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Jun 22, 2017
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Posts Tagged ‘St. Louis cider’

The Scoop: Evan Hiatt tapped as cider master for Brick River Cider Co.

Tuesday, June 20th, 2017

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Local craft brewer Evan Hiatt has been tapped as cider master of the upcoming Brick River Cider Co. Hiatt was co-founder and brewmaster of Six Row Brewing Co., which closed in 2015, then served as brewmaster for Pappo’s Pizzeria & Brew Co., which took over the Six Row space and closed this spring.

As The Scoop reported in April, Brick River is rehabbing a former downtown firehouse at 2000 Washington Ave. and will be the first dedicated cidery in St. Louis.

“I had my eye on Evan for a while because he’s one of the few people who has winery experience in addition to beer experience,” said Brick River founder Russ John. “He worked several years at Les Bourgeois, one of the largest wineries in Missouri, so he has an understanding of how working with a natural product like fruit juice is a little different than brewing.”

Hiatt said he looked forward to combining both his beer and winemaking skills.

“Cider is nice because it’s a hybrid of beer and wine,” Hiatt said. “The technical side of it is all winemaking. You’re starting with a fruit juice, but you’re carbonating it at the end, kind of like a beer. And you end up with something really unique. It’s pretty exciting.”

Brick River is still on track for a fall opening, hopefully by Halloween.

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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The Scoop: Brick River Cider, St. Louis’ first cidery, to open downtown

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

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St. Louis has seen an explosion of craft breweries in recent years, and soon it will welcome its first dedicated cidery.

Owner Russ John is in the process of opening Brick River Cider Co. downtown at 2000 Washington Ave., in a former firehouse. The name of the company is a nod to St. Louis’ position as a leading national supplier of bricks in years past. John said he hopes to have construction and permitting completed in August, then start production and have cider ready to drink just in time for bonfire season.

“My heart is hoping to make Halloween weekend, but I’m optimistic, probably, to hope it’ll be that soon,” he said. “It’s probably realistically sometime in November.”

John has a background as cider homebrewer. His family has owned apple orchards in the area since the late 1860s and has made cider on a small scale almost as long.

“The family legend is that the two bottles of cider I have on my desk were made by my grandfather during Prohibition,” John said.

John is currently putting together a group of a half-dozen different suppliers within a day’s drive of the cidery in an effort to support local agriculture. He plans to work exclusively with fresh-pressed Midwest apple juice.

The Brick City space will not only house a production facility, but it will also boast a tasting room. The space will have a 30-to 40-seat bar area on the first floor, along with the cider production facility, and a larger dining room on the second floor with a full kitchen.

Matt Sorrell is staff writer at Sauce Magazine. 

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