My book, my baby, “Asheville Beer: An Intoxicating History of Mountain Brewing,” will be published by the end of next week. I will be out of the country celebrating Mom’s 70th birthday then (although a big guy and several vicious mutts will be staying at my house). I’m so excited, both about the book and the trip, that I’m giddy. Here’s a link to a “Meet the Author” interview that includes several of the amazing photos and fun stories from my book.
The book will be for sale by the end of September in a bunch of locations around Asheville. I’ll let you know when my sales rep gets all the locales finalized. The book will also be available via The History Press and, of course, Amazon. I’d prefer that, since y’all drink local, you also may want to buy local, as the Asheville businesses that are selling the book will get a cut. (Thank you, all you Western North Carolina businesses that are hosting events and selling books. Big love).
Here’s a list (so far) of the “Meet the Author” book signing events we’ve set up. I’ll also put these in my Events listings on my Brewgasm Facebook page. They will also be listed on The History Press’ site.
If you or any of your friends are nearby, please come to one of the these signings to say “Hello” or “Cheers” or “Beer makes me pretty” or “I’m having a Brewgasm” or whatever you’d like to say. As an added incentive, I’m finally having “Brewgasm” T-shirts designed and printed, and I’ll be selling those as well (and probably modeling one). Squee!
Below are the signing events so far. Each business also has offered a beery special for the evening. There will be other surprises as well at every party!
Thursday, October 4: The Bar of Soap, 333 Merrimon Avenue, Asheville, 6 to 9 p.m. Includes special on local canned beers.
Saturday, October 6: Barley’s Taproom & Pizzeria, 42 Biltmore Avenue, Asheville, 5 to 8 p.m. Will tap a special local keg.
Tuesday, October 16: Pisgah Brewing Company, Black Mountain, NC, 6 to 8 p.m. Will offer specials on a couple of special Pisgah beers.
Thursday, October 18: Bruisin’ Ales Beer Shop, 66 Broadway Avenue, Asheville, 5 to 8 p.m. Will have free beer tastings from a local brewery.
Wednesday, Oct. 24: Altamont Brewing Company, Asheville, 6 to 8 p.m. Look for some local beer specials, and just maybe, some in-house brewed beer (?!).
Friday, Nov. 9: Good Bottle Company, Charlotte, NC, 5-8 pm. Will tap up to 12 different Asheville brews.
Saturday, Nov. 10: The Community Tap, Greenville, SC, 5-8 p.m. Pisgah Brewing tasting.
Saturday, Nov. 24: 5 Seasons Brewing, Atlanta, GA, Westside locale, 5-7 p.m. In-house craft beer special.
Saturday, Dec. 1: Mother Earth Brewing, Kinston, NC. In conjunction with Silent Night Imperial Stout Release Party.
Tuesday, Dec. 4, Asheville Brewing Company, Coxe Avenue location, 6-8 p.m. Releasing a “special” beer that night.
Saturday, Dec. 8, The Big Sip Expo, Greensboro, NC, 12-4 p.m.
This isn’t a complete list yet. I’ll likely have events in Hendersonville, Waynesville and Raleigh, as well as at other Asheville breweries.
Thanks in advance for the book love. Cheers!
Brews News got postponed a week because of Bele Chere, but I want to make sure y’all know about this:
New Belgium Design Presentation
On Wednesday, July 25, New Belgium Brewing will present the preliminary designs for their Asheville brewery to the public at the building formerly known as The Civic Center, starting at 5:30 p.m. City of Asheville staff also will be on hand to present updates of the infrastructure improvements (roads, sidewalks, etc.) that are part of their deal with NB. Refreshments will be served. Yes, that means both beer and food, says Jenn Vervier, sustainability director for New Belgium.
Also, congrats to the Altamont Brewing boys who took delivery of a brewing system last Friday. All that’s needed are final permits for them to become West Asheville’s first brewery! Check out their Facebook page for photos.
The name of the new mystery Asheville brewery will be Wicked Weed Brewing. But it’s not what you think. Supposedly, Henry VIII banned the use of hops, and referred to them as “a wicked and pernicious weed.”
Walt and Luke Dickinson of Wicked Weed Brewing in their currently empty, but under renovation, brewpub space.
