We’re excited to feature a very special guest from Lexington’s own Pivot Brewing Company in our first all-cider episode! Learn about the cider making process, enjoy our recap of an unforgettable Australian Open, find out why that big football game we can’t name uses Roman numerals, and listen to us debate which song Lady Gaga will sing first in that big game. You’ll learn about Leigh’s personal connection to the Bud Bowl and so much more. Now how ’bout them apples! Listen to “Episode 47 How ‘Bout Them Apples!” on Spreaker.
Last Saturday the basketball edition of College GameDay rolled into Lexington for the UK/Kansas game. It had been here in the past, but I had never felt compelled to go. I figured this time for the sake of the podcast I should make the trek Rupp Arena one time to check it out. Having experienced it now once, I can say with some confidence that Football Game Day is far supperior to its basketball counterpart, and if the show does make a return trip to Lexington in the future I probably won’t go.
Typically the crowds at Basketball GameDay are decidedly smaller than the crowds that Football GameDay gets. This is Lexington, however, and there was definitely a good turnout of UK fans. I did spot a couple of Kansas fans, but the majority of the crowd was supporting the BBN. There were signs a plenty, but I didn’t see any that were better than what you see on Football GameDay. Again, not to say that the crowd wasn’t enthusiastic, but it didn’t seem near as organic as Football GameDay crowds. Since the show is only an hour and doesn’t start until 11am EST there was a lot of sitting around and waiting from the crowd, which kind of seem to dampen the enthusiasm. Sitting around and waiting was only interrupted by either the crowd being directed to yell for spots they were filming to be aired later, when ESPN gave a live look in or when fans were participating in some on court games. These games included a three point contest, CATS (instead of horse) and a dunk contest. Surprisingly no one was hurt during the dunk contest, only two of the participants, however, were successful in really dunking the ball, one was a UK cheerleader.
I had forgotten that Digger Phelps was no longer a part of the show and was a little disappointed I didn’t get to boo him. Jay Bilas, Seth Greenberg (uses old school paper for his notes), Jay Williams and Rece Davis all do an ok job with what they have to work with. I found it odd that they read their own tweets about the UK/Kansas game at the start of the show and there didn’t seem to be any theme song opening ala Football GameDay. They also didn’t pick any other games besides UK/Kansas at the end of the show.
In the end, one of the biggest reactions from the crowd besides when the cameras were turned on them was the fan half-court shot challenge for $18,000. Spoiler Alert, he did not win the money.
It was pretty clear why Basketball GameDay doesn’t get the crowds at other schools like they got in Lexington. The format and entertainment value just isn’t as good as it is with Football GameDay. Since it’s inside Basketball GameDay was much more difficult to leave and come back, once you were in the arena you were in. Yeah you could have left and come back, but it was a bit of a hassle. Even though Football GameDay is four hours long, it’s outside and it’s easier for fans to leave, go to their tailgate and comeback for the middle or end of the show. Football GameDay has also been on much longer (1987) than Basketball GameDay and has really endeared itself to fans. Basketball GameDay debuted in 2005 and almost seemed like an afterthought, someone at ESPN decided that they needed an equivalent to Football GameDay, and they through something together. The show just doesn’t feel like it’s evolved as well or is as organic as Football GameDay.
Although I would encourage anyone who lives in the vicinity of a Basketball College GameDay to go and experience it at least once, I probably won’t go again if it comes back to Lexington. If Football GameDay comes back, however, I’ll be front and center.
In Episode 46, find out what icing in hockey really means, get analysis of the #1 seed fallout in the Australian Open, hear our thoughts on AllStar games, and learn if cinnamon molasses beer is less terrible than it sounds. Hey now, you’re an AllStar for listening to us, and that’s the icing on the cake!
On Saturday the girls of GBS teamed up with the ladies from Snobby Beer Bitch(check them out on twitter @Snobbybeerbitch and Facebook) a group of women who love to drink and learn about craft beer and support the local scene, to take a tour of Lexington’s newest craft brewery, Pivot. The craft beer scene in Lexington has grown exponentially in the last 4-5 years. West Sixth, Country Boy, Ethereal, Blue Stallion, Mirror Twin and Rock House brewing all offer the craft beer drinker something different. Pivot, however, is very unique, in that it is the area’s first craft cidery, offering their own product as well as showcasing ciders from other parts of the country.
Although they don’t quite have their own products available yet, they have more than enough ciders to try. I personally like very dry ciders and was very happy with the Argus Ciderkin. Argus is from Austin, Texas and I’d never heard of them before. I thought the Ciderkin tasted like Strongbow used to, before Strongbow decided they needed to change their recipe and made it too sweet. Leigh was thrilled that there were flights available since she was unable to decide what to have first.
