In the Spring Guide edition of “Got Beer?,” we noted that the details re: the 3rd Annual Bacon & Beer Fest were TBA – but we can A ’em now! The best-of-both-worlds bash, brought to you by the folks from Beervana Fest and RI Food Fights, will take place on June 16 from 2 – 5pm at Cranston Print Works (1381 Cranston St; The Steel Yard, which hosted the first two gatherings, is closed for renovations). Culinary superstars (including Julians, Boru, Salted Slate, Diego’s, Warwick Ice Cream and 20 more) pair small bacon-centric dishes – sliders, waffles, soup, fritter, whathaveyou – with a single beer (breweries TBA), and the outstanding combo is decided by popular vote. Early bird tix went live on the 18th; check eventbrite.com for the regular bird admission papers.
On June 28, 2016, Gov. Gina Raimondo signed House Bill 8100 Substitute B and Senate Bill 3053 Substitute A, which allowed breweries to sell 288 ounces of beer for off-premise consumption, in any combo of growlers, bottles and cans — a significant increase from the former 72-ounce limit – and sell 36 ounces in-house. Last week, the Senate hosted a policy roundtable titled “Building a More Vibrant Rhode Island,” unveiling a passel of notions to goose economic development. One of the bills would up the ounces-to-go limit at breweries to 384 ounces, greenlighting sales of a 24-count case of 16-ounce bottles or cans. A legislative note re: the package of Senate proposals says that the proposed change “seeks to allow additional growth in an industry that has recently gone from 14 to 30 craft breweries due to an earlier law addressing this issue.” We assume the bill will sail through and be enacted in a few months – so start saving up for those $90 – $120 cases of tallboys!
The Brewers Association, the trade organization that represents small and independent American craft brewers, has released its list of the top 50 craft brewers and top 50 overall beermakers in 2018. Narragansett Beer is #32 on the craft list and #42 overall. The “Hi-Neighbor!” brand has made steady progress in the past five years; in 2014, ’Gansett was #47 on the craft list and absent from the top 50 (they made the ’15 tally at #45). Congrats to Mark Hellendrung and his crew. And ICYM our previous mentions, go to narragansettbeer.com for the skinny on their BuyRITour (spoiler alert: free beer!).
Shaidzon Beer Company has a trio of fresh brews to entice you to their West Kingston HQ: London Dungeon, a porter that was among their very first offerings is making its triumphant return; a new saison; and Ocean Lust, an IPA which should be ready any day now.
A tasty Pawtucket collab is in the works: Crooked Current will be aging one of its OG beers, oatmeal rum raisin, in a White Dog Distilling barrel that previously spawned Puppy Bourbon, Cornucopia Whiskey and Aged Rum. Check CC’s socials for updates on when the brew will be tapped.
The waiting, which is the hardest part, natch, is almost over: Long Live Beerworks says that the “buildout of the new space is basically done.” and they’re hoping for an early April opening. Go to loglivebeerworks.com for links to alla their hoppy platforms. And Ragged Island is thisclose to getting approval from the Portsmouth planning and zoning boards so they can finalize the purchase of the land that will be the home of their new farm-based brewery. Cheers to all!
For more beer news, check Lou’s blog, bottlescansclaphands.wordpress.com, or follow @BottlesCansRI.