Beer Birthday: Bill Covaleski

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Today is the 53rd birthday of Bill Covaleski, a co-founder of Victory Brewing Co., along with his childhood friend Ron Barchet. I first met Bill at the brewery doing an article on Pennsylvania breweries for the Celebrator over a decade ago. It’s been great seeing his brewery rack up victory after victory as they’ve grown and become one of Pennsylvania’s best, biggest and brightest. Join me in wishing Bill a very happy birthday.

Kite & Key co-owner Jim Kirk with Sam Calagione, Bill Covaleski & Greg Koch
During an event at Philly Beer Week 2009: Kite & Key co-owner Jim Kirk with Sam Calagione, Bill & Greg Koch.

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Bill with a big bottle of beer.

Later night at Jim's Steaks Bill Covaleski showcases our cheesesteaks as James Watt looks on & Greg Koch tries to hide his face
A late night cheesesteak at Jim’s with Bill showcasing our sandwiches while James Watt and Greg Koch look on bemused.

Toasting the Class of '96: Greg Koch, Mark Edelson, Bill Covaleski, Tom Kehoe, Gene Muller & Sam Calagione
Toasting the Brewer’s Class of ’96: Greg Koch, Mark Edelson, Bill Covaleski, Tom Kehoe, Gene Muller & Sam Calagione.

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Bill wearing the Belmont Crown at an event at Belmont Station during last year’s Craft Brewers Conference in Portland.

Patent No. 2039345A: Screw-Top Bottle Mouth

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Today in 1936, US Patent 2039345 A was issued, an invention of Edward A. Ravenscroft, for his “Screw-Top Bottle Mouth.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

This invention relates to bottle mouths capable of being closed by drawn or molded caps of practical depths ‘and diameters. It resides in a formation of mouth which provides for a pouring lip without materially reducing the area of the throat or increasing the diameter of the required cap, and without necessitating a lowering of fastening means on the neck to such a point that drawn or molded caps .of impractical depths are required for closing.

In forming closures for bottles substantial economies may be erected through the use of cap closures instead of corks. The cap closure is ideal for bottles intended to contain dry or semi-dry substances, but for closing bottles intended to contain liquids, which are to be dispensed therefrom, cap closures known prior to this invention are open to very serious objections. The common screw cap closure is entirely devoid of any pouring lip and the stream emitted from such a bottle mouth breaks during pouring, spreads down the side of the bottle and is so erratic in behavior that it cannot be directed with any degree of certainty. The fluid which flows down the side of the bottle spreads in copious quantities into the threads or other fastening means on the neck and in many cases causes sticking of the cap. In the case of corrosive or poisonous fluids, the fluid on the outside of the bottle constitutes a real hazard; and in any case is decidedly disagreeable.

Attempts have been made to remedy the above difficulties but none of them has been acceptable. One of these attempts proposes the forming of a pouring lip at the top of the bottle, the threads for securing the cap being displaced a relatively long distance down the neck. This necessitates an exceptionally deep cap, which is so expensive to draw that any economy over the use of ordinary corks is impossible. Further, a substantial constriction of the throat of the bottle is involved in this construction which interferes with rapid pouring. In other constructions proposed a notch at the neck of the bottle is employed, the same producing a malformed lip of small effectiveness in producing a good stream and a clean cut-off. In this form the fastening means are placed entirely below the notch and here also a cap of excessive depth is required. In this form a very substantial constriction in the throat also is involved prior to this invention no means of eliminating the same has been proposed.

According to this invention, however, a good pouring lip is provided without constricting the throat to a substantial degree, the same being that the pouring stream is kept thin and in the accomplished without requiring a lowering of the fastening means on the outside of the neck. With the mouth of this invention a cap of ordinary depth may be employed, the same being substantially no deeper nor more expensive than 5 caps used with ordinary closures. There is also provided in this invention a crest concentric with the exterior of the neck so that a gasket in the cap will repeatedly seat to form a good seal.

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Beer In Ads #1901: Showing Off The Flower Garden


Wednesday’s ad is entitled Showing Off The Flower Garden, and the illustration was done in 1949 by Douglass Crockwell. It’s #32 in a series entitled “Home Life in America,” also known as the Beer Belongs series of ads that the United States Brewers Foundation ran from 1945 to 1956. In this ad, one couple is showing off their flower garden to another. One of them looks like he must be John Holl’s dad. The men hold their beers and point. The women left their beers on the table behind them and actually touch the flowers. Also, notice how in the inset below the painting, the vase resembles a hand holding a beer glass, doesn’t it?

032. Showing Off the Flower Garden by Douglass Crockwell, 1949

Patent No. WO2006046879A2: Method Of Making Colorless And Artificially Colored Clear Beer

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Today in 2006, US Patent WO 2006046879 A2 was issued, an invention of Alberto D. Rivera, Emiliano S. Macapugay, Jade Y. De Carlos, assigned to the San Miguel Corporation, for their “Method of Making Colorless and Artificially Colored Clear Beer.” Here’s the Abstract:

This invention is directed to a method of preparing a colorless and artificially colored, clear beer through adsorption process by contacting the wort with activated carbon during wort boiling. This method produces a colorless, clear beer with originally processed inherent taste and aroma utilizing existing brewery process and equipment. Artificially colored, clear beer such as primary- colored beer, which can be conveniently produced using the colorless, clear product is also disclosed.

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Of course, Miller Brewing tried their hand at something similar with their Miller Clear beer, which they tested in 1993. And of course, there was Coors Brewing’s Zima, released a little before that, although they referred to it as a “malt beverage” rather than a beer.

