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Black Sheep to host beer dinner throw down

black_sheepA month or so ago, Black Sheep Restaurant tried to hold a unique beer dinner at their rooftop dining area. Unfortunately, Mother Nature had other plans and torrential rain forced the cancellation of the event. So, to make it up to those beer lovers who missed out, the restaurant has rescheduled the event for Wednesday, September 16 between 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

The concept: pit two legendary breweries against each other in a beer pairing throw down.

The breweries: Tampa’s Cigar City Brewing and Southern California’s Stone Brewing.

Created by Chef Waylon Rivers, the menu is an opulent mélange of surf and turf creations. Think ceviche, scallops and beef short ribs. Creative and exciting stuff.

The beers will be presented by representatives of each brewery and are chosen to highlight the dish they are served alongside.  Both Cigar City and Stone are known for their assertive and flavor-forward brews and for this shoot out, they have brought the big guns. Heady brews such as Stone Hifi Lowfi Blended Ale and Cigar City Seasonal Creep are featured prominently.

First Course

Shrimp Ceviche, Compressed Water Melon, Shishito Peppers, Mezcal

Paired with:
Stone Goto Session IPA
Cigar City Invasion IPA

Second Course

Little Pig Ear Salad

Paired with:
Stone Hifi Lowfi Blended Ale
Cigar City Cracker White

Third Course

Seared Scallop, Summer Squash Salad, Upland Cress Gazpacho

Paired with:
Stone Delicious IPA
Cigar City Hard Cider

Fourth Course

Coffee Glazed Short Rib, Black Eye Pea Salad, Red Eye Vinaigrette

Paired with:
Stone Collaboration Woot Stout
Cigar City Seasonal Creep

In addition to the elaborate food to be served, the service itself is somewhat unique. Instead of a seated dinner, diners are encouraged to arrive when they feel like it anytime during the dinner’s hours. Dishes will be served reception style on diner’s time schedules, not in a rush as is often the case at beer dinners.

Tickets for the event are $40 (not including tax and gratuity) and are available from the restaurant. Call (904) 380-3091 for more details and to purchase a ticket.

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2015 in Beer Dinner

 

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Brew Hub opens first brewery in Lakeland

_MG_4119Brew Hub, a company led by a team of beer industry executives and craft-brewing experts, has opened its first brewery in Lakeland, Fla. The 50,000 square-foot brewery is the first of a network of five new, state-of-the-art craft breweries the company is planning to build that will offer craft brewers the opportunity to partner brew their beers on site.

Partner brewing is a process that allows craft breweries to brew their beer to exact specifications under the supervision of their own brewmaster, and to package and distribute from Brew Hub. Brew Hub also offers its partners services including sales, marketing, logistics, legal, and government affairs. Partner brewing allows craft brewers to expand their distribution without the overhead costs of building a new brewery or the complexity of contract brewing at third-party facilities.

“It’s an exciting time to be in the craft beer industry. There are so many craft brewers making amazing beer and the demand from consumers is almost insatiable – especially in Florida,” said Brew Hub CEO Tim Schoen. “The opening of our first craft brewery in Lakeland is significant because our partner model will allow many of these craft brewers the opportunity to expand their business and reach new consumers throughout the Southeast and beyond.”

The Lakeland brewery is located in Interstate Commerce Park off the I-4 Corridor and has an initial brewing capacity of 75,000 barrels, or one million cases, annually. The site’s central location will allow the company to efficiently distribute beer to wholesalers throughout Florida and the Southeast.

The Lakeland location features a 3,000-foot tasting room and patio. The brewery also will offer merchandise and brewery tours. Brew Hub will employ approximately 30 people at its Lakeland brewery in brewing, operations, front office and its tasting room.

Brew Hub currently has partnerships with several award-winning craft brewers, including Cigar City Brewing, Orange Blossom Pilsner, Green Man Brewing and BJ’s Restaurants (Nasdaq: BJRI). Brew Hub partner brews beer for all four companies at the Lakeland brewery.
Brew Hub also plans to brew the Brew Hub Craft Collection, a series of distinctive craft beers created by the company.

