Quick Sips is our way of highlighting beer events, tap takeovers and other notable beer news around the city of Chicago. If you’d like to submit something to be included in the next Quick Sips, please email us at [email protected]
Recently dubbed the “beer capital of America,” Chicago will soon welcome an entirely new brewing concept to the city. Pilot Project Brewing will be Chicago’s first formal brewing incubator – a space for experimentation and collaboration.
Set to open by early summer at 2140 N. Milwaukee Ave., Pilot Project introduces the city to the incubation concept, adopted at brewing spaces across the country such as Rocky Mount Mills and Labrewatory. All who brew are welcome at Pilot Project, from amateur homebrewers looking to kickstart a professional career, to existing breweries in search of an outlet for experimenting with flavors, styles, and peers.
Nine years ago when Shaun Berns, his wife Brittany and best friend Evan Morris were working at RAM Restaurant & Brewery, they had talked about one day opening their own brewery. The three made their way from RAM to More Brewing which opened in July of 2017. Less than two years later, the three are ready to open up their own brewery – Phase Three Brewing Company.
Defining what makes a person a millennial has been an object of journalistic contention for years now. Is it a strong memory of 9/11, barely remembering the world pre-internet, or growing up watching single-camera sitcoms? May I humbly suggest adding one more to the list: you can identify as a member of the millennial generation if you have ever been personally victimized by a toxic black can masquerading as men’s body spray. Even if you never directly sprayed this shower-substitute on your skin in middle school, you have breathed in its foul fumes at some point during your adolescence. With scents like Apollo, Kilo, Phoenix, Tsunami and Maniac, body spray was aimed at moldable millennial minds hoping they could spray their way to cool.
Hazy IPAs and pastry stouts – so hot right now – hazy IPAs and pastry stouts. As these beers have become hotter than Derek Zoolander walking the runway and giving us Blue Steel, the larger craft breweries are following suit. Surly Brewing joins the game with their latest beers, One Man Mosh Pit and Tiramisu Funeral Bar.
Year-round offerings, especially for long-standing breweries, are special for various reasons. With Great Lakes Brewing Company (GLBC), one would be hard-pressed not to have a beer of theirs that has become a mainstay, a fall-back favorite. In 2019, Great Lakes has done something really, truly special: not just creating a new year-round, but also commemorating the people who make the brewery what it is and keep it a sustainable community. Great Lakes IPA is a welcome addition to the brewery’s already stellar cast of characters. It’s a beer I foresee fitting in nicely with old favorites.
Certainly, Pink Boots Society events present a bonding opportunity for women of the industry, while simultaneously fostering awareness of their contributions. Nevertheless, from the presence of Omega Yeast Labs to the many brewers and industry women present, the event made it abundantly clear that crafting excellent beer served as priority #1. And, in doing so, demonstrated how possession of a Y-chromosome has nothing to do with becoming a skilled, imaginative beer professional.
It’s one of those things that’s irresistible: it’s been a long day at work and you want something that brings the ABV and the hops, because you don’t want to work too hard, right? A perfect blend of ABV, IBUs, flavor, maltiness and a crisp clean finish all packed into one amazing pint. Long live the DIPA.
Solemn Oath Brewery represented Chicago at the very first Uppers and Downers in Pasadena, California in 2015. Since then, the festival has been held in Chicago and on March 30, the premier coffee beer festival put on by Good Beer Hunting returns to Thalia Hall.
It can be difficult to keep up with all of the new things happening in the Chicago craft beer scene. With new taprooms opening and bottle releases happening virtually each week, there is no shortage of options for new Chicago beers. Thus I’ve rounded up a few of my recent favorites in this Ultimate 6er, What’s New Chicago edition.
August Schell Brewing Company, now named Schell’s Brewery, is the second oldest family-owned brewery in the nation. Founded in 1860 by German immigrant August Schell, the brewery is rich in German tradition. Stationed in the historic town of New Ulm, MN, Schell’s has weathered the storms of Prohibition and today’s ever-changing craft beer market thanks to staples like Grain Belt Premium. But it’s one of its seasonals that often gets the most attention due to the festival that celebrates it. First started in 1987, Schell’s Bock Fest celebration is an event as rich in tradition as the brewery itself. Here’s what you need to know about the event, which takes place on March 2, 2019 from 11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at Schell’s Brewing Company.
