AboutRuvani de Silva, Author at PorchDrinking.com
Austin Beerworks, Meanwhile Brewing and Kaiju Cut & Sew Release Social Harmony: A Kaiju Brew, benefiting Austin’s AAPI CommunityJanuary 24, 2023 | Ruvani de Silva
Austin Beerworks co-founder and director of brewing operations Will Golden and Kaiju Cut & Sew owner Chris Gomez are back celebrating the Lunar New Year and fundraising for their local Asian American and Pacific Islander communities with Social Harmony: A Kaiju Brew Roasted Barley Tea- Infused Gold Lager, brewed to herald the Year of the Rabbit.
As we officially enter Big Beer season, craft beer giants Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. has brought out the biggest of big beer guns to welcome winter in. The Colonel E.H. Taylor Bourbon Barrel Aged Bigfoot Barleywine is a masterful creation, prepared with delicacy and dedication, and bringing together two of the most respected alcohol brands in the U.S.
A sold-out Texas Craft Brewer’s Festival took place on Saturday October 8th at Fiesta Gardens alongside Austin’s Lady Bird Lake. The event brought together over 85 Texas breweries, 250 beers and 5,000 guests for an afternoon celebrating the quality and …
Beer Is Art | Obakeng Malope’s Campaign to Lift South Africa’s Youth Out of Poverty Through Craft BeerOctober 14, 2022 | Ruvani de Silva
Obakeng Malope has a mission. The South African brewer and filmmaker has started a project blending beer culture and social change with enormous scope on both a national and international level, and her hard work and tenacity has already led to significant press and multi-national collaboration.
Malope is the creator of Beer Is Art, an initiative to offer access to the craft beer industry to South Africa’s unemployed young people. In the second quarter of 2022, 4.8 million 15-34 year old South Africans were unemployed, 46.5% of the population in that age group. Malope believes that the growing South African craft beer industry has the potential to help lift some of these young people out of poverty. “The youth are sitting at home unemployed here in South Africa. The campaign teaches about beer, that beer is not something that you drink and get drunk off. We teach beer and food pairing, brewing, beer podcasting and licensing. We show them that they can turn beer into a career,” she says.
An hour west of Austin sits the quaint historic town of Johnson City, TX. It’s the home of Lyndon Baines Johnson, the 36th American President. It’s named for his grandfather, Samuel Ealy Johnson, Sr. And the Blanco County seat is now best known as a cosy, picturesque stop on the Texas Wine Trail.
However, between the dual impacts of the pandemic and sky-rocketing house prices in the greater Austin area, Johnson City is taking on a new identity. It’s the hip Hill Country outpost, with three craft breweries and new concept watering hole Nice N Easy, home of locally produced Lightsome Wines and Yokefellow Beer.
Being a South Asian in beer within the diaspora can be a lonely business. As per Brewer’s Association data from 2021, just 2% of US breweries are owned by Asians, with no available information on South Asians specifically. With so few South Asians involved in the beer industry, taking time to reflect on and celebrate South Asian Heritage Month* (July 18 -August 1**) offers an opportunity to amplify our presence, support one another, and reach out and share our culture through the medium of beer, our chosen career or interest.
On June 24, 2022, the US Supreme Court voted to overturn Roe vs. Wade, the landmark 1973 ruling giving women across the US the right to have an abortion. With thirteen states poised to enforce historic trigger laws banning all medically unnecessary abortions, and another thirteen considered likely to make abortion illegal, this decision is a devastatingly regressive setback for reproductive rights and places the lives of those who need reproductive care, particularly those from lower socio-economic and minority backgrounds at significant risk.
Texas Keeper Cider is one of South Austin’s best kept secrets. A stunning 19 acre Hill Country ranch with a lovely rustic wood-paneled taproom just minutes away from the SoCo tourist bustle, the tight, dedicated team have been creating sophisticated small-batch hand-crafted cider since 2013. Blending career expertise in wine-making, brewing, fermentation and, of course, cider making, Texas Keeper offer a refreshing alternative to the sweet fruit-flavored canned fizz that is most commonly associated with both macro and craft ciders.
Being a beer nerd with half an eye out for whatever new tool or trend the industry intends to chuck out at us next, I haven’t been able to help but notice the term thiol appearing in my feed with increasing frequency. According to the Brewers Association, thiols are highly aroma-active compounds derived from hops that can give very intense fruity flavor to predominantly dry-hopped beers. While the presence of thiols in wine grapes has been known for a while, thiols in hops were discovered relatively recently, hence the sudden outpouring of interest, much of which is tied to the fact that the brewing process does not lend itself naturally to releasing the tropical aromas that chemically complex thiols keep hidden away.
