AboutMathew Powers – PorchDrinking.com
Maplewood Brewery & Distillery didn’t merely open a taproom and tasting space, it opened a thoughtful representation of the entire Maplewood experience — and that’s how all breweries should approach taproom designs.
Just when you think you know what to expect from a Christmas Ale, Around the Bend Beer Company comes along and provides a unique holiday surprise — the Pretty Lights Belgian Tripel with Cranberry and Almond. Although this beer is exceedingly capable of standing on its own, it would be tough to find a beer more suited for pairing with a holiday feast.
For beer fans, notably in the Chicago region, Black Friday means dark beer releases. The day, dominated by Goose Island Bourbon County Stout, offers numerous opportunities for beer fans to indulge in some of breweries’ finest creations. For those that love Bourbon County — big beer or not — it’s the day to stand in line or find a bar party, of which there are many. For those who have no interest, it’s a time to Uber-it-over to breweries and bars for an immense, diverse selection of barrel-aged, or sometimes big-hopped, beer. Forget shopping. It’s beer time! Happy Holidays!
Have an event we missed? Email us — we’ll update this through Thanksgiving. Check back for updates!
A raging-river’s worth of barrel-aged beer flows through Chicago during November and December. Breweries often release special beers and throw plenty of parties on both Black Wednesday and, even more-so, Black Friday. But, it all starts with the day before Thanksgiving, allowing beer drinkers an opportunity to party, as well as purchase some Turkey-Day goodies!
Events are listed as we received them
The world’s largest barrel-aged beer competition — The Illinois Craft Beer Guild‘s Festival of Barrel Aged Beer (#FoBAB) in Chicago — is currently satisfying hoards of beer lovers. For breweries, it’s also a chance to see if their beer stood-out among the sea of special beers. The awards have been announced and our Chicago/Midwest editor, Mike Zoller, relayed the information as it happened. Here are the results — Congrats not only to the winners, but also every brewery that took the time to offer their beer to a thirsty, enthusiastic beer crowd.
Barrel-aged beers are the dope suits of the brewing world—looking good and ready for a party. Across the nation, brewery’s special releases and anniversary parties frequently involve something from a barrel, and bottle share parties are routinely marked by ice-filled buckets of barrel-aged whales. The Festival of Barrel Aged Beer (FoBAB) involves a sea of brewing alchemy; it’s the A-list party of brews. One will find special beer after special beer produced by some of the nation’s best breweries and barreling programs.
The wall of barrels, two-deep and floor-to-ceiling, that stretches along the length of the brewhouse captures the eyes of those walking through the Scorched Earth Brewing taproom doors. The tantalizing tower of aged beer induces salivation in a manner that would make Pavlov proud. Still, the diverse beer menu and exceptionally warm, inviting taproom environment amounts to a brewery that is attractive to just about every type of beer drinker.
It’s time to embrace the dark side of life (death). Soak in the screams. Face your fears. Take in the terror of a foggy graveyard. Forget cute costumes, trick or treating or the mythological Great Pumpkin. Halloween is for witches; mummies; Viking spirits; vicious clowns; nightmares; zombies; demons; and blood-sucking creatures of all types.
The recipe for each Alaskan Brewing beer is simple: Use authentic, regional ingredients; add creative ingenuity and throw in a dash of brewing history. Since 1986, Alaskan Brewing has enthusiastically embraced its Last Frontier location while simultaneously playing the role of craft beer pioneer.
The pillars are gone. John Hall is gone. The cozy, public house atmosphere is gone. But, the revamped Goose Island Brewhouse oozes elegance; it’s clean, modern and sophisticated. You won’t see any Anheuser Busch InBev (ABI) signs in the taproom, but evidence of the company’s influence is impossible to miss. It’s hard not to ooh and ahh at the grander things in life, like an expensive sports car or a large home — the new Goose Island Brewhouse exemplifies that concept.
There are few things more inviting than a dimly-lit hall bounded by floor-to-ceiling barrels donned with party lights, all leading the way to a destination where 50 firkins await. Held concurrently with GABF, the Epic Brewing 50 Firkin Fiasco provided beer fans with a bevy of experimental beers along with a plenty of food and live music.
It’s time we all took a seat and enjoyed a comfort beer, don’t you think? We are in the midst of a year dominated by natural disasters, shootings, political turmoil, fake news, nuclear war fears, a cold-war resurgence and societal fractures. But, there’s something about sinking into one’s favorite chair and opening a beer that calms the nerves. Here are six uncomplicated, security-blanket beers that help bring joy even as we are enduring unfathomable tension.
Though many portions of the country remain entrenched in summer heat, the lengthening shadows and longer nights point to autumn’s impending arrival. And let’s not forget about the changing colors… of beer. The fall harvest, Bavarian breadiness, and few other palate-pleasing ingredients are helping beer drinkers embrace the latest seasonal transition. Here’s a few you might be interested in trying.
The annual Carlsbad Brewfest (Sept 9, 2017) provides 60 beers and 30 ciders from more than 30 of San Diego’s breweries/cideries to 1,500 guests. Beer aficionados will also enjoy live music performed by local band OSS “Oceanside Sound System,” a DJ, yard games, and food from local restaurants
“As a startup, you have the opportunity to self-distribute since nobody knows who you are,” said distributors to Sun King Brewery co-founder, Clay Robinson in 2009. Now, as Indiana’s second largest brewery and with numerous, prestigious brewing medals to its name, plenty of people know about Sun King Brewing.
Sand between the toes, hammocks, sunshine, rustling palm trees and now Church Street Brewing — that could describe your next Caribbean vacation. The suburban-Chicago brewery is taking its beer to the tropics!
White Sox Craft Beer Night continues the year-long, maturing relationship between craft beer and the White Sox at its home, Guaranteed Rate Field. It started with the introduction of the Craft Kave prior to Opening Day, but anyone going to games has seen craft beer at almost every corner. Now, by hosting its own craft beer festival on Sept 9, the White Sox are demonstrating their active participation within the broader aspects of Chicago’s craft beer scene.
With a slogan of “Friendly as Fuck,” it’s no surprise The Walk-In bar in Chicago would help those ravaged by Hurricane Harvey. It’s even less surprising when you realize the bar’s General Manager, Phillip Smith, recently arrived to Chicago from Texas.
Thus, what was planned as a Labor Day party on Sept. 3 (2pm to 8pm) has transitioned to a relief party. All you have to do is walk in and order a few drinks; 15% of the total sales plus 100% of all gratuities will help support the Greater Houston Community Foundation. So, tip your servers well and help restore some lives
In a world full of juicy IPAs, Firestone Walker (FWBC) is bringing Generation 1, an unfined and unfiltered West Coast IPA, to all its markets for a limited time (eight weeks). The beer is a product of the FWBC R&D program, located at the Propagator pilot brewhouse in Venice, California.