Brew Hub plans to open four more breweries during the next five years. Specific markets will be determined based on demand, but the company is considering strategic locations in the Midwest, Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Texas and West Coast regions. This network of Brew Hub facilities will allow craft brewers from across the country to enter new markets.

Brew Hub was founded by a team of beer industry executives led by CEO Tim Schoen and Brew Hub President Jerry Mullane. Brew Hub’s financial sponsor is a private investment firm, The Yucaipa Companies.

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Posted by on September 5, 2014 in Craft Beer Brewery

 

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Hunahpu’s Day draft list leaked

hunahpu_2014As I was perusing Facebook this afternoon I saw a curious link. It opened a Google spreadsheet file the author purports to be the draft list for Cigar City’s Hunahpu’s Day beer festival. If this is indeed the list, it has some impressive entries. And, if years past are any indication, more amazing beers will be added to the list up to the last minute.

Without further ado, I present to you the possible draft list for Huanhpu’s Day 2014:

B. Nektar Meadery — Dwarf Invasion

B. Nektar Meadery — Kill All the Golfers

B. Nektar Meadery — Necromangocon

B. Nektar Meadery — Zombie Killer

Barley Mow Brewing Co. — S’mores Imperial Chocolate Stout

Barley Mow Brewing Co. — The Unkindness Black IPA

CCB/Ecliptic — Illumting the Path Pinot Noir Barrel-aged Ale

CCB/Max Lager’s — Black Ash American Black Ale

CCB/The Bruery — Dos Costas Oeste – Grapefruit

CCB/The Bruery — Dos Costas Oeste – Spanish cedar

CCB/Widmer Bros — Gentlemen’s Club – Bourbon Barrel-aged

CCB/Widmer Bros — Gentlemen’s Club – New Oak-aged

CCB/Widmer Bros — Gentlemen’s Club – Rye Whiskey Barrel-aged

Cigar City Brewing — Apple Brandy Barrel-aged Warmer Winter Winter Warmer

Cigar City Brewing — Bourbon Barrel-aged Jose Marti American Porter

Cigar City Brewing — Brandy Barrel-aged Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Don Gavino’s Big Guava Sour Ale

Cigar City Brewing — Double Barrel Hunahpoopoo Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Double Barrel Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Good Gourd Imperial Pumpkin Ale

Cigar City Brewing — Good Gourd Almighty Rum Barrel-aged Imperial Pumpkin Ale

Cigar City Brewing — Hunahpoopoo Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Kalevipoeg at the Gates of Hell Bourbon Barrel-aged Baltic Porter

Cigar City Brewing — Kalevipoeg Baltic Porter

Cigar City Brewing — Life is Like…Bourbon Barrel-aged Chocolate Cherry Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Rum Barrel-aged Final Push Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Rum Barrel-aged Marshal Zhukov’s Imperial Stout

Cigar City Brewing — Warmer Winter Winter Warmer

Florida Avenue Brewing — Coconut Brown Ale

Gravity Brewlab — Grodzilla

Gravity Brewlab — Malt Licker

Gravity Brewlab — Marathon in Your Mouth

Gravity Brewlab — Sour Cherry Basque Cider

Hardywood Park Craft Brewery — Bourbon Barrel-aged Gingerbread Stout

J Wakefield Brewing — BA Nothing

J Wakefield Brewing — DFPF

J Wakefield Brewing — Kryptoweiss

J Wakefield Brewing — Miami Madness

New Belgium Brewing — Love’s Leopold

Oskar Blues — Dale’s Pale Ale

Oskar Blues — Old Chub Scotch Ale

Saint Somewhere Brewing — Crepuscule

Saint Somewhere Brewing — E’te’ Sans Fin

Saint Somewhere Brewing — Lectio Divina

Saint Somewhere Brewing — Scourge

Saint Somewhere Brewing — Soleil Reverie

Tomoka Brewery — Pumpernickel Porter

 
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Posted by on January 24, 2014 in Beer

 

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Cigar City Brewing releases 2014 beer calendar

CigarCityBrewingIt is no secret that Florida is blowing up as a state to be reckoned with in the craft beer industry. With new breweries opening at a breakneck clip and more established breweries scrambling to expand their production capacity, things are definitely looking up for beer-lovers in the Sunshine state. And through all the hustle and bustle to make Florida a standout state in brewing, Tampa’s Cigar City Brewing Company has been a guiding force.

