Hammond is a beer lover's destination 

Byway Brewing Co. and 18th Street Brewing Co. make a trip to Hammond well worth it

click to enlarge Byway's tap room is about to get even busier. - BYWAY BREWING CO.
  • Byway's tap room is about to get even busier.
  • Byway Brewing Co.

Hammond, Indiana
has been gaining special positive craft beer attention. Originally the home of Hammond Brewing Co. from 1890-1918, in 1996 Three Floyds’ Brewery opened in Hammond with a five-barrel system. By 2000 demand exceeded their space, necessitating a move to Munster. Hammond remained without a craft brewery until a bonanza of two openings occurred within a week of each other in February 2016. Byway Brewing Co. opened a week after 18th Street Brewery opened their Hammond Brewery.
click to enlarge 18TH STREET BREWERY
  • 18th Street Brewery

18th Street’s original Brewery Taproom and Craft Cocktail Bar opened in 2014 in Gary. After being named Indiana’s best new brewery in 2013 by RateBeer, demand for their product pushed founder/brewer Drew Fox to expand beyond their initial space in Gary, and this time Hammond gained in a move. More national recognition and awards for 18th Street beers followed.

A former furniture warehouse, the new 18th Street production brewery sits at the Illinois border, and is just off the Monon Trail within the downtown business and government center. The original 18th Street Brewery in Gary remains open Tuesdays through Saturdays. Each location will have its own menu with locally sourced ingredients.

As of mid-June, 18th Street relaunched The Sour Note Brewing brand. Bottled in 500 and 750 mL’s and in 12oz cans in six-packs, Sour Note Peach Gose and Sour Note Blackberry Gose are available at both sites.

During a conversation at Bloomington Craft Beer Festival at Woolery Mill, Fox said, “With the expanded brewery, 18th Street will be able to expand its distribution throughout Northwest Indiana, including in South Bend and Elkhart,” with plans to “reach the rest of the state” as production allows.

click to enlarge Byway's gold medal winning Scottish Right. - BYWAY BREWING CO.
  • Byway's gold medal winning Scottish Right.
  • Byway Brewing Co.
Byway Brewing Company owners Dave Toth, Tom Duszynski and Branko Sajn grew from their Munster-based Sandy Bottom Home Brewing Club into a neighborhood craft society before launching an initiative for a craft brewery some three years ago. Following what they describe as detours to the destination, in 2015 they broke ground for a 12,000 sq. ft. brewery and restaurant in Oxbow Landing by the Borman, a redevelopment of an area near the Kennedy Avenue interchange of Interstate 80/94. Their proximity to hotels and the highway interchange makes them a destination site. With plans to brew between 10,000 barrels to 25,000 barrels annually, initial distribution is to start in Northwest Indiana, Chicago and Indianapolis.

Patrick Jones is head brewer. His record of Great American Beer Festival awards while brewing with Gordon Biersch Brewing in Colorado and Triumph Brewing in Philadelphia has just been burnished with a sweep of top awards at the 18th Annual Indiana State Fair Brewers Cup Competition. On June 10 Byway earned Best of Show, Indiana Brewer of the Year and Grand Champion Brewery of the Year. 

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Rita Kohn

Rita Kohn

Rita Kohn has been covering craft beer and the arts for NUVO for two decades. She’s the author of True Brew: A Guide to Craft Beer in Indiana.

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