One of the things we love about craft beer (and a key part to winning the Good Beer Seal) is the community aspect. Whether trying to create a brewery where none exists or rebuild the brewery that no longer exists owing to natural disaster, craft brewers are a tight-knit group!
The beer community came together to help Long Island brewers and residents in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, and you can hear about their latest efforts on the latest episode of Beer Sessions Radio™ (Episode 146, listen here) and get a preview of next week’s debut of Surge Protector IPA (proceeds benefit Barrier Brewing and Long Island Cares). Surge Protector is the collaboration beer being distributed under the Blue Point Brewing label (and available in NYC starting January 22nd). Host Jimmy Carbone talks to Long Island brewers Mike Philporick of Port Jeff Brewing Company, Greg Martin of Long Ireland Brewing, and Curt Potter of Blue Point Brewing Company about how they are recovering and the state of beer on Long Island post-Sandy.
And if you think a hurricane will throw you off your game, try being bombed. In the literal sense. Mazen Hajjar was on his Beirut balcony in July of 2006 watching the bombs rain down on his home city in Lebanon when he decided to do what any sensible craft beer lover would do in a similar situation: He went to the kitchen and started homebrewing! Not only did Mazen not know how to homebrew, he’s from a country with no brewing industry (the automated macrobrewery calls the mothership Heineken when they have a problem on the floor). On a whim, he reached out to Danish brewer Anders Kissmeyer, who showed that beer community goodness by sharing recipes with Mazen. With a focus on locally-sourced Lebanese ingredients and a nod to beer’s birthplace (beer was original brewed in the Middle East starting in 9,000 B.C.), 961 Beer was created as Lebanon’s only craft brewery. The name references the country’s international telephone code, and Mazen’s beer is distributed worldwide, even winning awards in international competition.
Plus, Wendy Littlefield calls in with updates for the rescheduled (also due to Sandy) Vanberg & Dewulf Coast2Coast Toast, which was taking place in bars across NYC. Finally, don’t tune out before Jimmy gets a surprise call from Barrier’s Craig Frymark, who takes a break from brewing (yes, Barrier is back up and running!) to thank everyone for their support the past 10 weeks.