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Beer In Ads #1900: Friends Over For Tennis


Tuesday’s ad is entitled Friends Over For Tennis, and the illustration was done in 1949 by Douglass Crockwell. It’s #31 in a series entitled “Home Life in America,” also known as the Beer Belongs series of ads that the United States Brewers Foundation ran from 1945 to 1956. In this ad, a group of apparently well-to-do people invited some “friends over for tennis.” I can’t imagine that even in 1949 that many people had their own tennis courts, so I ‘m not sure who this ad was directed at or why they though people might be able to relate to this situation. I suspect it may have been aspirational, since everyone thinks they’ll be wealthy enough to one day, though it’s probably only the 1% now who might, much less in the 1940s when wealth wasn’t nearly as consolidated.

031. Friends Over for Tennis by Douglass Crockwell, 1949

Patent No. 2116006A: Hop And Stem Separator

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Today in 1938, US Patent 2116006 A was issued, an invention of Edouard Thys, for his “Hop and Stem Separator.” There’s no Abstract, although in the description it includes this summary:

The object of the present invention is generally to improve and simplify the construction and operation of separators; to provide a separator which is particularly intended for separating stems from hops; and more specifically stated, to provide an inclined endless conveyor having trough-shaped members extending crosswise thereof, said troughs being divided into small pockets and said pockets being so shaped that the hops when deposited on the conveyor will settle in the bottom portion of the pockets while the stems will stand endwise and project upwardly from the pockets or lie on the surface thereof in a position where they can be readily removed by a revolving brush under which the vation of the hop and stem separating machine.

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Beer In Ads #1899: Planning The Vacation Trip


Monday’s ad is entitled Getting Ready For Summer, and the illustration was done in 1949 by Douglass Crockwell. It’s #30 in a series entitled “Home Life in America,” also known as the Beer Belongs series of ads that the United States Brewers Foundation ran from 1945 to 1956. In this ad, one couple helps another plan their vacation trip using … gasp, maps. Remember maps? Oh, and brochures. I’m sure it will be a great trip. Or perhaps they’re going together? Do people do that? I suppose after a few beers they might.

030. Planning the Vacation Trip by Douglass Crockwell, 1949

Beer Birthday: Bruce Paton

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Today is the Beer Chef, Bruce Paton’s 61st birthday. Bruce has been doing fantastic dinners pairing greatvbeer and gourmet food for almost twenty years in the Bay Area starting at Barclay’s Restaurant and Pub in Oakland and continuing at the Clift and Cathedral Hill Hotels in San Francisco. He’s has been doing events and consulting at various food and beverage operations since the hotel closed in 2009, so look for more of his beer dinners in the coming months. I’ve been to many, many of Bruce’s food events and they’re allvspectacularly top notch. He did around eight each year. Raise a toast and stuff your face in wishing Bruce a very happy birthday.

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My hands down favorite photo of Bruce, which I took for the Chef’s Association of the Pacific Coast newsletter. I don’t think this is the one they used, but, by far, as I think it captures Bruce’s spirit and his great love and passion for what he does with his cooking and beer.

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Giving a cooking demonstration with Garret Oliver, brewmaster at Brooklyn Brewery and author of The Brewmaster’s Table at the 2005 GABF.

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Bruce with Russian River co-owner Natalle Cilurzo.

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Me and Bruce New Year’s Day a few years ago at Barclay’s.

Beer Birthday: Anders Kissmeyer

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Today is Danish brewer Anders Kissmeyer’s 60th birthday. He was a co-founder of Nørrebro Bryghus in Copenhagen. I first met Anders through corresponding with him for an article on collaboration beers I did for All About Beer magazine several years ago. Then we met in person at GABF a few years ago and judged together at the World Beer Cup in Chicago. Anders more recently started his own company, Kissmeyer Beer & Brewing. Join me in wishing Anders a very happy birthday.

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Anders with Kjetil Jikiun, from Nogne O, at the Local Option during CBC Chicago.

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Anders with Jacob Storm, John Mallett, and Matt Brynildson at the World Beer Cup Gala Awards Dinner in 2012.

Patent No. WO1996012669A1: Method And Apparatus For Enhancing A Beverage Head

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Today in 1996, US Patent WO 1996012669 A1 was issued, an invention of Alexander Richard Dunn and John Cooke, assigned to Scottish & Newcastle Plc, for their “Method and Apparatus For Enhancing a Beverage Head.” Here’s the Abstract:

A gas jetting apparatus is used to jet a fine jet of gas through an orifice at a nozzle (18) into a beverage, for example beer, to promote formation of a creamy head. This apparatus may be incorporated into a beverage dispenser, for example a beer tap which dispenses draught beer.

And includes the following description:

“Method and Apparatus for Enhancing a Beverage Head”

This invention relates to a method and apparatus for enhancing a beverage head, particularly, but not exclusively, a head on a draught beer dispensed from a tap.

Sparklers are sometimes used to agitate a flow of beer as it is dispensed from a beer tap; this can promote frothing of the beer and contribute to formation of a head on the dispensed beer. It is also known to provide a single use secondary chamber within a sealed, pressurised beer can from which gas and/or beverage is jetted into beer within the can when the can is opened.

According to a first aspect of the present invention there is provided a method of promoting formation of a beverage head, comprising jetting a fine jet of gas derived from a gas source through at least one orifice and into a dispensed beverage.

The method may form or assist in the formation of a head.

The beverage may be dispensed from a tap; it may be a draught beverage.

The gas may be jetted into the beverage once the beverage has been dispensed. Alternatively or additionally, the gas may be jetted into the beverage whilst the beverage is being dispensed, it may be jetted into a stream of beverage.