Saturday, June 30, 2018

Your brother Ale is on A&E’s Wahlburgers Show!

Since I have been traveling crazy, I just saw it On Demand on A&E. It’s Episode 3 of Season 9. It comes on again Sunday, July 1st at 4pm. Check local listings for sure! Peep it! (Photo by Andrea Janise)

After getting the call from the public relations team representing one of the  popular Wahlburgers locations inside The Battery Atlanta complex (455 Legends Place #874, Atlanta, GA 30339) on April 6th to be a guest on its self-titled popular A&E show. It's based on the entrepreneurial ventures of the celebrity Wahlberg Brothers Donnie, Mark and Paul, and it was a no-brainer to say hell yeah! But it was even more of a go after I heard what we were talking about: Impossible Burgers. Since I don't eat beef like that, I'm constantly been on a hunt to find tasty substitutes. The episode’s theme is to find a healthier route for their customers of the very successful food franchise, so I met up with the chef of the Wahlberg bros—Paul—and tried his interpretation of how to flip the burgeoning plant-based patty into a lip-smackin’ double stack. Of course, the show's camera crew was there to capture the experience for a future episode "sometime in June" of 2018 I was told. To remain true to my passion and expertise, I got to order a brew I think would complement the burger, sip it while Paul made his creation from scratch, and soon our taste buds were in bliss. He did a damn good job with the additions of Sriracha Sauce and smoked cheddar, two flavors I had yet to try with the Impossible Burger. Here is more information about what an Impossible Burger actually is invented by Impossible Foods out of Northern California. They are blowing up for sure. (Along with Wahlburgers’ version, my favorites in the Atlanta area are at the Argosy in East Atlanta and Grant Park’s Grindhouse on Memorial Drive, so definitely see which one is your most gangster.)
Anyway, I Instagrammed it the next day and didn't know it aired until my boy who owns Atlanta Beer Bus sent me a direct message saying I did a great job on it last night. I was like, What???! I immediately searched for it on On Demand and boom! It was up.
All in all, I had a ball with Paul who was truly down to earth, funny, and accurately portrayed on the show as a passionate chef who finds having “me time” very difficult due to his demand for perfection in anything he touches. This episode has some special guests besides myself (Ha!) including Rob “Gronk” Gronkowski kicking it with Mark and a talented teen street performer who has his dreams answered thanks to Donnie. Please check it out On Demand. The episode is called “Paul the Pitch Man.” Oh! And I have been asked what beer was in the cup while chilling at the bar and pairing it with Paul's burger. We were sipping the Wahlburgers house brew called the “Wahlbrewski” fittingly brewed by Boston's legendary Harpoon Brewery! This unfiltered Pale Ale stood up to the smoke of the cheddar, yet didn't dominate the palate so that the numerous toppings Paul's burger had could shine. It worked!
This show is on some real shit regarding how they work together as a tight family and it was an honor and blessing to be on it. And most importantly, thanks to you for reading this on my blog. It means a lot.
In the end, getting this call and opportunity proves that nothing is impossible if you have faith. Real talk.



Thursday, June 14, 2018

It’s Ale Sharpton’s Annual Last-Minute Father's Day Gift Guide—2018 Edition

It’s time to hook Dad up!

Photo by Peggy Sirota/Parents Magazine
It's that time again!
Let’s get down to business for our annual Last-Minute Gift Guide!
Since I am doing so much more than just covering the best libation in the world—­beer­—here are a few events and items worth purchasing for that special dad out there who deserves it. So whether it’s on a fork, in a cup, at a location, or something he can enjoy daily, these will certainly beat a tacky tie he will only wear if you beg him to. I am also Tweeting dining specials and other ideas throughout Atlanta and beyond here so look for that as well.

June 14, 2018 5pm-9pm
At Second Self Brewing (1317 Logan Circle NW Atlanta, GA 30318)
I say: Father’s Day starts early at Second Self with this Gentleman’s Day tonight! And you don’t have to be a dad to go. There will be beers, cigars, meat, and custom shirts to name a few of men’s favorite things in life. I’m there to get my weekend poppin’. See ya there?
They say: We have the perfect Father's Day gift for you. Treat yourself or someone you love to Father's Night Out at Second Self. Your ticket will include: - SHIRT from Blank Label (w/ fitting at the store) - 3 PINTS from Second Self - CHARCUTERIE BOARD from Pine Street Market - CIGAR from Trilogy -or- 6-PACK TO-GO from Second Self - Selection of Barrel Aged Beers will be on The FIRST 30 PEOPLE to BUY TICKETS will get a free shirt fitting that night at the brewery!!! Ticket Prices: 1 for $50 2 for $80 Note - you don't need to be a father to attend!
2 for $80

Saturday, June 16, 2018, 4pm-8pm
I say: My hood’s Historic Old Fourth Ward Park is the perfect setting for any type of festival, and the Atlanta Beer Festivals folks are throwing down this weekend to especially treat dad to. I mean come on, you had me 200-plus brews! Get tickets here.
They say: Join us again for one of the best beer festivals of the summer, the Atlanta Summer Beer Fest. After 6 great years at the Masquerade Music Park, we are now on our 2nd year at Historic 4th Ward Park. We will have over 200 beers, featuring the local Atlanta breweries, and great breweries from all over the country. We will have some fun attractions this year, including live music on the main stage.  Be sure to Like our page on Facebook to get all of the updates. Tickets are $40 advance, $45 after June 8, and $55 day of event.  Tickets are now on sale. Your ticket price includes a souvenir cup, entertainment, and all of your beer, wine and cider samples.


