This week's new and returning products follows a few words about a fly fishing trip to Montana
Editor's note: In an abundance of caution Steve and Barb had been self quarantining since returning from a visit to Montana. The following is the first installment of the recap of their trip.
By Steve Siciliano
Our ride was fifteen minutes late and Barb and I were wondering if it was deja vu all over again.
On a previous trip to Montana the folks from the ranch forgot to pick us up."Oh shit," the proprietor blurted out when I called to inform her we were waiting at the Bozeman airport. "I'll have someone there in two hours." We spent those two hours wondering what the hell we had gotten ourselves into. Thankfully the lodge, located about 100 miles southwest of Bozeman on a high ridge overlooking the Ruby Valley, turned out to be great and our guide Chris Irwin was superb. Despite the inauspicious start it turned out to be a wonderful trip.
While my wife went to the restroom I called the shuttle service we contracted to drive us to the Madison Valley. 'I'm running a little late," a cheery voice said. "I'll be there in ten minutes."
The cheery voice belonged to the mother of the gal who owned and operated the shuttle service. "My notes say you want to make a stop," she said after I crammed our overstuffed suitcases into the back of her SUV. The ranch provided complementary beer and wine but no hard liquor. "Yes," I said. "We need to pick up some bourbon." After procuring the booze and stopping in Ennis for lunch we pulled into the parking lot at the Madison Valley Ranch.
We chose MVR because of it close proximity to the Madison River, one of Montana's premier trout fisheries, but also because of the stellar on line reviews. The moment we pulled up, Marketing & Fly Fishing Manager Parker Redmond greeted us and promptly showed us to our digs for the week--a nicely appointed, western themed room with a private porch. That porch turned out to be a popular after dinner gathering spot. Each evening we shared our bourbon and exchanged stories about our day on the river with a few of our fellow guests--Roxanne and Rob from San Antonio, Dave and Christie from Colorado Springs and Chris from Portland. It's a good thing that my son Chris supplemented our stash with a local bottle of hooch that he had delivered to our room as a surprise gift for my 69th birthday.
One evening Parker joined our little group for conversation and a drink before going home to his wife Manu and their young son Kaspar. Manu, a native of Germany, is one of the ranch managers and is the consummate hostess. In fact the entire staff--managers, servers, housekeeping, etc.--couldn't have been more accommodating. The safety and comfort of the guests were their main priorities. Everyone, staff as well as guests, wore masks and practiced social distancing. Individual parties were appropriately spaced during meals.
The breakfasts and dinners prepared by executive chef Matt Pease were flat out amazing. Matt works with small producers and uses fresh products in their peak seasons. The expertly prepared cuisine could stand toe to toe with any four star restaurant. Pretty impressive for a fly fishing lodge.
In the morning Barb and I would sip our pre breakfast coffee on the porch while watching the sun inch up over the high peaks of the Madison Range. If we were lucky we would spot moose thumping their way to the river and sand cranes feeding in the adjacent fields. After breakfast we would gather our gear, meet our guide du jour in front of the property's fly shop and then head out for an eight hour float down the mighty Madison.
Next week: Fly fishing on the Madison River
Featured Wines of the Week
Michael Sullberg, 2018, Cabernet Sauvignon, California, $14.19/750ml- A gorgeous ruby wine fills the glass. A juicy entry is marked by red cherry and blackberry. Fruit notes are balanced against dried lavender and a hint of spice, leading up to a long, pleasant finish. (Source)
Michael Sullberg, 2018, Chardonnay, California, $14.19/750ml-Perfumed floral aromas mingle with citrus, apple, and beeswax notes. The entry is juicy, showing notes of Golden Delicious apple and white peach. Grapefruit notes underscore the pleasant acidity, followed by a hint of creaminess and dried grass. (Source)
Licenciado, 2016, Rioja, Reserva, Spain, $19.39/750ml- Licenciado shows a ruby red color and outstanding aromas of wild berries, vanilla and spice. The palate is well-balanced, rounded and elegant, and offers black pepper, ripe black fruits and vanilla flavors. Its freshness, oak ageing and high extraction guarantee a longevity of at least 10 years after the year of harvest. (Source)
Buy three or more bottles of wine get 10 % off.
