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Beer Review: Steve Austin’s Broken Skull IPA

I can’t tell you how happy I was to hear Stone Cold Steve Austin extolling the virtues of craft beer, IPAs in particular, on his podcast over the past year or so. After seeing him crack Miller Lites and Budweisers for so many years on WWE television, it was refreshing to hear that he had a matured palate for beer. Not that there’s anything wrong with the occasional Miller Lite or Budweiser… Okay, maybe that’s more of a CYA in case my dad or girlfriend come across this post…

That said, I was also quite pleased to hear that Steve was partnering with El Segundo Brewing Company to put out his own IPA. If you’ve been following us for some time, you may remember that ESBC was one of our pregaming destinations of choice for PWG back in 2014:

Pregaming properly for #2014BOLA. You're welcome, Legion Larry.

A photo posted by The Steel Cage (@thesteelcage) on

Anyway, I was beyond excited last Christmas when my brother picked up a couple bottles of this stuff for me as a gift, and I was just as bummed out when those bottles were almost as quickly as a Mick Foley title run. Thankfully, my brother is so thoughtful that he picked up yet more to replenish my supply, and I figured I’d report on it for those of you who haven’t yet gotten your hands on a bottle (or can) of the good stuff!

Full disclaimer: I’ve never written a beer review before, so I’ll leave the technical details to the folks over on Beer Advocate.

I guess I’ll start with the ‘official’ description on the bottle:

Broken Skull IPA: A bad-ass 6.7% India Pale Ale designed by Steve Austin and ESBC for the working man & woman. It features Citra, Cascade, and Chinook hops to deliver big flavor with an easy finish. Now stop reading and start enjoying this awesome beer! Cheers! – Steve

Before I jump right in, a little about my beer tastes: I love craft beer, but I especially love a good balanced IPA. The first craft beer of any sort I can recall drinking was Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. It was hoppier than anything I ever had, and I loved it for that. To this day, it remains a solid option, though I rarely keep it in my fridge anymore. Not long after that, I started down the road of promiscuity that is well known amongst craft beer enthusiasts. There’s this drive to always try something new. With that, I found some super hop heavy IPAs that I loved initially, but also ultimately wrecked my palate for hops. I took a break for a few years, until I circled back around to Lagunitas IPA; which, along with Ballast Point’s Sculpin, find regular places in my fridge these days… I like other styles too – saisons are probably my next choice, followed by stouts and porters.

I chose a pint glass from Revolution Brewing Company, as it was the spot I hit up before catching Chikara’s Quantum of Solace in Chicago, also back in 2014. This beer pours nicely with a nice hoppy / floral / citrus aroma. It’s a bit lighter in color than some other IPAs I frequent.

After a few sips and a healthy swig of this beer, I’m reminded about why this didn’t last long the first time around. It’s smooth and well balanced. Just enough of the hops to satisfy my craving, but not anywhere near harsh. Alternatively to a regular IPA like this, session IPAs tend to sacrifice hop flavor as they shoot for a lower ABV. At 6.7%, this is just about the right mix of hoppiness and booziness for me to enjoy more than a couple (if I had that much on hand).

…and it’s gone. I do have a few more bottles on hand, thanks to my brother, but I’m going to be nice and hang onto them for the next time my podcast compadres swing by the Marty Jannetty Memorial Podcast Studio.

If we’re ever in your town for a wrestling event, you can no doubt find us at a local brewery before the show. We’ll try and announce our presence via Twitter. Come on out and say hello!

That all said, I’m going to call it quits on writing for the day, and with a little bit of a buzz – finish off an episode of Lucha Underground to get ready to catch the latest episode of Monday Night Raw. Swig of beer for the working man!

Want to open up your own bottle of hop forward whoop ass? You can pick up some of this beer through Inside the Cellar’s website:

…and don’t forget to share via Untappd!

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ClickJab Wrestling Fanfest – Phoenix, AZ

Last month, we got to attend a rare Arizona based pro wrestling convention, ClickJab Wrestling Fanfest, brought to us by ClickJab Entertainment. Chris Click is one of a handful of people doing what they can to bring awesome wrestling related events to the Southwest, and Arizona in particular. It was a great opportunity to spend some time with some of our favorite stars, and we can’t wait for the next one!

