Taste Indiana's national beer medalists 


Get the taste of GABF winners

Savor the flavors of Gold, Silver and Bronze at Tomlinson Tap Room, Oct. 28. Starting at 2 p.m. TomTap is celebrating with “as many of Indiana’s 2015 Great American Beer Festival medal winners as we can get our hands on.” Seven breweries brought home a total of ten medals. The winning beers will be on tap for as long as they last.

Hops from everywhere come to Indy

Hops Harvest is a special event for brewers worldwide. Some U.S. brewers head to the Pacific Northwest to engage in hands-on choosing of the hops they want delivered for the next year of brewing, some meet face-to-face with hops growers to suggest the qualities they look for and the possibilities of matching desire with nurturing those qualities. New varietals are always in trials plantings and brewers get to evaluate and be part of the process of creating the next generation of aromatic and bittering qualities based on the expanding palate of craft beer patrons. It’s generally a decade-long process to develop a new hops variety. Watch for Indiana brewers to be creating their beers beyond the already wide range of aroma characteristics that expand our perceptions of citrus, floral, herbal, pine and tropical from Citra, Equinox, Mosaic and Simcoe that spark IPAs. News of newer varieties from U.S. growers promise notes of cedar, lemon, melon, orange citrus and spice from hops named Azacco, Cashmere, Jarrylo, Lemondrop, Medusa, Tahoma, Tripple Pearl and Yakima Gold. Word also is out about Ron Mexico with characteristics of pungency and stickiness.

Chatting with Indiana craft brewers is a whirlwind sensory tour of ‘what if’s’ for combinations of malts and yeasts with newest, newer and old-friends hops. Added to the Pacific Northwest bounty is a growing choice of hops cultivated right here in Indiana and yes, worldwide, including varieties from Australia, Germany and New Zealand. But talk is not only about hops. Our brewers also get excited about our newly expanding local malt industry and locally sourcing fruits and berries.

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Here are some enthusiastic reports:

“Like a kid on Christmas morning. That’s how we describe the mood around here the day our freshly harvested Citra hops arrive from the Pacific Northwest,” said Upland’s brewers. “After all, it’s this precious cargo that lets us start brewing our Harvest Ale every fall. The addition of wet hops is what gives this beer its extra-vibrant flavor.

“The brewing schedule is intentionally kept wide open during the second week of September in anticipation of our fresh whole cone hop delivery. This crop is harvested in the hop fields of Washington’s Yakima Valley. As soon as the hops are harvested they are boxed up and put on a truck. Less than 48 hours later they arrive at our door and we begin mashing in.

“This year Upland will brew 150 barrels of Harvest Ale, using 250 pounds of wet whole cone Citra hops and 500 pounds of Munich malt from local maltsters Sugar Creek Malt Co.”

Harvest Ale is in four packs and on tap at each Upland location. Expect huge wafts of tropical fruit notes, balanced by a moderate bitterness and light tasted malt character.


Hops for hoops

Sun King
has a Pacer's themed brew just in time for the blue and yellow's home opener

Sun King Brewery is proud to celebrate Indiana's strong heritage of basketball with the release of a limited number of cans of Tip-Off Ale, a German-style Altbier with a rich copper color and mellow malt flavor. In addition, Sun King is proud to continue its partnership with the Indiana Pacers, where Tip-Off will debut on draft and in cans at the Pacers first home game against the Memphis Grizzlies this Thurs., Oct. 29 and be available for all Fieldhouse events, while supplies last.
More special brews

Upland Teddy Bear Kisses , a dark and robust beer brewed in the traditional stout method, features an abundance of dark malts and high alpha hops for a powerful impact of roast, chocolate, sweet bitterness. Velvety malt character, balanced bitter intensity and soothing chocolate notes created by long aging on fair trade cocoa nibs round out at 10 ABV, 80 IBU. Teddy Bear Kisses took Gold in the 2010 World Beer Championships.

“As usual, we had our Apple Buzz fans lined up front for the release of the Apple Buzz,” reported Oaken Barrel owner Kwang Casey, adding “And the loyal fans of the Apple Buzz said it is the best batch ever! We’d like to thank Adrian’s Orchard for providing us with a great apple cider and Jeff Allen for providing us great local honey. Adrian’s Orchard said it was a great apple crop year. We have bottled more than in the past, but it is going fast.”

