Well if you haven’t noticed the Cream Ale Drinker has been on a sabbatical of sorts since 2011. Where have I been? Life has changed A LOT for me since 2011. The company I’m working for has had a lot of successful growth that has kept me very busy. I also enjoy spending a lot of my time with my kids, including attending or coaching their sports. Another thing is that there has been so many great new spots opening in Rochester that I haven’t been able to be on the forefront of their discovery with my busy work schedule.  Among all the great new places the Genesee Brewhouse and Swiftwater are two of my favorites! I do miss the blog and have been playing with some ideas of bringing it back. I’m still very involved in the local 12 Horse chapter of the Brewery Collectibles Club of America (BCCA) and our yearly Brewery Collectibles show that has been getting bigger and better every year. I’ve also been working on my design/marketing business and making t-shirts. Check them out if you have a minute. http://mckeeandson.com/


The first cases of the Genesee Heritage Collection variety pack are delivered to a few select bars in Downtown Rochester NY by Horse and Carriage.

I couldn’t believe my ears when I heard that Genesee was bring back the iconic 12 Horse Ale, not to mention that they marked the occasion by delivering it by horse drawn carriage to a few select bars in downtown Rochester, NY. The beer was originally introduced in 1933 and was last on store shelves in 2003 when it was pulled due to lack of sales. It was delivered to Salinger’s Bar around lunch time today in the new Genesee Heritage Variety Packs. The pack features Genesee Lager, Cream Ale and of course 12 Horse Ale all in vintage style stubby glass bottles.  As a collector of NY breweriana 12 Horse has always been one my favorite brands so I was thrilled to get to try it and see it being produced once again. Here’s to hoping it catches on and sticks around for while. The Heritage Variety Pack are a limited release and should be hitting store sometime very soon. Try some while you can or better yet share some with your friends and family and see what stories or memories they have of this iconic brand. Cheers!

The new 12 Horse Stubby bottle and a 1930's era 12 Horse Tray from my personal collection.

Hogan’s Hideaway is hosting the first annual Three Heads Brewing Music Festival during the Park Ave. Fest on August 6th and 7th. There will be five beers on tap, two from TJ Sheehans and all three of Three Heads IPA’s. This is a free event and I can’t think of better way enjoy one of Rochester’s best Summer Festivals. There will be a tent for some relief from the sun and bathroom facilities. You can also check out Hogan’s Hideways new remodeled bar. Hogan’s Hideway is located at 197 Park Avenue near Goodman Street. Check out the great lineup of bands scheduled for both days!


12:00pm – 1:00pm
http://www.reverbnation.co m/441theband

1:00pm – 3:00pm
Friday in America
http://www.reverbnation.co m/fridayinamerica

3:00pm – 5:00pm
Extended Family
http://ex-fam.com/default. aspx

5:00 – 7:00
Moho Collective
http://themohocollective.c om/


12:00pm – 2:00pm
The Filthy McNastys
http://thefilthymcnastys.c om/

2:00pm – 4:00pm
Audio Influx

4:00pm – 6:00pm
Roots Collider
http://RootsColliderMusic. com/

poster by Daron McKee

Check out the 3rd Annual 12 Horse Chapter – Spring Brewery Collectible Show coming up on Saturday April 30th. Need a new beer item to decorate your home bar?- or just come to browse all the neat stuff and talk about collecting. Admission is free. There will be a plethora of brewery collectibles to check out and there’s always a bargain to be found. A fun time for a new or seasoned collector. Hope to see you there!

