Southern Brew News October/November 2011 : Page 1
Oct/Nov 2011 Vol. 6 No. 5 By Mike Dixon QUACK AND HOP. Duck-Rabbit owner Paul Philippon in the new taproom with patrons (l to r) Joel McCuaig, Ryan McCuaig, Jessica Hoodak and Mike Dixon. PHOTO BY REBECCA DIXON Expansion is not something new to this brewery. Duck-Rabbit started in 2004 when Paul purchased the equipment from Williamsville Brewery and took over the same Pine Street location. In that first year production was around 1,500 barrels. At his current pace, the brewery, now in year seven, is on track to produce 7,000 barrels and while they are keeping up with current orders he can see the need to expand. Three 80 barrel fermenters are on the way with an 80 barrel bright tank. Paul wanted to go even larger with the fer-menter but was limited menters, by the ceiling height of br the brewery building. With his 20 barrel bre-whou it will require whouse a 24 hour brew day to fil fill each of the new fermenters. The brew brewery’s staff of five keeps things run running smoothly. Th brewery plans The to hire two addi-tio people to tional a assist with brew-in operations ing and two additional sales p personnel. With distribution in North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Virginia the brewery has not found a limit See Farmville p.8 ’S By Owen Ogletree U INSIDE HIGH END HOMEBREW. Many homebrewers possess extremely elaborate systems these days. PHOTO BY BRIAN ROTH homebrewing.” The homebrewer rolls his eyes, grumbles some profane comment under his breath, ﬁ nishes the last sip of his imperial stout and slides off his stool toward the men’s room. Just how has the craft beer revolution influenced See Trending p.3 Upon ﬁ nishing his glass of Belgian tripel at Brick Store Pub, a young craft beer enthusiast orders a double IPA and quips to his older homebrewer friend sitting next to him, “With all these awesome craft beers available these days, I just don’t see why anyone would want to go to the trouble of ILLUSTRATION BY HANS GRANHEIM Calendar ......................... 2 Letter From Editor ......... 2 Beer Wench's Kitchen .... 4 Go Grain! ....................... 5 Tasting Notes ................. 6 Style Section .................. 7 Homebrew News ............ 9 Dr. Brewski ................... 10 Business of Beer .......... 19 State by State News Tennessee ........11 Georgia ..........16 Alabama/Mississippi ....18 The Carolinas .......20 Florida ...........22 Louisiana ............23 new tasting room on the third Friday of operation ﬁ nds owner and brewer, Paul Philippon, in his element discussing the beers and brewery with patrons who drove in from Ocracoke after they discovered the taproom was open for business. A short while later a local Farmville resident, Chip Galusha, strides through gh the door and is so enamored with the beers and surround-ings he contacts friends and in a short while more people arrive. Before long the taproom is ﬁ lled to capacity and patrons are lounging at tables outside on the lawn. Paul has carved out an ideal niche for the brewery on the four r acre property located just a few blocks from downtown Farmville. He as-freely admits he procras-tinated in opening the tasting room and with the Grand Opening scheduled for November 5 he may have to eventually expand to allow for more patrons.
Friday In Farmville: Duck-Rabbit Brewing
QUACK AND HOP. Duck-Rabbit owner Paul Philippon in the new taproom with patrons (l to r) Joel McCuaig, Ryan McCuaig, Jessica Hoodak and Mike Dixon.
The duck-rabbit craft brewery's
new tasting room on the third Friday of operation finds owner and brewer, Paul Philippon, in his element discussing the beers and brewery with patrons who drove in from Ocracoke after they discovered the taproom was open for business. A short while later a local Farmville resident, Chip Galusha, strides through the door and is so enamored with the beers and surroundings he contacts friends and in a short while more people arrive. Before long the taproom is filled to capacity and patrons are lounging at tables outside on the lawn. Paul has carved out an ideal niche for the brewery on the four acre property located just a few blocks from downtown Farmville. Freely admits he procrastinated in opening the tasting room and with the Grand Opening scheduled for November 5 he may have to eventually expand to allow for more patrons.
Expansion is not something new to this brewery. Duck-Rabbit started in 2004 when Paul purchased the equipment from Williamsville Brewery and took over the same Pine Street location. In that first year production was around 1,500 barrels. At his current pace, the brewery, now in year seven, is on track to produce 7,000 barrels and while they are keeping up with current orders he can see the need to expand. Three 80 barrel fermenters are on the way with an 80 barrel bright tank. Paul wanted to go even larger with the fermenters, but was limited by the ceiling height of the brewery building. With his 20 barrel brewhouse it will require a 24 hour brew day to fill each of the new fermenters. The brewery’s staff of five keeps things running smoothly. The brewery plans to hire two additional people to assist with brewing operations and two additional sales personnel. With distribution in North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Virginia the brewery has not found a limit of the public’s thirst for their beers. Twothirds of the beer sales are bottles which are packaged at a rate of 90 cases per hour by two employees and an average bottling day produces 550 to 650 finished cases.
