Craft Beers Inspired by Northwest Florida Headed Our Way from Idyll Hounds Brewery

Craft Beers Inspired by Northwest Florida Headed Our Way from Idyll Hounds Brewery

Get ready to welcome a new local brewery to the Northwest Florida craft beer scene. Idyll Hounds Brewery has been anything but idle as they've been busy putting together their brewery in Santa Rosa Beach. All that work is coming to fruition as they are ready to distribute their brews to the local area now.

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Grayton Beer Opens Taproom

Grayton Beer Opens Taproom

Back in March of this year, Grayton Beer opened their new brewery in Santa Rosa, FL. You would think they might take some well deserved down-time after tackling such a large endeavor, but instead have continued working at break-neck speeds. Including completely renovating their website, releasing their first seasonal "Gordgeous" in draft and 22 ounce bottles, and expanded their distribution into Alabama.

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2014 Destin Beer Festival

Hope all our readers have been taking full advantage of all the great local beer festivals in-and-around the Pensacola area. For those who haven't yet, it's not too late to start as there are still several more on the calendar before the year is out. The next being the Destin Beer Festival, taking place on Saturday, September 27th from 2pm - 5pm. The festival has put together an impressive lineup of participating breweries and will include culinary stations and live entertainment provided by Boukou Groove.

Official Festival Flyer

The entire list of participating breweries can be found on the festival's website and currently consists of the following:

A few breweries that we personally would recommend visiting this year are:

Props Brewery & Brewpub (Fort Walton Beach, FL)
Definitely should check this local brewery out if you haven't done so already. Not only do they have a good regular lineup of offerings but they also have been putting out some great seasonal/specialty beers as well. They are also well on their way to distributing their beers, hopefully by the end of the year.

Idyll Hounds Brewery (Santa Rosa Beach, FL)
A chance to try some beer from this up-and-coming new brewery. Also well on their way to distributing their beer in cans. Though they may not be in the Pensacola market initially, we hope to see their brews on the market shelves in the future.

Hop Heads Home Brew Supply (Fort Walton Beach, FL)
The local brewing supply source for FWB and the surrounding areas. They carry all the supplies you will need to home brew including grains, malts, and hops. They also host a monthly "Brew Day" beer making class.

General Admission tickets are $35 in advance and $45 the day of. VIP tickets are $50 in advance, $60 day of and includes early 1pm entrance to the festival, access to the VIP Tent, a chance to meet some beer celebs, and tastings from special casks reserved for VIP attendees. Proceeds from the festival benefit Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation which raises money to benefit children in need in Northwest Florida.

Make sure to check out the festivals Facebook and Twitter page to keep up with new announcements.

Event Summary
Event: Destin Beer Festival
Location: Chan’s Wine World (Destin) - 4424 Commons Dr E, Destin, FL When: Saturday, September 27th 2pm - 5pm
Cost: $35 in advance, $45 Day Of / VIP - $50 in advance, $60 Day Of Tickets: Online or at gate on day of

2014 Emerald Coast Beer Festival

The event that local craft beer lovers anticipate yearly, the Emerald Coast Beer Festival, is nearly upon us. Hosted by the Escambia Bay Homebrewers, the festival consists of two events, a Beer Pairing Dinner and Beer Tasting. The Beer Pairing Dinner takes place on Thursday, September 4th while the Beer Tasting is Friday, September 5th.

Official Beer Fest Flyer Flyer Correction - Beer Tasting Starts at 5:30pm

This year we won't be including a lot of information on the Beer Pairing Dinner, only because it already sold out. This year's dinner is with Cigar City Brewing, the venerable Florida brewery out of Tampa, and is sure to be a memorable event for anyone who was lucky enough to already get tickets.

We love to see more local beer festival opportunities popping up around us but if you can only make one festival this year, we would recommend this one. Why do we and many others love this festival so much? It is hosted by our own local homebrew club, brewery representatives are present and pouring which always leads to lively conversations, many homebrew clubs participate allowing you to sample unique beers you would not have access to otherwise, and the festival includes a really good showing from local and regional breweries.

You are bound to have a great time no matter which venues you check out during the festival. A few booths that we personally would recommend this year are:

  • Pensacola Bay Brewery (Pensacola, FL)
    If you live in the area, we truly hope that you've already tried their beer at local venues and visited the brewery as well. But, this is your chance to remedy the situation if for whatever reason you haven't. If your attending from out-of-town, make sure to check out Pensacola's hometown brewery.

  • Fairhope Brewing Company (Fairhope, AL)
    If you haven't gotten the chance to visit their brewery yet, this is your chance to try their brews without leaving Pensacola. You can't get their beer in Florida but after tasting their beers, we are sure you will make a trip out to visit them every once in awhile. We do!

  • Crooked Letter Brewing Company (Ocean Springs, MS)
    A chance to try this breweries offerings without making the trip to MS as they are not available in Alabama or Florida yet. We recently visited and found their brews exceptional.

  • Oyster City Brewing Company (Apalachicola, FL)
    Opened very recently, we haven't even tried their beers yet. A great chance to try beers from a new FL panhandle brewery.

