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Dec 18, 2017
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Posts Tagged ‘St. Louis beer’

Wellbeing Brewing Co. launches St. Louis’ first nonalcoholic brewery

Monday, November 27th, 2017

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St. Louis has long been a center for innovation in beer, and now there’s another to add to the extensive list: nonalcoholic craft beer. Wellbeing Brewing Co., a new brewery that specializes in NA beers, aims to have its wares on area shelves by Jan. 2, as reported by the Post-Dispatch.

Husband-and-wife team Jeff Stevens and Genevieve Barlow started Wellbeing, one of the country’s two breweries dedicated to solely brewing nonalcoholic beers, earlier this year. Although he has an extensive background in marketing beer and spirits at companies such as Momentum Worldwide, Stevens stopped drinking alcohol when he was 24.

“I went to tastings, had to write beer copy, knew a lot about the brewing process and how all kinds of beers around the world were brewed, but never got to drink any of it,” he said.

Stevens said he always looked for booze-free options when he went out and often came up short. Then about a year ago, he was in London with some coworkers who showed him how popular nonalcoholic beers were becoming in Europe. The experience inspired him to try his hand at brewing his own version.

“The market [in the U.S.] isn’t quite there yet, but I think all the signs point that way,” Stevens said. “I think bars and restaurants are going to have to give people who don’t drink alcohol just as good of an experience as those who do and offer just as many choices, versus just a Diet Coke or a coffee.”

Currently, Wellbeing contract brews through O’Fallon Brewery to produce Wellbeing’s first release, Heavenly Body Golden Wheat, a dry, crisp wheat beer. Next up is Hellraiser Dark Amber, available Feb. 1, which Stevens described as pale ale-like with more of a hoppy characteristic. He said future offerings will include a stout and a Radler. The beers will initially be sold in bottles with cans and kegs following later next year.

Stevens said he’s content to brew at O’Fallon while he judges the response to his beers. “We should be good [at O’Fallon] for a couple of years,” he said.

He said Whole Foods in Brentwood and Fields Foods have expressed interest in stocking the beer come January, and Tapped in Maplewood has committed to putting Wellbeing on tap when kegs are available.

Photo courtesy of Wellbeing Brewing

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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3 can’t-miss beers at the Brewers Guild Halloween Party

Friday, October 27th, 2017

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It finally feels like fall, Halloween decorations adorn the streets of Lafayette Square and we’re stuffing our faces with fun-sized candy bars. That means it’s time for ghosts, goblins and beer drinkers to unite once again for the annual St. Louis Brewers Guild Halloween Party.

Snag your tickets online and head to Lafayette Park this Saturday, Oct. 28 from 1 to 5 p.m. in your classiest Halloween costumes. You’ll enjoy some of the sudsiest the local craft beer scene has to offer. Don’t miss these brews for a spooky good time.

1. 2nd Shift El Gato Negro (7.6-percent) is the cat-worshipping brewery’s ode to Halloween. If you are a fan of El Gato Grande, then go “getchyasum” of this delicious full-bodied black IPA. The hop profile is the same, but the more heavily roasted, darker malt bill creates a beautiful bittersweet chocolate aroma and flavor that pairs perfectly with the resin, citrus and spice notes coming from the Citra, Amarillo and Columbus hops.

2. Third Wheel Imperial Oktoberfest (7.4-percent) is the perfect complement to this chilly fall weather. A touch heavier than most Oktoberfest-style offerings, this medium-bodied, malt-forward original from brewer Abbey Spencer and company will keep those toes warm. Caramel malt, earth and cereal notes drive a palate that finishes with just a touch of biscuity malt sweetness and boozy astringency.

3. 4 Hands Tiki Chocolate Milk Stout (5.5-percent ABV) is probably the greatest of the 4 Hands’ Chocolate Milk Stout family. Coffee, chocolate and coconut are at the forefront in this, dare I say it, Mounds Bar-esque adult beverage. You know, because sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don’t. It’s deliciously sweet and medium-bodied with aromatics dominated by coconut and chocolate and balanced on the back with a lingering dark chocolate and coffee bitterness.

Photo courtesy of St. Louis Brewers Guild

Katie Herrera is an account manager at Craft Republic and contributor to Sauce Magazine.

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DTWE: Love it or hate it – pumpkin beer season is back

Friday, October 13th, 2017

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Leaves are turning and a slight chill has actually embraced the Midwest. Though we’re in for some fluctuating temperatures this weekend, the beer scene in St. Louis has been overwhelmingly autumnal this month – pumpkin beers are everywhere. However polarizing this style may be, there is no denying the creativity and diversity across this spiced beer spectrum.

