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Showing posts with label Space Coast. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Space Coast. Show all posts

Rocky Water Brew Fest, Melbourne: A Rockin' Time



October 16, 2017: 
It was one rockin' time at the 4th Annual Rocky Water Brew Fest, presented by Eau Gallie Rotary, on Saturday, October 14 at Eau Gallie Square in Melbourne. The rain from Friday night and Saturday morning moved out, and it was smooth sailin' at the all-Florida beerfest in the Harbor City.

The fest highlights the smaller breweries in the state, with many brewers and owners on board to talk beer with the craft beer crowd. Tickets sold out around 2pm on fest day, shortly after the gates opened. Thirty-five breweries, including the local SAAZ homebrew club and a nearby brewery-in-planning (see below), lined both sides of the streets under tents at the corner of Highland Avenue and West Eau Gallie Boulevard. Among the breweries were four 2017 GABF medalists: Big Top Brewing, SixTen Brewing, LauderAle, and Walking Tree Brewery. I attended this fest the first two years, and after last year's sideline (courtesy of Matthew), I was excited to be back. What a way to spend an afternoon! A word of caution: lots of photos ahead!

making HEADlines: 

ROCKY WATER BREW FEST, MELBOURNE, FEATURES FLORIDA-ONLY BREWERIES, OCTOBER 14, 2017



Photo by Linda Johnson
Melbourne, FL:  The 4th Annual Rocky Water Brew Fest returns to Eau Gallie Square in the Eau Gallie Arts District in Melbourne on Saturday, October 14, 2017, from 1-5pm.  Presented by the Eau Gallie Rotary, the fest features over 30 Florida breweries. The Florida-only beerfest showcases the state's smaller breweries and gives attendees the opportunity to talk beer with the brewers and owners while sipping on local suds. 

Beer tents will line both sides of Highland Avenue at the intersection of West Eau Gallie Boulevard, and craft beer enthusiasts will enjoy samples of two to four beers at each brewery. Not only does the fest highlight smaller breweries, but the fest itself is intentionally kept on the smaller side, as far as attendance goes, to create a cozy and quality atmosphere for the patrons. "It's about quality, not quantity," says Rick Nemetz, Rocky Water Brew Fest Chair. Brewers bring their choice of beers, which usually include some favorites, as well as new beers that may not have previously left their tap rooms. 


Tap Into Dirty Oar Beer Company, Cocoa Village

September 28, 2017:
For well over a year, the crew from Dirty Oar Beer Company had attended beerfests and beer events sampling their house-brewed small batches and handing out logo stickers for their up-and-coming new brewery in Cocoa Village. No longer a "brewery-in-planning" as of this past summer, Dirty Oar Beer Company is now up-and-running with a fun neighborhood tap room and outdoor beer garden -- and, their own house beers on tap.



Co-owners and brewers Pat Buonomo and Chris Hughes met while both were bartenders at Bugnutty Brewing Company in Merritt Island. Just so happens, that's where I met each of them for the first time several years ago - they're the kind of guys with whom you just start talking beer. Since then, they began homebrewing together and then branched out and explored opening their own brewery. During the Spring of 2016, they started popping up at beerfests with Dirty Oar beer and/or stickers in hand. The process of opening the brewery included demolition, design and construction of the former King Street furniture store site, which they had acquired in early 2016. 


Cocoa Beach Uncorked Launches Food and Beverage Festival on the Beach

Catching some sunshine, along with colorful food and a craft beer ...
on the beach at Cocoa Beach Uncorked
Setup for the inaugural Cocoa Beach Uncorked food and beverage fest began under dark skies last Saturday morning. By noon, and almost as if by cue, Mother Nature turned the gray skies into blue, and the rain clouds gave way to sunshine, just as the Grand Tasting Village on the beach prepared to open. 

Held June 3-4 at Alan Shepard Park, the fest featured a 20,000-square-foot tent packed with chef-prepared gastronomic delights and liquid libations against a beautiful background courtesy of the Atlantic Ocean. Pre-fest info sounded pretty sweet -- picture it: culinary dishes along with an assortment of beverages on the beach -- what's not to like? And, yes, it was also apparent that the weekend would require some exercise.


Countdown: Cocoa Beach Uncorked Takes Off This Weekend


Beach? Check.
Ocean views? Check.
Food? Check.
Craft beer? Check.
Wine and spirits? Check.
More Food? Check. 

Hungry and thirsty yet? Yeah, check that.

The inaugural Cocoa Beach Uncorked two-day food and beverage festival takes off June 3-4 at Alan Shepard Park -- on the beach -- in Cocoa Beach. 


