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A Wolf Among the Seas – Saturday June 1st 2013

wet hopsWell read beer geeks, or maybe just those preoccupied with trivia, may have heard that the Latin name for hops Humulus lupulus translates roughly to “wolf among the weeds.” The origins likely have something to do with the plant’s hardiness and propensity for climbing up and over everything in its path. From its ancient discovery to modern chemical analysis, proprietary varietals, and experimental blends, the common hop has always shaped the flavors and aromas of the beer we drink.

By definition, hops are an integral part of every beer, but because our year round lineup features two hop heavy IPAs both using multiple varietals, hops are a particular obsession of ours. Behind the scenes, hop contracts and forecasting must be carefully planned out well in advance to support our current production as well as beers in planning for the upcoming year.

We certainly have our favorites, but as more options become available, we can try new experimental recipes (like Empower) and continue double dry-hopping our existing beers in small batches (like Galaxy Head High or more recently Mosaic Overhead). Galaxy Head High, to use one of our more popular examples, was not an accident. We double dry hopped Head High with a half dozen different varietals with varying degrees of success before we settled on Galaxy as the best complement.

When all is said, done, and brewed however, the process remains about the end result and we’ve decided to share this with you. On Saturday June 1st at Kane Brewing, we will be hosting “A Wolf Among the Seas” – an educational hop experience featuring a dozen or more beers taking over our tasting room taps. We’ll have experimental single hop beers, double dry hopped favorites, and pilot batches of hop driven beers in development. The focus will be on learning more about different hops, but you’ll probably have fun too. More details to follow…

496 Days

taphandles2

Just shy of 500 days ago,  we wrote a brief blog post about a pair of 7 bbl tanks we picked up used in Brooklyn. And while the blog has been quiet since then, those tanks, and the brewery around them, have been busy. Trying to sum up everything we’ve done in that time would be tricky, and unnecessary really, thanks to the real time updates and connectivity of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to name a few. These tools have allowed us to stay connected with you, and keep you posted on news, events, and just about anything we were up to, even while kanebrewing.com continued to say “we plan to open in the Spring of 2011.”

But just to give you an idea, in 496 days those tanks have been used as everything from overflow storage when we were running low on kegs in the busy summer of 2012, to now holding our first beer 100% fermented with Brettanomyces (their originally intended purpose). Kane Brewing’s full time employees have grown from 2 to 5.  A refrigerated truck has replaced the trunks of our cars as the preferred method of delivery. Our barrel aging program has grown from 12 bourbon barrels holding one style of beer, to over 40 bourbon barrels and a handful of wine barrels, holding a dozen different styles of beer.   We’ve repainted and redecorated the tasting room, adding a full bar out in the brewery with 6 additional taps. We launched Overhead (yes, the last blog post was a full four months before Overhead even existed!), two 750ml bottled beers, and several new Tidal Series beers.

And now, finally, we have a functioning website. We will continue to use Facebook and Twitter and other outlets for what they do best, but the website fills a huge informational void and, among other things, will help to answer the hundreds of inquiries we get: “What are your tasting room hours? Where can I find (insert beer here) on tap near me? What kind of hops do you use in Head High?” Our goal is to regularly update the list of bars, restaurants, and bottle shops that carry our beers, and keep the blog interesting with more in depth updates than is typically suitable for facebook and twitter. Thanks for you patience, and for your support, these last 496 days!

Update: Tasting Room, Brewing, On Tap and Events

The last few weeks have been pretty hectic around the brewery.  Most importantly we opened the tasting room this past weekend and our new Belgian-style glasses showed up just in time.  First off we want to thank everyone who came out to support us for our opening.  We couldn’t really keep track of how many people stopped by but met some great people and filled over 50 growlers—so I have to say it was a good day.  Same time, same place every Saturday.   
 
