Exciting day for beer enthusiasts at South Bend’s 2013 Brewfest
Published: Sunday, January 13, 2013
Updated: Monday, January 14, 2013 17:01
The downtown South Bend Century Center partnered up with Centerplate Catering on Saturday, Jan. 12, to host the second annual South Bend Brewfest. The venue was buzzing with excitement as the line of people waiting to get inside could hear the loud hum of chatting between brewers and tasters. The event offered 100 different varieties of craft beer from 30 different breweries, including many local favorites.
At the South Bend Brew Works (SBBW) booth, two young men passionately conversed with attendees and fellow brewers. SBBW, located at 216 S. Michigan Street, is a home brew supply store that offers equipment and expertise on making beer, wine and soda, according to their official website. They plan on opening their own brewpub this spring, according to Richard Hall, an SBBW home brewing specialist and IU South Bend chemistry student.
Alec Sanderson, manager at SBBW, talked about their brewpub adding to the Downtown South Bend experience where they will offer six to ten handcraft beers and other favorites.
Sanderson added that they will also have a great menu to pair with the brews, with plans to connect with the Farmer’s Market and Purple Porch Co-op to incorporate locally-grown and seasonal produce.
Sanderson said he wants to get the community involved with South Bend Brew Werks Brewpub as much as possible, adding that he is appreciative of events like Brewfest, which allow so many people with the same passions to network and connect back with the community that helps support them.
Hall also talked about the exciting development of the brewpub which is located right by the State Theater. Hall said the theater is being renovated and they plan on connecting with them to offer patrons a chance to flavor some local entertainment along with flavoring local foods and brews.
“The theater has a huge stage and screen. People could come in, grab drinks and food, and enjoy a show like local bands or movies.”
People who come into the supply store side will also get a chance to talk about home brewing and brewing recipes.
Across from South Bend Brew Werks table at the 2013 Brewfest was the highly anticipated Drewerys Brewery Company information booth. Although they didn’t have beer samples to offer, they drew a curious crowd wanting to hear more about their re-launch of South Bend’s historic Drewerys Brewery—a brand many have not seen for over 40 years.
Drewerys Marketing Representative Art McCormick said that the current owner Francis Manzo, an entrepreneur from Chicago, is interested in older vintage brands of beer like Drewerys, which is part of the reason why he plans to revive the brand.
"The beers should be available in stores by the end of the year,” said McCormick. “Drewerys wants to be as authentic as possible in bringing it back.” However, he said there would be some modifications made to the recipe.
From old brews with lots of history to new brews trying to make history, many stopped by to sample some of their favorite local brews, like Iechyda Da Brewing of Elkhart, Four Horsemen of South Bend, and Bare Hands of Granger. Each offered brews from pale ales, to porters to stouts, from light and mellow to dark and strong.
Ben Roule, co-owner and vice president of sales and marketing of the newly popular Four Horsemen Brewing Company, poured glass after glass of the various beers he had for sampling, like Irish Stout and Irish Red. The business is only about a year and a half old, the company has already sold around 6,000 cases in Northwest Indiana.
Kim Peffley, IUSB alumni, said, “I am surprised at the number of people here.” Her friend Rachel McDonough another IUSB alumi said, “I am happy to support our local breweries.” Kim said she was glad to have the opportunity to try so many different kinds and flavors of beer, and thought that many attendees may be more inclined to order local brews the next time they go out to a bar.
The 2013 Brewfest made many aware of the exciting opportunities that companies like South Bend Brew Werks, Drewerys Brewing Company and The Four Horsemen Brewing Company has to offer to the South Bend community.