Ohio Beer Blog

Akron nonprofit teams up with Aqueduct Brewing

Wed, 11/26/2014 - 7:38am

An Akron nonprofit group that helps adults with advanced cancer has teamed up with Aqueduct Brewing Co. to produce two special fundraising beers.

Life Is Good No Matter What — that’s the name of the group — will offer the draft beers at its Holly Run on Dec. 6 at Lock 3 downtown. The 5K run/walk begins at 9 a.m. In addition to the 5K, there’s a Fun Run, live music, a pancake breakfast and visits with Santa.

It’s the group’s inaugural fundraising run in Akron. A Holly Run this month in Milan raised about $40,000.

Proving that you can have a sense of humor while dealing with cancer, one of the beers is called Life Is Good No Matter What Ales You. It’s a honey wit that comes in at 7.6 percent alcohol by volume.

The other is Life Is Good No Matter What Bucket List, a 6.5 percent amber. Proceeds, obviously, benefit the organization.

Troy Haslinger of Akron helped launch the nonprofit in 2012 after the death of his sister Holly, who lived in the Sandusky area and whose motto was "life is good no matter what."

The group pays for outings and trips for adults with advanced cancer in northern Ohio. It could be anything from a night out on the town to a visit to Disney World to a trip to a NASCAR race.

"There’s so much out there for kids, but there’s really nothing out there for adults," said Haslinger, 39, an account executive with Foundation Medicine. "We found with our organization that the adults never have an escape. Their life doesn’t stop with cancer."

The group — which has paid for 16 "escapes" so far and hopes to do 20 next year — wanted to come up with a cool way to raise money and decided beer was it. Haslinger said it was great working with Aqueduct and he hopes the beers eventually will be sold at local bars and restaurants.

Aqueduct co-owner and brewer Robert Hernandez said the brewery was happy to help out. "I see the value in what they are doing," he said.

Hernandez expected the beers to be on tap at the Akron brewery, 529 Grant St., after the run.

For more details on Life Is Good No Matter What or how to participate in the upcoming Holly Run, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Festivals Unlimited expands to Philadelphia

Tue, 11/25/2014 - 2:29pm

Festivals Unlimited, the Cincinnati-based company that puts on beer events in Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus and Pittsburgh, is expanding its brand to Philadelphia. The company announced it will host the Big Philly Beerfest on Jan. 9 and 10 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

"We saw an opportunity in Philadelphia, the No. 4 media market in the country, at their downtown Convention Center," organizer Craig Johnson said Tuesday (Nov. 25) in an email. "Since our Pittsburgh festivals have already given us extensive experience with the labyrinth that is the Pennsylvania alcohol regulations, we decided to pursue it."

Festivals Unlimited hopes to fill a festival void in the city. It also helped that SMG, which oversees convention centers in Columbus, Cleveland and Pittsburgh, manages the Philadelphia center, Johnson said.

"We are looking forward to working with a slew of breweries that are new to our festivals," he said. "Russian River, Allagash, Alesmith and many many more....  27 breweries in Greater Philly....and did we mention the fourth largest city in America. Eventually, we hope to foster relationships that will bring Ohio beer not available in PA to PA, and vice versa. We can dream right? It will certainly be a challenge to get the word out in a city this large, but we think long term it will be a great move for us. So ... if you're counting at home that will mean five festivals in five cities in seven weekends."

The company also has hired its first full-time employee not named Craig Johnson or Matt King or Natalia King. Festivals Unlimited hired Matthew Utter, the former head brewer at Christian Moerlein. His duties "will primarily include building relationships with all of the craft brewers, curating/building the beer lists and event maps, as well as coordinating the connoisseur sessions that we now have at every festival," Johnson said.

Here's the 2015 festival rundown for the company:

-- Inaugural Big Philly Beerfest, Pennsylvania Convention Center, Jan. 9-10.

--  Second annual Cleveland Winter Beerfest, Cleveland Convention Center, Jan. 16-17.

-- Fifth annual Columbus Winter Beerfest, Greater Columbus Convention Center, Jan. 30-31.