The most popular beer remains Milk Stout which was developed by Paul at his first brewing position at Brewmaster’s in Cincinnati, Ohio after attending the Siebel Institute. The beer comprises 60 percent of the brewery’s sales, and while stout is generally thought of as beer style to be savored in cooler weather, Milk Stout has proven to be the year-round beverage of choice for many. A local taproom patron, Ron Sealey, who was not familiar with the brewery until Chip Galusha called, was overheard saying he did not like dark beer, but loved the Milk Stout. Duck-Rabbit brews four year-round styles which also include Amber, Brown Ale, and Porter. The seven seasonals include Rabid Duck Russian Imperial Stout, Wee Heavy Scotch Ale, Duck-Rabbotor Doppelbock, Baltic Porter, Barleywine, Märzen, and Schwarzbier. On the label of each seasonal the Duck-Rabbit logo dons headwear appropriate to the style. Paul seemed pleased when Ryan McCuaig, who drove in from Ocracoke with his father Ryan and girlfriend Jessica Hoodak, asked him about the company logo. Paul explained before he worked in the brewing industry he was a professor of philosophy and one of his favorite books (Philosophical Investigations by Ludwig Wittgenstein) included the image. He thought it fitting when he opened his own brewery to pay homage to his former vocation.
Paul began homebrewing in 1987 and when he determined he may not get tenure as a philosophy professor decided after some soul searching to attend Siebel and to work as a brewer. After Brewmaster’s, Paul worked at Pipkin Brewing Company in Louisville, Kentucky before moving to Pitt County, North Carolina to brew at Williamsville Brewery in Farmville. Williamsville suffered from an identity crisis since they were not located in Williamsville and despite also being branded as Main Street Brewery, were located on Pine Street. In the taproom, Ron Sealey and his wife Joyce stated they had lived for 12 years less than four blocks from the brewery location, but were not aware the brewery was even there until they received the call from their friend. The taproom boasts a beautiful copper clad bar, four draft offerings, and has merchandise and bottled beer-to-go. Plans include a copper clad merchandise shelving, perhaps more taps, growler sales, and additional seating. If this third night of taproom operation is any indicator, and with the excitement demonstrated by patrons, the brewery location and new taproom will not remain a well kept secret for very long
Trending Now: Homebrewing
HIGH END HOMEBREW. Many homebrewers possess extremely elaborate systems these days.
Uupon finishing his glass of Belgian tripel at Brick Store Pub, a young craft beer enthusiast orders a double IPA and quips to his older homebrewer friend sitting next to him, “With all these awesome craft beers available these days, I just don’t see why anyone would want to go to the trouble of homebrewing.” T
he homebrewer rolls his eyes, grumbles some profane comment under his breath, finishes the last sip of his imperial stout and slides off his stool toward the men’s room.
Just how has the craft beer revolution influenced homebrewing culture? Are younger beer aficionados enticed by the lure of using malt and hops to concoct their own creations, or are they content with what’s on the shelves of retails stores and in the coolers of craft beer pubs? How are homebrew shop owners creating and maintaining interest in the hobby? SBN sought out points-of-view on the matter from several homebrew shop owners and managers around the Southeast.
A Creative Streak
The flexibility and creativity inherent in the homebrew process seems to provide great motivation. “Anyone who loves craft beer should consider making their own. Homebrewing is an adventure,” says Nate Cowles of Bull City Homebrew in Durham, North Carolina. “Much like cooking, it enables the individual to explore flavors that are not readily available on the commercial market.”
Paige Blankenship, “Spiritual Beer Guide” for Greenville’s Thomas Creek Brewery homebrew shop in South Carolina, agrees. “We are seeing a lot of experimentation. It seems that everyone is trying to create new, never before brewed beers by using unusual ingredients or throwing in crazy additions. In the past few months I’ve tasted everything from a bacon porter to a chocolate stout homebrewed with chocolate Dunkin’ Munchkins! Sometimes these things work and sometimes they don’t, but the surprise factor is always fun.”
Alex Arthurton of 5 Points Growlers Beer & Brew Supply in Athens, Georgia notes an impressive spirit of experimentation with uncommon styles among young, new brewers these days. Sally Parsons of BX Beer Depot in Palm Springs, Florida echoes the sentiment by stating, “The younger brewers that we see today are really pushing the style envelope. They are not letting anything get in their way of making their own creative traditions.”
