HUNTINGTON — Here in these dark, long days of winter, a good roaring fire, the company of friends and a good locally-made craft beer can be just what the doctor ordered.
As luck would have it, there's a good bit of local craft brew news to tend to as we roll into January.
Here's a look at few brew things happening around the region.
Resilience is ready
Jay Fox, head brewer for The Peddler, the burgers and retro arcade pub at 835 Third Ave., said that The Peddler's collaboration brew with Sierra Nevada Brewing — the Resilience Butte County Proud IPA — is now on tap as of Thursday.
The Peddler is one of 1,400 breweries nationwide that brewed this special Sierra Nevada recipe as part of their effort to donate 100 percent of sales to the Sierra Nevada Camp Fire Relief Fund, aimed at long-term community rebuilding support for victims of the Camp Fire, the historic November fire that burned more than 153,000 acres, killed at least 85 people, and destroyed more than 13,000 homes. Many of Sierra Nevada's employees and community members were severely impacted by this tragic event.
While at The Peddler, you can also check out nearly a dozen other Peddler brews on tap including the new Ringmaster: A Russian Imperial Stout 8.8 ABV that Fox describes as having notes of coffee and chocolate along with dried fruit. Aged in bourbon soaked oak spirals.
Go online at https://www.facebook.com/The-Peddler-389850314486735/ to find out more about The Peddler.
Some Cider Fest tickets still available
While Huntington's Better Beer Coalition is best known for its super-sized summer-time Rail and Ales — West Virginia's largest craft beer festival - in the winter time they turn their attention and taps to specific niche in the craft brewing industry. Last winter, the first Wild and Wonderful Winter Beer Festival put a spotlight on sour beers. This year, the BBC is making room in the inn for beer's popular fruit-pressed cousin, hard ciders, as they present the first Wild and Wonderful Winter Cider Festival.
The festival will take place from 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16, at Black Sheep Harley-Davidson, 408 4th St, Huntington. It will feature samples of more than 30 ciders and a handful of craft beers from several local breweries. Local food favorites, Backyard Pizza and Southside Sliders will be vending.
With limited space, only 300 tickets will be sold and a few still remain. All tickets are $50 and are general admission, with only one session offered. Go online at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wild-wonderful-winter-cider-festival-tickets to get tickets.
For folks who aren't gung ho about ciders, there will be a selection of local and regional breweries including brews from Huntington's own brewery, The Peddler.
Go online at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wild-wonderful-winter-cider-festival-tickets to get tickets.
Get hopped up on some Chestnut
On Friday, Jan. 11, Taps at Heritage Station, the cozy craft beer bar tapped three new kegs of hoppy brews from one of the state's most well-thought of breweries, Bill Rittenour's Chestnut Brew Works, our of Morgantown.
Taps, 210 11th St., has Chestnut's flagship, Halleck Pale Ale, as well as two new hoppy brews — On the Beach Blonde- Hoppy Blonde Ale and The Blue Lot Special- Session IPA.
Interestingly, they did not send to Marshallville a keg of their seasonal brew, The Golden Suit Session IPA, brewed in honor of WVU basketball coach, Bob Huggins.
Go online at https://www.facebook.com/ChestnutBrewWorks/
WV Craft Beer Fest sets Spring date
Earlier this week, The State Fair of West Virginia and Lewisburg Rotary Club announced the 3rd Annual West Virginia Craft Brew Festival will take place on Saturday, April 27.
Enjoy beer tastings from West Virginia's finest craft breweries, as each will compete for the title of best brew. The evening will include live music, food trucks, and beer tastings from 3 to 9 p.m. Tickets will be available soon.
Go online at https://www.wvcraftbrewfest.com/ for more info.
Pouring out some great stories
One of Summit Beer Station's bar tender, Ashley Skeen, who happens to among other things have a masters degree in Marine Science, also happens to be a published author.
Skeen's new book, "The Intimacy Interviews; Real Women and Real Conversations" will celebrate its release at a launch party from 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 13, at Summit Beer Station, 321 9th St., Huntington.
You can pre-order the book now ($20) for the event.Otherwise it will be available on amazon starting Feb. 14.
Go online at https://ashleyskeen.com/ to pre-order and read more about how Skeen, who is also a local yoga instructor had her blog turn into a journey writing a book.
WV In Top 15 in brewery growth
Forbes magazine just published a story by Gary Stoller that dissected the amount of craft brewery growth by state over the past four years.
Stoller reported that a recent study by Chicago-based C+R Research showed the largest brewery growth occurred in New Jersey, Kentucky, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Virginia and New Hampshire.
Kentucky was No. 2 with a 43 percent growth in the number of breweries since 2015 while West Virginia was 14th with a 29 percent growth and Ohio was 18th with a 27 percent increase.
You can read the full story online at www.Forbes.com
Bad Shepherd prepping for Two Year anniversary
The Charleston-based Bad Shepherd Brewing Company, which provides a dozen brews on tap at its sister businesses, Bahnhof WVrst Haus and Biergarten and Black Sheep Burrito and Brews in Charleston at the Brewery and in Huntington at Pullman Square, is prepping some brews to help celebrate its 2-year anniversary.
Head brewer Ross Williams has some special brews just now coming out of the barrels. This past week they have been racking some Oud Bruin Sheep, brewed last February and aging in some of oak barrels since March. It will naturally condition with caramelized cherry and plum juices and will be ready in a couple weeks when they kick off their Year Anniversary Celebration.
In the meantime, you can check out some of their tasty dark and delicious brews such as the new "Wolf Cuddles," an 8.0 ABV Baltic Porter now on tap at Bahnhof and the Smooth Ambler-barrel-aged, "Bear Fight," Bad Shepherd's 11.0-ABV Imperial Stout - also on tap at Bahnhof.
Go online at https://www.facebook.com/CRWBrews/ and download the Digital Pour app to keep up with what is on tap at Bahnhof, Black Sheep, MU Hall of Fame Cafe, Summit Beer Station and Taps, as well as craft brew pubs all over the country.