If you read my Ultimate 6er | Snowed-In in Michigan, you would remember that, “from November through March, I have learned to always be prepared by stocking our home with the essentials: a space heater, frozen pizzas and, of course, a few beers to keep us warm and cozy on this snowy day,” so when Polar Vortex 2019 hit, my husband and I were ready to face it. One of the craft beers we picked up along the way to try was Lost Minds (7% ABV), a tart IPA from Brewery Vivant in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
My wife and I recently reached our milestone of traveling to all 50 states, ensuring we visit the local brewery in each of the places that we visit. While I am an avid meat eater, my wife is vegetarian. So, the places we choose to eat during our travels had to be well researched in advance to ensure they have a vegetarian menu that met the expectations of my wife, who can be quite a picky eater. Luckily, nowadays, that isn’t hard. Many breweries and brewpubs offer at least one vegetarian option on their menu, to various degrees of success and creativity.
One of my favorite holiday traditions is driving around looking at lights. When I was a kid, my family would pack into the car and take the longest route possible between my aunt’s and our house to look at Christmas lights. Even in high school, my friends and I would drive around looking for those homes whose merry-making bordered on deranged. Now that I’m older, I still take the Christmas light tour after dinner. Short’s Brewing Company, following in the Christmas tradition, released an American sour ale to highlight the raucous displays that have become as much a part of the holidays as Santa and presents.
I admit, I rage-bought a beer. I bought Pipeworks Brewing Pothole City because of the name. I didn’t even know what style it was, but I knew I wanted it. Nonetheless, the beer — an Imperial Stout — proved to be just as good as the name.
Like many of Cleveland’s newer craft beer bastions, Platform Beer Co. is attuned to the desires of beer connoisseurs and consumers. They have tackled many popular varieties from New England IPAs to saisons and goses. Platform is willing to experiment and re-evaluate their styles, releasing many offerings throughout Ohio, sometimes for a limited time (like their Small Batch IPA series, for example). Whenever I enter a local supermarket, I’m amazed by how prolific they have become. Still, some of their tried-and-true mainstays are what keep me coming back. One of Platform Beer Co.’s seasonals, High Brow Barista, is a particular favorite of mine.
In the summer of 2017, Whiner Beer Co. co-founders Ria Neri and Brian Taylor built a coolship using hand-picked steel and repurposed wood. The fermentation vessel is located next to the farm their brewery sits on in the South Side of Chicago.
This past weekend, Navy Pier’s Aon Grand Ballroom once again hosted the 7th Annual Cider Summit in Chicago, welcoming thousands of cider enthusiasts from around the Midwest as they enjoyed over 150 ciders from producers around the country and the world.
What comes to mind when you picture a flagship? Now think a bit harder and get past the Boston Lager, Fat Tire, and each of the IPAs available nationwide. What are the standard flagships available are your local favorite breweries? My guess is you are thinking of several more IPAs ranging from extra hoppy to sessionable, a few more pale ales, and maybe, maybe a stout here or there.
In honor of National Pizza Day on February 9, I am overjoyed to be writing about two of my favorite things: craft beer and pizza. Seriously–is there anything better than taking a bite of a hot, tantalizing slice of your favorite pizza and chasing it with a sip of a cold IPA or a refreshing pale ale? Just thinking about it makes my stomach rumble and my mouth begin to water.
In our explorations of Michigan’s craft brewery scene, my husband and I have tasted a lot of amazing food paired with some exceptional beer. However, nothing seems to top the beer and pizza combination for us, and we find ourselves returning to some of our favorite Michigan breweries again and again simply to indulge ourselves in this dynamic duo. If you don’t have a location to celebrate National Pizza Day already chosen, here are my recommendations for the best of Michigan’s craft beer and pizza scene to inspire you. Maybe we will see you there!