First, I got some more information from Michel Ordeman at Jopen: "The Koyt and Adriaan beer are both spiced beers (gruit beers). The different beers have different herbs in them. The combination of herbs and spices was different per region in old days. It depended on what grew where; in regions with pine trees they use pine, in dune regions they used the plants that grew there, etc. Koyt is extra special due to the use of three grains; barley, oats and wheat as stated by the 1407 city recipe. ... The Jopen Hoppenbier was the follow up beer from the Koyt; its recipe dates back to 1501 and this beer was the hopped version (instead of gruit). Besides the beers from the middle ages we also brew a Dutch Stout (dry stout with 5 to 6% alcohol). This beer was brewed in Haarlem from end 1800 to 1917." [ed note: Jopen Bier BV, the brewery, is located in Haarlem; although, Jopen is temporarily brewing at various facilities in Belgium]
Second, the Thirsty Troll Brewfest is coming up! It is September 13th from Noon to 5pm; only $30! On September 12th, Thirsty Troll Eve if you will, is a Brewer's Reception at the Grumpy Troll; tickets for this event are $75 each and include passes to the brewfest the next day. Go to www.trollway.com for more information.
Third, the poll closed on September 1, 2008. Best brewing region? South and Southwest beats out Central Wisconsin by a mere 5 votes! Milwaukee and the Northwoods were a distant 3rd and 4th, respectively. Poll for the next few? Best Fall Beer Fest!
Finally, the second of the Minocqua Brewing Company beers, the Scotch Ale - a "brewer's special" for the summer of 2008:
Appearance: a deep brown and ruby under a fine tan head with refined bubbling
Aroma: chocolate, caramel and roasted notes are primary with an earthy hoppiness and fine estery aroma coming through in turns; nice complexity in the aroma
Flavor: strangely muted; with such an interesting aroma, the flavors are more subtle, to some extent they may just be battling each other and canceling each other out, as it warms up the roasted notes come through
Body: full-bodied with a clean finish
Drinkability: a nice full-bodied beer, but I expected more flavor given the aroma
Summary: it is certainly strange to have a scotch ale in the middle of summer; as one of the MBR folks said "it tastes like it should have a taste, but it doesn't"