1. Schlafly Pumpkin Ale
This 8-percent beauty –arguably the most sought-after local pumpkin beer in the city – just brought home a silver medal at the Great American Beer Festival last weekend. It’s truly a pumpkin pie in a glass with a rich sweetness that embraces spicy undertones of flavor dominated by clove, nutmeg and cinnamon.
Schlafly Tap Room and Schlafly Bottleworks, schlafly.com

2. Crown Valley Brewing Pumpkin Cider
21st Street Brewers Bar hosts its Pumpkin Beerfest all month, showcasing a pumpkin beer each Friday in October. Tonight, Oct. 13, 21st Street shines the spotlight on Crown Valley Pumpkin Cider. Sweet, spice and everything nice, this 5-percent cider is stacked full of ripe juicy apple and pumpkin bound together with balancing notes of allspice and pumpkin pie spice.
21st Street Brewers Bar, 21stbrew.com

3. Nebraska Brewing Wick for Brains
This seasonal amber ale is reminiscent of walking through a pumpkin patch in the middle of a fall afternoon. Soft fruit, melon and spice dominate the nose, while ripe, fresh pumpkin, grain and nuances of clove and nutmeg embrace the palate. On the subtler side for sweetness, this easy 6-percent drinker finishes a bit drier than most.
Randall’s Wine & Spirits, shoprandalls.com

 

Katie Herrera is a contributor to Sauce Magazine and account manager at Craft Republic. 

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Four STL breweries medal at Great American Beer Festival

Tuesday, October 10th, 2017

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 { from left, Side Project bartender Megan Knaus, co-owner and brewer Cory King and brewer Tommy Manning; Perennial Artisan Ales co-owner Phil Wymore and brewer Chris Kinast } 

 

The St. Louis craft beer scene continues to be recognized at the national level. Four area breweries earned medals at this year’s Great American Beer Festival last weekend, Oct. 5 to Oct. 7, in Denver. GABF is one of the craft brewing industry’s largest annual events.

Perennial Artisan Ales took home two medals: a silver in the wood- and barrel-aged strong stout category for Maman 2017, and Perennial also took a bronze in the Belgian- and French-style ale category for Working Title. It’s a familiar feeling for the South City brewery; Perennial has picked up five other GABF honors, including a gold for its Savant Blanc in 2015.

“There were over 2,000 breweries that entered beers in the competition,” said Perennial co-owner Phil Wymore. “It’s a great honor, and St. Louis was really well represented.”

 

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{ Schalfly brand specialist Wil Rogers }

 

Charleville Brewing Co. garnered its second GABF win: a bronze medal for its Barrel-Aged Barleywine in the wood- and barrel-aged strong beer category. Charleville director of operations Tait Russell did not return requests for comment. Schlafly’s Pumpkin Ale won a silver medal in the pumpkin/squash beer or pumpkin spice beer category. This is the first GABF win the brewery.

“I think it’s a big deal for anyone who wins a medal there,” said Schlafly founding brewer Stephen Hale. “I would say collectively we’re feeling very good about it. “

Side Project Brewing’s Blended 2017 was awarded a silver medal in the Belgian-style lambic or sour ale category. It was also the first GABF honor for Side Project.

“The GABF is the largest U.S. competition,” said Side Project co-owner Cory King. “To be recognized for pretty much our bread and butter was really cool. We knew there’s be some serious competition in that category, and for ours to take second was pretty awesome.”

Photos courtesy of Perennial Artisan Ales and Schlafly 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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Civil Life will expand brewery, tasting room in 2018

Monday, October 9th, 2017

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Civil Life Brewing Co. is poised to expand its operations. As reported by NextStl, owner Jake Hafner has announced plans to build an additional facility next door.

As The Scoop reported in October 2016, Hafner purchased the former auto body shop last year with the intent to tear it down, though he wasn’t sure what he’d do with the land at the time.

A year later, Hafner’s plans have evolved. He said the entire project will include two new bars, a canning facility and a small retail space, along with improvements to the existing Civil Life location. The surrounding property will also include new sidewalks, curbs and streetlights. The current Civil Life location will remain open during construction.

Hafner said demolition of the structure should take place in April or May 2018, and he’s still determining how much of the expansion project to tackle at once. If he decides to start with the canning facility, Hafner said it could be completed as early as fall 2018. The entire expansion will take at least nine months.

“We know we’re doing something, we’re just not sure if we can afford to do the whole project at one time,” he said. “Whether or not we do the whole project or we phase it in – that’s the decision to be made.”

Photo by Jonathan Gayman

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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First Look: Saint Louis Hop Shop on Cherokee Street

Thursday, October 5th, 2017

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After being closed for nearly a month, Saint Louis Hop Shop recently reopened at its new location 2600 Cherokee St., offering a larger selection of beverages for craft beer connoisseurs and beginners alike.

