We're a team of two. See what we've been up to. Great to see you here.

Sunday, December 31, 2006

5'8 Dano Fish

5'8" Dano fish.
Robot art by Jay Acuna.

Had a fun time surfing with Jeremy for a few days. Shane came up on Saturday. Waves ranged from knee high to double overhead.

Here's Jeremy's competition page from the MSA.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

San Onofre Tuesdays

Some fun day surf at San O.


Monday, December 25, 2006

Holy Beer Update

Since my last review, I've probably tried close to every single craft brew represented at tht Foodery... There's too many to list, so stay tuned. I'll post when I get a chance.

Peace on earth...

Mangjulio, where have you been?

Yeah, I've been gone for a while. These blogs are a waste of my time, but I appreciate those who keep coming back to see if it's being updated...

Merry Christmas!!!!

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Killing me softly- IPAs

Avery Maharaja Imperial IPA- 19.5
Rogue Morimoto Hazelnut Brown Ale- 18.5
Bear Republic Racer 4 IPA- 17/20. I didn't dig the taste
Moylan's IPA- 18.5
Alesmith IPA- 19
Stone Runiation IPA- 19.7
Val Dieu Brown- 18
Wild Goose IPA- 16
Stone Vertical Epic 6.6.06
Brewer's Arts Resurrection Ale- 18
3 Floyd's Dreadnaught IPA- 19.5
LaRulle Tripel- 19.7
Unibroue Peche Mortal- 19.7. A great coffee stout
Victory Midnight Wit- 18.5. Nice session bear. Banana and coriander teasers
Harpoon Hefeweizen- 17.5

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Mas Cervezas!

Stoudt's Double IPA- 17.5/20 Unbalanced, alcohol too dominant. Not really hoppy. Great color, though.
Allagash Grand Cru- 18.5/20- Cold weather spices
Sly Fox 113 IPA- 19/20-
3 Floyds Gumballhead- 19/20- A wheat beer that should be an IPA
Stoudts Weizen- excellent for this style. wonderful on tap at White Dog. 19/20
Legacy Midnight Wit- watery, watery on tap at White Dog. 16.5/20
Clipper City Red Sky at Night (Saison)- had at Tria- 16/20
Lancaster Milk Stout- 17.5/20. A Poor Man's Mackeson's XXX
Dogfish Head Chicory Stout- Chicory in beer? 17.5/20
Lagunitas IPA- great session beer. 18/20
Mackeson's XXX Milk Stout- Perhaps my current favorite for this style, for the milk chocolate taste and drinkability. 19.5/20

SIMCOE hops, genetically engineered for your taste

An interesting article by the Philadelphia Daily News about Simcoe hops, a genetically infused version of West Coast Cascade hops. A wonderful addition to any crafted beer, especially die-hard fans of American style IPAs. I just had the Weyerbacher Simcoe Double IPA, and it was marvelous. 19.5/20.

Joe Sixpack | Hybrid-hop Simcoe is hot

Its popularity comes from citrus aroma, strong but pleasurable bitterness

FORGET cascades hops. The newest beer craze is Simcoe.

Cascades, of course, is the classic West Coast hop, the small, vine-grown bud that gives beer its aroma, its bitterness, its spice. For 20 years, the fresh, aromatic, grapefruit-like Cascades virtually defined American-made craft beer, and it still reigns as one of the biggest sellers.

But six years ago, agriculture scientists in Washington State introduced a hybrid called Simcoe, and brewers have been boiling it big time ever since.

Yards Brewing, in Kensington, used it in its reformulated Philly Pale Ale recipe, and watched sales rocket. Troegs Brewing, in Harrisburg, adds it to Nugget Nectar Ale. In Delaware, Dogfish Head Brewing's Sam Calagione said his brewers were using Simcoe before it even had a name, when it was known only as "Experimental Hop No. 555." Today, he said, Dogfish Head tosses a "load" of it into 90 Minute IPA.

Even savvy homebrewers are onto Simcoe. "There's a latent buzz around it," said Jason Harris, of Keystone Homebrew Supply in Montgomeryville. "Simcoe's made a huge impact."

Simcoe is so hot, Weyerbacher Brewing in Easton just named its newest beer after the plant: Simcoe Double IPA.

