Growlers: Gravity BrewWorks Tap Takeover, Rebel Kettle Brut IPA, Bubba Brews Cherry Sandbar

The Arkansas Brewers Guild is heading to Baxter County this weekend for a tap takeover at Gravity BrewWorks in Big Flat, Arkansas. On Saturday, Gravity will host 10 local breweries in addition to their own brews: Apple Blossom, Bentonville Brewing, Brick and Forge, Bubba Brews, Fossil Cove, Gravity, Lost Forty, New Province, Ozark, Prestonrose, and Stone’s Throw. The event runs from noon until 8 p.m. on Saturday. Yeah, I know Gravity BrewWorks is a bit of a drive, but it’s worth making even without the tap takeover. Tony Guinn and Bill Riffle are well known among the brewing community for their craftsmanship; Bill in particular has won gold at the Great American Beer Festival when he was the head brewer at Vino’s. If you are free this weekend, this is probably the best beer event you can find in Arkansas.
If you missed picking up a 4-pack of Headbanger’s Ball Double IPA at Rebel Kettle this weekend, there are still a few cases left at the taproom for sale. This is without a doubt one of the best IPAs offered anywhere in Arkansas, and demand has been pretty high so far. This week, Rebel Kettle is debuting an interesting brew called Brut Scootin’ Boogie. This is a new style called Brut IPA that originated in San Francisco. Head brewer John Lee describes it as an extra dry, low bitterness, highly dry-hopped IPA that’s highly drinkable, hoppy and fruity. So yeah, I’m definitely making plans to be there for this week’s 4:30 Thursday event to give it a shot.
Bubba Brews owner Jonathan Martin tells me that Little Rock this week should be getting several kegs of its popular variant Cherry Sandbar. Sandbar is Bubba Brews’ traditional pilsner, and the brew team creates this version by refermenting it on tart Montgomery cherries and on sweet dark cherries. I know several beer lovers in Arkansas who will go out of their way to find this one. Hopefully by next week, we’ll have a good idea of where you can find it on tap here in Little Rock. Until then, it’s on right now at all three Bubba Brews locations and at Maxine’s in Hot Springs.
Perhaps no beer style screams summer like a good, tart gose. Today, Lost Forty has its newest version ready for you to try out with a Raspberry Gose. The brew team created a traditional gose brewed with salt and coriander, then added raspberry puree and lime peel to accentuate some of those acidic notes in the ale. At just 4.5 percent ABV, this one should be extremely light and refreshing. Good news, by the way, for gose fans: Lost Forty was initially planning to just sell it on tap, but their cans came in early, and now you can get it in 4-packs to go starting today at 4 p.m.
The newly added expansion at Flyway Brewing is already making an impact, and the work is still going strong. Flyway just recently added two 30-barrel tanks and is now starting construction on a barrel-aging room in the back of the brewing facility. It will be fun watching the brew team get that new room stocked and aging; already, Flyway has five barrel projects in the works. This week, Flyway is brewing another batch of its Honeybird Blonde Ale, which has been a huge hit in the taproom. Also this week, Flyway will begin brewing its late summer cake series beer Carrot Cake Golden Ale. And if you’re looking for a new Flyway brew to try, head over on Wednesday for the release of Tanager Tart Cherry Ale. This one is a lightly sour Berliner Weisse that should be perfect for summer sipping.
Stone’s Throw Brewing this week is releasing a beer that pays homage to the history of Arkansas brewing. George Bros. Historic Arkansas Ale goes on tap this Friday at 4 p.m. The George brothers were the first known brewers in the state of Arkansas, operating a Civil War-era biergarten in Little Rock on Rock Street (the same street Stone’s Throw is located on). The beer is brewed in the same style with the same kind of ingredients that the Georges would have had on hand. The result is a farmhouse-style saison with a hefty malt and some notes of pepper and clove. If you want to check out what people in Arkansas were drinking around the time we became a state, get to Stone’s Throw this week.
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