EP 912 Victory Brewing Tasting- Part II

Gary Vaynerchuk concludes the tasting with Bill Covaleski from Victory Brewing and talks more about the beer world.

Beers tasted in this episode:

Pilsner Urquell
Prima Pils
Oktoberfest Marzen
Victory Festbier

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luca bercelli


Line of the day ‘you Laker fans are full of crap’

Great episode

Tags: beer, review, Video

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  • Anonymous

    Victory Beer is the real deal! I have drank a lot of very expensive import beer and this brewery holds its own against any and all of them. Every variety they produce has been well thought out and produced. If you can find it, try the V-Twelve. This is fantastic stuff, but watch out it is 12% alcohol and sneaks-up on you.

  • Anonymous

    QOTD: I live in PA where I’m limited to Wine and Spirits unless I drive to Delaware to Total Wine & More where I feel the excitement for craft beer.

  • Hey Guys

    I love, great episode and the beers sound awesome.

    QOTD: pretty hard for me to answer, but as an Aussie living in HK I’ll tell you one thing – I’d rather drink US beer than US wine. So much of the US wine we get here is gunk and while there’s too much Bud and Coors around for my liking I can pretty easily pick up and enjoy a Brooklyn Larger here HK. From what I see the US does an awesome job of creating craft/micro brews.


  • Anonymous

    qotd: Im a little to young to answer that, but for me I like Rogue Beer, and I have gotten others to try it and like it…which I dont think answers your question hah

  • Thanks for the response on QOTD! Surely, the consumer factors largely in the rise of craft beer and you are right on in citing that appreciation of flavor is the fundamental core of this trend.

  • I like your answer to QOTD as you rightly point out that it is an adventurous and appreciative consumer driving the upward trend in flavorful beers, wines, coffee, foods, etc. Happy to be living now to enjoy all this. Remember when supermarkets did not have bakeries in them? Maybe not since you are 24, but it was the case.

  • Prime time for Festbier. Hope to see you down here soon! Though, we just learned that Wine Library took in like 10 cases of Festbier to enlighten their lucky patrons. Thanks, Gary Vee!

  • Great point on the QOTD response! Lower price point of beer could fuel more rapid growth over American wine during its historic rise. It’s up to us as brewers to put an experience in the bottle that justifies the cost at any level. Cheers!

  • John, thanks for the great insight. I WANT to shop THAT store! Your basic point is that nothing grows w/o education behind it and therefore educating at retail level is indeed a valid approach.

  • Yeah, since American craft beer rose out a virtual vacuum of beer flavor deficit in the US in mid 80’s we brewers may be differentiating ourselves from what American beer used to be by being overly bold at times. Naturally, you would think that the ‘middle ground’ of flavor volume is where the sweet spot of sales volume will be found, right?

  • Dave, thanks for the thoughts! I appreciate your angle on the economic situation. Regarding the economy, I’d suggest that craft beers have another advantage in that we are growing, and employing while doing so. What happened soon after InBev bought A-B? 1,400 jobs in St. Louis were cut. People may select their beverages based on flavor, advertising, etc., but at some point we all factor in sustainability. How about the fact that we at Victory have operated a restaurant for 14 years. Some kids turning 21 now have drank our root beer and enjoyed our pizza for 1/3 of their lives with their folks at our place. In their mind’s eye, when they think ‘brewery’ you think they envision St. Louis, Munich, Amsterdam? Exciting times!

  • Keith, we hear your point on products that may go overboard. When Ron and I were teenagers our chosen career path was as rock stars. One afternoon while torturing our guitars in his basement (and his parents’ ears in the process) his Dad came down and shook his head saying “If you can’t play well, play loud???” Today we still whip out that phase and shake our heads when an ‘extreme’ brew strikes us as gone too far from balance and satisfaction.

  • Excuse me while I sell some beer, folks… Zach, plenty of Victory in TX. Seek here and you shall find. http://victorybeer.com/beerfinder/western/ Cheers!