What attracts brewers - and drinkers - to the variety is a distinctive citrus aroma combined with a high alpha-acid content that imparts a strong but pleasurable bitterness.

Because of those qualities, it's an especially popular ingredient in the new wave of extra-hoppy ales known as Imperial India Pale Ales. It provides a nice kick without a harsh slap to the palate.

"It probably got the most fire going with it three or four years ago when it showed up in some of the lively hop monsters from the West Coast," said Jim Boyd, general manager of the craft-brewing program at Yakima Chief, the Washington-based hops conglomerate that distributes Simcoe. "Almost every single one of them is using Simcoe."

Indeed, you'd think that Simcoe was created especially for these hop-happy ales. But in fact it's the big, bland lagers that drove its development.

The factory breweries that produce these beers don't much care about the variety of hops they use. Sean McGree, vice president of the hop division at Brewers Supply, another hops producer in Yakima, Wash., said: "To them, hops aren't flowers, they're a commodity. They use computers to dose hop extract into brewing kettles. So they're really just buying kilos of alpha acid... Often, the types of hops they use is a decision made by accountants, not brewers."

The goal, then, was to develop a hop variety with high alpha-acid content to reduce the acreage needed to grow the fast-spreading vines. The problem, though, was that once they're boiled in the beer-making process, high-alpha hops often produce harsh flavors.

Scientists at Select Botanicals, the Washington firm that propagated Simcoe, solved that problem by developing a variety with lower cohumulone, the acid responsible for the astringency of hops.

Jason Perrault, the company's vice president of research and development, said it took 10 years of pollination, crop development, harvesting and analysis till Simcoe was ready to be released in 2000.

Perrault said the company is still waiting for interest to grow among the big brewers. But he's heartened by the early acceptance by small brewers. "We've found that craft brewers are so much more willing to try something new, to give it a shot, to be a trend-setter," he said.

Mostly, brewers use Simcoe in combination with other hop varieties.

Dan Weirback, of Weyerbacher Brewing, said he first used Simcoe when his brewery sought to reformulate its Hop Infusion Ale, a beer with seven different hops.

"Simcoe had this wonderful flavor of West Coast hops. It's almost like a Cascades hop on steroids - it totally blew us away when we used it," Weirback said. "We thought, 'Man, wouldn't it be great to make a beer that would be dominated by Simcoe?' "

That was the start of Simcoe Double IPA.

Naming it after the hop variety was a no-brainer, said Weirback, because Simcoe is already recognizable among savvy craft-beer drinkers.

And it may just be the start of a new trend. After all, winemakers commonly label wines with their grape variety (e.g., Chardonnay, Merlot). So why shouldn't a brewer name his beer after its hops variety?

Especially when it's something as flavorful as Simcoe hops.

A sampling of Simcoe

Want a taste of Simcoe hops? Here's a sixpack of other beers that feature the distinctive flavor:

Philly Pale Ale, Yards Brewing, Philadelphia.

Pliny the Elder, Russian River Brewing, California.

Big Fish Barleywine, Flying Fish, New Jersey.

Dreadnaught, Three Floyds Brewing, Indiana.

The Maharaja, Avery Brewing, Colorado.

Titan IPA, Great Divide Brewing, Colorao.

"Joe Sixpack" by Don Russell appears weekly in Big Fat Friday. For more info, see www.joesixpack.net. Send e-mail to joesixpack@phillynews.com.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

First Quarter Rotation: In the Jukebox

Now Playing:
1. Band of Horses- Everything All the Time
2. Belle & Sebastian- If You're Feeling Sinister
3. Fila Brazilia- 95-99: The Remixes
4. Tommy Guerrero- Loose Grooves and Bastard Blues
5. Charlie Byrd- The Guitar Artistry of Charlie Byrd
6. Groove Armada- Back to Mine
7. Galvanize- The Chemical Brothers
8. Thievery Corporation- Versions

Recommended Singles:
1. Cut Chemist- The Garden
2. Band of Horses- The Funeral
3. The Who- Baba O' Riley
4. Shuggie Otis- Strawberry Letter 23
5. The Killers- All these Things that I've Done
6. Massive Attack with Mos Def- I Against I
7. The Strokes- 12:51
8. Maroon 5- Sunday Morning
9. Bob Marley- One Drop
10. Morphine- Candy