  • Serda Brewing Company (Mobile, AL)
    In case you haven't heard, the days of Mobile currently not having its own brewery are hopefully numbered as Serda plans on filling this gap in 2015. Try their beers before they even open the brewery!

  • Escambia Bay Homebrewers (Pensacola, FL)
    We always recommend checking out as many homebrew clubs as you can but of course, our highest recommendation goes for our local club - Escambia Bay Homebrewers. You get to try beers not commercially available and your guaranteed to get a chance to try some very unique brews. They bring along an impressive variety of brews to try. So stop by and make sure to thank them for hosting this event every year.

You can check out the complete list of participating breweries, homebrew clubs, and distributors on the bottom of the Beer Tasting page of the festival site. You will also want to grab a festival map to start planning which booths are on your "must visit" list.

Advance tickets are $30 and will be $40 at the gate the day of the event. VIP tickets are $55 and will be $60 at the gate the day of the event if any are still available. Designated driver tickets will be available at the gate for $10. You can get your tickets online or you can pick them up in-person at the following locations:

The charities supported by the 2014 Festival are Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northwest Florida and Seville Rotary Club.

Event Summary
Event: Beer Pairing Dinner
Location: Seville Quarter - Apple Annie's Room
When: Thursday, September 4th at 7pm
Tickets: Sold Out

Event: Beer Tasting
Location: Seville Quarter
When: Friday, September 5th 5:30pm-8:30pm (VIP Room 5pm)
Cost: $30 in advance, $40 Day Of / VIP - $55 in advance, $60 Day Of
Tickets: Website or at venues listed above

2014 Ft Walton Beach Beer Fest

There is more than one option this weekend for those looking to enjoy a craft beer festival. There is the Dauphin Street Beer Festival taking place in Mobile, AL as well as the Ft Walton Beach Beer Festival hosted by Chan's Wine World.

There will be over 50 beers available for sampling at the festival as well food and live music from Continuum.

Official Event Flyer

Tickets are $25 in advance and can be bought online. Tickets will also be available the day of for $35. 100% of the proceeds are being donated to SFA Ch. 7, a non-profit all volunteer organization that provides support to families of the 7th Special Forces Group (Ariborne).

Event Summary
Event: Ft Walton Beach Beer Fest
Location: FWB, FL - Uptown Station
When: Saturday, August 23rd 4pm - 7pm
Cost: $25 Advanced / $35 Day of
Tickets: Available Online

17th Annual Dauphin Street Beer Festival

It was disappointing news when the Inaugural Port City Brewfest was cancelled due to low ticket sales. But now it is time to start preparing for a beer festival in Mobile that has been going for 16 years strong, the Dauphin Street Beer Festival, showing that craft beer does have a following in Mobile.

The 17th Annual Dauphin Street Beer Festival takes place Saturday, August 23rd from 6 - 9 pm. This festival does not follow the typical template many other beer festivals follow, instead they use a "pub crawl" concept and place it on steroids, allowing participants to sample an impressive collection of craft beers in various local bars, taverns, and restaurants in Downtown Mobile.

A festival map and list of beers found at each venue can be found on the festival's Facebook page:

Festival Map

Festival Venue / Beer List

Tickets are $25 and can be bought at any of the participating venues or online through a few of the participating venues: Crescent Theater, Soul Kitchen, and Serda's Coffee Co.

After buying your tickets you will need to register them in order to gain entry into the 16 private clubs participating in the Beer Fest. You can do so at the City of Mobile Festival Registration website.

For those traveling from Florida to attend make sure to check out the hotel specials.

Event Summary Event: 17th Annual Dauphin Street Beer Festival
Location: Mobile, Alabama
When: Saturday, August 23rd, 6pm - 9pm
Cost: $25 per person

GrassLands’ Grasstacular Fundathon is On

GrassLands Grasstacular Fundathon

We've been covering the development of GrassLands Brewing Company out of Tallahassee, Florida since August of 2012 with our review of their Le Roi Rouge Imperial Red. In March of this year GrassLands chose the future site of their brewery. And now, with a launch date planned for September, owner Gabe Grass has announced the GrassLands’ Grasstacular Fundathon.

The GrassLands’ Grasstacular Fundathon is a chance for you to help GrassLands Brewery become a reality. Every donation from 10 to 5,ooo dollars will receive a reward along with acknowledgement via a plaque centerpiece located in GrassLand Brewery's taproom.

Owner Gabe Grass:

Your assistance is so meaningful to us – whether you decide to contribute $20 or $2,000, each and every contribution will make a huge difference in helping GrassLands open its doors and hit the ground running! We want to help make Tallahassee and eventually the state of Florida a craft beer destination, and we absolutely cannot do that without your help. You’ve been so awesome in your support of our eventual launch, and we definitely couldn’t have come this far without you.

GrassLands' CrowedBrewed campaign has a goal of 30,000 dollars. As of today 96 backers have donated over 11,000 dollars. If the goal is not reached by August 5th all money will be returned. So the time to support a promising up and coming local brewery is now.

Visit GrassLands’ Grasstacular Fundathon to learn more about the vision of GrassLand's Brewing Company, read up on all the awesome rewards, and most importantly, donate.