Rocky Mountain Brewing News April/May 2014 : Page 1
April/May 2014 Vol. 12/No.2 ILLUSTRATION BY HANS GRANHEIM at Great Falls’ Bowser Brewing Co. By John S. Adams TAKE A BOWSER. Members of the Bowser Brewing Co. team enjoy a pint before the afternoon rush. Pictured left to right are Kristen Furgason, owner Evan Bowser, head brewer Dennis Holland, and Erin Stutzman. PHOTO BY JOHN AD-Story and Photos By Jim "Doc" Damon eer has been around for thousands of years. But only in the past 20 to 30 o years have the health benefits of moder-y a ate beer drinking been publicized. Wine w was the first alcoholic beverage to be r recognized as being good for your health. B Beer is now leapfrogging to the top of the list, so let's take a closer look at the t m myriad of ways that drinking beer can be g good for us. T Beer is excellent for hydration and re-hydration. and potassium. A recent scientific study has demon-strated that rehydrating our system with beer is more effective in correcting not only the dehydration but the loss of these minerals. After your next workout, feel free to grab a beer, which contains 93% water. Hydration Our bodies require a great deal of water in order to function properly. We’re composed of about 70% water. In order for all the complex chemical reactions necessary to keep our bodies functioning, we need to constantly replenish our water supply. Whenever we exercise, we produce sweat, which results in our losing not only water, but precious minerals, including sodium See Healthy p.3 Colorado Calendar.................... 2 Homebrew....................5 Beer Directory.......10-12 Idaho...............6 Utah.................7 Wyoming.........8 Montana..........9 Upper Front Range.........13 Central Peaks..................14 Western Slope.................15 Denver..............................16 Lower Front Range.........17 Four Corners...................18 hey say beer is recession-proof. When the bad economy cost Evan Bowser his job at an architectural firm four years ago, he decided to put that theory to the test. “When I couldn’t find architectural work I started look-ing for whatever job I could find,” says Bowser, 28. Bowser was over-qualified ified for entry-level fast food and retail jobs. Who wanted to hire and spend time training a guy they knew would jump at the first better job opportunity? But Bowser was competing with archi-tects who had 20 and 30 years of experience for the few drafting jobs available at t the time. Bowser decided he was as going to have to make a career reer change. “I knew I wanted to do something that I would enjoy and would allow me to start a family here in Great Falls,” Bowser recalled. Bowser recognized a glaring absence in Great Falls’ econo-my: a local brewery. “I had a lot of time on my hands, so I bought a book from the Montana Brewers Association on how to start a brewery and I read it cover to cover,” Bowser said. “My dad was a home brewer and I had helped him since I was 13 or so. I got out all my old home brewing books and started reading back through them.” Ending the Drought Bowser s goal Bowser’s go was to open the first local brewery brewe in Great Falls since the last one closed its doors 43 years prior. Bowser put together a bus business plan and began sea searching for investors. Finding the financing was Fi a tough row to hoe for a See Bowser p.4
Drink Your Beer
Jim "Doc" Damon
Beer has been around for thousands of years. But only in the past 20 to 30 years have the health benefits of moderate beer drinking been publicized. Wine was the first alcoholic beverage to be recognized as being good for your health.Beer is now leapfrogging to the top of the list, so let's take a closer look at the myriad of ways that drinking beer can be good for us.
Our bodies require a great deal of water in order to function properly. We’re composed of about 70% water. In order for all the complex chemical reactions necessary to keep our bodies functioning, we need to constantly replenish our water supply. Whenever we exercise, we produce sweat, which results in our losing not only water, but precious minerals, including sodium and potassium. A recent scientific study has demonstrated that rehydrating our system with beer is more effective in correcting not only the dehydration but the loss of these minerals. After your next workout, feel free to grab a beer, which contains 93% water.
Prevent Kidney Stones
A recent study from Harvard studied almost 200,000 patients for an average of eight years as they drank a variety of beverages including soda, beer, wine, orange juice, coffee, tea, and others. The most significant decreases in risk of kidney stones came from drinking beer and wine.
Drinking beer caused a 41% decreased risk of kidney stones, while the decreased risk caused by the other beverages follows: white wine (33%), red wine (31%), caffeinated coffee (33%), decaffeinated coffee (16%), tea (11%), and orange juice (12%). Apple juice and grapefruit juice had almost no correlation.