It was great to get a taste of new beers from New York’s newest craft brewery Naked Dove. I sampled the Amber, IPA and Porter. All the beers were delicious but the Porter was the real standout for me. Pleasant hop flavor upfront that transitions into a nice roasted chocolate flavor, wonderfully balanced. I’m already craving some more. Dave Schlosser is the Brewmaster and owner along with 2 other partners. Dave is an alumni of every Brewery in town (Rohrbach, Custom Brewcafters, and High Falls Brewing Co.) so it’s great to see him break out and do things on his own. He also mentioned they will be coming out with a Black Rasberry beer which wasn’t ready in time for the tasting. Naked Dove IPA and Porter are currently on tap at Monty’s Corner and the IPA is on at the Tap and Mallet. So give it a try. The Naked Dove Brewery is located at  4048 Route 5 and 20, Canandaigua, NY, 14424. The tasting room is open and available for growler fills Thurs – Fri: 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm, Sat: 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm, Sun: 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm. You can reach them at 1-585-396-ALES with any questions. Check them out on facebook or on their website http://www.nakeddovebrewing.com/

 Update: Berry Naked Black Raspberry is now available at select locations as of 4-17-2011.

OK so I had a little fun with the logos.


Victory Brewing Company is taking over every tap at the Tap & Mallet, there will also be guest speakers from the brewery throughout the day along with Victory Beer specials til 6pm. To top it off the Tap & Mallet will also be roasting a whole pig to serve at dinner. It’s sure to be a Victory beer lovers dream! Being a big fan of Victory myself it will be a great opportunity try some of their less common beers. It takes place on November 6th starting at 11:30 am. For more info see the Tap and Mallet’s website. Highlights include: Uncle Teddy’s Bitter (On Cask), Saison du Buff (Dogfish/Stone collaboration), Summer Love , Abbey 5, Pursuit Pale Ale series  and Braumeister Pils.

Here’s a preview list I was sent from Victory.*

1. ½ Hop Devil
2. ½ Golden Monkey
3. ½ Prima Pilsner
4. ½ Victory Lager
5. ½ Storm King
6. ½ Whirlwind Wit
7. ½ Festbier
8. ½ Hop Wallop
9. ½ Old Horizontal
10. ½ Mad King Weiss
11. ½ Donnybrook stout *NITRO
12. ½ Helios
13. V-12
14. Baltic thunder
15. Scarlett Sunset
16. Harvest Pils
17. Harvest Ale
18. Moonglow
19. Wild Devil
20. Zeltbier
21. Yakima Glory
22. Pursuit Simcoe/Citra
23. Vista Farms Harvest Ale
24. Irish Pub Lager
25. Summer Love Ale
26. Scarlett Fire
27. Gassy Jack Bitter
1. Pursuit Citra/Simco Firkin
*(actual beer list may be subject to change)

Finger Lakes Fireball

I was intrigued when I heard the news of the release of Finger Lakes Distilling’s first batch of bourbon, McKenzie Bourbon Whiskey. So when a friend offered to pick me up a bottle from the distillery (thanks Neil B.) located on the east side of Seneca Lake I jumped at the opportunity. I was excited to taste their first batch of bourbon crafted from local products right here in Upstate NY. Finger Lakes Distilling bourbon is made with 70% corn, 20% rye and 10% malted barley. The corn is not a hybrid and it is local and organic. Once I got the bottle I actually considered not opening it for a second, it being their first batch, but I was excited because I wanted to try the bourbon and I buy whiskey for drinking not saving – collecting. So I cracked it… I poured a splash into one of my Glencairn nosing glasses – Wow did this stuff pack a flavorful and heartwarming fiery punch, lots of spiciness with some heat, cinnamon, hints clove and nice underlying sweetness. This whiskey is really something, and I will definitely be savoring it! I’m also looking forward trying more of their spirits and future bourbon releases. Now I have to get my hand on bottle of their Rye. So give Finger Lakes Distilling a try or better yet go try it while your on a visit to the distillery! -Batch 1 sold out quickly and batch two of the bourbon will be released sometime in the next 6 months. http://www.fingerlakesdistilling.com/

While I’ve been a scotch drinker for a few years this was my first experience with a craft bourbon and has really peaked my interest in exploring more varieties.