We also fired up the brew house last week and brewed our biggest beer yet.  It was our take on an imperial stout.  We filled our mash tun to the top with over 2,200 pounds of grain then added 120 pounds of dark Belgian Candi Sugar to the kettle to up the gravity, add some fig, dark chocolate and burnt sugar notes to the beer and help dry it out a bit.  Our plan is to rest this beer in some fresh bourbon barrels for six to twelve months then hand bottle it when it’s ready.  
Our plan has always been to try and work in some unique and creative beers between brewing our year-round and seasonal beers and this was the first attempt at that.  Since our tanks are empty while we are delivering our first couple batches it seemed like the perfect time to get something different fermenting.
We also delivered a bunch of kegs last Friday and expect a few more to go out this week.  The list of places that either has Kane on tap or has kegs waiting to be tapped is.  Right now our kegs at The Twin Light Taphouse and Brickwall in Asbury were kicked–we hope to get more on soon.
Bars & Restaurants:
Bond St. Bar
208 Bond Street
Asbury Park, NJ 07712
http://www.bondstreetbar.com/
Fish Urban Dining
601 Mattison Ave
Asbury Park, NJ
07712
http://www.fishasburypark.com/
Main Street Bar & Grill
732 Route 35
Ocean, NJ 07712
http://mainstreetbarandgrillnj.com/
Piccola Italia
837 West Park Ave
Ocean, NJ 07712
http://www.piccolaitalianj.com/web/
Surf Taco
21 South Hope Chapel Road
Jackson NJ 08527
Nip and Tuck Bar
23 Norwood Avenue
Long Branch NJ 07740-5424
https://www.facebook.com/NipBar
Maloney’s Pub and Grill
119 Main St
Matawan New Jersey 07747
Buffalo Wild Wings
# 2004A, 180 State Route 35
Eatontown NJ 07724-2014
Tap Room at the Somerset Hills Hotel
200 Liberty Corner Road  
Warren, New Jersey 07059 
http://www.thesomersethillshotel.com/
Growler Stations:
Cranbury Buy Rite
2678 Rte 130
Cranbury, NJ 08512
Joe Canal’s – Lawrence Twp
3375 Route 1
Lawrence Twp, NJ 08648
Joe Canal’s – Woodbridge
489 Route 1 South
Woodbridge, NJ 08830
http://www.joecanals.com/iselin-woodbridge.html

The kegs we sent to Joe Canal’s will not be tapped for a few weeks.  We are working on an event for both locations, but we will let you know when it’s confirmed.

Speaking of events—we have a few that are confirmed for the next week or so.  This Thursday we will be taking part in the New Jersey Beer Night at Barcade in Jersey City.  This is going to be a great event and we wish there were more like this.

All operating breweries in NJ are sending two kegs and some brewery reps to Barcade for the night.  The list looks impressive and we can’t wait to try some of the other great beers being brewed in the GardenState.  If the event is half as cool as the promotional poster they created, we’re in for a good night. 

http://barcadejerseycity.com/special-events/

We are also going to be pouring beer at a fund raising BBQ in Lavallette.  It should be a great time and its for a good cause.  More information is available at the link below—if you’re going to be in the area it’s worth checking out:

http://www.lavallette.org/forms/2011events/FirecoPigRoast.pdf

We have a few more events in the works but we will post them as we get confirmation.  

Finally, the person who has been working to find a solution to our glycol issues was in to pull apart the system headers and remove and rework the mess that our first highly unqualified plumber made. It seems to be working correctly now, but we still have to re insulate the copper then we should finally be able to put the glycol problems to rest.  Of course it seems like the probe on our bright tank isn’t working now.

NYC Beer Event

In honor of its 30th anniversary, Sierra Nevada is Taking Over the Taps at Rattle N Hum tomorrow afternoon.  According to the Rattle N Hum blog, they will have 40 taps and four casks of Sierra Nevada, including some pretty rare stuff available.  It appears as though the line-up even includes Golden Ticket Baltic Porter, the beer that was made at my Beer Camp in 2009.        


If you’ve never been, Rattle N Hum is one of the best beer bars in the city and worth checking out.  They do a fantastic job of bring in new beers and organizing interesting events.  More importantly they handle and serve casks properly.  Before moving out of the Manhattan, we were lucky enough to live around the corner from this place since it opened a few years back—it’s sorely missed now that we’re gone.  Hope to see you there.