Demonstrating an increased risk of kidney stones were sugar-sweetened cola, non-cola drinks, and artificially sweetened drinks. Alcohol acts as a diuretic (increasing our production of urine), thereby flushing out our kidneys and decreasing our risk of kidney stones. Soooo...keep on drinking your beer.
Vitamins are substances that are necessary to promote essential chemical processes in our bodies.Although present in very small quantities, they are vital to our survival. Researchers demonstrated beer drinkers have a 30% higher level of vitamin B6, (necessary for over 100 metabolic reactions), vitamin B12, (which prevents anemia and facilitates nerve function), and folic acid (also known as vitamin B complex) which prevents anemia and birth defects, than non-beer drinkers. Women with high levels of folic acid in their blood were 90% less likely to develop breast cancer than those with low levels.Beer drinkers have twice as many B vitamins as wine drinkers.
Iron is another essential mineral required by our bodies. The Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture recently reported that dark beer has a higher concentration of iron than lighter beers. Iron is found in all the cells of our body and is essential for transportation of oxygen from our lungs to nourish all of our cells.
Antioxidants are a unique group of compounds that prevent the oxidation of other molecules.Oxidation reactions can cause damage or death to our cells. Antioxidants terminate these reactions by being oxidized themselves. Polyphenols are antioxidants that occur naturally in grain and hops. Beer also contains ferulic acid, another antioxidant found in the cell walls of barley. The roasting process that creates dark malt also promotes the formation of more antioxidants; therefore, dark beers contain the highest quantity of antioxidants, even more than you can get in antioxidant vitamin pills. Antioxidants have been shown to kill viruses, help prevent high cholesterol, heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer's disease.
Since the Middle Ages, it’s been well-known that beer contains nutritional substances necessary for the energy required to keep our bodies moving and functioning. Often referred to as "liquid bread," beer has been relied upon by the Paulaner monks as their sole source of nutrition during the six weeks of Lent. The brew that they created for this special occasion is doppelbock.
With this in mind, we should remember that beer does contain calories, and consuming too many calories will lead to weight gain. Even so-called light beer (usually made by merely diluting regular beer with water) contains about 100 calories per serving.Regular beers have about 150 calories per 12-ounce bottle; most stouts contain 200 or more calories; barley wines and other high alcohol beers are often around 300 calories per bottle.
Increase Bone Strength
Researchers at the University of California at Davis have demonstrated that dietary silicon (important for bone and connective tissue growth and development) is found in both barley and hops. Since silicon is present mainly in the husk of the barley, it is therefore found in higher quantities in pale beers, especially those with a high hop content. On the other hand, dark beers contain roasted malts, whose husks have been depleted of silicon by the roasting process. Wheat beers, containing no husks, are also very low in silicon. In the same vein, it’s believed that an increased intake of silicon may help prevent osteoporosis (demineralization of the bones).
Reduce Heart Disease Risk
Your risk of heart disease can be reduced by 25-40% by consuming our favorite beverage, according to a recent European study which evaluated over 200,000 participants. Moderate alcohol consumption can increase HDL, the "good cholesterol" that protects against heart attacks and cardiovascular disease. A 2007 study in The International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition studied male patients with high blood cholesterol after heart bypass surgery.They were given 12 ounces of beer per day for 30 days. All patients showed an increase in antioxidants and improvement in blood cholesterol, demonstrating that beer is good for your heart.
But, there is a word of warning: the aforementioned benefits apply to drinking one or two beers a day, and doing so on a regular basis. This study also found that people who consumed more alcohol had an increased incidence of heart disease.
Prevent High Blood Pressure
Although wine has been demonstrated to be beneficial in preventing cardiovascular disease, beer may even be better! Researchers at Harvard University studied over 70,000 women aged 25 to 40 and concluded that moderate beer drinkers were less likely to develop high blood pressure than women who imbibed in wine or liquor.
Reduce the Risk for Diabetes
Another study from Harvard in 2011 monitored approximately 38,000 middle-aged men who were occasional drinkers. After increasing their alcohol intake to one to two beers a day, their risk of developing type 2 diabetes shrank by 25%. Alcohol is believed to increase insulin sensitivity by the body, protecting us against diabetes. They also demonstrated there was no benefit to drinking more than two beers.
