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Tap List | Cinder Block Brewery Uses Locally-Sourced Wheat for Witbier

Wheat grown by Great Plains Custom Grain will be used in Cinder Block Brewery’s Weather Witbier. Wheat grown by Great Plains Custom Grain will be used in Cinder Block Brewery’s Weather Witbier. (Contributed | Great Plains Custom Grain)
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5 minute read

Starting the first week of June, Cinder Block Brewery’s Weathered Wit will contain wheat grown by Great Plains Custom Grain, based in Wellsville, Kansas. Malt from that Kansas-grown wheat will journey to North Kansas City, Missouri, for the brewing process. Then the beer will make its way back to Kansas, as well as Missouri in Cinder Block’s distribution territory. In early June, Cinder Block expands distribution from Lawrence, Kansas, to Johnson County, Kansas.

Cinder Block owner Bryce Schaffter first met Gary Van Horn, a fourth-generation farmer and co-owner of Great Plains Custom Grain, at a Kegs N Eggs beer festival. Van Horn’s farm was already supplying Lifted Spirits Distillery with soft red winter wheat malt. He pitched the idea of supplying grain to Cinder Block.

“I want to grow barley and wheat and malt it for breweries,” Van Horn said. “I’m working on growing particular varieties of barley.”

Schaffter received samples and tested the grain for brewing. After initial trials, the two companies struck a supply deal. Cinder Block will soon brew and release a 30-barrel batch of Weathered Wit using the Kansas wheat.

“Witbier is a rustic style of beer,” Schaffter said. “There are more flavor characteristics with Great Plains’ wheat that lends itself to witbier. The grain has aggressive, bright tones and more flavor. Kind of like eating whole wheat bread. This is a good opportunity to pair the grain with our beer.”

Looking ahead, Van Horn has applied for grant funding to conduct a feasibility study on operating a malthouse. Currently, barley and wheat malt is produced and supplied by malters in other regions of the U.S and overseas. If plans bear out, Great Plains will be able to custom grow and malt grain for distilleries and breweries at competitive cost with a closer supply chain. As an essential ingredient in beer, that malted grain supply could open up fresh possibilities for locally-produced beer and spirits.

Women at Boulevard developed and brewed Test Salted Caramel Stout

Forty-four women at Boulevard developed and brewed Test Salted Caramel Stout, now available at the brewery’s Tours and Rec. Center. (Contributed | Boulevard Brewing Company)

Women at Boulevard Brewing Develop Test Salted Caramel Stout

A few months ago, a small group of women approached Boulevard Brewing brewmaster Steven Pauwels with the idea of brewing a beer on International Women’s Day (March 8). The idea expanded to include an invitation to women from every department to submit ideas via email for a test beer. Forty-four women participated in the process. A committee of four women picked the top three ideas: Blonde Ale with Coffee, Orange IPA and Salted Caramel Stout.

Test Salted Caramel Stout, the winning concept selected by vote, was brewed recently and released last Friday at Boulevard Tours and Rec. Center (2534 Madison). A dollar from sales of each pour was donated to MOCSA.

“We thought it would be neat to get people involved in the innovation process who don’t normally get to voice their ideas,” quality sensory coordinator Abby Zender said. “We had to sort some ideas out due to cost, ingredient sourcing, time constraints. One of my favorite ideas was called The Feminine Mystiki: Tropical Coconut Chai Ale.”

“The response was pretty overwhelming,” brewer Megan Wood said. “We had ideas ranging from a traditional Vienna lager to a dill gose.”

Wood wrote the recipe for the winning beer. Three women that submitted the same idea for the test beer joined Wood in brewing the stout.

“Hillary Dunnegan, Erin McGonagle and I got to brew on our original system alongside brewers Megan Wood, Stuart Kersting and Dan Chivetta,” beer hall lead porter Carlene Schipfmann said. “My husband and I have homebrewed, but it was a completely different experience to brew such a large batch on such large equipment.”