At the corner of Jefferson Avenue and Cherokee Street, the 1,500-square-foot storefront is a few doors down from its former address at 2606 Cherokee St., but it gives co-owners and brothers Justin Harris and Ryan Griffin nearly double the space to grow.

“[The other space] was small and we could see that we needed more room,” Harris said. “We really liked what we developed over there, and the goal is to bring that same formula over here and expand on it.”

The new location offers increased refrigeration and more shelving for beer, apparel and glassware. Additionally, a larger variety of ciders, spirits and imports, including more Belgium and lambic options, will be available. The new Hop Shop also features a larger bar area with six rotating taps. Harris said guests can expect a different brew every seven to 10 days.

“We do a lot of sixth barrels, so that gives us the flexibility to constantly bring in new stuff,” Harris said.

Brews currently on top include Dogfish Head Lupu-Luau Coconut IPA, Modern Brewery Citrapolicious, Ace Pineapple Cider, Prairie Artisan Ale Birthday Bomb, Urban Chestnut O-Katz and 4 Hands Chocolate Milk Stout.

With more space, Harris and Griffin also plan to host monthly events and weekly tastings through October. “It gives people a chance to come in and try some seasonal stuff before having to purchase it,” Harris said.

Saint Louis Hop Shop hosts a grand reopening this Saturday, Oct. 7 from noon to 10 p.m. The new location is open Monday through Thursday from noon to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday noon to 10 p.m., and Sunday noon to 6 p.m. Here’s a First Look at what to expect from Hop Shop’s new home:

 

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Photos by Caitlin Lally 

Caitlin Lally is a contributor to Sauce Magazine. 

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First Look: Earthbound Beer on Cherokee Street

Thursday, September 21st, 2017

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At long last, Earthbound Beer’s new home is ready to welcome customers. The brewery and tasting room at 2724 Cherokee St., opens Saturday, Sept. 23.

The massive 2,500-square foot tasting room has been a project two years in the making. As The Scoop reported in September 2015, co-owners and brewers Stuart Keating, Rebecca Schranz and Jeff Siddons announced they were moving from their flagship location down the street at 2710 Cherokee St. The space was less than 1,000 square feet and only allowed the brewers to make one beer at a time.

Eight old Earthbounds could fit into the new space that once housed part of Cherokee Street Brewing in the late 1800s. The tasting room seats around 80 on the first level and mezzanine, a feature designed by architecture and general contractor Nathan Dirnberger. The mezzanine appears to float above the tasting room thanks to railings made of tension wire and heavy-duty chains suspended from the 17-foot barrel ceilings.

Read more: Go underground at Earthbound Beer during construction

Behind the bar, 16 taps will pour Earthbound brews and a few guest taps, with another two nitro taps available. A small selection of spirits will be available (still no mixers or ice, the owners noted) with the potential for batch cocktails in the future. Earthbound patrons can now enjoy wine, too, with two reds, two whites and a rosé available by the glass.

Below the tasting room, a 7-barrel system will increase Earthbound’s production tenfold. The space also houses a canning line that will crank out 16-ounce four-packs of staple brews. Caves underneath neighbor 2720 Cherokee St. will allow for a barrel-aging program in the future.

As The Scoop reported in August, Vista Ramen chef-owner Chris Bork will helm the food program at Earthbound. The menu will feature smoked meats, sausages and sandwiches, though food won’t be available until November at the earliest.

Earthbound’s new location means new hours, too. It will be open Tuesday to Friday from 4 p.m. to midnight, Saturday from noon to midnight and Sunday from noon to 10 p.m. Here’s a first look at Earthbound Beer’s new home.

 

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Photos by Michelle Volansky 

Catherine Klene is managing editor, digital at Sauce Magazine. 

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Vista Ramen will helm kitchen at new Earthbound location

Tuesday, August 29th, 2017

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{ Vista Ramen chef-owner Chris Bork (center) } 

Earthbound Beer will partner with fellow Cherokee Street denizen Vista Ramen to run the kitchen for its new tasting room at 2724 Cherokee St. Instead of Vista’s namesake noodles, Vista Ramen chef-owner Chris Bork said bill of fare will feature smoked meats, sausages and sandwiches.

As The Scoop reported in September 2015, the folks at Earthbound Beer have slowly but surely been working to get their new location up and running. After several delays, Earthbound co-owner Stuart Keating said things look good for a September opening.