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Mailbag: Cesaro, 3MB, and Short Term Memory Loss

Another week, another bunch of emails that were too long or too ridiculous to make the cut for the podcast. Keep ’em coming, guys.

Bringing the W, but not so much the E.

Bringing the W, but not so much the E.

Em Kay (@mkpred): Antonio Cesaro stopped yodeling and I think he is up for a push again. After Ryback is done with Cena, who will face Cena for the championship? I don’t think Ryback will win the title during this feud.

I think Cesaro is a good contender for the Title, but I don’t trust the writers with coming up with a decent story for him against Cena. So I think The Perfect Way would be to give the Raw Money in the Bank to Cesaro and build him up until he cashes in. Do you think Cesaro is ready for the spot yet or perhaps another year should go into work?

I am sure it wasn’t meant to draw attention, but I find it peculiar that you capitalized ‘The Perfect Way’ in your Cesaro booking scenario. Though he’s a relatively fresh face, I feel like Curtis Axel (son of Mr. Perfect, of course) has taken the spot many of us thought Cesaro might take. Both Cesaro and Axel are very well rounded in the ring and their talent with in-match storytelling alone should be able to take them far in their pro wrestling careers. At this point, however, they both have their struggles on the microphone – and with more emphasis on ‘The E’ than ‘The W’, that’s a critical component.

The addition of Paul Heyman I think might fast track Axel to top tier feuds, allowing him to showcase his talents while Heyman generates the heat a big time heel would need.

Back to Cesaro, I am glad that the yodeling has been dropped. It was embarrassing and not terribly interesting. He needs the ability to showcase his talents, and to a degree I am disappointed that he didn’t get his shot to make a run with Heyman. Hopefully they’ll find the right thing for him soon.

Carter (@CarterJacobs3): I have created an idea for a Steel Cage inspired WWE stable. Here we go.. The Second Coming of the Three Man Band (screw Drew McIntyre):

  • Heath Slater- the charismatic one of the group (supported by Darrell in earlier podcasts)
  • Jinder Mahal- the fun one (supported by Schlag #mahaling)
  • Tensai- the man who brings two types of music to the band: Japanese funk and American rock. (Inspired, obviously, by Adam Hess). (Also screw Jared for hating Tensai).

These three men would rock the very core of the WWE. And, they would be managed by one of The Steel Cage’s mascots: Marty Jannetty.

First of all, Marty Jannetty is not a mascot. He is a man who just so happens to love his beer and doesn’t have a ton of self control. That said, he’s perfect to join up with 3MB and show them how it’s done. Rock and roll, babay!

I think we’d all be on board with Heath Slater – the guy had a fun run last year against all of the legends, and I do miss him getting at least a bit of the spotlight these days. Plus, he can work pretty well in ring and sell some pretty crazy bumps. Awesome enhancement talent, if nothing else.

Regarding Jinder Mahal, I think my interest in him lasted a week or two tops.

Tensai, of course, could play any role he wants – ANY ROLE HE WANTS, DO NOT QUESTION ME – but I don’t think this is the right one for him. He was doing well as a big tough guy working crazy stiff matches. I miss those. Sweet-T is, well.. something, I guess. He gets on TV and the children will cheer him. I just yearn for the day when he turns on Brodus and spits green mist in his eyes. He’d never be able to wipe it out with those T-Rex arms, and of course the Funkadactyles will become Miss Tensaite #1 and Miss Tensaite #2.

Back to the first thing you said.. Why the hate for Drew McIntyre? I think he plays his role pretty well – ridiculous and over the top. I don’t know if he’ll ever regain ‘golden child’ status with Mr. McMahon, but I’d love to see him doing something semi-relevant again. Folks always talk about how thin the roster is, but they could easily let some new storylines flourish – especially if they reinstated the brand split – but that’s a whole other topic.

Ian (@mr_lolo_jones): Ok so I think i’ve finally finished tinkering with my wrestling persona if i ever made it into the E.

Basically, I’m a dude with random short term memory loss, who can’t remember what feud they’re involved in.

I’ve got super annoying music, and I randomly keep coming out during different segments confronting guys.

ME – “Randy, I’m sick to death of your stupid pose, I want a match, TONIGHT”
Randy – “Uh dude, you already have a match with Big Show tonight”
ME – “I do?” *sulks back to locker room*

Cena is chatting shit about some clown he is going to bury at the next PPV..
Cena – “One of my legs may have fallen off, but I’m st….”
– super annoying jeer inducing music hits
ME – “Cena, you tire me, lets fight, TONIGHT”
Cena – *super confused face* “uhhhhhhhh…..”