Wood valued the opportunity to work with women from other departments.

“It was an eye-opening experience for me to see desire from other departments to be involved with the process,” Wood said. “We are starting an ‘idea box’ that is open to the whole company. Hopefully you’ll see many more employee-inspired beers.”

Casual Animal Brewing's theme of animal-named beers continues with its new release, Unicorn Booster

Casual Animal Brewing’s theme of animal-named beers continues with its new release, Unicorn Booster. (Contributed | Casual Animal Brewing)

Tap Notes

Rock & Run Brewery and Pub (110 E. Kansas St., Liberty, Missouri) signed with Major Brands to handle its distribution in Greater Kansas City.

The brewery’s tap list includes: Livewell Wheat with lemon, Mai-Ale, Roca Carrera Golden Ale with lime zest and kaffir lime leaves, Hoppy Sake American Blonde Ale, Brutus Maximus IPA, Witish Invasion Belgian-style Witbier with coriander and orange peel, and Hefe-Rye-Zen Wheat Ale with rye malt.

The lineup at Papa Louie’s at Green Room Burgers & Beer (4010 Pennsylvania Ave., Suite D.) includes Amber (5.5-percent ABV) with mildly toasty and subtle toffee notes, IPA (5.4-percent ABV) with a citrusy profile of lime, grapefruit and lemon, and a New England IPA (6-percent ABV) loaded with ripe strawberry and peach flavor, and a hazy appearance.

Free State Brewing (636 Massachusetts St., Lawrence, Kansas) released new Guavatas Sour and its popular Yakimaniac IPA in cans. Yakimaniac is also available on draft, six-pack bottles and 12-pack bottles. Four other new releases hit the taproom this week.

Guavatas Sour’s (4.65-percent ABV, 10 IBUs) initial fermentation with lactobacillus is further enhanced by added guava puree, resulting in a tart tropical ale. Blood Orange Radler (10 IBUs) mixes lager and a brewhouse-made blood orange soda to yield a slightly tart, slightly sweet and refreshing sipper. Boogiedown Pils (6.2-percent ABV, 37 IBUs), the second annual collaboration with Central Standard Brewing in Wichita, Kansas, is a pilsner with a dynamic hops mix: peach-lemony Grungeist; orange-like Mandarina Bavaria; and Styrian Wolf’s peppery, herbal hop with hints of lemon and menthol. Flavors and aromas of mango, papaya, pineapple and orange fill the bill in JuiceBox IPA (7-percent ABV, 65 IBUs), a heavily-hopped beer employing Mosaic, Mandarina Bavaria, Citra and coveted Australian Galaxy hops. Brightwater Saison (30 IBUs) is a light-bodied pale golden ale, with aromas resembling Sauvignon Blancs from New Zealand.

Sandhills Brewing (111 W. Second Ave., Ste. D, Hutchinson, Kansas) tapped its first barrel-fermented beer, a tart Tequila Gose. The sour wheat beer was brewed with coriander and sea salt and then fermented directly in an oak Tequila Barrel for a month and a half. The beer is available in 32-ounce growler fills and will soon be packaged in cans.

Colony KC (312 Armour Road, North Kansas City, Missouri) released the third beer in its Rainbow Road Series, Orange Sherbet.

Casual Animal Brewing (1725 McGee St.) recently released Unicorn Booster, a blonde ale “dry hopped” with six pounds of Astronaut Ice Cream to provide a soft, sweet finish. Other beers on tap include Mane Event Helles, Nomo Rhino IPA, Hop the Fence India Pale Lager, and Logging Logger Lager.

The tap selection at Crane Brewing (6515 Railroad St., Raytown, Missouri) includes highlights such as Guava Weiss, Coconut Milkshake IPA, Berry Weiss and Dry Hopped Gose.

Strange Days Brewing (316 Oak St.) has its Mexican IPA with jalapeño and lime peel (7.8-percent ABV) on tap. ESB (6.5-percent ABV), a new beer, is also on tap to celebrate the end of the English Premier League season.