Homebrew to Call Your Own
Taking pride and ownership in a wellmade batch of homebrewed ale definitely brings joy and satisfaction. Evan Smith of Blockader Homebrew in Athens, Georgia shares, “Always remember that homebrew is your own brew - you created the recipe, you cooked the wort, you monitored the fermentation, you cleaned up the mess on the kitchen floor when you bottled it. There is nothing more satisfying and triumphant than tasting the fruits of your labors. It’s a science experiment you get to drink!”
Sonja and Mark Burris from Bet-Mar Liquid Hobby Shop in Columbia, South Carolina express the opinion that homebrewing creates an appreciation of a huge range of beer styles. Craig Cook of My Brew Heaven in Gainesville, Georgia adds, “People who love great craft brews are the very ones who should be homebrewing for a very simple reason - variety! Why be locked in to just the commercial beers available, no matter how broad the selection? Just like grilling a great steak or preparing a fine sauce for pasta, brewing beer can be an expression of your personality.”
In these challenging financial times, the rising cost of a craft pint encourages many drinkers to look into homebrewing. Expensive ingredients, labor costs, marketing and distribution all play a role in the $15 price tag on that four-pack of extreme ale in the package store. Bob Carlton of Brew Depot/Beer Necessities in Alpharetta, Georgia says, “Today, good homebrew stores can offer the freshest ingredients — a huge selection of affordable barley malt, fresh hops and liquid yeast. This translates into homebrewed craft beer on par with commercial beers at half the cost. So why not be a homebrewer?”
Dennis Smith of Mobile’s The Wine Smith emphasizes the fact that homebrewing also allows for extremely fresh draft beer at home. “Once you find a favorite craft beer, it’s easy to brew your own clone. You’ll save money, and if you have kegging equipment, your draft beer will be twice as good as bottled beer.”
Asheville Brewers Supply’s Andrew Dahm makes the observation that homebrew bottles and cask firkins condition and carbonate the beer they contain by employing natural fermentation of residual sugars by leftover yeasts. “Homebrew is a bottle-conditioned product that hasn’t had to travel,” explains Dahm. “This makes for a fresh, flavorful product that you just can’t buy in a store. Bottleconditioned homebrew is like a cask beer.”
What's With This New Generation?
Beer & Wine Craft of Atlanta, a pioneering homebrew outlet in Georgia, can attest that homebrewers of 15 years ago mostly stuck to the basics in trying to make good quality, traditional ales and lagers, but the new generation of homebrewers doesn’t seem so constrained. One look at the current, voluminous catalogs of Beer & Wine Craft and businesses such as Brewmasters Warehouse in Marietta, Georgia reveals a massive variety of specialty malts, hops, adjuncts, sugars, yeasts, finings and more - all stocked to satisfy the wild inventiveness and enthusiasm of the new generation of young homebrewers.
Michael Lee of Midsouth Malts in Memphis has been extremely impressed by younger brewers’ willingness to be adventurous. Barron Humphries with Gainesville, Florida’s Hoggetowne Ale Works shares this attitude and adds, “Eight years ago when we opened, a typical 25-year-old that came into our shop generally browsed our recipe books and asked the stereotypical ‘Do you have any recipes for something like miller Lite?’ Today, a typical 25-year-old customer asks ‘Where are your imperial IPA recipes?’ ”
Luciano Scremin of Jacksonville Beach’s Engine 15 Brewing Company provides a perspective as the owner of a brew-on-premises. “I find that new brewers in our BOP operation are very interested in learning what goes into making certain flavors in beers. Brewing gives you a unique insight into the beer you are drinking, and there’s no better way to learn what beer really is made of than to make some yourself. You might even find that you enjoy making beer as much as drinking it!”
Fear No Beer
Ken Anderson of Grape & Grains in Greenville, South Carolina insists on approaching homebrewing without fear and starting small and simple. Paul and Carolyn Baker of The Shady Lady in Pensacola, Florida have the same opinion and recommend, “New brewers should not try to read everything they can get their hands on. You’ll get so confused that you’ll never try the hobby. Don’t over-think it - listen to the advice of your local homebrew supply store.”
Doug Kimpel from Just Brew It! In Jonesboro, Georgia stands on the opinion that one of the best aspects of homebrewing comes from making the process social with group brew days and homebrew competitions. Thomas Creek’s Paige Blankenship concurs and explains, “If you don’t want to make that initial investment in equipment, or are worried about where to start, brewing with a buddy is great. Joining a homebrew club allows you to connect with fellow novices as well as homebrew masters.”
Bob Prust of Growlers Craft Beer & Ales in Hilton Head Island speaks from a deep love of homebrewing when he says, “Do it because beer isn’t just something you drink. Whether you are an experienced homebrewer or some young person just buying a kit and getting started, having a passion for great beer is the most important thing.”
Read the full article at http://sbnonline.brewingnews.com/article/Trending+Now%3A+Homebrewing+/862911/83935/article.html.