John Zervas is the publisher of Hops To Table Magazine, a magazine that in a little over a year has quickly become the premiere publication for and about Sacramento’s beer scene. It has a pro website (including a comprehensive beer map) as well as a print edition, which you can find at over 200 locations in Sacramento and Chico including Pangaea, Cap Tap, The Shack, Dad’s and Hot City Pizza.
Hops to Table has become essential reading for those who care about brew. Consequently, when I asked him to do a #fridgepics for us, it made the most sense to ask for a picture of his beer refrigerator. In case you aren’t one or don’t have a beer obsessive in your life, yes, they all have beer fridges. At my house we have one in the garage right next to the kegerator. He agreed to the rule of no arranging before the pic, so I turned to my husband to find out what the beers were, even when only part of the label was visible.
First off, I had to ask John about the kegs because of course there was no way to know the contents. He replied that they are the Imperial Red Ale and Pumpkin Porter that were made for Hops To Table’s past homebrew pieces. The boxes on the left are hops and on the top he has yeast vials, all for brewing beer at home.
Now to the geeky stuff. On the top left there appears to be a 4-pack of Einstok Icelandic White Ale, a beer brewed 60 miles south of the Arctic Circle. The White Ale is brewed in the “classic witbier” style, but Einstok argues that it’s the pure Icelandic waters that make it stand out.
Left middle shelf is the Prairie Artisan Ales ‘Merica beer. Prairie was a cult brewery that has gained widespread acclaim, including a near panic for their 14% ABV stout Prairie Bomb. ‘Merica is a farmhouse ale made with Nelson Sauvin hops and conditioned with Brettanomyces and wine yeast. I’ve had this one and I love it, just like I love ‘Merica. Perhaps more.
To the right of ‘Merica is 21st Amendment’s weird beer “He Said”. It’s two cans of light pumpkin beer and two cans of dark. When someone says “pumpkin beer” I’m like “peace out”.
To the right of that is a bottle of Ale Apothecary beer (brewed in beer mecca Bend, Oregon), specifically their La Tache Wild Ale. My husband was duly impressed by this bottle and said it shows some “deep digging” on John’s part.
On the bottom left we come to a couple of classics. Brasserie Dupont’s Avec Les Bons Voeux. This Christmas-y winter beer evokes fond memories of when I first got into craft beer. I think Dupont is criminally overlooked in this age of beer trend chasing, and all of their beers are great. Saison Dupont is acknowledged as a classic but do people really drink it? I wish we could get it on draft around here. Buy a bottle of this Avec Les Bons Voeux and crack it under the Christmas tree and it just might be better than anything dumb ol’ Santa buys you.
The paper-wrapped bottle is a kriek from Brouwerij De Ranke. Again, for some reason this relatively easy to find beer really isn’t on most beer nerds radar. It is effing delicious and is a tart beer made with cherries from Poland and Girardin lambic. Man, I wish I was drinking it RIGHT NOW. I am lucky enough that I just called down the stairs and asked my husband if we have one and indeed we do. It’s pictured on the right with my very bad cat, Babs. Look at that color! This one was aged a few years and had a bit of a basement-y smell, in a very good way. It had lost some carbonation over time, which made it calm and balanced. This was a wise, experienced beer that had been around the block a few times.
In fact this whole #fridgepics post is making me thirsty. Thanks for the inspiration, John!