What’s on Tap: Las Vegas Beer News June 2023

Las Vegas Beer News: What’s Pouring in June

595 Craft and Kitchen, which I deem to be one of the premiere craft beer bars in Southern Nevada, will commemorate its 6th anniversary with a week full of special and unique beers from our local breweries. The celebration will begin on June 12 with four new local beer handles being added each day until all 24 taps are taken up with rare and rad brews by Saturday, June 17.

Breweries and brewers represented will include Able Baker, Astronomy, Bad Beat, Big Dog’s, CraftHaus, HUDL, Juxta Nomad, Las Vegas Brewing, Lovelady, Mojave, North 5th and Tenaya Creek.

Several of the beers were brewed specially for this occasion, such as Bad Beat’s Matt’s Best Friend (an India Pale Lager), Able Baker Dank Duck (a West Coast IPA), Big Dog’s My Nect and Maibock (hopped with Nectaron, which adds notes of pineapple, peach, grapefruit and passionfruit), Astronomy 594 Golden Ale (with habanero & vanilla) and Tenaya Creek Wascally Wabbit (a Hefeweizen/Belgian Golden blend with peach, carrot, ginger and turmeric).

Stopping in during this week is not only a way to support both local beer and one of our finest craft beer bars, but an opportunity to hang out with the numerous brewers and brewery industry reps who will be in attendance throughout the week.

There are several other cool beers pouring this month. HUDL Head Brewer Joe Cuozzo tells me he’ll have Honey I Berried the Showgirl, a 5.6% ABV Strawberry Honey Ale brewed with 220 pounds of wildflower honey and 84 pounds of strawberry puree; and Cool IPA, a 6.6% ABV West Coast IPA made with all-American 2-Row barley malt, a splash of Crystal malt and heavily dry hopped with Ekuanot and Idaho 7 Cryo Hops, which he asserts makes this beer refreshing and allows the dry hopping to be showcased.  

North 5th Head Brewer Patrick Tofte shares that on June 3 they are releasing Picklas Cage, a 4.7% ABV lightly tart sour with cucumber that makes a great base beer for their Michelada they serve in their taproom. In mid-June it will be followed up with Bite Lite, a 4.3% ABV American Lite Lager that is extremely crisp, light and refreshing.   

Astronomy Aleworks President Matt Brady informs me they’ll have two beers that to me sound perfect for the warmer weather. First up will be a Gose with mango and tangerine; and at the end of the month a collaboration with Juxta Nomad called CLK WRK, a Hazy IPA with blood orange. 

Las Vegas Brewing Company Head Brewer Amanda Koeller is currently pouring a Witbier called Pretty & Witty, brewed with coriander and orange peel and finished with pineapple puree. She says she’ll also bring out a mango/tamarind seltzer toward the middle of June.

Nevada Breweries Fare Quite Well at the 2023 World Beer Cup

The World Beer Cup (WBC) and the Great American Beer Festival (GABF) are considered the two most prestigious professional beer judging competitions in the world. As the WBC is open to all breweries worldwide, it is often referred to as “The Olympics of Beer.” This year it was held in May in Nashville as part of this year’s Craft Brewers Conference (Note: the conference and WBC will be held in Las Vegas next year).

The competition featured 10,213 entries from 2,376 breweries across 51 countries. With such a huge number of entries, it is especially impressive that four Nevada breweries each brought home an award.

IMBĪB Custom Brews (Reno, NV) has been on quite a roll, as it followed up its gold medallion win for its “Triad,” a lambic-style beer at last year’s WBC with yet another at this year’s competition. This year its Golden Funghi earned gold in the Experimental Wood-Aged Beer category.

Of the win, Co-founder Matt Johnson says, “Our brewing team was blown away when we learned that we had won gold at the World Beer Cup again this year for our Golden Funghi. We took our Belgian Golden Strong Ale and aged it in a bourbon barrel and then infused it with candy cap mushrooms. It was very much an experiment, but we knew that the maple-like flavor from the mushrooms was going to be a hit. We are so proud to be part of the Nevada beer scene and cannot wait to help with hosting the World Beer Cup in Las Vegas next year.” 

image courtesy of Brewers Association

A gold was also awarded to Schussboom Brewing (Reno, NV) for its “Lit Out From Reno” in the Belgian-style Strong Specialty Ale category. It’s worth mentioning that Schussboom opened in June, 2021 and medaled in the 2022 GABF in October, so not an easy feat to earn two major awards within months of each other and so soon after having opened. Schussboom

President Briana Wagner says, “Winning a gold medal at the World Beer Cup was a wonderful surprise and great honor. It was a proud moment to represent Nevada along with Shoe Tree Brewing Co., IMBĪB Custom Brews and Big Dog’s Brewing. We work very hard to create exceptional craft beer and to be placed as the best example of a Belgian Style Strong Ale in the world validates our efforts and care we put into our craft. We turn two years old on June 2nd and this is a cherry on our birthday sundae. Cheers to all of our craft brewer friends and patrons who continue to support us on this awesome ride.”

image courtesy of 595

Big Dog’s Brewing (Las Vegas, NV) earned a bronze for its “Old E, but a Good E” in the Wood and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer category, which is a version of their Knotty Dog Barleywine aged in bourbon barrels and cellared for 2-3 years.

Speaking about the beer and the WBC honor, Head Brewer Dave Pascual says, “This award might not mean much to the average person, but it means a lot in our industry and to our craft. Being able to submit beer to be judged by expert brewers, peers, and judges helps to validate our brewing skill. I will always say that we are happy to help represent Las Vegas and the state of Nevada as a craft beer destination. There are many fantastic beers that we and other local breweries brew that don’t get submitted for judging, but you never know what could happen if you don’t try. Glad we did, cheers.”

It’s quite noteworthy that Dave Pascual, who I continue to dub the “Michael Phelps of Nevada brewers,” has the distinction of being the person who has garnered more major medal wins than any other brewer in the history of Nevada.

Also earning a bronze was Shoe Tree Brewing (Carson City and Minden, NV) for its “Coco Burrito Supreme” in the Specialty Beer category. The beer is a Porter brewed with colossal amounts of cocoa nibs, vanilla, peanuts and lactose.   


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