Recommended Listening:
1. Os Mutantes- Technicolor, or Soul Jazz Records Presetns Tropicalia
2. Kruder & Dorfmeister- The K&D Sessions
3. Zero 7- Simple Things
4. Coldplay- X&Y
5. "Chris (Sabrina's Ex)"- Texas (unavailable)
6. Thievery Corporation- The Mirror Conspiracy, or anything on www.eslmusic.com
7. The Velvet Underground- Peels Slowly and See (Box Set)
8. Kid Loco- Jesus Life for Children Under 10 inches
9. Tommy Guerrero- Another Late Night, or Loose Grooves and Bastard Blues
10. The Postal Service- Give Up
11. The Skatellites- Foundation Ska
12. Daddy G- DJ Kicks

Monday, May 29, 2006

More ales

Stone Vertical Epic- 19/20!!!
Anchor Porter- 18/20
Lancaster Milk Stout- 17.5/20
Duvel Blonde Ale- 18/20
Organic Wild Hop- 16/20
High and Mighty Pilsner- 18/20
Boon Framboise-18/20
Lindeman's Kriek- 18/20
Rodenback Grand Cru- 18.5/20!!
Anderson Valley Hop Ottin- 18/20
De dolle Arbier-18/20
Heavywieght Perkunos Hammer- 18.5/20
Arran Blonde- 17/20
Dogfish Head Aprihop- 17/20

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Happy Easter

Wise indeed.

Smuttynose Robust Porter- 18/20
Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale- 17/20
Smuttynose Old Dog Brown Ale- 17/20
Smuttynose Lager-17/20
Troegs Pale Ale- 16/20
Left Hand Jackman's Pale Ale- 17/20
Victory Prima Pils- 17.5/20

Thursday, April 06, 2006


That would be 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 fins out!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

If you live in Honolulu, don't go in the water!

Shown in this Dec. 2005 Star-Bulletin photo, Oliver Johnson has flesh-eating disease and is fighting for his life after falling into the polluted Ala Wai Boat Harbor.

Man dying after fall into polluted Ala Wai

34-year-old mortgage loan officer Oliver Johnson has flesh-eating disease

A 34-year-old mortgage loan officer is near death with a flesh-eating disease after falling into the polluted waters of the Ala Wai Boat Harbor last week, according to his friends.

Friends of Oliver Johnson said his doctors at the Queen's Medical Center diagnosed him with necrotizing fasciitis, a Group A streptococcal infection that "destroys muscles, fat and skin tissue," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The disease forced the amputation of his left leg above the knee Monday, his friends said. His body also went into Streptococcal Toxic Shock Syndrome, which causes blood pressure to drop rapidly and all major organs to fail, they said.

"Oh, my God, you can't even recognize him anymore," said Zobel Dela Cruz, a friend of Johnson. "He's all swollen up and he looks like he's 350 pounds.

"We just want everybody to know so they don't go in the water."

Johnson had been drinking at a bar across the street from his one-bedroom condominium at the Tradewinds before he fell into the boat harbor early Friday morning, Dela Cruz said. He had cut himself while climbing out and had open wounds on his feet and legs.

Over the weekend, Dela Cruz and other friends said, Johnson complained of leg pain. By Sunday, he had trouble breathing and called for an ambulance to take him to Queen's, where he was later placed on life support, they said.

Though friends said no doctor has linked Johnson's condition to Friday's fall into the harbor, they see it as too big of a coincidence to ignore.

Heavy rains on March 24 caused a Waikiki sewer main to break, leading city officials to divert 48 million gallons of raw sewage into the Ala Wai Canal. On Friday, another deluge knocked out power to a pumping station, causing another 1.8 million gallons of sewage to spill into the canal, which leads into the harbor.

"Because of this, falling into the Ala Wai water, he's just lost his leg, his liver shut down and his kidneys have shut down," said friend Stephany Sofos. "Doctors said in order for him to survive, they may have to remove his other leg and left arm."

