Tag Archives: sierra nevada brewing

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #155. Sierra Nevada Brewing Celebration Ale.

Today is Thirsty Thursday again and that means it’s time to look at and think about new beer art, not to mention drink beer!  This week’s beer painting is of Sierra Nevada’s Celebration Fresh Hop Ale.  About 15 years ago I used to not like IPA, and my go-to brew was actually porter, if you can believe that.  Way back then I was confused what Celebration Ale actually was, and I started to like what I was drinking and thought the nice floral qualities were simply spicy grains for a spicy holiday beer….right….wrong!  I learned it was a fresh hop IPA and I was like, “Oh yeah, maybe I do like IPA,” and I came around.  I can say I have been enjoying IPA for well over a decade now, and it has actually become my favorite style.  I wish that Sierra Nevada was able to brew Celebration all year long, but sadly the hop harvest season is in October and the first batch of Celebration is being bottled right now.  Two years ago in early November we made a pilgrimage to Chico to check out the facility and drink some Celebration right at the source!  I highly recommend doing this if you happen to be in California.  The guided tour is amazing!  The success story about Ken Grossman and his startup business makes me believe anything is possible.  The sheer size of the production facility is amazing and the copper kettles are so beautiful.  When you finish the tour you get a 2 oz sample of everything they are currently serving, which ends up being over 20 ounces.  I did a painting of the oaked Narwhal onsite after our tour.  One of my favorite things about Sierra Nevada’s facility is the outdoor seating in the beer garden.  Tasty food at super reasonable prices, and huge pints.  If you are there at this time of year you can get Celebration on draft!

Cheers to the Celebration Ale, a seasonal beer release that is worthy celebrating!

Only 1 original oil painting is available, and a limited number of prints at our Etsy shop RealArtIsBetter.

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #155. Celebration Ale at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. 12"x14", oil on panel. By Scott Clendaniel.

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #155. Celebration Ale at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. 12″x14″, oil on panel. By Scott Clendaniel.

Copper Brew Kettles at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. in Chico, CA.

Copper Brew Kettles at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. in Chico, CA.

Hops room at Sierra Nevada brewing

A room full of hops!

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Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #120. Trip in the Woods by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

We spent New Year’s Eve in Talkeetna, Alaska — a real trip in the woods.  We were lucky enough to be invited to this lovely cabin that our friends built.  They brought a bottle of Trip in the Woods Cocoa Coconut Narwhal Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (as well as several other amazing brews) for a New Year’s Eve toast.  Thanks, it was delicious!  What with snow machines, a laser light show, stovetop nachos, and about two dozen mortar shells, the celebration was literally a blast!  Naturally, I brought my painting kit with me, and since all we could see out the cabin windows was snow-covered trees, I decided that a painting of Trip in the Woods would be the perfect way to commemorate the trip. What a way to end the year!  Cheers to 2018!

This original oil painting, and 52 limited-edition prints are available at our Etsy shop RealArtIsBetter.

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #120. Trip in the Woods by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. 8"x10", oil on panel. By Scott Clendaniel.

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #120. Trip in the Woods by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. 8″x10″, oil on panel. By Scott Clendaniel.

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #99, November 17, 2016, Narwhal Barrel Aged Imperial Stout by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

🎶 Take one down, pass it around!  99 Thirsty Thursday beer paintings posted to my FB wall! 🎶

Can you believe team Real Art is Better (Maria and myself) have released a beer painting for the last 99 Thursdays in a row without missing one?!  Not as impressive as when we released a different painting every day in 2014, but still noteworthy.  We almost missed a week during our last trip to our log cabin in McCarthy, when on a Thursday morning we awoke to an Internet outage.  Luckily the connection was restored around noon, so we posted as normal.   

Anyway, I released Bourbon County Brand stout last week, so how about a little barrel-aged goodness from an independent brewery, although the 3rd largest in production in the country — Sierra Nevada Brewing Co!  The beer I’m talking about is the Narwhal 2015 Barrel Aged Imperial Stout!  I bought the bottle that’s in this painting as soon as I finished painting it, and brought it back to Anchorage in my luggage.  I have to admit I haven’t cracked this special bottle open yet, but I did taste this beer at last year’s Great Alaska Beer and Barleywine Festival.  I have drank every beer that I’ve blogged about here.  The beer is jet black, smooth and silky, yet as robust as a Narwhal’s horn.  The flavor is amazing.  This beer is a spectacular treat and probably as hard to find as a Narwhal in the wild.  

I painted this on my trip to California in the brewery’s restaurant in Chico.  I chose a table on stage that has a view of the East Brewhouse.  With the Narwhal in the foreground, I knew this was a recipe for a successful painting.  I felt confident that the German copper kettles would shine when depicted in my usual style, painted on birch plywood that’s coated with gold paint.  

Sierra Nevada has to be one of my favorite large craft breweries.  It’s hard not to love a brewery that puts so much effort into crafting such delicious, sustainable brews.  The roofs are lined with solar panels and there’s childcare available onsite.  The hops are fresh and the kettles are copper.  I’ve heard people complaining about the size of Sierra Nevada, but hey, it started out small, with the first brew kettles built out of old dairy equipment.  We can thank Sierra Nevada for practically inventing American Pale Ale, now a world-renowned beer style.  I mean, both Wyeast and Whitelabs have yeast strains from Sierra Nevada labeled as the American Ale yeast.  Sierra Nevada’s Chico brewery is far from anywhere, but it is worth the pilgrimage, not only to buy rare bottles of Narwhal, but I got to drink my first Celebration IPA of the season at the source!  

Like in the final entry in my Year of Beer Series (Celebration IPA), I propose a toast to Sierra Nevada and to finely crafted beers worldwide!

This original oil painting, and 52 limited-edition prints are for sale at my Etsy shop RealArtIsBetter.

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #99 by Scott Clendaniel. November 17, 2016. Narwhal Barrel Aged Imperial Stout by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., 8"x10", oil on panel.

Thirsty Thursday Beer Painting #99 by Scott Clendaniel. November 17, 2016. Narwhal Barrel Aged Imperial Stout by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., 8″x10″, oil on panel.