Just in case that gray, rainy weather last weekend planted the 'winter is coming' seed in your mind, this week's Beer Drop should get us all back on the right track - Around The Bend's sunny Maui Gold! A hint of pineapple makes this session IPA a fresh, crushable option to toss in the cooler for the rest of the summer. 

I recently had the chance to catch up with Dan Schedler, Around the Bend's Founder/Head Brewer/Chief Bottle Washer, to talk all things Maui Gold, ATB, the worst brew day of his life (don't worry, it all turned out okay), and what's next for the brewery as they continue to carve their niche in Chicago and beyond. Read on for our full conversation!

O Canada! We're heading north for this week's Beer Drop to Hamilton, Ontario, home to Collective Arts Brewing. While they've only been available in Chicago since late 2017, five-year-old Collective Arts has already developed a fantastic reputation amongst the city's craft beer drinkers thanks to their focus on the fusion of creative brewing + the talents of emerging artists and musicians...and the beer is pretty tasty, too. I was able to catch up with CAB's Illinois Sales & Marketing Manager, Tom White, to learn more about this week's featured beer (a unique Milkshake IPA brewed with lactose and fruit puree), the brewery, their artists and more. And if Tom's name sounds familiar, you may know him from his other gig at beer site The Hop Review. Alright let's get to it! Cheers 🍻

Boysenberry. Hops. Brettanomyces (x2). Brew all that together for a different kind of purple drank - the Rubus Flux! a.k.a this week's Beer Drop feature from 4 Hands Brewing Co. out of St. Louis. This very limited production Boysenberry IPA also happens to be a collaboration with Chicago's own Marz Community Brewing - what could be more Midwestern than a beer brewed by two of its best and brightest cities? We had the chance to catch up with Ian Penrose from 4 Hands this week to learn more about the brewery, their focus on family and community, Rubus Flux's unique, berry funk flavor profile, and Ripple, a 4 Hands staple we've also added to our lineup just in time for those peak summer temps.

Order up and read on - cheers!

This week's Pollyanna Brewing Company might call Lemont, IL, home, but the star of this week's Beer Drop show is all about the easy-living, land down under vibes: Kiwi Allure! Thanks to the addition of Australia's favorite fuzzy fruit, this refreshing sour wheat ale will have you coming back to the cooler for more, especially on those humid summer days. Pair that can with Pollyanna's staple Lexical Gap IPA for a hell of a 1-2 punch for your grillin' and chillin' this weekend. I recently had the chance to catch up with Pollyanna's head brewer and co-founder, Brian Pawola, to learn more about these cans, the stories behind the brewery, and where you might catch one of their beers on the big screen this year - read on for more!

You can oftentimes feel spoiled as a beer fan in Chicago - home to some of the best craft breweries in the country and seen as a target market for others, there's really no shortage of the good stuff. However, due to factors like distribution, production, and regulation, we sometimes might miss out on some particularly special offerings.

Cigar City Brewing out of Tampa, Florida, was long one of those unicorns that you historically couldn't find around here, but that all changed this month when they announced distribution to Chicago! We were fortunate to get in touch with the crew there to feature a pair of their beers for this week's Beer Drop - the Guayabera Citra Pale Ale, and their flagship IPA, the Jai Alai.

Read on for my Q&A with Neil Callaghan, Cigar City's El Lector (a.k.a. beer educator, knower of all things CCB, sales support, brewery spokesman, etc.), and don't forget to grab a stogie to enjoy alongside these gems!