"It's our mission at Siciliano's to sell quality wine at affordable prices."
Featured Spirits of the Week
Detroit City Distillery, Peacemaker, Gin, Michigan, $36.89/750ml- Inspired by the legend of the "tree of peace." this spirit pays homage to our origins. White pine and blue spruce planted by our founder over 20 years ago were harvested to create a gin that embodies the taste of the Great Lakes state. From the bounty of nature to the freshest water in the world, gin isn't just our way of life, it's our state of mind. (Source)
Detroit City Distillery, Summer Rum, Michigan, $21.09/750ml- We made this spirit made in collaboration with some of our the best bars and bartenders across Detroit. We invited the crews from from Standby, The Skip, Takoi, Grey Ghost, Second Best, Keisling and Evening Bar to help blend rare rums we sourced from Jamaica, Trinidad, Barbados, Guyana and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The result is the perfect daiquiri rum. The nose is full of Jamaican funk with ripe banana, pineapple and clove. The light rose gold body has a creamy mouthfeel full of Caribbean fruit notes like papaya, guava, mangos and coconut. The silky smooth finish offers hints lime, toffee and French Indie spice. (Source)
Pierre Ferrand, 1840 original formula, France, $44.19/750ml- In the 19th century, when the modern art of the bar was born, no spirit was more prized for mixing drinks than cognac. Ferrand 1840 Original Formula represents our attempt to recreate the kind of cognac that the pioneers in the bars used during that period. Modeled on an extraordinarily rare 1840 bottle of Pinet-Castillon Cognac, and made with the blending techniques from this era, it is rich, concentrated and highly mixable, in the 1840s style. (Source)
New and Returning Products
Abomination Ales Wandering into the Fog El Derado, $6.29/16oz - Double New England IPA
Atwater Blocktoberfest, $1.99/12oz - Absolutely traditional in design and execution, Atwater’s Bloktoberfest exhibits bready, nut-like characters with a clean, light sweetness brought to heel by a crisp hop finish. Bavarian in its ancestry, German Style Marzens were brewed only from the end of September through April. They were then stored cold and the remainder served at Oktoberfest to celebrate the harvest and the beginning of the brewing season. The style exhibits clean, bready, toasty notes with the increased alcohol and hop bitterness required for stability during aging. (Source)
Bell's Best Brown, $2.19/16oz - A smooth, toasty beer that offers hints of cocoa and caramel. Brewed with American hops, Best Brown™ is well-balanced and bridges the gap between lighter-bodied beers and malty stouts. The owl hopefully agrees (you never know with owls). (Source)
Bell's Double Two Hearted, $3.29/12oz - Everything you love about our classic Two Hearted® Ale... now in a double IPA. With two and a half times the amount of Centennial hops, Double Two Hearted® has intense pine and citrus notes, a resinous hop aroma and rich malt character. (Source)
Bell's Spontaneous Me, $2.29/12oz - The seventh and final release celebrating a literary classic, and one of our favorites, Leaves of Grass, by Walt Whitman. Inspired directly by nature, this Wild American Ale is fermented with wild yeast harvested from the Bell’s Beer Garden to evoke tart, earthy and funky tasting notes. (Source)
Blackrocks nordskye, $2.19/12oz - We brewed/tweaked this beer at the pub for a couple years under a different name until it was can worthy. Galaxy hops bring out big tropical/fruity aromas and flavors, the low ABV and easy body make it easy to justify grabbing "one more." (Source)
Boreale IPA du Nord-Est, $4.99/16oz - IPA N-E takes you on a journey. It begins with exotic aromas that awaken the palate and is followed by a delicious bitterness characteristic of New England IPA (NEIPA). It’s a beautifully balanced ale everyone will love. (Source)
Breakfast Seltzer, $18.69/12pk
Collective Art IPA #13, $4.39/16oz - For the first time ever, we’re collaborating with another brewery on a beer in our numbered IPA series! For lucky No. 13 we got together with Aslin Beer Co. to make a classic double IPA. Hopped with Strata, Zappa, and Comet, these unique and sought after strains lend the beer a deliciously dank passionfruit forward character with underlying notes of mango and citrus. (Source)
Ferndale Project Love + Mercy, $6.79/16oz - Double new england ipa double dry hopped with all galaxy.
