An Afternoon with Urban Grape's Beer Expert Ben Bouton

Posted by Kim Wieczner on Mon, Jul 21, 2014

Ben Bouton at the Urban Grape

Last week, we were able to visit Ben Bouton at The Urban Grape in the South End. He was so kind to meet with us even just days before his wedding! (HUGE congratulations by the way Ben!)

The Urban Grape (and Urban Hops, as the beer collection is aptly named) is stunning and impressive, and it is easy to see why a beer aficionado like Ben Bouton would want to spend his days there.

Urban Grape South End

Urban Grape South End

Urban Grape South End

We are so lucky that Ben spends many of his nights at the BCAE sharing his wealth of craft beer knowledge with eager students.

Recent classes Ben has taught include Burgers & Beer (with burger team Richard & Katie of Boston Burger Blog and Small Boston Kitchen) and Trappist Beer-- and those were just last week!

Trappist beer

But Ben will be back with some awesome classes in August and into September and October. We talked to Ben about his upcoming classes and got some great insider insights and tips, all while exploring the beautiful store!

International Beer: IPAs of the World! - Friday, August 8th 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

This class will focus on IPAs (India Pale Ales), the second most popular beer category, just behind seasonal beers, as Ben informed us. He also gave us a little history lesson...IPAs orginate from England and were originally called Pale Ales. They were shipped to India but they would spoil on the voyage. Brewers added more and more hops to preserve the beer, and thus created the bitter brew we now know. IPAs do not always have to be so bitter, Ben explained, because the hops varies depending on where in the world it comes from.

Ben's favorite IPA: Notch Brewing Company's Left of the Dial

Beer Selection at Urban Grape South End

Taking on the Trend: Session Beer - Friday, August 22nd 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Session beers are categorized by drinkability, with 5% or less alcohol content, so you can have multiple in a sitting, perfect for gatherings of friends or family. As Ben so aptly put, "nobody likes a sloppy friend."

Ben's favorite Session Beer: Mahr's Bräu Leicht

beer display Urban Grape South End

Coming up in our September/October term...

Local Treasures: Beers of Massachusetts - Tuesday, October 28th 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

We knew Massachusetts had a fair number of breweries, but we didn't know that there are 50 breweries within a 50 mile radius from Boston! There is a wide variety of sizes and types of beer, and people are really "pushing the envelope," according to Ben. Students who take this class will sample a number of local beers and really "be able to put a face to the name."

And our Early Bird 30% off sale starts that day and ends 8/9.

Ben's favorite local brewery: Mystic Brewery (pictured below)

Mystic Brewery

We hope you can join us for one of Ben's upcoming beer classes, and we also highly recommend stopping by the store!

Urban Grape South End beer selection



Topics: BCAE, trappist beer, Massachusetts beer, Boston beer class, urban grape Boston, beer tasting, session beer, Boston Center for Adult Education, IPAs