Notes from all over, oddities and opening edition


Beer lovers in North Idaho got two serious slaps to the face this week, one of which ricochet over to Eastern Washington. First, Selkirk Abbey brought word that the Inland Northwest distributor of Duchesse de Bourgogne -- a great Flanders -- is closing down. Will some other distributor pick it up? We'd assume so, but the Duchesse could be gone for a good while.

And just to kick us when we're down, Dogfish Head has, according to an Enoteca newsletter, ceased distribution to North Idaho. That one seems somewhat strange, what with the agressive expansion they undertook not too long ago. No word if this also will affect Eastern Washington.

Speaking of beer... As mentioned earlier this week, Black Butte XXV has hit the shelves, and its bottlecaps are, as with all of Deschutes's reserves, covered with wax. I cannot tell you how much time I've spent peeling away that wax, but I'm sure it amounts to days. Or something. (Probably not days.)

Anyway, we don't often get good tips from the Erick Doxey, but here's one that'll save us and (potentially) you some time: You don't actually have to remove the wax before cracking the bottle open.

No. Really. True story. Digest that for a while.

Simply open it like you would any other bottle, and it does just that. It opens. No need to remove the wax.

Hey, it was news to us.

Finally, the Bartlett has announced its soft- and grand opening. The former is set for October 6th, the latter for November 7th-9th.