1492: Conquest of Paradise Drinking Game

The latest version of Columbus Day is upon us, the celebration of the man who risked it all to sail for weeks into the unknown, searching for riches beyond reality. The results of discovering the new world were disastrous for the natives, beneficial for Europeans, and mostly met with apathy for history and gratitude to the federal government for granting a longer weekend for our precious schoolchildren by today’s population.

Before there was Gladiator and G.I. Jane, Ridley Scott tried his hand at an epic called 1492: Conquest of Paradise, released by Paramount to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Columbus’ “discovery”. This movie lost nearly 40 million dollars, more than double the highest estimates of the original population of Natives living in North America. Karma’s a bitch, eh?

Nothing can get you excited for indigenous imperialism (and Portuguese Socialism) like the score for 1492 can. Echoing themes of the Hunt for Red October, the songs match with the epic scenes perfectly, setting the stage for even better work on subsequent Scott films.

Unfortunately, sitting through this slog of an epic is difficult. Chris Columbus is almost as difficult to understand as the drunken Irish chauffeur in The Quiet Man, and Queen Isabella’s personality is laughable in its lack of elitism. But there is a lesson to be learned. Did you know that Columbus didn’t originally instigate any violence, it was Count de Rochefort of Musketeers fame? That evil bastard couldn’t help himself, he just demanded respect and some indigenous action.

No-one needs an excuse to imbibe, so this Columbus Day, enhance your high and celebrate by shedding some light on history and watching this film with some ales.

Drink every time:

  • Anyone makes a reference to the earth being round
  • Inquisitional behavior occurs
  • Ridley Scott shoots an epic scene
  • Someone says “señor”
  • A horse spins around or rears

Death Rule

Drink any time a non-Spanish accent is spoken by a new character.


I went off the reservation with batch number 6, beginning to craft my own recipes instead of trying to follow those posted by others, and also switching recipe detail records from digital to analog. CTDR is my first attempt at a true high gravity, super hoppy Imperial IPA. The “Vermont” IPA and double IPA styles currently exploding in the area was something that I wanted to avoid (go figure).

Instead of a golden, slightly hazy and citrus-y hop bomb inspired by Sip of Sunshine, Heady Topper, or a Foley Brothers Fair Maiden, I wanted to make a beer that was dark and violent, using Crystal 60L malt and light DME and LME with lots of CTZ and Chinook hops for an SRM of 11.65 and an IBU of 95.5.

I finished the 3.5 gallon boil with Cascade and used two Wyeast #1056 American Ale smack packs which resulted in near immediate development of krausen and subsequent fermenter overflow. I gave the beast a full 10 days to ferment and transferred it to glass, where it will stay until a scheduled bottling day on 9/10.

With an anticipated ABV of over 8%, I wanted to give CTDR some aggressive aging for a more complex taste. I’ll christen this beer in late September/early October with some friends for an aggressive new movie drinking game, preferably one about imperial conquest.


Belgian Saison

Recipe based off of David Ackley’s at blog.eckraus.com


  • 6.5 lb Extra Light LME
  • 1 lb Caramel 10L
  • 4 oz Flaked oats
  • 1 oz Kent Goldings hops (6.3 AAU @ 60 min)
  • 0.5 oz Kent Goldings hops (6.3 AAU @ 30 min)
  • 0.25 oz fresh crushed coriander seed (20 min)
  • 0.5 oz Kent Goldings hops (6.3 AAU @ 10 min)
  • 0.25 oz fresh crushed coriander seed (10 min)
  • Coagulant tablet (10 min)
  • 1 oz Kent Goldings hops (dry hopped, 1 week)
  • Wyeast #3724 Belgian Saison


  • Batch Size: 5.5 gal
  • Boil size: 3.5 gal
  • Est OG: 1.059
  • Calculated OG: 1.046
  • Est FG: 1.013
  • Calculated FG: 1.010
  • Est ABV: 6.1%
  • Calculated ABV: 4.7%
  • Bitterness: 23.22

Treated brew water with three teaspoons of gypsum. Steeped specialty grains for 30 min in 1.5 gal water at around 150 ˚F. After boil, added water to bring volume to 5.5 gal.

Brewed 6/28, bottled 7/13.

First impressions 7/27: Poured out nicely, good golden color without intense haze. Very pleased with carbonation and the slight head retention. Tastes spicy and medium to full bodied with a somewhat raw finish that gets better by the sip. Overall, tastes better than I was expecting. Next time I’ll challenge the yeast with a higher starting gravity and kick up the alcohol.

Bums IPA


  • 1 lb Cara-malt 10L (10.0 SRM)
  • 4 lb Extra Light DME (3.0 SRM)
  • 4 lb Pale LME (8 SRM)
  • 1 oz CTZ pellet hops 19.4% AAU (60 min)
  • 1 oz Northern Brewer pellet hops 10.9% AAU (45 min)
  • 0.5 oz Cascade pellet hops 6.4% AAU (30 min)
  • 0.5 oz Cascade pellet hops 6.4% AAU (15 min)
  • Coagulant tablet (10 min)
  • 1 oz Cascade pellet hops (dry hopped, two weeks)
  • Wyeast #1056 American Ale


  • Batch Size 5 gal
  • Boil size: 3 gal
  • 7.4 SRM
  • Est OG: 1.065
  • Calculated OG: 1.070
  • Est FG: 1.015
  • Calculated FG: 1.015
  • Est ABV: 6.5%
  • Calculated ABV: 7.2%
  • Bitterness: 75 IBU

Brewed 4/18, bottled 5/11.

Seeped Cara-malt 10L in 155 degree water for 30 min. Sparged with half gallon hot water. Added to 1 gal water in brewpot for boil.

Victor’s Spoils IPA

Adapted from Victory and Chaos IPA recipe.

  • 4 lbs amber LME
  • 3.5 lbs light DME
  • 1 oz East Kent Goldings 6.3% @ 60 min
  • 0.5 oz Cascade 6.2% @ 60 min
  • 1 oz East Kent Goldings 6.3% @ 45 min
  • 0.5 oz Glacier 5.6% dry hopped
  • Wyeast #1028 London Ale

IBU: ~40
Original Gravity: 1.045
Final Gravity: 1.019
APV: 3.27%

Add half of malt extract at beginning of boil. At 10 minutes left, added rest of extract + coagulant tablet.

Brewed 3/30/14. Bottled 4/20.