PD takes a look at a brewery near you.
Solemn Oath Brewing, located in the large and populous Chicago suburb of Naperville, has remained a stabilizing force within the broader, changing Chicago craft beer market. Since opening in 2012, the brewery has adapted to internal and external changes without ever losing its identity, nor its popularity among beer fans; that’s what good people serving well-executed beer will do for a brewery.
Solemn Oath is now ready to take the next step in its craft beer journey by expanding to a second location and joining a slew of breweries in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood. But first, a pop-up bar is in the works.
In the Chicagoland area, we have no shortages of breweries. Big ones (Revolution Brewing, Goose Island, Half Acre) and some smaller ones looking to make their mark (Whiner Brewing, Lo Rez Brewing, Marz Brewing). With over 200 breweries and brewpubs now cranking out in the Chicagoland area, it has been hard for a professional drinker to find a place that truly stands out without trying to truly stand out. Personally, I prefer a place where the tourists don’t venture out to and I’ve had to look no further, Une Année.
First, a piece of advice. Do not speed as you travel the picturesque country roads of southern Illinois. The first reason is, of course, the cops. The speed limits drop quickly from 55 to 35 as you near and enter the small farming towns along Highway 158. The second reason is the simple beauty of the drive. Country roads should be cherished and with the debut of Lieferbräu Brewery as a reward for heading in this direction, you’ll be driving with a smile the whole time.
The Booth Brewery, originally based in Korea, is taking it global.
The Booth Brewery has recently expanded to the U.S., with a brewery in Eureka, California. They purchased the 30-barrel brewing facility from Lost Coast Brewing, who recently expanded to a new location. The new facility is up and running, and The Booth has set a goal of producing 10,000 barrels in the next year. This will include both U.S. distribution and Korean exports.
Here at PorchDrinking.com, we ran a series in August titled “the OGs of Craft Beer,” in which we featured classic or well-known beers that have helped to define and grow craft beer culture throughout the country. One beer featured in our series was Dead Guy Ale from Rogue Ales, a beer born in 1990 when the craft beer wave was in its infancy. Rogue Ales, established in 1988, is one of the true OGs of craft breweries and we’re proud to be featuring them today.
Enter the BuckleDown Brewing taproom and you’ll find, among other elements, an arrangement of leather furniture around a table (barrel) that makes one feel as if they have been invited into the BuckleDown home. It’s a fitting setting for an inviting brewery where the people matter as much, if not more, than the beer served to them. Ironically, BuckleDown opened with a production mindset in place rather than a brewpub or any concept intended to draw people through the door. Nonetheless, people arrived and relationships were forged. Catering to people isn’t a business strategy at BuckleDown: it’s organic and genuine.
Many craft beer fans are apt to consider Fort Collins, Colorado as integral to the genesis of America’s craft beer boom. It’s not uncommon to hear this northern Colorado town described as the “Napa Valley of Craft Beer.” With this in mind, it is understandable that the introduction of any new brewery could prove challenging. It is an even more daunting task then to bring an established brewery from a foreign country and set up the first state-side shop in the former lot where long-time beer veterans Fort Collins Brewery stood (FCB was acquired by the Vancouver brewery last year). While a hefty endeavor indeed, the crew at Red Truck Beer Company relished the idea of such a challenge.
The Vancouver brewery opened the doors to the Truck Stop, their Fort Collins location, on August 17; they did not disappoint. We had the chance to discuss the opening with general manager, Laird Mulderink, who shared the process behind the opening. We also spoke with head brewer Shaun Salyards, previously of Fort Collins Brewery and Snowbank Brewing, who provided insight on the 18 (yes, 18) beers on tap.
The long-awaited project pairing a budding local mixed-use development empire in Zeppelin Places, with one of craft beer’s most storied pioneers, New Belgium Brewing, has finally opened to the public.
The Source Hotel, the fourth major mixed-use space in Denver’s River North Art District from the Zeppelin team following Taxi, The Source and Zeppelin Station, has been a long time coming. In fact, New Belgium Brewing and Kyle Zeppelin’s team had been collaborating on this project since 2014. Normal construction delays and accidents made opening a practice of patience for everyone involved, but the excitement was palpable as Kyle Zepplin (developer), Stephen Dynia (architect) David Stutz (The Source Hotel GM) and Kim Jordan (New Belgium) addressed the crowd at the soft-opening this past Thursday.
Last Fall, the Denver beer scene saw two pioneers embark on a unique partnership, which left the brewery space at Wit’s End available for purchase. As Wit’s End was closing their doors, two industry veterans happened to be looking to begin a new path of their own. Taking over the space and equipment at Wit’s End gave Wayne Burns and Laura Worley just the opportunity they were looking for.
Wayne, brewing resume dates back to the early 90’s having spent time with Michigan staples such as Bell’s Beer and Kuhnhenn’s. And since moving to Denver, he’s spent time brewing with Vine Street Pub, Jagged Mountain, Wynkoop, and recently Holidaily. Burns’ wife Laura has also run the gamut of brewery experience, having spent time bartending or serving as General Manager as the likes of Tommyknocker, Lost Highway, and Woods Boss. Together this combined experience of front to back of house operations is something both Laura and Wayne believe will help them succeed with Burns Family Artisan Ales which opens tomorrow August 18th at 2:00 PM.
