Published August 2nd, 2022 at 11:30 AM
On Aug. 6, 2011, a military helicopter was shot down outside of Kabul, Afghanistan. The crash killed all 38 people aboard the helicopter. Of the 38 killed, 30 (plus a military working dog) were American including 17 Navy SEALs. The call sign of the helicopter was Extortion 17.
To honor the fallen, Kansas City’s Torn Label Brewing Co. has been brewing Extortion 17, a wheat IPA, for the past seven years. The idea started when Torn Label was approached by some of the local family members of the fallen. They asked Torn Label if they’d be willing to brew a beer to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the crash.
This year’s batch, which Torn Label will be releasing on Saturday, holds special meaning. Torn Label was able to brew the beer with Mary and Braydon Nichols, the wife and son of fallen pilot Bryan Nichols.
Extortion 17 comes in at 6.9% ABV and will be available on draft and in four-packs of 12-ounce cans to go. Additionally, there will be an exclusive line of merchandise and glassware to pair with the event.
Torn Label will be donating a portion of all proceeds of Extortion 17 beer and merch sales to Special Ops Survivors, which supports families of fallen Special Operations soldiers. They also help empower survivors to build a healthy post-loss life by providing individual, group and peer-to-peer emotional and financial support.
The event will start Saturday at 11:30 a.m. and go through 10 p.m. in Torn Label’s old Taproom.
Tall Trellis Brew Co. — 25600 W. Valley Pkwy., Olathe, Kansas — tapped a fresh keg of their brand new Kansas Cut. The beer is a juicy IPA that utilizes Kanook hops from Kansas Hop Co. as well as Mosaic and El Dorado. Coming in at 6.7% ABV, it’s a great thirst quencher on those hot Kansas days.
Callsign Brewing — 1340 Burlington St., North Kansas City, Missouri — just released a new small batch beer. Salad Forck is a light twist on a traditional German style kolsch. This version, which comes in at 5% ABV, was brewed with cucumbers. You’ll get just enough cucumber flavor to make this beer even more refreshing than a regular kolsch.
Transport Brewery — 11113 Johnson Drive, Shawnee, Kansas — put out the latest beer in their Trail Series, an IPA series dedicated to different regions in the country and where certain trails led to. The California Trail is a 7% ABV West Coast IPA brewed with Simcoe, Amarillo and Cascade hops. These three lead to flavors of grapefruit, stone fruit and pine. The light grain bill allows the hoppiness to shine through in classic West Coast IPA fashion.
BKS Artisan Ales — 633 E. 63rd St., Kansas City, Missouri — has quite the treat in store with their newest beer. Telescopic Vision is a big 12% ABV dark strong ale brewed in collaboration with Horus Aged Ales out of Oceanside, California. Something of a cross between an imperial stout and a barleywine, this boozy beer features Madagascar cacao nibs from Christopher Elbow Chocolates and Madagascar vanilla beans from Sava Trading Co. This uniquely decadent beer will have you wondering if you’re drinking a beer or biting into a vanilla caramel candy.
Rockcreek Brewing Co. — 5880 Beverly Ave., Mission, Kansas — has their newest beer available at their taproom. Homeland is an American farmhouse ale. This beer uses a proprietary hop from Hang’em High Hops in Michigan called Emerald Spire. This 6.7% ABV saison has flavors of freshly baked bread and light spice. It finishes clean and dry with a white grape hop characteristic.
City Barrel — 1740 Holmes St., Kansas City, Missouri — continues to pump out new beers with their latest release. Liquid Rainbows Mango Dream is the latest addition to their fruited hazy IPA series. As the name suggests, this particular version puts mango front and center with the addition of mango and mango powder. It’s hopped with Azacca and Citra providing even more tropical fruit notes. At 6.2% ABV this is a mango lover’s dream.
Border Brewing Co. — 512 E. 18th St., Kansas City, Missouri — released their latest beer, Vorlauf Bazooka IPA. Coming in at 6% ABV, this IPA is named after an old piece of Border’s equipment as an homage to innovation and adaptability. Hopped with Sabro, Chinook and Lemondrop, you’ll get flavors and aromas ranging from pine and citrus to sweet and spicy.
KC Bier Co. — 310 W. 79th St., Kansas City, Missouri — is teaming up with Waldo beer institution Bier Station for a fun Friday event. The two will be tapping KC Bier Co.’s Festbier, a Vienna-style lager, straight from a barrel. This event will unofficially mark the return of Festbier, a staple of the fall season for KC Bier Co. There’s only one barrel and it holds a limited amount of beer so be sure to get there at 4 p.m. when they tap it.
Stockyards Brewing Co. — 1600 Genessee St., Ste. 100, Kansas City, Missouri — welcomes back Bostevphus for another First Friday Record Roundup. If you’re unfamiliar with itt, it’s a free event featuring plenty of music all night being spun by Bostevphus. He brings plenty of 45s and full length albums featuring outlaw country, rockabilly, swing and honky tonk music. Music starts at 6 p.m. and goes through 9 p.m.
Red Crow Brewing — 1062 W. Santa Fe St., Olathe, Kansas — is tapping their monthly experimental firkin. Hosted on one Saturday a month, Red Crow’s brewer creates a 10-gallon batch of beer using whatever adjuncts, fruit, hops or additives he wants. The results are usually fun and creative beers. This month’s beer has yet to be announced so be sure to check the event page to see what’s been concocted.
Innovation Festival — Crown Center Square, Kansas City, Missouri — is a multifaceted free event. It consists of live music, breakout sessions about innovations in Agricultural Tech, and a brewery showcase. You’ll be able to find beer from 11 different breweries, four of which are local. Taste beer from favorites like Boulevard Brewing Co, Fields & Ivy Brewery, Crane Brewing Co., and Cinder Block Brewery. The brewery showcase allows you to create your own flight of six seven-ounce beers of your choosing while being able to network with brewers.
Alex Andujar is a former beer sales rep turned personal trainer. When he’s not training clients you can find him trying new beers at many of Kansas City’s great local breweries.