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Craft Brewing and Distilling News for January 15, 2014

January 15, 2014

Total Wine & More is set to debut the Total Beer Experience—a craft beer event to be held across several North Texas locations including its Plano, Dallas and Fort Worth stores. Running from January 15 through January 25, the 10-day event will allow consumers to sample craft beers from 30-plus breweries via more than 70 tastings and 40 classes. Participating brands include local entries such as Texas’ Rahr and Son, Martin House and Revolver, as well as national players like Dogfish Head, Full Sail and Oskar Blues, among others. Additionally, beer specials coinciding with the event will be offered at each location. Total Wine & More, which currently has five Texas locations, operates 100 wine, beer and spirits superstores across 15 states.

Sierra Nevada is releasing its flagship pale ale in a new format—four-packs of 16-ounce cans—which will begin shipping to all 50 states next week. The Chico, California-based brewer has already had ample success with its pale ale in can format, with its 12-packs of 12-ounce cans ranking as the leader in the craft can segment. Sierra Nevada’s four-packs of 16-ounce Torpedo IPA cans and its limited 2013 release of Summerfest 12-pack cans have also posted brisk sales, the company says.

•Victory Brewing Company will release 1337 Ale to shelves along the East Coast beginning late February, around the time of the brewery’s 18th anniversary. 1337 Ale, made from a recipe from Victory co-founders Bill Covaleski and Ron Barchet’s early days as homebrewers, honors the legislation signed into law in 1979 that legalized homebrewing and sparked the thriving craft beer movement. The Downingtown, Pennsylvania brewery is also celebrating its future with the release of the limited ale, available in 22-ounce bottles and kegs, as it continues its expansion into a second production brewery in Parkesburg.

•Pennsylvania’s Tröegs Brewing Co. has revamped its seasonal range with the addition of three new labels, according to Pennlive. Cultivator Helles Bock—a new German-style beer—will join the brewer’s lineup in February as a spring seasonal. In the fall, the new Hop Knife Harvest Ale is set to replace Tröegs’ Dead Reckoning Porter, which will transition into a brewery-only draft release available from September-October. Lastly, a new white IPA called Blizzard of Hops will roll out as a winter offering. The new offerings join Nugget Nectar Ale, Flying Mouflan, Sunshine Pils, Mad Elf Ale and Master of Pumpkins in Tröegs’ current seasonal stable.

•Firestone Walker Brewing Company, based in Paso Robles, California, is releasing a new mixed 12-pack, The Lion’s Share, this month, to be followed in March by a mixed 24-pack of its beers, Bear’s Necessities. The Lion’s Share features three bottles of British pale ale DBA, California pale ale Pale 31, West Coast IPA Union Jack and blonde ale 805. Bear’s Necessities will include 24 bottles of the same selection—only instead of the 805 it will feature Pivo Hoppy Pils.

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