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#ChicagoCraftBeer Archives – Page 2 of 9 – PorchDrinking.com

Lo Rez Brewing | El Paseo Pale Ale

November 6, 2020 |

Why do people love craft beer? You could narrow it down to a few major factors: Quality ingredients, community support and promoting a local economy. Those reasons are why people gravitate to craft beer, to be a part of something bigger. If any beer can hold all of that under its belt, it’s El Paseo Pale Ale from south side Chicago-based Lo Rez Brewing. Read More

Phase Three Brewing to Deliver Halloween Beer Bag to Limited Areas

October 27, 2020 |

If this year’s Halloween has you bummed, Phase Three Brewery in Lake Zurich, IL is here to cheer you up! This year to spread Halloween cheer, Phase Three is making local deliveries to limited Chicagoland zip codes in the form of Trick or Treat beer bags. This might be beer fans’ last chance to get Phase Three’s popular Bushel of Apples. Order yours before it’s gone! Read More

What We’re Drinking | October 23, 2020

October 23, 2020 |

Just when I thought fall weather and championships were coming to Georgia, I was let down. Again. It’s been 80 degrees on average and the Atlanta Braves are back home from the playoffs. Alas, that’s how it goes sometimes. This week seemed to be a little more relaxing for my counterparts as you’ll see from the nature views to the cozy autumn vibes. Everyone is busy now more than ever, and with the holidays approaching fast, let’s do our best to slow it down. In the meantime, here is What We’re Drinking. 

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Halloween Beer Treat | Spiteful Brewing Mrs. O’Leary’s Chocolate Stout

October 23, 2020 |

The famous Chicago Fire began on October 8, 1871, in a barn owned by Catherine and Patrick O’Leary. The city went ablaze for 36 hours, destroying 18,000 buildings and leaving 100,000 Chicagoans homeless. A frightful October story, to say the least! But, Spiteful Brewing has taken that story, mixed it with some cow-blaming folklore and turned into a sweet Halloween treat: Mrs. O’Leary’s Chocolate Stout.

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Chicagoland’s The Open Bottle Expanding to Lockport, Illinois

October 19, 2020 |

The Open Bottle craft beer shop and taproom in Tinley Park, Illinois, has not only endured the challenges presented by the COVID-19 outbreak but proved successful enough to advance its pre-pandemic plans for opening a second location. This November, work will begin on its second location (a retail-ready store) in Lockport, Illinois, located near the intersection of I-355 and 159th Street.

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Maplewood Brewing & Distilling | Festbier & Fest Whiskey

October 8, 2020 |

Maplewood Brewing & Distilling in Chicago, IL offered a dual homage to Bavaria this year with Festbier and Fest Whiskey, demonstrating its prowess in both realms of the imbibe world. Though Maplewood may have added distilling to its repertoire after opening its lauded brewery, creating spirits has always been part of the plan. Indeed, in 2016, Ari Megalis, co-founder and distiller, commented to PorchDrinking.com: “When we started, we almost considered only distilling, but it obviously takes some time before you can get your product on the market. But we love beer, and we ended up doing that, too. It worked out great because now we can do a lot of things with it.”

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GABF Passport | Illinois Breweries

September 21, 2020 |

It’s tempting to bemoan the fact that the industry remains in a lengthy pandemic-induced pivot. However, it’s time to start focusing on what is instead of what isn’t happening. For this year’s Great American Beer Festival (GABF), beer drinkers will have a chance to purchase a GABF Passport that gives them access to a host of good deals (an idea similar to Chicago and Illinois Craft Beer Weeks held in previous years). One can purchase the $20 GABF Passport and start enjoying brewery deals October 1 through October 18. As well, the passport gives beer drinkers an opportunity to attend (view) the star-studded Virtual GABF Festival (October 16-17) (which includes the awards ceremony).

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Brewery Showcase | Suburban Chicago’s Roaring Table Brewing Company

September 4, 2020 |

When Roaring Table Brewery won the 2020 USA Today Readers’ Choice “Best New Brewery” award, it didn’t come because the brewery engaged heavily in a marketing strategies, nor did it come from chasing trends or a producing a series of sexy releases. Beth May and Lane Fearing, married couple and founders of Roaring Table Brewing, created a brewery that at its heart and soul is a neighborhood tavern or pub that just happens to serve some of the best beer in town.

“Beer is more than just a drink; it’s an experience,” said Lane, who serves as Roaring Table head brewer.

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Alternative Beverages | Hard Sodas and Micheladas at Chicago’s District Brew Yards

September 3, 2020 |

It’s certainly well-known that there’s been an explosion of breweries and distilleries offering alternative beverages such as hard seltzers, ready-to-drink cocktails, hard sodas, and malt-based fruited drinks the past few years—and COVID19 has helped boost that category. Craft breweries have not been shy in cashing in on that trend, and finding their patrons to be quite receptive to their efforts. Two examples of how diverse that trend has evolved comes from Chicago’s Burnt City Brewing and Casa Humilde, two of the four breweries that make up the city’s unique District Brew Yards. They now offer their patrons a hard soda and a michelada-inspired beverage.

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Whiner Beer | Bleu Tub

August 31, 2020 |

Seasonal beers are bittersweet. While they often use fresh, quality ingredients and are perfect for the time of year, it also means you only get to drink them for a limited time. Whiner Beer, a brewery on Chicago’s Southside, specializes in barrel-aged beer inspired by Belgium and French practices and has a few seasonal beers their patrons look forward to throughout the year. 

Rifting off their permanent Saison LeTub, Bleu Tub is a barrel-aged Saison brewed with blueberries and is only available for half the year. With a dusty purple-ish hue and foamy head, the beer gives off scents of citrus, florals and it perks the nose up. With a smell that is clean, refreshing and inviting, Bleu Tub provides the perfect balance of comfort and excitement.