“To watch someone slowly fade away in front of your eyes over many years, and to not be able to do anything about it will stop you in your tracks. To know other individuals closely with the disease and ponder a similar outcome for them is challenging to say the least. It leaves you feeling helpless.”
Craft Women Connect was founded by Jen Price (@AtlBeerBoutique), Michelle Turner (@ExcitedtoFeast), Chris Hughes (@TheeCraftbeerconnoisseur), and Britne Dionne, and Caitlin Bradfield (@beersagogo) back in January 2019 as a response to the lack of spaces for and visibility of women of color in the Atlanta beer scene.
As seasonal and event-focused beers grow in popularity, Mardi Gras beers are now becoming a trend around the country, tying in with local celebrations or referencing NOLA traditions. For New Orleans’ largest brewery by volume, Urban South, this is the time of year for curated innovation as they update their annual triple-release of brews to celebrate the city’s biggest party.
Austin Beerworks and Kaiju Cut & Sew Launch Eastern Philosophy: A Kaiju Brew – The First Beer Supporting Stop AAPI HateFebruary 2, 2022 | Ruvani de Silva
Sunday, January 30, was the launch of Eastern Philosophy: A Kaiju Brew – the first beer brewed to fundraise for Stop AAPI Hate. The brainchild of Will Golden, Director of Brewing Operations and Co-founder of Austin Beerworks and Chris Gomez, Owner of Kaiju Cut & Sew, the event brought together several local businesses, with hundreds of Austinites in attendance to show their support and get a taste of this very special beer.
For the past four years, residents of and visitors to the Texas Hill Country have had a privilege rarely bestowed on American beer drinkers — the opportunity to enjoy freshly brewed English-style beers served on cask at the singular Acopon Brewing taproom in Dripping Springs TX. While their beautifully delivered flagship Homunculus Dark Mild Ale and Gaspipes ESB continue to draw in both cask-curious and happily acclimated patrons from season to season, at this time of year there is another very good reason to make a trip to Acopon — the annual release of their Hans Trapp BBA Russian Imperial Stout.
The Texas Craft Brewers Guild hosted its annual festival at Austin’s Fiesta Gardens on Saturday, October 23. After the festival pivoted to an online event last November, brewers and consumers were eager to return in person to this tremendously popular celebration of all things Texas beer, with over 85 breweries from across the state serving up over 200 beers to thirsty visitors. Both VIP and General Admission tickets sold out in advance, signaling the excitement for the first major Texas beer festival since Covid restrictions lifted.
Just over half an hour directly to the south of Austin sits Lockhart, Texas — the self-proclaimed “barbecue capital” of the state. The quintessential small-town-Texas vibe is punctuated by the enormous queues snaking out of Lockhart’s four famous barbecue joints on the weekend, which attract visitors from across the state and further afield. Now there is a new reason to visit Lockhart: Hawkins Farmhouse Ales.
When Ravi Patel launched Other Desi Beer Co. in 2019, one of his primary aims was to share the tastes and flavors of the Indian food that he grew up with through the medium of high-quality craft beer. With several Indian-cuisine-inspired brews already under his belt, including the delightfully bright and zingy 3 Ranis Pink Guava Hibiscus Sour and the deep, layered High Chai Stout featuring cardamom, black pepper and cinnamon, Patel has now pulled off the coup of brewing what may be the first beer to feature India’s national sweet, the jalebi.
Craft Women Connect, Blk Brew Babes, Pontoon Brewing & The Atlanta Podcast | Pomona Paradise Smoothie-Style Fruited SourJune 10, 2021 | Ruvani de Silva
Not one, not two, but three of Atlanta’s Black beer-community groups have joined forces with Pontoon Brewing to create the Pomona Paradise Smoothie-Style Sour. The beer came out of Pontoon’s ongoing Brewing Conversations project with The Atlanta Podcast–a community-focused initiative to raise awareness about inclusivity and racial issues in and around the Atlanta beer scene.
In just five years, New Orleans’ Urban South Brewing has made a huge impact in the beer world and is currently one of the fastest-growing breweries in the U.S. With more than 200 beers released to date, multiple awards under their belt and newly expanded distribution across Alabama, Tennessee and Mississippi, Urban South are riding high and celebrating their fifth anniversary in style with a 15-beer collaboration project that includes some of the biggest names in U.S. craft beer. Drekker, American Solera, Aslin and Pontoon are all involved in this highly ambitious project that includes beer styles ranging from mixed-fermentation Table Beer to Fruited Pastry Sour to TIPA.
Once a phrase linked solely with Oatmeal Stouts, the term ‘breakfast beer’ is now applied to beers ranging from Milkshake and Smoothie Fruited Sours to Oat IPAs. Of course, what you may or may not consider to be a true ‘breakfast beer’ invariably depends on what you choose to have for breakfast, but the link between oat content and breakfastiness in a beer remains undisputed.