Get On Board: Surfing Santas and Playalinda Brewing Brix Project Get Crafty

Last month, Titusville's Playalinda Brewing Company and Cavalier Distributing announced that they had teamed up to distribute the Playalinda beers across Florida. The beer began to appear in Central and North Florida bars and restaurants in mid-November, coinciding with a series of official launch events that took off in Orlando and Melbourne, before heading north to Jacksonville and St. Augustine. Playalinda Brewing recently celebrated its Two-Year Anniversary at its original downtown Titusville brewery (see story here). The release events are introducing many outside of Space Coast to the brewery's core beers, including the Bottomless Blonde Ale, Robonaut Red Ale, and Pleasure Chest IPA. As the launch events enter the final week, one beer that is splashing its way across the menu boards is Playalinda's special-release "Surfing Santas" Cranberry Blonde Ale. You'll want to get "on board" with it! And, here's why.



I've Been to Hell'n Blazes Brewing and Back

What a difference three months makes! I visited Hell ‘n Blazes Brewing Company  (Melbourne, Florida) in March when the brewery was still under construction, but beginning to take on its personality (check out that preview post HERE for all the background info). Fermenters were being moved around in the brewhouse, the bar didn’t have a top yet, and the construction dust was far from settled. It was obvious, though, that when finished, this would be a pretty impressive place, and that a substantial amount of manhours (along with blood, sweat and tears) had been poured into this project over the past year. A few weeks ago, the brewery announced its Opening Day as Friday, June 24 (5pm), and I’m fairly sure (oh, just a wild guess) that there were quite a few others besides me who marked that date on their calendars. 


Navigating Through History: Hell 'n Blazes Brewing Charting Out on Course in Melbourne, Fla

[Ed. Note:  Hell 'N Blazes Brewing will open its doors on June 24, 2016, 5pm. This story is based on my "during-construction" visit in March. I'm pretty excited to see the place!]


It was a hardware store back in the late 1800's. It also was home to a mortician, a furniture store, a bank, another hardware store, the "Christmas Cottage," and the "Petite Boutique" boutique and antique store. It even once housed a TV studio. And, now, the building at 1002 E. New Haven Ave. in historic downtown Melbourne, Florida is the new home to Hell 'n Blazes Brewing Company.


Hello, Florida BeerFest Season 2016!

It's the last week in January.  While that might be equated with the usual two-week cold snap (Florida chill - who else has needed a big ol' blanket recently?), it also means that BeerFest Season is here in Florida!  The new year started off with Key Largo Brew on the Bay and Funky Buddha Brewing's Maple Bacon Coffee Porter Day (see my MBCPDay blog post!). 

Check out my BeerSphere Events page for beerfests and other special events throughout the year (it's constantly updated; I even put links in to make it easy for ya). Include beerfests in your travel plans! (along with golf, scuba, beach bumming, birdwatching, concerts, etc. - but somehow I always find time for the beer!)

Playalinda Brewing Co. Takes Off

When one thinks of Titusville, Florida, the images typically invoked are likely those of Cape Canaveral/Kennedy Space Center launches, astronauts, rockets, and the famous T-minus 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, "We have liftoff!" Ah yes, the thrill of it all.

But, there's another reason to visit this area now. One of the newest Florida breweries to enter the local craft brew scene launched on Friday, November 14, at 4pm. And, yes, there was a countdown of sorts leading up to it. Say Hello to Playalinda Brewing Co. 


Slingin' in the Rain .... It Poured at Rocky Water Brew Fest!





The drive south on I-95 from St. Augustine on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 20 was a bit ominous: dark skies, rainy interludes, a peek of sun providing some glimmer of optimism, followed by generally gray cloud cover. I had this marked on the calendar for a while, and it was a definite go:  the first Rocky Water Brew Fest in Melbourne. (Do we say "first annual"?)



Spaced Out on Florida's Space Coast: Brews and Beach (Episodes 2, 3 and More)

Tale of a Beach and Two More Breweries....

And, on that first night in the Space Coast, following all that awesome beer at Bugnutty Brewing, the focus turned to food.  Being the diligent planner that I am, I had earlier consulted Google and found Coasters Pub, what looked like a really cool little place in Melbourne at the corner of A1A and Eau Gallie.  Close to the Hilton Melbourne Beach Hotel, good-looking food menu, and, yes, a bunch of beer taps!  No brainer, right?  So, yeah, next stop.  


Spaced Out on Florida's Space Coast: Brews and Beach (Episode 1)

Got a Little "Bugnutty" on Merritt Island

Not like I really need a reason or excuse for a "Beertrip," but, I thought it would be a cool little getaway thing to do on the last weekend in June. The criteria: there must be craft beer and beaches; also, for this short trip, somewhere not too far from the St. Augustine homebase. Actually, heading out to points south from here is pretty much a snap courtesy of I-95. Well, I already knew about three breweries in the Space Coast:  Bugnutty Brewing, Cocoa Beach Brewing and Intracoastal Brewing, so this Mission Control set the destination and reserved an oceanview room at the Hilton Melbourne Beach on A1A (Florida resident rate, by the way). T-minus and counting.