) before spending Saturday in Boston! Saturday night I was joined by friend of the show, Caz Novak, for his 3rd appearance on the podcast (for Caz’s other episodes click here and here). We finally got to sample some official Bone Up beer and it was very tasty! Liz and Jared, the wonderful team behind Bone Up, were on an earlier episode so you can listen to that conversation here. We also addressed the recent phenomenon of Pokémon Go! It was a sleepy, late-night edition of People & Pints but hopefully, you enjoy it because we sure did!

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I spent most of the day just re-exploring Boston and enjoying the sunny, though hot, weather in the city! Jess and I met with Caz and our other friend Jules for a delicious brunch at Lulu’s Allston. Jess and I then walked through Boston, stopping at the Boston Public Market and eventually walking to Trillium in Fort Point.

After Jess left to return to Worcester I rejoined Caz and we got a chance to catch up! We enjoyed the cooler evening and spent some time with other friends around Boston College. Finally, after a very brief attempt to play Pokémon Go we returned to Caz’s dorm to record this episode.

FullSizeRender (29).jpgThe beer we tried from Bone Up was their Key Lime White Ale, an attempt to mix two delicious things: beer and Key Lime Pie. Ultimately, we enjoyed it! Caz described it as “lime,” which is very accurate, while I explained that it reminded me of the beach. Then, Caz said that Key Lime’s spirit animal is a dachshund wearing a key lime ice cream costume.  I had a little trouble explaining my choice but I kept picturing a chimpanzee. Finally, apropos of our discussion, I said that the beer would be Pikachu and Caz claimed it was Squirtle. Again, we really did enjoy the beer and hope you can try to find it!

 

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The last time I had a Bone Up beer

 

We then attempted to get into the cultural craze of Pokémon Go. Caz does not play and doesn’t really have the nostalgic pull, a significant part of the app’s success. Caz said he thinks it’s a great idea but there have been several examples of recklessness that make him, and me, queazy. We agreed that there can be significant benefits to playing a game that essentially makes players get outside and walk around. Everything in moderation, though. There is still plenty of room for debate and conversation, and–certainly–research, around this phenomenon and I hope more intelligent people continue to dissect this app.

Finally, we returned to the beer for a rating. As discussed in last week’s episode, a numerical rating can be tricky and not entirely helpful, so I gave Caz the option to describe the beer in other terms. He very eloquently highlighted the delicious balance of the beer and explained that he enjoyed both the fruit elements and the beer elements. I agreed and added that the feelings this beer stirred up were pleasant and fun, certainly reminding me of summer and the beach. Also, for you number people, I gave it an 8 out of 10.

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We hope you enjoyed this edition of People & Pints & Podcasts! Please spread the word, subscribe to the show on iTunes, and comment with any feedback!

Also, check out the new Starving of Thirst EP, Coasts!

Ep. 11-& Caz & Artifact Cider Project Roxbury

Hey everyone and welcome to another week of People & Pints & Podcasts! My roommate and wonderful friend Caz joined me for another episode of the podcast (first one found here). I spent my weekend visiting Rosa down in DC, so I decided to record an episode before leaving. Caz claimed I was using him as a back-up, he may have been right…But in all honesty we had a great chat and really enjoyed our drink: Roxbury cider from Artifact Cider Projects.

Caz and I recorded the podcast very late on Wednesday, April 27, so we were very sleepy. Nonetheless, I was thrilled to try the highly recommended Roxbury cider and glad to share it with Caz. I had picked up the cider from Craft Beer Cellar Fenway (as usual), while at a tasting for Bent Water Brewing Co. I spent a good amount of time chatting with Ryan, Bent Water’s sales rep, about the history and plans for Bent Water. He highly recommended that I make the trek out to Lynn so I might have to. I also let him know that we had recorded an episode sampling Pearl from Bent Water and he seemed interested. It was certainly a good outing and I really enjoyed the conversation.

On the day of recording I decided to go visit Tom, the owner of Boston Homebrew Supply, to chat about craft beer in Boston and to learn about the process of homebrewing. I’m hoping to make my first foray into homebrewing with one of my roommates soon, so getting a peak at all of the ingredients and recipes available was very useful. Tom was very helpful and gave some great tips. We also spent some time talking about the potential craft beer bubble in Massachusetts. It was a great trip and we are hoping to schedule some time to record a podcast episode together.