For one episode of raw to get me super over I could just keep coming out in pretty much every segment.

At PPV’s or during matches I could come out to the ring during the wrong matches and just get so confused as to why my opponent isn’t in the ring….

You could further this to the extent where the character can’t remember his own damn name. He could just be ‘unnamed’. Brilliant.

I’m pretty sure this is what they’re doing with Triple H right now.

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Mailbag: Big E Langston, CM Punk, and Stone Cold Steve Austin

In the long standing tradition of respected sports writer Bill Simmons, I present to you… The Steel Cage Mailbag! This is essentially where emails go when we just don’t have time to read them all on our weekly podcast. Well, let’s just get started, why don’t we?

Earning his stripes in Florida, exposed nipple and all.

Earning his stripes in Florida, exposed nipple and all.

Mick, Australia: I was thinking while watching raw, couldn’t WWE have chucked Big E in the ladder match to kinda represent Ziggler? Not sure how stupid that sounds. They could’ve still put the belt on the line and maybe have AJ go up to grab it. Dolph could’ve played a part without contact (just running in and pushing the ladder or something). It might’ve made it a tad more interesting. Thanks, and fuck JTJ (Jared The Jew)!

You know, the first time I read that, I didn’t catch the last bit, and assumed JTJ was a typo for JTG. I was beginning to wonder why all the hate for the guy, outside of the fact that he makes probably close to six figures and just gets to hang out eating catering every week while Zack Ryder gets squashed.

To your point about putting Big E in the ladder match… That’s an interesting point, but man – that’s putting a lot on a guy who they’re quite honestly still developing. There’s a reason Big E has barely had any time in the ring on regular TV – he just needs more polish, which he’s getting down in Florida as NXT Champion. I, for one, think that anything less than that triple threat ladder match they originally booked would have been a step down – so they can at least let two guys with legitimate submission holds showcase their talents. ADR and Swagger are both pretty competent in the ring – though the build up is lacking (not their fault in this case.. well maybe a bit Swagger’s fault as he caused the concussion).

Will, UK: What do you guys think are the worse WWF/E characters of all time?

I feel like this is a running theme of our discussions, where we bring up classics like The Gobbledygooker, The Shockmaster, The Repo Man, and Kizarny. In fact, it is so much a part of our fandom that we held a Facebook tournament last year to crown The King of the Zing, with the honors going to that lovable carnival freakshow. It might just be time to start putting together the 2013 brackets! Thank you for the reminder, Will.

CJ: I’ve been thinking a lot about dream matches. A couple of matches I would love to see include Bret Hart vs. Kurt Angle or maybe Ziggler vs. Mr. Perfect. So what are some dream matches you guys would pay to see?

Thanks for writing in, CJ. It’s a shame that both of the matches you listed there are physically impossible, though I am sure that if anyone can wrestle a corpse and make it look good – it’s Dolph Ziggler.

One match I really wish we could have gotten, that we got a slight nod to at this year’s Royal Rumble, is Cody Rhodes vs Goldust. Both guys are immensely talented, and the chemistry that two brothers can have in the ring together makes for huge potential. On a much grander scale, as something we might actually see one day (pending medical clearance and all that jazz) is CM Punk vs Stone Cold Steve Austin. Two outspoken characters who would abuse each other on the mic as well as they could in the ring. Seeing the build up for such matches would be just as, if not more, exciting than the actual matches themselves.

DJ: Last week you talked about Punk v Austin at mania. But Punk Cena is clearly the rivalry of the era. So would you rather see Austin go over Punk in the main event of Wrestlemania XXX or Punk over Cena for the WWE title?

Austin over Punk, easily. It has historical significance probably bigger than losing to The Undertaker. Punk / Austin would be a clear main event type of match at least on the same level as whatever Cena would likely be doing with the WWE title. Punk has staked him claim as one of the best WWE Champions of all time with his historic reign that ended this January – a match with Austin – win or lose – would be a great accomplishment to add to the record books.

In case you haven’t seen it, here’s the Punk / Austin interview they recorded last year to promote the WWE 13 video game:

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Houston Texans Cheerleaders Fandangoing

This one is for the fellas out there.

You’re welcome.

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