Friday, September 22, 2017

Clairvoyant Brewing Becomes the 22nd Brewery in the Treasure Valley

by Bob Hubler

Clairvoyant Brewing opens it's doors to the public today (Friday, September 22, 2017) becoming the 59th Active Brewery in Idaho and the 22nd Brewery in the Treasure Valley (if you include Ontario Oregon).  The blog that I wrote two weeks ago was about White Dog Brewing and I claimed that they were the 57th Brewery in Idaho, failing to count the Shattuck Brewery in Elk River, Idaho. So White Dog Brewing was the 58th Brewery in Idaho.

We had a fun visit with Mike Edmudson on Thursday, September 14th.  Clairvoyant Brewing opened their doors for a soft opening for the Snake River Brewers homebrew club with an offering of four of their beers.

It was a "Long and Winding Road" for Mike Edmudson, Ryan and Tim Carter as their original target date for opening their brewery was way back in 2015.  Once they found their location and drew up their original plans, many changes turn their final plan.

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Clairvoyant already had three competent brewers, but all of them had full time jobs.  The Decision was mad to add a full time brewer.

Head Brewer, Eric Brooks 

Originally from Rockville, Maryland, Eric moved to Colorado after college to study and brew craft beer. There he met his fiancee Lindsey, a native Idahoan, who also worked in the craft beer industry. After having a baby named Madison, Lindsey and Eric decided it was time to move back home to her family in Boise.
Eric has been in the beer industry for almost 8 years. He brings his craft beer knowledge, artistry and practical skill to your pint glass. He enjoys brewing stouts, kettle sours, and non-traditional experimental beers. He also has a solid foundation in brewing the traditional favorites. 



Saturday, September 2, 2017

WHITE DOG BREWING BECOMES IDAHO'S 57TH BREWERY ON SEPTEMBER 1ST

by Bob Hubler

Current and upcoming Beer List


I was pretty sure that White Dog Brewing would open the first week of September, but I was still surprised to see this message on their Facebook page on Friday: " We stayed up all night to get things ready, so our doors are open as of 11 a.m. today. Please accept our sincerest thanks for your ongoing interest, engagement, and enthusiasm. We can't wait to meet you."  It was posted at 2 minutes after 11:00.

I checked Facebook a little after 1:00 as I was preparing to do some yard work.  So I changed clothes and call my buddy, Mike Johnston, and told him to meet me at the old Table Rock Brewing location at 2:00 and I was on my way.

It was great to drink beer at 705 W. Fulton again; good beer and a wonderful staff.  Sara, the manager was very happy to take time to talk about the brewery, the beer and their concept of a full time food truck (fifth wheel).  Dan, owner and brewer, came over and talked about their beer and how they are planning to keep the history of Table Rock alive by offering two Table Rock signature beers, Hopzilla and TD's Nut Brown Ale.  The Hopzilla is currently on tap and brought back great memories as I drank a pint of one of my favorite beers reborn.  It was not on the untappd app, so I added it plus the new location.

My wife, Nelda and I have a long history of drinking beer at that location.  We were there on the opening day of Table Rock Brew Pub 26 years ago.  The original brewery was owned by Mike and Peggy Fitzgerald.  Their first Head Brewer was Terry Dennis, a long-time home brewer and member of Boise's first Home Brew Club, the Boise Quaffers.  Table Rock became our favorite restaurant in Boise.  We only lived three miles away, so we were there a lot.

We bought our first Growler there.  It was a clear bottle that still had an Apple Cider Vinegar label on it.  We used to buy a couple of growlers of TD's Nut Brown Ale on Christmas Eve every year.

Over the years we drank Table Rock beer brewed by Terry Dennis, Bob McSherry, Kerry Caldwell and Derek Anderson.  We drank beer brewed by Marvin Kinney when it was the Post Modern Brewery and now we are drinking beer brewed by White Dog Brewing's Dan Jordan and Troy Moore, who are both the owners and the brewers.

We are very excited to be able to take our friends to White Dog Brewing for food and drink. It is a new brewery to Boise but the location has been home to a brewery since 1991.

I checked out the new brewery on Friday and brought my wife to see it on Monday.  We planned to check out the food that they served from Smoke and Thyme.  Smoke and Thyme food is cooked in a fifth wheel mobile kitchen that sits in the alley next to White Dog.  You don't leave the tap room to order or get the food.  Your server at White Dog will take the order and deliver your food.  It is included in your bill at White Dog.  You can also order their food from the Longdrop Cider Company which is in the same building as White Dog.