-- Eighth annual Cincy Winter Beerfest, Duke Energy Convention Center, Feb. 13-14.

-- Second annual Pittsburgh Winter Beerfest, David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Feb. 20-21.

-- Inaugural OTR Beer Festival, Washington Park (Outdoor), June 27. This is a smaller festival with the focus on Cincinnati-area brewers.

-- Third annual Pittsburgh Summer Beerfest, Stage AE/Promowest (Indoor/Outdoor), July 17-18.

-- Sixth annual Columbus Summer Beerfest, LC Pavilion/Promowest, mid-August. The exact date has yet to be determined.

-- Sixth annual Cincy Beerfest on Fountain Square, Fountain Square/5th Street (Outdoor), Sept. 11-12.

Categories: Beer News

Platform releases Oh, Snap Holiday Ale on Black Friday

Tue, 11/25/2014 - 9:40am

Platform Beer Co. will release the second brew made as part of its innovative incubator program on Black Friday. Oh, Snap Holiday Ale -- a 7 percent beer made with cinnamon and ginger -- will be tapped at 1 p.m. Friday. (Nov. 28).

"There's cinnamon and ginger on the nose, but as far as the flavor goes, it’s more subdued," said Kyle Roth, a South Euclid homebrewer and former beer blogger who has been training under Platform's 12-week apprenticeship program.

The Oh, Snap recipe was designed by Roth's brother Zac Roth and previously won a couple of gold medals in local homebrewing competitions. Kyle and Zac Roth, along with cousins Jared and Drew Opfer, plan to turn professional and open the Ferndock Brewing Co.

Roth is using the Platform program to gain valuable experience both brewing and learning the business side of the industry. Through the program, he was able to make two beers at Platform. Sandusky Pale Ale was released earlier. The last keg of Sandusky also will be tapped Friday, he said.

Roth joked that he doesn't think he'll ever fully graduate from the program, adding that there has been discussion about brewing another beer at Platform just to keep the Ferndock momentum going.

As far as the biggest lessons he learned, Roth cited the intense cleaning and sanitizing required. The program also has helped him connect with others in the industry, he said.

For more details about the Oh, Snap release, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Hold yer horses; Clydesdales staying, Budweiser says

Mon, 11/24/2014 - 7:54pm

Budweiser says it isn't cutting the famous Clydesdales from its holiday advertising. A Wall Street Journal story noted that the beer company is shifting its advertising to target 21- to 27-year-old beer drinkers and the Clydesdale were out for the holidays.

But not so fast, Budweiser said Monday.

"The story this morning may have left a wrong impression – the Budweiser Clydesdales will, in fact, be featured in next year’s Super Bowl advertising and are also a part of upcoming holiday responsible drinking advertising," Anheuser-Busch InBev said in a statement. "The Clydesdales play a strong role for the brand, representing Budweiser quality and care for more than 80 years. As icons of the brand — and relevant symbols of integrity, perfection and team spirit for all generations — they are important to the brand and our campaigns."

To read the Wall Street Journal story, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Brewnuts still alive in Samuel Adams American Dream competition

Mon, 11/24/2014 - 2:13pm

Brewnuts, a Cleveland business that marries craft beer with doughnuts, is moving on in the Samuel Adams American Dream competition. The company finished with the most online votes in the Pitch Room Wild Card Competition and now advances to the finals in New York City to compete for a $10,000 business grant, the brewery announced Monday. (Nov. 24)

Samuel Adams launched the American Dream program in 2008 in partnership with Accion, the nation’s leading nonprofit provider of small business capital and coaching. To date, it has provided more than $3 million in microloans to more than 375 small businesses nationwide, coached more than 4,000 entrepreneurs and helped create or retain more than 2,000 jobs.

To read the full news release, see below:


Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream and Entrepreneur Announce

Pitch Room Wild Card Winner

Cleveland-based Small Business Receives Most Online Votes

BOSTON ― November 24, 2014 –Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream and Entrepreneur Media announced today that Brewnuts has won the Pitch Room Wild Card Competition. The Cleveland-based small business will now advance to the New York City finals to compete for $10,000 business grant and extended mentoring from Samuel Adams.