Pivot has a great space. They have a front and back room, with plenty of TVs for watching the game. The projection TV in the back is especially nice. Dogs are definitely welcome, there were several hanging out when we were there. One unique thing that they also offer is a children’s play area in the back room. Unusual for a brewery? Maybe, however, as we have discussed on the podcast it’s something that you will probably see more of as the people who make craft beer and those that enjoy craft beer have families or start families, but still want to enjoy the craft beer scene.
Kevin, the owner gave us a great tour and really explained how the cider making process is very different from the process of making beer. In Kentucky ciders containing less than 7% ABV are considered “weak ciders” and are treated as malt beverages. This means that in order to be within regulation all Pivot’s ciders will have to be in this ABV range, so no high gravity ciders.
Apples are stored in a cooler until they are ready to be processed. The temperature of the apples is very important, the juice cannot go into the fermenter cold, Kevin explained that before processing they are left out of the cooler overnight in order to get to room temperature. Once they are sorted they are run through what I would call the grinder. The whole apple, core and all is put into the grinder in order to get an applesauce type product.
Once the apples have been ground to the right consistency that mash is crushed through about 16 layers of cloth, is then put into a press and pumped into a tank.
Any excess apple product leftover from processing will go to farms as feed for livestock. Once in the tanks the fermentation time just depends on the type of cider you are making. Kevin explained that a pub cider can be ready in a few weeks, but much like beer, cider could be aged in something like a bourbon barrel for up to a year.
Although Pivot did not yet have any of their own cider ready, the tour was really informative and Kevin really knows the ins and outs of the cider making process. If you are in Lexington definitely add Pivot to your list of craft breweries to visit. Even if you don’t consider yourself a huge cider fan, chances are good that you will find something that you like at Pivot. In addition, Lexington Pasta Garage is right next door and delivers to Pivot. Do yourself a favor and order something delicious from them, you won’t be disappointed. So bring the dogs, bring the kids and get to Pivot Brewing for great drinks, great service and a great atmosphere. If we endorse it you know it’s good!
You can follow Pivot on twitter @PivotBrewing and also like them on facebook
Watching sports on TV has certainly evolved over the years. HD changed the game, ticket sales to pro and college sports have declined over the years as people would rather stay home and watch the game on their super, HD, 3D, smarter than you TV. Even with all of today’s technology, there is still nothing like going to watch a sporting event live. It’s difficult to create the atmosphere of a live sporting event in your living room, no matter how many friends you invite over to watch the game. Somehow, even though you have to take out a loan to get one, beer at a baseball game just tastes different from one that you get out of your fridge. And it’s certainly more difficult to get a “nacho helmet” from your kitchen.
This week we share information about Bundesliga with an all-new Pick Em, ponder how anyone can be a Patriots fan, discuss why cheerleading is a sport, praise the rare dinosaur mascot, and critique a spruce beer that includes just the tips.
Monday was Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a day of honor and reflection on a man who did so much for the country and the world. This gave me the opportunity to watch a movie I have been wanting to see for quite some time; Race. The story of Jesse Owens and his rise to fame in the track and field world from a collegiate runner at Ohio State to a gold medal winner and the struggles he endured getting to and competing at the 1936 Berlin Summer Olympic Games. What he was able to accomplish; 4 gold medals in the ’36 games, was unheard of at the time, not to mention the fact that the United States participation in the games that year was under heavy scrutiny. In sports, we are taught; not one person is bigger than the game, even if Owens had not run in the ’36 games, the world would have still gone through dramatic changes and entered into war.
However, seeing a black American runner win multiple gold medals would be something that could not be ignored, even though many tried their hardest to do so. I know we live in a completely different time, but do we? I know the calendar says 2017, but from what we see in the news and continue to witness is something that I believe Dr. King would be saddened by. Sports, however, allows all of us to play on a neutral playing field. Regardless of gender, race, religion, etc. each person/team has to adhere to the same rules that are set before them for that sport. Not only does it allow us so many opportunities to better ourselves, but we also get to travel, meet new people and experience new cultures and places. As Owens battled the German broad jump champion Carl ‘Luz’ Long, it didn’t matter that Owens was black and from the United States and that Long was a white man from Nazi Germany. The tape measure was the same for all that competed and at the end of the day, Owens came out on top.
What sports can teach us, just like the late Dr. King tried to teach, is that we are all equal. The tape measure of life doesn’t stretch one way for one person and another way for another, we are all measured by that same tape measure. To quote Dr. King “The Ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” Owens could have stayed home and not competed in the ’36 games, but by doing so he took a stance and made history. I challenge all of us to take a stand to be the change, because we are all in this together.