This is where the food is prepared



I had the BLT (photo below).  It was very good and they served it on a slice of a tree.  Nelda had the street tacos that she loved. We are looking forward to trying some of their vegetarian fare, as well.

My BLT, served on a slice of log




When we visited Monday, Dan gave us tour of the brewery and showed us a few changes.  It still has the 15BBL original system, the wall was moved to allow more room for the brewing process.  The loss in floor space from the tap room was made up for by moving the wall where the former kitchen was. What's left of that space is now used for keg and canned beer storage.

The 15BBL Boil Kettle and Mash Tun

Fermentor containing a Fresh Hop Ale

Fermentors facing west

The old kitchen space holding cans of White Dog Beer

The old kitchen space holding kegs ready to distribute

White Dog Brewery becomes the 57th Brewery in Idaho (counting only current breweries) and 21st brewery in the Treasure Valley.  White Dog becomes the third brewery in Idaho that had a brewery in another state before coming to Idaho.  Ten Barrel Brewing opened it's second Brew Pub in Boise after their highly successful Brew Pub in Bend, Oregon.  Mother Earth Brewing opened a huge production brewery with a tap room in Nampa, Idaho.  Their first brewery was in Vista, California.

Oh....I can't forget the Frost Rail...it's fun to set your glass on its snowy surface to keep your beer cold.  And another great reason to sit at the bar.

The Frost Rail



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In other Valley Brewery news, I met Alvin Mullins at PreFunk Nampa. Alvin plans to open the  2C Family Brewery right across the street from PreFunk.  He originally was calling his  brewery Black Angel Brewing,  but another brewery took offense and threatened to "legal up" if he continued to use that name.  Alvin plans to have a tap room that will be open to families, hence the name.  We wish Alvin the best of luck on his new brewery, which will be the third brewery in Nampa.

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I talked to Heather and Ryan, the owners of  PreFunk Nampa about their upcoming expansion.  The expansion will double floor space of their business, but they do not plan to add a bottle shop.  They already sell a few bottles of very special releases.


Sunday, August 27, 2017

TREASURE VALLEY BREWERY UPDATE AUGUST 28, 2017

by Bob Hubler


We are  coming into the Home Stretch for Boise's newest breweries with Lost Grove announcing an opening date on October 6th.  White Dog will be open the first half of September with Clairvoyant most likely opening after White Dog and before Lost Grove.  The number of Treasure Valley Breweries will jump from 20 to 23 (25 if you count the cideries).

White Dog Brewing will probably be the first to open.  They have hired their staff and are currently brewing beer for their opening in about two weeks.  The two photos below may look familiar to the long time fans of the Table Rock Brew Pub.
This is what you will see when you walk in

No Kitchen means more space for tables

And don't forget that White Dog Brewing will be a Brewery with a Tap House.  There will be no on-site restaurant like its predecessors, Table Rock and Modern Grind.  There will be a Food Truck (fifth wheel in this case) onsite serving both White Dog and Long Drop Cider company.
Where to get the food at White Dog Brewing
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Clairvoyant Brewing is the Brewery that has been the longest in the works.  Clairvoyant started their construction in early 2015.  From the latest pictures (below), they look like they could open tomorrow.  They are currently brewing beer for their opening in the next few weeks.
Look closely to see the Brewer at Work

You could be sitting at this table very soon
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Lost Grove Brewing plans to have their Grand Opening on October 6th.  I talked to Jake Black on Monday and he is confident they may open a few days before the grand opening.  Brewing has commenced at the Lost Grove Brewery. They will have two of their own beers on tap with more offerings down the road.

Brewing at the  Lost Grove Brewery
The signage is up.

Watch  for the latest Brewery Opening Dates on the Boise Beer Buddies Email List

Remember that you can click on the above photos to enlarge to see more detail.

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There will be two new breweries added to the count in 2018.  The first is Spring Creek Brewing in Avimor.  I got a chance to talk to Jeff and Marc at the Mother Earth Celebration on Saturday.  They expect the ground breaking ceremony to take place in the next few weeks.  Spring Creek Brewing will be the second brewery in the Treasure Valley to be built from the ground up as a brewery.