Sun King made a special beer for Guy Raz, who hosts the TED Radio Hour. Guests at the Oct. 22 WFYI fundraising event sent Beer Buzz notices about Dave Colt’s multi-layered Razberry Blindness taking them on “a journey through fascinating ideas, astonishing inventions and new ways to think and create.” Alas, it’s on very limited release for those of us who missed the fundraiser. Maybe it will it re-incarnate.

TwoDEEP releases Jolly Old Milk Stout in the TapRoom on Nov. 3 as a prelude to National Stout Day on Nov. 5.

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Triton Brewing Company has Nutty Professor Peanut Butter Brown on special in honor of Halloween from Oct. 28 until it’s gone along with an $8 four-pack of Wit or Witout You or growlers of O’Rye-n Galaxy Pale, while supplies last. Triton is featuring gluten free guest brews Green’s Gluten Free Dry-Hopped Lager; New Day Meadery’s Southcider; And, Widmer Brothers’ Omission Lager

Half Moon’s Rye So Serious Double Rye IPA is seriously big at 8%ABV 105 IBU.

Its hearty, malty backbone is accompanied by the aroma of fresh grapefruit from the overwhelming amount of Cascade hops added in the boil as well as the fermenter. “As they say, "Go big or go home!" reports brewer John Templet.

Blind Owl updates for guest brews includes Three Floyds Gumballhead, Flat 12 Jack Pumpkin Ale and Daredevil Carnival Saison on tap.

Taxman Brewing Company (Bargersville) and Scarlet Lane Brewing Company (McCordsville) announced their Heaven and Hell collaboration series to be launched October 26th, 2015.

“Heaven and Hell is a two beer collaboration series between Taxman and Scarlet Lane. Heaven was brewed on site at Taxman and Hell was brewed on site at Scarlet Lane with both breweries participating and contributing ingredients and ideas. The two beers will be paired together while on draft throughout Indianapolis,” reads the news release. Heaven and Hell is a planned yearly collaboration series between Taxman Brewing Company and Scarlet Lane Brewing Company; provided they continue to enjoy each other’s company. Each year will rotate the brewery that hosts Heaven and the brewery that hosts Hell.”

Heaven is a Golden Strong Ale with orange peel, Belgian esters and Tahitian vanilla beans. Hell is an Imperial Stout triple fermented with four different yeast strains and charcoal filtered
Both beers launched in concert the week of October 26th on draft and at the scheduled launch parties. Twin pack, 22-oz. bombers are available at Indianapolis package liquor stores.

Current Draft Launch Parties:

October 28: Scotty’s Noblesville & Twenty Tap
October 29: The Pint Room Carmel, La Margarita & Ralston’s Drafthouse
October 30: Sinking Ship & Sinking Ship II
October 31: Taxman Brewing Company (costume contest + live music)
November 1: Hangover Dining at Red Lion Grog House

Flat12 announced they are the new home to Hoagies & Hops, an authentic Philly-style hoagie shop located inside the taproom; opening late October/early November.

Switchyard reported reaching 32% of their goal on Oct. 22, with $9,500 raised in less than 42 hours with 46 backers. More at http://www.switchyardbrewing.com/ksupdate



Oct. 28: Bier Brewery is partnering with Maggiano's Little Italy for a Bier Dinner.

Oct. 29: Scotty’s Noblesville Upland tap takeover with $4 pints of Teddy Bear Kisses, Russian Imperial Stout, Coast Busters Imperial IPA, Harvest Ale, Oktobrfest

Oct 30: Bier Brewery is partnering with Lino's Coffee in Speedway. Biers will be on tap and the festivities will get underway at 5:30.

Oct. 30: Flat 12 Haunted Zombie Brewery Tours; 6-8 p.m. free

Oct 31: Halloween at Flat 12, 21+ 6 p.m.-midnight, free

Haunted Zombie Brewery Tours 7-9 p.m. DJ Tony Beemer, costume contest, & horror films galore; specialty tappings: Zombie Jack Sour, Pumpkin Ale, Double Jack Imperial Pumpkin Ale, Barrel Aged Flat Jack

MOVEMBER events begin Nov. 1; check in with your favorite brewery for your participation in this annual fundraiser for prostate cancer research.

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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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