Considered one of the best breweries in the country by beer fans and the press, Cigar City has won their notoriety through producing high quality core beers as well as highly-sought-after special releases and seasonals. USA Today ranked the brewery as the nation’s fifth best saying, “…Cigar City, a Florida favorite, has fans from far outside the Panhandle state for their unique lineup of beers.” And Paste Magazine says of the brewery’s beers, “Cigar City’s Good Gourd was one of Paste’s Best Pumpkin choices and the second-highest beer we reviewed all year-long. The Jai Alai IPA took second-place in our 64-beer IPA challenge.”

Owner Joey Redner started the brewery as a result of a trip he took to Portland, Ore. for a wedding in 1994. Before that he says he had not been exposed to much in the way of craft or import beer. But, when he tasted fresh craft beer in the beer crazed northeast, he was hooked. In 2004, Redner began experimenting with brewing his own home batches of beer. He also began writing a beer column for the St. Petersburg Times that allowed him to evangelize about the pleasures of craft beer.

Several years later, Redner began looking at the feasibility of starting his own brewery. Along the way, he met up with Wayne Wambles, a brewer who had worked for several other breweries including the now defunct Buckhead Brewing Company of Atlanta, Ga. and Foothills Brewing Company of North Carolina. Wambles brought with him a wealth of brewing knowledge and skill that included multiple medals from the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup.

With the addition of a head brewer, Cigar City Brewing was on its way to becoming a legend in southern beer production. The brewery started with a 15 BBL brewhouse tucked in to a 6,600 sq. ft. warehouse. The first order was filled and sold in March of 2009.

Since then Cigar City has expanded its brewing operation and has become a powerhouse brewer in the Southeastern United States. Fans pack the brewery for their special releases like the annual Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout. At last year’s Hunahpu’s Day Release event, beer hounds by the thousands lined up in the middle of the night prompting a change in the event for the 2014 release.

Recently, the brewery has announced their 2014 release schedule including a greater emphasis on nitro brews that is sure to be a hit with beer lovers.

CCB_2014_CALENDAR

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2014 in Beer, Craft Beer Brewery

 

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Cigar City Brewing Company Hunahpu’s Day 2014 set, but with changes

hunahpu_2014Last year Hunahpu’s Day at Cigar City was a lot of fun. It was also flawed. By midnight the night before the release there was already a hefty line of beer hounds queued up to gain access to the event. A few hours later there were more than 300 lined up. By the time the sun came up the line stretched several blocks, into nearby businesses parking lots with thousands of beer lovers. This prompted the businesses to call the police who consequently issued the ultimatum to the brewery that they either open the event early and get the people off the street or it would be shut down.

Another issue with the event was poor line management, particularly for the most popular beers. Lines for some were hours long and unscrupulous imbibers routinely cut into the line making the wait even longer for those behind them. And worse still, the folks pouring the beer were hired from a staffing agency and had no experience serving. This made for confusion and foamy beer.

To try and cut down on these issues for this year’s event, the brewery has decided to make the event a ticketed festival with maximum attendance set at 3,500. Attendees will not have to purchase tokens to exchange for tastes, instead the single admission ticket will entitle them to sample as many beers as they like for the duration of the event.

In an announcement posted to FaceBook, December 30, the brewery said that bottles of Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout would be available throughout the day. Details on bottle limit have not been announced yet.