State Health Department spokeswoman Janice Okubo said health officials were unaware of the incident involving Johnson and could not confirm what happened.

"We do urge people not to go into the water with open wounds," Okubo said. "If you do and you don't clean them, an infection could set in a matter of days."

Sofos said Johnson was a surfer and runner and lived an active lifestyle.

With a south shore swell coming in, she warned anyone who might be thinking about hitting the waves to think about her friend first.

"Don't be stupid. If this can happen to a healthy 34-year-old man, think about what can happen to your children," she said. "He was such a great man, wonderful guy, he'd give you the shirt off his back.

"And then something like this happens and you wonder, 'Why him?'"

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Game On.

Rogue Brutal Bitter- 18/20
Rogue Chipotle Ale- 17/20
Rogue Mocha Porter- 18/20
Rogue Shakespeare Stout- 19/20
Rogue Chocolate Stout- 19.5/20 (has chocolate additive)
Young's Double Chocolate Stout- 18/20
Mirror Pond IPA- 16/20
Budweiser- 10/20
Miller Lite- 5/20
Sierra Nevada Stout- 17/20

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Crafted Beers!

Speakeasy Big Daddy IPA- 17.5
Mackeson's Stout
Anderson Valley Oatmeal Stout- 17
Ommegang Hennepin- 19
Sly Fox Wheat- 17
General Lafayette's Old Curmudgeon- 18
Dock Street Amber- 16
Nodding Head Rudy'sKung Fu Grip- 17
Nodding Head Bill Payer Ale- 17
Nodding Head Doc- 17.5
Nodding Head Chocolate Stout- 17.5
Nodding Head Ich Bin Ein Berliner Weisse- 17
NOdding Head 60 Schilling- 17
Stoudt's IPA- 18
Carlsberg- 15
Stoudt's Pils- 18
Victory Hop Wallop-17
Sam Adams White Ale-16
Maredsous 8-17.5
Rogue Shakespeare Stout-19
Rogue Chocolate Stout- 19.5

Monday, February 27, 2006

Barrelling rights and hot dog lefts...

Late afternoon Encinitas session, anyone?

Friday, February 24, 2006

Quarterly Review

Wow! American Pale Ales seem to be where its at for me. Stone and Rogue are hanging in there with Unibroue as great breweries. San Marcos, CA, site of Stone Brewery will be my next North County San Diego visit. I was in Encinitas surfing the Pipe last week with Jeremy, Dan, and Pam. Never made it over.

Rogue Morimoto Soba Ale- 18.5/20- Refreshing and light. Complements flavorful asian food.
Unibroue Ephemere Blackcurrent- 18.5/20
Fat Angel Ale- 15/20
Yards Love Stout- 17/20
Yards ESA- 17/20
Yards Poor Richard's Spruce Ale- 18/20- Spruce!!!
Road Dog Scottish Porter- 16/20- Not a big fan of Scottish Ale
Stone Levitation Ale- 18/20
Stone Arrogand Bastard- 18/20- Stone and Rogue Breweries have it going on
Fat Tire Ale- 17/20- Tastes like a biscuit, literally.
Whales Tail Ale- 18/20- Is this made in Oxnard? It tastes pretty, good. A light ESB.
Stoudts American Pale Ale- 18/20- solid
Stoudts Scarlet Lady- 17.5/20
Rogue Chocolate Porter- 18/20
Brooklyn '55 Lager- 16/20- Really disappointing from Brooklyn Brewery
Corsendonk Brown Ale- 18/20
Lindeman's Peche- 18/20
Old Dominion Oak Barrel- 16/20
Brooklyn Brown Ale- 18/20
Brooklyn Pilsner- 18/20
Thirsty Dog Amber Ale- 17/20
Blue Point Winter ALe- 18/20
Dirty Ho (Lindeman's + Hoegaarten)- 18.5- The RasberryLemonade of Beer.
Troegs Rugged Trail Nut Ale- 18.25/20- Nutty!
Sly Fox Pale Ale- 17/20
Lindeman's Cassis- 18/20
Flying Fish Grand Cru- 17/20- Winter Ale; not so hot
Victory Golden Monkey- 17/20
Stone India Pale Ale- 18/20- So good, I bought the $8.50 glass.

