Friday, February 11, 2011

Old World Brewery: Off To The Races!

At the risk of appearing to fall into a predictable pattern, I’m going to follow up one Old World Brewing post with another, simply because last Friday my camera refused to cooperate during a visit to OWB’s new location on 25th Avenue. I dropped by again today after work, met my nephew for a pint and snapped a few admittedly mediocre photos of the new place. (I’m not a photographer. My nephew’s a photographer, check out his WEBSITE.)

Today we ambled into the taproom to find three fellow blue-collar working stiffs quaffing the foamy suds and that’s a good sign. Seems folks are finding OWB despite the move. I was happy to see brewer Matt working away at something in the back along with Patrick. In short order we had pints of Red in front of us and the conversation drifted easily between topics.

Despite what one would hope are the typical difficulties associated with such an endeavor, the crew at OWB continues to forge ahead, putting out dependable, tasty product (brewed in Flagstaff for the moment) while they fit and fashion and fine-tune all the aspects of the new brewery setup. Just writing about it is exhausting.

We got another quick tour, this time with my camera functioning properly, and I shot a nifty couple of images of the old walk-in safe that once served admirably back when this building was a United States Post Office. Now, Patrick operates an office in the safe and today he took a moment to check out the line up for the upcoming Strong Beer Festival. As always we were made to feel welcome and only the prospect of getting pulled over by an officer of the law prevented us from staying for more than one pint, but as we exchanged farewells in the parking lot my nephew and I discussed the plan to one day have a taxi cab on standby so that we could stay for some real fun!

Old World Breaking into the NASCAR Scene? Yup!
My two or three repeat customers here at Beer Rant will remember that I blogged about a craft beer sponsorship in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series a good while back. (See that post here.) At that time I was tickled witless at the prospect of the craft brewing community stepping into the NASCAR arena even if the brewer was an out of state concern. Well, I’m happy to report that Old World Brewery will be running its logo on a NASCAR truck in the upcoming race at Phoenix International Raceway this year! Here’s a link to the website for Turn One Racing. Details of the arrangement seem to be up in the air just yet, but if you’re the sort that likes to follow NASCAR, and especially the truck series, keep an eye out for truck #60 and it’s new driver Cole Whitt because reportedly, somewhere on that truck will be an Old World Brewery logo! (I plan to attend a couple of NASCAR events at Phoenix International Raceway that week, including the truck race, so perhaps I can carry some OWB product down to the track and enjoy it like I did when Lagunita’s sponsored a truck in 2009.)

Finally, if you’re in the vicinity of 25th Avenue, just north of Van Buren (behind the Pep Boys building there, just across the street from Werner’s Welding), you owe it to yourself to stop in to Old World Brewery. You won’t see a sign on the front of the building so you’ll just have to trust your instincts, friends.

See you at the race!

Be Safe!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Old World, New Digs

First post of 2011; it’s been too long, I know. Enough said.

The Cool Shit You See When Your Camera Battery is Dead!

Old World Brewery has resumed operations in a new facility near 25th Avenue and Van Buren here in Phoenix and I’ve been meaning to drop by for a visit for several weeks. I drove by a couple times to check for activity late last year but didn’t find anyone around, but yesterday was a different story. After work I met a co-worker there – we’ll call him Vernon Bannister - and we ambled in to find Patrick Fields jamming at the drum set with his son.

Patrick graciously showed us around Old World’s new place, which was once a United States Post office back in the day. I asked about any special characteristics of the building, like safes and so forth and Patrick said, “speaking of safes…” and showed us to the brewery’s new office, located in an honest to God walk in safe. Cool. The brewery equipment isn’t quite up and running yet – the current Old World product is reportedly coming from Mogollon Brewing in Flagstaff for the moment (you’ve got to love the cooperative spirit of local brewing, right?).

My camera’s battery was dead, so I’ve got a built in excuse for a follow up visit this coming week. The new brewery building also includes an exhibit space for local artists to show and sell their work. Auctions of artwork are planned, as is a beer festival of some sort in the near future, perhaps in conjunction with a larger statewide beer celebration.

Patrick Fields was as gracious as ever, as focused as ever and seems more determined than ever to push Old World Brewery to the forefront of local brewing prowess. God knows they’ve got a brewing space worthy of the challenge. It should be fun to see where things go from here.

Vernon Bannister and I each departed with a growler of Irish Red and a pint glass sporting the new Old World logo. Perhaps Vernon is a convert as well, now; I think he is. (The picture here was taken later, when I got my growler home and my camera battery charged.)

As for the Irish Red – you know their porter would have been my choice had it been an option – the Red may be better than I remembered from the Lone Cactus facility and even a day later was holding up nicely in the growler. Thanks Patrick! Thanks Old World. (Patrick tells me that the porter will be one of their first batches when the 25th Avenue facility starts production. Awesome.) I tipped a glass of the Red in honor of my nephew's birthday as well. All in all, a great evening.

Look for Old World on Facebook, too.

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