Now that the end is in sight, Keating and his partners’ thoughts turned toward food service for the new place. Rather than helm the kitchen themselves, they followed in the footsteps of other area tasting rooms like 4 Hands Brewing Co. and 2nd Shift Brewing, which have enlisted local favorites Peacemaker Lobster & Crab Co. and Guerrilla Street Food, respectively, to handle their food programs.

 

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{ the interior of the new Earthbound Beer location in May 2016 } 

 

“We obviously can’t do our food down there,” Bork said. “It’s too close — it’s less than a city block away. But the opportunity to work on a new project, and the opportunity to work with Earthbound, was attractive. Earthbound is a brewery that’s really trying to do some different things, which I definitely appreciate. And that’s what we’ll be trying to do with the food.”

Bork said Vista would serve as a commissary of sorts for the project initially, though some items will be prepared at Earthbound.

“I’m not trying to get into the barbecue business, but we will have a smoker (at Earthbound) and a lot of the food will see time in the smoker or be based out of it,” Bork said. He plans on doing a rotating selection of smoked meats, along with sausages and a selection of sandwiches.

“We’re thinking of trying out a mostly beef kielbasa and probably a straightforward bratwurst,” Bork said. “Also probably one rotating barbecue plate, depending on what’s available, a couple of small plates, one of which might be a smoked fish dip.”

Orders will be placed at the bar, and patrons will be given a buzzer that will notify them when the order is ready. To avoid confusion, Bork said the Earthbound project may get a new name to differentiate it from Vista Ramen. He said food service would start sometime after the brewery’s grand opening.

Bork photo by Carmen Troesser; Earthbound photo by Catherine Klene

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine.

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First Look: Good News Brewing in O’Fallon, Mo.

Friday, August 4th, 2017

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The St. Louis craft beer boom continues, and it’s finally starting to take root out west. Case in point: Good News Brewing Co., which opened a brewpub in mid-July at 330 Sonderen St., in O’Fallon, Missouri.

As The Scoop reported in January, co-owners Dan Tripp, Josh Miller and Matt Fair announced they would turn their homebrewing hobby into a full-time business venture.

Good News brews 10 different beers from a crisp Citra Wheat IPA to an earthy Smoked Cherrywood Wheat. The brewery utilizes a one-barrel system, so what’s on tap changes up often and beers must be enjoyed onsite (no growlers for now). Several guest taps are also available, and customers can try all of the offerings by the pint, 10-ounce glass or 4-ounce sampler.

The Good News folks are tightly focused on their mission of brewing beer, so the food menu is limited to a handful of rotating personal pizzas cooked in brick oven on a sourdough crust made daily in-house. No appetizers, no kid’s menu and no takeout. “We’re a brewery that makes pizza,” Tripp said.

Good News seats 44 inside, including bar seats and communal tables, and the covered, pet-friendly patio boasts 11 picnic tables for al fresco dining and imbibing.

Good News is open Wednesday and Thursday from 4 to 9 p.m., Friday from 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Take a first look at what to expect from O’Fallon’s newest brewery:

 

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Photos by Michelle Volansky 

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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First Look: Center Ice Brewery in Midtown

Friday, July 21st, 2017

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It’s blistering hot outside, but Center Ice Brewery is keeping things cool in Midtown. The hockey-themed brewery opened today, July 21 at 3126 Olive St., just a couple doors down from Pappy’s Smokehouse and Southern.

As The Scoop reported in August 2016, Center Ice is the brainchild of owner-brewer Steve Albers. “I’ve been playing hockey since I was a kiddo. It’s in my blood,” Albers said. “Breweries represent the brewer’s personality – and that’s me.”

The 5,000-square-foot brewery features reclaimed materials from the old St. Louis Arena – the wood bar and tables in the 2,000-square-foot main bar area used to make up the arena’s roof, and the old penalty box door can be found as a photo-op box adjacent to Center Ice’s brewing equipment. The brewing floor is separated from customers by a low rink wall, which also curves around a private event space that will accommodate 30 to 40 people and offers 10 private taps.

A long time homebrewer, Albers planned to open with three of his own brews along with supplemental taps from area breweries like Main & Mill and Charleville Brewing Co. Center Ice’s opening lineup includes Golden Contract (an American golden ale contract brewed with Charleville), Hop Shelf IPA (a West Coast-inspired IPA) and Off Season Saison (a light, summery example of the style).

Albers said he chose approachable styles to open, but plans on starting a berry series made with fresh fruit and other more unusual beers soon. “With so many beers out there, you should set yourself apart and make something exciting,” he said.

Center Ice is open Wednesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Here’s a first look at what to expect from St. Louis’ first hockey-themed brewery:

 

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Photos by Michelle Volansky 

Heather Hughes is managing editor, print at Sauce Magazine.

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