Established by Shelley Fasulko and John Pippin in 2013, Brewnuts combines the co-founders two favorite things: doughnuts and craft beers. Made by hand, these decadent treats use the best possible ingredients including craft beers that are available in and around the Cleveland area. What’s resulted are high-quality, very fresh doughnuts that also reflect flavors of the season.

Hosted by Entrepreneur.com, the virtual Pitch Room Wild Card competition started November 3rd and invited entrepreneurs with a food or beverage product to upload a two-minute or less video of their best sales pitch. A panel of experts from Samuel Adams and Entrepreneur judged the videos based on criteria that included pitch quality, creativity, passion, and product viability.

The top 5-6 best video submissions, selected by the panel, were then posted to the Entrepreneur site, and the general public was invited to vote for their favorite. Because Brewnuts received the most votes for their sales pitch they were named the Wild Card winner, and will now receive a trip for two to participate in the Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream Pitch Room finals on December 4th. Held in New York City, the finals are the culmination of the overall Pitch Room Competition, which is designed to help entrepreneurs across the country perfect the art of the sales pitch.

At the finals, the Wild Card winner will compete with fellow small business owners from across the country who won in-person Pitch Room competitions in Chicago, Denver, Boston and New York. Each Pitch Room finalist will give their best two-minute sales pitch to a panel of expert judges including nationalretail buyers, an Entrepreneur editor, David Burke, American chef and restaurateur, as well asand Samuel Adams founder and brewer Jim Koch. The judges will then provide constructive feedback for each small business owner before choosing the best pitch, and the ultimate 2014 Pitch Room winner will be awarded a $10,000 business grant and extended mentoring from Samuel Adams.

About Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream

The Pitch Room Competition is part of Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream, a micro-lending and coaching program that provides a unique combination of access to capital and expert business advice for food, beverage, craft brewing, and hospitality small businesses. As an important extension of the program’s coaching and mentoring activities, the Pitch Room Competition has played a key role in helping small business owner’s better position and communicate about their products.

The Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream program was launched in 2008, in partnership with Accion, the nation’s leading nonprofit provider of small business capital and coaching. To date, it has provided more than $3 million in microloans to over 375 small businesses nationwide, coached more than 4,000 entrepreneurs and helped create or retain more than 2,000 jobs. To learn more, visit http://btad.samueladams.com/.

Categories: Beer News

Budweiser gives Clydesdales heave ho from holiday ads

Mon, 11/24/2014 - 11:58am

The Wall Street Journal reports that Budweiser is giving the heave ho to the Clydesdales -- at least when it comes to holiday advertising.

The horses have been a fixture in the beer company's holiday ad campaigns since 1987, but Budweiser has seen its market share dwindle. So Budweiser is shifting its advertising to target 21- to 27-year-olds, the newspaper says.

Instead of horses, "Budweiser will air spots featuring people in their 20s looking directly into the camera and calling out friends’ names as a narrator asks 'If you could grab a Bud with any of your friends these holidays, who would it be?'" the newspaper writes.

To read the full story, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Taft's Ale House welcomes first equipment delivery

Mon, 11/24/2014 - 10:54am

It’s moving in day at Taft’s Ale House. The yet-to-open Cincinnati brewery is getting eight custom-made DME bright tanks and a 10-barrel brewhouse delivered today. (See photos provided below.)

“It’s been a long road,” partner and brewer Kevin Moreland said about the equipment arriving. “I’m excited.”

The tanks and brewhouse are being hoisted by a crane through a second-floor window into the historic building — the former St. Paul’s German Evangelical Church in the city’s Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. Meanwhile, fermenters and other equipment will be delivered the week of Dec. 8.

Most bright tanks are short and stubby, but not the ones at Taft’s.

“I wanted some length to them so people could see them,” Moreland said. “We had these custom-made because I wanted to have some depth to them and have the aesthetic to go with our design.”

The goal is to start brewing by the end of January, he said, and opening the first week of April.

