– “Dark Beer Myths Debunked”

If you are a regular reader of this blog then you may be asking yourself…


The answer is quite simple. This week we are not going to do a beer review. I apologize to anyone who is addicted to them. This week you will not get your fix.

Instead we begin what I hope will be a different direction with this blog. When I started writing for Vas Foremost, I knew where I wanted to take this blog. There have been a couple of posts (“Blind as a Beer” and “5 Easy Ways to Enhance your Craft Beer Experience) that showed just a glimpse of where I wanted to go. Both posts received great feedback and left people wanting more. Since then, I haven’t written anything beyond writing reviews. Hopefully after this post, that will change.

I look to for our first look into educating ourselves about the wonderful world of beer. A couple of days ago they posted an excellent video entitled “Dark Beer Myths Debunked.” In the video Julia Herz, the Craft Beer Program Director for the Brewers Association, took us though three different myths associated with dark beer.

1) All dark beers are rich and heavy
2) Dark beers have more calories
3) All dark beers are higher in alcohol

I highly suggest you check out the video. It is short and will sum everything I would have hoped to say about some common misconceptions regarding dark beer.

Cheers to and Julia Herz!

Check out the video!

YouTube – Dark Beer Myths Debunked


Steve Pasko is a Certified Cicerone® and the Beer Content Writer for Vas Foremost. Follow him on TwitterUntappd or Instagram at Gardemybiere. Email him at or Visit his other beer blog at

The Vas Review – St. Patty’s Day

A weekly review of Vas Foremost’s craft beer offerings.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Green shirts, green beer and green rivers. Thousands of young twenty somethings claiming they are all Irish for the day! I guess that means it’s time to grab a pint of the black stuff, plop yourself at a bar all night and watch rugby with your mates (which is much closer to what the Irish do). Do yourself a favor this year and put down the artificially green beer and try something different. In this week’s Vas Review I offer up a couple of lesser known Irish-style ales.

Please remember to be careful on this St. Patty’s day and drink responsibly! 


Conway's Irish Ale

Cause we find ourselves in the same old mess…

Conway’s Irish Ale – Great Lakes Brewing Company

Style: Irish Red Ale

ABV: 6.5%

Serving: 12oz bottle (6-pack)

We all know Ireland’s most famous contribution to the brewing world: the Irish-style dry stout. The Irish also contributed a little bit lessor known but just as wonderful style, the Irish red ale. Most of you have probably heard of Smithwick’s, right? This would broadly fit under this category. Not limited to that beer, this style of beer can come at you from a multitude of directions. Our first review this week is one of my favorite Irish red ales, Conway’s Irish Ale from our old friends at Great Lakes Brewing Company.

Conway’s pours out a beautifully opaque copper with a glimmering reflection of the room in the glass.  Its aroma is filled with toffee candy and honey-nut granola cereal. Peanut butter cookie sandwich (Nutter Butter!!!) and a light feeling of Bazooka Joe bubble gum.

The taste reels in very similar to the aroma. A bubblegum flavor is backed up by a moderate bitterness. Balanced off of the bitterness is a toasted malty, toffee flavor. Conway’s doesn’t clock in too heavy having an excellent moderate mouthfeel. The flavors from the grain work incredibly well together here, meshing perfectly throughout. The finish borders on clean leaving behind a refreshed palette, ready for the next sip.

Conway’s is an excellent beer and certainly worth a try (it makes its way into my fridge every single year at about this time!). Be careful though if you plan to use this as an all-day beer. It weighs in at 6.5% alcohol by volume. Like most things in life, this beer is meant to be savored and enjoyed in moderation (and I wouldn’t have it any other way!).


Murphy's Irish Stout

…singin’ drunken lullabies

Murphy’s Irish Stout – Murphy’s

Style: Dry (Irish) Stout

ABV: 4%

Serving: 14.9oz can (4-pack)

Enough beating around the bush. We all know what beer most of us are going to reach for on St. Patrick’s Day. I won’t sit here and say that I personally don’t enjoy Guinness, because I do. I’ve been to the brewery and have had it straight from the source (for those of you wondering, Guinness does taste different in Ireland). We often forget that Ireland produces several other excellent stouts worth trying, some of which this author actually prefers. Murphy’s is one of them.

Murphy’s comes in a Draught Style can, meaning we are in for a treat. Watch in enjoyment as a waterfall effect cascades down the side of your glass turning into the deepest ruby red hue you can imagine. The aroma overwhelms the senses with chocolate, roasted barley and a rich black freshly ground coffee.

The first sip welcomes you with its creamy texture. The roasted barley holds in the background as a handful of coffee grounds goes into the pot. A bite of a chocolate bar and the unforgettable taste of a roasted marshmallow. Murphy’s has a little bit more to it than others. It has a tad bit more of a roasted bitterness characteristic adding to the beer’s depth. Light, yet full of flavor, Murphy’s ends with a creamy finish tickled with just a flake of roasted barley.

On St. Patrick’s Day this beer will be in my hand. Followed by a pint of Beamish, my other favorite imported Irish stout. The radio will be playing Dropkick Murphys, Flogging Molly or The Pogues. And it will be a good day…


Next week in the Vas Review: Back to the brewery spotlight!


Steve Pasko is a Certified Cicerone® and the Beer Content Writer for Vas Foremost. Follow him on TwitterUntappd or Instagram at Gardemybiere. Email him at or Visit his other beer blog at