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Planning the Perfect Craft Beer Day Trip to the Chicago Suburbs

August 12, 2020 |

The sheer number of breweries within Chicago limits would lead you to believe you would never need to leave the city to get your craft beer fix. While this is technically true, there are many Chicagoland suburbs that have great breweries that, unless they distribute to the city, Chicagoans will miss out on. Read More

What We’re Drinking | July 30, 2020

July 31, 2020 |

August is around the corner, and for many of you that likely means the end of summer and those wonderful autumn days are approaching. That is very much not the case here in Georgia. Things are looking up, though. Well kind of. There still continue to be many highs and lows of 2020 as sports are back, but conversations about whether or not and how to reopen schools, breweries and public spaces remain. Civil Rights leader and legend John Lewis passed away this week, leaving a legacy of pressing towards equality and continuing the narrative of fighting for civil and human rights. Rest in peace, Mr. Lewis. To celebrate getting through the week, here is What We’re Drinking.

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ALULU Brewery and Pub | Aldona

July 14, 2020 |

With a classic golden yellow tone, ALULU Brewery and Pub’s Aldona seems unassuming at first glance. A low head and the slightly transparent body leads a drinker to believe that the farmhouse ale may be simple, but the pint is … Read More

First Taste | Imperial Oak Brewing 2020 Quiet Giant Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout

June 17, 2020 |

Pure barrel flavoring. No extracts. No syrups. No sugar bombs. The Imperial Oak Brewing Quiet Giant (strong) Barrel-Aged American Imperial Stout series, now in its sixth year, celebrates the artistry of barrel-aging in its purest form.

Yes, there are varieties with adjuncts, but only as complementary flavors. “Why put a beer in a barrel for a year and then completely cover it up? That’s why the two-year [BBA] is still my personal favorite. But, I do like our variants. They aren’t going to knock you in the face. That’s not our thing. None of them are going to be a chocolate bomb, coconut bomb..that type of terminology. I like adjuncts. But, I want it to be subtle and complement the beer,” said Brett Semenske co-owner and brewer.

Quiet Giant arrives each year for its anniversary, which this year enjoys the theme: Six years, Six Feet Apart (details can be found at the end of this story). The party slogan speaks to the challenges presented to breweries in 2020 by the COVID-19 pandemic. But, Illinois’ case numbers are declining, patios are open and the beer remains consistent as ever. Going forward, most can expect five variants to arrive each May (this year in June due to the COVID-19 lockdown), with more two-year BBA for 2021.  However, this year, Imperial Oak also has a one-time special beer from its Savage Oak room, offered in bottles.

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Suburban Chicago Breweries Adjust to Operating During a Pandemic

June 2, 2020 |

On Friday, May 29, the full COVID-19 lockdown came to an end for numerous breweries across suburban Chicago, as long as they could offer outdoor seating and follow social distancing protocols (The city proper would have to wait a little longer). The questions were: How would breweries adjust to operating during a pandemic and would beer drinkers comply and behave?

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Ultimate 6er | Bon Appetit Chefs Paired with Beers

May 27, 2020 |

There is one universal truth in this world: the Bon Appetit YouTube channel is perfect. From Claire Saffitz attempting to recreate your favorite snack foods to Brad Leone’s chaotic fermentation process, the chefs at Bon Appetit have become minor celebrities. What better way to honor the hours spent in quarantine binging their videos than to pair each chef with a beer? So, next time you press play on Chris Morocco recreating Guy Fieri’s trash can nachos, make sure you have the perfect beer in hand.

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Marz Community Brewing Co. | Duchess De Bridgeport

May 22, 2020 |

duch·ess
/ˈdəCHəs/
Noun
a woman holding a rank equivalent to a duke in her own right.

If you’ve ever spent time in the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago, you’ve probably ventured into Maria’s Packaged Goods and Community Bar. Taken over by Maria Marszewski in 1987, the combination liquor store/bar has become a staple for the area and thus, the neighborhood dubbed her the Duchess of Bridgeport. Keeping it in the family, her son Ed Marszewski started Marz Community Brewing Company in 2013. Today, Marz pays homage to Maria with their take on a Flanders Red Ale, named for her likeliness, with Duchess De Bridgeport.

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3 Floyds Brewpub to Remain Closed Indefinitely

May 21, 2020 |

Zombie Dust, Gumball Head, Alpha King and the rest of the 3 Floyds lineup of beers will still be available to-go from the brewery in Munster, IN. But, the ability to sit down and have a drink or a bite to eat won’t be around for the foreseeable future; the 3 Floyds Brewpub is closed indefinitely. 

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Chicago-Area Breweries and Bottle Shop Host Beer Hunt 2020

May 16, 2020 |

Illinois Craft Beer Week my be postponed due to the COVID19 lockdown, but that’s not stopping six suburban-Chicago breweries and one bottle shop from celebrating craft week in spirit. Together, they have put together the 0th Annual Suburban Beer Hunt. From May 15 to May 30, beer fans can solve a series of puzzles that will take them on a to-go journey to six breweries and one bottle shop located in Chicago’s western suburbs. If they can solve each puzzle correctly, and in the correct order, prizes await the participants.

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Ultimate 6er | Netflix & Quarantine?

May 13, 2020 |

With many states still closed and stay-at-home orders extended through at least the end of May, most people have a lot of time on their hands. What better way to spend that free time than drinking beers and re-binge watching all your old favorite shows. These six beers are the ones you’ll be wanting to pair with some of the most popular series on Netflix. Read More