Beer Buzz: Indiana City turns one 

click to enlarge New signage went up this week at Indiana City Brewing.
  • New signage went up this week at Indiana City Brewing.

Indiana City Brewery opened a year ago at 24 Shelby Street with a massive turnout. The production brewery is housed in one of Indiana's oldest extant beer sites — the bottling house of The [American] Home Brewing Company (1891-1920). "The opening was beyond expectation," says founder/head brewer Ray Kamstra. "We were totally unprepared for the outpouring of support."

That support hasn't wavered perhaps is due to Kamstra's dose of derring-do, typified by ICB's flagship Pale Ale. "It's sort of a hybrid of American/ Belgian characteristics, with spices that make it a little more distinctive than your typical flagship offering," he says. Kamstra's recipes start on the "foundation of traditional styles, taking it up a notch with specialty spices, aromatic hops and increased alcohol" to create ales big in flavor and balance.

Noting a lean to beers with lower gravity, Kamstra explains, "People responded more to sessionable beers. While I like IPA's and we just put on Dock 7, an American IPA at 7.0% ABV, 85 IBU, alternatively we have Infield K├Âlsch-Style Ale at 4.7 percent ABV, 20 IBU." Kamstra describes his new Slow Gold American Wheat as a "change up" from customer favorite Yacht Rock Wheat Ale.

Shine, a delicious German-Style Dampfbier is an all barley golden ale with sweet flavor, low bitterness at 5 percent ABV, 14 IBU. Assistant brewer Nick Shadle is credited for "coming up with the idea of a full-bodied beer" closely following Reinheitsgebot of 1516 rules.

Indiana City's year two begins with new signage and façade restoration by Historic Window Sash Co., coordinated through East Washington Street Partnership, which assists businesses in making exterior improvements that upgrade the neighborhood.

Help needed

Chris Gerard, owner/head brewer of Bare Hands Brewery, suffered an accident on May 20. He is recovering but in need of continued care. Brewers statewide are assisting. Jon Lang, Triton head brewer, asked us to reach out to Beer Buzz readers for help with medical expenses. You can send a donation to Chris Gerard Medical Fund, Bare Hands Brewery, 12804 Sandy Court, Granger, IN 46530 or at facebook.com/barehandsbrewery.

Events

June 4 Rock Bottom Downtown Brewer's Happy Hour, 4-7 p.m.; brewmaster Jerry Sutherlin leads us through what goes into the making of RB brews.

Rock Bottom College Park Brewer's Happy Hour, 6:30 -7:30 p.m., with Brewmaster Liz Laughlin

June 7 Anderson Brewfest at Anderson Town Center Plaza, 1-5 p.m.

UpCup Homebrew Competition and AHA Rally at Upland's production facility, 4060 Profile Parkway, Bloomington, 3-7 p.m.

New brews

Tow Yard: Now serving their house brews, City IPA, Hook Up Shandler and Goldie Hops along with guest craft beers.

Oaken Barrel: Taste the Grainbow, a Weizenbock German style wheat ale, assistant brewer Sara Turner's first beer of her own recipe at OB. "This full bodied beer has a rich malt flavor with hints of clove and banana; perfect for fans of King Rudi looking for a bigger, maltier alternative," says owner Kwang Casey.

In Memory

Jack Joyce, founder of Oregon's first craft brewery Rogue Ales in Ashland, died at the age of 71. Rogue opened in 1988 and gained national attention with flavorful, hoppy beers and a farm-to-glass mission by growing their own hops.

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