The other brewery will open in Caldwell, Idaho.  Tony Stewart of Stewart's Bar and Grill plans to open a brewery next to his current business.  Tony is confident that his brewery will be open by August 2018. He has not selected a name for his brewery yet.

On a sad note:  Brewers Haven in Nampa has closed.  The popular Bottle Shop and Home Brew Supply store will be missed by the Canyon County home brewers.  The Brewers Haven in Boise remains open.

In other Canyon County Brew News, the PreFunk Nampa Growler Station will double in size soon. The hope is that they will be able to carry more bottles to make up for the Brewers Haven closure.






Monday, July 3, 2017

Three new Boise Breweries to Open this Summer

by Bob Hubler

The number of local Breweries in Boise are going to see a big increase in the Summer of 2017.  Boise will have enough breweries to do a decent pub crawl.

The Lost Grove Brewing Brewery


I recently talked to Jake Black about his up and coming Brewery conveniently located across the street from Boise State Student Apartments.  Jake has all his permits and just needs to complete construction and brew some beer before he can open.  He is shooting for a July 21st opening date.
He will owe me a beer if he doesn't open on that date.

They began their construction in February and plan to be open in a six month time frame.

You may remember Jake from his days at Payette Brewing where he was instrumental in their startup five years ago.  More on Lost Grove Brewing in the next blog.

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A serving window on the South side of the Lost Grove Brewery


White Dog Brewing


I see from their Facebook page, that White Dog Brewing has their innovative "frost rail" delivered and  installed.   They have their Federal Permit, so they can begin brewing now.  They still have some local permits to get prior to their opening, but they should have a nice choice of beer on their opening day which may be announced in the next few days.

Facebook

Photo from the window of the White Dog Brewery in late June.


Clairvoyant Brewing



It has been a long time coming, but it looks like Clairvoyant Brewing will be open this summer.   Like the other breweries, they will need a few weeks to make beer before they open to the public.

Here is a quote from my blog of June 23, 2015:  Clairvoyant Brewing plans to open in 2015 at 2800 W. Idaho Street, Boise Idaho.  From their webpage: "There are three passionate brewers involved in the creation of Clairvoyant Brewing Company.  We are Ryan Kowalczyk, Mike Edmondson and Tim Carter.  We are creative brewers each with a different style of brewing. This unique amalgam of brewing will make for a fun, enjoyable, flavorful kaleidoscope of beers."

As you can see, my projection of Clairvoyant Brewing opening in  2015 may have been a bit optimistic.  I have been told by mutual friends that it will be worth the wait.  The photo below looks like they could open very soon, but I was told to expect a September Grand opening.


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Photo from the Clairvoyant Brewery window in late June


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Other Idaho Brewery News


So far in  2017, Two new breweries have opened in Idaho.  One of them is brand new in Kellog, Idaho.  And the other is a reopening of a former brewery in Moscow, Idaho.

Moscow Brewing Company Story   Facebook   Website

Radio City Brewing Company      Facebook   Website

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Another Interesting Tidbit:  The Owners of the Black Angel Brewery to be opened in downtown Nampa will be changing their name after receiving a letter from the lawyer of a brewery with that same name.   New name could be 2C Brewing.


Current Idaho Brewery List with latest brewery updates.

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P.S. Spring Creek Brewery slated to open in late 2017 or early 2018 is in the fundraising stage.  Check out their website here.  Facebook
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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

2016: IDAHO BREWERY REVIEW

By Bob  Hubler

A SUMMARY OF THE MAJOR IDAHO CRAFT BEER EVENTS IN 2016.


Entering 2016, Idaho had 51 Breweries, by year's end Idaho had 54 breweries.  Three Breweries shut down during the year and six new breweries opened.  Out of the six new breweries, two were in the Boise Valley, two were in Moscow, one in Post Falls and one in Magic Valley.  Payette Brewing opened their State of Art Production Brewery with Tap Room.  Sawtooth Brewing opened a new Brew Pub in Ketchum and a new Production Brewery in Hailey.

I was fortunate to be able to visit five out of the six new breweries.  I still have not made it down to visit Magic Valley Brewing in Buhl, Idaho. Below is a list on the new breweries opened in Idaho in 2016.  Click on "Story" for more details about each brewery.