Bonzer 5 in New Zealand

Manga, NZ. The Acolyte of Trim.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Study finds all stereotypes are true.

One of a billion.
Following a 17-year, multi-continental study, the International Council on the Humanities has released a report determining that all stereotypes are, in reality, completely true. Going directly against the previously held and universally accepted notion that stereotypes were both false and offensive, the study proposes the exact opposite to be true: Stereotypes should not be found offensive stemming directly from the idea that they are solid facts in and of themselves.

"When we started analyzing the results of the study, we thought for sure something was wrong with our methods...the numbers just didn't seem right," said Dr. Sanjay Mehta, the study's lead doctor: a man with an impressive work-ethic, arranged marriage and a house that smells strongly of spices and seasonings. "But after turning over the data to our superior mathematical offices in Hong Kong and Beijing and learning from them that no errors were made, we knew this was no mistake. We had stumbled onto something groundbreaking.”

The study, only months away from entering its 18th year, encountered many major setbacks over the years. In 1997, an unfortunately large amount of important statistical documents were lost when the laboratory maid, illegal alien Ms. Rosa Lopez, mistakenly threw them away while cleaning the Council's offices. When later questioned, Ms. Lopez admitted (through a translator) to have been not paying attention to what she was doing, which she attributed to being very tired from tending to her 12 children. Were it not for a series of high-interest loans given by Jewish bankers and funds raised by the small group of homosexuals that run Hollywood, the study would have certainly been halted.

Tehran High's Homecoming King
Dr. Wei-Lin Nguyen was an associate director on the study; she also took flute lessons as a child and is a terrible driver. "Without the Jews and the Hollywood Gays, there's no way we could have seen this through to the end," said Nguyen from the car phone of her customized Acura Integra. "Now that the study is completed, we're all very excited to say the least. Dr. O'Conner and Dr. McManus are hosting the wrap party next week. They're both great colleagues, redheads and raging alcoholics. The party should be a blast."

The Journal of American Science, which plans on publishing the study's controversial findings, has elected to print two independent copies of the results: an English version and one in Ebonics or "Ghetto-squack" as it is referred to in the study.

"In the end, we hope these findings help the world better understand that every nationality and every race, even those crazy, suicidal Arabs, have equally petty and equally hilarious idiosyncrasies and shortcomings...and that all of them are true," said Inge Johanssan, the Council's public relations director: a devoted public servant and tall, blonde nymphomaniac. "Only when people are able to look at themselves and laugh will they truly be able to see themselves for what they are."

"Except for blind people. They can't see anything."

Friday, January 27, 2006

Being-a-Child-in-Hawaii Syndrome

Citing the economic benefits and overall convenience, Your Friend defensively announced yesterday that he has returned to living with his parents “just till he gets back on his feet”.

College expenses, poor financial planning and bad credit all influenced Your Friend’s decision to reclaim his childhood bedroom in the two story colonial house owned by his parents Cliff, (52) and Judy (51).

“Putting that spring break trip to Puerto Vallerta on my Visa fucked me over big time.” Your Friend explained. “I’m just going to be living at home until I can get that paid off, then I’m out of here.”

From there, the justification continued: “It’s really not that bad at all. My bedroom is in the basement, so it’s kind of like my own apartment down there. Except sometimes my mom comes down to do laundry.”

Not Too Shabby

Your Friend assures you that his parents are “totally cool”, allowing him to drink alcohol and eat whatever he wants out of the fridge at any time. “I forgot what it was like to have real ‘parent food’ at my disposal. There’s always lunch meat and milk and all that expensive shit that I would never think about buying if I was living on my own. So that’s pretty cool.”

The Roomies

As beneficial as the move home has been. Your Friend acknowledges some difficulty in the transition. “I have to smoke outside now cause my mom’s not having it, and it’s not like I can bring a girl home if I hook up at the bar or anything. My parents would probably be cool with it, but that would just be too fucking weird. I also have to walk Juniper (the family dog) all the goddamned time.”

Despite these drawbacks, Your Friend remains positive about his homecoming experience, at least on the surface. “It’s only temporary. I’m going to start looking at houses to buy here pretty soon.”

