Hop Kine IPL Makes Limited Time Return for Maui Brewing Co.

MauiHopKineCanMaui Brewing Company (Kihei, Hawaii) has officially announced that Hop Kine India Pale Lager will return in October as a Limited Release offering.

First introduced back in the spring of 2016, Hop Kine returns as a golden-hued “hybrid style lager” that employs a “crisp malty base provided by Pilsner and Munich malts” to accentuate “the citrus and hop aromas from Centennial and Citra hops.”  Weighing in at a “crushable” 5.7% ABV and 57 IBUs, Hop Kine has all the refreshment of a lager while still supplying the citrus-laden hop bite one might expect from an IPA.

“We’re stoked to release Hop Kine once again because it seems like every single person on our team loves this beer,” states Brewing Supervisor Jon DuPont. “It’s to the point now where I almost feel like our customers are lucky to get some because our whole crew does their best to hoard as much as possible. Hop Kine is a perfect beer for Maui; clean, light, and crushable, with a great balance of maltiness and bitterness. This year, we loaded the dry hop up with choke Centennial, Citra, Motueka, and Loral hops and used a new strain of lager yeast so it has an amazing citrusy, fruity aroma and tastes cleaner and crisper than ever. Don’t wait to get yours because, trust me, we won’t be!”

Hop Kine IPL made its 2018 debut at Maui Brewing Company’s Maui locations in Kihei and Lahaina on October 8 and is entering distribution now.  You can expect to find this Limited Release available in 6-packs of 12 oz. cans and on draft at select craft beer establishments located in Hawaii, Florida and in other “select mainland markets where Maui Brewing Company brews are available.” Prost!

Vital Information for HOP Kine India Pale Lager from Maui Brewing Company

Release – Limited, October 2018
Style – India Pale Lager
ABV – 5.7%
IBUs – 57
Malts – Pilsner & Munich
Hops – Centennial, Citra, Motueka & Loral
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. cans & draft
Beer Finder – https://mauibrewingco.com/find-our-beer/




CBS Returns to Close Out Founders Brewing Co.’s 2018 Barrel-Aged Series

CBS-lineupFounders Brewing Co. (Grand Rapids, Michigan) has officially announced that the highly sought-after Canadian Breakfast Stout (CBS) will return in November as the sixth and final release in the brewery’s 2018 Barrel-Aged Series.

Back for the second year in row and rockin’ some new label artwork this time around, CBS is an Imperial Stout brewed with coffee and chocolate – the same base beer as Kentucky Breakfast Stout (KBS) – and then aged in “bourbon barrels that had previously housed maple syrup.” Once its rest is completed, CBS emerges to offer a “transcendental drinking experience” that features notes of “rich maple syrup, roasted coffee and velvety chocolate.”

“We’ve been ramping up our barrel-aged program over the past few years and it’s allowed us to expand our offerings,” said President and Co-Founder, Dave Engbers. “We’re so excited to announce that CBS will be available for the second year in a row. The beer enthusiasts have been very vocal about their love for this beer and we’re happy we can accommodate. It’s what we love to do.”

The 2018 batch of CBS will debut at Founders Brewing Co.’s Grand Rapids and Detroit taproom locations on November 1 and will begin seeing distribution on November 2.  You can expect to find this incredibly Limited Release offering available in 750ml bottles (suggested retail price of $24.99 per bottle) and on draft at select craft beer establishments located in Alabama, Florida, Michigan and throughout the rest of the brewery’s distribution area.  Prost!

Vital Information for Canadian Breakfast Stout (CBS) from Founders Brewing Co.

Release – Limited/Barrel-Aged Series, November – December 2018
Style – Imperial Stout
ABV – ???
Added Ingredients – Coffee & chocolate
Treatment – Aged in bourbon barrels that previously held maple syrup
Fun Fact – On the label artwork: “Fans may notice that CBS’s label is missing a key, iconic element this year. The Mountie has been removed but the feel of the original label is maintained with an image of a bucking horse against a forested background.”
Availability – 750ml bottles & draft
Beer Finder – https://foundersbrewing.com/beer/find-our-beer/

Epic Brewing Extends its Reach to Central Florida

EpicGlassEpic Brewing Company (Salt Lake City, Utah) has teamed up with Sunshine State Distributing and will officially kick-off distribution in Central Florida with a series of launch events in the Orlando area during the week of October 8.