Brothers Walt and Luke Dickinson and partner Ryan Guthy want to use a whole lot of this wicked weed to brew their beers. At Wedge Brewing tonight, the business partners revealed the name of their heretofore “mystery” brewery. I was lucky enough to talk to them beforehand and tour the amazing old building at 91 Biltmore Ave (former site of Asheville Hardware). Wicked Weed Brewing will open for business late in 2012 most likely. With support from local entrepreneurs Denise and Rick Guthy (Ryan Guthy’s parents), the Dickinsons and Ryan will splash out a 15-barrel brewhouse with a bar in the basement of the building and another bar and restaurant upstairs. There will be patio seating in part of what’s now the front parking lot.
WWB will be a pretty big brewhouse in the scheme of Asheville beer, with state-of-the-art 15-barrel system, five 15-barrel fermenters, a 30-barrel fermenter, 3 brites and 10 serving tanks (at least that’s big compared to most of our current local breweries—not compared when to the big boys from Colorado and California who are opening facilities in the region). Equipment is on the way. The brothers also have purchased an open fermenter to make some big Belgian beers. I know of several brewers who are having tank envy as they read the above.
“We want to focus on hoppy West Coast style beers and big Belgians, with some traditional English style ales and lagers as well,” says Walt Dickinson, 30, currently CEO of Higher Grounds Rainwater Solutions of Asheville.
Both Dickinsons are home brewers, but Luke, 27, will spend most of his time in the brewery, while Guthy will oversee restaurant operations, and Walt will serve as general management. In an “awwww” moment, Walt told me he gave his brother a home brewing kit for his 21st birthday. And Luke’s been brewing like crazy ever since.
Luke currently bartends in Delaware and works part-time at Dogfish Head Brewery in Milton, Dela. He plans to move back to Asheville in September (the brothers both moved to Asheville with their family in the early 90s and attended T.C. Roberson High).
While Luke says he’s obsessed with brewing, he only has a little commercial brewing experience (though he brewed his first commercial beer with brewer icon Sam Calgione). So the brothers will hire a lead brewer to help them.
Initially, they’ll only sell their beers in house, and though the brewhouse will have a 5,000 barrel capacity, Walt says they certainly won’t be putting out that much beer in year one.
“First, we want to make sure we’re making the best beer we can, then we’ll see if we want to sell our beer around town or elsewhere,” he says.
I’ve have more on WWB in the next Mountain Xpress Brews News, and as their sudsy journey continues.
(Crossposted to Mountain Xpress)
In a big brewery trifecta, Western North Carolina will get another new brewery—and fast. Per the Longmont Times-Call, Oskar Blues Brewery of Longmont, Colo., has signed a lease on a brewery space and adjacent restaurant/music venue in downtown Brevard. The brewery plans to be open for business by December.
From the newspaper article:
“In a statement released late Tuesday, founder Dale Katechis, a mountain biking enthusiast, said he has kept a bike in Brevard, on the edge of the Pisgah National Forest, for years, and travels there frequently to go mountain biking and to attend the annual Mountain Song Music Festival.
“This place rings true with the same eclectic mountain charm that inspired Oskar Blues to put Dale’s Pale Ale in a can back in the day in Lyons,” Katechis said in a statement announcing his plans.
His company has signed a contract on a 30,000-square-foot brewery space adjacent to a 6,000-square-foot restaurant and music venue in downtown Brevard, which he said, has a “small town main street tone” similar to Lyons.
The company has been looking at taking its Colorado operations “to the next level,” Katechis said in the statement, but opening a smaller venue in a community he has an affinity for struck him as “a lot more fun,” as well as allowing the company to save on shipping costs, as more than 35 percent of its beer is sold east of the Mississippi River.
The new venue should be up and running by December, the company said.”
Oskar Blues is well-known for being one of the first craft brewerys to can it’s brew. The brewery was started as a small restaurant/brewpub in 1997 in Lyons, Colorado, near Boulder.
Brevard Brewing Co opened in downtown Brevard just last week, with head brewer Kyle Williams focusing on lager beers.
Clearly, my wish that breweries stop opening in the area so I can finish my Asheville beer history book in a timely manner is not to be granted. Life’s tough. Cheers to Brevard!
So, it all went down yesterday. As The Beer Guy, Tony Kiss, wrote, “It’s as if Asheville landed two major league baseball teams in the same season, as if the Yankees and Braves both relocated here.” Or to be more geographically appropriate, as if the Giants and the Rockies both relocated here.
Kim Jordan toasted by some Asheville brewers
Yesterday, at around 4:30 p.m., Governor Bev Perdue and New Belgium CEO Kim Jordan announced that New Belgium Brewing will open their second brewery here in Asheville.
Here’s the story I wrote about the event for Mountain Xpress. I took these photos as well.
