South Florida's craft beer scene is growing -- fast. If it's one thing Beerfest proved, it's that we have a lot to look forward to when it comes to new brews.
According to the Florida Brewer's Guild, Broward County is looking at as many as three new breweries in the coming months, with one currently under construction in Pompano Beach. In Palm Beach County, there are five breweries in the works, with two in Boynton Beach, and another slated for Boca Raton.
This year's New Times' Original Beerfest showcased many of the new breweries set to come on tap in the next several months.
Here are some of our best brew highlights from this weekend's event, with a quick look at a few the breweries coming to Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach County in the coming year.
LauderAle, Fort Lauderdale's first and only nanobrewery, opened its doors to the public in July. The turnout was so great, the grand opening almost ran out of beer, according to New Times' Dave Minsky. Of course, the brewery runs on a one-barrel system -- so it makes sense that we, the people of South Florida, couldn't get enough of more local craft beer. Owners Kyle Jones and Joey Farrell had plenty to share at Beerfest, however, and were giving out samples of their LauderAle IPA.
We couldn't be more excited for the grand opening of J. Wakefield Brewing set to take place in early November, a quick transition after a successful CrowdBrewed campaign launched in September. The brewery, which will be located in Miami's Wynwood arts district, had a number of its specialty beers on tap for Beerfest, including a guava Hefeweizen, star fruit double IPA, and pineapple kolsch. Our new favorite: the vanilla coconut porter. Rich, creamy, and delicious it smells (and tastes) just like the candy, Almond Joy.
A new South Florida start-up brewery is on its way to opening in Boynton Beach, what will be the city's third brewery -- and the second to open in Boynton this year -- if all goes as planned. Wild Oak Artisan Ales, which creates barrel-aged brews made with wild yeast, is currently operating from a Delray Beach home brewing location. The duo behind the beers includes general manager/co-owner Chris McElveen, and brewmaster/co-owner Matt Manthe, who say they are planning for a full-production facility, coming soon.
The South Florida craft beer scene is certainly growing, and new to Broward County is Native Brewing Company. Founder Adam Fine isn't a newcomer to the craft beer movement, however; he's been selling his Glades pale ale and Native lager for several years at local pubs, but hasn't made the transition to a operating his own brewery or brew pub -- yet. The same beers were out for sampling at Beerfest, as well as his The Eleven brown ale and Thunderhead Red American amber ale. Until Fine is able to open a brewery and tap room of his own, you'll just have to find his beers around town.
Cigar City showed up with samples of its Jai Alai IPA and hard cider, as well as one of its latest new releases. The new style is something special with just 1% ABV, what can only be described as a super-session brew. It's real name: the Session Berliner Weisse, a light and refreshing thirst quencher that shines with a tart lemon snap.
Nicole Danna is a food blogger covering Broward and Palm Beach counties. To get the latest in food and drink news in South Florida, follow her @SoFloNicole or find her latest food pics on Clean Plate's Instagram.
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