Your Friend was then forced to end the phone interview because his parents were trying to watch “Law and Order”. -M. Polk

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

QUIVER 2005- Click on sketch to enlarge


This is nasty: a sludgepool filled with crap that takes the shape of the Australian continent.

What is nastier?
1. Sampling a rare Japanese holiday ale that costs $8.50 for a 12 oz. bottle and tastes like the sludgepool above, or a tad bit better.


2. A fresh steaming poo pile in 20 degree weather.

In any case, the Hitachino Nest Celebration Ale 2006 gets a 11/20. Mahalo.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Surf Rage Poem by Ambrose M. Curry III

angry people give off radiation
I choose not to get close enough
to get radiation burns.
the likelyhood of anger imploding
and checking the spread of anger
is the path I find comfortable
confront anger or buy in to the radiation
burns are inevitable.
waiohai is a bone of contention.
when there is little surf the only surf i at waiohai.
I am pleased to say I have not surfed a wave at waiohai for over 25 years
to avoid the rocks and crowd.
I rather surf blown out shifty mysto hard to ride spots
than condescend to the pits of dispair
offered up as recreation at spots like waiohai.
surfing prowess is not measured in pugalistic
terms ever.fighting aint surfing.
bullys are not surfers
limited wave resources?
poorly directed training?
you choose...
I choose not to know some people
god bless em all


I knew a kid once
before he started robbing cars
and beating people up
and going to jail...
ambrose m.curry III

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Tennis Courts

Go fast and carvy!

Tavarua, Fiji in August 2006?

Matt Calvani & Margaret Yao. Nice pics from 2005!

Margaret dropped me a line inviting Pam and I to Tavarua in August with Matt and Bing. So tempting, but I have to stay focused on endo! Sorry! We'll take a raincheck on that one until 2007.

Thursday, January 19, 2006


Good one, good one...

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

organ grinder monkeys may be selling you surf wax

Monkey, monkey! Click on me!

el fin del dia en el norte de Hawaii

A heart inscribed on the sand is all we have left to remember of the day.

Dogfish Head Saison d'etre- 16/20
Brooklyn Brown Ale- 18/20
Thirsty Dog Amber Ale- 18.5/20 (I think Ten Stone mixed up the tap lines and this was actually Blue Point Winter Ale)
Old Dominion Oak Barrel Stout- Smells like vanilla, tastes like flat half and half- 16/20
Troegs Rugged Trail Nut Brown Ale- 18.5/20 Great nutty aftertaste
Stoudts Scarlet Lady- 17/20
Sly Fox Pale Ale- 15/20
1/2 Hoegaarden, 1/2 Lindemans Lambic a.ka. "dirty ho" or "dirty slapper" -18.5/20 The strawberry lemonade of beers.

Monday, January 16, 2006

In Trim

There's always a ripper chick at every break in Hawaii. Learn to respect them! This one brings the classic longboard style to mine. Sucks to be the guy in the back catching up on the potato chip.

Where I draw the line

Dr. Mark: cuttie on his right coast beachbreak.

I used to surf here with Mark, when the water was warmer. All I had was a 4/3mm. When the water went cold to the 40s, I quit and started spending more time reading about endo and delving into Belgian ales. All the while, Marc continued ripping at his homebreak.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

San Onofre 2001

The M.O. is to drive from Venice and spend a few days in Pacific Beach. South Orange County is a fun place for a sunset barbeque and a surf. It's a natural stop along the way. Pacificos on the beach at Old Man's are permitted.

Welcome to the family (in California)

9'8" C.J. Nelson Model by Bob Pearson.

Thanks, Porfilio, for picking it up in Hermosa Beach. 2 carnitas tacos from El Terasco are coming your way in February.

Flying Fish Grand Cru Winter Ale really isn't a winter ale: 12/20
Lindeman's Framboise tastes like Bartel and James Rasberry with a tablespoon of sorbet. 17/20
Victory Golden Monkey- Belgian-inspired, but with a really creepy and tacky label 17/20.

Unibroue creations (Maudite, Trois Pistoles, Le Fin du Monde, Ephemere, Terrible) and Lancaster Amish 4 Grain (Draught, not bottled. This is categorized as a Pale Ale? Come on now.) are the winners of December 2005.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Yes. Yes. Yes.

