Beer News

Posted in Beer News, Coming Soon, Highland Brewing, Seasonal Return

Highland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter 2016 release

Highland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter

Highland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter releases again this year, appearing on draft and in their tasting room on October 14th, 2016. Named for the Southern Appalachian landscape, Highland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter features fair trade/organic coffee from Dynamite Roasting Company.

This year’s version will feature both a Mexican dark roast blend and a lighter Honduran blend.

Early in the brewing process, referred to as the hot-side, Highland adds Mexican coffee at the end of the boil, which extracts the flavors much like the way coffee is made at home. Later, on the cold-side part of brewing, Honduran coffee and a portion of the base beer are blended, allowing the coffee to concentrate, after which the hi-test liquid is injected and circulated into each tank.

Highland Brewing Company along with Dynamite Roasting Company, show their dedication to the freshness of this offering by freshly grinding the beans the morning of each brew day.

Shortly after its release in the tasting room, Thunderstruck Coffee Porter will release across Highland’s distribution areas.

Additionally, Highland aims to protect the region that inspired this beer. So for every glass purchased on October 14th, they will donate $1 to Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy.

Style: Porter (w/ Coffee)
Hops: Chinook, Hallertau, German Select
Malts: Briess Pale Malt, Briess Caramel 60, Briess Chocolate, Briess Midnight Wheat.
1.5 lbs of coffee per barrel

Availability: 12 oz bottles, Draft. Fall Seasonal.
Latest Return: Mid-October, 2016

5.8% ABV, 26 IBUs

Posted in Beer News, Highland Brewing

Highland Gaelic Ale now available in cans

Highland Gaelic Ale

Highland Gaelic Ale appears in cans for the first time this month. The Asheville, North Carolina based brewery first bottled Gaelic Ale back in 1994, and decided now it needed a new home in outdoor friendly in aluminum.

Read More: Highland Mandarina IPA available in cans

“With bottling and canning operations, we are in a new chapter. And Gaelic is the right beer to package both ways because of its flexibility – its medium body and balance. It fits with food or on its own, in cool or warm weather. Gaelic cans will be with me on my next hike.” – Leah Ashburn, President.

Highland Gaelic Ale adds to the growing number of canned offerings from Highland, following their first cans of Pilsner and Mandarina IPA over the summer.

Additionally, Highland stated that with their flagship beer now in a can they will be seeking to expand distribution in the near future.

Style: Amber Ale
Availability: 12oz cans, Draft, 12oz bottles
Distribution: North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, and Washington, DC.

5.5% ABV

Posted in Beer News

Red Brick Brewing is dropping bottles. Almost completely.

Red Brick Cans 2016

Atlanta, Georgia based Red Brick Brewing has decided to eliminate bottles completely from their lineup by the end of the year. At least, as far as they year-round and seasonals go.

In 2014, Red Brick debuted Laughing Skull Amber Ale in cans, a brewery first. The success of the switch was undeniable.

“We continue to focus on sustainability and we feel that cans are a more sustainable option. Aluminum is one of the most widely recycled consumer packages in the United States. In addition, aluminum provides our products complete protection from harmful UV light” – Garett Lockhart, President & Brewmaster

All of Red Brick’s core and seasonal releases will be available in cans by January, 2017. The brewery’s specialty Brick Mason Series will soon transition to 16 ounce cans.

Occasional brewery only releases will be available in bottles in limited quantities.



Posted in Beer News, Foothills Brewing

Beer & Football: Foothills partners with Wake Forest

Foothills Wake Forest

Foothills Brewing Company (Winston-Salem, NC) has partnered with Wake Forest University. The school will soon be selling the brewery’s beer lineup at select school events.

The partnership currently spans the next two years, commencing September 1st at Wake Forest University’s first home football game versus Tulane.

“We are extremely excited to offer Foothills beer at Wake Forest Athletic events this year, I grew up in Winston-Salem and have been a Deacon fan for as long as I can remember. I look forward to sharing a pint with fans during the season this year.” – Matt Masten, co-owner, Foothills Brewing

The partnership is part of Wake Forest University’s bigger initiative called ‘Made in Winston-Salem,’ designed by the Athletic Department to showcase local businesses on campus.

Hoppyum IPA & Carolina Blonde Cream Ale will be available at home football games, with seasonal and select brands throughout the stadium. Foothills Beer will be available at basketball games this fall as well.

Posted in Beer News

So you want to design a beer label (Sponsored)

Fast Labels Co UK

Craft Beer Label Design: A Beer Brand Owners Guide

With the U.S. craft beer market exceeding sales of $19.6 billion per annum (in 2014) and growing every year, craft beer is certainly a lucrative business opportunity for those with a passion for the fizzy stuff.

However, creating your own craft beer business takes a lot of thought and effort.