Improve Brain Health
A 2005 study reported in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine demonstrated an improvement in cognitive (brain) function in women who had moderate alcohol consumption, over those who were not drinkers. They believe that moderate drinkers were less likely to have a significant decline in brain function over the two-year period they studied. By enjoying a drink a day, these women scored an average of 18 months younger on tests of their mental skills than the non-drinkers.
Prevent Strokes and Memory Loss
A study from the Harvard School of Public Health showed that moderate amounts of alcohol (acting as a blood thinner) decreased the formation of blood clots, which can block blood flow to the brain and cause an ischemic stroke. Alcohol can also raise the level of HDL ("good cholesterol") which facilitates the removal of bad cholesterol from the bloodstream.This prevents deposits of cholesterol from clogging and eventually blocking arteries to produce strokes.
In 2011, researchers reviewed 143 separate studies from 19 different countries and concluded that moderate drinkers were 23% less likely to develop memory loss or Alzheimer's disease.
Reduce Risk of Cancer
Hops contain xanthohumol, a very unique antioxidant which leads to block the effects of cancercausing enzymes. It’s six times more effective than vitamin C and four times more effective than antioxidants found in soy products.
Researchers in Portugal recently found that marinating steak in beer eliminates up to 70% of the carcinogenic (cancer-producing) substances called heterocyclic amines (HCAs). These substances, created when the meat is pan-fried, are believed to be blocked from forming by the sugars in the beer.
In 2005 the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA) reviewed 50 separate studies and concluded that moderate drinkers live longer. They also estimated that moderate drinking (one to two beers a day) prevents about 26,000 deaths a year, explained by lower rates of diabetes, heart disease and stroke. These findings are applicable to many other countries as well, with another study reporting that "if European beer drinkers stop imbibing, there would be a decrease in life expectancy of two years - and much unhappiness."
Alas, drink your beer with the satisfaction that you are doing something you enjoy, and at the same time, improving your health!
Jim "Doc" Damon is an M. D. with a passion for beer and healthy living. He is an avid home brewer, a certified beer judge, and a regular contributor to Rocky Mountain Brewing News.
Read the full article at http://rmbnonline.brewingnews.com/article/Drink+Your+Beer/1678596/203852/article.html.
At Great Falls’ Bowser Brewing Co.
John S. Adams
TAKE A BOWSER. Members of the Bowser Brewing Co. Team enjoy a pint before the afternoon rush. Pictured left to right are Kristen Furgason, owner Evan Bowser, head brewer Dennis Holland, and Erin Stutzman.
They say beer is recession-proof. When the bad economy cost Evan Bowser his job at an architectural firm four years ago, he decided to put that theory to the test. “When I couldn’t find architectural work I started looking for whatever job I could Bowser, 28.
Bowser was over-qualified for entry-level fast food and retail jobs. Who wanted to hire and spend time training a guy they knew would jump at the first better job opportunity? But Bowser was competing with architects who had 20 and 30 years of experience for the few drafting jobs available at the time.
Bowser decided he was going to have to make a career change. “I knew I wanted to do something that I would enjoy and would allow me to start a family here in Great Falls,” Bowser recalled. Bowser recognized a glaring absence in Great Falls’ economy: a local brewery.
“I had a lot of time on my hands, so I bought a book from the Montana Brewers Association on how to start a brewery and I read it cover to cover,” Bowser said. “My dad was a home brewer and I had helped him since I was 13 or so. I got out all my old home brewing books and started reading back through them.”
Ending the Drought
Bowser’s goal was to open the first brewery in Great Falls since the closed its doors 43 years Bowser put together a business plan and began searching for investors.Finding the financing was a tough row to hoe for a 24-year-old recent college grad with no previous business experience. But Bowser’s parents had recently sold their family farm and moved to Lewistown and they wanted to help out. So Evan went into business with his folks to start family-owned Bowser Brewing Co.
“I was planning on doing the brewing myself, but I realized that if I was going to make this a successful business, then I needed to have a great product right away,” Bowser said. Lucky for Bowser, 24-year brewing veteran Dennis Holland was looking to make his way back to the West.