Martin City Brewing Company is adding a new Pizza & Taproom (4000 Indian Creek Parkway, Overland Park, Kansas) in Mission Farms. The grand opening party is Saturday, May 26. Portier Brandy Barrel Tripel comes out as a limited release in four-packs and on draft (500 E. 135th St.).

The taplist at Calibration Brewing (119 Armour Rd., North Kansas City, Missouri) includes Let It Flow Golden Ale, I Scare Myself IPA, Back to Black IPA, Rye I Am A Rock, Whole Lotta Love Grapefruit IPA, Is This Love Mojito Cider and I Never Knew You Raspberry Cider.

Double Shift Brewing (412 E. 18th St.) shows off its Power Moves Hazy IPA (6.7-percent ABV), brewed with oats and wheat and hopped with Citra, Idaho 7 and Vic Secret hops.

Border Brewing (406 E. 18th St.) has tart and fruity Sour Strawberry Blonde (3.8-percent ABV, 5 IBUs), a kettle-soured variant of its top-seller with extra lemon and orange peel and pureed strawberry.

Wakarusa Brewing (710 Main St., Eudora, Kansas) has Raspberry Mead, Mosaic IPA, Pale Ale, Oatmeal Stout, Vanilla-Cocoa Oatmeal Stout and Ginger Chamomile on tap.

Guavatas Sour is a new release from Free State Brewing Company

Guavatas Sour is a new release from Free State Brewing Company available in cans and on draft. (Contributed | Free State Brewing Company)

This Week

American Craft Beer Week runs May 14 to 20. Check listings below for numerous events at a taproom near you.

During American Craft Beer Week, purchase a canned beer at Boulevard Brewing’s Beer Hall (2534 Madison Ave.) receive a complimentary koozie and enjoy 10 percent off all canned beers in the gift shop all week long.

Tuesday, May 15

Fringe Beerworks (224 SE. Douglas St., Lee’s Summit, Missouri) releases Pineapple Whip IPA.

Cinder Block Brewery (110 E. 18th Ave., North Kansas City, Missouri) releases a surprise cider.

Granite City Brewery (15085 W. 119th St., Olathe, Kansas) welcomes Martin City Brewing for a tap invasion with Portier, Abbey, Blond and MC Pale Ale on tap.

Barley’s Kitchen + Tap (16649 Midland Drive, Shawnee, Kansas) taps Firestone Walker Brewing Co.’s Parabola and variations including Coconut Rye Parabola and Scotch Parabola.

Barley’s Kitchen + Tap (11924 W. 119th St., Overland Park, Kansas) hosts Hoppin’ Frog Brewery, featuring B.O.R.I.S. The Bodacious Oatmeal Russian Imperial Stout and Deschutes Brewery, featuring The Abyss.

Kansas City Bier Co. (310 W. 79th St.) taps I-35 Lager, a collaboration beer made with Wichita Brewing.

Wednesday, May 16

Kansas City Bier Co. taps Wrong Place Radler at its taproom and at Bier Station (120 E. Gregory Blvd.).

Fringe Beerworks (224 SE. Douglas St., Lee’s Summit, Missouri) welcomes Bur Oak Brewing at 6 p.m. for a tap takeover.

Cinder Block Brewery releases KC Weiss, a Berliner Weiss initially kettle-soured with a Lactobacillus blend, then fermented with a combination strain of Brettanomyces and brewers yeast. It is tart and slightly bread-like, with rustic tones reminiscent of a farmhouse ale.

Barley’s Kitchen + Tap (16649 Midland Drive, Shawnee, Kansas) taps a vertical of Boulevard Brewing Company Saison Brett 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Barley’s Kitchen + Tap (11924 W. 119th St., Overland Park, Kansas) hosts Lagunitas Brewing Co., featuring Dark Swan; and Epic Brewing Company, featuring Oak and Orchards, a sour beer brewed with blueberry, boysenberry and black currant and aged in Syrah barrels.