I say: I’m a hop head and the IPA is my favorite style as the result. This book will help those who feel the same whether it’s brewing, knowing what to look for, or simply learning more about what the most prominent three-letter term in the beer business is all about. Books last forever so why not show the brilliant brewer and author Dick Cantwell love? Go here to book one.
They say: We are in the “heyday of IPA,” according to renowned brewer Dick Cantwell. Experimental flavors and new hop varieties are appearing as risk takers aim to make beer that stands out from the crowd. In his new book, Brewing Eclectic IPA: Pushing the Boundaries of India Pale Ale (Brewers Publications; June 4, 2018), Cantwell shares the latest trends, exciting techniques, and true story behind the most popular style of craft beer: the IPA. Among the most well-respected and experienced craft brewers in the world, Cantwell provides tips and insights for beer lovers, first-time brewers, and industry veterans alike. 

I say: I went by the Uno de 50 store in Lenox Mall and couldn’t leave without rocking one of their bracelets for men on my wrist. Hook Pops up with one if he wants to step his wrist game up! They also have silver-plated chain necklaces, wide rings, watches and key rings, ya heard?
They say: If you’re unfamiliar with UNOde50, get ready to swoon. The distinctive jewelry brand born in Madrid features stunning and timeless pieces for both women and men that are made using traditional methods as if they were one-of-a-kind. Go here for more information and help Dad stand out.


Monday, June 4, 2018

It’s almost time for the Montreal Jazz Fest!

Kamasi Washington will be in the house! Photo:

Consistent with this being one of the best music festivals in the world, the 39th edition has a stellar lineup in 2018!

I love the Montreal Jazz Fest!
If you have been following me over the years, you will know that I make it a point to attend the Montreal Jazz Fest every year. It’s simply that amazing. Besides jazz, I love how they explored other art forms including rock, soul, funk, folk, and one of my favorites—hip-hop—in the past. Throughout the years, I have seen unforgettable shows performed by everyone from Wu Tang, to Public Enemy, Del The Funky Homosapien, and last year’s dope grand finale, Anderson .Paak! (We later met Anderson in the hotel I was staying at which I highly recommend, the newly remodeled Hyatt Regency Montreal, based in the center of the Fest.) Here is my photo during his show...
Well this year they still provide stellar lineups but are bringing a stronger focus to the jazz side, which is just as much of a draw since that is how they originally began in year one. In 2018 from June 28 to July 7, you can’t go wrong with Herbie Hancock, Terence Blanchard, Bobby McFerrin, and burgeoning geniuses Kamasi Washington on the sax, Hamilton on Broadway’s Leslie Odom Jr., and bassist Thundercat to name a few. The War On Drugs will be closing on the last day.
The official description says:

39th edition of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal
Jazz, jazz… and nothing but jazz!

The Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, presented by the TD Bank Group in collaboration with Rio Tinto, unveils a new series of concerts for its 39th edition, June 28 to July 7, 2018. On the program: an array of artists featuring legends and rising stars, dear Festival friends and newcomers, promising evenings of magical jazz in all its forms.

Go here for all the information and to book your tickets. Keep in mind that besides all acts, free outdoor shows, and other highlights, the entire city of Montreal is one of the world’s most revered playgrounds for food, famous parks, historical landmarks, diversity, art, culture, and of course, beer. This is undoubtedly one of my favorite cities and hopefully you will see why. Trust me, you will see something extraordinary every day. Did you see what greeted me while having coffee at a cafe nearby the Hyatt Regency last year on my Instagram here? This crew called the Les Gens De Couleurs was mind blowing. Check out my other posts on this #cruisinforabrewsinmontreal hashtag.
So whether it’s a Father’s Day present, a vacation with a loved one, or simply to feed your desire to indulge in music, this is the place to be for the summer!
Look for more coverage soon including where to eat and get your sip on when in Montreal.



Friday, June 1, 2018

Tucker Brewing Company is ready for their Grand Opening on June 2!

Here is a little taste of what they are doing. I took this yesterday.
They are aiming for the 10,000-barrel range within a year.

Yep! Another brewery inside Atlanta’s perimeter. This one is in Tucker, GA and it’s dope!

When I first moved here with my family in 1990, we set up shop on the border of Stone Mountain and Tucker, GA. In fact, both of my brothers went to Tucker High School. And with that, I was so pressed to have a brewery or at least a brew spot near our house, but there was absolutely nothing besides a Taco Mac up the street that eventually changed ownership. Hence, the opening of the first microbrewery in the city—Tucker Brewing Company—on June 2 decades later is getting the eyes to water up! And I won’t even say how awesome the layout is during my sneak peek tour yesterday. The beers are German-inspired ales and lagers, there will be live music, it’s in a huge space, and… Aw hell, I will leave it to you to see for yourself. Support these cats and keep showing love to independent brewing! I will be there on June 2nd to support another brewery making ATL the shizzzznit!
Below is the official invitation. Make sure you RSVP here:

Please join us for our grand opening on Saturday, June 2, 2018 from 1 pm to 9 pm. We will be celebrating with live music, food trucks and, of course, great beer!

RSVP for the grand opening event on Facebook.

Entry to the brewery on Saturday costs $10 and includes a souvenir 16-ounce Tucker Brewing Company Willi Becher glass, plus two full beer pours. We will also have water, soda and juice for non-beer-drinkers. Pets on leashes and children are also welcome!


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