  • QOTD: Maybe in the US, but internationally I don’t think the message is out there, yet. I also don’t really have a handle on the availability of decent US beer outside our borders. I still see a perception of American beer in popular culture as watery light lager, and hear cracks from our Canadian brothers up north even though very good beers have been made here in the States for quite some time now.

    BTW – sat down to a couple pints of Victory Festbier at my favorite local yesterday: fantastic drinkability, flavor, and with moderate ABV putting it firmly into session-beer territory. I could drink the stuff all day – just keep the Old Bay seasoned wings coming.

  • Anonymous

    I want to stand up for Pilsner Urquell! Its really not fair to judge the beer in that way. I have been to Prague and other parts of the Czech Republic and Pilsner Urquell is my favorite beer in the world (that and Guiness). I think some European beers dont transport as well, and tend to be old in the bottle. Pilsner Urquell is not the most complex, fancy beer I have ever tasted, but its beauty is in its simplicity. Its smooth and balanced and I love it! I guess at the end of the day I am searching for a different aesthetic with Beer than wine. I want wine that is profound and complex, I want beer that is smooth, easy to drink and refreshing. Fancy beers are all fine and well at the tasting, but try drinking a few liters of it! I could easily drink 5 or 6, 500 ml glasses of Pilsner Urquell. I never noticed the difference between the wine and beer world in that beer is less competitive for high quality. One of my favorite beers of all time is an ice cold pacifico with lime. I like beer that is easy to drink and sometimes fancier beer is nice at first, but I get sick of it.

  • Great show…QOTD: American craft beer is definitely on the way up. There are pockets of greatness. (By the way, is Victory available in Florida?) I am seeing the trend. We need to get more it available in more places like ball parks, etc, but the monopolies are being monopolies. Grocery stores are getting better, slowly.
    Best beer in the world….had it recently – Westvleteren 12.

  • Victory Golden Monkey, Spaten Optimator and Guinness are the only beers I drink. Fabulous

  • Anonymous

    QOTD: I would say yes. I just got back from spending 2 months in Europe and drank beer in Germany, France, Austria, Belgium, Czech R, and The Netherlands. As a beer drinker, I missed American Micro brews. The styles are different, but the flavor is more intense with American micro brews in general (exception regarding Belgium). The amount and use of hops is the differentiating factor as I understand American micro brew VS Europe. Even with Belgium beer, the malt is the distinguishing factor, more-so then hops. I love American micro brews for the hops! BUT…. there is something to be said about making beers too sweet/malty, because the sweeter the beverage the less my palate can tolerate. Sweet beer = less consumption. Dry/bitter beer = more consumption.

  • ben from boston

    Awesome awesome episode. Great guest, great questions, great education on beer. I’m probably one of the few vayniacs who prefers beer. Prima Pils by the way is hands down my favorite beer I’ve ever had and I’ve had all the originals in fresh in Prague. I have not tried St Bernardus or the other two victory beers features in this episode unfortunately. Definitely gotta seek out that peanut flavor.

    And Gary, you are not beholden to the wine world, I totally support you expanding more into beer.

    Speaking of that please please PLEASE, do a brandy episode. Especially Armagnac. I frickin’ love Armagnac. I’ve never asked for anything before (except for Georgian Wine 😉 do it for me. How bout this if you do an Armagnac Episode, I will wear jets paraphernalia while watching it just for you (and then shower vigorously afterwards).

    qotd- ummmm… I’m only 25, can’t answer that.

  • ben from boston

    gary, got my (non wine drinking) friend to watch this ep, and hes a new fan now. good looks on spreading the love to other categories. There’s a beverage for everyone out there.

  • Anonymous

    QOTD:beers are past where wines were in the 70s! good luck

    great beer show, gary! and good questions in the last segment!

  • Jonathan In Kansas city

    I second the Armagnac episode My wife her family is from the Bas Armagnac region of France I have enjoyed many over the last 8-9 years. Her Grandfather and his friend actually made some Armagnac and his friend made it for many years. For our wedding gift we were given a 1942 bottle and over the years we have gotten 1966,1975.1977,1981 vintages of Armangac.. I wish i could import it its soo good! Personally I am a Beer drinker FIRST and Wine lover 2nd. After a great meal of any sorts a good Armagnac can always finnish! Can i say i also enjoy Single malt Scotches? There is one Armagnac i have had and brought back that is what i understand made in the way of a scotch but from grapes.. Wow really freakin interesting and good!

