Beer Buzz: Hop Cat is finally here! 

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Hop Cat opens in Broad Ripple Aug. 16 at 11 a.m. with a “Hoosier Takeover” featuring 130 Indiana craft beers on tap including 30 beers each from Sun King and Upland. “This will be the largest number of beers ever available from either brewery on tap at once at one time,” said Hop Cat spokesperson Chris Knape.

“All told we will feature beers from 32 breweries from around Indiana.” The tap list is posted at HopCat.com and www.facebook.com/hopcatbroadripple Knape reports Hop Cat has hired more than 130 employees with an investment of “more than $2.5 million into the restaurant, which will seat about 300 people.” Bar-height tables surround the oval mahogany bar, which dazzles with an array of tap handles. The family area is set apart. No one under 21 is allowed without a parent at any time. Along the olive green walls booths with royal red fabric heighten the oak wood flooring. Lighting is muted throughout. Expect pub food with locally sourced seasonal ingredients.

Across town at 2727 E. 86th St., within the Ironworks complex, Ruth’s Chris Steak House opens Aug. 18 with a 12-tap bar featuring brews from Triton, Bier, Flat 12, Tow Yard, Upland, Three Floyds and QuaffOn!. “Bach of Elijah,” a special-one-time Bourbon stout, was created by the Thr3e Wise Men brewing team using Ruth’s Chris own blend of Bourbon. Coming from Switzerland is an exclusive offering from Storm&Anchor, a relatively new brewery with a passion for hops and experimentation. Their one-of-a-kind batches are also at the downtown Ruth’s Chris.

During a telephone interview with general manager Larry Griggers and owner Ryan Craig, each spoke of their master chef’s “creativity to match a flavor profile between the food and beer,” while acknowledging “our menu is our menu” which relates to “a steak house mentality” with cocktails, spirits and wine as the expected beverage. Griggers and Craig say time they have made a conscious effort to engage their patrons with the flavor complexity of craft beer and are offering a wide spectrum of Indiana craft at this new location to better serve an expanding clientele with broader beverage expectations. The upscale décor extends from the two-story interior to the patio with adjacent free parking.

New Brews
August is IPA month. Flat 12 is featuring a very big Fuffet Double IPA with nine different hop varieties from across the globe creating complex tropical fruit, citrus, and pine notes in both the aroma and flavor. Triton’s Soul Crusher IPA made with Citra, Cascade and “a couple other awesome hops” doubles as homage to GenCon.

Thr3e Wise Men Klinsmann’s Revenge is a refreshing German Pilsner

Union Brewery & Cutters collaboration Hardin Hoppy Wheat is an easy-drinking American wheat brewed with white wheat, red wheat, 2 row and pilsen; hopped with simcoe, falconers flight, amarillo.

Bloomington Brewing Company Dubbel Entendre is packed with flavors of honey, bubble gum and clove, and Benedictine Belgian IPA with German, English and American Cascade hops has floral and earthy flavors.

On hand for BBC’s Loesch Farm Cascade hop harvest was Shadow, born under July’s full moon.
“Her mother died just after the birth so Shadow has become our resident farmhand,” reports BBC’s Robin Lasek. “We will be using the just harvested “wet hops” in our annual Homegrown Ale, to be available in BBC’s Lennie’s brewpub around Labor Day.

Events
Aug 13
The Sinking Ship, 6:30-10 p.m. Triton Tap Takeover featuring some Usua-ales, Specialties and a “Barrel Experiment!”

Sun King taps the winning named “Froth of Khan” as the Official Beer of Gen Con at the west block of Georgia Street as the kick-off to the "Best Four Days in Gaming," 5-10 p.m.

Aug. 16
WAMM Festival in Greenwood, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. www.wammfest.com

Aug. 17
Dig IN~A Taste of Indiana at White River State Park. digindiana.org

Vevay, IN Bavarian Beer Bash Home Brew Competition is open to all home-brewers. Entries due Sept. 20, Judging Sept. 28.
Full information at: bavarianbeerbash@gmail.com

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