49Rants & RavesMoscow StoryBrew Pub
Facebook
Tyler HawkinsOpened January 2016
50Magic Valley BrewingBuhlBrew Pub
Facebook
Rich WhiteOpened  April 29, 2016
51Post Falls BrewingPost Falls StoryTap Room
Facebook
Dan Stokes & Alex SylvainOpened  May, 2016
52Hunga Dunga Brewing Moscow StoryBrew Pub
Facebook
Graham LillyOpened  July 24, 2016
53Mother Earth Brew Co.NampaStoryTap Room Facebook
Chris BakerOpened October 8, 2016
54Mad Swede BrewingBoise StoryTap room
Facebook
Jerry LarsonOpened October 15, 2016

Complete List of Idaho Brewers


I was impressed with all of the new breweries that we visited.  All had a decent selection of craft beer. I was especially impressed by the Mad Swede beer.  Long time Home Brewer Jerry Larson has made a seamless transition to commercial brewing with some exceptional craft beer.  I am happy to see his beer showing up at a lot of the tap rooms and restaurants in the area.

Jerry Larson Standing next to his brewing system at Mad Swede


10 Barrel became the first brewery from another state (Oregon) to add another brewery in the state of Idaho in 2013.  Mother Earth became the second brewery from another state (California) to build a brewery in Idaho in August of 2016.  White Dog will become the third brewery from another state (Montana) to build a brewery in Idaho in 2017.

Daniel Love in his new Tap Room at Mother Earth


I met Daniel Love, founder of Mother Earth, at the Press Conference at PreFunk in Nampa when they announced their plans to open another Brewery in Nampa.  He explained his vision of the future of craft brewing in Idaho and how Mother Earth would be part of that future.  Dan was anxious to be accepted as part of the Idaho Beer Culture and started by joining Idaho Brewers United, the Idaho lobbying group that represents all the commercial brewers in Idaho.  We were introduced to many of the beers from Mother Earth that day and we were impressed.  Sin Tax Stout remains one of our favorites.

Probably the new Brewery that impacted most of the craft beer aficionados in Boise was the new Payette Brewing Production Brewery and Tap Room.  See Story  Their Tap Room quickly became a gathering spot for all the fans of the Payette Brewing wide selection of beer.  Most nights, there is a food truck available for those that want to drink AND eat.  Many nights, there is also entertainment.

On a sad note, we saw the closing of three breweries in the State of Idaho.  Post Modern Brewing in Boise with Head Brewer Marvin Kinney closed in February 2016.  This was one of my favorite breweries.  Very sad to see them disappear from the Boise Craft Beer Scene.

Leakey Faucet Brewing in McCall ceased operations in 2016  August Wheeler operated this brewery out of his home.  I got to try a couple of his beers at the Sushi Bar in McCall.  Very good beer as I recall.

And The Moscow Brewing Company also closed it's doors.  Luckily Rants and Raves started operations prior to Moscow Brewing Company closing, so Moscow did not go without their own brewery.






Tuesday, November 15, 2016

BOISE AREA BREWERY UPDATE 11/11/16

by Bob Hubler

October 2016 saw the Opening of the Mad Swede Brewery and The Tap Room Opening at the Mother Earth Brewery in Nampa as the number of breweries in the State of Idaho increased to 54! But they will be the last breweries to open in the Boise Valley in 2016.

I checked in at The Clairvoyant Brewing Company and The Lost Grove Brewing Company last week. Clairvoyant has made a lot of progress since my last visit  four months ago.  They have most of their brewing vessels and equipment installed.  They need to finish up the plumbing and wiring and remain 8 to 12 weeks away from their opening.  They are now planning an early Spring 2017 opening.  Lost Grove has not begun their construction yet so they will be not be opening for 6 to 8 months.  Maybe the Summer of 2017.

White Dog Brewing from Bozeman, Montana will open a second brewery in Boise this spring.  They will be located in the former Post Modern/Table Rock location.  They plan a brewery with a tap room, differing from the prior brewpubs that occupied that space.  They will feature a "frost rail" on their bar to keep the beer cold for slow beer drinkers.  Longdrop Cider Company also opened a new tap room in the same building.  They will occupy the short lived "Brewforia" location.

I also heard through the local craft brew grapevine that David Krick has delayed his plans for the WPA Brew Pub in Boise. But we do have another new brewery that will open in the Boise area in 2017.  Jeff Badigian and Marc Grubert  will open the Springs Creek Brewery Pub and Pizzeria in the Avimor Community in the Summer of 2017.