For the past five years, Kyle and Miranda Carbaugh have been operating Wiley Roots Brewing Company on a quiet dead-end street in Greeley, Colorado. They’ve run their small space with a friendly and humble mindset, believing that if the beer is good, then the rest will fall into place. The Carbaughs have even come to affectionately refer to themselves and their brewery as “the weird kid in class”.
For nearly seven years, Carton Brewing Company has exemplified life in New Jersey and the team has kept its focus on local, for-the-moment beers. The brewery opened on August 11, 2011 in Atlantic Highlands and it became the state’s 13th brewery. Owned by Augie Carton (who was previously an underwear salesman, among other professions) and his cousin Chris, the brewery is located where the owners were born and raised.
Drake’s Brewing Co. was founded back in 1989 by Roger Lind in what was half of an old Chrysler Dodge factory powerhouse in San Leandro, CA. Back then, the brewery was named after Lind, Lind Brewing Company, and he brewed English-style ales. Lind built the original gravity-fed brewing system himself (10 barrels) but he left the brewery in 1998. Drake’s was owned by JBR Coffee Company from 1998-2008 and then John Martin, who Lind used to previously work for at Triple Rock Brewery, purchased Drake’s in 2008.
Burning Barrel Brewing is the vision of a father/son duo; Jack and Duncan Alexander. Jack, a longtime homebrewer, and Duncan are leading the way on the build-out of the brewery located within the Barrel District of Rancho Cordova, a city just east of downtown Sacramento. Rancho Cordova has embraced the “Maker Spirit” by creating its Barrel District, streamlining the process of opening a brewery — and more. The Barrel District currently includes six breweries, two distilleries, and one meadery.
Tamir Danon isn’t concerned about your Instagram photos, he isn’t interested in your Untappd reviews, and you won’t be sampling a flight at his brewery any time soon. He just wants you to relax, step aside from all of the distractions and just enjoy the beer. Danon, along with his wife Chantel Columna, and college friend Ayana Coker are the co-founders of Denver’s newest brewery, Novel Strand Brewing. Opening today at 1st and Cherokee in Denver’s Baker District at 3 pm, Novel Strand will focus predominantly on lower ABV hoppy, sour and funky/wild beers, but will also open with a 4.3% oatmeal stout as well.
I’ve always been a bit cynical. I’m not a rare breed in that sense; the beer world has many stubborn, cranky cynics. We’re the ones shouting at you to get off our lawns with your sour, hazy, glittery slush stouts as we rock cantankerously back and forth on the porch with our pint glasses full of clear, reliable IPA. But even the most hardened beer traditionalist among us can look forward to summer. In summer, we can rise from the ashes of our self-loathing like a magnificent, tipsy phoenix. Even if for just a season, we can crack a smile and enjoy the sun on our face while the bubbles of an unfamiliar brew caress our puckered lips.
In that spirit, Colorado’s Rockyard Brewing Company is showing us how it’s done. Shedding its skin and undergoing a major renewal of its own, the brewery has done away with ALL of its award-winning original lineup.
The goal of any brewery should be to produce great beer and positively impact their community. Many breweries have this similar mission, but few are as mission-driven as Savannah-based Service Brewing Co.
Like many Coloradans who have traversed the winding I70 highway toward Summit County, you’ve probably at some point noticed the word BREWERY painted in big bold letters along the side of a building in the thoroughfare town of Idaho Springs. For those who keep up with the ever-evolving Colorado craft beer landscape, this mountain town spot has become a familiar requisite stop for those who appreciate well-crafted traditional styles paired with great eats. But what most don’t realize is that Westbound & Down Brewing has been quietly preparing to join Colorado’s storied lineup of esteemed sour producers.
Denver’s River North Art District is beginning to look completely different than it did even six months ago. Just along the once rough and tumble, sleepy main drag of Larimer Street alone, the transformation is none more apparent than the recent additions of American Bonded, the next chapter in Sean Kenyon’s (founder of Williams and Graham) burgeoning cocktail bar catalog, and Call, a trendy coffee shop, sandwich concept, along with it’s upcoming neighboring sister bar Beckon. The landscape has also been forever changed by the recent influx of satellite locations from several already well-established national brands. This recent flood of familiar faces includes one of the country’s hottest bar concepts in Death and Co, inside of The Ramble Hotel, the fast food behemoth that is Shake Shack, and chain wine bar concept Barcelona. And beginning Monday, Odell Brewing will extend their reach outside of their Fort Collins roots to Denver’s hottest neighborhood, when they open their second outpost in the heart of Denver’s River North Art District.
Downtown Loveland is currently home to three breweries (soon to be four) which are well-established in the community and gaining notoriety among the always crowded Colorado craft scene. Loveland Aleworks has been in their current residence, for a long while, and Verboten had a recent change when they moved to their current location on 5th Street. Crow Hop Brewing, the third of the trifecta, called 3rd Street their home since their opening in 2015. That all changed last week, when the team closed shop on 3rd and moved one block north to the east side of 4th Street in Downtown Loveland. Prior to their grand reopening in early June, Crow Hop has put on a few soft open events for their loyal patrons, and Thursday was the first soft open for folks outside of Crow Hops staff and immediate family, and the event did not disappoint.
Full disclosure, I’m a 20-year Navy veteran. In studying breweries, and meeting with their owners, it became clear that a huge number of those brewery owners had also served time in the armed forces, in fact, a much larger number than you would expect statistically.