beer by mail – schlafly beer
Occasionally beer arrives by mail on my doorstep, often from breweries that I wouldn’t otherwise have access to. Today’s post features Schlafly Beer, and although they are not available in Minnesota yet, these are beers you should know about. Many airlines make connections in St. Louis, they have a large portfolio (about 70 different beers annually), their bottled beer was contract brewed at Schell’s for 10 years, and they represent Midwestern brewing in a way that is distinct from here in the northern region
Schlafly Beer is brewed under the Saint Louis Brewery umbrella, which initially raises red flags. However, despite the unusual joint ownership model, Saint Louis Brewery is independent. It is Missouri’s largest craft brewery, and Schlafly Taproom, housed in a historic brick building, was the first taproom in the state since prohibition.
What arrived by post and ended up in my glass were two lovely beers – the Grapefruit IPA and Coffee Stout.
The darker of the two is made using a cold brew technique, as with many coffee beers. The French Press in this case comes from Kaldi’s Coffee, a respected roaster in business in St. Louis since 1994. The stout is incredibly smooth and flavorful but does not come with the heavy body that often accompanies coffee beer. The dark roast coffee plays very well with the specialty malts and there are no acrid or acidic notes thanks to the cold brew technique.
Even more craveable was the Grapefruit IPA, which is quite unique in that it uses fresh grapefruit puree rather than juice or extract. Because of that, it is far more mild overall than some other versions of this popular style. The beer is dry-hopped with citra which adds incredible aroma and depth of flavor overall. For those who have had Ballast Point’s Grapefruit Sculpin, for example, this will be more balanced and easier to pair with food as it doesn’t scream grapefruit. At the same time, the citrus is very fresh in the mouth.
We paired this one with a glazed citrus Bundt cake to tie together the bready and grapefruit notes.
So why the roundabout of naming confusion, which, at least for me, makes me think they are owned by the big guys? Well, politics and beer collide more often that just on Sunday:
“In 2014, the brewery filed for an exclusive trademark on the use of the name ‘Schlafly’ … however, this was opposed by conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly, on the grounds that ‘alcohol has a connotation that is the opposite of conservative values.'” – Zagier for AP.
Phyllis Schlafly is best known for becoming the face of the conservative opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment of the 1970’s which proposed the shocking idea of equal rights for women. You read that right: the face of the opposition to women’s rights was a woman.
The next time you find yourself in St. Louis, visit the taproom and raise a glass to women in the brewing industry. Or if you find yourself in one of the many states where Schlafly distributes bottles, split a six pack with a favorite woman in your life.