Ferndale Project Small Step, $5.89/16oz - New England ipa double dry hopped with citra, enigma, cascade and simcoe.
Grand Armory Strawberry Kiwi Grindage, $2.19/12oz - A Strawberry Kiwi IPA for mugs, chillin, and grindage, bud-dy! The Strawberry and Kiwi addition in this juicy IPA makes you feel like you’re in Encino, sneaking slushee pulls right off the machine. (Source)
Hoof Hearted Cowboy Konkey Dong, $5.69/16oz - Donkey Dong, now that's what I call a joystick. Fermented in Donkey Kong barrels and excessively dry hopped with Galaxy, Simcoe, and Dr. Rudi Hops. Brewed in collaboration with Arcade Super Awesome. (Source)
Hoof Hearted Miracle Toast, $7.59/16oz - Double Mashed Imperial Stout w/ Maple Syrup, Vanilla & Saigon Cinnamon. (Source)
Left Hand Oktoberfest, $2.59/12oz - This is no festivus for the restuvus – on the contrary – we start brewing in the Spring and it takes a full two months to reach lagered perfection. Biscuity, malty goodness dominates upfront while the noble pedigree hops lend a properly spicy, dry finish. Zicke zacke, zicke zacke, hoi, hoi, hoi. Time to roast your chicken and upend your stein before the air gets crisp, the leaves flame and fall and the skies fade to black. Auf geht’s! (Source)
Left Hand White Russian Nitro, $2.99/16oz - Abide with The Nitro, or White Russian Nitro, if you’re not into the whole brevity thing. White Russian Nitro is takin’ er super smooth for all us craft beer drinkers out there. There’s a beverage here that’s for strikes and gutters; ups and downs. And, I don’t know about you, but I take comfort in that. With coffee, vanilla and notes of chocolate, this is a beer that really ties it all together. But, well, that’s just, like, our opinion, man. (Source)
Lone Pine Blueberry Sparkler, $4.39/16oz - An American sour ale brewed with a punchy volume of fruit. It is packed with tart, bright blueberry flavor, while remaining light and refreshing. (Source)
Lone Pine Brightside, $3.59/16oz - Our American IPA balances a subtle malt character with smooth, clean bitterness and layers of complex citrus zest, tropical fruit, and pine.(Source)
Lone Pine Diamond Unicorn, $4.89/16oz - DOUBLE IPA | 7.8% ABV Brewed with Ella, Vic Secret, and Pacific Jade. (Source)
Lone Pine Oh-J, $4.39/16oz - A carefully selected arrangement of late-addition hops produce a pure citrus punch. 0% fruit. Fresh, never frozen. Not from concentrate. (Source)
Lone Pine Tessellation, $4.89/16oz - Our 100% mosaic hopped Double IPA stands bright, but with a strikingly soft and rounded mouthfeel. Heavy whirlpool & dry hop additions showcase the complex mosaic hop aromatics of blueberry, mango, and juicy, overripe peach. (Source)
Lone Pine Tiny Tess, $3.29/16oz - The little sibling of Tessellation, Tiny Tess is our session variation. 100% Mosaic hops and exactly half the ABV of Tessellation, Tiny Tess is crisp, flavorful, and wonderfully reminiscent. (Source)
Off Color Beer for Beaches, $2.99/16oz - All the fruit notes of the classic Sex on the Beach cocktail without the alcoholic bite or huge amount of sugar to cover it up. A heavy cranberry juice addition lends a lovely peach hue and a complex acidity. While the peach creates the illusion of sweetness to round out the acidity and farmhouse ale base beer. (Source)
Rogue Combat Wombat, $4.39/16oz - Weird & wonderful fusion of hazy IPA and sour ale brewed with grapefruit and blood orange, then dry-hopped with Australian hops. (Source)
Saugatuck Backyard Lo Cal IPA, $2.79/16oz - A light, easy drinking beer without compromising flavor. Backyard has all the characteristics that you want out of an IPA, like hints of juicy citrus and a dank hoppy nose. The beauty of this beer though? It’s only 3.7% ABV, and less than 150 calories per 16 oz can. (Source)
