The Rules: Garden State Craft Brewers Craft A Best Practices Document

craft beer express

If you spend any time at New Jersey’s brewery tasting rooms, you’ve surely noticed some differences from those in PA. No dining. No entertainment. No food trucks. Well, maybe some food trucks.

In some ways, New Jersey brewers have been left to interpret the state’s two-year-old law that allows them to sell pints of beer and has led to the proliferation of tasting rooms and new breweries across the state. But because the law was met with opposition from the restaurant association, it prohibits food service and entertainment at breweries that aren’t brewpubs. However, the law left some grey area and some room to make one’s own decisions about how strictly to follow the law.

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Tonight: Mac & Beer Fest In Collingswood

Follow the instructions for the lightened-up baked mac and cheese, and pair it with the prescribed spinach salad and—BOOM—a mac and cheese salad on your plate. Genius? We think so.

Sure, you’ve had lobster mac n’ cheese and mac n’ cheese with pancetta, but have you tried Mexican mac n’ cheese? Or Greek mac n’ cheese? Didn’t think so.

But you can change that tonight by going to the Mac & Beer fest at the Grand Ballroom in Collingswood. The fest, which runs 5-9 pm, benefits the Collingswood Foundation for the Arts, who manage the ballroom and the Scottish Rite Auditorium and Grand Ballroom, and the Crossroads Programs, which helps a abused, abandoned, homeless and at-risk young people. So yes, it’s for a good cause.

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Tonight: Lady Birds Beer Club


Thanks to local Allagash sales rep and former beer journalist Suzy Woods, Philadelphia was one of the first cities in the world to host its own women-in-beer group, which invited women to hang out and learn about beer in a social, female-only environment.

But the group has been mostly quiet for a few years, choosing to host twice-annual coed gatherings for the time being instead of its regular meet-ups of yore. A national women-in-beer organization tried to form a chapter here, but its efforts largely failed. Active groups exist in the western and eastern suburbs, and Victory runs an occasional Girls Just Wanna Have Suds series but the city itself has recently lacked any substantive focal point for beer-loving women.

Until now.

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This Weekend: Women’s Collaboration Brew Day

Craft Beer Express

If you’re a craft beer lover, by now you’ve heard that women have served in the capacity of brewer throughout history … that is until the art became industrialized at different times in different places and men took over a newly profitable profession. So you often read about modern female brewers “reclaiming” what was once a proud tradition.

Well, no better example of that exists than Women’s International Collaboration Brew Day, taking place in Philly, New Jersey and around the world on Sunday.

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Blindfolded Wine Dinner At Vintage Grille

Maybe you’ve watched “Eyes Wide Shut” and found yourself intrigued. Or you and the missus need to throw a dash of spice into the ole’ bedroom. Whatever your motivation, lead your spouse, girlfriend, mistress, furry to Vintage Grille in Doylestown Wednesday night at 7 pm for a blindfolded wine dinner.

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A Rare Rioja Dinner Catered By Garces…At A Liquor Store In New Jersey?

PA Wine blog 3_image

Imagine you’re blindfolded and taken to a $200 wine dinner, where a Spanish wine importer is pouring you six different Riojas dating back to 1928. Jose Garces Restaurant Group is catering a paired menu of small plates, which Garces ambassador Beth Koenig describes as you eat it. To end your meal, the two female owners of Menagerie Coffee, rated by this magazine as the best coffee shop in Philly last year, pour over Intelligentsia single-origin coffee selected for the occasion.

Then someone removes your blindfold to reveal your location. You blink to adjust to the fluorescent lights and you discover your high-class experience has taken place … at a liquor store in New Jersey. Surprised? Probably. Disappointed? Hopefully not.

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Because Drinking In A NASA Centrifuge Is Just An Awesome Idea


On February 28, you have a chance to attend what may be the first beer festival held inside a former NASA training facility. Fermented Productions is organizing a festival of beer, wine, spirits and food at The Fuge, a catering venue and aeronautics museum in Warminster, Bucks County, that used to train every American astronaut embarking on a lunar mission. The room is entirely round, and attendees can visit the centrifuge simulator. Which is just cool.

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Chocolate And Beer Pairing? Yeah, A Chocolate And Beer Pairing


If you haven’t made it to the Academy of Natural Sciences’ chocolate exhibition yet, you have until next Saturday, when it closes. As a “last shot” of chocolate decadence, the Academy is hosting a beer and chocolate pairing tonight led by Don Russell, who writes the “Joe Sixpack” column in the Daily News.

From 7-9pm, you’ll get to taste sweet and savory chocolate treats and have Don explain why they each pair well with the different beers you’ll be sampling. Also, reps from the museum’s catering company will be there to teach you how to cook and bake with various types of cocoa, so you can even tell yourself that this is an educational experience. Even if we know why you’re really going.

Tickets are $35.

Academy Of Natural Sciences [Event page]

Ninkasi Beer Event Coming To Lucky’s Last Chance


You may have heard of the Hymn to Ninkasi, an ode to the revered Sumerian goddess of beer and one of the earliest known examples of word-based writing.

No? Well i you’re into craft beer, you may have heard of Ninkasi Brewing, the 30th biggest brewery in the U.S. (as of 2013), based in Eugene, OR. But unless you’re really into the scene, you’ve likely never tried its gold-medal-winning Bohemian Pilsner (Great American Beer Festival) or the Total Domination IPA, which Men’s Journal called one of the world’s 25 best beers in 2012.

Well, you may want to thank your favorite goddess that you live in such a beer-centric town because for the second time in its nine-year history, Ninkasi is sending special shipments into a market it doesn’t officially service. The first time it was New York. And this time it’s Philly.

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