Episode 38: Sour Grapes

IMG_0327This is the 38th episode of the Blind Tiger Podcast.  Recorded on one of the holiest days of the year, September 26th.  Historians, the piously religious, and those with any sense of cultural hipness will recognize that as Jesse Clark’s birthday.  In celebration of this auspicious event Mike, Jesse, and I gathered in our studio for something foreign yet familiar; a taste of the fermented grape.  That’s right!  In honor of Jesse’s birthday he encouraged us to let hip flip the tables on us and let Mike and I stumble through over an hour of wine ignorance before the expertise of Jesse.

It was an episode that Jesse was, dare I say, overly enthusiastic to record.

Is it weird for a craft beer podcast to focus on wine for an episode?  Absolutely.  But fear not, despite Jesse’s insistence for an all wine episode Mike and I delivery some relevant craft beer news.  From the collaboration beer between St. Boniface and Columbia Kettle Works, to Pabst being sold to a Russian company to Starbucks trying to cash in on the craft beer craze.

But just because we let Jesse have an episode focused on the merits of good wine doesn’t mean we were going to let him live in heaven for an entire evening.  Thus to compare good wine to bad we had to slip in some Slummin’ It.

In honor of Jesse’s birthday and craft beer’s cousin, wine, this week’s opening question was: If you could select a beer to become the favorite of wine snobs what would it be and why?

Show Notes:

Beer News:

  • St. Boniface and Columbia Kettle Works Brew Collaboration Beer
  • Starbucks Knows You’re Jonesing for a Beer
  • Pabst Blue Ribbon Now Owned By Russians

Slummin’ It: Jug o’ Wine edition

Fans from the beginning might know that Jesse is a recent convert to beer. It took a gentle transition from the smooth mouth feel of a rich red wine to the bubbly goodness of a carbonated beer to get Jesse to be happy drinking many great samples from the craft beer world. But given how quickly he downed a recent gift of Heady Topper brought back from Vermont I’m going to declare his conversion to be complete.


Before beer Jesse was in love with the charms of wine. Obsessive fans are probably aware that Jesse has gone on at length on metaphors between craft beer and fine wine. He is able to go on at length about regions, grape varieties, and all manner of incredibly insightful yet BORING details about wine. Thus when he proposed to turn the tables on Mike and I and have US be the ones with a shocking lack of knowledge we jumped at the opportunity to be spoiled for once. But that didn’t mean that we wouldn’t take the opportunity to torture him just a little. Thus we are going to indulge in a little Slummin’ It, with some of the cheapest wine around. Yum.

*Beer vs Beer: *

When conversations about starting this podcasting endeavor were in their infancy Mike and I discussed that the aim of this podcast should be to help navigate the beer novice through the rather daunting world of craft beer.  Knowing Jesse’s aversion to bubbles we had found nearly the perfect vessel to be the blank slate to our biases.   An empty vessel to be filled with Stouts, IPAs, Sours, Pilsners, Bocks, and more until eventually out of a drunken haze would step a man who knows his craft beer.  (At least in this region anyway.)

As much fun as it has been for Jesse over the past one and almost a half years he proposed a reversal of our dynamic.  Mike and I have no real disdain for the fermented grape (other than the intense hangover I can get from it) but by no means are either of us well versed in the history, culture, or variety of the wine world.  Jesse wanted to thrust us into the judges seat to try our hand at experiencing wine with a gentle mentor.  To see if our ignorant pallets   could distinguish between average and greatness.  And thus here we with a twist on our most favorite segment; Beer vs Beer … or in this case Wine vs Wine …

The Wines:

  1. Casmatta Toscana 2011
  2. Andezon A 2012
  3. Giacomo Grimaldi Barolo 2010
  4. Domaine Mur-Mur-Ium Syrah-Sublime 2011
  5. Red Guitar

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