Not only do you need a winning beer formula (i.e. something at least comparable to the big brands in terms of sheer quality and taste), but you also need to create a brand, deal with regulatory issues and production problems, and successfully get your beer on the shelves of stores/bars/pubs.

Most craft beer entrepreneurs tend to focus on the aforementioned issues without much persuasion, but there’s one other issue that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves: the bottle label.

It might sound crazy, but your bottle label has the potential to make or break your business – it’s the number one aspect by which purchasing decisions are made.

Here’s a guide to getting craft beer labelling right:

Stand Out from The Crowd

Perhaps the most important – and often overlooked – ingredient in the perfect craft beer label recipe is the idea of uniqueness.

Not only is this important from a branding perspective (there’s no point being another “me too” brand in a super-competitive market like craft beer), but it’s also important from a visual perspective.

When customers are looking for a beer to buy in their local supermarket, they’re greeted with an abundance of choice, and they don’t have time to carefully peruse every bottle label on the shelf and make a super-informed decision.

Instead, they look at the few bottles that stand out to them.

This means that if your bottle label is similar to the rest of the beers on the shelf, it’s probably not going to get a second look.

Therefore, you need to do your research and look at the competition.

You should look at:

  • Color(s)
  • Typography
  • Material (e.g. paper, clear adhesive label, etc.)
  • Imagery
  • Etc.

The easiest way to do this is simply to head down to your local supermarket and look at the craft beers on the shelves.

Your aim is to notice similarities so you can then buck the trend with your craft beer label, thus allowing you to stand out from the crowd.

For example, if there are a tonne of beers with paper labels, it might be best to use a clear/wood label for your beer. If most of the labels are red, use a completely different colour.


Even if you hire the greatest graphic designer on the planet to design your bottle label, he/she won’t be entirely free to do whatever they want in terms of the design.

There are a number of pieces of information that must be included on any beer label, and there are also pieces of information that should be avoided.

Here are a few that MUST be included:

  • Brand name (e.g. “Ted’s delicious beer”)
  • Class designation (e.g. “ale”)
  • Name + Address (e.g. “Ted’s delicious beer, 12 beer road, London…”)
  • Net contents (e.g. 1 pint – there are strict rules here)

And here are a few things that you shouldn’t include:

  • Flags (e.g. U.S. flag)
  • Coats of arms
  • Crests
  • Words such as “strong”, “full strength” or anything else that may be a statement of alcoholic content

How to Design the Perfect Craft Beer Label (INFOGRAPHIC)

Here’s a nifty infographic – created by the bottle label printing company, FastLabels – that goes into a lot more detail (and also offers some research) about craft beer label design.

Beer Label Infographic

Posted in Beer News

Southern Tier breaks ground Pittsburgh, PA location

Southern Tier Pittsburgh

Southern Tier Brewing Company (Lakewood, NY) is breaking ground on their first satellite brewpub located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The pub is located at 316 North Shore Drive, just a short walk from Heinz Field and PNC Park. The new location will feature a smaller edition of the home brewery, plus a 10,000 square foot outdoor beer garden.

The project should be completed in time to still watch a bulk of the football games in the coming NFL season, according to brewery founder Phin DeMink.


Posted in Beer News

Duck Duck Ouch. Round 2


We really feel for Lost Abbey. They make a pretty amazing beer by the name of Duck Duck Gooze. It takes a full three years to produce. Because of that, there aren’t a whole lot of bottles to go around. The problem – selling them.

Lines for beer releases are time consuming and get crazy. Then there is the proxy/beer mule situation, where folks want to stack their cellars, or trade.

So.. for the one every three years release, the brewery uses their e-commerce platform, run by Nexternal. On Tuesday, the site crashed with the fans frantically clicking and refreshing the store. That… got ugly fast.

After postponing the online sale until today, Nexternal shit the bed again. The link didn’t go live on time. Guess what happened… the “fans” of the brewery turned on Lost Abbey once again. Here is a smattering of the hatred, mean comments, and entitlement that the brewery had to deal with today. They communicated every step, and apologized profusely. It fell on deaf ears.

Lost Abbey did an amazing job despite the onslaught. Wish we could buy you a beer. 

Honestly, Instagram comments were even uglier. Sad world.

Update. After three site crashes, Lost Abbey has decided to cancel all the orders, and refund everyone’s money. They are going to reset over the weekend and find a strong, fair, solution.

As you can imagine, the comments just got uglier.

I’m not getting my rare beer, so I’m going destroy everything

Refresh SO HARD.

Don’t be dumb and buy beer.

A Internet Lesson offer

Lunch on Lost Abbey.

Give everyone free bottles

Heartless brewery just wants your money.

Sick burn.

Then Lost Abbey attempted to use Brown Paper Tickets...

And… Brown Paper Tickets crashed. Behold the power of the beer geek.

That’s thinking outside the box.


Russian River fan.

Finally, Lost Abbey went to Eventbrite. This says it all.

 See!! All is well!! 

Oh shit.