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Caz and I really enjoyed Roxbury cider and had some fun with the review process. We dubbed this the second installment of Sippin’ Cider with Cuppari (named after the aforementioned Rosa). Initially, Caz described it as “pumpernickel” (a strange one), though he changed it to the more appropriate “crisp.” I suggested that it was a “refreshing” drink. Then, we both agreed that we would order Roxbury for Rosa or “anyone who isn’t a big craft beer fan.” Roxbury definitely has the character and flavor of a craft beer but might be a little more approachable. Lastly, we thought that we could both go through somewhere between 3-5 glasses of Roxbury.

After the cider talk, Caz and I took the opportunity to reflect on the semester. This episode came at the opposite end of our last episode which was a nice point to consider the change in between. We talked about growing more comfortable with life back at Boston College after studying abroad in Europe. I also said how much I enjoyed spending quality time with a small group of good friends, like Caz. We also looked forward to our fall semester, when we will have a great space for grilling and lounging outside. I teased that I might be able to brew some beer for us, so we’ll have to see how my first batch goes!

Finally, we returned to Roxbury for a rating. Caz gave it a 9.17/10 while I rounded down to a 9. We both agreed it was delicious and highly recommend it to anyone interested in cider. It certainly does not have any of the puckering sweetness sometimes found in cider and was perfectly crisp and refreshing. I’m sure Caz will be joining me again soon so if you enjoyed the episode, please let us know! Also, to get all of the episodes in one place, subscribe to the show on iTunes or anywhere you listen to podcasts.

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Ep. 2-& Caz & Night Shift Fürth Hefeweizen

People & Pints & Podcasts 2: Electric Boogaloo. For the second episode of the podcast I went the easy route and invited my roommate, and very good friend, Caz Novak to join me. Ultimately, I think it was an excellent decision and we had a great time chatting and sampling some delicious beer. We were a little nervous but I think we found a rhythm and had a really fun conversation.

Caz is a fellow Junior at Boston College from St. Cloud, Minnesota. He and I met through our great friend Danny Pimpinelli, who is studying in Australia currently. Caz is a fantastic friend, whom I was thrilled to have on the podcast.

Caz is a German major (as well as International Studies) and he studied abroad in Heidelberg, Germany so I fittingly picked out Fürth, a German style Hefeweizen from Night Shift Brewing, for the episode.  Fürth is named after the eponymous city in Bavaria and proved to be a delicious choice with lots of flavor. I dubbed it a “party” of flavors while Caz was reminded of an umbrella (he later admitted he meant a parachute but umbrella works too). The beer reminded Caz of fuchsia and “me, yellow.” By the end we gave the beer some high marks and agreed we’d both go for a second!

Aside from the beer, Caz and I chatted about his Spring Break plans which are comprised of a service trip to Virginia as a part of the Appalachia immersion program facilitated by Boston College. We also reminisced about time abroad and described our visits to each other’s respective host city (my visit to Heidelberg is documented here).

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I had mentioned last time that Bill would be joining me as frequently as possible but he is very busy over the course of the next few weeks so he might be unavailable for the upcoming episodes. Still, he will join when he can and, who knows, maybe Caz will come back as well! Look out for Episode 3 in a week and we hope you enjoyed our conversation!

As always big shoutout to Tyler Coyne and Starving of Thirst for the intro/outro music (their mash-up of Shut Up and Take Me Home Tonight can be found here).

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Ein Bier, Bitte!

Hi everyone and welcome to this week’s People & Pints! This past weekend I decided to visit my great friend from Boston College: Caz, who is studying in Heidelberg, Germany. I was joined by our friend Tyler, who also goes to BC and is currently studying in Paris, for a fantastic weekend. I hadn’t heard of Heidelberg before Caz decided on the city for his study abroad experience. Heidelberg is a very small city relatively close to Frankfurt that is situated along a beautiful river and between some gorgeous hills. The typical fall scenery was very refreshing because, although I love Amsterdam, I haven’t been able to experience nature like I did in Heidelberg. Although it wasn’t necessarily the focus of my weekend, I did have a few delicious beers. More importantly, I had fantastic conversations with some incredible friends and experienced a totally new city.

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Heidelberg

After arriving late Friday night, Caz warned Tyler and me that, unlike Paris or Amsterdam, “there isn’t a ton to do in Heidelberg.” Caz, of course, wasn’t expressing any regret about his city, but was simply letting us know that Heidelberg doesn’t have the same options of activities as a major European city. Nonetheless, we had some great hiking adventures over the span of a few days. On Saturday, Caz led us along the Philosophenweg, a very old trail, about 2 km, that leads to the top of the hill. It was a great hike, in which we decided to wander and get a little lost, and the views along the trail were spectacular. At the top of the hill there are ruins from an old monastery and a small lookout post. The following day we explored the Schloss or Castle of Heidelberg, which was a shorter walk up the opposite hill. We lingered on the grounds of the Schloss for quite some time as the sun began to set behind a nearby hill. On both short hikes I was shown a different aspect of life in Europe. Amsterdam is by no means a gigantic city but it felt much larger by comparison. I thoroughly love life in the city and enjoy biking along the canals, but it was quite refreshing to see the leaves changing in breathtaking ways and surveying the city from beautiful heights.

