Haven't done one of these in a while and instead of talking about why I'll just talk about important stuff. Here are a list of rumors and facts about craft beer in Kansas that I've stumbled across in the last few weeks/months that I thought I might pass on...
1) If you're a fan of Boulder Beer Company, and particularly if you like Hazed and Infused, please check the dates on anything you buy, especially 22oz bombers. The date printed on the bottle is a "pull date" - meaning that the beer should not be sold after that date. That means that the brewery does not want the beer to be on any shelf after that date. I have a personal story related to this but don't feel that I should relate it here. However, if you see some outdated Boulder on the shelf of your favorite store please email the brewery and let them know: email@example.com
2) In fact, you need to make a habit of checking all dates on all beer that you buy. Of course, you should be doing that anyway, but I know for a fact that there are some shady products lurking on shelves out there and you should remember that if a brewery takes the time to put a "Best Before" date on their beer they do so for a reason. And that reason is that they do not want you to buy it after that date. Distributors and retailers don't always understand (or lets be honest, don't care about that) and most of them think that you are too stupid or ignorant to check. If you find outdated beer tell the store you bought it from. If they don't care email the brewery. If you have any questions, here is a great reference point for figuring out the dates on your bottle.
3) Lagunitas, Green Flash, Magic Hat, and Firestone Walker should start appearing in Kansas coolers soon.
4) That Boulevard Chocolate Ale bank rush was fun, wasn't it? Did any one notice the $75 price on ebay in the aftermath? It's down to $50 now that it has hit other states.
5) Stone Brewing Company will be in Missouri sometime this spring. Minnesota too, from what I've read. This is interesting because a few years ago all the talk from Stone was that they were considering pulling their distributors and focusing more on their base area in California. Regardless, it's great news, though I'm sure a Kansas license isn't in the works. But, hey, Arrogant Bastard is now only a several minute drive away!
6) Regarding Widmer Brothers Brewing Company. The more Drifter Pale Ale you can send this way the better. It's a great beer. One of the best beers available in Kansas in my opinion.
7) Avery in cans. Soon. White Rascal, Ellie's Brown, IPA. By summer, or so I've heard.
8) PBR sucks from a bottle. How's that for the idea that good beer doesn't come from a can?
9) Code: Supposedly witty 19th century writers love light having a spectrum dominated by energy with a wavelength of roughly 440-490nm. They also supposedly love Kansas sometime in the coming months or year, as per a fairly unreliable source.
10) Best beer I've had lately: Annie's Amber from High Noon out of Leavenworth. Very tasty amber, robust and a bit hoppy. Nothing like a typical amber, which probably accounts for the negative reviews on Beer Advocate. Also, keep an eye out for the Halcyon Wheat from Tallgrass, an unfiltered wheat in a 12 oz can - their new summer seasonal. Can't find a link for this yet but it is good!