The Cigar City Brewing Company Hunahpu’s Day event will take place March 8, 2014 from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the brewery in Tampa, Fla. Tickets will cost $50. Ticket purchase details have not been released yet, but the brewery has said that members of their El Catador Club will have first opportunity to get the tickets.

 
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Posted by on December 30, 2013 in Beer, Beer Festival, Events

 

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The New Yorker magazine publishes interactive craft beer growth map

newyorkerEveryone who reads this blog is aware of the extraordinary growth of the craft beer industry over the past 10 years. To illustrate the explosive character of this growth, The New Yorker magazine has published an interactive online map that brings this phenomenon into focus.

The map uses data gathered by the Brewers Association in 2012 and was released recently. The map shows that Florida ranks around the middle of the pack for total number of breweries, but in the upper range for total output. It also shows that in 2013 Florida saw 10 new breweries open, adding to the output and variety available to residents of our state.

Another exciting tidbit the map points out is that Cigar City Brewing Company in Tampa is considered one of the fastest growing breweries in the country with 77% growth in production in 2012 over 2011. Cigar City is ranked 17th of the 50 fastest growing breweries in the nation. Another notable regional brewery ranked in the top 50 is Highland Brewing Company. The Asheville, NC brewery ranks 33rd on the map with 53% growth in 2012 over 2011.

You can view the entire map and glean your own data by following the link below.

Mapping the Rise of Craft Beer

 
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Posted by on December 28, 2013 in Beer News

 

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Brew Hub Announces Partnership with Cigar City, Orange Blossom Pilsner and BJ’s Restaurants

BrewHubIn an update on a story we brought you some time ago, Brew Hub, the regional brewery project led by former executives at ABinBev, has announced partnerships with several Florida breweries and a major beer-centric restaurant chain.

Read all the details in their press release below:

ST. LOUIS, Dec. 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Brew Hub, a company led by a team of beer industry executives and craft brewing experts, has announced partnerships with three award-winning craft brewers: Cigar City Brewing; Orange Blossom Pilsner; and BJ’s Restaurants (Nasdaq: BJRI).

Brew Hub will partner brew beer for all three companies at its new, state-of-the-art craft brewery in Lakeland, Fla. beginning May 2014. Brew Hub will brew a variety of beer brands for each company and distribute the beer throughout Florida and eventually other southeastern states.

Partner brewing is a process that allows craft brewers not only to brew their beer to exact specifications under the supervision of their own brewmaster, but also to package and distribute from the Brew Hub brewery and make their beer available for export to international markets. Partner brewing allows craft breweries to expand their distribution without the overhead costs of building a new brewery or transporting beer across the country. Brew Hub also offers services including sales, marketing, logistics, compliance and government affairs.

“These guys know what they are doing, and I am excited for the opportunity to be able to grow Cigar City Brewing without sacrificing quality or compromising the brewing process,” said Joey Redner, Cigar City Brewing founder and CEO. “When you combine Brew Hub’s experience with a new state-of-the-art craft brewery in our home state of Florida, we knew this partnership could help us get more Cigar City beer into the hands of people who love it.”

“The partnerships we’ve formed with Cigar City, Orange Blossom Pilsner and BJ’s Restaurants are exactly why we formed our company,” said Tim Schoen, founder and CEO of Brew Hub. “All three brew amazing craft beer, but they simply can’t meet the overwhelming consumer demand. Partnering with Brew Hub will allow these award-winning craft brewers to brew more beer and increase their distribution which will allow them to grow much more quickly.”

Brew Hub will brew approximately 40,000 barrels of beer for the three partners combined. The Lakeland brewery will have an annual capacity of 75,000 barrels, or one million cases. The Florida brewery will be the first of five breweries Brew Hub plans to open across the country. All will allow craft brewers the opportunity to partner brew their beers on site.
“With these three agreements in place we are sold out for 2014, and we couldn’t be happier,” said Schoen. “Our focus will now be on expanding our brewing capacity at our Lakeland brewery, and announcing the next two breweries we plan to open.”
The Lakeland brewery is located in Interstate Commerce Park off the I-4 Corridor. The brewery will also feature a 3,000-square-foot tasting room where consumers can enjoy the beers being brewed by any of Brew Hub’s partners. The site’s central location will allow the company to efficiently distribute beer to wholesalers throughout Florida and the Southeast.