Fantastic Head of Ale!

Ommegang Three Philosophers- 18/20
General Lafayettes Double Thunder- 17/20 (could only drink 1/2 pint)

Sunday, January 08, 2006

The San Diego Update

J.P. St. Pierre, of Moonlight Glassing in San Diego County, had this to say about the current foam blank situation (from a Surfer Magazine BB thread). It's been a month since the hourglass got flipped over. Take it, as you would anything, for what it's worth:

Here is your report/update:

There are at least a dozen serious players trying to start up new foam companies. Fortunes will be made and lost no doubt. In a year it will be great for you the surfer because you will be able to work with your shaper and pick and choose the best blank for the board you want.

In the meantime, containers of blanks are on the way from South Africa, Australia, Argentina and other locales. The quality will vary and shapers spoiled by Clark's low tolerance blanks will suffer while those with knowledge of rocker and skilled with a hand planer will emerge as the craftsmen that they are.

The cost of these blanks are all over the map and mostly unknown. How this will affect you, the surfboard buyer, is unknown.

It could be awhile before we see a foam company offer the wonderful variety of stringer options and layups that Clark offered, I suggest you buy any groovy board out there you with unique stringers you come across.

Surfers all over are bitter at the retail shops that jacked up the prices on boards while the shops that did one board per customer at the original prices earned respect.

Many glass shops have run out of blanks to work on and some are switching to epoxy. The question is, is it economically possible to work out the bugs of epoxy in a short time and do production so rent and bills get paid? The other main question is, which "epoxy" do they focus on? Which foam and which resin? Many glass shops are left hanging while shapers decide what path to take.

I haven't heard of any glass shops closing down yet but I fear it may happen soon. The honest glass shops may perish but hopefully they will get support from somewhere.

A lot of people don't realize this, especially in the surf media, but glass shops do not glass boards willy nilly. It is the SHAPERS who decide which foam they shape a board out of and how it will be glassed. The shapers decide which brand of cloth to use, how many layers, the width of the laps, patches, what resin to use, everything! Much of this influence comes from the retail shops who would rather have the cheapest whitest board possible instead the strongest.

I am trying to create a new paradigm in the surfboard industry where the glass shop can no longer be scapegoated by the shapers. From now on the shapers have to mark the fins correctly and have to fill out the order card accurately. No more, "Oops I forgot to shape that customer's board I will just blame the delay on the sander and shape it today and get the board rushed through and no extra expense to me."

Ever see that old Fritz Lang film Metropolis? The heart must be the mediator for the hands and the head.

On the home front typing this in my glass shop I see the racks full. It seems that everyone wants their last precious Clark blanks done with color work which we specialize in. People keep asking if we are going to start doing epoxy. I tell them that first the question should be, are you going to start doing epoxy AGAIN.

I am making a deal with the epoxy pundits, if a straight up honest California glass shop with legal employees and worker's comp. insurance can go one year doing epoxy without losing a ton of money and nobody has health problems then I will embrace it.

I am asking all surf magazine editors to stop publishing the word "unbreakable" with epoxy. This really puts everyone who makes surfboards in a tight spot. If a wave lands on a board right the board will break, I don't care what material or method it was made with. If the retail shop rat tells some kids mom that a board is unbreakable and the kid breaks it drama follows.

I think 2006 could be what I imagine 1968 was like, a lot of experimentation. Hopefully we will end up with fantastic interesting surfboards to ride. There is a chance the retail shops could be filled with cheap imported generic boards this summer. The flip side is that the custom movement seems to be energized by the threat of it going away.

3 bitter chumps

Never in my life have I ever wanted to end up on one of these websites. The Paparazzi snipered us. We were just trying to have a couple ales while discussing local neighborhood politics. Jeez.

How about some more reviews?
Rogue Mocha Porter 17/20
Lindeman's Kriek Lambic 17/20
Samuel Smiths Brewery Pale Ale 13/20
Chimay Ale 17.5/20
Brooklyn Pilser 18/20
Victory Brown Ale

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Hau'oli Makahiki Hou!

Be mindful in 2006.