Founded in Salt Lake City, Utah in 2010, Epic Brewing Company is the longtime dream of David Cole and Peter Erickson – the brewery’s founders and self-described “beer geeks, foodies and ‘Epic’ adventure junkies” – that has allowed them to “share a passion for making and drinking fine ales and lagers.”  Shortly after opening the doors, their beers caught the attention of locals and quickly “began earning medals . . . domestically and internationally.”  This caused an increase in demand and led Epic Brewing to open a second brewery and taproom in Denver, Colorado in 2013.  This larger facility has made it possible for Epic Brewing to steadily expand distribution, build upon its popular barrel aged beer program, and establish a line of sour beers.  Epic Brewing Company currently brews “over 40 distinctly different beers”, and they are now ready to share some of that goodness with beer lovers in Central Florida.

“We have had fans in Florida for years and it is exciting to finally start distributing our beer there. To do it with such a great partner like Sunshine State makes it a slam dunk,” said Darin McGregor, Epic’s National Sales Manager. “Chris Larue and Joe Martin have built a team that is well organized, passionate and downright scrappy. They are a perfect fit for Epic. With their help we think beers like Big Bad Baptist, Tart n’ Juicy Sour IPA, our new series of New England-Style IPAs, as well as our diverse portfolio of barrel-aged sours will add a lot to an already thriving and still up and coming market.”

Epic Brewing Company plans to enter the Central Florida market with the following offerings:

To properly introduce you to the beers listed above (and possibly a few rare surprises), representatives from Epic Brewing and Sunshine State Distributing will be in Orlando this week hosting the following launch events:

If you cannot make it out to one of these events but still wish to get your hands on some beers from Epic Brewing, you can expect to find their offerings available in bottles/cans and on draft at beer-focused establishments located throughout Orlando and the surrounding areas normally serviced by Sunshine State Distributing.  Prost!

Ciderboys Introduces Lemon Cello Hard Cider

LemonCiderboys Cider Co. (Stevens Point, Wisconsin) has officially launched Lemon Cello, an Apple Limoncello Hard Cider, as its latest Limited Release offering.

Inspired by the bright yellow limoncello liqueur that is so popular in southern Italy, Lemon Cello is a Hard Cider that balances “two different natural lemon flavors derived from fresh Florida lemons — one for aroma and the other for the flavor —” with the sweetness from the base apple cider.  Described by the cidery’s quality team as “not too tart but not too sweet either”, Lemon Cello (5% ABV) “is abundantly aromatic and overflowing with a sweet, zesty fresh-lemon flavor.”

“Consumer response to Ciderboys Lemon Cello has been amazing so far,” said Julie Birrenkott, Director of Marketing for Ciderboys. “Most people like sweet lemon-flavored beverages and foods, and Lemon Cello’s robust citrus aroma and flavor combined with the sweetness of our apple cider makes for a truly refreshing drink. It’s no surprise that it has been well-received in the marketplace.”

Lemon Cello was introduced in late September 2018 and will be available as long as supplies last.  You can expect to find this Limited Release offering available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select cider-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, Wisconsin and throughout the rest of Ciderboys’ distribution footprint.  Prost!

Vital Information for Lemon Cello from Ciderboys Cider Co. 

Release – Limited, late September/early October 2018
Style – Hard Cider
ABV – 5%
Added Ingredients – Florida lemons
Fun Fact – Info on limoncello: “Limoncello originated in the Naples region of southern Italy, which includes the famous Amalfi coast and isle of Capri. Traditionally made by steeping lemon peels in grappa (a clear Italian brandy), adding syrup, and then aging, limoncello pairs well with desserts and is commonly served cold as an after-dinner digestif.”
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Cider Finder – http://www.ciderboys.com/cider-locator/

Wild Leap Brew Co. Hits October with Two Limited Release Beers

WildLeapLogo.pngWild Leap Brew Co. (LaGrange, Georgia) has officially announced that Rollin’ Deep Cinnamon Roll Stout and the third volume in its incredibly popular Alpha Abstraction Double IPA series will both debut during the second week of October 2018.

Arriving as Wild Leap’s first canned stout, Rollin’ Deep is a cinnamon roll-inspired treat “brewed with rich caramel and chocolate malts and cinnamon.” Clocking in at a warming 8.5% ABV, Rollin’ Deep boasts a “straight-from-the-food-court, sticky bun flavor” that will pair beautifully with the “cooler autumn days” ahead.