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Mad Swede Brewing Company  became Idaho's 54th and Boise area's 20th brewery when they officially opened on October 15, 2016.  Mad Swede is owned and operated by Jerry and Susie Larson with Jerry brewing their beer.

Jerry Larson, Head Brewer at Mad Swede

I attended the grand opening at Mad Swede and got a brief tour of their facilities by Jerry.  After the tour, I got to taste the first six beers that they were pouring.  I have been to a lot of breweries over the last ten years and this was the first time that I really liked all six of their beers.  Here is a list of all of their beer.  If I had to pick a favorite, I would  pick their Longship IPA and their Varangian Nector Stout.

Mad Swede is located about a mile south of the Boise Costco providing a local brewery in a part Boise without other breweries.  I look forward to seeing Jerry and Susie have great success with their new brewery and I look forward to seeing their beer on tap at venues around the valley.

The Mad Swede Tap Room is open Tuesdays through Thursdays from 4:00 to 10:00, Fridays from 3:00 to 11:00, Saturday from 2:00 to 11:00 and Sundays from 2:00 to 8:00.

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Mother Earth became Idaho's 53rd and the Boise area's 19 Brewery in August when they started brewing in north Nampa, but did not open their Taproom until October 8, 2016.  Their brewery and taproom may be a challenge to find the first time, but well worth it. Check out our Mother Earth Makes #53 story for a  map to the brewery.

We attended the Mother Earth's Tap Room grand opening on October 8th.  We tried many new beers and drank some of our favorites like Cali Creamin and Sin Tax Stout.  We also got to drink some of their excellent seasonal ale, the Four Seasons of Mother Earth Summer Belgian Golden Ale which is aged in red wine barrels.

They had a great crowd for their opening and gave brewery tours of what could become Idaho's largest brewery.  Mother Earth's Nampa Brewery is new, but Mother Earth is an established brewery that has a great lineup of beer.

The Mother Earth Tap Room is open Thursdays and Fridays from 3:00 to 7:00 and Saturdays from Noon to 7:00.

:ME Owner Daniel Love at Tap Room Opening
Nampa, Idaho now has two breweries,  Mother Earth and Crescent Brewing located downtown.


Check out the Updated List of Idaho Breweries Here.

Monday, September 19, 2016

A TOUR OF BOISE'S PAYETTE BREWERY

By Bob Hubler

Payette Brewing Website
Payette Brewing Facebook

It was five years ago last May that Mike Francis invited the Snake River Brewers Homebrew Club to tour his new Payette Brewery in Garden City and taste his beer.  Mike had been attending the SRB meetings and kept giving us updates on his progress in building his own brewery over the previous 18 months. His flagship beer named Outlaw IPA, became my favorite IPA.

Since then, the Payette  Brewing Company has grown to being the number one brewing company in Idaho in annual sales.  The new brewery costing $4.5 million will enable Payette Brewing to maintain their growth and introduce their beer into new states.  You can already find their beer in Washington, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming.

Payette Brewing Company recently opened their new 60 BBL Brewery on Pioneer Street in Boise, Idaho.  Awesome location just off the Boise Green Belt north of Ann Morrison Park. So five years after Snake River Brewer's Homebrew Club toured the original Payette Brewery in Garden City, they were invited back to tour the new Payette Brewery on September 8, 2016.

SRB Members and Guests Ready for the Tour
Steve Sutherland gave our group a detailed description of the Brewing Process
Our Tour Guide Steve
The Payette Brewery has a 60 BBL system with multiple fermenters ranging in size from 60 BBL to 240 BBL  The Canning Line is capable of 70 Cases per Hour.

Payette Brewing currently employs 34 people that run the brewery and tap room at their new location.  As the brewery expands, there could be 70 to 80 employees.  They are currently brewing only during the day. The brewery has a potential capacity to brew 100,000 BBL's per year with day and night shifts and additional fermenters.


The Grist headed to the Mash Tun via twin augers

The 60 BBS Brewing system with the Mash and Lauter Tuns in front.

Mash tun and Lauter tun on the left and the Brew Kettle and Whirlpool on the right
Two of the many Fermenters

Mash Tun on the left and Lauter Tun on the right
You can see the bottling line at the back of the brewery


Brewing System from the Ground Level


These two tanks are part the cleaning process.

P.S. The Original Garden City Brewery is still there brewing smaller batches and limited edition beer.

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