More Canadiana

Apparently this blog has been nominated in the category of Best Beer Blog in the first annual Canadian Food Blog Awards, which comes as both an honour and a surprise. My Thanks to Beer and Butter Tarts for the nomination, and congratulations to all the other nominees.

Guess I better watch the tyops typos until after the judging is over…,

What He Wrote, and How!

Back in my office after a lovely, warm week in the sun, I was contemplating what to write as a year-end post when I came across this missive from my friend and publisher, John Hansell.

December 26th, 2010

What does John know, really?

John Hansell

Well, to be honest, I know that I’m not a great whisky writer. I read stuff by Michael Jackson (may he rest in peace), Jim Murray, Dave Broom, and more like them in Malt Advocate magazine and they just amaze me. They, are great whisky writers.

I also know that I can’t describe whiskies as eloquently and colorfully as the best ones. (I refer you to the names above once again. They are all brilliant at what they do.)

I’m not crazy about this blog’s name, “What Does John Know?” because it comes across as sounding egotistical–to the point where I am becoming increasingly embarrassed by it. Don’t be surprised if you see it changed sometime soon. It’s really just the Malt Advocate magazine blog, and I am only one part of a great team of people. (But most of you knew that already.)

I feel that I am just a passionate whisky enthusiast, like many of you. The only difference is that I started this great journey thirty years ago, so maybe I just got a head start? That forced me to blaze some trails (and I have the scars to prove it). If I have made your whisky journey more pleasant and easier to navigate, then this is much more than I have ever envisioned and I am a better person for it.

(Read the rest of John’s terrific post by clicking any of this text, and if you haven’t done so already, subscribe to his feed. You won’t be sorry you did.)

Contradicting his own claim that he is not a great whisky writer, John neatly sums up what is or should be in the heart of every writer on whisky, beer, wine or any other beverage. And so, with great thanks and unapologetic larceny, I will take his words as my own and leave you with this thought for the year:

I want to thank you all for taking time out of your busy schedule to join me here, and I wish you all a very happy, healthy and prosperous 2011.

See y’all next year!

For the Canadians…Well, the Ontarians…Okay, GTAers

Heads up, folks, the first ever Toronto Beer Week kicks off on Monday and it’s looking like it will be a good one. I’ll be presenting a bunch of events — like my Malt & Molluscs Monday at Starfish and Wednesday’s Malt Magic beer and single malt pairing at The Monk’s Table — but also attending a lot more.

Yesterday, I posted my picks for the week at my blog. Rather than repeat them all here, why not just follow this link and check them out?!

Housekeeping and Beer

You may notice that World of Beer looks a bit different now, primarily because I’ve finally taken the time to figure out how these widget thingys work. (Next up: twitter?) And if you look to the right, you’ll notice that the Facebook badge touts a blurb of text along the lines of “Colorado, USA: Avery Brewing Company’s…” You may wonder what it all means.

Well, first off, it means that if you’re on Facebook and haven’t already liked the World of Beer page, well, shame on you. You’re missing out on reviews like the one I posted about Greg Nash’s tremendous Kryptonite from Halifax’s Hart & Thistle a few days ago, not to mention the easiest way imaginable to keep up to date on new posts here and at my other two blogs.

More importantly, however, it touts my review of a limited edition, barrel-aged beer from Colorado’s Avery Brewing, which is everything I could write in 420 characters and much, much more. The bad news is that precious little of this wonderful, 9.9% ale – I still can’t believe it’s that strong! – made it outside of Boulder. On the positive side, though, the label on the bottle i have states “60 cases shared, 37 hoarded.” So there’s hope yet!

Announcing My New Blog: Beaumont Drinks!

For the past four years, I’ve been responsible for the Beaumont’s Beer Blog over at After some recent discussion, however, the powers-that-be at TTS and I have decided to fold the Beer Blog and replace it with a new blog focused on all things beverage, whether beer, spirits, cocktails or wine. We call it…

Beaumont Drinks!

We took it live just this week and I’ve two posts up already. The first deals with the question of value in beer, wine, spirits and cocktails, while the second takes to task the drinks columnist in the new issue of Sharp Magazine.

Check them out, and if you like what you read, leave a comment and/or subscribe to the RSS feed by clicking the icon in the address field of your browser. (We’re still sorting the page out and a proper subscription link is forthcoming.) I look forward to seeing you there!

World of Beer Welcomes The Wench

That title says it all, folks. I’m thrilled to welcome to World of Beer our first official assistant/contributor/social media expert/provider of keen insight, none other than The Beer Wench herself, Ashley Routson!

Beginning with next month’s Great Lakes Craft Brewers and Water Conservation Workshop and Craft Brewers Conference, Ashley will be providing contributor posts to add to your beery elucidation here at WoB, and as we go forward with the redesign of the original site — yes, Jack, it really is going to happen! — she’ll also be helping my ancient and out-of-touch self understand all these networking sites and tweetings and widgets and other assorted InterWeb stuff.

So welcome aboard, Wench. Now get to work!