“With fall approaching, we wanted a beer that was perfect for football games and bonfires,” said co-founder and CEO Anthony Rodriguez. “We’ve always served a variety of stouts in our tap room, but this one was way too good to keep to ourselves.”

If sweet Pastry Stouts are not your thing, fear not because Alpha Abstraction – Vol. 3 will be released alongside Rollin’ Deep to satisfy all the hop fiends out there.  This Double India Pale Ale employs the use of Mosaic hops – the first of the Alpha Abstraction Series to do so – to “provide a nice mix or fresh mango, citrus, and very complex tropical aromas.” Although Alpha Abstraction – Vol. 3 “has a different flavor profile from anything [Wild Leap has] brewed before”, this “big, juicy, balanced Double IPA” (8% ABV) will most assuredly still appeal to “connoisseurs and casual drinkers alike.”

Rollin’ Deep and Alpha Abstraction – Vol. 3 will launch at a Double Release Party at Wild Leap Brew Co. on October 12 and will also enter distribution at or around that date.  You can expect to find these two Limited Release offerings available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer-friendly establishments located in and around the Atlanta, LaGrange, Newnan, Peachtree City, Columbus, Athens, Gainesville, and Augusta areas of Georgia.  Prost!

Big Storm Brewing Co. Rebrands Lightning Twenty Five as Bay Beer

BSB_BayBeer_BoxCompBig Storm Brewing Co. (Clearwater, Florida) has officially announced that Lightning Twenty Five, a Light Lager released during the 2017-2018 NHL season to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Tampa Bay Lightning, will return this month as a Year-Round offering that will now be known as Bay Beer.

Brewed with “classic American cluster hops and German pilsner barley malt”, Bay Beer is an approachable, easy-drinking Light Lager that is “the perfect beer to celebrate all the great activities and events [Tampa’s] coastal lifestyle has to offer.”  This crushable brew is meant to be enjoyed “cold as hail” while hanging out with your buddies.

The Lighting Twenty Five was specifically designed as a beer that would appeal to the masses much like the broad appeal of the Tampa Bay Lightning and their brand of entertainment promoted by the National Hockey League. Consumer feedback has been overwhelmingly positive and reinforced our vision of the liquid – an approachable light lager that’s meant to be enjoyed by all, not just the craft beer wonk. When the beer medaled at the Best Florida Beer Championships, we felt this offered further validation to the acceptance of a craft light lager. With this move, we are making Bay Beer one of our core beers.”


– L.J. Govoni, Big Storm co-owner

Bay Beer is available now in 4-packs of 16 oz. cans and on draft.  You can expect to find this Year-Round offering “at AMALIE Arena, various Tampa Bay restaurants and bars, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits, Total Wine & More, select Publix locations and other outlets.”  Prost!

Vital Information for Bay Beer from Big Storm Brewing Co.

Release – Year-Round, launching October 2018
Style – American Light Lager
ABV – 4%
Fun Fact – While still under the name Lightning Twenty Five, Bay Beer “captured a bronze in the American-Style Lager category at the Best Florida Beer Championships earlier this year and was the only beer of its style subcategory to medal at the event.”
Availability – 4-packs of 16 oz. cans & draft
Beer Finder – https://www.bigstormbrewery.com/beer-finder/

Tasting Notes – The Classics: Brown Shugga’ from Lagunitas Brewing Company

LagunitasBrownShuggaPourFor this week’s installment of Tasting Notes, we kick it old school with a classic by getting into a hearty pour of Brown Shugga’ from Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California).

First created back in 1997, Brown Shugga’ is a Barleywine-style Ale that actually came into existence when the brewers at Lagunitas botched a batch of Olde GnarlyWine Ale and attempted to save it by adding “loads of brown sugar.” Although this quick fix made it so they were able to reach the same original gravity of GnarlyWine, they discovered that they ended up with something completely different in terms of flavor and aroma.  What they did get was the “dangerously slammable”, mighty tasty Brown Shugga’ (10% ABV) that has been a hit with the brewery’s fans ever since.

The 2018 batch of Brown Shugga’ is out now and will be available through December.  You can expect to find this Limited Release brew available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s nationwide distribution area.

Now that we have covered Brown Shugga’s history and release details, let’s crack open a few bottles and get all sweet on these Tasting Notes!