Holland is a master brewer who landed his first head brewing job at Great Lakes Brewing Co. In Cleveland in the early 1990s. That’s where Holland developed his fall seasonal Nosferatu imperial red ale, a practically legendary brew considered years ahead of its time.
Over the course of his more than two-decade career in beer making, Holland bounced back and forth between the West and Midwest from Great Lakes Brewing, to Leavenworth Brewing in Leavenworth, Wash., BOB’s House of Brews, in Grand Rapids, Mich., and Akron’s Ohio Brewing Co.
Holland saw Bowser’s ad looking for a head brewer for an upstart brewery in Great Falls, and he jumped at the challenge.
“I wanted to move back West, and I knew Great Falls was near the mountains,” Holland said.
Bowser and Holland hit it off immediately.
Bowser wanted a brewer who wouldn’t be afraid to take chances and experiment, and Holland liked the challenge.
“My goal was to supply the Great Falls community with the best beer in Montana,” Bowser said.
First the first few months Bowser worked as his new employee’s assistant. Together the pair conceived and created 38 brews in their first year of business.
“I do all the ordering,” said Bowser. “I’ll buy Dennis everything he needs to make whatever it is he’s brewing, but then I’ll also throw in stuff I’ve never heard of before and tell him, ‘see what you can do with this’.”
As of this writing Bowser Brewing has produced 48 different styles of beer ranging from the popular Smoot Honey Ale, which uses 90 pounds of honey from the local Smoot Honey Co., to the bold and bizarre Horseradish Red, the latter being the first and only pilot brew Bowser has ever produced. “It was amazing, people were drinking full pints of it,” Holland recalled with a grin. “It wasn’t my thing, it was too hot, but people sure seemed to like it.”
Holland said the fun part about working with Evan is the freedom of creating an array of beer styles. “It’s about education,” said Holland. “We want to educate our customers on what beer can be. If you have 12 different styles of beer on tap, there’s got to be something up there you like.”
“I just wanted to shock Great Falls,” said Bowser. “People think craft beers are supposed to taste a certain way. We try our best to separate ourselves.That’s where we are carving out our niche.”
One of Evan’s experimental home brews has turned out to be one of Bowser Brewing Co.’s most popular beers: the jalapeño hefewiezen. Bowser first tried a chili beer at the Great American Beer Festival five or six years ago. He wasn’t a big fan of that brew, but he saw the potential. “If I drink a beer and I don’t like it, I’ll try to make that beer myself and see if I can improve it,” Bowser said.
Bowser said he experimented with different types of chilies. He tried adding peppers with the seeds (too hot) and without (not enough heat). He settled on the green, crisp and summery garden flavor of jalapeños. Bowser de-seeds a 40-pound box by hand for each batch, throwing in just enough Whole jalapeños to give the brew its distinctive, yet mild, bite. The beer began as a trial ale, but customers couldn’t get enough of the slightly spicy, yet smooth flavor and Bowser said it soon became a regular by popular demand.
Each spring things get a little wild while taking inventory and cleaning out the ingredient room.Leftover ingredients from the past year are blended into a beer Dr. Frankenstein would be proud of coined the Spring Cleaner Monster. “Monster 2013 took in a total of 15 different styles of malt and nine different hops to create one very complex beer,” Bowser said.
The brewery taproom itself reflects the bold and creative style of the men behind the beer. Bowser, who specialized in interior architecture before his foray into the brewing business, designed much of the taproom.
Part tavern, part diner and part living room, the open floor plan of the comfortably lit taproom is inviting. Cozy lounge chairs, couches and a coffee table near the glowing fireplace creates a warm, welcoming atmosphere at one of the room. The bar itself gives off comforting appeal of being in your buddy’s garage or basement. A chalkboard on a large pillar behind the bar features customers’ requests for beer styles. In the last year Bowser brewed a chocolate-raspberry dunkelweizen, a coffee stout, and a huckleberry honey based on suggestions taken from the board.
“In a town dotted with casinos like a mini-Las Vegas, Bowser provides an atmosphere apart from the usual,” Evan said. “There are no keno machines and there is no television. It’s a place where families can come in to enjoy a beer and visit with one another.”