International Tap House (403 E. 18th St.) welcomes COOP Ale Works as a trivia sponsor. COOP’s new Fly Me Away New England IPA will be on tap along with Pils and Spare Rib.

Thursday, May 17

Several Martin City Brewing beers are paired with pizza, starting at 5 p.m. from May 17 to 19, at Ruins Pub (1715 Main St.) while supplies last. Big Brother Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout is paired with Pig N Fig pizza; Hard Way IPA is paired with pizza topped with Spanish chorizo, Manchego cheese, caramelized onions and cilantro; and MC Pale Ale is paired with Seaside pizza made with bay scallops, shrimp, spinach, smoked provolone and sun-dried tomato gremolata.

Cinder Block Brewery serves up Mango Ginger Real Fine Liquid through a Randall.

Cinder Block Brewery also co-hosts a KC Weiss release and chimichanga-eating contest at Screenland Armour (408 Armour Road, North Kansas City, Missouri). KC Weiss will be served three ways for the release of Deadpool 2.” Try Tequila Sun-Weiss, Murk-Arita and Josh Brolin Sour. Beers tap starting at 4 p.m. and the eating contest begins at 6 p.m.

Kansas City Bier Co. taps Winterbock.

Crane Brewing (6515 Railroad St., Raytown, Missouri) taps Small Ball Saison 2018.

Granite City Brewery (8461 NW Prairie View Road) welcomes Kansas City Bier Co. for a tap takeover, featuring Dunkel, Helles Pils and Maibock on tap.

Barley’s Kitchen + Tap hosts an I-35 Lager Blind Tasting with Kansas City Bier Co. and Wichita Brewing Co & Pizzeria.

International Tap House welcomes Ballast Point Brewing for a tap takeover. Special beers on tap include Tart Peach Kolsch and Moscow Mule Ale, along with Sour Wench and Sculpin.

Barley’s Kitchen + Tap hosts Prairie Artisan Ales featuring Phantasmagoria Double IPA and Founders Brewing Co. featuring Dankwood, an imperial red IPA aged in bourbon barrels.

Friday, May 18

Brick’s Pub and Grub (18 SE Third St, Lee’s Summit, Missouri) hosts Kansas City Bier Co. for a tap takeover

Kansas City Bier Co. taps Hops Schlagen.

In collaboration with 99 Hops House at Argosy Casino, Cinder Block Brewery created its North of the River Series, second edition, as a Summer Pale Ale with pineapple, grapefruit and orange. The beer release begins at 5 p.m. at 99 Hops. The beer will also tap at Cinder Block’s taproom at noon.

Saturday, May 19

Kansas City Bier Co. taps Whiskey Barrel Doppelbock. Live music by Rick Willoughby.

Sunday, May 20

Cooks for Courage, a benefit for Child Protection Center, is a judged competition featuring Kansas City barbecue and beer. Sample food from Cherven Desauguste of Mesob, Clark Grant of Hogshead Kansas City, Ted Habiger of Room 39, Jonathan Justus of Black Dirt and Justus Drugstore, John Smith of EJ’s Urban Eatery and Bobby Stearns of Ophelia’s Restaurant. Border Brewing Company, Brewery Emperial, Colony Handcrafted Ales, Crane Brewing Company, Kansas City Bier Company, Rock & Run Brewery and Pub and Stockyards Brewing Co. compete for the title of best brew.

Kansas City Bier Co. taps Der Bauer, a German take on a farmhouse ale. Live music by Matt Clothier.

Boulevard Tours & Rec. Center (2534 Madison Ave.) hosts a Spring Cleaning Sale. Purchase a wide variety of Boulevard Brewing items at a discount. A $5 ticket provides access to a 45-minute shopping session and a beer to sip while browsing.

– Pete Dulin writes about food trends for Flatland and is the author of The KC Ale Trail. Follow @FlatlandKC and #TapList on Twitter for more food news and trends.


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