Tasting Notes for Brown Shugga’ from Lagunitas Brewing Company

Appearance:  Brown Shugga’ pours up a deep, red-hued copper in color while wearing over two fingers of rocky, tan-tinged foam.  When held to direct light, the copper softens a bit as dark amber tones push their way through.  The beer is pristine in clarity and displays an extremely exuberant carbonation presence.  Head retention is good, eventually falling to just under a finger of pillowy foam that leaves behind some serious sheets of lace on the glass.  Absolutely stunning to look at.

Aroma: Surprisingly, the first thing to hit the nose is a substantial waft of orange zest and pine from the hops.  Caramel, toasted grain and toffee then work their way in and are followed by a smooth note of molasses.  Sugary booze meets a refined, balancing hoppiness? We’ll have a sip of that fo sho.

Taste: The beer sneaks onto the palate with an unassuming biscuity malt presence that steadily builds to sweeter notes of caramel, toffee, brown sugar and molasses.  Lightly floral and citrus hop notes link up beautifully with the caramel and toffee to strike a nice level of balance.  Resiny pine notes turn up late to close out the flavor profile with even more hoppy goodness.

Mouthfeel:  Medium to full-bodied with a medium carbonation, Brown Shugga’ is nice and creamy on the palate, exceptionally smooth, and incredibly easy-drinking.  After a playful bout of push and pull, the sugary sweet notes and the citrusy/piney hops amicably decide to sprawl out together in a relaxed state of balance (not at all cloying, but not overly bitter either). Despite being slightly pronounced in the nose, the 10% ABV is pretty tame overall.  The aftertaste is all caramel and pine.

Final Thoughts:  Now that our glasses are all empty and discussions have been had, the best way we can describe Brown Shugga’ is that it comes across as an American-style Barleywine that strives for balance while maintaining enough of a hoppy bite to keep it from being allowed in the arena of the English Barleywine.  What do we mean by that? Well, it is an experience that features enough sweetness to live up to its name while that big American hop presence dials in the right amount of bitterness to find an inexplicable, almost miraculous level of balance.

Just like in the beer’s origin story where the brewers at Lagunitas ended up with something completely different than they expected, the same could happen to anyone who orders a pour of Brown Shugga’ . . . but in the best possible way.  The name creates certain sugar-filled expectations. The enthusiastic hops then turn up to offer a bit of a surprise.  The initial shock wears off as it all then comes together to form a uniquely balanced beer that is ridiculously drinkable for its size.  That uniqueness leaves a lasting impression from sip to sip, glass to glass, and year to year.  It always keeps you coming back for more, and that is why it is a classic.  Get you some Brown Shugga’ while you can.  Prost!



LOKO Cuisine & Beer Zombies Unite to Host Eggs & Kegs Event at Cigar City Brewing

lokocuisineOn Sunday, October 21 at 11 a.m., LOKO Cuisine and the Beer Zombies will form an unholy union to host a Zombie-themed Eggs & Kegs brunch at Cigar City Brewing (Tampa, Florida).

To properly bring the Halloween spirit to this year’s October installment of Egg & Kegs, LOKO Cuisine will receive a direct assist from the undead by getting the Beer Zombies, “a Las Vegas based Craft Beer lifestyle brand, brewing project and all around craft beer ambassador”, in on the action.  This very special brunch will consist of the following four zombie-inspired dishes (served buffet style):


As far as the “kegs” portion of this brunch goes, Cigar City Brewing will be breaking out the following Halloween treats:

  • There Gose a Zombie – Blood Orange Margarita Gose
  • Gourds Gone Ginger – Good Gourd Pumpkin Ale with ginger

In addition to the ghoulish dishes and beers listed above, this event will also feature nitro cold brew coffee and tea from Ginger Beard Coffee (available for an additional cost) and some swag giveaways from the Beer Zombies.

Tickets for the Beer Zombies Eggs & Kegs are available now for $32.10 each, and you can purchase yours by clicking here. Ticket cost includes the four-course brunch and one pour of beer (pint or snifter of equal value). Physical tickets will not be issued, but your name will be added to a paid list once the purchase process is completed. FYI: Everyone in your party will have to check in under the purchaser’s name at the door.

Like all LOKO Cuisine events, seating for the Beer Zombies Eggs & Kegs Brunch is limited and tickets are expected to sell out with a quickness.  If you have any desire to brunch with the undead at Cigar City Brewing on October 21, be sure to lock down some tickets as soon as possible.  Prost!

