Carla Jean Lauter

The Beer Babe

Category: Beer Reviews (Page 35 of 92)

The DeCapper

The DeCapper is a unique bottle opener that opens the bottle by being placed on top of the bottle and pressing down. It’s a completely different shape then I’d ever seen – I received one of these an embarrassingly long time ago, and admittedly have neglected to review it, so with some outside help, here is the long-overdue write-up.

Part of my hesitation to review this gadget is that I couldn’t quite describe its function – so I enlisted some help. My guest reviewer, Mike Lauter (that’s his real name, by the way) is an engineer and very eloquently described the DeCapper’s correct function:

“It takes some getting used to, but works very well with a refined procedure. The first key is to make sure it is completely settled a deep as it can on the bottle. The second key is to use firm steady downward force to pry open the top. Too quickly will just bend the cap. If it does not open fully on the first press, simply rotate the De-Capper and press again.”

The DeCapper (right) compared to other bottle openers.

As for its internal workings, Mike couldn’t tell me without breaking it to find out, so I skipped that. I know it involves a spring. That’s about as specific as I can get.

Compared to other bottle openers, Mike had this to say:

“Its better than most keychain openers (which do a lot of bending but don’t always take the cap off), better than the church keys that are also not always effective. As long as you think for a second and apply the ‘correct procedure’ the DeCapper performs better than these styles. However, a well-dimensioned handled bottle opener still wins, if even by a small margin.”

I’d have to agree on all counts.

The DeCapper itself is available in many different styles to suit many interests or hobbies – but is definitely marketed towards sport and hunting fans (with football, moose, Labrador Retriever and shotgun cartridge shapes among the choices). I can easily see this fitting in many of the “man caves” out there – and basically it’s a must for anyone who drinks lots of beer and gets bored with the traditional church key.

Personally, I find the device to be fun, but a little ungainly. Mine is a stainless steel one, and it looks really spiffy sitting next to my stainless steel appliances. I’m not sure how I’d fare with some of the other shapes, though – it seems to need to be applied straight on, and I don’t know how you can apply steady and even pressure to a moose head.

If you have a beer fan in your life that’s “seen it all” this might be just the trick. Especially as that perfect addition to a man cave or sports bar. More info on this interesting beer gadget is available at

Sebago Brewing Co. – Milestone Ale

This caught my eye the other day becuase, for the most part, Sebago (or Portland, ME) isn’t well known for large bottles, and primarily deal in 6-packs and draught (for those who don’t know of Sebago, you need to try their Hefewiezenm its phenomenal!).  This one is a special collaborative beer between two brewers decade of brewing beer with Sebago. What struck me after I read the label is that it was brewed in a way that I had never heard of – it was stoned.

No, I’m not talking about the kind of stoned that you’re thinking of. In this process, the unfermented mash had red-hot granite rocks dropped into it to instantly carmelize the malts. According to the Sebago website, “This collaboration beer is brewed using a non traditional process of stoning the beer, using granite stones that were heated until red hot and lowered into a wooden vat of unfermented beer.” I would really love to see picturesof this process – I can picture the hissing and the spitting of the stones, and can only imagine what that would smell like.

The end result of this process is a red ale, and I haven’t had a good red in a while. I like the aroma on this, it has a lot of malt there, and a lot of sweetness and depth. I think that the smell that I am getting is described by some as “pineapple” but I could be totally off base on that. needless to say it is a very inviting aroma and  something that I was eager to try.

I was very happy to taste this – it has a syrupy mouthfeel but a really nice balance. It is very sweet but not in a bad way. I like the way that it lingers, its a good beer to sip, even though it is such a common style. I think that this one is a winner, and I honestly wish they’d add it to their regular line. While I think that this may be Sebago’s first “specialty” brew, I hope that they continue to develop quality beers like this.

We get by with a little help from our friends…

Have you ever wanted to be part of making someone’s dream happen? How about the satisfaction of supporting a beer blogger in pursuit of the ultimate beer-geek endeavor – opening a brewery.

Well, Erik Meyers (of TopFermented, a great beer blog) is doing just that, and he’s raising capital for his brewery in an innovative way. By using “Kickstart,” he’s soliciting pledges to startup a brewery. The interesting part is that he has a goal (in this case $40,000) that he must meet by a certain date, and if he doesn’t raise enough money, you aren’t charged for your donation. This keeps both the investor safe, and means that there’s a really good chance that individuals just like you and I can pitch in a little bit to get going. The minimum contribution amount is only $5.00, so I encourage you to check out Mystery Brewing and see if you’d like to help. You can also see Mystery Brewing’s progress to their goal on the sidebar of my site.

To contribute to Mystery Brewing’s startup goal or for more information, click here.


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