Brew Hub brewing operations will be led by Chief Brewmaster, Dr. Paul Farnsworth, who is overseeing all aspects of design, layout, construction and day-to-day operation of the new brewing, production and warehouse facility in Lakeland, Florida. Farnsworth earned a bachelor’s degree and Ph.D. from the University of London and has been instrumental in the startup or operation of over 100 breweries in 10 countries.

Brew Hub was founded by a team of beer industry executives led by Tim Schoen, CEO, and Jerry Mullane, president. Brew Hub’s financial sponsor is a private investment firm, The Yucaipa Companies

Brew Hub plans to open four additional breweries over the next five years. Specific markets will be determined based on demand, but the company is considering strategic locations in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, Texas and West Coast. This network of Brew Hub facilities will allow craft brewers from across the country to enter new markets.

About Cigar City Brewing
Cigar City Brewing was founded with two goals in mind: first, to make the world’s best beer; second, to share with people near and far the fascinating culture and heritage of the Cigar City of Tampa. From its past as the world’s largest cigar producer to its Latin roots and the many other diverse cultures that call it home, Tampa draws on many sources to develop its unique culture. We use the highest quality ingredients we can lay our hands on, and that is not just marketing jargon. If it makes better beer, we use it. We also strive to use local ingredients when and where we can. Not only do fresh, local ingredients help us make better beer, it helps us make beer that reflects the culture and heritage of Tampa. Learn more at www.cigarcitybrewing.com.

About Orange Blossom Pilsner
Orange Blossom Pilsner was first brewed in 2001 as one of Florida’s first craft beers, and the company has been brewing award-winning beer ever since. Orange Blossom Pilsner, made with orange blossom honey, is the company’s flagship brand, was awarded a bronze medal at the 2003 Great American Beer Festival. Today the company brews Orange Blossom Pilsner, Orange Blossom Squared and Toasted Coconut Porter and will begin releasing more fun, new beers in 2014.

About BJ’s
BJ’s Restaurants, Inc. currently owns and operates 144 casual dining restaurants under the BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery, BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse, BJ’s Pizza & Grill brand names BJ’s Restaurants offer an innovative and broad menu featuring award-winning, signature deep-dish pizza complemented with generously portioned salads, appetizers, sandwiches, soups, pastas, entrees and desserts, including the Pizookie dessert. Quality, flavor, value, moderate prices and sincere service remain distinct attributes to the BJ’s experience. The company operates several microbreweries in addition to using independent third-party brewers to produce and distribute BJ’s critically acclaimed proprietary craft beers throughout the chain. The company’s restaurants are located in California (63), Texas (29), Florida (15), Arizona (6), Colorado (5), Nevada (5), Washington (4), Ohio (4), Oklahoma (3), Oregon (3), Kentucky (2), Indiana (1), Kansas (1), Louisiana (1), New Mexico (1) and Virginia (1). Visit BJ’s Restaurants, Inc. on the web atwww.bjsrestaurants.com.

About Brew Hub
Brew Hub was founded in 2012 in St. Louis, Missouri by a team of beer industry executives and craft brewing experts led by Tim Schoen. “Where Craft Brewers Go to Grow,” Brew Hub provides full brewing, packaging, distribution and selling services for craft brands that are capacity, geographical, or capital constrained. The company plans to have five breweries located throughout the country that will cater to craft breweries. Each facility will allow craft brewers to partner brew their beers on site.
Learn more about Brew Hub at:
www.brewhub.com
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Brew-Hub/378410608933205?fref=ts
https://twitter.com/TheBrewHub

 
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Posted by on December 6, 2013 in Beer News

 

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