On Tap: Big Releases From Side Project, Alpha And Six Row Along With Not-To-Miss Beer Festivals

By Molly Rippinger
In Food

While beer is certainly enjoyed year-round in St. Louis, there’s always something special about sipping your favorite brew in the sunshine of spring. This week, brews with cult-like followings are being released and also two beer-centric festivals to note that are quickly coming up on our calendars.

Image courtesy of Side Project Brewing

Image courtesy of Side Project Brewing

Side Project Brewing
Fans of Side Project’s Fuzzy Wild Ale have been known to go to great lengths in order to get their hands on one of the highly coveted bottles distributed at the Perennial Artisan Ales tasting room. In the past, the limited release has led legions of beer lovers to get in line early—and we’re talking pitch-a-tent-and-spend-the-night early. While the camping might have been called off by head brewer Cory King, there will still be plenty of activity come Saturday, April 19 when Fuzzy is released. The line for a raffle ticket to exchange at noon for a bottle of Fuzzy will begin at 9am, while a bottle share will start at 9:15am and drafts will be poured beginning at 2:30pm.

If you haven’t been lucky enough to try Fuzzy in the past, the unique ale is known for its crisp sourness balanced by the natural notes of peach. The brewing process combines a wild strain of yeast along with pounds of Missouri-grown white peaches that are with the ale as it is fermented and aged in chardonnay barrels. On the nose, Fuzzy is all peach while the first sip reveals the flavors of citrus, oak and a pleasant funk. The 375ml bottles will be available for $15 each. 8125 Michigan Ave., South Carondelet, 314.631.7300.

Alpha Brewing Company
In honor of the band that played at Alpha’s first anniversary festival, Ryot, the brewing team at Alpha has created a special brew to mark the group’s fifth year in St. Louis. The Black Rye IPA is a malt- and hop-forward ale that matches the spunk and charisma of the band. At the release party on Friday, April 18, Ryot will be on hand to play an acoustic set and also to mingle with people enjoying drafts of the new brew. The party starts at 7pm and $7 gets you your first pint along with a commemorative glass. 1409 Washington Ave., Downtown, 314.621.2337.

Six Row Brewing Company
This week, two special releases are flowing from the small-batch sour series at Six Row – their DIPA and Coconut IPA. The Double IPA is backboned by heaps of American hops that provide a complex balance of malt and caramel along with notes of pine and citrus. On the other hand, their Coconut IPA plays with more tropical flavors combined with floral hops. Six Row produced these brews in small batches, so once they tap the kegs the pints go quickly. 3690 Forest Park Ave., Midtown, 314.531.5600.

St. Louis Microfest
There’s no bigger beer-centric festival than the annual Microfest in Forest Park, when over 80 breweries along with 100 international and craft brews are on hand for the ultimate suds-soaked weekend, May 2-3. The 19th annual Microfest celebrates everything special about the brewing —from the newest trends to the oldest, time-honored traditions. Pick from one of the three tasting session times and have free reign to try tastes of all of the brews. Festivities include a 2-mile run through Forest Park, live musical performances, cooking demonstrations, brewer discussions and food options from favorite local vendors. Proceeds from the event benefit the Lift For Life Gym, an inner-city program that provides a positive place for St. Louis youth to participate in free athletic and social activities. Tickets are available from $25-70.

IndiHop
Two of St. Louis’ hippest neighborhoods, The Grove and Cherokee, come together for one massive celebration of the best independent breweries in the city on Saturday, May 17. IndiHop is a day dedicated to sampling 50 different local brews at various venues in the two neighborhoods. Once participants try all of the beers in one neighborhood they can continue their quest for more craft brews by hopping on a shuttle to the next round of samples. Besides the tasty brews, enjoy live performances at each location. Indihop-ers also get to keep their commemorative tasting glass. Festivities run from 12-5pm and tickets are $15.

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