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Heidelberg Schloss

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The Jazz Cats

Our nights were rather tame as we preferred enjoying each other’s company over the noise of a “discotheque”. Saturday evening we opted to check out a local jazz club. I expected this choice to be a perfect opportunity for People & Pints, and although it didn’t turn out as I had anticipated, it was still an interesting experience. Ironically, the bar served almost exclusively virgin drinks; a sign in German proudly revealed that this was the first alcohol free bar in Heidelberg. I did manage to get a glass of Paulaner Hefe-Weissbier, which is a German Wheat Beer. The beer was smooth and tasty with notes of fruit. The Jazzhaus was a really cool underground venue. The “jazz cats,” as Tyler called the guys playing, were unique and definitely produced some good music.

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Upper Glass

As I said earlier, the weekend was not spent only beer, which was perfectly fine. Although Germany is more or less the world capital of beer, we decided to space out our imbibing. I did manage to find an awesome craft beer bottle store, Upper Glass. They had a plethora of local beers as well as some great American imports. My friend Eli in Amsterdam has been searching relentlessly for some San Diego beer and Upper Glass happened to have Ballast Point, Karl Strauss, and others so I decided to bring some back for him. I told the cashier about this quest and it didn’t really seem to affect him. I looked at him awkwardly for a few minutes before he pleasantly responded that he was happy I found the “holy grail.” I realized that he wasn’t being distant, he probably just didn’t know how to properly answer my query in English. I asked him if the beers were popular and he said that they were, “but they’re going to stop exporting here. Not enough money I guess.” I nodded understandingly and asked if he had any other recommendations for local beer. He directed me to a few bottles from a local brewery, Welde Bräu. Welde is located in Plankstadt, which is very close to Heidelberg. Welde is an interesting brewery because it is in fact a macro-brewery but it had produced a few bottles that were more “craft beer” focused. I had the Hop Stuff Ella + Equinox, which is a Zwickelbier/Kellerbier. The Zwickel or Keller is an unfiltered, hoppier version of a Helles Lager. It is apparently quite popular in Germany, though I had never come across it before. It was a nice beer that was a little hazy in color without a particularly strong aroma. The taste was a bit hoppy with subtle citrus flavors and a very warm, smooth finish. I decided to also bring a bottle of Bourbon Barrel Bock home, which I believe will be very nice.

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Philosophenweg

I didn’t necessarily drink my way through Heidelberg in this short trip, but I did manage to serve perhaps the more important aspect of People & Pints: the People. My conversations with Caz and Tyler brought me right back to Boston College; it was as if we hadn’t skipped a beat. Between laughing over inside jokes and fretting about classes, it made me feel at home. Alongside quoting The Office and Youtube videos, we managed to have some great conversations about nostalgia and sentimentality. I’ve always believed hiking could be a very cathartic, often spiritual activity and I was proved right this weekend. Along the Philosophenweg, we talked about the combination of excitement and anxiety of returning to the US. We’ve all been enjoying our respective experiences abroad but there are certainly aspects of being back home that we all miss. On the other hand, our programs felt like they have been going incredibly quickly. Caz mentioned how strange it is that we’re within a year of our final year of university. “Real life is too close,” Tyler noted. We all felt the pang of nostalgia as we reminisced over simpler times and on our hike shared stories from our younger years. IMG_3288

But ultimately we ended the weekend with broad smiles and Tyler noted how valuable our experience abroad really is. “We’ve been learning a lot while in Europe. It’ll be great to take that back.” I agreed saying how we’ve grown in independence and responsibility. We all felt a little more reassured as we took in the sun on my final day in Heidelberg. Although real life might be approaching, I think we’ll be well prepared. After learning a few German phrases like how to order a beer–or a scoop of ice cream–or apparently the motto of Heidelberg “Ich hab mein Herz in Heidelberg verloren,” I had to bid Auf Wiedershen to my friends and to Heidelberg. Luckily, Tyler will be visiting the coming weekend so I’m sure we’ll have even more adventures. If nothing else, we will have some good beer and some great conversations.