  • Jonathan in Kansas City

    Also to mention I have started HomeBrewing.. blog site to come!

  • Jonathan in Kansas City

    Is Victory available In Kansas City areas?

  • lsutigerinatx

    Great episode. I’m the opposite of Gary in that I was always a beer person who recently began showing more appreciation for wine. My knowledge is fair on both, but I can see that I have a different type of love for each. Not all of your viewers are solely wine lovers Gary. I would LOVE to see 2 or 3 beer episodes a month.

    Oh, and chukheadted is right. Beer is definitely past where wine was in the 70s

  • I have double feelings about these episodes which I only now have watched : on one hand, I like the appearance of beer on the show, as well as a knowledgeable guy to talk about it, and also the way to present it (one Victory beer and a reference beer in same category), on the other hand – as a Belgian, so raised on beer, and quite knowledgeable about it myself, even if I say it myself 😉 – I’m a bit sad about quite a number of missed details perhaps for most of the people, but definitely not for beer lovers!

    For instance : the pouring technique and the glasses. The glasses are typical for pilsnertype beers, but stronger beers (like tripel) are better drunk in wine glasses (it’s the recommendation when drinking from 75cl bottles with food), to really get the nose AND the best foam head! (for the Victory tripel the stability of the foam head was quite disappointing) Or : old world vs new world…I beg your pardon??? Whatever you said about this difference might be about the beers respecting the German “Rheinheitsgebot” (only a limited number of ingredients can be used) and the rest, but there’s no old world or new world here. Because pilsner is a relatively new beer, even in the “old world” as you call it (because it needed cooling installation), and there are far more beers that cannot be withdrawn from their origin as easily, e.g. lambic and the “original” fruit beers (because they are made from fruit lambics)…as the yeast is natural, present in the air in Brussels and Pajottenland. Other types like the red sour ales (for instance Rodenbach) won’t be easily made away from Roeselare (in Belgium)…

    I can suggest to everyone a series being made by Flemish television where a team of a Belgian beer lover and an English wine lover visit breweries (even in USA) to learn about beer. It’s called “Tournée générale”, and a second series ‘ll begin shortly. Conversations with for instance Pierre Célis, “father” of the typical wheat beer Hoegaarden who started a brewery in Austin, Texas (the beer was called Célis’ white), are wonderful.

    QOTD : I agree with other comments that beer is definitely past where wine was in the 70s. I think the beer brewers in USA were way more serious about their hobby/profession since the start (I’ve visited wine cellars, where they were more proud about the celebration of weddings between the barrils than of temperature control!!!), and of course, the price of the product makes it easier to get hold of the better foreign products. Further more, the threshold is lower to get to know these beers. The success of the Belgian beer bars is proof of this.

  • I visited Australia 2 years ago, and the micro breweries were really good quality there as well! And I regularly buy Coopers Sparkling Ale in the Netherlands near the Belgian border…
    Ilse – a Belgian (beer!) living in Spain (&wine!)

  • Hey Onzilske

    I agree that Australia’s micro breweries are good, there’s just not enough. The vast majority of the population drinks very bad beer. I’m glad you enjoy Coopers; I’m a massive fan as well. For a decent sized company they make great beer; it’s preservative free, full of flacour and packs a decent punch. See if you can track down the ‘Coppers Vintage’ a seasonal release that is designed to cellar.


  • Gary. You must try the Abyss. It is awesome.

  • Hamilton Carter

    I lived in plzen for two summers. We’d go to a bar and they would be rolling in kegs from just down the street. On tap in plzen it was probably one of the best beers I have ever had, then I tried it back here in the states and it is only a fraction of the flavor and character (which is to be expected). You haven’t experienced beer until you’ve had a pint in plzen.

  • luca bercelli


    Line of the day ‘you Laker fans are full of crap’

    Great episode


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