Categories: Beer News

Beer story sampler

Mon, 11/24/2014 - 8:44am

Here are some interesting beer stories, including many from around Ohio:

-- Cleveland.com reports on the new Forest City Brewery, which plans to open in the spring Cleveland's Tremont neighborhood. The site says the brewery will have both a 10-barrel and one-barrel system. To read the full story, click here.

-- WCPO reports on the opening of the new Blank Slate Brewing Co. taproom. "The taproom has eight taps featuring all of Blank Slate’s current beers," author Jesse Folk writes. "Fans can belly up to an expansive bar, or relax at several group tables or two-top tables. The two-top tables were converted from bourbon barrels that once held LaFollette’s barrel-aging projects." To read the full story, click here.

-- Drink Up Columbus reports on an ugly sweater party set for Dec. 6 at Zaftig Brewing Co. The event will feature the release of Zaftig’s Christmas Ale and Zaftig Bourbon Stout (ZBS). To read the full story, click here.

-- The Brew Professor offers a roundup of Cincinnati beer happenings. They include the Tap and Screw Brewery planning to serve its own beers beginning Dec. 11. To read the full report, click here.

-- The Toledo Blade reviews the book We Make Beer. "Elegantly crafted with a smooth mouthfeel, a medium body, containing hints of playfulness, strong scents of citrus and pine, and complemented by a strong finish," author Bob Cunningham writes. To read the full review, click here.

-- CSPnet.com reports on how Anheuser-Busch InBev is calling itself the underdog in the beer industry. "David Almeida isn’t shy about touting Anheuser-Busch’s strengths and position as the largest brewer of beer in the United States and around the world," author Steve Holtz writes. "At the same time, he positions A-B as an underdog in the industry, as a company that needs to fight and scramble to maintain its market position." To read the full story, click here.

-- Paste reports on the 33 best beers to have on Thanksgiving -- as suggested by the most respected brewers in the industry. Sam Calagione recommends Dogfish Head Olde School Barley Wine, while Ken Grossman suggests Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale. To read the full rundown, click here.

-- Men's Journal profiles Roderick Read, the brewmaster at the Anheuser-Busch InBev pilot brewery in St. Louis. “We're not even bonded to sell beer from this system," he says. "The mission here is to test raw materials, innovate new products, and teach future brewmasters how to brew." To read the full story, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Beer story sampler

Fri, 11/21/2014 - 2:10pm

Here are some interesting beer stories:

-- WMFD in Mansfield reports on the growing popularity of Phoenix Brewing Co. The TV station cites the brewery's Redemption IPA finishing third in the King of Ohio IPA challenge. To watch the report, click here.

-- Drink Up Columbus offers up some advice if you want to get into the beer industry. "Ground level experience helps," says Lydia Johnson, a field sales representative for Great Lakes Brewing Co. "If you’re working in a bar as the person who brings new product in and develops a menu, you’ll meet a lot of helpful industry folks." To read the full report, click here.

-- WCPO reports on the Growler House, a new growler shop planning to open Dec. 2 in Cincinnati. The shop will offer 30 rotating beers on tap at first. To read the full report, click here.

-- Cleveland.com is soliciting potential beer names for the new Forest City Brewery. To see the suggestions, click here.

-- MarketWatch reports that Anheuser-Busch InBev is cutting jobs in the U.S. "These are always difficult decisions, but are important in evolving our business and improving our competitiveness," Anheuser-Busch Vice President Jim Brickey says. To read the full report, click here.

-- The Los Angeles Times reports on six craft beer terms that every beer lover should know. They include bugs and wort. To read the full story, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Hoppin' Frog to release limited edition B.O.R.I.S.

Fri, 11/21/2014 - 8:55am

Hoppin' Frog Brewery will release a limited edition version of B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout on Black Friday. (Nov. 28) Extended Barrel-Aged BORIS #200 will be available starting at noon Nov. 28 exclusively at the brewery.

"We initially released B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout when we first opened our brewery's doors over eight years ago, and it instantly became our biggest seller," owner and brewer Fred Karm said in an email. "Now, to celebrate brewing B.O.R.I.S. batch #200, we have aged it in Kentucky Bourbon barrels for five times longer than normal to impart quite a substantial, over-the-top Bourbon character!"