Lots of coverage in the Asheville Citizen-Times as well, but I’m not going to link to them, because they put their stuff behind paywalls after a week or so.
There will be more to come about both Sierra Nevada and New Belgium coming to North Carolina–both in my Brews News and in my book. So stay tuned. In the meantime, I’m gonna go drink a Shift Pale Lager.
Governor Perdue, Kim Jordan and ABA President Tim Schaller
Special tag listing some of the reasons New Belgium chose Asheville
Special tag listing some of the reasons New Belgium chose Asheville
Governor Perdue, Kim Jordan and ABA President Tim Schaller
Kim Jordan toasts with some Asheville Brewers Alliance guys.
While the writing hasn’t been formally released, it’s clearly on the wall.
There will be an event of some sort tomorrow involving North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue down in Asheville’s River Arts District, and while I can’t confirm that it is indeed the announcement that New Belgium Brewing will be building an East Coast Brewery and Distribution Center at the site of the Western Carolina Livestock Market, it seems pretty damn likely that is, indeed, the case.
My educated guess is that there will be a number of press releases sent out in the morning, and that there will be lots of official back-slapping and beer lover celebrations throughout the day.
I have a number of thoughts about this. One, it’ll be a further economic boost for the city in terms of beer tourism. Having not one, but two, major craft breweries–Sierra Nevada and New Belgium–will draw tourists who want to come visit one of the big brewers, and while they are here, give an Asheville brew or two a try. From a purely selfish point of view, this will be good for sales of my Asheville beer history book (to be released next Fall) and offer me a chance to teach more Beer 101 classes that will feature local beer tastings. Thanks, as always, to the Asheville Brewers Alliance for supporting me in these endeavors.
Two, I think it will be interesting to trace the changes that these breweries bring to the region, especially to the small town of Mills River (where Sierra will locate their 2nd brewery) and to the still transitional but burgeoning River Arts District. My hope is that the RAD will stay funky and true to its roots as a place where artists can afford a little studio space and follow their creative dreams.
More tomorrow…time to go taste a New Belgium Shift Lager…
If you follow me on Twitter, you’ve probably seen me reference the book I’m writing a few times recently. But, here, for your delectation, is the official press release.
The History Press is pleased to announce the forthcoming title:
An Intoxicating History of Mountain Brewing
Anne Fitten Glenn
Asheville has grown from a town with a taste for mountain moonshine to an international destination for beer lovers, renowned as Beer City, USA, in fewer than twenty years. Eleven established breweries operate within the city limits and another five call Western North Carolina home. At least six more are in the planning stages, including beer giant Sierra Nevada Brewing, which recently chose the area as a locale for their new East Coast brewery.
The history of ales and lagers in Asheville starts with a murderous downtown rampage by a drunken desperado at the turn of the 20th century and runs through the region’s explosion into a beery Mecca offering the gamut from sophisticated gastro-brewpubs to grungy warehouse breweries. It includes the story of F. Scott Fitzgerald writing at The Grove Park Inn while downing up to 30 beers a day. It includes one brewery pouring thousands of gallons of “not right” beer into the city’s sewers, a burgeoning brewery on the wrong side of the tracks (literally), one that fought a small town’s laws to open, and more.
Foreword by Zane Lamprey, host of Drinking Made Easy.
Asheville Beer will be published by The History Press in the Fall of 2012.
Media review copies, high-resolution photographs and interviews available upon request.
Contact Katie Parry at 843.577.5971, ext 113 or email@example.com.
Anne Fitten Glenn has been writing about beer and the beer business since 2005, although she’s been drinking beer for a lot longer. She currently writes the Brews News for Asheville’s newsweekly, Mountain Xpress, as well as frequent articles for CraftBeer.com, the national Brewers Association’s on-line magazine. She also developed and teaches Beer Education classes to servers and to the beer-loving public. She lives within walking distance of several of Beer City’s breweries.
I’m more than excited about telling stories and tales of beer and the beer biz from round here. Contact me if you have a relevant beer history tidbit. Meanwhile, I’ll be sitting here in front of my laptop, writing and drinking beer.
I visited Green Man Brewing on Friday to watch them bottle–for the first time ever. They’ve put up about 100 cases of the lovely Dweller Imperial Stout, and they’ll start selling it to the public today at 2 p.m. at the brewery (23 Buxton Ave., $20 per bottle, 9.5 percent ABV).
The new bottler at Green Man
Brewers Mike Karnowski and John Stuart capping the pretty bottles of brew
The final result (love the Green Man snifters)