Friday, August 14, 2015

Sierra Nevada Launches Oktoberfest Video Game

Sierra Nevada Brewing released a secret throwback game on their website to promote the release of their new Oktoberfest beer, which is a collaboration with German brewery Brauhaus Riegele from Augsburg. Much like the father-son leadership of Ken and Brian Grossman at Sierra Nevada, Riegele is also owned by father-son team Dr. Sebastian and Sebastian (Jr.) Priller-Riegele.

The game’s goal: help Kenny the Braumeister collect water, hops, barley and yeast so he can brew enough Oktoberfest beer to go around.

There are two ways to unlock the game:

1) Click around the top navigation area until Kenny appears – then click on Kenny and get to brewing.

2) In the website footer, find the yellow ribbon that says “Locate Beers.” Type in"Prost" and hit enter.Using the keyboard arrows, help Kenny collect all of the ingredients to make his beer. In the spirit of friendly competition, players can share their final score on Facebook and Twitter.

The collaborative seasonal release is available in 6-packs and 16oz draft Nationwide.

About Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. 
Founded in 1980, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. is one of America’s premier craft breweries, highly regarded for using only the finest quality ingredients. The pioneering spirit that launched Sierra Nevada now spans both coasts with breweries in Chico, California and Mills River, North Carolina. Sierra Nevada has set the standard for craft brewers worldwide with innovations in the brewhouse as well as advances in sustainability. It is famous for its extensive line of beers including Pale Ale, Torpedo®, Hop Hunter® IPA, Nooner® Pilsner, Porter, Stout, Kellerweis® and a host of seasonal, specialty and limited release beers. Learn more at

About Brauhaus Riegele 
Founded in 1386, Brauhaus Riegele is acknowledged as one of Germanys leading breweries in respect to quality and beer culture. It is located in Augsburg in the heart of Bavaria, where roughly 30 different kinds of craft beers are brewed, among them “Commerzienrat Riegele Privat,” Germany’s beer of the decade. Learn more at 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Like Minds Establishes Production Brewery In Chicago

Justin Aprahamian, a James Beard award winning chef and owner of Sanford Restaurant in Milwaukee, WI, and long-time industry consultant John Lavelle have announced their plans to open Like Minds Brewing in the West Town neighborhood of Chicago. The brewery, a former Goose Island storage facility is located at 1800 W Walnut St. just northwest of the Lake and Ashland Metra stop.

John and Justin's shared interests extending beyond beer into art, music and writing incorporate many of their favorite artists into the Like Minds brand – including Grammy Award winning graphic artist Rob Jones, as well as Jason Edmonton and Kevin Tong

Label artwork by Jason Edmonton (left) and Kevin Tong (right). PHOTOS: Like Minds

Justin’s culinary background gives him a unique and fantastic way of imparting flavors into beers that are outside the realm of traditional brewing norms. 
A large part of the philosophy of the brewery will be taking a very thoughtful and seasonal approach to its beer making. They will be using ingredients at their height of freshness and making beers you’d want to be drinking at that time of year. The late summer launch will include a Cucumber Kolsch to be featured along with staple recipes for Dialekt (Kolsch style), Nighthawks (Oatmeal Stout with Intelligentsia Coffee) and Horehound (7.2% IPA). 

For Chicago production, Like Minds has enlisted veteran brewer Matt Brower, 
formerly of Dogfish Head, as Head Brewer. Matt’s technical command of brewing accompanied by Justin’s recipe development allows them to step outside the box of traditional brewing while maintaining well made, quality beers. Also from Dogfish Head, they are excited to have Zach Houlahan joining the Like Minds crew as VP of sales and coordination of distribution. 

The Brewhouse buildout at 1800 W Walnut St. PHOTOS: Like Minds

Like Minds has partnered with Chicago Beverage Systems in the metro area for distribution. More information on beer availability and launch events will be available in the coming weeks. For now, make sure to follow their progress on Facebook and Twitter.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Almanac Invades the Windy City

We've long been fans of Northern California's Almanac Beer Co. – both their unique farm-to-barrel sour program and elevated packaging design stand out as some of the market's best in class. We had the opportunity to do a brief interview in 2013 with CEO and Designer, Damian Fagan. Earlier that year they began distributing to Southern California. They quickly realized that their sour portfolio was not only in high demand, but also the heart and soul of their operation. After two years focused on developing and growing their barrel program (now over 800 barrels deep) they announced distribution into Colorado, New York City and Chicagoland. Through Wirtz Beverage distribution Chicago will have access to Almanac's full portfolio of beers, including the Fresh Beer, Fresh Beer Limited Series and Farm to Barrel (Farmer's Reserve) Series.

Below is a list of the official launch events for the week of August 17-22nd. Chicago will have opportunities to meet the folks behind Almanac and sample a range of beers in collaboration with some of the city's best craft beer venues. We hope to see you there!

Monday 17th: 4 Course Beer Dinner 

The Kitchen, 316 N. Clark St, 7pm
Reservations Required, call: 312-836-1300
$35 for food and $15 for the beer pairings
Almanac beers featured: Saison Dolores, Golden Gate Gose, IPA, Emperor Norton, Farmers Reserve Pluot

Tuesday 18th: Meet the Brewer Event
Hopleaf, 5148 N. Clark St, 6pm
Almanac beers featured: Saison Dolores, Golden Gate Gose, Emperor Norton, Farmers Reserve Pluot, Farmers Reserve Strawberry, Farmers Reserve Blackberry, Dogpatch Sour

Wednesday 19th: Almanac & Moody Tongue Collaborative Pairing
Dusek’s, 1227 W. 18th St, 6pm
For $20 get 3 small plates and 6 beer pairings (one beer from each brewery with each plate)
Almanac beers featured: Golden Gate Gose, Emperor Norton, Farmers Reserve Blackberry
No reservations required

Thursday 20th: Meet the Almanac Team
Bangers and Lace, 1670 W. Division St, 6pm
All nine available Almanac beers featured: Saison Dolores, Golden Gate Gose, IPA, Emperor Norton, Farmers Reserve Pluot, Farmers Reserve Strawberry, Farmers Reserve Blackberry, Farmers Reserve Citrus, and Dogpatch Sour.

Saturday 22nd: Beer Brunch

Longman & Eagle, 2657 N Kedzie Ave, 11am
Almanac beers featured: Saison Delores, Golden Gate Gose, Farmers Pluot
No reservations required