The price is $15.99 for a 22-ounce bottle. There is a two-case limit.

The brewery also will host its third annual waffle breakfast at 10 a.m. Nov. 29. Head brewer Lee Gidley once again will break out his antique waffle irons and make waffles.

Categories: Beer News

Warped Wing and Esther Price team up for beer

Fri, 11/21/2014 - 8:29am

Warped Wing Brewing Co. and Esther Price Candies have collaborated to create a special holiday scotch ale using the Dayton candy company's caramels. The beer is called Esther's Lil Secret, which is 6.5 percent alcohol by volume.

"We are pleased to be working with another Dayton company using our hand-crafted caramel to create this special scotch ale," Esther vice president of operations Doug Dressman said in a prepared statement.

The two companies said they plan to collaborate on holiday beers again in the future.

Warped Wing will host a release party at 5 p.m. Dec. 4 for Esther's Lil Secret. Some of Esther Price’s candy also will be served. The beer will be available on draft only and will hit taverns, restaurants and select retail outlets the following week.

Categories: Beer News

Lucky Owl Brewing Co. coming to Geauga County

Thu, 11/20/2014 - 1:27pm

Geauga County is getting a second craft brewery.

Lucky Owl Brewing Co. is launching in Bainbridge Township with a four-barrel, custom-made brewing system. It hopes to have draft beer and 22-ounce bottles out in the market by the start of next year.

The production brewery is located in a residential area - it's starting out in a large heated garage - so there will be no Lucky Owl tasting room for right now.

"That's definitely a goal of ours down the road," partner and brewer Jeff Bradbury said about a taproom. "We'd love to be able to move into a different space. We're going to brew some beers, see how they fit with the taste of the community and people's response from them, and grow organically from there."

At first, Lucky Owl will have just a couple of draft accounts and its bottled beers will be available at Chuck's Fine Wines in Chagrin Falls.

The first beer will be an India pale ale, said Bradbury, 44, who has been a member of the Society of Northeast Ohio Brewers (SNOBS) homebrewing club in Cleveland for five years. He and his partners - Dave Demming, Dave Demming Jr. and Brian Rini - also are big fans of Belgian and farmhouse ales so Lucky Owl will be producing those styles.

And here's where the experimentation comes in.

"Part of each batch we're going to set aside and try different spice additions, different infusions or even souring and barrel aging," said Bradbury, who works as an IT manager at a local insurance company. "We'll be able to see how a single base recipes can become several different beers. Some of those will resonate and some of them obviously may not be good. We're going to experiment and learn as we go and try to refine our portfolio that way."

Bradbury, the Demmings and Rini opted to start their operation in Bainbridge because they all live in the area. There's also aren't many other breweries on the far east side of Cleveland and they believe they can fill that void in the area. The only other brewery in Geauga County is Chardon BrewWorks in Chardon.

The Lucky Owl name - the logo is of an owl - stems from a visit years ago to the Holden Arboretum.

"We spent probably a month coming up with different names and we had a couple of hundred," Bradbury said. "That name in particular resonated with us for several reasons."

For starters, it's fun and light-hearted. Plus, their spouses liked the idea of an owl. Then there was that trip years earlier to Holden Arboretum. Bradbury took his oldest daughter on an overnight stay there and an animal rescue group brought in injured animals to show the children.

"One of the animals that really captivated my daughter was an owl with an injured wing," he said. "We think back to that owl and how lucky it was."

Bradbury also is a partner with the Chagrin Beer Co., a contract brewery that has its beer made by Cellar Rats Brewery in Madison.

"It's an exciting time to be involved," he said. "It's a great vibrant community. We look forward being part of that and seeing how we contribute to it."

Categories: Beer News

Beer story sampler

Wed, 11/19/2014 - 8:48am

Here are some interesting beer stories:

-- WCPO reports that the proposed legislation designed to raise Ohio's ABV limit to 21 percent is languishing in Columbus. "The legislators said if the bill doesn’t make it off the floor and over to the Senate by the end of the week, it will likely have to be reintroduced in the next legislative session," Jesse Folk writes. To read the full report, click here.