Celis Brewery Introduces Juicy IPA as New Year-Round

IMG_2294Celis Brewery (Austin, Texas) has officially named Celis Juicy IPA the winner of its “IPA Challenge”, a distinction that has made the beer the newest addition to the brewery’s lineup of Year-Round offerings.

Back in August of this year, Celis Brewery held its first IPA Challenge by asking “beer drinkers to vote for their favorite of the four Celis IPAs” entered into the competition.  The IPA selected as the favorite would then go on to “become the next year-round beer to be canned and distributed statewide” in Texas.  Celis Juicy IPA won the competition in a landslide by earning 1,290 of the 3,000 votes cast.

Just as its straightforward name would lead you to believe, Celis Juicy IPA is a “hazy pale orange” Juicy India Pale Ale that is brewed with Citra, Azacca, Idaho 7, and Simcoe hops to produce “strong notes of citrus and tropical fruit aromas and . . . frisky yet flirty flavors of guava and papaya.” The beer’s “classic juicy character” offers a full-bodied experience that culminates in a “smooth, non-cloying finish” featuring “a refreshing hop bitterness that is floral and lingering.”  Coming in at 7% ABV and 65 IBUs, Celis Juicy IPA aspires to be an “approachable” option that “brings hop lovers a juicy satisfaction as well as helping new-to-IPA fans ease into their hop palate.”

“Hazy IPAs are crazy popular right now,” says Daytona, brewer, Celis Brewery. “I really wanted to brew this style that I also love to drink. It’s a very refreshing type of beer, and I love the fact that these kinds of IPAs have a hop characteristic without the big bitterness. We created an easy-drinking and true-to-style New England hazy IPA that craft beer fans and newcomers alike enjoy. This beer has been extremely well received by people in Austin in its limited release, and now we’re happy to share this delicious brew with more beer lovers across the state.”

Celis Juicy IPA is available now as a draft-only offering at “hundreds” of craft beer-friendly bars, restaurants and retailers in Texas.  6-packs of 12 oz. cans are expected to be available in the Austin area at the end of October 2018 and then hit Celis Brewery’s entire distribution footprint in Texas by January 2019.  Prost!

Vital Information for Celis Juicy IPA from Celis Brewery

Release – Year-Round; Draft-only release begins in October 2018. Cans hit Austin at the end of October & the rest of Texas by January 2019
Style – American India Pale Ale/Hazy or Juicy IPA
ABV – 7%
IBUs – 65
Hops – Citra, Azacca, Idaho 7 & Simcoe
Availability – Draft-only to start with 6-packs of 12 oz. cans to follow 
Distribution – Texas

Creature Comforts Brewing Co. Schedules Bottle Release for Fauxjolais


Creature Comforts Brewing Co. (Athens, Georgia) has officially announced that it will host a bottle release for Fauxjolais, a fruited blend of Saisons, on Saturday, October 13.

Born out of “Creature Comforts’ appreciation of Old World wine and nuanced flavors”, Fauxjolais – a playful name that references Beaujolais wines starts as a “blend of saisons from the brewery’s wine barrel cellar.” The blend was then conditioned on “second use organic black raspberries and black currants” that were previously used to create River Ridge Black.  The finished Fauxjolais is a bottle conditioned offering that comes in at 6.9% ABV.

“The name of the beer is a play on words,” said Wood Cellar & Specialty Brand Manager Blake Tyers. “I enjoy drinking Beaujolais wines, which traditionally are very drinkable and have a bit of acid and funkiness. We were inspired to mimic some of those flavors using alternative fruit to grapes in Fauxjolais.”

750ml bottles of Fauxjolais will release alongside River Ridge Black (click here for more details) on October 13 in the Tasting Room at Creature Comforts Brewing Co. Quantities are limited, and this Limited Release offering is not expected to see distribution. Prost!

Vital Information for Fauxjolais from Creature Comforts Beer Co.

Release – Limited; October 13, 2018
Style – Saison (blend)
ABV – 6.9%
Treatment – A blend of Saisons that were aged in the brewery’s wine barrel cellar
Added Ingredients – Conditioned on second use organic black raspberries & black currants 
Fun Fact – On the label artwork: “Creature Comforts staff member Melissa Merrill designed the artwork for the label. The original artwork was painted with a medium derived from blackberries and ink.”
Availability – 750ml bottles
Distribution – None. Tasting Room-only release