Jackson’s Nanobrewery is still a Nanobrewery

By on April 28, 2011

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The new Brew System is here!

Our new brewer, Kirk McHale, arrived in town a couple months back – he is the mastermind behind Melvin IPA and 2 x 4 Quadruple Pale Ale. He drove our new tap mobile up from the Border Patrol in San Diego. Words cannot describe the bus so you just have to see it to believe it. Some highlights of his trip were breaking down every morning and having the entire 16-ton bus shake when it hits the maximum speed of 63. He also hit black ice in the canyon!

We have been busy making beer – more beer in a month than we made all last year – and we are still a nano-brewery. Kirk grew up in San Diego and has been part of the So Cal beer revolution for over a decade. Working as the brewer at Pizza Port Carlsbad (American Brewery of the year past two years – see you in a week Bagby) and his own start-up in Oceanside, Breakwater Brewery . He has brought a new style of beer to Jackson. On behalf of myself and the 30 or so locals at the bar, we thank you. My business model was totally shot though. We add so many hops and malt to the beer we are giving it away – and that’s the way it should be this off-season. Many breweries make simple beers that cost less than 40 cents to make and charge you $5.00 – wow – no wonder the are all millionaires! If we are going to charge a brother $5.00 then it better get to the point on the first sip and you should not have to get more than a couple.

I always thought it would be fun to go to a brewery and buy a growler for half the price of pints, and then go sit down at the bar and drink it. Maybe we will have to use that one in the beer show pilot we are shooting in June.

There are West Coast beers in Jackson! Thai Me Up’s new 22 series (Introducing the Old West to the New West) has been so much fun to make and to drink, it’s a series of single hop IPA’s and pale ales. We have been taking fruity hop strains from the Yakima Valley (buy American!) and putting them into the beer. For instance – our 22: Falcon and our 22: Amarillo are both made with the same yeast and grain bill – all we change batch to batch is the hop. This way the customer can try both beers and really focus on the hops – taste the pine flavors or the grapefruit zest and smell the floral bouquet that only that hop has. We have been recommending to slowly drink a 22 series beer and really taste and smell it, letting it warm up a little to get that extra flavor. Then try the other 22 series beer on tap, compare the two and try to pick up on the nuances that make each hop different. And then if you have the time, get a pint of ½ and ½ 22 series that blends both tastes together. By the end of the summer we will all be able to identify our favorite hops and then we can gravitate towards those beers when we are at other breweries or shopping at the grocery store. Next up is the 22: Bravo IPA and another 22:Amarillo that we dry hopped with Centennial hops!

I’m off to Chico, California to brew on Sierra Nevada’s pilot system. I will hit you from there.

Mark your calendars for May 19th at 4-8 pm. Snake River is hosting the Tetons on Tap http://www.craftbeer.com/pages/news-and-events/calendar/show?title=the-tetons-on-tap – all local breweries will be showcasing their favorite beers. See you there.

And did I mention we are getting Avery Beer on tap in May!!!! http://www.averybrewing.com/ – Avery Drops the Hammer!


About Jeremy Tofte

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