Saturday, July 27, 2013

An All Day Brew Becomes All Year - We Celebrate

Photo: Founders Website
One of my favorite new discoveries here in SC is this All Day IPA, appropriately named because of the 4.7% ABV. Clearly a session beer, I was very surprised upon first taste at the hop intensity and full bodied flavor... certainly no compromises were made with this beer. I suspect there is a trend developing to offer lower gravity IPAs (which are notable for versions Double, even Triple) so that I can have more than one and still get something accomplished for the day.

The first version I had, on draft, was announced as a Seasonal, probably for the Summer activities, but with this new announcement, I can expect to have it year round. And I will.

I have since tried the 12 oz bottle version and enjoyed it equally. I'm told that there will also be a canned version next month. In the spirit of pure research, I'll give that version a try as well and report back.

A quote from Founders' website:

"The beer you’ve been waiting for. Keeps your taste satisfied while keeping your senses sharp. An all-day IPA naturally brewed with a complex array of malts, grains and hops. Balanced for optimal aromatics and a clean finish. The perfect reward for an honest day’s work and the ultimate companion to celebrate life’s simple pleasures."

Friday, July 19, 2013

Growler Station Hosts Red Brick - Imbibing Ensues

Red Brick Brewing was the guest at last night's Meet The Brewer party at The Growler Station and Beer Ambassador Will Palmer did an exemplary job of educating and pouring.
Proof is in the photos:

Will poured these four offerings:

Amber Ale
American IPA

One of their signature brews, usually a seasonal


Tasting ensued.
How many fingers?

Participants enjoyed Will's presentation skills, or was it the generous pours?
Ethan Mullis and Katie Frick joined me in my choice of the Black Eye Rye as the favorite.

New Interviews With Greenville Brewmasters

Very fun and educational morning spent talking with two of Greenville's most influential brewmasters, Will McCameron of Brewery 85 (which isn't actually brewing yet) and, Don Richardson, brewmaster and co-owner of Quest Brewing which just held their grand opening last Saturday, July 13th. Transcribing the audio will take a day or so before I can pass along what I learned, but I'll be posting it soon. Stay Tuned!

Will chose this location to chat, the brewery's location is still officially undisclosed

Don looks like a proud Papa, don't you think?
Check back early and often for the updated stories.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Doors Now Open at Quest Brewing

This past Saturday saw a lot to celebrate in the craft beer world and nothing bigger than Quest Brewing opening its tasting room doors to an eager public.

First timers got to try Quest's four beers on tap (for a modest fee) and to inspect the brand new facility. All this, plus food trucks and live music.

Even tho a rain shower came thru late in the afternoon, beer lovers refused to have their spirits dampened (ahem!) and made it thru the lines to indulge their craft brew craving.

Some photos of the event before I had to shelter the camera from the rain:

Lines were long all day, sure sign of a successful opening!

People were patient but eager to get their first taste, in many cases.

Tasting room scene; more crowds and what appears to be several people heading back for more.

Fermentors filled with the next batches of brew.

Did I mention the music?

Production begins behind the stage.

Darby Wilcox was a real crowd-pleaser, and there was another band to follow her.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Lesson in Growling, uh, Growlers

Passed by this business yesterday, The Growler Station on Augusta Road, here in Greenville and, having never visited it before, stopped in to see what new in the growler filling station world.

Glad I did, cause I learned a lot: a new method of filling and a new type of screwtop that will keep the beer fresher, longer.

In addition, they have an enormous selection of draft beers, as well as a significant bottle library. From their list, I chose these three faves of mine to use as examples:

(All pics from their respective web sites)

Quite a line up! Big special event this Thursday, Red Brick does a tasting event with several of their brews on tap, so to speak. Catch me there!!

"Big John" demonstrating the filling technique.

Celebrating the 15th at Thomas Creek Brewery

Saturday was actually the 13th, but we were joining the 15th Anniversary Party at Thomas Creek in Greenville:

Casting a leery eye at the clouds overhead, we arrived early and headed for the wrist band station.

When the first opportunity to snag a Class Five IPA presented itself, I took it.... at one of three pouring stations (plus the cask tasting table).

Inside, there was beer, live music and camaraderie and I have the pics to prove it:

Soul Stew was the first band to play.

Beer and Music Fans

Pouring station #2, with eager beer lovers

Beer buds: Weston, Whit (TC staff) and Nick, blogger at Blog.Write.Repeat
Ladies who love beer and music

Soul Stew with a familiar face on drums

Isn't Josh McGee supposed to be making beer?

Thomas Creek co-founder Bill Davis enjoys hearing from fans.
Brewmaster Tom Davis listens gentlemanly to an appreciative beer lover.
"Do you think this beer makes my eyes blue?"
Enforcing new laws about the amount of beer the brewery can now sell to one person

Pouring the cask samples. Hooded cask is the mango infused IPA, waiting for more settling.

Meanwhile, outside the crowd is growing and so is the rumbling in my tummy, so it's time to explore the food options:

One of two trucks that braved the forecast rain.
Roast beef sammich sounds good and, what's that, a Blueberry Beer Cupcake?

Do I spot a pretzel necklace? Nice touch.

Ken, Glenda, and Jennifer toast the occasion with silos looking on.

Rare sight: Beer blogger taking a break. Red Ale and beef sammich is a tasty pairing.
Meanwhile, back at the cask table....

Waiting continues for the yeast to settle down so the cask can be tapped.
Success! The pouring begins!

I'm having a chat about the mango infusion with Bill (who admits that the Doppelbock is his favorite).
The rain held off while I was there and allowed the celebrants plenty of time to sit, sip and relax (tho I think chairs would have helped this couple:

Before I end this post, I want to take the opportunity to offer my personal congratulations to Tom and Bill and all the other great people at Thomas Creek for surviving 15 years and for making my task of writing about the craft beer world so much fun and rewarding.