Saturday, May 15, 2010

philly beer week's collaborative ale and the brotherly suds

Brian O'Reilly, award-winning brewmaster of Sly Fox Brewery, paired up with the loved-and-local brewers Tom Kehoe of Yards' Brewing Co., Bill Covaleski of Victory Brewing Co., Brett Kintzer of Stoudt's Brewery and John Trogner of Troegs Brewery on Fri. morning, May 7 at SF's Royersford location to jumpstart the production of the Philly Beer Week's Collaboration Ale—a beer styled as an extra special bitter, an ESB.

As a concoction that represents the "heart of what beer week is about," said O'Reilly, there was, without a doubt, no way that I was going to miss rubbing 'bows with this five-some, even if it was only 8 a.m. (And, just so you know, by the time I left around 10 a.m., they had yet to pop up some beer bottles.)

The combined-effort brew will be first unveiled at Philly Beer Week's Opening Tap event, held Fri., June 4, at Independence Visitor's Center with the city's mayor, Michael Nutter, tapping the premier keg. (I joked that I should tap the keg—move over Nutter, it's my birthday weekend!) 

The brewing collaborative team, tentatively titled Brotherly Suds, took a bit of leg work, dividing two parts of the team to provide the malts, two to provide the hops and one stylized brewing setup, as seen at Sly Fox. The concept of Brotherly Suds is hoped to continue per each Philly Beer Week, too, replacing a new brewery with one that was represented the previous year.

The Opening Tap affair, the first celebratory event held during Philly's week-long, beer-infused festival, will host an impressive slew of lagers and ales besides the collaborative concoction. Samples from over thirty regional brewers will also be hand beside pub-styled foods, live music, and appearances from an adored Ben Franklin imposer and the notorious beer writer, Joe Sixpack.

Philly Beer Week, held Fri., June 4 to Sun., June 13 premieres with over a hundred pint-crazy celebrations sculpted around thousands of traditional-to-obscure beers. For more information, visit the 10-day, beer-glory bash here.