-- The website Thrillist recommends eight breweries "in awesomely bizarre places." Two of them are in Ohio: Pinup and Pints in Dayton and Old Firehouse Brewery in Williamsburg. Pinup and Pints is a strip club brewery. Old Firehouse is, well, in an old firehouse. To read the full report, click here.

-- Sideswipe Coop Looter took home the top spot in the second annual Fantasy Ohio Beer League competition put on by the Ohio Beercast. Coop Looter took out Columbus Bodhi in the finals. To read about the competition, click here.

-- The Artful Pint reports on a major Christmas beer tap takeover at the World of Beer in Lakewood. The event will feature nearly 25 holiday brews. To read more, click here.

-- The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel profiles the MillerCoors pilot brewery where new recipes are deveoped. "This is our sandbox," Manny Manuele, director of technical innovation and development, says.To read the full report, click here.

-- Bon Appetit magazine reports on how breweries are adding salt to their beers. "As with cooking, sprinkling salt into beer helps flavors pop, rounds out rough edges, and adds depth," author Joshua Bernstein writes. "A salted beer should be nuanced." To read the full story, click here.

--  The Telegraph has put together a map breaking down per capita consumption around the world. The Czech Republic tops the list, followed by Germany, Austria, Estonia and Poland. "Of the top 10 countries with growing beer sales, seven were nations with a Muslim majority and included Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Indonesia and Iran, according to figures from Pew Research Centre," author Raziye Akkoc writes. To read the full report, click here.

-- Business Insider offers up 15 perfect holiday gifts for beer lovers. They include beer soap, a subscription to Draft magazine and the game Brewopoly. To read the full list, click here.

Categories: Beer News

The Woods to host meet-the-brewer event with Franklin Brewing

Wed, 11/19/2014 - 8:31am

The Woods Restaurant & Lounge in Rocky River will host a meet-the-brewer event with the Franklin Brewing Co. from 7 to 9 p.m. Dec. 1.

The event, called "A Brewer's Eve," will feature brewer Aaron Schickel and a discussion about craft beer. Franklin will serve its America's Gold, Richard's Pale Ale, Liberty Blonde, Milk Street Stout and Noel Spice. There also will be appetizers.

Tickets are $20. For more details, click here.

Categories: Beer News

Video: Northeast Ohio beer tour - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Tue, 11/18/2014 - 8:37am

The Akron Beacon Journal's Rick Armon and Northeast Ohio Media Group's Marc Bona visit Great Lakes Brewing Co. to try Christmas Ale.

Categories: Beer News

Video: Northeast Ohio beer tour - Buckeye Brewing

Tue, 11/18/2014 - 8:35am

The Akron Beacon Journal's Rick Armon and Northeast Ohio Media Group's Marc Bona visit Buckeye Brewing in Cleveland to try Christmas Girl.

Categories: Beer News

Video: Northeast Ohio beer tour - Hoppin' Frog

Tue, 11/18/2014 - 8:31am

The Akron Beacon Journal's Rick Armon and Marc Bona of Northeast Ohio Media Group visit Hoppin' Frog in Akron to try Frosted Frog.

Categories: Beer News

Video: Northeast Ohio beer tour - Fat Head's

Tue, 11/18/2014 - 8:28am

The Akron Beacon Journal's Rick Armon and Northeast Ohio Media Group's Marc Bona visit Fat Head's in North Olmstead to try Holly Jolly

Categories: Beer News

Video: Northeast Ohio beer tour - Thirsty Dog

Tue, 11/18/2014 - 8:25am

The Akron Beacon Journal's Rick Armon and Marc Bona from the Northeast Ohio Media Group visit Thirsty Dog in Akron to try 12 Dogs of Christmas Ale.

Categories: Beer News

Video: Northeast Ohio beer tour - Brew Kettle

Tue, 11/18/2014 - 8:22am

The Akron Beacon Journal's Rick Armon and Marc Bona of Northeast Ohio Media Group visit the Brew Kettle in Strongsville to try Winter Warmer.

Categories: Beer News