Sibling Revelry Coffee Red, $2.19/12oz - We took a few barrels of our flagship Red Ale and conditioned it with freshly roasted Rwandan coffee from our friends at duck-rabbit Coffee. Using whole beans instead of ground or cold press gives a rounder, more subtle coffee flavor. The aroma is iced coffee and caramel, the body of the beer drinks like our Red Ale with a lightly roasted and sweetened coffee finish. (Source)
Sibling Revelry IPA, $1.99/12oz - Our India Pale Ale has big pine, citrus and stone fruit aromas with a clean, dry finish. It's like Grandpa Bert – not that bitter once you get to know him. (Source)
Sibling Revelry Mocha, $1.99/12oz - This special batch of our Oatmeal Stout was conditioned with cacao nibs and coffee sourced from Cleveland's own Duck-rabbit coffee roasters. Grab a mug of this creamy creation that combines our favorite morning pick-me-up with the best evening socialization companion! (Source)
Sibling Revelry Olly Olly Gluten Free, $2.39/12oz - This pale copper-colored beer was brewed in collaboration with our friends at Barrio! Malted oats give this beer a sweet body and residual sweetness reminiscent of a traditional pale ale to match the citrusy blend of hops. Light bodied and barely bitter, this GF beer plays well with all palates. (Source)
Sibling Revelry Red Ale, $1.89/12oz - An American Red Ale brewed in the Irish tradition with UK malts providing a light, toasted caramel profile and finished with a healthy amount of American hops for a fresh, moderately citrus aroma. Keep this one handy for the rowdiest family reunions and sports parties. (Source)
Sibling Revelry Swing State, $1.89/12oz - A dry-hopped, light-bodied American Pale Ale. A light malt body with a citrusy hop character leads to a dry hoppy finish. (Source)
Sibling Revelry Tangelo, $2.39/12oz - Orange you glad we said tangelo? Instead of traditional citrus fruits, we brewed this hazy IPA with natural flavor from tangelo fruit – a hybrid of grapefruit and tangerine. Bursting with sweet fruit and zesty citrus flavors, the hops blend well with the fruit for an oh-so-apeeling tangy finish. (Source)
Stone Wizards and Gargoyles, $3.19/16oz - It's not just the same hometown that unites Stone Brewing and Modern Times. It's an unceasing drive to create, innovate and challenge convention. (Not to mention the shared obsession with those little green miracles we call hops.) Modern Times / Stone WIzards & Gargoyles IPA is an achievement of collaborative awesomeness between two San Diego craft beer trailblazers. Centennial, Cashmere, Citra, and Azacca hops are joined by two in-development hops, yielding juicy notes of tropical citrus that play beautifully with the robust flavors and aromas of the coffee, supplied by, of course, Modern Times' caffeination masters. The result is a beer as wonderfully unique as its creators. (Source)
Surly Culture Collab, $14.09/16oz - This American sour ale features wort fermented with New Belgium’s classic “Felix” culture–the oldest souring culture maintained in the United States–then blended with wort fermented with Surly’s house cultures. We place the result in virgin oak and red wine barrels along with whole blueberries. (Source)
Surly Damien, $3.59/16oz - From the blackest depths of the brewhouse comes Damien, Child of Darkness. Spawned from the usually discarded remnants of Darkness, Damien is a dry-hopped black ale with flavors of roasted malt and dark brown sugar. Tangerine and pine aromatics only add to its insidious appeal. (Source)
Surly Direct Current, $1.99/12oz - Like a shock to the system, Direct Current IPA overwhelms the grid with an electric jolt of juicy, orange-grapefruit hop flavor. (Source)
Surly Pina Du Nord, $4.89/16oz - Pina du Nord–Pineapple of the North–is a collaboration with our friends at Pinthouse Pizza in Austin, TX. This hazy IPA carries a tropical, boat-drink vibe from the use of pineapple, key lime, and a heavy dose of citrusy hops. Brewed with oat milk from the good people at Modist Brewing in Minneapolis, along with flaked oats and unmalted wheat, expect a rounded smoothness and just a touch of tiki-inspired swagger. (Source)